Hands down, this is my FAVORITE Stephen King book. I'm not saying this is his best piece of work, but (personal preferences 'n all) this is j4.5 stars!
Hands down, this is my FAVORITE Stephen King book. I'm not saying this is his best piece of work, but (personal preferences 'n all) this is just what I happen to enjoy the most. So. Erica has a stellar review that explains why this book should be revered above all other King books. And also touches another review that is total crap, written by a man who can normally be counted on to give good book recommendations. Even though he tends to ramble, and add musical lyrics to all his reviews. And does't actually talk about the book half of the time. Or, let's face it, make sense. Because he's old. And weird. Probably even smelly...but I have no proof of that one. Still. He's our friend. Most days.
Anyhoo. This one is actually a fairly simple fantasyish tale.
The Fearsome Dragon...
The Wise and Beautiful Queen...
The Evil Sorcerer...
The Decent but Stupid King...
The overlooked, sad, spiteful, kinda stupid, (Baby-Brother) Prince...
Prince... actual size may vary
Oops! Wait. The Good and Decent Hero Prince...
The thing that I love about this story, is that it has that classic good over evil vibe to it. There are twists, but nothing mind-blowing. It reminds me of a the kind of fairytale/fantasy stuff my mom would read to me before bedtime. Well. Ok. She never read me anything with adult content in it, but that's not what I'm talking about. This is just... Good wins, and Evil takes a beat-down. Sometimes it's nice to pretend that you're a kid, and you still believe that, you know? Be noble, be kind, do the right thing...and everything will work out. Remember that? sigh So, that's why I love this one. The End. ...more
Reread 2014 I read American Gods not too long ago, and while I liked it, it didn't turn out to be a favorite. So I wondered if maybe I shouldn't go bacReread 2014 I read American Gods not too long ago, and while I liked it, it didn't turn out to be a favorite. So I wondered if maybe I shouldn't go back and check this one out. You know, see if it was really as good as I remembered? Huh. It was actually better. Hilarious! The 5 star rating stands!
Original review 2009
Good Omens is going to have to go down as one of my favorites! I wouldn't say that I laughed out loud, but I snorted once or twice and smiled the whole way through! Who would have thought the apocalypse could be so funny?! Evidently Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. Personally, I thought it was a great "coming of age" story about a boy named Adam Young.
Warning: If you are one of those people who wear a "What Would Jesus Do?" bracelet and believe that the purple teletubby really is gay, this is not the book for you. Just put it down and grab something by C.S. Lewis.
The story centers around an angel and a demon who have spent thousands of years on earth together, and have quite a good working relationship. Everything is running along smoothly until Crowley (the demon) is charged with delivering the antichrist to his new family. In other words, handing over the Spawn of Hell to a bunch of (satanic) nuns who will switch him out with a human baby who has just been born. Once the deed is done, Crowley decides to enlist Aziraphale (the angel) to help him stop the coming apocalypse. They have eleven years before the boy reaches his "full potential"... ...more
I don't think the scariest thing about this book is the fact that this tiny kid has the power to potentially crack tBuddy Read with my pal, The Jeff.
I don't think the scariest thing about this book is the fact that this tiny kid has the power to potentially crack the Earth in half. Don't get me wrong...the thought of that curls my toes. The genius of this book, is that your fear builds with the father's fear. And it's not the fear of simply being captured. He fears what all of this is doing to his daughter, and he fears what he has had to do to his daughter, in order to keep her safe from herself. The part that really got to me, was when he had to hold up her charred teddy bear to her when she was a toddler, and tell her that she was very bad for doing this to Teddy. You could almost smell his guilt and desperation just coming off the pages. He didn't want to yell at his little girl, but he had to make her afraid and ashamed of what had happened. Otherwise, the next time she got angry and threw a tantrum, it might not just be a stuffed animal that went up in flames. If you've ever been in extreme circumstances like that with your child, then I think it will gut-punch you to read that.
The creation of The Shop was an especially nice touch by King. It's (I believe) everyone's secret fear that there's some unknown government agency out there that doesn't have to conform to The Rules. The scientists and field agents were also chilling, in that they were just doing their job without much thought to the moral ramifications.
And Rainbird? Dear God, that guy was a whole new level of creepy! Partially, because he really did love Charlie, in his own sick way. He sees Charlie for who she is, and what she can become, and he's proud of her. He felt that she was his, and he was willing to patiently wait for her to trust him. And as disgusting as he was, for the most part, he was dead-on in his assessment of her. Honestly, that was the scariest thing about Rainbird. You want to believe that if someone is psychotic and amoral, then they're also missing the things that would allow them to correctly read other people. In Rainbird's case, his lack of conscience just let him see through the bullshit, and get to the core of the individual. He was truly a chilling character.
You know going into it, that not everyone is getting out of this alive, but for a King novel... I thought it had a pretty happy ending.
Wow. Mac was really fucking annoying during the first half of this book. I can see why someone might DNF this thing. Really. When I originally read thiWow. Mac was really fucking annoying during the first half of this book. I can see why someone might DNF this thing. Really. When I originally read this in 2009, I hadn't read thousands of books with a paranormal twist, and the market wasn't overflowing with books about evil fairies, so this was a new sort of book for me. And I loved it. However, if this was my first time reading it now, I might have tossed it out the window after Mac gave her explanation for substitute swear words. Ass = Petunia & Fuck = Frog? Are you kidding me with that southern belle bullshit? Fortunately, I already knew that this version of Mac was going to be replaced by a better, stronger, cooler, and far less strangle-worthy version.
Second time around I now have an appreciation for some of folks who maybe didn't love this book, but my feelings on it didn't change. None of my favorite urban fantasy series had a 1st book that blew me out of the water. Some of them, like Kate Daniels, I didn't like enough to even go back and attempt the second book for years. So, it doesn't bother me that Darkfever has a few glitches, because it also has Jericho Barrons. I have many Book Boyfriends, but Barrons is...Barrons. I can't even explain much I love him. LOVE him.
Do not get on my thread and tell me you don't understand why. Seriously. I will defriend you over this.
I read this for the 1st time about 5 years ago, and thought it was amazing. So I re-read it this year...just to make sure. Since the tv shRe-Read 2014
I read this for the 1st time about 5 years ago, and thought it was amazing. So I re-read it this year...just to make sure. Since the tv show started, quite a few people have asked me what would be a good Green Arrow comic book to read. And this was the only one I could think of to recommend. Shame on you, New 52! Turns out, I was (for once) right. This is still the best Green Arrow title that I've ever read, and it's one of the rare books that stands the test of time. If you're looking for a well-written origin story about Oliver queen, look no further. This is the definitiveGreen Arrow.
Original review 2009
Honestly, this is really the first time I've really read anything about Green Arrow, so I can't compare it to anything else, but I really enjoyed this one! In fact, I think this is one of the better origin stories that I've read. I'd recommend it to anyone who loves to read comics....more
So I needed something fluffy to take with me on vacation, and since Kat's update feed was all cute with the gifs, and the comments, and*Re-read 2014*
So I needed something fluffy to take with me on vacation, and since Kat's update feed was all cute with the gifs, and the comments, and the whatnot about this one. Well, I decided to take it with me, and see if it was a s good as I originally thought. And it was...sort of. I'm not sure what was going on in my life at the time of the first read, but this time around, I was reading it in bed at night. So? Wait for it...wait for it... While listening to my husband farting every five minutes, and complaining about how our lunch at Cinderella's Royal Table had given him food poisoning. And that was after long days spent in the hot sun, chasing four kids though theme park after theme park. sigh This didn't exactly put me in the mood for a romantic book about finding love in Paris. I'm letting the original 4 star review stand, because it's certainly not Ms. Perkins' fault that I was engulfed in noxious fumes while reading her book.
*Original 2012 Review*
Awwww. How cute is this book, you ask? SO cute.
While it's not anything that will change your perspective on life, it's definitely a great way to spend the day. I'm not sure guys are going to fall all over themselves to get their hands on this little piece of chick-lit heaven, but I'll definitely be recommending it to all the girls in my life.
Even my crusty heart did a little *pitty-pat* at the end. Love those two crazy kids!...more
I was hoping for a fun bodice ripper, and this one had so many glowing reviews that I thought it wo2.5 stars
*Warning: Some spoilers may not be tagged*
I was hoping for a fun bodice ripper, and this one had so many glowing reviews that I thought it would be a good choice. Unfortunately, I didn't like the Simon or Juliana. In my opinion, the title could easily have been The Ass and the Idiot. And, really, if you don't like the characters, what are you left with? However. I finished this in one day, so the problems I had with the book had nothing to do with readability.
Trashy Romance novels are a guilty pleasure of mine, so I tend to overlook a lot of stuff that would normally get on my nerves. Which means, I don't deduct points for the theatrical love scenes or the campy dialogue. I mean, are there really guys out there who hiss through their clenched teeth when they're aroused? Sure, I've heard my husband hiss, but it was because one of the kids accidentally clocked him in the nuts with a toy. If he had hissed at me while we were dating, I don't think we'd be married right now, to be quite honest with you.
Like the majority of every romance novel, the hero and heroine have to overcome a multitude of obstacles in order to find their Happily Ever After. In this case, the obstacle is the hero's snobbery. Ok. I like the stories with the rigid hero and the carefree heroine. Usually, it's fun to watch them argue and clash. Not so much in this case. Simon thinks Juliana is below him, and Juliana wants to teach him a lesson. So far, so good! If she had teased and tortured him, this would have been a fun little story. But that's not what happened. Basically, she has the hots for him, so she (somehow) gets him to agree to this weirdo bet that made no sense. He has give her two weeks to prove to him that you can't live a life without passion. Da fuck? Keep in mind that he's a super-frigid Duke, who's all about duty, duty, duty. Why would he agree to this bet to start with? *sniff, sniff* Something smells sketchy... Again, I'm pretty lenient when it comes to the plot in romance novels, but you've gotta at least try to give me something quasi-reasonable. Anyway this bet, that he tries several times to get out of, consists of nothing more than Juliana stalking Simon, and making herself look desperate. Dare I say, cheap, as well? Look, I'm not slut-shaming, but she runs around throwing herself on a guy who repeatedly refuses to acknowledge that she's in any way worth his respect or affections. Which brings us to his fiancee. Did I forget to mention that he got engaged during this bet? Well, so did he. Although, to be fair to the guy, he told Juliana that he was planning to ask the girl to marry him before she issued her ridiculous challenge. And yet... At one point in the book, after a kiss that she initiated, he loses control and (with her permission) ravishes her in the stables. (view spoiler)[And by ravished, I mean he licked her boobies. (hide spoiler)] They get interrupted by her brother, and she finds out that he has already gotten engaged. Oh! How can this be?! I thought he was different! Are. You. Serious.
During the last 10% or so of the book, she managed to slightly redeem herself a bit. She finally realized that she didn't want his crumbs, and left him in the dust. (view spoiler)[ Although, she didn't realize this until she snuck into to his room, got naked, and begged him to give her just one night with him. *hork* Sorry. Threw up a little right there. (hide spoiler)] Of course, by then, he realized he couldn't live without her passion, and proceeds to fall all over himself to win her back. A toast...to the Happy Couple!
Overall, I just wasn't impressed.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
So I'm pretty late to be jumping on the bandwagon, but this was really good! I know I normally gobble up any retelli4.5 stars Cinderella with cyborgs!
So I'm pretty late to be jumping on the bandwagon, but this was really good! I know I normally gobble up any retelling, but when this first came out, there were so many iffy reviews that I gave it a pass. Stupid. I should have checked it out for myself.
So you have a pretty faithfulish retelling going on here. Of course, since it's sci-fi Cinderella, there's are going to be some substitutions to the carriage and glass slipper. But they were really cool substitutions! And you could still definitely tell that this was the Cinderella story.
And the ending was soooo good! It seems that Cinderella won't be the only fairlytale that gets retold in the Lunar Chronicles...
If you've been putting this off because of bad reviews, you may want to reconsider....more
There's no real reason to give this book 4 stars...other than I flew through it. It's total brain candy and I am fully prepared to admit there is nothThere's no real reason to give this book 4 stars...other than I flew through it. It's total brain candy and I am fully prepared to admit there is nothing really new or inspired about this story. But. I had a lot of fun reading this one! And sometimes you have to fork over the stars just 'cause a book kept you interested and flipping the pages. Again, I totally agree with my friends' comments about how this one was a Paint-By-Numbers Ya book. And I totally agree with the reviews that point out all of the plot holes and pseudo-science that never really quite makes sense. It's true. All of it. I still ended up gobbling this one up. Maybe I'm just in a good mood, but none of that stuff really bothered me too much. Only recommended for people willing to overlook nonsense like the concept of a Brilliant Teenage Detective. ...more
Enjoyment Level: 3 stars Beautiful Writing: 5 stars I'm settling in the middle with 4 stars.
Laini Taylor can really write. She's excellent, no questionEnjoyment Level: 3 stars Beautiful Writing: 5 stars I'm settling in the middle with 4 stars.
Laini Taylor can really write. She's excellent, no question about it. She knows how to pull at your guts, and make you realize how deep your emotions run. There was this one part (sorry, I don't have the actual quote) about how the only emotion that really sticks with us...transports us back to the moment it happened...is shame. I'd never thought about it before, but she was right. I rememberish how I felt when I fell in love with my husband, and I rememberish how I felt when my mother died. But if I think about something I did that I'm really ashamed of? I'm right there again. There's no Ish about it. Ms. Taylor truly shines when she's writing about the human condition.
But, damn! This was loooooong and drawn out. The long I don't mind, but the drawn out? I just wanted to scream, Get on with it, already! I don't care about cake and hope! Yes, yeeeees, I know that part of the beauty of these books lies in the purple prose. But after a while, I seriously just wanted it to end.
I noticed that a lot of reviewers were a tad annoyed by all of the POV shifts, and by the introduction of several new characters. But I kinda liked it. In fact, one of my favorite characters was Eliza. *shrugs* But I can see where everyone's coming from, and it goes back to the Drawn-Out/End-It-Already thing. When the story would finally start to veer away from feelings and chocolate, and toward to some actiony stuff...BAM!, POV shift. Aaaaand more feelings and chocolate. Just from a different character.
So. How 'bout that Ending, folks?! Before I read this, I kept asking around to friends who had, "Hey, how did you like it?! Was it good?! Did it have a happy ending?!". And every single one of them sort of stuttered before answering me. 'Um, yeah! I mean, it was good, but... Yeah, it was good. It's just not like you'd think, but it's good. And there's a HEA...of sorts. Yeah, it was good. I liked it."
But they all had this weird look on their face. Sort of like a grimace. An unsatisfied grimace. And now I get it. (view spoiler)[ Are you telling me that I just slogged though 5000 pages, and there's still some sort of Final Battle that's yet to be fought?! And, Hello?! Can we please (for the love of 5000 pages!) get some clarification on what these fucking Godstars are?! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! You can't just drop a bomb like that in the last chapter, and then give us NOTHING!!!! And that epilogue was... What the fuck was that? Sure Akiva and Karou (in my mind I still pronounce it Caribou) got to snuggle up for the rest of the season, and you know they'll eventually get to live together permanently. But what about the impending BATTLE! What about Akiva's powers? Why does he have them?! His mother knew he would be important, right? Right?! WHAT DID SHE KNOW?! What about Scarab and Eliza's plan to defeat the evil monsters?! How will they do it? What's gonna turn these characters into some sort of Warriors of Light?! Share some INFO with me, Laini!(hide spoiler)]
Anyway. It was good. I mean, yeah it was really good. It's just... It's not what you'd think, but it's still really good. *GRIMACE*
I blame the cover. Look at the beautiful freaking cover! How could I resist it? Besides, fairytale retellings are my kryptonite. Unfortunately, I end upI blame the cover. Look at the beautiful freaking cover! How could I resist it? Besides, fairytale retellings are my kryptonite. Unfortunately, I end up sifting through massive amounts of crap in order to find a good one. Towering is a prime example of Crap. I have to admit that I had fair warning about this one, though. There are literally hundreds of scathing reviews on Goodreads that beg other readers to stay away from this book. But did I listen? No. No, I did not. Why? Well, I had just finished another retelling that quite a few people hated. All of the problems those readers had with the story were the exact same things that I found interesting and entertaining. You know, to each his own...and that kind of thing. Also... Look at that cover! There had to be something beautiful inside of it!
*THERE MAY BE SPOILERS AHEAD*
Towering is modern retelling of Rapunzel. Yes! Which is why I really wasn't expecting her to be locked in an actual tower. Eh?! Because it would be hard to find a plausible reason to lock a girl with magical hair in a tower in this day and age. Just finding a tower would be hard enough... But if you're going to go that route, you need to have an ironclad reason why there was no other option. You also need to give some sort of backstory on the damn tower. Was it a grain silo in a previous life, or what? I mean, it's not like we have an overabundance of random towers sitting around here in The States. Ok. Let's forget the tower. I was willing to give that one a pass, because... Well, just because.
Wyatt is the 'prince' in this story, and his POV was by far the least annoying. And I guess Rachel wasn't so much annoying as she was...weird. Although, I suppose anyone would be a bit odd if they had been locked in a tower, and fed nothing but classic literature until they were 17 years old. Again, why? Why did 'Mamma' insist on keeping Rachel stuck in the Olden Days. Why was the kid reading Jane Austen instead of Judy Blume? There was no real reason to make the poor girl any more socially dysfunctional than necessary. And for that matter why was she sitting around in dresses instead of sweat pants and a tank top? Wouldn't that make more sense? Anyway, the story opens with Wyatt on his way to move in with a crazy old lady, who lives out in the middle of nowhere. We eventually find out that he's recently lost his best friend to some 'mysterious circumstance' that he feels like he could have prevented. Once the mystery behind his guilt is revealed, I felt sort of let down. It's not something that was in any way his fault, and (while tragic) I can't imagine that it would drive a normal teenage boy to agree to such a move. M'kay. Next up is the ghost story. Danielle was the daughter of the old lady that Wyatt now lives with. On his first night in the house, he meets up with an apparition trying to claw it's way into the bedroom window. And after finding Danielle's diary, he realizes that the spirit was probably Dani. Of course, since he's part of Mystery Inc., he decides to investigate her disappearance Scooby-Doo style. Meanwhile, he hears a voice in the distance...singing. Naturally, no one else hears the voice. So, yeah, he's gotta investigate that too. Enter the girl in the tower. Hello, Insta-Love! I was wondering when you'd show up! Wyatt and Rachel sittin' in a tree... Except it's not that cute. Because within moments of meeting each other, the googly eyes start. And ya know what? I would have been ok with that. But could we at least pretend that they got to know each other just a little bit, before they declare their love for each other? I'm going to have to start keeping a garbage can next to me when I read stuff like this, so that I can spit out that little bit of vomit that comes up in my mouth. I've heard that it's bad for your esophagus to keep swallowing bile...
At this point, the story is crisscrossing between Ghost-Dani's diary, Rachel remembering the past, Wyatt remembering the past, Rachel's weird observations on life in a tower, and Wyatt's ongoing investigation into everything. I should probably mention that Rachel has magical hair that grows 'when she needs it'. It's not there just for looks, though. It gives her supah-strength...like Samson. It also makes a great rope for repelling down towers! But wait! There's more! She has magical healing tears. Oh, and she was prophesied to bringanendtoamagicaldrugring. ??? Excuse me? Could you please repeat that? sigh I said, she was prophesied to bring an end to a magical drug ring. ??? 'Cause, she got magical hair and tears. ??? Right. Well, honestly, reading it for yourself in the book doesn't really clarify it much.
Bottom line? The story was weird, and the plot holes in this were wide enough to drive a herd of elephants through. Towering got 2 stars from me instead of 1, because it is readable. I've been disappointed by Flinn before, but I continue to read her stuff, because I do think that the majority of her books are (mostly) enjoyable. Just not this one.
I've said it before, but I'm betting a lot of you boys didn't believe me. So I'm gonna say it again: When there's a vampire in a Paranormal Romance...hI've said it before, but I'm betting a lot of you boys didn't believe me. So I'm gonna say it again: When there's a vampire in a Paranormal Romance...he will eventually chomp on the heroine's Happy Bean! Case in point: Page 282 - All thought cleared my mind when his fangs replaced his tongue, piercing my clitoris instead of licking it.
Ta-da! Of course that has nothing to do with the review, but I thought you guys might like to know what exactly your ladies are reading. Word to the wise, though. Some things only work in the fantasy world of books. I wouldn't suggest you try that little trick out at home. You're not a sexy vampire, you (hopefully) don't have fangs, and I doubt many women will appreciate someone chewing on their sensitive bits. Just sayin'.
So I normally don't venture into the world of PNR much anymore, but I make an exception for Jeaniene Frost. Most of her stuff is rooted in Urban Fantasy, and there's always a great underlying story being told to go along with all of the lovey-dovey stuff. Her Night Prince series is a spin-off of the Cat and Bones series (aka the Night Huntress series), and it features my favorite character, Vlad. I still like the Cat and Bones books, but every time Vlad makes an appearance, he kicks up the story a few notches.
I have to admit that he's not quite as cool in his own series. Maybe that's because he isn't playing off of Bones? Not sure. At any rate, this was still a solid story, and a good addition to the Night Prince storyline. I saw some other reviews that thought Leila got a bit whiny in this one, but I didn't think she was annoying. I thought she was justified in asking for more out of their relationship. Whatever. To each his own.
For PNR with a good plot, you can't beat Frost. I'll definitely read the next book when it comes out! ...more
Sort of sad to see it end... But. I'm expecting some great things from this author in the future, so I'm betting the best it yet to come.
If you enjoy the post-apocalyptic or dystopian genre, then the Ashfall trilogy is something you need to immediately check into. It's brilliant.
So. Lots of surprises in Sunrise. Of course, the biggest surprise would have to be that No way! Please tell me that was some sort of dream sequence! Seriously?! Ahhhhhh! moment. If you've read the book, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't read it yet... Brace yourself. 'Cause not in a million years did I see that coming. Almost as shocking was the relationship between Alex and his mother. That lady made some odd choices. Really odd. Again...did not see any of that weirdness coming.
The story was different from the first two, but I'm not sure if I can really explain exactly how. Less action and more politics maybe? Although, I'm not sure even that would be an accurate description. At any rate, the pacing seems different from the others. Know this going in, and you should be fine.
The characters go through quite a bit of change in this book. One of the biggest changes is that Alex steps up as a leader. Although, in reality, it's more like he gets 'pushed up'. And Darla finds her own version of a romantic side. It, um, shows itself in a rather unexpected way... Sorry, not sure how to say any more without giving away a pretty major spoiler.
New characters are added, old characters make a reappearance, and not everyone turns out the way you thought they would. Also, a new villain emerges. *see above mentioned screaming* In the end, I'm going to have to declare this a pretty satisfying ending to these book. Was it perfect? No. But most endings aren't. However, this one comes pretty darn close.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital copy of this arc for review....more
The beautiful cover sucked me in...I admit it. And really, it's got such an interesting premise, that I couldn't helAlso reviewed for Addicted2Heroines
The beautiful cover sucked me in...I admit it. And really, it's got such an interesting premise, that I couldn't help but want to read it. Romeo and Juliet plus Hamlet? Cool! I didn't even realize that it would be incorporating Norse mythology, but that was also a bonus! So why only 3 stars? Hmmm. I'm not sure really. The author is talented, and if you've ever read her blog, you'll probably agree that she's quite a funny lady. But for some reason this story just didn't click with me as much as I wanted it to. It took me several days to finish it, simply because it was so easy for me to put it down.
I did like the way that Juliet was portrayed as a strong character, but neither Hamlet or Romeo evoked much emotion out of me. Romeo leaned toward the slightly annoying side, but not enough for me to hate him, and Hamlet was likable...but not lovable.
The journey to find and rescue Juliet was kind of the same way. There was something missing in it that I can't put my finger on. I normally love retellings, but I couldn't seem to get into this one. Maybe it's just me? I'm not much of a Shakespeare groupie, so perhaps this particular story was meant to be embraced by a different kind of reader? The kind of reader who wasn't sending sidelong glances to her copy of BatGirl while trying to get through this one...
So. The author is good and the premise is good. It wasn't my cuppa, but it might be yours?
In case you were wondering, I received a digital arc from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review....more
Boy, this was really hard to rate. I'm a BIG fan of this series, and this book was one of my highly anticipated reads for the year. And it wasn't bad, iBoy, this was really hard to rate. I'm a BIG fan of this series, and this book was one of my highly anticipated reads for the year. And it wasn't bad, it really wasn't...but it wasn't great, either.
I loved finding out more about Celaeana's past, I loved seeing her struggle to get control of her power. And I loved it when she finally did some pretty badass shit. The problem? Everything I just mentioned happened in the last bit of the book. The rest of the book, while interesting in parts, felt like a lot of semi-boring filler. And it was loooooooooooooooooooooooooong. 565 PAGES LONG. Rambling, rambling, rambling...Interesting!...rambling, rambling, rambling ...Interesting!...and so on. It's not like the entire book was a wash, because there were a lot of things I truly enjoyed about the story. I just think Maas' editor should have stepped in at some point, and called bullshit on at least 30% of the story. I can't even properly express how much this story dragged on and on, in my opinion. Although, the vast majority of the reviews I read were nothing but squealy fangirling, so I feel like I'm in the minority here. Maybe if I'd been prepared by a few not-so-glowing reviews, I wouldn't have been so disappointed?
The POV switches were another issue, and I'm still not quite sure how I feel about them. On one hand, I thought Manon (one of the ironteeth witches) was an interesting and complex character, and I enjoyed reading about her. On the other hand, because of all the new major characters that are introduced, it added to the draggy feeling of the overall plot. First, you would hear about what Celaena and Rowan were doing. Then, just as something mildly interesting happens, you get switched over to Chaol. Chaol just didn't do it for me this time around. But just when I was well and truly tired of hearing about his inner struggles, you would get switched over to Dorian and Sorscha. Ok, not the most interesting plot point, but not the worst, either. There's not a huge amount of focus spent on those two, before you get switched to Aedion. Aedion is Celaena's cousin, and currently a general in the king of Adarlan's army. I would classify him as a tiny step up from Chaol on the Give-A-Shit meter. Then you go over to Manon, which I actually liked. And now you finally get back to Celaena! Yay! Wait. I can't remember was even happening when switched over. What the hell was she doing that I was excited about? Guuuuh...
I guess I'd say that while I'm still a fan of the series, I won't be standing in line for the next book. I have a feeling that while these books will grow in length, they aren't going to pick up the pace to accommodate for the extra pages. I'm seeing 3 untitled books in this series listed, so I don't think the author is planning on wrapping up these books up anytime soon, either. Again, I want to point out that only 2 or 3 reviewers felt the way I did, so feel free to take my review with a grain of salt.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital arc of this book.
This was a witchy YA that kept me flipping the pages till the end of the book,Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital arc of this book.
This was a witchy YA that kept me flipping the pages till the end of the book, so it definitely deserves all 4 stars.
Penelope was a child when a demon broke into her home, killed her parents, and drained her magic. She should be dead, but for some reason...well, she's not. Wouldn't be much of a story if she was, right? She also shouldn't be able to borrow her family's magic to cover up the fact that she doesn't have any of her own. In her world, a witch without magic is called a Static, and those guys end up banished. Yep. The other witches just toss them out of their society. Nice, no? Her Grandparents and sister are the only ones who know her secret, and they've all worked hard to keep it safe. So far, it's worked. But Penelope isn't satisfied with just passing for a witch. She's found a ritual that will restore her magical essence, if she can only find the demon who took it. There's a hitch, though. There's always a hitch... The only way for her to find her demon (and a more detailed version of the ritual), is to become an Enforcer. See, only Enforcers have access to the library with all of that info in it that she needs. Of course, to become an Enforcer she's going to have to show off her magical abilities. Oops. That might be difficult. Never fear, our girl has it covered. She can pull from her sister, because their tests will be held at the same time. Except that there's a problem. After all her hard work over the years, some random witch pulled a muscle (or something) and now her Penelope's test date is getting moved to a different time slot. Time for plan B.
In the meantime, a chance encounter with a demon has left Penelope with a stalker. Sort of. At least, that's what Penelope thinks when Carter first starts popping up around every corner. He's annoying, cocky, and apparently obsessed with her. Or at the very least waaay too interested in her magical abilities. Why is she so freaked? Well, he was there when she managed to explode a demon in an alleyway. And since she has no idea how she managed to pull that one off without having any magic, she certainly doesn't want him poking his nose into it. Besides, he makes her sick to her stomach. Literally. A little nausea isn't enough to stop this guy, though. Nope. He's determined to figure Penelope out, because he needs her. No, not like that! God. You guys have such dirty minds.... He claims that his magic is more powerful and stable if she's around. If that wasn't interesting enough, it seems as though she can pull magic from him in the same way she can pull it from her family. Which would explain the alleyway full of exploded demon goo...
To make matters worse, the more Penelope digs into finding a way to restore her powers, the more it looks like she's onto something bigger than just finding her own magic. And it looks like her Grandma is hiding a pretty important piece of the puzzle. In fact, trusting Carter with her secret might be the only way to find out what she needs to know. But Carter has some pretty big secrets of his own, and once she finds out what he's hiding.... Well, let's just say she's a teeny bit upset.
I really enjoyed Salt! The pacing is good, the plot is interesting, and there were a couple of things I didn't see coming. So all in all, I'd have no problem recommending this one for fans of YA urban fantasy.
Unite has a very cool premise, and it made me a bit sad that I didn't like it more. I'd like to seeThis review can also be seen at Addicted2Heroines
Unite has a very cool premise, and it made me a bit sad that I didn't like it more. I'd like to see how it all turns out in the end, but I don't think I'll be continuing this series.
So, somewhere out there there's another planet (like ours) that is going to be destroyed within the next few decades. Something along the lines of colliding with another planet ...or maybe asteroids? Years ago, they contacted the leaders of our planet and worked out a deal that would benefit both sides. They would give us their awesome technology, and we would let them move to Earth. Hopefully, it's a teeny-tiny planet, because I'm pretty sure we're overpopulated as it is. Of course, the government was afraid that the general population was going to freak out when they found out about this, so they came up with a plan. They've taken babies from the other planet, and placed them into foster homes here. The idea is that people won't be quite so afraid of these aliens after they announce that they are coming, when they realize that little Suzie from next-door is also an alien. They will already know and like these kids, which will take some of the fear-factor out of it. Right? So far, so good.
But there were too many things that just didn't make sense after that. First, why was the FBI in charge of these kids? Shouldn't an operation like this be run by Homeland Security? Or better yet, why wasn't there a new task force created to deal with this?
Another thing I didn't get was why Avery couldn't lie to her parents. Because it's not like she couldn't lie at all. In fact, she lied every day to everyone else! In the book it's explained away by saying that she had it drilled into her at a young age that she must always be totally honest with them. WTF?! Um, I've drilled it into my kids' heads to be totally honest with me, too! And guess what? They lie! They lie all the freakin' time! Me: Did you break my *insert expensive electronic device here*? Them: NOOO! I never even touched it! You told me not to, and I respect you...Mommy. Me: Then why is there chocolate on it...and chocolate on your face? Them: Uh... Me: And why was it found in YOUR room? Them: Uh... Me: Fess up! Them: Uh... Me: Fess up, and I won't kill you. Them: I swear it was an accident! Me: You better be glad I opted for the extra insurance... And you know what? If I'm honest with myself, I'd think it was weird if my kids didn't pull shit like that. So, no. I couldn't buy that Avery never ever lied to her parents, and it annoyed me. Or maybe I'm just jealous.
Probably the most ridiculous thing though, was when they told Avery that they decided to pull the plug on Project Integrate because of budget cuts. There are several things wrong with that line of reasoning.. First, you'd have to assume that these aliens only contacted the United States. And let's face it, that's a stupid assumption. If they contacted all of the world's leaders, then our budget wouldn't play into it as much. Second, there's no way our greedy politicians would stop a project that promised them superior technology. EVER. Even if they had to take from schools and research hospitals to do it, you know they would. I mean, they do it now, and for reasons far less important! Besides, there would have be a slush fund somewhere out there that wasn't being used for anything at the moment.
There were other little petty things that I didn't like, but these were the things I found the most distracting. To me, this felt like a great concept that was poorly executed. It wasn't horrible to read, but I wouldn't go out of my way to recommend this one.
I got this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. ...more
This is a cute series that I'm glad I've been able to keep up with. I'm not claiming that it's mind-blowing, but the plot bounces along a t a nice pace.
This book opens with Becca getting ready to go to some sort of a snooty gala held by Holder purists. This group would love to add her father to their ranks, so they've been given an invite to the event. However, the only reason that they've agreed to attend is to be able to talk to a Seer who may know something about Darragh. It's too dangerous for anyone to find out about who and what Becca actually is, so she'll have to pretend to be a low-level mind reader while they are there. And since her bond with Alex would also give her away, they will have to mask it, and pretend to be nothing more than colleagues.
I usually don't like 'love triangles', but Scott did a good job with this one. It's not really a love triangle (for several spoilery reasons), but it appears that way to everyone else...including Alex. Of course, this adds a level of drama that Becca is blissfully unaware of, and gives the plot a little extra sumpin' sumpin'.
Be warned: There was some high schoolish drama with a mean girl that I thought was kind of stupid and unnecessary. There's a kind of dance-off at the end... Really. And I really wish the chemistry between Alex and Becca didn't feel so blah. Alex just seems pretty dull. But then again, it's not like Becca is a wild-child. So. Normally, those things are deal-breakers for me, but in this book it felt more like a minor annoyance. It started out a bit slow, but once the story got rolling, it was hard for me to put it down. The addition of the new characters was good for the overall story, and I'm hoping to see them in the next book.
Thanks to NetGalley for a digital arc in return for an honest review....more
I really loved the first book in the Demon's Gate series, but this one was a little harder for me to get into. Maybe I just had a lot of stuf3.5 stars
I really loved the first book in the Demon's Gate series, but this one was a little harder for me to get into. Maybe I just had a lot of stuff going on while I was trying to read it, but for some reason it took me longer to get through this one.
The vast majority of the story focuses on Amaranth, Dham, Cat, and Trick/Patrick's journey to Rome. Trick is the demon (or spirit) who is in possession of Amaranth's best friend Patrick's body. After a particularly nasty run-in with the Inquisition, Trick drops the bomb that he will have to let Patrick take back control of his body, in order to avoid being tracked by another demon. Sounds good, but the downside is they are not sure whether Patrick's mind has been damaged by the possession. Also, they're going to have to convince Patrick to let Trick take him over again, in order to complete their mission. Awkward!
I was a bit surprised by the people who bit the dust at the end, and I wonder how that will impact the next story. So even if this one didn't blow me away like the first, I'm still interested to see what happens in the next book.
All in all, this was a very good self-published novel.
I received a digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review...more
Second Book Syndrome. That was my biggest fear before I opened Golden Son up and started to read. Was Brown going to shit the bed with this thing, and pSecond Book Syndrome. That was my biggest fear before I opened Golden Son up and started to read. Was Brown going to shit the bed with this thing, and potentially taint of one of my favorite reads? Thankfully, the answer was a resounding NO.
Dear Mr. Brown, Thank you for not shitting the bed. Sincerely, Anne
Golden Son takes place about 2 years after Red Rising leaves off, so things aren't quite the same as they were when we last saw everyone. Cuz, you know, it's been 2 years! Anyway. Darrow is at the Academy learning to command fleets of ships, and is just about to win another game against his enemies. He's older, he's got a bit more experience, and he's determined to do what needs to be done in order to win Augustus' trust. After all, if he wants to help Sons of Ares infiltrate the Golds and bring them to their knees, he's still got to worm his way to the top of that elite world. Well, taking out Karnus au Bellona's fleet, and winning the Academy's Laurel will be a nice start. Of course, Darrow has an excellent plan. And then all hell breaks loose... The End.
Yeah, I know. That doesn't make much sense, but once you read the book, you'll understand. You can't explain a plot like this one. Not really. All you need to know is that it's worth reading. The opening scene sets the tone of the story, and that tone is this: Expect the Unexpected. Every time I thought I had a grip on what was happening, the entire paradigm would shift, and I'd be sitting there gawping like a fish...or whatever else gawps. So. Yeah. It's got a few twists and turns.
My biggest problem? I gave the first book 5 stars, but Golden Son blows Red Rising out of the water. So, now what do I do? Can I give this 6 stars? Am I allowed to do that? No? That's a shame, because this was such an amazing book. I had sky-high expectations for it, and it didn't disappoint me in the least. That's something I don't get to say very often, you know? Go get it! But watch out for that ending...
This was me upon receiving my copy from NetGalley (thanks, by the way!): (view spoiler)[So I've been stalking my email all morning...
Got this as a freebie on my kindle, so I figured why not? It's not what I would call necessary, but it was a decent glimpse into the beginning of theGot this as a freebie on my kindle, so I figured why not? It's not what I would call necessary, but it was a decent glimpse into the beginning of the Blackest Night storyline. The majority of it is Hal sort of looking back on his somewhat turbulent relationship with Bruce, and realizing that they were friends despite everything. Did I mention that it was free? ...more
So Callie is a detective on the police force. Evidently, she was on the trail of a powerful bad guy, and because of all of his connections he3.5 stars
So Callie is a detective on the police force. Evidently, she was on the trail of a powerful bad guy, and because of all of his connections he managed to not only escape justice, but get her suspended for trying to take him down. This becomes an important plot point later, so pay attention to it.
Ok. Full disclosure time. I don't find cops sexy. At all. In fact, my kids all knew their Miranda rights by the time they were in the second grade. Why? Because I don't think that the creme of the crop goes into law enforcement. Potentially, this is because I've lived the majority of my life in places where the Good Old Boy system is firmly in place. Or possibly it's because every doofus I ever went to high school with became a cop. Either way, I know my perception is skewed and jaded. And before you ask...no. I've never been arrested. Anyway. Are there good police officers out there who care, and do their job? Yes. Like the mythical unicorn, I believe that they exist...
Callie jumps in front of a bus to save a kid, and ends up getting squished in the process. When she wakes up in the Underworld, she's informed that there's been a mistake. The kid was supposed to die. Not only that, but she isn't really dead yet. Just in a coma. So Hades offers her a deal. If she can act like a bodyguard to his son, Plutus, and find out who is trying to kill him, Hades will restore her to life. Otherwise, she's stuck.
Now, the first part of the book is set in the Underworld, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. The different gods and mythological creatures were interesting, and Callie's reaction to being there was entertaining. The last bit of the book was set in our world, and that part of the story was where the author sort of lost me. It wasn't bad, it just didn't have the same cool flavor.
As I mentioned above, I may have some prejudices that kept me from believing that Callie was a bad-ass. However, if CSI and David Caruso turn your crank, you might enjoy the tough-girl cop aspect of the story more than I did. The ending gives you a HEA of sorts, but it leaves enough wiggle room for another book. All in all, this was not a bad way to spend my afternoon....more
Man, there are a ton of great reviews for this book! This won't be one of them. For me, Almost Matched was a stinker on many levels.
First, I thought itMan, there are a ton of great reviews for this book! This won't be one of them. For me, Almost Matched was a stinker on many levels.
First, I thought it was supposed to be funny. Guess what? Not funny. At all. Natalie and her friends were goofy, but not funny. Oh look at us! We all sit around and talk about sex! Aren't we funny?! No. No, you're not. We made orgasm noises when we ate scones! Remember how I nearly didn't make it to the potty in time...because it was soooo funny?! Remember? Huh? Remember?! Uuuuuh... Tee-hee! We had a swordfight with a dildo and a breadstick! Sober! Did I forget to say that we did that sober? Aren't we hilarious?! *crickets chirping* So for humor, you get some sort of immature stuff that you might have laughed at...when you were twelve.
Second stinky aspect of the book? Their Heartbreaking Past Will Move You. Or at least, that's what the blurb says. I held out judgment on Mr. Wonderful's 'heartbreaking past', even though it seemed like it was leading up to something fishy. Surprise! It was truly heartbreaking! No. Just kidding. It was waaaay stupid. Ok. He has this mysterious 'thing' that troubles him. He seems to go to a dark far off place sometimes... By the end of the book he's having a debilitating panic attack because of this 'thing' in his past. Finally, we find out that his college girlfriend was killed in a drunk driving accident. But there's something he's not saying... *cue dramatic music* (view spoiler)[So I assume that he was the one driving, right? Yeah, no. She had been on a downward spiral with drug and alcohol for a while. They were at a party, she made out with another guy, clubbed Mr. Wonderful in the head with a beer bottle, got in her car, and got smashed. Literally. But, of course, he feels guilty. Ok. Reasonable. But not to the point of panic attacks! And yes, I read the 'extra' where we find out that he was in the passenger seat. Yep. That sucked. But seriously? If you're curling into a ball, because that's the worst thing you've ever had happen to you? Warning: Rude Awakening Ahead! See, there's this little thing called, Life. It happens to all of us. Get over yourself, dude. (hide spoiler)] I'm not crying over that one.
Third nail in the coffin was that this was a novella. I usually fly through them, but I had to force myself to keep reading this one. I couldn't believe something that short could feel like Game of Thrones. There was always another page! Ahhhhh! It's The Neverending Short-Story! What if my kindle was cursed?! You are now entering...The Twilight Zone. Or. It just sucked.
Lots of people seemed to love this book. I thought it was crap.
I received a digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital copy of this book.
Not too shabby for a debut novel. Especially by an author who was diagnosed withThanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital copy of this book.
Not too shabby for a debut novel. Especially by an author who was diagnosed with learning disabilities as a child. In Anderson's case, reading and writing were very difficult for her. So. I'm always especially impressed by people who overcome difficulties, and then turn around and spit in the face of the problem. Spunky, no?
Anyway, as far as the plot goes, there's nothing super-duper new here. But. It's readable, and it's a reasonably entertaining book. Although, I personally think some of the story could have used some tightening up by an editor, and possibly a different cover. Why a different cover? Well, while the cover looks very cool, at no time in the book does anyone jump out of a building. In fact, the 'secret clone factory' is underground. Moving on...
Xan was actually a fairly realistically written character. He wasn't some awesomely perfect kid, but he also wasn't a total turd, either. His friend, Miles, was an asshole and a bully, and I thought it was interesting that Xan never really got why the other kids hated him so much. I mean, he knows Miles is a jerk, but he never really admits that the kid has done some serious damage to other people's psyches. While it was an annoying blind spot for a main character to have, it was also a fairly realistic one.
As far as Xan's parents go, I'm not sure what to think about them. On one hand, I like that they aren't portrayed as absentee parents, but on the other... Exactly how dumb do you have to be to buy a baby out of the back of a friggin' van in some dark alley?! P.S. If you've done this, I think it would be wise to immediately start checking your child for signs of top secret genetic enhancements. 'Cause your kid might want to know if they're part of a government science project when they get older. Just sayin'.
Lacey was a pretty cool character, but I was a little weirded out by her 'piercing stare' after a while. Sure, she was an off the charts genius, but her real super-power was her ability to stab you with her eyes. Evidently, she can use these stabby-eyes to keep all the men in her life in line. I want that super-power! Oh, who am I kidding... I've got an awesome set of crazy-eyes already! How else do you explain my husband's willingness to fold clothes and wash dishes? As an added bonus, I've been gifted with an amazing Fishwife Screech that allows me to augment my she-devil glare. All I need is a cape.
The plot goes something like this: Someone tries to kill Xan, and then pin attempted murder and arson on him. Since all of his 'friends' have deserted him, he turns to the resident genius (Lacey) for help. She, in turn, reaches out to her two crazy pals for help. That part of the story peters out pretty fast for some reason... Xan and Lacey make some discoveries about Xan's genetic origins. How, you ask? Lacey is supah-rich, and has an entire lab full of genetic testing equipment in her old nursery. Sure. Ok. Next up is Beta. He's the clone who has been sent to dispose of Xan. Of course, due to Lacey's hyper-intelligence, they manage to capture him and hold him prisoner in her storage room while they dig around for answers. FYI, Beta's POV is the most interesting, because you actually get a chance to see him grow and change. Somehow, an odd love triangle sorta/kinda happens at this point. Only I couldn't really figure out if Lacey and Beta actually liked each other, or were just good friends. In fact, I couldn't figure out what was up with Xan and Lacey, either. She seemed weirded out by kissing him, and the ending was confusing... Anyway. These three need to find a way to fool a multi-billion dollar corporation into thinking that Xan is dead, Lacey is clueless, and Beta is a different clone. Easy-peasey!
Hopefully, the next book will explain some of the loose plot threads, and things will make more sense. For the most part, though, this was a fun and easy read....more
Unfortunately, now it's over. Oh well, better to go out in a blaze of glory, right?
This volume wraps up our timThis sort of sums up this entire run...
Unfortunately, now it's over. Oh well, better to go out in a blaze of glory, right?
This volume wraps up our time with the Young Avengers, and ushers in the beginnings of Loki: Agent of Asgard, Vol. 1: Trust Me. Like always, I accidentally read everything out of order, and even that didn't have much of an effect on how much I enjoyed this limited run.
Mother has captured Hulking, so the majority of the issues revolve around the team trying to find a way to rescue him that won't result in the end of the world. Without adults being able to see what's happening around them, it's up to the younger set of heroes to step up and save everyone. The scenes with Captain America were pretty funny.
The last few issues take place at a New Year's Eve party that serves as an epilogue of sorts. Everything gets wrapped up quite nicely, and there aren't any goofy plots threads left dangling. Thank you! You do find out who the Not-Patriot is, and I thought it was a fairly clever little twist. Loki's Guitly Conscience plays a big role in this, but not in the way you might think... The relationships between the characters go through some changes, also. Some of the lurve survives, some of it doesn't, but it was all handled well.
I have to say, I'm sort of attached to this group now, and I'm hoping we'll get to see all of these guys again soon.
Anthologies are hard to rate, so this 4 star rating is for the book as a wThe links to the failytales are posted with this review at Addicted2Heroines
Anthologies are hard to rate, so this 4 star rating is for the book as a whole, and not the individual stories. I had fun with this one, because I was determined to find out what fairytales all of these stories were retelling. Let me say, it wasn't all that easy. I'm not sure I'm even right with quite a few of them, but after spending hours searching the web for clues, I think I've figured most of them out. However, if you think I'm wrong, please leave a comment and let me know what you think the story really was! M'kay. Here goes nothing...
The Key by Rachel Hawkins 4 stars Really short story about a girl with the ability to touch people and read their thoughts. It was very creepy and the ending left quite a bit to the imagination! I had an extremely hard time finding a fairytale that even remotely resembled this one, but finally settled on a story I found called The Golden Key. That fairytale is short, has a cliffhanger ending (albeit, a rather boring one), and, uh...they word key is also in the title. Anyone else got anything? *Edit* One of the many reasons I think Goodreads is spectacular is because when you ask a question, someone in the community will eventually come along and give you the answer. Although, you really need to prepare yourself to feel a bit stupid when they do. So. The (fairly obvious...now that I think about it) answer to What Fairytale is The Key has been found! Bluebeard. Duh. Thank you, FallingAngels!
Figment by Jeri Smith-Ready 3 stars Weird story about a good-luck charm that acts as sort of an imaginary friend. The story kinda grew on me, and I thought the ending was cute and sweet. This was one of the ones that I couldn't find anything on when I searched the Grimm library. I did find a story called Good Luck is Better Than Gold (by Juliana Horatia Ewing), but I don't really think it counts as a fairytale. It's not a story the Grimm brothers collected, and it's not really folklore. Is it? So...anybody have any other ideas about this one? *Edit* Ok. So thank you Autumn for pointing me in the right direction with this one! What we have here looks to be a retelling of Puss In Boots. I swear, I never even thought about that one, but it totally matches up. Loving the Goodreads community right now!
The Twelfth Girl by Malinda Lo 3 stars This is a pretty obvious (Finally! Thank God!) retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses. It's set in modern times at an elite boarding school. The main character wants to become part of the exclusive group of girls, who seem to come and go as they please on campus. Rumor has it they dance the night away... This one is darker, and the ending is left to the reader's imagination.
The Raven Princess by Jon Skovron 3.5 stars Ok. I'd never heard of The Raven, but at least this one wasn't hard to find. The short story closely mirrors the actual fairytale, with the exception of the ending. I liked the author's twist on things, and I enjoyed finding a new fairytale, but it didn't blow my mind. It gets the extra half star for introducing me to something new.
Thinner Than Water by Saundra Mitchell 5 stars This story rocked my purple fuzzy socks off! It's a retelling of Donkeyskin...but served with a steaming cup of revenge! If you aren't familiar with the tale, it involves a king who wants to marry his daughter. Ewwww! The original story didn't quite end the same way, but I think most of you will love the way Mitchell's version goes down! This is definitely not a fairlytale for children.
Before the Rose Bloomed: A Retelling of the Snow Queen by Ellen Hopkins 2.5 stars As the title suggests, this was, um...a retelling of The Snow Queen. It stays fairly faithful to the original, which is fine, but it would have been cool to see something different.
Beast/Beast by Tessa Gratton 4.5 stars This was a really good retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Beauty had a wild edge to her, and the Beast was very mild-mannered. It focused on why the freedom to choose who you love means so much to us. Lovely ending!
The Brothers Piggett by Julie Kagawa 4 stars This was a dark retelling of The Three Little Pigs. No, seriously! That ending is freaky! Loved Kagawa's creepy twist on the tale.
Untethered by Sonia Gensler 4 stars It's a ghost story with twist... Well played, Ms. Gensler. I didn't see it coming. Here was another one that had me burning up Google till the wee hours of the morning. What fairytale was this based on?! Well, I think I found it! Mwahahahaha! Ok, there's this obscure tale called, The Shroud. Has anyone heard of it? Yeah. Didn't think so. Anyone else got a better guess?
Better by Shaun Hutchinson 4 stars I love that this one had a sci-fi setting! A clone used for medical experiments on a spaceship falls in love with a boy. She's been told she's not real, but what actually makes us human? I'm guessing this one was Pinocchio. I'm a REAL boy! And by the way, does anybody know if Pinocchio is in the Grimm collection? I can't find anything definitive, and if not, it would go a long way toward my Good Luck is Better Than Gold theory! *Edit* Huh. Not Pinocchio at all. This one is actually based on The Pied Piper of Hamelin. Or at least that's what the author said (Thank you Shaun Hutchinson!). And I suppose he knows what he's talking about. There goes my Better Than Gold theory. Damn.
Light It Up by Kimberly Derting 4.5 stars Damn fine modern retelling of Hansel and Gretel! Nothing says 'I love my step-kids' quite like dumping them in the woods with a cannibalistic serial killer. But the real moral of the story is...you should always wear flame retardant clothing when you are preparing to cook children.
Sharper than a Serpent's Tongue by Christine Johnson 4 stars Cool twist on the classic Diamonds and Toads story. The good sister receives the blessing. Jewels and flowers that fall from her mouth with each word. And the bad sister receives the curse of snakes and toads falling from her mouth. But which is the good sister, and which is really cursed?
A Real Boy by Claudia Gray 3.5 stars Dystopian/sci-fi setting for what I'm guessing is Pinocchio. A human and an android fall in love, with a sweet Happily Ever After ending to it! Cute story.
Skin Trade by Myra McEntire 1.5 stars This entire story made very little sense to me as I read it. Creepy musicians who are in a band, like to take women home and skin them alive. So they can sell the skin. Uh... One of the guys fall for a woman in the crowd...and decides to change his ways. She loves him, so I guess they live happily ever after? Looks like this one is a retelling of The Robber Bridegroom. Gee, can't imagine why Disney hasn't made a movie out of this yet...
Beauty and the Chad by Sarah Rees Brennan 4 stars This story doesn't take itself seriously at all, so it's a really nice addition to this collection. Beauty lives in a fairytale-like reality, and the Beast (or The Chad) has been sucked into that world from ours. Beauty is honorable, and tries to take on her father's (alleged) debt to The Chad, by pretending to be a boy. Doesn't make sense? Don't worry, it totally does, Dude! Very cute Beauty and the Beast!
The Pink by Amanda Hocking 4 stars This was (yet another) story I hadn't heard of, but Hocking made it easy to find. The Pink is the actual name of the story she retold, so...yeah. Thank you! This one follows the original closely, with the exception of what happens to the Queen and King in the end. The gist is that a young prince, who has the gift of wishes, gets kidnapped by an evil palace cook. He wishes for a female BFF, and they eventually fall in love. Now all they need to do is get their HEA, right? I gave it an extra half star for telling me a new fairytale!
Sell Out by Jackson Pearce 3 stars Modern day retelling of Snow White, but from the perspective of the prince. Prince Charming is broke, has a crappy home life, and lots of bills. However, his kiss can raise the dead. Somehow, he works for an agency that sells services like his to the upper crust. He makes his living reviving dead rich folks and their kids. Guess it doesn't pay much, though. Enter the evil step-mother. Will he take her bribe and leave Snow dead? Eh. It was ok, and it was definitely a different take on the classic.
So. Some average stories, lots of good ones, a few stinkers, and a couple that blew me away. This is one of the better anthologies I've read, and I had a ton of fun reading this sucker! I'd highly recommend it to fans of this genre. Besides, I want you to read it, and let me know if you guys think I've got any of these stories wrong!
I received a digital arc of this book from NetGalley....more
So, Kaitlin's pals offer to help her paint her house, if she'll dip her toes back into the dating pool. SheSnagged this one as a freebie the other day!
So, Kaitlin's pals offer to help her paint her house, if she'll dip her toes back into the dating pool. She agrees, but with the intention of getting the dates over with as quickly as possible. Naturally, she meets Mr. Awesomesauce in the process.
It's short, cute, and sweet. Did it blow my socks off? No. But it didn't annoy me, either....more
I received a digital arc from NetGalley and the publisher.
It's being called the When Harry Met Sally for young adults, so right off the bat, I wantedI received a digital arc from NetGalley and the publisher.
It's being called the When Harry Met Sally for young adults, so right off the bat, I wanted it. I mean, is there anyone out there who didn't love that movie?! But this book isn't some rip-off retelling of the movie, so don't worry. No, it's just a really good book about two kids who meet in seventh grade, and how they form an unlikely friendship over the years.
Anybody who has ever had a really close friendship with someone of the opposite sex, knows that there are some awkward questions that you're forced to answer about the nature of your relationship. Over and over and over again. No matter how platonic it is. But what if the two of you over time start to feel less than platonic? Aren't the best romantic relationships build on strong friendships? Of course they are. Lust rocks, but real love is the shit that The Long Haul is made out of. But finding a BFF that makes your knees go wobbly isn't always easy. Or maybe recognizing that person for what they are is the hard part? And that's the gist of Better off Friends.
The story follows Macallan and Levi from their first encounter in middle school, to their last year of high school. The grow close, grow up, grow apart, and grow back together again. The cycles of their relationship are funny, sad, and heartwarming. By the end of it, I wanted to go back to high school and relive all of those bittersweet memories, too. No, not really! You couldn't pay me enough to go through all that angsty shit again! Sorry, kids. These are most definitely NOT the best years of your life. So. Don't kill yourself, or anything stupid like that. It gets better.
At any rate, this is the perfect kind of book to curl up on the couch with. It's sweet, cute, and it leaves you with a smile on your face.
I've been searching for a book centering on witches for a while now, but nothing ever really clicked with me. Until Hexed. But hear me out before you run out and buy this one, because some of the things I absolutely loved about this sucker, might be the very same things that turn you off.
First, Indigo is not a heroine that you would normally cheer for. She's shallow, but not self-absorbed enough that she doesn't realize it. And not shallow in a cutesy way like Buffy, either. She's not worried that her hair is messed up, she's worried that bringing a nerd to a party will be the social death of her. In fact, it would have made more sense for the author to make Paige (the above mentioned nerd) the heroine. Paige is smart, kind, and bookish. And let's face it, most readers tend to gravitate toward a character they can relate to. Although, smart and kind are sort of a toss-up for me... Personally, I loved that Ms. Krys didn't go the easy route, and give us yet another cookie-cutter heroine that we all feel comfortable with. I mean, you've got to work at it to like Indigo, especially in the beginning of the book. She changes over the course of the book, but it happens slowly...just like it should. There is no huge moment when she realizes the error of ways, and then totally transforms. Even when she initially starts taking baby steps toward shedding her old ways, there is still a part of her that is mortified.
At a pivotal point in the book there's a death that rocks Indigo's world. In the middle of all of this, her relationship with Bishop is starting to morph into something more, as well. And I can hear the naysayers squeaking that 'at a time like that' Indigo would not be interested in pursuing a relationship. Bzzzt. Wrong! Having gone through the same person dying...at the same age as Indigo...I can most assuredly tell you that the things going through her head were written in a realistic light. Been there. Done that. Minus the magic.
Beyond the main characters, the secondary characters were thoroughly enjoyable. The bad guys were bad, and the good guys were...sort of bad too. In fact, there were lots of ambiguous individuals in the book. I'm also awarding bonus points for there being no insta-love in the book. Or for that matter, even insta-attraction, because it takes Indigo a while to start thinking of Bishop as a datable guy. I liked being able to take a break from the magical soulmates theme that tends to run through a lot of the paranormal stuff I read.
The magic itself was big and fun. Lots of spells flying around, and, for that matter, lots of flying in general. So if you prefer a more subtle brand of witchcraft, you may not be in love with Hexed. Me? I like the Harry Potter stuff. Go big or go home! I typically get bored with witches who have to sit around chanting and making potions... in order to get a seed to grow. Zap that shit with your wand or something! Hell, Miracle Grow works just as fast as the lame spell you're using... But that's just me. A lot of people prefer a more subdued approach.
Cliffhanger? Why, yes. Yes, there is. Nicely done, I might add. The story is wrapping up, everyone is smiling and in love, and I keep thinking that the author is forgetting about something. It wasn't a HUGE thing...but I was still annoyed that it wasn't being addressed. I mean, don't you just hate it when there's that teeny little thread that gets left out of the conclusion? Hey, whatever happened to so-n-so or such-n-such, you know? Then...BAM! So I guess the author didn't forget after all. Nice.
I received a digital arc from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review....more
Snagged this one a little while back, because it's a retelling of Cinderella. Don't judge my obsessions! But I3.5 stars
My quest for Freebies continues!
Snagged this one a little while back, because it's a retelling of Cinderella. Don't judge my obsessions! But I gotta say, the cover didn't really inspire confidence. Excuse me, Mrs. Hannah? Would you like some crackers with your cheese? At any rate, I wasn't expecting much. Why does it seem like a cover can make or break a book for women. I mean, haven't we always been told that men were the visual ones? Anyway, with my low expectations firmly in place, I started reading...
Guess what? It wasn't bad at all. In fact, this is a pretty good retelling! Well, considering Cinderella is a werewolf, and all. There was a lot more of the original story woven into the plot than I thought it would have. I've noticed quite a few books lately that are labeled 'retellings', but have little to no connection to the story they are retelling. In some cases, the only connection to Cinderella is that the girl has a stepmother, and her shoe falls off at some point in the story. Not exactly what I was hoping for in a reimagining, you know?
Yes, there were some corny PNR moments in this one. Loins are burning, and wombs are throbbing! But for the most part, Before Midnight is a pretty good book. Best part? It's still free on Amazon!