Lucinda “Luce” Price has been banished to a boarding school for troubled students after a mysterious fire leaves a boy dead. On her arrival at Sword a...moreLucinda “Luce” Price has been banished to a boarding school for troubled students after a mysterious fire leaves a boy dead. On her arrival at Sword and Cross, Luce finds herself attracted to two boys. When Luce sees Daniel, she is immediately drawn to him yet he prefers to remain elusive. Luckily, there is also the charming and popular Cam who goes out of his way to charm Luce. Enrollment at Sword and Cross has not banished the clouds of darkness that follow Luce wherever she is. She doesn’t know what they are or where they come from but she does know they foreshadow unpleasant events in her future.
Angels may be making their move into the realm of teen fiction as the “new vampires” but this story was certainly not heaven sent. Let this book’s title serve as my review of this book since it fits – the story fell flat for me. I found myself slogging through hundreds of pages spent on character development with little plot to keep me moving along. The writing is often repetitive and leaves too many loose ends that left me feeling like part of the story is missing. Too much time is spent describing unrequited love without enough forward movement in the story. (Why did I slog on and actually finish this book?) Perhaps more will be revealed in the sequels, but you won’t find me wasting my time on the next book in the series. (less)
I felt obligated to read this book since it won the 2010 Michael J. Printz Award, which says this book is supposed to represent the best in Young Adul...moreI felt obligated to read this book since it won the 2010 Michael J. Printz Award, which says this book is supposed to represent the best in Young Adult literature of the past year. I knew it was a departure from Libba Bray’s Gemma Doyle Trilogy – I just didn’t realize how far of a departure it would be.
At a hefty 480 pages, this book contains some of the best humor I’ve read from a YA author in years. That was almost assured as we find Cameron spurred into action to find a cure for his mad cow disease by Dulcie, a pink-haired, punk angel. The trip gets even crazier when you find Cameron making this trip accompanied by Gonzo, a hypochondriac dwarf, and Balder, a Norse god cursed to exist as a yard gnome. (BTW, if you haven’t seen the book trailer yet, be sure to check it out at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KloEAo... It most certainly will give you an idea of the heights that the humor in this story will reach.
You may ask, why only 4 stars if this book was so great? I truly could find no true flaws in the writing in spite of the quirky nature of the story. My rating stems only from my personal preference in what I enjoy reading. Although this book was amazing (5-star rating description), I can only say that I personally only “really liked it,” which gives it 4 stars under the GoodReads rating.
Beautiful Creatures is a twist on the young adult, boy meets girl, supernatural love story. Several twists make the story a bit unique. One: The boy i...moreBeautiful Creatures is a twist on the young adult, boy meets girl, supernatural love story. Several twists make the story a bit unique. One: The boy is the “normal” one and the girl is the supernatural, angsty, attractive new kid at school Two: The story is told from the boy's point of view. Three: It's not about vampires!
I chose to read this book based on its rave reviews, and the plot did sound intriguing. However, I was a bit dissappointed. Overall, their was something about the whole plot that just didn't resonate with me. I had issues with the pace of the story and with the editing. More than once I found inconsistencies in the story line and sometimes I felt like the story was an Energizer bunny wannabe. (It just kept going and going and going... and I wished it would just get on with the story.) It wasn't horrible though, it did hold my interest enough to get me to finish the book and the ending was action packed. I did like the southern town setting, some of the snappy lines and literary references. (less)
Sorry, but this book was not really my cup of tea. It is definitely a book for the less sophistocated teen (or tween) reader. There is plenty of actio...moreSorry, but this book was not really my cup of tea. It is definitely a book for the less sophistocated teen (or tween) reader. There is plenty of action and it is definitely sound like a middle school boy telling the story. It is a great lead into mythology that should peek an interest in learning more about those mythical gods and heroes. (less)
It's not often that you find a good horror story written specifically for teen readers, but this is one of them! McNamee never lets up on the action e...moreIt's not often that you find a good horror story written specifically for teen readers, but this is one of them! McNamee never lets up on the action either. Once I started reading this one, I couldn't put it down until I got to the end. (less)
When Grace was nine years old, she was attacked by wolves but survived because of the interference of a member of the pack. Eight years later, as the...moreWhen Grace was nine years old, she was attacked by wolves but survived because of the interference of a member of the pack. Eight years later, as the days grow longer and the air speaks of winter, Grace watches the woods behind her home hoping to catch a glimpse of the yellow-eyed wolf that saved her. But this year, as winter approaches, a teen is attacked and killed by wolves. A hunting party has been formed to rid the woods of the menace. Terrified that her wolf will be killed, Grace fabricates a story hoping to buy time for the wolves so they may escape the hunt. After a harrowing race through the woods, Grace finds a wounded boy huddled on the back porch of her home. One look at his yellow eyes and she knows that this is her wolf - in human form. Now it is Grace’s turn to save Sam, the wolf that once saved her. With a clever twist on the folklore of werewolves, Stiefvater has crafted a romantic tale that shares the intensity of its nemesis, Twilight. The odds are against this couple as their romance blossoms and the forces of nature threaten Sam’s ability to remain human.(less)
Micah had a secret boyfriend named Zach. But he was brutally murdered, and Micah is now a suspect. This is why she has decided she will come clean and...moreMicah had a secret boyfriend named Zach. But he was brutally murdered, and Micah is now a suspect. This is why she has decided she will come clean and tell us the truth – and nothing but the truth – so we will know that she is not the murderer. There is no question about it; Micah is a compulsive liar and she is good at it. She admits it to us as she tells us her story. She was able to dupe everyone into believing her lies for a while at her progressive, private high school in New York City. Only you can determine whether Micah is truly telling us the truth, as her story is told within this cleverly crafted jumble of narrative related to “Before” and “After” the murder, as well as a “History of Me,” “Family History,” and a number of other section headings. Larbalestier certainly knows how to suck us in to turning page after page as she lets Micah tells us her story. How are we supposed to believe Micah when the tale she is spinning may just be her wildest yet? (less)
Welcome to the Glade! That trip in the elevator has just deposited Thomas in this refuge surrounded by walls hundreds of feet tall. There are other bo...moreWelcome to the Glade! That trip in the elevator has just deposited Thomas in this refuge surrounded by walls hundreds of feet tall. There are other boys living here, but just like Thomas, they can’t remember much about their past. They just know that every thirty days a new boy will arrive just like Thomas did, and they manage to survive on their own agricultural efforts along with a few supplies sent by the creators. They also know that if they want to escape the Glade, they will have to find their way through the maze surrounding the Glade. But don’t get stuck in the maze when the doors close! That is when the Grievers come out; slimy monsters that are half-animal, half-machine killers bristling with needles, and pinchers that will be the death of you. You’d think that after two years, someone would have solved the maze by now, but the creators have added a quirk to the mix – the walls of the maze move every night. As Thomas struggles to regain his memories, a young girl arrives with an ominous message that the rules of the game have changed. The creators have cut off supplies and the Grievers have gathered for an all-out attack. If anyone is to survive, the Maze must be solved.
This story is fast-paced and full of tension, with bits of blood and gore thrown in to attract fans of horror stories. The narrative, however, was a bit mediocre and certainly is not up to standards set by other dystopian novels like Lowry’s The Giver, or Collin’s Hunger Games. It also reminded me a bit of the 1997 movie, Cube, where strangers find themselves involuntarily placed in a maze of moving rooms from which they must escape, giving it the air of a ripoff. Be forewarned that, like so many novels these days, it ends with a cliff hanger setting itself up very well to make readers eagerly await the next book in the series. (I must comment here that I understand the monetary value of creating book series, but it irks me when authors write a book that ends on a cliffhanger. It seems a rather shameful way to get readers to buy your next books. That said...) This tales will garner a few fans of dystopian tales, horror stories and edge of your seat thrillers. (less)
It saddens me that writers like Cinda Williams Chima have not yet been “discovered.” She should be basking in the fame accorded such writers as J.K. R...moreIt saddens me that writers like Cinda Williams Chima have not yet been “discovered.” She should be basking in the fame accorded such writers as J.K. Rowling, Stephenie Meyers or Stephen King. I, as well as major book reviewers, awarded her starred reviews for her first three books in her Warriors Trilogy*. But those three books pale in comparison to this, her newest book, the first in her Seven Realms Trilogy. This is a MUST READ for all who enjoy high fantasy.
Set amidst a backdrop of a thousand year history, we are introduced to the main characters; Han “Hunts Alone” Alister, a former thief and street gang leader, and Raisa ana’Mariana, princess heir of the Fells. Chima tells their tale in chapters which alternate between these characters poised on the brink of adulthood. Han and Raisa must discover what part they will play in a future set amidst scheming wizards, street lord wars, ethnic blood feuds and political machinations of a most devious nature. Both are supported by a rich cast of secondary characters. Although the first few chapters can be a bit cumbersome, do not be discouraged. It is all necessary. Once you get past them you will not put this book down until you have reached the end.
*The Warriors Trilogy = The Warrior Heir, The Wizard Heir, and The Dragon Heir. (less)
I'm always looking for a new book on CD to listen to as I drive around town. This one showed up on the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA...moreI'm always looking for a new book on CD to listen to as I drive around town. This one showed up on the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)Selected Audiobooks for Young Adults in 2008. Since two more titles in the L.A. Meyer's "Jacky Faber" series showed up on the 2009 lists I decided to check it out.
It's hard to know what kind of rating to give a "book" when the book is an audiobook. I felt the story itself was slightly better than mediocre - 3 stars. But Katherine Kellgren's Cockney accent truly brought this book to life - 5 star. (less)
This is the first book in yet another series of books being written to ride the wave of Stephenie Meyers' Twilight series. Indeed, Strange Angels cert...moreThis is the first book in yet another series of books being written to ride the wave of Stephenie Meyers' Twilight series. Indeed, Strange Angels certainly shares similarities in its storyline of vampires, werewolves and a burgeoning love triangle.
The story starts out on a gloomy note as a zombie bursts through the back door of the house where sixteen-year-old Dru Anderson and her father have been living. Dru is able to destroy the vile creature. After all, she received training from her father who spends his life tracking down those horrors that go bump in the night. But Dad won't be coming back to give Dru lessons anymore. It turns out Dad was the zombie and he lost a battle with one of the evil monsters he hunts. Now Dru is left to battle the horrors on her own. That is, until she teams up with Graves, a boy from her high school. Graves is quickly attacked and turned into a loup-garou (half-werewolf). The third leg of the love-triangle is completed with the introduction of Christophe, djamphir (half-vampire) and vampire hunter.
This installment does little more than introduce us to the main characters of Dru, Graves and Christophe with only a few action scenes thrown in. The story is plagued with pacing that is choppy. The story often seems to be stuck and is kept moving only by a glut of oddly chosen descriptions and the interruptions created by Dru's inner dialogue dispersed throughout the story. I can only describe as the writing as sloppy and dimwitted.
Because of its similarities to Twilight, it will probably become a popular choice of less sophisticated teen readers and its cliff hanger ending will leave those readers anticipating the sequel. (less)