I won’t lie, reading this book was exhausting. The moment I was introduced to a new character, Eliza, and her POV, I was peeved. It signified that in...moreI won’t lie, reading this book was exhausting. The moment I was introduced to a new character, Eliza, and her POV, I was peeved. It signified that in order to tie up all the loose threads presented in the first two books, my much loved story was going to become all the more convoluted. There were many times that I would come to this new POV and I would set the book aside. I didn’t like or care for the character and I often found myself wishing her away. There were also numerous times that my desire to read a happy ending for Karou and Akiva was the only thing that kept me reading. Thankfully Ms. Taylor provided one.
Having said that, I did enjoy the journey that Laini Taylor has written.
The world is imaginative, as are the characters with whom I had become deeply invested. How Ms. Taylor was able to fathom such a world blows me away. It’s Cruel, grotesque and wonderous.
The writing is lovely.
“Liraz had heard it said that there was only one emotion which, in recollection, was capable of resurrecting the full immediacy and power of the original - one emotion that time could never fade, and that would drag you back any number of years into the pure, undiluted feeling, as if you were living it anew. It wasn't love - not that she had any experience of that one - and it wasn't hate, or anger, or happiness, or even grief. Memories of those were but echoes of the true feeling. It was shame. Shame never faded, and Liraz realized only now that this was the baseline of her emotions - her bitter, curdled "normal" - and that her soul was poisoned soil in which nothing good could grow.”
And the woman can drag out sexual tension like no one I have ever seen! It’s borderline cruel.
“Akiva felt the tilt of the world trying to tip him forward: to be nearer to her--nearer and touching--as though that were the only state of rest, and every other action and movement were geared to achieving it.”
“But let's not be casual about this body, okay?" She nuzzled him back. "It may be your soul that I love, but I'm pretty keen on its vessel, too." Her voice had dropped lower as she spoke, and his response was low and husky in kind. "I can't say I'm sorry to hear that," he said, and brushed his face past hers to kiss a place beneath her ear, sending instant, electric frissons coursing through her body.”
It’s difficult to delve further into a review as this story is rather complicated, and the task seems daunting, for me at least. It’s clear that while Akiva and Karou’s story has been “wrapped up”, the stories from this world are far from over. I only hope the next adventures are told from Liraz and Ziri’s point of view as I have become firmly invested in them. I’d love to see how their roles within this world progresses, and their relationship unfolds. (less)
I don’t understand the impulse that lead me to read Just One Year, especially given my extreme dislike for its predecessor Just One Day and my loathin...moreI don’t understand the impulse that lead me to read Just One Year, especially given my extreme dislike for its predecessor Just One Day and my loathing of Willem. Some book fairy must have been whispering in my ear as I was perusing books at the library or perhaps I was the beneficiary of time’s passing. In the year since I first read Just One Day , I was able to forget how much I wanted to cut Willem. I could no longer recall the behaviors that made me dislike him so vehemently and was left rather emotionless about both he or Allyson by the time I sat down to read this installment. I’m so very glad that I didn’t attempt to refresh my own memory because I loved reading Willem’s journey of self-discovery.
Aside for the few passages where Willem recalls events that transpired the day he met Allyson, aka Lulu, she is completely absent from this book (omitting the last two-ish pages). Therefore, if you are looking for a reconnection and kindling of romance between these two, you will not find it here, and will be wholly disappointed. Just One Year is Willem’s story. We are finally allowed to see why he acted like such a douchebag when he was with Allyson for that one life altering day in Paris, and I have to say, I ended up charmed by him. I would never date him, much less pine over him and search the planet for him, but I was charmed. With Allyson gone, we are truly able to understand Willem’s head space, learn about his past, understand his actions, and accept them. Upon learning about his parents love story, and the subsequent loss of his father, I was able to more easily accept how he could allow himself to become so invested in a girl he didn’t even attempt to learn the name of. While I still grapple with whether or not it is possible to love someone after so little time, I can very easily believe that spending even just a few precious hours with a person can set you on a course that could lend itself life altering revelations, which could further lead to life changing choices.
At the end of the day, I very much enjoyed following along as Willem traveled to Amsterdam, Mexico, India and beyond. I appreciated the life lessons he learned, the sense of self he discovered, the family he pieced back together, and the purpose he chose to pursue. The fact that his 18 hour attraction was validated was simply icing on the cake. I could and would have been just as satisfied had he and Allyson never found each other again after so much time, because Foreman, restored to her former writing glory, was wise enough to show us that both he and Allyson would have been happy, fulfilled individuals with or without one another (less)
Leave it to me to have a contrary opinion on highly praised Cruel Beauty. My lack of love wasn’t born of a lack of desire. I had been really excited a...moreLeave it to me to have a contrary opinion on highly praised Cruel Beauty. My lack of love wasn’t born of a lack of desire. I had been really excited about this debut. What YA reader wouldn’t be eager to read A Beauty and the Beast retelling with greek mythology woven in for good measure? Unfortunately nothing about my reading experience of this highly anticipated and much adored release was enjoyable. Reading Cruel Beauty felt more like a chore.
Cue the summary.... Nyx is destined to be a human sacrifice. She is being served up on toast by her father. He made a deal with someone much more powerful than himself, Ignifex, in order to pro-create. But all deals have a cost. His is to offer up his first born daughter to the powerful Ignifex as a bride upon her 17th birthday. Her time has come at the start of the book. She has trained her whole life to kill him, knowing that his destruction will mean her own. I should also mention that Nyx’s father is an uncaring ass and Ignifex can offer Nyx the world in addition to being described as really hot. Nyx is determined to kill Ignifex. I don’t understand why. This endeavor requires her to search every room in an ever evolving and shifting house. It’s a really long boring pursuit. She also makes out with Ignifex’s shadow. Don’t ask, I didn’t fully understand it. And that is about the entirety of this book. Have subpar witty banter with Ignifex, make the moody eyes at one another, throw a fit, search the house, make out with a vague shadow. Lather rinse repeat. Nyx loves Ignifex, no wait the shadow, oh wait it's back to Ignifex. All the while trying to sort out whether or not she hates her family. And if she decides to hate them, fretting over whether or not she should feel bad for hating them. There are some betrayls, and then a happily ever ending is provided. Whatevs.
If this sounds appealing to you, by all means, read Cruel Beauty. I for one couldn’t muster any liking for ANY of the characters, Nyx’s fickleness made me bat shit and I was bored out of my mind when I wasn't gritting my teeth in frustration. (less)
The story of Peter Pan never intrigued me as a child. I was always day dreaming about what I would be, see and do when I grew up; therefore the concep...moreThe story of Peter Pan never intrigued me as a child. I was always day dreaming about what I would be, see and do when I grew up; therefore the concept of living in a realm where you could forever remain a child was not appealing. It is only in adulthood, that I understand. But even still, the story of Peter Pan is not my favorite. I say this so that you understand my love of Tiger Lily was unexpected.
I can't even put my finger on what prompted me to glance at Tiger Lily, but I was a goner within the first few pages. Told from Tinker Bell's point of view, we are enabled to see a broad view of the underbelly of Neverland and the host of characters that reside within the magical realm.
Tiger Lilly's Neverland wasn't what I imagined it would be. It's dark, lonely and dangerous. The woods are only a place to romp and play within for those that are extraordinarily brave or oblivious. The residents themselves live with a constant undercurrent of fear whether it be of their fellow villagers, pirates, wild beasts, Englanders, or most fearsome of all, change.
We are also shown the characters we all recognize, though new, colorful sides of them are presented. Captain Hook, for instance, is a drunken, desolate man, who no longer recognizes himself as he was when he was a young, eager man searching for eternal youth.
On the other hand, Peter Pan, is everything we have known him to be, adventureous, impulsive, and charming. However, we also learn that his playful, seemingly spontaneous actions are driven from fear. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of growing up and the responsibility that coincides with adulthood.
But the biggest treat of all is a character barely referenced in the tale of Peter Pan, Tiger Lily. Tiger Lily is a lonesome character with a fierce will and a deep sense of compassion that she carefully keeps hidden. Adopted at infancy by the village Shaman, she is taunted and teased mercilessly. Many believe she is cursed. Her story is not a happy one. Yet it is evident from the onset that Tiger Lily has a thirst for exploration, and eagerness to discover the world and her place within it.
In spite of my knowing that Peter ultimately winds up with Wendy Darling, I couldn't help but feel the wrongness of such an ending as I became immersed in their story. The characters of Tiger Lily and Peter called to one another, each possessing characteristics the other lacked, delighting in all the traits that made them the same and failing in their ability to express either.
Ultimately, it was the choices of each of these characters, and those closest to them that made this book both heartbreaking and joyful. It's truly a beautiful and surprisingly haunting tale.(less)
To say I was hesitant to read a book written by a YA writing duo would be an understatement, Garcia and Stohl anyone? But I must say that These Broken...moreTo say I was hesitant to read a book written by a YA writing duo would be an understatement, Garcia and Stohl anyone? But I must say that These Broken Stars was certainly one of the stronger YA debuts I’ve read of late. No glaring plot holes, solid writing, fun plot, etc.
Told from duel point of views, These Broken Stars tells the story of Tarver, a poor but highly honored, soldier and Lilac, the sole heiress and only child to the richest man in the Galaxy. The story begins with these characters meeting each other for the first time during a party hosted on space liner, the Icarus. Their meeting is short, but sweet. However Tarver and Lilac are quickly thrust together when the fastest and largest liner in the galaxy falls to its impending doom and they are stranded upon an unknown planet. It doesn’t take long for us readers to presume that Tarver and Lilac are sole survivors (pretty sure it says as much on the dust jacket) and so the story truly unfolds. We read as Tarver and Lilac fight, traverse foreign land, encounter unknown species, fight for their survival and ultimately, fall in love. Think Titanic, only imagine it was set in space and Jack doesn’t die and is significantly less animated. At its heart, These Broken Stars is a romance with a survival tale woven in to prevent it from appearing too sappy. (less)
This is book for anyone who had less than stellar high school experience. I for one despised high school. In fact, I hated school from first grade on....moreThis is book for anyone who had less than stellar high school experience. I for one despised high school. In fact, I hated school from first grade on. This was is no way due to the required learning. That part I loved. It was the evil little turds known as my class mates that made school so miserable. To this day I can’t pin point why I was the target of so much ridicule. I wasn’t the prettiest, or the most unfortunate looking. I wasn’t rich, but wasn’t dirt poor either so it’s not as though I had the best or worst clothing (which is sadly a driver to fitting in). I was athletic and I was intelligent, but I hardly boasted about either and it wasn’t as though several others couldn’t say the same. The only discernable difference I can ever recall having is that I was “mature” for my age and cared way too much about the opionions of others. This combo may have made me an odd child. Regardless, school was a horror. I often cried myself to sleep and dreaded having to attend school each day. The impending doom would make my stomach clench and the sense of dread didn’t ease until I arrived home each afternoon. In grade school, the girls would exclude me, whisper about me, tell troubled boys I liked them, would pretend to befriend me, only to embarrass me on the playground, and while the boys would gladly allow me to join in on a game of kickball, they would hardly defend me, or invite me to be a part of their inner circle. I spent lunch alone, and class time withdrawn. As I grew, the ridicule evolved. By middle school, I continued to be ignored, yet gossiped about by the girls, but my relationship with the boys changed. They started noticing I had boobs, and curves in places that some of my female classmates did not. They stopped allowing me to find solace in recess kickball, and instead opted for trying to lure me under the bleachers to make out. While I refused, it didn’t prevent them from telling others that I hadn’t, only adding fuel to the fire. By the time high school rolled around, I had a reputation for being “easy” even though I had only kissed one boy and he went to an entirely different school and was known by no one in my school district. I couldn’t trust anyone enough to bother with befriending them. Past experiences with girls made me believe that any female who was nice to me for more than a few seconds was just trying to get me to let my guard down long enough to make people believe whatever dirt she intended to invent and spread about me, and guys assumed I was an easy lay, so after accepting two dates with two different guys who only wanted to suggest parking at a local boat access as our date, I began turning down the attentions of any guy who bothered to show an interest. Needless to say, school was lonely, and I was miserable. So it probably goes without saying that I related to Elise and her story. I could understand how she felt before her attempted suicide because I felt that way myself. Sad, angry, hopeful that something miraculous would happen to turn everything all around or that if I said or did the “right” thing, I could turn it all around for myself. Praying to meet one person who bothered to look past all the untruths being said about me and attempt to get to know me for whom I was, and like me. That didn't happen for me until senior year, and it required an event that I'm not going to recount here to transpire in order to make it possible. So, I understood why Elise did what she did when she realized it wouldn't happen for her either. And while I personally didn’t resort to an attempted suicide as a possible escape (my coping mechanism took shape in the form of bulimia), I can more than sympathize with a need, dare I say necessity, for an outlet.
It’s hard to describe my reading experience of This Song Will Save Your Life. It brought back feelings and memories I never really cared to revisit. But there was a comfort that came from reading it as well because I can’t imagine that anyone could write about such a wretched school experience if they themselves hadn’t suffered the same thing, and for any of you out there that may have also been taunted and teased in such a way, you know the kind of hope and comradery that can form among fellow misfits. This book is so unabashedly honest in the truths it unveils. That telling someone doesn't help, in fact, it is often more harmful than not, and the only respite comes at the end of the day when you can leave your classmates behind for a few waking hours. I’m so so glad that Leila Sales had the courage to write such a book and I hope that those who are suffering from miserable school experiences read this and feel a little less alone. I promise you, it gets better, but I’ll be honest, it requires graduating. A song, or talent for music, doesn’t always save a life, but I couldn’t even begin to tell you how many endless hours I spent listening to music. It was an extreme comfort to me then, as were books, and continues to be to this day. I could say more about This Song Will Save Your Life, however, I’ve rambled on long enough. Just know that this book is a gem, and I am thankful to have read it. (less)
It’s a rare thing to read the conclusion of a trilogy and consider it in keeping with the series. Into the Still Blue accomplished this feat. Thanks b...moreIt’s a rare thing to read the conclusion of a trilogy and consider it in keeping with the series. Into the Still Blue accomplished this feat. Thanks be!
Into the Still Blue picks up where Through the Ever Night left off. Aria shot, the Tides and Dwellers seeking momentary asylum in a system of caves, and Hess and Sable heading towards the Still Blue with a kidnapped Cinder in tow. Rossi does not waste precious words summarizing events previously presented in the first two books, and this fact is one of several that enabled me to love this conclusion.
What really sold me on this installment was the fact that Rossi provided conclusions to each of the story threads she began in book one. From the moment Aria and Perry solidified their relationship in Under the Never Sky, it was apparent that the next step would be to build rapport between dwellers and savages as they sought out the Still Blue. But there were other, less prominent questions that would need to be addressed on this quest such as the identity of Aria’s father, whether Soren would redeem himself, how Dwellers and Savages would govern themselves and co-exist, would Sable be destroyed, and if so, who would be the one do it, etc. Each of these questions receive answers…and they are satisfying answers.
I can’t say more without revealing major spoilers, but for those who have enjoyed the series thus far, I’m confident you will find peace in this conclusion. Under the Never Sky is still my favorite in the series, but initial installments usually are. (less)
Apparently I have some standards afterall. News to me. Obsidian offers numberous twilight-eque tropes. Mood-swinging hottie who treats the "heroine" l...moreApparently I have some standards afterall. News to me. Obsidian offers numberous twilight-eque tropes. Mood-swinging hottie who treats the "heroine" like le poo, yet she secretly finds him oh so irrisitable while outwardly projecting dislike. Said mood-swining hottie is mysteriously drawn to inextrodianary, simpleton due to her outward projections of dislike and sectretly finds her oh so desireable, though continues to treat her like le poo. Snarky jokes/comments (though I found them to be incredibly lame and juvenille) are peppered amidst all these red-herring feelings of like, dislike, desire, and hatred. Oh and the mood-swinging hottie is an alien. People are out to get him. Scratch that, dark aliens are out to get him. And the heroine is a book blogger.
If this sounds like your cup of tea (I wouldn't blame you, normally its mine too), you might enjoy this read...maybe. But I found it to be pretty bland and typical. Definetly won't be reading the million other installments to this series.(less)
Yes, I read this entire series and rated it highly. Yes, I know its poorly written. I agree that Juliette is beyond annoying with her lack of self awa...moreYes, I read this entire series and rated it highly. Yes, I know its poorly written. I agree that Juliette is beyond annoying with her lack of self awareness and terrible metaphors. It is frustrating as hell when she waxes poetic about drivel. And don't even get me started on the all too convient xmen esque super powers that allow an otherwise unextrodianary and borederline idiot girl lead a rebellion. I totally get why anyone in their right mind might would look upon me with judgement in their eyes for delighting in this series. All I can say, without the slightest bit of shame, is that the steam and swoon worthiness of this book fogged my brain and allowed me to plow thru the utter non-sense that is the plot so that I could focus on the hottness that is Warner.
If I were capable of feeling shame about books I've read and loved, I would surely feel it for this series. It's awesomely bad. I cannot stand Violet....moreIf I were capable of feeling shame about books I've read and loved, I would surely feel it for this series. It's awesomely bad. I cannot stand Violet. I have to chew gum while reading to offset my gag reflex. And the details around Violet's origin are so absurd, its borderline offensive. BUT I really liked this series. I don't know why, but I do. Its mind numbingly entertaining, contains interesting world building and has a fair amount of swoon. Sometimes that's all it takes I suppose, for me at least.
As for this final installment, it didn't disappoint. There was plenty of action and steam. All the lose ends were tied up and each character was granted an appropriate ending. Lovers of the series will be wholly satisfied.(less)
Oh dear lord, why do I read these books? The fact that I have read three angel books in the last two weeks is going to require me to add an "angel" ca...moreOh dear lord, why do I read these books? The fact that I have read three angel books in the last two weeks is going to require me to add an "angel" category to my shelves, which will throw them all off....all I can say for myself is that this blasted series kind of snuck up on me and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't enjoying it.
Before I go further, I should mention that there are several "things" about this series that would make more discerning readers want to toss these books into the recycle bin. The heroine is beyond dense. She has her moments, and sometimes I even like her if for no other reason than for the fact that she tries to do the right thing. However, character motivations remain elusive to her until they smack in the face, often quite literally. The plot points are often entirely too convienient and the world is so ambiguous that it allows for anything and everything, though I kind of admire that last one. Can't call fowl on what is undefined, right? Overall, there isn't much that makes this series any more special than the thousands of other titles within this genre, which may be in part why it appealed to me.
For me, I read books within this genre to be exposed to a new realm, where the comforts of our reality are present, but paired with a fantastical element. I read them to meet characters that I can love, hate, swoon over, laugh with, mourn, cheer for, or all of the above. Lastly, I read these type stories to go on an adventure that allows for youthful characters to save the world, or complete equally heroic tasks. Its oddly empowering. There are dozens of series that achieve these goals, and I enjoy this one because it does as well.
I don't like Violet. I don't feel that she has done anything to earn such devoted adoration from nearly all her fellow characters, and I have already made my thoughts on her intellect clear. I don't swoon over Lincoln because he is entirely too calm and essentially wooden. But I do love these two together. There scenes are tension filled, and sometimes entirely steamy. I'm not angel obsessed, in fact I often shy away from angel lore as it often comes across as preachy and/or hokey. Yet I love the concept of there being no such thing as a good side or bad side, just warring purpose and points of view. And this series possesses my most favorite of elements within this genre...morally ambiguous characters that outshine their alleged hero counterparts. For those of who share my love, you will find your heart's delight in Phoenix, Onyx and Nox.
There is nothing special about this series, but it contains everything I want when hungering for this genre. It may not be the best of the best, but it did make me serial read every book currently available to me and consent to reorganizing my bookshelves. For me, that's something.
P.S. the cliffhanger ending is bullshit. I'm not happy about having to wait to get my ending that I know is coming.(less)
Few words are needed to describe this read. It's in keeping with Grave Mercy, but significantly less ridiculous given that there are no assassin nuns...moreFew words are needed to describe this read. It's in keeping with Grave Mercy, but significantly less ridiculous given that there are no assassin nuns present. The plot kept me prodding along, (curiosity kills time, not cats) but if the main characters has fallen of a bridge to meet their impending doom, I wouldn't have cared. They don't. Apparently they will be back for the sequel, which lets face it, I will probably read, eventually, because that's what I do. Good read for those in need of a "fantasy" fix.(less)
There was once a time when I would devour each book of series immediately upon release. I couldn’t manage the anticipation of expected greatness. But...moreThere was once a time when I would devour each book of series immediately upon release. I couldn’t manage the anticipation of expected greatness. But over the years, series that I initially adored, and authors I thoroughly trusted would let me down with their final installments. I say that so that fans of this series know that I went into my reading of Allegiant with a weary heart. I wasn’t expecting greatness. I simply wanted it to not suck, or somehow taint my view of the series as a whole. All I wanted was a three star book. Queue disappointment.
I really and truly loved books 1 and 2. Tris got on my nerves a bit with her self-defeating suicidal tendencies in book 2, but overall, both were great reading experiences. I felt as though Roth had set a good tone for book 3 and expected things to wrap up in a way that was in keeping with the first 2 books of the series. Wrong. I may be the only one in thinking this, but Allegiant read like an entirely new series. The world was the same, all the characters we had come to know where there, but rather than wrap up her story, Roth somehow made it entirely more complicated. I like the conclusion of trilogies to tie up loose ends, answer my questions, and provide character resolution. Instead the world was expanded tenfold, I was introduced to brand new characters I cared nothing about, because frankly, I resented meeting them so late in the game, and the ending was hurried.
I could continue to rant, but it hardly seems worth it. The book itself is fine; it would be kind of awesome really had it been the start of a series and not the end of one. If I was rating and reviewing Allegiant solely based on this book’s ability to stand on its own, I’d give it 4 stars. But Allegiant isn’t a stand-alone title, it’s the conclusion of a series, and as far as conclusions go, it widely missed the mark. (less)
One would think that my ever increasing age would make me less susceptible to the wisened ways of authors who create tormented characters in the name...moreOne would think that my ever increasing age would make me less susceptible to the wisened ways of authors who create tormented characters in the name of swoon. Sadly, it has not.
The Lynburn Legacy isn't the most stunningly written series. There were plenty of scenes that made me roll my eyes and shout mental indignations that no teenagers are so naive and goodly, but once you get past this initial short coming, these characters really worm their way in. And the story isn't half bad either. But I think the characters sell this story more than the plot points. Its refreshing to read about a heroine that is described as average and doesn't lament over her lack of "hotness" but rather rocks out her most prized asset, intelligence. Hoorah! And these characters value friendship and desire to be normal and good and try to obey their parents, which is an almost non-existant concept in YA literature. Not to say this series is without its cliches, because I assure it is not. Our hero is tormented and naturally, all the more attractive for it. Our average heroine has earned the adoration of everyone around her, though, luckily it is made apparent that this is due to her good, sassy nature and not because she is really super attractive to everyone but herself. And the heroines are way to clever with their humor which made it loose its intended effect, but somehow, I was able to overlook these things and really settle in with this series. The concept intrigued me, and I'm not going to lie...I like this Jared Lynburn.
In short, I suggest this series to anyone wanting to read a decent paranormal tale that has its fair share of swoon. But be warned, its frustrating as hell!(less)