Thursday, April 19, 2012

Almost There!

So the semester is almost over, which means that I will have time to read again! This makes me happier than you can imagine. There is a lot that I need to read. Despite the fact I haven't had much free time lately, I have actually managed to finish two books (one of which was The Game of Thrones, which was quite the accomplishment in and of itself, I must say.) Both were quite enjoyable, but they were definitely completely different from each other.

The first one I finished was The Game of Thrones or The Song of Ice and Fire: Book One by George R.R. Martin. I had this book recommended to me a while ago by someone I worked with, and after receiving a gift card for the Kindle Store on Amazon, I decided to buy it. The story line is really complicated, so I will do my best to summarize it here. In the country of Seven Kingdoms where winter can last decades, kings, queens, knights, and regular civilians struggle to gain the throne that will rule the country. As the time period of peace is slowly coming to end, the country soon falls into chaos. It's difficult to tell who's alliances lie with who, and who can actually be trusted. In a power struggle that could mean your life, knowing who to trust is everything. And if you place your trust in the wrong person, it could be deadly.

Okay, that wasn't really the greatest synopsis, but it's kind of difficult to explain what goes on in The Game of Thrones because it's told from so many different points of view. At the beginning, it really took me a while to figure out who was who, and how all of the characters interacted with each other. Plus the fact that some of them have quite unusual names didn't really help. Once I got my bearings, I didn't want to put this novel down. It's very fast paced, and Martin tends to leave the reader hanging with one character and quickly jump to the next. I have to admit, I kind of forgot about some of the cliff hangers because of this, and I wouldn't remember the character was in a dangerous situation until I got back to their narrative. But I liked that Martin kept me on top of my feet while reading. It keeps me engaged in the story, and he definitely made me want to read more, even though the books get longer and longer (oh well, I'll have free time soon anyway.). I also have heard that the TV show that HBO made out of this series is really, really good, though when I went to try to watch it last weekend, I couldn't find it anywhere on the internet. So I guess I'll be renting when I get home. Once I watch it, I'll definitely let you know if it's worth seeing. From what I've heard, it definitely is.

So the other book I read, The Bermudez Triangle by Maureen Johnson, was totally and completely different from The Game of Thrones. The Bermudez Triangle follows the story of three girls in their final year of high school, who have been friends forever. However, after Nina spends the summer away from Avery and Mel, things change between them. Nina has the best summer of her life, starting a relationship with Steve, which she's sure will last until they both start school at Stanford the following year. However, things between Avery and Mel have completely changed while Nina has been gone. When Nina discovers the two of them kissing, she knows that nothing between them will ever be the same.

This book was great for two reasons. First, I thought the way the characters interacted was accurate to how teenagers act, especially Nina. She becomes so obsessed with Steve, thinking that they'll be together forever, and this is something that I personally see in teenagers all of the time (especially those in high school). Those kind of people actually irritate me, so it was no surprise that I became irritated that Nina was so obsessed with Steve. It's kind of obvious from the beginning that the relationship won't work out, but Nina was so blind with her love that she didn't see that. But that's getting away from what I liked about this book. The second thing that made me like it was it was a portrayal of a lesbian relationship. Yes, the publishing industry has come a long way in publishing books with LGBTQ characters, but not necessarily in the way of lesbians. I was just reading an article for my final paper in my children's literature class, and the author said that the amount of lesbians presented in young adult literature hasn't been growing the way that gay characters has been, which I found really interesting. It's definitely something that I'll have to look into, because now I'm curious to see whether or not this author was correct.

On that note, I should probably get back to work, writing the paper mentioned earlier. I will have to let you know my findings for this paper, since I'm analyzing how the portrayal of gay characters in young adult literature has changed from 1969, when the first one was published, to now. It seems like it will be a very interesting paper. Until next time, happy reading! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment