“No amount of fire or freshness can challenge what a man will store up in his ghostly heart.” So shares F. Scott Fitzgerald in his most memorable book, The Great Gatsby. First published in the early 1920s, The Great Gatsby has since acquired a lot of praises and recognition and adapted into different languages, numerous plays, televisions series, films, and incorporated even in radio shows and games.
Although not as popular as Fitzgerald’s previous two novels (The Side of Paradise and The Beautiful and Damned) during its time of publication, The Great Gatsby is certainly his novel that transcended time. This year, another film adaptation of this book, in 3D format, is set to be released by Warner Bros. Pictures.
The new film, simply titled “The Great Gatsby,” features Leonardi DiCaprio as the mysterious yet charming Jay Gatsby, Carrey Mulligan as Gatsby’s eternal love, Daisy Buchanan, and Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway, the story’s narrator. The plot released for the film illustrates how Nick Carraway is whipped into the lustrous world Jay Gatsby has created and how, through constant interaction with him and his cousin, Daisy, he foresaw Gatsby’s ultimate downfall.
The story is encased in such melancholy, but readers and moviegoers alike will surely revel in the rich 1920s culture presented in the film. The hype of freedom and the addicting taste of prosperity are vividly captured as the couple’s illicit affair deepens and their relationships and connections get tangled in a nasty web that spells misery.
The Great Gatsby is a considered an all-time classic, and for that very reason, it has become a common reading for different educational levels. Some might feel watching the new film will feel tedious because of that same reason, but those who want to appreciate the book in a new way will certainly put this December film in their “must-watch” list.
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An erotic fiction. Who would have thought that such a novel will make it to the top spot of the New York Times Best Seller list? Perhaps not a lot of people considered it, but 50 Shades of Grey by new author, E. L. James, did just that.
50 Shades of Grey garnered a lot of attention not only for its controversial beginnings but also its highly explicit content. It has received mixed reviews from both avid readers and renowned critics, but beyond the adoring fans’ appreciation and the critics’ disappointment, what made this book a massive hit?
50 Shades of Grey began as a fan fiction for Twilight, the award-winning book by Stephanie Meyer. Hence, it has all the same elements that made Meyer’s book a favorite among many. It has characters with varied personalities, and it involved complex and intriguing relationships. Probably the best thing about it, though, is that it has a very smooth and captivating flow, which entices and perhaps even hypnotizes the reader not to put down the book until it is finished.
While it highly resembles Twilight, 50 Shades of Grey still has unique points that allow it to stand out and separate itself from the story from which its core concept is drawn. One of its notable points is that it offers mature content. The content can be disturbing for some, but it explores sexual relationships in such a manner that many others believe that the expositions show progress and success for females.
For those who thoroughly enjoyed the book, the news that rights to it has been acquired by Universal Pictures and that it is set to be produced as a film is surely another thing to welcome.
As noted earlier, 50 Shades of Grey is heavily sprinkled with explicit erotic descriptions. A good portion of these revolves around BDSM. BDSM is a form of sexual relationship wherein the parties involved agree on role plays that entail restraint (ropes, chains, etc.) and intense stimulation. BDSM basically combines bondage and discipline, dominance and submission, and sadism and masochism.
BDSM is not an entirely bad thing since it is all about trust and mutual consent. However, if you are a conservative, so to say, or if erotica is not your cup of tea, then this book should be on your “Skip” list.
Aside from the erotic content, another thing that people find perplexing about the book is that the author used a lot of British idioms. To the author’s defense, she is British and therefore more familiar with British terms and idioms. However, she used Washington as setting, and that alone should have been a great enough reason to preferring American phrases and idioms over British.
Although engaging, James’ book is not a “classic.” It is certainly not a book that can be compared to, say, Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Yes, it is an easy read, but it contains inconsistencies, mistakes in grammatical construction and punctuation, and a relatively big collection of repeated words and phrases. These things diminish the value of the book and curtail the enjoyment you will feel while reading it. These are also reasons why the book has acquired a fair number of negative reviews.
In the End
Numerous readers and critics have doubts on how and why 50 Shades of Grey became a New York Times best seller given the “Bad” and “Ugly” reasons we have presented. While it is true that the book is not as deep as some best sellers might have been, its smooth flow and its ability to attract readers, proven by how it became viral and consequently sold millions of copies, are certainly to reckon with.
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Reading books has always been and will always be one of the most enjoyable and worthwhile activities for us. A lot of people thought print books will be completely eradicated. After all, the digital age has come and books have now become available in electronic format, allowing you to read them whenever and wherever you want. Nevertheless, no one can deny the charm that print books have, especially if you got them as gifts or if they have been signed by the authors themselves.
One problem most people encounter with reading print books, though, is forgetting in which page you left off. Some wrong solutions people have come up are the following:
- Folding the top corner of the page
- Inserting a thick or hard object as a bookmark (e.g., ruler, pen, toy, etc.)
- Leaving the book open, pages facing down
These solutions are all kinds of wrongs and things you must not do. Why? It is because these solutions tend to damage your books, and certainly, you do not want that to happen.
You might be asking, “There are already normal bookmarks being sold. Why should I get Albatros?” Here are some of the best reasons why Albatros is perfect for book lovers:
The Albatros bookmark is relatively thin: it will mark your page without creating visible gaps. It is very easy to use, and the glue, which helps it stick to your book pages, is guaranteed not to damage your books. It can also be used for several books, although you must be aware that the glue will fade with time. Hence, it is generally recommended to be used only for a single book.
Available in 6 colors (red, pink, yellow, green, blue, and black), the Albatros has a nice, bird-like design that keeps track of your reading. All you have to do is attach one side on the front of the first page and the other at the back of the last page. Every time you flip a page, the Albatros bookmark will put itself in place.
So, if you love reading or if you know someone who do, then be sure to get Albatros; it will certainly be a lifelong friend for you!
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There’s nothing like being able to sit back, relax and be drowned in a good book. It makes you feel free; it makes you feel curious. Interesting books make you feel alive and kicking, and they can get you reading for hours and hours. However, there are times when reading becomes ineffective. What happens is that you keep on reading a book but none of what’s inside it makes sense. It suddenly feels like reading is a waste of time when it totally isn’t!
Don’t wait ‘til finishing a book becomes thorny. Here are some tips on how you can effectively read your books so that whether it’s a 250-page, 2500-page book or a 500-page eBook, you will be able to conquer it easily and successfully.
- The place matters. You cannot read inside the bar. You cannot read during a football game inside the stadium. But you can read inside the bathroom for hours (as long as no one’s using it!) and you can stay sit at a park for the whole day with a book in your hand. Obviously, the first tip is to find a comfortable place where you can focus on reading the material. The right light setting, on the other hand, is also vital to keeping your focus and ability to see what you are reading.
- Get a dictionary. Increase your vocabulary by keeping this book of words beside you. Find the meaning of words you do not know because these words may be vital to your understanding what the book is all about. If you don’t have one, you can also consult the glossary and index.
- Go for active reading. Students often use highlighters when reading huge textbooks and there is a reason for that. In reading a book or an e-book, you may also take down notes and questions, and highlight or underline certain parts that you think should be given more stress on.
- Finish it off. Do not stop reading for too long. Once you have started reading, try your best to finish it off. Sometimes in the middle of reading, we lost interest in the book. When that happens, you can just skim through some parts but make sure that you still get to read most parts of the book.
- Know your focus. What’s do you want to know? What is your purpose for reading the book or eBook? When you don’t have a purpose, it’s hard to be motivated to finish reading the book. So make sure that you do motivate yourself enough to get your reading going.
- Read everything. The cover flaps, the table of contents, the title page, the preface, the introduction, the author’s note and sometimes even the acknowledgement, all have something to do with the book and what it’s all about. Make sure to read them.
- Give attention to the use of words. The nouns and verbs used in each sentence are the ones that give them the sense. The use of no, not, never, can’t, won’t and other negative words reverse the meaning of a sentence. Would, could, if, should and other conditional tense also make a big difference.
- Finally, look at drawings and diagrams closely. Understand what the pictures and images are trying to depict.
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An eBook is an electronic book, usually in a PDF or portable document format that enables readers to read material on a desktop or laptop screen or any portable device. But why is an eBook more selling than a hard copy book?
There are various reasons why most people had stopped buying hard copy books and prefer to buy eBooks instead. Among the many reasons presented include the following:
Reason #1 – Physical Mess
Most individuals have already discarded the use of hard copy books because they do not want any physical mess or disorder. Years ago, people tend to buy several books for references. These books are, in actual reason, consuming a lot of space in the house especially when they are not properly arranged.
Reason #2 – Cost
In today’s finances, eBooks are lower than hard exact duplicate books. Many individuals are greatly astonished that the cost distinction is not that much and would simply take only a dollar or two.
Reason #3 –Accessibility
With eBooks, you can just carry it anytime and anywhere. In fact, it enables you to carry 12 or more books without exerting much effort that may cause physical discomfort or inconvenience. With eBooks, you cancarry as many titles as you like as it is very portable. As a matter of fact, eBooks enable you to take along the whole library with you anywhere you go. You can shift between titles with easiness and the bulk is lighter than a standard paperback.
Reason #4 – Reading throughBoards
Those who possess a lot of books know how much space they can occupy, but with a reader, your bookshelf is situated on a small handheld gadget, your computer or on both. This will spare you a lot of storage space and also entails you have a backup over the internet or computer if something happens to your books.With eBooks, you can use a variety of modern technology gadgets if you wish to read while waiting somewhere. Be it an iPad or an iPone or a Mac, reading your favorite book has never been made this easy.
Reason #5 – Capacity to Explore and Profit
Ebooks enable us to underlineand add notes. While maybe not as satisfying as using a highlighter pen, it has the clearadvantage of making our notes and markups easily searchable. If you would like to go back to search for something, you can quickly search for it, instead of turning back through many pages.
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“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me…Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful…that’s what matters to me.”
A great man who charmed the world with his endless imagination and innovation, Steve Jobs is indeed one of the greatest minds our generation has ever seen. Most of us know him to be the genius behind Apple’s sought-after products like iPhone, iPad, and Macbook. However, more than just being an inventor, who is the indomitable Steve Jobs?
The World of Steve Jobs
Getting to know Steven Paul Jobs, or simply Steve Jobs, can be a herculean task. As most people close to him put it, there is a “reality distortion field” surrounding him. While this “field” often describes Jobs’ charisma which thoroughly convince people of how something impossible is possible, it also denotes his ability to lead, or perhaps mislead, people. Fortunately, there is a man who is given the chance to see through Steve Jobs’ stealthy armor and has created a book, aptly titled Steve Jobs, that reveals to us what the real Steve Jobs is like—not the image his words have or the media has created but the man he is to his family, his friends, his peers, and his subordinates.
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson is released just weeks after Jobs’ passing, easily making it a must-read among everyone who wants to have a deeper understanding of the prodigious man’s life. It shares Jobs’ struggles, his climb and his separation with Apple, his comeback to his “family” company, his establishment of Pixar, and his debates with Microsoft and its founder, Bill Gates, among others. However, more than just giving us details and explanations, Steve Jobs offers us the ability to feel what Jobs himself felt. It is as if we can see things through his eyes and walk in his shoes.
The book’s passages thoroughly illustrate how Steve Jobs’ principles were formed, what some of his regrets in life are, and how his very contradictory nature has helped not only himself but Apple and the world. During his lifetime, was Jobs able to “put a dent in the universe”—leave a mark that will be remembered by generations to come, maybe even forever? It is one question that the book, without doubt, tries to answer. Of course, no specific conclusion is given. In fact, it is a wonder why the book never mentioned Jobs’ passing away. Then again, it is as if the book is emphasizing his legacy: Jobs may be like everyone who has a beginning, but he is one without end.
For avid readers and people fascinated by Steve Jobs, what the book contains is nothing but precious information. It is highly comprehensive, covering 600 pages of the life and works of Steve Jobs, and is narrated in such a way that readers will most surely be captivated. Non-fiction works, especially biographies, can be dull, even if the person featured is one as prominent and beloved as Jobs. Indeed, it is a challenge to portray a person’s life as if it is a modern fairy tale that speaks of a moral and ends with “happily ever after,” but esteemed writer Walter Isaacson pulled it off magnificently.
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson may not be as comprehensive as some readers wish it to be, but it surely is a portal that connects us to the world of Steve Jobs—a world where everything is possible and where all ideas are turned to reality.
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The Golden Compass is the first installment in the “His Dark Materials” trilogy by Philip Pullman. It is a must read for the fantasy lover and a book to convert those who claim they do not like fantasy. Led by a child heroine, Lyra, the book makes challenges to religious faith while leading the reader through a path of intrigue in alternate worlds filled with danger and mystery. Though it is marketed to the young adult, it can be a great read for an older audience with its dark undertones and sophistication.
The setting is Oxford in an alternate but seemingly parallel world that is ahead of our own in technology. It is ruled by the Church which has close ties with science, particularly physics. Each person has a visible soul called a daemon that comes in the form of an animal that reflects each individuals personality. If the soul is separated by distance, the person and daemon become weak and sickly. As a child, the daemons change form to reflect emotion but settle into the most complementary form as one gets older. The detail in the story with regard to the daemons is enough to make the reader want to have one of their own.
Lyra has been raised an orphan by Oxford scholars at the University. She is a tomboy, rough and tumble, and not one to bow to authority. Her only family is an uncle who secretly studies something called Dust in the North which could upset the Church.
Children start disappearing, kidnapped by Gobblers, and Lyra sets out to find and save them. Through a series of fast moving and often strange events, she is thrust into a world of deceitful adults who work for the Church. She is put in the care of a strange woman with a daemon in the form of a golden monkey. The woman claims to care greatly for Lyra and brings her on a journey North. Along the way, she is given a golden compass that has magical powers and she finds ally’s in some strange places, including that of a race of armored and intelligent polar bears.
The end of the book leaves the reader at the edge of a cliff. It does not clue up but instead leaves you hanging and wanting to read the next book in the series, The Subtle Knife. This New York Times Best Seller belongs on the shelf alongside The Lord of the Rings, and Harry Potter.
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Orson Scott Card has written another absorbing tale of science fiction that once again extends the genre to the general public. Ender’s Game is astonishing, intriguing, and will pull readers from the teenage years and adulthood into an adventure that teaches lessons of loyalty, honor, friendship, and morality.
Published in 1985, this book was purely science fiction and fantasy, but there have since been advances in technology that very much resemble some of the technology described in this book. Despite its publishing date, it is not reminiscent of the 80‘s and will place you easily into a future reality. It has been given the Hugo award, the Nebula award, and has appeared on the New York Times Best Seller List.
Ender is an outstanding child. He is smart, considerate, and about to be thrown into adulthood at the amazingly young age of six. Pulled from school on Earth, Ender is sent to a Battle School in space to train in an elite team of fighters who have been selected to protect Earth from an alien race called the Buggers. In Battle School, loyalties are created and destroyed as the children are segregated and made to fight simulation battles against one another. Ender frequently gets the worst of the pack as he is moved from one army to the next, constantly faced with losing contact with his only allies and being forced to make new ones. There are ethical struggles throughout that are sometimes lost as Ender fights to hold onto his humanity in a place where he is often not given a choice to keep it.
On Earth, an interesting subplot unfolds, as Ender’s siblings, Valentine and Peter, wage a political war against one another on the Net and begin to change the shape of the government forever. They are discovered as the instigators behind the uprising by the authorities but are allowed to continue.
A page turner from start to finish, Ender’s Game is a book that gets recommended by all who read it. The ending nicely sets the reader up for the next installment of the story, Speaker For The Dead. For those who would like more of the story that unfolds in Ender’s Game, there is a parallel story in Ender’s Shadow. The series gets more sophisticated as it evolves, but can still be enjoyed by the reader who does not describe him/herself as a fan of the science fiction genre.
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Dean Koontz outdid himself once again in the tale of Odd Thomas. It is both a chilling and an endearing masterpiece filled with compassion, struggle, and life lessons. True to the horror genre Koontz does so well, it is packed with horrific events but somehow also pulls on the heart strings of the reader.
This is the story of a man named Odd who likes to think himself ordinary. In actuality, he is an extraordinary character who will warm your heart while enduring a terrible and often surprising turn of events. Working as a fry cook in the small town of Pico Mundo, Odd has the ability to see the dead. He tells very few people of this strange ability and attempts to help those lost souls make their way into the afterlife, including the ghost of Elvis Presley. Odd can also see evil in the form of “bodachs” who only appear when something bad is about to happen. These shadowy figures congregate in areas where there will soon be human suffering and their numbers are a good indicator of how bad the suffering will be.
When a mysterious man appears in Pico Mundo, hundreds of Bodachs follow with the promise that this man is bringing with him death and destruction. Odd has an uncanny sense of what is going to happen in the future, call it what you will: promotion, the ability to see the future, or a sixth sense. With a page from a day Calendar dated August 15th, Odd knows he only has one day to do something about the impending doom and sets out on a harrowing journey to defeat the mysterious “Fungus Man.” Along the way he quickly discovers that there are more people involved than meets the eye and trusting in public figures is no longer an option.
With the support from his soul mate Stormy, a very close friend Little Ozzie who publishes detective novels, and Pico Mundo’s Chief of Police, Odd lives life as simply and cleanly as possible. When trouble looms, his friends are there to help him despite the danger that is destined to erupt.
The end of the novel comes too soon. A page turner in every sense of the phrase, it is difficult to put down, even in the wee hours of the morning when you know you should be sleeping but feel the need to help see Odd to the end. The character development is fantastic, the plot unpredictable, and the presence of a series of Odd Thomas books, a relief.
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Some people think that the print media is already a thing of the past. With people leading the mobile life, loving gadgets and devices like laptops, smart phones, and iPads, it might really seem like reading books is a fading fad. However, that will never be the truth. Books will always have this irresistible charm. The feel of crisp or soft paper on your hand and fingertips and the feeling of reading stories in ink, which is gentler to the eyes, will always be something to look forward to. After all, as the former esteemed Harvard President Charles W. Eliot once said, “Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”
Therefore, if you are looking for new friends, counselors, and teachers, so to speak, then you will love Rotyo.
Rotyo is a new book-sharing site launched last December 5, 2011. It is a platform designed to help readers find new gems, offering ideas for new books to read and discussing titles that are currently in demand. The site also offers meaningful reviews and ratings from members which can be helpful guides for deciding which book to get and add to your continuously growing collection.
Why You Will Love Rotyo
Some of you might be hesitant to try Rotyo. After all, there are already various sites offering book ideas, so the question is: how is Rotyo different from all of them? There are actually a lot of reasons why Rotyo stands out. Among these reasons is the fact that you will get numerous benefits from using the site, not only if you are a reader but more so if you are an author. What are these benefits?
Find New Books
The primary purpose of Rotyo, as you might have already figured out, is to help you find the best, the newest, and the most highly rated books. Aside from continuously offering suggestions through blog posts and reviews, the site also has a library where you can browse titles, along with descriptions and ratings from your fellow Rotyo members. Browsing by genre and author is also possible and easy.
Discover Books Read by Family and Friends
Often, books that interest our family and friends intrigue us, too. Are you wondering what they are currently reading? Are you unsure which books they will recommend and which they probably want you to avoid? Rotyo is the solution to that dilemma. With Rotyo, you would not need to be a psychic to discover what your family and friends are thinking. You will instantly find their most beloved and hated books with just a few clicks.
Know What Readers Think
Being an author can be a very rewarding experience. To get positive feedbacks, to be appreciated, and to be recognized—these are things we all want to achieve regardless how much we deny them. However, the path toward fame and fortune is not as smooth and short as some people think it is. If you are a new author or one who want to offer readers more help or more astounding stories, then Rotyo can be your greatest tool. With Rotyo, you can easily find out what people think about your books, which part needed improvement, what they say about your style, and more. All these you can discover without conducting extensive research.
Share Ideas with Fellow Readers
This benefit actually applies to both readers and authors. As a reader, you can share insights with fellow Rotyo members, suggest your favorite books and talk about new and upcoming releases. As an author, you can collection ideas for new stories from members, you can hone your writing skills, and you can even make surveys about popular genres and such. How convenient can research get?
If you want to check new books without logging to the site, you can do so via Rotyo’s app. This app can be downloaded both from iTunes and the Android Market, so no matter what type of phone you have, it will surely be a breeze to find the book of your dreams.
So, head to Rotyo today, and open a new world by reading a new book.