Tag Archives: five shoes

I Am Number Four or We’re Here, We’re Hot, Get Used to It

Thank you to everyone for positive comments on my cute new house. There have been requests for inside photos as well….they will be forthcoming as we actually finish some rooms. For a little while, I was feeling the book ennui…maybe you have felt this as well. It’s that feeling I get when I keep trying new books and nothing seems all that interesting or new to me and I keep not finishing books(which drives me crazy actually). I call this Book Ennui (mostly because I love using ennui in everyday conversation or blog posts ūüėȬ† Then two things happened: 1) I read Gone Girl (and if you still haven’t read it then I suggest you finish this blog post quickly and rush out and get it because it is awesome and amazing but I digress) and 2) my parents bought me a Kindle Fire for my birthday (thanks Mom and Dad!).¬†Both of these things have inspired a new love of reading everything which led me to reading some things I had on¬†my to-read list but just never got¬†around to.¬†Obviously, I am insanely late on the whole Lorien Legacies (the series name for I Am Number Four) deal since there was a movie a couple of years ago and all that going on. It seemed like it would be right up my alley thought with the sci-fi and the YA and so on. And it was…….sort of.

Title : I Am Number Four

Author : Pittacus Lore

Red Flags : Violence

So, we open this book with John Smith, a fifteen year old alien from the planet Lorien and he lives with his guardian, Henri. Not just a guardian in the Earth sense of the word¬† but what they call a Cepan on his planet, somebody to protect and train him in his special powers called “Legacies.” John is one of originally nine aliens sent to Earth to escape the evil Mogadorians who raided and brought down his whole planet. These nine Loriens are supposed to get all their powers and then go back and kick some Mogadorian booty. In order to protect them, they have been magically gifted with a special charm that only allows them to be killed in numerical order if the nine are not physically around each other. Each time one of them gets killed, they get a crazy tattoo around their ankle that burns into their skin. Now John has three tattoos (a.k.a. 1, 2 and 3 are dead) and John is NUMBER FOUR. (Did¬† you get the title now? Clever Huh? )

So John and Henri are on the run and they move to a little town called Paradise. He goes to school and meets a pretty girl on the first day. She has an obnoxious ex-boyfriend who hates him and he also makes friends with the nerd from the school. Not suprisingly, John and pretty girl get along REALLY well and now he wants to stay in town. Henri, however, is worried that they are going to get killed. Also, John’s legacies have started kicking in finally and he can do some pretty awesome superhero type things. Can he keep it quiet and stay with pretty girl? Or will the Mogadorians finally track him down and kill him?

So I liked the premise of this book and I got all excited when I first started reading it. But here is where I started to get annoyed. Could this be any more predictable? Boy goes to new high school and on the first day he meets a girl, and you get into a fight with the ex-boyfriend who is a jerk. Also, he is one insanely mature fifteen-year old boy. I understand that he is an alien and maybe this accounts for the behavior but seriously, a fifteen-year old boy who falls in love, handles fights with maturity and makes appropriate decisions. I just didn’t buy it. I kept looking back to the beginning to make sure I hadn’t missed a couple years of growth or something. I liked the parts of the book that were about the homeworld and the relationship between John and Henri was nice (maybe a little too understanding a father figure but whatever). My biggest issue with this book was the predicability. It just felt a little cliche.

Rating : Five shoes – I liked the initial premise and the sci-fi bits but it lost me on some of the plot points. A comfy flip flop, not great but good. In other words – Meh.

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Filed under book review, five shoes, I Am Number Four, Lore; Pittacus, YA

SEX ON THE MOON!

Now that I have your attention….I have a theory that anything with the word sex in it will make people at least give a cursory look at it, I’m guessing that the author of Sex on the Moon subscribes to this theory as well. I picked up this book because it is by Ben Mezrich, whom you may have heard of because he wrote the book The Accidental Billionaires upon which The Social Network was based on. He has¬†a reputation for writing books in a more accessible way which apparentely means written as a ¬†movie script.

In this case, Mezrich is telling the story of Thad Roberts who was caught having stolen moon rocks from NASA. Let me say that again…..a man went into NASA and made of with a bunch of rocks literally from the moon. Roberts starts out life as a poor kid whose devout¬†Mormon¬†parents threw him out of the house for having premarital sex. Roberts gets married, decides he wants to become an astronaut,¬† and gets a job at NASA as a sort of intern. Pretty impressive but Roberts can only be satisfied if he is the best intern at NASA.¬†He proceeds to ingratiate himself with this intern group by throwing parties and daring others to do ever more extreme stunts. Then he meets another young beautiful intern and begins a passionate affair with her. This leads him to make a brash promise – he wants to get his girlfriend the moon.

For as exciting as this story sounds, the book actually was somewhat disappointing. Mezrich glosses over the beginning of Roberts life, which seems to me to be fertile and interesting ground for why someone would attempt this crazy heist. He spends an inordinate amount of time on Roberts in the NASA program Рparties he throws, different dares he makes, other strange things that Roberts does in the context of NASA. Then we get to the actual heist and it is really anticlimactic and a little boring.With as much research, including actual interviews with Roberts, you would think he would be able to give some interesting reasons why all this happened. All in all, this was an okay book. The subject matter was very interesting but it left something to be desired for me. A five shoe book Рa black flat , functional but not that interesting.

Three Appeals : interesting subject matter, scientific details, easy-going fiction-style writing

Red Flags : Some sexual situations and language

First Line : “It had to be the strangest getaway in history.”

If you¬†like Mezrich’s writing then you should read The Accidental Billionaires, Bringing Down the House and Rigged – all¬†well reviewed non-fiction books¬†that he¬†has written.

If you are interested in other crime non-fiction you should try Skyjack: the Hunt for D.B. Cooper about the hunt for the man who extorted money by hijacking a Northwest flight and then parachuted to safety. For a book from the point of view of the criminal try Ghost in the Wires by Kevin Mitnick who was once the most wanted hacker in the world.

If you like the NASA or governmental space aspect more try Area 51 by Annie Jacobsen which is a detailed history of the most secretive and famous military installation in the world.

Let me know if you like this book or any of the books listed here. Happy Reading!

Trina

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Filed under book review, five shoes, non-fiction