Touch of Frost is another one of those great books to look out for this summer! It's an intriguing cross between Hex Hall, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson...moreTouch of Frost is another one of those great books to look out for this summer! It's an intriguing cross between Hex Hall, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, and every great YA paranormal fiction novel out there. It has literally everything: mystery, romance, mythology, boarding schools . . . What could be better?
I had absolutely no trouble getting sucked into this novel; the moment I picked it up, I couldn't set it down. It's very suspenseful, and there's enough action to keep even the most reluctant reader interested.
I especially loved the characters. Gwen herself was a really awesome character, and I took an immediate liking to her; the emotions she goes through about the loss of her mother, and the difficulty of feeling like you don't fit in are very relateable to many teens' lives everywhere today. Everyone goes through a period of time where they don't really know who they are, or where they belong.
The love interest--because, yes, there is ALWAYS a love interest--is definitely one to talk about, and is--just in case you were having doubts--an important part of the novel. Gwen and Logan have a complicated relationship, but it just adds to the suspsense of the novel.
Touch of Frost is an outstanding start to a very promising series. Look for it in July, (possibly on the 26th) from Kensington Publishing Corp!
Selected Shorts and Other Methods of Time Travel was, at times, very confusing. By the end of each story, I was thoroughly boggled. But I also...more Review:
Selected Shorts and Other Methods of Time Travel was, at times, very confusing. By the end of each story, I was thoroughly boggled. But I also have realized, after finishing it, that the boggling nature of virtually the entire collection of stories is what makes it so effective. Most of the stories are pretty pointless, but usually only at first glance; when I first started reading it, I have to admit that I honestly didn't get the point. I also didn't understand how it was, exactly, "thought provoking". But then it hit me: the fact that I was thinking about it at all made it very thought provoking, and made it an honest-to-God success.
The stories were all very quirky and random and unrealistic, but in an insanely smart way; their purpose was to make you do a double take, and make you actually think: What the hell did I just read? They all feel very whimsical, and some didn't seem to have much to do with time travel at all, which I suppose contributed to the mood of the book as a whole. They also definitely hinted towards (and plainly discussed) serious ethical issues and racial discrimination, but when you pair serious social issues like that with David Goodberg's tone of storytelling and people from other planets, it all just became very entertaining to read.The entire collection is told in a very wry, humorous tone, which, even when puzzling over a particularly confusing story, made me smile.
I especially loved the odd quips between each story; they were entirely and completely and utterly pointless, which I'm assuming was the point. Some were just really weird and others were funny, while quite a few were insanely smart in an almost reluctant way. I swear, this book will put you in so many different places at once.
Goodberg's writing was great, continuously holding that same removed, wry tone throughout the entire book which, to be honest, really made the whole thing. None of the stories really seemed to be connected in any huge way (other than the idea of time travel), but they somehow still fit together seamlessly, in a very peculiar, subtle way.
And even though it was, ultimately, epic, I have to admit that there were some stories I didn't really get at all, while there were a few that stood out a lot to me personally (for example, the one where the professor traveled back to Main Street USA). When looking at it as a whole, I have to describe the book as being, well, my seven year old sister hyped up on Halloween candy, two sodas, and more pop tarts than are healthy for her, or maybe a crowd of very vocal people with ADD and very, very conflicting opinions.
Before I Fall is a very quickly-moving, stick-to-the-point type of book. I really liked it--but I also...moreREVIEWED BY LEAH FROM SIMPLY NERDY BOOK REVIEWS
Before I Fall is a very quickly-moving, stick-to-the-point type of book. I really liked it--but I also wasn't very surprised by it. It was just one of those books that you basically know what's going to happen just by reading the inside flap. This isn't to say that it was predictable--it is just to say that you know, even before you start reading, that she relives her last day seven times. Which is, virtually, a basic outline of the entire plot.
If you don't look at it critically, though--which I didn't, while I was reading it--it's a really great book. It has a ton of teen girl drama, a pinch of romance to keep you going, and Oliver did an amazing job of only putting in the interesting details of the endless Cupid Day. It also touches on the questions we all can't but help but ask in regards to death; What happens to me after I die? It also deals with the idea of fate, and that every single thing that we do can lead to something huge and monumental.
While I really loved this book, I have to admit that I really, really, really hate just about every single one the characters--especially the girls. So much, in fact, that I'm surprised I was able to finish the entire thing. The girls are all just . . . well, let's face it, they're mean. The guys--especially Sam's boyfriend, Rob--are absolutely terrible (major douche-bags and jerks), and the teachers are sexually charged. Basically, they're all awful (personality-wise). But, for some reason, I still couldn't but this book down.
Another thing that really got me is that she kept on making the same mistakes. You'd think, hey, this killed me the first time around . . . why not have another go at it? No! No, no, no, no, no. Practically the entire book I either want to slap Sam, yell at her, reprimand her, and, finally, applaud her. Even with all of that bitchiness and mean-girl attitude, she's still a very strong female character. Sure, she's mean--but she still has a ton of personality, depth, and overall, great development.
And I hate to say it, but . . . I hate the ending. Sure, it's hopeful and inspirational and whatever, but it's also just generally depressing in an uber-annoying way. I'm not going to spoil it, but I'll just tell you this: what you're hoping will happen will not happen.
But, when I look at this book as a whole: I have to admit that the good aspects of it overpower the bad ones. I honestly did really love this book--and I cried when I finished. Definitely give this one a go.
Let the cover fool you. Let it draw you in when you see it on the shelf at the bookstore. Please do. Because that's what I did, and I am so glad. Not...moreLet the cover fool you. Let it draw you in when you see it on the shelf at the bookstore. Please do. Because that's what I did, and I am so glad. Not only is this novel pretty on the outside, but it's gorgeous on the inside. Every page, every chapter, is filled with amazing writing, angst, suspense, romance, dialogue, and plot. I am in love with every inch of this book.
First, character development. I identify with each and every character in this book (except maybe the Housemaster . . . can you say creepy? And a few other choice words that would upset my grandmother . . .), and I loved most of them. First, Rhine. This book jumps right into the story, right into the action, and I swore I felt like I was in Taken (you know, the movie). It just starts, and bam! You're hooked before you're done with the first page. I felt so terrible and frightened for her in her situation, and I understood and agreed with every decision she made. Rhine is my new best fictional friend. Gabriel is my next favorite--wow, do I love that boy. Can you say hot-tay? Their secret romance definitely added to the endless suspense of the plot, and I hyperventilated every time he came up in the story. He is now my fictional boyfriend.
Cecily and Jenna both had their own little quirks--I liked Jenna much more than I liked Cecily, but they both had their moments. I had nightmares (not really, because I read this entire book in one sitting . . . yay for six hour car rides and finishing two books with one bathroom break!) about being thirteen years old and being married . . . and pregnant. Scared me so much. Linden I felt terribly for, and I think I loved him just a little bit by the end of the story, like I know that Rhine did, too.
The dialogue also rocked (oh how I love dialogue), as did all of the writing. Rhine had a very memorable voice in my mind, and I love that in a book. The plot of this story was very, very creative (I had flashbacks of Chosen . . .), and I don't think it's possible to love a book as completely as I loved this one.
Basically, go buy this book. Read it. Love it. Give it to your friends. Stare at the cover.