This was a fantastic addiction to the legions of dystopian YA! I really liked the way Condie let her develop (very slowly) through her relationship wiThis was a fantastic addiction to the legions of dystopian YA! I really liked the way Condie let her develop (very slowly) through her relationship with Ky (who I also loved). I liked the portrayal of a post-disaster society as entirely controlled for their own safety, the neutrality of the Society made a spiffy back drop for the muted passion of Ky and Cassie.I did end up wondering why the Society was like that though. I know we get a one liner somewhere about the ‘warming’ but how on earth did that lead to this type of set up and who let it start in the first place? Really, no one thought Matching was a strange idea? Maybe finding your perfect match like that is nice, but shouldn’t you be able to choose whether you want to be with them?
It is a truly interesting dystopian YA novel with a sweet love story intertwined with Cassia’s discovery of how the society fails them in so many ways. I will heartily recommend this book to anyone interested in a lighter dystopian novel and can definitely see myself rereading/getting everyone else to read it it in preparation for the sequel!
So, what did I think? Wow. I went in half expecting to love it, half expecting to hate it, both because so many people said it was amazing. I now firmSo, what did I think? Wow. I went in half expecting to love it, half expecting to hate it, both because so many people said it was amazing. I now firmly side with that group and have promptly lent (…forced it upon) a friend.
I love the relationship that grows through the Hunger Games, and for me this was definitely the highlight of the book. Watching Katniss struggle between her forced independence that she is so used to hiding behind and the new relationships the Games thrust upon her was enrapturing to say the least. The relationships between the characters, the ones in the Games, the figures behind the scenes and Katniss’ family back at home are wonderfully shown (not told! Yay!), demonstrated and expanded throughout the story. This was amazingly done. The characters were really brought to life and their true colours, whether good or bad, were allowed to shine through the plot. Letting characters grow in this way takes a special skill and Collins definitely has that in spades!
The other, obviously important, part of the book, the plot, was amazing! I don’t know how she came up with such a brilliantly depicted world but I could picture it all in my head and I loved (and hated) living the experience along with Katniss. The dystopian America was intriguing and I would really like to know more about the governmental setup of the districts. The Hunger Games itself, well, disturbing comes to mind. Again, a really interesting idea (that one hopes would never happen!) about governmental control.
There were, as there almost always is, a couple of things that just didn’t work for me. I would say I didn’t like the level of violence (which is true) but at the same time I concede that it is necessary to show the conditions the children were forced into during the Hunger Games. Suzanne wins 80 zillion points for showing this in a very sensitive way, making sure that the violence was always balanced out by sentiment or at least a really good reason (not dying yourself for instance…).
All in all, a really great book, unlike any other YA book I have read. The end definitely left me hanging and I can’t wait to have a second to read the next two! I need to find out what happens to Katniss because I have a definite feeling that it isn’t going to be good…
I loved the language, the run-on though paragraphs. K tells me this is fancily called the stream of consciousness. I’m not sure about the fancy but II loved the language, the run-on though paragraphs. K tells me this is fancily called the stream of consciousness. I’m not sure about the fancy but I loved the way that this really drew me into the descriptive experiences that Holden was thinking about. Holden has an excellent sense of humor and his (mostly sarcastic) observations were witty and entertaining.
His attitude is one thing I’m torn over. While it is his story and it needs to have pieces of Holden in the narrative, he was very self-absorbed and this started to annoy me about half way through. I did enjoy how Holden, as a character within his own story, was visibly developed over the pages. I am always appreciative of growth and a smidge of self-awareness in the person I’m reading about.
I can definitely see the comparison between this and The Perks of Being a Wallflower and in retrospect I wish I had read Catcher in the Rye first, it probably would have made a lot more sense. Again, it is one of those books that I wish I had read when I was younger, 15 perhaps, when it would have made more of an impression. As it is now, I thought it was a pretty good read but not one I will return to soon, maybe in the future a reread would make me love it more.
What a great story! The book started off slowly, accompanied by my sighs of “Oh good, another depressed teenager in New York”, but it quickly earned aWhat a great story! The book started off slowly, accompanied by my sighs of “Oh good, another depressed teenager in New York”, but it quickly earned a permanent place on my bookshelf. Andi Alpers is a girl with some issues but she is amazingly described and we get to learn more about her through her adventures than by being told, always a plus. Donnelly carefully builds up our expectations, taking us from moody New York to a more grungy Paris than is normally portrayed. Along the way we get to meet several very interesting side characters such as her best friend, a rising political superstar, and her parents, who become intertwined with the main support of the plot. In France we meet (super nice, super hot) Virgil for some necessary love interest and support for Andi during some trying times.
What I liked most about the story though, was not the characters. Normally I am happy to say that the characters have to be amazing and the plot will still be alright but in this case it was more like the characters allowed the plot to shine. I loved the way that Donnelly managed to integrate music, both new and old, in a way that I never would have thought of. I actually ended up learning a lot about French classical music and the Revolution, from a completely new perspective. I loved having a glimpse into the imagined life of a captured child prince and of the girl who would do anything for him. I loved how we got to know Alexandrine through her 200 year old journal. I loved living the journey right alongside Andi and Alex. I loved the trippyness of the 18th century revolution (I loved the double meaning!). I loved everything.
This was a fantastic book! It is the first I’ve read by Cassandra Clare and definitely will not the last. We are introduced to the story and the mainThis was a fantastic book! It is the first I’ve read by Cassandra Clare and definitely will not the last. We are introduced to the story and the main characters in Pandemonium (very clever by the way) and get off to a great start that really had me wanting more! I was a bit confused at first about who was who and what was going on but that soon sorted it self out as Clare skillfully draws us into the story and brings the characters to life. Clary has a lot to deal with in this first book of The Mortal Instrument series. I love that we are taken along on this ride, I really felt like I was there alongside Clary and Jace as they face the many (many) obstacles encountered. The whole plot progresses insanely fast, a lot happens within a really short space of time and I think this was one of the many things that really grabbed me. I needed to know what was going to happen next!
All in all, an excellently written start to this amazing series! Well developed, beautifully described, this world within a world will definitely be getting another visit from me!
Wicked Lovely is one of the best faerie related books I’ve ever read. Marr masterfully combines elements of the classic faerie image, promiscious partWicked Lovely is one of the best faerie related books I’ve ever read. Marr masterfully combines elements of the classic faerie image, promiscious partiers who remain entirely classy, with modern funk, piercings, tattoos and relationships that the centuries old faeries can never truly understand. I like that we get presented with a cast of less than ordinary characters. I loved Aislinn, who was allowed to really come into her own. I appreciated the way that she never handed over control, no matter what.
I loved and hated Keenan in equal parts for most of the book. While you must lean towards dislike, because of his attitude towards everyone that is not him, I felt like Marr was able to give him a real personality behind his bad boy king persona. My absolute favorite character (and one I would like to be friends with!) though, was Seth. I would say that ‘he is everything you want in a …” but he can’t really be characterised as anything, he doesn’t fit any mould, hence the “…”. He is just Seth. Equal parts sweet and bad ass, Seth was what many boys in young adult fiction wish to be, an actual man! *gasp*
I can’t really say much about the plot without giving anything away, which is making this quite tricky! All I will say is that Marr has the skills necessary to pull off a story that, written any other way, could have easily gone horribly awry. Instead we end up with a fantastic plot that is both magically and entirely down to earth. There is enough humanity scattered through out the novel so that we are never allowed to get overly carried away into the faerie magic of the battle between the Winter Queen and Summer Queen and yet enough magic to take us out of the ordinary and into the extraordinary!
All in all an amazing read, one I would highly recommend to anyone the least bit interested in faerie folk lore and young adult books.
I loved everything about this book! I loved the way the story is set up. We get to see how the government has infiltrated everything and how everyoneI loved everything about this book! I loved the way the story is set up. We get to see how the government has infiltrated everything and how everyone is simultaneously happy and terrified all the time. While reading I actually didn’t like this part at all, I was bored and wanted something interesting to happen. But then it did, and now, looking back, I can see that the set up made the plot so much better. Without that part the rest of the story would have come off as completely absurd no matter how well written it was.
I liked Lena, I felt for her, what she was going through. I loved being there to experience love and the magic. Honestly though, I loved Alex a teeny bit more. I think it was his sneakiness and simple, plain humanness (word?). His realness when compared to the false, emotionless Portland. The thing I loved the absolute most though? Definitely how we get to see the relationship between Lena and Alex build, and how he teaches her so much about the world.
We never really get any reason for how the society ended up this way, with everyone forced into certain positions and treatments, with cites and countries fenced off. I would love to get a little history or something about what’s going on outside of Portland but I can definitely understand that for now, we know what Lena knows and all I can say is I hope she learns more in the next book!
I loved loved loved this book and if you haven’t read it yet you need to go find a copy right now and tell everyone to leave you alone until you are done. Seriously. That good. ...more
While Jenn sent me a copy of Sleight for (the now cancelled) Indie Author Month, I will admit that I’d alrOriginally posted at http://baffledbooks.com
While Jenn sent me a copy of Sleight for (the now cancelled) Indie Author Month, I will admit that I’d already bought a copy and was just waiting for an excuse to read and review it. After finishing Sleight, I don’t know why the hell I waited so long because it is perfect. There is so much to love and I don’t know what my favorite part is so I’m going to break it down:
Characters: I loved how we are introduced to the characters and their worlds. While there is an obvious instant connection thing happening, the relationship between Gemma and Henry is given time and space to grow nicely, at a pace that makes sense. I loved the connection that the families have, both good and bad, which offer the most intriguing balance of support and danger from all sides. I really liked how the families were so intertwined and how everything kept being turned inside out. This made perfect sense because, along with Gemma and Henry, the first half of the book carefully introduces (and connects) the reader to an amazing cast of characters who brought the book to life… before pulling everything apart in the second half. There were just so many layers of awesome that I just have to stop before this paragraph is any longer…
Plot: Oh my gosh. This was the most convoluted, amazing plot ever. I loved how so many bits and pieces of other peoples stories came together to make Gemma and Henry’s own personal one. I loved the pieces of circus lore and magical history that made everything that little bit more special. I loved the twists and turns, and turns of the pages that literally had me gasping (the bf kept looking at me funny). I loved how just as the story seemed to be making sense, something new was thrown in there, and yet the author knew just when to stop before it became overdone and annoying. And I hated the end for leaving me on the edge of my seat without knowing what happens next!
Writing: As you can see from the first two sections, the writing was fantastic. None of that could have been accomplished without a perfect backbone. There were no typos or weird grammatical things to make me cringe. Without being overdramatic, the language allowed the plot to come off of the pages (or Kindle screen, that’s what I was reading on).
My one quibble: While I loved the characters themselves, it occurred to me (after finishing) that Gemma and Henry sometimes acted strangely for their age. While they are often portrayed as very mature teenagers, with a very mature bond between them, this is contrasted by some very young teen behavior (running away and getting drunk when something really bad happens). I can’t really complain about this too much though because they are both older teens (17 and 18) and the situations they have been in have forced them to grow too fast. So basically… I’m complaining about nothing. Hmmm….
Overall: A perfect read and one I would very highly recommend. Sleight is the perfect balance of interesting history, betrayal, drama and swoon. I loved it and cannot wait for the sequel (Jenn tells me fall, maybe?). I hope you go and pick up a copy and love it as much as I do!...more
Hereafter is a sweet and passionate love story that, while lovely, was a bit odd…. I loved most of it though and so I’ll start with that! I loved howHereafter is a sweet and passionate love story that, while lovely, was a bit odd…. I loved most of it though and so I’ll start with that! I loved how we are drawn right into the story with Hudson’s amazing writing and beautiful descriptions, although I have to say, some of the scenes (the nightmare ones) made me very uncomfortable because drowning… yeah, not fun. She skillfully takes us through the heart wrenching and sigh inducing to the down right spine chilling without making anything seem out of place. It works effortlessly, which we all know, means a ton of effort went into it!
I loved how the connection between Amelia and Joshua is built up slowly and perfectly. While a bit of insta-love is here, the relationship gets to be fully explored and developed across the book. I also really liked the supernatural elements that got thrown in there that worked well to clarify some of the general weirdness (yes, I am being vague, I don’t want to kill it for you!). And then, we get the bad guy who might not be so bad (I couldn’t decide…), Eli. I thought he was an extra very interesting addition to the story and kept the whole thing from being ‘just’ another love story. This was a love story with mystery.
The oddness arises from one simple fact: Amelia is dead. This seems like a kind of insurmountable thing, no? I don’t really know how this is going to work out but I did like how it was handled here and I’m incredibly intrigued for future books (which I hope there will be!). It was a very interesting look at an idea that I don’t think many people think about. Overall, a great story with a slightly strange twist… a definite a stand out novel for me!
After hearing so much hype about this new release, I was really excited to get my copy and start reading. Now, I wish I’d waited and borrowed a copy.After hearing so much hype about this new release, I was really excited to get my copy and start reading. Now, I wish I’d waited and borrowed a copy. This seems to be a love it or hate it sort of book, and while I didn’t hate it, I certainly didn’t love it!
To me, everything was incredibly and unnecessirly rushed. While the concept was intriguing and I like how the tests played out, there was so much that was just ignored or glazed over. I kept questioning everyones easy acceptance (I certainly wouldn’t be convinced!) and the fact that our protagonist, Kate, doesn’t seem to catch on to… well, anything. I’d figured most of the twists way before they happened and everything just seemed a bit half-hearted.
Overall, a disappointment and maybe a good example of how hype can kill a book for you sometimes. I was expecting so much more. For its interesting idea I give it a 4, for it’s shabby excuction it gets a 2. ...more