Thought that this was an interesting story, but it's more science fiction than fantasy. Because I'm not really into science fiction with space ships,Thought that this was an interesting story, but it's more science fiction than fantasy. Because I'm not really into science fiction with space ships, robots, and simulations, I found myself focusing more on the character's personalities and their relationships with each other.
The main character is a boy named Aadi, a child prodigy who did not really want to attend the space camp run by his parent's employer. This is supposed to be a trial run for the camp, and all of the campers are children of TEGRC employees. The campers are divided into teams and put through various simulations and training in preparation for actual space travel. I thought that the simulations became a little violent for a book aimed at young adults, and the mystery Aadi's team discovers had disturbing implications.
Gave this book a 3/5 rating because while I enjoyed the story, I'm not a big science fiction fan. Also, the dialogue seemed a little stilted at times, and the author doesn't seem to like contractions. What child doesn't use contractions (will not instead of won't, can not instead of can't)? I did like that the girls in the story were strong and intelligent, holding their own with the boys. Not a bad story, and I'm curious what happens next with Aaid, Eirena, and the rest of the team....more
Crewel is the first book in a trilogy, but I'm not sure that I want to read the rest.
Adelice, the main character, struck me as selfish, unlikable, andCrewel is the first book in a trilogy, but I'm not sure that I want to read the rest.
Adelice, the main character, struck me as selfish, unlikable, and unsympathetic. I know that we're supposed to feel sorry for all she's been through, but so much of it was her own fault that I couldn't muster up much sympathy.
Trained for years by her parents to hide her ability and told that she needs to fail the testing session for her own safety, Adelice "slips" on the final testing day. To make matters worse, she lies to her parents when she gets home and lets them believe the ruse worked.
I got the impression that her parents had a plan in place in case the ruse didn't work, but things turned out terribly because Adelice wanted to pretend that everything would be okay. How incredibly selfish and immature!
Almost every bad thing that happens to Adelice is her own fault. Maybe not entirely, but at least partially. And yet she won't take responsibility for any of it, which annoyed me even more!
Yes Adelice is incredibly gifted, but too many people give her warning after warning and risk their own safety, which left me at a loss. Why would so many people try to help her when she wasn't very nice? And why wouldn't she listen?
Even when Adelice is punished and we're told how awful the punishment was, it didn't seem to matter to her. I know I'd have a quick attitude adjustment after being left in a dark, dank dungeon for days on end, but not Adelice! Are we supposed to admire her spunk? I just thought she was reckless and foolish.
That sounds really harsh and like I didn't enjoy the book at all, which isn't the case. I loved the idea of the Spinsters, weaving time and material like the Fates of old! I wish we had spent more time with the other Spinsters and learned more about the process.
The world that the author has created sounds fascinating too! The Powers That Be have absolute control over their citizens, dictating every detail of their lives, from how many children you can have to when you die. Terrifying!
And despite the power the Spinsters have, women are definitely second-class citizens in this society. Not allowed to travel and kept in traditional female occupations, they have very few rights. I would have liked to explore this world in more detail!
The ending left me a little torn. The big finale seemed like just another reckless action by Adelice and left me liking her even less, but I sort of want to read the next book to see what happens. I think I'll wait and maybe time will soften my feelings for Adelice....more
While the premise of this book really intrigued me, the story itself let me down a little. The plot was interesting, the characters were intriguing, tWhile the premise of this book really intrigued me, the story itself let me down a little. The plot was interesting, the characters were intriguing, the writing was good, and I love anything to do with the Fae. So why didn't this book draw me in as expected?
Most of the story is told from Caitlin's point of view, then it splits and we have Caitlin's and Eddy's parallel adventures. The duel story lines were easy to follow and interesting enough, but I found myself putting the book down more than once for some reason.
After stewing about it for awhile, I think that it was the pace of the plot that ultimately put me off. We know from the synopsis that Caitlin has to travel to Tir na nOg to try to retrieve her daughter, but it takes almost half the book before they even cross!
While it's important to set things up, it felt like the author was giving us almost too much information. I kept waiting for Caitlin to cross over into Fae territory and I admit that I became impatient.
While not a bad book, it was just okay for me. If anyone else has read this one, I'd love to know what you thought! It took me much too long to finish this one, but I'm not 100% sure why....more
This is a fun, unique read about a woman dubbed "Hostage Girl" by the media because villains keep kidnapping her to try and get superhero Blaze's atteThis is a fun, unique read about a woman dubbed "Hostage Girl" by the media because villains keep kidnapping her to try and get superhero Blaze's attention. Kind of like focusing on Lois Lane instead of Superman. I sort of wish that Gail had been more proactive when it came to protecting herself instead of always waiting for Blaze to rescue her, but I still liked her!
Once her rescuer leaves town, Gail thinks that her life will now get back to normal and starts to relax. Unfortunately, it seems that every villain hasn't gotten the memo and Gail is taken hostage once again, only this time by a mad scientist. Holding her hostage for several weeks, he keeps giving her a mysterious cocktail of drugs, which has an odd effect on her. Then the mad scientist's house is raided and Gail escapes.
Somehow the concoction the mad scientist gave her results in Gail developing superpowers! Very cool! Now Gail not only has to learn the extent of her powers, but also how to control them. Good thing there's a Superhero Lair where she can be taught by the experts!
This part of the story was my favorite, as Gail was starting to come into her own. Learning to fight, exploring her powers, and getting to know some of the other superheroes take up most of her time now. Loved her budding romance!
Unfortunately, Gail is still a little too naive and trusting for someone who has been kidnapped so many times. There was more than one instance where I wanted to reach through the pages and smack her upside the back of her head! Why doesn't she trust her new friends more? Why is she taking so many stupid risks? Why Gail, why?
This was a really fun read for me, until it suddenly ended. I honestly thought that I was missing pages as the ending was so abrupt. It's like one of those old TV shows that suddenly end as the stagecoach is heading straight for the cliff! Wait! I need to know what happens next! Evil, evil cliffhanger! ...more
Captive is the sequel to Pawn, book two in The Blackcoat Rebellion series. While I liked the first book better, this is still a good read!
Kitty is anCaptive is the sequel to Pawn, book two in The Blackcoat Rebellion series. While I liked the first book better, this is still a good read!
Kitty is an amazing character! Raised in a group home and thrust into a dangerous situation, she refuses to passively sit back and let others dictate her life. While she has limited choices, she does her best with what she has. Is she the best and brightest? No. But she's smart and resourceful, and that makes a difference.
Once Kitty was sent to Elsewhere, the plot really picked up! What a fascinating place! Made me think of a Russian gulag, or what I imagine a Russian gulag would be like. It's a jail, but one where no one gets out alive.
Everyone has an assigned job, lives in bunkhouses, eats horrible food, and is provided with only the basic necessities in order to survive. What an incredibly bleak existence.
Kitty's assigned job, once I understood what was happening, is absolutely horrifying. What's even more horrifying is that no one thinks it's horrifying. How they can be so matter-of-fact about doing something so heinous is just another example of how terrible life in Elsewhere is!
There are a couple of coincidences in this story that I didn't buy into, but understood that they were necessary in order to move the plot where the author wanted. I just wish they could have been handled in a better way. Still a good story, but not as believable as I'd like. I know it's fiction, but I still like my fiction to be at least possible in real life, know what I mean?
There's a big ending with lots of action and a surprise twist, so I'm curious to see what the author does next! ...more
Maddie has seen death dates on people's foreheads for as long as she can remember. It's an odd talent, but I'm not sure if that would be more of a bleMaddie has seen death dates on people's foreheads for as long as she can remember. It's an odd talent, but I'm not sure if that would be more of a blessing or a curse. Since Maddie doesn't know how the person will die, just the date, I got the impression that Maddie views it as more of a curse.
When the son of a client disappears on his death date, the FBI gets involved. Suspicious of Maddie's so-called ability, she is viewed as a suspect when more teens start to disappear. Torn between her uncle's request to stop telling people their dates and her mother's need for the cash, Maddie just wants the murders to stop.
Things go from bad to worse when they try to warn her BFF's new crush of her rapidly approaching death date. Unsure if a person's death date can actually change, Maddie and Stubby can't simply sit by and do nothing. When the girl disappears, Maddie and BFF Stubby find themselves accused.
Really enjoyed this story, and loved Maddie! She's in a tough spot, but does her best with what she has. I was more than a little annoyed at her mother for using Maddie's talent in a somewhat cheesy way, but more so for basically giving up when her husband died. No child should be forced to take care of their parent. especially when the parent becomes an alcoholic.
The ending of this one took me a little by surprise, as I didn't see it coming. Was satisfied with how things played out, and enjoyed the nice little twist at the end. Well worth reading!...more
This book has a slight overlap with the first book in the trilogy, Grave Mercy, which I've never really come across before. Most of the sequels I readThis book has a slight overlap with the first book in the trilogy, Grave Mercy, which I've never really come across before. Most of the sequels I read start either shortly after the first book or somewhere down the road, so I got a little kick out of the overlap.
Like the first book, this one has a cast of characters listed at the beginning. This is one of my reading pet peeves, so I skipped ahead to the story. Why do authors feel the need to list every single character in the book? Please just let us meet them naturally, as the story progresses!
Sybella is a Daughter of Mortain (aka Death) and has been trained as an assassin at the convent's island retreat. Sent undercover to spy on her evil father, her latest assignment may prove to be too much for her. Her father could decide to kill her at any moment, her oldest brother patterns himself after Daddy Dearest so is just as bad, and her "favorite" brother wants to become a little too intimate for words. Talk about a dysfunctional family!
Some of the characters from Grave Mercy make appearances and while it's nice to see them again, this could be read as a stand-alone. I really enjoyed getting to know Sybella and my heart broke for her more than once as we learn more about her past. Despite everything, she is a survivor and has found new purpose in her life serving Mortain.
Really loved the action and adventure in this one! Great characters, some dark twists and turns, and a satisfying ending make this a must-read if you like fantasy!...more
This book and I started off on the wrong foot, as there is a map and cast of characters listed at the beginning. This happens to be one of my readingThis book and I started off on the wrong foot, as there is a map and cast of characters listed at the beginning. This happens to be one of my reading pet peeves, as I don't like having to plow through a cast of characters that I haven't even met yet! It also makes me suspicious that the author feels the need to list the characters, as if the reader will be confused otherwise. Thankfully, this was not the case!
Once I started reading, the story really drew me in! Ismae has been treated horribly her entire life because she is "marked" by the god of death, with scars from her mother's failed attempt to expel her from the womb. Unloved and unwanted, Ismae is rescued from her new brute of a husband and taken to an isolated convent. A convent full of assassin nuns! How cool is that?
Quickly taking to her new life, Ismae discovers that she is immune to poison and is assigned to the Poisons Mistress. She isn't as successful in all of her studies (history and womanly arts are kind of boring), but she does well enough to be sent on her first assignment. And it's a success! Her second assignment doesn't go as smoothly and the Abbess receives a complaint about Ismae. This complaint leads to her third and most challenging assignment, undercover at the royal court.
Most of the story deals with her undercover assignment in the court of the young Duchess Anne of Brittany. Using Anne's half-brother Gavriel Duval as part of her cover, she tries to figure out who is plotting against the duchess. All while dealing with her growing feelings for Duval.
To be honest, most historical fiction isn't to my liking and I get bored with all the double-crosses and schemes. Thankfully there wasn't too much court intrigue in this one and it easily held my interest.
All in all a very satisfying read! The author has come up with a very interesting premise - assassin nuns! And I loved seeing Ismae explore her gifts and become more confident in her duties as Death's Handmaiden. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series, as I really like these characters!...more
One of the things that I really loved about this story is that Hazel is the hero. She wants to be a knight, fighting monsters and saving her town, ratOne of the things that I really loved about this story is that Hazel is the hero. She wants to be a knight, fighting monsters and saving her town, rather than waiting passively for a Prince Charming to come and save the day. I love a good, strong female lead and Hazel fits the bill perfectly!
Hazel and her brother are raised by inattentive parents, left to their own devices much too often and getting into more trouble than was healthy. But if they weren't neglected, they wouldn't have had so many childhood adventures! The jury's still out though on whether or not that was a good thing.
Having unwisely made a deal with the fae when she was younger, things go from bad to worse for Hazel when the mysterious horned boy disappears from his glass coffin in the woods.
So many questions! Who is the horned boy? Where did Hazel's childhood sword disappear to? Who is leaving her cryptic messages? And when will the Alderking finally make Hazel pay up?
Really enjoyed this story! Holly is an incredibly talented writer who gives us great characters, an interesting plot, and a nice twist to the ending that I wasn't expecting. Well worth reading!...more