Where The Wolves Read

A blog where I review mostly books. I also review, if my appetite allows, movies, music, and video games. Enjoy the feast!

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling

Summary: There is a door at the end of a silent corridor, and it's haunting Harry Potter's dreams. Why else would he be waking in the middle of the night, screaming in terror?

Here are just a few of the things on Harry's mind:

• A Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher with a personality like poisoned honey
• A venomous, disgruntled house-elf
• Ron as Keeper of the Gryffindor Quidditch team
• The looming terror of the end-of-term Ordinary Wizarding Level exams

. . . and of course, the growing threat of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.

In the richest installment yet of J.K. Rowling's seven-part story, Harry Potter is faced with the unreliability of the very government of the magical world and the impotence of the authorities at Hogwarts.

Despite this (or perhaps because of it), he finds depth and strength in his friends, beyond what even he knew; boundless loyalty; and unbearable sacrifice.

Though thick runs the plot (as well as the spine), readers will race through these pages and leave Hogwarts, like Harry, wishing only for the next train back.

Review: Order of the Phoenix is my least favorite Harry Potter book, but it's still very good. I like seeing characters like Neville grow even more. Especially during the scenes with the DA. You get introduced to a few new characters like Luna. She's sweet, but strange. Certainly a unique character. If you have a hard time fitting in with people then I recommend you pay close attention to this character. You also get introduced to Umbridge. Ugh. She's my least favorite character in the entire series. Absolutely cannot stand her. Sirius annoyed me a bit in OotP. He acted quite childish in certain parts.

The story was good. I liked seeing the rage that Harry struggled with throughout this book. That struck a chord with me, and it was nice to see those internal battles. I liked seeing Harry's self-doubt as well. He didn't know if he was a good guy or a bad guy and I think a lot of people struggle with this every day. That was encouraging for me. Dumbledore keeps showing these great moments where he is clearly supposed to be a "God-character". Sometimes I want to hug him and sometimes I want to strangle him. And that ending? Oh gosh. That ending.

4 howls

Friday, March 30, 2012

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

Summary: Harry Potter is midway through his training as a wizard and his coming of age. Harry wants to get away from the pernicious Dursleys and go to the International Quidditch Cup. He wants to find out about the mysterious event that's supposed to take place at Hogwarts this year, an event involving two other rival schools of magic, and a competition that hasn't happened for a hundred years. He wants to be a normal, fourteen-year-old wizard. But unfortunately for Harry Potter, he's not normal - even by wizarding standards. And in his case, different can be deadly.

Review: Goblet of Fire is very close to being my favorite Harry Potter book, but Prisoner of Azkaban still holds that title. The characters are still great, but we get a bit more with this book. We meet the students of Durmstrang and Beauxbatons which are 2 new magical schools. It would be nice to know more about wizarding academies in places like America and Spain and Japan, but this was a nice taste of what else is out there. It shows that Rowling put thought into the world outside of London just like she did with Hogwarts.

I loved reading about the Triwizard Tournament as well. It was great seeing Charlie again in Goblet, and learning about the different kinds of dragons. The third task was my favorite though. I like the creativity of throwing so much at the contestants, and putting them through a challenge of facing everything they should know about. Seeing Dobby again was nice as well. I wish you could have gotten glimpses of him in the movies, but oh well.

4. 5 howls

Monday, March 19, 2012

Book Blogger Confessions: 3/19/2012

It's time for another Book Blogger Confession hosted by Karen at For What It's Worth and Tiger at All-Consuming Meda.

Question: Everyone LOVES that book! Why don't I? How do you handle being the one reviewer who doesn't like a book that's taking the blogosphere by storm? Do you write a review? Pretend you didn't read the book?

I always hate when people recommend a book to me, or I hear a lot of hype over a book, but it doesn't always work with me. Case and point: Twilight. My IRL friends know how much I dislike these books. No reviews are not on my blog because I read them before I started my blog, and I don't know if I actually put in the effort to read them again when I know I'm going to give them a negative review. It seems like a waste of time. I know these books are popular though and that's fine. I have friends who did very much enjoy these books. I didn't. Sorry. There are also books like Divergent and Shatter Me that got crazy good reviews. I've read both books. I've enjoyed both books. I didn't like them quite as much as everyone else though. I believe I gave them both 4 howls on my blog, so yes I did like them a lot. Yes I will read their sequels. I was a little disappointed (not sure if I was disappointed in the books or myself) because it didn't quite hit the mark I was looking for. Another book I've seen decent reviews for, but I didn't like was Dust City. I was confused through a lot of the book and the ending fell flat. Again, no review because I read it at a time when I was unable to put up posts. I let my friend borrow it because she thought it would be a good read. She couldn't finish it. I've seen a couple blogger reviews and they liked it. They thought it was unique (which it is). I just didn't get into it. Wings by Aprilynne Pike is another example. I like fey books. I'm always up for reading a new book about them. I even looked past the blurb from Stephanie Meyer because I was so sure I would like this book. No. I didn't like any of the characters except for Tamani (sp?), and the story was rather dull for me. I've seen negative reviews of Wings, but better reviews of the others so I might try this series again. I'm not sure. Final example: House of Night series. I've read Marked, and it was...okay? That's the best way I could describe it. It had a decent start. I guess what ruined it was I started to read the summaries of the later books to see where it was going and my first thought was, "Zoey becomes a bit of a slut." She had 3 different guys she was bouncing from? I'm alright with love triangles, but there gets to be a point when you get sick of them. And HoN was that series that made me gag because of it. This being said, I liked what the Cast women did adding Wiccan rituals with vampire lore, and I've been slowly collecting these books in case I want to read them again. So no I haven't completely written them off. Again, thank bloggers for that. I've seen better reviews of the later books than I did of the first couple so I was encouraged to give this series another look. I think that's all I've got to say on this topic.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

Summary: J. K. Rowling continues to bewitch readers everywhere with the third book in her magical Potter series, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Harry's ongoing exploits, along with those of his contemporaries, teachers, and relatives, are as imaginative, entertaining, and mysterious as ever. For during Harry's third year at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he must face his greatest challenge yet: a confrontation with Sirius Black, an escaped convict and madman who is rumored to be in cahoots with Harry's archenemy, the Dark Wizard Lord Voldemort. This alone would be daunting enough, but Harry's task is made even more trying when he discovers that Sirius is suspected of being the one who killed Harry's parents.

For Harry, the Hogwarts campus has always been a sanctuary, but when Black escapes from the horrifying clutches of Azkaban Prison, all clues suggest the madman is headed for Hogwarts and Harry himself. As a result, the school starts to feel more like a prison than a sanctuary as Harry finds himself constantly watched and under guard. What's more, the terrifying Dementors - the horrifying creatures who guard Azkaban Prison - are lurking about the campus looking for Black. And their effect on Harry is a devastating one.

Still, life at school offers plenty of distractions. Harry really likes the new teacher for Defense Against the Dark Arts, Professor Lupin, who might be able to teach Harry how to defend himself against the Dementors. But Professor Snape's behavior toward Lupin has Harry wondering what secrets the two men are hiding. Harry's friend Hermione is also acting very strangely. And, of course, there is the tension caused by the ongoing Quidditch competition between the Gryffindors and the Slytherins and the never-ending bullying of the Slytherin leader, Draco Malfoy.

One of Rowling's greatest strengths is her ability to stack mystery upon mystery in a way that keeps the pages turning without frustrating the reader. Her clues are always fair and bountiful, but it's easy to lose track of them in the midst of all the high suspense, spell-casting action, and unexpected plot twists. That's okay, because Rowling ties it all neatly together at the end in a way that will leave readers snapping their fingers and muttering, "Oh yeah. Forgot about that one. How clever!"

Review: Words cannot describe how I feel about this book. Prisoner of Azkaban is by far my favorite HP novel, and I'm positive it will remain my favorite until the day I die. This is the book where you get introduced to a couple of my favorite characters. There is a good bit of character development as well. Especially in Hermione. I think she learned a lot about herself in PoA, and I think she is starting to realize that brains aren't everything. Harry also has to learn that the things you hear about a person are not always what is the truth. This becomes important again in later books. And you get introduced to friends of Harry's parents and you learn a bit more about their past which is always a fun little thing to do. You also meet various new creatures (of both the light and dark variety). The magical world gets expanded a good deal as the students get to experience their first trips to Hogsmede. I'll add that I have read this book countless times, but I've only just realized that there is a typo (at least one, but there could be more) in the book, and there are some bits that didn't match with previous books just right, but it did not take away from my love of it at all! I have no idea what to add to this. If you've read Harry Potter then you know exactly how incredible this series is. If you haven't, go read it!

5 howls

Friday, March 2, 2012

Cover Reveal: Bonds of Fenris

I was recently contacted by S.J. Bell about being part of a cover reveal for his book, Bonds of Fenris. I like this cover a lot. It's a nice, simple, silhouette style. It definitely makes it obvious this books is about wolves which is super exciting! Anyways, here is the cover:

And here is a little blurb about Bonds of Fenris:

Talia Thornwood's life ended one year ago, when she became a werewolf. She survived the attack, and the horrifying transformation a month later, but the life she has now is barely worth living. She lurks about in a filthy, run-down house, with too many werewolves crammed into too small a space. Every day is a struggle against the stress of human contact, the romantic prodding of her obnoxious packmate Pierce, and the gnawing hunger for flesh in her soul.

She's all but resigned herself to a dreary existence on the margins of society when she meets Corwin. Corwin is a werewolf like none other. He walks among humans as if it was nothing, and can keep his wolf under control even when the moon is full. Talia's mind is suddenly opened to the possibilities before her, and the realization of how little she really knows about lycanthropy.

Corwin claims that he can teach her how to cope as he does, even how to transcend her affliction. But it will not be easy. It is a hard education that requires her to question everything her pack taught her, and confront exactly what she has become. And, more amazingly, what she never stopped being.

Bonds of Fenris is a paranormal novel by S.J. Bell, due to be released through Smashwords on May 7, 2012. Visit the author's website at . Cover art is by the delightful Stephanie Mooney, at .