Never have I been so glad to be an audiobook listener than with this series. The first book only recently released in the US, but both books have beenNever have I been so glad to be an audiobook listener than with this series. The first book only recently released in the US, but both books have been available on audio thanks to the Australian publisher for ages, so I immediately downloaded this sequel. Another plus, it's only a duology. And as I said, it's from the land down under, and I've never met a book from an Australian author that I didn't like. But this series? This series is phenomenal. If I thought the first book was insane, I was nowhere near prepared for this conclusion. The absolute brilliance of this series leads me to believe that I must, at all costs, read everything else Jessica Shirvington has ever written....more
I love discovering books not because they're being promoted but because other readers are simply enjoying them and sharing the love on Goodreads. I prI love discovering books not because they're being promoted but because other readers are simply enjoying them and sharing the love on Goodreads. I probably would have dismissed this book without a second thought because it sounded a little too dystopian for my tastes, but it is sooo much more than that. The utter mind-fuck that Maggie pulls over on Quentin, the infiltration, the romance, the utter chaos of it all...I am so glad I didn't have to wait for the sequel like so many others complained about after that killer cliff-hanger....more
I enjoy re-reading books, especially when doing so means I can finally get to the last book in a series. I liked all the answersOriginal review here.
I enjoy re-reading books, especially when doing so means I can finally get to the last book in a series. I liked all the answers we got in this sequel, especially as I'd forgotten quite a bit in the years since I originally read it. But knowing the final book is more Nick's story...I'm still not sure I'll pick it up. I like Nick. He reminds me a lot of Ronan, actually. But my library doesn't have the final book on audio, and I'm not sure I'll love the book enough to own it myself....more
Eh. I actually didn't finish this audiobook, but I made it to the 80% mark before DNFing, so I'm going to give it 2 stars for that. I was actually atEh. I actually didn't finish this audiobook, but I made it to the 80% mark before DNFing, so I'm going to give it 2 stars for that. I was actually at the part where things were really starting to get interesting, but my commute was over and it was a Friday evening and I was just never able to make myself pick it back up to see how it ended. I think it was just a tad too out there for me, with human consciences in some robots and other robots trying to assimilate humans while still others wanted to BE like humans. Maybe the robotic aspect was why it was so hard for me to connect with any of the characters, even the human ones....more
An ARC - as well as an audiobook version - of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts are my own. ThisAn ARC - as well as an audiobook version - of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts are my own. This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
Before I even started The Diabolic, I knew I was going to love this book...I just wasn't aware how much I'd enjoy it. I had an ARC, but once I realized Candace Thaxton was narrating the audiobook, I decided I'd go that route. Candace also narrated one of my favorite books ever -- The Sea of Tranquility -- and does a great job of portraying Nadia, another girl who doesn't allow herself to feel. So I knew she'd do a fabulous job performing as Nemesis, a ruthless killing machine who only cares about one person: her master and charge. And, honestly, it was better than I could have imagined.
This was a book that I started listening to at work and continued listening to on my way home. Then I took my daughter to the park and cracked open my ARC while continuing to listen and followed along that way. And I continued listening while I was cooking and washing dishes. Then I went back to reading and listening after dinner. I just could not put this book down. I finished The Diabolic in one day and I regret nothing.
The Diabolic was damn near perfect. It had everything I was looking for: political intrigue, characters with violent tendencies, forbidden romance...plus, it's set in SPACE. I don't think I picked up on that in the summary the first time I read it, but yes, political intrigue of galactic proportions. SO MUCH YES!
But probably my favorite aspect of this novel was that of a cold, calculating being having to come to terms with her humanity and actually allow herself to feel things. And it was glorious! She freaks out when she laughs by accident. She bonds with a mutant dog-thing and it's ridiculously adorable. And she allows herself to love, which is no small feat. I just adore characters who basically start out as robots and are a big ole pile of mush by the end of the story.
Even when they're being exceedingly violent. Especially then. Like, you read all the time about badass characters who do violent things but you never actually experience any of that once the story gets going. Not so for Nemesis, whose philosophy in life lies somewhere just shy of Kill or be killed. There is all manner of brutality between the pages of this book, and it was gory but also awesome.
Also, I SHIP IT. So hard. It's pretty much forbidden. Except she's pretending to be someone she's not, so it's kinda okay and accepted? But it starts out as a partnership in a revenge plot. Then they become sparring partners. And then friends. And, well, it just snowballs from there. It's only a little angsty, and mostly because Nemesis is SO freaked out by all these new feelings she's experiencing. And she's afraid. But they are such a good pair because they've both done unconscionable things, in the name of the greater good and those they love. And it just works.
So...yay for evil tendencies? At any rate, this book was amazing, plain and simple. And it's a stand-alone! Which makes it an even more perfect fit for me because I hate waiting for the next book. :P I highly recommend the audiobook version, but whichever route you go, I guarantee you won't be disappointed with The Diabolic.
Thanks to Audiobook SYNC, you can grab the audio version of this title thru Wednesday (5/11) for FREE! Details here.
This was one strange, strange littThanks to Audiobook SYNC, you can grab the audio version of this title thru Wednesday (5/11) for FREE! Details here.
This was one strange, strange little book. Observations on religious extremism and atheism aside, I'm still not really sure what this book was about. Was it supposed to be Vivian discovering what her own beliefs were in the midst of the Rapture? Because I feel like she forestalled ever figuring out her own thoughts on the matter by calling everyone else's beliefs into question, until she gets a lecture on the subject from just about the only adult she trusts...and that doesn't happen until nearly the end of the book.
Was this supposed to be a parody on all of that, akin to This is the End? I could see that, with the good being saved - straight through the roofs of their homes, no less - and the wicked left to deal with the tsunamis and earthquakes and hurricanes and all manner of destruction coming their way after the Rapture.
But it also had a traditional contemporary YA novel feel, with Viv learning that family isn't only blood, that friends can become just as much your family as the one you were born into. It took her a road trip across apocalypse-ravaged America to discover that, but it does play a big part in Vivian's character arc. And then there was that whole thing at the end with the Church of America and capitalism and marketing and just...what?!?
I liked the story. It was weird and atypical for YA, and I'm not sure if it's just social commentary on religion, a slightly off-putting attempt at realistic post-apocalyptic fiction, or just some kind of conspiracy theory novel. But it was weird and I liked it. Not enough to think a series was warranted, and I probably won't read the follow-up - unless it appears in my hands for free like this one - but it was enjoyable to some degree. And I think that readers who like a story that's a little off the beaten path will find it enjoyable, as well....more
Why is no one talking about this book? It was awesome...full of intrigue and kickass women and boasting of a post-apocalyptic world that felt genuineWhy is no one talking about this book? It was awesome...full of intrigue and kickass women and boasting of a post-apocalyptic world that felt genuine and realistic. AND it's a retelling of Fitcher's Bird by the Brothers Grimm. And so far, it seems to be a stand-alone, which I love because it kind of ends on the perfect note....more
I lovedStarflight. Loved it! So much that I think I've already read it something like three times. ;) And this sequel/companion is every bit as fun,I lovedStarflight. Loved it! So much that I think I've already read it something like three times. ;) And this sequel/companion is every bit as fun, though I had my doubts it would be since I wasn't a big fan of Kane's - or even Cassia's - in the first book. Still not the biggest Kane/Cassia shipper, but I think other developments in the book made up for their lack of chemistry. Much can be overlooked when a sequel takes the campy humor and Firefly-esque antics of the previous book and ramps them up a notch...or ten....more
Wow. I was already feeling the love for this author after my re-read of Rook, but Sharon Cameron has solidified her place as a favorite. I just love tWow. I was already feeling the love for this author after my re-read of Rook, but Sharon Cameron has solidified her place as a favorite. I just love that feeling when I'm reading, like I know I'm missing something, but I can't quite put my finger on it, only to be surprised again and again. Plus, she writes some of the BEST ships! I am really going to make a point of checking out her backlist titles ASAP....more
It was entertaining, but I think my biggest problem with it was that it just had so much going on and not enough time was spent on any one aspect. DraIt was entertaining, but I think my biggest problem with it was that it just had so much going on and not enough time was spent on any one aspect. Dragons, fey, a competition, political intrigue...none of it was expanded upon as much as I would hope, and none of it seemed very cohesive. I might still pick up the next book, though, because things that happened in the beginning of the book still have me curious....more
An ARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review, as was a copy of the audiobook. My thoughts are my own. This reviAn ARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review, as was a copy of the audiobook. My thoughts are my own. This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
Sorry, I just really like the formatting of these books. I'd write my whole review like that, but I think I'd have a massive headache by the end. Or you'd have one, and then where would we be?
The gist of that over there being: this sequel is as awesome as Illuminae, if not more so. I'm always wary of companion series because I fall hard for the characters in the first book every time. Way. Hard. So, for a duo of authors -- as amazing pants as these two are -- to make me love the characters in their second novel just as much is kind of unheard of.
I received both an ARC and an audiobook*** of Gemina for review, and being the visual person that I am, I followed along the text while I listened. Because with a book like this, you can't just hear an E X P L O S I O N on the audio without seeing it, not the way this series is presented. This sequel is just like Illuminae, told through a dossier of emails, text-like chats, and even files from AIDAN. You didn't think you'd seen the last of him IT, did you?
If you thought Kady and Ezra had a struggle on their hands in the previous book, what with a BeiTech ship on the warpath and a deranged AI taking charge, you ain't see nothin' yet. In this installment of the Illuminae Files, the characters are subjected not only to more BeiTech goons out for blood but also an alien life form that none of them are prepared for. All I can say is, Poor cow cows.
Our heroine this time around may be a pampered princess whose daddy runs Heimdall station, but Hanna's more dangerous than she looks. And she reminded me a lot of Lilac from These Broken Stars. Except harder to kill. Nik is a good guy with a bad boy rep, but he set his sights on Hanna long ago. He's good in a tough spot and also hard to kill. Which makes their pairing in this novel all the more fun. Add in Ella, his wise-hacking cousin and Hanna's smokin' hot boyfriend -- narrated by the incomparable Steve West on the audiobook, YUM! -- plus some seriously ruthless BeiTech mercenary-types who want to take them all out, and you've got a legit cast of characters.
Lots of action, too...and laughs and sobs and all the feels, really. Just like the first book. But more so. And with a psychedelic angle. Ha, you'll see what I mean. There is nothing I don't like about this book or series, but my favorite part might just be the action as reported by that analyst. That guy is hysterical. And he's got a British accent on the audio, which makes it even funnier.
Seriously. I don't care if you're not a fan of sci-fi or haven't read anything by these authors before. YOU NEED THIS SERIES IN YOUR LIFE. It's equal parts clever and funny and action-packed and soul-crushing and you are seriously missing out if you don't give it a chance. It's rare that I can say a sequel lived up to my expectations, but that's exactly what Gemina does. So go forth and grab this book and then live long and prosper.
This sequel was balls-to-the-wall as explosive and dynamic as the first book. There's a lot more introspection into Cathryn's (sp? I listened to the aThis sequel was balls-to-the-wall as explosive and dynamic as the first book. There's a lot more introspection into Cathryn's (sp? I listened to the audio) motivations and what led up to her scheming for revenge. And what led to the Seekers becoming the murderers that they are now, including the Middle Dred's master plan. Some of the characters have redeemed themselves in my eyes, while others continue to make one bad decision after another. Not only do you get a more in-depth look at the characters, but you're also thrown right into the middle of the action and it. Never. Stops.
I liked this book slightly less than its predecessor, but that's likely to do with how some of the characters are behaving and has little to do with the actual writing. Also, the narrator is fabulous for this audiobook. I re-read Seeker via audio last year and I knew that was the way to go with this sequel. And probably the next book, too. :)...more
Officially done with my re-read/listen of this series. (I don't think I need to re-read Fairest to remember just how awful Queen Levana is. :P) OriginOfficially done with my re-read/listen of this series. (I don't think I need to re-read Fairest to remember just how awful Queen Levana is. :P) Original review here. I am SO READY for Winter....more
Figured it was time to start my re-read/listen before Winter releases, though the way I go through audiobooks, I probably should have waited a bit lonFigured it was time to start my re-read/listen before Winter releases, though the way I go through audiobooks, I probably should have waited a bit longer, lol. Original review here....more
An ARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
So, I thouAn ARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.
So, I thought I was getting a book about time travel, and what I got was a thoughtful story about grief and loss and friendship. I'm not complaining. Some of my favorite books deal with these subjects. I just wish there were some way to prepare other readers for this book...and to make them stick with it when the going gets tough because it's totally worth it in the end.
At around page 18, I was stuck and didn't know if I'd make it any further. Gottie is a whiz at physics and math and she thinks she's traveling through wormholes to the past, and that's all well and good because I love me some time travel. However, the detail with which Gottie explains black holes and wormholes and how one might travel through them is exhausting and thoroughly confusing. And I say that as someone who aced physics in high school. BUT, as I discovered by reading on, you really don't need to understand the science or math behind the phenomenon, only that this is what Gottie believes is happening to her.
Gottie has been grieving the death of her beloved grandfather for the last year or so. And to make matters worse, right after his passing, her first (and secret) love broke if off with her. She is heart-broken twice over and has shut herself off from the world.
Until the return of her best friend. Things are rough between them at first, with Gottie still feeling the sting of Thomas' betrayal when he moved away five years ago and never wrote to her, but they move past it and something sweet develops between them. For a time, it's almost as if those five years never happened.
The characters in this book are all kinds of quirky. As in, not a single one of them seems to conform to society's norms. And that's okay. It's just another thing that I could have let bother me in the beginning, if I hadn't kept reading to determine why everyone -- at least in Gottie's family -- was so kooky. To some extent, it's a coping mechanism, just as Gottie's fixation on the wormholes is her way of dealing with her loss.
I was really able to empathize with Gottie. I lost my grandmother when I was around the same age, and I always felt close to her. My gran was just about as zany and out of this world as Grey...and she also died of cancer. The constant reminders of my own loss made this a difficult read at times, but it was also a cathartic experience. You don't realize how much you bottle up, how much you keep inside, until it's all spilling out.
This was such a weird little book. For most, it will mean reading out of your comfort zone, either because of the science-y aspect or the tough subject matter. But the payoff -- even if you don't totally understand it at first -- makes the journey more than worthwhile.