Red Rising #1 – Book Review and Hunger Games comparison

15839976Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.

Source: Goodreads

Warning: contains spoilers

To everyone who reads this book, it will bring a lot of similarities with the Hunger Games books. And in fact, Hunger Games might have inspired this author to write this book, since it was published 4 years after the first one.

In Red Rising, people are divided in castes by color. Red being the slaves, and the Gold being the government. This can be compared to districts, were every district has it’s function in society, there are poor and rich districts, and in the main one are all the people who live by other’s afford.

What changes: 

In Red Rising, we are invited to vision a world in the future were Earth Colonized another planets, and that was the start to re-organize the world the same way as a hundred years ago. The first people to colonize Mars, were there to prepare the grounds for the others. What happened is that years passes and the “others” came to Mars, but these people never knew about it. Generations passed and the Red caste became more and more incult and ignorant about history and the world they never knew.
Until 1 Red was chosen to become a Gold one, so he could rise in society and claim what is right for all the people. So he infiltrates the Golden society to study with them in disguise.

And then we have the “Slavery Game”

At school they are all put in a ground to play a game. The Golden ones are divided in houses, and each of them a banner. They have to use the banner of the house to enslave the other houses. The last house not enslaved, wins.
They allow them to use any tools they have. They fight, there are murders, rape, torture. Even tho they have “inspectors” watching the game, and it is on TV (just like Hunger Games), the show is not live, the inspectors can edit the clips, show what they want. So they use it to manipulate the game. Help who they want to win.

And what you’ll read on this first book is from the mines of the Red people, till graduation of Darrow after the game.

My thoughts

Although this being very similar to Hunger Games, I don’t have a favorite yet.
Darrow character seem to be more full of real emotions, most of the time he knows what is right and what is wrong, still chooses to do wrong because it’s the person he is pretending to be, he needs to act like a Gold one.
I loved the fact that Darrow, in the game, also has a little bit of Daenerys Targaryen on his blood. He did what no Gold one had thought to do. Free the slaves, and let them help you instead of commanding them.

The Movies

Yet, this is another book series waiting for the releasing dates on the movies.

Anúncios

Where was I 10 years ago #10yearchallenge

Oh boy, where was I 10 years ago, and who was I?

100_0474In 2009, by this time, I was at the middle of my first year of high school. I had to change school at the beginning at this year as I was suffering bullying from my colleges. So far things were good, nobody knew me in my class, and I already knew the school because it was my school the year before.
In January 2009 it snowed on my hometown. For me, was the first time I could experience that.

Taking a Multimedia course at the age of 15, I had already given up the dream of being a Math teacher. The unemployment on public education didn’t seem to get any better and I didn’t want to make my parents pay my degree so I could be unemployed, that was never the point. So I decided to take a level 4 course, the same one as my brother, not knowing what I was really doing there. I didn’t knew 10 years later that course would lead me to being a web developer with an engineer degree.

On the category of boys, I was a type of girl that loved to flirt, I loved the attention, but then I wouldn’t give all my heart for them, I never had a serious relationship till 2 years after. I dream was to grow old, be a strong independent woman, rent a house I could afford on my own (I never knew I was going to buy a house straight away), and then if I got into a relationship I would ask the boy to move in with me. I would have the stability of knowing that the house was mine if things didn’t work out. Look at me now, on a 7 year relationship, 2 months living together. I didn’t know saving money was going to be this hard either.

ford-fiesta-2008-2017-wing-mirror-cover-lh-or-rh-side-in-ford-hot-magenta-2-259-pI became obsessed by the Ford Fiesta 2009 model, still am. The magenta car that I was seeing on web series like “T2 para 3” or on youtuber’s videos, since Ford gave them a car so they can test drive and make publicity with them. I love that car and till this day I wish to buy one for me, the 2009 model, not any other.

I started an youtube channel  in 2009. I gave some effort into it, but since I was a bit ashamed to share it among friends, I hid it and when it got spread, I just shoot him down totally. I was never born for it anyways.

My faith level was on its highest point. I was already a catechist, I had quit scouting because I couldn’t relate to the purpose of it anymore. scouting used to help us grow up, help us relate to others and help others, help the community. But at that age, the purpose of the people around me was only to find a way to make money so they could go on trips and camping with no other task on their calendar to think about community. So I joined a juvenile group called “walking youth”, and there we did a lot of volunteering such as raising food for the poor, meeting with ex addicts or young adults in need, homeless that were in rehabilitation on the house built by the “walking youth” for this purpose.

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And here’s me now. 10kg fatter, achieved almost all my goals I could think of, and waiting to set some more. I am proud of the person I have become, and all the things I’ve gone through to get here only made me stronger and wiser. I can say that I am happy.

I am just were I was suppose to be.

 

 

 

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle #1)

After many request from my godfather (from college), I’ve finally read this book called The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.

Rating ☆☆☆☆☆

notw-165

At first glance, I didn’t know what to expect from it, I didn’t got any background or tip of what it was about, so I just dipped in and embrace the adventure that was about to begin.

warning: may contain spoilers

The whole book is about a men named Kvothe that, at the time of the story, is living as a common man named Kote. One day a Chronicler comes to town searching from him and wants to tell his story.
At this point we know some weird things are happening in their town, we know Kote has some secrets and that he was known in the past for being the kingkiller.
Kote agrees to tell his life’s story that will take three days to be finished.
From there we are took on a trip that starts on the memories from his parents and plans for the future, then the death of his parents and all his hope shattered. He was forced to live on the streets for years until he to overcomes the death of his parents and goes to university in hopes of being the man his parents wanted him to be.
His main interest on there was to learn the name of the wind, but things wasn’t easy for him. My feeling were shifted between joy and sadness through the whole process of it. He was bullied, he had achievements, he was betrayed, he loved, he was hurt, he received kindness and he was punished.

At the end of the book, when a colleague of his destroys the only precious thing he ever has, he was able to call the wind to revenge him. And then the first day passes and we still don’t know why he’s the kingkiller, why are this weird things happening in town, what happened after. Because there are 2 more books after this one.

I really enjoyed it. Tho it’s 900 pages long, it has a good rhythm. The thing that most surprised me was that this is no ordinary story, there are no straight line to the main character’s destiny, there is no conquer without some loss, there is no realism without some pain. The book describes a man’s life, not a fairytale. I can’t wait to start the second that has 1200 pages, and the third is yet to come.

 

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Surprising Cities – Zurich

This year I had the opportunity to travel by airplane for the very first time, and my first trip was to Zurich in Switzerland for a 3 day training course where I had the change to see the city on my spare time.
There were a lot of things I wasn’t expecting, or really had no idea of and made me love this trip so much. This was a week where I went in an airplane, tram, subway and a UBER for the first time.

Thing I had no idea about Zurich

  1. There are plenty of fields to cultivate
    So I thought, Zurich being a huge city, I would only see big apartments, loud city noise, city signs everywhere, but my first impression (apart from the huge mountains we first see through the airplane) are the fields of different colors. Apparently if you have a big farm, with 20 cows in Switzerland, you are rich man. Government invests so much in this.
  2. There is a tram passing by every minute
    This really impressed me because the circuits of trams are so huge that green lights for cars last 5 seconds so that a tram can pass by. You can go anywhere by tram. I git a 6 days pass where I would just validate him in the morning and during 24 hours I could go anywhere, then I would have to validate again.
    Tram lines in Zurich
  3. There are almost no free parks for cars
    Actually the price to pay for a parking spot in a whole day it’s more expensive than a 6 day Tram pass. People don’t have any need to go to work by car. Most of the people I knew only drive once a month, they just need the car if they want to purchase something big and need to carry it home.
  4. The buildings are so beautiful
    Almost every building have an oldfashioned style, like it’s more than 100 years old (some of them are, like the train station) but everything it’s well taken care of. You could see that the faces of the building were cleaned, repainted, like they really love living in the 80’s.
  5. The churches look the same
    Pretty much, it doesn’t matter what kind of church it is, it has the same type of tower with a clock.
  6. Zurich Lake
    Such a beautiful view
    dav
  7. Cordon bleu
    No idea that they had a traditional dish that is a breaded pan-fried meat with cheese and a stuffing of your choice. I had one with pineapple in it.
    cordon-bleu-2
  8. People from Switzerland speak English very well
    I was surprised that their English was almost perfect, even the accent. A country with 3 different languages (German, Italian and French), and Zurich being on the German side, from all the people I’ve dealt with, only 2 people didn’t speak English.
  9. People from Switzerland always eat everything on the plate
    I went to a restaurant with the rest of the team and asked for an hamburger with fries (because was the only thing I knew I would like, It’s hard to understand the ingredients in German, also they like vegetables a lot more than I do). I couldn’t eat everything by myself, there are a few dishes that I can eat the whole thing, and I started to get embarrassed when I noticed that they ate everything they had on their plates and were looking at my food like (You’re gonna leave that?). I’m so sorry.
  10. Everything closes by 10pm
    Why????

 

There were a lot more things I could talk about like the amazing Italian restaurants (I got only 1 bad experience), the empty streets, the Swiss chocolates, the expensive cost of life in there, but this 10 things were what most got me.

Next city will be Milan, since I went there the very next day of arriving from Zurich.

My name is Daniella, and I kick and bite

raccoon

Red Queen – Book Series Review

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver. The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change. That is until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power. Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime. But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart.

During this summer I had the opportunity to read the trilogy of Red Queen.

In my opinion these books are worth to read but they are not that awesome.
The story is similar to hunger games with a bit of X-Man background. So, the main character, comes from a poor family where her older brothers were sent to war and her destiny was to go to war too when she’s 18, but, the King and royal families found that she had a power to control electricity and a puppet show begins. She has red blood, and in a world where only people with silver blood were known to have powers, she was forced to play a role of a lost daughter of a royal family that were raised as a red blood but never knew who she really was, and now, soon to be married a prince.
Mare Barrow, sick of having to relate to people whom she hated the most, who sent her brothers to war, she joined a rebellion and became, like Katniss Everdeen, a Mockingjay.
They found out there were other like her, which blood were red and they too have powers, more powerful than the silver blood, and formed an army to fight the king.

Then the second book is more of a show off of all the powers and training. X-Man action. The third book was the one I loved the most because it describes the oppression of the king under his mother’s power (which was the power to go inside a person’s head and also manipulate his mind) and how he became so evil. This makes Mare Barrow think weather she wants to kill him, or save him. An answer we still don’t have.

There’s a fourth book released this year and by the comments on it it’s all about Maven. We’ll see how it goes.

Some people told me about a movie called The Darkest Minds… I think this might be similar to The Red Queen series, it also has book versions, I have to get them also. Have you read them? What do you think about them? Let me know…

The Algorithm of Power

At the end of last year I’ve received a book that I won from a Goodread’s giveaway from the author Pedro Barrento and it’s called The Algorithm of Power.

A society run by an operating system…
A world without politicians…
Digital Alternative is a new movement that intends to revolutionise politics… by doing away with politics.
From its humble origins as a buggy strategy game developed by a geeky teenager, Epochs evolves to become The Network, the operating system that will rule over the whole planet with chilling efficiency.
Split between the 21st and the 24th centuries The Algorithm of Power is a new type of dystopia. One in which the future that awaits us is not democratic and where the government has no use for torture, gulags or a secret police – because no one even notices there is a government.
Welcome to the reign of software!

The History

In the year 2307, Julia Koch, a nurse from the region of New Shangri-La faces with a problem that messes with her conscience and emotions. A man needing surgery and the operating system that runs the world denies this man any care because he’s an illegal immigrant. Before dying, he made Julia promise that he would tell his wife what have happened to him. This causes Julia to move to a new region called Integralia where the costumes are very different than she was used to and she has difficulty to adapt.

In the year 2031, Carla Rodrigues is involved in a political movement that is against having politicians as government instead of an operating system. She believes an operating system would be impartial and always satisfying people’s needs. She’s developing an algorithm that identifies patterns on people’s behavior so that she can contribute to this new world.

Her Friend Paulo Fontana is the man behind this new world idea. After a childhood incident where, tricked by his cousin, he watched how humans can be cruel to defenseless animals, he decided to dedicate all his life into protecting nature. With the help of one great developer, they manage to make an AI that simulates the tactics of governments to make earth recover and human race survive. The answers they got where not what they expected, but the results were better.

Julia Koch lives in this world that Paulo Fontana and Carla Rodrigues helped create and that no one knows about. As the story goes on, our mind gets blown out.

My opinion

This book is amazing. I am a person who loves historical books, and reading this futuristic one made me fell in love with the author.
The story has so much detail and very well thought of an alternative future that may or may not happen, having the ideals of different type of people, technological advance and politics. Also all this happening on my country, Portugal.
This book really got me thinking on what’s the best solution for survival and it will be placed on my favorites’ shelf.
Can’t wait for the next book.

 

Goodreads 

If you’re interested in knowing more about this self-publish author, feel free to visit his page.

 

Eurovision 2018

A week pasted by since Eurovision’s final, and oh boy, what a show!
Since this year, Eurovision took place in Lisbon, Portugal, I got a chance to buy ticket and watch it live. This post will be all about my opinions since the semi-finals till the winner.

For those who don’t know what Eurovision is, it’s a musical festival that exists for 62 years. Every year, European countries and some other countries invited compete with each other with one performance. The winning country gets to host next year’s show.

In 2018, Eurovision had 43 countries entering the contest. Since Portugal won last year’s show, it didn’t have to pass through semi-finals neither the big 5 countries that are the biggest financial contributors to the European Broadcasting Union (Spain, France, Germany, UK and Italy).

Results of the 2 semi-finals.

Screenshot_1

I felt really sad that Belgium didn’t get to pass to the finals, I enjoyed the song, and the performance was different. Also Georgia’s song, was real music. I guess not many people likes that kind of music on Eurovision.
Latvia’s song was like watching 50 shades of grey…

Georgia’s song
Belgium’s song

Now about the performances on the final:

  1. Ukraine -> It was so unlucky that this was the first song to be performed because I think that’s the only reason it got so few points from the crowd. The performance was amazing, and the song got stuck in my head.
  2. Spain -> hated it.
  3. Slovenia -> Catchy music, but the lyrics are meaningless, doesn’t bring anything new.
  4. Lithuania -> Cool song, not on my top list tho.
  5. Austria -> Really liked the song, but the performance was so poor.
  6. Estonia -> That’s what I am talking about, she was AMAZING. I enjoyed hearing her live, made a huge difference.
  7. Norway -> The singer was already known… pretty, smiling face… didn’t brought anything new.
  8. Portugal -> I know it’s my country but I hated it… it wasn’t even our first choice.
  9. United Kingdom -> What were they thinking?
  10. Serbia -> Nooo.
  11. Germany -> Looks very much like Ed Sheeran. Meaningful lyrics, and song full of emotion. I liked it from the start.
  12. Albania -> Nothing new.
  13. France -> Was a nice try but it didn’t work out. Those red shoes tho, really caught my eye.
  14. Czech Republic -> Loved it all, the clothing, the dancing, the catching song and the meaning of its lyrics. I don’t know why it got so underrated.
  15. Denmark -> It passed because it was something different, men with beards and a lot of hair, bringing the viking world. Still the song wasn’t good enough.
  16. Australia -> nothing new.
  17. Finland -> great performance from Saara Aalto, not enough to gain people’s vote tho.
  18. Bulgaria -> I loved the song, and Im so sad I can’t find any more Equinox’s songs. Their clothing were very appropriate to the performance.
  19. Moldova -> everyone got in love with this performace. They had a genius idea to get people’s attention. Very proud.
  20. Sweden -> This guys looks like Jim Carrey.
  21. Hungary -> My favorite band, yes, because I’m a metal fan. I came to the show to support them.
  22. Israel -> I got curious how would she perform, since she was the most popular one on Eurovision. She kicked it
  23. Netherlands -> nothing new
  24. Ireland -> Not my style
  25. Cyprus -> She really is a Beyoncé… and catchy song
  26. Italy -> Poor performance, great lyrics.

My Top 5 countries:

Hungary
Germany
Czech Republic
Bulgaria
Ukraine

The Results

results

At the end Israel won, it was always the favorite one. And the show was great no matter who the winner is.

Operation Hail Storm – Book Review

Brett Arquette emailed me his book in exchange for a honest review and I do not refuse to read any kind of books. So I started reading this book on March 17th and finished it on April 1st. I don’t have much time to read books as I had last year, so it took longer than usual. Here’s my review on it:

RATE *** 3/5

The book’s theme is new to me. I haven’t read anything like it. I did not like the first 100 pages, at all. The book starts with giving too much information about the characters and their past. Sometimes it’s useful to get to know what a person went through to get where they are, but when the person it’s not crucial to the story, it’s just too boring to read. And when the person is, in fact, important to the story, it just ruins the mistery of its acts since the beginning. Also on those 100 pages had too much detailed drone activity that I couldn’t visualize it.
The part that I liked the most was when Marshall Hail went to see the memorial for victims of “The Five”. That was when the whole book started to make sense to me and got my attention.
Through the rest of the book I liked the care that the author had on researching all this technologies, the way that they work, and improve them with his creativity, he showed how the world could be affected with them.
I rate a 3, out of 5… I would definitly read the next book of Operation Hail Storm.

 

Goodread’s review

 

My name is Daniella, and I kick and bite

raccoon

What I eat in a day

I’ve been at the gym for almost a year now, 6 times a week from Monday to Friday. Since then I also started seeing a nutritionist that has helped me with my diet. I find important to share with you what my daily diet looks like because it can help understand the myth about losing weight.

So for starters, I wasn’t forbidden to eat anything, neither do I have to eat something I don’t like. So, if I crave for fast food, I go and eat it. Why is this important? Because if we don’t do this, the craving will not go away and we can easily forget this whole dieting thing because it’s too much for us. The goal is to an healthy daily diet, not a rough diet that we can’t wait to finish.

The rules:

No carbs at night.
No high in sugar food after lunch.
If you go to the gym, eat a lot of protein after working out.
Starting cutting on the sugar on every food you buy:

  • thin yogurt ( <5g/100ml sugar)
  • thin gelatin (did you know normal gelo has only 12% gelo, and about 80% sugar? thin gelatin has about 60% gelo)
  • less sugar on coffee or tea
  • use brown sugar
  • use coconut oil to cook your meat

 

Note: I go to the gym at lunch time, so I have lunch at the middle of the afternoon.

My daily plan

Breakfast at 8am

  • 250ml of water with Pensal (barley)
  • Bread with cheese
  • coffee

Morning break 10:30am

  • Gelatin
  • 1 white cheese (18g)
  • 1 whole rye toast, or a rice cookie

Before Gym 00:30pm

  • a banana
  • a thin yoghurt

After Gym 2:30pm

  • A scoop of protein
  • quark cheese with granola
  • A cup of green tea

Lunch 4:30pm

  • Meat or Fish
  • Soup or Salad
  • Sometimes a small portion of rice or potatoes
  • Fruit
  • Coffee

Dinner 8:00pm

  • Soup
  • A small portion of dry fruits
  • Meat or Fish or an yoghurt

Before going to bed:

  • Gelatin or Tea

 

Total calories: 1500

Calories burned at the gym: 450

With this diet I’m never hungry, my body as enough nutrients to recover my training and I’m losing weight on an healthy way.

For a better life…..

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My 2017 and new year’s resolutions

I really can’t complain about this year… 2017 has been good to me. I’ve been much better than I was a year ago, and it all started with me getting a job (paid internship) and it all ended with me signing a contract on the same company.

I couldn’t ask for anything better than this, since I could help my parents with their expenses, because my dad still doesn’t have a job nor allowance, which I hope he does next year. So every month, I helped my family with groceries, car maintenance, insurance and taxes, and I could also buy nice thing for my family on Christmas.

Having a pay check also allowed me to enter a gym and lose weight. I’ve been dying to tell you all about my gym journey but I just can’t get time to do so. But basically I was at about 70.1kg when I enter the gym and I’m now 66.5kg after 6months. I don’t need to lose a lot, but I want myself to be healthy and decrease my body fat.

The saddest thing that happened to me this year was my cat Pickle passing away. Was totally unexpected and we still don’t know what happened to him. He just showed up dead with no injuries. I really miss him.

Apart from myself…. Portugal won Eurovision this year, which is GREAT!

Taking a look at my year’s resolution, this is what I have accomplish:

  1. find a job
  2. pay my parent’s debt to my grandparents
  3. read more than 34 books
  4. build my own app
  5. see my blog growing
  6. sell my tshirts
  7. play guitar
  8. go to the gym every week
  9. learn German
  10. get my kitchen remodeled

Well, money wasn’t enough for all the debt and remodeling the kitchen, my blog didn’t grow as much, I didn’t play guitar as much as I wanted.

This is my 2018 resolutions:

  1. Practice German at least 5 times a week
  2. Practice guitar at least 1 time a week
  3. Go to Eurovision’s show
  4. Rent a house
  5. Read 37 books
  6. Make 22 blog posts
  7. Get to 63Kg
  8. Get a new cat

 

We’ll see what 2018 has reserved for me. I hope you all had an amazing year. Happy Holidays. Don’t drink and drive….

My name is Daniella and I… kick and bite.

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