Tag Archives: Nancy Farmer

My January 2018 Book Haul!

I promised myself that I would try minimizing my book purchases this year and be more vigilant on book sale and promos! Hah! So for this month, I’ve acquired five books which got me busy for the first three weeks of the year. I was so engrossed with The House of the Scorpion* whose review I just posted earlier tonight as well as the disappointing I’ll Give You The Sun*.

I am currently reading Number The Stars by Lois Lowry and once I finished this, I’d try to reread one of my favorite books in 2015 – Wolf by Wolf* so I could start Blood by Blood as soon as possible! So exciting!

I bought The House of the Scorpion from PowerBooks and the rest are from Fully Booked. Big thanks to Fully Booked for carrying Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wold Duology! ❤

*Links of my reviews.

 

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Book Review: The Lord of Opium – Nancy Farmer

Published: September 3, 2013
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Format: Novel
Genre And Themes: Young Adult, Dystopia, Romance, Drugs, Death
Length: 411 pages, Hardcover
Ebook ISBN/ASIN: 1442482540 (ISBN13: 9781442482548)
Characters: Matteo Alacran, El Patron, Tam Lin, Maria Mendoza, Chacho, Fidelito, Ton-Ton, Celia, Mirasol

Now, The Lord of Opium may not have the same literary awards received by its predecessor – The House of the Scorpion but it’s still as strong, story-wise.

This book started a good few hours during the funeral of El Patron and from thereon, Matt’s young life is about to really change because he is technically The Lord of Opium (still no spoiler) thus becoming the most powerful man in the world (by default).

This one is as riveting as the first book. I loved the characters of the “Lost Boys” especially little Fidelito. He is my favorite character here aside from Matt. I really connected to his character because he kinda reminded me of my 6 year old nephew.

Then there’s Mirasol. The author really knows where to give us the feels. The ‘relationship’ between her and Matt was just heartbreaking. I dare you not to feel anything for her. You’d lose.

There are tons of things here that maybe a bit too much for some I think. I mean, I loved every single details of it although some readers may find it too crowded. Nevertheless, it’s good to imagine such things and wish for a possible third book.

The relationship of Matt and Maria was finally rekindled here and I loved that Matt was finding his own identity separate from El Patron. It’s odd that he is basically the same person but different at the same time.

I just want to dissect everything about this book, including the zombie-like eejits, the drug lords, the countries surrounding Opium and more importantly – how Mattero will run it as a totally grown man! Man’ I’d kill for a third book!

Again, my friends – I cannot recommend this high enough!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

AMAZON BUY LINK

About The Author
Nancy was born in 1941 in Phoenix and grew up in a hotel on the Arizona-Mexico border where she worked the switchboard at the age of nine. She also found time to hang out in the old state prison and the hobo jungle along the banks of the Colorado River. She attended Reed College in Portland, Oregon, earning her BA in 1963. Instead of taking a regular job, she joined the Peace Corps and was sent to India (1963-1965). When she returned, she moved into a commune in Berkeley, sold newspapers on the street for a while, then got a job in the Entomology department at UC Berkeley and also took courses in Chemistry there. Restless, again, she decided to visit Africa. She and a friend tried to hitchhike by boat but the ship they’d selected turned out to be stolen and was boarded by the Coast Guard just outside the Golden Gate Bridge. Nancy eventually got to Africa on a legal ship. She spent more than a year on Lake Cabora Bassa in Mozambique, monitoring water weeds. Next she was hired to help control tsetse fly in the dense bush on the banks of the Zambezi in Zimbabwe. Part of the time she spent in the capital, Harare, and was introduced to her soon-to-be husband by his soon-to-be ex-girlfriend. He proposed a week later. Harold and Nancy now live in the Chiricahua Mountains of Arizona on a major drug route for the Sinaloa Cartel. This is the setting for The Lord of Opium. They have a son, Daniel, who is in the U.S. navy.
Nancy’s honors include the National Book Award for The House of the Scorpion and Newbery Honors for The Ear, the Eye and The Arm, A Girl Named Disaster and The House of the Scorpion. She is the author of nine novels, three picture books and a number of short stories. Her books have been translated into 26 languages.

Book Review: The House of the Scorpion – Nancy Farmer

Published: September 1, 2002
Publisher: Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books
Format: Novel
Genre And Themes: Young Adult, Dystopia, Romance, Drugs, Death
Length: 380 pages, paperback
Ebook ISBN/ASIN: 0689852231 (ISBN13: 9780689852237)
Characters: Matteo Alacran, El Patron, Tam Lin, Maria Mendoza, Chacho, Fidelito, Ton-Ton, Celia

I’ve read this and its sequel over a week ago and it was a bit difficult for me to write reviews for both books since they’re so epic, I’m almost at a loss where to start. Let me try my best though, to say what I thought about this incredible masterpiece. Yeah – very telling I know, but this one’s really a masterpiece.

First the characters –

I loved Matt’s character. I was with him the whole time reading the book – was rooting for this kid who’s been cloned from the most powerful man in this dystopian words where drugs serves as its currency.

His resilience is beyond admirable. For a young age, he’s been through a lot. He may have gone ‘Lord of the Flies’ on us readers but the way he came out of it was so bad-ass, it got me bawling my eyes out. This character should be in a movie, pronto.

El Patron. I find him creepy but he’s such a dynamic character I’d love to see him come to life in a film. I loved that as evil as he is, there’s still a part of him that remembers the good ol’ days when he was not the ‘El Patron’ everyone has come to know when he isn’t consume by his self-made power.

Celia – as Matt’s caregiver -she’s probably the one character in the book that is consistently with Matt all throughout. I’m just wondering exactly how old she is but nevertheless – what a great character to juxtaposed the evil surrounding Matt.

Maria who is Matt’s love interest is a bit complicated to explain. She’s got good intentions but what she’s saying sometimes contradicts her actions.

Tam Lin is an amazing father figure for Matt. Kind of reminds me of Mister Miyagi in Karate Kid.

Steven and Tom – it is odd that they weren’t given that much part in the story but their actions throughout the book effectively made me despise them.

The storyarc from the getgo is nothing short of exhilirating. What a dreadful possibility this could be, what with the climate change, the advancement of technology and the ‘powerful folks’ claiming lives like it was their gift to do so. It’s terrible but effective in the story.

The world-building is almost censory overload. I mean, reading it makes you envision them on the spot because of the author’s powerful words.

The pacing was set faster than I expected which I absolutely loved. No unnecessary scenes. Every scene in this book is pivotal to the development of the characters and the story.

I know that I’m gushing all over but it’s just that good. This is super spoiler free but I’m telling you – it is so worth reading it!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

AMAZON BUY LINK

About The Author
Nancy was born in 1941 in Phoenix and grew up in a hotel on the Arizona-Mexico border where she worked the switchboard at the age of nine. She also found time to hang out in the old state prison and the hobo jungle along the banks of the Colorado River. She attended Reed College in Portland, Oregon, earning her BA in 1963. Instead of taking a regular job, she joined the Peace Corps and was sent to India (1963-1965). When she returned, she moved into a commune in Berkeley, sold newspapers on the street for a while, then got a job in the Entomology department at UC Berkeley and also took courses in Chemistry there. Restless, again, she decided to visit Africa. She and a friend tried to hitchhike by boat but the ship they’d selected turned out to be stolen and was boarded by the Coast Guard just outside the Golden Gate Bridge. Nancy eventually got to Africa on a legal ship. She spent more than a year on Lake Cabora Bassa in Mozambique, monitoring water weeds. Next she was hired to help control tsetse fly in the dense bush on the banks of the Zambezi in Zimbabwe. Part of the time she spent in the capital, Harare, and was introduced to her soon-to-be husband by his soon-to-be ex-girlfriend. He proposed a week later. Harold and Nancy now live in the Chiricahua Mountains of Arizona on a major drug route for the Sinaloa Cartel. This is the setting for The Lord of Opium. They have a son, Daniel, who is in the U.S. navy.
Nancy’s honors include the National Book Award for The House of the Scorpion and Newbery Honors for The Ear, the Eye and The Arm, A Girl Named Disaster and The House of the Scorpion. She is the author of nine novels, three picture books and a number of short stories. Her books have been translated into 26 languages.

My Book Haul: September 2017!

This is my first time sharing my book haul from a certain period of time and this one is just from last month! I often buy books from thrift shops, book sales and from the three leading book stores in the country – the National Book Store, Fully Booked and Powerbooks. Mostly, from National Book Store because they are more varied and they tend to be way cheaper for some reason! Haha! So without further ado, let me present to you these titles!

 

From this haul, I’ve already read three of the series via ebooks (The 5th Wave, The Maze Runner series, and the Reckoners)  but it’s really nice to have copies which I’ve got for very affordable prices!

I’ve scored Another Day by David Levithan for P299 only which is also the most expensive from this haul but considering it’s regularly priced at 499 on paperback and I’ve the hardbound copy… I know right?

The other titles if you cannot read them on the image are:
For P100
1. The Best of the Morning Rush Top 10 with Chico, Delamar and Gino Volume 3

For P199 each from the National Book Store
Hardbound Editions
1. Black Ice – Becca Fitzpartick (
2. Five Kingdoms Series (1-4) – Brandon Mull
3. The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave, Book 2) – Rick Yancey
4. Jardhead – Anthony Swofford

Paperback
1. Love Letters to the Dead – Ava Delaira
2. Steelheart (The Reckoners, Book 1) – Brandon Sanderson
3. The Bane Chronicles – Cassandra Clare
4. The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, Book 2) – Rick Yancey
5. The Scorch Trials (The Maze Runner, Book 2) – James Dashner

For P99 each from the National Book Store
1. The Lord of Opium (Matteo Alacran, Book 2) – Nancy Farmer
2. Struck by Lightning – Chris Colfer

For P39 each from Chapters & Pages
1. Mystic River – Dennis Lehane
2. The Vineyard – Barbara Delinsky

I’ve always wanted to read a Delinsky novel because I’ve been seeing her name since I started reading books from Belva Plain and Rosamunde Pilcher – I’m pretty excited, hopefully this first one would a great experience!

So that sums up my book haul post! I’ve already started with Struck by Lightning and it’s already looking great!

What are you reading now?