About 2.5 stars. Synethesia is something that always intrigued me. I can't imagine having all of my senses crossed with numbers and letters in full teAbout 2.5 stars. Synethesia is something that always intrigued me. I can't imagine having all of my senses crossed with numbers and letters in full technicolor. In Shade Me, Nikki Kill (yes, that's her name) has synesthesia and it affects both her academic and social life. Nikki receives a cryptic phone call from the most popular girl in school and suddenly she finds herself deep in a mystery.
The issue I had with this book is that our main character - a high school - is investigating the assault of a fellow student on her own, without any thought to her personal safety. There were a lot of TSTL (too stupid to live) moments and I could not understand why Nikki kept avoiding the lead detective in the case. The victim left all sorts of clues that only someone with synthesia could figure out.
The book also suffers from missing parent syndrome, thus allowing Nikki the freedom to go as she pleases. When she follows a lead and actually finds the assault scene, she stupidly contaminates it, taking items from it and leaving fingerprints.
Oh, and when Nikki investigates further and finds out that there is an escort service involved and she actually applies to be an escort? Hello? What is going on here?
This book had so much potential. I was waiting for Nikki to share her findings with the lead detective and explain how she got them. That would have been far more interesting than watching Nikki put herself in danger over and over again.
A hot mess.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Katherine Tegen Books for a review copy of this book.
I liked Take the Fall by Emily Hainsworth. Didn't love it, but I did enjoy the mystery aspect of the story. The book begins with an account ofHmmm...
I liked Take the Fall by Emily Hainsworth. Didn't love it, but I did enjoy the mystery aspect of the story. The book begins with an account of an attack on the main character Sonia. She survives the attack, but her best friend Gretchen is found dead. The rest of the story unfolds as Sonia and the police try to piece together the clues.
About halfway through the book, I was a little frustrated by Sonia's Nancy Drew imitation. I mean, if you are getting threatening notes in your locker after your best friend has been murdered, wouldn't you not run to the police for help? Not our Sonia. She holds on to the postcard. I did keep reading because I was curious....
The last bit of the book surprised me. I didn't see that coming.
Recommended for young adult readers.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Balzer + Bray for a review copy of this book....more
The Mystery of Hollow Places is the story of teenager Imogene Scott as she tries to find her father who disappeareAn intriguing coming of age mystery.
The Mystery of Hollow Places is the story of teenager Imogene Scott as she tries to find her father who disappeared mysteriously. During her investigations, Imogene learns more about her mother who had left Imogene and her father many years earlier.
While the story didn't seem that realistic to me - personally, I can't see a teenager driving around in winter bad weather all over the state with limited funds - I did enjoy Imogene's relationship with her best friend Jessa and Jessa's brother Chad.
The Mystery of Hollow Places is a solid debut for author Rebecca Podos and I am looking forward to reading more books by this author.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Balzer and Bray for a review copy of this book....more
My Review: This was an OK read for me. I liked the writing style,Update 1/26/16 Christal and I discuss this book on Badass Book Reviews. Check it out!
My Review: This was an OK read for me. I liked the writing style, however the story bothered me because I had a lot of unanswered questions. For example, we are told that Breezy wakes up in her grave about a year after her death. As the story is told from Breezy's point of view, we are never really sure how it was possible that she was reanimated and what kind of creature she was. Then there are the monster hunters, a kind of evangelical missionary type who hunt monsters and try to "rehabilitate" them, usually not too successfully.
For the most part, Breezy was a likable character. She had a lot going for her before her untimely death. She was smart, focused on her future (she wanted to be an astronaut), and she had a wonderful family. For someone so young and who had been dead a year, she certainly understood that her new and undead situation was dire.
I felt that the world building in this book could have been expanded a little. When I read a book, I am looking for some resolution by the end of the book. In this book, I feel that there were too many unanswered questions.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Katherine Tegen Books for a review copy of this book.
I can always gauge my enjoyment of a book by the amount of times I am inspired to go and Google. I'd never hear"Trust no one." Good advice for a spy.
I can always gauge my enjoyment of a book by the amount of times I am inspired to go and Google. I'd never heard about La Dame Blanche and I blame our crappy high school history curriculum. Why didn't we ever learn about some of the heroines of the war? The people that risked their lives to track train schedules, troop movements, and the like? (Remember, no computers or internet in WWI).
Samantha is a bright young woman destined for more than her present job at MI6. She is talented in both math and speaks many languages due to her father's work as an ambassador. After she places third in a Girl Guide contest, she is approached by MI6 and offered a job as a spy. She balks at first because her father is missing and she doesn't want her mother to lose anyone else. When they offer to help find her father, Samantha accepts the offer.
Samantha is trained in all matters of spycraft - ciphers, evasion, self-defense, etc. Her mission is virtually impossible. Samantha takes on the identity of a distant cousin Sophie who will be a governess to the children. She is dropped in the palace of the Kaiser's son in order to find the elusive agent Velvet, whose identity is unknown because the handler has been murdered.
The story kept my interest throughout. Each time I thought I knew who Velvet was, I was dead wrong. Each chapter begins with a definition of something to do with spycraft. The story is told through Samantha/Sophie's point of view and I enjoyed watching her unravel the mystery.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Balzer and Bray for a review copy of this book....more
I wanted to love this book and I think I did - for the first 25% of it. Then it started to drag.
A Madness So Discreet has an interesting premise - it'I wanted to love this book and I think I did - for the first 25% of it. Then it started to drag.
A Madness So Discreet has an interesting premise - it's set at a mental asylum for the insane in Boston and then later at another asylum in Ohio. Mental institutions in the mid 19th century are very much different from today and they housed people suffering from all sorts of ailments: unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, even PMS and more.
Our main character Grace is at the asylum because of an out of wedlock pregnancy. While she loses the child in a most horrific way, it gives the reader a glimpse of the horrible ways in which people in these institutions were treated. While it's fascinating to read about these practices, they are truly the stuff of nightmares.
The remaining 75% of the book has Grace assisting a doctor with some crime scene investigations of a serial killer. This part of the book dragged on.
I have heard good things about this author and I would like to read some of her other books in the future.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Harper Collins for a review copy of this book. ...more
I first learned of this series through a free download of Guys Read: Funny Business. My family listened to the audio version o3.5 Terrifying stars....
I first learned of this series through a free download of Guys Read: Funny Business. My family listened to the audio version of the book on a road trip and we couldn't stop laughing at the gross stories geared to young boys. When Guys Read: Terrifying Tales was made available to me, I jumped at the chance to read and review the book.
The stories are perfect for young boys and reluctant readers. Most of the stories were short, some had the author's own opinions in boldface type warning the reader to stop reading (a sure-fire way to make most people continue on). The stories were written by well known writers and kept me on the edge of my seat throughout.
My favorite story was Manifest by Adele Griffin and Lisa Brown. I'd love to see that story expanded into a full novel.
Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for a review copy of this book....more
About 3.5 stars. In a way, this book kind of reminded me of Julie Kagawa's Blood of Eden series but instead of vampires, we have zombies and people whAbout 3.5 stars. In a way, this book kind of reminded me of Julie Kagawa's Blood of Eden series but instead of vampires, we have zombies and people who have tested positive for the zombie virus. Positive is a new spin on the zombie apocalypse story. In Positive, the zombie apocalypse occurred about 20 years earlier. People live in the relative safety of walled cities. Our hero hails from Manhattan, where the subways are flooded and provide some fishing for our hero Finn and his buddy Ike. The zombie virus is also a different take on the old zombie story. Now it can take anywhere from exposure to 20 years for the zombie virus to manifest and turn a person into a snarling flesh-eating killer. When Finn's mother goes zombie, the whole family is tested and Finn is sent to a medical camp in Ohio. He doesn't get there right away because his ride is killed by a very scary lady.
Finn begins his voyage across the US looking for that medical center where all will be good. On his way he learns about the world outside Manhattan. This is a journey story and each step along the way builds Finn's character. From what he sees of the world, he knows what kind of man he doesn't want to become.
I liked Finn's character. For someone with so little life experience, he was a quick learner and even quicker to react to situations. I loved how he treated his "family" and wanted to keep the girls safe, especially Kylie. Kylie was a strong character as well considering what she had gone through with Adare.
Positive kept me reading way into the night. The last part of the book was intense and I couldn't put the book down. I look forward to reading more books by this author in the future.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Harper Voyager for a review copy of this book. ...more
Please note that this book is best enjoyed if you have read the first book Unaccompanied Minor which is hilarious, espeAbout a 3.5 star read for me...
Please note that this book is best enjoyed if you have read the first book Unaccompanied Minor which is hilarious, especially if you've ever worked for an airline.
We Will Be Crashing Shortly continues the story of April Mae "Crash" Manning, a street-smart (or shall I say airline smart?) teenager and airline heiress. The book is mostly told from April's point of view and is a madcap adventure through Atlanta and on board an L1011 on its way to the Cayman Islands. What makes April so endearing is her outlook on the world. April has spent most of her life in airplanes and surrounded by flight crew - she has memorized lists of things that keep her "situationally aware. It also helps that she has managed to memorize almost every episode of MacGyver, so she is pretty handy in sticky situations. April has been raised by airline employees - flight attendants, pilots, and mechanics. She knows her way around airports, planes, and the airline's computer system as well.
The zany cast of characters makes this book a laugh out loud fun read perfect for summer reading. There's Flo, a 67 year old flight attendant who has seen it all. Flo is definitely someone you'd want around in case of emergency. Officer Ned is around to keep April grounded. April's evil stepfather Ash is up to no good as well.
We Will Be Crashing Shortly is a madcap adventure throughout Atlanta and in the air over the Caribbean. Perfect summer reading.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Merit Press for a review copy of this book. ...more
The Night We Said Yes is the story of some teens that want to relive a magical night where they decided to say yes to anything. The story shifts from
The Night We Said Yes is the story of some teens that want to relive a magical night where they decided to say yes to anything. The story shifts from the past (1 year previous) to the present day. The thing is, there's not much that differentiates either the past or the future. They are still the same group of friends, the same love interests, and the same bland and boring kids.
This book did not work for me. I found the main characters annoying. Ella was kind of wishy-washy and bland. Meg kept going back to Jake, even after he'd hook up with someone else. Even their games of "Truth or Dare" were dull.
Thank you to Edelweiss and HarperTeen for a review copy of this book....more
Wow. That was awesome! I was a big fan of The Hollows series and was so sad that it ended. The Drafter showcases Ms. Harrison's wonderful writing stylWow. That was awesome! I was a big fan of The Hollows series and was so sad that it ended. The Drafter showcases Ms. Harrison's wonderful writing style. From the first page I was hooked, and I could not put the book down. It was new, original, and action packed.
The Drafter is set in the future, a future where people with certain talents are able to draft - skip around time. Drafters work in conjunction with an anchor, a person who helps the drafter rebuild memories lost in a draft or time shift. Peri Reed is one of the more talented drafters and she, along with her partner and lover Jack work for Opti, a government organization which may or may not be corrupt. Then there's the alliance, a group that is trying to prove that Opti is corrupt.
What's cool about this book is that you are never quite sure what is real and what isn't, and who is an enemy or an ally. You don't know if the information fed to you is truth or lie. The more you read, the more questions arise. It's really a form of mindf&*k and it is a lot of fun to read.
Thank you to Eidelweiss and Gallery Books for a review copy of this book.
The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak by Brian Katcher was a hoot! The story is told in alternating first person points of view ofI am still laughing.
The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak by Brian Katcher was a hoot! The story is told in alternating first person points of view of Ana and Zak. Ana is your perfect A student. She's on the school quiz team and NEVER disobeys her parents. Ana is a bit stuck up at first, but as the story progresses, she becomes more and more likable and a bit badass, too. Zak is your typical gaming geek. Zak is endearing and right away I knew that I would enjoy reading his point of view.
Zak gets stuck on the high school quiz team. The good - Ana is on the team. The bad - it's on the same weekend as Washingcon, the science fiction and fantasy convention that Zak attends with his friends. Zak resigns himself to missing the convention, however, Ana's little brother Clayton has other plans. Clayton takes off for the convention and soon Ana and Zak are looking for Clayton.
There's lots of cultural references to all sorts of science fiction and fantasy and the author captures the essence of these types of conventions very well. There's always an opportunity for humor when you are surrounded by the costumed attendees.
I loved that even though Zak was relatively young, most of the convention attendees knew him and while most were kind, there were a few uncomfortable moments for Zak. And Ana, what a change from an uptight do-gooder to a badass heroine.
The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak was a fun read and I am looking forward to reading more books by this author in the future.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Katherine Tegen Books for a review copy of this book....more
Wonderful story, kickass heroine, some seriously cool magic. I understand from the blurb that this was inspired by Little Red Riding Hood b4.5 stars.
Wonderful story, kickass heroine, some seriously cool magic. I understand from the blurb that this was inspired by Little Red Riding Hood but I didn't really see that. In a way, I'm glad because this truly felt like an original story. Rachelle is a 15 year old girl who was an extraordinary fighter, battling evil and darkness and some very ambitious people in the court. The narrative is interwoven with the story of Tyr and Zisa which adds another dimension to the book.
Magical. Wonderful. Enchanting. Beautiful.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Balzer & Bray for a review copy of this book....more
Illusionarium is both an entertaining and engaging read. It is set in a whimsical alternative history, a world where people live iAbout 3.0-3.5 stars.
Illusionarium is both an entertaining and engaging read. It is set in a whimsical alternative history, a world where people live in airship cities. In Illusionarium, people inhale a drug that enables them to illusion all sorts of realities. Only thing is, too much of that drug causes unpleasant side effects like extra fingers, eyes, etc.
I'm a big fan of steampunk and it is always fun to see new and original takes on the genre. I enjoyed Illusionarium and I am looking forward to reading more books by this author.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Greenwillow Books for a review copy of this book.