Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson

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A short story like The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is always pleasant to read. Likely due to the overall shortness of it. The plot doesn’t drag on and nothing is left unsaid at the end. The story itself follows a few character, all doctors, who are trying to figure out where Mr. Hyde came from, and what is going on with their dear friend Dr. Jekyll. Essentially, it is the perfect book if you have little time to spare. There really isn’t that much to say about this text as it is so short and to the point, with a griping end that keeps you hooked on the story all the way through. The chapters are also short thus further facilitating the rapidness of reading, perfect for winter time when the days are short.

I gave this book 4 out of five stars on Goodreads, as I really enjoyed this book and, as I have read it in the past, and it has been one of my favorites. It is easily one that I would recommend to many readers, even those that are not interested in the Gothic genre.

Quotations from the text:
Street after street, and all the folks asleep – street after street, all lighted up as if for a procession and all as empty as a church – … (3)
She had an evil face, smoothed by hypocrisy; but her manners were excellent. (23)

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Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – Ransom Riggs

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This book was quite enjoyable, despite taking me a long time to read (unfortunately). It’s one of those books that takes you a while to get into, but in the end is rewarding, especially once you discover all the secrets along with the protagonist. It is most definitely an intriguing text, there are aspects of horror in it, a suitable text for Halloween really.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is the likely not a book that many would pick up, it seems bizarre at first glance. The characters in the novel are interesting enough to want to follow around as the book progresses. Similarly with the plot, which varies between not too much going on – to anticipating the action as the chapters break. Overall, despite taking such a long time to read, it is a book that can be read quickly, and understood easily. I recommend this book primarily for those interested in peculiar happenings, those looking for an easy read, or those searching for something different.

I gave this book 3 out of 5 starts on Goodreads.

Quotes:
“elaborate, almost pornographic detail”
“sadomasochistic ballerinas” (111)
“morning brought rain and wind and fog, pessimistic weather…” (179)

The Thirteenth Tale – Diane Setterfield

This book is beautiful, and wonderfully written and the imagery descriptions are spot on, which is why I have only selected a small amount of quotes, there were many yet these stood out the most. The Thirteenth Tale is a really hard book to put down, and once it’s finished, it stays with you for a while as it seeps in. One would not expect the out come of the story that Vida Winter tells the protagonist Margaret Lea, yet despite this, the story pulls you in as if you are a by stander and watching all the action unfold.
I recommend reading this book on darker days, in the autumn, with a large cup of tea. Despite reading this in the summer, it was gloomy the few days that it took me to read this and it goes by so quickly that way. The gloomy outdoors set an adequate mood for this story engaging you further. It is also the perfect length for these gloomy times.

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars on Goodreads, and I rarely do.

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Few quotes found in the text:
“Life is compost.” (46)
“When one is nothing, one invents. It fills a void.” (117)
“You leave the previous book with ideas and themes – chapters even – caught in the fibers of your clothes, and when you open the new book they are still with you.” (291)
“I have replaced doubt with with certainity, shadows with clarity, lacunae with substance.” (316)

The Collector – John Fowles

This book is so messed up. I would not classify this book as a horror novel. The Collector is more of a traumatizing novel, fictional naturally, but really disturbing. Frederick, going by the name Ferdinand in the text, decides to collect a beautiful girl named Miranda, as he used to do with butterflies, gaining a large sum of money that’s lasting him a life time. He is not a pretty man, as Miranda describes in her diary, which is part 2 of the book. The other 3 parts are from the perspective of Fred, and have no separations what so ever. It is as if one is reading a chapter which is some 104 pages long. Not very appealing and could have been written better. However, it is a book that is written if first person all the time, using the first person pronoun “I” all the time. Quite frankly, when Fred is dictating his story, he only uses quotation marks when Miranda is speaking. It is also hard to decide who the protagonist and who the antagonist is. Despite the text being about Frederick, I believe he is the antagonist for he is hurting and going against Miranda. Yet, at the same time, Miranda is also an antagonist towards Fred. It is a never ending struggle for the both of them, and has an unsatisfying and shocking ending for the pair.

I gave this book 2 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.

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Quotations that stood out while reading:
“I can sense their wild worry.” (117)
“You draw a line and you know at once whether it’s a good or a bad line. But you write a line and it seems true and then you read again later.” (129)
“indulging in wicked vanity” (145)
“You can get away with murder with words.” (159)
“The beautiful sun on the blood-red stems.” (198)
“the most beautiful things are quite independent of money.” (209)
“Sour men and wounded women.” (244)
“But it will be like being a gale of light, after this black hole.” (247)