I was so eager to read the second book in this series, but — if I may be perfectly honest — I feel really disappointed. I guess I shouldn’t have beenI was so eager to read the second book in this series, but — if I may be perfectly honest — I feel really disappointed. I guess I shouldn’t have been too surprised since the second book in a trilogy is usually lackluster compared to the first or the final book. Setting up for the grand finale and all. Still, I didn’t think I would have been this … bored.
After Karou finds out that Akiva was responsible for the genocide of her chimera people, she breaks off all contact with him and finds the remaining surviving chimera. She is their only hope now, their only resurrectionist, who can continue pumping out soldiers for the war against the angels. Despite her true intentions to help her own people, the chimera don’t trust her. They still see her as a traitor, and Karou can’t ever be sure that she is safe with them. Meanwhile, Akiva mourns the loss of Karou and deeply regrets what he has done. He is more determined than ever to end the brutal conflicts between chimeras and angels once and for all, but he is not sure how to begin such a venture, especially when he is hailed as the Beast’s Bane, a hero amongst his own angelic race.
I think my biggest problem with this book was that it simply felt like nothing much was happening. By the end of the novel, it’s clear that much of what happened in the story (which, to me, was not much) was a set-up for book three. Days of Blood & Starlight just doesn’t feel like much of a story on its own. While I can remember several memorable and series-defining events from the first book, there was only one or two significant events that occurred in this book. To put it plainly, I was simply bored by this book. When I was reading book one, I found it hard to put the book down (or rather, my tablet, heh). I had no troubles putting book two down at all.
There were also some chapters from the point-of-view of really random characters. For example, the Dama centaur chimera sisters Sveva and Sarazal and their escape story. There were a handful of chapters from them and then you didn’t hear anything from them again for the rest of the book. I found that quite odd …
A love triangle begins to emerge in this book, which I would not have minded so much if there was a hint of it in the first book. Karou and Akiva are more or less separated (for the time being, anyway), and we are introduced to Ziri, a chimera of the same race that Madrigal/Karou was. Cue intimate moments scenes. Insert a vague history between the two of them. See, all this was brand new information in book two, Ziri was never mentioned in book one, and it made it feel like this love triangle thing was an afterthought or something.
I also have to agree with my friend Paola that Zuzana had become super annoying in this book and I really hope she would be turned down a notch or two. I don’t know if she and Mik were supposed to be comic relief in an otherwise bleak and depressing environment, but they were not funny. They were irritating. Especially Zuzana, who came off as self-centered to me. A clashing of worlds is about to occur, your best friend’s life is going to be in danger, the entire WORLD is going to be in danger, and the only thing she seemed to care about was that she was in a dinky hotel room, away from all the action. Sigh.
I was happy with the direction of character development though. I feel Karou has grown up and matured a lot, enduring her trials and tribulations (unlike her best friend who seemed to have done the reverse of maturing), and Akiva also has gone through some serious self reflection. I like how they are not like two lovesick teenagers hell-bent on being together no matter the costs. They are level headed and realize there are greater stakes — worlds to save — and if they cannot be together because of this, then so be it, because it will be for the greater good. I do hope Karou and Akiva will resolve their issues with one another, but I feel it would be appropriate if they didn’t either. I guess either way, I will be content with their relationship.
Here’s hoping book three will be much better!...more
I am kind of in a state of disbelief over this book. I mean that in a, “What did I just read?” kind of way. It started off pretty good but very, veryI am kind of in a state of disbelief over this book. I mean that in a, “What did I just read?” kind of way. It started off pretty good but very, very quickly went downhill for me. I just can’t believe over half the things that happened in this book. I’m surprised I actually read every word to the end.
Sweet Evil is about a girl named Anna. She’s super sweet and innocent, incredibly nice, and also, she can literally see people’s emotions, in colours. She’s always known she was kind of different from other people, obviously. When she turns 16, she meets Kaidan, a deliciously handsome teen boy who’s in a famous rock band. He’s the same as her — he can see people’s emotions, but the difference is, he knows why. Anna and Kaidan are Nephilim, the offspring of demons and humans. Born to one of the Dukes of Evil, their jobs is to corrupt humankind and have them destroy one another in sin. However, Anna is even more unique than she realizes — she is not the daughter of a demon and a human, but rather, a demon and an angel.
There are so many things I didn’t like about this book. I’ll start with the story and structure. I really did not like having the story world explained to me via question-answer sessions between characters. I can think of at least three long scenes where Anna is sat down with another characters (Kaidan, her foster mom Patti, or her dad) and they just explain things to her. It was like reading an interview, where Anna would ask a question and the other person would provide an answer. I find this to be a very boring and unimaginative way of revealing a story world.
A lot of events happened in this book that were just super unrealistic, and I don’t mean the demons and spirits and angels. The majority of characters in this book are 15-17. Somehow, every teen is hooked onto drinking and ecstasy and having sex, or so it seems. At age FIFTEEN? Holy cow. Maybe I just wasn’t “hip” when I was 15, but that seems awfully young to be doing these things. Not only that, but it’s incredibly easy for them to enter clubs and bars. I have no idea why. I highly doubt all the bouncers do is slap a bracelet on your hand that says you’re a minor. As the kids in this book showed, even with these magical bracelets, they got their hands on booze very easily. And wow, were they ever knowledgeable about alcohol, they knew so many drinks and mixes, it was mind boggling.
The characters were ridiculous. Anna is supposed to be super innocent, kind and a little naive. Well, she definitely came off naive, and very dumb, and very annoying. She’s stuck in this world where she wants everyone to hold hands and ring around the rosy. She’s also hypocritical. For example, Kaidan, being the son of the Duke of Lust, kept wanting to have sex with her. She kept refusing. Finally, one night, she randomly pounced on Kaidan, totally wanting to have sex with him because — get this — her poetry homework made her mad. Kaidan wasn’t great either. I saw no reason why the two of them fell in love after four days (Anna even admits it’s only been 4 days), but they did. Kaidan had little personality and the only thing he wanted from Anna nearly the entire time was to have sex with her, which Anna kept refusing yet she fell in love … Weird.
Anna’s parents were really aggravating too, especially her mom. Anna’s foster mom, Patti, is your stereotypical helicopter mom. At the same time, she makes dumb parenting decisions. Anna needs to go to California to meet her dad — why not go on a road trip with Kaidan, the boy you met yesterday? Yes, you know he’s the son of a demon, that should be no problem because you’ll just go right up to him and tell him to leave Anna’s virtue intact. He’ll listen to you, right? And then there’s Anna’s dad. She hasn’t seen him in 16 years, yet once they were in each other’s lives, they acted like they’ve always known one another, being super close and everything. It was bizarre. Not to mention how extremely uncomfortable it was to read about her dad bringing TONS of alcohol to her and teaching her how to drink alcohol so she can lure other people to drink and become drunk. She’s SIXTEEN. I don’t care if that’s her job as a demon child, she’s SIXTEEN! It did not inspire any warm and fuzzy father-daughter moments in me at all.
On a similar note, I do understand that this book centers around these demons that are each in charge of a sin, but I felt like the amount of it in the book was almost at inappropriate levels for a YA/teen novel. There’s SO much drugs and alcohol in this book which the characters drink with no consequences. Kaidan’s job is to have sex with girls, so he’s having one night stands in every other chapter. We have two twin girls whose job is to break up relationships and marriages. One of them describes being gang raped at age 13. Anna herself almost gets date raped. Who thought all this would be okay in a book with characters who are so young?! If this was an adult/general fiction book, that’s different, but this isn’t. I also disliked how this book emphasized virginity = purity. Implying that if you're not a virgin, you're a dirty, dirty whore, which is something some of the female characters who are not virgins experienced when the other kids at school found out they had sex with so and so.
I can go on forever about what I didn’t like about this book, but I think you get the point. There’s so many things I dislike about it and the story seemed to make less and less sense as the book went on. It’s really strange because when I first started the book, I actually really enjoyed the first chapter and was looking forward to some YA demon-angel mythology. I am definitely not interested in reading any more from this series :|...more
The last several times I was attracted to a beautiful YA cover, the book turned out to be disappointing. This time, however, the book turned out to beThe last several times I was attracted to a beautiful YA cover, the book turned out to be disappointing. This time, however, the book turned out to be a very wonderful read! I’m pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book and how much I look forward to the next one in this series.
Everneath is about 17 year old Nikki (nicknamed Becks because of her last name), who has reappeared on the Surface of the world again. Where had she been previously? She was in a “cocoon”, trapped in the Everneath (a mythical underworld of some sort) with an Everliving being named Cole, who fed off her emotions for 100 years so that he will continue to remain immortal. She’s finally out of Everneath and back on the Surface, where she finds only 6 months have passed. She only has another 6 months of freedom before the Everneath tunnels will claim her again.
If there’s one thing Nikki wants to do before being taken again, it’s to see her former boyfriend Jack. They had broken up even before she went missing, but she never stopped thinking about him, for a hundred years. As Nikki tries to mend their relationship so that it at least sort of resembles a friendship again, Nikki and Jack find themselves longing for the past and each other. This is made particularly difficult because of Cole, who keeps appearing before Nikki and offering her another choice — choose to be with Cole and they may become rulers of the Everneath. Why Nikki won’t go for this option, besides the fact that she wants to be with Jack, is because she will have to be like Cole and start feeding off other people’s emotions too, an experience that Nikki has done and does not wish on anyone else.
At first, I found it a little difficult to get into the book. I didn’t really understand the world of the Everneath, and the plot seemed to progress rather slowly. It’s not a plot orientated book, it’s definitely a character orientated book. However, I caught on eventually and with the 6 month deadline hovering over Nikki’s head, there was a real sense of urgency to everything the characters did and the choices they made. What I particularly loved was the way the story was presented. It switched back and forth between the past and the present with each chapter, juxtaposing the awkwardness of Nikki and Jack’s present relationship with the sweet, honeymoon-like relationship of their past. It definitely helped me understand the characters more thoroughly and knowing the ins and outs of their relationship put into perspective the danger the Everneath is to the both of them.
Nikki was a great character, I liked how the book kind of showed her return to the Surface like a person who was recovering from a drug addiction. Because that’s what it’s described as in the book — when you are being fed off, it’s like everything in the world is fine again, no need to feel anything, which Nikki sorely wanted because of her break up and the fact her mother died (and then the culprit didn’t even go to jail). It was like she was numb for 100 years and finally was sober and out in the world again. The other two main characters, the boys Cole and Jack, were a tad disappointing in their characterization. They both felt sort of stereotypical, bad boy and perfect boy, but at least they were two people who were distinctly different from one another (unlike some other YA love triangles, where I don’t understand what the girl’s dilemma is because both boys are exactly the same … but that’s another story). And they were both quite likeable, even the naughty one, haha.
I’m really happy that I read this book! I haven’t enjoyed a YA paranormal book in a long time (or so it feels), and I’m glad Everneath lifted me out of that funk. I’m definitely looking forward to the second book, I’m dying to find out what happens after that ending!...more
I’ve been meaning to read this book for a while. When it was first released and the reviews started pouring out on blogs and Goodreads, the overwhelmiI’ve been meaning to read this book for a while. When it was first released and the reviews started pouring out on blogs and Goodreads, the overwhelming majority that I read were very positive reviews. Needless to say, this book piqued my interest but I didn’t get around to reading it until now (an excuse I use for almost every book I read — “I didn’t get around to reading it …” Hah). I tried not to have my opinion of the book subconsciously swayed by the hype, though when it feels like EVERYONE loves this book, I feel pressure to love it too. Anyway, I definitely think this book is amazing, fun and creative, and I enjoyed it very much. I can totally understand why everyone loves it. I don’t think I love it quite as much as some other readers too, but I do think it is a very good book.
The story is about a young girl named Karou (pronounced ka-roo), who lives in Prague, alone in her own apartment, and attends an art school. She loves to draw and her friends love seeing the monsters she creates in her sketchbook. Little do her friends know, these monsters aren’t figments of Karou’s imagination; they are real. They are the monsters who raised Karou and Karou loves them as her own family.
Her “father figure” is Brimstone, who appears to be the leader of the four monsters. His life’s work is to collect teeth. All kinds of teeth, from humans to animals and even other fantastical creatures. Karou has no idea what Brimstone does with these bags and bags of teeth, she’s not allowed to ask. However, she runs errands for Brimstone and in return, he gives him small beads that allow her to make minor wishes, such as changing her hair colour to a natural blue, or giving her enemy caterpillar-bushy eyebrows.
When black handprints start appearing on doorways all over the world — the doorways to the world where the monsters reside — Karou’s world starts to change drastically. Suddenly, she loses all contact with Brimstone and the others and worse, she is being hunted by a beautiful but dangerous male angel named Akiva. However, little does Karou know, Akiva knows all about Karou’s true identity and how she is connected to him. Before she knows it, she and Akiva are embroiled in a forbidden love.
Before I say anything else, I want to make it clear that I did, indeed, fall in love with this book. I haven’t read a book this creative or imaginative since … well, it feels like a very long time. The best part of the creativity, for me, was the use of the teeth and wishes. I’m not going to spoil what Brimstone was using the teeth for, for those of you who don’t know, but I really liked that twist. Teeth! So simple, but so genius at the same time.
At its core, it’s still a pretty ‘common’ story. I would say the core of this novel is similar to the basic plot of Romeo & Juliet: two starcrossed lovers who cannot be together due to their affiliations. But in Daughter of Smoke & Bone, I feel Laini Taylor took that common story and re-imagined it on an epic grand scale, with angels and demons and an eternal war. The chronology of the story is also a bit different as well, telling the end first (although as the reader, you do not know it is the end) and then explaining the beginning, with how Karou and Akiva originally met and so on.
I really enjoyed the beginning of the book (or the ‘end’ of the story). I was totally loving being in Karou’s world, her art classes, her secret visits to Brimstone and her monster family, her annoying ex-boyfriend doing stupid stunts to try to win her back and all the little, and sometimes petty, wishes she made. Where the book began to falter, for me, was when the story shifted and began to tell the tale of how Karou and Akiva originally met. It was very removed from the setting I was already used to, and I was really not expecting that at all. I went from being on a slightly magical/paranormal Earth to a completely different world altogether, one where angels and monsters fought a war on a daily basis. New city names, new geography, new culture to know. The problem wasn’t the newness, it was just such a sudden shift for me that it almost felt like a disconnect between the first half of the book to the second half. The more I read, the more far away I felt from everything I read prior. It almost felt like a completely different story I was reading.
I wasn’t too crazy about was Karou and Akiva’s relationship either. It’s very sweet, but as I mentioned earlier, it is at its core, a Romeo & Juliet kind of story. Even though I praise the author for being so imaginative with it, the relationship is still as simplistic as what you think a Romeo & Juliet story would have. Their relationship is powerful, deep and passionate — and also quite instant. Even though Karou and Akiva started off as enemies, they very, very quickly put that all aside and, well, fell in love. I know, I know — you are thinking, “Uh, did you not READ the book? There is a reason!” I’m perfectly aware but I think even when Karou and Akiva met originally in Karou’s past life, it was still a lot of, “Wow, he’s so beautiful” and “Wow, she’s so beautiful”, with some “I saved your life” mixed in. I’m afraid I just didn’t feel the same fiery passion that these two character felt whenever they were with one another.
Now, with all that said, I did love reading this book a lot though. It was very fun and I became victim to the “just one more chapter” syndrome that all good books seem to be able to inflict on its readers. I liked Karou’s character a lot — not so much her “alter ego” (or rather, her original form) because that personality seemed way too Mary Sue for my liking. But I liked Karou and how she interacted with her human friends and her monster family. I loved the idea of a monster hidden in a little shop collecting teeth — don’t ask my why, but I’m very attached to that idea and this book did a very good job driving me crazy with wanting to know what the heck Brimstone was using the teeth for! You do get to find out in the end, no worries. The book also did a good job driving me crazy with who Karou was in her other life, but that one became somewhat predictable and therefore, less mysterious once Akiva entered the story and you see how they’re interacting.
I certainly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys YA novels, I do think this is one of the better YA novels I’ve read in the last little while. I eagerly look forward to book two: Days Of Blood & Starlight!...more
I’ve seen this book appear on a number of Goodreads friends’ pages and was interested in it because 1) it took place in a stea4.5 stars, rounded up :)
I’ve seen this book appear on a number of Goodreads friends’ pages and was interested in it because 1) it took place in a steampunk Victorian period and 2) it’s a mish-mash of vampires, werewolves and ghosts. Essentially, I was under the impression it was a quirky book that would be fun to read and I’m happy to say, now that I finished reading it, that it is exactly that. Sometimes it’s nice to read something not serious, and Soulless was a great getaway. It was almost like fantasy chick-lit.
Soulless is about 26 year old spinster, Alexia Tarabotti. She is, if you haven’t guessed, soulless, which means she is “immune” to supernatural creatures. She can’t be bitten by them, for example, and they become human when touched by her. She lives in a steampunk Victorian era London, where werewolves, vampires and ghosts are real and integrated into society. Such supernatural creatures are registered with BUR (Bureau of Unnatural Registry) so they are all kept track of. At a ball one day, Alexia is attacked by an unregistered vampire, whom she accidentally kills. Lord Maccon, an alpha werewolf, a BUR worker and ridiculously gorgeous, is sent to investigate the killing. Nobody knows who this vampire is or where he came from. What’s worse is that registered supernaturals are disappearing and more unknown supernaturals are appearing. Even worse, everyone thinks Alexia may have something to do with this, being soulless and all.
The first thing I noticed was the writing style. It’s different from most novels, I think. I don’t really know how to describe it, other than that it’s quirky. I enjoyed the writing a lot and found it suited the humorous Victorian setting of this book. It’s witty, it’s funny and I was never bored at any time when reading this. I imagine this kind of writing style isn’t going to be for everyone, but I personally really liked it.
All the characters are very memorable and I love them all. Because of the type of story it is and the kind of atmosphere the book has, I’m not surprised that all the characters are kind of “cartoon-ish”; in fact, I loved it. Alexia is a bold, intellectual and independent woman who has resigned to the fact that she’ll probably never marry because frankly, no husband wants a wife this assertive in such a time period. That isn’t to say she doesn’t have her feminine moments. Alexia has resigned to being a spinster, but she does kind of wish she has a husband and a family and all that jazz. I loved her relationship with Lord Maccon, who becomes a love interest of her’s very early on in the story. They seem to irritate one another at first, but later it is revealed they both are quite fond of one another. Lord Maccon is so protective of Alexia, it is just adorable! I was a little surprised by how much romance was in this book (namely, all the kissing/making out scenes), but I found myself quite enjoying them bantering with one another. Even the characters that don’t speak much have wonderfully endearing qualities. For example, I really love Alexia’s family butler, Floote. He doesn’t say much, he doesn’t even appear much, but I just imagine him hovering around in the background, worrying over Alexia entertaining her adventurous spirit, and it just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
I think this is a delightfully written book that’s fun to read if you’re yearning for something light and fun. I am looking forward to reading more about Alexia in the next books in this series (makes me happy to know there are at least four more books after this first one)!...more
I’ve been seeing this book (and its other installments of the series) around on many, many blogs and there’s also this hype surrounding the 4th book,I’ve been seeing this book (and its other installments of the series) around on many, many blogs and there’s also this hype surrounding the 4th book, The Iron Knight, that is coming out soon. Soooo I decided I wanted to check out what all the hubbub around this book series is about. I don’t want to miss out on a party when there is one, although I tend to read with cautious optimism when it’s a book that’s beloved by many readers, to save myself from too much disappointment should the book not live up to its hype in my eyes.
I ended up … loving it.
The Iron King is about 16 year old Meghan Chase, who is pretty ordinary, even if she is the school loser. Her only worries are getting her car license, school and whether the popular football player of the school notices her. However, upon returning home one day, she realizes her little 4 year old brother Ethan is gone and replaced by a changeling child who wreaks havoc. Seeing her determination to get her brother back, Meghan’s best friend Robbie reveals that Ethan has been taking into the Nevernever, and that he himself is actually a faery … a rather famous one: Puck.
Meghan traverses into the Nevernever into the Seelie Court, where she discovers something major — King Oberon is actually her real father. Meghan is half human, half fey. Oberon wants Meghan to act like a princess now that she’s in his court, and takes her to a meeting between the Summer/Seelie Court and the Winter/Unseelie Court. It is there that Meghan meets the Winter Prince, Ash, who, despite wanting to kill Meghan to win the favor of his Queen, accompanies her and Puck on their journey to rescue Ethan.
This book was non-stop action. From the moment I picked it up to the moment I finished reading it, there was always something happening, something adventurous and exciting. This was a book where I could just sit and read and not realize how much time has gone by (Studying for exams? What exams?) I’m not exactly that familiar with fey legends and whatnot, and I haven’t read too many books that dealt with faeries (I think the only other faery related book I read was Wicked Lovely, which was okay but didn’t really nab my full interest), but this book has me suckered into the whole fey world now.
I think it’s the world that had me the most addicted to the story. I mean, the plot was fantastic as well, but the world … it felt like Wonderland with a mix of the Labyrinthe. To move around the Nevernever, there’s like secret passageways and maze-like paths, not to mention to move from our world to the Nevernever, there’s even more hidden doorways and whatnot. It all felt very fantastical. They have different territories and the environment of the region is shaped by the kind of fey that live there — my favourite being Nir Na Nog (did I get that right?) probably because I always had a fascination with beautiful, snow covered ice lands. My second would be the iron fey’s territory, because it sounds super cool with all its scrap metal and technology, even if it is horribly dangerous there. Even though these different areas are so vastly different, they fit together really well in the context of the story.
Meghan is a great character. She’s surprisingly courageous and outgoing for someone who’s on the bottom of the school food chain, but perhaps it was the situation (you know, people wanting to kill her in the Nevernever) that brought out these qualities in her. I’m so thankful she isn’t whiny or annoying. She’s got a good head on her shoulder.
The only complaint I have about this book is probably Meghan and Ash’s romantic relationship. I really don’t understand how it went from Ash telling Meghan he’s going to kill her one day … to them kissing and being in love. It kind of just happened — bam! so I’m not completely convinced by their romance. There was no scene that I can remember that helped with the transition. Meghan disliked Ash one moment, and suddenly, Meghan was in love with him. Same with Ash. I don’t know about you, but I don’t care how gorgeous a guy is, if he told me he wants to kill me and I know he’s dead serious about it, I would find it very difficult to make my feelings do a 180. Yes, I admit, I find Prince Ash very swoon-worthy too, but that kind of gets thrown out the window when threats toward my life is made.
I like Meghan. I like Ash. But I don’t really understand Meghan + Ash.
If you haven’t read this series yet — read it! It’s a fun faery story that doesn’t take itself too seriously, with a cast of memorable characters. This is a case where yes, the book does live up to its hype.
It’s been a super long time since I read any of the Mortal Instrument books. I remember all the characters but couldn’t really remember the plot detaiIt’s been a super long time since I read any of the Mortal Instrument books. I remember all the characters but couldn’t really remember the plot details. It all kind of came back to me as I read this fourth book though — which, by the way, I was a little surprised about because I thought the series ended with three?? But I guess not. Last I heard, there’s also a book five and six planned as well.
In City of Fallen Angels, Simon is adjusting to his life as a new vampire. Things get a bit rough when his mother sort of finds out and Simon decides to move out to protect her. Which turns out to be sort of a good thing, I suppose, since someone keeps sending people to try to capture or harm Simon, presumbly for his powers as a Daylighter, a vampire who can walk in the sunlight. Of course, nothing can harm him with the Mark of Cain on him.
At the same time, Shadowhunters are dying in Downworlder territory, causing a bit of strife between the two groups. At first everyone thinks it’s the leader of the vampires, Camille, but it soon becomes clear there is a greater force at work, with an ulterior motive.
Oh, and there’s also the Jace-Clary part of the story, which was my least favourite part so I’m going to kind of just glaze over it. Jace starts receiving dreams about harming Clary, and believes he might actually harm her. There was a lot of proclamations of undying love, angst and inner turmoil between the two — essentially, their relationship hasn’t really progressed since the last three books. I was hoping for it to mature, but it just can’t seem to get past this “I love you but I shouldn’t” kind of depressing thing. It’s also a bit hard to take their love seriously because this sort of obsessive love is what teenagers experience in “puppy love”, the kind of thing you think is cute but probably won’t last forever.
Anyway, this book felt very much like a “set-up” book — it’s setting up for a second major plot in the series. I’m not sure how I really feel about the continuation of the series; I thought book three ended off pretty well and tied things together neatly. All the same though, I do enjoy the series and the different direction it is headed in now does intrigue me and want me to continue reading. I will be the first to admit this wasn’t really a necessary sequel, but I guess I’m just a fan of the world Clare has created in her books and want to keep immersing myself in it.
I really like Simon (I can’t remember if I liked or disliked him in the previous books, but I think I was generally favorable towards him). He’s sort of the main character in this book (well, a central character anyway) and I think he does develop more as a character. He’s got a whole different life now — and I’m not only talking about being a super vampire that makes other vampires jealous, but also the fact he has two girls interested him! From being friend-zoned by Clary to having to rip girls off his back, Simon manages to feel like a refreshing new character while still retaining his personality, his thoughts and familiar self. He’s also got some angst going on now, with being a vampire and all — angst seems to be a central theme in this series — but I think Simon is a fabulous character and I’m really glad this book focuses more on him and that he has more of a role in the story now.
Overall, I quite liked the book. I was by no means obsessively reading it, but it certainly entertained me during my long commutes to and from campus. If you already enjoy the series, then I’m sure you’ll like this one too. If you haven’t read this series before, I find it is a bit of hit-or-miss amongst readers (at least, the ones I know), so I suggest just going with your gut feeling.
A lot of people are raving about this book and giving it great reviews. On the flip side, a lot of people are also giving it bad reviews and calling iA lot of people are raving about this book and giving it great reviews. On the flip side, a lot of people are also giving it bad reviews and calling it a total Twilight rip-off. I was curious as to which camp I would fall into, and how big of a rip-off this book could be, so I picked it up when I saw it available at the library. Now that I’ve finished reading it, I can conclude that 1) I side with the readers who feel this book is a big disappointment and 2) it is so, so incredibly obvious that it’s a Twilight rip-off, or at least trying to ride on Twilight’s high. The list of similarities is uncannily long, but I won’t list them all here in this post.
Basically, if you know anything about Twilight, you already know the story behind Hush Hush, just replace vampires with fallen angels. Nora Grey meets mysterious new student Patch in her biology class and is forcefully assigned to be his partner for a biology project. Patch is ridiculously good looking, but has a hard, icy personality. They don’t get along very well and Nora decides she doesn’t like Patch, yet mysteriously feels attracted to him anyway. The more Nora tries to stay away from Patch, the more intrigued she is by him. Meanwhile, at the same time, Nora feels she is being stalked by a man in a black ski mask and believing it may be Patch, she starts trying to dig into his past, but comes up empty handed each time. Only when she sees the scars on Patch’s back, she Googles ‘fallen angels’ and realizes that Patch must be one, and possibly trying to use Nora as a sacrifice so that he may obtain a human body.
What irked me was Patch and Nora’s relationship. Even if I forget the whole idea of it being the same situation as Bella and Edward (Edward wants to kill and drink Bella’s blood for his own benefit; Patch wants to kill and sacrifice Nora for his own benefit), it’s just a really shallow and nonsensical relationship built on intimidation. I did not understand how or why Nora would start falling in love with Patch and vice versa. She is frightened of him and seems to dislike him and after standing a little too close to Patch, she suddenly decides she secretly is lusting after him. It’s so incredibly hyporcritical; there’s several points in the story where Nora believes Patch is a real danger to her life, and at the exact same time, she also believes Patch would never harm her. I don’t understand this at all. She switches back and forth on her stance on Patch every other page, it would seem. Not to mention that it’s so disturbing that her supposed love for him is based on fear; she finds him dangerous and that is attractive to her so she continues to hang around him despite believing he has the power to kill her. So unsettling. Nora is an incredibly weak minded and shallow girl.
Patch is worse, he gives no hints that he likes Nora at all, and suddenly it is revealed near the end that he is in love with her; no explanation why he would choose her. I mean, Nora doesn’t exactly have a stellar personality or drop dead gorgeous looks from what I can tell. I can see no reason why a fallen angel would find her irresistibly alluring. I don’t find him to be a likable character at all. Also, the author’s repeated use of the word ‘smiling’ when describing Patch got on my nerves. He was smiling like he knew a secret. His eyes smiled. I could feel him smiling. You get the idea.
While eerily similar to Twilight’s, I didn’t think the plot was unbearable. The overall plot actually is okay (hence my pity half star below …). What I found silly was the author’s portrayal of teenagers and high school. It’s just so out of touch with what real teenagers or real teachers would behave like. Anyway, it’s pretty obvious that I didn’t really like this book, but I admit I’m kind of curious about the sequel because I want to see if it’s going to continue shadowing Twilight’s plot (and like I said, plot-wise, it isn’t that terrible, it’s really the characters that drag this book down). As far as recommendations go, I don’t recommend reading Hush Hush.
Twelve year old Percy Jackson is about to be expelled from school again. Somehow he always gets in trouble at whichever boarding school his mom sendsTwelve year old Percy Jackson is about to be expelled from school again. Somehow he always gets in trouble at whichever boarding school his mom sends him to, and his ADHD and dyslexia doesn’t make things any easier. As hard as it is to believe, being expelled is the least of his worries. Lately the weather is acting strangely and creepy monsters seem to be following him. His best friend turns out to be a satyr, his mother disappears in a flash of light in a “car accident” and, oh by the way, he also finds out his father is Poseidon, the Greek god of the seas.
A lot of people compare this series to the Harry Potter series. There are definitely similarities, but the differences outweigh them greatly. For one, Harry Potter has a constant element of “seriousness” in it, whereas Percy Jackson & The Olympians is all humor and fun. The Lightning Thief stars an impulsive and somewhat cynical boy who gets thrown into a myriad of hilarious situations while trying to unfold a mystery: Someone has stolen Zeus’ master lightning bolt and is trying to frame Percy and Poseidon for it. In an effort to clear his own name, Percy embarks on a journey with his satyr best friend Grover and another demigod (or “half blood”), Annabeth Chase, daughter of Athena, to the entrance of the Underworld (located in … Los Angelos!) to confront Hades, who they believe is the thief. Percy is a likable main character who almost always has something funny to say, although most of the time he isn’t trying to be intentionally funny. He’s extremely fluent in sarcasm.
A lot of places (such as my local library) have this book in the Young Adults section, but I seriously think it’s more of a children’s book (age 10+ maybe). I’ve never seen the movie, but the trailer makes the story appear to be “serious”. It’s not. The plot is charmingly juvenile in many ways; for example, the scene where Percy and his friends walk into a water-bed shop only to be captured by the crazy salesman who ties them to the water-beds and tries stretch their bodies to the exact length of the bed. It’s something a younger person would find funny (I found it amusing, probably because I’m a kid at heart but I know some people will probably just roll their eyes). Anyway, the plot is funny and is intended to be silly (at least, I think so) and moves at a decently brisk pace.
If you like Greek mythology, and don’t mind the idea of ‘modernizing’ them (think Ares on a motorcycle, or Poseidon dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and carrying a fishing pole), then you’ll probably like this book. Greek mythology isn’t all togas and white pillars and people sitting around on clouds in the sky in this series. I found this book to be a fun, fast read and I can’t wait to read the next one in the series.