Forever was the perfect ending to The Wolves of Mercy Falls series. Perfect. I love a well-written h...moreReview originally posted at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
Forever was the perfect ending to The Wolves of Mercy Falls series. Perfect. I love a well-written happy ending as much as the next girl. But even better is a well-written open-ended finale that leaves the reader with hope and a burning desire for a fourth novel in a series with only three books. Check and check.
The lyrical writing of Maggie Stiefvater is unrivaled. The way she conveys emotion with words, well, it leaves me at a loss for words. It’s simply beautiful. So clearly does she describe emotion that if feels like I’ve been written into the pages of her novel, experiencing everything first-hand. I can almost envision the pained looks, swiftly exchanged glances, eyes brimming with love. And the way that she describes the forest, Beck’s house…everything. It’s almost scary how realistic a picture this woman can paint with words.
Speaking of words, holy cow, did she sneak some good ones in! I love adding new words to my vocabulary! And she used context clues, so I didn’t even have to crack open a dictionary (or use Google) to figure the terminology out. One example that stands out: ouroboros. Seriously cool word and awesome usage in the book. (Picture a dog chasing its tail.) I love that she writes for a more astute audience.
And the characters! I’ve loved Grace and Sam since I first met them in Shiver, and I adjusted to the addition of bristly Isabel and arrogant Cole in Linger. But I really think they all came into their own in Forever. Maggie was just giving us a taste of who these characters were before, but after the events of the first two novels, these guys really showed their true colors. In a good way. They were so developed, so realistic and ultimately relatable. I’m really going to miss them!
Alas, I passed up Shiver on the bookshelves at Borders many times before finally giving this series a try. To think that I never would have visited Mercy Falls or watched Sam and Grace fall in love! Okay, I'm going to have to wrap this up and stop reminiscing, or I'm going to start crying again. Seriously, such a great ending!(less)
cassandra clare is my new go-to author. i don't think she can write anything i don't immediately love. i'm so excited for this new storyline for my be...morecassandra clare is my new go-to author. i don't think she can write anything i don't immediately love. i'm so excited for this new storyline for my beloved shadowhunters.
this author is amazing at making her characters come to life. i always feel like i become the characters and feel what they feel, etc. or that i'd like to hang out with these people in real life. her characters have heart and aren't afraid to feel...well, except will, maybe. that guy's obviously got some inner demons he needs to conquer before he can even think of being with tessa, though it's quite clear he does care for her.
tessa is such a strong heroine, too. a lesser woman would not be able to make the hard choices that she does. even staring death in the face, she's able to take the high road. she won't sacrifice who she is for anything, even if she's not quite sure who she is anymore. but i'm sure the author will unravel her story as beautifully as she did clary's in the mortal instruments series.
i think what i liked most about this prequel is getting more background on the shadowhunter families i was introduced to in tmi...seeing where they came from and how it developed the characters i know and love from tmi.
i also love the setup for a love triangle between tessa, jem, and will. normally, i'd be all over the 'bad-boy' in this scenario, same as i was in the clary-jace-simon triangle, but that's normally because the good guys in these triangles are usually so saccharine-sweet and perfect. but jem has his own demons to fight, as does will, so i'm really torn on this one.
i think this novel was great at introducing the reader to these new characters, as well as setting up the premise for the whole demon-machines vs. shadowhunters war that's coming. and i can't wait to read more!(less)
**spoiler alert** i love this series, but i felt that this installment was a little too predictable. there were so many bombs dropped, but i anticipat...more**spoiler alert** i love this series, but i felt that this installment was a little too predictable. there were so many bombs dropped, but i anticipated them all before they hit. i kept skimming ahead and having to go back to read little details i'd missed, simply because i just knew something was about to happen or i was going to learn some earth-shattering news and had to prove myself correct. (it's an inherent flaw of mine.)
the ending felt forced, as well. after all that jace and clary had been through together, after all their declarations of love despite the circumstances, was it really necessary for them to have to reaffirm their feelings to each other in the end? regardless of finding out that they weren't actually brother and sister, these two people are not the type to be swayed so easily from their true feelings. it felt supremely unnecessary for aline to mention that 'some people only want what they can't have'. as if the only reason jace and clary fell in love was because it was 'forbidden'. it felt like this was added as a filler, not because there was any chance that they might actually not feel the same way after everything that had happened.
still, i love the story, and it helps knowing that this isn't really the end...that there's another cycle in the works. regardless, it was hard to put the book down for any length of time, which is why it still gets five stars. i just had to know what was happening to my shadowhunter and downworlder friends, even if i already had my suspicions. i appreciate how well-developed the characters are now...it really does seem as if i know them.
i can't wait to read more of jace, clary, simon, et. al., in 'city of fallen angels'...i know clare won't disappoint.(less)
I'd had this book on my TBR list for awhile, as well as its companion novel (Fire), and then my sister gave me some Borders bucks she had and indicate...moreI'd had this book on my TBR list for awhile, as well as its companion novel (Fire), and then my sister gave me some Borders bucks she had and indicated she was really interested in reading the series, so I went ahead and ordered both books.
I read Graceling a few weeks back, and I certainly enjoyed it, but I wish I had taken notes while I was reading because I don't remember exact instances where my interest in the story diminished; I just know that it did and can only list general points. For starters, I felt that the author was sometimes overly descriptive but still managed to build a less-than-stellar world for her novel. Also, some of the names were beyond ridiculous and I found myself skimming over them or simply using the first initial of the name for the remainder of the book. I liked the main character Katsa, but she did come off a little strong at times. Some may argue that the author is trying to force her feminist views on the reader via Katsa, but I never felt that way while I was reading.
I did like Katsa and all of the other characters, even the evil ones, and the story was definitely entertaining. It's just not going to make it on my favorites list. And I'll get around to reading Fire one day, but after the ending in Graceling, I just couldn't bring myself to pick up the next novel, knowing it wasn't going to continue where Graceling left off. I don't despise open-ended novels, but after all of the trials and tribulations that Katsa and Po overcame through the course of the novel, I was left quite unsatisfied at the lack of resolution in their own relationship.(less)
this novel was sad and beautiful at the same time. a budding romance set in a dystopian society aboard a spaceship 300 years away from present day ear...morethis novel was sad and beautiful at the same time. a budding romance set in a dystopian society aboard a spaceship 300 years away from present day earth.
from the onset of this story, i felt as trapped on the spaceship as the rest of the characters did...at least, the main two characters, the ones who knew something was amiss, that this type of society wasn't right. i felt their isolation, their desperation, their hopelessness. beth revis is a true storyteller...she pulls you in with her well-formed characters, her beautiful imagery.
the characters are admirable to an extent and yet still so relatable. i couldn't put the book down and would have finished it in a single day if it hadn't been for other obligations. there were just so many twists and turns to this story, from the beautiful cover to the beautiful ending...a glimpse at what life could be like if we let ourselves be controlled by our leaders, instead of deciding for ourselves how we'll allow our lives be governed.
when i read this book, i didn't realize it was the first in a trilogy. that helps, knowing the conclusion of this debut novel from beth revis wasn't *really* the end. because it was one of those endings without any real resolution, and i really hate those. the ones where the reader is left to decide for themselves how everything turns out. but now i'm excited about the ending because so much was left unanswered, and i can't wait to see how revis fills in all the gaps.(less)
I was up until the wee hours of the morning trying to finish this book. It gripped me from the first page, and I couldn't imagine going to sleep witho...moreI was up until the wee hours of the morning trying to finish this book. It gripped me from the first page, and I couldn't imagine going to sleep without knowing what happened. Which, if you think about it, doesn't make much sense since it's only the first novel in a trilogy, but there it is.
This book was so captivating -- I'm sure that word will appear in a ton of reviews -- and I've heard a lot of comparisons to The Hunger Games, but I don't think that's a fair assessment. Yes, dystopians are very much the trend right now, and dissenters will undoubtedly refute the merits of this novel by calling it just another copy-cat trying to ride on the coattails of The Hunger Games' success. I assure you it is not. This book is real and honest and compelling and unafraid. Of course there are going to be similarities, but that will always be the case in literature; it's how the story is told that makes it stand out, stand apart. However, if The Hunger Games is the dystopian novel in which we are to compare all others, it has found its equal.
In Beatrice/Tris, Veronica Roth provides us with a main character that we can immediately find likeable and even relatable. Tris is not pretty. She doesn't have many friends. She doesn't always make the right decisions, and she struggles to be the person she is expected to be. Her voice is so natural, so powerful that you feel as she feels. Tris is not invincible, but she is strong and intelligent. We're allowed to see her flaws and faults, that she isn't perfect and can't best every foe placed before her. Tris is very capable but she's still fragile and needs help at times to overcome her obstacles. That's where Four comes in.
Four is the perfect complement to Tris. He pushes her and has no sympathy for her plight, but it is still obvious that he cares for her. Four does what he can to keep Tris safe, but she doesn't fully understand their relationship, why he taunts her or doesn't acknowledge what happens between them in private. One of my favorite scenes is when she confronts him about it, and Four says, "I didn't think it would affect you this way. Sometimes I forget that I can hurt you. That you are capable of being hurt." Four believes in Tris when maybe no one else does. Their mutual respect is a driving force in their relationship, and that only gets stronger when they see each other at their weakest.
The world Roth has created in Divergent is fascinating. People are split into factions based on their strengths and how they perceive that the downfall of their once great civilization came about. They must choose which faction they belong in at the young age of sixteen, and this decision impacts the rest of their lives, determining if they will live out the rest of their lives with their families or choose a different path altogether. The motto of all factions is faction before blood. What a difficult choice to be faced with at sixteen.
This first installment mostly concerns itself with following Tris through her initiation into the faction she chooses. We see her grow and overcome. We see her fall and we see her triumph. And through it all, we see Tris become the person she always suspected she was. But now she's starting to suspect that things are not as they seem and her life may really be in danger.
Divergent is full of suspense and there is no end to the action. These characters do not sit idly by and wait for things to happen. They are always in the midst of it. There are secrets in this novel, too, which I will refrain from spoiling, but I'll just say that all of my suspicions were confirmed. That's not to say that the answers are there in plain sight. No, you do have to work things out on your own. I just seem to have inherited my mother's gift for always knowing what's about to happen in a book or in a movie.
This was such a great read. All of the hype over the release of this book was not for naught. I dreamt about it after I finished it last night, and I haven't been able to stop thinking about it since. I'm actually already considering re-reading it. In my haste to devour it, I am sure I glossed over items of importance, and though I know I have a year or more in which to re-read it before the second installment is released, I don't know if I want to wait to read it again. My congratulations to the author for bestowing such an astounding debut novel on the world.
Once I reach 50 followers on my blog, I'll be giving away a SIGNED copy of Passion!!!
I enjoyed Passion even more than the other two books in the serie...moreOnce I reach 50 followers on my blog, I'll be giving away a SIGNED copy of Passion!!!
I enjoyed Passion even more than the other two books in the series. Lauren Kate's writing is spectacular, even if it is compounded with somewhat generic characters. But even so, I still feel drawn to Luce and Daniel's love story, especially as it's told over and over (and over) again over the course of five thousand years or so in Passion.
The author just has a way with words. From a writer, that's to be expected, right? But even despite the syrupy-sweet love story (and don't get me wrong, I still love it, despite how unrealistic it might be), her ability to create a new world, in a new era for each time Luce and Daniel fall in love, well, that is just first rate. Lauren's writing just lends itself to the reader's imagination, creating incomparable visions of each of Luce's past lives.
There's love. Love lost, again and again. Betrayal. Time travel through Announcers. Beheadings. War. Fire. And more danger than Luce could ever realize. And it's still not over.
I know better than to read a book when it first releases, especially when the series is not yet complete, but I couldn't help myself. It feels like forever ago that I read Fallen and Torment, and I was itching for a Luce and Daniel love-a-thon. And Passion did not leave me wanting.
Rapture, the final book in the Fallen series, is scheduled for release in May of 2012.
One last thing: (view spoiler)[Throughout the entire book, I kept thinking to myself, so...Satan is a Southern gay man? It was a lot of "honey" this and "darlin'" that and he knew quite a bit about fashion. Just sayin'... (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
at first, i was really annoyed with the voice the author gave to meghan chase. she was such a whiny, immature girl for having just turned sixteen. eve...moreat first, i was really annoyed with the voice the author gave to meghan chase. she was such a whiny, immature girl for having just turned sixteen. every word that came out of her mouth made me cringe, much in the same way that going back to read my journal from high school does. but once i realized that she sounded exactly like my sixteen-year-old self, i thought that the author had been very clever to make her sound this way. because all of the other characters sound wise beyond their years - which makes sense since they are from the nevernever, where there is no time and they are essentially ageless.
i adored this story and all the characters that julie kagawa gives (sometimes new) life to. i felt as if i knew them all and was along for the journey with them. the more i got to know meghan, the more i liked her. i even found myself forgiving her naivete, despite how many times it reared its ugly head.
the world that the author created in the nevernever was spectacular. i envisioned everything beautifully, as if i were seeing it with my own eyes. even her character descriptions left nothing out. ms. kagawa definitely has a way with words, even when she's describing the less-desirable creatures in the faery world.(less)
meghan is still so gullible and unassuming, but she's a character that's really growing on me. she's back in the nevernever to live up to her end of t...moremeghan is still so gullible and unassuming, but she's a character that's really growing on me. she's back in the nevernever to live up to her end of the bargain she made with ash, and they have no idea that a war between the summer and winter courts is imminent because of the things meghan set into motion when she killed the iron king.
julie kagawa is a genius when it comes to world-building. did this woman grow up in the nevernever? seriously, i'd get so involved in the story and the setting that i'd forget that i was curled up on the couch reading about meghan's adventure instead of living it myself. i will forever be indebted to ms. kagawa for opening my eyes to the world of faery like no other before her.(less)
*i won a copy of this novel through a contest on alicemarvels.com*
omg...i was breathless after reading what was supposed to be the final novel in the...more*i won a copy of this novel through a contest on alicemarvels.com*
omg...i was breathless after reading what was supposed to be the final novel in the iron fey series. the sacrifices, the friendships, the love...all were called into question before the author was done telling meghan chase's story. (and she is done with meghan's story...the next book is ash's!!! as if i needed another reason to love this author!)
this was by far my favorite in the series. meghan really comes into her own and is ready to take matters into her own hands...with the help of her beloved ash and her trusty sidekick puck, of course. (love those guys...i'm team ashpuck!)
this book (the whole series, really) had everything...action, love, family squabbles, friendships tested time and time again, twists and turns. like i said in previous reviews of this series, this author is a genius when it comes to world-building...i felt like i was a part of the adventure the entire time, though i never left the couch. her prose -- though repetive in a few instances, and i honestly didn't *mind* the constant mention of ash's 'muscles coiling beneath his skin' -- is beautiful and flowing and never lacking.
and ms. kagawa's character development has no equal. i've rarely felt closer to characters, even if i didn't like many of them in the beginning of the series. that's just a testament to how good she really is...i even found myself liking queen mab when all was said and done! and i think she painted such a brilliant picture of grimalkin for me...he was my favorite secondary character, without a doubt, in spite of, or maybe because of, the parallels i drew between him and the cheshire cat from alice in wonderland (another favorite of mine).
i just do not know how i'll contain myself until november when the iron knight is released. julie kagawa is one talented lady...i don't know how she churns them out so quickly or makes them so lovely, but i am much appreciative of her beautiful stories. i'd recommend this series to everyone i know...and i have!(less)
I was pretty ecstatic when I heard the news that Julie Kagawa would not be ending her Iron Fey serie...moreReview originally posted at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
I was pretty ecstatic when I heard the news that Julie Kagawa would not be ending her Iron Fey series with The Iron Queen but would instead lend Ash’s voice to his own story in a fourth book in the series. Switching voices midstream in a series (or mid-book) can be hit or miss for me, but this author has proved before that she is quite capable (see Puck’s story), and I’m quite pleased with Ash’s narrative in this final book.
And Ash has quite the story to tell. He is attempting to earn a soul, after all, and nothing in the Nevernever is easy. Not only does he have to face monsters and fey of all types, but he also has to face some harsh truths about himself. Luckily, Puck and Grimalkin are along for the ride, as well as a couple of unexpected companions.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Ash’s tale of sacrifice, love, and longing. His voice was just so honest, and his determination to reach his goal is unrivaled. But I stand by my previous assertion that The Iron Queen was the best in this series. The ending was just so genuine; it didn’t feel forced or that a happily-ever-after was necessary. Things may not have ended beautifully for our trio, but there was still hope. I much prefer an ending like that than a perfectly-planned, the-stars-have-all-aligned kind of ending. But that’s me. Also, I think I just really missed Meghan’s voice. Her character had really grown on me over the course of the series, and I really felt her absence in The Iron Knight.
Julie Kagawa is an exceptional writer and is fantastic at world-building. She is truly talented, and even though The Iron Knight wasn’t my favorite in this series, it was still an awesome addition to the Iron Fey series and has undoubtedly already earned itself a place on my bookshelf. And I think it goes without saying that this series is my favorite based on the fey. It was just too much fun to read! So, obviously I was delighted beyond words when I learned that Julie would be writing an Iron Fey spin-off series, along with a post-apocalyptic vampire series, both of which are expected to have 2012 publication dates.
I received a copy of this book for review from Netgalley.(less)
okay, i know what you're thinking...this book isn't in the dystopian genre...this is a werewolf book. but you'd be wrong on both accounts.
first, let m...moreokay, i know what you're thinking...this book isn't in the dystopian genre...this is a werewolf book. but you'd be wrong on both accounts.
first, let me explain why i shelved this under dystopian. as andrea cremer unfolds calla tor's story, we discover that the keepers control a lot of factors for the packs of wolves (guardians) they preside over: who they will mate with, the resultant offspring, where they will live, etc. calla's love interest (or i guess i should say, one of calla's love interests), shay doran, even opens calla's eyes up to the fact that the system in place between the keepers and the guardians is a hegemony. so, maybe not a dystopian, per se, but i still think it belongs on that shelf.
secondly, this is not a story about werewolves. this is a story about shifters who happen to take on the form of wolves, as that was the animal of origin for the guardians. werewolves turn at the full moon and from all accounts i've read, don't seem to have any control over the change or how they behave once they've turned. in nightshade, the wolf is constantly a part of calla's being, existing in a parallel plane of existence concurrently with calla's human form in this dimension. she has complete control when shifting and can change on a whim.
i was pleasantly surprised with this novel. not your typical werewolf book, as i've explained, and although i had my suspicions about shay's role in the world of keepers and guardians, and how it would be discovered at the union of calla and ren laroche (calla's predetermined mate...i.e. the other love interest), i still really enjoyed how the story played out and left even more questions unanswered than i had in the beginning.
i love a good character-driven story, and i feel that the author did a great job building not only the main characters (calla, ren, and shay) but also their packmates and even the keepers. her descriptions of them and their actions were so vivid and gave me a good sense of who they were. i know some might find calla's decisions selfish, considering her responsibilities, but i think they show her strength of character, considering the reasoning for her decisions...she did what she did for the sake of her pack. i can't fault that logic.
I know I’m in the minority with this sentiment, but I wasn’t as enthralled with this novel as I was...moreReview originally posted at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
I know I’m in the minority with this sentiment, but I wasn’t as enthralled with this novel as I was with the first installment in the series. Rather than feeling like a supplement to the first book, this addition to the series almost felt like starting over. A slew of new characters, a completely different setting, and a tedious account of Searcher history all made the first half of this novel very lackluster for me, which I found very frustrating considering how much I was anticipating this book.
I really liked the strength of Calla’s character in Nightshade, but I felt like she lost some of herself in Wolfsbane. Maybe that’s just because Shay was more assertive, though, growing into his inner wolf, if you will. I liked his character less in this novel, too. He seemed possessive of Calla, controlling even, especially whenever mention of Ren was made. That said, I didn’t really feel the connection between Calla and Shay as much, especially with Calla so conflicted over Ren. The love scenes between Shay and Calla felt kind of forced and awkward. I was completely Team Shay at the end of Nightshade, but now I’m on the fence and leaning closer to Team Ren after Wolfsbane. Probably doesn’t hurt Ren’s case that he’s so tortured when we finally get to see him again. I do so love the tortured bad boy.
The second half of the book, though, made up for the flat first half. Plenty of fight scenes, secrets, making out…all the stuff that made the first novel so much fun. I understand the history lesson was necessary to get us to the startling revelations at the end of the novel, but sometimes less is more. I delight in finding hidden clues and putting things together myself, but because of the long-winded chronicling of Searcher history that was provided, I discovered the shocking secret very early on in the book.
Still, I may not have loved it as much as Nightshade, but the events of Wolfsbane are critical for the big finish I know Andrea Cremer has in store for us with Bloodrose. Just a little friendly advice, though: if it’s been awhile since you read Nightshade, I recommend you pick it up again for a re-read before starting Wolfsbane. I only read Nightshade earlier this year, but I was still fuzzy on some of the details from that cliff-hanger of an ending.(less)
If I was going to sum up my feelings on Crossed with one statement, it would be this: I didn’t hate this book, but I also didn’t love it, though I app...moreIf I was going to sum up my feelings on Crossed with one statement, it would be this: I didn’t hate this book, but I also didn’t love it, though I appreciated the background story and seeing the characters in ways I didn’t expect. There was less actually happening in the storyline, but the characters faced harder choices than in Matched.
Normally, I’d like my pulse to be racing throughout a good majority of the book, but being the second installment in the series, I expected it to be more of a history lesson than an action-packed novel. Such is the way with sophomore entries. Crossed started off very slow, and I had a hard time staying focused on the story, but it picked up about half-way through, thankfully.
I am so wishy-washy when it comes to split POVs. It’s really all in how an author handles the transition, I suppose. In this particular instance, I believe having both Cassia and Ky’s points-of-view really helped the reader understand the characters better. Reading Ky’s POV really changed my opinion of him, I think. Not that I like him less, but he’s not as innocent as one was led to believe in Matched. And some of his insider knowledge really helped form a different opinion of Xander for me. I’m sure this will lead to inner turmoil for Cassia, as well, but that’s yet to be seen.
My biggest beef with this sequel, besides the slowness of the first half, was how much coincidence was needed to propel the story along. It just seemed at times that if coincidence didn’t exist, we might never have attained any real resolution. Though, being the second novel in a trilogy, maybe we weren’t supposed to. Either way, I am not a proponent of coincidence, of events happening for the sake of happening. I am a creature of reason.
That said, I’m still kind of excited for the final book in the series. The way the author left the ending? Well, I’m more curious than ever. Ever the romantic, my final question to myself upon finishing Crossed was, “Which boy?”
i *loved* this book! before i read this novel, i had read some reviews saying that this story was not as good as lauren oliver's previous novel, befor...morei *loved* this book! before i read this novel, i had read some reviews saying that this story was not as good as lauren oliver's previous novel, before i fall, but having not read that one yet, i think it must be a pretty awesome read considering how much i enjoyed delirium.
the storyline was rather similar to the recently released matched by ally condie but with some key twists, and the character development really set it apart. and the whole idea that love is a disease...what a great premise for a dystopian novel!
one of the best novels i've read, and it's easily in the top tier of my favorites list. and the cliffhanger at the end! i don't know if i'll be able to contain myself until the next installment is released!(less)
word of mouth travels fast...it seems that all of my online buddies have already read this novel and steadfastly approve, myself included. what a brilliant debut! when you envision your own novel, you only dare hope that it comes out half as amazing as lauren destefano's futuristic vision of our world. if you haven't heard great things about this book, you must be holed up in a cave. i cannot recommend reading this book enough!
the characterization in 'wither' is absolutely phenomenal. the characters are captivating and completely human in their exploits. every new thing you learn about them is a kick in the pants, pulling you into the story that much further. the polygamy aspect of the story really intrigued me, in the same way that you have to look at an accident on the highway as you pass...you know it's disturbing, but somehow seeing the devastation will help you understand it. destefano really delves into the subject and how it affects the sister wives, though her concentration is on rhine, the main character.
i adore rhine's character. she's strong and oh-so-stubborn, her focus only on escaping this sham of a marriage and getting back to her brother rowan, though she's distracted by the handsome and sympathetic gabriel. oh, the complications that arise.
i am in love with this novel. it's my #1 read for this year. and it was unexpected. i love the dystopian genre, so i knew i would like it, but wow, i like it like i like the hunger games. it's unique and sets itself completely apart from the rest of the genre. it's defiant and it asks questions that some would be afraid to answer. but it's unequivocally fearless and courageously tests the waters, and it has found an audience waiting to tread those waters unafraid, as well.(less)
this is another book where i read an excerpt before the novel was released and couldn't wait to get my hands on an actual copy when it came out. i mea...morethis is another book where i read an excerpt before the novel was released and couldn't wait to get my hands on an actual copy when it came out. i mean, a burning man falling from the sky in the first chapter? my name is interest and i have been piqued.
so, it was a bit of a letdown to discover that the book's storyline was very similar to that of other books already available in the ya genre: girl meets boy and is immediately enamored. boy runs hot and cold, leaving the girl confused and frustrated as to his feelings toward her. boy is crazy for girl but cannot divulge his real feelings because of the threat he poses to the girl's very existence. boy indulges baser instincts and confesses feelings to girl. girl's life is now in peril. difficult decisions must now be made to save girl so that boy and girl can live happily ever after.
okay, so it's not as cut and dry as all that. the book does have some redeeming qualities: well-written and developed characters; brilliant imagery, especially in the dream sequences; and best of all, NO LOVE TRIANGLE. overall, it was an enjoyable read, and i'll definitely pick up the rest of the series. i'll just start the other installments with lower expectations than this one and hope i'm pleasantly surprised by the outcome. (less)
i love the mortal instruments series...i've even got my younger sister into them, although i don't think she enjoys them as much as i do. regardless,...morei love the mortal instruments series...i've even got my younger sister into them, although i don't think she enjoys them as much as i do. regardless, even she agrees they're pretty awesome.
that said, cofa was greatness. all kinds of plot twists, danger, romance, betrayal, adventure...all things we've come to expect from cassie clare. honestly, i think she endeavors to be the absolute epitome of suffering.
i loved the heated scenes between jace and clary, but i felt like i'd already read all of those from the teasers cassie posts, so those were expected. what wasn't expected was the suffering cassie puts jace through. i mean, wow. could that guy's life get any more difficult? he killed his would-be brother. he was in love with what he thought was his sister, only to find out she's not. (yay!) and now that they can finally be together, he might be the most dangerous person to her? gah...seriously, how much is she going to put him through before he just self-combusts? i miss the sarcastic jace i know and love...
anyway, off of that tangent and on to another...i had always felt like i could do without simon's character. he just seemed like such a sniveling pansy, up until he shot that bow and killed the greater demon. and even in doing so, i still didn't really like him. but after cofa, i finally, genuinely like him...and according to cassie, i'm not the only one to feel this way after the 4th book. maybe it's because he finally quits concentrating on what he wants to have with clary and moves on. but i want to believe that it's because he finally accepts his life as a vampire and even his mark. and maybe the entrance of yet another new character (or two) helps him with that acceptance.
oh, and speaking of acceptance...i always liked malec...but when they were absent from the first half of the book, it made me realize just how much i enjoy their relationship. okay, mostly magnus, but alec has really come around since he and magnus went public. they've really become an integral part of the group, and i missed them while they were away...to, ahem, 'south carolina'.
not to be overshadowed by the relationships in the book, cassie has ensured that the elements of danger and deceit are still alive and thriving. we have a new villain...or villains??? either way, expect to be left wanting more...and left waiting until spring of 2012 to get it. sigh.(less)
good, easy read. i liked the storyline...it wasn't too predictable. i thought the relationship between patch and nora could have been developed a litt...moregood, easy read. i liked the storyline...it wasn't too predictable. i thought the relationship between patch and nora could have been developed a little better...it just seemed like patch was just your random scary stalker-dude, and then all of a sudden he wanted to be with nora, but i guess that's part of his mystery and why nora is so infatuated with him. can't wait to read how their story develops in crescendo!(less)
i absolutely loved hush, hush, so i fully expected to love this book, as well...and i was not disappointed!
however, i did find nora's character more t...morei absolutely loved hush, hush, so i fully expected to love this book, as well...and i was not disappointed!
however, i did find nora's character more than a little irritating in the first half of the book. in the first book, she seemed more mature in her suspicions and the way she questioned everything. but in 'crescendo', she seems like any regular, naive teenage girl, creating drama when there was already so much going on in the story. but after i was about half-way through the book, she seemed to redeem herself and was the nora i loved from 'hush, hush'.
the intensity of the last 100 pages of the book made me forget nora's previous behavior, though. so many questions finally answered, and yet, even more brought to light that i hadn't even thought to ask. and, ack, that cliffhanger! i don't know if i can contain myself until october when the final installment, silence, is released!(less)
This was a 3 ½ star read for me, but since it was not really any better than the first two books in the series, I rounded down to three. I think the p...moreThis was a 3 ½ star read for me, but since it was not really any better than the first two books in the series, I rounded down to three. I think the problem with this book, for me, is that it suffers from not actually being the final book in the series, which it was originally slated to be. Honestly, I was kind of ready for Nora and Patch’s story to end. Don’t get me wrong…I do like this series. I just feel like the story is starting to get stretched too thin and some of the situations are a little too contrived for my preference.
On the plus side, Nora’s character was a bit less annoying this time around, though that might have been a result of what happened after that huge cliffhanger Fitzpatrick left us with at the end of Crescendo. Nora’s got a lot of growing to do, and I still don’t think she’s ready for what’s to come after the events of Silence, but I’ll still read it just to see how badly she flubs up everything. Who knows? Maybe she’ll finally come into her own, but I think that’s pretty doubtful as long as she’s still all goo-goo eyes for Patch.
Speaking of, his royal hotness surprised me in this latest installment. Whereas he was trying to kill Nora in Hush, Hush, he’s doing everything he can to keep her safe in Silence. I know I shouldn’t like Patch, what with his stalker tendencies and devil-may-care attitude, but I can’t help myself. I still think I prefer the psycho-Patch from the first book, though. He kept things interesting. :)
Silence wasn’t necessarily uninteresting, but it seemed less eventful than the previous books. Too many gaps being filled for much else to happen, which made this seem more like a middle book than an ending, which I guess it technically was. I enjoy reading this series, but with the influx of new talent out there, especially in YA, I feel my fondness for these books dwindling.
i didn't love this book, but i also didn't hate it. i think it's a good first attempt for such a young author, but the story was lacking. it seemed to...morei didn't love this book, but i also didn't hate it. i think it's a good first attempt for such a young author, but the story was lacking. it seemed too relationship-centric, as i prefer the love story to be a departure from the main conflict in a novel, not what the entire book revolves around.
i've read many 'angel' stories as of late, and i do prefer those that set the female protagonist as the angel, rather than the human girl who constantly needs rescuing by her fallen angel boyfriend-type. but even though this story falls in the first category, i wouldn't say that the main character bethany is strong in this story. instead, she is weak and spends most of the book falling and pining for the human boy xavier, who, on the other hand, is not lacking in strenth of character or moral fiber. xavier loves bethany in return, but if it were not for his prodding, bethany would have completely disregarded the mission she and her brother (gabriel) and sister (ivy) had been sent to earth to accomplish, which was to give faith back to the community of venus cove. it takes a demon in the form of hunky jake thorn to remind bethany of her purpose, and by the end of the novel, she has redeemed herself and realigned her priorities with those of her angel brother and sister.
'halo' was a good, easy read, and the cover is gorgeous, but its downfall was the lack of a strong female lead. however, i enjoyed the story enough that i will read the sequel, hades, when it comes out later this year.(less)
Wow. I think I said that about The Forest of Hands and Teeth, but The Dead-Tossed Waves was even more wowsome. Yeah, it was so good, I made up my own...moreWow. I think I said that about The Forest of Hands and Teeth, but The Dead-Tossed Waves was even more wowsome. Yeah, it was so good, I made up my own word for it.
For honesty's sake, I'm going to admit that I'm writing this review after having already read the third (and final, if I'm not mistaken) book in the series, The Dark and Hollow Places. Now that I've prefaced this review with that statement, I feel I can candidly say that of the three books, this one was my favorite.
Carrie Ryan is so awesome at world-building...truly. I felt as if I was walking the between the fences yet again, this time with Gabry instead of Mary. And I enjoyed every heart-breaking second of it. The worse the situation seemed, the more I was drawn to Gabry...pulled into her life and left feeling as desolate and hopeless as she was. And just when I think Gabry can't suffer anymore, the author throws her a bone...only to wrench it out of her tired, bedraggled hands yet again.
This author is a master at tugging at your heart-strings. One minute you're being pulled in this direction, and a second later, she's got you turned around, wondering how you ever felt that inital pull in the first place.
Usually, the middle book in a trilogy is just fluff. But that is definitely not the case with Carrie Ryan's The Forest of Hands and Teeth trilogy. I think this book made the trilogy what it was, at least for me.(less)
Wow. I can't believe I waited so long to start this book. And I only did so at the behest of a few friends who said that the first book was good but t...moreWow. I can't believe I waited so long to start this book. And I only did so at the behest of a few friends who said that the first book was good but the others in the series are even better. If the first book is any indication, the rest of the series must be phenomenal!
That said, this book is kind of a downer. Zombies run rampant. The humans that have survived thus far have fenced themselves in, but still there are attacks. Yet, the ruling individuals in the village just outside the reach of the Forest of Hands and Teeth, the Sisterhood as they are called, have created some semblance of order. The residents of the village look to the Sisters for guidance, for survival. Except Mary.
Mary has heard stories all her life of the ocean. She doesn't want to stay trapped within the fences meant to protect them all; she wants to see the ocean her mother told her about, the one she still believes exists.
I liked Mary's character, the way she was written. Some see her as selfish for wanting what she does, for not wanting what is right in front of her. But in times of great despair, aren't our dreams and wishes all that keep us going? Mary just wants hope, like anyone else might. She just doesn't make very good decisions when going about it. She hurts people without even realizing it, and for not seeing how she affects others, she is selfish. But it's part of what makes her such a great main character; she's not perfect.
The author's writing is such that I was pulled into the story immediately. I felt the characters' losses, their heartaches, their fear. I was on the edge of my seat till the bitter end, always wondering if Mary ever would get to see the ocean. Carrie Ryan truly is a masterful storyteller. I've already started The Dead-Tossed Waves and can't wait to tear through it so I get get to the last one. I'm sad that it took me so long to read this series, but at the same time, I'm kind of glad because now I don't have to wait for the next installment to be released. They're all right at my fingertips!(less)
I love how these books weren't necessarily sequels to their predecessors but instead worked as companion n...moreReview also posted at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
I love how these books weren't necessarily sequels to their predecessors but instead worked as companion novels. You didn't have to have read the other books in the trilogy -- though it did help in the long run.
Again, I'm amazed at how long it took me to read this series. Each girls' story was so heart-felt, told with such raw emotion, that it was as if I was living the life of a survivor myself. The true testament of an awesome writer is their ability to make the reader feel one with the story, and in that respect, Ms. Ryan has surpassed my expectations. Her characters all breathe a life of their own into the story, all ingniting a passion and an unrivaled survival instinct to boot.
In this final book, the author hasn't made any of the characters' lives any easier, and she hasn't necessarily tied up any "loose ends" so-to-speak, but she has left the reader with a sense of hope. A light at the end of the tunnel, if you will. Endings don't have to be perfect and sigh-inducing, but if there's one goal that needs to be accomplished with a final book, it's to leave the reader with a sense of satisfaction, and I can say that I felt that after turning the last page of The Dark and Hollow Places.(less)
in this adaptation of the story of the big bad wolf, little red riding hood isn't so little anymore, and she's hell-bent on avenging the murder of her...morein this adaptation of the story of the big bad wolf, little red riding hood isn't so little anymore, and she's hell-bent on avenging the murder of her poor old granny.
you've still got the wolf, red, granny, and the woodsman, but the author takes some creative liberties with the original story and completely owns her version. we were never meant to like the wolf from the original story, but pearce has you hating the fenris--werewolves--wanting to hunt them down, just as the march sisters (little red riding hood x2) do to avenge their dear oma march (granny).
she also expertly weaves a love story into this tale, and although i was doubtful while it was unfolding, mostly for scarlett's sake, i felt that it was integral to the story, and it made me care for the characters in ways i had not expected. i was half-way through the book before i began to feel anything for the characters' plights--except for scarlett, who's determination and purpose really drove me to keep reading--but from there i was invested and had to find out how the characters' stories tied together, even if it meant depriving myself of sleep.
this was such a great twist on an already entertaining children's classic, but i felt that at times, it was quite predictable, despite the twists and variations from the original story, which is why i gave it 4/5 stars.(less)
This story was cute and fun and over pretty quickly. I like retellings, but I never connected with this one. I love the original story, and I love wat...moreThis story was cute and fun and over pretty quickly. I like retellings, but I never connected with this one. I love the original story, and I love watching Disney’s version of Beauty and the Beast with my daughter, but this adaptation left me wanting.
I didn’t like Kyle, even after he became a better version of himself. And Lindy was just one big cliché. I didn’t watch the movie based on this book, but even so, I found it difficult not to project the actors onto the characters. That’s no one’s fault but my own, I know, but it still had an influence on my opinion of this book, sadly.
I believe we all probably know this story pretty well, so I don’t think I’ll be spoiling anything for anyone here. The story is supposed to take place over the span of two years, in which Kyle must break the spell the witch has cast upon him, but there obviously wasn’t enough material there to cover that time span because here’s what goes down: the spell is cast, Kyle removes himself from society for awhile, then abducts Lindy who leaves before the curse is broken to take care of her father, she’s gone for months and months in which nothing happens, and then she and Kyle are reunited by fate. I hate when I see this in a novel. I don’t like it in movies either, really. And maybe it can’t always be helped, but I think there’s probably a better way to relate the passing of time than “six weeks later…” or “one year after…” or similar transitional phrasing. If you’re going to tell me that a lengthy amount of time has elapsed, you’d better tell me what happened in that time period.
Anyway, this review is for the audiobook. I think I may have liked the actual book better because the narrator for this one drove me a little nuts. The guy read Lindy’s parts as if he was Derek Zoolander. Seriously. It was funny at first because I, for one, think Zoolander was one of Ben Stiller’s funnier movies, but it started grating on my nerves after awhile. Maybe I’ll give the actual book a read one day, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. I'm still considering reading Cloaked by this same author, though...I can't help it. I love retellings. But maybe I'll read the book instead of listening to it, especially if it's narrated by the same guy.(less)