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.
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 love Urban Fantasy. Growing up fantasy always happened on faery rings, in Neverland and on the grounds of Hogwarts. I love Urban Fantasy, because I’m from New York and I like seeing my Urban world infused with magic. In fact, that is exactly what Jaye Wells has done with her new series. She infused the nitty gritty of crime, gangs and police investigations with magic.
There’s no more crack, weed, crystal or illegal prescription drugs, in the world of DIRTY MAGIC, people use potions for pain reduction, weight loss and high as a kite highs. It’s actually a really great idea. Instead of selling hard drugs, a life of crime is based off of how strong your potion is and not how good you can cook that blue crystal. Imagine Walter White as a Wizard. That’s Kate Prospero’s world.
Kate’s a simple beat cop with a dirty past. She walks the streets looking for petty crimes and small misdemeanors. On a normal night, on a normal shift, Kate runs into the abnormal. A man so high on potions he has transformed into a creature with a taste for blood. Kate’s altercation with the supped up druggie grabs her the attention of the MEA (Magical Enforcement Agency) and has a her put on a case that brings her dirty past back. Kate comes from a coven family. Her mother was a magical sex worker and her uncle, a wizard king pin. After heartbreaking events that surrounded to her mom’s death and her uncles imprisonment, Kate took her baby brother from that world. She stopped cooking potions and became a cop. Now, her old contacts, enemies and ex-lovers are all suspects behind the new potion Grey Wolf that turns the average human into wolf like murderers.
After ten years of banning magic and treating potions like the plague, Kate is thrown back into the deep end. When her case gets a little bit too close to home, she must decide whether or not she has the ability to use magic without getting addicted to the power.
It took me a bit to get into it, but half way through I just couldn’t put it down. This book is fun, because it seems so real. It’s “Law and Order,” “Bones” and “Fringe” with magic instead of technology and science. The lingo is similar, the criminals just as bad, but instead of violent sociopaths, you have magical mercenaries.
DIRTY Magic is filled with twists, turns, action sequences, frustrating events and heartbreaking collateral damage. Kate is dealing with trouble from all sides. Her kid brother wants to learn magic, because he can’t remember the events that lead to their magic-less existence. Kate’s put on a task force where she is unknown and disrespected. The ex-boyfriend who she left years ago, not because she didn’t love him, but because she had to get out of the life. It’s all thrown in and reading has Kate stumbles through it all is real entertaining. She’s a great heroine. Tough, but vulnerable. BAMF, but not an ice queen. Just the right combination to make her likable and admirable all at once.
This book was good. I am excited to see where the author takes her characters in the next installment that comes out later this year.
Recommended for readers of Urban Fantasy and fans of Kim Harrison, Ilona Andrews and Patricia Briggs. (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)
It’s hard to decide whether or not you enjoy a book when you spend most of the time angry. Like really really angry. Like punch a few people in the face and set their car on fire, angry. That is how Sophie Jordan’s UNINVITED made me feel. Angry.
Davy Hamilton is normal. As normal as a music prodigy who plays lots of instruments and has the voice of an angel can be. She’s on track for the perfect life. The life she’s worked hard for. Which is music, New York and her super attractive boyfriend. That all comes crumbling down of course, when she is revealed to be a carrier of Homicidal Tendency Syndrome.
This is where the anger starts. This girl who had the world at her feet. Moral, talented and a hard worker all of a sudden becomes a devil in everyone’s eyes. And I mean everyone from her parents, to her best friend to that very attractive boyfriend. If it was just them, just the ignorant people in her personal life, I could have gotten through it without rage, but it’s more than that. It’s the government. The U.S government that ostracizes their citizens and the Mexican and Canadian governments who do not test for HTS, but block of their borders to innocent people who try to make a run for it.
That’s what makes this so upsetting. They’re innocent. They’re children and teenagers who have not done anything yet. The world in this book lacks free will and choice. It’s decided that you simply will murder and that’s that. Davy’s life quickly deteriorates. She’s uninvited from school, because expelled is too dirty a word or something, and forced to go to one of the few high schools that accepts carriers.
Here is where we begin to see the injustice of what the world has done to carriers and more we see that not all carriers are like Davy. While Davy is denies and refuses to accept that she could ever be a killer, the others have accepted. Some by simply giving up on the future they had and others by embracing the idea that they are villains. In her new school, Davy is faced with lecherous teachers, potential rapists and situations that an upper middle class girl who spent all her time playing music in a safe bubble is not prepared for.
And Sean. Sean the guy who looks how a you expect a carrier to look, but is loyal and a defender of the weak. I enjoyed Sean’s character and like his scenes with Davy…it was just too perfect. Sean is created simply to swoop in whenever Davy can’t handle things. He’s created, because of course a teenage girl can’t go into a bad situation and simply deal. She needs someone to protect her, someone to connect with, someone to teach her how to fight, someone she can fall in love with and make her world better. Sean is a formula that most books with heroines have. The love interest. The hero. The savior. I feel that this book would have been just as interesting and infuriating if Davy didn’t have to fall in love. If she just met someone who became her best friend forever.
UNINVITED isn’t a bad book by any stretch of the word. It is action packed and the writing is good enough that I read it in a day. I can see this becoming a hit with the YA crowd, because even as it is over the top, it’s deeply engrossing and keeps you glued to the pages. It just pissed me off, so very much!
You’re probably wondering…Naomi, did THE HUNGER GAMES make you this angry? No, but CATCHING FIRE sure as hell did. Naomi, did DIVERGENT make you this angry? No, because I had a hard time buying the world in that series. UNINVITED on the other hand…as over the top and unrealistic as it is…I know that it could happen. I know that if scientists discovered some genetic code in our make up that said we were more likely to commit murder than yup, there would be mayhem. Republicans would scream about the bible, though shalt not kill, etc and forget the whole section on free will.
I enjoyed UNINVITED and I will be reading the next book in the series.
Katie Heaney has never had a boyfriend. Never has she ever. She’s a virgin, she’s inexperienced and she is in her mid 20s. This is the hook of “Never Have I Ever” and it sticks through out the memoir, but it’s about so much more. It’s about a girl, a teenager and now a young woman trying to navigate a world where she seems to be the lone fish in the pond.
Katie (yes, I feel comfortable calling her Katie, because I have basically read her journal and that definitely puts us on a first name standing), outlines her life and how it relates to boys. I don’t think we as women realize how tuned into the opposite sex we are. Our stories from grad school into adulthood and beyond chronicles adventures of getting boyfriends. Really think about it. Really think about it, from Sweet Valley High, to Pride & Prejudice to Eat Pray Love, these books take us on different adventures, and follows females figuring out who and what they are and want to be and ends with them falling in love.
That is what our society has set up for us, so imagine being twenty-five years old and never really falling in love. Never having a long term commitment. Never having sex or any kind of prospect for marriage. What does that make you?
Katie takes us deep into her thoughts through out the years. We get sections of her journals, her funny retelling of her most embarrassing moments and she bravely tells us about the times that she cried. It starts off ridiculous and so true with first crushes on Jonathan Taylor Thomas (right! Didn’t we all love us some JTT?) to the crushes who ignored her and the crushes she ran away from. This first section is charming and adorable, because I think we all remember the days of kindergarten boyfriends, fifth grade loves of our lives and the boys who were more interested in video games than girls, but we were all interested in them.
Then it gets adult, and we see how little Katie understands about the opposite sex and what it takes to gain their favor. I think a lot of us, especially the inexperienced us, have turned our crushes and love interests into false gods. The times we know very little about them and have already built our entire romantic futures and married lives on a single hello or a polite smile.
What I think the true heart of this story is not just Katie and her misadventures with the opposite sex, but her friendships. The book starts with a description of what makes her different from her best friend and as the book progresses, we meet that best friend and we watch that relationship grow. More, we see how normal, happy and legitimately OK you can be without male attention. That while you may seem like a fish out water and while you may wonder “what the hell is wrong with me?” You know that nothing really is.
I picked this up, because like Katie, never have I ever. I wanted to read it, because I was amazed to discover there is someone out in the world who understands what it’s like to be 25 with little to no experience. I read my ARC just as I was turning 25 and Katie Heaney’s sharp wit, adorable retellings and honest vulnerability helped combat the “I’m a freak of nature” depressed feelings on my birthday last week.
Still, I believe this is a book that everyone can enjoy. It’s not just to say to inexperienced girls “you are not alone” or to preach chastity or something to experienced girls. This is just one girls story. And Katie Heaney is funny, smart and so unbelievably honest about things the rest of us would have kept hidden as a dirty little secret. She’s brave and I recommend her book, highly.
ARC Provided by Grand Central Publishing and Netgalley.(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)
Here’s the thing about FINDING IT, it’s funny, entertaining and in moments honest. I really enjoyed Kelsey. I thought she was fun and free. I liked that she was a young woman who liked sex and liked to have a good time. I even liked her interaction with Hunt. I thought they were a fun couple and enjoyed their adventures.
Here’s the other thing about FINDING IT, been there done that. Literally, I don’t want to spoil it for fans of the series, but it’s been done before. Kelsey meets Hunt and sparks fly. I have to admit that their first meeting is hilarious and Hunt is filled with mystery and chemistry. The two characters have chance meetings, longing glances and chemistry. The kind of chemistry that bounces off the walls.
That’s why I gave this book three stars. I loved the opening. Meeting Kelsey and Hunt in Europe and being a fly on the wall as they experience history, architecture and nature, was absolutely stunning.
But there’s a twist, the truth…who exactly is Hunt? The answer is so obvious I wanted slap Kelsey and yell figure it out. I mean, I guess what are the chances, but as an avid reader the chances were high and the twist obvious.
I have not read LOSING IT, but it’s a very popular book and so I expected good things. I expected the author of such a popular book to write unique characters in unique situations…I have to be honest, as much as I liked Kelsey there are aspects of her that weren’t unique. But, the real problem is that Hunt is one of the most formulaic characters of all time… It’s really becoming ridiculous how authors think that all they have to do is tell us that a character was at war. As if every soldier has the same experience and reacts the same way to trauma, warfare, etc.
I wish authors had more respect for our men and women in the armed forces. I really do, because it’s not one size fits all. Everyone isn’t the same. Every experience isn’t the same and “war” cannot be the only answer to why characters have dark pasts.
This book is fun. I recommend it for a lazy weekend.(less)
FIGHTING FOR YOU is a story from another decade. A past decade. A decade where it was OK for a man to assume a woman doesn’t know her own mind. Declan wants Emma and Emma wants Declan, but Declan will not be with Emma, because the girl doesn’t know what she wants. She couldn’t possibly want him, because she’s good and pure and he did a few tours in Afghanistan, so obviously he’s soiled and bad.
Eye roll, my God what world does this author live in? Just because a woman is a virgin doesn’t mean she’s some angelic nun. Just because she’s a virgin doesn’t mean she would allow a man to come into her life on his terms and dictate to her what she does or doesn’t want.
This book just isn’t romantic or hot. It’s outdated. Case in point, the cast of supporting female characters are taken from the pages of “Sex and The City,” Samantha type character included. In 2013, it’s abhorrent to me to consider that all career woman talk about is men. They meet for lunch everyday and just wax lyrically about men. It’s not 1786, we women actually have more going on than men and the hope to get married.
Everything about Declan Stone is cliche and formulaic. The author wanted him to be dark and broody so she sent him to war. Yes, war is violent and scary and many of the men and women in the armed forces come back with PTSD, but this has to stop being the go to cop out for authors. It’s such an easy fix. If the war or the army is not a huge part of your story stop using it as a way to give your character depth. It’s offensive. It’s similar to how easy it is to give characters abusive parents to explain a broken character or making a character get raped to explain a closed off character. It’s being done way too often and is weakening the power of these ordeals in genre fiction. Especially in a book like FIGHTING FOR YOU where it’s formulaic and not a bit authentic.
I honestly couldn’t finish this book in fear that my eyes would get stuck in the back of my head.
Rachel Morgan is at it again! Or, in it again would be more accurate. There’s strange magic at play in the Hollows that is causing magic, spells to backfire and supernaturals to act extremely strangely. The Master Vamps are asleep, the Elf’s are in a religious crisis and our favorite witch turned day-walking demon is in the midst of it all, because the same magic that is being pulled through Cincinnati is coming from Rachel’s personal ley-line.
THE UNDEAD POOL is the best Hollows book we have had in awhile and is without a doubt one of my favorites in the series. It is action packed, funny, filled with those fantasy elements that we all love and to top it off it is romantic. It’s truly amazing how Kim Harrison has been able to keep this series, entertaining and fun for a decade. Usually, I’ve given up by book 12, but not THE HOLLOWS. Never the Hollows, because Kim Harrison keeps me coming back and emotionally entrenched in her characters and in the story.
The story and action in this installment packs a powerful punch, as always. I couldn’t put it down. I had to know who was behind the magic, what it had to do with Rachel’s ley-line. In the midst of all that we get to see how the wild magic effects the vampires, the witches an the shifters. More excitingly, there’s new lore connected to the Elves that we’ve always got a glimpse of, but we finally get to really experience. In THE UNDEAD POOL, we really get to see into Trent’s world. What he’s trying to save and ultimately what he is trying to fight against.
From the moment the cover was revealed fans of the series have been in a tizzy. Why? Trent was on the cover. I picked up the novel with frightful anticipation. After ten years of being enemies then friends, then enemies and friends, it was finally here! Finally, Trent and Rachel were going to be a thing. This could either go one way. This new couple could either destroy the series or make it all the more interesting.
I don’t want to give anything away, but I really want to address the people who have doubts about reading this book, because of rumors or a dislike of Trent. This is not a paranormal romance! This book is as Urban Fantasy as ever. Filled with magic, adventure, fighting and snarky inappropriate comments from one sassy pixy.
There is nothing really wrong with this book, it’s just boring. Boring, because it’s more of the same. The City of Chicago are still bullies, Merit and gang stumble upon yet another magical mystery that only they can solve and nothing much else happens. Lots of series have formulas and monster of the week type formats, but in my opinion Chicagoland suffers for it. There just isn’t much holding me to the series beyond the fact that I love Ethan Sullivan, but even he fell flat for me in WILD THINGS.
We finally learn the meaning behind Gabriel’s infamous prophecy and I kind of guessed it years ago. But! But after years of reading this series, the prophecy seems illogical and against the lore Chloe Neill has spent years setting up. More, Merit has been taken from normal girl to Ms. chosen one, special, first of her kind, McAwesome. Completely against the premise that a grad student becomes a vampire. All of a sudden she’s something more, which isn’t what I signed up for. I’m kind of tired of the “chosen one” angle, no matter how simple or intimate the anomaly is.
Then there is the mystery. I have often felt that Merit and team were weak detectives, and they are, but for some reason the characters in this particular installment seem to think that they are getting better or accomplishing feats, when really they are just bumbling around in the dark. They stumble across leads without any real deductions or investigative prowess. Everything is solved with a single phrase or action. Too easily wrapped up with not enough tension or resolution. In fact, I could care less about the villain.
The ending was intriguing and I’ll no doubt read the next book without such high hopes, but interest non the less.
I am really disappointed and underwhelmed by this book,
Recommended for fans of the Chicagoland Vampires series.
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)
This book starts off a bit choppy. It’s kind of all over the place and spends too much time trying to give past characters cameos. Yes indeed, I do love Ellie, Oh great there’s Jo, wow Joss is there too?! Got it. Lets move on. My biggest issue is that when Liv and Nate start their friends with benefit like relationship, I don’t buy it, because there’s no tension.
These two characters really are just friends in the beginning. There may be a spark of attraction, but I find some of my friends attractive that doesn’t mean I want to spend forever with them. Samantha Young takes her time setting up the tension and once she does the story gets very interesting.
I loved Olivia. She’s charming, witty and authentic. Reading as she comes into her own and gains confidence really was a joy to read. I loved that Olivia was a normal girl. She had curves, self esteem issues and wasn’t drop dead gorgeous the way that many Contemporary Romance heroines.Olivia also has very little experience with men. That’s usually cliche, but I really bought it. I liked Olivia a lot and really identified with her self esteem issues and sexual frustrations.
I’m not a fan of the player falls for the inexperienced girl trope. It’s really annoying and overdone. How many guys do you actually know who sleeps with a different woman that awesome? I know that making a man have experience usually means that they’re hot, but I found Nate’s lifestyle and more Liv’s defense of his lifestyle to be disgusting. He is a womanizer, let’s call a spade a spade. BUT, not even cynical me could fight the charm of this story.
Nate is a lot less intense in comparison to Braden and Cam, but no less manly or romantic. I enjoyed the fact that Nate and Liv were friends first and everything else was secondary.
This is a fun and sometimes heartbreaking read. In classic Samantha Young style, both these characters have demons and ghosts from their pasts. The traumas that unite Olivia and Nate in friendship pulls them away in romance.
It’s really smart stuff. If not for the overdone camesos and the choppy start I would have called this a five star book. Still, a very good read.
Recommended for Contemporary Romance Readers and fans of the On Dublin Street series.(less)
I did not finish this book. I couldn’t, because I am too big of a Jane Austen fan and this is a cross between fan fiction and a historical soapbox. Everything that could have happened to a lower class person in Regency England happens in this book. It’s filled with so many events, it’s melodramatic.
This book did not need to be set in the Bennet household. It could have been any household in any historical time where there was a below stairs, above stairs hierarchy. But, Jo Baker wanted to sell books so she decided to drag Jane Austen into it.
PRIDE & PREJUDICE is my all time favorite book and because of that I never should have picked LONGBOURN up, but my curiosity got the best of me. I figured since it wasn’t a sequel or from the eyes of a beloved character, it might be worth reading. It’s not, at least not to me.
There is just something very disrespectful about this book.PRIDE & PREJUDICE is 200 years old. But the tone of LONGBOURN is very belittling. The Bennet family has existed for two centuries and in my opinion Jo Baker does not get them. It’s almost as if the author wanted to bring the Bennet’s low. Is PRIDE & PREJUDICE a 100% view of England 200 years ago? No, absolutely not. But it does point at a society where women were unprotected and life without a good marriage was filled with poverty and emptiness and a reputation was all a girl had to recommend herself. Does that make the lives of the upper & middle classes more important than the lives of the lower class? Absolutely not. Was Elizabeth’s marriage to Mr. Darcy more important than the lives of the men who died on battlefields? Absolutely not. But that doesn’t make the lives of women like Elizabeth Bennet any less important. I felt that Jo Baker’s book was set up to make the problems of the Bennet family seem silly and frivolous.
I am sure that the sometimes silly and inappropriate behaviors of the Bennet family could make them discourteous or even disrespectful to their servants, but Jo Bakers take does not feel like an Austentale.
Almost nothing from the PRIDE & PREJUDICE plot has any real bearings on the tale of LONBOURN which brings me back to my original idea. Servants standing in the rain would have happened when any society family went to a ball during a rainstorm. Not just the Bennet family.
I absolutely believe in putting your own twist on things, but be aware and knowledgeable of the tale you’re telling. I feel like this book was written just to be controversial and discussed. The language does not fit and character representations are not accurate. It’s not a homage to the original work or even for the enjoyment of Austen fans. It’s just a gross manipulation and a marketing plan.(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)
Liked that it was New Adult Paranormal. Liked that it was about friendship. Liked that it was a unique take on su...moreRead this as a buddy read with Rachel.
Liked that it was New Adult Paranormal. Liked that it was about friendship. Liked that it was a unique take on supernaturals. Liked that it wasn't about finding a boy or true love. Liked that it dealt with heavy issues.
Disliked the ending. Disliked the ending. Disliked the cliffhanger doozy of an ending. Disliked that i went "what it's over?" after reading the ending.
Liked it. Will read the sequel, mostly, because of the doozy ending and want to know what was gonna happen next.(less)
I’ve never thought that a book was not for me based on the fact of my age, or social economic status, but COVET wasn’t written for me. I am from a generation whose future will look drastically different from the current middle agers and I am from a neighborhood that could never afford that kind of living.
There are moments in this book where I just couldn’t empathize. There is a reason many books end at the wedding, because marriage isn’t something you understand unless you’re married. I have never even come close to it. I have never had to watch myself drift away from the person I am supposed to love for the rest of my life.
I understand loneliness and temptation though. I also understand a confidence crushing stint of unemployment. Still, this book wasn’t written for a 24 year old single girl from the Bronx. It was written for suburban wives in their early 40s. The crowd who was initially drawn to that Desperate Housewives TV show.
I feel bad for Chris and Claire. I am sorry for the fact that life has separated them, but then there are moments where it is so obviously partially their own fault. Who takes a vacation to Hawaii after being laid off? Claire even says that things have always gone perfectly for Chris his entire life. So, they have lived charmed lives, get a string of bad luck and fall apart. I don’t care about characters like that. I like fighters. Survivors. Not privileged people who fall into despair when life throws them a curve ball. This book would be more interesting if it took place during the unemployment and not after Chris got a new job.
At the end of the day this book didn’t interest me. Just did not care. It was about privileged people who had a slow turn and just couldn’t handle it. Who wants to read about people like that?
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.
I love a good love story. More, I love a good love story with baggage and angst. I love redemption, healing and growing. Grime and Punishment has all...moreI love a good love story. More, I love a good love story with baggage and angst. I love redemption, healing and growing. Grime and Punishment has all that, but I just didn't believe it.
There just was no spark between Jack and Ryan. Well, none that I could read. These are two men who have been damaged by Ryan's cousin Nick. They both know the dirty side of Nick, the side he tried to hide. When it's all said and done and Nick kills himself, they are the collateral damage.As they clean up the mess Nick left behind, literally, they bond over their shared heartbreak.
That's what this story seemed like to me. Two attractive men bond over their loss. There is no real love story. They are both just there and they are both heartbroken and they use each other to heal.
I like Z.A. Maxfield's writing, it kept me turning the pages. The crime scene clean up job is a brilliant addition. It's dirty and gritty, but someone has to do it. It's strange to read about that kind of world. We know the detectives and the CSI teams, but you never really hear about what happens when they all clear out. The owners of the property, the family, the friends, etc have to rebuild their life. They have to deal with the grit, the blood, the broken glass and skin tissues that has been left behind. It was interesting to read about that world, but at the end of the day I didn't care. I wasn't swept away. This book was a good distraction for a few hours, but then I happily moved on. (less)
What is the formula for new adult fiction? I am glad you asked! I have the ingredients below:
1. College kid in living situation they shouldn’t realistically be able to afford with their background and economic status?
2. Messed up parents?
3. Abuse, most likely sexual, in their past?
4. They are not looking for romance, more they don’t want it, but a guy falls from the sky?
Now, Naomi, does ALL OF YOU have those ingredients? Check, check, check and check.
This book is one if the most formulaic books I have ever read. There are no surprises. Everything you think is going to happen, happens. The villains are exactly who you think they are. The tragedies come exactly when you expect and the relationship progresses exactly how you imagined it would when you read the synopsis. 100% formulaic. The author made a feeble attempt to shake it up… Lets make the girl the player and the boy the Virgin!
My biggest problem with the book is that the guy is still the better character. Avery, the girl and narrator, is strong, sexual, confident, the aggressor and I am still more interested in the boy. The girl is a player and the boy is a Virgin trope is new for me, but just didn’t work. Why? Because Avery is still a bland Mary Sue heroine. The boy still wears the armor.The boy still has to take care of the girl, still has to do all the heavy lifting and has to hold the girls hand in the journey to commitment.
I hate this kind of romance. The kind where the girl is all over the place and expects the guy to keep up. Avery says on one page that she respects Bennett’s choice to stay a virgin, then pushes her way into his bathroom and forces an intimate encounter that he went into the bathroom to get away from. She says she’s not the girl for him, because she doesn’t want a commitment then gets mad when he doesn’t call.
When he sees her with his boss, a man she has slept with, and gets upset she flips out and immediately thinks he’s judging her. But, doesn’t think it’s strange that she gets jealous when a girl stands next to Bennett. Honestly, Avery is an emotional basket case in the worst way. She’s the kind of mess that makes us girls look like messes.
For once I would like to read a book about a promiscuous character who does not malign the opposite sex. Avery is very similar to her male counterparts. She has lots of sex, but looks down on her sexual partners. Why are sexual characters in books either misogynists or man haters? Why can’t they just have lots of sex, because they like sex? If authors really believed in sexual freedom they would write characters who just enjoy the opposite sex.Why does something always have to be wrong with them? Why do they always have to feel that the ppl they sleep with are not good enough for them?
Avery thinks that Bennett is judging her sexual lifestyle every single time he twitches. If she was really so sexually free, why does she care what people think? Why does she expect everyone is judging her?
I picked up this book, because the twist of experience girl and virgin boy was too much to resist. Unfortunately. The twist does carry the book. It’s like every other book in this genre. With one distinction; the experienced males in New Adult romances wouldn’t treat their love interest the way Bennett is treated. In one scene he is overwhelmed and tempted, so he takes himself away from the situation and Avery refuses to take no for an answer. She bursts into his shower and begins foundling him. If a male character did that to a female virgin we would have posts upon posts calling this guy out for his complete disregard for the virgin’s personal space, rights and choices.
This book has 2 stars, because Bennett is actually pretty good.(less)
STAY WITH ME should have been amazing. Should have been filled with drama, angst, heartbreak and magic. The recipe for a New Adult novel to rival EASY or SEA OF TRANQUILITY was there, it’s all there. Shoulda, woulda, coulda doesn’t matter, because this book falls short of the prize.
There is no drama in this book. That’s the best way to describe it. Hailey and Caleb meet and fall in love. She becomes friends with his friends and they have a lot of fun, but there are no curve balls. None. Hailey spends a lot of the book afraid that Caleb is going to learn her deep dark secret…then he does and nothing happens. There are no fights, no misunderstandings and no separations.
A great love story grabs you, because the heroine and hero have to work at it. They have to be up against some kind of odds. They have to misunderstand and exes have to come out of the wood work or parents have to step in and mess it all up. There has to be drama. The characters cannot be perfect every moment of the day, because nobody is perfect.
Hailey is a celebrity to rival Taylor Swift, Brittany Spears and Miley Cyrus…do you honestly believe that the paparazzi wouldn’t find her? That they wouldn’t be parked outside her apartment posting pictures of her and her new boyfriend? Do you think students in her classes wouldn’t sell lies as “exclusives” to the tabloids? I honestly don’t know why Hailey’s character was famous, because it wasn’t utilized in the story.
We never meet Hailey’s mom face to face which is a showdown that I could not wait to experience. At one point Hailey shuts down her mother’s bank account…her crazy selfish stage mom doesn’t so much as leave a hate filled voicemail threatening to reveal all her daughters secrets?
See? The elements are all there, the author just did not take the extra steps. Hailey is bland and Caleb perfect. No faults, no ticks and definitely no complexities. Just flat characters that read flatly on the page. Which is sad, because the author definitely has the capacity for more. The side characters of Nick and Daphne intrigued me and I cannot wait to get my hands on their book.
I just hope that with the next story the author doesn’t hold her punches. I want my couples to fight. I want there to be horrible parents, scandals and implosions. STAY WITH ME poses a problem and then solves it in less than a page or two. No, it needs to be longer and drawn out in order to truly have impact.
This is an easy read and a good first effort on the part of the author. The set up is great and I will definitely give the next book in the series a chance.
I loved REAL.Like couldn’t put it down and couldn’t look away from it, love. It was romantic and had everything I love in a Romance. MINE has all the same elements. I love this kind of romance. The kind where people are not cookie cutter perfect, where there are issues and problems beyond the average. Remington and Brooke are not average.
More than that, I love the way that Katy Evans has taken a mental illness like Bipolar disorder and given it humanity. She’s taken away the stigma and given us more than cliche, or over the top. I love Remy’s ability to fight through his disorder and overcome his traumatic past and horrible parents.
And, I must admit seeing them in a real relationship, where they love each other, are committed and having sex is fantastic. Love this relationship and love these characters.
Here’s the thing about Remington Tate, he is one of the most chest clutch worthy men in modern day romance. I didn’t even know I was a chest clutcher until I read MINE. Remy is still as intense, sexy and wounded in Mine as he was in real and I adore his character, but it wasn’t enough.
My real issue is the way that Brooke and Remington seem to relate to each other. He’s still a god to her. He’s Riptide and not Remy. When her mind wonders and she thinks about him it’s at massive proportions. He is bigger than life. And it makes me uncomfortable. In REAL, Remy makes it very clear that he wants to be real to her, he wants to be her man and not some adventure, but I do not get that feeling from her.
Then there is Remy, his dependency on Brooke cannot be healthy. The idea that he just can’t control himself when it comes to her is not romantic. When she is hurt, his job should be taking care of her not going ballistic. Also, the idea that he relies on her to keep him level. That he needs her in his corner or he will loose it, is scary. They cannot always be happy. They will have misunderstandings and they will fight. That is natural. If Brooke can not voice her opinions are vent her frustrations in fear of him collapsing then they will never work.
This is just an unbalanced relationship. Remy puts Brooke on a pedestal and expects her to stay there. He’s the man. He will fix the problems and she’s HIS!! In REAL, Remy is super hot and he still is for a fling, for a one night stand, but a long lasting relationship with a guy who demands his employees take care of her and when someone says “I’ll protect her like she was my own” Remy turns on him and say she’s not yours, she’s MINE.” That’s unattractive to me and I would advise my friends and sisters to get away from him immediately.
It’s entertaining on the level that I am invested in these characters and want to see then happily ever after. I just think sequels like these raise issues that could easily be ignored in the original installment. This is an unhealthy relationship, masquerading as ideal and it made me very uncomfortable to read.(less)
I don't usually like to quit books, but I think I have to admit defeat on this one. I find the writing style to be difficult. The book is written as i...moreI don't usually like to quit books, but I think I have to admit defeat on this one. I find the writing style to be difficult. The book is written as if the main character wrote a letter to her lover and so it's written like "you this" and "how could I not love him, he's your dog." It just doesn't feel organic and it's really distracting to me. The other issue is that the girl keeps talking about this epic love they're going to have, but while they stand around talking about nothing on their second meeting it really puts a damper on my connection. I keep expecting these epic interactions of pure amazingness and it's just simple.
Also, I just read "The Sea of Tranquility" and I am now reading "Slammed" and unfortunately this author is not grabbing me with this YA book the way those two grabbed me. I know it's not fair. I know it's not fair to compare books especially when they don't have similar themes. BUT, my current bar from Contemporary YA is set very very high and this book has not reached it.
Maybe I'll pick it up again, maybe I wont. I just have too many books on my to-review shelf to force myself through anything. If you complete it and it's good, let me know.(less)
I love movies. I have wanted to write & direct movies since I was five years old. When other kids were talking about being doctors, teachers and fireman I wanted to be Cecil B Demille and Alfred Hitchcock. So, when I read about a character like Dez, I am always pulled in. Someone who thinks in terms of plot points and speaks in terms of dialogue, AMAZING. Unfortunately, Dez is without a doubt one of the scariest characters I have ever had the experience of being in their heads.
Desmond wants to direct and Riley, the girl next door, wants to be an actress. It’s a match made in heaven or on the pages of a hollywood script, except that Riley just does not see Dez that way. And to make matters worse for the aspiring filmmaker, Riley thinks she might be gay. Other people would hang their head down in defeat and say “oh well,” but not Dez. Desmond never says die and he understands stories. He understands what it means to win the girl and he knows that he just has to direct life like a summer blockbuster.
This is a very interesting concept. I have always believed that, like doctors, storytellers have a God complex. We give life and we take it away. Usually, just on paper or on the screen, but Dez takes it a step further. He decides that he is going to write and direct the people around him until he gets the conclusion that he desires.
It’s interesting reading about Dez, because he is really sick. Not in a “I’m really misunderstood,” but in a stalker, abusive, controlling psycho kind of a way. One of the problems I have with this book is a confusion on how no one saw Dez for what he really was. The kind of obsession and focus Dez has on Riley seems impossible to miss. I can understand people not realizing he was obsessed with her, but how could no one see that he was in love with her? Just seemed really unrealistic that his feelings could be so completely under the radar.
Honestly, I don’t understand how any of the male characters in this novel could be so under the radar. They are monsters! There’s the abusive religious politician, the coach who is as big a bully as his students, Marcus the guy who takes advantage of heartbroken teenage girls and Desmond. Desmond is the most horrible of them all, because his victim believes him to be her best friend.
It’s really awful, everything about Desmond. We are in his head, see his motivations and his “tough” life, but I don’t care. He’s sick, deluded, controlling and just a really really bad person. I am not sure if the badness comes from insanity or if he is just a sociopath who doesn’t feel emotions like the average person. I would have given this novel a higher rating if I understood the authors motivation. There’s a great scene at the end where Desmond takes a good look at himself and doesn’t like what he sees, but beyond that I don’t know how the author wants us to feel. Should we pity him? Should we hope he gets locked into a mental institution? Should we hope Riley punches him hard in the face? I don’t know.
I was on team Riley, aka Desmond’s obsession, until she became one of those girls who is suspicious of other girls. Her best friend Libby suggests that Desmond is more than he seems and Riley’s reaction? “She just doesn’t like to see me succeed!” What the hell girl! Everytime a girl tells you to watch out its cuz their jealous? Get over yourself!
Also, someone needed to tell this girl that telling people that this person is a murderer and that person is a murderer is you know…WRONG! Riley is the worst detective of all time. She sees clues in nothing. I’m in her head and I just didn’t believe her clues and could not understand her motivations or suspicions. The murder mystery is really ridiculous and besides giving Desmond a look at himself, it has no real baring on the original story. I was more interested in seeing if Desmond got caught in his web over finding out who killed a teacher we never meet.
My last thought is about Riley’s sexuality. I felt that certain aspects of her journey were very authentic, but I think Dawn Klehr needed to make a decision. Riley is unsure if she is a lesbian, if she is straight or if she is bisexual. Which is fine, I think many young people are confused as they discover who the are. But, at the end I wasn’t sure about her discovery. Was she only confused about her sexuality, because people around her kept telling her being gay is wrong or was she honestly, confused? It seemed like the author wanted her to be confused, but it seemed to me that Riley was just afraid and in denial. I would have liked a firm “I’m going to explore my sexuality,” “I like boys and girls” or a “I’m a lesbian.” Her sexual journey is such a huge part of the book and I just don’t get why everything else gets a firm close, but that got an ambiguous choice.
Dez’s film knowledge was entertaining, if a bit cliche. It would have been interesting if he dropped in some Taxi Driver, a bit of The Third Man or any other sort of male driven crime drama. He kept quoting Fight Club and Reservoir Dogs, which is fairly obvious in my opinion. (even though I have broken many Fight Club cherries” But he also quoted Godfather III. Any self respecting film geek pretends that godfather III doesn’t exist.
It’s unique. I recommend you check it out, but don’t hope for a amazing experience. Just for fun.(less)