My Top 5 Owned Authors

I do enjoy the booktube and I have seen top something owned authors a couple of times and it made me think from which author do I own most of the books. This does not necessarily go hand in glove with my most read authors, or my favorite etc. – which surprised me to be honest. Agatha I was pretty sure of, but I was surprised about others, because I don’t remember reading that many books from those writers. Due to ebay, however, I own a lot, but have not read them all… Anyway. Here it goes.

1. Agatha Christie (21 books)

The Murder at the Vicarage
The Thirteen Problems
The Body in the Library
The Moving Finger
A Murder is Announced
They do it with Mirrors
4.50 from Paddington
The Mirror Crack’d from Side to Side
The Caribbean Mystery
At Bertram’s Hotel
Nemesis
Sleeping Murder
Miss Marple’s Final Cases
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd
Murder on the Orient Express
Murder in Mesopotamia
Death on the Nile
After the Funeral
Cat Among the Pigeons
Giant’s Bread (as Mary Westmacott)
And Then There Were None

2. Charlaine Harris (18 books)

Dead Until Dark
Living Dead in Dallas
Club Dead
Dead to the World
Shakespeare’s Landlord
Shakespeare’s Champion
Shakespeare’s Christmas
Shakespeare’s Trollop
Shakespeare’s Counselor
Real Murders
A Bone to Pick
Three Bedrooms, One Corpse
The Julius House
Dead over Heels
A Fool and his Honey
Last Scene Alive
Poppy Done to Death
Grave Sight

3. J.K. Rowling (11 books and I did not include the Potter books I have in German)

Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Askaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Magical Beasts and Where to Find Them
Quidditsh Through the Ages
The Tales of Beedle the Bard

4. Trudi Canavan (9 books)

The Magician’s Apprentice
The Magician’s Guild
The Novice
The High Lord
The Ambassador’s Mission
The Rogue
The Traitor Queen
Priestess of the Wild
The Last of the Wilds

5. Rick Riordan (9 books)

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief
Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
Percy Jackson and the Titan’s Curse
Percy Jackson and the Battle of the Labyrinth
Percy Jackson and the last Olympian
The Demigod Files
Percy Jackson and the Sword of Hades
The Lost Hero
The Red Pyramid

Marliese Arold – Magic Girls: Das Rätsel des Dornenbaums (#3)

This book is not published in English yet. I have no idea if it ever will be, but I will keep an eye and ear open and let you know. Look further down for a short review in English.

Rätsel des Dornenbaums

Hardcover
Verlag: arsEdition
veröffentlicht 2009
Seiten: 168

Buch (Deutsch)

Klappentext:

Ein rätselhafter Dornenbaum wächst an dem Platz, an dem sich die Schwarzen Zauberkutten versammeln. Um herauszufinden, was sie vorhaben,nehmen die Hexenmädchen Elena, Miranda und der Zauberer Leon Bredov an dem verbotenen Ritual teil. – natürlich getarnt. Plötzlich erscheint im Baum der große Magier Mafaldus Horus, der die Macht in der Hexenwelt an sich reißen will. Das muss Leon Bredov im Auftrag der Obersten Zauberrichter verhindern! Da fliegt ihre Tarnung auf. Elena und Miranda, die das wertvolle Amulett hüten soll, geraten in höchste Gefahr…

In Kürze:

+ 3. Buch in der Magic Girls Reihen
+ spannend und unterhaltsam
+ endlich verbringen wir mehr Zeit in der Hexenwelt
+ sympathische und liebenswerte Figuren

Meinung:

Unsere beiden kleinen Hexilhexen bestehen ihr nächstes Abenteuer. Während die ersten beiden Bücher doch damit beschäftigt waren, die „Abenteuer und Gefahren“ im Menschenland zu behandeln, wird es diesmal richtig spannend.
Wer die ersten Bände noch nicht gelesen hat, sollte hier vielleicht lieber aufhören, da doch das ein oder anderen verraten wird.

Nachdem sich also nun herausgestellt hat, dass Leon Bredov kein Verräter sondern ein Geheimagent ist, der gegen die Schwarzen Zauberkutten ermittelt, sind sich die Hexen unschlüssig wie lange sie noch im Hexil bleiben müssen. Als Elena, Miranda und Daphne ein Wochenende allein verbringen (weil Mona zum Hexenseminar will und die Mutter zur Weiterbildung), meldet sich ausgerechnet Leon Bredov. Er braucht Hilfe. Also machen sich die beiden Mädchen auf den Weg um mit ihm ein geheimes Treffen der Schwarzen Zauberkutten auszuspionieren. Diese wollen den schwarzen Magier Mafaldus Horus auferstehen lassen. Als das Vorhaben gelingt, sind die beiden Hexenmädchen in größter Gefahr.

Diesmal finde ich die Geschichte spannend. Die ersten Bücher waren auch nicht schlecht, aber haben sich meiner Meinung nach viel zu sehr mit der Menschenwelt und der Angst der Entdeckung beschäftigt. Hier wird es nun endlich mal interessant. Auch wenn ich ein wenig genervt von Miranda war, die es irgendwie kaum hinbekam ihre Deckung aufrechtzuerhalten, fand ich das auch wieder sympathisch. Diesmal ist es nicht Miranda (die sowieso alles kann) die einen etwas kühleren Kopf behält, sondern Elena. Auch kann ich verstehen, dass sie etwas neidisch auf Miranda ist, da ihr das Lernen geradezu zufliegt. Das macht Elena aber in keiner weise negativ, sondern menschlich. Es ist nicht schlimm auch mal neidisch zu sein, sondern wie man damit umgeht. Elena missgönnt ihrer Freundin nichts, sie hätte es halt auch nur gerne etwas leichter.

Der Schreibstil was wieder schön, die Gestaltung des Buches ebenfalls. Besonders gefallen mir immer noch die kleinen Lexikoneinträge etc. die besondere hexische Fähigkeiten und Zustände noch einmal erklären.

Fazit:

Ein gelungen und spannendes Abenteuer mit sympathischen Figuren und endlich mehr Zeit inder Hexenwelt.

In English:

After Elena and her family have discovered that her father isn’t a traitor but a secret agent of the wizard ministry, Elena and her friend Miranda are unsure whether they will remain in the human world or can return back home. When the girls are alone on the weekend, Elena’s father contacts the house because he is in need of help. Since nobody else is home the two girls meet up with Leon Bredov to help him in his investigation. All of them spy on the dark magicians who want to resurrect the dark wizard Mafaldus Horus. Will the three of them be discovered and identified as spies and are they able to stop the ceremony before it’s too late?

I really enjoyed this book because it’s the first time the reader is taken into the wizard world. The previous two books were primarily concerned with the human world – with settling in and the danger of being discovered. Now it gets interesting.

Although I was sometimes annoyed with Miranda, who was barely able to hold up her cover, it made her also more sympathetic. The girl, who is always best at everything, is about to loose her cool and it is Elena, who struggles with learning and using magic, that is in control of herself. Although Elena reveals that she is jealous of her friend’s ease with their studies and aquiring knowledge, it does not paint Elena in a negative light. It makes her human, because she is jealous but she doesn’t begrudge her friend’s abilities – she is proud of Miranda’s skills.

The writing is fluent and I especially like the little encyclopedic entries about human behavior and their reasons. Very funny.

Rating:

rating 4

My Reading Months July and August

I haven’t had the greatest of reading months lately, so I decided to sum up both July and August in one post. I am not in a reading slump, but I just don’t seem to have the time or the patience to read. If I manage ten pages before I sleep it is quite an achievement.

Elsemarie Maletzke – Jane Austen: Eine Biografie

This biography of Jane Austen was something that I have been reading over a longer period of time. I like her books and I have seen most of the film and TV adaptations, so I thought it might be right to read something about her life. It was interesting and the author had a way of intertwining Austen’s life and experiences with the content and development of her novels. All in all, a good and interesting read.

jane austen bio

John Green – The Fault in Our Stars

I have refused to read this book for some time now. Firstly, because I wasn’t into the whole cancer book thing lately and secondly, because I try to avoid hypes a little bit. Often I am just disappointed. And honestly, I don’t get the hype around this novel. I am sorry and people will probably be really mad. It was a good book, it was a fast and easy read, but … I don’t know: it was predictable and worst something just irked me – I can’t quite put a finger on it. As I said it was a good book but something about this book made me uncomfortable.

Rick Riordan – The Throne of Fire (The Kane Chronicles #2)

The second book in the Kane Chronicles was a good and solid read. I really enjoyed the Egyptian mythology (and honestly that would save almost any book for me) and the story was fast paced and another thrilling ride, yet I still have problems with the protagonists. Though I understand them a little more this time, both are still annoying and it is actually someone else who saves the day every time they are in trouble. The siblings created a problem that someone else has to solve. I really don’t get why they are always portrayed as the heroes. Anyway. The world creation is fantastic and although the story follows the same repetitive narrative pattern, I thinks it’s still a good adventure story if you don’t want to think too much, but rather want something to wash over you.

verbotene eden 2 Throne of Fire

Thomas Thiemeyer – Logan und Gwen: Das Verbotene Eden #2

This is the second installment in a dystopian series written by the German author Thomas Thiemeyer which has not been translated yet. In the world were men and women hate each other and are at the brink of war, Logan and Gwen cross paths, well, Logan captures Gwen and intents to sell her on the slave market. But of course things change.
I have listened to the first installment as an audio book and I really enjoyed it. The premise was interesting: due to a virus men and women started to hate and kill each other and separated into different lives. While always at the brink of war, those tendencies have grown more certain after the first book. Altogether this was a good 2nd installment; it was easy to read, fast-paced and fluent. However, I would have loved to learn more about the world that Thiemeyer had created, which he failed to provide. And although both characters are independent characters and no shallow copies of the two main protagonists in the first novel, I couldn’t quite grasp them.

Octavia E. Butler – Fledgling

Since a friend of mine has just handed in his dissertation on Octavia Butler’s work and I have read already two of her books, I decided to try to read all the novels that he analyzes in his work. Since I had Fledgling at home, I started with the Vampire book. Yes, this book is about Vampires. And it is actually good. It has an interesting take on the Vampire myth and Butler developed a fascinating world. Though there are some things that I found a little difficult to swallow (and I shouldn’t because I watch and read Game of Thrones – and after that not a lot of things should shock me anymore), it was a good book and enjoyed it. Some characters were a little annoying especially Wright, but that’s probably just me.

feldgling Derek Landy 1

Derek Landy – Skulduggery Pleasant

So after a little more adult read, I decided to grab a children’s novel about a dead guy and magic. That’s sounds great, doesn’t it? Well, at least to me. And it was a great book. The world creation was fantastic, the characters likeable, the story thrilling, and the writing was fluent. Skulduggery Pleasant is a skeleton magician and helps Stephanie solve the death of her beloved uncle. Suddenly she is in the middle of a world that she did not even know existed. I really recommend this.

Kirsten John – Rapunzel, der schüchterne Wolf und die Sache mit dem Magischen Zopf

This is a children’s book series that has sadly not been published in English yet, but really should. For a short English review please see further below.

Rapunzel

Hardcover
Verlag: Arena
veröffentlicht 2012
Seiten: 127

Buch (Deutsch)

Klappentext:

Verwünscht noch mal! In welchem Märchen sind Mia und ihr Frosch Jakob bloß diesmal gelandet? Und warum hat Mia urplötzlich so einen unstillbaren Hunger auf Feldsalat? Glücklicherweise begegnen die beiden einem gutmütigen Wolf, der sie zu Rapunzels Turm führt. Dort setzt sich Mia erst die böse Frau Gothel, befreit Rapunzel – und verpasst ihr dann auch noch eine schicke neue Friseur!

In Kürze:

+ der 4. Band in der Mia Reihe
+ diesmal verschlägt es Mia in das Märchen von Rapunzel
+ flüssig, frischer Schreibstil
+ das Buch ist wunderschön illustriert

Meinung:

Das letzte Mia Abenteuer hat begonnen. Wer die ersten drei Teile nicht gelesen hat, sollte nicht weiterlesen, weil vielleicht doch etwas verraten wird.

Anstatt dass Mia, ihre Tante und Jakob, wieder nach Hause reisen, werden die drei getrennt und Mia und ihr Frosch Jakob landen in Rapunzel’s Märchen. Mia kann sich das Ganze gar nicht erklären und sucht einen Ausweg und ihre Tante. Dabei trifft sie auf Rapunzel und bringt auch hier das ein oder andere Durcheinander. Gebt dem Kind niemals eine Schere.

Auch das vierte Abenteuer ist wieder sehr lustig und spannend und stellt ein Märchen auf den Kopf. Der Schreibstil ist wieder einmal sehr flüssig, frisch und altersgerecht, die Illustrationen sind zauberhaft, die Protagonistin ist ein keckes, mutiges und auch mal aufmüpfiges junges Mädchen und Jakob ist ein niedlicher und knuffiger Sidekick. (Das hört er jetzt sicher gar nicht gerne.) Auch der schüchterne Wolf, der gerne ein böser Wolf wäre, hat mir sehr gut gefallen.

Fazit:

Alles in allem handelt es sich hierbei um eine schöne, kindgerechte Märchenneuerzählung mit wunderbaren Figuren und sehr schönen Illustrationen.

In English:

This last fairytale adventure takes Mia to meet Rapunzel – by accident as usual. Mia, her frog Jacob and her aunt were about to leave the Cinderella’s fairy tale when something went wrong and Mia landed in yet another story and not at home. While trying to find her way back home, she interferes in another story yet again and causes some funny and interesting twists. She should have never been given the pair of scissors.
The fourth and sadly final story in this series is as funny and hilarious as the predecessors. The writing is really suitable for the age group, the illustrations are wonderful, the protagonist is brave and cheeky and the frog is just adorable. Again a great fairy tale retelling.

Rating:

rating 4

Jessica Fletcher & Donald Bain – Murder She Wrote: Murder on the QE2

Murder on the QE2

paperback
publisher: Signet
published 1997
pages 304

Book (English)

Blurb:

Bestselling mystery writer and amateur sleuth Jessica Fletcher is invited to travel to London on the grand dame of ocean liners, the Queen Elizabeth II, as one of seven guest lecturers. The night they set sail, a fellow speaker is found brutally murdered. Now Jessica has just four days at sea to find the killer…before she finds more of her colleagues, or even herself, dead in the water! (Amazon)

In (Very) Short:

+ Novels based on the crime series Murder She Wrote
+ fun and entertaining read
+ whodunit crime story
– the solution might have been a little far-fetched, but that’s okay

My Opinion:

When I don’t have an Agatha Christie at hand I just turn to Murder She Wrote. Since I have watched all the seasons that I currently own on DVD several times, I decided to start another Murder She Wrote novel. This is my second MSW novel so far and I have to say that I enjoyed it.

Jessica Fletcher is on the QE 2 crossing the Atlantic and of course a murder happens. Why anyone would ever invite Jessica Fletcher at all still amazes me. I mean theoretically speaking everybody must know that people die around her and you should probably just run for the hills, but anyway. I am rambling. (Although a friend of mine and I agree, we would just run, when she was near :) )

So, of course Jessica being the observant sleuth that she is, starts to look a little closer. This time she has a new sidekick – a lady she met on the trip who is as observant as she is. Towards the end both know who the murderer is and when the police arrives at the scene (I mean on the boat), the true killer is revealed.

The book contains what you need, Jessica Fletcher, an annoying and incapable security chief, and a group of suspects with a lot of motive. Although the murderer was a little far-fetched for my taste it did confirm the traditional whodunit requirement: the person you least suspect.

The book was entertaining, the story interesting, the writing fast paced and on track, and there was Jessica. I can’t help it but I love her as much as Miss Marple.

Bottom Line:

A fun and entertaining read. No Marple, but exiting nonetheless.

Rating:

rating 3

Fiona Foden – Life, Death and Gold Leather Trousers

Gold Leather Trousers

paperback
publisher: Scholastic UK Ltd.
published 2011
pages 291

eBook (English)

Blurb:

Riley Hart is heart-stoppingly cute. Clover has a major crush. Unfortunately, Riley is also best mates with Clover’s arch nemesis, Sophie.
But right now, Clover’s life holds bigger problems. Jupe, her beloved rock-star uncle, has died and Clover will never know what she did to make him cut her out of his life
Is there anyone who can tell Clover the truth? Could Jupe have cared, even at the end? If only Riley would leave Sophie’s evil grasp and help her find out…(Goodreads)

In (Very)Short:

+ contemporary children’s/young adult novel (somewhere in between)
+ relatable and likeable main character
+ great way to deal with the topic of divorce and family

My Opinion:

It’s been quite a time since I read this book and I honestly don’t remember everything. Clover loves music, has a little sister with whom she shares a room, and her parents separate. As if that is not bad enough, she likes a boy who is best friends with her worst enemy and her uncle has broken of all contact with her.

Clover tries to deal with all the changes in her life and come to terms with her family situation. When her uncle dies and leaves everything to Clover’s mother, long-buried feelings start to unraveled.

I really enjoyed the book. It dealt with topics such as divorce, new family members, and death – all this without being in any way depressing. The book dealt with those topics without forcing the issues upon the protagonist or looking down on the Clover in any way. Everything progressed naturally.

Although I get quite frustrated with young protagonists, who make decisions that I don’t understand (and yes that is probably because I am old), I was able to relate to Clover and her feelings. I was as mad at Clover’s parents as she was and I was as frustrated as Clover was. Foden’s way of writing was so captivating, that I identified with her protagonist. Otherwise I would have not felt the way I did while reading the book. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and let’s be honest the title is just great.

Bottom Line:

A great book with a relatable and loveable main character, fluent writing, dealing with different forms of love and support.

Rating:

rating 4

Alexandra Pilz – Zurück nach Hollyhill

For a short English review please see below. The book is not published in English yet.

Holly Hill

Hardcover
Verlag: Heyne
veröffentlicht: 2012
Seiten: 348

Book (Deutsch)

Klappentext:

Ein Dorf im Moor. Eine Reise in die Vergangenheit. Eine große Liebe. Mit ihrem Besuch in England beginnt für die 17-jährige Emily ein Abenteuer voller Magie und Zauber. Und hinterher wird nichts mehr sein wie es wahr.

In Kürze:

+ Zeitreise Jugendroman
+ spannend, unterhaltsam; sehr angenehmer und einnehmender Schreibstil
+ ein Zeitreisekonzept das nicht überfordert
+ interessante Figuren und spannenden Handlung

Meine Meinung:

Bei diesem Buch handelt es sich um eine Zeitreise Jugendroman – so würde ich es zumindest beschreiben und es hat mir sehr gut gefallen.

Emily bekommt nach dem Abitur einen Brief ihrer verstorbenen Mutter in dem sie Emily rät nach Hollyhill zu fahren. Das Dorf in dem ihre Mutter gelebt hat. Das überrascht Emily und ihre Oma (bei der sie lebt), denn ihre Mutter hatte nie etwas über ihre Vergangenheit verraten. Also macht Emily sich auf die Suche nach einem Dorf was auf keiner Landkarte zu finden ist.

Endlich angekommen, vermeiden die Dorfbewohner ihre Fragen zu beantworten und verhalten sich auch sonst komisch. Erst als das Leben ihrer besten Freundin in Gefahr gerät, wird Emily klar, warum man das Dorf auf keiner Landkarte findet.

Die Geschichte ist wirklich sehr interessant und auch wenn die ganze Zeitreiselogik für mich doch recht verwirrend ist, schafft die Autorin es, dies nicht als Problem darzustellen. Es ergibt alles einen Sinn, wird ausreichend erklärt, lässt vielleicht ein paar Ungereimtheiten offen, aber das stört nicht.

Der Schreibstil ist flüssig, leicht und schafft es einen schnell in die Geschichte zu entführen. Die Figuren sind etwas verschroben, Emily ist etwas naiv, aber das nimmt man ihr nicht übel, Matt ist da schon etwas anstrengender, aber auch das ist okay.

Während wir in diesem Buch in einige der Geheimnisse des Dorfes eingeweiht werden, ist schnell zu erkennen, dass wir nur wenig über die Vergangenheit der Mutter lernen und auch wenig über die Vergangenheit der Dorfbewohner. Das lässt natürlich genügend Stoff für Fortsetzungen.

Auch wenn die Idee an sich sehr schön und auch recht einzigartig ist, sind einige andere Ereignisse doch vorhersehbar – besonders natürlich die Liebesgeschichte. „Sie können sich nicht leiden, aber trotzdem können sie nicht ohne einander“ ist ein immer wiederkehrendes Motiv und kann auch sehr gut und überzeugend gemacht sein. Hier wirkte es allerdings ein wenig erzwungen in meinen Augen. Aber das ist auch nicht so schlimm und tut der Spannung der Geschichte keinen Abbruch.

Fazit:

Ein schöner, spannender Zeitreiseroman, der mich schnell in seinen Bann gezogen hatte.

In English:

This book is not translated into English yet. It is a good and entertaining time travel young adult novel. Emily receives a letter from her dead mother when she graduates college. She tells her to visit her old home Hollyhill to find out about her past. But the town does not exist. It is not on any map that Emily and her friend look at. Still Emily goes out to find Hollyhill. After a less than warm welcome in the town, Emily tries to learn about her mother’s past only to be drawn into an adventure she couldn’t even dream up. When her best friend is in danger she suddenly learns why the town is not recorded on a map.
The time travel concept (which can generally be very overwhelming when theories and such come into play) is kept simple and the idea of a time traveling town is quite unique really. The story has some crime fiction twists, the characters are likeable though some more so than others, the writing is captivating, and some plot twists are quite predictable as in many young adult books. The whole we-despise-each-other-but-we-are-so-drawn-to-each-other seemed a little forced. But all in all, this is a good and entertaining book.

Rating:

rating 4