Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 10:01 pm
(I took care to give no obvious spoilers about the story)

Title: Pocahontas: Het ware verhaal, geschreven door een directe afstammeling van Pocahontas (on Librarything)
Original title: Pocahontas
Author: Susan Donnell
Language: Dutch (original = English)
Series: no
Format: paperback
Pages: 286
Publisher: De Boekerij
Year published: original 1991, my edition 1995
ISBN number: 9022520323
Topic of the book: Pocahontas, early 17th century, America, England
Reason for reading: I liked the Disney movie (I've only seen the first Disney Pocahontas movie) and wanted to read the story it was based on. I found this book in the book basket in the Bagels & Beans restaurant in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.
Recommended: Yes.

Back cover text:
Pocahontas is een oud, door overlevering in stand gehouden verhaal over een jong Indiaans meisje, de dochter van een machtig opperhoofd. Haar naam betekent Kleine Ondeugd en deze ondeugd is voorbestemd een groot krijger van een andere stam te trouwen. Haar leven verandert van de ene dag op de andere wanneer zij in contact komt met een groep Engelse kolonisten. De Britten worden bedreigd door de stam waartoe het meisje behoort, maar de jonge vrouw trekt zich het lot van de bijna verhongerende mannen aan en redt hen van een wisse dood. Pocahontas wordt hun heldin en haar faam verbreidt zich razendsnel. Voor de moedige kolonist John Smith wordt zij echter meer dan een heldin... zij wordt de liefde van zijn leven en met haar gaat John terug naar zijn verre vaderland...

Pocahontas is een prachtig verhaal waarin de Amerikaanse Indianen en hun geschiedenis op boeiende wijze tot leven komen. Maar bovenal is het een hartverwarmende roman over een jonge, moedige vrouw; een boek dat niemand onberoerd zal laten.

Susan Donnell, een directe afstammeling van Pocahontas, gebruikte haar eigen stamboom als basis voor deze onvergetelijke roman.

Comments on the back cover text:
Uhm, in the story John Smith does not accompany Pocahontas to England! He's already there when Pocahontas arrives in London. She travels with John Rolfe (well, another John, so maybe the back cover text writer got confused?).

First paragraph:
Londen, juni 1616

'John, kijk eens! Het lijkt wel of iedere familie een eigen kerk heeft. Ik had nooit gedacht dat het er zoveel zouden zijn.'
Pocahontas stond aan de reling toen het schip langzaam de Theems opvoer, langs Gravesend naar het havengebied van Londen. H.M.S. Treasurer was de vorige ochtend in Plymouth gearriveerd, na vanuit Virginia de oceaan te zijn overgestoken. Daar waren sir Edwin Sandys, parlementslid, en een kleine delegatie van de Virginia Company aan boord gekomen om hun protégée, de Indiaanse prinses, haar man John Rolfe, hun zoontje en hun gevolg te vergezellen bij de officiële ontvangst in Londen.

Comments on the first paragraph:
The first chapter starts with Pocahontas' arrival in London. After that it starts at the beginning, when John Smith arrives with the other colonists on the coast of Virginia.

Read it here (^-^)
Saturday, June 30th, 2012 01:22 pm
(I took care to give no obvious spoilers about the story)

Title: The Help (on Librarything)
Author: Kathryn Stockett
Language: English
Series: no
Format: paperback
Pages: 451
Publisher: Penguin
Year published: original 2009, my edition 2011
ISBN number: 9780241956540
Topic of the book: 1960s, Mississippi (America), racial issues ('black' and 'white'), history
Reason for reading: A friend recommended it and I borrowed this book from her.
Recommended: Yes!!! If your English is good enough that you can easily read the first paragraph, go read it! Though there is a Dutch translation as well ("Een keukenmeidenroman"), I can't judge the quality of the translation.

Back cover text:
Enter a vanished world:
Jackson, Mississippi, 1962.
Where black maids raise white children,
but aren't trusted not to steal the silver...

There's Aibileen, raising her seventeenth white child and nursing the hurt caused by her own son's tragic death; Minny, whose cooking is nearly as sassy as her tongue; and white Miss Skeeter, home from college, who wants to know why her beloved maid has disappeared.

Skeet, Aibileen and Minny. No one would believe they'd be friends; fewer still would tolerate it. But as each woman finds the courage to cross boundaries, they come to depend and rely upon one another. Each is in search of a truth. And together they have an extraordinary story to tell...

Comments on the back cover text:
I didn't read the back cover text before reading the book. This one doesn't really give spoilers, but if you don't read it, you don't know that.

First paragraph:
Chapter 1
August 1962

Mae Mobley was born on a early Sunday morning in August, 1960. A church baby we like to call it. Taking care a white babies, that's what I do, along with all the cooking and the cleaning. I done raised seventeen kids in my lifetime. I know how to get them babies to sleep, stop crying, and go in the toilet bowl before they mamas even get out a bed in the morning.

Comments on the first paragraph:
This is the writing style of the Aibileen and Minny chapters. The Skeeter chapters are in regular English, but when you get to those, at least I was already very used to this writing style. I can imagine someone could have a bit more difficulty reading this, though.

Read it here.
Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012 01:18 am
(I took care to give no obvious spoilers about the story)

Title: Jungle Tales of Tarzan (on Librarything)
Author: Edgar Rice Burroughs
Language: English
Series: Tarzan #6
Format: paperback (also available as free ebook here)
Pages: 183
Publisher: Standard Publications, Inc
Year published: original 1919, my edition 2008
ISBN number: 1605974536
Topic of the book: Tarzan's younger years in the jungle (short story collection)
Reason for reading: I'm reading the Tarzan series in order on paper, but as I didn't have #6 (in paper version), I skipped it because it's a collection of stories taking place during book 1. Now I got it on paper, so I'm reading it :)
Recommended: Yes, but you should have read at least the first Tarzan book (not only seen the Disney movie! There are too many references to things in the first book which don't appear in the Disney movie).

Back cover text:
No back cover text.

First paragraph of the first story, "Tarzan's First Love":
Teeka, stretched at luxurious ease in the shade of the tropical forest, presented, unquestionably, a most alluring picture of young, feminine loveliness. Or at least so thought Tarzan of the Apes, who squatted upon a low-swinging branch in a near-by tree and looked down upon her.

Read the entire review here!
Thursday, May 17th, 2012 04:10 pm
(I took care to give no obvious spoilers about the story)

Title: Omnitopia Dawn (on Librarything)
Author: Diane Duane
Language: English
Series: Omnitopia #1
Format: paperback
Pages: 381 (392 when you count the preview chapter from book 2 as well)
Publisher: DAW books
Year published: original 2010, my edition 2011
ISBN number: 9780756406783
Topic of the book: Science fiction, online multiplayer game (MMORPG)
Reason for reading: I saw the book on the author's weblog ([personal profile] dduane) and it sounded quite interesting - I don't play online multiplayer games, but the concept of the book sounded interesting. Also, I really like Diane Duane's "Young Wizards" series and I was interested in reading a non-YW book by her sometime too (so I bought it as it wasn't very expensive - yay for English paperbacks XD).
Recommended: I would recommend it to people who are at least a bit interesting in online games (even when you don't play them) or people who like Diane Duane's books XD

Back cover text:
In the virtual twenty-first century multiplayer on-line games have become one of the most popular forms of entertainment. And the most popular gaming universe of all is Omnitopia, created by genius programmer Dev Logan.
For millions of people around the world, Omnitopia is an obsession, a passionate pastime, almost a way of life. Omnitopia is a virtual place where dreams come true - players can create their own universes within the game's structure and participate in the profits if their piece of the universe is a hit. Ten million players routinely play in Omnitopia, and at any given time, nearly a million of them are on-line, living in a world more real to them than their own.
Now Dev and his people are preparing to roll out a major new expansion to the Omnitopia system. And even as players, staff, the media, and the heavy hitters on the world financial scene wait eagerly for this fast-approaching and momentous event, there are others preparing to play a very different game - one that is meant to strike at the heart of Omnitopia and bring the entire system crashing down...

Read the rest of the review here!