I'm slow on reading this book, I know. It came out a little over a year ago, but this is one of those that I thought I'd just hold onto it until it wa...moreI'm slow on reading this book, I know. It came out a little over a year ago, but this is one of those that I thought I'd just hold onto it until it was closer to release date of the second book. That way the wait isn't quite as painful. Either way, I was very happy with this book.
I knew next to nothing about the story other than the summary...which is fairly accurate, as far as it goes, but there's a lot more to it than what's mentioned in the summary. First of all, I'm a fan of Earth-destruction type books, and movies. Any time a Deep Impact, Armageddon, or The Day After Tomorrow type movie comes out, I'm the first one through the theater. Books...same thing. I can't get enough of this type of story, so I'd be pre-disposed to like it anyway just for that aspect. Add to that the fact that it was really really unique in another aspect (one I won't tell you of because I don't want to ruin things for you), and I was pretty engrossed from the beginning.
I love the characters, especially Janelle. One of my favorite heroines in a while because she was uber smart. Her father's an FBI agent, and she definitely inherited the man's analytical skills. I love reading characters like this and watching them work out details, uncover clues, and slowly figure things out. She was so intuitive, but also brave and selfless.
Ben was a good match for her, as he is smart, sweet, and brave as well. So the two of them seem to fit really well. I loved the slow build of the romance... there was no rushing here, and it made it more believable to me.
This was definitely a very unique story, and I don't feel like I can really go into more detail than that without ruining it for anyone who hasn't read it yet. But it had me engrossed... the pacing was absolutely perfect. I found myself flying through pages. The suspense heightened everything to the point where it felt like the last third of the book just blew by.
Naturally, this ends with a cliffhanger that had me gnashing my teeth and getting misty-eyed. Thank heavens I waited until only a couple weeks before the sequel's release date before reading this. If I had to wait a year for the sequel, I'd be really upset!! Great book. Very inventive. (less)
Pretty Crooked was such a cute story. I loved having a break from the the "sky is falling" type stories I've been reading to just sit back with a ligh...morePretty Crooked was such a cute story. I loved having a break from the the "sky is falling" type stories I've been reading to just sit back with a light, fun read. This book definitely delivers that.
The idea of having a Willa be like a modern-day Robin Hood was a cute one. At times I was a little appalled myself over some of the stunts she pulls. I tried to push that aside though and just enjoy the story without worrying about whether or not the motive was pure enough to forgive her actions. But I won't pretend it didn't give me some pause now and then.
Willa was a good character. I liked the fact that she cared about others and didn't want to see them be made fun of or hurt. Her heart was definitely in the right place, even though her actions were wrong, no matter what the motive.
The romance was cute and sweet, and all in all, I found that the story had a great mixture of humor, seriousness, romance, and a little intrigue. The author's writing was engaging and the story fast-paced. A great book to read when you just want to enjoy a relaxing afternoon. (less)
This story surprised me on a couple different levels. First of all, the story is told alternately between then and now. I thought, at first, oh boy, t...moreThis story surprised me on a couple different levels. First of all, the story is told alternately between then and now. I thought, at first, oh boy, this is going to be confusing. But the author handled this switch back and forth so skillfully that it didn't pull me out of the story or confuse me at all.
Gabby is faced with some challenges here and earns a new strength as she journeys through this situation. I love watching a character's journey as they grow and change to meet what's happening to them, and you definitely saw this with Gabby.
I wanted to kick the crap out of her mother on more than one occassion. In most scenes Gabby has with her mother, I just couldn't help but think that some people don't deserve to be, and should never be, parents.
There were a few surprises in this story for me, some I saw coming, and some I didn't. Bottom line, the story was very good, a fast read that kept me interested. The author's writing style was so good... I love this kind of deep-heart narrative that really strips barriers away, where you truly feel like you're in the person's head. Some of the writing was so beautiful.
A great debut by author Ann Redisch Stampler. Definitely someone to watch for! (less)
Let me just say that this book grabbed me from the start. I had so been looking forward to this one coming out as I had heard so many great things abo...moreLet me just say that this book grabbed me from the start. I had so been looking forward to this one coming out as I had heard so many great things about it, the cover was intriguing, and the summary sounded amazing. From the first page, I really was sucked in. The pacing kept me going, and it definitely proved to be one of those books that kept me reading late into the night when I should have been sleeping.
Faye was an awesome character that I just felt bad for from the very first page. To have your parents dump you at a strange school in the way they did... wow. I can't imagine how it must feel, but the author did a great job dealing with her emotions towards her family and pretty much everyone who has always treated her like something was wrong with her. It was sad. Kel was definitely a compelling male lead that I thought was great. The pairing just seemed to work, and the suspense in the story kept the two moving toward further danger.
About two thirds into the story though, things began to fall apart for me a little bit. I could almost pinpoint the exact moment even. Faye was sitting in her dorm room puzzling over what to do with the little bit of information she has managed to collect regarding what's been happening to her at the school... then suddenly she's outside and something else is happening. There was really not much explanation as to the lost time between the dorm room and outside in the woods. And then to make matters worse, strange things start happening to the plot from that point on. I found myself very confused as to where we were, and what was happening. It was so quick of a scenery/event change, that it jarred me from the story and I'm not sure I ever really made it back completely. And I really wasn't sure that I bought into Faye's reactions toward the end of the story.
It was unfortunate that this happened so near the end of the story, because that was the last impression I was left with. But the story really had me for two thirds of the way, so I'm hoping that if there's a sequel, I'll be able to move right back into the story and pick up comfortably.
On another note though, the author's writing was tight, action-packed and very compelling. She's a talented writer and did a great job creating characters I cared about. (less)
Great debut! I was snapped right into this story from the first page and it didn't let me go until the last page. It left me begging for more. Sherry...moreGreat debut! I was snapped right into this story from the first page and it didn't let me go until the last page. It left me begging for more. Sherry has led a sheltered life, and I mean that literally. I can't imagine living four years in a bunker with only your family members as company. Sherry and her dad have to leave in order to find food, because the family is out, and they venture from the bunker hoping that the world above has changed.
The concept of this story was truly unique for me. It's the first dystopian book I've read that approached things from this angle, and I found it all the more thrilling and scary because I could really see this happening. It was strange, yes, but is it really such a stretch of the imagination that something like this could happen? I don't want to say what because I don't want to give anything away, but it was just so fresh and new. There were moments of complete eerieness in this story. I found myself wanting to turn the lights up during several scenes of the story.
The characters were great. I loved Sherry as the main character. This is a sheltered, somewhat pampered girl who is now thrown out into a dangerous world, but she's so brave and willing to throw herself even further into danger in order to save people she loves. Joshua was amazing. I really loved his character and how he sort of mentored Sherry into this new and freaky world.
Toward the end of the book, there was a very big surprise that took me completely off-guard. I never saw this coming, and it really hitched the suspense up even further and I just can't wait until the sequel comes out so I can find out what happened. Wow! Great job Susanne Winnacker. (less)
When I first started this book, I wasn't sure I was going to like it. Although it does kind of start out wih some action, surprisingly, I had a tad bi...moreWhen I first started this book, I wasn't sure I was going to like it. Although it does kind of start out wih some action, surprisingly, I had a tad bit of trouble getting into it at first. I'm not sure why. I'm so glad I stuck with it though. This book turned out to be fabulous.
The whole idea that no soul is born to be brand new, that all souls are repeatedly endlessly and that, grown, the people remember themselves throughout centuries, was so unique. I've never read anything quite like that in a dystopian, and it has dragons too! So really it's somewhat of an interesting mixture between dystopian and fantasy. Whatever it was, though, worked for me.
I love the relationship between Ana and Sam. The majority of the story is actually between these two characters. You would think this would make for a boring book, but quite the contrary. These two carried the story off just fine. Their scenes together, their building affection and feeling was so compelling to read. The external conflicts, while welcome and well done, were actually secondary in a way.
Jodi Meadows has employed excellent world-building here, and I found myself truly enthralled. I'm eagerly awaiting the second book in this series. Her writing was fast paced, and often beautiful. A wonderful debut. (less)
Wow. I gotta tell you... this is one of those books that just grabs you from the first page and never lets you go. I had such a wonderful, enjoyable t...moreWow. I gotta tell you... this is one of those books that just grabs you from the first page and never lets you go. I had such a wonderful, enjoyable time reading this book. When it was over, I was so sad that it was over. The story was great, the characters were great, the writing was wonderful. It just had it all. And yes! It had mythology... but one of the most unique twists to traditional mythology that I've ever seen. I was so intrigued and sucked in by this concept. What a breath of fresh air this book was... so very different from everything else I've seen.
Nikki was a great character. I cared so much about her and what she's been through. You couldn't help but love her and you also couldn't help but understand what drove her to make the choice that she did. And wow, what a choice it was. I wasn't sure what to make at the beginning of the story. The author starts in the middle, which at first, I thought was going to be a mistake. You have a girl waking up in this place called the everneath after 100 years with no idea how or why she got there, and knowing nothing about her except that for 100 years she has forgotten everything about herself and her life, except the face of one boy. The more you read this book, there was absolutely no question why Jack's face would be the one thing she remembered. Jack...wow. I'll stop there because if I start gushing I'll end up giving things away.
This book was absolutely perfect. The pacing was great, it read so fast. The writing was just beautiful, the characters, everything was exactly how I like it to be. I can't wait for the sequel.(less)
Wow, this was completely different from what I expected. I'm not sure why, but it brought something a little bit more than what the summary predicted...moreWow, this was completely different from what I expected. I'm not sure why, but it brought something a little bit more than what the summary predicted for me. Yes, Delaney is now drawn to the dead, and it's so sad to watch her agonize over this as she discovers that she can sense people who are about to die and that there's not much she can do about it. My "predictable" radar was going off when she met Troy, because I really saw the whole "guy with similar issues swoops in to save the day" thing about to happen, but the author led us down a completely different path. I was pleasantly surprised.
I really wanted to knock Delaney's parents upside the head. The fact that they believed some of the things they did about her really shocked me. I felt so bad for her that they would make these assumptions and be so difficult with her, all in the name of protecting her. But it was true to life, that I guess I understood it. I can probably imagine some parents reacting the way they did.
The romance in this story was perfect. It is slow to build, slow for me to even figure out actually, but then again, when it finally becomes obvious where the story was headed, I wanted to bomp my forehead and say, "no kidding. Where have you been?"
This was such a unique story, and I found myself really sucked in and on the edge of my seat. So many things were going on and it kept you so engaged. The writing was fast and thoughtful, and the characters so real and endearing. I had to love it. Looking forward to more great stories by Megan Miranda. Great debut!!
For some reason, I don't find many stories out there about witches. There are plenty of vampires, werewolves, angels and demons, but not nearly as man...moreFor some reason, I don't find many stories out there about witches. There are plenty of vampires, werewolves, angels and demons, but not nearly as many witch stories. So A Witch In Winter was kind of refreshing for me.
I loved Anna as a heroine. She was kind of cute, and was exactly how I would picture a girl her age. So much of the time, I read stories where the YA heroine is portrayed as being super smart, brave, resourceful, etc... and I always thoroughly enjoy those stories. Sometimes, though, it's nice to just meet an average-seeming teenage girl. And to me, that was Anna. I liked her and her relationship with her father, and it was interesting to see her trying to build relationships with some of the girls around her. Once she finds out what she is, I didn't admire some of her early choices though. Attempting to do things on your own when your first trial of witchery had gone so wrong probably wasn't such a great idea, but there again, she was acting her age.
Seth was a great character, and I understand that the premise of the story is that she's accidentally put a love spell on him that supposedly causes him to love her, but at the same time, the insta-love effect in the story kind of disappointed me. Even though we're supposed to believe he would have loved her that quickly spell or no spell. But at least once they are together, I truly enjoyed their relationship and thought he was a great guy.
The big showdown was the best part of the story, to me. Very compelling. This proves that Ruth Warburton knows how to write some really suspensful scenes. The book came together for me and I thought this was a pretty good debut. Very enjoyable.
I wasn't sure I was going to like this one because I figured it would be kind of zombie-esque and it would turn me off, but surprisingly, I found myse...moreI wasn't sure I was going to like this one because I figured it would be kind of zombie-esque and it would turn me off, but surprisingly, I found myself really loving it. You couldn't help but feel bad for Seraphina. Anyone who has a bit of a conscience would probably find it difficult living on for many years knowing that your life meant the death of someone innocent. So it isn't surprising that Seraphine wants out.
I thought it was so sweet how she begins to really love and care for the family of the girl whose body she now inhabits, even as she feels guilty over the fact that her very presence in their lives means that their true daughter is dead. And her growing thing with the guy in her life.... yeah, that was interesting too.
All in all I found this to be a really wonderful, thought-provoking debut by Avery Williams. Her writing kept me interested. It was thoughtful, beautiful at times, and the pacing kept me going. I knew bad things were going to happen later and the author did a great job leading you up to that point and making you really care about Seraphine and what's going to happen to her next. A great debut and a great start to a new series. Looking forward to the next installment.
I had a little trouble getting into this one like I hoped I would. Perhaps it was the fact that the book was written in verse and I've never really be...moreI had a little trouble getting into this one like I hoped I would. Perhaps it was the fact that the book was written in verse and I've never really been a fan of that style of novel. It's more distracting to me than engaging. Another thing that kind of pulled me out of the story is that it was a tad bit predictable to me. There was a love triangle... and I kind of knew that one side of the love interest was going to go anywhere, and then boom, I'm right. And then coincidentally, things change to put Marcie back where she was, there's a little conflict there, and then boom, resolution.
Marcie was really the only character in the story that I really felt like I knew. Everyone else was sort of like looking at a picture... a little flat and two dimensional. I really wished I could have seen a bit more depth in some of those other characters.
Lastly, the conflict in the story was based mainly on a big misunderstanding, in my view. So I never really felt like there was a mounting level of emotional buildup. All in all, I admired the author's ability, but the book fell a little flat for me. (less)