I enjoyed this. It was hot, even though the main character had some serious self-sabotage issues, and the man was sometimes a bit too forceful. But II enjoyed this. It was hot, even though the main character had some serious self-sabotage issues, and the man was sometimes a bit too forceful. But I like how the therapy actually worked this time, and also the involvement of family. It wasn't that well-written, but the plot was good enough to keep me hooked. ...more
Don't know why I never reviewed this, but here I am now. I had sort of high expectations because of all the raving reviews, but I honestly thought thiDon't know why I never reviewed this, but here I am now. I had sort of high expectations because of all the raving reviews, but I honestly thought this book was too full of holes for it to ever seriously make it onto any of my good shelves. Their are a lot of obvious problems with the so-called "curse." Besides that, the name Trollus always makes me laugh. It just makes me think of this:
Come on, Trollus is a really weird name. Also, you can't have good looking trolls. Doesn't that defeat the very definition of a troll?? Also, it's just not a pretty word to call anyone. We might as well start having sexy as hell brownies and GQ cover goblins, since we've started down this path already.
I enjoyed the imagery and the idea of this dark city with glass gardens, and Tristan sometimes did things that made me like him, but in the end it's just another book with two attractive people who have the world against them. Where have we heard that before? Oh yeah, everywhere. There were a couple twists here and there, but in the end I felt woefully underwhelmed, especially since I thought it didn't need to be prolonged into a trilogy. ...more
If there's any word to be used to describe this book, I would call it juvenile. From fist fights in front of the lockers to bitchy girls who make cattIf there's any word to be used to describe this book, I would call it juvenile. From fist fights in front of the lockers to bitchy girls who make catty comments about your sex life, there are so many things about this book that just scream cliche. Opinions about The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer have been mixed. Some people love it, some people absolutely hate it. While reading it, I could see both sides of the argument.
On the pro side, I can tell you why this book is so appealing to teenagers and swoony women alike. Hodkin definitely created an extra-freaky atmosphere where scenes jump from dream to reality, making it difficult to discern which is which. While some of the words she uses are hit-or-miss, a good amount of them contribute to the darkness and confusion. The way that Mara kept having visions and her gory imagination all help her case of being a teenage psycho. Then, there's Noah. Noah, the perfect guy who has a dirty past and is generally a scumbag but decides to change for Mara. He's rich, hot, has a British accent, and somehow can't resist Mara's theatrics. What's not to love, even if he has violence tendencies?
On the con side, where do I even begin? Shall I name the number of plot holes in the story? The hodgepodge of tragic events that are magically solved by visions and collapsing buildings? The completely idiotic portrayal of high school? You can't skip school for days on end, you can't just get someone expelled at the drop of a hat, and you can't get punished by your Spanish teacher and then get your complaints turned down. I'm pretty sure that most of the stuff that happens to Mara is her doing. She's completely unlikable and you can kind of understand why people hate her so much. She doesn't do anything besides piss off everyone around her and ruin lives. Really. I don't see what Noah sees in her because they're not the same. Beyond the fact that they both have magical powers, they have absolutely nothing in common. So much of her behavior goes unexplained, from her refusal to take pills to the way she handles all the situations she's put into. Also, when Noah punches some guy nears death and Mara is just like "damn that turned me on"? What the hell is wrong with this girl?
In the end, this book is creepy. That was my favorite part. But the psychiatry, the petty and random things that happen in high school, and Mara herself are all giant downers. ...more
I think I'm starting to get tired of all these contemporary YA novels that revolve around sexual/physical/psychological abuse. There doesn't have to bI think I'm starting to get tired of all these contemporary YA novels that revolve around sexual/physical/psychological abuse. There doesn't have to be some awful tragedy in order for a modern-day story to happen. Don't Breathe a Word wasn't awful, and it actually had some nice prose and momentum, and it lets us glimpse what life is like for the homeless in Seattle. But other than that, I was bothered by the glorification of life on the streets and the whole "street power" idea. Everything was resolved too quickly, and the evil presence was too easily obliterated. ...more
"I would give up all my powers to have you in my arms. Your love is the only magic I need."
Took me a while to get into this book, but once Alyssa
"I would give up all my powers to have you in my arms. Your love is the only magic I need."
Took me a while to get into this book, but once Alyssa entered Wonderland, I was falling through the trippiness with her.
The cover is a pretty good representation of what this book is about. It's vibrant, dark, and creepy. The main character, Alyssa, isn't your average bubble-headed blonde. Her mother is stuck in a padded room, she hears flowers and bugs speak, she skates, and she wears petticoats and combat boots. What's made very clear in this book is that this isn't an Alice in Wonderland retelling; Alice is Alyssa's ancestor, and the curse she began in Wonderland follows Alyssa's entire family line. It's this curse that she travels to Wonderland to correct.
Alyssa's best friend, Jeb, gets caught up in her adventure to Wonderland. I agree with many fellow reviewers that Jeb isn't that likable of a love interest, especially since there's a much worthier guy competing with him for Alyssa's affections (but more on that later). While he isn't horrible, he doesn't inspire admiration when he continues to protect Alyssa from every insect or mirror that poses a threat. I started liking him more later on, and I especially enjoyed the scene at the tea party (wink wink).
Jeb's rival is Morpheus, otherwise known as the Sexiest Man Alive, otherwise known as the Caterpillar. He says himself that he exudes mystery and sexiness (or something along those lines), and he really does. His peculiar mixture of humanity, love, and self-service makes him a fascinating character to observe. It helps that he's British.
This book is extremely original. The world isn't a carbon copy of Carroll's Wonderland; rather, each facet has been twisted in some dark, extraordinary way. The plot, which began with a simple curse, becomes something else entirely. There are graveyards of stuffed animals loved to death, glazed geese begging to be eaten, happy clams, and neon gardens. A lot of Alyssa's time in the mortal world pales in comparison to what she does in Wonderland, and maybe that was why the beginning of the book was so uninteresting to me. I'm hoping there's more of this toxic beauty in the sequel, Unhinged....more
THIS BOOK HAS MADE ME SO CONFUSED. If you look at the shelves I've placed it on in my Goodreads review, you'll probably think I have schizophrenia or some other terrible psychological disorder that only comes into play when I'm reading books.
I was so angry at the start of this book. To me, Kat (Katy? Kittycat? Kitten? WHAT THE HELL IS YOUR NAME?) was suffering from a severe case of Bella Swan Idiocy, what with her stumbling over tree roots and flat ground and ogling Daemon just because of his jaw-droppingly good looks.
Even though I couldn’t stand him, and I actually think he might be the first person I ever hated, he was…he was a god. Who knew the kind of girls he was used to seeing in bathing suits.
She was every bit the annoying girl who doesn't know she's pretty, gets insanely jealous whenever another girl gets within ten inches of a guy she says she hates, and gets distracted whenever he takes off his shirt (which is a lot, in this book).
I was sick of that. Frankly, I was ready to flip some tables and call it a day.
But then... something changed. Maybe it was around the time Katy dumped a tray of spaghetti over Daemon and his fake girlfriend's head, or maybe it was when her comebacks started getting better. At any rate, that was when I began getting interested. It amazed me that this book had such a high rating, and they definitely didn't skimp on the advertising, since covers popped up everywhere. My every step on GR was dogged by the stupid green cover with its flawless models with their glowy green eyes. Which led me to believe that there was something about this book that I was missing. In the first half, all I could think was two stars this book sucks two stars why would anyone read this piece of crap TWO ST--
I mean, it's horribly cliche-ridden. As I've already mentioned, we have the cutely clumsy heroine, who attracts the attention of a guy who's 1000000x hotter than her and his equally hot sister, they're hiding some freaky supernatural secret with connections to Native Americans (this seems to be a crowd pleaser), and the heroine discovers this secret because she's stupid enough to walk in front of a truck. It's a recipe for disaster.
Strangely enough, it works. Not for the first half. That was just frustrating and made me want to stab Katy in the face. But after she discovers their secret, I looked forward to the book. One thing that I absolutely love, and that I have to commend Armentrout on, is that the woman knows how to write chemistry. Not only do they have a fuse-blowing make-out session (literally), Katy and Daemon have these sweet and hot moments together that made me root for them. The ending was a nice addendum to this, and it shows that Katy isn't a weak-spined character like I originally believed. Rather, she's pretty liberal with her middle fingers and insults. Also, she has secret ninja moves.
Daemon fell to his knees beside me, pulling me into his strong, solid arms. “Kat, say something insulting. Come on."
There were just these moments that made me laugh, which contrasted with my eye-rolling in the beginning. I know a lot of people have issues with Daemon, but I have already come to this understanding with myself that I'm attracted to douchebags, so despite Daemon's controlling, possessive, and overconfident demeanor, I find it very endearing. Others might think I'm a whacked out freak who will end up calling the suicide hotline sobbing about domestic abuse, and I am perfectly fine with that. Just leave me to my own dysfunctionality, and we'll be good.
Barring the fact that I like assholes, the plot of the book was strangely intriguing, too. This is my second alien book, Gravity being my first. And I think I realized with this one how much liberty writing about aliens affords you. I mean, with vampires and werewolves there's all that stuff about sticking to the rules with the bloodsucking and silver bullets and garlic necklaces. But with aliens, all that's really required is that they're from another planet. That's it. They could look like Alex Pettyfer or a half-cooked pig with an apple in its mouth, and nobody would complain. Although I prefer Alex Pettyfer. Anyhow, the plot's not that incredible or special, but it was mysterious, and there are still a bunch of things that haven't been explained fully.
In conclusion, I am so bewildered. Everything inside me is screaming at me not to like this book because it smolders of cliche, but what has made us believe that cliche is bad? If it's written well, why shouldn't I like it? Why should I let the critical reviewer inside me say otherwise? Oh yeah, Katy's a book blogger too. It sort of annoyed me in the beginning, just because she annoyed me and so consequently everything about her annoyed me, but then I started liking it towards the end, especially since I empathize. It's been so long since I've read something that had legit chemistry, I think I'm okay with all the possible problems lurking in the book. I feel quite mellow right now.
If anyone was able to make sense of this garbled review, I applaud you. You guys should be running the nation, not those seat-warming nobodies. ...more
Alex FRANKS goes to SHELLEY High. Oh my, could this possibly be a FRANKENSTEIN retelling? ExceptThis review can also be found on The Dreaming Reader.
Alex FRANKS goes to SHELLEY High. Oh my, could this possibly be a FRANKENSTEIN retelling? Except now the monster has become a hot seventeen year old boy?!?!?
Joker approves of my superb reasoning skills.
This would've been a great book if it hadn't been so reminiscent of Twilight horrified. Rought had a lot of things going for her. She had a strong main character, a successfully enigmatic male lead, and a plot that any classic/YA lover would be drawn to. I love retellings, and this is the first retelling of Frankenstein that I've seen. In the first couple pages, I rushed through this book. It was exciting, exhilarating, and I wanted to know more about Daniel and Alex and Em. Even though the GR blurb pretty much ruined the big secret for me, I still wanted to get to the bottom of everything and understand it completely. Also, Rought's writing style? Gorgeous. Sometimes it seems to go into the realm of too dramatic, but most of the time, it contributed just the right amount of haunting beauty and really added to the dark tone that existed throughout the book.
There didn't seem to be much going wrong in the first, oh, 100 pages. And I thought this book would be great, but as is the case with my crappy badness-radar, I turned out to be wrong.
Alex Franks was great for five pages. Then his whole mysterious, hood-over-face thing got old fast. It's been done so many times before, and besides his apparent good looks (in which case, why would he need the hood? And if the hood was to hide himself and people had already seen his face, what was the point?), there wasn't really much else he had going for him. I know, I know, he's related to Em's old boyfriend, but despite that, I still felt like she was cheating on Daniel. And this sort of bothered me. Also, what was the deal with Josh? He seemed like such a comical mustache-twirling villain that I couldn't take him seriously. On top of all that, he was a ginger. Figures.
The beginning and end were pretty interesting. There's some action and guts in the last couple pages. But the middle is just mind-numbing backwards and forwards lovin' between Em and Alex, with a couple memories of Daniel scattered in to make her feel guilty. I was never sold on the love. Isn't Rought essentially showing that Em only loves Alex because Daniel's in him? That's messed up, man. What guy wants to be loved because he reminds his girlfriend of her old boyfriend? No one, unless he couldn't get a girl any other way. And given Alex's supposed good looks, I think he'd be able to get someone.
Em is a badass in the first couple pages when she punches people and throws insults, but she softens too much. Sadly, she follows the trend and starts crying a lot. Not that she doesn't have reason to, but sometimes the tears were just unnecessary. I appreciated Rought's integration of Em's mom and dad instead of making her some poor orphan, but I think she really could've done a better job with her characters. None of them really made sense to me.
I recommend giving this book a try, even if it does get redundant in the middle. The end is pretty cliche, but you should just stick with it for the writing style. I think that was my favorite part. ...more
Won this through the First Reads giveaway. I'm so surprised. Of all books, it had to be this one...
Edit: 11/11/12 Finally finished reading this book, aWon this through the First Reads giveaway. I'm so surprised. Of all books, it had to be this one...
Edit: 11/11/12 Finally finished reading this book, and I really don't know how to express my feelings towards it. If I approach it objectively, it's one of those subpar sex-filled run-of-the-mill BDSM romance novels (if BDSM can ever really be run-of-the-mill). Actually, this didn't even have much of that sort of stuff. Mostly just hot, consensual sex. There is some talk of safe words, but they're never used in that sort of context. The female MC, Eva, was actually decent in the beginning. She's pretty gutsy, and the fact that she wouldn't stand for Gideon's "I wanna fuck you now" bullshit was encouraging. However, she undergoes the unfortunate decimation into a jealous, somewhat-pathetic character. The fact that she admits she's like that doesn't help her case. Gideon, of course, is the cool, arrogant man who radiates sexiness and power but has a dark, turbulent past. It's never made quite clear what exactly he's hiding, but what little I did see was pretty disturbing. He also exhibits controlling, stalkerish tendencies, but to a lesser degree than one of our other favorite epitomes of the Hot Male CEO Who Happens To Like S&M.
Speaking of him, let's move on from examining this book to what it really is: a FanFiction of Fifty Shades of Grey, which is FanFiction of Twilight. How meta. What people have said about this is right; it is indeed a better written version of Fifty Shades. But it may just be only that. We have the classic components: the rich, attractive, intelligent, but haunted male who prefers brunettes (this fact is brought up again and again) and the plain but somehow still alluring female with the gay friends and a slightly dysfunctional but still loving family. It's just been done so many times. It's the epitome of cliche, and that's why people lap it up. We all like a good romance, me included. I appreciate the darker tones of this book and the sweet side of it, but when I step back and look at it, I don't see anything redeeming about its characters. I still don't understand why Eva struck such a chord with Gideon, but perhaps I'm not supposed to. My main issue is that this book is almost the same thing as Fifty Shades, with a little less bondage and better writing. If Day hadn't stuck so fastidiously to the old cut-and-dried formula, I probably would've gotten into it with less eye-rolling. ...more
I'd seen good ratings for this, so I decided to try it out, especially since I'm a fan of Edgar AThis review can also be found on The Dreaming Reader.
I'd seen good ratings for this, so I decided to try it out, especially since I'm a fan of Edgar Allan Poe's creepier works. I'll admit I was wary about reading it because of the cover. But it's funny how the floofy pink dress Isobel is wearing on the back cover comes into play.
Damn, I loved the atmosphere in this book. Maybe not in the beginning fifty pages of the book, but the tone became really haunting. When I think about Nevermore, I can't help seeing smoky swirls of gray that resemble the background of the book. The entire thing is just really creepy and shivery, and it did a great job of bringing back the darkness of Poe's stories.
I'll admit, the beginning annoyed me because it seemed like the beginning of any cliche YA novel about the pretty, popular girl getting involved with the wrong guy and losing her friends in the process. But Isobel pleasantly surprised me. I liked her snarky comments because they added a degree of realism to the shifty dream world that composes the rest of the book. It really seems like two parallel stories going on at the same time, and in the end, when reality and the dream world begin to converge, I really felt it. Anyway, Isobel shows an interesting amount of spunk for a heroine, although there were times when she may have been toeing the line between cool and stupid (ie. when she leaves Reynolds's scythe there instead of picking it up, when she watches Reynolds and Death fight even when she should've run ten minutes ago, and when she attempts to sit by Varen. Really, what did she expect, that he would welcome her with open arms?). All in all, though, I was pleased by her behavior.
I can't say much for Varen. I honestly don't know much about him, and there's not much of a difference between him and any other angsty male who scribbles ranty poetry and glares at everyone, except his angst has literally created a world of its own. He was gone for most of the time, and Isobel was left to fight his battles for him. He retaliates once or twice, but I never really see him presenting himself strongly at any time in the novel. I was especially disappointed in the end, when he's sitting in his couch and all depressed and trapped. The book really is more about Isobel than it is about her and Varen, which is why I don't sense much character development on Varen's part. The only place where he's truly a person to me is when his dad catches him at home with the Chinese food. That was when I was crying for him (slightly), even though that scene isn't mentioned again.
The plot itself is really interesting. Isobel begins hallucinating, hearing voices and seeing people, and then she plunges into a figurative rabbit hole into Poe's/Varen's world. Things get really creepy once that starts to happen, and Creagh describes everything from the Nocs to the floating objects in Isobel's room with vivid detail. I especially liked the scene from Masque of the Red Death, when Isobel is inside Prince Prospero's multicolored rooms of doom. That scene really came alive for me, and I was pretty disappointed that Isobel didn't stay longer.
I can definitely see why this book got the good ratings that it did, but I do hope that some of the topics are explored more, and that Varen's character is developed further in the next book. And the Poe references sure help!...more
"How could he not see all the beauty that was out there--the starlight leaving stains of brightness in the water, the salt-kissed wind?"
I kept waiting for The Assassin's Curse to get better, but it remained a clusterfuck until the very end. I mean, I can't say there weren't good things about it, because there were. After all, just look the blurb. I like pirates and loot and rum and all that good stuff. I also like assassins, because who doesn't love killing? So I go into this book expecting lots of arrrr matey type things, and adventures swinging on a ship, but I got none of that. Instead I get poor character development and the barest mention of ships and some obscure assassin club (I think that's what it is...).
Clarke promised us a lot of things with this book. With the cover, with the premise, with everything. Unfortunately, she didn't deliver. My biggest problem with this book is that there's way too much stuff integrated for it to make sense. First you've got your pirates, then you've got your wizards and witches, and then you've got assassins who can do magic too, except it's blood magic. It's way too much information to stuff into one book without making things sound ridiculous and random. When Naji and Ananna get stuck on the island, I thought that they were there because the island was supposed to help them. But then Naji mentions this wizard dude, and I'm like "what the hell is going on?" This happened multiple times. Sure, it's easy to get lost in the adventure of Naji and Ananna zipping around from place to place, but if you stop and think about it, why are they going to all these places? It's like a goose chase that they already know is futile, yet they keep doing it anyway. The ending to the book is even more ridiculous, even cheesy. I really expected more than that. It was such a bullshit blowoff so Clarke could write another book.
That's the plot. The characters are just... ugh. Naji sulks, Ananna moons after him, and generally their attitudes put me in a bad mood. Which sucks, since Ananna actually gave me hope. In the beginning, when she knees her fiance in the balls, I was cheering for her. But then she meets Naji and she turns all gloomy and moans over her plainness, and I just knew this wasn't heading for anything good. There wasn't even a damned kiss in this book. Granted, it would've been weird and even more out of place if there had been one, so maybe Clarke used some good judgment there. I found no reason to believe that she'd fallen in love with him, especially since he treats her like crap sometimes and completely shuts her out otherwise. Nothing about him caused me to like him, especially the way he totally fell under Leila's spell in the beginning. Not cool, bro.
In short, I got through this book relatively painlessly, but when I separated myself from the situation, I realized that this book misses so many things. That's why I feel so apathetic towards it. It's a good example of a situation where too many good things mashed up together can make the entire project go sour. ...more
I'm starting to sense that this series is beginning to spiral out of control. You have your usual host of characters, but then you have new ones likeI'm starting to sense that this series is beginning to spiral out of control. You have your usual host of characters, but then you have new ones like Manny and then Payne, who totally seems to come out of nowhere. I mean, what the hell was the Scribe Virgin doing with her? I got the feeling that she was keeping her in a pickle jar or something. I liked Vishous in this book--he wasn't an instable lush lusting after his mated best friend, and Jane was a total badass. She seems like she could kick a lot of butt, unlike Cormia. Once again, the Scribe Virgin comes in and saves the day, then makes a sacrifice. Which would be all well and dandy, except of course Ward couldn't just let someone not have a happy ending. Also, things in the end happened way too quickly, and my head was spinning.
All I can say is that this is getting weirder and weirder, and I'm not sure I like it. ...more
Another hot-boy-hates-girl, average-but-intelligent-girl-hates-boy, boy-undergoes-miraculous-transformation-and-loves-girl story. Oh, and add in someAnother hot-boy-hates-girl, average-but-intelligent-girl-hates-boy, boy-undergoes-miraculous-transformation-and-loves-girl story. Oh, and add in some drugs and stereotypically slutty blondes. Despite the overdose of cliche, Elkeles does a decent job. I didn't gag or roll my eyes the whole time! Not even once. ...more
"The problem with wanting," he whispered, his mouth trailing along my jaw until it hovered over my lips, "is that it makes us weak."
After seeing raving reviews about this book pop up all over GR, I finally felt peer pressured enough to read it. I must say, I was hooked. From the first page, I got sucked into the beautiful world that Bardugo creates, and I think that's what sets this novel apart from many. The world of the Grisha is mysterious and appropriately dark, with exotic tones that come from a lot of thorough research done on Russian customs and culture. It reminded me a bit of Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone, which took place in the magical city of Prague.
Alina's world came alive with me in all the right ways, without the boring info dump that usually accompanies complicatedly woven universes. I found the concept of the Shadow Fold and the volcra interesting, as well as the privileged lives the Grisha lead apart from the rest of society. There are many small details that are included that wowed me. My favorite part in the story was when Alina's Tailor friend, Genya, gives her a makeover using rose petals and gold. I thought it was creative, and the idea very interesting.
While the conflict between light and dark is nothing new, nobody has written about it the way Bardugo does. The skills of the Grisha which set them apart from everyone else yet endanger them, and the threatening extinction of their kind, are fascinating, though not completely original.
One of my favorite aspects was the love interest(s). Usually, I root for the promiscuous bad boy (which is very bad of me, I know), and not the best friend. But this time, I found myself loving Mal for his determination and his obvious concern about Alina despite everything. The Darkling was too dark and edgy for me, I think; towards the end, he did seem truly evil. There's a difference between a sexy bad boy and someone who's an actual threat to my life. However, since 90% of my Goodreads friends are psychos, they'll probably ship him and Alina. Which I totally understand, because I'm a bit of a psycho myself.
My one real problem with this book is the characterization. The world of the Grisha is spellbinding, but the characters are average. Alina is a classic orphan turned savior of the world, Mal is her sweet childhood best friend, and The Darkling...actually, The Darkling's a bit confusing, and I'll see what happens. But the thing is, I never truly felt connected with them in their troubles, and despite the colorful world that Bardugo creates, I couldn't fall in love with the characters too. I've just read too many other characters like them.
That aside, Shadow and Bone is definitely something that should be read! And now I want a kefta. Preferably in black. ...more
Little Red Riding Hood apparently knows how to go around threatening to blow people up with her shotgun now.
This book hookedActual Rating: 4.5 Stars
Little Red Riding Hood apparently knows how to go around threatening to blow people up with her shotgun now.
This book hooked me from the very start, considering I read all 400 pages today. What is still present in both Cinder and Scarlet is Meyer's remarkable ability to keep the plot going at a steady pace, keeping the reader interested. Another trick she pulls off quite well is the alternating POV thing. I actually just ranted about that on my blog, so it was really refreshing to see it done right. Scarlet isn't dissimilar from Cinder in her determination and loyalty, but she is different in many other ways. For example, she was much sassier, and much more violent, from her devotion to the guns she always happens to be carrying around. I liked that her story was set in France, although that setting isn't really explored, nor does it have any deep significance to the plot.
Scarlet starts off with Scarlet trying to locate her grandmother. Along the way, she meets Wolf, a streetfighter. This is all running parallel to Cinder's escape from prison along with her trusty sidekick, Cadet--Captain--Thorne. Thorne offers an amusing diversion from all the explosions and the fact that the entire world is falling apart with his dumb side comments. Also, he's a method for Meyer to give us information about the Lunars and the events of the first book without it seeming like a ton of info-dumping. There's a great balance between Scarlet's and Cinder's stories, and the way they intertwine later on is also effortlessly done. I liked this book much more than the first because Scarlet's character was one I could more easily like, just because she's much more stubborn yet quick-thinking. Also, I really enjoyed the role that Wolf played. While with Cinder, I think the fairytale aspect wasn't really relevant, Scarlet actually utilizes it creatively.
I would've liked some more Kai in this book, since his and Cinder's separation is beginning to really grate on me. And considering all the stuff on her to-do list (trekking through the Sahara Desert, finding a billion different people, etc) I don't think they're going to see each other anytime soon. The ending closes off Scarlet's story, though Cinder's is still to be continued, which leaves feelings of resentment and contentment inside of me, which makes me very confused. The queen is still a bitch, and I take back anything I said about Cinder's stepmother being remotely nice. This sequel is where everything is noticeably becoming unique and saturated with Meyer's own flavor, and I'm really enjoying it. I can only hope this same creativity is present in Cress. ...more
In terms of problems from ShatActual Rating: 3.5 Stars
What I think of Juliette:
What I think of Kenji:
What I think of Adam:
What I think of Warner:
In terms of problems from Shatter Me, this book still has them. We still have no idea why the world is decaying and why animals are dying. The prose, while not as obnoxious as it was in the first book, is still pretty heavy. I really don't think the strikeouts are necessary. They add absolutely nothing to the plot, and I would've enjoyed the story more if it wasn't Juliette narrating. I thought Destroy Me's prose was actually pretty good, since Warner didn't go overboard with his descriptions like Juliette does. Juliette is still annoying as hell, from her self-pity to her inability to control her own hormones or tears. In addition, she enjoys stuttering uncontrollably and rambling on and on about how she can't speak or how she's in pain. When she was told to interrogate Warner, she barely tried and instead held small talks with him. How fascinating her self-control would be, if only it existed. Now, there are places where her uncontrollable yapping does help, especially in chapter 62. Hot damn.
Kenji and Warner carry this novel all the way through. I was drooling over myself in boredom before Kenji took control of the situation and basically bitch-slapped Juliette in the face multiple times with his words. It was awesome. I can appreciate Mafi's self-awareness in this novel, but I still don't think Juliette changed much. She still whines and cries, despite all of Kenji's attempts to tell her to get over herself. The other characters are explored as well, and I like the insights into their lives that we get. I don't know how I feel about Castle yet; the way he treated Warner did seem kind of brainless, but oh well.
Warner, Warner, Warner. I was bemoaning the fact that I'm starting to crush on the bad guys in books instead of the guys the MCs should end up with to my friend. Warner is dark chocolate. Dark and sinful, with the barest tinge of sweetness. Especially in this book, we see so much more of his humanity and his capability for redemption. He develops into a person who has done bad things, who recognizes how hard it is to feel, and who wants to redeem himself for the people he cares about. Where Warner is dark chocolate, Adam is white chocolate. Not authentic, and so sweet it's liable to give you diabetes. Only good in small amounts. Mafi obviously focused a lot of her efforts on the other characters, but in doing so, she skipped over Adam's character. He makes no progress in this book; the only times we get to see him are when he corners Juliette in dark tunnels and begs her to take him back. I have to agree with Warner when he tells Adam that he doesn't deserve Juliette. While it baffles me as to why anyone would want to deserve Juliette, Adam doesn't accomplish anything. Instead, it seems like he's just there to prove everything Warner says about him correct.
A lot more shit goes down in this book, and the plot actually does take direction. It's an improvement, and I'm really hoping for some more chocolate in the next book, dark or white. But not milk. I hate milk.
After the stunning debut that was Angelfall, I know that everyone was expecting big things out of this book. Maybe that's why it seemed so much less sAfter the stunning debut that was Angelfall, I know that everyone was expecting big things out of this book. Maybe that's why it seemed so much less spectacular than I'd initially thought.
The book picks up pretty much exactly where it left off, with Raffe missing in action and Penryn reunited with her mended sister and psycho mother. There's a lot of filler dialogue, and a lot of stalling on the Raffe and Penryn front. I was really frustrated, and it was reminiscent of Days of Blood & Starlight where I waited for pages before Akiva and Karou finally saw each other again. Is this a theme in books about angels? Because it's very annoying.
As before, Ee isn't afraid to delve into the more horrifying and post-apocalyptic aspects of her world. I think Paige brings in a level of depth to the book, especially because Penryn doesn't know how to distinguish between human and monster because of her. The possible themes underlying the book aren't explored enough, though, which leads me to point out the flaws here.
In the end, World After contains nothing new. Many of the old scenes and concepts from the first book are recycled, with a little more blood sprinkled in. A lot of the plot before Raffe came back into the picture was filler, and while the story picked up again when he returned, I don't think anything was truly accomplished. If you think about it, all they really did was land back on square one. Also, I STILL don't quite understand the reason for the post-apocalyptic world. What the hell was Gabriel doing there in the first place?
I know the author has expressed wanting to write five books, but I really don't think that's necessary if the three books in between are going to end up fillers like this one. The conversation is still witty and the reunion between Penryn and Raffe was pretty hot, but there's not enough and it's not fair for it to be spread thinly over three more books when it could be contained in a trilogy. At the end of this book, I saw traces of Angelfall, but it wasn't nearly as satisfying as I thought it'd be....more
This book was way better than I expected. I was supposed to sleep at 11 and wake up at 6 for school, but I read until 12:30 when I looked at the timeThis book was way better than I expected. I was supposed to sleep at 11 and wake up at 6 for school, but I read until 12:30 when I looked at the time and blearily thought, "oh, that's the time?"
So yeah. Better than I expected.
I really like the way Ward has portrayed the relationship among the brothers. They're not buddy-buddy all the time, and each one has a distinctive character, which sets the scene well for the next books because I suspect they all have interesting back stories.
Ward's world building was a bit confusing at times; the definitions in the beginning helped, but some of the stuff needed more elaboration. I love their names and the gratuitous H's though.
The relationship went along at a decent pace, although I still don't understand the reason behind the random stranger sex in the beginning. I would've thought that it would be attributed to vampire hormones or something, but there was no such mention. Which is why it's weird. Because nobody has sex with random guys who break and enter, no matter how hot.
I liked Wrath's weakness. It did the right job in making him seem more human.
This book can't be more than a romance novel because of the see-through plot and the obvious evil force behind it all; there's not that much profundity (although this is a prevailing theme in books nowadays). But what it does as a romance novel, it does well. The sex scenes to further the relationship between Beth and Wrath, and I liked the rituals and loyalty among the brothers.
All in all, very good for a romance novel, and I'm looking forward to reading the other brothers' stories next. ...more
This book has everything I hate. I'm not kidding. 1. An idiotic, annoying heroine. 2. A love triangle. 3. More telling than showing. 4. Info dumps. 5. DoucThis book has everything I hate. I'm not kidding. 1. An idiotic, annoying heroine. 2. A love triangle. 3. More telling than showing. 4. Info dumps. 5. Douchebag love interest. 6. Things that happen that make no logical sense at all.
The things I could say about this book... If you saw my comments as I read, well, you'd understand. I'm surprised this has such a high rating. Because of it, I had high expectations, and they all came crashing down the moment Anna opened her mouth and started talking about her appearance, how she was soooo plain. But I kept going, hoping that maybe Kaidan, the love interest, would redeem the story. I mean, if you're going to throw good and evil together, there should be some serious chemistry, right?
All Kaidan turns out to be is a knife-wielding, wannabe bad boy who bangs every girl in a ten mile radius under the pretense of "working." I found his need to have sex with at least one girl every night extremely distasteful, since he wasn't being forced into it, as shown by his later ability to just drop his work whenever he chooses.
But Anna still chooses to follow him like a simpering puppy.
You know why this book is 1 star? I'll tell you why. The main character.
People expect stuff from young adult books nowadays. They expect a girl who can kick asses and take names as well as she can pull off a ballgown, who's as smart as she's pretty.
I don't expect that. Sure, it's nice, but it's becoming the norm, and I want something different. Anna could have been that, but she failed completely. Here are some quotes that show just how insufferable she is:
A vibrant energy rushed through my body as the pieces slammed into place. Oh, dear Lord. I was in love with him. And there wasn’t a thing on earth, in heaven, or in hell that could have stopped me.
Spare me. She barely knows the guy. He's the first guy she's been attracted to, and she's ready to face heaven and hell? Bella Stewart, come on down! I think we've found you a buddy.
We couldn’t just stand there loitering. I made a quick decision to trust them and hoped it wouldn’t turn out to be one of my naive moments.
So. She decides to go into the company of potentially dangerous people to avoid LOITERING? Priorities, girl. Sort them. “Look, Jay, I’m going to be honest with you, even though it’s embarrassing. I’m one step away from stalking him.” My voice shook. “All I do is think of him. If there were no such thing as caller ID, I would call him all day just to listen to him talking on his voice mail. I’m having an extremely difficult time getting over him. If I see him again...” DOES SHE HAVE ANY COMMON SENSE? DON'T SAY SOMETHING LIKE THAT.
What's probably even worse is Jay's reply, which is: "'Sorry, man... It's cool.'"
But it doesn't stop there...
I dealt with the pain by shutting down. The more time asleep, the better. I missed school a few times, just to lie in bed. Failed a major test. Lost weight. But I knew time would heal the ache, and everything would be okay. I could move on. I would come back to life. Eventually. But not yet.
Remind you of anyone yet? Take the vampires and replace them with angels, and voila! You get Sweet Evil. There is nothing about this book that's interesting in the least. Not crybaby Anna and her pathetic obsession with Kaidan, who basically strings her around and gets laid every night anyway. Oh, and he also makes "masculine growing sounds" and gives her "crushing stares," not that I have any idea what any of those mean.
Not her best friend, Jay, who acts like a wannabe gangster and cheats on his somewhat-girlfriend. And not her friends, who represent sins and don't really give a crap about the chaos they induce.
There was also too much drinking and substance abuse in this for me to be okay with it. If Higgins was trying to teach us anything, it was that it's easy to get fake IDs and that drinking is totally okay as long as we know when to stop. Also, you can apparently dump illegal drugs out of your car window...
I'm pretty sure the people who know when to stop wouldn't be drinking in the first place.
The idea with the Dukes and their children was an interesting one, but Higgins has botched it in a way that's so annoyingly stereotypical that I was begging for the book to end and put me out of my misery. The writing is subpar, with words that don't really mean anything and illogical sentences that make no sense. I wouldn't have read on, but Higgins pulled a dirty trick. The relationship between Anna and Kaidan reaches no closure, and if there's one thing I can't deal with, it's unclosed relationships. So I'll be reading on. Hopefully, Anna will get over herself (not likely), and Kaidan will stop being a douche (even more unlikely). ...more
I remember the days when I just discovered Meg Cabot, reading all her Princess Diaries books in oThis review can also be found on The Dreaming Reader.
I remember the days when I just discovered Meg Cabot, reading all her Princess Diaries books in one day and waiting on tenterhooks for the next installment of the Airhead series, screaming and clutching one of the Mediator books to my chest as I cried for Jesse, or making inhuman squeals as I read 1800-Where-R-U. Those were the days.
But the Meg Cabot who caught my heart with these heartwarming novels? She's either not here, or I'm just way more mature than I was. However, considering that I still giggle at "that's what she said" jokes, I don't think that's the case. So maybe the problem really is that Meg Cabot's writing has deteriorated to the point that I find it annoying and whiny instead of endearing.
I don't want to accept that, so I'll just say this: maybe, finally, Meg Cabot has bit off more than she could chew by undertaking a series about the underworld, just like she did with Insatiable. I know she's trying to take these cliches (the vampire, the bad boy death deity) and turn them into something new and revolutionary, but maybe she should stick with what she does better: taking outrageous ideas and turning them into something heartwarming and sweet.
Underworld really bothered me, and I think Pierce is a big factor in that. Unlike Cabot's earlier characters, she's disgustingly subservient and inept, especially when it comes to making decisions. For some unfathomable reason, she's enamored with John and the size of his muscles (they're as big as melons, apparently), and though she cares about her family, she has no qualms about running amok causing trouble for everyone in Isla Huesos. Also, I never would've thought Cabot capable of making such an elementary mistake, but Pierce's eyes fill with tears way too much.
Are crybaby heroines the new black now? I don't understand this waterworks trend right now.
Pierce cries over everything, and despite my love for Meg Cabot, even the little side quips didn't make me crack a smile. Don't even get me started on John Hayden. He was nowhere as attractive as Michael, or Jesse, or Mitch (from the Boy series; I really loved Girl Meets Boy, for some reason). Probably because he does nothing redeeming, besides that tiny part where he takes Pierce's advice and makes some of the accommodations in the Underworld better. That was it. Elsewhere, he's this domineering jackass who manipulates and lies to Pierce, striking her dumb with the size of his roided up muscles.
Yeeah. Never thought the day would come where I didn't like a Cabot male main character, but here it is. Actually, I didn't like Alaric much either... Uh-oh.
The plot is a bit all over the place, with Pierce rushing around and getting nothing done, then meeting other people. It actually seemed really filler. The real problem wasn't really a problem at all; rather, Pierce makes it into a problem. I didn't like Alex that much because he was an idiot and a dork, but I liked him much more than Pierce and John. I didn't even like Hope that much. She seemed so pretentious.
God, you know things are bad when you don't even like the damned bird.
Whatever, hopefully the next book is better, though judging by the blurb, it seems like same ol' same ol' "lose life or lose love of my life" stuff. ...more
I never got the chance to review this book! But I'm short on time, so all I have to say that it's horrible because Nora is a dumb, obnoxious bitch. AnI never got the chance to review this book! But I'm short on time, so all I have to say that it's horrible because Nora is a dumb, obnoxious bitch. And that really says something, when your protagonist is a dumb, obnoxious bitch. So she loses her memory, she sees Patch, the guy who MADE HER LOSE HER MEMORY, and she's all *swooon* he's sooooo hotttt.
It really says something to still want to be with the dude who took away your memories and won't tell you anything, then uses his deep, profouuund love for you as an excuse.
And I don't even get what the point of the memory-erasing was. Nora gets them back in the end, and it's like it never happened at all. Yet 1/3 of the book basically revolves around her trying to get them back, reliving things that I read once and really did not want to read again.
Also, plot devices. Fitzpatrick brings up random stuff like devilcraft/demoncraft/whatevercrap, refers to it obscurely, and voila! We have the answer to EVERYTHING. Why are the villains evil? Devilcraft. Why is Hank a complete jerkoff who would be willing to kill his daughter? Devilcraft. Why does this mind-numbing book exist? Devilcraft.
We don't even know what it is, besides some dumbed down version of necromancy (can we even call it that?)
And I really don't want to insult books, but this one was just wtf the entire time. I don't even know how I ended up finishing it because it was so utterly boring to get through. I can't say it's the worst book I've ever read, but it really makes me lose faith in the YA market, if they're letting this kind of stuff get on the shelves. And I know some people completely love it, and I know that even though Patch is essentially a rapey freak with a weird name, he does pull off the bad-boy persona well (probably because he is a rapey freak). So kudos on that, Fitzpatrick.
I think that's all I have to say for now. None of the characters are remotely likable. I hated Marcie so much that the 180 she did in this book still hasn't endeared her to me much. Nora is the same, maybe even worse. Patch is...I don't even know. I just wish that we could keep calling him Jev. It sounds so much better than Patch. Whenever I think of Patch, I think of clovers and plants. I don't know why, but that's not good. ...more
I gave this 2 stars because despite it all, I read the entire book within a few days. Although Christian is no less creepy or disturbingly domineeringI gave this 2 stars because despite it all, I read the entire book within a few days. Although Christian is no less creepy or disturbingly domineering as he is in the first, at least the sex was less liable to be counted as some sort of assault. But what is with the plot, if we can even say there is one? It's just unbelievable that people are allowed to do this.
Don't get me wrong, Christian should still be considered a threat to society, as evidenced in the first book. But, I don't know...Even though the crappy grammar and annoying inner goddess/conscience are still painfully present, this book really gave me a nice break from life. I read it and got some nice laughs. And some relaxation.