I don't read a lot of contemporary but a survival story? That I will jump on. There were things I enjoyed about The Raft - the suspense, the terror, tI don't read a lot of contemporary but a survival story? That I will jump on. There were things I enjoyed about The Raft - the suspense, the terror, the wondering - and thing I just didn't - some things were just too "easy" the way they happened.
When the plane Robie is on starts to go down, Max (the co-pilot) throws her out, saving her life, and gets her on the raft. After that Robie and Max are left to float around in the warm waters of the Pacific without any food, water, or way to contact land. Like Robie, the thing that would freak me out the most about being stuck on a raft in the middle of the ocean would be the sharks. I am terrified of them - barely go in the water at the beach I'm so scared of them. So, I'm with Robie on this one and I'm not sure I would've been as brave as she was when she HAD to get in the water.
Robie is not someone I would want to be alone on a raft with. She was kinda annoying - even though I should probably remember that she is fifteen years old and being whiny and annoying is required. I just didn't connect with her at all. I would have liked to have gotten to know Max a little more - but he was always unconscious so we don't get much from him either.
When Robie and Max make it to the island is when Bodeen lost me. There were just a few things that happened that I just didn't believe was even possible. (This coming from a girl that loves paranormal/sci fi books.)
I can't really say much more about The Raft. I didn't form a connection with the characters and I just felt like I knew how it was going to end before it got there. There were times that I was freakin' out with Robie - especially with the sharks and being in the water. And there is a twist at the end that made me have a "OH!" moment - didn't really see that coming at all. ...more
I completely loved everything about Rossi's debut novel. From the world she created to the characters to the action and suspense - Rossi crafts a wondI completely loved everything about Rossi's debut novel. From the world she created to the characters to the action and suspense - Rossi crafts a wonderful story that leave the reader wanting so much more.
In Under the Never Sky, the world is being destroyed by the Aether storms - storms that rain down fire and scorch the earth destroying what ever is in it's path. In this world there are two types of people - Dwellers and Outsiders. Dwellers live in pods and have access to other "worlds" through a eyepiece that covers their eye. Outsiders know nothing but hunger and violence - having to fight to survive in the harsh weather conditions. Outsiders do have one advantage though - most of them have special gifts that help them survive in the harsh conditions. And there is just so much more to this world that Rossi created. At the beginning of Under the Never Sky, I will admit I was somewhat confused. I felt like I was thrown into this world and couldn't really find my way around - but once the story got going I understood more about what was going on around me. Not really knowing what was going on kept me interested and wanting more.
I think the strongest part of the story were the characters - Aria and Perry were wonderfully written and full of surprises. I loved that the story was told from both point of views - we would have missed so much if it had only been told from either Aria or Perry's. Aria is one very tough chick - she was determined to find out what happened to her mother (even if it meant breaking the rules), she didn't let anyone push her around, and she fought for her life whenever she had to - even if she wasn't very good at it. I love that she didn't let Perry push her around - even though he could be very mean and intimidating. And Perry - swoon-worthy Perry. I just loved that boy. You see that he has a kind side to him when he is with his nephew but he also has a hard side - one that kills men without thinking twice. And I loved the relationship between Aria and Perry - no instalove going on here. Mostly instahate. It made the story much more enjoyable with a little bit of suspense and wondering.
I need the next book in this series immediately and I know its going to be at least a year before that happens. If you love dystopian I highly recommend this book - full of action and adventure, love and loss, and hope and sadness - Under the Never Sky is a superb debut that will leave the reader wanting more. ...more
My twin tried to get me to read this book MONTHS ago - but did I listen even though she reads everything I recommend to her? Nope. Do I wish I would hMy twin tried to get me to read this book MONTHS ago - but did I listen even though she reads everything I recommend to her? Nope. Do I wish I would have? Yep. Switched by Amanda Hocking got me out of my reading slump and I devoured it in a day. The story is unique and interesting and I enjoyed everything about it.
Wendy has always been different than the rest of the kids her age - more contrary, more demanding, and very distant with other people. When Wendy discovers she has an ability to make people do what she is thinking she really starts to wonder why she is so different. And then Finn shows up and everything in Wendy's life turns upside down.
I wasn't sure how this book was going to be since it was about trolls - but the trolls in Switched are not the trolls you see in other fantasy books. The trolls in Switched are Trylle - a beautiful species that is nearly extinction. Hocking creates a very interesting mythology about the Tyrlle - one that is full of drama that Wendy is completely thrown into without any desire whatsoever.
The characters in Tyrlle are completely enchanting. Wendy is so damaged from her crazy childhood which results into a personality that isn't completely lovely but I adore that about her. At the beginning of Switched she is very standoffish - she doesn't make friends easily and has moved around a lot. As the story progresses, Wendy starts to find her way - I really enjoyed seeing her grown and develop as a character. As for the boys in Switched - well, there are many to choose from. All the boys in Switched are swoon-worthy and the best part is there isn't a love triangle to deal with (at least not yet?).
Hocking's Switched is a fast, fun read. I completely enjoyed it and can not wait to get my hands on the other two books in the series to find out what happens....more
I was very excited to get on the blog tour for this book - anything dystopian-ish and zombie-ish I'm all for reading. While it didn't fully live up toI was very excited to get on the blog tour for this book - anything dystopian-ish and zombie-ish I'm all for reading. While it didn't fully live up to my expectation - I enjoyed the book and look forward to the next one to find out what happens with Sherry and her friends.
Sherry has been living with the same five (technically six but her grandpa died a year ago) people for the last three years in a bunker under their house. They know something bad has happened above ground but haven't been able to find out what is going on since closing the door three years ago. When their food runs out, Sherry and her dad are forced to venture out of the safety of the bunker to look for food so they don't starve to death. When they emerge from the bunker, they find a world that has been completely destroyed and nothing like the one that was in existence when they went underground. When Sherry's dad is taken by the Weepers, she is saved by another survivor, Joshua, and her eyes are opened up to a whole new world.
Once Sherry meets Joshua, The Other Life takes off at a fast pace - which isn't necessarily a good thing. I felt like a lot of world building was left out - I wanted to know more about the world that Sherry had stepped into but instead I was left trying to figure it out while the book sped on. Joshua takes Sherry to Secret Haven - a hideaway out in the middle of nowhere where he lives with a handful of other survivors. From there, Sherry and Joshua must rescue her family from the bunker, find her dad, and stay alive. While The Other Life read fast, I just wanted some more details.
As for the characters, we are introduced to so many but really don't get much of a back story. With the book ending how it did, I'm pretty sure we will be getting at least a sequel - so hopefully we find out a little bit more about all the interesting characters that Winnacker introduces us to. As for Sherry and Joshua, I could get behind their friendship but not so much the love story. The book is just so fast - the majority of the stuff happens in a matter of days - and their relationship felt forced. But, then again, if I had been living with just my family for over three years and there was a cute boy around I would probably think I was in love with him too after a week. So, there's that.
The Other Life is a fast, entertaining read. I liked the direction that Winnacker went with the Weepers and think the world that she created would be very interesting if I knew more details. I'm a details person, y'all. I love them - so I need that in my books, especially my dystopian books. The Other Life is definitely more character driven and I definitely want to know more about the characters in the book and find out what happens next....more
I have been DYING to get my hands on Obsidian by Jennifer Armentrout. First, it's set in WV, my home state. Second, it is about a hott alien - intriguI have been DYING to get my hands on Obsidian by Jennifer Armentrout. First, it's set in WV, my home state. Second, it is about a hott alien - intriguing. And third, look at that cover! It has to be good with a cover like that! As soon as I received the eARC, I dove in - I had been in a reading funk and Obsidian was exactly what I needed to pull myself out. I loved everything about this book and can. not. wait. for the next one.
Obsidian is a fun read that is face paced and never dull. Katy, Daemon, and Dee's characters play off each other fabulously. There is witty banter, steamy chemistry, and a great friendship between the characters that I just loved. Katy, who just moved to WV, is loyal and caring but doesn't take any crap from anyone and her friendship with Dee is fun to watch develop. You know those insta-love relationships? This was like a insta-friend relationship. These girls just clicked - and they needed each other. The one thing that could ruin the friendship is Daemon - Dee's twin brother - who is a jerk to Katy instantly. He insists the girls can't be friends - which hurts Katy - but the girls don't listen. Katy and Daemon develop a love/hate relationship - they are always at each others throats but at the end of the day if one needs help the other is there. There is definitely some sexual tension between these two and I really love that it wasn't insta-love.
Not only are the characters great but the storyline is addicting. Katy has no idea what Daemon and his sister and friends are - but finding out is a lot of fun. Of course there were signs leading up to the big reveal but Katy never really saw it coming. And as for the type of aliens Daemon and the gang are - well, you are gonna have to read to find out. It is a very interesting part of the story and not something I would have considered.
The ending of Obsidian left me wanting so much more. I loved these characters and want to know what happens next! Obsidian is probably considered sci-fi but don't let that turn you off - it's more about love and friendship and less about the sciencey stuff (even though I'm really loving the sci-fi stuff right now). Make sure to pick up a copy when it's released!...more
*Spoilers for Wolfsbane* Y'all. I've been trying to review this book for over a month. There was so much that I loved about it and so much that left me*Spoilers for Wolfsbane* Y'all. I've been trying to review this book for over a month. There was so much that I loved about it and so much that left me heartbroken and angry. I have such mixed feelings that I'm going to try to put it into words without sounding completely ridiculous.
Cremer goes into Bloodrose guns blazing - there is not a dull moment and from the start it is impossible to put down. Like I said in my review of Wolfsbane, I love Cremer's world-building and story-telling. This book is full of so many twists and turns and so much drama and love and hurt. I LOVE where Cremer took the story with the Searchers and the Keepers. I love the adventures the characters have to go on to retrieve the rest of the sword for Shay so he can defeat the Keepers. Cremer does an amazing job of describing and each location the group goes to and each location is more dangerous than the one before. These parts were by far my favorite parts of the book. I loved the adventure and the suspense that Cremer creates during these parts.
The main love triangle between Calla, Shay, and Ren is still going strong - which I hate. I hate love triangles and I hated how Calla handled it in book two - but in Bloodrose we get the old Calla back. She's determined to protect her remaining pack over everything else - something that a true alpha should be doing, right? - and the love triangle isn't the prominent issue within the story. I actually love the other relationships in Bloodrose more than the Calla/Shay/Ren thing. Ansel and Bryn are two of my favorite characters and seeing them trying to work through things after all the hurt in Wolfsbane is interesting. I also love a a few of the other relationships that develop throughout the story - which I won't talk about so I won't spoil it.
My anger and heartbreak comes with the end of the book (typical, right?). There is just so much that happens that I didn't see coming and that I'm not sure WHY it had to happen. And I have questions about the way other things happened... Bloodrose was such a roller coaster of emotions for me.
Overall, I really did love Bloodrose. The good outweighed the bad and the storytelling, worldbuilding, and emotional rollercoaster that Cremer takes the reader on is what a good book is all about. I might not like or agree with everything that happened but this was Cremer's story to tell - and she told it amazingly well. I honestly can't wait for the companion novel, Rift, and anything else Cremer writes. ...more
OMG, y'all. This book totally blew me away. Really. It is my favorite book of the year by far. There is SO MUCH AWESOMENESS in Pandemonium. Even betteOMG, y'all. This book totally blew me away. Really. It is my favorite book of the year by far. There is SO MUCH AWESOMENESS in Pandemonium. Even better than Delirium in my opinion - and I loved Delirium. But Lauren Oliver WENT THERE with Pandemonium and it will blow. your. mind. I'm still thinking about this book and it's been over a week since I finished.
When Lena emerges into the Wilds - nothing is how she imagined it would be. Alex is gone and her heart is broken. Shattered. When Raven and the other "invalids" find her she is half dead and really just wants to stay that way. As she regains her strength she accepts her new life in the Wilds and becomes a member of the Resistant - moving to New York and emerging herself in the fight against everything that she once believed in. What she doesn't expect is what happens next - and must fight to stay alive and escape what will most certainly be her death.
Oliver's writing is FLAWLESS. From the very first chapter she grabs your attention and keeps it. Pandemonium is written in a switching time frame - one chapter is "then" and one chapter is "now" and it flows effortlessly. I would find myself wanting to know what was happening in the "then" when I was in the "now" and vise versa. The "then" is about how she found her way. The "now" is about how she is strong and not the same girl we saw in Delirium. She has became a warrior for the resistance and since they took Alex from her she will do whatever she can to take them down.
Since the blurb tells you about the romance - I'm only going to say a few things about it. First, I love Alex. In Delirium, we see how Alex is perfect for Lena but at the end of Delirium he is captured and probably killed. Lena is heartbroken - like doesn't want to live anymore, let me die - heartbroken. She goes on with her life - but doesn't forget. When she is put into a dangerous circumstance with an unlikely companion, things start to change. She starts to let her heart heal - even while she is fighting to survive. The relationship that starts to bloom is what she needs. And I ADORED it. Absolutely and totally fell in love with this "forbidden romance."
Pandemonium is everything that a sequel should be - engaging, heart pounding, and completely captivating. I can't remember the last time I read a book so fast and was so completely enchanted with the characters and story. ...more
I can not say enough good things about A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. The story is heart breaking and real and hard to deal with but fabulous in itsI can not say enough good things about A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. The story is heart breaking and real and hard to deal with but fabulous in its own way. How do you deal with heartbreak and loss when you are so young with no one to turn it? This is what Conor is facing and the Moster makes him face. The monster comes to tell Conor three stories then after the stories Conor must tell him the truth - something Conor doesn't want to face.
Conor is dealing with a lot in his young life. His mother is sick with cancer, his father left and is living in America with his new family, and his grandmother isn't someone he gets along with. On top of a horrible home life, he is also bullied at school every day - which he takes without telling anyone what is going on. Then one night, the monster shows up and demands for Conor to deal with what is going on in his life through three stories - all of which cause Conor to act out and deal with the things happening in his life. Even as an adult reader, I was left confused and trying to figure out what had happened with the stories - who was really hurt and who was really doing the hurting.
Even though I listened to the audio and didn't look at the illustrations as I read the book, I still enjoyed the story. I did go and buy the book just so I could see the illustrations and they are fabulous. The pictures are done in black and white and it adds a whole different element to the story - making it dark and scary in ways just reading it wouldn't allow.
The audio for A Monster's Call is superb. Jason Isaacs (aka Lucius Malfoy) does a fantastic job of bringing Conor's voice to life. He is emotional and forceful and everything you want a reader to be when reading a book with so much emotion attached to it. His voice for the monster is scary and commanding while his voice for Conor makes your heart hurt at times. He was the perfect narrator for this book.
A Monster Calls is heartbreaking and real and something that you need to experience. Conor will break your heart and you will want to take him home and make his life better once you read his story. The audiobook is fantastic and would be a great starter for audiobook virgins. If you have not read this book, it should be put in your TBR pile. It is a fast read and worth the couple hours....more
Michelle Hodkin's debut novel is a dark tale filled with mystery, death, and romance that will have the reader turning the pages faster than they canMichelle Hodkin's debut novel is a dark tale filled with mystery, death, and romance that will have the reader turning the pages faster than they can read them. From the very beginning of the story the reader is sucked into the story and the mysterious circumstances surrounding Mara. I think the tshirts say it perfectly - "Who is Mara Dyer?" What is going on with this mysterious girl? Just the outside of the book is enough to grab your attention - the synopsis is intriguing and the cover is beautiful.
One of my favorite thing about this book is the characters. Hodkin does a fantastic job of bringing the characters to life and making them real. Mara is a girl with some serious issues but who can blame her when she has been through such a traumatic accident and lived when others died. Mara's story is dark and not for the faint of heart - there are some spine tingling scenes in this book, for sure. She is one messed up chick but still manages to have a quick wit about her. I love how she gives it back to Noah. Speaking of Noah - can we say SA-WOON! I know a lot of people were kind of disgusted with his attitude but I loved it. Then again, I always liked the bad boy when I was younger. I love the relationship between Mara and Noah too. There is no insta-love happening here and thank GOD there is no love triangles. The relationship between Noah and Mara develops at a reasonable pace - at least for high school kids.
The story is written brilliantly. There are so many twists and turns and crazyness going on that it keeps you wondering what the crap is really going on. I know a lot of people got to the last 100 pages and the thing with the alligators and just didn't like it - but I kinda did. I know it was crazy but, really, the whole book is crazy! There is definitely a different paranormal twist going on and I think Hodkin knows where she is taking it. There is something going on with Mara and the alligators just show how crazy it is. I will say that it was confusing and maybe not explained clearly - but there is a lot of stuff that still needs explained. I have faith that Hodkin has a reason for how things happened and they will be explained in later books.
Overall, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is a fantastic read. It is a very intriguing and so different from anything I've read - and, regardless of the crazyness, I love it for it. I highly recommend this book and wish I could buy it for my library but I have middle grade kids and it's definitely not age appropriate. If you are looking for something that you haven't read before with a swoon-worthy romance, paranormal elements, and spine-tingling mystery, this is the book for you. ...more
I'm not really sure why I put off reading this book for so long. I won a copy on Twitter back when it first came out and just never read it. I kept heI'm not really sure why I put off reading this book for so long. I won a copy on Twitter back when it first came out and just never read it. I kept hearing how amazing it is - so when I saw it on audio through my library I jumped at the chance to listen to it. I seem to be getting through audio books faster than books right now for some reason.
Delirium is a wonderfully well written dystopian about love, friendship, and trust. Oliver's words just flow off the page and takes the reader into a captivating world. I loved every single word of Delirium.
Delirium is set in a world where love is considered to be a disease - and once you turn 18 you are cured from ever contracting the disease. What I didn't think about going into the story was how eliminating love in a world is like taking away feelings for anything - there is no passion. No love for your children or husband. No love for even hobbies or the world around you. That makes for a very depressing place, full of empty shells walking around not caring about much. Oliver does a fantastic job of keeping the world believable. Her descriptions of the world and reasoning behind how it worked made sense. The world she creates is sad and lonely - and even though Lena sees it she embraces it.
Lena has been hurt far too many times - her father and mother are dead and she is left to live with her aunt. She doesn't want to feel anymore - she wants to be "normal" like everyone around her. When Lena meets Alex that slowly starts to change. Alex is part of the Resistance and feels that Lena is worth saving. What happens next is a story full of love, heartbreak, and risk.
I loved the characters in Delirium. At the beginning, Lean is very no-nonsense type of girl - she plays by the rules and doesn't cause any trouble. As the book progresses, we see her grow into her own person. She comes out from the shadows of her past and becomes strong and fearless. Lena progresses with the help of Hannah and Alex. Hannah, her best friend, is a bit of a wild child and tries to get Lena to loosen up before she is "cured." I loved the scenes with Hannah. And Alex. Ahhh.. I love Alex. He is like the perfect guy. Every scene with between him and Lena is so full of life and love and happiness. I loved their relationship.
The audio part of this book is amazingly good as well. Sarah Drew is a FANTASTIC narrator. I've actually had the chance to read Pandemonium and as I read, I could hear her voice. She became Lena to me and I will probably "reread" Pandemonium again on audio just to hear her read it. I will definitely be checking out more books narrated by Drew in the future.
Overall, Delirium is a fantastic read and I highly recommend the audio book. If dystopian is your thing and you like a good love story - this is a book that should be on the top of your TBR pile. ...more
Liesl and Po by Lauren Oliver is a wonderfully written middle grade novel. I'm always looking for books to add to my school library and this is definiLiesl and Po by Lauren Oliver is a wonderfully written middle grade novel. I'm always looking for books to add to my school library and this is definitely one that makes the list. With intriguing characters, adventure, and a wonderful storyline, Liesl and Po is definitely a book my students will love (and adults too!).
When we meet Liesl, she is locked in an attic by her stepmother and mourning the death of her father who died the day before. When Po shows up, a ghost from the otherworld, Liesl welcomes the company - even if it is a ghost - and they become friends. Through a series of crazy events, Liesl and Po escape the attic and head towards her old house in the country to spread her father's ashes. Along the way they meet Will, a orphan who worked for an evil alchemist and is trying to escape his wrath, and who also would watch Liesl from the street through her attic window.
The plot in this book is so twisty and complicated that it will leave a younger reader guessing to the very end about what is going to happen. I figured out most of the mysteries before they were resolved but for a middle grade reader it will definitely keep them entertained and guessing. I really enjoyed how Oliver had all the paths cross in one way or another. The links between the characters were interesting and fun to watch play out. I also enjoyed how the box of magic kept switching hands and kept you guessing how it was going to make its way back to the rightful place.
As for the main characters, the reader will fall in love with all of them. I just wanted to scoop Liesl and Will up and take them home with me. They are two children that just needs someone to love and care for them. To have such rough lives, they are not bitter or hard. Liesl is so caring and compassionate in this book. I just really loved her character. And Will was just as well written. Ah! I just really loved them.
I try to read as much middle grade as I can so I can decide what is good and what is not for my library. This is definitely a book that I would buy for my students and push for them to read. I am even considering making it a book club book. This is a middle grade book at it's best....more
When Delaney falls through the ice and is submerged under water for eleven minutes. She should be dead - but she's not. After being in a coma for almoWhen Delaney falls through the ice and is submerged under water for eleven minutes. She should be dead - but she's not. After being in a coma for almost a week, Delaney wakes up to a whole new life. Everyone is changed by her fall - herself, her parents, her best friend, Decker, and her friends.
Megan Miranda's debut novel is suspenseful, engaging, and brilliant. Part love story and part psychological thriller, Fracture will have you from the moment you start reading. The first ten pages takes you into the drowning of Delaney - and from there things just become more intense. Every move Delaney makes she is being watched - by her mother, her father, her friends. She went from being almost valedictorian to having to be tutored - and there is something a little off that draws her out in the middle of the night to the dying. When Delaney meets Troy, a person with similar abilities, what she is looking for is answers but what she gets is so much scarier.
The characters in Fracture are written so well. Decker, Delaney's BFF, is caring and loyal and oh-so-in-love with Delaney - even if he won't admit it. He has to deal with the fact that he left Delaney on the ice and she fell in - and deal with it he does. There is so much tension between Delaney and Decker - a fine line that they both walk because of the hurtles in their friendship. And sometimes they are just too hard to deal with. When Delaney meet Troy - things get a whole lot more interesting. Troy is definitely a bad boy but not in a good way. He is sketchy and there is a lot more to him than what you think. It made me nervous the way Troy was with Delaney - like you're holding your breath waiting for something to happen.
Fracture should definitely be on your to be read piles if it isn't already. No ghosts, witches, vampires, or werewolves here. Just a amazingly well written thriller that you won't be able to put down. ...more