Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Coraline

Title: Coraline
Author: Neil Gaiman
Pages: 162 (depending on the version)
Published: February 24th, 2002
Read: 3/8/2019 via Audible

Coraline Jones is an explorer. The day she moves into her new home she begins to unravel the mysteries that surround her. The house is old, the mice seem to move with intention, and when she is turned away from her parents due to their busy schedules, she begins to wish for something more.

When she goes through a secret passageway in a locked room she finds a world like her own but with a twist. At first Coraline loves this new world. The other mother and father are always there for her, the food is delicious, and the toys come to life! But when Coraline realizes that things are not what they seem, she begins to discover the truth to the happiness of the other world.

***SPOILERS***

Coraline is the hero that I always wish that I could be. She is so brave and never turns away from a challenge. The first glimpse of those button eyes would have had me screaming for home! When she realizes that there are children’s souls that are trapped, she does everything she can to set their souls free. I love the cast of characters like the acrobat grannies and their dogs, the weird man upstairs with the circus mice, and the cat. I love the cat, I think that he’s a perfect companion for this book because he doesn’t actually tell you anything but he drives the plot forward. I also cheered when the other dad defied the other mother to save Coraline!

***END SPOILERS***

I read this book via Audible and I loved it so much. Basically anything Neil himself narrates just turns to gold!

Coraline is a dark and whimsical children’s story told by Neil Gaiman. He is the master at taking something small and turning it into something unforgettable!

 

How NOT to Respond to a Bad Review

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Alright, I have a confession to make, it is hard AF for me to write a negative review. I usually always find the positives in a book and then give it a higher star thinking that maybe the book wasn’t for me. I’m a pretty generous rater. However, sometimes you come across work that is so overly offensive, you don’t even want to waste your time writing a review. This has only happened to me twice so far and neither time I wrote a review… and I wasn’t sure if that was the right thing to do.

When a book contains things like poor language structure, or the book is said to be adult and the writing is more YA, I don’t feel like that forces my hand to HATE IT, it just wasn’t for me. However, if the book contains themes that are offensive and those situations are not being addressed as issues for that particular world, that’s when I start having that feeling of, I need to tell people… I have recently come into a situation where someone was being harassed by the author over writing a negative review and that honestly scared me.

People should not be afraid to give their honest opinions, after all, that’s why we rate books. This person was stalked over her social media to have her review removed (instagram, her blog, goodreads, etc) and it honestly left a bad taste in my mouth. If you are an author, I understand that getting positive reviews drives your book into people’s hands, but you are GOING to get negative reviews, period. People are NOT going to like your book in the same way that people LOVE that book. The number one thing people tell authors is to not get caught up on the reviews – especially since people rate books differently. Some personally, some critically, some both.

I was truly disturbed when I was contacted about that author harassing her to remove her review. I have a weird suspicion that it’s going to happen to me, even though I am being vague in my blog post. I should not have this feeling. I should not feel scared to leave my review for a book I was asked to review. I know that authors work hard, but the only way to get better is to listen to what people are saying. If you decide to read reviews and they list issues they had with it, take it or leave it and move on! I struggled for a week on how I was going to leave my review because I hate hurting people’s feelings, but when I did decide to discuss the issues INSTEAD of leaving a review because I wanted to be nice, I was met with, “I don’t want people tweaking my work.” Then don’t ask for people to review it?

All in all, I did not enjoy the book. I think the overall story was there, it has potential, but if you’re unwilling to take any criticism, the book is going to stay off of people’s TBRs. If your book has NO negative reviews and only over the top 5 star reviews, people note that.

I hope everyone has an amazing weekend!

-Rachael

The Middle

A lot of blog journeys start from the beginning… mine starts from the middle.

I’m 30, pushing 31, I’ve had blogs and journals on and off since my early teen years (livejournal/xanga anyone?) I never keep up with them, but as of late, I’ve become super active on social media, specifically Bookstagram on Instagram. I’ve learned that publishers are really interested in book bloggers, not just bookstagrammers. Sometimes I wonder why, considering that Bookstagram gets SO MANY views for books, but I want to keep up with the times, so this will be where I talk about my life and talk about my books!

I’ve introduced myself a lot over the years and I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m pretty damn basic. I love coffee, my kindle paperwhite, and did I mention drinking coffee?, Harry Potter, and most of all, I love my family.

I hope this blog is worth a shit. I think I might be a little more personal in my reviews here versus on Goodreads as I am more critical and leave a lot of my personal feelings out… but here, it won’t affect their overall star rating for a personal review. I also will warn people if this review contains spoilers. I get somewhat tired of not being able to review a book with spoilers, so BEWARE!

Rachael