Recent Read Talk - Book Talk Transcript

Hello fellow ink drinkers and welcome back! Today we’re going to be going over some recent reads that we have done and our thoughts on the books. Belle’s book will be discussed first as she has been working on her recent read for longer. To be fair, she is a college student so she does have an excuse for taking more time to read a book.

For Belle’s book, she actually ended up not finishing the book. For the past few months, she has been reading “The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter” by Theodora Goss. Even though Belle is in college and all of that, this book has been a long read. The best way to describe the premise of this book is that the main characters are the daughters of scientific characters from Gothic literature and the daughters were in some way experimented on. All the characters eventually find each other through this mystery, there were these killings in London and Sherlock and Watson get involved. It’s just a big mystery but it’s just very slow and just very dull. The action is just not really there and it’s a very slow book. It took until about page 200 for something to actually happen. There were some deaths of unknown people that happened earlier in the book but it wasn’t portrayed as a major event rather something that just kinda happened. The one cool thing is that the author wrote the book as though it was written by the main characters and she was the one who put the story together for them after they wrote their accounts. There were some notes in the margins from the characters about certain accounts in the book which were interesting. However some of the notes felt a little unnecessary and seemed to drag the book out.

Belle does not feel as though she is the type of person for this book and others may like it better. It starts with the character of Mary Jekyll. Her mother just died and her father had been dead and she’s kind of picking up the pieces from that. Mary Jekyll meets Hyde’s daughter. In this universe, Jekyll and Hyde are different people but it’s unknown whether they were two different people and then apparently Dr. Jekyll started experimenting on himself and then maybe he could transform into Mr. Hyde. The book later introduces pig men and that was the point where Belle decided to stop reading. The story also includes three other girls and Mary's housekeeper. Overall, there is just a lot of randomness to the story and if Belle finished it, answers would probably be there but Belle decided not to finish the book.

My recent read is actually a reread and it was a book that I read as a kid. It is called “The Legend of Holly Claus” and it’s an older book. Brittney Ryan is the author of this book. I read it when I was probably around 10, 11, 12, or 13 years old. There was something about it that stuck in my head and the motif in the book that love conquers time is one of those ideas. I had decided because of this blog that I had wanted to reread some nostalgia books. I chose to start off by rereading this book. The premise of it is that there is a little boy who writes a letter to Santa Claus. In his letter, he asks what Santa Claus wants for Christmas. Santa Claus lives in a land that is called the Land of Immortals which is where all sorts of fairytale creatures and people who have done a lot for humanity live. It’s essentially a world of magic and this letter sparks the idea that Santa does want a child to share his life with him and his wife. A little girl is born and she is named Holly. She is the only child to ever be born in this land and then there is a big bad guy. I am not gonna be able to pronounce his name. I always call him Heineken and that is not his name. It's something that is completely different but for this case we are just gonna call him big bad. In order for him to be free from his prison he needs to possess the purest heart in the land and of course Holly is the purest heart. So he freezes her heart with ice so it stays pure forever. Because of this, she can’t be warm at all and she has to live in the cold. She had clothes that were made for her from enchanted snow and many other things to help her stay cold.

I thought it spent a lot more time on her venturing out into the real world because that’s how the plot moves forward. However, two thirds of the book was all about her growing up in isolation because she can’t really be around those who live in the Land of Immortals. Plus the one time that she did try to venture out the big bad showed up and cursed somebody so everybody is scared of her. I latched on more to the end of the story where she is in the real world and meets her true love. I forgot about all the things that had happened before that part and how she grew up and had these animal friends who really cared for her. I still really enjoyed going back and revisiting the read. It was really interesting to get an older perspective to this book. I do really recommend it for anyone to read. Another thing that I resonated with is that Holly was compared to children with medical conditions. When she goes to the real world, she meets a little girl who is very sick and due to her illness she has to get rid of all of her toys. It’s not very clear what she has but the only thing I thought of was TB or tuberculosis. I’m not sure about that at all honestly. I thought it was strange that there was a sickness that caused that to happen. There probably is something historical there that I’m just not remembering. Holly ends up making her a doll to replace all of her dolls that were destroyed and the little girl is in love with it. She says that the doll is her if she wasn’t sick and Holly says that she’s sick too but the little girl can get better and show the doctors that she can get better. It was a really cute moment in the book.


All in all, Belle would not necessarily recommend her recent read to others. I would recommend mine if you are looking for a cute childrens’ book for either yourself or for the children in your life. We hope you have enjoyed our recent read talk. See you guys next week.

Arya

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