To be honest, I definitely didn't get into this book straight away. It found it pretty ridiculous at first. Within the first couple of pages, we get tTo be honest, I definitely didn't get into this book straight away. It found it pretty ridiculous at first. Within the first couple of pages, we get to see Ananna, the main character, run off on a camel to avoid having to be marry some guy from an allying pirate clan. Yeah, a camel. It was pretty damn strange. But fear not! As you can tell from how I gave this book a four star rating, I enjoyed this book immensely! When I got through maybe two, three chapters, I absolutely fell in love with it, and was transported into this fantastic world.
Let's talk about the characters: Ananna is a great main character (although her name is super annoying to say). Being a pirate, she can kick major ass, obviously. She's strong, witty, brave, smart, speaks her mind but she's also very naive and is sometimes quite reckless. Definitely no damsel in distress business here, as she saves Naji (the assassin) as much as he saves her.
Now on to Naji. He definitely isn't your typical male hero. Although he's strong and capable, he's also very vulnerable and insecure because of his facial disfigurement. I loved that he wasn't that typical egotistical, amazingly attractive guy who seems to be popping up everywhere lately. It was definitely a refreshing change, and made him more realistic. Naji is a very mysterious and secretive guy, and we don't get to know a lot about him until the end of the book, which is a shame. But I'm definitely looking forward to knowing more about his past (and is it ever mentioned how old he is? I wanna know!).
Most of the supporting characters we see throughout the book were equally as interesting to read about. And let's just say most of them weren't the nicest of people.
Another thing I adored about this book was Ananna and Naji's relationship. The author could've easily made it an insta-love romance, but decided to develop their relationship more, which I loved. I enjoyed seeing them start to trust each other, and care for each other. Obviously there was a little bit of tension between them (though it only really started near the end), but it was very subtle and lovely. I'm really excited to see where it goes in future books!
The plot was all kinds of bad ass, obviously, and moved at a fast pace all throughout the novel. It was filled with action and danger. The writing style was fantastic, and Ananna's narration made it even better. The world building was really good; I absolutely loved the setting and it felt as I was there with them, but I would've liked a bit more information here and there. I also felt like this book was too short for me to enjoy it fully, and it ended too abruptly for my liking. I think I expected more out of the ended. Like, I wanted it to go out with a bang, but it didn't.
In short: The Assassin's Curse is, without a doubt, a fantastic debut from Cassandra Rose Clarke. Although it has its flaws, its thrilling, action-packed, and keeps you turning the pages. I mean, c'mon, it has assassins AND pirates AND magic. What's not to love? An amazing, thoroughly entertaining read! Definitely one to check out and put on your to-read list.
I've always loved these type of stories. When I was growing up, I read Dragonkeeper by Carole Wilkinson and absolutely adored it. Asian culture, mythoI've always loved these type of stories. When I was growing up, I read Dragonkeeper by Carole Wilkinson and absolutely adored it. Asian culture, mythology, and dragons have always interested me, so obviously I thought I would like this book. And, yes, as you can tell by the four stars I gave it, I definitely did enjoy it.
The first half was interesting enough, sure, but it was the second half of the book that definitely took my interest and that's when I really got into it. I didn't want to put it down after I hit halfway. It was constant action and surprise, and everything kind of fell into place.
Eon, or should I say 'Eona', was a great, strong female character, though I found that it's quite hard to connect with her. I guess that was because she spent most of the book trying to hide the fact that she was a female. Despite that, she's a very well rounded character and extremely likable, although she is quite frustrating at times. What I especially liked about her character is that she's not your stereotypical strong female in literature. She's not a great fighter, she doesn't know how to handle a sword - but she's smart, and she uses that to her advantage. She also grows a lot throughout the book, which is of course fantastic.
All of the secondary characters were fantastic aswell, and extremely realistic and well developed. I'm excited to see where each character goes in Eona, especially Lady Dela, Ryko and Lord Ido.
I know that some people think the book is quite hard to get through and I can see why. It's quite heavy on the mythology and there is a bit of info dumping here and there, but I found that I could get through it quite easily. I adored the writing style and everything was written quite vividly. The world building is great, also, and I loved all the magic and the dragons. You can tell the author put a lot of research into Asian culture and mythology before writing this one.
Though I loved it, the book does have its faults and there's definitely room for improvement in the second one. And from what I've read, everyone seems to love Eona even more than they did this one, so it's safe to say I'm pretty damn excited (and I also ordered it straight after I finished this one. WOO.)
From the one star rating, I guess you can tell that I did not like this book. At all. The main problem I had with this book was the characters. At theFrom the one star rating, I guess you can tell that I did not like this book. At all. The main problem I had with this book was the characters. At the beginning of The Forest of Hands and Teeth, I was fully on Team Mary. She was rebellious and seemed like the only one with a brain in her village. It just went downhill from there. I've never wanted to reach inside the book and strangle a character more in my life, honestly. I always say I loved flawed characters, but I just could not get myself to like this character at all. She was selfish and utterly infuriating. Instead of actually focusing on the zombie problem, she was all lovey dovey with a guy named Travis (who, might I add, had no personality whatsoever). On almost every page she would go on about how much she loved him, wanted him, etc. She. Was. Obsessed.
Oh, and did I mention there is a love triangle? Oh, the love triangle, how I loathe thee. Both these guys, Harry and Travis (who are brothers, by the way), were both boring as hell. They were flat, one dimensional characters who weren't fleshed out at all. And the fact that most of this book focused on Mary's attraction to Travis and Harry annoyed me to no end. I wanted more zombies, dammit! The romance between Mary and Travis was terrible and I didn't feel a connection at all. It felt forced and unnecessary.
Too many things were left untold. So many questions were left unanswered. This book did not give you enough information and back story at all. The book was quite slow-paced, and the action started to happen around page 120.
The writing style was the only thing I liked about this book. The writing was beautiful, and I always like books in present tense. Majority of the book was Mary's thoughts, and looking back, there really wasn't a lot of dialogue, which I didn't like.
In short: Too much kissing, not enough zombies. Won't be checking out the sequel....more
As soon as I saw the words "post-apocalyptic" and "aliens" together, I was in! Midnight City is a refreshing young adult novel. It was nothing like IAs soon as I saw the words "post-apocalyptic" and "aliens" together, I was in! Midnight City is a refreshing young adult novel. It was nothing like I had ever read before. And it was awesome. The world that the author has created is seriously frightening. The gang (Mira, Holt and Zoey) are faced with new danger everywhere they go. The world is just chaos! It only took me a short time to really get into the story and I was sucked into this horrific world completely. It was thrilling, action-packed and full of surprises!
As I said before, I really liked the world the author had set up. It was pretty complex, with all the different factions people were in, and all the different aliens and the artifacts but I eventually got my head around it all. The prose, pacing and plot were all really great. The writing flowed really well, the plot was fast-paced and barely ever slowed down and the plot was just really exciting.
Although it was very much a plot driven novel, the characters were a delight to read about. All were seriously bad ass in their own way. I really liked Holt, Mira and Zoey. Holt and Mira were both strong characters, yet very broken. There was a lot of fantastic character development with these characters and I loved how their relationships slowly grew as well. Zoey was completely adorable and the way she called Holt's Dog Max "the Max" -- so cute! I'm totally excited to see more about her powers in the next book. Still kind of confused about what she can and can't do though. The characters we met along the way were really interesting to read about, as well! I'm really excited to see if some of the supporting characters come back in the next book.
My only gripes would be that sometimes it felt like too much was going on and at first I had trouble picturing everything (maybe that's just my lack of imagination, though..).
In short: Midnight City is an action packed adventure that sucks you right in. With fantastic characterization, a fast-paced plot and great world building, this book is a real page turner. Awesome on so many levels. Sci-fi fan or not, this book has a little something for everyone!...more
With an exceptionally high rating on Goodreads, I had high expectations for this book. And to learn that it was by an Australian author made me e4.5/5
With an exceptionally high rating on Goodreads, I had high expectations for this book. And to learn that it was by an Australian author made me even more excited to read it. Thankfully, I was not disappointed by this one bit. From the very first page, I knew I'd adore this book. The writing is fantastic and pulls you in right away, and the constant suspense and questions that you just need to know the answers to keeps you turning the pages. Many things set this apart from other books about Angels, but the main thing that totally sets it apart is wonderful Australian setting. It was a very refreshing change to see a paranormal novel set in Australia, and it definitely added to the story.
I loved the characters in this one, and the fact that they were quite older than normal characters in YA fiction was great. Gaby is an extremely likable, realistic main character. She's tough, smart, funny and also very relatable. You definitely feel for her situation. Rafe, who reminds me a lot of Raffe (Heh. Such similar names.) from Susan Ee's Angelfall, can be a major A-hole sometimes, but you know deep down that he's not so bad. I liked how Gaby's and Rafe's relationship developed throughout the novel, and I'm seriously so excited to read more about their past in the next installment. Also, their relationship didn't randomly become the centre of the novel, which seems to be a recurring thing in YA fiction lately. So, yay for that. The supporting characters were equally as fun, and I cared about them as much as I cared about the main characters. One thing I loved about the characters was that they weren't such stereotypical Aussie characters (Well, except the Butler Brothers, of course. Those boys are your typical rednecks.). There wasn't a "G'day" in sight. WOO.
The plot was extremely fast-paced, and I was able to devour this one in about one or two days. There was constant twists and turns and some things I definitely did not see coming. I liked all the different creatures shown in the novel, which was another thing that sets this book apart from other Angel novels. The 'hellions' sounded pretty damn frightening, to say the least.
The only thing that particularly annoyed me was the abrupt ending. (But maybe that was just me not wanting it to end at all...) Honestly, I could go on and on about how much I liked this book. I'm so glad I picked it up. Fantastic debut from Paula Weston!
In short: Read. This. Book. Seriously, you will not be disappointed! Eagerly anticipating the sequel!...more