Okay, so I liked this one a tad more than I liked Wake. But only because it actually had some semblance of a plot and the writing was a bit tighter.
I...moreOkay, so I liked this one a tad more than I liked Wake. But only because it actually had some semblance of a plot and the writing was a bit tighter.
If only the plot wasn’t so fucking ridiculous and outlandish. I get that this is a paranormal book, so some disbelief is required, but it is just so far removed from reality.
(view spoiler)[Police work is left up to a teenage couple that operate solely on hunches and instinct. Dreams are accurate, relevant, and are counted as evident. Teachers are able to have annual bacchanals with students, without the students ever breathing a word. Every male teacher is a fucking rapist. I just….I just…no. (hide spoiler)].
And there was no suspense. McMann really needs to learn how to employ a red-herring every now and again. It got to the point where I thought the actual bad guy was the red-herring just because it was so boringly and straight-forwardly him.
And Janie and Cabel need to take a chill pill. My God, you would think with all their responsibilities they would be a little less moody. Well, at least there isn’t a love triangle.
I am not exactly looking forward to the final one. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I have been a Caletti fan for a long time. She's an exceptional writer, and her books always have keen observations and a quirky, relatable cast of ch...moreI have been a Caletti fan for a long time. She's an exceptional writer, and her books always have keen observations and a quirky, relatable cast of characters. The Six Rules of Maybe was no exception. It was so adorably Caletti, but the problem was, it was nothing more than that. All I enjoyed about this book were the characters and writing.
The plot, unfortunately, was dull and meandering. The initial set-up is like an indulgent Lifetime movie, full of drama and potential family blow-outs. But Caletti actually treated the situation realistically, making the story true to life, but it felt robbed of its deliciousness. If the background cast of characters hadn't been so absorbing, there would be no meat to this novel. Caletti's strength lays in the development and personalities of her characters, making her books seem more like character-studies.
But I certainly did enjoy this novel. Scarlet, Hayden and Zeus (yes, I'm mentioning the dog) were adorable and flawed, and even the characters you weren't supposed to love, like Juliet, had redeemable qualities. This book is about personal costs and family. Is another person's happiness worth more than your own? Are nice people always doomed to be trod on by those more selfish?
So, in all honesty, 3.5 stars. I enjoyed the Caletti-ness of it, but it wasn't her best one. Strong on character, weak on plot.(less)
What if the story of Dracula wasn't fiction? What if it was history?
That is the basic premise of this breakout new series. Jamie Carpenter's life has...moreWhat if the story of Dracula wasn't fiction? What if it was history?
That is the basic premise of this breakout new series. Jamie Carpenter's life hasn't been the same since his father was killed two years ago on charges of terrorism. He is angry and disconnected from his mother, until the day she is kidnapped by a vicious monster. From there, Jamie is taken by Frankenstein (yes, that Frankenstein) to Department 19, a secret sect of the British government that deals with supernatural. Department 19 was started over a hundred years ago by the group of hunters that slayed Dracula, and has been keeping vampires in check ever since. Jamie is a descendant of one of the founding families, and his father was one of the organization's top members. Jamie begins to train as a vampire hunter, learning the history and practicing with weapons, while also uncovering some secrets of the Department, secrets that some would kill to keep hidden. Jamie is determined to rescue his mother, even if his only allies are a hulking green monster and an imprisoned vampire girl.
Wow, this book is a thrill! It's a gory, violent, action-packed thrill ride that will appeal to boys and girls, teen and adult audiences alike. I've been looking for a novel like this for a while. I'm so used to YA paranormal pussying out on me, focusing on romance rather than plot. Trust me. This book breathes a breath of fresh air into the genre. At times, it would almost be too graphic. The last battle scene.....whoa....I got a little queasy. The monsters in this book are real monsters. They rip, tear, kill, and torture....sometimes just for the fun of it. Both bad guys and good guys die, sometimes in gruesomely horrific ways. For example, when vampire die, they just don't crumble into a pile of dust, they freaking explode into showers of blood. SHOWERS OF BLOOD. If they ever made a movie out of this, it would be a CGI dream.
I also enjoyed how the chapters alternated to get the full scope of the story. Some chapters would focus on the past, such as the formation of Department 19, which gave some insight as to the dynamics of the Department. However, as what happens with omniscient 3rd person POV, the reader can sometimes feel disconnected from protagonist. I am nearly certain this is just my personal taste, however, as some reviewers said they felt genuinely attached to Jamie. I enjoyed the plot overall, rather than just Jamie as a character.
I'll be honest here. The writing isn't the best. I read an ARC, but I doubt the writing would change that dramatically for its publication. It was serviceable, a little chunky, but this is understandable. This is an action/horror novel. Beautiful writing isn't the point, and could actually distract from the story.
The story overall was unique. Yes, it clearly borrowed from Dracula, Frankenstein, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.......but that is kind of the point. It was slightly predictable who the turncoat in the story was, but so what? It was a fun ride, and I enjoyed getting there.
This is the start of an excellent series that will do great in its target audience. It managed to resolve many loose ends, but also has a level of suspense that will leave reader's eager for the next installment. Bloody, thrilling, with a tad bit of romance, and a whole lot of fun. (less)
Jesus, this is a hard book to rate. I could probably justify any star-rating I choose to give it. In many ways, it was like a drive-by smack in the fa...moreJesus, this is a hard book to rate. I could probably justify any star-rating I choose to give it. In many ways, it was like a drive-by smack in the face. Shocking, painful, and it leaves you feeling bewildered, while at the same time forcing you to acknowledge your own being.
This is quite a powerful book about loss and the search for answers to impossible questions. At times it was quite uncomfortable to read, for it was filled with such raw emotion and honesty, but at the same time, it was too intense to leave alone for long.
About a year ago, my grandfather, whom I was quite close to, died of a brain aneurism, which was both unexpected and a long time coming. My family and I spent the next fews days just rehashing the event over and over again, also dissecting all the ways my grandfather seemed unhealthy in his last few weeks, from forgetting his car keys to complaining of a cramp in his sides. Next to my grandmother, I was the most inconsolable. I believe "crazy raging vindictive bitch" would be the best way to describe how I was feeling in the following weeks. I was angry at everyone. If they weren't crying, I wasn't happy because I wanted everyone to visibly feel as devastatingly miserable as I was. I also engaged in a myriad of irrational, self-destructive behavior like driving our mini-van into a stone wall (the reason as to why I don't have my license as of yet) and toppling over a refrigerator (the reason why my grandmother has a new fridge)….yeah, I was not pleasant. I can't even imagine how I would react if it was my father, a father who had just committed suicide. So I could relate to Eddie for the most part.
This isn't a book that one has fun reading. I'm not even sure if I liked it, but I am sure that I loved it (does that make sense?). The characters, even the narrator, were tremendously flawed, and at times infuriating. It was hard to predict their response to anything, but that is one reason I liked these characters so much, even the douche bag. They were too complex to love or hate holistically.
I am warning you now. There are no definite endings or answers in this book. But I think that only adds to the novel. Grief can never be summarized or summed up.
And I loved the prose. It was lyrical and sparse. Exactly what I like.
I will definitely be reading more of Courtney Summer's novels. (less)
This book confuses me. It is loaded with contradictions.
Sometimes I liked Brooke, sometimes I didn't. She was supposedly a genius (albeit a reluctant...moreThis book confuses me. It is loaded with contradictions.
Sometimes I liked Brooke, sometimes I didn't. She was supposedly a genius (albeit a reluctant one), but then she goes and does something as infinitely stupid as moving to a whole new city for a boy. A boy she has only had one conversation with. It just confounded me. What kind of person thinks that is a good idea? And then she actually thought about telling Scott what a stalker she was, before they even developed a friendship. Once again, who thinks that is a good idea? It just defies all common sense. I was very much prepared to hate Brooke, but by the end of the book, I had a small affection for her. Very small.
Brooke was supposed to be this cynical genius, but I never got that impression. I found her quite flippant. She supposedly didn't trust people, but that conflicted with her faith in her "knowing", a gut feeling that told her that Scott (the guy she moved to NYC to be with) was her true love. It just didn't make sense that someone who was supposedly torn up over her parent's divorce was so willing to drop everything for love (or obsession rather).
I wish Colasanti had just left romance out of it. This book would have been more enjoyable if Brooke was just moving to the city on a self-discovery mission instead of for some boy. The most relatable aspects of the book for me was Brooke's indecisiveness over what she wanted to do with the her life. I'm a senior in high school going through all that crap now, so I could relate. I wish this book was just about that. Leave Scott out of it.
The writing was easy and breezy, although it wasn't particularly fun. It was just a quick and light three or four hour read. Some people looking for some light distraction will like it, but those looking for some realistic fiction with depth will be disappointed. (less)
Andi Alpers, a troubled Brooklyn teen, is always one step away from the edge. The only thing keeping her going over is her love of music, but even tha...moreAndi Alpers, a troubled Brooklyn teen, is always one step away from the edge. The only thing keeping her going over is her love of music, but even that doesn't seem enough at times. Two years ago her younger brother, the glue keeping her family together, died. Now her mother, a talented French painter, is suffering from a psychotic break down, and her father, a workaholic scientist, refuses to acknowledge his old family while he lives a new life. Andi is content with flunking out of her prestigious liberal high school, but her father, in a rare burst of parental concern, forces her to come with him to Paris so she can focus on working on a project that might save her grade. Her father is called to Paris because a colleague of his, a famous historian, needs his help in identifying a shriveled up heart encased in crystal that might just belong to the young Louis XVII, the son of King Louis XVI, who was guillotined in the French Revolution. While shifting through some artifacts, Andi discovers the long-hidden journal of Alexandrine, an aspiring actress and companion to young Louis, who is struggling to save herself and her charge. Whilst reading this diary, the fates of the two young women are woven together, and Andi will come to discover that internal revolutions are just as affecting as external ones.
I loved this book. It was lovely. The writing was beautiful, lyrical, and intricate. Andi was intriguing and relatable. Sometimes her constant negative attitude, especially towards the beginning, could become bothersome, but she was extremely interesting. Her sarcastic comments were often funny, and she had a lot going on underneath the surface. Her feelings, as well as her love for music, seemed to transcend the page. I loved Alexandrine too. Although she was in the book less than Andi, her role in it was just as vital. One thing I loved about this story was how everything connected. I could mentally see the puzzle pieces coming together, and it was a thrill to watch everything unfold. Also, I learned a buttload about the French Revolution, but it never seemed like I was reading a text book. I can tell Ms. Donnelly did her research, and it was very in-depth and well-done.
The only thing I did not like were the hints of the supernatural. To explain myself without giving away to much of the plot, I will say that this book is a lot like the movie Happy Feet. I do not mean to allude that there were dancing penguins in the streets of Paris. But, you know how towards the end of the movie, the plot does a complete 360, and the film is no longer about cute tap-dancing birds, but rather some heavy-handed environmental message? This book is kind of like that. Towards the end, it took a really sharp turn, and I'm not sure whether what happened was real or not. I mean, I guess it worked, but it shook me out of the story for a little bit. That's what kept me from giving this novel 5 stars.
Anyway, I recommend this book. I recommend it to fans of A Northern Light. I recommend it to fans of historical-fiction. I recommend it to those interested in a more personal look at the French Revolution. I recommend it to music lovers. And I recommend it for anyone looking for a satisfying, thought-provoking read.
An awesome read that will stay with me. I have a feeling it will help me when my history class studies the French Revolution next month. (less)
I am pretty much the last person in my group of friends to review this book, which is ironic because I was the first one to finish it. But I'm lazy so...moreI am pretty much the last person in my group of friends to review this book, which is ironic because I was the first one to finish it. But I'm lazy so here I am with nothing to say.
Um.....I was expecting more. The writing was good and Seth was funny and real and yada yada yada but I wanted it to be darker. Is that a sick thing to say? That I wanted this kid to be more screwed up? But its true. I kind of felt like this novel was a well-written anti-climax.
If you decided to read this book because you like the TV series on ABC Family, don't. The two have nothing in common besides the title, Wil's name, an...moreIf you decided to read this book because you like the TV series on ABC Family, don't. The two have nothing in common besides the title, Wil's name, and the concept of kids at fat camp. These differences don't necessarily mean one is worse than the other. No, there are plenty of more reasons for that. This is one of the few instances that the TV series has actually more plot, heart, and character development than the book.
One of things that really,truly pissed me off was all the brand name dropping. Good Lord! See, I'm not the most fashionable person in the world, or even remotely wealthy. I think Coach bags are ugly. Gucci sunglasses make people look like insects. Vera Bradley reminds me of diaper bags. Ugg boots are like bear feet. I don't want the word "Juicy" printed on my ass. I don't wear makeup unless forced to by my mother, for a costume of some sort, or when I fall asleep in public places. I wear clothes from Wal-Mart if I like them well enough. But the way this book makes it sound, brands are the most important thing in the world. There must have been over 200 references to brands in this book. This isn't Gossip Girl, Ms. Paley, it's fat camp. I understand that you want to emphasize the class differences between Wil and April, but its a little overboard to mention the brand of ALARM CLOCK like its the sort of thing everyone notices. Gosh, it was just so damn annoying.
And I laughed when it said "for Ages 12 and up" on the back cover. Please! What part of this book is inappropriate? Sure, there is the occasionally mild curse word and an obscure mentioning of "hooking up", but this book seemed like something more for ten year olds. I mean, this is the last sentence: "But nothing- nothing at all- was sweeter than leaving Wellness Canyon with a new best friend by her side." BLECH. And all the writing was just as cheesy and horrible.
This book also failed miserably at creating anything resembling interesting characters. They were predictable stereotypes. April overeagerness was absolutely cringe-worthy. I felt embarrassed for her most of the time. Wil, while slightly more likable, could shed her "tough exterior" and become just as cheesy as the rest of them when the situation arose. Jessica and Marci(?) were just popular girls, and Colin was nothing more than a mean jock. Just nothing special. The plot was also very tired. I felt like I was reading some Mary-Kate and Ashley junk.
Also, the overall message was just horrendous. You think that a message from a book about fat camp would be something like "be comfortable in your own shoes" or something, right? Nope! The thinnest girls were always the prettiest, and the characters only felt good once they saw the pounds being ticked off on the scale. Even Wil, who was confident in her body beforehand, sold out. Great.
Overall, a truly disappointing book. Its a good thing I won this book and didn't pay anything for it. I do recommend the TV show, though. Its infinitely better. (less)
I started this book the day the world ended. No, not in a literal 2012-tsunami-earthquake kinda way, but in a my-cell-phone-and-laptop-just-so-happene...moreI started this book the day the world ended. No, not in a literal 2012-tsunami-earthquake kinda way, but in a my-cell-phone-and-laptop-just-so-happened-to-break-on-the-same-day kinda way. And when you are a 17 year old girl, that is really, really bad. So while I was rolling around on the ground suffering from texting withdrawl, a thought occurred to me: Go read a book, you idjit! So I did. And in no time at all, I forgot the outside world existed.
To say I loved this book would be a severe understatement. So here is a list of adjectives I feel are adequate descriptions: (courtesy of Dictionary.com and my own unique vocabulary):
Awesome, addicting, seductive, intense, articulate, lush, fantasmic, suspenseful, beautiful, poetic, dark, amazing, unique, mysterious, romantic, excellent, gorgeous, wistful, eerie, superb, breathtaking, magnificent, wonderful, fascinating, Gothic, OMG, astounding, perfect, sublime, tender, painful, and last but not least, Jesus.
So, in short, it was damn good.
I just loved everything about it. The luscious writing, painfully real characters, intriguing premise and hushed tone. Everything, especially the ending, was just perfect. As soon as I was finished with it, I wanted to start it all over again (and I very nearly did).
Initially, I thought this book would scare the crap out of me, with the creepy cover and all. I read Laura Whitcomb's book The Fetch first, and I loved it, even though this novel is more universally loved. So perhaps I was biased going into it. But I'm positive I would have loved it no matter the scenario.
As for the SEQUEL *OMG SQUEAAAALLL*, I don't think it's really needed, but hey, I'll devour it anyway. I'm a little worried it won't be as good as Certain Slant. seeing as most unplanned sequels aren't, but even if its half as good, I'll still love it. (less)
Meghan Chase is used to being nothing special. Her father disappeared when she was six, and her family seems to forget she even lives with them someti...moreMeghan Chase is used to being nothing special. Her father disappeared when she was six, and her family seems to forget she even lives with them sometimes. At school its much of the same, her only friend being Robbie, a prankster who seems to be more and more protective of her of late. But on the eve of her sixteenth birthday, she is sure that will all change. Her cool crush will notice her and her mother will take her to get her license. Meghan is determined that this will be the most special birthday ever. It is; but not in the way she imagined. Meghan begins to see mysterious figures and things she knows can't be real, and when her little brother disappears, a vicious, other-wordly creature in his place, Meghan will find out how special she is. Guided by the faery Puck, Meghan will have to travel into the faery realm, filled with magic and danger, in order to retrieve her stolen little brother.
One thing I regret is that I didn't read A Midsummer Night's Dream first. I would rather go into this book with Shakespeare's characters in my head, then got into Shakespeare's play with Kagawa's characters in my head. Hopefully, that does not effect my enjoyment of the play, which I intend to read one day on my own terms, seeing as my school system failed to force me to read it under a restrictive classroom setting.
One positive thing I can say about this book is that it is entertaining and undemanding. Everything is imaginable and easy to follow, and the action flows at a steady pace. It covered some really well-worn territory, but it did so in a charming way. Most of it was pretty standard fey book fair, but there were a few ideas (the Iron Court, for instance), that I felt were original.
Meghan, while not necessarily stupid, was not the brightest bulb in the bunch. She was rash and oblivious at the same time. She didn't seem to do much. The whole thing was quite repetitive. She would follow someone somewhere, they would run into danger, something would save her, and then she would begin to follow someone else to somewhere else, they would once again run into danger, she would be saved one again and so on and so forth. She wasn't particularly great.
The two love interests (because I assume Puck shall become a love interest) are pretty bland. I know, ladies, Ash is supposed to make me weak at the knees, but at this point he is pretty "eeeehhhh". Is he supposed to be the "bad boy"? And what is Megan being all "I am his beloved!"? They made out a few times. I do not consider that love. Certainly not love I would be willing to risk my future on, because if Ash's mom finds out she is going to be pissssssssed.
Overall, my impression of this book can be summed up in one word: "solid". Is that weird? To call a book "solid"? But thats what is was. Dependable, safe, and consistent.
The only character that I liked enough to make remarks over is Grimalkin. There should be a requirement for every fantasy to have a snarky talking cat, if there isn't one already. I just love those furry grumps.
If I had been home long enough, I would have read this book in one sitting. But then again, maybe not.
I had to keep putting the book down because it...moreIf I had been home long enough, I would have read this book in one sitting. But then again, maybe not.
I had to keep putting the book down because it would get so intense. I felt hyper-aware of people watching me read this book, and I dreaded the question "Whats that book about?". My friend did ask me that, and when I told her, she said "But they're not really brother and sister, right?" Her face looked horrified. And I understand that. I have a younger brother and EEEEEEEEEEWWWWWW times a million. Yucky Yucky poo poo.
But disgust was only one of the various emotions I felt while reading this book. And despite everything, you do route for Maya and Lochan to somehow find a way to be together. The character development of the book was just plain awesome, as was the writing. Just read the first couple sentences:
"I gaze out at the small, crisp, burned-out black husks scattered across the chipped white paint of the windowsills. It is hard to believe that they were ever alive . I wonder what it would be like to be shut up in this airless glass box, slowly baked for two long months by the relentless sun, able to see the outdoors- the wind shaking the green trees right there in front of you- hurling yourself again and again at the invisible wall that seals you off from everything that is real and alive and necessary until you succumb: scorched, exhausted, overwhelmed by the impossibility of the task."
I read that and was like "Daaaaamn."
I connected to all the characters, including the little kiddos. I loved them and could imagine them as real people. I wanted to punch the mother and much more that I cannot say because I am a lady.. I am going to make a terrible parents shelf in her honor.
And I didn't cry while reading the book. I cried afterward. It was just an emotional journey, and any book that can make me feel like that is a good book in my opinion.
I wouldn't have picked this book up under normal circumstances. But everyone I talk to here on Goodreads adores it, so I felt compelled to give it a shot. And I'm glad I did. (less)
I was so eager to read this book because I loved Vizzini's novel It's Kind of a Funny Story, which I found to be both funny and perceptive. This book...moreI was so eager to read this book because I loved Vizzini's novel It's Kind of a Funny Story, which I found to be both funny and perceptive. This book was more of it's immature little brother (although it technically is older).
The concept of a geek swallowing a supercomputer to become Cool is an over-the-top twist to the classic "dweeb becomes cool" story that fodders so many high school rom-coms. And although the premise is funny and ridiculous, I was waiting for the book to become serious. It was often crude and bizarre, but it was never serious. I'm not a big fan of teenage-boy humor, either, so this book had very little to offer me.
Overall, my experience with this book was very similar to my experience with The Deathday Letter. Both feature average teenage boys under bizarre circumstances, both feature narrators who are desperate to get laid, and both are annoying silly when I just want them to be serious.
This book just wasn't for me. It wasn't bad, but if you are only ever going to read one Vizzini novel in your life, make it It's Kind of a Funny Story.(less)