3 Days 3 Quotes | Day 1

I was nominated to do the 3 days 3 quotes tag/ challenge thing by Kerry over at kerryberrybooks. Thank you very much Kerry and now here are my favourite quotes.

3 Days 3 Quotes | Day 1

“My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?”

I think I have spoken many times about how much I love Cloud Atlas, but the reason why I love this quote is a bit more complicated. I was in a really low place around the time that Cloud Atlas came out in the UK and I can’t really explain why but this quote really resonated with how I was feeling at the time. Basically its complicated and I don’t want to explain all the details. But I love this quote.

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2 Reasons Why I Love The Great British Bake Off

1. Sue

2 Reasons Why I Love The Great British Bake Off | bluchickenninja.com Read the full post »

DISCUSSION: Armada *Spoiler Warning*

DISCUSSION: Armada | bluchickenninja.com

There was loads of stuff I wanted to talk about in my Armada review but didn’t because of spoilers. So I’ve decided to put them all into a “discussion” post instead. I’m putting a huge spoiler warning on this post. Basically only read this if you’ve finished Armada, if you’re thinking about reading it check out my review instead.

*I’m not joking don’t read this unless you’ve read Armada.*

So the basic plot of Armada is that there is this computer game which is being used to train everyone on Earth as drone pilots so they can fight when these giant squid alien things attack. You go on to learn that the army has funded this game along with many others and has been funding the film industry for the last 40 years. Basically all popular science-fiction movies and television programs have been funded by the army. Basically what I want to know is how was all this kept secret. There must have been hundreds of people working on that game alone, we find out Gabe Newell and Peter Jackson and the London Philharmonic Orchestra have worked on it. We see that the army funded Star Wars and Star Trek and even Cosmos. We find out that Carl Sagan was hugely involved in the project. The army has built huge amounts of infrastructure so people can control these drones and we find out there are drones basically hidden under every city. Not only that but they built a secret base on the moon. There must have been thousands and thousands of people working on this and not one person let it slip in 40 years?

And then we have the problem that large parts of this book feel like Ender’s Game. So the thing with Ender’s Game is there is a massive plot twist at the end, all those battles that Ender thought was just training turned out to be real conflicts with the “buggers”. So then in Armada, not only does it already feel very similar to Ender’s Game anyway, but that first in game battle we see is almost exactly the same as the final battle in Ender’s Game. You have all the tiny ships protecting the big guns as they try to destroy the planet. It almost feels like Cline is trying to make Zack Lightman into the new Ender Wiggin, and that’s fine. The strange thing was the fact that Zack was constantly making references and comparing what he was doing to Ender. Like I realise the whole point of this book is all the pop culture references, but it felt like Ernest Cline was trying just a little too hard to make Armada the new Ender’s Game.

Then we have the secret space station on the dark side of the moon. One of the things Zack mentions when he arrives there is that it looks familiar. Almost like the builders took reference from sci-fi movies. Which is completely ridiculous. First of all designing a building to look like a thing they saw in a movie would be so much extra work, what did they get the original blueprints? Because if so then doesn’t copyright also come into play. There is also the fact that those original sets were made to look nice, they weren’t designed to be part of an actual working space station. Wouldn’t the designers create something that actually worked rather than something that they saw in a movie.

And then the ending. Okay I like this book but the ending was like actually what the fuck. So it turned out the whole aliens invading thing was actually some AI trying to “test humanity”, the AI wanted to see what humanity would do if aliens tried to invade which (in my opinion) was really stupid. The AI said that it knew humanity was a “violent race” but the book also says that the humans tried to talk to the “Europans” and didn’t get an answer. It really felt like Q putting the human race on trial in The Next Generation. Actually no, you know what it felt like. It felt like Galaxy Quest. It felt like Ernest Cline was trying to mock all those alien invasion type movies.

However even though I enjoyed the book I did feel that the ending ruined it for me. You have all these millions of people that died and all this damage and suddenly oh its all okay because we’re now a member of some fancy club and have all these new medicines and technology. Also that stupid cliffhanger ending even though we are probably never going to get a sequel.

[/rant]

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Armada by Ernest Cline

Armada by Ernest ClineRating: 4 / 5 stars
Format: ebook / Hardback
Published: 14th July 2015
Book Depository | Goodreads

Zack Lightman has spent his life dreaming. Dreaming that the real world could be a little more like the countless science-fiction books, movies, and videogames he s spent his life consuming. Dreaming that one day, some fantastic, world-altering event will shatter the monotony of his humdrum existence and whisk him off on some grand space-faring adventure.

But hey, there’s nothing wrong with a little escapism, right? After all, Zack tells himself, he knows the difference between fantasy and reality. He knows that here in the real world, aimless teenage gamers with anger issues don t get chosen to save the universe.

And then he sees the flying saucer.

I can’t quite decide if this book is mocking all those aliens invade type science-fiction movies or if it took them and tried to make this new weird thing. Basically Ernest Cline is either a genius or a maniac and I can’t quite decide which one it is. So heres the thing, I enjoyed this book but I also had some massive problems with it. Problems which I don’t want to talk about because I will give away many many spoilers. But despite that I did actually really like this.

Its an Ernest Cline book so you go into it knowing that there are going to be references to Star Trek and Star Wars and a bunch of other things. But I like that it also has these really subtle pop culture references. I like that he mentions the Kobayashi Maru without any other references to Star Trek, I like that he gave a little explanation of what it is for people who haven’t watched Star Trek while people who have watched Star Trek will fully understand what he is talking about. I like all the references to internet memes, even Leeroy Jenkins. I am a nerd and I like that there is a book with all of these things, where it acknowledges and celebrates the nerds of the world.

However I did feel that all the pop culture references got a little over the top in some parts, especially when Cline was trying to make certain points of the book very serious and it just didn’t work because of the references to Galaxy Quest.

I love that the main character actually feels like a real kid. He would rather play video games than go to school, he doesn’t want to think about the future, he has no idea what he wants to do after he graduates and when he finds out that aliens are real he reacts in a realistic way. And by that I mean he shouts and screams and has a panic attack.

But it did kind of feel that Ernest Cline had copied Ready Player One. In both books we have a main character who becomes obsessed with this one person, they learn everything they can about them and go as far as to watch the movies and read the books and play the games they liked. In both we also have these huge computer games that basically everyone all over the world play. It felt like Ernest Cline had found this winning plot in Ready Player One and instead of creating something new for Armada just rehashed that same plot again with a few changes

I will admit that Armada has some problems however its very good for what it is, which is basically an adventure book for nerds, if you want to read something without thinking too much about the plot this is great. It’s really not meant to be taken very seriously. Basically if you are a nerd, or enjoy science-fiction and gaming, you will probably enjoy this.

Buy Armada on Book Depository

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*I received a copy of this book from Crown Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

My Blogging Notebook

Way back on my blogging essentials post I mentioned I have a notebook in which I take notes, write blog posts, make lists and plan out my posting schedule. Well I thought since this notebook is nearly full I would show you guys how I use my notebook.

My Blogging Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

This is an A5 flexi journal from Paperchase and I really love it, my only problem is its a bit more beat up than what I would expect for something that has lived on my desk for over a year. This is especially annoying since it’s not what I would consider a “cheap” notebook.

My Blogging Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

On the inside cover I store various things that I use as bookmarks. On the other page I keep track of various blog stats. These giant post-it notes are really good for this sort of thing, I can just add another post-it on top when I get to the bottom of a page.

My Blogging Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

I prefer doing a first draft of my posts on paper first. I’m not sure about everyone else but when I’m writing a post out on the computer seeing spelling or grammar mistakes really distracts me from writing. My memory is pretty bad so that little thing sometimes makes me forget my train of thought. It also means its really easy for me to do a second round of editing as I’m typing it up.

My Blog Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

I’ve tried filofaxes and a bunch of different planners and the easiest way I’ve found to plan out posts is by printing a monthly calendar and sticking it into my notebook.  I stick tabs on each month aswell so its really easy to flip through them

My Blog Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

This paper isn’t really the best for using with watercolours but its good enough for little doodles. Anyway its not like I’m creating some amazing artwork.

My Blogging Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

When I started doing book reviews I decided I wanted to keep them looking the same. I have a draft saved on WordPress which I can copy but I kept a note in here too. You would think after writing 2 reviews a week for six months I would remember how I format reviews but nope, I still reference this pretty much every time I write a review.

I’ve also found that having a list of the books I got from publishers really helps especially since these are the books I will almost definitely review.

My Blogging Notebook | bluchickenninja.com

This is something I’ve just started doing so my method might change. But it turns out taking notes while reading a book really helps when it comes to writing a review. Normally I try and write a review as soon as I finish a book but this really helps me get my thoughts out.

Thanks for reading.
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