Book Reviews: Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Catch-22 tells the tale of Yossarian, a bomber during World War 2, and his attempts to survive the war. The main problem, however, is not the enemy army,  but his own army, which keeps on increasing the amount of missions he and his squadron must fly before they are free. Yossarian tries to escape by feigning madness, but the all powerful Catch-22 stops him: If somebody keeps on flying the missions, they are insane and don’t have to fly, but if they make a formal request to be removed from duty on the grounds of insanity, then that is proof that they are same and thus, they have to fly. This is, without a doubt, one of the best books ever written. While it will give anybody a great laugh just by reading it, delving into Catch-22 becomes a massively rewarding experience. However, remember that this book is still a satirical novel, and it is without peer in that factor. The cast of characters are all very quirky and hilarious, but they definitely don’t lack in their slew of tragic character flaws. If it is possible, annotating this book while reading it will make it a lot easier to understand, not only on the first read-through, but through all the consecutive read-throughs that are guaranteed to follow.

Stars?: 6 out of 5

Book review written by Edward L.

Book Reviews: This is what Happy Looks Like by Jennifer Smith

This is a book that centers around the idea of fate and starts when teenage star, Graham, gets a new phone and emails his friend. When he misspells the address the email goes to small town girl, Ellie, in Maine. They start up a conversation and learn about each other. When Graham comes to shoot one of his movie where Ellie lives he tries to find her. Once they find each other, the more they learn the closer they get.

I would recommend this book to people who would like a light cute book that can hold their interest and that. It wasn’t too mushy and it wasn’t too out there. So it is definitely for people who want a light refreshing read.

Stars?: 4 out of 5

Book review written by Ananya Rai

Book Reviews: Looking for Alaska by John Green

Miles arrives at a school called Culver Creek Preparatory and meets a group of pranksters. They may seem like ordinary pranksters, but their pranks always end up going too far. In the midst of these pranksters, he meets a girl named Alaska. Falling for her, he does anything he can for her. One night, Alaska receives a call, freaking her out and asking for help to escape Culver Creek. No one but Alaska knows what was in the call, but helping her escape leads to devastating events that soon follow. Trying to uncover the cause behind such unfortunate events Miles and his friend embark on quite the mystery.

The book is beyond amazing. Not just because it’s written by John green, but h address the issues that surround a teenager’s life very accurately. From having a crush to doing drugs, Green is able to address these issues efficiently, yet still keep the reader interested through the very gripping plot line, leaving the ending rather shocking.

Recommend?: Yes! It is a book that everyone will enjoy.

Stars?: 4 3/4 out of 5

Book Reviews: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

A little bit like boy-meets-girl, if the boy (Akiva) was extremely beautiful and an angel, and the girl (Karou) was an equally beautiful girl with blue hair and some wicked skills. Daughter of Smoke and Bone starts out strong, with great writing and world building, really wonderful strength of character on Karou’s side, as well as hilarious conversations between her and her friend Zuzana. Then Akiva comes in and everything falls of a cliff. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is an easy book to love: gorgeous prose, and that addictive escapism into a fantastic world of wishes and star-crossed love. But to be honest, there are quite a few not-so-great cracks when one reads a little more carefully. For example, take the relationship between Akiva and Karou. The time between their first civilized conversation and their first make out session can’t be any more than maybe two weeks–and that’s being generous. Throw in the hormones that come with the opposite person being hotter than the gun control debate, and their relationship starts looking pretty darn shaky.

One could make the argument that Akiva knew Karou in another time, so the insta-love between them is justified, but it’s made very clear that Karou is Karou, not the person she was before, and that she has never known Akiva until now. So while Daughter of Smoke and Bone has more than a few original ideas, and some of the best writing I’ve seen, the centerpiece romance falls flat, making the book less than what it could have been.

Stars?: 3 out of 5

Book review written by Stephanie L.