I began this book feeling eager and excited to start. It sounded really awesome. It was kind of slow and I wasn't sure how I felt about Quin or John aI began this book feeling eager and excited to start. It sounded really awesome. It was kind of slow and I wasn't sure how I felt about Quin or John as characters and I felt like the characters were sort of dumbed down or immature, but I kept reading. I got to a part where John was asking a question and he used a word that isn't common. The author decided to specify the pronunciation in the dialogue, which was a major problem for me because it showed me that any expectations I had that the story would grow into a smart and well written book would be fruitless. I tried to continue, but the writing wasn't strong enough for me to overlook what I consider a terrible mistake in a published novel. Most fantasies contain glossaries to specify definitions and pronunciations of words and it's embarrassing to have someone try to explain it in the story itself. That may sound harsh, but I just could not finish....more
Nowhere But Here was such an addicting book. I started out feeling vaguely interested, buReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
Nowhere But Here was such an addicting book. I started out feeling vaguely interested, but unsure about reading a book involving a motorcycle club. I don't know, I guess I just don't find bikers all that attractive or interesting. I like motorcycles, but not MCs in general. But I should have known that Katie McGarry would have me glued to my seat, unable to stop reading. At one point, I was so engrossed that I somehow dropped my Kindle in surprise during one of the scenes. I was in public. It was embarrassing.
The book was simply amazing. Not only was I totally engrossed in the characters and the way they went from disliking each other to falling for each other, but I loved the plot. Emily was the kind of character who needed to learn about herself. She had some issues with change and I didn't want to see her end up boring, bland, and not really happy. And when her mom gasped at the obituary of her biological father's mom and made Emily attend the funeral, I knew that it was a pivotal moment for Emily. Oz was a difficult character. He was probably the complete opposite of Emily, yet somehow almost exactly the same. They both needed to find themselves, stand up for themselves, and take risks, despite those risks being completely different for both of them. Watching them grow together and accidentally fall for each other was just the icing on the cake.
I knew Emily's mom and adoptive father were lying to her about something. It was quite obvious that her biological father's family and motorcycle club were keeping her in the dark. Olivia was the only person willing to drop hints, but it was up to Emily to figure it out. I thought I knew what the big secrets were, but the author really surprised me. The hidden secrets weren't as simple as I originally thought and I found myself dropping my jaw multiple times.
Katie McGarry switched things up with this series, but I found myself addicted and I kept wanting more. I can't wait to read more from the author in this new series. I didn't think I would like the whole motorcycle club angle, but I was proven wrong and I crave stories from many of the club members. Who are they? What are their fears and wants? I love that the author took my original hesitance and turned it into curiosity!
I highly recommend Nowhere But Here, especially if you're a fan of Katie McGarry. It's a contemporary romance with some darkness, secrets, and character growth, much like the author's other novels. It's a must read for any contemporary romance fan! Despite being the first in a series, it can also be read as a stand alone, as the next book will feature a side character. (I swear, that's my favorite thing about contemporary novels!) ...more
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet was awesome. Charley was suffering from some major issues afReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet was awesome. Charley was suffering from some major issues after her terrible encounter with Earl Walker in her apartment at the end of the previous book, but she wasn't necessarily able to admit that. Instead, she developed a major problem of watching infomercials and buying nearly everything, letting the boxes pile up on The Spot in her living room where she almost lost her life.
What I liked so much about Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet is realizing just how many people care about Charley and her wellbeing. Even her father, despite the things he did to her in the last book. Maybe even, (gasp!) Denise. Even Reyes helped her out with the stress she was experiencing.. in more ways than one.
I also really liked Charley's case in this installment because I honestly didn't know who on earth was to blame and I liked watching her figure the case out. Also, with each book, I find out more and more information about Reyes, his past, and what exactly his connection to Charley is. I love how they come together, but make each other mad and exasperated, too.
This series is so awesome. It's funny, vibrant, entertaining, romantic, mysterious, and thrilling to read. I definitely recommend it and I think that each book gets better and better. It's a great urban fantasy for lovers of anything paranormal, weird, or slightly mysterious. ...more
Third Grave Dead Ahead was awesome. I feel like Charley is becoming more powerful and reaReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
Third Grave Dead Ahead was awesome. I feel like Charley is becoming more powerful and realizing just how otherworldly she really is. She had a million cases in this installment to figure out, was experiencing pressure from her family, and wasn't able to get any sleep. When she bound Reyes to his body, she didn't realize that he would haunt her every time she fell asleep.
I love that there's not just one plot in the series. In each book, Charley is overloaded with cases and things to figure out, while also trying to help Reyes and figure him out as a person. I love the chaos of it all. In this book, Charley was also severely sleep deprived and living more off of a caffeine than she had been in previous books.
Third Grave Dead Ahead was even more dangerous because Charley was in the middle of so many perilous situations. And what sucks is that people close to her tend to refuse to tell her things to prepare her for dangerous situations, which happened frequently this time. But despite her frustrations, she tends to maintain a carefree façade and manages to crack me up in the meantime.
I highly recommend the series, especially if you're looking for a fun paranormal without all of the dramatic seriousness. Charley can be a bit much at times and super cheesy, but there's something awesome about all of it! I read this book waiting in a hospital waiting room for like 4 hours and it was the perfect book because it kept me entertained and in a good mood. This is definitely an awesome series....more
I sometimes read terrible billionaire romances for no reason. I’m trying to stop reviewinReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
I sometimes read terrible billionaire romances for no reason. I’m trying to stop reviewing them because I almost always hate them. I downloaded Fixed on You because it was free and I was in the mood for a quick and somewhat shallow romance novel. I vowed that if it was terrible, I would just not review it. Fixed on You was actually pretty good! I don’t know if it was because my expectations were as low as the price or if it was genuinely better than the popular romance novels I’ve been reading, like Fifty Shades or Bared to You. Maybe it’s a little bit of both.
Alayna was a troubled girl with an obsessive past. She wanted to move up in the club business and had her sights set on a management position. When Hudson Pierce walked in, she had no idea he was even a big deal, let alone the owner of her place of business. Hudson wanted two things from her. First, he wanted her to be his fake girlfriend to convince his family that he wasn’t incapable of love so they’d stop trying to marry him off. Second, he wanted to sleep with her. Knowing her obsessive past, she warned him that it was a bad idea, but took his offer in order to get her loans paid off. She wasn’t being paid for the second act, only the first. Obviously, I knew that they would fall for each other. I didn’t like Hudson very much because he was just so crisp and callous, but I realized that was exactly part of the reason why he was considered to be incapable of love. I knew Alayna would be in above her head with him, but I wanted to watch it all unfold.
Fixed on You wasn’t really a billionaire meets plain ordinary girl kind of romance. Hudson was very aware of Alayna’s past and her stalking charges. He didn’t pick her because she was different from the normal girls he dated or because she was plain. He picked her because she was crazy and somehow righted herself and seemed functional. I kind of liked that aspect because it made it a tad more believable for me. Alayna was kind of awesome. She told Hudson’s mom off on multiple occasions. She made all sorts of mistakes, and wasn’t really afraid to be herself. And unlike many billionaire asshole romance novel characters, Hudson actually seemed to encourage that.
The book was a bit rough around the edges, but no more so than the $10 traditionally published bullshit romances that are on the shelves right now. In fact, that’s my biggest complaint about them is that they are so terribly edited and executed. Fixed on You was free and I probably would have paid for it and been happy to do so. I’m not completely sold on the genre, but I’m glad that I was able to read one of these books without wanting to pull my hair out the entire time, so I consider that a success. ...more
I loved Second Grave on the Left. It was funny and entertaining, which put me in a great mood. I am a big fan of urban fantasy and while I do like more serious ones, this series kind of fills the void left behind the Sookie Stackhouse series for me.
It was tough to get into at first because Charley can be so damn cheesy, but it didn’t take long for a smile to appear on my face as I realized that is just simply who she is and I wouldn’t want her any other way. She thrives off coffee and showers instead of sleep, solves cases with her best friend, and has a weird obsession with the son of Satan.
In Second Grave on the Left, Reyes disappears and it’s up to Charley to find him. He’s being tortured by demons, but insists that Charley can’t find him because it’s a trap and she’ll die if she tries to fight them. She’s the key to heaven and he’s the key to hell and the demons shouldn’t get their hands on both. But she’s determined to save him because no one has any idea what will happen if she doesn’t.
Second Grave on the Left was fun, full of adventure, and humorous. I love the plot and I can’t wait to find out what happens next. ...more
Chasing River was awesome! It was a lot different from the other K.A. Tucker books I’ve readReview originally published Love Literature Art and Reason
Chasing River was awesome! It was a lot different from the other K.A. Tucker books I’ve read, mostly because it took place in Ireland and dealt with Irish politics. Amber was the sister of Jesse from Burying Water and she wanted to take a couple of months to travel the world before settling down in her tiny Oregon town. One of her stops was Ireland, where she got involved in a terrible mess and met River Delaney.
I hardly ever read books set in Ireland that aren’t fantasies or written by Irish authors, so I really enjoyed the setting. I like that there was some focus on the IRA and Northern Ireland politics because it played a major role in me and my grandmother not visiting Northern Ireland on our trip in 2013. I was familiar with many of the places since I spent two weeks there and I loved experiencing everything through Amber’s eyes.
River was a complicated guy. His older brother got out of prison and aligned himself with some newer IRA groups who focused more on terrorism than the core values that the IRA used to stand for. River didn’t want anything to do with it, but he also wasn’t about to let his brother get arrested or in trouble because he felt that it was his duty to keep his family together. However, after saving Amber from certain death, he couldn’t help but think about her from time to time. And when she stumbled upon his family owned pub, River had no choice but to deal with her.
For Amber, who always did the right thing and was the perfect Sheriff’s daughter, getting involved with River was something she would have never considered. But she was supposed to be taking risks and making memories on her trip, so she decided to just for it and chase River until they could figure out what was happening between them.
While in my own experience, I found the Irish to be genuinely friendly despite me being an American, I realize that my time was spent in Southern Ireland, where that’s basically the case. River and his family were in Dublin, but hailed from Northern Ireland. It created a conflict because Amber was not only American, her family name had British roots and the Northern Irish still have issues with Britain. For River to be crushing on an American girl with British ancestry was a big deal for him.
I loved the conflict in Chasing River. I loved watching River fall for Amber and watching Amber take risks she never would have taken if she wasn’t purposely vacationing to find herself. I liked the way their relationship mirrored Jesse and Alex’s relationship and how Amber had to decide what was good and bad and understand shades of grey.
I highly recommend Chasing River. While it is the third book in the Burying Water series, it can be read as a standalone, as the other character’s and their backstories are not crucial to the story. However, K.A. Tucker writes awesome books that you don’t want to skip, so you might as well buy the whole series and read them all. I tried skipping over some books in the Ten Tiny Breaths series only to end up reading them all in order anyway. K.A. Tucker is my go to contemporary author and I highly recommend all of her books. ...more
If I’m honest, I can admit that I didn’t really want to read this. I didn’t like Cain verReview originally published at love literature art and reason
If I’m honest, I can admit that I didn’t really want to read this. I didn’t like Cain very much and I’m not sure why. So when I say that it was probably the best book in the series so far, it’s obvious how much my opinion turned around. Which is my absolute favorite thing about K.A. Tucker. She gives me this POV I swear I’m gonna hate and I love it.
Cain’s story ended up being amazing. I gained so much respect and admiration for the type of person he was, especially when I realized that owning a strip club isn’t something he did for money, power, or sex. He kept it open even when he didn’t want to because he knew he was giving the girls a decent place to work and keeping them off of the streets and out of the seedy clubs he knew about. I think I expected him to be a creepy strip club owner, even when I saw how much the other characters liked him in the earlier books, so I’m happy that he ended up being one of my favorite characters.
Charlie was an interesting character, too. She was full of secrets and couldn’t trust anyone. She wanted out of her lifestyle, but knew there was no way she could just quit doing what she was doing. So she thought, away from the eye of her stepdad, she could work at Cain’s club and try to save up enough money to disappear. I liked her, but I also felt weirdly protective of Cain and the other characters I’ve grown to love, so I had hoped that she wouldn’t ruin their lives. I wanted her to stay, to go, to do the right thing, to disappear, and I couldn’t make up my mind the whole time.
Four Seconds to Lose was really amazing. I was so set on not reading it for so long and I’m glad I decided to. I love that K.A. Tucker is somehow able to make me care about characters I’m not so sure about by giving them a narration and putting them in the spotlight. And when they fall in love, I’m on the edge of my seat trying to figure out how on earth the relationship is possibly going to work out with such insane conflicts. I fall with them and I end up caring so much!
I highly recommend this series. I know my previous review of Five Ways to Fall said that I was glad I didn’t read the rest of the series because I didn’t have to, but I was wrong. I should have kept reading in order because the series is all the more amazing having done so. I swear, K.A. Tucker can’t write books as fast as I’d like them! These books are Must Reads for any fan of contemporary romance with a bit of suspense, conflict, and characters that aren’t cookie cutter perfect people. Each character has their own set of issues, but their stories are moving and heartwarming without being wholesome or preachy and I like that the author takes the seedy strip club setting and makes us love the characters without taking them away from that setting.
Note: The Ten Tiny Breaths series does not have to be read in order because each book feaReview originally published at love literature art and reason
Note: The Ten Tiny Breaths series does not have to be read in order because each book features a side character from the previous book and shoves them into the limelight. It helps to read them in order so you know the backstory, but it’s not crucial to the enjoyment of the story. (But K.A. Tucker books are awesome so you might as well buy them all and read them in order.)
One Tiny Lie was Livie’s story. I skipped over it a couple of years ago because I didn’t like Livie. I didn’t know how on earth I was ever going to enjoy reading a book from the point of view of a perfect, goody-two-shoes person who loves the company of children so much that she offered to babysit Mia 24/7 in Ten Tiny Breaths. While I share Livie’s determination and rule following demeanor, I’m not a caregiving or nurturing kind of person at all and I kind of hated how sweet and perfect she was. But I know K.A. Tucker has surprised me in other books by giving me a character I can’t stand and making me love them, so I finally picked this book up and loved it.
In One Tiny Lie, the doctor from the first book picked Livie as his pet project. He seemed to recognize that her plans and determination to remain innocent and perfect was a side effect of losing her parents. On the surface, she seemed to know what she was doing, but somehow he knew that she had no idea and just wanted to follow a plan she created at 9 years old to make her parents proud. Immediately, I knew I would enjoy the book. Livie needed to lighten up, lose control, and learn about who she really was.
She met Ashton on her first drunken night and ended up stumbling into him on campus nearly all of the time. He was no good for her, had a girlfriend of his own, but she was drawn to him anyway. She attempted to forge a relationship with one of his friends who fit the mold of who she wanted to be. He was sweet and kind and cookie cutter. Ashton was anything but.
A lot of people dislike One Tiny Lie because it involves a lot of infidelity. As a cheating hater myself, I totally understand that. It’s not my favorite part about the book at all. However, I think that Livie needed to make crazy mistakes in order to grow. Yeah, she could have broke things off with her cookie cutter good guy boyfriend, but a person like Livie wouldn’t make that decision unless she was ready to admit that the things she set up for herself weren't necessarily what she wanted. Livie was NOT going to admit that.
Livie’s connection to Ashton, which ended up being much deeper than attraction and lust, was kind of the tool that led her to have the ability to make that decision for herself. So I kind of think the whole thing was necessary for her development, as much as I cringed about it. I don’t defend Livie or her infidelity at all, but I realize it was a drastic character growth tool. She wasn’t ready to admit she liked Ashton enough to end things with the perfect guy she saw herself with under her vision of her future. I don’t think the author threw in cheating just for kicks and once I realized that, I got over my initial disgust about it. You don’t cheat on people you love, but we all knew as readers that Livie didn’t belong in the plan she set up for herself.
I learned to really like Livie as she grew up and realized that maybe it’s not the best thing to have a plan. You can change things. Kids aren’t supposed to grow up and do exactly what they said they were going to do. That’s part of life.
I highly recommend One Tiny Lie. It wasn’t as good as Ten Tiny Breaths because I thought Kacey’s personality was amazing and awesome, but it was really really good. And fortunately, Kacey still has some minor scenes in the book that made me laugh. I can’t wait to continue the series! ...more
When I read Ten Tiny Breaths a couple of years ago, I just stopped reading the series aftReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
When I read Ten Tiny Breaths a couple of years ago, I just stopped reading the series after I finished, even though I really liked it. After devouring K.A. Tucker’s newer series, I felt the urge to go back and reread Ten Tiny Breaths and continue the series like I should have done a long time ago.
In Her Wake is a novella that serves as a prequel to Ten Tiny Breaths, but should be read after it. It’s from Trent’s point of view before betting Kacey in Miami. In the first book of the this series, Kacey and Trent cross paths and fall in love, but not without difficulties. Their meeting in Miami wasn’t the first time their paths crossed and In Her Wake goes over what was going through Trent’s mind when he first found out about her and how his life had an impact on hers.
I enjoyed In Her Wake. It was tough to get into at first because I liked the Trent of Ten Tiny Breaths and I wasn’t sure what to make of this pre-Kacey Trent person. But he was broken, struggling, and hurt. After a few pages, I was sucked in and I think I didn’t look up until it was over. I could have read In Her Wake as a full novel if it went over all of the events of Ten Tiny Breaths from Trent’s point of view if it was an option. I was that engrossed. I liked how he saw her.
In Her Wake isn’t an absolute necessity to read, as is the case with most novellas, but it’s a great addition to the series and I’m glad I read it. ...more
After reading my first Sarah Dessen book recently, I realized I’ve had this sitting on myReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
After reading my first Sarah Dessen book recently, I realized I’ve had this sitting on my shelf for a few years. I remember watching the movie when I was younger and liking it. I don’t know what took me so long to finally pick this up or read a Sarah Dessen book!
How to Deal was a great combination of two Sarah Dessen novels: Someone Like You and That Summer. Someone Like You was the longest and first of the two books and involved characters I was familiar with from the movie, Halley and Scarlett. That Summer had some events that I remember from the movie, but involved a character named Haven. Both were similar in themes and I see why they were chosen to be combined to inspire the movie.
It was kind of cool reading the book because it was written in the late 90s. There was this one part about how Halley’s boyfriend kept calling the house phone after 10:30pm and she couldn’t get him to stop, so she held the phone by her head at night and tried to pick up on the first ring. I don’t know that teens nowadays understand that because most of them have their own cell phones they can control the ringer volume on and it doesn’t bother their parents at all when someone calls. I remember the terror of getting some boy’s number and hoping you didn’t get his mom on the phone when you called him after school when I was teen! I loved that I could relate to parts of the book in this way. I don’t think the book is too outdated for modern teens, but it contains just enough 90s and 2000s things that make it great to read if you’re an adult, too.
My favorite thing about the book was how the characters grow, make mistakes, and change. These aren’t YA contemporary books that are about summer romances that last forever. Instead, they focus on coming of age, dealing with issues, and how a summer romance might change you forever, but might not last. I liked the complication of it all and the fact that it wasn’t a light boys-fix-everything kind of book. I loved the main characters and appreciated the way they grew throughout the stories. I didn’t care much for Macon in Someone Like You, but I thought he was necessarily in order for Halley to grow, change, and understand herself a little better.
I definitely recommend How to Deal and I’m sure I’ll read more Sarah Desen books in the future. ...more
Surprisingly, Saint Anything was my first Sarah Dessen book! She’s like the queen of contReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
Surprisingly, Saint Anything was my first Sarah Dessen book! She’s like the queen of contemporary YA and yet I haven’t read a single one of her books. I’m glad that is now remedied because Saint Anything was wonderful and compelling.
I really connected with Sydney. I totally understood feeling invisible and I liked her narration. While I didn’t quite identify with her or her situation specifically, she was the kind of person I felt like I related to in a broad way. Who hasn’t felt like no one really sees you? It was so easy to slip into her story and just keep turning the pages. I was quickly engrossed.
I wanted Sydney to have an escape from her crazy mom and her life. It was like she never got to make a decision about anything in her family life. Her mom was frantically trying to make excuses for Peyton’s behavior and be overly supportive and it made their whole family focus about Peyton as a result. I don’t know what it’s like to have an older sibling, especially one with such a large shadow, but I felt terrible for Sydney. So when she found Layla and her family, I was so grateful. Layla’s family was wonderful and while they could be loud and dramatic, they didn’t treat Sydney like she was supposed to quietly follow them around. She got to have an identity with them.
Saint Anything was about love, family, self identity, growing up, and forging your own path. I highly recommend it. I don’t know why I thought Sarah Dessen’s novels were geared towards younger teens. There’s not anything graphic or extremely mature in Saint Anything, but it wasn’t some teeny bopper contemporary or upper “middle grade” fiction. It was perfectly YA and it brought me back to being a teenager and finding my own voice. I have since picked up the How to Deal pair of novels and have started reading it, happy to have discovered that Sarah Dessen writes beautiful and compelling YA fiction that isn’t just for young teens.
Saint Anything is definitely a must read and it works well for the summer contemporary reading. ...more
Becoming Rain was awesome! I liked it even more than Burying Water, even though I didn’t like Luke much in the first book. I like how the book is a sequel, but can also be read as a stand alone, as it features secondary characters.
The conflict had me on the edge of my seat. As undercover officer Clara ended up falling for her target, Luke, I wondered how on earth it would be resolved. How could they possibly end up together without losing everything? I can normally figure out how conflicts in contemporary romance will resolve themselves, but so far with this series by K.A. Tucker, I’m always at a loss. I love how unpredictable it makes the story as a result. I’m always filled with the good kind of angst when I read them.
I ended up loving Clara and Luke, especially together. I thought they brought out the best in each other. As I said, I didn’t care for Luke very much in the first book. I couldn’t understand why he looked up to his uncle so much and the illegal business he had on the side, especially after all of the things that happened with Alex and Jesse. He was so naïve about the dangers of the illegal business. However, once he became the main character and I got to know him, I realized he wasn’t as lazy and callous and dumb as I originally thought.
I absolutely love K.A. Tucker. Her books have all amazed me, even when they feature the kinds of characters I can’t stand normally. I can’t get enough and I’m actually planning to go back and read the books in the Ten Tiny Breaths series that I skipped over. I highly recommend Becoming Rain and the Burying Water series. It’s a must read if you enjoy any kind of contemporary romance. ...more
I just... can't. I hate Kitty. From her stupid name to her idiocy. She's all "okay fine I'll trust you" and then she's all "nevermind I'm just gonna do mI just... can't. I hate Kitty. From her stupid name to her idiocy. She's all "okay fine I'll trust you" and then she's all "nevermind I'm just gonna do my own thing and ruin everything for everyone else in the process." just over and over and over. She ruined the series. She's a useless teenage girl who needs someone to just lock her in a room and keep her away from important things. Can this series just be redone from Knox's point of view? Ugh....more
World After was amazing. It didn’t suffer from second book syndrome at all and was just as action packed as the first book. Despite the fact that she was returned to her family and the Resistance after Raffe thought she was dead, Penryn’s life was far from safe. Her mom was just as crazy as ever, her sister was some sort of weird monster, and Penryn practically came back from the dead. Penryn found herself on another quest to find her sister, but things were much different. Her sister wasn’t the innocent little girl she was in the first book and Penryn had to admit she was kind of scared and worried about her.
The only thing that drove me crazy during the novel was the lack of Raffe. I just wanted them back together because they made such a great team. But the anticipation was nice and I liked seeing Penryn come up with crazy solutions to her problem all on her own. She was resourceful and awesome. The sword seemed to align with her and it began to show her glimpses of Raffe’s perspective in the past, giving her a better idea of who he was and how he protected her. As much as I was screaming inside for Raffe to show up, I am glad that I got to see Penryn tackle some things on her own.
I am impressed by how amazing this series has been. It blew me out of the water and continues to surprise me. It’s dark, gritty, terrifying, but full of love, hope, and redemption at the same time. I absolutely love Penryn and Penryn with Raffe is even more amazing. I love her perspective and I hope that the two of them can somehow make things right with the world and still somehow end up together, even though it basically can’t happen. I have not been so excited for a book release in a really long time. As much as I wish I’d have read this series sooner, with the release of book 3 being just days away, I’m relieved I don’t have a long wait! ...more
OMG! Angelfall was awesome! I admit I’ve had this just sitting on my Kindle for months. I wanted to read it, but then I was afraid it would be some stupid angel paranormal romance and I think YA has enough of those. Angelfall was different and so much better than what I expected. It was a post apocalyptic story involving angels who destroyed the world. It was more urban fantasy and less paranormal romance, with a snarky and amazing heroine and a brooding wingless angel. The world was torn apart with people fighting to survive in the devastation brought upon them by angels for reasons mankind could only guess.
Penryn was amazing. She is definitely one of my favorite heroines now. She was strong, loyal, fierce, and determined. At the same time, she made some terrible decisions, had her weak moments, and was vulnerable. She was both a character you could root for and a character you could relate to. I loved her! I liked the way she handled the problem of the angel. She wasn’t immediately all swoony over him. Instead, she attempted to torture him for information and later form a shaky alliance with him. I liked that she tried to keep a good head on her shoulders, even when she might have preferred to have a distraction. Penryn’s character evened out the hopelessness of the world, too. So many post apocalyptic stories are bleak and set in the future far after the events that ended the world and I liked having such an entertaining character to prevent that attitude from coming about and I preferred that the apocalypse was so recent and no one really knew what happened.
I was so shocked at how great the book was. I have to admit, despite reading nearly all of the angel and human paranormal romance YA series, I think I might hate them. I’m not exactly awed by angels. I think that’s why I avoided reading this. It was so amazing to open the page and discover this torn apart world where angels are a factor in the apocalypse without the fire and brimstone and without society really understanding why. It was all just awesome and nothing like I expected. Penryn, like me, also really didn't like or trust angels, so I liked her point of view. I was eager to find out why the world ended up that way and intrigued that no one could explain why.
I highly recommend the series. I’m excited to start book two and I’ll be buying book three as soon as it’s available! You don't have to like post apocalyptic fiction to enjoy Angelfall. It appeals to fans of paranormal romance and urban fantasy as well. It's entertaining, action packed, and amazing. I recommend reading it if it sounds even remotely interesting because it's AWESOME!...more
How to Love was frustrating to read. It’s a book about second chance love, which I thoughReview originally published at Love Literature Art and Reason
How to Love was frustrating to read. It’s a book about second chance love, which I thought sounded amazing. And it might have been, had Sawyer LeGrande not been an epic waste of time. This book should have been called How to Love A Terrible Person and Ruin Your Life As A Result.
I hate to be harsh because the book had promise and wasn’t badly written. I liked the constant jumping from Before to After as we got to understand Reena and Sawyer and how things ended up that way. I kept reading, captivated, wanting to find out what happened between them. How to Love is one of those books that I thoroughly enjoyed reading, but once I figured out the full story, it was a waste of time. The story began with Reena. She was raising her daughter on her own and out of high school. She ran into Sawyer at a gas station and realized that he was back in town for the first time since he left her. The reader had no idea what happened other than Sawyer knocked her up at some point and then left and now he’s back years later. The book switched from After (the baby) to Before frequently throughout the story, so we eventually got the entire picture. Reena’s family wasn’t very happy with the fact that she got pregnant at 16 and her relationship with Sawyer’s parents was nonexistent. She hadn’t spoken to Sawyer since he left, shortly after getting her pregnant. In the Before sections, we found out that she had always had a crush on him since she was a little kid.
I am not judgmental and I love some flawed characters. I’m always rooting for the worst kinds of villains in fiction. Not just your typically bad boy, but the ones that are actually problematic, selfish, and sometimes evil. That is NOT why I dislike Sawyer, really. I can grow to love a flawed bad boy character. I promise. But Sawyer had to the be the worst character to have as the love interest and he was so terrible to Reena. Over and over and over again! And she just kept letting it happen! I wanted to slap her the entire time!
Reena virtually never spoke up for herself. She was in a relationship with a nice, but generally uninteresting guy. She had a shaky relationship with her parents after having her child. The highlight in her life was Hannah, her daughter, but that was basically it. She took some classes at a college, but it was obvious she had gotten into a much better college and had some set goals before finding out she was pregnant. She dreamed of being a travel writer, but was instead a waitress and part time student. While I understood that things have to change when you have a kid, I was kind of irritated that she let her pregnancy stop her from doing what she wanted. No, she couldn’t go off to a 4 year college and ignore her baby, but she could have at least travelled and wrote a bit and not let her circumstances stop her from finding some sort of compromise and joy in her life. She could have at least tried to mend things with her parents by SPEAKING UP every once in awhile. You’re a mom, Reena, you’re an adult. Get the F up and do something with your life and stop letting everyone around you blame you alone for your circumstances. Rise above them and also stop treating them like your life is now ruined.
And then came Sawyer. He had so many problems and he was the kind of guy who made Reena turn into mush and stop being responsible. It was clear that he wanted back into her life and he even attempted to form a relationship with Hannah. It complicated things, especially because she cared about him. But he was terrible. In the Before, he was a drug addict. He took her to parties and scored drugs and just LEFT HER in rooms with strangers KNOWING she was uncomfortable. He flirted with other girls ALL OF THE TIME in front of her. He lied to her in order to not hurt her feelings. He wasn’t the kind of bad boy who was better around the girl he loved. He wasn’t the kind of guy who made her into a better, more well rounded person. He didn’t make her take risks that eventually opened her up in a positive way, like so many bad boys in romantic fiction. There were literally NO redeeming qualities about him. And she just let all of this happen. In the After, he was clean, he was back, and he was willing to be around for her, but there was still this general perception that he really had no responsibilities. Nothing about his past was addressed other than the fact that he wasn’t doing drugs or drinking anymore. Everyone blamed Reena for getting pregnant and even looking Sawyer’s way in the first place and it was generally perceived that it was her fault for getting involved with him. When he came back, that perception was still there as her family warned her not to mess up this time. Which was BS. Where was his slice of blame and responsibility?
Also, when Sawyer left, there was no reason for it. Honestly, he just left and I think it was to create a plot device. Later, it was the general idea that he was afraid she would go off to college and leave him. She was good, he was bad. He worried about her leaving him, she worried about him leaving her. So he left first. And then she was pregnant. And they rarely talked about anything important, or those fears could have been alleviated. Why would anyone want to be with someone who made them feel like less of a person? She never spoke up about her feelings or her wants, and he never talked about his issues. They didn’t belong together at all.
My feelings about the book are directly related to Sawyer. The fact that he’s supposed to be the main squeeze just made me lose all respect for Reena and not enjoy the way things panned out as a result. A better story would have been her finally finding someone who treated her right that she also could fall for and for her family to support her. It seems as though other readers liked Sawyer and rated the book highly because they didn’t have the same problems that I did. My advice is to decide for yourself. How to Love is a quick read and it’s certainly worth reading. It was written pretty well and dealt with a lot of issues. If you don’t hate Sawyer, I’m sure it would be quite enjoyable....more
Champion was a great conclusion to the Legend series. It was full of emotion, adventure, loss, choices, and action. June and Day grew as characters anChampion was a great conclusion to the Legend series. It was full of emotion, adventure, loss, choices, and action. June and Day grew as characters and had some heavy choices to make throughout the book.
In Champion, June and Day were separated, but their stories collided a few times and they ended up working together to fight the Colonies and discover a way for the Republic to move in a positive direction. Because the two of them came from different worlds, they viewed every situation differently and I liked the contrast. The ending was absolutely superb. I almost cried, which is typically a rare sight.
I highly recommend the Legend trilogy and I enjoyed Marie Lu’s writing and world building. If you’re a fan of the dystopian genre, these books are must reads. I don’t understand why the books aren’t more popular, actually. In many ways, these books were more complicated and moving than the more popular series, like The Hunger Games and Divergent.
However, there were aspects of the story I didn’t like. Had I read the trilogy back when dystopian YA fiction was sort of my go-to genre, I might not have any criticism. But I’m kind of over the whole teenage girl is somehow the key to saving an entire world that was evil and terrible for a number of years. I think that the Legend trilogy would have been better if it was not YA. If the author would have aged everything up and peppered in some more mature themes and spent more time on the government and the ins and outs of it, it would have been absolutely spectacular. But because it was YA, it really took away from the story and simplified the overall world. June and Day were far too young to have such crucial roles in society. How was June a soldier and later one of the most important people in the government? How was she working at such a young age? And if that was normal, how on earth could a society to employs children ever bounce back to the fair and just society that we would expect?Why was Day able to lead so well and be the voice of the people? What adult do you know would follow a teenager into anything? Had June and Day been 10 years older, the entire plot would have made far more sense to me and would have actually made the ending that much more compelling and touching. But these criticisms aren’t necessarily only geared towards Legend. Any YA dystopian seems to suffer the same problems.
Despite the things I disliked, there’s no argument that Legend excels in the YA dystopian category and is a must read for any fan of the genre. It is only as my reading tastes grow and change that I discover the genre isn’t necessarily the one for me any more. Very few of the books I used to loved have followed me as my tastes have changed. I definitely recommend reading this, though, and I can’t wait to dive into The Young Elites by Marie Lu!
At first, Prodigy seemed like it was suffering from second book syndrome. June and Day were separated and wrapped up in what the other one was thinkinAt first, Prodigy seemed like it was suffering from second book syndrome. June and Day were separated and wrapped up in what the other one was thinking, adding a lot of relationship drama to an already dramatic plot. I liked that June and Day weren’t all googly-eyed throughout Legend, so I was kind of disappointed by the direction of the plot.
However, my feelings quickly changed. The relationship drama had a crucial point since they both came from different worlds and their motivations and past experiences had a lot to do with not only their future together, but their loyalties. Would June stay loyal to a Republic that turned it’s back on her? Would Day be blinded by his hatred for the Republic? Could either of them trust the Patriots? Was the new Elector just as bad as the last?
Legend was a bit predictable, which was my only criticism, but Prodigy quickly remedied that situation. It wasn’t very predictable at all. I honestly didn’t know who to trust, if anyone. I loved getting different sides to the story and finding out how the world was actually set up. The idea that the Republic could be an isolated military regime in an otherwise democratic world was crazy, but not that far fetched. I liked that we got to see the Colonies and compare them to the Republic.
I really enjoyed Prodigy. The conflicts were amazing and I like the way the story pulled me everywhere and tested me. I had no idea where it was going or who to trust. I highly recommend the series and I’m glad that the second book was better than the first and that it surprised me. I was so worried it wouldn’t be as good when I first started.
I have had this on book on my shelf for ages and never really wanted to read it. I’m not a plant/flower person and don’t experience joy in tending anyI have had this on book on my shelf for ages and never really wanted to read it. I’m not a plant/flower person and don’t experience joy in tending any kind of garden and the book just sort of seemed like that sort of story. For the past few days, I’ve been unable to get into any book and have been bouncing between 5 or 6 books and feeling generally apathetic about any of them. Finally, I picked this up because I knew I’d see my friend again and really wanted to be able to hand it back to her.
Immediately, I was hooked. For the first time in over a week, I was able to slide right into a story and get comfortable. I don’t know if the first person narrative is what drew me in initially or if it was the general messed-up-ness of the main character. It was obvious that she was terrible, miserable, and altogether lost. I wanted to know more about her and why she ended up that way and what could have happened to land her back in the group home.
Victoria’s story was captivating. She was an orphan who lived in various homes, all of them terrible, up until her last home right before she was 10. After 10, I guess she was to be considered unadoptable and she’d end up back in the group home until she reached 18. The book began with her being 18 and leaving the home, but some chapters went back to when she was 10 at her very last home with Elizabeth, who taught her about flowers and what they mean.
In some ways, the book had a White Oleander feel to it. The main character had issues, was reserved and somewhat withdrawn, and was placed into group homes and homes that didn’t work out, just like the main character in White Oleander. The circumstances and overall message was different, but the tone was similar as well. Not knowing what happened with Elizabeth was a major factor in my interest of the story. I wanted to see Victoria adapt at 18, but I also burned with curiosity as to how everything went so wrong with her last home. Elizabeth seemed great, so I didn’t know what went wrong. It was interesting to watch the story unfold and watch Victoria excel as something after she became an adult. Her encounters with Grant were sweet, complicated, and interesting as well.
While I thoroughly enjoyed the novel and highly recommend it, I do think it’s unrealistic, especially towards the end. I didn’t dislike Victoria, but I realize that a character like her in real life would not be someone with whom anyone would sympathize with. She was nasty and she often made no sense with her actions. Her actions after becoming a mother were insanely unrealistic as well, including the way the conflict was resolved at the end. The main reason this never bothered me was that I read a lot of unrealistic fiction anyway and don’t really expect characters to act accordingly with my world. Contemporary fiction is rarely my go-to genre. But also, I’m not a mother and I’m less inclined to be shocked and offended by less-than-motherly actions and decisions. I can see why so many reviewers were left feeling slightly miffed by the character’s actions, though.
Despite the unrealistic feel towards the end and slightly throughout the story, it was awesome. It was a great debut novel with a ton of redemption and love. I loved the idea of the flowers being a language and communicating a message and I loved how the author weaved that into a complicated story with extremely flawed characters. I’m giving it a full 5 stars because it took me right out of my reading slump that I was in for over a week....more
I liked Max a lot. He was nonchalant, nice, and refreshing. I kind of hate stuffy billionaires and I have no idea why I keep picking up these terribleI liked Max a lot. He was nonchalant, nice, and refreshing. I kind of hate stuffy billionaires and I have no idea why I keep picking up these terrible books, but Max didn’t fit the stuffy billionaire mold quite like the other leading guys of this genre.
I like books like these to have a good storyline, but what I liked about Beautiful Bastard was that it was to the point. I think Beautiful Stranger had a great plot and I liked the chemistry between Max and Sara, but it started to get redundant. I don’t know.
I’m starting to think that I should just stop reading these types of books. Max was cool, his relationship was Sara was all taboo and the stuff of fantasies, what with the photos and the sex near/in public and I get that a lot of people have these fantasies. But to build an actual romance around it just gets dumb to me. There’s always unnecessary conflict and miscommunication and I’m not impressed when I know that they will fall in love, have a fight, and then get back together.
When it comes to this type of fiction, I read the first books and that’s it. Maybe my problem stems from the fact that this isn’t the first and it’s essentially the same type of story as all of the others, as the first book, with different characters and fetishes.
Don’t take my word for it. I have no business reading these kinds of books. I like steamy romance, but I just can’t do the unnecessary conflicts and the jumping into bed and falling in love kind of storylines without any substance. ...more
Bared to You is very much like 50 Shades in all of the ways that people will like (if you’re into that sort of thing) without so many of the things thBared to You is very much like 50 Shades in all of the ways that people will like (if you’re into that sort of thing) without so many of the things that make 50 Shades the worst book on the planet. Bared to You is another billionaire suit-and-tie romance with dark edges and a ton of sex, but without the lip biting idiocy of Anastasia Steele and terrible writing. For what it is, Bared to You wasn’t badly written at all. Yes, there are moments where the plot makes no sense, but I find that with ANY rich guy and plain girl romance these days and I don’t think people read these in order to have their brains exposed to rich storytelling. I think most people lean towards historical and paranormal romance for that.
I actually liked Eva for much of the book because she actually said no, had no problems walking away from Gideon multiple times, and wasn’t afraid to tell him that she wasn’t a tool to be used. At the beginning, Eva shocked me by being so adamant about not sleeping with someone she was so incredibly attracted to. I’m used to my heroines in these books turning into puddles that still somehow bite their lips.
I liked Gideon, too. Sure, he was all polished and perfect, but as soon as Eva walked out on him, he wasn’t afraid to be sensitive and emotional and beg her for another chance and apologize for fucking up. I’m used to the billionaires being gigantic assholes nearly all of the novel, so that was a nice change of pace.
Honestly, despite the fast paced, jumping-into-bed, lust = love kind of plot, Bared to You was kind of refreshing at first. But then the constant issues started. Jealousy, sexual abuse, miscommunication, unnecessary drama, other women, etc.. it was so much in a very short amount of time. Towards the end, I started to feel like they needed to just get over themselves. Eva once impressed me by walking away, but then that became her thing and then Gideon kept getting all upset about how he fucked up again and they both just got on my nerves.
I think if you read these books often and like them, Bared to You is one of the better ones. But as good as it was, it wasn’t good enough to redeem the genre.
First Grave on the Right was exactly what I wanted and expected. It was a lighthearted and fun paranormal novel and I totally enjoyed reading it. My fFirst Grave on the Right was exactly what I wanted and expected. It was a lighthearted and fun paranormal novel and I totally enjoyed reading it. My favorite thing about adult paranormal romance and urban fantasy is how fun it can be while also being serious. It’s what kept me going in the Sookie Stackhouse series and this series is a close fit to the same sort of style and tone.
Charley had her hands full. She could see the dead and usher them to the other side and she used that to help her as a private investigator. She worked closely with her uncle, who was a cop, to solve cases since she could speak to the dead person. She had a great attitude, quirky friends, and no ability to realize that situations could be dangerous. Like Sookie, she ended up getting hurt because of her abilities.
I think most negative reviews are from people who don’t typically enjoy the paranormal romance/urban fantasy genre. If you know what to expect, this book totally delivers. But if you were looking for better fleshed out complications in the plot and less girl talk, you won’t find it here. And if you are looking for the hot and steamy serious paranormal romances like that of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, this probably isn’t the book for you either, though it gets a bit steamy at times. It’s full of corny jokes, quirky people, and heroines who make light of their actual dangerous situations.
This kind of book is one that would pair well with a night in and some popcorn. It’s fun, entertaining, and awesome to read. I definitely recommend reading it and I’ll continue the series. If you like the Sookie Stackhouse novels, the Paranormalcy trilogy or anything paranormal from Jennifer L. Armentrout, you’ll probably enjoy First Grave on the Right. It's good old fashioned PNR. ...more
I think I would have given Salem Falls 5 stars if I hadn’t read it right after The Pact. I did, so all I have done is compare them and come to the conI think I would have given Salem Falls 5 stars if I hadn’t read it right after The Pact. I did, so all I have done is compare them and come to the conclusion that Jodi Picoult novels leave me feeling vaguely frustrated and empty for some reason. I don’t know if it’s the way the story is told or what. She’s a great author and her books are thought provoking and captivating, but I hate certain aspects of them, I guess.
Salem Falls is told from multiple points of view and takes place after Jack was released from jail. Some sections go back to the past before he was convicted so that we get an overall picture of what happened. Jack and Addie immediately fall into a relationship, despite the fact that he never told her what happened. And before he could really say anything, people in town found out about his prior conviction and started harassing him. And one of particularly bad night, he ended up where he was in the first place, accused of sexual assault.
I didn’t like Jack. I understood he was innocent (at least of the first accusation). I understood he was a teacher at an all girl’s school and things happened that he couldn’t get out of. But he was an idiot. He didn’t successfully distance himself like any male teacher should have known to do. And when he realized his student had a crush, he should have taken better measures to distance himself before something bad happened. It was frustrating. And then to have him end up in the wrong place at the wrong time in Salem Falls just made me want the jury to convict him so he’d never wind up in trouble again. If people in town are actively harassing you about a sexual assault conviction, you should probably not get drunk and wander around aimlessly. I just wanted to punch him for being so stupid. Even his interactions with Gillian, where she was actively coming on to him in public, he should have told someone in the diner about so that if she did it again, someone would think to notice. A man who spend 8 months in jail should have known the power in having people on your side. I thought he might have been guilty, but then I thought there was no way. I didn’t know. I mean, what are the odds that another teenager girl would lie about it? This can’t be a real thing that happens to one person all of the time. I mean, is he somehow godlike in the looks department? Seriously.
I didn’t like Jack and Addie’s relationship. It felt physical to me. It happened really fast. And I don’t feel like they shared enough information and talked enough to have fallen in love so quickly. It became clear once Jack was accused of yet another sexual assault and Addie questioned his innocence that they obviously didn’t know each other very well. The synopsis made it seem like they had a real connection and relationship and I never really got that from them.
Despite my feelings of Jack or Addie, I enjoyed the novel. I liked that Jordan McAfee had a role in the story because I liked him in The Pact, too. His relationship with his son was great, too. I enjoyed his private investigator and getting more of their story. It was clear that the teenage girls in the story had their own problems and Gillian was a trouble maker. I liked unraveling that particular mystery. They dabbled in the occult, claiming to be Wiccans, but no one besides the occult store owner really knew about it. The trial and gathering of evidence was interesting to read about and I never knew what the jury would decide. For much of the story, I even wondered if Jack was guilty. I liked not knowing and being pushed and pulled in multiple directions.
While I enjoyed the mystery, the trial, and not really knowing what happened, it bothers me often that Picoult doesn’t give readers the truth, especially not right away. It would be easier to root for the defense or the prosecution if I knew who was right. But then again, I know that she writes her books that way for a reason. Almost every courtroom drama has a right and wrong side. Real life, however, is different. We don’t know. We throw our eggs into the basket that makes the most sense for us, but we could be wrong. I like the challenge, but it was frustrating and unfulfilling sometimes. However, Salem Falls was much more satisfying than The Pact to me because we eventually got to the bottom of the mystery.
I enjoyed Salem Falls and will certainly read more of Picoult in the future. However, it’s clear that it’s NOT a good idea to read them back to back, so I’m taking a bit of a break. I’m shocked that it took me so long to finally read her books. I always assumed she was some chick lit author who wrote light romances with suspense or mystery added in. She writes great fiction that is thought provoking, complicating, and moving. ...more
I’ve only read one other Jodi Picoult novel and I enjoyed it, finding it much better written than the light chick-lit I was expecting. So I brought hoI’ve only read one other Jodi Picoult novel and I enjoyed it, finding it much better written than the light chick-lit I was expecting. So I brought home a stack of her books from the used bookstore that sounded promising and started with The Pact.
The Pact was a good story, but not the story I wanted or expected. I know that sounds strange. I feel conflicted, frustrated, and empty after reading it because, while it gave me a story full of secrets and drama, it left so many doors unopened. Chris and Emily had been together since childhood and when she was found shot in the head, Chris blamed it on a suicide pact. Later, he was tried for murder. The story was told in the present with bits and pieces from before the murder/suicide, along with bits from the past when Chris and Emily were kids.
I felt like I got a decent glimpse of the parents as they forged their friendships and had Chris and Emily. I felt like I got a pretty good account of what was happening with Chris in the present. But aside from those two storylines, I felt like the rest of the story was full of holes and blind spots and I wasn’t given enough information. The book was written in third person and featured nearly all of the characters, but I never got inside everyone’s heads and the storyline called for a more introspective narrative.
The relationships and friendships in the story were crazy and twisted. Chris and Emily were a strange couple because they had hardly any memories apart from each other. Chris went from viewing her as a sister type to seeing her as a woman and fell madly in love. For Emily, things were a bit different, but I know she felt connected to Chris on a deep level. While everyone else saw a mature and perfect couple, I felt like they were terrible and thrown together by circumstance. It’s not like they could part and ever get away from each other. They’d disappoint so many people. And that fact had to be part of Emily’s problem. It almost felt like they were one giant family up until Emily died.
Mostly, Emily annoyed me. I never understood why she wanted to kill herself. There were things that happened to her that had something to do with her not liking her life, but I feel like she either came from a family that communicated enough for her to have told someone at one point or she would have acted less well adjusted and her family would have noticed. I just never bought that no one except Chris knew about it or weren’t surprised. I can’t believe that the nurse wouldn’t have asked more questions after her reaction at the clinic, either, to uncover Emily’s state of mind. Emily’s character frustrated me so much and I don’t know if I have a legitimate complaint about her character or if I just hate that she died and never got any help or closure or anything.
I feel torn because the novel rings true in many ways. We don’t know the motivations of people around us. People change in an instant. We don’t know the truth. We pick sides without really knowing the whole story. These are all things that happened in the novel. And I enjoy it when books don’t necessarily wrap up stories in one nice and neat bow, so I’m not sure why I’m vaguely frustrated by the story.
I think my frustrations are the same frustrations I have with young, terrible love. The adult in me wants to scream at Emily and slap Chris for not saying anything or doing anything and for not thinking about the consequences of his actions. It makes no sense! But I think The Pact is a love story in the same way that Romeo and Juliet is.. which is to say, it's not, really. It's a cautionary tale about the issues with young people, serious issues, and glorified view of suicide. It's immature. I wanted the author to fix the problems or at least shine some light on the issues at the end and I think that's why I was frustrated. She didn't do those things. But here I am writing my review a week later and still struggling and thinking about the issues, which means that it must have been pretty thought provoking and moving.
I definitely recommend reading it. It was thought provoking, descriptive, and engrossing. I plan to read more of her books, as I enjoy her writing style....more
Nicholas Sparks is not my go to author typically. While I’ve enjoyed a few of his books, I’m typically mildly disappointed by the writing and overallNicholas Sparks is not my go to author typically. While I’ve enjoyed a few of his books, I’m typically mildly disappointed by the writing and overall execution of the story. Most of the time, I prefer the movie to the book. So I’m surprised by how much I enjoyed Safe Haven, even after seeing parts of the movie and totally spoiling the biggest twist for myself.
Safe Haven was great! It was pretty well written. It didn’t take long to get into the groove of the characters and understand who they were and what their motivations were. I liked Katie a lot and admired her for being so independent and brave. I thought Alex was a relaxed, laid back, and all around wonderful guy. He did a lot of things with his kids and his love of his setting made me appreciate the town of Southport. Watching Katie and Alex reluctantly fall for each other was sweet.
The romantic story in Safe Haven was captivating and wonderful, but it was not all there was to the story. In Safe Haven, Nicholas Sparks attempted something I’ve rarely seen from his novels. He created somewhat of a suspense situation by giving us the point of view of the person from Katie’s past. What he did with the character was awesome. Not only was on the edge of my seat towards the end of the novel, but his point of view was incredibly captivating. I loved the short and choppy thought processes he had as he struggled to merge the person he thought he was and who he thought Katie was with the person his anger created of both himself and Katie.
Nicholas Sparks often writes inspirational and spiritual romances. His frequent references to God and Christian principles can add a lot to his stories, but aren’t the things I necessarily look for and I find that his books can be a little strangely preachy as a result. So I was totally floored by the way he created a type of bad guy/villain who took Christian principles and Bible verses and twisted them in his screwed up mind to justify the way he acted and felt about certain behaviors. It was certainly not something I was expecting, but I really enjoyed the perspective. I thought it was refreshing and unique for Sparks to have a character who claimed to be a man of God and yet didn’t quite understand that his actions were the opposite of what any religious person would consider godly. I guess I just thought he’d always stick to the good stuff and I’m shocked and a bit impressed that he decided to take a different route.
There was a twist at the end that I enjoyed. I knew it was coming because I saw the end of the movie. I missed the beginning of the movie, so I was eager to see how the book would handle the situation and how it would do the twist. Some readers disliked the twist, but I enjoyed it and the letter at the end of the book and the movie made me tear up a little. The twist isn’t anything I believe could really happen, but I appreciate the whole full circle aspect of it and I thought it really brought the story together quite well. I recommend reading Safe Haven, even if you’re like me and don’t typically pick Nicholas Sparks books up to read. He has a few really good ones and this is one of them!