Review: Make Good Art by Neil Gaiman, Chip Kidd (Designer)

Deciding to get an art course is to decide on a lot of things.

It’s to decide whether your passion would be enough to put food on the table, to afford a roof over your head, to pay the monthly bills—to earn a living. You’ll have a constant doubt. But you keep moving, until you reached graduation and everything hits you.. you have no damn clue where to start.

Continue reading “Review: Make Good Art by Neil Gaiman, Chip Kidd (Designer)”

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Timely To Be Read: Fruit Salad

Fruit Salad is the perfect name for this TTBR since there’s a lot of mix of genres. And let’s be honest, I’ve been craving fruit salad recently. So this time, TTBR includes 9 books! My highest book number–achievement unlocked! And it’s purely adult fiction, so I’m sorry I didn’t include YA. I just couldn’t! I just had enough YA for now.

Continue reading “Timely To Be Read: Fruit Salad”

Review: The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

OceanAtTheEnd

Dude this guy can write anything.

A Neil Gaiman book doesn’t have a mind-blowing factor; it’s never overwhelming. With this guy, it’s the simplicity, the casualness that reels you in. The way he weaves fantasies to our world. How he creates fantasies that are often mistook as illusions or delusions today. The notion that fantasy is created in our world, so it must belong here.

Ocean at the End of the Lane is definitely your portal back to your childhood. To feel what it’s like to be scared, to cry, to run away, to be a kid again. Neil Gaiman should have his own genre, really. I don’t know why it isn’t invented yet.

How do I even begin to describe this book? It’s like reading someone else’s childhood–is the closest thing I can get. Not just reading actually. You get to experience someone’s childhood. Since the story has a personal feel to it. Said in a confidential and intimate manner that can’t help but penetrate your heart. And throughout the story, you’ll get to find and reconnect bits and pieces of your previous childhood.

Also I like how time is separated in this book, by either before or after. How childhood is categorized as “before”, considered as something to be left in the past. The notion that we cannot bring our past self with us, that we can’t be the same kid. So we tuck our childhood, our self away and lock it. Never to be seen again. That’s why we consider our childhood our old self. And our adult phase, our new self. Why is there a need to change? Why do we have to detach our self in order to we grow up? Why can’t we be the same person, the same “me”? (Getting really deep now) This book points that out. That we have a tendency, more like a stage, to disconnect ourselves and create a barrier in which we separate our old selves to our new. And I loved it.

Plus the characters were phenomenal. Where can I buy my own Lettie Hempstock?

*A side note: The back cover of the book, the pale boy standing on a water pipe or drain or something. It’s actually Neil Gaiman, himself, age 7.

Rating: ✰✰✰✰

Do I like it: It’s a given already.

Recommended to: To people who lost their childhood

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 640)


Below are information about this book.

Publication: June 18th 2013 by William Morrow Books

From Goodreads:

Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.

Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

Appreciation: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming by Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

Just few passages from the original article. It is too lengthy to post it here so I will be linking it below, if ever you need further reading.

Here it goes:

So, I am going to be talking to you about reading. I’m going to tell you that libraries are important. I’m going to suggest that reading fiction, that reading for pleasure, is one of the most important things one can do. I’m going to make an impassioned plea for people to understand what libraries and librarians are, and to preserve both of these things.

And it’s that change, and that act of reading that I’m here to talk about tonight. I want to talk about what reading does. What it’s good for.

Fiction has two uses. Firstly, it’s a gateway drug to reading. The drive to know what happens next, to want to turn the page, the need to keep going, even if it’s hard, because someone’s in trouble and you have to know how it’s all going to end … that’s a very real drive.

The simplest way to make sure that we raise literate children is to teach them to read, and to show them that reading is a pleasurable activity. And that means, at its simplest, finding books that they enjoy, giving them access to those books, and letting them read them.

There are no bad authors for children, that children like and want to read and seek out, because every child is different. They can find the stories they need to, and they bring themselves to stories.

And the second thing fiction does is to build empathy. When you watch TV or see a film, you are looking at things happening to other people. Prose fiction is something you build up from 26 letters and a handful of punctuation marks, and you, and you alone, using your imagination, create a world and people it and look out through other eyes. You get to feel things, visit places and worlds you would never otherwise know. You learn that everyone else out there is a me, as well. You’re being someone else, and when you return to your own world, you’re going to be slightly changed.

I worry that here in the 21st century people misunderstand what libraries are and the purpose of them. If you perceive a library as a shelf of books, it may seem antiquated or outdated in a world in which most, but not all, books in print exist digitally. But that is to miss the point fundamentally.

Physical books are tough, hard to destroy, bath-resistant, solar-operated, feel good in your hand: they are good at being books, and there will always be a place for them. They belong in libraries, just as libraries have already become places you can go to get access to ebooks, and audiobooks and DVDs and web content.

I think we have responsibilities to the future. Responsibilities and obligations to children, to the adults those children will become, to the world they will find themselves inhabiting. All of us – as readers, as writers, as citizens – have obligations. I thought I’d try and spell out some of these obligations here.

We have an obligation to make things beautiful. Not to leave the world uglier than we found it, not to empty the oceans, not to leave our problems for the next generation. We have an obligation to clean up after ourselves, and not leave our children with a world we’ve shortsightedly messed up, shortchanged, and crippled.

Albert Einstein was asked once how we could make our children intelligent. His reply was both simple and wise. “If you want your children to be intelligent,” he said, “read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.” He understood the value of reading, and of imagining. I hope we can give our children a world in which they will read, and be read to, and imagine, and understand.

(Pictures are not mine)

(Source: The Guardian)

Timely To Be Read: A Mix of Everything

yk4Ug9jHOkay, I learned. I don’t want to make this post lengthy because (let’s face it) it’s boring. I’ll just be putting the synopsis of each book.

As you can see, this Timely TBR consists of different genres–adult, young-adult, thriller, humor and crime. There is a lot of variety in this TBR and I’m so excited to dive in!

NZBSG16-Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

“Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy..”

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 640)

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr | 

“Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure’s agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall..”

(Fully Booked, Tall/Large Paperback, P 640)

KRdNz_uzI’m Not Scared by Niccolò Ammaniti 

“One relentlessly hot summer, six children explore the scorched wheat-fields that enclose their tiny Italian village. When the gang find a dilapidated farmhouse, nine-year-old Michele makes a discovery so momentous he dare not tell a soul. It is a secret that will force him to question everything and everyone around him..”

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 500+)

Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #1) by Laini Taylor  

“Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”, she speaks many languages – not all of them human – and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out..”

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 399)

aafw3cH7Night Film by Marisha Pessl 

“Everybody has a Cordova story. Cult horror director Stanislas Cordova hasn’t been seen in public since 1977. To his fans he is an engima. To journalist Scott McGrath he is the enemy. To Ashley he was a father..”

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 440)

Noggin by John Corey Whaley 

“The in between part is still a little fuzzy, but he can tell you that, at some point or another, his head got chopped off and shoved into a freezer in Denver, Colorado. Five years later, it was reattached to some other guy’s body, and well, here he is. Despite all logic, he’s still 16 and everything and everyone around him has changed. That includes his bedroom, his parents, his best friend, and his girlfriend. Or maybe she’s not his girlfriend anymore? That’s a bit fuzzy too..”

(Fully Booked, Hard Cover, P 760)

Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk 

“The first rule about fight club is you don’t talk about fight club..”

(Fully Booked, Paperback, P 748)