Having read Julie Kagawa’s Blood of Eden series, I recently decided that it was time to give her other series a try. Over the past couple of years, I’...moreHaving read Julie Kagawa’s Blood of Eden series, I recently decided that it was time to give her other series a try. Over the past couple of years, I’d seen great reviews about The Iron Fey series – and I finally wanted to see what all the fuss was about. While I didn’t find the first book, The Iron King, to be amazing; I did think it was a solid read.
A huge reason why I enjoyed The Iron King was because of the worldbuilding. I really liked the idea of the faerie realm’s existence being dependent upon human imagination, and seeing the rise of the iron fey and the deterioration of the faerie realm as a result of humans dreaming about science and technology instead.
There was just something lacking with the characters, however. For example, although I found Meghan to be very determined in her quest to get her brother back, I still felt a bit disconnected from her for some reason.
I also didn’t care much about the romance because Ash was cold and kind of a jerk. As well, it seemed that he fell for Meghan because she reminded him of his dead girlfriend, which I find a bit creepy. But, I’m not on Team Puck either because he came off as friend material to me. (less)
The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg was a light, albeit cheesy, read. After being cheated on, Penny decides to open up a club for girls who ar...moreThe Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg was a light, albeit cheesy, read. After being cheated on, Penny decides to open up a club for girls who are fed up of getting their hearts broken by guys. While I thought Penny’s reason for opening up the club was really lame, I did like the eventual outcome of The Lonely Hearts Club because it led to the creation of a diverse group of girls who supported each other, were loyal to their friends, and learned that they didn’t need a boyfriend to feel validated.(less)
I found Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood, an older Eileen Cook novel, to be a bit more enjoyable. Although I couldn’t understand why Helen would still h...moreI found Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood, an older Eileen Cook novel, to be a bit more enjoyable. Although I couldn’t understand why Helen would still hold a grudge against Lauren years after having moved away, I’m always game for a story involving revenge. Unfortunately, Helen’s revenge tactics turned out to be pretty petty.
I did like Helen’s voice though and the fact that Cook showed that getting revenge may not actually make you happier. Sometimes it’s better to concentrate your energy on yourself rather than on others. I just wish the story could have concluded differently because you never find out what type of consequences – other than the fact that her friends sure got over being used quite fast – Helen faced due to her actions. This was one novel where I could have used an epilogue!(less)
Solid by Shelley Workinger was a quick read with a good cast of characters and an interesting plot.
As someone who is in the science stream, Workinger’...moreSolid by Shelley Workinger was a quick read with a good cast of characters and an interesting plot.
As someone who is in the science stream, Workinger’s explanation for her characters’ superpowers made sense without making me annoyed for being too simplistic. At the same time, those who know absolutely nothing about genetics will still be able to understand what has transpired without feeling like they’re being overloaded with scientific information.
Workinger’s characters – even Miranda once you get to know her – were likeable enough, but I never got fully attached to them. I think part of the reason may be because as a reader, you don’t know exactly what they’re capable of since Clio, the main character, and her friends are still trying to figure it out themselves. So, they pretty much acted like typical teens (except sometimes the dialogue made them seem older) when I was expecting them to do amazing things.
This also led to the expectation that there would be a lot of action. However, Solid focused more on character development, with Clio discovering things about herself and making new friends with whom she felt comfortable with. Even when there could have been the potential for some action, the conflict was resolved a little too easily.
Despite its issues, I still liked Solid. I think if it had been longer, some of my expectations could have been met; and hopefully that’s going to be the case in Settling, the sequel to Solid. (less)
My Sparkling Misfortune is a humorous middle grade novel written by Laura Lond that will appeal to anyone looking for a lighter fantasy read. The stor...moreMy Sparkling Misfortune is a humorous middle grade novel written by Laura Lond that will appeal to anyone looking for a lighter fantasy read. The story is narrated by Lord Arkus, a villain, who at the beginning of the book is being haunted by a monster and has been betrayed by Prince Kellemar, a man who wants to become a hero. Determined to get revenge on the prince, Arkus decides to try and catch a gormack (an evil spirit). Unfortunately, he manages to capture a sparkling (a good spirit) named Tulip instead. With no use for a sparkling, Arkus releases Tulip from his servitude. But when Tulip proves his usefulness, Arkus changes his mind and chooses to keep Tulip (whom he calls Jarvi because no servant of Arkus would have a name like Tulip).
Jarvi is so mischievous and made me want my own sparkling! I loved the way he would trick Arkus into doing heroic things or send Arkus into bursts of anger that made Arkus throw things at him.
Even though Arkus proclaims he’s a villain, it’s impossible not to fall in love with him. One can’t help but chuckle as Arkus keeps trying to convince himself, Jarvi and the reader that he really is a villain and not a hero.
In spite of its light tone, My Sparkling Misfortune does manage to convey an important lesson about how easy it can be to categorize people and expect them to act a certain way without knowing them very well. Just like the world isn’t divided into “good” and “bad” people, sometimes a hero may do something non-heroic or a villain may turn out to have some scruples. (less)
The Karma Club by Jessica Brody was a light and engaging read with an original plot and a message that tells you to beware of messing with karma.
Brody...moreThe Karma Club by Jessica Brody was a light and engaging read with an original plot and a message that tells you to beware of messing with karma.
Brody did a great job with characterization because not only was Maddy a relatable protagonist but her two best friends, Angie and Jade, were solidly developed as well, and therefore each of the girls had their own distinct personality.
I also really liked the emphasis on friendship in The Karma Club. Maddy, Angie and Jade, are constantly there to support each other and when Maddy comes up with the idea of the Karma Club, she makes sure that justice isn’t only exacted on the people who have humiliated her but also on those who have hurt her friends.
It’s easy to understand why Maddy starts the Karma Club. I mean, who wants to wait around for the universe to give the person that screws you what they deserve when you could restore the balance by yourself right away? The schemes that the girls originally come up with are funny (although a little childish) but it soon felt to me as if Maddy, Angie and Jade didn’t care about what they had to do to get revenge or how their actions would affect other people’s lives.
The other thing that bothered me was that things were wrapped up a little too neatly at the end. However, Maddy is finally able to comprehend how karma works and learns that you don’t want to use karma to get back at others but to spread good in whatever way possible. (less)