Five of my Favorite Fiction and Fantasy Books

My Love for Books

It proved difficult for me to pick only five books out of the million that I've read, for this review. I hope that I can continue to write about all the books I love. Terri Goodkind is an author I enjoy reading, and when I was young I read books like Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery.I have read everything else she wrote, but I also enjoy other classic novels too, like Wuthering Heights . These reviews below are my more recent favorites, and I will have to give my readers updates. I hope you find something to enjoy.

House Rules

House Rules by Jodi Picoult (she has also written of My Sister's Keeper, Nineteen Minutes, Change of Heart , and many more) is a big book with an amazing amount of information along with a great mystery story. Jacob Hunt is accused of murder. He is also a teenage boy with Aspergers syndrome. Can you imagine what goes through everyone's mind when they hear what happened? This novel will tell you. Anyone who is confused by this disease or needs more knowledge of autism and Aspergers should really read this book.

One of the things I like about House Rules is how each chapter is from different character's point of view. Emma (Jacob's mother), Theo (his brother), the detective, and the lawyer that are working on Jacobs case all have things to say. It is extremely interesting to read how each character thinks, and it also pulls the story together neatly. There are just enough clues to keep you thinking. I enjoy House Rules because it really shows you what it's like to be Autistic by diving into the depths of Jacob's mind. You should join this emotional roller-coaster.

Light On Snow

For a great book of fiction, Light on Snow by Anita Shreve is an excellent choice. I've loved almost every book she has written, and this is in the top three. (The Weight of Water and The Pilot's Wife are others).I think the fact that it's set in New Hampshire (the state I live in) that appeals to me. Nicky Dillon is a twelve year old girl who finds an abandoned baby in the woods by her house. She brought the baby home to her widowed father. Later on, a woman, haunted by her own terrible choices, shows up and becomes a big part of the story (I don't want to give it away).

I know it's hard to believe that such a simple storyline could create an exciting novel, but somehow it does. Anita Shreve is just a very admirable author, who can make anything seem like an adventure, and the characters are average people who are easy to relate to. If you are looking for something new to read, you should try Light On Snow .

Dark Tower VII Song of Susannah

All seven books of Stephen King's Dark Tower series is a must read, but the last three books stand out to me as being some of the best books I've ever read. Dark Tower V Wolves of Calla is an intense, jam-packed thriller. This book is the one that made me fall in love with this series. Dark Tower VII Song of Susannah is a perfect ending that you wished could have gone on forever; it is a solid piece of work, still as amazing as Wolves of Calla , but set apart.

To understand Dark Tower VII , you must read the first five of the series. At least the fourth and fifth are essential to understanding the characters, places and well, everything. The basics: Roland is a "gunslinger" who goes on a mission to find the "dark tower", after he finds the "man in black" in the first two books. On his travels, he draws three people from various places and times (this will be explained in detail in the the Dark Tower III, Drawing of Three), and they become "gunslingers". After that, there are just adventures after adventures, while they still come closer and closer to their destination. These books are simply works of art in how the characters are each examined thoroughly, each one completely different from the next. I was never a Stephen King fan, just because I had heard he was a "formula" writer and a "mystery" writer, and these are the kinds of books I would normally ignore, but once I started, I couldn't stop.

In Song of Susannah , it's exactly what the title states(as in all of these books). Susannah must be saved from the place she has traveled to (New York city in 1999), and from the "daughter of none" who has almost taken over her body and mind. While reading about Susannah's song, Eddie and Roland travel into Western Maine, 1977 to find the author of 'Salems Lot (Stephen King!). There is a place called Castle Discordia on the border of End World, and people like the billy-bumbler and Manni senders. This novel is filled with suspense and excitement, leaving the readers with extreme anticipation for the next one.

Audiobook Sample!!

Secrets of a Fire King

If you haven't read The Secrets of a Fire King by Kim Edwards yet, you need to. Especially if you have already read The Memory Keeper's Daughter (#1 New York Times Bestseller). I have to be honest with you, I liked The Memory Keeper's Daughter a little better than this The Fire King , but it just depends what you are into. Secrets of a Fire King is actually a thin book (255 pages) of stories, but some of the characters are actually in more than one story.

I really enjoyed most of the stories immensely. There were one of two that aren't exactly what I would call "great" but still, on a whole, this book is at least among the top ten. The reason I rate this novel so high is simply the fact that Kim Edwards has a very unique style that I tend to gravitate towards.

The stories in the Fire King are placed in a variety of locations. Jugglers and a trapeze artist, or a woman who works for Marie Curie. Each story will leave you entranced through discovery, understanding and the elusive mysteries of love.

One of my favorite of these stories is called Aristotle's Lantern. This is good because it takes place on an island somewhere in the Philippines, and you can really get into the different people's lives. It all starts off peaceful and calming, and then things start to happen. You will be surprised at the turn this story will take you. Just to give you an idea of Kim Edward's writing style, I've given you an excerpt from the beginning of Aristotle's Lantern :

Phil gave the signal, his arm a swift blur in the heat shimmering-air. Pragna, her head tilted to catch the sun, dark glasses hiding her expression, lowered her book to her belly; at seven months pregnant, she couldn't dive.

"Go!" Phil called as his arm fell, and in the next instant Jonathan was over the edge, disappearing into that sea, so blue, so green, the water a liquid gem closing over him. Then Gunnar, lean and tan, plunged into the sea and disappeared. I sat on the edge of the boat, adjusting my mask. "Go, go!" Phil called, and I pushed off, sliding after Gunnar into that other world.

It was so quiet,. Falling, I noticed this first. Light fell in shafts and then diffused., the water turning dimmer and more opaque and suddenly cooler. A school of tiny silverfish scattered before us like sparks. Below, Jonathan's limbs were luminous against the ocean floor. I felt the water shift as Phil dove in, and turned to see him silhouetted against the clear, wavering ceiling of the ocean, a wide stream of bubbles in his wake.

First King of Shannara

I started reading books by Terry Brooks when I was about thirteen or fourteen.There was the Sword of Shannara, and  the Magic Kingdom of Landover books that I had just started reading, until I received First King of Shannara for Christmas. This is the prelude to the Sword of Shannara , and Terry Brooks explodes in a wash of action and descriptive storytelling. After I read this book, he was suddenly my favorite author, and I had to read everything he wrote. There were many good books by him, but First King of Shannara is still the best.

First King of Shannara  is a fantasy story with a magical land, dwarves, elves, trolls and even druids. Druids are basically very powerful magicians. As in any great fantasy story, there is good and evil. I think one of the things that makes this novel so intense is that it is set during a period of war in the Four Lands, and the druids are fighting to save their magic from Brona, the evil Warlock Lord.

I decided that in order for you to appreciate Terry Brooks and read this book, I have to give you an excerpt from an especially descriptive part.

Chapter 24

Wind and rain tore at the ramparts and walls of Stedden Keep, mirroring the fury of the battle being fought at the castle's broad gates. Twice the Northland army had come against the walls and twice the Dwarves had driven it back. Now it was nearing midnight, the skies black, the air thick with rain, the light so poor that it wasw impossible to see more than a few feet save when lightning scorched the whole of Ravenshorn with its brilliant, momentary fire.

They were going to lose this one, too, Risca thought, striding down the stairway from the main wall to the central court in search of Raybur. Not that any of them had thought they wouldn't. That they were still alive after weeks of fighting and retreating was a bigger miracle still. But they were running out of time and chances. They had stalled for just about as long as they were able.  

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