Die For Me was one of those books that I could not wait to get my hands on - and Plum did not disappoint. I really enjoyed this book and loved that it...moreDie For Me was one of those books that I could not wait to get my hands on - and Plum did not disappoint. I really enjoyed this book and loved that it was a new and different paranormal story.
In Die For Me, we meet Kate who has just moved to Paris with her sister Georgia to live with their grandparents after their parents are killed. Kate is having a hard time adjusting to life without her parents and living in Paris - until she meets Vincent. There is something about him that draws her in and when she and Georgia see him and his friends perform a daring rescue - Kate wants to know more. What Kate discovers in Vincent's world is almost too much for her to handle. Can she open herself up to love after losing so much?
First, I loved the setting of this book. Paris. One of the most romantic places in the world - or so I've heard, I've never been. But Plum's descriptions of Paris are beautiful and make me wish I could visit sometime. The way she describes the cafes, streets, and sections of the city brings it to life and makes the reader feel as if they are there.
I also really liked the characters in the story. Kate is your typical teenage girl - she has her struggles after losing her parents but has her head on her shoulders. I loved Georgia - the wild child sister and always kept the story entertaining. Vincent, the love interest of the story, is suppose to be a swoon-worthy Parisian but I wasn't that drawn to him. Sure, I wanted him and Kate together but he just wasn't my type. I really liked Jules, Ambrose, and Charlotte and find those two boys much more my type while Charlotte would be a great BFF.
*Maybe spoilery* When Kate finds out Vincent is a revenant - a undead human who saves peoples lives and if they die doing it then are "reset" back to the age they really died at - she has to decide if that's the kind of life she wants. Along the way, she finds out about the "bad revenants" - who don't like the way Vincent and his crew do things.
Plum tells a great story and I'm interested to see where the series goes. I will say that there are some things that aren't too believable and some parts that I guess what was going to happen way before it did. It is definitely an enjoyable read though and a new, fun take on the paranormal.(less)
Juniper Berry is the story of an eleven year old girl who is struggling with the strange and awful ways her parents are acting and treating her. Her p...moreJuniper Berry is the story of an eleven year old girl who is struggling with the strange and awful ways her parents are acting and treating her. Her parents are famous movie stars - who always had time for Juniper - they played and acted and loved her more than anything. Then, slowly, her parents started to change - they became distant and moody and wanted nothing to do with the child they loved so much before. Juniper is devastated by the change in her parents - they are really her only friends and now they want nothing to do with her. One day, Juniper meets Giles out in her back yard and they realize that the same thing is happening to both of their parents. Taking matters into their own hands, the two new friends are determined to find what is destroying their parents and bring them back.
I really enjoyed this short middle grade story. It was creepy and heartbreaking and a great read for young readers who like a little bit of mystery and suspense in their stories. At the same time, Juniper Berry has a underlying message - be careful what choices you make because they can change you and not for the better.
Juniper is such a smart, courageous lead character - I like to see that for the girl reader who might be struggling to choose the right path. Giles isn't as strong but I like that the relationship he develops with Juniper and how they played off of each other.
Overall, this is a great middle grade read for students who like a little bit of horror mixed in their readings. They might never look at red balloons the same way again! (less)
When I first saw the cover of this book I thought, "No freakin' way! Looks insanely creepy and I hate creepy." That's why you should never judge a boo...moreWhen I first saw the cover of this book I thought, "No freakin' way! Looks insanely creepy and I hate creepy." That's why you should never judge a book by it's cover, y'all. It does have some creepiness to it, our main character, Emerson, can see ghosts and talk to them, but this book is more than that. It is time travel and love story and ghost story and all kinds of awesomeness rolled into one book. I absolutely loved it.
There are some things about Hourglass that were kinda annoying, the start of a love triangle mostly, but I can forgive McEntire for that because the rest of the story is so good. I love a book that has a new concept we don't see in every book and Hourglass definitely has it - time travel. Time traveling is so fun and interesting and there are so many different ways it can be explained. That was my favorite part of this book and I think McEntire does a great job of developing the story and explaining how the time traveling works within the story she has created.
That's not to say that I didn't love the characters, I definitely did - especially Emerson. Emerson has been through so much - how she is still function is beyond me - so for her to still be as funny and tough as she is is great. I know some reviewers didn't seem to like her brother but I thought he did a good job of taking care of Emerson with all the crap she's gone through. I like that she actually has a authority figure in her life - a lot of YA paranormal books are lacking that. Michael was also a very interesting character. I'm interested to see how their relationship plays out after everything that has happened in Hourglass. It also looks like McEntire has set it up for a love triangle (one that I hope doesn't get developed) with Kaleb, Michael's friend and colleague at Hourglass. I do like Kaleb though. He is an interesting character and brings a lot to the story - I just hate me some love triangles.
If you are looking for something away from vampires and werewolves and want something a little more on the sci-fi side - Hourglass is definitely for you. I'm looking forward to the next book in the trilogy. (less)
The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab is an enchanting and captivating story that reads like a fairy tale - drawing the reader in and not letting go until...moreThe Near Witch by Victoria Schwab is an enchanting and captivating story that reads like a fairy tale - drawing the reader in and not letting go until the last page. I completely fell in love with this story and it will be one book that is kept on my bookshelf for years to come. There is just something about the way that Schwab tells the story of the Near Witch that makes you keep turning the page until there is nothing left and then you want to devour it again. The writing is just beautiful. The Near Witch has all the makings of a classic fairytale.
There are no strangers in the town of Near - and when one comes to the town it causes quite a stir. On the night the stranger shows up, Lexi Harris sees him from her winder and is very curious about the newcomer and what brought him to Near. The next night, children start to disappear from their beds and everyone is sure the newcomer is to blame. But Lexi has other feelings about the situation and goes to see the old sisters, witches, who her father (who passed away a few years back) would take her to see and trusted even if the other town members didn't. When Lexi meets the stranger, Cole, she trusts him and believes that something else is stealing the children from their bed at night. As Lexi and Cole race against time to try to save the children they must also trust each other and not get lost in the night themselves.
I loved the characters in this book. Lexi is a great lead - she is smart and tough and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure her voice is heard. I love that she doesn't back down to anyone - even the elders of the town, who could ultimately kick her out of the town, or her uncle, who tries to keep her in the house and marry her off to a town boy. I also loved her protectiveness over her little sister - I would be the same way with both of my sisters. Cole, the stranger in town, is so mysterious and you are just drawn to him and want to find out his story. I liked the town witches too - they were definitely spooky and you could see the appeal of them and why Lexi always wanted to go there.
I also loved the setting in The Near Witch. Schwab creates her own world around the town of Near. Near isn't some time in the past or the present or the future - it's just there - existing in its own universe that is a magical place and full of stories. Everything about Near draws you in - from the town people to the songs the children sing right down to the old witches living near the moor. It was just a beautiful place and so well imagined.
I really can't say enough good things about this book. The Near Witch is definitely one of my favorite books of the year - it has everything I want in a story and is utterly enchanting. (less)
I put off reading Wolfsbane for a while - as much as I loved Nighshade I KNEW there was gonna be a cliffhanger and I just couldn't put myself through...moreI put off reading Wolfsbane for a while - as much as I loved Nighshade I KNEW there was gonna be a cliffhanger and I just couldn't put myself through the wait. I'm one of those gals that if I can wait for the whole series to be released THEN read them - I'm a much happier reader. So - I waited. Patiently. And, I've gotta say, I'm so glad I did. I loved Wolfsbane as much as I loved Nightshade but, y'all, this book was intense. It was full of twists and turns and drama and awesomeness all rolled up into one excellent sequel.
Cremer takes the reader on one heck of a ride with Wolfsbane. Cremer laid the foundation in Nightshade and Wolfsbane took off and never looked back. Regardless of what team you are on, the plot of Wolfsbane is what keeps the need to finish this book as fast as possible going. Cremer builds a world that is so detailed and rich with history (History teachers FTW!) - you can tell that there is just so much planning that went into how these books would flow with each other. The world of the Searchers, Guardians, and Keepers is so complex - there were times I had to go back and reread certain parts just to make sure I was understanding the history (which I didn't mind). And the adventure Cremer takes us on! We aren't in Colorado anymore, Toto! The new world in Wolfsbane is definitely different than what we experienced in Nightshade - with a lot more heartache and danger.
If there was one thing that was a negative it was the lack of previous characters from Nightshade in Wolfsbane. Where is Ren? I LOVE Ren! And the rest of Calla's pack, who she left behind - there are so many unanswered questions when it comes to them and I missed the pack. However, I did love the new characters that Cremer introduced - Connor, Ethan, Adne, and the gang definitely filled some of the void - adding even more complexity to the story.
I'm not even going to address the love triangle. Team Ren. That's all.
When Calla left her pack to save Shay, she didn't realize the consequences - and, y'all, there are consequences. I spent most of the book wondering HOW THE HECK they were going to get out of the situations they were all in without everyone dying. (dramatic much?) The cliffhanger was one heck of an ending to Wolfsbane and I was SO HAPPY to have Bloodrose on hand.
This debut novel by Moira Young is absolutely phenomenal. I completely loved everything about it - the dystopian world, the characters, the story was...moreThis debut novel by Moira Young is absolutely phenomenal. I completely loved everything about it - the dystopian world, the characters, the story was all spot on and written perfectly. Dystopian is all the rage right now in YA and Young is a leader of the pack.
Our protagonist is Saba, a young girl from Silverlake who has her whole world thrown upside down in a blink of an eye. When her twin brother, Lugh, is taken by four horsemen - Saba must become the strong one and find a way to rescue her brother while also caring for her younger sister, Emmi. As Saba and Emmi make their way across the barren land - they face more terrible things than they could ever imagine. When Saba is forced to join forces with a group of revolutionary girls and a handsome boy named Jack, she starts to find herself and her strength.
One of the biggest things I heard about this book was the writing style - that the way it was written was in the dialect that the characters spoke and some people didn't care for it. I actually listened to the audio and found it completely engaging. Heather Lind does an amazing job of reading the story in this dialect and even now I can hear her voice and remember the story and characters. I'm not sure if I would've loved this book as much if I hadn't listened to the audio. Lind completely drew me in and I will definitely be listening to the other books on audio if Lind is reading them.
The characters in Blood Red Road are awesome. I loved Saba. She is one kick butt girl that doesn't take any crap from anyone. Even when she is put into the worst situations, she fights and never gives up. On top of being tough - she is smart and can scheme when she the need arises. I like for my female characters to be tough and smart - and Saba definitely is. I also loved Emmi. She is the typical kid sister who doesn't listen to anything her older sister has to say even if it's whats best for her. Saba and Emmi never got along before but, as the story progressed, their relationship changed and you can see why they feel the way about each other. When Saba meets Jack, I immediately love him. There is just something about him - even though we don't know that much. I can't wait to find out more about him.
Blood Red Road is a awesome debut book. If you can pick up the audio for it, I HIGHLY recommend it. Lind is superb and if something happens and I end up reading book two instead of listening, I know it will be her voice I hear in my head. This book is amazing and if you haven't checked it out you are missing out.(less)