I wasn't sure what to expect from this novella. Sure, the summary does give plenty of the plot away, but I'm still glad to say that Julie Kagawa surprI wasn't sure what to expect from this novella. Sure, the summary does give plenty of the plot away, but I'm still glad to say that Julie Kagawa surprised me. I missed these characters so much - especially Ash - and it was wondeful to dive into Nevernever and Meghan's life yet again. So much has changed since we last saw her, and it was different to see her as The Iron Queen. Meghan was powerful and regal, but she had the same heart. She still loved Ash, and would do anything to protect her family and those who are important to her, and after everything that she's been through, her personality still amazes me. I simply love this girl.
To put it in a simple way, Iron's Prophecy was a quick, good novella, that fed me yet another dose of The Iron Fey. Unfortunately, I am now forced to acknowledge the fact that this series is really over, and that I have to let go of Ash and Meghan - Oh, Ash, how I'll miss you - and stop fantasing about what's happening to them, or what adventures they're going through. It's going to be hard. ...more
It's actually quite ironic that the dystopian world - which was exactly what attracted so many readers - was what repulsed me in Divergent. Ok, wrongIt's actually quite ironic that the dystopian world - which was exactly what attracted so many readers - was what repulsed me in Divergent. Ok, wrong word. I wasn't repulsed. I just didn't understand the world created by Veronica Roth. The factions were great, and the concept was really interesting, but it wasn't realistic. Why were they created? How were they created? The atmosphere and the tension surrounding all the factions made it impossible for me to imagine decisions being made.
Fortunately, Veronica Roth provided us (some) answers to those questions. The dystopian society in which Tris lives is explained a lot more deeply, and though not all the answers are handed over to us, I can see where the story is going. Needless to say, I enjoyed Insurgent a lot more than Divergent, although a couple of things still bothered me. It's unlikely I'll ever be completely satisfied by this series. There's always something, some little detail or a character that keeps me from enjoying it fully.
The writing isn't the issue, nor is the plot. Both were excellent, especially the former. Roth has a way with words, even in the present tense, a type of narration that I hate. My problem with Insurgent was the main character herself, Tris. In Divergent, she was a thoughtful girl, objective and yet emotional with those she loved. In Insurgent, she was broken, and not in a good, deep way. Tris was a mess. Four - I refuse to call him Tobias - has to constantly remind her that she has to try to live, try not to get herself killed, try to understand that her life means something.
...And I almost killed myself everytime that happened. They're in the middle of a war, and just when Tris had to be the strong, great girl that she was back in Dauntless, she breaks. I get it. She has to be human and show emotions, especially regarding Peter, etc. But for God's sake, be realistic about it! Her breakdowns and teary moments did nothing to the book, it only added misery, (stupid decisions) and an unnecessary amount of drama in a plot that was already bursting with blood and war.
I was planning on giving Insurgent 3 stars, but aside from my dislike towards Tris, the series has developed in general, and I'm somewhat satisfied with the way things turned out in the ending. And, I admit it, Four may be one of the reasons I added an extra star to my rating. It's quite easy, though, to see that Veronica Roth has a lot of potential. Despite my personal rants about the society, she did create a fascinating story, and I look forward to the third, and last, book in the Divergent trilogy. It should be interesting!
I don't know why, but I've been procrastinating in the last couple of days. It took a lot of courage for me to actually sit down, and try to write thiI don't know why, but I've been procrastinating in the last couple of days. It took a lot of courage for me to actually sit down, and try to write this review. Maybe it's because I loved Immortal City so much, and it's always harder to talk about a book you love than one you hate; maybe it's because the story is so original and interesting that I can't possibly do it justice with my words. Either way, I was drawn to Scott Speer's debut novel the second I saw this cover. It would be beautiful enough on its own, but then Goodreads told me it was young-adult. And I was even more curious.
Though Immortal City is, like I mentioned, a debut novel, it doesn't feel like it at all. The world-building is solid, introducing us to a society in which the angels have come out and told humanity that they exist. Now they get paid for their services as Guardian Angels, which, if you think about it, is weird and fascinating at the same time. They don't have to save anyone, and it'd be all right for them to work with this. But why only rich people have guardian angels? Why aren't their services more accessible? It's mean and just plain wrong for rich guys to save themselves from death because they have money, while someone poorer than them has a family to sustain.
This conflict of ideals and religion can only lead to something spectacular. More interesting is how angels are treated. They're celebrities, they have millions of fans.... it's like Justin Bieber with wings, basically. People would die to be saved by one of them, especially the girls. There's a rule, though, that says it's forbidden for an angel to save anyone other than who he's protecting. And that's where Jackson and Maddy's story begin.
I loved them both before I even reached the middle of the book. Jackson is surrounded by cameras and paparazzi, but he can't feel any of it. He's suffocated by it all. Jackson's loneliness is touching, and I was glad when he found Maddy. His characterization could have been better, really, but I was overall very satisfied with the way things turned out for him, especially in the ending.
Maddy, in the other hand, is untouchable by the Angel-drama. She doesn't like them, doesn't worship them. She thinks this adoration is pointless. So you can only imagine how great it was the first time Maddy met Jackson. The only girl in the world who doesn't care about angels ended up falling in love with one (how's that for irony?). I liked her personality, her stubbornness - it didn't seem fake, for once. She irritated me a little in the ending, with a stupid decision, but really, the last chapter made it up for me.
With a balanced pace, delicious romance, and strong world-building, I can only give Immortal City five stars. It doesn't deserve any less than this. Its flaws, if any, only made the reading more realistic for me, which doesn't happen often. I can't wait to read the next book in the series. If it's as good as Immortal City, I'll be pretty satisfied.
It's a miracle when series live up to the former installments, especially after dragging it out for five or sixPHEW! This was actually quite a ride.
It's a miracle when series live up to the former installments, especially after dragging it out for five or six books. The Chicagoland Vampires series is the exception to that rule. Even after NINE books, it still manages to get better and better.
Merit is as kickass as ever, and she continues to be one of my favorite main characters of all times. She has the sense of humor, the taste in food, the skills, and the sensibility that only a few possess. Sometimes, when there's some romance thrown in the story, even if it's well developed, the lack of good traits in the main character puts me out of it. It doesn't convince me at all, and makes me question why the love interest is so interested in the girl (or vice versa). That doesn't happen in CV. Chloe Neill creates such a great story that it's impossible not to be captivated by it *or the romance*. I definitely can see why Ethan Sullivan would kill or die for this woman.
Speaking of the romance... ahhh, my feels went crazy with this book. Never have I wanted to hit, and kiss Ethan Sullivan more. It was just perfect. And I will leave it at that, because part of the perfection of this book is reading it and figuring everything else as the plot goes on. ...more
There are some novels that you can't forget. That are memorable and unforgettable, with characters so well constructed and complex that they seem realThere are some novels that you can't forget. That are memorable and unforgettable, with characters so well constructed and complex that they seem real. Clarity, unfortunately, was not one of those novels. Perception was. The first book in the series (series, trilogy? I'm not sure) was enjoyable and fun, but not especial at all. I could see why Clare made her decisions that way, but I didn't feel connected to it. The love triangle was shallow and not at all likable. Since the first book didn't attract me as much as I had hoped it would, there was no hope for the second book, right?
Wrong. What bothered me in Clarity was dealt with in Perception. Clare evolved and matured, and she actually became a main character I could relate to. Her determination to find her stalker and the reason the girl went missing was great. Her tracking skills weren't good, but her resolve to discover something useful worked perfectly in the story.
Perry, however, took Clare's place as the most one dimensional character ever. Yes, he had his issues, and yes, I understood them, but seriously, his behavior irritated me most of the time. It was like he cared about Clare and her gift, but not enough to break through his problems. Clare's social enemies were annoying as hell, too. Kim Harrington can write some pretty clichéd characters. Blond cheerleader with a brain as small as a peanut, bitchy body language and bully tendencies? Check. Why are they always like this.
The love triangle did evolve, and I actually picked a side this time. Both Justin and Gabriel were remarkable guys to Clare, but I couldn't help but love Gabriel much more than Justin. I can't forgive Justin for what he did to Clare in Clarity, and his childish behavior did nothing in his favor. And Clare didn't act slutty towards them, which was wonderful. I hate when the girl ends up making out with both guys and not deciding anything. So, the romance pleased me a lot.
Overall, the plot was great, although a little predictable. Even then, I loved most of this book, including Clare's development as a character and the romance solidification at the end. This book just came out, but I can't wait to read its sequel. I can only it won't take too long to come out. If you want a refreshing read with a bit of paranormal, this is the right book for you.
This book... this book is so good. I don't have any words.
Review to come.
There's something incredibly refreshing in reading a well writtThis book... this book is so good. I don't have any words.
Review to come.
There's something incredibly refreshing in reading a well written fantasy book. Maybe it's the fact that the author has created a whole new world in which you can loose yourself in, or maybe the characters are so different from what I'm used to, yet I'm able to relate to them completely. Well, both happened while I was reading Shadow and Bone. I wasn't sure whether I would like this novel - usually, I'm afraid to read books that have a lot of hype - but Leigh Bardugo enchanted me with her fantastic writing, realistic world, and human characters.
Don't get me wrong - it's not like this novel doesn't have any flaws. It's just that the good things about it has captivated me so thoroughly I forgot about the bad aspects of the story as I was reading. It was like a balance - the negative was cancelled by the positive. Take it the romance, for example. I hated that Alina seemed so obviously in love with Mal since the first chapter. It felt like insta-love, and that's something pretty much unforgivable these days. However, as the plot progressed, and we got to see how deeper the connection between these two characters ran, I understood every little aspect of their love for each other, especially on Alina's part. It was fantastic.
I fell in love with them, with the way they were so passionate and human about what happened around them. How, even though they made mistakes, they tried to be better and do the right thing. It's pretty ridiculous, I know, but this tiny thing made me happy. I'm tired of stupid heroines that make stupid decisions and it's up for the heroes to save them. Instead, here we have a young man and woman determined to make the best out of the situation they're currently in, regardless of the specifics. I feel like I could on and on about how realistic and heart-warming they were, but that would spoil the best part.
And the best part, I feel compulsed to say, it's the world itself. In the beginning, I was lost - I mean, what is the Fold? How did it come to be? As Alina got lost in world of the Grisha, however, her surroundings felt like home to me, and I began to understand exactly what Bardugo created here. Language, mythology, geography, magic, politics - that's the best part of a fantasy novel, and Shadow and Bone has it all. Bardugo's writing style was adorable, full of descriptions that weren't tiring.
Shadow and Bone is a lovely fantasy novel, and I can say for sure that I'm looking forward to reading its sequel - though I have no idea what Alina's next adventure is gonna be like. Leigh Bardugo has captived me in every way, and I'm eternally grateful for that. And if you're asking yourself: Does this book really lives up to its hype?, well...
I first heard about Assassin's Creed from my brother in-law. He loves the games, was constantly commenting how Ezio was badass, how his moves and killI first heard about Assassin's Creed from my brother in-law. He loves the games, was constantly commenting how Ezio was badass, how his moves and kills were impressive, and how the graphics were fantastic. When the novel came out, I spent months craving it, only now having the courage to buy, and finally, read it.
Oliver Bowden transports us to Italy, 1472, where a young man is about the learn the power and secrets of his family. After a brutal attack and betrayal, Ezio takes the name Auditore to a whole new level, seeking vengeance from those who took blood from the ones he loved. Ezio becomes an Assassin, as lethal and skillful as one can possibly get.
When I start reading a book in which the main character is an assassin, I immediately wonder if he's evil. I bet almost everyone cringed upon the words "I am an Assassin..." that's written in the back of Assassin's Creed. I know I did. So you can only guess how satisfied I was when I found out Ezio's not evil at all. He's what I would call fierce, in every single way. He loves his family and would do anything for them. At the same time, he kills without a drop of mercy, but only when he has to. I loved that. He's the kind of guy that I would be proud of, if I were his sister.
That said, I enjoyed his relationship - if multiple, and brief, encounters over the years can be called a relationship - with Cristina. I didn't expect him to be in love, and I certainly didn't expect for him to be so caring and ... cute... with Cristina. His love life was very, very different from the game, and by that, I was disappointed. But really, since I never played Assassin's Creed, my disappointment was short-lived.
To say Renaissance was a fast-paced book would be the understatement of the year. Ezio's 17 (if I'm not mistaken) when his story as an Assassin begins. At the end of the book, he's 44 years old. No, I didn't type that wrong. He's 44 years old. This means basically half of Ezio's life is described in 500 pages. I both love and hate that. I understand that the author wanted to show us what it means to be an Assassin. It's tiring and bloody. Ezio would spend years trying to find a guy, and months figuring out how to kill him. It makes the Order of the Assassins look way tougher than it sounds.
However - and that's the negative part of my review - it leaves no space whatsoever for character development. Sure, Ezio is more mature on the last chapters than he was on the first ones, but still, to write someone else's whole life, you have to describe their experiences, how they changed over each blow that life had landed upon them... and none of this happened with Ezio. It was so fast paced I was confused sometimes. The narrator would say that Ezio spent a long time searching for someone. I thought this "long time" would be weeks, months, or even a couple of years. And then I found out this "long time" was actually 8 years. How can you describe what happened to someone as special and broken as Ezio in 8 years with less than 3 pages? If the author keeps this pace up, how old will Ezio be on the third book? 89 years old?
Now, the ending itself. I liked it, but it was definitely not what I had expected. Really, it blew me away. I never thought Ezio's mission would be so important. I won't give anything away, but if I was playing the game, I'd have to pause to just absorb the ending for a moment. Just... what the hell?
Assassin's Creed is an excellent book for those who played, and enjoyed, the games. If you never played it - like me - you can read it anyway. It's a good way of learning Ezio Auditore's story, and reading an action-packed book.
It's incredibly difficult to read a hyped book. I get nervous, and I just don't know if I'll like it or not, if it's going to be disappointing or mindIt's incredibly difficult to read a hyped book. I get nervous, and I just don't know if I'll like it or not, if it's going to be disappointing or mind-blowing. More difficult than that, however, is to write a review on a hyped book that I loved more than anything. That's exactly what I'm facing right now. I have no idea how to put what I feel about this book into words. Pushing the Limits was fantastic, and I honestly don't know where to begin.
Perhaps I should probably begin by saying that Echo and Noah were fantastic characters, not because they were strong, or kick-ass, but because they were so damn human it hurt. They went through so much - Echo, because of her scars, and Noah, because of his tough family situation - that it's impossible, completely and totally impossible, to not sympathize with them. Both Noah and Echo were realistic to the extreme, and not once did I look at them and thought "Wow, that just didn't make sense", because everything, from the way they decided on things, and to the dialogues, was realistic and well thought. I cried for them, I cheered for them, and I couldn't get enough of these two.
The set of secondary characters couldn't have been more eclectic. Noah's friends, Echo's family, Noah's brothers, and the school counselor, were delightful characters, and they all fit into the story without taking the spotlight away from Echo and Noah. I loved the relationship between all the characters, the dynamic that it created between them. It was incredibly refreshing and also allowed us to get out of the drama and hurt that usually followed Echo and Noah around.
And - just because I can't help myself - I gotta talk about Noah. My newest crush is simply adorable. Noah is the kind of boy that's tough on the outside - he has to be, to stand everything he's been through - but on the inside, he's a boy separated from his brothers and in love with a broken girl. He's strong for all of them, while at the same time struggling with his own problems. I couldn't be prouder of the way things turned out in the ending for him - and Echo, of course - because he really deserved it. The romance that developed between them was sweet, and full of pain as well. It was heart-breaking and swoon-worthy at the same time.
I waited more than 3 months to read Pushing the Limits. I read every review out there, and I was positive I'd love it. And yeah, I did love it - but Pushing the Limits is also the best contemporary novel I have ever read in my life. The characters and flawed but impressive, the multiple points of view were distinguishable, the writing was smooth and the romance was wonderful. The waiting, my friends, was well, well worth it.
Note: A review copy was provided by the publisher for review purposes, through NetGalley. Thank you! This review also appears on my blog...more
Everybody talked about John Green when The Fault in Our Stars came out, and honestly, I didn't know why. I mean, was this novel really that special? HEverybody talked about John Green when The Fault in Our Stars came out, and honestly, I didn't know why. I mean, was this novel really that special? However, I was curious, and that's why I bought a copy and started reading it. And now I know why people loved this book so much. The Fault in Our Stars is a book about death, about life, and a lot more than that.
Hazel, the main character, is easily someone I could become best friends with. She was honest, simple, and snarky. The kind of protagonist that can make you love the story just because of her. Cancer crushed her childhood dreams and expectations, and you can see that as the plot unravels. And when she meets Augustus Waters... well, that's when the book really pulls you in. Their relationship is at the same time fast and slow. Their dialogues were so constant in the chapters that I grew tired of it, all the while yearning for more. I honestly don't know how John Green made me feel that way, but he did, and only an extremely talented author has such power over the reader.
It took me almost a week to figure out how to write this review, and even now, I'm struggling with it. Not because I had mixed feelings over the book, but because I was so overwhelmed by it, that my thoughts just flew out of my head. What I really loved about this novel isn't the romance that I just described, however. It's the way it's written. John Green writes fiction books, but The Fault in Our Stars was real, somehow. These characters, Hazel, her parents, Augustus, his parents... they were so real, and the situations they went through so realistic, that this felt like a diary, not a fiction book.
John Green exposes the truth about cancer, things that we all know, but prefer to ignore it. A 16-year-old girl isn't courageous, and she isn't fighting the cancer bravely. She's suffering, and this disease, this awful disease, is destroying her from the inside out. It's not something brave, it's something painful that she has to endure because there isn't anything she can do about it. That's exactly how John Green portraits Hazel, and it changed a part of me. This beautiful novel is a story that not only opens your eyes; it changes you, makes you see everything so differently that you wonder why the human population haven't read this book yet.
I know, now, why my Goodreads friends loved The Fault in Our Stars. I know, now, why John Green is considered one of the best authors in the world. To him, I can only say "thank you". And to every reader out there, I can only recommend this novel. It's an unforgettable ride.
I honestly couldn't believe The Gathering Storm was a debut. Robin Bridges writes so wonderfully it's impossible not to wonder, how could this be herI honestly couldn't believe The Gathering Storm was a debut. Robin Bridges writes so wonderfully it's impossible not to wonder, how could this be her first novel? But yes, it is, and this fact only makes me respect Mrs. Bridges that much more. I began reading her book with hesitant eyes and a critical mind, ready to identify a mistake or plot hole. I found none.
It's impossible to write here everything that pleased me in this book. The setting was adorable. I love Russian stories, especially about the Romanovs, and the narration was fantastic. The description of the ball rooms, silk dresses, polite conversations and royal dramas were dutifully detailed, which only heightened my imagination. Although not much action takes place in the first chapters, Katerina's life was so full of social meetings and etiquette that I felt comfortable with, not once drifting off. The intrigues between the Duchesses, Dukes, Princes, Queens and Kings from all over Europe were as entertaining as a fight scene.
Katerina slowly unravels the mystery surrounding her power - or curse, as she calls it many times - taking the readers along the journey. Katiya doesn't understand why Prince Danilo, Prince of Montenegro, has suddenly noticed her and seems to be so interested in marrying her. On the other hand, Katerina feels curiously drawn to Grand Duke George as well, even though he doesn't reciprocate her feelings. At the beginning, I was afraid of a love triangle blossoming, but this is not the case. Danilo's ambitions sickened me sometimes, and I hated him more than I could ever express on words, really.
Again, it's impossible not to be impressed by this debut. It doesn't have harsh flaws, only slight aspects of the story that bugged me at certain times, like Katerina's mother's constant illness. I hope women at that time weren't so delicate as to retire to bed if a vase was broken. Also, the romance disappointed me in the end. It developed slowly and rightfully as the story progressed, and then, at the very last chapter, it all went to hell. The relationship between Katerina and George went to a totally different level. Odd.
The writing and background were solid, consistent, leading to a fiction book that felt like non-fiction. It was well researched, and culturally right. I had no problem at all picturing the balls and dances on my mind. I wish Katerina's gift was explored more deeply, but since this is the first installment in the trilogy, I'm certain this issue will play out just fine in The Unfailing Light. I chose not to reveal anything about the plot; It's much more interesting to read the book and be surprised by it. Trust me.
With a fascinating setting and characters, The Gathering Storm was a very quick and delightful read. Despite the rushed ending, I loved the book. So many things happened to Katerina, and I can't wait to get more of her and the Russian society. Robin Bridges surprised me in a very good way.
Dystopia is well known these days. After The Trilogy (a.k.a. The Hunger Games), the amount of dystopian books multiplied like crazy. For me, this is aDystopia is well known these days. After The Trilogy (a.k.a. The Hunger Games), the amount of dystopian books multiplied like crazy. For me, this is a very complicated genre to work with - and read about. I love futuristic books, but only if the future in question is explained and can actually happen, if I can relate to it somehow. There is also that kind of dystopia that makes no sense whatsoever, and it leaves us wondering what the hell happened to the world to come to this point. Under the Never Sky, unfortunately, was more of the latter.
This was my biggest problem with the book. The lack of answers was disconcerting. I couldn't connect with Aria and her world because none of it made sense to me at all. What is the Aether? Aria and Perry talk about it a hundred times, but still, I felt like an outsider - without a capital O. What was the Unity, what happened to Earth? Were is the rest of the population? More than 3 billion people didn't just evaporate, or died overnight. Where are they?
Aside from this plot hole (that bothered me a lot, but still, I tried to get over it), the characters were fine. That's exactly how I'm going to put it. They're fine, and that's it. I didn't love Aria, or Perry, but I was okay with their personalities, their actions, the way they looked out for each other. I saw where the romance was headed, and I enjoyed it. It's better than hating it all, I suppose... I just didn't fall head over heels for Perry or Aria, which felt right to me.
However, as much as the characterization worked, a particular aspect of Perry's abilities left me hanging. You see, Perry can smell pretty much everything - the leaves, people, trees... even from a mile away. I know I'm probably babbling, but this had me laughing for five minutes (not kidding). Perry smelled Aria's menstruation, and according to him, it was just like violets. Aside from the WTH thought that passed through my head, Aria smells like violets pretty much the whole book. They spend, let's say, weeks walking in the jungle, and then a couple of days with an old friend, then another week walking and looking for answers... and she's still bleeding? Either her period is completely different from a normal human being, or Veronica Rossi missed this detail, and it turned into an enormous plot hole. Aria's period lasted two months? Awkward.
The plot was greatly planned. It surprised more than once, and I found myself incapacitated to let go of the book. Rossi's writing style is full of details, but it fit the story perfectly. A simpler writing would let out some aspects of the narration that were essential, and a more complicated writing would be too massive to read. So, thumbs up.
Since I didn't connect with the characters too much, the ending left me hanging, but not dying to read Through the Ever Night. I'm looking forward to it, sure, but I'm not squealing like a fan girl. Under the Never Sky was a slight disappointment. It had everything I thought it would've had, but there was a spark missing, a certain emptiness that does not let me give it 5 stars. Still, it's a very good book. I understand now why a lot of people loved it.
The Probability of Miracles is one of those novels that makes you feel so much while reading it, that makes you stop and change your perspective of liThe Probability of Miracles is one of those novels that makes you feel so much while reading it, that makes you stop and change your perspective of life in so many ways. It's impossible not to be drawn by its premise: A dying girl who moves to a new town that's known by its miracles, and falls in love. It wasn't just the synopsis that caught my eye, however; it was the cover, the reviews, and the readers that cried their hearts out with Mrs. Wunder's story. Who doesn't want to feel emotional enough to cry over a book?
Cam Cooper was just the kind of girl I had expected. It's not that she didn't want to live... she just accepted that death is imminent, and that it's pointless to spend the rest of her life searching for an answer - a miracle - that doesn't exist. Her sarcastic personality seemed shallow at first, at least to me, but as I got to know her better, it became obvious how much she was suffering. Instead of whining and acting like a child, she hid behind sarcasm, which was fine by me, since her thick wall of indifference starts to crumble when she meets Asher.
Ah, Asher, Asher... He was the responsible for my tears. Wendy Wunder created such a real, solid character in him. I could relate Asher to anyone in my life. It's nice to see a boy with a believable appearance, personality, actions, instead of someone stoic, mysterious, and sexy. Asher and Cam's story is full of angst, regret, pain... but it's also full of love. Their issues made me want to hug them at all times. And even when things were going downhill, they dealt with whatever came at them with their hearts, which was another positive point for me.
I always try to read a contemporary novel between heavier genres, like fantasy or historical fiction, to stay in touch with realistic stories that deals with the same kind of things we have to deal with in a current basis, like cancer. And though I knew how this book was going to end, it didn't left me in tears... it left me sobbing. I actually didn't expect it to mess up with me so much, but it did.
The Probability of Miracles is not only a novel about cancer. It's about finding your first love, enjoying every moment you have, loving your family, and most of all, it's about learning peace, even when you're carrying a burden as heavy as a disease. This is one of the most beautiful novels I've ever read, and I admire Wendy Wunder for creating such a touching story. If you haven't read this book yet, do it. It has the potential to change you.
Jeaniene Frost is, to put it in a very simple way, my favorite author of all times. Everything she wrote, and I literally mean every single book she wJeaniene Frost is, to put it in a very simple way, my favorite author of all times. Everything she wrote, and I literally mean every single book she wrote, got into my favorite list. Her writing is fluid, full of sarcasm and yet the romance she builds in every novel is sweet and sexy at the same time. Her characterization is solid, the plot is consistent, and it's impossible not to fall for the heroes (a.k.a. Bones, Spade, Mencheres...). It shouldn't come as a surprise to see that I gave Once Burned 5 stars. I would've given it 10 stars if I could.
All the aspects of Jeaniene Frost's books that I mentioned above are present in Once Burned. To write about Dracula as a main character of a love story requires a certain amount of... creativity, to put it mildly, that not all the authors have. Vlad didn't make me fall in love with him in the Night Huntress series, but then, his potential as a hero and as a love interest weren't fully explored. In Once Burned, he's the main attraction, and man, he makes a hell of a love interest. He's arrogant and protective of his people above all else, but he's also fierce, strong, and gentle. Vlad is a fantastic character, and it would be impossible not to fall in love with him just as I did with Bones.
Don't get me wrong. Bones is amazing, and one of the few characters I've read about that can be just as interesting after 6 books and 3 novellas as he was in the beginning of the series. But Vlad has... something more. His relationship with Leila doesn't even come close to Bones and Cat's relationship in Halfway to the Grave, but it affected me the same way. Maybe that's because Leila is just as likable as Cat. She's determined, snarky, and is strong enough to bear the weight of her powers and the realization that Vlad is, indeed, Dracula, without breaking or whimpering.
As a whole, Once Burned was everything I thought it would be, and more. I cannot wait for the next book in the Night Prince series, and I really hope it's just as good as Night Huntress. Jeaniene Frost has a lot of potential, and Once Burned just proved to me why I consider her my favorite author. Her stories never fail me, and I really, really hope it stays that way.
It's no secret how much I love this series. You know that kind of setting that immediately draws you in, a main character that's simply fantastic, andIt's no secret how much I love this series. You know that kind of setting that immediately draws you in, a main character that's simply fantastic, and non-stop action scenes? Yeah, that's what Elemental Assassin means to me. Through each book, we came to know a bit more of Gin Blanco, the Deveraux sisters, Finn, and the other characters. Since Jennifer Estep just sold 3 more books, I was hesitant to read By a Thread. I was afraid it would be like Anita Blake. Thank God it was nothing of the sort.
After killing Mab, Gin finally tries to find some piece. But even with her arch-enemy dead, things haven't gotten easier for Gin. Everyone wants to get a taste of what the Spider is capable of, and fights and duels in the back of the Pork Pit's a common thing now. When Finn suggests a vacation, Gin takes the opportunity. But, just like the synopsis said, when you deal with blood in a daily basis, even a week off town can't keep you out of trouble.
Bria's friend is being harassed by Dekes, a vampire, constantly. He's basically Mab Monroe with a suit and fangs, so Gin offers her services to deal with him. With her friends' help, Gin finds out Mab wasn't the hardest target she'd ever face. Dekes is more powerful than the Spider ever imagined. Since book 2, I was always afraid of Mab. The woman was Devil on Earth. She was evil and twisted, but Dekes is no better. Seriously, Jennifer Estep has a way with villains. Dekes freaked me out.
I don't even need to say how heart-racing the action scenes were. Just like in the previous books, Gin's not afraid to get dirty and do whatever is necessary to survive. She's such a strong character. I've never seen anyone like her, and that's saying a lot. Gin's reputation as the Spider is not a joke, if she has to cut a guy's throat or decapitate him, so be it. She gets the job done at all costs, but even then, she doesn't lose her humanity. She's an assassin, but that doesn't mean she isn't human.
However, as much as I love Gin's soft side, I was bothered by her selflessness when it came to Bria. Fine, she's your sister, you'll always love her. I get that, I have a sister myself... but it was wrong for Gin to accept whatever Bria told her. There was a certain scene in which Bria was ashamed of Gin, because she was an assassin. Gin just bowed her head and acknowledged the pain without confronting Bria. This bothered me immeasurably. It's not okay to be ashamed of your sister, or blame her because you were tortured by Mab. She almost died trying to save Bria's life, and yet, the detective just continued to throw evil stares at Gin. Ungrateful much?
This brings me to my next point: Owen. He cares so much about Gin, loves her so much, that the fact that she's an assassin doesn't concern him. He accepts her, bloody parts and all, which is one of the best aspects of the series. Their relationship is heart-warming. Owen would do anything to protect Gin, but if she's about to fight nine guys and tell him "Go, I'll meet you outside", he goes. He trusts her to make her own decisions. I love that about him. No, risk that. I love everything about him. I was so glad Owen was there for Gin when Donovan came back into her life. Compared to Owen, Donovan is trash. He's a hypocrite, selfish, and know-it-all. Also, the way Jennifer Estep resolved the "unfinished business" between Gin and Donovan was freaking awesome. That's all I'll say.
By a Thread is the perfect sequel to Spider's Revenge. There's so much going on, and that still need to be dealt with, and I can't wait to read Widow's Web. August can't get here fast enough. If you haven't read the series yet, or never heard of it, please do. You have no idea of what you're missing.
If you haven't read this series yet, you should. You have no idea what you're missing. Molly Harper's writing style and characters captivated me sinceIf you haven't read this series yet, you should. You have no idea what you're missing. Molly Harper's writing style and characters captivated me since book one, and after almost two years, I still enjoy myself while reading her books. Nice Girls Don't Bite their Neighbors is no exception. Jane has grown so much, changed so much throughout the series, and yet, she continues to be the same hilarious, crazy librarian we met so many adventures ago.
This time, Jane is marrying Gabriel, but of course, trouble is following them very closely. Being able to get married in an old fashioned way may not possible after all if they don't find out who wants to kill Gabriel and use Jane as a message. I loved Gabriel even more in this book. His protective nature was always charming, but now, he's doing everything he can to be with Jane forever. This couple works fantastically while investigating, and, as always, secondary characters like Dick and Jolene are just as entertaining as Jane.
Molly Harper delivered us yet another great addition to this series. In a way, I'm sad that it's almost over. At the same time, however, I'm happy about the way things played out in the end. It was a worthy ending to a series I loved so much. Ah, well. I'll miss Jane, Gabriel and the gang, but I'll still have the short stories.
Note: This quick review can also be found on my blog....more
When you think about faeries, what exactly comes to your mind? I used to think Thinkerbell was all there was to it, but Julie Kagawa, thankfully, provWhen you think about faeries, what exactly comes to your mind? I used to think Thinkerbell was all there was to it, but Julie Kagawa, thankfully, proved me wrong. Faeries aren't glittery little beings. They're soulless creatures that crave a good bargain, and are always looking for ways to trick a human. They're beautiful, alluring, and may be the death of you. It's so refreshing to start reading a book in which the mythology is something unique and - though not unexplored - open to endless possibilities.
In The Iron King, first book in the Iron Fey series, we have Meghan, an ordinary high school girl whose life turns upside down when her brother, Ethan, is kidnapped and taken to the Nevernever, home of the faeries. The story basically is about a girl trying to get her sibling back, and though it was never boring, it failed to blow me away completely.
Oh, don't get me wrong. I'm a big fan of this series, and it's been a wonderful ride to read all the books all over again. However, I couldn't help but notice how The Iron King isn't perfect like I thought it was. Maybe it's my own sense of criticism that is changing, but maybe the thing that drew me to it a year ago, when I first got my hands on this series, doesn't appeal to me now. And that factor is Meghan herself.
She is a pretty strong heroine, but only in general. She matures greatly as the series progresses, but in The Iron King, specifically, she's still that same protagonist that I've seen so many times in other YA books - fierce, beautiful (but thinks she's flat), and a Mary Sue sometimes. It's interesting (and a little amusing) to compare this Meghan to the girl she has become later on, but I can't help but notice these differences, and how - if this had been my first experience with the book - this would've bothered me.
The side characters were the best part of the book for me, especially Puck and Grimalkin - not that I'm saying that I don't like Ash. It's just that in The Iron King, we don't get to really know him, and though he passes off as an alluring, dark prince and a good love interest, I didn't immediately fall in love with him in this novel. That said, Puck and Grim are the best characters in this book. They're just so funny and entertaining! I wish I had a best friend like Puck. It would surely make my life more interesting, LOL.
With a fascinating mythology and captivating characters, The Iron King has two different flavors mixed together: the flavor of Disney's magic, and the darkness of a medieval movie, especially one with fantastical creatures and handsome knights. I do believe this series is a must read, but more than that, it's something that will make you squeal like a fan girl, and satisfy your need of action scenes. It's no wonder Julie Kagawa is one of my favorite authors!
When I first began reading Chicagoland Vampires, I was bored by the politics and the complex world-building that Chloe Neill had created. I almost droWhen I first began reading Chicagoland Vampires, I was bored by the politics and the complex world-building that Chloe Neill had created. I almost dropped it altogether, but I was using her descriptive writing to train my English, and my translation skills, so I just swallowed my urge to throw the entire series away, and kept reading it. And now, two years later, this is one of my favorite vampire series of all times, especially because of the politics and the complex world-building - although some kick-ass scenes and a breath-taking blond Master vampire do win a few brownie points.
I feel like Chloe Neill is unraveling something unique with her series. In it, vampires burn in the sun, but they also have a knack for using a katana, they're magical creatures that feel all the currents of power around them, and their eyes silver when they're feeling certain emotions. It's a familiar yet completely disconcerting territory to explore, and Chloe Neill has done a terrific job at it - she's still doing a terrific job at it, since this is her sixth book and things are only improving. Merit has grown into her skin, gone from a geeky graduate student to a vampire Sentinel who's willing do to just about anything to protect her House and her city. She's at the same time a reliable friend and a kick-ass vampire chick ready to swing a katana when danger arises. I simply love Merit, and the way she has evolved as the series went on.
Now that I'm talking about, you know, my love for the characters, I wouldn't be able to write this review without talking about Ethan, the breath-taking blond Master vampire that I mentioned before. If you have read this series, and invested as much effort into it as I have, you're probably as happy as I am about Ethan being in this book. And at a certain extent, my expectations were met and I was fan-girling over the fact that he's back the whole time.. but at the same time, I was disappointed with a few things. Ethan has changed, and I wasn't ready for it. One second he's this intense guy bursting into Tate's office and being staked by Celina... and then, he's this open-minded guy who's not afraid to speak his mind, and being forward with Merit about his feelings. Well, this troubled me. I couldn't create a connection between these two sides of him, and I was afraid that Chloe Neill had changed Ethan in a permanent way. I'm glad to say this didn't happen, and once again I saw the Ethan that I loved and got so frustrated with. My friends, I can definitely say: Ethan Sullivan is back. Prepare yourselves: It's a tough, yet exciting, ride.
When talking about the plot and the villain, I was surprised by how much Biting Cold was about Tate. The summary talks about an evil chasing Merit across Nebraska, yes, but I thought that maybe that was just a secondary plot arch, and Mallory stealing the Malificium would've been the real issue. However, Mallory's betrayal is the least of Merit's concerns, now that Seth Tate has finally showed his true form. I loved this twist, and though it was a little weird to know what Tate was, it made sense. I was satisfied by the way things turned out, especially when it came to the "final" battle.
Overall, Biting Cold was everything I thought it would be, and more. Chloe Neill is a fantastic writer, and now I can only wonder why I was so worried about this book in the first place. Chicagoland Vampires is still placed firmly on my "favorite" list, and with everything that has happened in this installment, it's obvious things are going to be even crazier in Chicago now. I can't wait to see more of Merit and Ethan.This series is just getting better and better!