Firelight is an amazing read and I am truly fascinated by the draki mythology Sophie Jordan invented! The myth is very rich and the struggles experienFirelight is an amazing read and I am truly fascinated by the draki mythology Sophie Jordan invented! The myth is very rich and the struggles experienced by Jacinda are simply amazing! I think dragons are nearly closing in on the werewolves in my personal supernatural favourites!
Jacinda is a draki, a human descendant of dragons who can shift into a dragon (or close enough). But she is not just any draki, she is the last fire-breather and is considered as unique in her pride. Being unique isn't that fantastic considering people only see the fire-breather in her and she has been promised to prince Cassian (not that she had a say in the matter, or in anything else now you mention it). Jacinda also has to cope with the loss of her father, her mother who hates the pride and the jealousy of her twin sister Tamra who never shifted. It is a lot to live with but nothing compares to being a draki for Jacinda. She simply can't live without it. Following an unfortunate escapade where Jacinda narrowly misses death thanks to the help of a hunter, Will, Jacinda's mother sneaks out of the pride in the night and goes to live in a human area with her daughters. Tamra couldn't be happier to have a shot at a normal life but Jacinda suffers immensely and struggles to keep up appearances in her new high school, especially when she meets Will there, the hunter who saved her life.
I consider fantasy as a mean to talk about real life metaphorically so when I read about werewolves hiding themselves from society, I also read about the struggle of a minority to be accepted by others. Yes, I am a nerd that way. So whenever I read a fantasy novel, I will get lost in this world but also feel the need to relate it to everyday life. I was literally in awe about Jacinda. Her struggle in the draki world and then in the real world to be accepted for who she is and not what she is is truly mesmerising. I found that this book more than any other I have read pinpoints the struggles of being a teenager today and face the mostly contradicting expectations of one's family, society and friends. The need to be accepted versus the need to be oneself is an eternal dilemma but I really loved reading about Jacinda in this book.
The draki mythology is absolutely amazing. The book being written in Jacinda's point of view, you really feel as if you are in a struggling draki's head. Her voice is clear and her passion for her draki self is fascinating. The pride is well described and I liked the dynamics between the characters. And of course the feminist in me loves seeing rebellious Jacinda annoy the hell out of the patriarchal society of the Pride and give them quite the challenge to deal with. I absolutely can't wait to read the second book in the series.
The physical description of the draki, what drives it and the relation to the earth is simply wow. (yeah, that's the most eloquent word I could find) I found that Sophie Jordan brilliantly described how the earth sings to Jacinda's draki.
Another brilliant aspect of the novel is the characters and their relationships with one another. The conflictual relationship between Jacinda and Tamra is really well described and you ache for both of them being so alike and different at the same time. Their mother is also an interesting character to read about and I absolutely can't wait to read more of Will's story!
You probably know by now that my main pet peeves in this type of supernatural YA books is the romance (I might be a little too old and cynical to appreciate any of it anyway *shakes head*) so you won't be surprised to know that the romance wasn't my favourite part in the book. How predictable am I, really? It felt kind of déjà vu in contrast with the strong originality of the fantasy angle. But even I have to admit that it's really not that bad and the attraction between Jacinda and Will is very interestingly woven with the fantasy aspect.
All in all, Firelight is a great story which introduces the reader to a fascinating world populated with draki and touches to the core of what it feels like to be a teenager. Definitely your new favourite young adult fantasy story!...more
Sadly, I cannot review Last Sacrifice without sharing major spoilers on the 5 previous books!
I have fallen in love with this series and this last bookSadly, I cannot review Last Sacrifice without sharing major spoilers on the 5 previous books!
I have fallen in love with this series and this last book is just packed with the very best!
At the end of Spirit Bound, the Moroi Queen Tatiana is staked and Rose is accused of committing the crime (gasp!). True, Rose has been vocal about her opposition of the Age Law (a law which would bring to 16 the age of dhampirs being sent to the world to become Guardians) and she has such a terrible temper and an aversion to rules that she is the best scapegoat.
She learns from her father, Abe Mazur, that she risks to be executed if she is not proven innocent soon enough (double gasp!). Rose is also given at the end of her trial a piece of paper written by Queen Tatiana herself before her death. Not only does Rose have to prove she is innocent, but she is also given the impossible task to find Lissa's long lost secret sibling to give Lissa a seat in the Moroi Council (triple gasp!).
This book is action-packed and resolves most of the issues and mysteries presented all along the series, leaving enough tension and a cleverly subtle cliffhanger to make you impatient for the next series. Indeed, even if Last Sacrifice is the last book in the Vampire Academy series *cries*, another series set in the same world and featuring most of the same characters will be coming out (really soon I hope!).
The characters are as wonderful as ever. Rose has become one of my favourite characters and I just love her personality. Of course, she has many flaws, like never being afraid of danger and never thinking before acting, but she is the best, really. In this book, Lissa is learning to rely more on herself than on Rose or Christian. She is really growing up and is becoming, with her progressist ideas, an important figure for both Moroi and Dhampirs. Dimitri is coming to terms with his transformation back to a Dhampir and his outlook on life is progressively changing. I absolutely love Sydney, she is also one of my favourite characters (and apparently she will feature in the next series, to which I say yes please!).
And I think that my future sentence will suffice itself. ABE MAZUR! Love that guy! Best character EVER! I just can't help laughing whenever he's there (there in the book, I mean) and I love his interactions with Rose!
Okay so I can go on (and on) for each character like that, but to sum up, they are all wonderful and have great personalities!
There is a lot of romance in there *rolls eyes*, but as you might have understood by now, it's not my favourite aspect of urban/horror YA fantasy. I actually thought there was a bit too much chiseled-chest talk in there but oh well, one can't always be satisfied!
I already said that the vampire mythology is ace, but it is acer in this one! You will get to meet many many other characters *emphatic background music* which give a nice counter vision to the sheltered life (most of the time) of both Lissa and Rose. I cannot get over how amazing the world Richelle Mead created is. One of the very best.
The writing is just so compelling that you won't be able to let go of the book. And if you do, it's only to start reading the series all over again. The action scenes are brilliantly written and Rose's voice is clear and often hilarious. I am honestly going to miss seeing the world through Rose's eyes.
We get our fair share of politics in this novel and I love how realistic it is (okay, so, technically, Moroi politics and family feuds don't exist per se but honestly, the whole power struggles and interested friendships are totally in fashion in our boring every day world). It is absolutely convoluted and that's what makes it amazing! Go politics! (I mean in books, because I disagree with myself when it comes to real life)
To sum everything up, go buy this series and and start reading! NOW! ...more
I totally fell for this book and its wonderful characters, haunting myths and fascinating setting. I honestly cannot recommend it enough!
The story isI totally fell for this book and its wonderful characters, haunting myths and fascinating setting. I honestly cannot recommend it enough!
The story is about Verity Gallant, who lives in Wellow, a small city near the ocean. She is awkward, too big for her age and spends her time reading so the other teenagers her age keep bullying and making fun of her. At home, her parents don't pay attention to her as much as she would like and she is often frustrated. But she has a great friendship with her younger and more popular sister. Verity finds refuge in books, adventure stories and her small library in Wellow. One day, a complete stranger gives her a book, telling her "The Storm is coming" and Verity's entire life will change.
The characters are all awesome and reflect definitely what goes on in a small town where people refer to each other with the last names and the reputation of a family or disputes are kept from generation to generation. Verity is an amazing heroine and she will have to show her courage, strength and determination along the book. I just wanted to hug and help Verity during the entire book!
Sometimes, the setting of the book becomes a big part of the plot and I absolutely loved the setting in this one. You will learn what it is like to live in a seaside town, where boating is the main sport and everyone knows each other. The descriptions of the places were so brilliantly written that I swear I could feel the soothing rolling of the sea, the salty air and wind on my face. It definitely makes me want to go and have adventures *cough* visit the seaside!
The book is about family and friends, and I really loved the dynamic between the characters. Henry and Martha stand by Verity, and they will help her as much as they can, even though it would put them in danger too. The book is also about family but more particularly about how adults see children and vice versa. One of the underlying themes is what is called the Gentry in the book (like pirates, but living on the coast to steal ship cargos), and how they rose to become a very strong and wealthy people - at a cost. The historical parts of the book are fascinating, and you really feel transported in another world. The fantasy part are very original and absolutely awesome. I really liked the feeling that it could be true and what is described as a story and a myth.
I absolutely loved this book! Younger readers will love the action and adventure feeling in it and the not-so-young readers will also love the setting and the characters. M. L. Welsh is a new author that I will definitely be following from now on!...more
I can't review this book without writing spoilers for the 5 previous books of the series. If you haven't read any of the Shifters books (yet), do notI can't review this book without writing spoilers for the 5 previous books of the series. If you haven't read any of the Shifters books (yet), do not read further!
I have read the five previous Shifters books in a couple of weeks and I have been so impatient to read the next, and last, book of the series for so much time that there was a lot of squeeing when I received it. I read it in two sittings (mostly because I had to go to work) and loved every single page of it. It is a brilliant conclusion to a fascinating series.
This is Faythe's last battle to be accepted for who she is and what she stands for. Faythe fights for women (and tabbies in particular) to have a say in their future, and not be used as political means. She had been fighting for this from the very first book and each time she has been confronted to walls of indifference and narrow-mindedness. This time around, the outcome of her fight will have consequences on all tabbies and other species.
Faythe has definitely grown up during each book. She has been able to be respected for who she was by her Pride and most importantly by her father who, without acknowledging it, wouldn't have her any other way. I know that there is a lot of sexual tension in the book and that a part of the story revolves on the romance, but I really feel that this book brilliantly explores the differences and inequality between genders as well as political maneuvers to get to one's goal.
The fight Faythe and her Pride bring to the Council isn't a mere territory dispute or the will not to be treated unfairly. They are fighting to bring one vision of the world where everyone can live together, including all species, as well as where tabbies have a say in their future. This fight is so fascinatingly told that I can't wait for Rachel to write a spin off of the series. The world she has created seems so genuine that it has become one of my all time favourite shape-shifting stories.
I have always said that Rachel's style is amazing. The reader is gripped from the first pages into the fast-paced action and falls for the fascinating characters and species present in the book. The characters have all amazing personalities and I love the way they interact with each other. There is also some romance, between Faythe and Marc and between... Faythe and Jace. This part of the story is really well described and you can feel for Faythe when she says that she truly loves both of them.
Faythe has come a long way from the first book of the series where she didn't want to be part of the Pride, despite her Pride's love for her. Now she will do absolutely everything for this group of people she has come to love and let them love her in return. After reading this book, you will want to be a Shifter and be part of a Pride. (Or maybe that's just me.)
I am so thrilled to have read this book and I am going to reread the entire series because I frankly can't get my head around the idea of it being over. Rachel has written a guest post on the shape-shifting tradition in literature and how she came to create her werecats on this blog. She is one of my favourite contemporary writers and I can't wait to read her next book; she is one of the few writers from which I will read every single one of her books on principle, knowing I will read something thoroughly original and brilliantly written.
If you haven't read anything by Rachel, you are missing out on something. Anyone with a liking for Urban Fantasy will love this series, the others should get started on the genre just for this series. Did I mention I really loved these books? :)...more
I have to admit that when I first received the book, I anticipated not liking it, thinking it would be yet another cliché in the paranormal romance geI have to admit that when I first received the book, I anticipated not liking it, thinking it would be yet another cliché in the paranormal romance genre. Oh boy was I wrong. I was hooked from the first chapter and read it in one sitting. I absolutely love being surprised by a book, and this one is no exception.
The story is told from the point of view of Sky who has been abandoned in a parking lot when she was six years old. She obviously had a terrible life before settling in with the Brights at ten years old. You get this feeling of a dark shadow hovering over Sky's personality but you don't know until the last part of the book what it exactly is. She is a very interesting character moving to a new city in another country where she has to be someone new - again. I know that it sounds a bit familiar, but it really feels new. She is quite immediately attracted to Zed who is the school bad boy, but she doesn't feel like he's her soul mate or that they are the two halves of the same whole etc. She feels attracted to him at first and that's it. She does obsess a little about him too in a harmless stalking kind of way, as any teen would do. (I have come to realise that there is nothing more dangerous in this world today than a teenage girl with a crush...)
I like the characters, both main ones and secondary, there is a nice balance between them and they are all very well described and original in their own way. I like to have a feeling that the world doesn't revolve around 'jocks', 'cheerleaders' and 'nerds' and that the ones in the middle are actually the most interesting to read about. The world isn't black and white, you'd be surprised at what the shades of grey have to offer. The adult characters are pretty cool as well, they are not perfect but not the impersonation of an evil egotistical demon either and they are pretty interesting from the arty Brights to the outdoorsy-sporty Benedicts.
The paranormal aspect is pretty ace. One of my biggest pet peeves in this genre is the coherence of the paranormal element with the story as well as in general. Here, it makes sense though it is not something we encounter a lot (you know, like vampires and shapeshifters). It raises enough interest and fascination without having to explain the whole history and biology behind it all. There is a lot of action and I loved the paranormal related events. The romance is good! Which you never hear me say (or read me write rather?) often. I felt exactly the same emotions I experienced when I read my very first paranormal romance: I was curious, I empathised with the characters and mainly thought "awww" the whole time.
The writing is very good, absolutely flawless, it creeps on you from the first pages and you feel like you can't put the book down before finishing it, and when you're done, you will patiently wait for an eventual sequel to get your fix. There are quite a lot of references to popular culture in it and it really helps feel connected to the story and the characters. The setting is very important to the story and there are quite a few descriptions of the mountains. I really wish I could go there, it seems like a terrific place.
All in all, Finding Sky brings you the best from the paranormal romance genre, without relaying too much on the boring incredible beauty of its characters, the eternal timeless forever and ever romance (yawn) or some hardly coherent paranormal powers. A perfect balance for an amazing story. fans of the genre will definitely love this new addition and non-fans could definitely fall for this story. I can't wait to read other books by Joss Stirling, she definitely rocks my paranormal socks!...more
Bryn has been raised by a pack of werewolves ever since she was a little girl. She is human and was saved from being killed by a RabiWhat a cool book!
Bryn has been raised by a pack of werewolves ever since she was a little girl. She is human and was saved from being killed by a Rabid (werewolf without a pack) by the Alpha of the pack, Callum. The members of the pack didn't accept her too well at the beginning, and she isn't making it easy for them when she starts being older, but they all act very protective of her since there are so few female members of the pack. She was raised by Ali (human woman who came to live with the pack) and her husband (who is a werewolf), as well as Callum who acts half as a fatherly figure, half as the Alpha of the pack. Her best friend is Devon, a werewolf her age. She is basically unhappy with her life, and whines a lot, but she goes on with it without questioning much. Until one day she meets Chase, and everything changes.
Bryn is amazing! She has quite a temper and doesn't let herself get chewed out by all these over-protective werewolves around her. Her feisty personality is simply hilarious and especially when she is interacting with Callum. Her best friend, Devon, is a ......... [wait for it] ............ metrosexual werewolf!!! And this is one of the funniest things I have ever read in a werewolf book and I laughed for ten minutes. He is awesome! He wears designer clothes, likes musicals and has the best personality. Later in the book, you will meet Lake, one of the very rare female werewolves, and I love this character so much, I absolutely cannot wait for the next book in the series. This book is very character-driven so they all have a certain depth to their personalities (not only the main characters) which is really interesting to read. Except Chase which you aren't able to learn much about, you get a glimpse of what it is like to live in a werewolf pack.
The whole werewolf myth is not as fully explored as I expected in this book (mostly because it centers on Bryn's struggle) but I suspect it will be in later books. The second one, Trial By Fire, will come out summer 2011. One of the main themes of the book is about gender and how it affects one's role in society. The werewolves pack are very male-driven and the scarcity of females (werewolves or humans for that matter) make them very protective. As if the women were, somehow, their properties. Bryn fights this all along the novel and it was fascinating to read how male werewolves would not understand what Bryn's deal actually was, unable to put themselves in her shoes. The story of Lake also illustrates this point and I really can't wait to read more about her (which I think you understood by now!).
It is a great read, you can't turn the pages fast enough to know what will happen next, and you will laugh out loud many times at the situations or what the characters say. There is some romance in there as well, so all is not lost for the hopeless romantic in you.
This book is amazing and I can definitely predict a kick-ass series! I would recommend it to all werewolves and urban fantasy fans, especially if you liked Rachel Vincent's Shifters series don't hesitate to check this book out, you will not regret it! And if you are not a fan of the genre, it is a great book to start!...more
I have recently sworn off any paranormal romance but I was still interested to read this book because it looked different from the rest. In this book,I have recently sworn off any paranormal romance but I was still interested to read this book because it looked different from the rest. In this book, the girl is the paranormal element and she is presented as an evil character, so I figured it would be a nice change from what I usually read. I haven't been convinced by the romance, but the rest of the book was so interesting that I'm really glad I read the book because I loved it! The writing is fast-paced and you can't stop turning the pages wanting to know more. There is depth in this story and it reconciles with the more traditional vampire stories. the characters are most of them fascinating (obvisouly, I didn't like the human popular jock Justin, but all the others are ace!).
The vampire part is amazing! Many vampire stories nowadays gloss over the evil/killing aspect of vampires because some characters repent or because they just follow the logic "he's really handsome and he has such nice abs! He mustn't be entirely evil and mean". Don't even try to deny that one. So I really liked this aspect that Lenah is what you would call a real evil vampire thinking she is superior to humans and feeding on their blood, *children included*. For me vampires are linked to gothic fiction. Gothic is this mix between horror and romance which has a certain vibe to it: dark ambience, arrogant vampires, sensuality, clear evil versus innocence. I don't exactly know how to translate it in contemporary literature besides citing Anne Rice. Infinite Days has this vibe. We feel the gothic atmosphere in the flashbacks in Lenah's past where we see how truly evil she was and how she interacted with her coven. Lenah and other vampires live on the fringes of society, they are immortals and adjust to their contemporaries, but don't aim to mix with them unless they need to feed. Most of them don't have any respect for human life.
Lenah is an impressive character. I liked the fact that she goes from evil blood-thirsty vampire to wanting to become human again at all cost. Because becoming human again means she can feel, emotions, food, scents, textures... When she starts going to school, she is mainly clueless as to how to act in this new society (having spent a hundred years six feet under) but she adapts rapidly. It is interesting that she didn't aim to create a new Lenah, she obviously didn't say she was a 500 years old vampire, but she did talk freely about herself, saying that she spoke 25 languages or that she didn't know much about technology. I love the fact that Lenah, being several centuries old, has kept her habit of using wild herbs in some situations. I grew up in a small village in the countryside and even today we use wild herbs for herbal tea and have our beliefs on these plants. I love anything which includes nature and more particularly a character's love for nature and this was one of the most fascinating traits of Lenah.
Lenah's maker, Rhodes, sacrifices himself for her to be human again and he's an amazing character in a very quiet way, in the sense that long explanations and descriptions are unnecessary to explain his personality and his relationship with Lenah. I *love* the character of Tony! He is the first person Lenah talks to at school and they hit if off. He has Japanese origins and is in Wickham on an art Scholarship. He is excentric and has a very good heart. I would have voted for him to be Lenah's love interest (really!) instead of the hot guy.
One of my *major* pet peeves in this genre is the romance. Basically, there is the hot guy who is not as evil as he looks, his girlfriend the blond evil girl and then the heroine of the book who falls in love for the hot guy because he's handsome (there might be some rationalisation like "he makes her feel secure", "he doesn't judge her", "he's different" but mainly his torso plays the biggest role). And then the guy sees *the other girl* and there's a mysterious spark and they fall in love. *sigh* I hate it because it's boring and usually there isn't any explanation for this "connexion" between the two other than "he's handsome" and "she's different in a good way". And, honeslty, all I read is just pure and simple physical attraction, not love at first sight or soul mate through the centuries and "I can see through his soul when he looks at me" kind of love. I had serious hopes for this book that somehow it wouldn't be like that, but Lenah's attraction to Justin in the beginning isn't explained other than he's attractive and she's attractive and different (in a good way, of course). The romance did grow on me during the book, and I liked the dynamic of it, but the attraction part didn't convince me at all. Ok so you probably think I'm weird since I said I loved this book but didn't like the romance part, and it's a paranormal romance, but there is so much more to this book that me not being convinced by the romance doesn't matter!
I wasn't convinced by the romance between Lenah and Justin, but the book is an amazing addition to the vampire genre. I couldn't stop reading it to learn more about Lenah's past and see her adapt to this new society. I absolutely can't wait to read the two sequels of the Vampire Queen trilogy!...more
I think it is possible to divide this series between the first three books and this one (and most probably the two others which will follow: The WarloI think it is possible to divide this series between the first three books and this one (and most probably the two others which will follow: The Warlock (2011) and The Enchantress (2012)). This book takes a whole new tone and you get from the beginning that things really are serious and that a war or at the very least a conflict is imminent. The three first books were about Awakening the Twins and teaching them some magic, as well as fleeing from John Dee and Niccolo Machiavelli. The Necromancer is a much darker book and shows also the most terrible secrets of the planet.
The twins go back to San Francisco and don't know what to do from there on. They know they have a responsability, being the Twins of Legend. But they are unsure what to do and who to trust. They don't want to trust people blindly. Each book brings a wave of new characters. In The Necromancer, various new characters appear and Prometheus is the most incredible one, he is the Witch of Endor's (who gave her memories to Sophie) brother and Scathach's uncle. Through Sophie's eyes we learn a lot about him and his past, but also what is going on with the Elders. The character of Virginia Dare is also very interesting: independant and cunning. You will also learn a lot about Scathach through her (wait for it) twin sister Aoife!
I particularly liked reading the changes in the personalities of both John Dee and Niccolo Machiavelli. I feel that their true natures are reflected through their actions in The Necromancer. They are clearly different and "not in the same league". Machiavelli seems to decide on cold calculation whereas John Dee's decisions seem mostly motivated by fear. (Coward.) No matter how well described the "good" characters are, you can really judge the quality of a story on its "bad guys". Creating flawless and moral characters is less complicated (though not simple either!) than creating a credible "evil" counterpart. In The Secrets of The Immortal Nicholas Flamel series, there isn't a clear distinction between good and bad. I mean, there is a distinction, but what is pointed out is that the characters aren't described as good or bad but as characters all utterly convinced of the rightness of what they are doing. No one doubts Nicholas and Perenelle Flamel are on "the good side", but The Necromancer challenges that conviction, as well as it challenges it for other characters. All the characters working for the Dark Elders all have very profound reasons to do so, but they vary depending on the characters.
I cannot stress enough my complete admiration for Michael Scott and the incredible story he created intertwining fiction with historical facts and legends. The only characters who do not exist are Josh and Sophie! All the others are so interesting that I went to check their biographies/stories on internet, and I can't wait to read more about them. The characterisation is for me one of the strongest point of this series, after the plot and story-telling!
The ending will keep you at the edge of your seat: wow! I can't say anything, but you will clearly be quite impatient for Summer 2011 and the release of The Warlock!
This book finally gets at the turning point of the story where a conflict seems inevitable and the characters have to choose sides. The Necromancer is a very strong and heart-breaking book that will surprise you, frighten you and make you long for The Warlock....more
In this third book of The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series, Nicholas Flamel, Josh and Sophie head over to London after narrowly escapingIn this third book of The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series, Nicholas Flamel, Josh and Sophie head over to London after narrowly escaping the evil John Dee and Niccolo Machiavelli in Paris. Even though London belongs basically to the Dark Elders, it is the only place in Europe where there is a Master of the Water element. Josh and Sophie are now both Awakened and they need to be able to control this element.
The fact that Josh is finally Awakened makes him, in his mind, equal again to his sister. The power they have unleashed together in Paris clearly points out, if there remained any doubt, that they are the true Twins of legend: "the two that are one and the one that is all". I am now repeatedly amazed by the changes in Josh's personality. From being a powerless whiny character in the first book, he is now opening up to his true self and gaining in power and strength. The fact that Mars Ultor, the bannished Elder, has given him the gift of strategy makes him an undeniable strength in their group when he can analyse all dangerous situations with calm. It is fascinating also to see Josh interact with the Coward's Blade Clarent (Excalibur's twin). I can't wait to read more about those blades in the future books. The twins also start to be more independent, now that they are powerful. They want to know why they are fighting and for whom, not blindly follow what they are told. This is, I believe, an amazing point that is being made. To quote a superhero: "with great power comes great responsability" (which I'm dedicating to Becky the Bookette who is a fan! ;) ). The twins understand the extent of their yet to be discovered powers and want to use them for good and not just as a mere instrument to someone else's will. Nicholas Flamel included.
Dangerous situations are definitely not scarce when they set foot in London. Now that the Dark Elders are convinced that Josh and Sophie are the Twins, they have started to gather to return to Earth. Many creatures await the trio in London and hunt them thanks to the distinctive silver and gold auras of the twins. All those creatures are brilliantly described by Michael Scott, especially the Archon Cernunnos who was present on this planet even before the Elders. Each character has a very moving story through the centuries and it is always an amazing discovery that awaits the reader. My heart has been taken by the character of Gilgamesh the King. I won't write anything here, but what a beautiful and heart-breaking story his is. I can't wait to read more about him, if he will come back in the next books. All in all, I am literally amazed at the world created by Michael Scott and many character's stories will stay with me for a long time.
But the book is also mainly about Perenelle, held prisoner on Alcatraz - hence the title. She is said to be much more powerful than Nicholas Flamel, and she is the one feared by Elders, Next Generation and other species alike. Single-handedly, she overcomes all that is thrown her way with uncanny brilliance. Her fight is the most amazing parts you will read in this book. The Sorceress rocks!
I cannot even describe how breath-taking this series is. The mythology created by Michael Scott is unbelievably rich and fascinating. I keep wanting to know more about what happened before humans set foot on this planet and I keep asking myself, how the Twins will use their powers. As soon as I finished reading The Sorceress, I started reading The Necromancer. I am addicted to this series, and I am sure you will be too!...more
I am absolutely amazed, I really don't know why I haven't read Michael Scott before! I have read all the books back-to-back and one after the other!
ThI am absolutely amazed, I really don't know why I haven't read Michael Scott before! I have read all the books back-to-back and one after the other!
There is definitely more action in this book, the twins Josh and Sophie, Nicholas Flamel and Scathach have fled to Paris. Perenelle stays prisoner of the evil John Dee on Alcatraz. In Paris, they meet two incredible French characters and John Dee allies himself with none other than Niccolo Machiavelli, the mastermind behind all modern theories of power and politics. I love how Michael Scott uses history to build his story through centuries. It is such an interesting way to revisit some key persons and theories!
The cool thing is that you go further into the characters and begin to have a better grasp of their personalities. The change in Josh, throughout the book, is the most relevant. Again, I love Sophie and Josh's relationship, I think that it is really well portrayed (*cough* though I have no idea how twins really interact with each other!) and that it is one of the most fascinating points of the story. You also start to learn that Nicholas might not be entirely innocent or truthful, and you find yourself in the twins' shoes wondering who to trust.
In this book, you are going to meet new characters (Immortals as well as Elders and Next Generations) and they are all amazing. On a more precise note, you will meet the Comte de Saint-Germain who is an important figure in the French culture since his existence, like the one of the Flamels, has been transformed in legends and stories and he was believed to be Immortal. In this book, Michael Scott creates a character who, in present time, is a very well known musician doing electronic music. In real life today, there is a musician whose pseudonym is St Germain and who does.... electronic music. I don't know how Michael Scott does it, but he is simply extraordinary! (though I have no idea if this was made on purpose or not, it is brilliant!)
Each books takes place in a different city, I have visited San Francisco (Book 1), I'm French and I've been to Paris (Book 2) and I live in London (Book 3) so I can really say that the books encapsulates what it feels like to be in those cities. I find it amazing to restitute the sense of history and culture which is present in the book about Paris. It is impressive! So if you want to learn more about Paris and especially what lies under its streets, you need to read this book!
This series is a fascinating adventure which will amaze you from the first book. You will go through history with a new eye and read about historical events with a fantastic spin. Perfect for all ages and tastes!...more
I have been wanting to read this series for a while and never managed to, but I am so glad I finally did! This series is amazing: a lot of action, pleI have been wanting to read this series for a while and never managed to, but I am so glad I finally did! This series is amazing: a lot of action, plenty mythical creatures and fantastic characters.
From the first chapters, the reader gets taken in the action and follows the 15 year old twins Sophie and Josh through this adventure. With them you learn that the famous French alchemyst Nicholas Flamel and his wife Perenelle are alive and kicking (after being born in the 1300s). It is amazing because in France there has been so much speculation over the Flamels that it wouldn't be weird at all if that was indeed true! People might also know him from the first book of the Harry Potter series as the inventor of the Philosopher's Stone :)
Sophie and Josh are very different mentally but complementary, it creates a sort of balance between them. I love reading about twins, I find that the potential for stories is endless. Josh is extremely whiny and half of the time he looks like a regular guy child but Sophie is ace (what prejudice against men?). I love how the women characters aren't just pretty objects but are sometimes stronger than men. I absolutely love the fact that Perenelle is considered more powerful than Nicholas Flamel. Girl Power! The book is fast-paced and you will be cheering "no don't do that!", "run fasteerrr!", "Oh wow, I want to be able to do that too!" during the whole book. The characters are all fascinating with very distinctive traits of personalities. The character of Scathach simply ROCKS and I can't wait to discover all the other creatures present in all the sequels!
What I love the most in this book is that fantasy mixes with history: Michael Scott uses mythological beliefs as well as real historical facts and people who really did exist! Alchemy was a well known specialty and could be compared to being a scientist today. Alchemy is a form of magic, but it revolves more around a certain knowledge of the world and a few rules of chemistry and physics than just making things appear out of thin air. It is a fascinating thing to learn about. Yeah, so now I'm considering Alchemy as a career :) All along the books, you ask yourself where the magic is all gone? For centuries and centuries, people have belived in magic and supernatural things, but not anymore. Things out of the ordinary are dismissed as a hoax. Did science kill magic or did it simply take its name? I find that it is very interesting to raise the question. What do you think?
This book and the series in general is a real treat, it is as much an adventure as a history book of some sort. The magical world created by Michael Scott will fascinate you and you'll be wanting to know more about everything in there! Cool plus: this book will appeal to girls as much as boys and to the younger reader as much as to the adult!...more
This book is awesome and reviewing it will only butcher the masterpiece. *sigh* Don't read it and go buy the book instead :)
In this story, the werewoThis book is awesome and reviewing it will only butcher the masterpiece. *sigh* Don't read it and go buy the book instead :)
In this story, the werewolf Kalix MacRinnalch is settling down in Daniel and Moonglow's flat in London in a relatively safe situation. Though half of the werewolf Council wants her dead, her family protects her and hides her from them. Vex, the young Fire Elemental, is also settling down in Daniel and Moonglow's attic, and both of the girls go to remedial college to learn how to read and write and try to blend in. Which proves to be much mush harder than it seemed...
Thrix (the werewolf sorceress, Kalix's sister and incidentally fashion designer) and Malveria (Fire Elemental, Aunt to Vex and Queen of the Hiyastas) are still deeply passionate about fashion, more than anything else. They are still hated by the vile Princess Kabachetka who wants to be the most fashionable and heir to the throne of the Hainustas. A lot of serious and less serious drama ensues... I feel all of a sudden very blessed not to care about fashion...
Dominil, the white-haired wolf, is back in London to help Beauty and Delicious, the blue and pink-haired wolves, become rock stars (with integrity) helping them rehearse and finding gigs - all this with Pete the guitarist falling in love with her and one of her old College acquaintance wanting to kill her.
Decembrius, after being a follower of Sarapen, is finding himself unwilling to go back to Castle MacRinnalch and is wandering in London to find Kalix. Eventually, he isn't looking to kill her.
I want to profess my love for the character of Vex. She is the most hilarious person ever (though, technically, she is a Fire Elemental) and you are in for quite a laugh whenever she is around. This girl is a jinx for all those around but she has some serious style. I loved the interaction between Kalix and Decembrius, and I can't wait for a third book to read more about them!!
I absolutely love this book and I am putting it among my favourite books of all time. Really. I am loving all the strong female characters, the incredible plot and the werewolf/fire elementals mythology. The book takes all the awesomeness from Lonely Werewolf Girl and mixes it with additional greatness. It is pure pleasure!
If you are not blown away by the world depicted brilliantly by Martin Millar, you will be entranced by his characters, all thoroughly original, his fantastic story-telling skills and his sensational sense of humour which breaks through every line. If you are still not interested by the book, I'm afraid nothing can be done for you anymore. That I loved this book doesn't even cover it. Curse of the Wolf Girl, with Lonely Werewolf Girl, goes beyond this. It is one of my book soulmates, if there is such a thing, with everything I love in a book, plus all the things I secretly like but would never admit and all those I never knew I liked.
Anyways, I'm not sure if I managed to show how much I really liked this book... *grin* Seriously people, read it, it is made of awesome! ...more
When I read Shiver several months ago, I fell in love with the story, the general atmosphere of the book and the style of writing. I thought it mightWhen I read Shiver several months ago, I fell in love with the story, the general atmosphere of the book and the style of writing. I thought it might be a stand alone novel but I was thrilled and a bit weary to see that it was in fact a trilogy. When I picked up Linger, I had this mixed feeling of high anticipation and fear I wouldn't like it as much as I liked Shiver.
Well, a few pages into the book and my fears most entirely dissolved. I was again falling for the characters, the atmosphere and the style. I can spend hours describing how much I loved this book and why. But I won't since it's boring I prefer rereading it and loving it all over again instead of analysing everything as I always do. Sam has become a man who won't be changing into a wolf anymore whereas Grace is feeling the call of the forest more acutely than ever before. But she can't change, can she? Sam comes to terms with being the new leader of the pack, but he finds it hard without Beck.
If you haven't read any Maggie Stiefvater books - Uh, are you even living on the same planet?!! - you should. She has a unique way of writing and she gives an incredibly interesting dimension to the werewolf myth. Her characters are irresistibly flawed, they have doubts and they are always real. If you have read Shiver, then fear not fellow reader, you won't be disappointed!
The book is told from the alternate point of view of lovers Sam and Grace as well as from the ice queen Isabel and the new member of the pack, Cole. Isabel was one of my favourite character in the first book and I loved to get into her head. Cole is an interesting choice for a narrator and it was fascinating to get to know him. Some parental figures play an important role in the book, that's quite interesting to read as well. You will *love* the evolution of the werewolf thingy - I love when fantasy makes sense.
The book is perfect and it feels just right. It is one of those books you'll keep next to your bed to reread and rereread whenever you lay your eyes on it and feel again all those powerful emotions embottled in its paragraphs. *sigh* I love that book....more
I was really impatient to read this sequel-but-not-exactly to the first book and I haven't been disappointed at all. All the things which made me loveI was really impatient to read this sequel-but-not-exactly to the first book and I haven't been disappointed at all. All the things which made me love My So-Called Afterlife were there, and there were so many other things that I didn't have any feeling of déjà-vu. I found both books quite different in terms of plot and general atmosphere, and I really liked immersing myself in another part of the ghost world Tamsyn created. I found My So-Called Haunting to be slightly darker than My So-Called Afterlife.
This time around, we are not following a ghost, but a young girl (very much alive) who can see ghosts. Skye hasn't had an easy life, what with having to see ghosts and deal with her mother who can't in a family of psychics, she has never related well with people her own age, and she has always struggled to make friend. I absolutely loved Skye, she is funny and original voice but a very believable teenager at the same time. I thought that her relationship with her mother and with her aunt were very interesting to read. Even though Skye suffers at school, she stays herself in the difficult situation. Without dwelling much on the details, I found the love story very cute, especially how it unfolded (and I'm sure those of you who read the book will be amused by this).
The characters were all great and I loved getting to read about Jeremy (and his yet unimproved fashion sense) again! I have to talk about one character in particular. Upon her arrival in her new school, Skye becomes friend with Megan. And Megan is just so wonderful in a lethal combination of stalkerish gossip teenage girl kind of way that I am laughing out loud just thinking about her. The ghost characters were also very well described, I literally *love* Mary who haunts Skye's house. The ghost Skye meets at the Dearly D, Dontay, has had a difficult time and it was fascinating to read about his story and how he learned from his actions. As always, Tamsyn Murray hints subtly at a serious issue without being too moralising or doomy gloomy. The reader can therefore enjoy a very original and entertaining story, as well as discover more serious themes hidden in the plot.
We also get to be at the Dearly D and seeing it through Skye's eyes. The Dearly D is a church in London where psychics try to help ghost to move on to their next life and I liked the image of this a lot in the first book and even more in the second. Aside from the Dearly D, there are various London places which are featured in the book in such a way that I wanted to grab a map (always helpful when - like me - you have no sense of direction) and discover them myself. I think that London is the ultimate Gothic city and there are so many places you can lose yourself in which would give you quite a few chills!
My So-Called Haunting is a treasure of a book and I can guarantee you won't regret reading Tamsyn Murray's books. All fans of paranormal romance and ghost stories will love the original plot and the amazing characters, and everyone else should appreciate the funny and witty story. One of my favourite UK writer for young adults and an absolute must read!...more
It is quite hard to talk about By Midnight without giving away major spoilers, so I will keep the review quite general and short to try to tell you whIt is quite hard to talk about By Midnight without giving away major spoilers, so I will keep the review quite general and short to try to tell you why I liked this book and how I found it changed from other books in the same genre.
The story revolves around April Dunne, who moves from Edinburgh to London. She moves in the specific area of Highgate which is most famous for its cemetery. Many many books, songs and films were inspired by the cemetery itself and especially by what - supposedly - happened in there *wiggling eyebrows*. A lot of the story also revolves around April's parents, so you do get a glimpse of her life in her family and how it works (or more accurately doesn't).
The general atmosphere of the book screams Gothic and it is just so fascinating to read. The action is set in one of the spookiest (historically speaking) places of London and the reader can really feel a chill at some moments! The setting is important in the book and it is so amazing to be able to go in the places April has been in (if you live in London that is) and learn what happened in the past.
What differentiates By Midnight from other urban fantasy books is the level of research put into the vampire folklore and the history of London. Not only does the book embraces it, but it also gives an original spin to it. You learn a lot reading this book, and I would definitely suggest it to vampire fans. I love how vampirism is explained in there, and I obviously won't spoil it for you but it is an interesting way of seeing things.
The characters are interesting and I feel that we will be able to fully appreciate them in the sequel. There are various personalities, April is a great character and I just LOVE how she reacts when someone breaks the "I'm a vampire" news, because that's definitely a rational reaction! She is not a strong character per se being no body builder herself, but she has a strong personality and doesn't turn her back to fights. There are some truly "bound-to-be-classic" moments where you can only stand awestruck by the sheer awesomeness of it all. The teenagers look like real teenagers and I am convinced that a teenage girl with a crush is lethal (don't say I didn't warn you). The character of Caro is, with such a name, obviously wonderful *beams*. She is a conspiracy theory junkie and she has fantastic ideas. The "faces" aka the cheerleaders+jocks though no one has pompoms or American football practice, make me laugh so bad. You will definitely have some laugh out loud moments reading this book. The book being in a special school with highly intelligent and highly rich kids, the classes are a bit different as well as the teachers. There is some kissing and flirting in there as well for the romantic part in you who has been craving to swoon as well as a hot brooding male character and his equally hot friend/nemesis (or so I read).
I had a few issues with the rhythm and structure of the book, the action seems to take a while to start and some key moments or descriptions are only present at the end or on a couple of pages only, but the book is so well researched and the characters and plot so interesting that you stay hooked to the story anyway and truly enjoy the read. The writing itself is pure pleasure, you oscillate between spooky episodes with a scary atmosphere, to the futility of an afternoon between girls (oh dear) and to some truly romantic scene. It feels so real in the sense that you can have in the same day those three types of emotions but at the same time it is very entertaining to read.
I can't really say more without spoiling other than it was a highly enjoyable book and that I will definitely read the sequel! Fans of Urban Fantasy and vampires in particular will definitely fall for it. The characters and the vampire history and mythology present in the book create a very spooky and irresistibly fascinating story. ...more