From the summary, you'd probably think of Amanda Bynes' movie She's The Man. A girl who disguises herself as aFull review posted at Amaterasu Reads
From the summary, you'd probably think of Amanda Bynes' movie She's The Man. A girl who disguises herself as a boy and went to an all boys school? Ring a bell? Or if you're familiar with Hisaya Nakajo's Hanazakari no Kimitachi e, which is also about a girl who went to an all boys school. Or if you want to look even further, I would say this also reminds me a bit of Drew Barrymore's Never Been Kissed. You're probably right in that part of the story, but I think that's where the similarity ends.
I have to give Jody Gehrman credit because as much as this book sounds familiar, she was able to make the story her own. Putting in her own spin using cliche elements from books we've read and movies we've seen, and injecting a healthy dose of hilariousness that will surely tickle one's funny bones, along with a dash of wit and comedy that will make you forget it was similar to another story, Babe in Boyland is an insightful yet very entertaining sneak peek in what happens when girls try to understand what really can't be understood. Boys.
I was already laughing my socks off after the first eight pages. Natalie's voice is distinct and very funny, even comical. Her editors from hell who insults her on a daily basis mocks her further when her advice column bombs and virtually all the males in school hates her because apparently she doesn't know a thing about relationships and boys. She's a failed love goddess and a journalistic joke, to quote her own words. So Natalie attempted to write her own expose, and maybe win the Story of the Year award while she's at it.
I can come up with a few adjectives to describe Natalie, a.k.a. Dr. Aphrodite. She's reckless, she's sassy, she's witty, she's awkward, and basically, she's just a girl trying to learn how it is that boys "operate". I love how Natalie puts in the effort to understand guys more, even though she's crazy as a nut for infiltrating an all boys school. She was trying to be more "dedicated" and more honest in her craft, which was mainly her driving force to do such a drastic action. And for her sanity as a girl, she had to find out once and for all how to give right advices to those writing to her, and not just what they want to hear.
Emilio somewhat reminds me a bit of Alex of the Perfect Chemistry, though somewhat tamer, more mysterious, and more laid back. He's the kind of guy you would love to just hang out with. Not really part of the popular cliques, but he gets along with everyone. I love how simple his character is, but easily lovable.
It's amazing how much I appreciated being a girl after reading about being a boy from another girl's point of view. Aside from the obvious luxuries we have that boys don't, what she had to sacrifice, Natalie had to pretend to be someone she's not, and along the road she had experienced all kinds of failures. I found myself rooting for both Natalie and Nat, and finding delight when they overcome situations (which otherwise embarrasses the world out of everyone in a normal setting) and basically existing in a world far different from her own, the world of boys.
The author's experience in theater is put into good use in this novel. Natalie's character, aside from being a writer, is also an actress, and Jody was able to give an authentic feel on how it feels like to be a high school actress, or just being a part of a drama club.
But what I really loved about this book, was the lessons and realizations that Natalie has picked up along the way. Sometimes its not about trying to decode or understand what "boys" want to say or do. It's about us appreciating what we are and what we have. Its true that Natalie had learned a few hard truths about relationships and boys, but what probably is the greatest lesson this book gives is what she discovered about herself. But seriously, reading Natalie's piece about boys towards the end of the book. It wouldn't hurt to think about what was written about the ever elusive, ever complicated... boys, and why they behave like they do....more
Forgive me if this review does not do this book any justice because I cannot put into words just how much I love thiReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
Forgive me if this review does not do this book any justice because I cannot put into words just how much I love this book. The last time I've felt like this was when I've read Divergent, but this was a completely different experience!
Warner's personality made the biggest impact on me. He's captivating and all kinds of wrong but his appeal is so strong and unique in his own tortured, sadistic way. Warner has a warped, twisted grasp of the concept of power, it might be honest, true but frightening and ugly. He's passionate about things that would make him stronger and achieve greater things, mostly because of his insecurities that are still unknown. And for him Juliette is a destructive but a powerful and effective means to a grand end. What puzzles me is his almost tender, confusing treatment of Juliette. Is that how psychos show their love? One second tender, the other violent. Maybe he's as broken as Juliette is, with his own horrors in life and nightmares to chase away, but there's something about Warner that just fascinates me even when he's this disturbed, cruel, cold blooded, heartless young leader.
Adam is probably a few notch down the broken list than Warner, but he has his own charms and his own monsters and nightmares to fight off. He's trying to pick up the pieces of what's left in his life, trying to keep his brother safe from the horrors of life and is genuinely kind and heroic. The proverbial knight in shining armor, who has to keep up a facade to protect Juliette. At some level he understands Juliette's pain, they used to be friends after all. He was her only friend. He was the only one not afraid of her, understands her, knows that whatever she has done wasn't her fault, cares for her, loves her so much. Adam is this guy who protects Juliette unconditionally, willing to take countless blows and hurt and pain for her. Where do you find a guy like that now, much less in a future where the world is falling apart?
I don't think I have ever met two boys with personalities as intense as Adam and Warner. They're probably at the opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to mental stability, but both are still too hot for words nonetheless.
Pity is probably the last thing I felt for Juliette. Sadness was what I first felt when I flipped through the first page and read about this girl who has not touched anyone in 264 days and has not been loved all her life. All she wanted was to be loved and treated like a human being. Not a monster, not the harbinger of death, not a freak. I felt anger for all the injustice and torture she has ever suffered, and suffered she did. A lot. Despite all of that, Juliette might not be as broken as she thinks she is. Even when death surrounds her, she still believes in the value of human life among anything else. She didn't end her life because deep inside she believes this life she's living, leading, will get better, will be worth it.
The supporting characters were also fabulous! Raise your hands if you like Kenji! I love a guy who can effortlessly throw off a scene or a bad moment with his sarcasm and unexpectedly good humor. Sure he curses a lot, but he's provided a lot of opportunities for light moments and smart comments to make readers like him instantly. He's excruciatingly persistent, and good natured.
And the plot? Brilliant. Heavy. Intense. Every single thing about this book is exquisite. It's wonderful.
Every single moment, every single touch, every single kiss Adam and Juliette shares is like a shot to the heart. Intense and overflowing with emotions it just takes my breathe away. It's hard to lose focus on either Adam or Juliette because they always seem to have very vibrant emotions which readers couldn't help but be attached to.
Tahereh Mafi brings to life Juliette's world in vivid detail, with beautiful words flowing and fusing together one by one. I tell you, this girl has talent. It was hard to continue reading because almost every single sentence in the book is worthy to be quoted. Juliette, Adam and Warner could not have been brought to life more convincingly were it not for the power of Tahereh Mafi's writing.
"I'm one piece of astonishment forged into being". I am completely flummoxed just by how Tahereh Mafi puts together words so easily and make them sound so wonderful. Shatter Me is a beautiful book with beautiful words, astonishing plot and heart stopping moments. Just reading isn't enough. You'd want to experience every single moment, you want to it come to life right before your very eyes. You need to have a really good imagination to give justice to the brilliance of the imagery, and the wide range of emotions you'll feel. I am shaking with feelings ranging from amazement, disbelief, and utter, total fascination. Shatter Me is intensity put into words. Every bullet fired, every punch thrown, every single second spent running for their lives will keep the readers wide eyed, wildly anticipating what happens next, if Adam and Juliette can escape.
The emotions slowed down a little bit towards the end, but if there is one thing I've learned from emotionally potent books like this, it's that the calmness at the end is the beginning of something more in the next book. Shatter Me's ending allows readers to catch their breaths after a highly entrancing experience.
Read it! This book definitely deserves all the hype and attention thrown it's way! Tahereh Mafi is a superb author to watch out for....more
I prefer to define 'stalking' as 'intense observation', or substitute that with the other phrase. Because really, woReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I prefer to define 'stalking' as 'intense observation', or substitute that with the other phrase. Because really, would you want to be labeled as a 'stalker'? The word has such a negative connotation that the way we see someone called as such changes dramatically. And in Cammie's case she is one, but she's not afraid to admit it.
I didn't quite understand how Cammie can call herself a stalker at first. I felt like everyone had wronged her. The whispers in the corridor, the snide remarks, the laughter from the cheer leaders and the popular kids all because of one reason: she is a stalker. How did she become one? Why? When Toby came into the picture, that's when I finally understood. Cammie is, indeed, a stalker. But don't they have feelings too? Don't they get hurt? Don't they get worried? It felt like exploring an unfamiliar territory while I was reading about Cammie. There were moments I felt like it was all a joke, then I felt like it was so ridiculous, and then I felt afraid. There are things that were wrong with Cammie, but they were not all bad. Cammie's 'problem' was brought on by a dysfunctional family and growing up in a very different environment where feelings are rarely showed and she was rarely appreciated. That was all she wants, attention and love. To be liked.
But let me emphasize one thing: there's a fine line between observing people and invading their privacy. When you cross that line, that's when it becomes scary and dangerous. But this is a Young Adult book, and everything is downplayed. Toby, the object of Cammie's affection, understands a person who needs help because he used to need it. It hurts to think that the one thing Cammie and Toby had in common was because they were both different, that they were outcasts, that something is wrong with the both of them. Toby, despite being the cute boy with green eyes, went through depression and was called crazy by everyone. What made me finally love both characters were how they tried to be better. Toby became Cammie's anchor and Cammie was the one person that made Toby feel normal again. Romance be damned (at first), but there's something about those moments between them where they just shared what they felt, talked about things they liked and bonded over an abandoned theater. Simple things like that can lead to building strong friendships and maybe something more.
Yes, dear readers, do not be fooled by the pink, overly happy looking cover. The Stalker Chronicles deals with a theme far more deeper than what made it look, and that's what made me like this book, the way it had surprised me. I've expected it to be a light, fluffy, hilarious tale but I got so much more. The author did such a fantastic job of showing what was beyond Cammie's notorious persona as a stalker, that she's so much more, that she can also be a girl whose parents are getting divorced, who worries if the guy she likes will like her back, and is ultimately tired of being the 'stalker' everyone thinks she is.
Cammie's witty voice all throughout the novel is another part that I liked. It's like diving into the mind of a girl who obsesses with something she likes, but in all the wrong ways. It makes you think just how much family dynamics, school environment, friends influence you. And just when you think everything in this book is all cute and fluffy if you judge it by its cover, you'll be delighted to know just how much depth each character has with their back stories. It wasn't just about Cammie, as the story moves forward along with the rest of the characters, although it could have been better if there was more tension and a lot more conflict that can drive the story forward.
The Stalker Chronicles is a heartfelt tale of one girl's life as a stalker, and who she is behind that label. Sometimes there's a reason why people act the way they do, and people need to take a step back and see someone beyond what people label them as. Thoroughly entertaining with quite a few bursts of wit and flashes of humor, The Stalker Chronicles is a good read! If you want a book that will surprise you, get this one! I tell you, there is more to this book than that cute, flashy, pink cover....more
I tend to shy away from YA Paranormal since I'm still recovering from reading paranormal romances even before I crossedFull review at: Amaterasu Reads
I tend to shy away from YA Paranormal since I'm still recovering from reading paranormal romances even before I crossed to the YA genre, so I always am skeptical to try new books. Boy, this book just made me enjoy YA paranormal again!
How do I begin my review of this book? I'm not really sure, because this impressed me so much. The plot development is solid. Eventually you'll have questions as you go along (like who are the Nephilim? what are they?) and I have to admit that I thought I was going to have a hard time remembering the terms used since there were so many at the first few pages, but Ednah was able to explain everything clearly. The questions are eventually answered one by one, and the story flow is smooth.
The way Ednah wrote about Lil and her life as a gypsy is so vivid, I can just picture it in my head, clear as a bright summer day, the setting, where she lives, how she is as a person. You think it'll be difficult to imagine a world where Demons and Nephilims exist? Not in this book.
Ednah gave life the Angels and Demons, the battle between Good and Evil in a crafty way that will get you hooked from the first page! I did get hooked, right after I read the first four pages. There were a healthy amount of action scenes that made the read more engaging, and of course the twists and turns and surprises you come across that there isn't a dull moment while you're reading!
There are countless of books about Angels and Demons out there, but for me this was one of a kind, definitely one of the most refreshing YA paranormal books I've read so far. I'm definitely re-reading this once I have the time.
I'm also looking forward to the next book in the series! I wonder when it'll be released?...more
I always get nostalgic whenever I read stories about high school, given that it was such a fun time of my life. And thReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I always get nostalgic whenever I read stories about high school, given that it was such a fun time of my life. And the collection of stories in Luna East Academy brought out a lot of warm, fuzzy feelings in me while I was reading. There really is a story for anyone and everyone who've ever been through the good and the bad times, the crazy ups and downs and the confusing, exhilirating time that was High School.
Short but meaningful, each of the stories will bring out a different feeling from the reader the moment they finish reading. I started off feeling 'kilig', immediately responding to that sweetness that started off the stories in Luna East. It gradually pulled me in with the myriad of characters I meet in each author's work, each becoming a little more interesting as I navigate through the world of high school cliques, the social hierarchies, and the common denominator that binds all of the stories inside: friendship and love.
I really think the idea behind Luna East is brilliant! I love how I get to read works from different authors with different themes and writing styles and you not only get to see the contrasts in their works, but you get to know the lives of those within the fictional Academy that is Luna East. You are bound to meet a character that you will like and dislike, read a story that will make your heart ache or jump with joy, one that will fascinate you a lot and make you think of it even after you've finished reading. I love getting that wonderful, happy feeling.
All of the stories were really good, but some of them stayed with me long after I finished reading the Kindle ebook and they are:
Sitting in a Tree by Chrissie Peria
I've read this first on the Luna East blog, and it didn't get less sweeter or cuter after my second time reading. It makes one miss school fairs and all those booths that serves as "bridges" for some of the students to express what they feel for other fellow students.
Fifty two weeks by Mina V. Esguerra
I had a big smile pasted on my face by the time I finished reading this story. Anything Mina writes always seem to get under my skin, leaving me with extreme feels.
Yours is the First Face that I Saw by Ronald S. Lim
This story surprised me completely. I've read a handful of stories with LGBT themes, but Ron's just made me fall in love with his story immediately after reading the first few paragraphs. It's delightfully interesting and was written really well. My only complain: why does it have to end there? More!
Something Real by Miles Tan
My first taste of sadness in the world of Luna East. Gigi's story took time for it to sink in! There was something about her and what she's been through that makes me want to just hug her. The poor girl... and that guy. I have no words to express what I feel about James. It was a mix of frustration and disbelief and a little bit of sadness thrown in the mix. I love how this story brought out complex feelings from me. One of my top favorites!
The Rumor About Me by Kristel S. Villar
This has got to be my most favorite story in this collection! I just love anything that involves a shy, timid girl who learns to stand up for herself along the way and the jock who was completely different from what everyone thinks he really was. I wish it didn't end. I wish there was more.
Senpai’s #1 Fan by Anne Plaza
I was sold the moment the words "Kaname" and "Danny Choo" were mentioned at the start of the story, and later "Quatre Raberba Winner". Anne Plaza gave the readers a sneak peek into the world of Otakus, enough to gave Jannie a good foundation for her character. If I was a character in Luna East's world I'd probably be hanging out with Jannie and her friends. I will thrive at anime conventions and fangirl over goods and cosplayers, and still be focused enough to notice someone like Adrian. I also love how it wasn't just about anime or mecha costumes, but the transition to music is a good addition too!
Wouldn’t Change a Thing by Jayen San Diego
"I am always the second best, and I hate it." After I've read that line I knew I was going to like this story. I love how stubborn Maan can be, and how that stubborn streak in her draws Nico helplessly closer. There's something good about getting inside Maan and Nico's head and knowing how they feel about those around them and each other, which made me love the point of view switching. And those sweet moments at the end? I had to re-read them over and over.
If you think of each story as a part of a world you've yet to fully see, you will find something worth exploring in Luna East. There's definitely a lot of room for new stories and characters to appear, all of them existing in a world where anything can happen. But more than that, these collection of stories urges everyone to come not just explore life in Luna East, but try to write their own story. Each and every single tale can inspire a reader to write something, anything, to contribute to the world of arts, music, money and sports. What a really lovely work this is! Kudos to each and every writer in this collection! You are all a talented bunch! ...more
I think started a bit slow, but it got better as I go along reading, and before I knew it I was enjoying the read.
Yuki can smell the dead. Literally.I think started a bit slow, but it got better as I go along reading, and before I knew it I was enjoying the read.
Yuki can smell the dead. Literally. It was her indicator that a ghost is around when she smells something. With her recently discovered powers, Yuki was helping the world, one ghost at a time, and her latest haunting was from a ghost smelling like vinegar.
Enlisting help from her friends, Emma, hardcore vegan and against anything with meat who’s got a knack for concocting salves to nasty teas using herbs, and Calvin, the boy who was into all things mystical, the one who’s spirit animal was a wolf. But was it really just a spirit animal, or something else entirely?
I had an impression that this was a ghost story, and that’s what you will initially think when you read the summary, so imagine my surprise when I found out there were wolves as well. I had my reservations, wondering how this element of the story will play out, but it was an interesting mix. Wolves and Ghosts. I don’t think I’ve read anything with both.
I liked the way the plot worked out. E.J. was able to blend ghosts and wolves and turn it into something very convincing and believable with her writing. I think this was such a fresh idea, a very promising premise that, if worked out effectively would be a really good story. It’s enchanting and very entertaining!
The ending was such a cliffhanger. It makes you wonder just what will happen to Yuki. I myself am anticipating how she’ll be able to deal with her powers and the upcoming Samhain, when she’s most vulnerable against ghosts.
A single moment can change everything. A tragedy can change lives forever.
Ezra Faulkner was your resident golden boy, good looks, good grades, great family. But all of that was before the accident, before he found out that he needed a cane to walk, before he had to give up playing tennis. Now hanging out with his usual crowd doesn't feel right anymore. Being homecoming king suddenly feels irrelevant, being popular felt like an unusual idea. In his search to find out just who Ezra is post accident, he crosses paths with his childhood friend Toby, who himself faced a tragedy of his own early in life, and his unlikely circle of friends. Then there's Cassidy Thorpe. She was like someone from a dream, smart, full of life and infinitely interesting. With Toby and Cassidy, Ezra's life was starting to take a bright, new shape, one filled with new adventures, opportunities and friendships that seemed impossible before. But as Ezra continue to fall for the mysterious Cassidy, the secrets and intrigue that seems to accompany her was starting to feel like another tragedy waiting to happen.
I will never get tired of saying this: Ezra has a great, strong voice. Throughout the novel, I absorbed each and every word he uttered, every thought of his. I never got tired just listening and feeling everything his character had to give and present to a reader. For a golden boy who should have sounded shallow given the initial set-up of his character, the depth of his personality is a surprise. The struggle he poses felt real at the very least, palpable and relatable at most. As much as I wanted to pity him, I found myself urging Ezra to be strong, because if there was anyone who could get through that one moment of tragedy to start anew, it was him.
Like Ezra, intrigue was what I felt when I encountered Cassidy Thorpe. In a sense, she was different. Smart, eloquent, deep, fascinating. Cassidy had a fresh, unusual take in life that attracts Ezra. Where Ezra's life revolves on parties and tennis games, Cassidy takes parts on debates and attends college lectures she's not even enrolled at. There were moments where I felt she was so real, so fascinating and so quaint. She was like a rollercoaster ride, with dips and high points, thrills and lulls. She's a joy to read, like a slice of happiness with a certain piece of sadness attached to it. She was the missing piece that completes a puzzle, but not Ezra's.
Toby was twelve when he faced tragedy in the face, quite literally. His quirks are what made me love him, and the fact that even though he and Ezra drifted apart as they grew up, he was there ready to be his friend all over again. Toby's quips and random musings always manage to make me laugh. He makes everything bearable because despite not being popular or school royalty, he knew how to have fun in his own geeky way. Along with Phoebe, Luke, Sam and Austin, they represent the misfits, with oddities and flaws that endears them to the readers in their own unique way. They were the kids you notice for not being part of the normal crowd, but are fascinating in their own way once you get to know them. They were my crowd, my kind of people.
The bittersweet romance that transpired between Ezra and Cassidy, as well the truths and lies that binds them both was worth the read. What happened to both of them felt right, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows. Life doesn't always turn out the way we want it to be and that's exactly what happened to them. Where one was urging the other to break out of the cage that confined him to a world that doesn't fit him anymore, the other could not break out of her own, trapped in a world full of regrets, pain and sadness even she couldn't escape.
There's a lyrical, almost painful feeling inserted in parts of Robyn Schneider's The Beginning of Everything. There was no need to use big words to express and pass on to the readers Ezra's feelings: regrets, sadness, loneliness, confusion, envy, wonderment, hate, love. The smooth, simple way the story was presented was enough to speak to the readers. It's such an interesting part of reading, always, to find out just how much lesson a story conveys, and Robyn Schneider's story drove several points home. Do we let a single tragedy define us for life? Where does one find the courage to start over and find one's self again? How good is being normal? Can you be different and still live a life filled with things that can make you whole? Ezra's story answered these questions and tells the reader something more.
Severed Heads and Broken Hearts, they were the perfect words one can use to describe, in essence, what this novel is all about and yet readers can still find something more in it. Something profound that can coax emotions that's sad and happy, good and bad, the what ifs, the whys and why nots, the realization that even though tragedy can change a person's life, there's bound to be at least one person who will cross your life and help you change it in a way you never expected it to be. Sometimes they stay, and sometimes, they don't.
Once in a while there comes a novel that just speaks to you unlike any other story you've read. The Beginning of Everything is that kind of book. I do not even need to recommend this to readers as much as I did for other books. When you come across this book and the urge to read hits you, remember that Robyn Schneider created a masterpiece worthy of reading. What beautiful story telling from Robyn Schneider!...more
He's the perfect man to do the job. He's nobody. He blends in, becomes your friend, someone you trust, and the nextReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
He's the perfect man to do the job. He's nobody. He blends in, becomes your friend, someone you trust, and the next thing you know your mom or your father or your sister is dead. That's him, and he's just a boy. Benjamin (not his real name) has lived the life of a cold-hearted assassin for four years. He has nothing else to live for. His parents are dead and he has been trained to kill since he was twelve. But Benjamin has started to wonder: when will this end? When does he have to stop killing? Then he meets a girl in his new mission, and she's not what he expects, especially her father who is Benjamin's target. Before he knows it, Benjamin has started doubting his mission, craves to become normal, and the little changes being made has made him suspicious. But how does one get out from The Program with his life still intact?
It felt exhilarating to get into the mind of an assassin, and with a mind such as Benjamin, there was never a dull moment in this book. He was just a boy who trusted the one person who ended up betraying him and the next thing he knew he was an orphan, given a choice to die or start killing people. How does a twelve year old get through that traumatic experience? By becoming the perfect killing machine. Benjamin might follow his mission to the letter but he is still human, and no matter how much he fights it memories and feelings surfaces at the most unexpected of times. Piecing his past together with the present is a delight for me. It gave me the chance to know Benjamin in a deeper way and made me understand him just a little bit more, why he had to be distant, sometimes cruel, unfeeling. It was the only way he knew to survive. It's what made him the perfect assassin. He had to grow up living a life filled with blood and violence, and the experiences he's had made him sound so much older than he is, which is somewhat sad. He could have been a jock, a great student, but it was never going to happen now.
I've second guessed a lot of characters in this book, and Samara was one of the most consistent characters in it, one of the very few you'd think of as the villain. She was passionate about a lot of things, fights for what she believes in and despite being the daughter of the mayor, goes out of her way to prove that she cannot be defined by the wealth and power surrounding her. Sam had her fair share of heartache and tragedy like Benjamin, and that forged her character to become headstrong, sometimes stubborn and intense, but she wasn't someone you'd easily dislike. In some ways she was similar to Benjamin, someone who doesn't fit in, lost, someone who had to grow up before they had the chance to enjoy life. I give kudos to the author for giving her character such an unexpected angle that blind sided me before I realized how it made everything fall into place.
The plot was brilliant! It's reminiscent of Jason Bourne at times, but the very presence of Benjamin's character as Boy Nobody and the reason why he became the way he is gave this book a different spin. Allen Zadoff fashioned Benjamin in a convincing way from the short, staccato sentences, down to his different observations of everything around him both as a teenager and as an assassin and it's that combination that makes him so interesting to read. Add to it characters with questionable identities like 'Mother' and 'Father', espionage, mystery and a thrilling story and you get Boy Nobody, which is one heck of an entertaining read.
It was easy to sympathize with the characters, but what pulled me in to this book deeper and deeper with each turn of the page was the amazing storytelling by Allen Zadoff. It's like watching an action movie but I'm leafing through the pages of a book. Highly engaging, tension filled and very fast paced. You'll just find yourself holding your breath at certain moments and yet you don't want to stop reading. Convincing, from the coded messages and conversations, the significance of withholding Benjamin's real name and his real identity, to that moments of confusion, when Benjamin decided that he wants to be normal, for everything to stop and then the truths and realization that sets in and you find yourself understanding the whole story as secrets are revealed one after another. It's got a great balance of romance, action and mystery that just gets to you as you read on.
I finished reading this book in two and a half hours and I think it's just amazing. There's no other word to describe it. Please, if you can grab a copy of this book once it comes out, do yourself a favor and read it. Don't miss out on this thrilling story!...more
Tori Warrick was a loner. Her withdrawn attitude started when her parents died in an accident. But when her claFull review posted at Amaterasu Reads
Tori Warrick was a loner. Her withdrawn attitude started when her parents died in an accident. But when her classmates misunderstood her constant wanting for solitude she became a social outcast. Bullied and humiliated on the day of her seventeenth birthday, Tori was at the receiving end of a vicious attack, until she fought back, but it wasn't really her. Something inside her awakened when she turned seventeen. Something dark, mysterious and quite possibly be evil. Tori thought a change of scenery will help, but then her paths crossed with Christian Devereux, and things became more confusing. As she discovers who she really is and the power she's keeping, she was drawn to dark and brooding Christian who has his own secrets to keep, and he isn't really what Tori thinks he is.
See I've read books about Vampires and Werewolves hating each other, and maybe in the supernatural, paranormal world, its not far fetched that Witches and Vampires also tend to hate each other, but Bloodspell takes it to a whole new level.
I loved how truthful this book is. The characters were not sugarcoated or described with pretty words that will make readers swoon over them. There was no pretense that the vampires or the witches are do-gooders and it's a refreshing change. They are evil, they have the tendency to do horrible things, and it was obvious in the entire story.
Both Tori and Christian were characters that are hard to describe. But what I love about them is how they want to fight for what they feel to each other. Their relationship wasn't all sunshine and butterflies. There was this constant fear that they could kill each other. Christian was a powerful guy who drives Tori crazy with his Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality, while Tori is someone who was trying to make sense of the power she has and what it means to posses the Blood. They were both terrified of their own selves for what they can do to each other. Vampires and Witches were forbidden to make any kind of association, which was the biggest hurdle they had to face.
Truthfully, it took a bit of patience for me to get used to seeing their relationship going okay when suddenly the complication of "Stay away, I'm not strong enough to fight this." comes back and they had to do something just to be together again. But I think moments like it made the foundation of Christian & Tori's relationship stronger.
Amalie Howard took time to explain the background story behind all the characters and she did it very well. I especially loved the one about Brigid, Tori's ancestor. The "Blood" is probably the most frightening aspect of the story. It's evil, it's death. If you think Vampires and Witches are scary, then the Blood is something more to fear.
Bloodspell has a well rounded plot which was a delight to read. Amalie Howard takes the readers into a journey filled with danger, evil lurking around, and she has written a story of forbidden love between two people who, despite all the odds against them, couldn't stay away. I'm a romantic at heart, and the romance in this book just appealed to me so much. And the scenes between Tori and Christian are just scorching hot!
Such a luscious read this book is. Bloodspell is a dark, haunting, fast-paced action filled story that will enthrall fans of the paranormal genre. This book is highly recommended! If you want to read about a headstrong heroine, a persistent and gorgeous male lead and villains who are evil personified, then this book is for you! Bloodspell will hold your full attention and won't let go until you've read the last page!...more
My first Maggie Stiefvater book and I'm not sure how to put into words what I feel. I think she's one of the very fewReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
My first Maggie Stiefvater book and I'm not sure how to put into words what I feel. I think she's one of the very few authors I've read that rendered me speechless.
Blue has quite a gift: she amplifies the powers of her clairvoyant mother and her psychic friends. The night of St. Mark's Eve was one Blue will never forget. She met Gansey or more appropriately, a manifestation of him, walking on the Corpse Road. Gansey is an Aglionby boy, and he is going to die soon. All her life, Blue has been told that she's destined to kill the person she'll love with a kiss, and that's why she's staying away from boys, especially those in Aglionby, the Raven boys. But soon enough, Blue's paths crossed with the real, breathing Gansey and she was swept along his lifelong desire to find what has been eluding him all his life: Glendower, who, according to tales will favor the one who wakes him up. Finding Glendower alone was difficult enough, now Blue finds herself in the middle of the complicated lives of these boys. But she knows one thing: she will not let Gansey die.
It's quite stressful to read this book. I mean it in a good way, because Maggie Stiefvater just has this knack for making the readers feel so much emotions coming from her story all at once, especially her characters. I had to stop quite a few times to catch my breath. Maggie Stiefvater took great time in developing each and every character in this book, giving them believable, and oftentimes very complicated, back stories. Maggie had a knack for laying bare a lot of things about her character and still leave room for guessing, for mystery. The depth of each and every one of them is one of the reasons why I held on reading. They all seem so broken, like a fundamental part of them was missing and only the search for Glendower will make them whole.
I was so absorbed in Gansey's search for something more, that something beyond having power and money, that something worthwhile, that reason why he was born the way he was, privileged. Ronan was, in all intents and purposes, broken beyond repair. The anger and the hatred he had appeared when his father died, that devil may care attitude, his penchant to challenge death every single chance he gets, his sarcasm. How did he become like that? These two characters are my favorites, so different but oddly meshing together. Adam's life was marred by violence, all his life he wanted to prove that he can be something better, that there's something big and positive to look forward to than letting his father hit him, that even though he's poor, his credentials from Aglionby will create an opportunity for him to be someone, to be like Gansey, maybe even more. And then the empty shell that was Noah, extremely shy, barely there. Each and every Raven Boy had something dark shadowing their pasts, and it felt like I was dipping my toes in a pool of extreme sadness, forlorn feelings each and every time a bit of their lives is revealed.
If you are the type of reader who easily gets bored, however, let me tell you now that the story took quite a while to coalesce. You will need a lot of patience before you see where the story is headed. There were parts that can easily confuse the readers and there seems to be a lot of elements that needed to be presented and discussed, the occult, psychics, magic and the individual lives of the characters that readers might find themselves lost a time or two. Hold on, dear readers, because after the struggle in the first half of the book and the lethargic pace of the story, there are things to look forward to. The way Maggie Stiefvater infused magic and intrigue into the story was very interesting. If you are expecting The Raven Boys to be an outright romantic book because of the prophecy surrounding Blue, then you might be in for a little bit of disappointment. The story goes beyond who Blue will kiss. It became a great frustration of mine that I couldn't seem to feel any chemistry between Blue and Gansey. There were momentarily glimpses of possibilities on romance, but even those were fleeting and unsure. And there are just a lot of elements in this book that are very uncertain and unclear that it might seem a torture to a lot of people to know what will and will not happen.
It was very tiring to cope with the feelings this novel conveys to the readers, but I wouldn't have it any other way. The magic in Maggie Stiefvater's writing is evident in her strong character building, with enough depth to entice the readers to get to know them more. There's a certain eloquence in her writing that you will just admire. The plot and its pace was a sweet torture, but it's one that will almost immediately make the reader have that driving need to find out what happens next. The Raven Boys is a very promising read, and with the first book, Maggie Stiefvater opens the story to a lot of possibilities. ...more
I've been a Kpop fan almost half of my life and I am so glad I have read a book with Korean influence all over. It's the first I've come across, and iI've been a Kpop fan almost half of my life and I am so glad I have read a book with Korean influence all over. It's the first I've come across, and it's really really good.
What made this a very enjoyable read for me, is how much I can relate to it. As a huge fan of Korean pop music, the references to a lot of Korean artists made me really proud, as this is the first book that had mentioned a lot of the most talented and most loved Korean artists I know. And it wasn't just mentioned in passing, it was an important part of the story, as Jo. Zee, the instructor being half-Eurasian and half Korean, draws out most of his influences on them.
I do think that the Korean pop audience would like to read this book as well, knowing how much they'll be able to relate to its characters (some of which are Asians).
The story reminds me a bit of Step Up!, with dancing as one of the main elements in the book, and of course, Suzie's brief two-week journey through internship and discovering the first sin, Lust.
The concept of writing about Lust is very interesting in my opinion. A friend of mine was asking if this book would have parts about sex, but it surprised me how it was delivered in a way that there was no need to write an actual, blatant, sex scene and yet you'll eventually understand what "Lust" is in this book.
One of my concerns when using foreign phrases in a book is that authors tend to use them and expecting the readers to get the meaning without having to explain it. I had to admit its also one of my concerns seeing that there are parts where Korean, Spanish and French phrases were used, but Jess not only managed to explain their meaning, the phrases added a tinge of uniqueness to the book and was able to integrate it well in the conversations without confusing the readers.
Also, I am very much fascinated with the way Jess was able to write the dance scenes. It was filled with such detail you'd imagine it easily as if you were watching it happen right before your eyes. Dancing is a very energetic and lively endeavor and I'm glad the book had the same energetic and lively feeling to it....more
Unearthly is just fabulous! Just when you thought any form of writing abouOriginal post at Amaterasu Reads
Wow. I am totally blown away by this book.
Unearthly is just fabulous! Just when you thought any form of writing about Angels couldn't get any better, Cynthia Hand proves us wrong! It's new and fresh, and simply stunning you just can't help but wonder how she was able to write something this good.
The pacing was slow at first, but as you go through the pages, the story just picks up and the next thing you know you're so absorbed in it and you only have so few times to catch your breath to think and absorb what's happening. I couldn't put down this book!
Clara is not your typical angel. For one who is with Angel Blood, you'd think luck is on her side, but a lot of things had gone wrong for her when she received her purpose. She had to leave the only home she knew and the friends she grew up with, all for the sake of "saving" the boy in her dreams.
I loved how Clara seems perfectly flawed. Her hair color was a disaster (Carrots!), and from being popular back home, she struggled to make her way through school, which seemed like an unfamiliar territory. She was disliked on sight by the most popular girl on campus, because the guy she had to save happens to be her boyfriend. I love how Clara is quirky, sassy, witty and generally a fun character. She tries hard to make sense of how it was to be an angel, and decipher what her real purpose is. And despite her being an angel-blood, her character is very easy to relate to. Like Mulan, she "followed her heart", and that's what I liked most about her, being true to herself.
The romance build-up fooled me so much. Who in here did not expect Christian to end up with Clara? My prediction was way off the mark! And for the first time I found myself rooting for the underdog! Christian had the advantage in so many ways against Tucker. The money, the looks, popularity, but I can't help but feel more for Tucker. There's a certain depth in Tucker that Christian surprisingly lacks, or maybe it's because we get to know Tucker more in this book, and I adore his character! *raises Tucker banners*
There's a certain intensity in the love triangle involving Clara, Tucker and Christian that just draws you. At least that's what I felt. Christian and Tucker may be different as night and day, but for some reason, they are both fitting to be with Clara. One of the reasons why I love Cynthia Hand's writing is her way of just putting into words powerful emotions. You can feel a lot through her writing.
I simply cannot get over the fact that Cynthia Hand's writing is very simple. There were no flowery words used, no steering around corners to lengthen the story, and yet you find yourself in Clara's shoes, in her world, with all these wonderful characters and great stories around you that you can't help but be fascinated.
I know there's more to look forward to in this series, and it has a lot of potential! I can tell that it's going to be a big hit! Like most of the reviews I know, I wasn't the least satisfied with the ending. I was stunned, to say the least. It's a long wait for the second book, but that is one wait I'm gonna have to endure....more
Brie died on the very same day her boyfriend told her he doesn't love her and her heart just got broken into two, literally. Now Brie is stuck in a dingy pizza place and a replica of her town and she couldn't really quite get into the afterlife, not until she made sure her family and friends were okay. But as Brie tries to get through Death to be able to move on, she slowly realizes that not all is well in good in the life she'd left behind. Plus there's one Top Gun Tom Cruise look a like boy who's her only shot at making it through the after life and he makes her feel things about the afterlife she didn't quite expect to.
My heart broke for Brie for many, many times. To be able to see your family picking up the pieces of their lives after you are gone, seeing them struggle and yet you couldn't do anything about it was painful. Ironically, Brie's character felt more alive when she was dead than when she was living. You get this seemingly perfect girl at first and then you see her in her more fragile moments and you realize there's more to her than just having great friends and family. What made me love her is that spark in her personality, that spunkiness, even when she was betrayed and lied to when she was living. She didn't just accept it all sitting down, she got mad and got even. But even in her after life, Brie was determined to make life right, at least for those she had left behind.
Patrick is the most adorable Lost Soul in the whole world! I loved him from the very first moment he opened his mouth and started spewing out creative cheese nicknames for Brie to the very moment his character unraveled. I couldn't remember how many times I have laughed out loud with his cheesy, bad pick up lines. But most of all I loved how you'll feel like you're just skimming over the surface of his personality in most parts of the book, then you finally find out just how much he had sacrificed for the very same thing Brie hated, Love, you get this entirely different person and you'll just like him more. Plus he's good in Latin. Definitely a plus!
The Catastrophic History of You and Me is the first book in a long time that made me feel heartache, happiness, anger and sadness all at the same time. It's never easy reading about Death, let alone reading about someone going through it, so I was really surprised when I found myself being swept along with Brie's story, her emotions, her thoughts, her life. I felt like I went through the Five Stages of Grief myself. It's one thing to think that an author's writing is good, but to be completely enamored with it is an entirely different thing. It's a bit scary how much I responded to Brie's experiences as she went through all of it.
The Catastrophic History of You and Me surprised me in a lot of ways. It's about family, it's about friends, it's about love, it's about life. It's full of what ifs and what could have been. It's about trust and sacrifices, about sharing and listening. About being honest with yourself and thinking of not just yourself but all of those you love. Patrick and Brie's story made the afterlife seem so romantic!
Jess Rothenberg had this magical way with words and she'd make you evoke a swarm of complicated emotions that will sweep you off your feet while reading her book. I breezed through this book and I couldn't wait to read it again. It's THAT good! Fantastic debut, Jess!...more
I don't really know where to start, but this book has just made me feel so much emotion that I am not sure what to discuss, what to say, and what to feel. All I know is this, The Dream Thieves is very, very good.
After reading The Raven Boys, I have gotten used to the very slow pacing of the story, and instead I enjoyed my time reading as I discover more about the relationships and the bonds that bind each Aglionby boy to each other. Ronan has been dreaming of things, and has discovered that he can take things out of them. Gansey is still hell bent on his quest to find Glendower, Adam is slowly suffocating in the life he's leading, and Noah is flickering in and out of their lives. The prophecy surrounding Blue's doomed love life is slowly becoming a real obstacle as she struggles to figure out her feelings for at least two Aglionby boys, and lives begin to unravel in this lovely, amazing sequel.
Oh Ronan, Ronan, Ronan. How I loved you in this book. See, if you feel that The Raven Boys is (still) lacking of Ronan, then you will get so much more of him in this book to the point that you think you might just get sick of him, but you wouldn't. I just loved reading about him, the things he could dream of, the nightmares, the struggle with his own pain, anguish and longing for his family while figuring out just what he really is and what he could do. My feelings are as intense for Gansey, who was as delightful as he was in the first book and more. You get a more complete picture of the faces he keeps as Dick, the child from a wealthy, influential family, to the Gansey who was Ronan's rock and Adam's friend, the boy who only feels free when he's in Henrietta, to the boy who was slowly but surely feeling emotions he shouldn't. And Adam, which I am slowly distancing myself from. Maybe it's because of the changes he has undergone in this book, the feelings he had to deal with and the acceptance of who he needs to become. He's not unlikable, but I find myself just pitying him most of the time. And no one should forget Noah, who appeared so little in this book but is still as enjoyable to read as all the other three.
I loved how the Gray Man insert himself in Henrietta and the chaotic lives of the boys, Blue and her family so easily. A man who was supposed to be invisible, unnoticeable and full of mystery. He's a character that I find very interesting, a dangerous hit man who has a dark past of his own and ghosts he's running away from, but I can't seem to bring myself to dislike him. His unfazed attitude with Maura and her sisters, and his eventual feelings for her felt so unconventional and unexpected and delightful all at the same time. I can't say he's a bad guy though he's done horrible things.
The Dream Thieves moved in a much faster pace than The Raven Boys and along with the introduction of The Gray Man and Kavinsky, secrets and clues are a lot easier to come by in this story. There were major moments in the book that will make it faster for the reader to figure out what's going on and yet with some answers come more puzzles, more questions to add to the intrigue and allure of the story and you'll just find yourself neck deep in and you just push on and read and try to know more with each turn of a page. The Dream Thieves had everything I was asking for in the first book, and I appreciated the story more because of it. More intrigue, more tension, and most importantly, more romance. Blue's rocky relationship with Adam and her inevitable realization that Adam will not be the boy she'd like to kiss was something that made my heart clench in this book, more than Gansey's search for Glendower, or Ronan's longing for his mother. Because we all know what the prophecy says when it comes to Blue and her feelings for the boy she will kiss, and she knew now who she wants to kiss. And along with it comes the complicated ties of friendship, the magic, the future.
The Dream Thieves is such a fantastical follow-up to an already amazing first book! I can honestly say I've enjoyed reading this book much, much more. It's magical, intriguing and a bonafide page turner. Again, hats off to Maggie Stiefvater for crafting such a story that made me feel so much and give me such a big book hangover afterwards....more
When I first read the summary of this book, my brain immediately took off and created a montage of scenes fOriginal review posted at Amaterasu Reads
When I first read the summary of this book, my brain immediately took off and created a montage of scenes from one of my most favorite historical movie, Orlando Bloom’s Kingdom of Heaven. Fitting, I think, since the movie is about the fall of Jerusalem, the Holy City, to the hands of the Muslims.
Crusade was a book I wouldn’t usually read. Though it is YA, I consider this outside my usual comfort zone. In a sense, Crusade is a difficult read, but like the little kids in the story, pushing through to the end, I loved it.
It’s different. Different couldn’t begin to describe how I felt reading this book.
I couldn’t even begin to imagine being apart from my family for days, let alone months. And the characters in this story were little kids! I had a hard time swallowing the fact that children even as young as seven would answer to the call of the Crusade, leaving behind their families for a great cause, for God. People were poor, and the only thing they can hold on to was their faith. And what other way to show their faith than to join a Holy Crusade?
It was something that you know was bound to fail. How can kids who were merely in their teens defend themselves, let alone reclaim Jerusalem from grown men, experienced in fighting, when they finally arrive to the Promise Land? Will they even arrive? But for some reason, it was fascinating to see how most of the kids held on to the journey. It was hard, daunting, and my heart felt like it was being crushed into pieces every time a child succumbs to the harsh journey. I’d like to think they were blinded by their own faith, but who am I to judge the kids in the story?
It was a heartfelt read. Linda Press Wulf’s book was a unique journey through the time where faith was so strong; it’s like a tangible thing, something everyone can believe in when they have nothing else to turn to. Georgette’s voice was vivid, and though wavering at times, it was a truthful account of a child who went for a journey that would change her life in ways she didn’t even imagine. This combined with Robert’s deeper understanding and complex musing of his life and his faith, providing a clearer voice to the story, made Crusade an unforgettable read.
Religious in ways that matter, Crusade is a story of a band of children’s journey seen through the eyes of Robert and Georgette, two very different people with a story of their own to tell, brought together in the end by the very same Crusade that had abandoned them. After all, you can't talk about the Crusades without touching the subject of Christianity and how it was during those times. This side of the story made me re-examine my faith a little bit, but it's what made me like the book more.
Linda Press Wulf has a remarkable talent for writing. It’s evident in how detailed her writing can be. I’m usually reluctant to read historical books, but you can tell how Wulf is well-versed with the theme she chose to write on.
Over all, reading Crusade is a gamble I’m glad I took. I have learned to love Robert and Georgette and was delighted to read along as they matured, their characters forged into something stronger through all the hardships and the loss they have faced, the love that they have for each other, and the important realizations they have come to about faith and life in general, all of which they wouldn’t have known were it not for the doomed Crusade that brought them together.
I’m surprised that I loved Crusade more than I thought I would, and I’d gladly recommend this book to anyone who would love to read a book with a deeper message once in a while....more
In a future Chicago, 5 factions live alongside each other, the Candor filled w/ honest people, the selfless AbnegatiReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
In a future Chicago, 5 factions live alongside each other, the Candor filled w/ honest people, the selfless Abnegation, the brave ones of Dauntless, the peaceful ones are in Amity, and the ambitious, intelligent people made up Erudite. Beatrice is 16, and it's time to choose which faction she wants to be with. Will she stay with her family and be selfless, or be brave? Joining the Dauntless and changing her name to Tris, she was in for a life different from that she has lived. As Tris gradually comes to know who she really is, all the while keeping a deadly secret, she unknowingly stumbles upon something that threatens to tear apart the peaceful society she lives in, and like it or not, she's part of it.
I loved every single moment I've spent reading this book. From the moment I met Tris, I felt like I'll be in for a great adventure. I love stories that just pulled you in after reading the first page, and that's just what happened while I was reading Divergent. Action packed with dynamic characters, it's a book everyone would love to read, and I'm pretty sure I'm right. Teens, tweens, even older people would love to read about this future world, and one girl's journey into discovering, and gradually accepting what she really is.
I join the many characters in this book (and readers) who probably underestimated Tris' character. As they say, appearances can be very deceiving, and that applies to Tris. She's from Abnegation. She was supposed to be selfless, and with her small stature, helpless, and maybe even powerless. But for what she lacks in height and weight, she made up for in her intelligence, perseverance and determination to be true to herself, and I think, just for that, she really does deserve to be in Dauntless. She's beyond brave, and she's fierce. I love how she can be strong and still be able to accept that she'll need help from people at times.
I salute Veronica Roth and loved her so much because she was able to write a story filled with trials and experiences that shaped the and defined its characters. The tests Tris went through might be physical and nerve wracking, but it prepared her to face things she knew would come if people finds out what she is. Maybe she's part-Abnegation and part-Dauntless. But really, should people be defined by the factions they're in? What if they don't fit it on any of the five? Why can't they be brave and peaceful? Why let just one virtue define you?
And you know what made me love this book more? Four. Why? Not just because he has amazing blue eyes and huge hands and he's good with weapons (and maybe he tends to have violent tendencies sometimes) but he's not there to swoon over Tris. He was pushing her to the edge all the time, pressing her buttons to see if and when she'll break, how long she'll last. I don't think that happens in books usually but he wasn't there to immediately confess his undying love for the girl he likes. His approach is even a bit sadistic (but cute) if I may say so. Four has his own fears and things he's fighting for, and I look forward to seeing more of his life in the next books.
Divergent is a story about choices, and living up for every single one you make, because its what defines you in the end, and the way you live, and everything else in your life. It is up to you how you will live your life, it's you who control your destiny, and like Tris, she didn't let the factions restrict her. She's different, but she's not to be feared, and Tris embraces that fact. She's Dauntless, she's Abnegation, and maybe something else. Maybe she has something in her belong to all five factions, and instead of rejecting that truth, she accepted it.
I wanted to be a bit more critical with my review, but I'm afraid I'll be giving away something important about the story, so I'll stop here. All I can say is that everything you hear about this book is true. Maybe it will even surpass the expectations you have, because it sure passed mine.
I feel in love with the power Veronica has over putting words together and turning them into this amazing, brilliant read that will enthrall readers and transport them to Tris' world. Great world building and very much into detail, but it didn't hamper the story or any of the character's development in any way, and just with that, Divergent gets my vote for being the best dystopian book I've read this year. I know I've mentioned a few books that I said were the best, but THIS is the best, the cream of the crop, that one great book topping the rest.
When you think about it, it's quite hard to believe that this is a debut novel, considering how well written it was.
To end this review, let me just say that... Veronica Roth is an author to watch out for. A lot of people automatically think of The Hunger Games when you say the word "dystopia" these days, but try reading Divergent and see if you'll still think of it that way. It gives a new meaning to the word "dystopia" all in its own....more
I should not be surprised of the unexpected twists and turns a Julie Kagawa book presents, but it still gets to me,Review posted at Amaterasu Reads
I should not be surprised of the unexpected twists and turns a Julie Kagawa book presents, but it still gets to me, every single time. In this action packed sequel, Allison is on a race against time to save her sire, Kanin. Trapped in the hands of a psychotic vampire named Sarren who will do anything to inflict the same pain he has felt when Kanin betrayed their race, Allison is on a desperate search to find him, but she won't be able to do it without enlisting the help of an unexpected ally. As they track Sarren, Allison comes face to face with something much worse than the Red Lung virus, and it's infecting everyone, including vampires. Now Allison had the seemingly impossible task of finding Kanin, and stopping the virus before it kills everyone.
I've said this before and I will say this again: Allison Sekimoto might be small, petite to some, but she's never to be underestimated. She's got a heart bigger than anyone, and she's not afraid to do anything in order to protect the ones she loved. Her struggle to not become the monster she fears will drive away the people she had learned to care about is the main conflict for her in this book, and my admiration for her just grows. I agree with what Jackal and Kanin says: it takes a certain strength to become a creature of the night, and Allison got through it. There's a lot going on inside her head as she was wondering if embracing who she has become was the right thing to do, and what does becoming a vampire has in store for her in the future. What about her and Zeke?
Am I crazy, or am I just reading too much into Kanin and Allison's relationship? I never, not once, did I feel, that his actions were fatherly towards her. Not once. Granted he might be her sire, but I felt there were moments where they were just connected in a way Zeke and Allison will never be, and it's not just the call of blood. There was one particular moment where I still wonder if it was punishment and cruelty that Kanin wants to show or was it something leaning towards something more. This part of my review just confirms how I secretly will not object if Kanin and Allison will ever have that 'something'.
Trust Julie Kagawa to mess with my mind as I struggle to make sense of Jackal's true character. Even after the end of this novel I am uncertain if he's one who hides under the facade of evil but has something inside of him that might make him a little good, or if it's the reverse. Some of his intentions were good, and according to Kanin he's lost, but can someone who lost his way be redeemed? Jackal is a fun vampire to read, and though I hated him in Immortal Rules, he's showed sides to him in The Eternity Cure that can't be overlooked. Also, Jackal took over the limelight and stole it away from Zeke. Although Zeke's character tends to fade in the background a little bit because of his kind nature, he's shown flashes of strength and leadership that gives his character room for potential growth. I just hope he's able to withstand whatever the story throws his way especially with the trials he went through in this book.
The plot is nothing short of brilliant! I've always had high praises for Julie Kagawa for being such an imaginative writer and The Eternity Cure just takes me into a world unlike anything I've read of before. If you think Immortal Rules was a high octane read, The Eternity Cure was filled to the brim with action scenes one after another. Be prepared to plunge in to the fast paced story from page one because it doesn't stop until the end. And the best part is? You'll want more even after you're finished reading. It's a dark, bloody world and Julie Kagawa did a great job building it and creating characters who can kick butt and still manage to be complicated and deep at the same time. If you think the story ends when the race to find Kanin comes to a close, you have a new type of plague, Bleeders, deranged vampires and the potential threat of all life on earth ending to keep you going. An explosive story with rapid pace, highly volatile characters and unexpected plot twists, Julie Kagawa had the recipe for an amazing follow up down a tee in The Eternity Cure. I cannot get enough of this series!
I still remember that night when I woke up and my mom was staring at the TV in shock. That was September 11, the dayReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I still remember that night when I woke up and my mom was staring at the TV in shock. That was September 11, the day of the 9/11 bombing in the U.S. I think that will be forever etched in my mind, so a book written inspired by the 9/11 events will never go unnoticed by me.
A lot of families lost their loved ones that day of the terrorist attack, like 12 year old Ben. True to the summary, this book isn't just about that, but of Ben and his friends Preeti and Jed and what happened to them that summer.
Ben is a kid you would just like to hug, a kid you couldn't help but love. He was afraid to grieve for his parents because people will think he's being overly dramatic. And for a 12 year old to think of that just breaks my heart. And the hardships he has faced dealing with his mom's eating habits, that's a lot for a 12 year old who has also lost a father to take. Also, Preeti is so funny! She sounds very intelligent for an 11 year old, and I love how she always babbles, saying she's just trying to help cousins get rid of their emotional baggages. How can an 11 year old say that?
I loved this book for a number of reason. I was first skeptical when I first read that this is appeals to younger audiences, but I am glad I gave this a chance. Even with the MG feel of the book, readers will be able to relate to it in some ways. I feel like I'm seeing a younger version of myself through Ben, Jed and Preeti. How I had fun when I was young, with a very active imagination! Also, I love how hilarious this is. I've had quite a good laugh while I was reading this book. As if that isn't enough, there's also a very cute carton illustration in the end, which made the book more enjoyable than it already is.
We Can Be Heroes is not just all about fun. It also tackles issues like racism, through the eyes of children like Ben, Jed and Preeti. It's also about family, dealing with loss and grief, done in a very entertaining way. It was evident that Catherine Bruton knew what she was writing about with the way she presented sensitive issues and topics in this book. It tackled stereotypes, races, terrorism in a very good way.
We Can Be Heroes made me feel like a kid again, made me look back at those times and reflect on how good those times were. It also made me appreciate my family in a lot of ways, and seeing the friendship formed between all three children was so heart warming, that even when times were difficult they can still have fun. Set aside a few hours of your time and give this book a chance, will you?...more
I have to give it to Cassie Clare. Mad props to her, really. I am in awe at how good she is with world building. She wOriginal Post at Amaterasu Reads
I have to give it to Cassie Clare. Mad props to her, really. I am in awe at how good she is with world building. She weaves a wonderful version of Victorian London right before my eyes, and its such delight to read it. I prefer to be familiar with the "world" the book I'm reading is set to, so I'm always happy when authors take time into describing them without the book dragging too much. One of the reasons why I love TMI was Cassie's ability to put you in a new world with such great detail you almost believe it exists. It almost feels like I live and breathe with the characters. I think the setting is perfect for the dark and mysterious world of the Shadowhunters.
I try not to compare this with TMI, but I guess it can't be helped especially if this is a prequel series to that. Tessa is unique in her own way. I love the fact that she reads books. I always think characters who read books tend to be smarter. She's brave and strong, having been thrusted into a new world where she doesn't know anyone else, alone and without a family aside from her older brother who was missing, suddenly realizing that she possess powers and she survived and lived through that horror. Tessa is inquisitive, not so feminine and she's just the right person for Will.
Yes, Team Will! :)
It's a struggle to try and figure Will out, especially when you have no idea what he really is. Around 90% of the time I want to strangle him and pummel him to the ground, but still I fell in love with his character. Beautiful, angsty and secretive with a shadowy past, I can only imagine what it will take for him to open up himself to anyone else, even to love. He's sarcastic and obnoxious and sometimes downright rude, but there's something about him that just draws you in. And then he'll drive you mad. :)
Jem, on the other hand is... a gem. He's everything you wish Will is. Lovely, charming, soft spoken, deep. I especially loved Jem's character because he seemed more stable than Will even with his sickness. He's very wise, despite of his age. He's the "balance", the equalizer to the whirlwind that is Will. There's something about him that you can rely upon, while Will is like a time bomb waiting to explode. I guess they are suited to be parabatai after all. Where Will is frank and spontaneous, Jem is level-headed and careful. They're the perfect complement to each other.
I will not give away a lot, but my favorite part of the book is Page 289 - 293. See for yourself and tell me what you think. I had a huge grin on my face when I was reading that.
I love the twists! I know a lot of people are saying that this is just a "replica" of The Mortal Instruments series, but I beg to disagree. This book had me anticipating what happens next, left me guessing and as I go along, I want to read more! ...more
I can just imagine the first scene happening inside my head as if it was real. Alex and her twin brother Marcel, standReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I can just imagine the first scene happening inside my head as if it was real. Alex and her twin brother Marcel, standing in front of the destruction left by the fire that stole their parents away from them. The horror evident on both child's faces as they realized what awaits them as orphans in the kingdom of Antion. At that moment I decided that I will read this book through the very end.
The summary was deceiving, readers are not shoved head on to battle at once, but into a world of careful re-imagining and building by Sara Larson. We see Alexa years after she had lost her parents as she lived her life as a boy with her twin brother, Marcel. She was the best guard, the captain if only she wasn't so young. With Marcel by her side and friends like Rylan and comrades like Deron, her job becomes bearable, that is if the Prince wasn't being the stubborn, pampered Royal he always was.
I loved Alexa, the way her character was built, through death, destruction, the loss and sacrifice of the ones she loved, and it has made her a strong, tough person. The life she was leading wasn't easy, having to hide her true identity, lie and deceive people, all the while serving a man who has done unspeakable horrors to her fellow citizens. I cannot imagine how it was like to be in her shoes, aside from being forced to masquerade as someone she's never going to be (a male) if she wanted to live, she was given such daunting tasks one after another. Her struggle to hide her identity as a woman intrigued me at first, and that was what kept me going through most parts of this book, always anticipating that moment when she was discovered. That, and her electrifying, tension-filled interactions with Price Damian.
Cliche as it might look, I was caught in the emotions Sara Larson was able to weave in each and every encounter Alexa had with Damian. He comes off as a spoiled Prince who throws tantrums in the most irrational way, but Damian's just as deceiving as Alex was, and his infuriating, smart way of exchanging words and banter with Alex was such a delight to read. He was, in a sense, swoon worthy, especially when more of his character was revealed when he was abducted! I have to say that the secrets he was keeping gave way for a lot of confusion and questions, because while we wait for each secret to be revealed, readers also wait to see what his character as a whole has to offer. Was there more to him than the flowery words and magnetic charm? There was, and I'm glad that his past was revealed because it gave him the needed backbone for his story, a reason for why he was acting the way he was. It was frustrating, however, how he and Alexa always seem to tease each other, but when they get too close, they pull back without warning.
Like Alexa, I seem to have been torn between Damian and Rylan. While Damian's title definitely adds to his charm, Rylan, as a Royal Guard, only has that to compare against Damian. But I did feel like Rylan's character was a lot more stable and consistent than Damian was. Granted, he might be a little to kind and a martyr, having been that guy who decided to give way and wait for a girl who he knew doesn't love him, but Rylan had his own charms. In a perfect setting, he would be better suited for Alexa, and at times I felt just that. I felt bad for him quite often. Maybe good guys do finish last, but his supportive attitude, understanding and acceptance of Alexa should have earned him a little more credit for her. He was suffering there, watching as Alexa's and Damian's story happen right before his eyes and he can't do anything about it. I hope he becomes more assertive in the next book. Fight for what you want, Rylan!
I give Sara Larson a salute for creating an interesting world for Defy. This might be her debut novel, but I loved how she painted such a convincing world for her story. Antion, Osgard, Dansii, the inner workings for each kingdom, the Royalty, its citizens, the state of their lives and how they are all connected gave the book a solid setting that served as a great backdrop for Alex, Rylan and Damian's story to unfold. Though it was largely a story of a girl keeping her true identity a secret, it was also that of a war torn world, the terrors that comes along with it and the struggle to make it a better place for everyone. The motivations behind Damian's actions, the force that drives Alex to keep her secret and protect her people, all of it contributed to a solid, entertaining read....more
All that Helen wants is to be normal. But at sixteen, standing at five foot nine and growing taller each day, that wReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
All that Helen wants is to be normal. But at sixteen, standing at five foot nine and growing taller each day, that wasn't easy, especially if you live in such a small island, Nantucket, and has been branded as a freak by a lot of people. Then one day a new family, the Delos, moved to the island, and Helen did the most horrible thing to the boy from that family. She attacked him. So much for trying not to stand out. But oblivious to Helen, she has set in motion a series of event that has her fate hopelessly tangled with that boy, Lucas, and neither of them can't stop it from coming true.
I have always been a fan of Greek mythology and I am in love with a lot of the countless adaptations I have read of the story of Helen of Troy (my mom was named after her) and Paris, the younger Trojan Prince. But goodness, Josephine Angelini can put such a highly imaginative and astoundingly creative spin to their story in Starcrossed.
My only problem with Helen in this book is that she constantly keeps on belittling herself. You'd think she'd be a lot more braver knowing that she possess a power so great, but her desperation to just be "normal" overpowers her most of the time. I think she's a likable character though, adorable at times, even. Plagued with insecurities and uncertainties, I think Helen possesses that "real" factor. Demi-gods were always portrayed to be perfect, but Helen's was downplayed so much, but that made me like her. Learning slowly and gradually accepting herself makes Helen a character worth the while to read about.
I will not deny this, but I think I fell in love more with the Delos family as a whole more than I liked Lucas. I have not read of such a great chemistry in a family in a while now, but no matter how unusual each member was, they had such a strong bond anyone would envy. Lucas is a part of this great family, and in some ways, he is a great person. He has taught Helen a lot, and it hurts a bit to see him struggle with his feelings for her. When you've read about him, you will not be able to stop yourself but cheer for him and Helen, trust me on this.
The plot moves forward in such a nice pace. You will read not only of Helen and Lucas, but also of other wonderful, dynamic characters and together they made such a wonderful story. Claire, no matter how quirky she is, she's such a trusting and loyal friend to Helen. You'd wish you have a friend like her! I did, and her story and Jason's will keep you pre-occupied from the heaviness you'll feel from Helen and Lucas's.
Starcrossed is a one of a kind novel. A blend of mythology, love, destiny and fate. It's such an impressive debut for Josephine Angelini. Filled with vivid and adrenaline filled action scenes, heart breaking moments that will make you sigh in frustration, and a fantastic, highly convincing backstory, it's a novel that will leave you wanting for more long after you have flipped the last page.
I am HIGHLY dissatisfied with the ending, but I guess it happens when you develop a bond with the characters and become a little bit emotionally invested on them. You can't help but cheer them on, no matter what the circumstance is, no matter what the odds are against them. Spending the day reading almost 500 pages of a great piece is worth every single moment I've spent!...more
I can't really find the words to describe my feelings after reading, but I can say thiReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
This is such a beautiful book.
I can't really find the words to describe my feelings after reading, but I can say this: There You'll Find Me is heart wrenching and emotional. It's a wonderful story about loss and love and one girl's struggle to put back the pieces of her life shattered by a tragedy.
I had to pause for a while and gather my bearings after I finished reading this. I was a bit misty eyed when I leafed through the last page.
One of the most adorable and charming pairings I have ever had a chance to read about is Beckett and Finley. There were moments where I just drowned myself in laughter over how entertaining they are just throwing random verbal exchanges to each other. They were over the top, certainly, and very funny. But there are also times where my heart feels like its breaking a little more and its those parts I find the hardest to read, but they're also the ones I love the most. Grief is a delicate and a difficult emotion to deal with. It doesn't go away for a long time, and sometimes it stays too long with people to the point that it's all they see, it takes over their lives. But once a person is over that, then what? What is left? The aftermath is what scares Finley. She was so afraid of losing grip in her emotions, her pain for the loss of her brother that she thinks she wouldn't have anything left once she gets past that.
I guess in more ways than one, Finley and Beckett were similar. Both living fake lives, pretending to be happy and just fine. Beckett lost himself amidst the new persona created for him to become a star, and when the time came for him to be just himself, he couldn't go back. He's probably a little selfless, always thinking of other people and he has yet to stand up against a father who treats him as an investment, a tool for money. I love how Beckett has his moments where he was himself even when he's a disguise. Even when their relationship went downhill, they're good for each other. They understand each others pain and suffering and the need to be honest and come clean once and for all. Finley's lucky to come across a guy who can help her through the darkest moment of her life, a popular actor even!
I have to admit I hated Finley, at one point, with all my heart. A person will never admit he/she's an addict, or sick, until someone notices it, sometimes not at all. I've had a hard time connecting with her during those first few moments when everyone keeps on telling her she's sick, that she needs help, that she needs to fix her life (which is not easy, I have to admit) and not be like Mrs. Sweeney but what did she do? Get angry, throw a tantrum, lock herself in her room, refuse to talk to her only friend and ruined her relationship with the only guy who can ever see through her. How is that for ruining yourself big time? I just get so frustrated when main leads act so out of it when you can clearly see what the right thing to do is, when it's right up there staring at their faces and they just won't take it.
Ireland just sound a little bit more magical to me. My mind conjured up images of lush green fields and hills, great scenery and friendly people. There are points in our lives where we feel the need to connect in a deeper level with Him and I felt it while I was reading this book. I am not a very religious person but I loved this particular aspect in the book where Finley travels to Ireland and just drink in every thing, every gravestone, every cliff, every field she sees, and they're all part of God's wonderful creation. Those moments make me appreciate life even more. It makes you want to stop for a little while and think of life even for just a little moment.
That little rant there just goes to show how emotionally invested I have been with the characters. Readers wouldn't help but empathize with them. There You'll Find Me has such dynamic characters with colorful personalities which will touch the reader's hearts. Every single one of them, especially Finley and Beckett, will fill nooks and crannies in your heart.
There You'll Find Me is a touching journey of finding something you once have that you've lost: yourself, love, your faith in people and in Him, in a place where you least expect it to be. It has a little bit of everything; drama, romance, heart breaking and breath taking moments which makes it worth reading. It talks about faith and religion without being preachy, and its something everyone can appreciate reading once in a while.
I have a new favorite author and that is Jenny B. Jones!...more
Celia has haemophilia. I initially thought it was just that, that the story will revolve around a girl who was growiReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
Celia has haemophilia. I initially thought it was just that, that the story will revolve around a girl who was growing up and has finally decided she will live the way she wants to, that she wouldn't let her sickness control her, but I learned that The Truth About Celia Frost is much more than that.
This book made me do a lot of guessing. Maybe it has a paranormal edge to it? Or perhaps a mythological connection? But no, it came down to life and death, of science and people trying to play God. My imagination went far off as I read through. I love how it's something I was totally unprepared for, that it's something more than I expected it to be.
Celia's life went through one whirlwind of a change ever since that fateful moment when she was almost stabbed. She went from an immature teenager wanting to break free of her hermit-like, mundane existence with only her and her mom to a girl who is determined and not afraid to show the world who and what she is. Sol is a great companion and a friend to Celia, and his life, in contrast with Celia is what helped her understand hers more.
I think a lot of people will have misconceptions and will eventually misunderstand Celia's mother. I did and I felt a little taken aback when all the bad things I've thought of her (that she was a mother who has utter disregard for her daughter and only thinks of herself) were put out in the open and justified, but slowly, readers will understand why she became that way and that all that she had done for Celia is in her best interest.
One thing readers should take into account while reading this is that appearances can be deceiving. People who you expect to be good aren't really what they seem, and those who you think are bad will surprise you in unexpected ways. Like Frankie, the private investigator hired to find Celia and her mother. My perception of what is good and what is bad was tested quite a bit by this book.
The Truth About Celia Frost is a fast-paced, quick read. Engaging and thrilling from page one up to the end, with twists and turns happening so often readers wouldn't know what hit them by the time they finish. It's a breath of fresh air, something new to look forward to aside from the usual dystopian and paranormal books coming out these days. A gripping debut for Paula Rawsthorne which I definitely recommend to everyone!...more
What struck me the most was the realism. It's very obvious and powerful, and iReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I'm a little bit in-between this book.
What struck me the most was the realism. It's very obvious and powerful, and its what really urged me to read through it all. I loved and hated the emotions it roused in me while reading. A very strong sense of hate for what happens to the children, fear for their lives amd pity for Carly and Mitch.
What Carly and her younger brother Mitchell experienced is horrifying and disturbing to say the least. No child should ever experience what they went through. I instantly hated the parents that brought them into this world and left them in the hands of Richard. The guy was a lunatic! It was no wonder Carly felt abandoned and resigned to a life of torment. What can a teenage girl and a five year old boy do?
I instantly sympathized with the characters as soon as I read the first page. But it took me time to understood Carly. I could not fully comprehend the reason why Carly had to "click". Even the explanation confused me a little, which made the somewhat paranormal angle of the book lost to me.
What I did love though, was reading the entire book through Carly's point of view. It was scary seeing all of it from her side, but its like a tangible thing that you can feel. All of it. Her emotions, her thoughts, her constant worry over Mitchell.
In a way, it was depressing. I thought with all the beating and emotional torture Carly went though, she'll deserve to have something better, and she did eventually, but not fully. Morgan is the one bright spot that added a touch of romance into it, a welcome feeling for a book with such a sad theme.
As I said, I love the emotions that In the Storm invoked in me, and I always loved reading books that made me feel. The worst way to feel for a book is apathy, and I'm always wary of reading books with powerful themes and not feeling anything for it, but that did not happen for In the Storm. I think adding a few more pages and turning this into a full length book will allow the plot, as well as the characters, develop for a clearer, stronger story with a more solid foundation....more
So you want to be a part of a bit adventure. How about in the near future? And you want to be with two drastically dReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
So you want to be a part of a bit adventure. How about in the near future? And you want to be with two drastically different people trying to survive in the harsh world with a Sky that mostly kills than saves. You don't need to look far, because Under the Never Sky is the book you need.
It might just be me, but I took great delight in seeing Aria forge a strong character when she was out in the wastelands. She's a girl who, all her life, has lived in her own bubble inside Reverie where she can control everything, never knowing the outside world, and Aria learned just how it was like to truly live when she was thrown to the Death Shop for death to cover up a sinister deed. With an outsider. With Perry. There was a particular scene in the book, when Perry had to tell Aria that she had her 'first blood', that made me realize how constricted Aria's life really was. Even with all the technology, the freedom she enjoys in the Reverie, there were things she didn't even know. But the harshness of the terrain, every blister, every twinge of hunger, every single time she braved a storm when the Never Sky goes haywire, all of it contributed in creating a new Aria. A better Aria, one who knew the secrets behind her birth and what really happens inside Reverie.
Ah, Perry. How do I begin to describe this wonderful character? I was greatly fascinated with him. Perry's story is much more complicated than Aria's and I like a great mystery, something I want to figure out. He was raised in a world completely different from Aria's, but filled with the same familiar complexities. He has to kill his brother to become the Blood Lord, the leader of his tribe, but he couldn't do it because of his beloved nephew, Talon, is dying. He's strong, a bit headstrong for his own good. He has plans vastly different from his brother, most of the time clashing opinions with him. Perry is Marked, a Scire. Rare, with two gifts instead of just one. He can smell emotions and see better than anyone else in the dark. It must be hard to possess both a gift and a curse. Perry will worm his way through the reader's hearts with his unusual charisma. Rough, hardened by life but smart and strong. Someone who's capable of loving so much and be harsh if needed. Experienced. Vulnerable. Wouldn't you like a person like that as well?
Veronica Rossi took the time to develop Aria and Perry's relationship. I am not a fan of insta-love myself so I am deeply impressed with the way Veronica made the shift of emotions between Perry and Aria from hate and disdain coupled with curiosity, to trust and ultimately, love. It takes time to build all of that, and surely enough the trials Perry and Aria went through were enough to show them the good side of each other. They grew on me. I was swept away by the story and I didn't even realize it until I was holding my breath during scenes where they faced great dangers and had to fight for their lives countless of times. The wastelands were an unforgiving place, either you fight to live or you die, it's as simple as that.
I think what made me fascinated with this book, aside from the great romance and dynamic characters, were how the settings were written. Veronica's world building is just amazing. Scary, but amazing. You can see the glaring difference between the Reverie and what was beyond the Wastelands. One was progressive, the other one simple, maybe even considered primitive. I don't think you can even call it a wasteland because people exist in those places. Granted it was with a life much more crude and harder than in Reverie but when you look closely, they also have startling similarities no matter how advanced or how 'outdated' both places are. After all, people live in there, they're ruled by basic instincts, with desires and wants, though it might not be exactly the same. The Reverie needs to find a way to correct the mistakes they made in their ruthless pursuits of technology to live better, and The Blood Lords will do anything to make their tribe survive.
What's more amazing is that there's an abundance of supporting characters that readers will also love. Roar is one particular interesting fellow. I knew from the moment I've read of him that I will like him. Roar has superior hearing, his gift. I'd like to read more of his story with Liv, Perry's sister. He's a great friend to Perry and to Aria. And probably the first person who will get your attention aside from the three is Cinder. A great mystery surrounds this boy who harnesses a deadly power, one which can potentially change the whole story.
There's a lot to look forward to in the sequel, which I am excited to have, but for now I will say this: Under the Never Sky is a phenomenal debut for Veronica Rossi. Like the Ether filled sky, this book will entrance you from start to finish. To simply say I love this book is an understatement. I devoured it, I absorbed every single word, page by page. Brilliant and simply wonderful! ...more
There was an archaeologist, an airman, a painter, a ghost, a vampire and a Viking, but it all started with a journalReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
There was an archaeologist, an airman, a painter, a ghost, a vampire and a Viking, but it all started with a journalist sent on a mysterious island for a story. These people all had their own stories of horror, tragedy and love told, but how are they all connected?
Markus Sedgwick's story telling filled me with awe. When I first started reading this book all I ever felt was confusion, and for the next three stories that feeling stayed with me. But then time rewinds itself, and where the horror started for a journalist named Erik, stories from Winter, Harvest to Blood Moons featuring different characters presented itself and the reader like me was left to wonder if everything will make sense in the end.
I had felt different feelings as I read through all seven of the stories. The first was utter confusion, the second provided hints but muddled the story a bit, the third made me feel skeptical, the fourth broke my heart a little bit, the fifth left me wide-eyed, the sixth made me feel afraid, and the seventh was just utterly tragic and that was what tied the other six together and gave way to such a great story in such a roundabout but surprisingly neat way. I rarely read nor have the patience to pick up subtle clues and connect one story to another but just when I was about to give up trying to put everything together for this book, by the time I was reading the sixth story, the author gave away hints that just opened up the story and widened my understanding of it and I suddenly realized how differently the way this story has been told and I felt really impressed.
Midwinterblood showcased a wide range of seemingly unrelated stories, filled with seemingly unrelated characters and even though they share the same names, or a variety of it, it will still make the readers wonder what the point is of showing stories all tackling the same topic: love in its various forms and the sacrifices one is willing to make to obtain it, if not now, maybe in another place, in another time. There was an odd sense of melancholic beauty in all the tragedies, deaths and horrors each and every character has encountered, and the readers brave and patient enough to march into the story further and further will get to experience the magic of Markus Sedgwick's writing. Different, but lovely. It's my first Markus Sedgwick book and I am just happy that my first had to be a unique story like this. Unexpected read, but I am delightfully surprised!
I wish I can describe the individual stories and the characters a little more, but giving general opinions about the book is the safest way to tackle this as anything else I say will give the whole story away. This, however, is a book that must be read in the daylight, especially if you are someone whose rich imagination runs wild at first and scary the next. It takes a while to get used to the feeling of confusion as you try to anticipate how the next story is connected to the previous one, but I promise you, the last 60 pages will be what makes this story such a worthwhile read. Is this recommended? Yes, definitely! ...more
See when Richelle Mead said The Hunt is "terrifying and fascinating", I should have taken her word for it. I reallyReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
See when Richelle Mead said The Hunt is "terrifying and fascinating", I should have taken her word for it. I really should have.
I am writing this review with my heart still up on my throat, pounding frantically from the adrenaline rush this book provided. I'm pretty much feeling utterly terrified right now, and I am not exaggerating.
We are all humans, that's an undeniable fact. I am human, and I have never before appreciated being one until I have read this book. It saddened and somehow repulsed me to see humanity die and deteriorate to the unimaginable. You never appreciate humanity as it is now until you read of something like what is portrayed in The Hunt, where the population was reduced to flesh eating, merciless creatures. The few remaining survivors are stripped of even the most basic thing, to be called a "human", a live breathing person. Instead they are called "Hepers", nothing more but food, much like a cattle, for consumption and entertainment. They were educated, well fed and kept in a dome, unaware of the doom their young existence will meet shortly. How ironic the vampires in the book consider themselves superior when they behave the way they do, with insatiable thirst for flesh and blood, like savages. Like monsters.
The children in this book have my respect for surviving as long as they have. I would never last a day if it was me. Fear is a great motivator to stay alive. Gene has done all he can to live, even the unthinkable: to walk with the very same people who are out to get someone like him. Years of pretending to be someone he was not felt like he was slowly forgetting who he was. The father he has lost taught him these: Do not stand out, be like them, do not show emotions. The vampires are just like what I expected them to be, merciless and vicious. You cannot outrun them, you cannot escape from them, you cannot win against them. If you are a Heper, you will die. It was a fact in this book. He couldn't do anything to stop it, not if he wants to survive. Self preservation is an instinct, and Gene's reluctance to help the Hepers were understandable, but seeing and finally understanding that he and them were the same, he couldn't possibly let them die. Not for him, not for Ashley June. The only thing that gave hope in this book is the confusing and fragile romance between Ashley June and Gene and in some ways it is also sad.
The little details that makes the vampires who they are, no matter how horrific it was, fascinated me. They express laughter by scratching their wrists, they show affection by touching elbows and armpits. They do not smile. In a way it felt like they were dead inside. Imagine a whole place filled with creatures like them. They walk and they talk, but that's where the similarities end.
Gene had a front row seat to witness first hand the devouring of Hepers, of his kind, his people, when he was selected to take part in The Hunt. What a sick and twisted way of entertainment. But it wasn't just for that, even the government found a way to make it a tool for gaining support and popularity. I keep on asking myself "how is this all possible?". Why can't they just be satisfied with synthetic meat? With produced blood? To hunt humans as a sport? Make it a form of entertainment? Some sort of a campaign? This is what happens when the order of things change. What was natural for humans will never apply to these creatures. Basking in the sunshine, sleeping under the shade and eating apples were all but trivial things. What a horrifying society the world had in this distant future.
The Hunt is full of unexpected surprises and twists and turns tucked within pages of hair raising, high octane scenes. Expect carnage, expect blood, expect the unexpected. I felt my heart skipped a beat more times than I can count while reading. Andrew Fukuda paints a frightening, bloody picture of the future. What happens when the hunter becomes the hunted? The knowledge that you can die any minute is evident from the page one, like a dark cloud hanging over you, and it will not go away easily. I felt a myriad of emotions while reading this book, from total, utter fascination to something that made me sick to my stomach. But it's good. Very good. The kind of good that will leave you speechless.
Mankind's downfall will be ourselves, and The Hunt will show the readers just how hopeless, dark and savage the world can be if we become the very monsters we are all afraid of. ...more
You know when you've read something entirely different from what you always read and you can barely sort things outReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
You know when you've read something entirely different from what you always read and you can barely sort things out in your head because it's so unique? That's how I feel about Heaven.
Heaven's heart got stolen, literally. That one night she was up the roof, admiring the night sky and the stars, solving the puzzle that has turned into a mini obsession for the last few years, she bumped into David Pettyfer, courier of hard to find, obscure books. He didn't believe her at first, but something in David compelled him to help Heaven. And when he did, he was suddenly in on a dangerous adventure. And Heaven wasn't just one without a heart, she's also something else. Someone closely connected to the reason why London's sky hasn't been quite the same for years, and he's about to find out just what Heaven is.
Heaven and David are two of the most unlikely pair of teens I've read in quite a while. She was born in a privileged family, orphaned and has been living a double life: one where she's free to study the night sky phenomenon and the other a quiet, rich miss. David escaped from a suffocating family and got acquainted with the rough side of life, a small price he had to pay for his freedom. Both Heaven and David are mature, serious characters but that doesn't make them less interesting of a read. The experience is a little different because they seem less foolish and less frivolous but I love seeing the strength behind each of their personalities.
Most of the time I'm trying to grasp a hold onto the world where Heaven and David are, but since it feels like it's shifting all the time, it's hard to keep track of it. There were times when I feel like I'm in Old London, what with the almost obvious absence of technology at some point, and then in another moment I see Pods, they talk about the internet and mobile phones and so I'm hurled into the present, and then the author introduces something completely out of the loop, something supernatural, that it completely throws me off balance again. It's the kind of confusion that I think comes along with the way the story was made. It makes you really think what this book is all about, and figuring it out is part of the reading experience!
Heaven is a good kind of different. The kind that makes you wonder what's real and what's not. It'll make you skeptic and doubtful but despite the constant unreal feeling, Heaven and David will certainly make you feel much alive. Thrilling, intriguing with a brush of reality and what's beyond it. Christoph Marzi's got a special way of blending the supernatural with adventure, adding a dose of angst along the way and gave it a unique spin. Heaven's got it all: mystery, thrilling (rooftop) chase scenes, evil villains, magic, ghosts, dynamic characters and a solid plot. If you feel like reading a book that has a fascinating unique tone, give it a try!...more
You know that kind of book where it hurts you to read but you continue because it's too beautiful to stop? ExactlyReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
You know that kind of book where it hurts you to read but you continue because it's too beautiful to stop? Exactly what I felt while reading this.
Be careful what you wish for, it might come true. But not without consequences. Annaliese was found after missing for a year, but she wasn't the same when she came back. She's not even convinced that she's Annaliese. Now her family struggles to go back to normal, and Annaliese just wants to find out who she really is. But if she's not Annaliese, then who is she? What had the real Annaliese done to disappear? As she discovers bits and pieces of a life she had supposedly forgotten, Annaliese was in for a lot of heartbreak and pain, and finds herself tangled in a twisted kind of love that spans decades.
To be honest, it was exhausting to read from Annaliese's point of view. Every single poem she has written, which Anna found one by one as her life restarted once she came back felt like a knife to the heart over and over. They're simple, beautiful and sorely honest. There's always a feeling of melancholy accompanying her words, and sometimes just plain, heavy sadness, regrets, what-ifs and secrets that weighs you down. It came to a point where I wonder if that's all she'll ever have and get to feel. Sadness, regrets and pain. That feeling of letting down a lot of people, of being an impostor, of not fitting in, of being nothing. If she wasn't Annaliese, then who is she? The further I go into the story, the more I know of the lives and the circumstances surrounding Annaliese and I just feel so sorry for what she had to go through. The decisions in life she had made was solely hers, but was what she exchanged enough for her to be stuck to her current situation?
I liked Logan. There were parts where I felt that maybe Annaliese was better off loving him, that the sacrifices she had made for him was worth it. Because despite being a golden boy, Logan had his own problems to deal with, those swift sneak peeks at his not so perfect life makes him a less shallow character. Granted that the actions he made was based on something Annaliese has done, maybe it was also part regret and part pity but I felt like for a while, maybe it can be real. That it wasn't a product of a wish to get what wasn't really Annaliese's to begin with.
Dex is a complicated character. When he's with Annaliese it's sometimes hard to make sense of what's going on between them. He's unusual, shy, socially awkward and he's the last potential love interest I expect to get in the book. There's too much going on in his life, and the things he does is sometimes hard to understand. The hardships he faces and the tragedies in Annaliese's life combined felt like nothing good was gonna come out of it, but the unexpected happen. These two lost souls carrying an unusual gift and burden felt like soulmates. They understand each other. And though their relationship was highly unconventional, it was, in a sense, a great reprieve, that little piece of unexpected happiness. And I loved every single moment that they were there for each other.
Every single scene with "the mom" and "the dad" felt like a small kick to my heart. If Annaliese was struggling to make sense of her life, what more of her parents? The ordeal they had to go through, their constant fear of her disappearing again, their struggle to get to know their daughter all over again. It was heartrending. Kate Karyus Quinn just had to nail every single scene to my heart with all the raw emotions it makes me feel.
What's brilliant about this book is when you think it's so good with all the things it makes you feel, the mystery unravels one by one and from being about a girl who has lost her memory, it transforms into something infused with mystic, power, magic, and you still continue to believe in the writing. There's something in Kate Karyus Quinn's storytelling that convinces you. What if? And then just when you think you've had enough of the angst in Annaliese's life, you're plunged into flashback after flashback of another life, one that started with a simple wish that turned into a never ending, bloody experience and it is about to start again.
There's a certain beauty in the melancholic, sombre way Another Little Piece is presented. It's about one girl's life, the choices she had made and its consequences. Her choice to face it, give in or put a stop to it. It's about a girl who wanted to get what she wanted by any means necessary, and it's this desire that broke her. It's about a girl who in search for the missing pieces that makes her stumbled upon countless of lives, each not her own, acknowledging the ghosts of the pasts and the gruesome things that she did and wondering if it will ever end. It's about a girl, who, after remembering and getting back the things she has lost, had the courage to face what comes after, a girl who had to be broken once more to become whole.
Another Little Piece is an exquisite book. I can't say it enough, it's just so good. It pulls on your heart strings, calls out to you and draws you in with Kate Karyus Quinn's masterful storytelling. It hurts you in a good way, it gives hope in the end and a lot of lessons we can all learn from. With beautiful prose, fantastic plot and an original, new voice, what a wonderful, wonderful start for another author who is rapidly becoming a favorite of mine. I am definitely going to be on the look out for her books in the future!...more
London's brain resets at 4:33 am. Everything she has done for the day, fighting with her mom about the secrets she'sReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
London's brain resets at 4:33 am. Everything she has done for the day, fighting with her mom about the secrets she's been keeping from her about her dad, talking to her bestfriend Jamie, getting hit by a dodge ball in the face, borrowing hideous clothes from a snarky schoolmate, and meeting that one boy who she'll love, she forgets all of them. Whether she likes it or not, the moment her eyes open the next day, she would not remember any of it.
If you think that would be fun, you're wrong.
Living a life filled with notes you need to read to get you through day by day, meeting people, experiencing life changing moments and having all of them erased, wiped clean in a day, I can't imagine how one can live a normal life, let alone build one at that.
First, I would like to say that I'm humbled to be introduced and read about a character like London. Sure she's not a perfect character, but because of what she's going through, I appreciate all the little things I used to take for granted. Because I will remember all of them and they will always stay with me. For London's case, no matter how hard she tries, it wouldn't. Ever. I admire the strength she has and her determination to live life as normally as she can.
It's a lot harder because London can only see what's in the future. She can never look back even if she wanted to. How can you come into terms with the fact that you know what's in store for you tomorrow, even those years from now, and not what HAD happened today? It's heart breaking and very sad. If you had the power to see them, would you want to change it? Will you tell people? It's hard to be London.
Here's what made me love Forgotten even more. Aside from the uniqueness of the plot, I loved how the characters behave. Specifically Luke. He's vulnerable, sensitive, awkward at times and weird. Who paints ears anyway? He cries in front of London, he does sweet things for London, tells her the cutest things, like when when he told her she snores. Even with London's reluctance to have Luke know of her secret, he was there, doing the littlest things, making the effort to make sure that even when London forgets everything, she'd still remember him. The guy she likes. Now that's a love that's enduring despite all the difficulties they face and will face in the future.
I think he's the one person you would not want to be erased from your memory, or from your notes, no matter what happens.
Forgotten is a one of a kind read. It's an amazing debut novel. It has a captivating plot, with real and emotional characters, and that one girl who will leave us contemplating about the things in life we tend to ignore. Forgotten will rouse powerful emotions from readers once they are immersed in London's world, filled with notes and things to remember, yet filled with love and hope that sometimes, the mind can forget, but the heart will always remember.
You wouldn't want to miss such an UNFORGETTABLE novel, right?...more