Intisar’s Car: My Review

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Today I am here with yet another comic book review! This one is called Intisar’s Car and deals with the life of women in Yemen. I also just found out that it has a sequel which I definitely have to check out, but for now, let’s talk about this one!

Original title: El Coche de Intisar
Authors: Pedro Riera & Nacho Casanova
Genre: Comic, Semi-biographic
Publication: 2011
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Available in Spanish, French and German

The story:

“Portrait of a modern woman in Yemen.”

This book was inspired by real life women living in Yemen, and follows the life of Intisar, who lives with her mother and her siblings in Sanaa, loves driving and smoking, and works in a hospital. The story is told through little anecdotes of her daily life, but also has a more intense background following the situation of women in Yemen, who for example wear a burqa in order not to be bothered by men in the streets, and have to get the approval of a man before they do pretty much anything.

My opinion:

I absolutely loved this book, and I learnt so much while reading it. It was a total eye opener, and made me want to read more books like this one. I will definitely be picking up the sequel as soon as I have the opportunity!

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May contain spoilers!

Before I say anything else, I absolutely loved the drawings. They were simple, but it fitted perfectly with the tone of the story, and I personally found them both stunning and beautiful.

I also really loved the character of Intisar, as well as her relationship with both her brother and her best friend. I really felt for them, was scared with them, for example when Intisar was worried her father would forbid her to work, and that he would beat up her brother because he allowed her and her mom too many things. (Her dad remarried and doesn’t live with them.) This book was full of unexpected things, which is one of the many reasons I loved it so much. It was also deeply beautiful, for example when Intisar tells the story of the little girl waiting for the bus to school, or the one about the old man and his faithful street dog.

I laughed and I teared up while reading this book, but that’s not even the best thing about it. The most important thing is that this book really opened my eyes about a reality which I never concerned myself with, and now I know I want to learn more.

Feel free to recommend stories you deem similar, I would love to read more about this subject!

NIMA: My Review

Author: Enrique Fernández
Title: NIMA
Genre: Comic
Release: 2017
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐
Available in English, Spanish, French and Italian

The story:

Nima is a nymph who just came of age. For the survival of the species she needs to seduce a human male and then kill him. Will she be capable of that?

My opinion:

To be honest I thought the universe created was pretty cool, and I really liked the drawings but overall it felt that something was missing. It was still a nice discovery though!

“Men are just good enough to be used once and then thrown away, all of them!”

Now there can be several interpretations to this book, I guess. The first one would be that it’s empowering for women, as they are represented as strong and independent characters who live in an all female society. But then there’s the idea that they need men for the survival of the species which kind of undermines it all. (And that made me a little bit uncomfortable.) It could also be read from a male POV as a terrible representation of women, a witch-like kind of trope where women just use and murder men, and I don’t like it either. So I don’t really know where to stand with this book. As much as I love the idea of a society of women living alone in the woods I wanted them to be gay I’m not sure I dig the idea of seducing men to have sex with them and kill them.

Anyway. This book was a bit confusing, it felt like all was going too fast, and the ending was mostly predictable. But it still had its good points. The drawings were nice and Nima herself was absolutely adorable, which I appreciated. It was not mindblowing, but I still enjoyed it while it lasted.

So Many Books Getting Released Today??

As I scroll through bookish contents on various social media, I take note of future releases I might be interested in, and add them on my TBR, or preorder them sometimes if I see a sequel to a series of books I like, a book I’ve been anticipating, or simply something that seems right up my alley. And recently, everything I seem to be potentially interested in has been announced for TODAY, and let me tell you I’m really excited because I have preordered the hell out of those books!

First, there’s Vengeful by V. E. Schwab, the sequel to Vicious. I am dying to read it, so of course I preordered that one. Vicious was originally published in 2013, and I read it back in 2016, so this sequel was long awaited! If you want to check out my review, by the way, it’s here.

Then there’s Hank Green’s first book An Absolutely Remarkable Thing which seems right up my alley, for starters because is seems to deal with social media and I love books talking about that, and overall just because it’s Hank Green and he’s fantastic.

And then there’s my latest find, an Alice in Wonderland retelling (and I know I love those) which is called A Blade So Black, by L. L. McKinney. I don’t really know what to expect of that one, but it definitely seems cool, and it’s probably waiting for me on my Kindle by now!

Honorary mention: What if it’s us? by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera. I know, I know, this one is not getting released today, but October 9th is still pretty soon, and I felt like this post was the right place to tell you how excited I was about this collaboration!

McCurry, NY, 9/11: My Review

Title: McCurry, NY, 9/11
Authors: JD Morvan & Kim Jung Gi
Release: 2016
Genre: Biography, Comic
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The story:

This book is based on the life of Steve McCurry and starts off with the attacks of November 2015 in Paris, when the project was born, before taking us back to the events of 9/11, as well as several war zones and near death experiences that he faced throughout his life. It mixes real pictures he took on his trips as well as comic strips, and some pages of interview.

My opinion:

This is a book I picked up at my internship because we are distributing it, so we basically have piles of it waiting to be read (available in both English and French! Okay, end of my promotion I promise, I just wanted to mention it…)

Anyway. While I knew about the events of this book, I didn’t really know much about Steve McCurry himself. I had seen some of his pictures, including obviously the famous picture of the Pakistani girl with the striking green eyes that made the cover of the National Geographic. But that’s pretty much it, and there is so much more to his story!

So I learnt a lot about our recent history while reading this book, and this is one of the reasons I really liked it. It’s also one of the many reasons you should read it: not everything is in the news, and a picture can sometimes say so much more than a thousand words. And while I’m talking about pictures, this book includes some absolutely striking ones by Steve McCurry. It definitely, and completely made me want to go on an adventure.

One more thing I absolutely loved was the drawings. They are really beautiful and also really match with the pictures in my opinion so that was another really good point in addition to the rest.

McCurry, NY, 9/11 doesn’t sugarcoat things, but instead shows you the fascinating life of a man who was passionate about photography, and knew that his work was important to the world, and its posterity.

Let’s Talk About To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before

I am obviously very late in this fandom, but I still wanted to share some thoughts and feelings on To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before because I absolutely loved the book. In facts, it had been on my TBR for years, and I’m really ashamed to say I never picked it up. I probably found out about this book back in 2015 when I joined bookstagram, and the summary did seem right up my alley. So when the movie was released in August, I knew it was time I finally read it.

I read the first book in a day, and watched the movie in the evening. Within a week, I had read the entire trilogy, and watched the movie twice: once alone, and once with my parents, who liked it even more than I had expected. I then proceeded to recommend it to everyone, because it is so worth it.

The first book was my favourite, I have to admit. The whole fake dating trope will get me every time I swear. But it was really sweet to see as Lara Jean came to realise that her feelings for Peter were not all that fake. The whole dynamic with Josh was also interesting, and I wish we had seen more of him in the other two book – not as a potential love interest, but as a friend to Lara Jean, because after all, they were good friends at some point.

Basically these days every time I feel down I think about this scene in the movie where Peter calls him a “Bon Iver wannabe” and it cracks me up, and makes me feel so much better. I know the entire world seems to have fallen in love with Peter K/Noah Centineo, and I’m not ashamed to say: so have I.

Now that I’ve said that, we can move on to how much of a relatable character Lara Jean is. Her style is one I aspired to have when I was in high school – and still do today, though for practical reasons I mostly wear jean and sneakers to work. Baking cookies, muffins and such? Also something I did in high school, like, every weekend. Writing love letters to boys I had a crush on? Also did that. Never been in a relationship/fear of letting people in? Also me in high school. Seeing every day girls who used to be my best friends and left me behind when they became more popular? Also me in high school (though Gen did have her reasons, but still). So yearh, I think you’ve got the picture. Lara Jean is without question one of of most characters I have ever read about (maybe with the exception of Cath from Fangirl, the most relatable one). Also, I stan Lana Condor, my new queen of everything.

Like I said, the first one was my favourite one. The second book introduced a new beloved character aka John Ambrose Mclaren who was barely mentioned in the first movie, and briefly introduced in the first book. I have to admit, I didn’t really want to like him because I really liked Lara Jean and Peter together, but I couldn’t help but fall for him a little bit, because he was such a lovable character. Overall, the plot of the second book was a bit repetitive with what of Peter and Gen’s relationship, though it was nice to see more of her thoughts when it came to her relationship with her family, and how she came to hate Lara Jean so much. I also really liked the part about the time capsule a lot, but I have to admit, some parts of that book left me a bit frustrated.

When it came to the third book, I was really glad to see Trina become a bigger character, and Lara Jean’s relationship with her sisters evolving a lot. It was also nice to see that Lara Jean and Peter’s relationship had grown a lot. The introduction of college applications was yet another very realistic element which I appreciated a lot, and overall I’m really satisfied with how the trilogy ended. Huge thanks to Jenny Han for creating such wonderful books!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a wonderful day!

6 Authors I Discovered In 2018

I know the year is far from over, but I was thinking about this today while driving home from work, and I really wanted to write this post, so here we go!

I had heard about these authors before, and for some of them, they had actually been on my TBR for ages, however I only got around to reading their work now, and I’m so glad I actually did. This is a mix of both YA and adult literature, as I read a little bit of everything, and I’m delighted by all this great discoveries.

1. Haruki Murakami

I had vaguely heard about Murakami, obviously, at least a little bit, before last year when one of my friends recommended me his book Norwegian Wood, which I immediatly bought on my kindle, where it waited for more than a year, until I finally picked it up. To be honest, I was a bit underwhelmed by this book, but I’m not giving up on Murakami just yet. There was definitely something special about this book, even if I didn’t quite enjoy it as much as I hoped I would. Kafka on the Shore is next on my TBR.

Check out my review of Norwegian Wood?

2. Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman is another author who had been waiting on my TBR for quite some time. I had even purchased the audiobook version of The Ocean at the End of the Lane at some point last year, but never got around to reading it. As I am driving to work, I cannot read physical books, obviously, so I digged it up from the depth of my phone, and it’s such a fascinating book, I’m really glad I finally got around to reading it, and I will definitely be on the lookout for more of Gaiman’s books!

Like Murakami, Gaiman has always seemed to me to be an author I must absolutely read at some point in my life, so I’m glad I am working on that!

3. Jenny Han

If I have to be honest with you, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before has most likely been waiting on my TBR since I created my Bookstagram account back in 2015. When the movie was released on Netflix, I immediately wanted to check it out, but I decided that I should read the book first, which I did, and I LOVED IT SO MUCH. I gave it 5 stars without second thoughts, and within a week, I had read all three books in the trilogy, watched the movie twice, and recommended it to everyone (including a lady who was sitting next to me at some point on the train, I swear, I’m obsessed. Lara Jean is such a relatable character, and those books are fantastic.) The Summer I Turned Pretty has also be added to my never ending TBR list.

4. Neal Shusterman

I have to say, I saw many people mentioning Scythe in the book community, and I knew that it was probably up my alley, but I didn’t really want to start a series that wasn’t finished yet, because I already have so many of those… I also knew that the Unwind Dystology was among my cousin’s favourite books, but I never realised they were by the same author. She had left book 1 at my grandma’s house, and I picked it up, and absolutely loved it. The world Shusterman has created is both scary and fascinating, and I have now also finished the second book, Unwholly. The third one is waiting on my Kindle, and once I have finished the series, I will definitely move on to Scythe!

5. Adam Silvera

Silvera was another author who kept popping up on various of my bookish feeds (twitter, instagram, you know the drill) and I knew I would eventually end up picking up one of his books at some point. I think one day, while I was browsing amazon, I saw that one of his books had a very cheap deal on Kindle, and I decided that it was the perfect occasion. I have now read both They Both Die At The End and History Is All You Left Me, and absolutely loved the both of them. More Happy Than Not is also waiting on my Kindle, hopefully not for long!

Check out my review of They Both Die At The End as well as History Is All You Left Me?

6. Samira Ahmed

To end this list, I wanted to include a new author! And by that, I mean that she published her first book in 2018, so I didn’t wait that long to discover her. But still, I couldn’t end this list without mentioning Samira Ahmed. Her book Love, Hate and Other Filters left a deep impression on me, and I will definitely be on the lookout for her next books. And obviously, I definitely recommend it.

Check out my review for Love, Hate and Other Filters?

There has been, obviously, other authors that I read for the first time in 2018, but those mentioned above are the ones who left a deeper impression of me!

August Wrap Up

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Better late than never! Here comes my August Wrap Up, and the good thing is, I read a lot this past month!

Books I read:

Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami ⭐⭐⭐ (review)

The Rest Of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

New World: Inferno by Jennifer Wilson ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Unwind by Neal Shusterman ⭐⭐⭐⭐

UnWholly by Neal Shusterman ⭐⭐⭐⭐

To all the boys I’ve loved before by Jenny Han ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han ⭐⭐⭐⭐

From Twinkle, With Love by Sandhya Menon ⭐⭐⭐

The Kong Crew vol. 1 by Eric Herenguel ⭐⭐⭐⭐

And a collection of speeches and letters by Gandhi about being a vegetarian which I rated 4 stars.

Currently reading:

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman (audiobook)

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (kindle)

Movies:

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, Alex Strangelove, Candy Jar, and more