Friday, 14 June 2013

The return of the - Kismet Spills All...'s June 2013!  What happened to 2012?  Or even the beginning of 2013?  I stopped blogging in May 2012 with the intention of starting up again after my university exams were over...that never happened unfortunately; not through choice, but more through the fact that life took over and the year flew by full of business and stressfulness and all the rest. 

Now, I have just recently found out that I have passed my final honours year of university and will no longer be a student...freedom!

So, with this new lease on life, I've decided to give blogging another try.  With me being the perfectionist that I am, I am having difficulties determining how to go about it.  So, I've decided to just go with the flow at hard as that will be for me.  I'll post when I am able to post and try to keep a somewhat reasonable schedule.  Even though I stopped my blog in May 2012, I did not stop reading or creating drafts that still need to be fixed and posted.

I can't wait to start reading properly again and be able to write about my reviews, favourite quotes and anticipations.  I guess what I'm saying is, I missed blogging, and I'm glad to be back!

- Kismet Spills All.


Friday, 25 May 2012


I can't believe it has been two months since my last post!

I had to take an abrupt hiatus as I couldn't find a suitable way to juggle blogging with studying for my exams and therefore it started to take a bit of the fun out of blogging.

So I have decided to take a bit more time out to come up with a way to fit blogging into my schedule as I love doing it and don't want to go about it the wrong way!

I am still reading when I can, (and will try to get as much of my reviews completed and uploaded at some point in the future), and trying to keep up with the challenges that I signed up to!

So, hopefully, I will find a way to do this, and restart my blog, making it bigger and better!

- Kismet Spills All.

Friday, 23 March 2012

The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins.

Published: 5th January 2009
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Scholastic
Pages: 464
Age Group: Young Adult
Challenge: Book Blogger Recommendation Challenge, TBR Pile Challenge, 100+ Reading Challenge, Read and Review Challenge
Buy this book: Amazon UK

Synopsis [Amazon UK]
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. But Katniss has been close to death before and survival, for her, is second nature. The Hunger Games is a searing novel set in a future with unsettling parallels to our present. Welcome to the deadliest reality TV show ever...

The cover...
The cover does highlight the main elements with the blood, the arrow and the mockingjay.  I also like that the title looks almost dirty and has two silhouettes of a boy and a girl, referring to the two tributes, in the spaces of letters.

How did I find out about this book?
I have heard about this series a lot since it came out but I had never actually bothered to read it until it was all Katersoneseven on Youtube could talk about and I decided to give it a try.  I have already read this book before but decided to re-read it and read the others before the movie is released.

What is this book about?
A girl named Katniss lives in District 12, the furthest and poorest district from the high class Capitol.  She has to illegally hunt to put food on the table for her family and worryingly await the yearly Hunger Games.  A 'game' that puts 24 people against each other to only have one victor.  When Katniss volunteers as tribute to replace her 12 year old sister, her life is turned into a television show where she has to keep herself alive as well as unknowingly consider her love life and potential future/death.

My opinion...

I absolutely adored this book.  It was well thought out and everything was planned for, even down to the tiny details.  The world of Panem is clearly visible in my mind and I couldn't wait to see how the film portrayed this.

I liked the way the book was written, in first person from Katniss herself.  However, it appears as though she is talking to the audience of the book from some sort of diary especially when she tells the characters in the book only half the story but the rest is there in detail for the reader.  This could potentially be giving the game away about what is about to happen.

It would have been great to have a bit more detail on Gale so that I could have firmly decided who my choice of romantic interest for Katniss could be as throughout the book the admiration for Peeta just grew stronger as there wasn't enough reference to Gale.  Which, in my opinion, it should have for Katniss too as in a situation like that it seems that it would change people and their perceptions of others.  Yet, Katniss's affections would always relate back to the audience watching the Hunger Games and the sponsors it would potentially enlighten.  It would have been better if she was a bit more attached to Peeta in a romantic way other than only for his safety.  Although she still seems to be a bit naiive in this area, especially considering she is only 16.

The format of the book was great! However, I especially loved the way in which the actual games were portrayed to the reader.  I couldn't wait to see what happens next and loved how anything could happen!  Although The Hunger Games was about fighting to the death, the author still managed to capture the hearts of the audience through the amazing characters and the way in which they chose to fight for survival.  Although children fighting children is not ideal, it was told in a way that wasn't as violent as it could have been, and added the special touches of humour and romance to pull us away from the hurt and fear.

I can't help but recommend this book to anyone who wants a new and exciting read!  I've already recommended it to a lot of my family and friends!

If you enjoyed this book: what to read next...
This book is part of a series with book two titled Catching Fire! The movie version of this book was released today, March 23rd.  I have heard that an older book titled Battle Royale has the same theory as The Hunger Games yet has much more gore, so I'll definitely be checking that out!

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Thoughts on a Quote [3].

Thoughts on a Quote is a Thursday segment I have created. This will be for any segments in a book that stick out to me that I want to voice my opinion on.

"The world was made up of people putting one foot in front of the other; and a life might appear ordinary simply becase the person living it had done so for a long time.
Harold could no longer pass a stranger without acknowledging the truth that everyone was the same, and also unique; and that this was the dilemma of being human."

This passage from a new release by Rachel Joyce got me thinking about how much people worry about what others think of them and think that they will be judged for the moves that they make.  Yet, everyone is in the same boat.  Everyone is as important as anyone else and I'm assuming everyone has worrying thoughts about what they've said or done at some point.  It's essentially their life and they can choose how they live it and this is what makes them unique.  This was an intriguing way to look at in in comparison to Harold's journey and 'collisions' with many different people.

I would love to know: what do you think of this quote?

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry - Rachel Joyce.

Published: 15th March 2012
Format: Hardback
Publisher: Doubleday
Pages: 304
Age Group: Adult
Challenge: British Book Challenge, 100+ Reading Challenge, Read and Review Challenge
Buy this book: Amazon UK

Synopsis [Goodreads]
When Harold Fry nips out one morning to post a letter, leaving his wife hoovering upstairs, he has no idea that he is about to walk from one end of the country to the other. He has no hiking boots or map, let alone a compass, waterproof or mobile phone. All he knows is that he must keep walking to save someone else's life.

The cover...

Although the dust jacket is suited to the story, I preferred the actual covers of the book and how they depicted Harolds' journey and its' companions.

How did I find out about this book?
I found this book through the Waterstones Read and Review section, entered to 'win' it and was pleasantly surprised when it came through my letterbox unannounced.

What is this book about?
This book is about an older man named Harold who for twenty years has let his life dwindle.  He finds out from a letter that an old friend is terminally ill and when he goes out to post a return letter he decides then and there that he would rather do it face-to-face.  So, with no mobile phone and wearing a pair of yachting shoes he sets off on foot to walk over 600 miles to finally say what he has been meaning to say for twenty years.

My opinion...
Wow. What a moving story. There is so much to say, so much to comment on, yet it has somehow rendered me speechless.
The story seems so simplistic, from the chapter titles to the chapter pictures to the actual image of a man going out to post a letter and deciding to actually go and deliver it personally, yet it was mesmerising. The fact that Harold was an older man who kept to himself and didn't know many people, yet was still able to find his feet, excuse the pun, and get out into the world and somehow find himself again was what made this a great read.

I loved the main characters of Harold and Maureen (and even Rex) from the beginning.  Even though they appeared to be ordinary people, there was so much more to them and what made them become who they are and it was great to find this out.  The many details of their life were highlighted throughout the book and told in a way that complimented Harolds' journey.  The different twists that the author took I found rather unexpected but in a good way as again it highlighted how lifes victories, traumas and dramas can really change a person and only when you truly have the time to think about what has happened and come to terms with it are you able to fully move on, which I believe is a different process for everyone.

When other 'pilgrims' decided to join Harold, I thought that this would somewhat destroy Harold's progress, especially since I was so enjoying just hearing his and his wifes' sides of the tale.  Although it did in a way, it showed that although you will find such amazing people in the world, there will still be the ones who are only out for themselves and using you to gain achievements for themselves.  The way in which the author brought this into the mix was enlightening, it showed that although people may 'push' you down, you should get right back up again as you are as equally important to the world as they are.  It also showed that some people are 'sheep' and follow the crowd because they feel that this is what they should do in order to fit in, however, this is not allowing them to achieve any of their own goals per se, it is only allowing them to mooch off of anothers' victory and what does that really say about them as a person?

I guess the only actual negative point to be made about this book was how in some parts it seemed as though it was set back when a lot of the new technology did not exist and yet there was the small mentions of 'tweeting' or mobile phones that brought it back to modern day.  It made me realise how much we actually rely on these types of technology nowadays and made me wonder whether it would actually be possible to discard them for a long period of time?

This book is a definite pick me up, I think you will find yourself questioning a lot about your own life and own woes and pondering whether such silly things should be having such an effect on your life. In my opinion, I think they always will, but you just need to find the right route to get past these and essentially get to your own goal, just like Harold!

Rachel Joyce is an amazing storyteller, I think a story like this can be taken in so many different ways and thay ou may get something different through re-reading it.  I cannot wait to see what she comes up with next!

If you enjoyed this book: what to read next...
This book reminded me a lot of Forrest Gump and has made me want to watch that movie again. However, what I didn't realise was that this movie is based on a book of the same name by Winston Groom, and I think I will be seeking this one out!

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

WWW Wednesday [9].

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading.
[1] The book I am currently reading is:
Why Do We Have to Live With Men? by Bernadette Strachan
[My Review]
Buy this book: [Amazon UK]

[2] The book I just recently finished is:
 The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
[My Review]
Buy this book: [Amazon UK]


[3] The book I think I will read next is:

The Morganville Vampires #1: Glass Houses by Rachel Caine
[My Review]
Buy this book: [Amazon UK]
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