The fourth book in the Iron Fey series is easily my favorite and I’m sure I won’t be alone in thinking that. At the end of the third book, Meghan bani...moreThe fourth book in the Iron Fey series is easily my favorite and I’m sure I won’t be alone in thinking that. At the end of the third book, Meghan banished Ash from the Iron Realm, knowing he would stay by her side despite how harmful living in the Iron Realm would be to his health. But before he left, Ash made an oath that he would find a way to be with her. The Iron Knight tells the story of Ash’s journey to find a soul — to become mortal and therefore immune to the effects on iron. Of course, he doesn’t embark on such a perilous mission alone; he has Grim and Puck, as well as a couple other surprising companions they meet along the way.
At first, I was a fan of the Iron Fey series. But by the third book, I read reluctantly and slowly, putting the book down for long stretches of time before returning to it. Meghan’s character began to wear on me, but at the same time, I needed an end to her and Ash’s story, so I happily reached for the fourth book. Despite the length, I flew through the conclusion to the Iron Fey series.In my opinion, writing a book from Ash’s point of view is the best idea Julie Kagawa could have for this series. Being in Meghan’s mind grew so annoying, but reading the story from Ash’s point of view is fresh, enjoyable, and exciting. Not only that, but a majority of the book is free of Meghan’s whining voice, and instead filled with my favorite character, Puck. Without Meghan around, Ash becomes a much lighter, carefree individual and we finally get to see the close friendship between Puck and Ash reemerge. And because Meghan wasn’t around too often to annoy, the scenes she did spend with Ash were sweet and heartwarming. Less tears, more determination.
The Iron Knight is also full of non-stop action, but there are more intellectual puzzles in addition to constant battles. Kagawa delivers surprise after surprise, leaving the reader in a constant state of agonizing suspense. I tried and mostly failed to predict what would happen next, which filled me with an odd sense of elation due to the depressing nature of most of my predictions. Some aspects of the journey and of Ash’s trials do seem a little cliche, but not so much so that they distract from the plot at all. For the most part, the conflicts and plot twists are incredibly unique and intricate. Just reading Iron Knight is an emotional roller coaster almost as harrowing as Ash’s — and he has to live through all these crazy events!
The only problems I had with this book are the same ones I had in the previous three. First, overuse of the word “writhing” — it must be Kagawa’s favorite verb. Also, the characters all formally address each other too often to be believable. Every sentence seems to contain some variation of a moniker: Prince/Little Prince/Ice Boy/Winter Prince, Puck/Goodfellow/Robin Goodfellow, Grim/Cat. Especially when it came to Ash, I wanted to shake every person that insisted on calling him “Prince of the Winter Court” in every sentence of speech. So unnecessary. But these are things that, after reading the first three books in the series, I’ve come to accept. And while a majority of the second half of this book left me bewildered and perplexed, internally protesting in outrage, I believe that was Kagawa’s intent and I’m glad she could inspire such a strong emotional reaction in me.
Essentially, if you’re an Ash fan, you’ll love Iron Knight. If you’re a Puck fan, you’ll love Iron Knight. If the end of Iron Queen made you throw the book against the wall in frustration, demanding some sort of resolution for Ash and Meghan, you’ll love Iron Knight. This book is a long, crazy ride, but one you’ll enjoy every minute of.(less)
I have always been such a huge fan of The Chicagoland Vampires series. As soon as I picked up the first book, I devoured the series. I also became qui...moreI have always been such a huge fan of The Chicagoland Vampires series. As soon as I picked up the first book, I devoured the series. I also became quickly depressed that I started to have to wait for the rest of the books to be published. Biting Cold was no different from the rest of the books in the series. It was full of action, adventure, romance, and even mystery. Needless to say, Biting Cold had everything that I could ask for. After reading the previous book in the series, Drink Deep, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I knew that Biting Cold would be amazing, but I didn’t know where Neill would take it next. What would happen with Mallory? Would Ethan and Merit’s relationship progess? I had specific things that I wanted to happen, and I was a bit afraid that I would be forced to wait through several more books to get the end result that I wanted. I shouldn’t have feared, though. Once again, Chloe Neill absolutely captivated me, and I was hooked from page one. The beginning of the book honestly could have been the end of the book. It was SO full of action! I was a little let down with how Neill handled the events surrounding Mallory, but I understood that what was done was best for her character. I was also a little off put by the events surrounding Tate, but I enjoyed learning more about his character as well. I can not express how much I LOVE Merit and the rest of the characters that make up this series. In order for a book to be brilliant, it needs a great story line, great characters, great twists, and even better heart throbbing moments. Chloe Neill incorporates all of these aspects into every single one of her Chicagoland Vampire books. I will forever be a fan of Chloe Neill, and I will read every single book that she publishes throughout her career. Pages: 337 Publication Date: August 7, 2012 Publisher: New American Library Rating: : 4
Teaser Quote: “Ethan leaned in, his lips at my ear. “Irresistible force,” he said. “Immovable object. Choose the one you want to be, and do it. You are a vampire of great power, Merit. Prove it to us, to the city of Chicago, to the Houses. Prove it now.”(less)
John Green is no stranger to praise. His previous novels, Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines scored much recognition, and won many awar...moreJohn Green is no stranger to praise. His previous novels, Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines scored much recognition, and won many awards. The hype surrounding his new novel, Paper Towns, is huge. Everyone knows someone that has read it, or knows someone who wants to read it. So when I picked up the three hundred odd page novel I had super high expectations. That’s the problem with expectations: as soon as you expect something, you’re almost always going to be disappointed. And I was, but not for any reason that I can justify. I think I thought it was going to be breathtakingly mesmerising from the very first word. In all the hysteria, I forgot that a novel needs to lay its foundations and introduce its characters to the reader before any kind of connection or relationship is achieved. Once I remembered all these things, I let my preconceived ideas dissipate and found myself really enjoying everything Paper Towns had to offer.
Paper Towns is narrated through Quentin’s point of view. His neighbour – and long time crush – Margo Roth Speigelman has a thing for running away from home. When she disappears again, everyone is upset, but no one is surprised. Only this time it is different, and Quentin thinks Margo wants him to find her. He uncovers some clues, which he believes she deliberately planted for him, and begins piecing all of them together. While Quentin spends the final months of his senior year looking for Margo, the rest of his friends spend their final months preparing for prom and revelling in the fact that their high school days are finally numbered. Quentin becomes totally consumed with finding Margo and misses out on all kinds of experiences (like graduation) as he follows dead end lead, after dead end lead. He starts to wonder all kinds of crazy things, like whether or not he’ll find her alive, or whether he’ll ever find her at all.
Quentin is an incredibly likeable character. He’s compassionate, dedicated to his cause, and everybody’s best friend. Margo, on the other hand, I found harder to care about. Although she is gone for a lot of the novel, readers learn a lot about her through the clues that Quentin uncovers on his journey. From my vantage point, Margo is conceited, superficial, melodramatic and not worthy of Quentin’s affections at all. I found myself wishing that he’d stop looking for her and just let himself enjoy the last few months of high school with his friends. But if I’m honest with myself, Quentin’s supreme dedication to find her, dead or alive, is one of the characteristics that I admired about him most.
In the end, although none of them really think they’re going to find her, all of Quentin’s friends forfeit their graduation ceremony so they can accompany him on a last ditched effort to follow a lead. They end up in a car headed for New York. It’s during this trip that readers are really exposed to the true strengths of friendships, relationships, love and loss. The road trip to New York is my favorite part of the novel and I found myself re-reading several pages because I was so touched by some of the words and actions of the individual characters. I’m not going to tell you whether they actually find Margo or not, because that would ruin the ending for you all. But I am going to tell you that I think Margo is someone that will always run, will always look for the quickest escape route when anything gets tough. She’s one of those girls that lack the strength of character to look life in the face and deal with its raw and brutal consequences.
This was my first experience reading a John Green novel and I can happily say that it will not be my last. There is a little something for everyone in this novel, with action, drama, romance and real life experiences and emotions spread across its pages for all to absorb. yaReads give you two very big thumbs up, John Green. Two very big thumbs indeed!(less)
If I got to write a letter to the author of Leviathan, I’d say, “Scott Westerfeld, don’t be that guy- that guy who has a great idea for a story and th...moreIf I got to write a letter to the author of Leviathan, I’d say, “Scott Westerfeld, don’t be that guy- that guy who has a great idea for a story and then ruins it by dumbing it down for his readers”. I read the first two books in his Uglies series, and it was a struggle just to make it that far. Westerfeld creates these amazing worlds which feel so familiar and yet very exciting. He has strong willed main characters with something to fight for. But then there’s the lingo that he insists on hitting you over the head with, which for me, really made me cringe during his steampunk alternate history, Leviathan.
The story takes place on the brink of World War I, and follows two very different characters: Aleksandar Ferdinand, the prince of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and Deryn Sharp, a girl masquerading as a boy in the British Air Service. Austria-Hungary is on the side of the Axis (called Clankers in the book, for their machine warfare), while Britain is on the side of the Allies (called Darwinists for the use of their “fabricated” beasts). While the two are on opposite sides of the war, they are facing many of the same problems. Both have lost parents, have had to be on their own, and have egos that need serious humbling. The world of Leviathan is refreshingly unique and awe-inspiring. Whales as zeppelins, lizards as messengers, enormous machines like robots that you can sit inside and walk around in…I really wish this world were real.
Despite how cool the world is though, I can’t say that I loved this book. The lingo drives me absolutely bonkers. Every few pages, I was cringing over words like “clart” (excrement), “barking” (f***ing), “boffins” (well educated adults)… I get it. The point of the lingo is to make the story seem otherworldly, but mainly I was just annoyed. I got so wrapped up in decoding what everyone was saying that I wasn’t really paying attention to the story. I felt cheated with this story because I was expecting it to be so much more; I really thought Westerfeld would raise the bar and write something that was difficult and deep, but I got more of Uglies: a cool world with no substance.
I will say that the art of the book is fantastic. The illustrations throughout are beautifully done and really add to the story. The cover art drew me in from the beginning, covered in cogs and wheels like the inside of a mad clock. My favorite part was definitely the map of the Great War on the inside front and back covers, with each country represented by an animal or some machine. While I didn’t much care for the story of Leviathan, I loved the world of Darwinists and Clankers, and can’t wait to find out more about how each side builds their weaponry in Behemoth, the sequel due out this October.(less)
Kaylee has spent her adolescence riding on the coat tails of her best friend, Emma. Emma is one of those beautiful, cool and popular types, and althou...moreKaylee has spent her adolescence riding on the coat tails of her best friend, Emma. Emma is one of those beautiful, cool and popular types, and although Kaylee doesn’t quite make the cut, the fact that she’s Emma’s best friend means that she’s been accepted by most of the cliques around school. But Emma’s the one that gets all the attention, Kaylee’s usually just along for the ride. So when Nash, one of the cutest boys in school, starts paying attention to her, Kaylee can’t believe her luck.
But Kaylee has a secret. She can sense when someone is about to die. It’s all consuming and comes in the form of something resembling a panic attack. When she starts flipping out in front of Nash at a club one night, she thinks her chances with him are shot.
Nash sees something in Kaylee that he’s never seen in many people before. He sees who she is for real and it doesn’t bother him in the slightest. In fact, he actually likes the creepiness that comes along with Kaylee. Nash thinks that together, he and Kaylee could be amazing – in more ways than the obvious.
Kaylee doesn’t understand why she can sense immanent death, and the last time she tried to tell someone about it, she ended up in the loony bin, all drugged up and the center of one kooky psychological study. After she got out of the hospital, she knew that she had to keep her secret to herself. Then girls start dying all around her and Kaylee knows enough about her ability to identify their deaths as anything but coincidence. She’s not so sure she can keep her secret to herself for much longer. There is something about Nash that makes her want to trust him, makes her want to confide in him. When she does, Kaylee almost doesn’t believe what he tells her.
Kaylee’s character development throughout the story is solid and believable, and her reactions to Nash’s news about what, and who, she is hits the nail right on the head. Nash is dynamic, and something tells me that he’s going to be paramount to the popularity of this series, but I have a feeling that we are yet to see just how powerful, how strong Kaylee is. I suspect she’s going to grow into one heck of an amazing role model for young readers everywhere.
With the right amount of romance and supernatural action all mashed together, Vincent’s prose is simple and easy to read, making My Soul to Take an easily digested treat.
My Soul to Take is a supernatural feast. I have a feeling that readers, both young and old, are going to love this series.(less)
Amelia Hayes has just gotten a job at the supermarket and it doesn’t take long before she gets a crush on her charming (and much older than her) staff...moreAmelia Hayes has just gotten a job at the supermarket and it doesn’t take long before she gets a crush on her charming (and much older than her) staff trainer, Chris Harvey. While Amelia is trying to find her identity and place in life, Chris is struggling to find the meaning in his life. The story switches perspective between the two as we watch their friendship grow and as Chris changes his view of Amelia from a protégé/little sister type to someone he could consider as a potential girlfriend.
Amelia is in the 10th grade and to her, boys are the brainless creatures who push her around on the school bus and who are otherwise only after one thing. Chris is in his final year at university and battling the girlfriend drought while he still licks his wounds over his previous relationship one year prior. For her the supermarket job is a way of gaining independence, for him though, it’s a dead end.
Amelia is unlike any girl Chris knows and is always amazed at how her mind works, she makes him question his own thoughts and the way he thinks. They exchange letters of things that they hate, while Amelia thinks her mum has been screwed over by feminism, Chris hates the injustice of people getting everything in life while he struggles at the bottom.
It’s not hard to relate to either of these characters, not because it’s written in the first person or because they’re similar to you in age, but because at some point, you were them. It’s what makes this story feel so incredibly real because you were (or still are) Amelia, you were friends with an Amelia, you were Chris or you were in love with a Chris, these characters are so real they might as well be people you already know who just happen to be in a book.
It goes without saying that this is a well written book. The story is engaging and the dual narration adds depth to the storyline and has so many subtle details that come together to create this image of what being a young adult is really like, not what people think it’s like. Also, it’s the kind of book that makes you feel just a bit smarter for having read it, it really gets you thinking. It contrasts the different lifestyles of families, friends and social classes as well as making you consider the issue of feminism, without making you feel like you’re reading a textbook.
This isn’t your typical love story; it’s honest, bittersweet and insightful with the characters lending you their lives to let you look into your own.(less)
In the Community, there is no more pain or war. Implanted computer chips have wiped humanity clean of destructive emotions, and thoughts are replaced...moreIn the Community, there is no more pain or war. Implanted computer chips have wiped humanity clean of destructive emotions, and thoughts are replaced by a feed from the Link network. When Zoe starts to malfunction (or “glitch”), she suddenly begins having her own thoughts, feelings, and identity. Any anomalies must be immediately reported and repaired, but Zoe has a secret so dark it will mean certain deactivation if she is caught: her glitches have given her uncontrollable telekinetic powers. As Zoe struggles to control her abilities and stay hidden, she meets other glitchers including Max, who can disguise his appearance, and Adrien, who has visions of the future. Together, this growing band of glitchers must find a way to free themselves from the controlling hands of the Community before they’re caught and deactivated, or worse. In this action-packed debut, Glitch begins an exciting new young adult trilogy. The Community is perfect; everyone is safe; everyone is obedient. Or so Zoel — Zoe — always believed, until she began glitching. Now she finds herself experiencing emotions for the first time, emotions that are beautiful and confusing and painful and exciting. At first, Zoe feels alone, but then she discovers Adrien, who not only knows about the glitching, but also knows about her secret power, the power she can’t yet control. Adrien opens up a whole new world for Zoe, one that includes other glitchers, like Max, a classmate she’s known forever. Together, the glitchers plan to escape, but Zoe soon finds out that she has to be careful who she places her trust in. Glitch is a thoroughly enjoyable and engrossing read. The story opens with a fair amount of world-building, and while I don’t always like having so much overwhelming information thrown at me, I can also appreciate having our world established early on. While the world-building is thorough and the world somewhat unique, the characters really steal the show here. Unfortunately, the character development is a little slow at first, but as soon as Zoe meets Adrien, things quickly pick up and there’s no putting the book down. The problem with Glitch is that it feels too familiar, which isn’t Heather Anasatasiu’s fault. The world and the characters she’s created are intriguing and exciting. But after finishing the book, I can’t help but feel like I read some sort of mash-up of The Hunger Games, Insurgent, and Delirium. And I like all of those books, so it stands to reason that I like Glitch. It just didn’t wow me. However, the science fiction aspects are definitely refreshing and I really enjoy reading Anastasiu’s scientific explanations — especially when it comes to the glitchers’ abilities. The abilities coupled with the strong characterization and unpredictable plot are real highlights; they’re the elements that set Glitch apart from the aforementioned books and make Glitch a worthwhile read. Fans of Katniss and Lena will love Zoe. She’s a revolutionary with strong convictions. She’s also a character whose actions speak louder than her words. Too many female “heroines” are physically weak, easily manipulated, or charged with lofty aspirations that they can’t quite put into action. But Zoe is strong. She knows what she wants and she goes after it, even at risk to herself. And nothing comes easily to her — she has to work for all the good she accomplishes; she doesn’t have control of her power; she doesn’t know who to trust; she’s compassionate enough to rescue people who don’t even appreciate her help. Basically, Zoe’s a real heroine, one whose journey I’m immensely invested in. The love triangle is an interesting addition. At times, I loved it and at times, I hated it. However, I do appreciate Anastasiu’s ability to play with our emotions when it comes to these boys. We quickly learn that things aren’t black and white. The characters you might think are trustworthy aren’t and vice versa. Anastasiu kept me on my toes until the very end, which was incredibly frustrating…in a great way. Glitch and Zoe definitely get my recommendations. Pages: 320 Publication Date: August 2012 Publisher: St. Martin’s Press Source: NetGalley Rating : 3.5 Teaser Quote: “‘…Evolution might be the wrong word–it’s not like glitchers are a new species. Just highly adapted. We’ve started developing abilities that get around their programming, making neural connections to subvert the hardware. Even with all our tech, the brain is something.’“
P.S. Will appeal to fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent!(less)
Delilah is a bit of a loner who prefers spending h...moreOriginally posted on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Nichole
What happens when happily ever after…isn’t?
Delilah is a bit of a loner who prefers spending her time in the school library with her head in a book—one book in particular. Between the Lines may be a fairy tale, but it feels real. Prince Oliver is brave, adventurous, and loving. He really speaks to Delilah.
And then one day Oliver actually speaks to her. Turns out, Oliver is more than a one-dimensional storybook prince. He’s a restless teen who feels trapped by his literary existence and hates that his entire life is predetermined. He’s sure there’s more for him out there in the real world, and Delilah might just be his key to freedom.
Delilah and Oliver work together to attempt to get Oliver out of his book, a challenging task that forces them to examine their perceptions of fate, the world, and their places in it. And as their attraction to each other grows along the way, a romance blossoms that is anything but a fairy tale. Delilah has always lived in a world where she feels like the odd one out. She’s clumsy, unpopular and forgettable. Delilah would much rather lose herself in books, specifically a children’s fairy tale, something that worries her mother very much. She has read this specific fairy tale hundreds of times. She has all of the words memorized, so she’s startled one day when she realizes that something is in the book that doesn’t belong. After much investigation, Delilah soon realizes that there’s way more to a book than meets the eye. Who really knows what goes on behind a book when the it’s closed? Do the characters really exist? Delilah finds out that they do exist, and soon she is talking to the main character in the fairy tale, Oliver. Together, Delilah and Oliver do everything in their power to set him free from the story he’s been placed in. I have never read anything by Jodi Picoult. I honestly was not sure what she typically writes, so I didn’t really know what to compare this book to. I was initially intrigued by the story line because who doesn’t want to know what goes on in a book once you set it down? It’s something I have thought of in the past, and I found it so cool that it was being brought to light in this book. One thing I loved about this story was the pictures. They were GORGEOUS! I literally could have gotten rid of all of the words, replaced them with full size pictures on each page, and been properly entertained. The artists who worked on this book along with Jodi Picoult are seriously amazing. I’m still reeling from the fact that this book is considered as a young adult novel because it’s not. This book is 100% a middle grade novel. While reading this book, I often found myself telling others that I could have seen myself reading this book in the fourth or fifth grade. There were no challenging words, there were pictures on each page, and it was simply a book for young children. I later found out that Jodi Picoult writes adult novels. I quickly realized that I’ve watched some of the movies based on her books, and I find it necessary to tell Picoult fans that this book is nothing like what she would normally write. As sweet as I think it is that Jodi Picoult worked on this book with her daughter, Samantha Van Leer, I don’t think it was her best decision ever. I could often tell when Samantha was writing, which wasn’t a good thing. Some people have told me that this will be a great career boost for Samantha. I agree, but based on what I’ve read, Samantha would do better at writing books for elementary and middle grade students. She could shock me and create a brilliant novel, but I’ve only seen her work this one time. Overall, I was not too impressed with this book. I found it to be way below my reading level, and I could not stand either of the main characters. I do believe that this book will appeal to younger children and teenagers. I also thing this would be a great story for parents to read with and to their children. Pages: 358 Publication Date: July 26, 2012 Publisher: Simon Pulse Rating: : 2
Teaser Quote: “JUST SO YOU KNOW, WHEN THEY SAY “ONCE UPON a time”… they’re lying. It’s not once upon a time. It’s not even twice upon a time. It’s hundreds of times, over and over, every time someone opens up the pages of this dusty old book. ”(less)
At its heart, I Now Pronounce You Someone Else is about 18-year-old Bronwen’s quest for identity – who she is, where she comes from, what she wants. A...moreAt its heart, I Now Pronounce You Someone Else is about 18-year-old Bronwen’s quest for identity – who she is, where she comes from, what she wants. And, perhaps most importantly, what she doesn’t want – yet.
Bronwen has a long-held theory that she was actually switched at birth. It’s the only way she can explain the differences between her and her family, especially her distant, blond mother (a fact that screams through the pages every time Bronwen calls her “Mother” instead of “Mom”). Her stepdad is okay, though, despite his failure to officially adopt her after the death of her father. And her brother, nicknamed Jesus, is away at college and really isn’t too bad, as long as Bronwen remembers to bow down to him the way her mother does.
When Jared Sondervan comes into Bronwen’s life, though, she thinks she’s finally found the person—and the family—that gets her. Jared may be four years older, but they fall in love, and Bronwen quickly finds herself embraced by his loving family and his picture-perfect collegiate friends. Finally, she’s a part of a family that talks openly, laughs loudly, and loves each other unconditionally—unlike her own, in which the evening news is the only safe topic of conversation and an annual trip to color Bronwen’s naturally-brown hair blond (to match her mother’s) is the only bonding activity. It’s not long before Bronwen finds herself completely immersed in the Sondervan family, feeling fully accepted in spite of her quirks. And soon enough, she and Jared are engaged, and Bronwen couldn’t be happier. Or so she thinks.
The writing style of debut author Erin McCahan is swift and tight; the book is almost entirely comprised of small scenes – some spanning less than a page, some spread out over three or four – and are ordered in such a way that makes for easy, pleasing reading. The setting travels swiftly from Bronwen’s home to high school, to Jared’s home and college environment, and even to Bronwen’s favorite vacation spots. There’s snappy dialogue and witty banter, and a nice pace that kept me reading and eager to learn the outcome.
This book did raise some issues that I think are important to analyze in YA literature, particularly when it comes to romance and relationships. Now, I love me a good romance, and YA is ripe with some excellent examples; with Bronwen and Jared, though, the reader doesn’t really get a chance to see how or why they fell in love. Their relationship felt so rushed (which, admittedly, may have been the point), and I had a hard time believing a college senior would be so ready and willing to enter into a committed relationship with a high school student who’s barely left her small town in Michigan. I also took issue with the “romantic” gestures that Jared leaves for Bronwen, most of which I found not just unrealistic, but also a bit too old-fashioned and (dare I say it?) bordering on creepy and somewhat patronizing for my tastes. In short, I suppose I just never trusted Jared as a character, which meant I had a hard time liking Bronwen for falling so deeply in love with him.
However, Bronwen has a definitive and satisfying character arc throughout I Now Pronounce You Someone Else which was executed wonderfully. Her issues with her identity, her stepfather, her still-lingering grief over her father’s death, and her strained relationship with her mother are all believable, relatable, and fully developed by the various supporting characters and plotlines, while crumbs of foreshadowing are littered throughout to help the reader understand (and accept) the book’s climax.
Part of being a teenager is about finding your identity, and I appreciated Bronwen’s path as she uncovered the secret sadnesses within herself and took the necessary steps towards resolving them. Her decisions and motivations made sense, and while I am still not entirely happy with the outcome, overall, I Now Pronounce You Someone Else was a breezy and lighthearted yet ultimately thought-provoking read.(less)
I ended up buying Born Wicked at B&N with my birthday money. I was on the lookout for a...moreOriginally posted on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Nichole.
I ended up buying Born Wicked at B&N with my birthday money. I was on the lookout for a book about witches. For some reason, witch books are really hard for me to find in the YA genre. If I want an adult paranormal witch book, then there’s absolutely no problem. Let’s be honest, most of the popular ones are about witches and vampires. But with YA? I have the biggest problem. So, I was really excited when I saw Born Wicked tucked away in a remote area of the shelf. I knew that I had to read this book. I ended up putting another book away just so I could get this book even. When I first started reading Born Wicked, I was bored. I didn’t dislike it, but I didn’t love it. The main reason for this was because it is a historical fiction book, and I tend to not like those….pretty much because I find them very boring. About halfway through the book, though, I started to realize that I was in love with it. Yes, it’s a book that leans on the milder side, but it’s so good! There’s not a lot of action, although there is some, but…omg…I loved this book. Another bright side about Born Wicked was that all of the characters were loveable, relatable and enjoyable. I often found myself telling Cate what she needed to do. It didn’t matter that she couldn’t hear me! It’s NOT just a book! I was placing myself in that setting and demanding that she do the right thing…well…what I wanted her to do! Didn’t so much work, but it’s always awesome when you can place yourself IN the book. That doesn’t happen with every book. I loved loved LOVED that Born Wicked surrounds three sisters. Not only did I love the idea, but I really enjoyed the sisters. And shockingly enough, Cate isn’t my favorite sister. Actually, she’s my least favorite. I’m in love with Tess. I am seriously going to yell at Jessica Spotswood if she ever ends up killing her off. OMG and at the end of the book! Holy smokes, Tess! Way to go girl! The romance in Born Wicked is very tame and mild. It does exists, but it’s not forced on to you. And there’s a slight love triangle…but not really. It’s not that Cate’s torn between two guys…she just has some really big decisions to make for herself and her family. Normally, I love really heavy romances, but the romance in this book worked. I think that it will be jacked up in the second book…maybe?….but I really enjoyed it. I don’t know what else to tell you guys except that this book is awesome and you need to go read it! It is SO GOOD. I’m so excited to read Star Cursed next…OMG…LOVED IT!
In Ravka, the Grisha hold power. They possess magic and use this magic to protect ordinary pe...moreOriginally featured on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Kiona
In Ravka, the Grisha hold power. They possess magic and use this magic to protect ordinary people, like Alina and Mal, from the dangers of the Shadow Fold, a curtain of darkness that produces flesh-eating monsters. Alina has never had a problem with the way of things. Her life might not be blessed, but she has a best friend in Mal, the boy she’s grown up and slowly fallen in love with. But when Mal’s life is in danger, Alina unleashes a powerful magic that’s been hiding dormant for years. Suddenly, Alina is one of the most important people in Ravka. She’s taken to the leader of the Grisha, the Darkling, for training, but she soon learns that the Darkling has his own agenda.
Shadow and Bone is one of the most gripping fantasy novels of this year. From the outset, Bardugo’s world-building is superior. Ravka, the Shadow Fold, the Grisha: they’re all equally compelling elements of the story. But before we’re fully immersed in the politics of Ravka, we’re grounded in Alina’s and Mal’s relationship. Having grown up together as orphans, they’ve formed a resilient sibling-like bond. But as they age, Alina starts to see Mal in a more romantic light. Unfortunately, Mal thinks of her as one of the guys. The older they get, the more Mal seems to take their relationship for granted, more interested in receiving admiration and wooing the beautiful Grisha women. Their relationship is, at times, adorable, and other times, realistically frustrating. Anyone who has ever fallen for a friend will relate to Alina.
With characterization and setting firmly established, Bardgugo jumps right into her captivating plot. The Grisha’s world is beautiful, mesmerizing, and dangerous. We get to see Alina learn to navigate the intriguing politics of the palace and come into her own. I love seeing her come to terms with her powers, as well as her own confidence. She truly grows into an impressive heroine by the book’s conclusion, a heroine everyone will do well not to underestimate. Her growth as a strong, young woman is charming and satisfying.
The Darkling also provides intense suspense and mystery. It’s very difficult to decide whether or not he’s trustworthy, which makes him an fantastically fun character to read about. The reveal of his back-story is a complete surprise and probably one of the most likable twists, in my opinion. Of course, the best twist comes with the powerful ending, which feels much deserved, but leaves me anxious for more. Fantasy lovers desperate for a new, consuming series will love Shadow and Bone.(less)
I fell in love with The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan this year…head over heels, g...moreOriginally posted on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Nichole.
I fell in love with The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan this year…head over heels, gasping for more, crying on the inside because I had about another year to wait for the second book…that kind of love. I actually didn’t know that this short story about Marco was being released. I ended up finding out about it through Twitter, and you can bet your ass that I went and bought it ASAP. This is a really short ebook. It’s only 35 pages, but IT. IS. AMAZING! I didn’t really pay much attention to Marco in TBATC. I mean…yeah….he was a character….but he wasn’t one of the main characters, so I just kind of ignored him. We learn so much about him in this short story! All I can say is that I MUST learn more about Marco! When the ebook ended my mouth was literally hanging open. It ended LIKE THAT? Seriously?! Now I need more Grace and Marco. It can’t end like that! There has to be more to the story! You know what…I don’t even want another short story. I want a freakin novella. No…I just want a book totally dedicated to Marco and Grace. That will keep me happy [= If you love paranormal books or just gargoyles in general, then this is the series for you!. LOVED IT.
Pages: July 16th 2013 Publication Date: July 16th 2013 Publisher: Delacorte Press Source: Ebook Rating: : ★★★★★(less)
If you liked Wicked Lovely and Ink Exchange then you’re going to love this.
Aislinn is Seth’s world. Before Ash came along, Seth never pegged himself f...moreIf you liked Wicked Lovely and Ink Exchange then you’re going to love this.
Aislinn is Seth’s world. Before Ash came along, Seth never pegged himself for the couple-type. He’d always been happy to cruise along and engage in a little no-strings-attached kind of fun when it suited him. But Ash changed all that. Changed him. Now Ash is Seth’s whole world. She is his everything and he can’t bear the thought of losing her. But as Ash falls further into her role as queen of the Summer Court, it’s a thought that he’s entertained more than once. He can see the connection between his girlfriend and the king of the Summer Court – Keenan – growing stronger the more summer approaches.
And Keenan has noticed, too. Keenan notices nothing but Ash. He watches her every move, doesn’t miss a single bat of her eyelid. The fact that Ash is still with Seth is killing Keenan. He swears his romantic interest in Ash is for the betterment of the court only, but that doesn’t exactly make it any easier for Seth. If Keenan keeps pushing Ash, keeps testing the boundaries with her, will she give into his charming ways? Seth, being the smart, savvy guy that he is, knows all too well that if he doesn’t act now, he’s going to lose his girl.
You won’t believe what he does…
And what about Donia? Poor Don and Keenan have been trying to work things out for ages. Are they ever going to get their stuff sorted, or will Ash and the whole court rivalry thing going to keep them apart always? Donia is one feisty chick that you don’t want to put off side. Is Keenan smart enough to see that, or will he put himself, his queen and his entire court in danger because of his blindness?
I couldn’t possibly write a review of Fragile Eternity without throwing a shout out to Niall. Although his role is sort of secondary, he still manages to throw his bad ass self around, making sure that everyone knows that he’s one fey not to be messed with. Niall’s protectiveness over Seth is more than a little endearing and I can’t help but wonder if perhaps the strength of their relationship that we saw in this novel is a taste of wicked things to come…
Niall, ruler of the Dark Court, you rock my socks off. I can’t wait for more action from you in the future.
Melissa Marr’s faery world is one I love to get lost in. Seth, Aislinn and Keenan are all so alive and real in my heart that I can feel Keenan’s jealousy pulling at my insides, hear Ash’s tears as she weeps for her lost love, and see the desperation painted on Seth’s face as he watches his lover engage with another. The words flow effortlessly across the page and paint a picture so beautiful that its hard to believe they’re just words. There’s not one single part of Fragile Eternity that I didn’t love. The character development is mind blowing, the twists and turns are both tiny and ginormous (and totally surprising, let me add) and even though nothing goes the way I want it to, as I turned the last page I still had a huge smile on my face.
I think the divide between Team Seth fans and Team Keenan devotees will become clearer than ever now. While Melissa Marr lays out a pretty solid case for both her boys, if you were sitting on the fence before Fragile Eternity, I’m willing to lay money on it that you wont be at the end. And I reckon it will be a pretty easy choice, too.
Totally and absolutely brilliant in every possible way(less)
Ever since the draug—mysterious creatures that prey on vampires—took over Morganville, the lives of student Claire Danvers and her friends have been t...moreEver since the draug—mysterious creatures that prey on vampires—took over Morganville, the lives of student Claire Danvers and her friends have been thrown into turmoil. Most of the town’s residents have evacuated, but Claire, Shane, Eve and Michael have chosen to stay and fight. Using the city’s water system to spread, the draug have rapidly multiplied. Things in Morganville look grim, especially since vampire Amelie—the town founder—has been infected by the master draug’s bite. Now, if Claire and her friends don’t figure out how to cure Amelie and defeat the draug, it looks like Morganville will become little more than a ghost town… When Black Dawn opens, Morganville is, yet again, in a whole bunch of trouble. The most dangerous vampires known in existence – the draug – has finally made their way into the city limits, crippling the town and spreading fear to all. They got to Amelie – something Claire thought would never happen. Without Amelie, the humans and vampires of Morganville have no hope of ever making it out. The town is despairing, trying to figure out what in the heck they’re going to do. Like always, our trusty friends Claire, Shane, Eve, and Michael are right in the middle of everything. But there’s so much else going on. As if the draug isn’t enough, Michael and Eve are in a really bad place. At the end of the last installment, Michael took a big old chunk out of Eve, and now she’s not sure she can trust him. The beast that lives inside of Michael finally bared its fangs and put a huge wedge between our favorite vampire/human couple. Will they be able to get through this, or was everyone else right? Is it just too dangerous and unrealistic to think Eve and Michael could ever have a lasting relationship? Claire and Shane are … well, Claire and Shane. As messed up as Shane is, it becomes abundantly clear to everyone that he can’t function without his girl. Claire makes him a better man, makes him want to be a better man. For that, he realizes they have to make it through this stuff with the draug. He decides they have to be defeated, no matter what. Shane wants his happily ever after. Everyone knows I’ve been a big advocate of this series right from the very beginning but Black Dawn solidified a concern I’ve been having for a while now. Rachel Caine, I ask, whhhhhyyyyyyyyyyy did you, after all this time, decide to start including perspectives of characters OTHER than Claire? Moreover, why are those other perspectives written in first person, while Claire’s is in third? If the series had started out that way, I’d have less of an issue with it. But the series is nearly over, and including the new perspectives interrupts the flow of the narrative. To me it feels like the story has shifted from an action driven plot line, to a more character driven plot line. It doesn’t feel like the same Morganville anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I still completely enjoyed reading Black Dawn, but now it feels like a different story – not the Morganville we all fell in love with. Publication date: May 2012 Pages: 367 Publisher: New American Library, a division of Penguin Publishing Group Rating: : Teaser Quote: Claire and I were married in the church by Father Joe, and Eve and Michael were our maid of honor and best man.(less)
First, let me draw your attention to the incredibly beautiful cover. It was impossible for this cover not to catch my eye. As a self-published author,...moreFirst, let me draw your attention to the incredibly beautiful cover. It was impossible for this cover not to catch my eye. As a self-published author, the cover design was left up to Keary Taylor and she truly did an amazing job with an image that leaps off the shelves. And now, onto the review. Eve doesn’t remember anything before the Fall. As far as she knows, her life began when she was thirteen, found by Avian, Sarah, and Tye. The three of them are the only family Eve knows and together they live in a safe haven for perhaps the only humans left alive, Eden. That is, until West, Victoria, and Brady show up.
Now eighteen, Eve recognizes that she’s different from the other inhabitants of Eden. She’s fast, strong, rarely tires, and feels kind of disconnected — emotionally. She doesn’t think she knows what love is, even when it comes to simply loving her best friends and “family.” Yet as she spends more time with West, she finds he awakens certain emotions in her. But for someone who has only ever known life in Eden, how can she learn to trust an outsider? Especially since Avian is suddenly vying for her affection; Avian, whose very presence calms Eve and who understands her better than anyone else. Neither West nor Avian want to push Eve, but it’s clear she has a decision to make.
At first, Eden reminded me of Stephanie Meyer’s The Host, but with non-stop action and a more likable protagonist. Eve is a strong, independent, and utterly selfless heroine. She is so busy taking care of everyone else that she neglects her own feelings. When her inner conflict regarding West and Avian begins, she thinks avoiding the situation will make it go away. She piles on more and more work, leaving barely enough time to even sleep. But it’s impossible for her to ignore the two men. She’s drawn to each one for completely different reasons. This is why the love triangle in Eden appealed to me so much. Eve’s conflicting emotions are completely warranted as she shares common interests with both of her suitors. There is no obviously apparent or “right” choice. It truly seems like she could be happy with either guy and I was right there with her, confused as to who she should pick. Keary Taylor does a great job of opening up Eve’s mind to the reader, allowing us to slip effortlessly into her thoughts. She’s not only a protagonist you can respect, but also one you can identify with.
While the love triangle dominates a majority of the book, the plot is in no way slighted or overlooked. Eden is four hundred pages of glorious characterization, world-building, suspense, breathtaking twists, and heart-pounding action. The post-apocalyptic United States is described in visceral, frighteningly believable detail. The science and mechanical details behind the Fall and the Fallen are innovative and so intriguing. It’s impossible to put the book down because you just want to know more and more — how, why, when? Taylor doles out the answers to these questions, but sparingly, building up the suspense until the very last page.
Personally, I loved the ending to Eden. First of all, I was satisfied with Eve’s choice. Second, even though Eden is meant as a standalone novel, I appreciated the open-ended conclusion. It does leave some questions unanswered and Taylor could easily write a sequel with this incredible world she’s created, but since she’s not planning on it, the openness of the ending leaves room for your imagination, for you to continue the story for yourself. Some books don’t do this well, but I think Eden pulls it off.
At times, I feel like Eve’s inner dialogue unnecessarily rehashes the same thoughts over and over. But since these new feelings are so overwhelming and all-consuming, I can see where she’s coming from. The characters’ dialogue also seems oddly formal and forced, sometimes. It can be hard to get through those occasional formal bouts, as they’re distracting in how noticeable they are, but once they pass, it’s easy to fall back into the story. Still, I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves insane world-building, intricate love stories, and the idea of technology growing too powerful. Eden does an excellent job of dealing with themes of what it means to human, where we draw the lines of morality and ethics, selflessness vs selfishness, and acceptance. If you’re looking for a completely new world to jump into, try Eden.(less)
Wow. I mean, just wow. I’m in shock, I think. I finished reading The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness about forty minutes ago and I just can’...moreWow. I mean, just wow. I’m in shock, I think. I finished reading The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness about forty minutes ago and I just can’t get my brain to work. I’m stuck in time, my thoughts frozen on the last sentence of the novel, my mouth hanging wide open in the shape of an O.
I’ve been reading a lot lately, devouring books faster than I can get my hands on them, but nothing – I repeat nothing – stands out nearly half as much as this book does. It’s profound, it’s remarkable, it’s downright captivating.
Imagine living in a world where women no longer exist. In fact, they’ve been extinct for so long that you’ve never ever seen one with your own two eyes. Well, that’s what life is like for twelve, almost thirteen-year-old Todd Hewitt. When his people settled in Prenticetown, New World, they had no idea that they were settling in a place full of disease. Before long all the men had contracted The Noise – the ability to hear the thoughts of everyone around them – and the women started dropping off like flies. Todd’s mother died just after she had him, and so did all the other women, which makes Todd the youngest, and last person born in Prenticetown.
In a town where everyone can hear everyone’s thoughts (including animals), there is never a moment of peace. Not ever. So when Todd stumbles upon a hole in all the noise, a patch of quiet, he knows something is very wrong. Everyone hears the quiet in his thoughts and suddenly Todd finds himself being chased out of town. Only, Todd didn’t really know there was an out of town. Suddenly, nothing makes sense.
While being pursued he stumbles across the quiet patch again, only to discover that the quiet is actually a she, a girl. And he can’t hear a single thought passing through her mind. But all the women died, didn’t they? If so, then what the hell is this thing in front of him? It must be an alien – a spackle – right? Wrong. It only takes Todd a few moments to realize that this is no spackle, and that he really is looking at a girl, for real. But where did she come from? And how did she survive the disease? Unfortunately, Todd and Viola (the girl) don’t really have time to get to know each other because all of Prenticetown is looking for him, looking for her. Todd’s life takes on a new meaning as he realizes that he must protect Viola at all costs. If the army catches up with them, they’ll kill her and they’ll kill him too.
Suddenly, as the truth about his people’s real past comes out, Viola and Todd realize that the only thing they have left is each other. Their survival depends on the other’s commitment to keep them alive. The Knife of Never Letting Go is a story full of betrayal, deceit, and the painful realization that the human race is capable of some seriously profound acts of evil. Everywhere Todd and Viola go, destruction seems to follow them. They realize they can’t go into any more settlements because the army tears through soon after, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. When they make the choice to avoid all further settlements, in all circumstances in order to protect civilians from unnecessary harm, readers learn that perhaps, just maybe, there is a little bit of good left in humanity after all.
The companionship that develops between Todd and Viola is heart warming, to say the least. Their instinctual, primal desire to survive is what brings them together, but it’s their friendship that ultimately keeps them fighting, keeps them alive. They not only want to stay alive for themselves, but they want to stay alive for each other, too. Because really, a life without companionship isn’t a life worth fighting for. The moment Todd realizes this is both beautiful and poetic, and I found myself feeling a little choked up, searching for tissues.
Patrick Ness’s phonetic use of language really helps set the tone of the story, and assists in building clear, perfect images of the characters in question. When Todd finds Viola, it is instantly clear she’s not from his planet because she pronounces words differently to him. I normally find phonetic manipulation of language like this annoying as it tends to slow down my reading process, and interrupts the narrative flow of things. The phonetic manipulation in The Knife of Never Letting Go, however, makes for effortless, colorful reading.
The Knife of Never Letting Go is nothing short of brilliant. Every page brings with it new revelations, new drama, deeper character development. Just when you think the book can’t possibly get any better, Ness raises the bar and takes the story to a whole new level of greatness. Reading this novel has been a real pleasure, and one that I know I’ll repeat many times over in the months to come. To say that I am eagerly awaiting the second instalment of this story is the understatement of the century.(less)
I remember when I read Pretty Amy by Lisa Burstein. I remember that it tugged at my heart an...moreOriginally posted on www.yareads.com, reviewed by Nichole.
I remember when I read Pretty Amy by Lisa Burstein. I remember that it tugged at my heart and threw me for an emotional roller coaster ride. The story, the writing, the characters…it was all just so beautiful, and I remember that I wanted more. I read about Amy, sure, but I wanted to know more about Lila and Cassie. So, I was thrilled when I learned that Lisa Burstein was writing Dear Cassie, and I was not above begging and pleading if I had to to be a part of the Dear Cassie Blog Tour over at Rockstar Book Tours. Thankfully, it didn’t quite come to that. Dear Cassie was so emotional and beautiful. It was so….raw. In Pretty Amy, we only got a small taste of Cassie. We learned that she had a horrible home life, she was emotionally screwed up, she did drugs, she didn’t really care about her life, and she had absolutely no taste in guys. Dear Cassie takes off right after Pretty Amy, and Cassie is sentenced to go to Turning Pines Wilderness Camp (somewhat of a boot camp) for 30 days. There she is forced to write about her troubles and her thoughts, interact with both friends and foes, do physical labor, suffer from poison ivy, and accept herself and her past. I loved Dear Cassie so much. As someone who doesn’t overly love contemporary books, I get so extremely excited when I find ones that I fall head over heels in love with. And that’s exactly what happened with Dear Cassie. Cassie’s character was strong but weak at the same time. I found so much inspiration and strength in her. And those times that she wanted to fall down, I just wanted to pick her right back up and set her on her feet. I haven’t loved a character as much as I loved Cassie in a very long time, and kudos to Lisa Burstein for giving life to her. This book does focus a lot on the topic of abortion, which could possibly offend some of you. I found it to be beautiful and heartbreaking. It’s not my place to say whether or not I agreed with Cassie’s decision, but it was a wonderful experience watching her come to terms with her decision. It was really hard, though, for me to read about her constantly punching her stomach (after the baby was already gone), because it was just too painful. I can’t imagine being in that type of position and it was just utterly heartbreaking. On a negative note, I hated Ben’s character. Ben is a guy at Turning Pines Wilderness Camp, and he develops this weird thing for Cassie. I kind of wanted to see her end up with noone. I didn’t even want a semi crush or relationship in the book, because I felt that Cassie really needed to learn that she could survive without a man in her life. I also found Ben to be very controlling, something that I can not stand in men. The ending of the book infuriated me. It’s not what I wanted or expected, and I’m hoping that maybe there will be another book about Cassie. Her story is really unfinished right now, and I hate when books end that way. Overall, I flat out adored this book. It was beautiful, romantic, sweet and heartbreaking. It discussed topics that were difficult to read but necessary for the story. Dear Cassie was such a realistic story, and I cannot wait to read more from Lisa Burstein in the future.(less)
For centuries, the Petrescu family has been protecting society from a danger that moves among the population undetected. Eighteen-year-old Vasi Petres...moreFor centuries, the Petrescu family has been protecting society from a danger that moves among the population undetected. Eighteen-year-old Vasi Petrescu has never had a problem carrying out his duty, but, when ordered to eliminate an eighteen-year-old girl, he is immediately taken out of his comfort zone. The Syndicate has never targeted a female before, yet somehow this one has ended up on more than one hit list. Vasi would like to find out why, but there may not be time. Now, he’ll have to decide whether or not to keep her alive even if it means going against his own family. The action, mystery, and conspiracy in The Syndicate will take readers on an immersing journey in which decisions are not only life changing, but irreversible. Vasi Petrescu has grown up in a world full of champions and heroes. The only problem is that the world has never heard of them. For in Vasi’s world, creatures called Hybrids roam the streets. Hybrids can blend in. They can look and speak just like an average human. In fact, if it were up to normal humans, they would never be able to pick one out of a line up. But Vasi knows better. Vasi knows that Hybrids are evil creatures who can snap at a moments notice, killing hundreds in their wake. Now that Vasi has been initiated to a full fledged guard, he can help his brothers hunt down the Hybrids, saving the world from the terror and doom they bring to the Earth. The only problem is, Vasi has been assigned to assassinate a female. Vasi knows that females cannot become Hybrids, so he begins to question the family that has supported him and his kind since before he was born. Follow Vasi on his journey to the truth and witness him try to find himself in the process. The first thing that drew me to The Syndicate was the cover. When I see a cover that I’m in love with it, I could care less about the description of the book. The only thing that matters is that the cover is pretty and I want to read what’s behind that beautiful image. Not only is the cover absolutely gorgeous, but it definitely relates to the book itself. It’s an image of a male, presumably Vasi, and I feel that you can really get a sense of his strength and confusion from the expression on his face. I know that when I was reading about Vasi’s story, I often would find myself referring back to the cover to get a good look at him. I find that most female writers narrate from a female character’s perspective. There are a few exceptions to this. For example, Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, is narrated from the main male character, Ethan. I give major points to authors who go out of their realms and write from a totally different perspective. However, I often find that I have problems with male narrators written by female authors. That was no exception for this book. I often feel that the male character is either slightly feminine or over the top stereotyped masculine. In this case, it was the latter. I felt that Shorts did a great job identifying the main character was a male. Vasi really had no feminine traits, which is something that I enjoyed. However, females (society even) tend to create a majority stereotype for men. I felt that a lot of those stereotypes were released onto the character of Vasi. I would have appreciated it a little more if he had had a uniqueness to his personality. Something that separated him from the typical male stereotype. If you follow my reviews, you may have noticed that I have a huge problem with weak female characters. It drives me nuts for a female to listen to everything a male says and to follow on his heels like he’s God himself. I want my female characters to be strong, independent, self-serving, a go-getting-I-can-do-it-myself female. This was not the case with the main female character, Riley. Riley completely depended on Vasi. She never once thought she could take care of herself, and she made that pretty clear throughout the whole book. There were even a few times where she basically mentioned that she needed Vasi to protect her. I just wanted to shake the girl and tell her that she wasn’t useless material. Girls and women alike can be very powerful, and I find that books often stereotype them to be the weakling that needs saved from the handsome prince. I did enjoy the mystery of the book. It may have been my age level, but I figured out everything relevantly quickly. There was a twist at the end that I didn’t see, though, and I really appreciated that. I think that younger age groups will stay in suspense a lot longer than I did. One thing I didn’t like, though, was how quickly Vasi and Riley fell in love. I don’t even want to call it love, so I’m going to call it lust. They seemed to feel this way after two days, which is not enough time for anyone to fall in love. I wish that they didn’t attach themselves so quickly. In fact, I would have rather it not happened at all during this book. I would have liked to see the wooing process and witness Riley stand up for herself a little bit more. Some of the things at the end of the book (don’t worry, I won’t give anything away) really threw me. They just moved way too quickly. I know that when I first meet a guy, it takes months before I really let him in. Riley and Vasi didn’t take the initial time that couples take to get to know each other, which made it a little awkward to follow their story. Younger teenagers, between the ages of 11-16, will probably really enjoy this book. It sort of reminded me of a cross between White Cat, by Holly Black, and The Strange Angels series by Lili St. Crow. I don’t think that people above the age of 20 will fully get into this book. It definitely targets a younger audience. There are a couple references to sexual encounters in the book. There are no explicit details included. Overall, though, it was an interesting read and I think that the younger generation will really appreciate it. Pages: 301 Publication Date: July 9, 2012 Publisher: Lands Atlantic Publishing Rating: : 2
Teaser Quote: “…we have to make the decision in time, we have to mark it, put it in the envelope, stick a stamp on it, and mail it back. We can’t just decide, but then let the deadline pass, because if we do, it’s like we never made the decision to begin with.”(less)