Stephanie Perkins has blown me away yet again. She has an obvious talent for writing exhilarating romances with brilliant characters - I can't wait for more! Dolores Nolan aka Lola is a lover of fashion, letting her uniqueness shine through with her fun and quirky looks which change every day of the week. As a seventeen year old, she has a rocker boyfriend named Max. Thing is…he's twenty two and her gay dads aren't very pleased about it. They'd much rather she fall in love with Cricket Bell, her old best friend who broke her heart a few years ago when he used to live next door. Now that he and his famous twin sister have moved back…will the two rekindle their love for one another or will things prove to be just too difficult?
Like in Anna and the French Kiss, the main character of Lola and the Boy Next Door is trapped in a love triangle, however, the "other guy" isn't in another continent this time. Throughout the novel, Lola suffers from the guilt of having feelings for two boys. Deep down in her heart she knows that Cricket is special but how can she give up the boyfriend she already has and loves? Cricket Bell is awkward, intelligent and super cute. I love that he and Lola were best friends when they were kids! They were each other's first kisses (even though Lola mightn't have had his permission…), made adorable presents for each other and even annoyed his twin, Calliope, with their closeness. It's the kind of innocent and honest relationship we all love to read about. It was frustrating and even a little devastating to see almost everyone and everything getting in the way of their relationship. Boyfriends, friends, meddling sisters, parents…the evil forces of nature….will they ever be left alone? Every day and night they have an unspoken rule to see each other from their opposite facing windows. I lived for these sweet moments as we were able to see them naturally and without their real-life problems! The flashbacks are also to die for. They take us back to a time of happiness, although the anticipation of "the day that changed it all", otherwise known as "the day that Cricket Bell stuffed everything up", makes that sweetness very short-lived and valuable.
One of my favourite things about this novel was the presence of Anna and Etienne from the first. Lola and the Boy Next Door is the companion novel and to see our old favourites so often? Bliss! Their relationship is portrayed as being perfect and effortless, and upon seeing their absolute ease with each other, Lola is determined to find "The One". Despite how much I loved Cricket, Etienne St. Clair will always be my number one. He is my type of guy and the only thing stopping me from stealing him away is his height - did I mention that he's short…shorter than his girlfriend? *gasp* Cricket and Lola compliment each other perfectly though. Lola's the cool to Cricket's geek, the confident to his awkward, the crazy to his normal… The list goes on! At some point, Lola has a bit of an identity crisis. Max sees Lola (her normal self) and Lolita (her dressed-up self) as two different people, so which one is he in love with? Is Lola simply expressing herself or hiding who she really is? Luckily, Cricket steps in to reassure and aid our little princess, and I think you'll like the results. Lola and the Boy Next Door is essentially about change - in yourself and in the relationships which surround you.
If you enjoyed Anna and the French Kiss, this companion novel is sure to please. We were previously granted the story of finding true love for the first time, and now we get to see two people finding each other again after many years of separation! With this comes an intimacy that Perkins ALWAYS gifts us with and she is without a doubt one of the best YA romance writers out there. Impossible to be otherwise, the romance is heartwarming and will have you begging for Isla and the Happily Ever After. Will our two favourite couples appear in it also? We'll have to wait and see! ;)(less)
It's been a long time since I've cried so much whilst reading a book. Stephanie Perkins writes in a way so realistic that you can't do anything but experience the whole journey right along with Anna and reminisce about your own memories of friendship and love. This novel has the perfect blend of humour, heartbreak, love and normal teenage school conflict. Anna and the French Kiss made me giggle a terribly huge amount. I read it on my flight to Italy, so it was either very funny or I was very delirious from the lack of sleep - I'm thinking both? Anna's thoughts are spot on and perfectly represent what most girls are thinking when they're around really sweet and really cute guys. *wink*
Etienne St. Clair is possibly the coolest fictional character ever. Born in San Francisco, raised in London, currently going to school in France…hell yes. British accents and the ability to speak French = serious hotness. He and Anna become best of friends and the developments in their relationship are fascinating to read about. It seems that they take one step forward, three steps back, and it's an exciting game of 'When Will They Get Together?'.
So back to the crying (very embarrassing since I was on a full bus for four hours but it was unavoidable). There are a few heartbreaking/warming moments in this novel that hit the nail on the head and really touch your heart. While I was reading this, I couldn't believe how it so perfectly echoed my past and current thoughts. Anna's character was so relatable and adorable so you're easily invested in her life. You never know how the characters will behave next - prepare for a quick read as you'll be rushing to get to the end!
This is a magnificent novel that you need to read right this moment. Anna and the French Kiss is a beautiful story about love, heartbreak, friendship, enemies, making mistakes and fixing things again. Fall in love with Etienne or else I'll lock him away and keep him to myself!
Brutally honest and bittersweet, The Fault in Our Stars will tug at your heart-strings in the very best way. Hazel Lancaster is a cancer survivor but depends on an oxygen tank to keep her weak lungs functioning. Suddenly, they feel like they might collapse when the gorgeous Augustus Waters appears at one of her weekly support group meetings, in support of his blind friend, Isaac. As they slowly bond over their issues and love of books, the two play the dangerous game of falling in love where nothing can be certain, but persevere hand in hand until the very end. An absolutely moving novel that will surely bring you to tears.
Ever since Hazel got a second chance at life, never did she believe love would be in the picture. With all of her baggage, who would be interested? Gus soon makes himself known and quickly proves that she's completely worthy of his affections, making her feel special and like a normal teenage girl should. He charms her with his smile, gets her hooked on bloodbath zombie books, makes her feel loved and even grants her a special wish. Although I did feel things moved along quickly for them, I adored every stage of their relationship. It's emotional, real and feels entirely right. They're meant to be and it's backed up with visible evidence! Gus is one of the most unique YA guys for a variety of reasons - none that I'll be sharing with you! - and he'll win you over the second he appears in the book. I guarantee it!
If you're used to heroines who fight supernatural battles or rebel against corrupt governments, you'll love the refreshing voice of Hazel. How often do you read books like this? Where the girl is thrown into real life-threatening circumstances? Where she has a physical disadvantage? Where she sacrifices her own happiness so that the love of her life won't get hurt if she dies? Not only is Hazel mentally and emotionally strong, she manages to keep her sense of humour and enjoy what she can in life. Her relationship with her friends and family are explored too, realistically showing the affect cancer has on those around her. I truly adore how genuine this book is, not making Hazel's life perfect but really showing all of the flaws and complications.
If, like me, you've never read anything by John Green before, I'd say this is a great place to start. With his perfect balance of extreme wit, humour, romance and heartache, The Fault in Our Stars is a brilliant read. As you fall in love with all of the characters, you'll be hanging onto their every word and waiting to see what will happen next, following them every step of the way on this bumpy journey. Green's beautiful story about love and loss will wrangle your heart this way and that, making you ride his rollercoaster until the very last page. And what a ride it is...(less)
In a society where girls should be nothing but proper ladies, falling for the common gardener is scandalous, especially when your rich and attractive childhood friend has expressed his intentions to make you his wife. Not only is Cate Cahill torn between two boys who she shares equally close bonds with, but she's burdened by a secret that could have fatal consequences if discovered. She and her two sisters, Tess and Maura, are witches and if things weren't bad enough, Cate's just discovered that she's the centre of a mysterious prophecy that will change her life forever. Exciting and filled with entertainment, Born Wicked is a fantastic debut by Spotswood that'll have you jumping in your seat!
Cate's relationship with her younger sisters is crucial to the story, and I loved that they were both so well-developed. While Tess is an advanced caster who's innocent and sweet, Maura's rebellious and desperate to be The Best. Living with their human father, who isn't privy to their secret, they only have each other after their witch mother's death. My respect for Cate is sky high. Throughout the book she suppresses her carefree side to be the responsible one and makes huge sacrifices for the ones she loves. As the prophecy unfolds, this is especially true in epic proportions! She finds herself having to decide between two paths, one that'll lead to a terror and another to a witch resurgence, but both with terrible consequences for her. Beautifully suspenseful and mysterious, Born Wicked will have you desperately trying to piece all of the clues together!
The romance in this book is brilliant! Finn Belastra works in a bookstore (too smart a place for women!) but has become the Cahill's gardener for some extra cash. As Cate hovers about in fear that he'll ruin her beloved garden, the two bond and she falls in love with the boy who doesn't disapprove when she engages in unladylike behaviour (…like climbing trees). On the other hand, Cate and Paul have been neighbours since they were children. She remembers the green-eyed boy during their most playful moments and is shocked by the charming man who returns after four years of being an architect's apprentice in New London. He comes from a good family and could give her the world, but her heart doesn't stutter around him like it does with Finn! In three months, Cate will have her intention ceremony, where she'll choose between marriage or the Sisterhood. If she doesn't, the sinister Brotherhood will do it for her and she's guaranteed to be unhappy. Unfortunately, the prophecy will affect her decision and make things more difficult than you can imagine!! The romance is written with fabulous development and I promise you will just FALL. IN. LOVE.
You'll fly through Born Wicked in search for the conclusion! In the final third of the book, things get very fast-paced and suspenseful as disaster strikes and changes everything. Throughout the book you'll be plagued with questions about the prophecy and you'll only become more ravenous for answers as you learn more! The politics of the Brotherhood and Sisterhood are largely involved but you'll have to read the book yourself to find out more. Get ready for some stunning story-telling with great witch mythology and raging romances. Feel conflicted about every element in the book before being shocked by the cliffhanger that'll have you dying for more! You can find me in the corner. I'll be having a little tantrum and cry... (less)
The Catastrophic History of You and Me has a fascinating concept, with an emotional tale and dangerous love. When Brie Eagan's perfect life was shattered by her boyfriend's horrifying confession, her heart literally broke in half along with it, leaving behind a devastated family and a troubled ex. Through the gut-wrenching humour, loveable characters and moving scenes of mourning, this book will have you wondering what your life would be like, had you just made one different decision. Maybe you'd have gotten that big promotion, met a fantastic guy or saved someone's life? Ooh. I've got your attention now!
Upon floating into heaven, Brie immediately runs into a boy named Patrick who dresses like he's part of the Top Gun cast. He'll charm you within a second of opening his mouth and suddenly dying doesn't seem that bad at all! You really wouldn't believe the amount of smiles and giggles he got out of me… Acting as Brie's rock and guide in the after life, Patrick supports her through all five stages of grief and gives her something of himself extremely precious and sacred. (Hint hint - big plot point) Their relationship is honestly so amazing, endearing and saddening that I can't even describe! The two have an abundance of adorable moments that puts this book so very high up on the Cool List! You'll come to find that Patrick harbours many secrets that'll mess with your mind and leave you breathless. THE TWISTS! *gasps* Unbelievable, pass-out material right here.
On a serious note, your heart will probably acquire some cracks from this story. When Brie goes back to earth to check up on the people in her life, she finds them all broken and lost. Rothenberg does some amazing character development here, making the situation even more personal than it already is. Throughout the novel we're given the opportunity to get to know Jacob Fischer, her ex-boyfriend, and learn about the long relationship he had with Brie. It all seemed perfect so why did he say he didn't love her? Why is he meeting up with Brie's best friend? What did she do to make him hit rock bottom? The complicated aftermath of Brie's death will forge a strong bond between you and all of the characters, so you will most definitely need a hand to hold when the massive secrets and twists begin showing their nasty faces. Brie gets a whole lot more than she bargained for….
How do I measure how much I loved this book? Well, I had to "call a friend", Millionaire style, and ask what happened at the end. Seems like I got too excited and did the mad dash to the finish line! Catastrophic History will rewire your "sensible" cells and demand you read it in one sitting, whether it's 5am or not! The romance ties together with the conflicts perfectly and is another platform on which Brie can question what her life means to her compared to another. The novel is set out in parts of the Five Stages and it works amazingly well for the story. I was truly stunned by how well Rothenberg made it work and I'm on my knees bowing down to her brilliance! Grab the popcorn and tissues, and sit your behind down to read this with your girlfriends. (Pssst…offer free hugs.) Prepare to be awed and filled with absolute contentment as Rothenberg takes you through the emotional five stages of grief. Give Acceptance a wave when you see her!(less)
Across The Universe by Beth Revis may soon become one of my favourite books. It begins with Amy and her parents preparing for their animation. The scene has a very disturbing and eerie mood, and this continues for the rest of the book. The novel then takes us to meet Elder, the next up in line to lead Godspeed. After this, we constantly switch point of views between the two, getting little snippets about the characters and this new world they're in. I absolutely loved the multiple point of views as we are able to get a lot more information from both sides and it later on creates a lot of suspense. The author comes to a small climax in the plot and ends the chapter, switching to the other character's point of view and making us wait to see what would happen next! This happens throughout and will keep you on the edge of your seat!
The novel is a tad slow for me in the beginning, to be honest. The first half of the book it spent mostly introducing the characters and the new world. While it was all very fascinating, I just wanted to get into action and main plot. Said action finally appeared and boy was it worth it. The murder/mystery component of this novel was fantastic. On more than one occasion, I literally got the chills because the creep factor was so high.
There were so many things I enjoyed about this book, the setting being one of them. It was so elaborate and believable. Who knew that you could have such a large and realistic world in just one ship? I thought Elder was a great character. He's sweet, thoughtful and wants to be the best he can be for his people by doing the right thing - nothing like Eldest, the current leader of Godspeed, who he defies. Amy's character is…unique. She comes from Earth and doesn't fit into this unnatural and manufactured world. The people aboard Godspeed lack emotion and personal thought, so her actions seem wild and out of control in comparison. She has strong opinions and doesn't understand how these people are living the way they are. It's quite sad when we see her struggle to make everyone open their eyes and to listen to her. Elder is willing to do whatever he can to keep Amy from harm. He falls hard and is fascinated with her, bringing her flowers and watching as she sleeps after only knowing her for a day, or not even that. He loves and appreciates her differences, unlike everyone else who thinks she's some sort of alien. It's all very sweet.
One thing I have to criticise is the actual main plotline - the murderer onboard Godspeed. I felt that it was very obvious who was behind everything so that was a little disappointing. It might've been just me so don't let this deter you!
I'll conclude my lengthy review by saying that Across the Universe really is a must read. Characters that keep changing and unfolding in a world that you don't know what to expect from makes for an exciting read. You'll fly through the book and after reading the end, you'll be anxiously waiting for the next installment, A Million Suns!(less)
Legend grabbed and dangled me over the edge of a twenty-storey building me by my feet. With a fast-paced plot filled with intoxicating drama, shocking mystery and deceit, you'll fall in love with everything that is Legend and will surely be placing yet another book on your favourites shelf. While Day was brought up in a "slum" district and has been labelled a criminal by the government, June Iparis attends the best university in the country at only fifteen and has successfully guaranteed herself assignment into the military thanks to her perfect Trial score, something only she has ever managed to accomplish. When Day breaks into a guarded facility for plague medicine to cure his brother, he is accused of murdering a soldier named Metias, someone he swore he only wounded in the shoulder in self-defense. On a mission to avenge her brother's death and prove herself by finding the notoriously unidentified Day, June vows to track him down and undo the boy no matter what it takes. Whether by means of deception or seduction, she'll make him pay. Little did she think that love would ever factor into the equation…nor that the Republic would be keeping such dark secrets…
Day and June are characters that will astound you with their depth and thorough characterisation. Before their inevitable union as a couple, we get to know them as opposing individuals via the dual narration. We get insightful looks into their backgrounds and personalities, readying ourselves for the explosive first meeting that'll set off an unbelievable chain of events. Even though June is one of the brightest people in the country, she has a naughty streak. She's funny at the most inappropriate times and isn't afraid to put herself at risk, whether the situation calls for it or not. You'll fall in love with her, as well as the kind-hearted and intelligent Day, and will be absolutely delighted as you watch them fall in love against their will. As we get to know both more and more, we realise that maybe they aren't so different after all and that lies have kept them apart all this time.
Composed of a physical test, written test and interview, the Trial determines your future. Unlike June, Day failed his Trial and was sentenced to work in the outer districts. As the book progresses, we discover what really happened and continuously gape in disbelief as shocking secret after shocking secret is revealed. The world of the Republic is carefully detailed and is suffocating in comparison to the Colonies. The neighbouring nations are at war with each other and their differences reach a deadly crescendo by the end of the book. As much as this is a personal journey for Day and June, it is as much a powerful dystopian that'll knock you off your feet. Things take many turns for the worse throughout Legend and you'll be gripping onto the edge of your seats as the unthinkable keeps occuring.
Join the rest of Legend's adoring fans as they roar in happiness and outrage. With two equally strong, skilled and intelligent protagonists, you'll be in power-couple overload and overwhelmed by the intense connection you have with them. Addicting and smartly crafted, Lu's brilliantly written futuristic thriller will tangle you in its intricate threads of mystery, leaving your mind exercised and begging for more. Just like me, you won't be able to wait patiently for the sequel with so many newly revealed secrets to explore!(less)
If you're a fan of the Vampire Academy series, this Ultimate Guide is a must-have! With book summaries, in-depth character profiles, insights into the vampire world, an exclusive Q&A with Richelle Mead and so much more, you'll easily lose yourself in the familiar memories you have of this fabulous series.
The six book recaps take up about two-thirds of the guide and are 30 pages long each, with Richelle Mead preceding each one with an explanation about her ideas and thought processes while writing. Michelle Rowen is a fantastic writer who so obviously has the same passion for the series as we do, reading as a fan rather than as a critic. Appropriately outraged and swoony in just the right places, Rowen's summary of the series is almost as entertaining as the real thing. In fact, her detailed summaries turned out to be so interesting that I found myself reading them in detail. I had only meant to skim but got caught up in the story all over again! By reading this guide, you'll reignite the passion you had for the series and won't regret having a trusty guide for future emergencies too. It doesn't hurt to re-read the amazing quotes Rowen highlights either!
The summary is not where the guide shines though. The last third of the book (part 2) is where we really get into the thick of things. I was surprised by how much information was given about each character and relationship in their breakdowns. Those minor characters you always forget about? They're featured too! While I loved the quizzes and colour inserts, Richelle's Q&A is my favourite part of the guide. She talks about her favourite characters, her thoughts on the love triangle, vampire mythology, the school, tattoos and loads more! I had a blast in that section and surely you will too. There are a hundred other things in part 2 I can't even begin to name but it's all fun and informative, trust me!
When you read Richelle's answers you'll realise what a well thought out series this is. Things that may have seemed random or insignificant were deliberated on carefully and planned to a T. Richelle speaks as if her characters are real when discussing their motivations and backgrounds, and I'm just a little jealous that there's so much more of these characters that'll only ever exist in her mind! Simply reading those final lines of Last Sacrifice again sent my heart fluttering - what a way to end the summaries! Oh how I adore my hard-earned happily ever afters. I can't say enough - grab this guide if you haven't ready!(less)
With an air of sophistication and grandeur, a mysterious narrator firstly prepares readers for a tale about three young girls. Each have a different dream: one wishes to become famous, one wishes to be married and one wishes to find her family. In the lush 1920's, the roles of women were changing and Bright Young Things is a magnificent telling of the difficult journey three friends take to make something of themselves in the real world.
On the night after her unwanted wedding, Cordelia Grey and her friend, Letty Larkspur, take a one-way train to the glamorous New York to live the lives they've always dreamed of. In their hometown, the narrow-minded townsfolk don't appreciate Letty's femininity or Cordelia's boldness, expecting women to be practical and behaving. Already in New York is Astrid Donal, the socialite girlfriend of Charlie Grey. While Cordelia and Letty begin their stay in New York together, some misunderstandings lead to their separation before fate steps in and intertwines all of their worlds. I absolutely loved that they were all connected in some way! The trio hit their absolute highs together, and their lows, and together climb back onto their feet to triumph once again. This is truly a rollercoaster ride!
The best thing about Bright Young Things is the relationships between the girls, their families, friends and beaus. There is no question in my mind that they carry the story and keep readers invested from beginning to end. Some relationships will have you giggling like a lovesick schoolgirl, some will have you weeping and some will have you fuming while others are simply comforting with their warmth. Mysteries and adventures are littered throughout this novel and you'll really enjoy exploring the scandals, highlights and lowlights of their lives.
If you wish to enjoy an authentic frolic in the fascinating Jazz Era, Godbersen's classy novel will have you roaring with joy. These ambitious girls will worm their ways into your heart and have you invested in the stories they tell. Overall, these well thought out plots and characters will make for an enjoyable read. Be prepared for a wowing sequel! (less)
If you're looking for something genuinely funny, Freshman Year and Other Unnatural Disasters will leave you thankful your life isn't as chaotic and impossibly disastrous as Kelsey's. Filled with laughs, rants and tears, this book will be the cherry on top of your syrupy sundae on a gorgeous Sunday afternoon. Prepare to journey through the horrors that is freshman year with Kelsey Finkelstein, who's as loveable as they come!
I never expected to love this book so much. I was expecting a light read with endless crack but Zeitlin has written something truly spectacular. As well as characters who are developed and all have significant roles in the story, there's a realistic serving of heartbreak and anger to balance the moments of hilarity that will quite literally have you laughing out loud. Immediately you'll fall in love with Kelsey's narration and be flipping through the book as fast as you can to see how her year ends! Gripping and 100% entertaining, this could-happen-in-real-life tale will charm you with it's vivacity and endearingness.
Kelsey's relationships are the central focus of this novel. Zeitlin has honestly constructed an amazing cast of characters, creating detailed and intriguing story lines for them all. None of the tiffs between Kelsey and her best friends are petty. They have issues we can all easily relate to on a mature level and the hurt will really jab you in the heart. Who knew to expect such horrifying twists and betrayals? Gah! Not to sound like a broken record but the characters and plot are ACE. It's been a while since I've read a book with such well-developed secondary characters! Add in Kelsey's embarrassing family….I'm in love.
Now, how can we have a high school story without a tricky romance? Kelsey's in love with the gorgeous Jordan Rothman and plans to stake her claim on the soccer player this year since his bratty girlfriend's out of the equation. No one expected another complication to arise.... Throughout this book, Kelsey discovers that life at fourteen isn't perfect and you'll always have someone waiting in the wings to mess things up for you. (Tip: Avoid the mean troll on your soccer team.) But when Hot Newspaper Guy gets caught up in the "Embarrassing Photo Situation", reluctant sparks fly and we have ourselves a romance ;) Gosh, I won't spoil and tell you about every single sweet/funny situation in this book so I guess you'll just have to pick it up yourself!!
Freshman Year and Other Unnatural Disasters deals with realistic issues that have honest depth and meaning. You'll come out of reading this feeling different, perhaps a bit worn out (the poor heart!) or in the mood to run and give your best friends a hug! I guarantee you'll adore every character you're supposed to and wish you had a quirky Kelsey for yourself. Despite how alive the humour brought me, I can't get over Kelsey's determination to make it through Hell, dealing with the unfortunate complications of being a teenager and a girl looking for love! Promise me you'll pick this book up because you will not regret it!(less)
Shadow Kiss is by far my favourite (or second…) favourite of the series. In this installment, many things that we were waiting for to happen, did. I won't spoil, of course, so you'll just have to go and read yourself!
A few things i'll let slip: Rose and Christian make a badass team. More fun is had with clothes off. Dimitri needs himself a guardian angel. Love fire. Cabins are great. I'd like a knife to gut Lissa. Thanks for nothing.
Shadow Kiss is a definite tear jerker, whether of happiness or total devastation. Power on, people. You can do it!
Short review but that's all I can say without spoiling. Guess you'll just have to make do with the teasers!(less)
Although I Am Number Four wasn't the best book, Pittacus Lore proved that this series was worth reading with the following two. Similar to The Power of Six, The Rise of Nine is full of fast-paced action and makes great use of its multiple points of view. In this third instalment, all of the remaining Garde members, bar Five, must overcome different obstacles, all the while trying to reunite in order to defeat the Mogodorian leader, Setrákus Ra. So many exciting story lines progress and capture your attention at once, so it's guaranteed that you'll be on the edge of your seat for this entire read.
Lore's talent not only lies within his ability to write great action sequences, but also his ability to build anticipation which is tangible and irresistibly good. The Rise of Nine allows us into the minds of John (Four), Veronica (Six) and Marina (Seven) and the Lorics are split into two groups. With every change of perspective, the excitement and suspense builds to an almost unbearable level, as we're desperate to continue the story of the group we're currently with.
Four and Nine, who was saved at the end of the previous book, plan to meet up with the others but must evade government agents at the same time. Shockingly, they're working with the Mogodorians and have no idea what their planet is in for. Nine was a comedic and badass character and his evolving relationship with Four was riveting to watch. They have their bonding moments but spend the rest of their time arguing about what to do, where to go and who the powerful Loric that legend speaks of is. Only one Garde member will become as strong as Pittacus Lore (the elder) and be able to defeat the otherwise unbeatable Setrákus Ra. (Of course, both boys think it's them.)
All the way in India, the others think they've found another Loric, a shapeshifter number Eight. This diverse group had to be my favourite. Six was fierce as usual and became the leader of the group, looking after an insecure Marina and young Ella. Their camaraderie was so uplifting and was the one thing we could be sure of. Eight, known by his supporters as Vishnu, is cheeky and possesses amazing abilities we haven't seen before. Their adventures are even more exciting than Four and Nine's but I'll leave that for you to discover... I won't spoil the story but at some points, certain characters veer off on their own paths with their own problems to take care of. The groups constantly change as they separate and merge and it's simply never-ending entertainment!
The final parts of the novel bring us to a culmination of everything Lore's worked to build from page one. We were treated to explosions and gun fights only a few chapters in, but this is even more intense and extravagant. The ending is filled with twists, surprises and several fear-for-their-lives moments too. The Rise of Nine is truly a magnificent read and it would be a shame to miss out on this series. With a ton of action and suspense, mixed in with friendship and a hint of romance, what's not to love? (less)
After the luxurious first novel of the series, things begin to heat up and become deadly serious in Beautiful Days. With family wars, speakeasy openings and relationship problems, there is never a dull moment and this novel will definitely impress, whether or not you liked the first!
I hardly want to spoil anything for you because so many intriguing things happen that will send you into a tailspin. As always, Godbersen transports us into the wonderful 20th century and shows us the real world of that time. If you've read Bright Young Things, you know that the different relationships are plentiful. Each and every one develops more in this book and provides that extra little bit of mystery. How exactly will things end for our three starlets? Will they get everything they wanted? Less? More? Something they never expected? Oh, at times I felt like crying and at others, squealing, but what did you expect? These characters grow greatly and will have affected you by the end! I can't pick a favourite.
While the first book concentrated more on the friendships and growth of the girls, Beautiful Days is action-packed and much more exciting. If you love deception, high-speed car chases and kidnappings mixed amongst your romance, this is the book for you! I absolutely loved the conclusion of this series. It was perfect and made me feel like reading the last few chapters over and over. A sense of contentment and complete fulfilment will wash over you as you bathe in the happiness of Letty, Cordelia and Astrid. Three girls with wild dreams have finally grabbed onto their desires and have no plans to let go. A sensational novel! (less)
Ever since the release of Last Sacrifice, fans have been eagerly awaiting the spin-off to Richelle Mead's bestselling series, Vampire Academy. First of all, if you have not read the original series, I strongly recommend you do so now. I do not think you can fully appreciate Bloodlines without knowing the history of events, characters and Richelle's world first. You will have a big pile of confusion on your hands and a great book will be wasted! In the point of view of Sydney Sage, an alchemist who's had a significant impact on the outcome of previous events, we are transported to sunny California where we run into some of our favourite characters - Jill, Adrian, Eddie, Abe, Rose. If you've read Vampire Academy and enjoyed it, Bloodlines will not disappoint, and if you haven't…what are you still doing here?
I was never worried about the continuation of this series as I knew Richelle had a lot more story to tell, and Bloodlines begins to slowly answer all of those questions we were left with in Last Sacrifice. While this novel isn't heavily packed with action, it certainly does not lack the fine characterisation and mystery we're used to. In the previous books, Sydney is a character who's intelligent, hardworking and does everything by the book. She usually follows rules to a T and doesn't take risks, but her unexpected friendships with vampires lead to her so-called untrustworthiness and betrayal of her superiors. While still firmly believing that magic is wrong and unnatural, Sydney becomes a caring character who has a compassion for those, human and paranormal, around her. Gone is the heartless robot, and herein appears a human who may be normal after all. Readers are very sympathetic to Sydney, as all she gets in return for her help is sadness and anger. Why can't she do anything right?
When Sydney, Jill and Eddie begin their schooling with the humans, they discover the school has a fascination with Sydney's golden tattoo, something they think makes her super intelligent. Sydney eventually discovers the student's illegal activities, using alchemist-like tattoos on themselves for pleasure, speed, strength and skill. Are these tattoos simply using alchemist-like technology or is a traitor alchemist supplying humans with their chemical formulas? This storyline is the centre of Bloodlines, as well as Sydney's mission to keep the Princess safe. There is a lot of mystery which stems from this plot and while some outcomes were predictable, my enjoyment of this novel did not lessen in any way because of this.
While Sydney is the main character, a lot of the novel's focus is on Jill, the royal Moroi she has sworn to protect. Jill's nice enough but I can't help but feel a little annoyed at her spotlight-stealing. Sydney spends a lot of time trying to please her, not upset her, entertain her, drive her around and tal-….you get the point. This wasn't a huge negative but I'm really hoping for Sydney to focus more on herself and her relationships in The Golden Lily. Speaking of relationships, we knew this was going to come - Adrian and Sydney. Can I say…amazing? Yes, the romance is minimal and only their friendship is solidified by the end of the book, but what a journey! Both characters change a lot with their interactions with each other and that is enough to please me. I see this friendship going places. Real sexy, sweet and romantic places. Give me more!
If you're looking for those shocking twists, god-awful suspenses, frustratingly awesome characters and multiple exciting story lines, Bloodlines is the book for you. It was a good start to what I think will be another amazing series by Richelle Mead and I am eagerly awaiting the release of the next book! I've always loved Adrian and this book only made me love him more. If you weren't a fan before…you'll definitely change your mind after this one. These characters have a load of potential and I'm very much looking forward to exploring them further!(less)
Words will probably fail to convey just how flawless this book was. The Golden Lily manages to have everything we want in a book - characters we care about, a romance that drives us crazy, suspenseful mysteries and more! I'm not completely sure yet but this spin-off series might have overtaken the original in my eyes. The way I see it, we've still got the old characters PLUS new characters in a new setting with a new agenda. The thought of having four more of these books has sent me into heaven!
After the original series ended, everyone was eager to see Adrian be paired up with Sydney. The two are polar opposites in personality but share the same stubborn fire that we know will bring about a delicious passion in their relationship. The Golden Lily completely delivered on the intense Sydrian romantic tension and had me running laps around my room in frustration. So here's Adrian being completely adorable and pounce-worthy in a million ways I can't even explain, and there's Sydney being OBLIVIOUS TO IT ALL. She's the human equivalent of an alien who's been living on Mars her whole life. The I'm-into-you body language, conversations with not-so-hidden meanings and every other signal on the planet? They went completely over her head! *cries* Oh, Sydney! How many times did I feel like shoving you into Adrian's arms when he was putting himself out there for you to just ignore?
If things weren't confusing enough, there's a love triangle in this book. Oh yes. Oblivious little Sydney has "met her match" in Brayden, a nerd who even tops her book smarts but lacks the social smarts like she does. I found him sweet and cute at first but slowly…he began to grate on my nerves. I mean, really, his name should've clued me in on his dodgyness. He's all too practical to keep up with her fire, to love and treat her like she deserves! The two have zero chemistry and Sydney just doesn't realise that everything she needs is in Adrian. For a date, Brayden takes her on a windmill tour for goodness' sake! Mead compares the two boys throughout the book, drilling Adrian's superiority into our minds. Brayden does or says something ridiculous to Sydney and Adrian counters with something charming and sweet not long after. The two men are entirely different but, as the story progresses, I think Sydney begins to realise how one might be better than the other……………
As always, Mead's characters are magnificent. Sydney begins to creep out of her shell in The Golden Lily and does things she never thought she would do as a perfect and obedient alchemist. Her superiors constantly say how responsible she is but she finds that that's not the case at all. She's befriending the vampires she's been taught to fear, going on dates and developing feelings for people she shouldn't, beginning to practice forbidden magic, making decisions without permission and…generally just breaking a lot of rules. I knew she had all of this in her from the beginning and it was so exciting to watch her change and become this new, unpredictable person. I can only imagine that she will grow more and more with every book so I'm ecstatic at the moment!
Adrian's character is also given the growth and time he missed out on in the original series. He deals with a father who is always disappointed in him and that doesn't believe he can do any good. My heart was just crushed every time Nathan delivered a mental blow! Adrian tries so hard to be a good son and wants his dad to be proud of him but Nathan lets him down time and time again. Sydney doesn't realise it (although Adrian does!) but she's his support during these difficult times and tries her hardest to brighten him up afterwards. They made me melt with how perfect they were for one another and you just know that when they finally get together, they'll be stunning - hard to look at without fainting, stunning.
Many more things happen in this book than they did in Bloodlines. We have a mysterious society of possible vampire hunters roaming the city and this leads to attacks and kidnappings everyone's weary of. There are multiple suspects behind each event and we're not completely sure about them until the end! Dimitri, Sonya and Eddie are testing their blood to try and solve the puzzle of strigoi immunity. At the end of the last book, Sydney discovered that her blood was unpalatable to strigoi and this brings in a whole other question that we've yet to answer!
I officially have to shut up now. If you're not convinced that Adrian and Sydney are as sweet as toffee, YOU ARE A LOST CAUSE. The Golden Lily ignited something wild in me that the last few books of the Vampire Academy series seemed to lack and I have full faith that Mead will take us to breathtaking places again with the next four books. I had to stop myself from rereading this book as soon as I finished it, it was that good. Adrian has long been my favourite character since he was introduced in Frostbite and I could almost die from how good his character is now. This book ends on a CLIFFHANGER. I melted, cried and banged fists on tables. You've been warned. (less)
Where do I start? When I fell in love with Matched last year, my expectations for Crossed were extremely high. After being tortured with that emotional cliffhanger, I expected to be pulled out of my misery but was sorely mistaken. Crossed isn't a fast-paced and exciting adventure but a slow-burning learning journey. In this sequel, we learn more about Ky and Cassia's personal stories and the Uprising, which is surrounded by many clues, secrets and conflicts. While these pieces of information did interest me, I was desperate to see the action and passionate romance from the first book.
When Ky is sent to the Outer Provinces to "work" with other anomalies and aberrations, bombs are dropped on his camp almost every night. The Society uses them as decoy villagers and moves them around constantly for the Enemy to kill. At the same time Ky plans his escape, Cassia makes it her mission to find the boy she loves, even if it means venturing out into the dangerous unknown herself. The beginning section of the novel is probably the most suspenseful and heart-wrenching. You can only hope that the two will reunite and not be hurt by sheer bad luck. It was also at this time that my heart felt as if it would explode out of my chest and you could probably hear my shouts of "no way!" from Antarctica! As Ky and Cassia are separated for a good amount of the novel (no who/what/when spoilers here!), we learn about their upbringing through memories and things we questioned in Matched are somewhat explained.
Venturing deep into the canyons, we're able see the abandoned villages, filled with books and information - a total contrast to the high-tech Society. I enjoyed learning about the "other" lifestyle, but found it very hard to engage with the story, as there wasn't much dialogue but internal thoughts. The lonely setting of the novel didn't help and I really felt that the book could've been shorter, as we strayed from the point of the story from time to time. Discoveries about the Society's dark secrets and the Uprising are made though, setting up a lot of background for the next book. When Cassia decides she wants to join the movement, Ky is adamantly against it. What does he know that we don't? Here's where the secrets start unravelling!
While Crossed isn't a riveting read that'll glue your eyes to the pages, you'll feel the intense emotions of desperation, pity and frustration that resonate through all of the characters. I can only hope that Condie finds a good balance between the action and internalised emotions in the third book! With many still unanswered questions, there's a lot of fixing that needs to be done because things aren't exactly bright and sunny by the end of Crossed...(less)
A hundred and two days is the time Céce and Mack have together. Being a journey about heartbreak, passionate love, friendship and trust, where Stay With Me will take us, we don't know. Mack Morse works at Vic's Too with his good friend, Anthony, and when Tony prepares to leave for the army, he enlists Mack with the job of taking care of his smart, younger sister, Céce. Sparks fly, but it's a shame that Mack is a high school dropout with anger management issues, a criminal record and a problem with looking people in the eye... This novel is incredibly emotional, realistic and moving, and I have no doubt that this emotion will stay with you for a very long time.
Mack has always had a gift with dogs and can render them harmless in a matter of seconds. Being bitten on the face as a little girl, Céce is terrified of them until Mack rescues a battered pitbull and teaches both girls how to love. While both are hesitant to be involved with each other in the beginning, a mutual understanding quickly escalates into full blown love. They understand each other in a way no one else can and know just what to do to comfort the other. I found their relationship to be so beautiful. Whether Mack is buying Céce cheap but thoughtful gifts, whether they're making love or whether their hearts are breaking because of terrible circumstances, it all hit me like a ton of bricks in the very best way. Griffin's writing is superb and always conveys all of the emotion he intends to. Just stunning.
One of the novel's best attributes is the surrounding air of mystery. Things that may seem insignificant or that don't make sense are explained as the story progresses through flashbacks. These revelations are extremely powerful and meaningful, no matter how minor the subject matter, and I enjoyed going on this learning curve immensely. The characters are developed very well and each revealed layer of their background only makes us more sympathetic or adoring. One moment can change your life forever, but despite that, you can move on and become a better person with these experiences - that is the main message of the novel, and the plot in which this message is conveyed is heartbreaking. Plot wise, I refuse to divulge anything! I will only give you some sound advice: Grab some tissues and prepare to cry for most of the novel's second half.
For days after finishing this book my heart ached, and it continues to do so every single time I think about it. While the conclusion is in no way tragic or horrible, it is open-ended, bittersweet and will make you cry bucket loads anyway. Perhaps it's the genuine love and sacrifice? Or perhaps anger at the unjustness of the situation? Either way, Stay With Me will move you and you will hopefully take something away from this truly magnificent story. These characters will embed themselves in your heart and stay in your thoughts for a long time to come. An absolutely brilliant novel by Paul Griffins, Stay With Me is a must read.(less)
In the second book of the Caster Chronicles, Ethan Wate battles with himself and those around him after finding out that he's not as normal as he seemed. Whilst trying to discover his true identity, he must also fight to save his girlfriend, who is the brink of surrendering to the darkness, and keep her close after she becomes more and more distant. Beautiful Darkness is packed with punch, filled with more doing and less talking. New characters are introduced and together they embark on a dangerous journey through the Caster worlds, which are littered with dark creatures around every corner. Unlike Beautiful Creatures, this novel has an exciting plot which will sustain your interest very easily and until the end.
We are introduced to two new love interests who are both surprisingly entertaining and likeable. Liv, an assistant at the Gaitlan Library, knows more about the Caster world than she lets on. Her genuine kindness and simpleness intrigues Ethan, as the situation between him and Lena gets complicated. An old friend from the previous book returns, Lena's Dark cousin, Ridley, bringing with her a boy named John Breed. He and Lena spend a suspicious lot of time together before running away to find a place, a paradise, which may not even exist. Who is John and what's his agenda? Is he on the Good side? I felt that the character development improved immensely in Beautiful Darkness. Ethan grows as he explores his roots and destiny, plagued with dreams about a man he doesn't know. Lena becomes strong and determined, taking control of her life and no longer being a weak girl who cries about her doom. The issues between the lovers actually strengthened their relationship that much more and built a tension (of the good kind) that would not have been achieved otherwise.
The fight between Good and Evil is less emphasised in this book. While it is still the overall theme of the novel, the majority of Beautiful Darkness is focused on Ethan's mission to find and save Lena before it's too late. I enjoyed this increase in action, over mythology, as I felt the previous book was a little too overpowering in that aspect. There is a nice balance of romance with humour and action, so all of the bases are covered!
With unpredictable twists, mysteries and high levels of anticipation, Beautiful Darkness is a very enjoyable novel. If you didn't like the first, continuing on with the series is most definitely the right decision! I'm relieved to now be a fan of the series and am looking forward to Beautiful Chaos!(less)
Matched was such a fantastic novel. Upon completion, I was breathless and still in fan-mode. I had heard about this book a while ago and when I saw the gorgeous cover, I knew that I had to have it. The whole concept of living in a completely controlled society intrigued me. What better place to have a love story? A love triangle? The book begins well and pulls readers in immediately as we await Cassia's match. I was very excited about this and couldn't wait for the impending "glitch scene". I was very surprised as the glitch didn't occur until after the ceremony. Here I was, bouncing in anticipation, and it didn't even happen! Well played, Condie, well played.
As the story continued, I realised I wasn't getting into it as easily as I should've been. But around the halfway mark…I was there. Matched sucked me and held me in its clutches so that I couldn't stop reading until I finished it in the early morning hours. It's another one of those books that you have to read in one sitting and can't let go of until you've finished. There isn't a low/calm point where you can take a break because every single chapter ends at an interesting point so in the end, you never end up stopping.
I feel as if we didn't get to know Cassia enough. Most of the book was spent with Cassia hanging out with Ky, sneaking around, having internal debates with herself, etc. There wasn't much development with her character, or any of the others for that matter. Well, either that or my memory is really foggy. But with that being said, I really loved Ky… What to say about him? Quiet, strong, smart, romantic? What's not to love? Cassia and Ky's love story absolutely messed with my heart. There were sweet moments, sad moments and moments that just made you want to die. There was a certain thrill and constant tension between them. It's because of them and their secretive, dangerous relationship that makes this book so gripping. You wanted to know what sweet thing Ky was going to do next, whether they would finally get caught, whether they would stay together… Exciting stuff, I tell you.
I thought the novel ended on a perfect cliffhanger. Absolutely cannot wait for the next in the trilogy to see how Cassia overcomes the complication (which I must say made me cry) that has been thrown her way. The fact that Xander, the other boy, was willing to help her was heartbreaking too. Poor boy. He and Cassia seemed to be the perfect match for each other but then Ky came along and muddled everything up. The worst love triangles? When both guys are great people and you know that one will end up hurt, even if they absolutely don't deserve it and deserve the girl as much as the other guy.
Matched will stay with you, long after you've finished. The sequel, Crossed, hits the shelves in November and I bet you won't be able to wait until then!(less)
As soon as I opened this book I knew it would be an all-time favourite. The main character, Cinder, drew me in immediately with her kind heart, humour and willingness to help others. I never thought this would be my kind of read - androids and space people? - but my goodness did Marissa Meyer blow my mind. Her clever world crafting and fully developed characters will leave you breathless and begging for more. Is it 2013 yet? Surely it can't be a whole year away… *sobs*
Living in New Beijing, Cinder is your futuristic Cinderella. She works as a skilled mechanic and, on her own, supports her family's lavish spending. With her evil step-mother and sisters, her family is unbearable and will make you shudder in anger, nervous fear and frustration. You'll be horrified by how much her mother's cruel and thoughtless actions affect the outcomes of the novel too! Your sympathy levels will be in overdrive as Cinder's thrown into the cruellest of situations and by the end, you'll definitely feel compelled to give this cyborg a metal-crushing hug. The novel comes alive through it's brilliant characters, whether heroic or evil, and is carried effortlessly by Meyer's imaginative writing. Cinder is filled with nerve-wrecking tension and action, making it a very addictive read. If you can put it down for even a second, I'll be very shocked!
Of course, this wouldn't be a Cinderella story without a Prince Charming. On a very typical day at her stall, Prince Kai of the Eastern Commonwealth stops by to drop off his android for repairs. It's through this first meeting that their lives intertwine and they become caught in a forbidden romance neither can walk away from. The world is in a pandemic, the currently incurable plague killing millions of humans and androids alike. Somehow, Cinder unwillingly gets involved with the testing, which guarantees an almost-certain death with countless unsuccessful vaccines. Through this experience, she learns shocking things about her true self and origins, along with becoming a crucial part in the raging Earth/Lunar war. This brilliant cyberpunk will fascinate you with its intriguing mythology, mystery and thrilling action. Spot-on characters plus a fast-paced, yet intricate storyline? Don't pass out on me now! You have to stay conscious to enjoy the book!
Kai and Cinder have a very heart-warming relationship. Like every other good thing, it blossoms slowly and you can see how things develop between them every step of the way. As secrets about Cinder are revealed, their relationship only gets more dangerous. After Kai's father dies from the plague and he's slated to become the new Emperor, consorting with a non-human is the worst thing he can do. Add on Queen Levana, the brain-washing Lunar leader who's threatening to unleash a fatal war on Earth unless she's made Kai's wife, and Cinder is in for a wild journey. Will she be able to become Kai's beloved Queen at the ball or will Levana's evil plotting leave her dead?
This isn't a novel to read on a sunny afternoon to pass the time. No, Cinder's intense story is gripping and will have you enthralled for long after you've finished. The characters in this novel are at their best and, I promise, you'll feel honoured to have experienced the otherworldly level of amazing that is Cinder. Every element of this novel is just perfect! You'll want to get your hands on the sequel immediately afterwards so maybe you should chain yourself up before you go breaking into Meyer's house for it. Truly stunning and original, Cinder will appeal to every single type of reader and throw you into a imaginative world filled with endless possibilities.(less)
Vampire Academy is the first book of six from the very popular series of the same name. It follows the adventures of Rosemarie Hathaway and her friends, including Princess Vasilisa Dragomir. Rose and Lissa have been best friends since kindergarten and share a special bond, which you'll learn more about throughout the series! Rose's love interest is Dimitri Belikov, a Russian guardian who is also her mentor.
Vampire Academy is not your typical vampire book. There are different types of vampires, different abilities they can wield and other extra things too. Definitions for Dummies Moroi - Full vampires. They're the "good" ones and all have special abilities (earth, water, fire, air) Royal moroi - Moroi who come from the twelve royal families Strigoi - "Evil vampires" who are made, not born, and aim to kill the royal moroi Dhampir - half vampire/half human - usually grow up to protect moroi from strigoi
I was really skeptical about liking this book for many reasons. 1) It's about vampires... Enough said. 2) The title sounds a little cheesy and the cover isn't that great. 3) My friend did an absolutely terrible job of selling it to me. But hey guess what? I really enjoyed the book! The characters were very interesting and relatable. Sure, they're vampires but they still face the same problems we mere humans do! The relationship between Rose and Dimitri was fantastic. You could really see their warring emotions, especially so in Dimitri's case, and so you just knew that it would be good when everything finally came together.
Rose was a great character. She was strong, confident, badass and sexy without being annoying, She did the whole "everyone wants to be me" thing very well and didn't do it in a snobby way! Dimitri was pretty fantastic too. He was mature, wise, strong, smart, responsible, smoking hot……unattainable. All good qualities. He and Rose will make a great couple. They balance each other out in so many ways!
I think the bond between Lissa and Rose was really interesting too. It made their friendship much more intense and gave us some really good scenes. Christian, Lissa's badboy love interest, is wonderful by the way. I love him as much as I love Dimitri!
Overall, great book. Very nice set up for the rest of the series!
Power of Six left me absolutely speechless. There were truly no dull moments and all 350 pages were a delight to read. The novel has two narrators, both of which are graced with exciting story lines and magnificent character development. After running from Paradise, John Smith races around America with Six and Sam in an attempt to learn about his past and his Legacies, to save the people on Earth and to prevent the total destruction of his home planet, Lorien. Meanwhile, Marina (Seven) lives in a Spanish orphanage with her Cepan, Adelina, trying desperately to escape from her prison and find the others like her.
So the powers of invisibility, telekinesis, pyrokenesis weren't cool enough for you? We're now discovering that some have the ability to see in the dark, breathe underwater, resist gravity and shapeshift! Every single word of this novel is to be devoured. Whether you're reading about the Lorien history, John's flashbacks and visions, action sequences, romantic moments, hilarious bantering or scary chases, Power of Six will enrapture you and demand to be read in one sitting. With the point of view changes, anticipation and mystery is built on a whole other level. Leaving one character's story on a cliffhanger, the chapter changes location and immerses us into the story of another. Cue cliffhanger. Rinse and repeat.
The relationships in this novel are very strong and, in my opinion, really carry the novel to its "brilliant" status. John continues to maintain his friendship with best friend, Sam, a human who's determined to aid the aliens in their war against the Mogadorians. While away from his girlfriend, Sarah, John has a wandering eye, becoming guiltily attracted to Sam's crush, Six. But there are no messy love triangles or jealous third wheels here, so fret no more. The dynamic personalities within this trio will surely entertain and evoke a fair share of laughs from you! In contrast, Marina has only one alliance in her orphanage - Ella, a seven year old who has just been brought in. Their friendship is sweet and heartwarming, a spark of happiness amidst the sadness of Adelina's betrayal and alliance with the Church.
The fight to stay alive and to kill the Mogadorians is the main plot of the novel. Pittacus Lore cleverly weaves it in between other elements so that we're given a rich, complete and exciting experience. I cannot stress it enough - go out and buy this book now! You will not regret it. I am bouncing in anticipation for the third book. If it's even half as good as this book, we're in for a real treat.(less)
I Am Number Four is set in a world where there are nine aliens, all who come from the planet Lorien which is now destroyed. These nine aliens are being hunted by the evil Mogadorian, but they have to be killed in order, thanks to a special charm. They look like ordinary teenagers living ordinary lives, but have extraordinary skills. The plot of this novel captivated my attention immediately. "Three are dead. I am number four. I am next." It sounded smart, exciting and full of adventure. I actually really enjoyed this book. I didn't think I would because of the so-so ratings but it was turned out to be as interesting as I'd hoped!.
John is the main protagonist of the novel. He is fifteen years old and has Legacies (paranormal abilities) including creation/control over light/fire and telekinesis. Legacies develop over time and are triggered by emotion, so John's powers are most likely still evolving which should be great to read about in the future. I thought his character was very sweet. He was always so sympathetic, kind and level-headed - surprising for a fifteen year old, no? John was very sweet to Sarah, the girl he meets at school, also. Over the course of the book, the two become closer and eventually declare their love. Their relationship is visited quite frequently in the novel but I feel as if it still wasn't enough. I would have preferred some longer scenes, even if it meant less of them. Nonetheless, John and Sarah are adorable together and it's very pleasant to read about.
The book, I felt, started off somewhat poorly though. The short sentences and lack of flow really bugged me, as they all felt disconnected, and I was worried that it would continue this way for the rest of the book. Luckily after the first chapter, I was sucked into the storyline and wasn't bothered by them, even though they were still noticeable at times.
I started reading I Am Number Four the day after watching the movie (which wasn't as good as it could've been). Imagine my surprise when I discovered that the movie is almost nothing like the books. Unlike the movie, all of the characters in the novel were very likeable, the relationship between John and Sarah was better developed and more realistic, storylines made more sense and there was overall just a better flow. The fact that I already knew what the characters looked like and what they were like may have aided me in having such an enjoyable reading experience as well.
The ending was action-packed and lasted for quite some time - about one fifth if you want to be specific. Though it is very lengthy, most of it is exciting and suspenseful. It's only towards the very end of the climax that it becomes a little tedious - though that may have just been because I was reading very late at night whilst exhausted - but that is soon rectified as we come to the conclusion. Some characters are left behind, some embark on a new journey and some don't really do anything. I guess you could say it is left quite open-ended, leaving a nice opening for the next book. I Am Number Four wasn't the best written book but it was unique and gripping, so I will definitely be reading the sequel, The Power of Six.(less)
Falling Under opens with a scene of mystery as a burning man falls through the sky and down onto Theia's front lawn. She is helpless as the nameless man dies, his parting words cryptic as he tells her that it was "worth the fall". Immediately afterwards we are thrust into Theia's everyday life where we see that she is controlled by her strict father who seems unloving and cold. We are then introduced to her friends, Amelia and Donny, who I absolutely adore. Amelia is a shy girl who enjoys delving into the world of magic while Donny is sarcastic, confident and downright hilarious. Their characters are very well developed and I wouldn't mind reading an entire book just about them, to be honest! Every night that Theia goes to sleep, she is mentally transported to another world where a handsome man wearing suits with coattails awaits her, along with his group of featureless skeletons. He seduces and pushes her away at the same time and she is shocked when he appears at her school, staring right at her. From the beginning, Theia is intrigued by him, not at all scared at what he could possibly be. It is a slow process but she eventually realises that the man haunting her dreams and real life thoughts are one and the same.
We easily fall victim to Haden's sly seduction, even though we can see that he is manipulative and toys with people around him. He uses girls as puppets in order to seduce Theia or make her jealous, and he is possessive when he misinterprets her interactions with other men. Theia falls quickly and the two play the game of one step forward, two steps back. Just when you think Haden will give into his feelings for Theia, he becomes frustratingly rational and we are forced to continue waiting. This eventually builds up a mountain of tension and their first kiss - or all of them really - is magnificent and explosive. Hayes has the ability to write wonderfully steamy scenes as well as those very romantic ones. So don't think that Haden's always a jerk! He's actually very sweet at times and we see his innocent boyishness - his human side - make an appearance. A few times in the novel there are moments of "Stay away from me. I'm too dangerous" and "No, I really love you!" but the positives by far outweigh the minor negatives. Towards the end of the novel, Haden becomes the narrator and everything is quite literally the other way around. Because of this experience, they grow as characters and have very different identities to those they had at the beginning.
Falling Under is utterly captivating as we are never sure what to expect next. The pace is good, the twists are exciting, the climax nerve-wracking and the conclusion jaw-dropping. Can we have the sequel now? (less)