html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" ""> I Need an Invention, Intention, to stop Temptation to Scream...: Book reviews

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Book reviews

Hi folks I'm back! Yeah. Here's the book reviews that I promised! I've been buried under these pages for most of the time at the instance of any free time. Highly addictive and contagious if you ask me. The perfect companion for those arduous journey to the east or journey to the west rides on the east west line.

To those who have not cultivated a habit of leisure reading, I'd like to encourage that habit. For many, finding a book that sustains one's interest is probably the most important challenge for all of us. So for 'starter' readers, my advice is to find a book that stirs your general areas of interest. For example, I'm a big fan of conspiracy theories, mysteries, and of course HISTORY!!! Therefore it is no surprise that I'm a big fan of Dan Brown's books. It's a pity he has only written four books. Haiz. So choose a book that will suit your interest and more often than not you will find yourself lost in bookworming.

Finally after a long search and running through of what I term 'mediocre' books, I have located a good author that writes in a similarly entertaining manner. One that will literally leave the reader at the edge of his seat. Meet Steve Berry!

But first, the source of my books. Unlike Weasel, I usually do not have huge 'capitals' to buy first hand books from Kinokuniya or Borders. Hahaha. Peasants like me usually borrow books from the national library, or do a once-in-a-blue-moon splurge at maybe Sans Bookshop? But one place that I usually scan for cheap and good BRAND NEW books is usually Carrefour. Both the Suntec and PS joints. I happen to chance upon these books at the book bargain corner at Suntec City. At $5 each, for hours of page flipping action, I'd say its money well spent man.

Set in the near future, Secret introduces Jakob Volkner--Pope Clement XV--a German "caretaker pope" who, nearing the age of 80, was elected as John Paul II's successor. But three years into his papacy, the thoughtful Clement has begun to quietly express skepticism about papal infallibility and the Church's restrictive dogma, and to make odd requests of his longtime secretary, Monsignor Colin Michener, an Irish-born but American-reared priest whose vows of celibacy have been tested--and found wanting. Clement has also made repeated visits to a guarded sanctum within the Vatican archives, where sacred and historic documents are stored. And he's dispatched Michener to Romania to locate an elderly cleric who, in the 1950s, translated three cryptic prophecies, purportedly offered by the Virgin Mary in 1917 to a trio of children in Fatima, Portugal. Those secrets have since been fully disclosed to the world. Or have they? That’s the question facing Michener in the wake of Clement's shocking suicide, as he pursues a twisted trail of clues, crimes, and religious forecasts from Rome to Bosnia to Germany, accompanied by his former lover, journalist Katerina Lew. But making any additional secrets known to the world will put Michener in confrontation with doctrinal reactionaries, led by Cardinal Alberto Valendrea, the Vatican's Italian secretary of state, who's determined to follow Clement as the Vicar of Christ--even if that requires inventing a few new sins and flouting a 900-year-old prediction of doom for the next pope.

This book in my opinion blends the mythical history of catholicism along with modern day issues. Its a good read especially for Da Vinci Code and Angel and Demon lovers. Its another great chance for one to immerse oneself and travel through time and retrace the path of the famous Fatima secrets. In the course, exposing one to nail biting untelling turns with mysteries and surprises lavishly littered along the way. While most of the information, like ancient catholic rituals, portrayed are true, watch out for those that are not. At least the author's note at the end allows the reader to discern what is true and what was pure work (albeit brilliantly) of the author. I like the way Steve discloses the methods he used to obtain information and how he came about developing or creating his fiction through imagination.

Set in present day Russia, Miles Lord, a workaholic African-American lawyer from Atlanta, is in Moscow to help Stefan Baklanov, the Romanov claimant his high-powered firm is backing. Since the new tsar will reign as an autocrat like his ancestors, both big rubles and big bucks are at stake—not to mention access to nuclear weapons. Lord soon discerns that Baklanov is corrupt, a tool of the mafiya. While digging through old files on the Russian Revolution, Lord comes to believe Baklanov is the "raven" Rasputin predicted would help save the royal house in 1916. Teaming with a beautiful acrobat, Akilina Petrov of the Moscow Circus, Lord attempts to discover whether any children of Nicholas II escaped Lenin's executioners. A series of exotic clues propel the pair on an international scavenger hunt. -

This book works for me. As an ex history student, I have always been interested in what had really happened in Yaketerinburg, where the family of then Tsar, Nicholas II was executed. Rumours have it that 2 of his children, Anastasia and Alexei miraculously survived the massacre, and their descendants live among us till this very day. Banking on that plot, Steve Berry has got history buffs like me falling for the book, hook, line and sinker. Relive the Russian Revolution all over again!!! Ironically, Rasputin the infamous Russian clown turns out to be the ultimate hero! Hard to imagine eh (for those who studied RR before)? Hahaha. I think not. People at A04 might stone me for professing my love for history so readily as most didn't have happy memories of doing history at A levels. Hahaha.

Well borrow the books from me if any of you folks are interested! While stocks last! Whee!

Time to go sleep. Gotta train for AHM tomorrow. I need those ironman jet packs under my new balance man.


Post a Comment

<< Home