This book set off all the pleasure sensors in my head! I laughed, cried, cheered and rejoiced! It left me satisfied and yet excited for the spin off s...moreThis book set off all the pleasure sensors in my head! I laughed, cried, cheered and rejoiced! It left me satisfied and yet excited for the spin off series to come.
Belly loves Conrad. That is a truth that everyone in her life knows. He's the boy she has loved since she was a...moreThis is a review of the whole trilogy.
Belly loves Conrad. That is a truth that everyone in her life knows. He's the boy she has loved since she was a little girl and she spent her summers with his family at Cousins beach. Through out the trilogy we see how a crush, turns to attraction, turns to hatred and turns to an understanding that only comes when two people who know each other well, mature. Add to that Jeremiah, Conrad's little brother who has always loved Belly and you get drama wrapped in a YA love triangle.
I read THE SUMMER I TURNED PRETTY and thought it was simplistic, and formulaic, but not bad. I was invested, I liked Belly and both Conrad and Jeremiah had moments of being the kind of guys my teenage self would have loved. It was good. Then I started reading IT'S NOT SUMMER WITHOUT YOU and slowly it all began to go wrong. The characters began to show themselves as as shallow and one note. They weren't characters, they were props. The author wanted certain storylines to happen and cared very little for continuity. Jenny Han did not stick to what she wrote in the first book. Still, I got through it. In fact, I thought that Jenny Han did a very good job with actually making a love triangle complex. I very easily understood how Belly could be caught between two brothers and how two brothers could be into the same girl. We follow these characters from childhood into young adulthood. You see them bond, fight, mature and age.
Then I got to the finale...WE'LL ALWAYS HAVE SUMMER. I have never cried because I hated a book, but at the end of this book I cried. I have never read a more shallow, ridiculous, or 1 dimensional story in my life. I will happily read Twilight and Fifty Shades again and again to avoid this series. Because, at least the characters in those series while horrible were consistent.
Characterization was so weak. Jeremiah and Conrad's character flipped and flopped with whatever plot point Han was pushing. And her plot points, were cliche and formulaic. To the point that I knew within twenty pages what would happen at the end. So obvious in its simplistic manipulation.
The fact that Belly's voice did not mature from five to nineteen is preposterous. The fact that her thoughts are identical from childhood to college age is ridiculous. This writer has no range, she has no understanding of evolution or development.
At no point is Belly's relationship with these guys real. I kept waiting for it. Waiting for the moment when they grew up and I felt their relationships move into true romantic love. They do not have a single scene in this story where I believed they were in love.
What is love? Is realizing your childhood friend is pretty cuz she's in a pretty dress? Is it being the girl that their mother loved? Is it being in constant close proximity? Cuz that is what this author is telling her readers. There is not a single real conversation where we saw how they meshed, how they agreed or disagreed, how their minds appealed to each other. No, it's all stupid stories about the time they were five and Conrad took care of a dog and cried or that time Jeremiah stuck with Belly when she was sick..what the fuck? That was ok for bookS 1 and 2, but book 3 when marriage, and maturity are in play, the same stories and tricks?! I should have known it would be superficial when the book was titled the summer I turned pretty.
MORE! Why do authors of books like this make it seem that romantic love is more important than family bonds. The actions of the brothers in this book are incomprehensible. It blows my mind.
The ending is fluffy and ridiculous. We waste so much time reading about these characters over so many years, but never see them heal or evolve. We don't even get to see the end game couple get together! Literally it's a book of angst and then a two page epilogue of happily ever after that is not explained, or described or given any form of context. It's absurd and upsetting.
I wondered the other day why John Green still dominates the best sellers list and this book told me why. It's because when Hazel falls in love with Augustus we know it and not just because she tells us in narration, but because it's a feeling clearly expressed through the pages. They connect on a deeper level and you just get it.
I DO NOT RECOMMEND.
The deterioration of Jeremiah's character is unforgivable. All of a sudden Jeremy is dirty, selfish, clueless, a drinker, etc, while Conrad ate healthy, was tidy, etc. Never mind that Jeremiah was the only one to stick with his mom while she was dying, never mind all the stories of the good hearted kid he was and never mind that he dropped everything in book 2 to get his brother back on track.
This story lacked any complexity while the first two books had more range. Also, god Jenny Han hates this character. He is second best to his mother, his father, his brother, Steven, laurel and the girl he loves! To the point where he knows she doesn't love him completely and asks her to marry him anyway. And this is treated as ok. It's ok for this guy to be emotionally abused, cuz look he's a cheater, so his brother can betray him. Also, the fact that Susannah was so amazingly seeing she knew Conrad was destined for Belly, but ignored the fact that Jeremiah would be destroyed in the process is telling of the writers priorities.
The thing about HALF BAD is that it’s not a bad book. It’s well written, the characters are consistent and the story makes sense. The problem is that I did not get a seconds worth of enjoyment out of this book. There is not a single moment of happiness in Nathan’s life. Even when he is doing something of his choosing that brings him pleasure, a cloud of tension and anxiety covers it. It gets monotonous, the fact that nothing good ever happens to this boy.
There’s a strange sense of despair in this book. The strangeness is that the despair was not Nathan’s, but mine. This book pulled this emotional resonance out of me that made me want to crawl inside the pages, into the story and just hold this character in my arms until everything is OK. To me that is power and it makes me understand the insane bidding war that came with this book getting published. It is different from anything else I have read, but I am not sure that makes HALF BAD a good book.
There is a very limited perspective in terms of story telling that I think many readers will find difficult. I know very little about this world. I know that white witches are supposed to be good, but are ruthless, without morals and unforgiving. They are in a secret and covert war with black witches who are solitary and seemingly evil.
As the story progresses we see why Nathan is different and why everyone wants him either dead or on their side, but that’s all I know. Our view of the world is so limited. The audience is left in the dark about everything, but the sorrow that is Nathan’s life. It would have been nice to know about the cruelty of white witches and the insanity of black witches. Which came first? Were the white witches cruel so the black witches went insane? Or is the other way around?
That’s why I couldn’t give it a higher rating. There needs to be a balance, good and bad. Despite the title, claiming half, this book is filled with one heartbreaking, anger induced situation after rage building despair covered situation. There is no moment to breath, to decompress or to settle into situations. Things get bad and then they get worse right before it gets horrifying.
This book is absolutely draining to read and for me, that’s a negative. Unless it’s a nonfiction book about a persons actual life I expect to see range from the books I read. I expect highs and lows. All I did was cry, or be close to tears or rage when reading this book. This was intense, began to dread picking it up, because I didn’t want to fall back into depression.
I just don’t get what Ms. Green expected us to get out of this book, it’s not entertainment. Is this book meant to be a torture? Should we be thanking our lucky stars that we are not Nathan? As you can see, I had a very visceral reaction this book, which perhaps makes it amazing.
It’s a great premise, but the execution is not for me. It’s harsh and vivid. The injustice of it all sat on my chest like a hot plate. I cared about Nathan, I truly did. He’s the kind of character every writer wants to accomplish brining to life. He is reflective without being whiney, he is brave without being egotistical and he’s a survivor. Nathan has a desire to live which burns bright in him like a flame. Others would have given up and taken their lives, but Nathan is passionate. He will survive no matter what. That’s amazing.
Still, Nathan’s passion is not enough to make me ever want to read this book again. It is just too depressing.
So, I will not be finishing this. I literally cannot take the B.S.
This author is not only perpetrating the idea that abusive, obsessive, insane men ar...moreSo, I will not be finishing this. I literally cannot take the B.S.
This author is not only perpetrating the idea that abusive, obsessive, insane men are hot, but she also backtracked, rewrote and twisted every aspect of what made the first book in this series interesting.
I am so sickened by the twist of "Warner is not that bad" that I really could care less about the rest of the plot. This is just overpowered by the sick, sick love triangle.
Warner abused and tortured Juliette... That is it. End of story, his "intentions" mean nothing in comparison to his actions.
I really can't ever read anything by this author ever again, because she is writing books for teens that send dangerous and disgusting messages. I'm done. (less)
I guess the point of this is to humanize Warner, but he's a sociopath and a psychopath. It sucks that his father is soooo horrible, but it makes him a...moreI guess the point of this is to humanize Warner, but he's a sociopath and a psychopath. It sucks that his father is soooo horrible, but it makes him a good character not a good hero. He is pretty awful person. So what if he has a good quality or two? He's my fave character in Shatter Me, because I love a good villain, but as anything else? Not so much. (less)
I enjoyed this book, a lot, but I need to be 100% clear on something... No sob story, no abusive parent, no isolated past ever makes it ok to be a kil...moreI enjoyed this book, a lot, but I need to be 100% clear on something... No sob story, no abusive parent, no isolated past ever makes it ok to be a killer, to be wicked, to hurt people and I really really wish that people who write books stopped making bad guys into misunderstood heroes.
Warner is obsessed with Juliette the way I imagine stalkers and serial killers are obsessed with their pray. It horrifies me that people root for this sickness to succeed.
I know it's just a book, but Warner held her against her will, forced her to hurt people, ignored her privacy,tortured Adam and is focused on her in the most unhealthy way imaginable. This is romance? This is love? He does not love Juliette. He is obsessed with her. This is sick and it's horrible that the author has written this for teenage girls. Are we really telling 16 year olds that it's ok for an abusive, possessive, violent guy to be in your life cuz he loves you?!!!! Get it together world. Get it together!(less)
This book lacks any kind of depth, meat or substance. Or, maybe it's just too immature for my tastes?
It really is just typical, formulaic and boring. It also takes some elements of Pride & Prejudice, where the guy says something mean about not wanting to dance with the girl and of course misunderstandings and pride-filled angry events ensue. There really isn't much to commend this book.
Abbey is the kind of heroine that only thinks about the hero. Literally, even before she starts to like him every other thought is Jason. I honestly cannot abide this kind of heroine. She's the lead in the play, but cannot enjoy it, because Jason is the other lead. She plays the violin, but it's seriously just a sort of drop in to give her some character, but is never really utilized, but oh guess what? Jason's an awesome bass player. Never mind that Abbey has been playing her instrument since the 4th grade and Jason just picked up the bass for "fun" a year before.
It's these kinds of set ups that really hurt books like NEVER TOO LATE. Where the guy is this shining god of perfection and the girl's job is to look up at him with bright and shiny eyes and sigh dreamily. Never mind the fact that Abbey has a best friend whose only purpose is to be the obstacle in Abbey's way to getting the guy. It's supposed to be like "I'm conflicted, because my BFF likes you too," but there is no conflict, because if Abbey and Olivia are best friends there is no real sign of it. Their relationship is just like that kid you sit with at lunch, because you don't know anyone else at school.
I can't even say very much good for this book besides that it is a very short read. Read it in about three hours. That unfortunately does not improve the fact that the tension is juvenile, the dialogue is the complete opposite of authentic. Point me to the person who speaks like these characters, never mind teenagers!
When people sit to write these books, do they even talk or listen to teenagers or do they just throw words together and say to themselves "this is legit?"
Prince of Shadows will do one thing for every single person that reads it…clarify how annoying it must be to be related to Romeo Montague. I thought about it a few times in high school while reading about light through yonder windows breaking, but honestly the kid was annoying. Unfortunate for his older cousin Benvolio who he has been cursed with the task to keep the young swain under control. Can you imagine how difficult a task to keep the romantic, brave, fool hardy and young Romeo under control? A herculean and I think we are all aware impossible task.
I found the prologue of this book to be one of the best I have ever read in YA. Benvolio as this secret thief the prince of shadows really pulled me in. Also, the idea of the two often forgotten and completely overshadowed cousins of Juliet and her Romeo falling in love and finally taking the spotlight, seemed amazing. But, the story quickly becomes about Romeo. Not always, but he’s this shining beacon in the background, always overshadowing and overtaking Benvolio and his fledgling romance. I found the legendarily romantic youth to be unbearable. Which made reading sections of this book unbearable.
Also, while the idea has merit and lots of people will enjoy it, the idea of a Romeo & Juliet story where Romeo & Juliet are not the main couple seemed a bit over the top. Benvolio spends a good chunk of the time warning Romeo of the folly of loving a Capulet only to succumb to the same ill fated kind of love. No, the irony is not lost on me, but still… didn’t do it for me.
I read this book just to get an outside POV of what the other characters thought after the double suicide that is the most tragic love story ever written. I am pleased to say that there is quite a bit of story after the lovers are discovered in their final embrace.
It’s action packed, filled with romance and has a new take on legendary characters (although once a jerk always a jerk in the case of Tybalt). Still, not enough to satisfy me. I am a Shakespeare fan, but have never been fond the story of two teenagers killing themselves for love. For me it’s always about the beautiful writing. And while Ms. Caine is talented she is no Shakespeare.(less)
I do this really dangerous thing. I request review copies of books with interesting summaries from authors I have never heard of and then I forget about it. I get an email that says “you were approved for this book.” I often have no memory of what the book is or what it’s about, but I know that something about it caught my attention…so I read it. Without reading the synopsis. I go in completely blind. Sometimes, it’s a huge mistake. After 50 or so pages, I rush to Goodreads to read the synopsis and figure out whether or not it was a mistake. But sometimes, like with CHARM & STRANGE, INSOMNIA an THESE BROKEN STARS, it’s not a mistake, but a gift.
HEART BEAT was a gift. A gift from myself two months ago when I requested an ARC of it. I opened this book without any idea what to expect. And what I got was a truly heartbreaking and yet beautiful story about loss, forgiveness, hard decisions and first loves.
Emma’s life was destroyed when her pregnant mother reached for toast and fell into a coma. More than a coma, Emma’s mom is brain dead. Gone and absent from a body that no longer has a soul, but still has a functioning heartbeat. Why is Emma’s mom kept alive by tubes, machines and nurses that turn her body over to prevent bed sores? The baby growing inside her.
This is an extremely tense and controversial subject. Especially, to Emma. She hates seeing her mother’s empty body and hates that she had no say in the matter. She is unable to imagine a life with a baby brother who will never know their mother and who forced Emma to see their mom’s body empty for at least 30 more days. It’s intense, because what Emma’s stepfather, Dan, decides is probably the most obvious thing. The mother may be basically dead, but if keeping her heart beating will keep their son alive, shouldn’t he do it? I think so, but that doesn’t make the choice anymore heart wrenching for the people who have to live with the aftermath of the choice.
Emma spends a lot of this book torn between rage and soul crushing grief. Grief, because her mother is dead and rage, because seeing her in a hospital everyday makes moving on and letting go impossible.
Truth time, I cried constantly during this book. I couldn’t help myself. I just cried so much, because the writing is so beautiful and the emotions so authentic. It was almost like reading a teenage girl’s diary. I couldn’t imagine having to live with the loss and anger that this character deals with every day. She is torn up inside and cannot even look at her stepfather and has nowhere to focus her feelings. She gives up on school even though she was on track to be valedictorian. She gives up on friends, except for her loyal bff Olivia. The world just seems to freeze in place.
Until she has an awkward run in with Caleb. Her schools resident bad boy stoner. Caleb has a history of stealing vehicles and crashing them. The kind of guy that Emma would never look at twice before her mother died. But in one instant, after seeing Emma with her mother, Caleb understands. He understands living with someone who is dead, but whose presence still lingers.
Through their mutual heart ache and loss these two characters bond. They go from being alone at sea to being each others life rafts. Suddenly, they can see the shore. Can see hope. They know that they can be happy again. But, is it enough? Do they only care for each other, because of their loss or is it real? What’s great about this book is that after the end of it, I don’t need to believe they’ll be together forever. I know that what they had helped them through difficult times and that knowing each other made them better. That’s all I need to know. I am glad that the author didn’t try writing an epic forever love, because how realistic is that?
I would compare this story to something like THE FAULT IN OUR STARS. It’s completely different, the writing style is not at all similar and yet both books have that beautiful sadness. Love in the midst of sorrow. The kind of books that remind us that sometimes being a kid isn’t easy and sometimes you have to grow up and find your independence in the saddest of ways.
Emma’s journey is emotional, because she’s right as often as she’s wrong. She’s logical as often as she is illogical. It’s real, because that’s how we all are. Sometimes our mind guides us and sometimes our hearts lead us astray. In this book you get both sides of a horrible situation. You get why Emma is so damn angry at Dan and you see how Dan is as lost at sea and as broken as she is.
I can see that this book wont be for everyone. Emma is angry and does selfish and often rude things, but I believed her. I believed her actions and emotions to be real. I’m also one of those people who doesn’t believe a heroine has to be lily white and sacrificial to be likable. So, check this book out.
Prepare for tears, but know that it’s worth it. This is a great book.
Recommended for fans of THE FAULT IN OUR STARS and CHARM & STRANGE, not because they have similar themes, but because they have dark, sorrowful and intelligent storytelling(less)
From page one it is clear that THESE BROKEN STARS has amazing things going for it, the first thing being ORIGINALITY. Honestly, I was in awe with how unique this book is. It’s YA, it’s a “Romeo & Juliet” story and it is unlike anything I have ever read in this genre. It is smart, intense, horrifying, heartbreaking and spellbinding. I read this book as if under a spell. It pulled me in and literally did not let me go until the final page.
Lilac LaRoux is untouchable, literally. As the daughter of the richest and most powerful man in the universe, touching Miss LaRoux in any way would be a mistake. Which is why Lilac turns the attractive Major Tarver Merendsen away. It’s mean, it’s brutal and it’s necessary. It’s also unfortunate as Tarver is the one to get Lilac to an escape pod just as their space liner called the Icarus goes down for the count.
Sounds action packed and filled with drama? Well, that is only the beginning. From there THESE BROKEN STARS is a roller coaster of emotions, events and twists. This book goes places I never imagined. It’s cerebral and filled with psychological landmines.
What I love is how amazingly realistic the character development of this book is. When you hear about a sci-fi about teens stranded on a planet you don’t think “real,” but it is. The slow deterioration of their circumstances, compiled with Lilac and Tarver’s mental states is amazing. The writers do a great job really showcasing each character’s strengths and weaknesses. Lilac and Tarver come from completely different worlds with completely different experiences and it was a real treat to see how each of their backgrounds both helped and hindered their journey.
In the midst of it all are small snippets of dialogue between Tarver and an unknown interviewer. This interview is supposed to be a debriefing of all that Tarver saw on this strange planet, but it soon becomes clear that it is so much more. It’s amazing reading his flippant, sarcastic answers in this yet to be explained interrogation, but knowing the truth of the heartbreaking and exhilarating journey he went through with Lilac.
I love the twists in this book. It goes from a story about two people stranded on a strange planet and then starts world-building. We begin to understand the world of the future. A world where the human race has spread out among the stars and technology has made it possible for us to not only live on foreign planets, but also build everything about it from the ground up. That includes, vegetation, animals, etc.
As Tarver and Lilac search for a way off the planet, for other survivors and just signs of life beyond each other, the world of this new series comes into view. World-building this intricate and intimate is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. We don’t have to go into their greatest city or smallest town to get an idea of the differences between class, or how technology has advanced. Because it’s all there. Just with the interaction and discoveries of these two young adults.
Lastly, there is the romance. It’s a slow burn. We know from the start that these two characters are attracted to each other, but it seems that circumstances will keep them apart. When they crash land, they are strangers. They know of each other, but don’t actually know each other. With every new circumstance and every trial, Lilac and Tarver slowly reveal aspects of their personalities that quickly bonds them. Tarver is steadfast, Lilac is strong and they simply cannot deny the chemistry that burns between them as they lean on each other for survival. The romance isn’t cliche or formulaic and soon they find themselves in situations that are impossible and their love is tested in unfathomable ways.
I loved this book. I enjoyed every second and was just blown away by it.
I highly recommend it for fans of YA fiction and Sci-Fi.
Review copy provided by Disney Hyperion and Netgalley.(less)
I am not a fan of stories like ALICE IN WONDERLAND. You know, “let’s fall down the rabbit hole to a dangerous and wonderful place …and oh! A strange, but interesting creature that’s here to help or harm us for absolutely no reason!” Those kinds of stories. The IRON FEY series is like that and now it’s spin-off series has a similar vein. The difference between Alice and Ethan Chase is that I care about him beyond the fact that something weird happens to him. He’s a kid who has been dragged into the faery world and they will not let him go. No matter where he turns, Fae are always there to force him into chaos.
I enjoyed most of this book, I did, but the glaring lack of character conviction and the blatant manipulation by the author makes it impossible for me to give it a high rating. There is no real true heart or emotion in this book. It’s all talk and because it’s all talk I have an issue with the ending. Characters make huge choices. End of the world, war between all fey, kind of choices and I don’t believe it. They do it for love, but none of the relationships feel genuine to me. It’s all author desires and no true evidence on the page. Kagawa tells us they are in love, but never shows us and the showing is what gives us emotional entanglements to story and character.
My biggest issue with IRON TRAITOR is that the female characters are there as a beacon for the real characters to focus their love and are useless beyond that. I call Ethan, Keirran, and even Mr. Chase “real,” because they are well rounded characters who have clear desires, motivations and their presence has a real influence on the plot. The girls on the other hand are there to give their male counter parts heart. Annwyl is weak and pathetic, admittedly she has a reason in this book, but she was the same in THE LOST PRINCE. She is always a step behind in figuring out what’s happening and she is constantly overly grateful for the fact that people care about her. Keirran’s every step is to save her and she claims to care, but she neither fights for her life or relinquishes it to save Keirran from ruining his life in his desire to save her.
Kenzie is a formulaic ‘I am woman’ character who always stomps her foot in feminist rage when Ethan wants her to stay home, but contributes nothing for 90% of the book. Literally, Kenzie has a scene in the beginning where she successfully negotiates with the Fey, but spends the rest of the book hiding behind rocks or getting Ethan injured in his role as her protector. Ethan comes out the romantic hero in his vow to step in front of a dragon to save Kenzie, while she is the annoying busy body who is risking both their lives just so she can say it was her choice. Add to that Ethan’s mom who comes off as an irrational child of a parent while her husband is not only rational, but also understanding with a dash of support and you have a book with useless females.
It’s amazing to me that the woman who created the awesome Allison Sekemoto, created these women. It was almost like writing a book from a close minded male.
Kagawa’s relationships would be more interesting if she actually gave us love stories. In all three of her series, characters are in “love,” but I don’t buy it. Keirran is willing to burn the world to save Annwyl, but they are barely together and he never checks in on her, so it’s hard to actually believe their love. Ethan loves Kenzie, but there is not a lick of chemistry between them that would make me believe that they are not best friends. They are not in love, in my opinion and it’s difficult for me to understand why the author is trying so hard to make it a love match.
One last complaint about Kenzie. I think she is one of the most horrible characters I have ever read. Not only is she useless, she is selfish and a fool. She’s a fool, because she is always giving her opinions and advising Ethan when she has no idea what she is talking about. She doesn’t have the experience to back up anything she says. Like, at all. She uses the fact that Ethan has been so isolated and lonely to her advantage. She’ll be like “this is what a good friend does” and because he thinks he loves her and has no experience with it, he believes her. She is partially to blame for the explosive cliffhanger of an ending.
And the cliffhanger is explosive. It’s also infuriating and confusing, because I do not know where the rest of the series is going. Or how it will make sense.
If you love the Iron Fey series you will enjoy this book and be heart sick at the end.(less)
I did not finish the IRON FEY series. I found Meghan and Ash to be excruciating and just couldn’t get myself to the finish line, but I liked the world of the series. The idea that the Fey evolved, because people and our dreams evolved, is brilliant. We started dreaming about computers, iPhones and Tumblr blogs, so Fey were created by those dreams. Amazing. I’ve always thought so and because of my love of Julie Kagawa’s world building, I was excited to jump back into that world without the anchor of the selfish and excruciating Meghan Chase.
Ethan Chase is not his sister. He is not half Fey and to be clear Ethan Chase hates the Fey. All his life he’s been tormented, harassed and even kidnapped by the Fey. The cute little kid that we rooted for Meghan to save was rescued from the Nevernever, but he was never saved. This is an important distinction that Ethan haters seem incapable of grasping. Ethan may live in his house with his parents, but the Fey are still there. Everyday, taunting him and messing in his life. He has a reputation for being a hoodlum, because he gets blamed for Fey mischief. This kid is not happy, he’s not stable and he has no one to talk to. It’s actually quite sad to see someone live a life that he cannot escape. It’s not like his problems are alcoholic parents that he can leave when he is 18. No, Ethan will always see the Fey, I wonder how he is going to survive to adulthood with his special sight.
It’s clear to see why he hates the Fey, but he is not completely callous. When a halfbreed classmate disappears, Ethan doesn’t keep his head down and pretend it’s not happening. He investigates, he brings attention to himself and he is pulled deeper into the Fey world.
I really enjoyed this book. It’s fun and filled with twists and turns. It’s rather predictable as I saw some of the twists coming, but it didn’t matter. In my opinion, this book falls apart at the end. It’s fixable, which is why I am reading the sequel, but the end seemed rush and didn’t make a lot of sense to me. Characters make choices that seem completely out of character and romances bloom out of thin air. I didn’t love the ending, but I think IRON TRAITOR, the sequel, was well set up.
Despite reports that Ethan is annoying I found him to be authentic. He is not happy and I am glad that he never pretends to be. Life has thrown this kid lemons and he has made a bitter lemonade. He gets what needs to be done, but that doesn’t mean he’s happy about it. And that’s why he’s a great hero. Everything he does goes against his desires and instincts, but he does it, because its the right thing to do.
Recommended for fans of The Iron Fey and readers of YA adventure novels with male main characters.
It’s finally time for Gwen Frost to take her last stand against Loki, the evil Norse god that has been trying to regain his power. This war has taken her mother, friends and came close to losing her life at the hands of her boyfriend, who Loki possessed. As Nike’s champion Gwen knows it’s her job to kill Loki, but she doesn’t know how. When she receives word that Loki and his reapers are after a specific ancient artifact, Gwen knows she has to stop them and hopefully find a way to destroy her enemies once and for all.
When this series started, I couldn’t put it down. It wasn’t the best and had elements taken from Vampire Academy, but Mythos Academy was fun and entertaining. Then it hit the middle and lost its stride. Like a bad yo-yo, the series began to tangle and eventually it went limp. Between Mythos and the Gin Blanco series, it’s become pretty clear that Jennifer Estep cannot sustain series with multiple installments. Both of these series start strong, but eventually fall flat.
KILLER FROST is the final book in this series and honestly it’s a relief. Mythos Academy is action packed, and entertaining, but you can read the good guys being incompetent but so many times. Seriously, every plan they come up with leads to a trap and explodes in their face. I have never read of important artifacts being so well and foolishly protected as in this series. Every twist and every move of the bad guys are obvious, because as a reader I know that Gwen and team can not be trusted to keep it together.
Whenever the good guys win a battle in this series it’s not because of skill or stratagem, it’s because Gwen comes up with some last minute reckless scheme in the heat of battle and it works…every single time! By book 6, this series was so formulaic I basically I wrote the ending.
I often roll my eyes in YA when there are no adults around, but Mythos makes it clear how ridiculous it is to read seasoned warriors telling 16 year olds that the world is in their hands. Except for Harry Potter, but let’s face it that guy had Ron Weasley and Hermione freaking Granger by hifs side.
It was fun, but I was ready to quit Mythos Academy. Too bad it couldn’t sustain the fun.(less)
Skulk is original. I'll give it that. It has a heroine who is a slightly overweight graffiti artist from England with parents who are abusive...more2.5 Stars
Skulk is original. I'll give it that. It has a heroine who is a slightly overweight graffiti artist from England with parents who are abusive and absent in completely different ways than the average YA. SKULK is also an utterly unique view on shape shifter. No wolves, Lions or panthers here. Nope, these shifters are foxes, crows and spiders. Yes! SPIDERS of all things.
Unfortunately, this was not enough to keep me interested. After the initial novelty of it all I quickly become numb to the style. A good chunk of this book is people finding Meg or running into her randomly and imparting vital information. There were times where someone would appear and it was just too contrived.
Contrived is the word that best describes this book for me. Nothing felt organic. Things didn't seem to happen, because that is the way things should unfold in the world that the author sets up. It feels like it's happening just because. The author wants Meg to bump into a fox on her first night of transition, so she does. It doesn't matter if it seems a bit convenient or a little too lucky that he would just happen to be there.
That's how this book plays out. Everyone just happens to be there. The Spider just happens to know that Meg is a member of the Skulk and so he should follow her, etc etc. No real explanations, no real attempt to have the story flow naturally.
This book was not for me. I really give the author a lot of praise for giving us a truly unique look at shifters, the story in itself just doesn't work for me. (less)
Weird, weird, weird. Found it difficult and interesting, horrible and amazing all at once. I wanted to put it away, but couldn't wait to get to the en...moreWeird, weird, weird. Found it difficult and interesting, horrible and amazing all at once. I wanted to put it away, but couldn't wait to get to the end. It's a thing I guess.
I already know what negative reviews of this book will say. They will say they’ve read this story before and that it’s not unique and I am going to say…whatever. Not a very strong argument, I know, but I enjoyed this book. When I opened Sophie Jordan’s FOREPLAY, I was really stressed out. It was 48 hours before an intense deadline and I needed a break. I tried other books, but I could not get into them. FOREPLAY pulled me in right away. Why? Because I understood Pepper more than I have understood a character in a long time.
Pepper is a girl who has made up her mind. In fact, her mind has been made up most of her life. She loves Hunter Montgomery. In fact, she loves Hunter so much that no other guy exists. She has spent her life in love with an idea and a hope. She is so focused that she allowed relationships, experience and most of the years regulated to being wild, to pass her by. When Hunter is suddenly available, Pepper freaks out. She doesn’t have the experience of other girls her age and the last thing she wants to do is turn off her dream guy with her lack of ability. Enter Reece, the hot bartender with the even hotter reputation. The hot bartender from the local bar may not be the one, but he is definitely the one to train Pepper in the art of Foreplay.
FOREPLAY is one of the most emotional books I have read this year, because it is subtle. I say subtle, because I did not cry, but I felt Pepper’s journey. I know what it is to have a tough life and pull yourself up by your bootstraps. I know what it feels like to see a life that you want and work endlessly until you have that life. For Pepper, that life is family dinners, vacations to Disney world and Hunter Montgomery.
What’s great about this book is that you think you know how it’s going to end. If you have seen enough movies or TV you know that the guy being used, becomes the guy. The issue with FOREPLAY is you understand that he may not and you get why. Pepper’s reasons for being attracted to both Reece and Hunter are very real. They are both perfect, charming and handsome in their own ways.
With all that, I can’t really call this story a love triangle, because from the very start one of these guys never stood a chance. It becomes pretty clear early on who Pepper’s true love is and it is really just waiting for her to get the guy.
So yes, FOREPLAY has elements we have seen before. Many heroines have had pretend boyfriends and many heroines have used a guy to grab the attention of another, but none of those Heroines learned the art of Foreplay from Reece. He may not be the one for her, but Reece is HOT! So, so, very HOT. Their scenes roll of the page with literal steam. Reading this book you understand sexual attraction. You understand what it is to look across the room and see someone you want. Reece sets a fire to Pepper that she didn’t know she was capable of.
FOREPLAY is funny, it’s awkward, sexy, romantic and filled with drama. There’s a moment so stressful, that I screamed and threw my nook across the room to get away from it. Honestly, it is that well written and executed. Just great. Absolutely fantastic.
Recommended for fans of Easy, A Song for Julia and Slammed.
In reviews for book 1 in the Bloodlines series, fans of Vampire Academy expressed disappointment with how different the book was. They especially expr...moreIn reviews for book 1 in the Bloodlines series, fans of Vampire Academy expressed disappointment with how different the book was. They especially expressed disappointment that Sydney Sage was not more like Rose Hathaway. I say, thank God that Sydney is not Rose, because as awesome and fierce as Ms. Hathaway is, she would not have survived Silver Shadows.
Sydney ascends in this installment. She is an honest to god heroine. And not just because she is the female lead in this series. No, Sydney is a fighter and more importantly she is a survivor. No matter what she faces, no matter what the Alchemist throw at her, Sydney refuses to be broken.
Don’t misunderstand, there are moments of despair. Moments where she is bent and twisted up in fear and doubt and heartache. But, though she bends, Sydney does not break. As heartbreaking and anger inducing as this book can be, it’s enjoyable to be in the head of Sydney Sage.
Unfortunately, Adrian breaks. He’s actually the reason that this is a 4 star review and not a 5 star. He is the weak link. Yes, he redeems himself and by the end he stands tall and fights, but I am having a hard time forgiving him for breaking. I know that he has spirit. I know that it torments him and that he struggles with depression, but he doesn’t try. For a good chunk of the first half of the book he simply gives up.
And part of me gets it. It’s months later. He has been struggling and trying and failing. The problem is that the struggling and trying happens before the start of the book. This is a failing of this books early structure. We see Sydney fighting so hard to keep herself and her love alive and then we see Adrian, moping. Just when I was so sick of his attitude and behavior, the damn broke and he found his resolve again.
I was not always an Adrian fan. The “romance” between Rose and Adrian was nonexistent to me. I felt that their “relationship” was creepy and that he forced her into a commitment that no one could possibly believe she could keep. So, my love for Adrian in this series was a surprise, but Richelle Mead evolved, changed and morphed Adrian into a man and a romantic lead that I could get behind. Which is why his behavior is so incredibly frustrating. He backtracks and reverts and I found myself unable to have sympathy for him not while Sydney is going through hell.
I compare it, in a way, to army spouses. Do they suffer? Yes. Oh yes, it is hell to raise children alone or to just be on your own when someone you love is gone and in constant danger. But when that soldier comes back, their husband or wife or partner, has kept home and hearth ready and waiting. The people left behind do their best to keep it together so that when that soldier gets in touch they get strength. Adrian doesn’t do this. In my opinion he falls apart.
This is a book that, for the most part, does not stop. Despair is replaced by hope which is stomped on by pain and then turns to joy. Silver Shadows took me all around the emotional world. I was terrified and angry one moment, laughing one moment and cheering the next. And all the while I was on the edge of my seat, because the Alchemists are a worthy opponent. They are not just one person, they are an organization with money and more a zealous belief that vampires are evil.
The Alchemists are everywhere and they will do anything…ANYTHING to be on top. To control everyone under their charge and destroy anyone who gets in their way. Terrifying really, because they are so cold, so calculating and really they are extremely evil.
We meet new people in Silver Shadows and it’s interesting to see the lengths in which the Alchemists go to keep their people in line. We also get to see Marcus Finch prove himself. Until this book, I found him to be incredibly disappointing. Seeing the team work to find Sydney was actually a lot of fun. Enemies become allies and all their resources and magic are thrown into rescuing Sydney. And still, it might not be enough. That’s how tough the Alchemists are. They may just be unbeatable. Adrian may never find Sydney. Marcus may just get caught.
Then there is the EXPLOSIVE final act. Where the entire world basically explodes and Sydney and Adrian make a leap from which their is no return. The kind of ending that literally has me chomping at the bit for the The Ruby Circle, the next and I’m sad to say, final book. Because, something huge is coming and I have no idea how Sydrian will weather the storm. But, I am excited to read every moment of it.
This book is action and magic packed. It is romantic, torturous and filled with familiar faces. I recommend it highly.(less)
The idea is fine, but there is something about the writing that doesn't quite work. Lots of failed opportunities for amazing storytelling. Like when T...moreThe idea is fine, but there is something about the writing that doesn't quite work. Lots of failed opportunities for amazing storytelling. Like when Thomas gets some of us his memories back! Whoa, he's unconscious for three days. That was the time to take us back in time, show us the world and give the reader and idea of what's happening. We could have met the villains, or something. Instead he's like, " i felt nothing and then i woke up." And then through dialogue we learn vague information...
This is ok. I think the movie will be better than the book. It just seems cinematic in the way that it's very visual and there's not enough of Thomas' inner thoughts or feelings that we'll miss it. Also, Dillon O'Brein will bring personality to the character that is just missing in the book.
Yup. I wish I would have just waited for the movie. (less)
I did not like this book. Didn't like the book, didn't like the main character. This is one of these books that is supposed to be written for gay yout...moreI did not like this book. Didn't like the book, didn't like the main character. This is one of these books that is supposed to be written for gay youths, but is actually written for gullible straight adult. There is no other reason, that I can see, why Will is written the way he is.
Will is a newly out of the closet gay teenager. His parents are trying to understand, but they try a little too hard and Will doesn't believe their acceptance. His best friend has no idea how to relate to him and the only other gay teen in town is a little too over the top for Will's liking. He feels completely alone and worst he thinks that no one will ever like him. He dreams of going off to the big city and immersing himself in the gay society found there. This dream leads to him joining the more PG dating site and meeting up with a more worldlier gay man.
That's all fine. Here's the thing, Will sucks as a person. He thinks that he is the only one with issues. Judges others and refuses to accept when people accept him. The amount of times that he thought "do you have to be so obvious?" about the other gay teenager at his school made me want to slap him. When it comes down to it, Will's transition from in the closet to out is seamless. His parents don't quite know how to relate, but they are trying, his best friend could care less and the guys at school leave him alone, because they have a better punching bag.
Yet, all Will does is complain. DO NOT GET ME WRONG. It's extremely hard to be a teenager, add being gay or of color in a white bread world and you have even more drama. The issue for me is that Will has the opportunity to have a great support system and he shuns them. He prefers to sulk over trying to be a good person and showing his family and friends the love that they show him.
He's selfish and self absorbed and at no point is he redeemed. He does not change or get hit with a great revaluation. He learns some life altering information about his boyfriend and you would think that he would take some life lesson from that. But he really doesn't. People still have to tell him Will it's not all about you or Will you are not trying. He doesn't wake up and say, oh, no I've been a shit.
I just could not get into this book, because I couldn't get into Will. (less)