I enjoyed this reading the Twilight story from Edward's point of view. I think Meyer did a good job with changing points of view. I actually like Edwa...moreI enjoyed this reading the Twilight story from Edward's point of view. I think Meyer did a good job with changing points of view. I actually like Edward's point of view more than Bella's. Midnight Sun helped me appreciate and understand both Edward and Rosalie. It is a shame that something leaked the story and that Meyer will most likely never finish it. =((less)
Those of us who had to wait a whole year will understand the following frustration. In Cast in Peril Kaylin was chosen as harmoniste for the recitatio...moreThose of us who had to wait a whole year will understand the following frustration. In Cast in Peril Kaylin was chosen as harmoniste for the recitation. In Cast in Peril I was expecting her to fulfill her role. Wrong! In Cast in Sorrow I kept waiting for her to fulfill her role. She finally does, but the waiting was painful!!!
I liked seeing Kaylin's growth as she understands her powers. She is still enough of a novice that she remains humble. She performs many miracles and a result has many Barrani in her debt. This could get interesting in future books.
I always liked Teela. Now I like her even more.
I am satisfied with the ending. Sagara managed to tied up many loose ends. Of course I want more books, but I walk away feeling satisfied.
I really enjoy books that grab me from the start: “Once, my mum told me a story about a princess and it began with her stuck in a castle. My story begins with my head stuck in the toilet.” Needless to say I wanted to know why this story started with a girl’s head in the toilet.
Our protagonist Mina Hart is a “normal” person with genetic defect(s) somewhere in her family making her “blemished.” This might be ok if people weren’t genetically engineered. In Dalton’s society GEMs, those that are genetically engineered, have the upper-hand.
Though Dalton combines many of my favorite dystopian books and movies into one, it does not seem cliché. The Blemished has elements of oppression, rebellion, loyalty, friendship, betrayal, and survival. What make is it unique is the strong female protagonist who owns her choices.
What I loved: • The way Dalton drew me into the story with the opening line. • The fast-paced nature of the novel. I barely had time to breathe while reading. Danger and poor choices seem to lurk around the next page. • Mina o Though she is frustrating at times, I enjoyed her growth and ownership of her choices. o A dystopian novel does not seem to be complete without a love triangle. Mina’s choice surprised me. Read to see who she chooses. • Mrs. Murgatroyd aka Murder-Troll o She is revolting to look at: “The collagen in her lips made her mouth baggy and shiny, like slugs inside loose skin.” Ew! She’s not hard to hate, but Dalton gives you glimpses of her true nature which made me question my hate. • Choice Ownership o It is refreshing to see Mina own her choices no matter how disastrous the consequences. • The Ending o Dalton ties up most of the loose ends. I know this is the first book in a series, but I am satisfied with the ending. Check out The Blemished by Sarah Dalton if you are looking for a fast-paced dystopian adventure! Many thanks to Sarah for an ARC! (less)
Perry and Aria had to go their separate ways in Under the Never Sky. For both of them it was a coming of age story. Both have a better idea of who they are. Their maturity continues in Through the Ever Night. Who knew being thrown out of their homes would be for the turning point for each?
Oftentimes I am frustrated when authors write in multiple perspectives. I am not convinced the narrator changed. Rossi uses third-person point of view very well. Though the story alternates between Perry and Aria’s point of view, I am never confused or annoyed at the prose. Instead I have to keep reading.
I liked the character development of both Perry and Aria. Perry struggles to rule as the new Blood Lord. As he makes unwise choices, the characters and I cringe. It is satisfying to see him struggle and then come out triumphant.
Though Aria is younger than Perry and newer to the “outside,” she is a more mature character. She sees the bigger picture and is a good match for Perry despite what the tribe may think. Perry saved Aria in Under the Never Sky, but she saves him in Through the Ever Night. In the end they prove to be a good match, both committed to one another.
The journey is not over yet. It will continue, and I desire more! Right now! Can Perry and Aria save the tribe before the aether destroys everything? Will their love survive this time? Can I survive the wait until next year for the conclusion? (less)
I enjoyed Incarnate, because I wanted Ana to succeed. No one wanted to help, love, or friend her, because she was new. No one thought she was worthy of anything.
I also enjoyed it, because after I finished reading sections the story would stay with me. Is reincarnation possible? Do soul mates exist? How would I live my life differently? How real is faith? Can you believe because you have been told to?
All the souls in Incarnate are 5000 years old, and they are continually reincarnated. They come back in different bodies, but their souls remain the same. Ana, the protagonist, is a new soul. No one knows if she will be reincarnated when she dies.
In essence this society, Range, is immortal. They do not fear dying, because they will come back. I am not sure what I would do if I was immortal. Would I live right every time, or would I allow myself the freedom to explore new things and make mistakes? What would most people choose? I think it would be awesome to master so many trades, but I think I would grow weary continually living without a purpose.
Their god, Janan, says he created them for a purpose and that he will protect them. However, Janan is a very silent god. He does not seem to communicate or act. Most people do not believe in him. It is hard to blame them, because Range has to protect itself from dragons, centaurs, and other mysterious, dangerous creatures. Janan built the city, Heart, where the people of Range live. Its walls and buildings protect them from the previous mentioned dangers.
Meadows makes an interesting commentary on religion and faith. Only a few believe. Janan has provided shelter and protection but does not communicate otherwise. He seems to be a god who demands worship but does not interact with his people. Is religion only for those who need it? What kind of god is he? What happens if you do not worship god? What if you desire more?
Like many of the Range inhabitants, I want more. “I know Whom I have believèd.” I know who my God is, what He is capable of doing, and that He lives. I understand the lack of faith in Janan. On the other hand I also understand faith is a gift. Without faith one does not believe, and that is a gift of God.
Overall, I enjoyed this read. Meadows thoughts on immortality and faith are different but thought provoking. The romance was believable, because it was not Insta!Love. (Yes, I just said I enjoyed the romance.) I enjoyed Ana’s journey, and I look forward to what is next.
As our world becomes more technologically advanced, more dystopian novels are published. I like dystopian novels, because they focus on what is import...moreAs our world becomes more technologically advanced, more dystopian novels are published. I like dystopian novels, because they focus on what is important: survival and relationships. Under the Never Sky is no different.
The story takes place in a world where being outside is dangerous and deadly. The sky is filled with aether, which strikes and wreaks havoc at will. As a result society split into two groups: those living in indestructible pods above and below ground and those living out in the dangerous landscape.
Perry and Aria’s worlds are very different. Perry is a “Savage,” and his world is all about survival. Every action is meant to help one another survive. Aria is a “Mole,” and her world is full of virtual video games, fun, and relaxation. The story begins when their worlds collide. For those action lovers Under the Never Sky is for you. Immediately the story starts with nonstop action and soon survival is questioned. The action never stops. Rossi fills in the gaps about her created world as the story progress; there is never an information dump.
My favorite part of the book is the main characters: Perry and Aria; they kept me reading. Their stories are told in alternating points of view. As they get to know each other, we get to know them. I kept reading to know what happened. Will they survive? Will they complete their mission? Can they save the current world?
What would happen to us as a society and individuals if our technology suddenly failed or were yanked away? Perhaps mass chaos would erupt. It almost makes me want to become a doomsday prepper…almost. My husband thinks we should become doomsday prepper stocking up on frozen carrots. I think carrots would serve us well in a Zombie Apocalypse. Make sure to read Under the Never Sky to find out if they survive and the status of their mission. (less)
**spoiler alert** I'm still digesting the book and want to read it a second time. After that I will post a review.
April 23, 2012 update:
One thing I li...more**spoiler alert** I'm still digesting the book and want to read it a second time. After that I will post a review.
April 23, 2012 update:
One thing I liked about Hourglass was its ability to draw me into the story. The first time I read it was over the summer. I stayed up late and suffered from a book hangover the next day. Not pretty, but almost worth it. At the time I was the only one not to LOVE Hourglass. Let me tell you why.
I have mixed emotions about romance novels. I like them, but I hate when characters mistake lust for love and 17-year-old girls know who they want to spend the rest of their lives with. Additionally sometimes I feel like reading too many romance novels is dangerous for my relationship with my husband. I start to wonder why he doesn’t show affection the same way the characters do. Does this mean he doesn’t love me?!?!? No. of. course. not. Don’t. be. ridiculous.
I also get frustrated when the romance overshadows the plot. I feel this is the case in Hourglass. The main characters are time traveling. How cool is that? Can you imagine what kinds of mischief people could get in to or what kinds of honorable acts could be done? Imagine if we could change the course of history! Awesome in a scary way!
The end left with me with more questions. How does time travel really work? How have events changed? Can they be sure of what tomorrow holds? What is next?
***SPOILER ALERT*** One thing I enjoyed and was intrigued by was Jack. He makes a scary villain. He visits Emerson in her bedroom, the most intimate and personal space she owns. (When I was done reading the second time I also expected to find Jack waiting in my bathroom for me. Scary!) He changes her past, so that she “owes” him for her present. He stole Liam’s wife’s memory which incapacitated her. He manipulates people and situations to his own end. He has messed with time, so no one is sure of the consequences. He is mastermind behind the “evil plans.” I buy most of it, but I feel like McEntire tried too quickly to tie up some of the loose ends leaving the reader unconvinced. (less)
I picked this up because a friend recommended it, and I had just finished another breathless read, Awaken. I did not expect to be left breathless, sleepless, or suffering from a book hangover...again! Needless to say, reading Divergent has left me breathless. It is not just a dystopia. It is a work that questions values, choices, and ideals. What is right? What is true? Whom can one believe?
Beatrice, like other 16 year olds, must choose which faction of society to belong to forever. Her choices are Candor (honesty), Erudite (intelligence), Amity (peace), Abnegation (selflessness), and Dauntless (brave). Her choice is both surprising and not. What would you choose? Regardless of what you choose, I dare you to pick up this book!
Update: On my second read, I found Divergent just as intriguing, breathless, and amazing. It left me wondering and satisfied.
Children become adults at the age of 16. I know this works for England and other European countries. Could this work for America? As I think about some of my students, I wonder if real responsibility would be a wake-up call. I wonder if they would enter the real world, make mistakes, and revisit education when they were ready. On the other hand I know my students are on the verge of adulthood and still need guidance. Do many students grow up parentless or virtually parentless? Is that why so many novels have limited or no parent involvement?
Is it fair to make people choose one path at the age of 16? I am not even sure that today at 33 I would be satisfied being made to choose one path. Divergent’s society disguises slavery as choice. They want everyone to fit into a mold, desiring robotic citizens.
One of my favorite aspects of Divergent was the romance. I am not a big fan of romance unrealistic romance. The author has to make it believable. Otherwise it is “insta!love” and gag worthy. Roth convinced me of the honesty of the characters' love. For me the best part is their love is ongoing and codependent (Thanks Kara!).
In conclusion, you should pick of Divergent, because it is a wonderful story of the importance of choice. (less)
Awaken is one of those books you pick up, are instantly drawn in, and want to live in that world. Awaken was so good, I’m still considering rereading...moreAwaken is one of those books you pick up, are instantly drawn in, and want to live in that world. Awaken was so good, I’m still considering rereading it immediately, now, when I’m done with my review.
Awaken is both futuristic and present. Kacvinsky illustrates how people in 2060 (and today) choose to be almost solely connected to the digital world. Everywhere people are plugged in. Face to face interaction is almost nonexistent. Madeleine, heiress of the digital school empire, lives in her room and through her computer. Her experiences are limited and monitored by her authoritarian dad. Life is mundane to say the least until she meets Justin, a mysterious, friendly, sexy guy. I enjoyed Madeleine’s journey to find herself as she experiences life and her first love. This is a must read for dystopia fans and romantics.
There is one thing that keeps bugging me. One of Justin's actions changes the course of Maddie's life forever. Not only does he not apologize for it, but Maddie doesn't seem to mind. Blame is never placed. I wonder if Katie Kacvinsky will reconcile the event or let it slip into the night unnoticed. (less)
While this series is excellent, the stress of reading it in one sitting is unbearable. The nonstop action kept my heart racing as I devoured the pages. The unpredictable kept happening. Ness is a master of plot twist.
Mayor/President Prentiss is an evil man. I did not like him in book one, and I like him even less in book three. His relationship with Todd worried me the whole time. Like Todd I did not trust him, but he showed some elements of goodness. Yet, he was always controlling multiple people. He is a master of manipulation. I kept wondering if/when he is going to die. (He became worse than Aaron the preacher.)
Ness throws in a big curve ball, because he adds a third narrator 100 pages in! I wanted to throw the book across the room! The third narrator adds depth to the story. I am impressed with Ness' ability to distinguish between multiple points of view, make each believable, and create a well-rounded story.
When Manchee died in book one, I could not stop sobbing. How could he kill off the most loyal character? Aaron's death redeemed Manchee's life…a little. In Monsters of Men I was sad when another animal dies, but I was sobbing when a favorite character was killed. Ness put my heart through the ringer. Again.
I highly recommended this series to anyone who loves a good story of survival, coming of age, and being active in one's choices/life. (less)
I really wanted to like this book, because several friends recommended it to me. It kept me reading, and I couldn't put it down. I needed to know what...moreI really wanted to like this book, because several friends recommended it to me. It kept me reading, and I couldn't put it down. I needed to know what happened, but I felt let down when I finished it.
It felt too much like Twilight. The story begins with a mysterious, sexy guy, Patch, and his new lab partner, a vulnerable, oblivious teenage girl, Nora. Like Twilight, it has danger, helpless females, love, and being saved by an almost good guy.