Some books just aren't for everyone, and despite the praise from book friends, I couldn't bring myself to like this one. I couldn't seem to connect wi...moreSome books just aren't for everyone, and despite the praise from book friends, I couldn't bring myself to like this one. I couldn't seem to connect with the main characters, and since they drive half the story, that made it harder to like. (less)
If I thought I was excited about reading For Darkness Shows the Stars before, I'm even more excited now. Seeing a glimpse into Kai's life before he co...moreIf I thought I was excited about reading For Darkness Shows the Stars before, I'm even more excited now. Seeing a glimpse into Kai's life before he comes back to face Elliott - well, it definitely left me curious. I know the basic storyline For Darkness Shows the Stars is supposed to follow, but the setting and little changes all intrigue me. I'm curious to find out more about the Posts, Luddites and Reduced.
Kai's love for Elliott, despite him trying to let her and her life go, comes through so much in all the unsent letters he plans in his head and on paper. I can't wait to see them interact in the mail book.
I really enjoyed this book - I loved the story - all the learning to survive through grief - it was touching and at the same time, easy to read. It wa...moreI really enjoyed this book - I loved the story - all the learning to survive through grief - it was touching and at the same time, easy to read. It was just a really good story.
Only downside was the "teen texts" - shorthand text messages make me cringe. But small potatoes, it was something I could live with.
Face-paced story; not just in the sense of action and mystery, but in the way it was written. Short sentences, combined with tight chapters and a limi...moreFace-paced story; not just in the sense of action and mystery, but in the way it was written. Short sentences, combined with tight chapters and a limited time frame meant the story moved forward so quickly, I was halfway done before I knew it.
We're introduced to boy-nobody and for so long you don't actually know who he is. You here about his past, and how he became wrapped up in The Program (a secret agencies using teens as assassins of sorts) but you're never sure who he is exactly. It left this air of mystery throughout the whole book. Even when bits and pieces of the unknown past get revealed, you're still not sure who or what boy-nobody really is. I did enjoy this part, but it also left me feeling a little flat at times - like I was missing something vital or something. I wanted to know more.
I like the gadgets used in the book. It's one of my favourite parts of a spy book - seeing when toys the agents will use. Teen spies have it even better because they seem to get away with so much more.
While I really liked how fast the storyline moved, the story time-frame meant you couldn't really explore the characters in depth. You're aware that you're only seeing the surface, because the short mission doesn't allow boy-nobody to dig any deeper into the other characters' lives. I would have liked that sense of familiarity and depth more.
I was pretty shocked by the ending. It wasn't what I thought was going to happen and does make me wonder what might happen in a sequel.
This book wasn't quite what I was expecting. I enjoyed it, but not as much as I wanted to. I think this is because I kept drawing comparisons to Dark...moreThis book wasn't quite what I was expecting. I enjoyed it, but not as much as I wanted to. I think this is because I kept drawing comparisons to Dark Angel: the genetically modified, beautiful young girl; the love interest who isn't really part of it all, but made himself part of her life; on the run from the scary organisation that created them - BUT one creator feeling fatherly emotions for his creations. I know it's not ONLY a Dark Angel-storyline, but it's the one I kept coming back to (especially after I was finished and read the blurb for book 2)
I found Sera's memory problems to be a bit of a let-down. It too so long for the story to get going because everything was unknown to her. But it did pick up at the end.
Not a bad book, but not as epic as I wanted it to be.
Fathomless had an extra edge before I even started the book. Not only did I love the previous fairytale stories Jackson Pearce has written, but The Li...moreFathomless had an extra edge before I even started the book. Not only did I love the previous fairytale stories Jackson Pearce has written, but The Little Mermaid is my personal favourite fairytale - so I was SUPER excited to see how Pearce would twist the story and make it her own. And let me tell you I LOVED IT!
We start the book being introduced to the Ocean Girls. If you know Jackson Pearce's previous books well, the Ocean Girls are not new ideas, but we've never actually seen them before. Transformed into something that can live under the water, something dangerous - not quite a mermaid, but closer to a siren, luring men into the waves with the hope they will love them enough to return their souls and let them be released from the ocean. But you can't make a boy fall in love with you with just a song...and so, the Ocean Girls chose to fade away under the water, forgetting their past lives, hoping an angel will return and take them to a better place.
Enter Lo, our main Ocean Girl. She's conflicted. She loves her life under the water and after a failed attempt at taking a human boy's soul she's content to let her life fade away. I was so curious about Lo's life. She is obviously the Little Mermaid in the story, especially when she later attempts to move around on land, with pain shooting up from her feet - almost like crushing glass with new step. But she's torn between accepting her life now under the water, and trying to regain the memories of her life before becoming and Ocean Girl, her life as Naida. The conflicting people within her made for some interesting twists. You never knew which personality will take hold or what memories she'll discover.
But she has help with that, Celia Reynolds. I knew before starting the book, that Celia was part of the giant Reynolds clan, my favourite family in Jackson Pearce's series! Celia is a triplet, and unlike the males in her family, she doesn't seem to be aware that there are dangerous and supernatural beings in the world. Her sisters, Anne and Jane, believe they are the only ones which weird and secret talents - the three sisters can see the Future, Present and Past. Celia, gifted with the power to see the past, believes her talent is useless. What good is seeing the mistakes and troubles of the past? You can't change what happened before. But she can help someone who forgets to remember. She can try to help Lo remember Naida. I felt bad for Celia, she seemed so alone, despite having sisters around her all the time. Not quite like Anne and Jane, Celia stands apart and when she meets Lo, she starts to find herself as Celia and not just as a sister. I loved her trying to help search through Lo's memories and I loved how much she cared.
Like all good stories, there's a complication in the mix: a boy, Jude. Lo and Celia help save Jude from drowning, and it starts a snowball effect of drama. Jude falls in love, both girls feel a connection to him and both look for something beyond their lives when they're with him. Lo, desperate to find a way out of her ocean life, hopes that Jude might fall in love with her and release her from her water prison. Celia wants to be normal and finds a way to block the past while with Jude. But secrets and lies plague their separate relationships and that can only lead to trouble. The secrets churned me up a bit. Some I could understand keeping, others made me mental. I just wanted everyone to be happy in the end. These hopes for a new life and the mix of secrets caused a massive twist at the end - I totally didn't see it coming - but it was good. I loved it.
Amazing retelling of The Little Mermaid - definitely a favourite. Can't wait for Cold Spell. I hope there are more retellings after this one, because I enjoy them too much to let go.
Before this year I never actively searched for mystery and thriller books, I never considered myself a crime lover or one who searched for secret evil...moreBefore this year I never actively searched for mystery and thriller books, I never considered myself a crime lover or one who searched for secret evil societies - at least not in a "real world" setting, one without vampires or some other supernatural element. But this year changed it. I read one fantastic mystery-thriller book and I NEEDED more. Dead Jealous hits the mark for mystery, danger and suspense.
I really enjoyed Poppy's voice. She was a tad too trusting at times, but growing up visiting Pagan festivals all her life, and believing that the people she interacts with at these gatherings are all friendly, wholesome people (despite being a sceptic of their beliefs) there's no doubt in her mind that she's with people she can trust. But dead bodies and a gripping mystery tend to change the way you see things. I think after discovering a dead body I'd be a little less trusting of anyone I met, new or old, at least for a while - but Poppy pushes through, convinced that she knows who the untrustworthy people are and who she should stick with.
You get swept up in the mystery. I was determined to try and crack the mystery before Poppy. I had my suspicions, but every time I settled on someone being "the killer" a new twist would pop up and I'd change my mind again.
There is a romance sub-plot to the book. Before I'd even met both potential guys for Poppy I was Team-Michael. It doesn't always work, but I like when best-friends turn into something more, especially if it ends up being mutual like. I'm all for moving on if the other person doesn't show an interest, but if there's a chance I want to see it.
I really enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to the next Poppy Sinclair mystery.
Jackson Pearce has captivated me again with her fabulous fairytale retellings! I love that she seems to pick the less obvious tales - not that people...moreJackson Pearce has captivated me again with her fabulous fairytale retellings! I love that she seems to pick the less obvious tales - not that people have never heard of Hansel and Gretel (or Little Red Riding Hood) - but they're not the first ones people draw from. Sweetly is exactly the sort of story I adore.
For brother and sister, Gretchen and Ansel, life has always been about living in the shadow of tragedy. After losing Gretchen's twin sister in the woods by their house while they were just little kids, nothing in life has seemed stable. When their stepmother throws them out when she's no longer legally required to look after them, it becomes just another twist in their existence...until they stumble upon the little town of Live Oak and their worlds are turned upside-down. I loved how the beginning was set out, there was the obvious Witch talks and a modernised "bread crumb" trail of lollies and a desperate need to stick together - as all Gretchen and Ansel had were each other.
I thought Gretchen was a really nice main character. While she was a tad timid at first, used to hiding from her past, she grew into herself so much. As someone who has always sort of believed in the supernatural, she accepts the twists and turns she comes across almost too well - but it is fiction and it didn't bother me much. I loved that she adopts a take-charge attitude as the story continues. She discovers there's a mystery in Live Oak where teenage girls are going missing each year and Gretchen decides she doesn't want to just sit back and watch it happen again - she doesn't want to be one of the missing. I love the change you see in her.
I know you're all wondering: So where's the witch with the gingerbread house, liquorice windows and chocolate doors? Well she certainly turns up, but not quite in the way I expected. We meet Sophia Kelly soon after Gretchen and Ansel arrive in Live Oak. Sophia's a mysterious young lady who runs a chocolatier out of her house, but it's obvious she's keeping secrets from the rest of the world. Flitting between emotions and desperate to host a chocolate festival for the young girls of Live Oak, Sophia confuses you from start to finish. I'll admit I had no idea what to feel when it came to Sophia. I was convinced she was the evil witch one minute, and worried I was judging her too harshly the next; like I was trying to force her into the role of the witch because I knew the story of Hansel and Gretel demanded the witch with the lollies would be the enemy. I liked that this storyline was unpredictable that way. In Sisters Red there were obvious plot twists that jumped out at me from the start, and while I did pick some of the direction for Sweetly, Sophia remained a mystery to me the whole book.
One of my favourite parts of reading Sweetly was seeing the connections to Sisters Red. We haven't left the Fenris (werewolves) behind, they're still there, still attacking girls and still causing a lot more trouble than you'd like. And even better, there's even a Reynolds boy on the scene: Samuel Reynolds. No actual mention of Silas or Papa Reynolds, but when he says he comes from a family of woodcutters and hunters you're pretty sure he's part of the same bunch. I loved it! Samuel is an incredible love interest (because you know that's what he'll end up being instantly) He doesn't fall immediately in love and he doesn't spend every waking moment trying to convince Gretchen she should stay in the pretty-girl world and let the man look after her. There is no one man who saves the day, this is definitely a Girl-Power book - but with a nice supporting role for Samuel. He was written in a way that let Gretchen shine while he stands by her in everything she does. It was perfect.
I really loved this book and I'm desperate to get my hands on the next one: Fathomless (and not only because it's a Little Mermaid retelling - my favourite fairytale)