Such an awesome Summer read (even though I read it in the dead of winter!). Loveable characters, sweet romance, some pretty hot scenes, fantastic writSuch an awesome Summer read (even though I read it in the dead of winter!). Loveable characters, sweet romance, some pretty hot scenes, fantastic writing...My Life Next door ticks all the right boxes. The secret doesnt come into play until the last 100 pages, but I think this was a pretty good stragetigc move, as we have relationships established, seeds of doubt sown, characters changing face or other characters seeing some for who they really are; Clay Tucker is a cold, manipulative bastard and Nan is a two faced, jealous biatch. The love story is sweet, well paced and absolutely real. Its not many authors that can write such a romance and have me believe that the two characters actually love each other as much as they say. There are some obstacles that the two love birds have to overcome which, when they do, only serves to strengthen their relationship. The thing that struck me was that they actually got to KNOW each other before they established themselves as a couple. This slow progression from friends to love was so sweet. The Garrett family provided some hilarious scenes with the little children, but also drove some of the more serious issues within this book.
I think I would have to agree with the decision Samantha made, by choosing, not which family to stick with (although she did kind of do that) but also choosing what was right (no thanks to said manipulative bastard, Clay). Sam's mum was a weak woman, easily swayed and many times I felt like slapping her in the face and screaming at her to stop being so goddam selfish and stupid!
I would reccommend this book to over 16's as there is quite alot of discussion about sex and birth control (mostly within the context that Jase's family is one of 8 kids and some of the comments his mother gets, as well as this being a story about first love...and alot of other firsts).
This was a heartwarming and enthralling read (and the looking at that cover just makes you all sorts of happy; the hardcover has an awesome bright yellow cover under the dust jacket). Definately reccommend this to all those who love a good chick lit book, with some deeper context. ...more
Full of political intrigue, murder, assasin nuns, and of course romance...oh the romance...so sweet and reaOH.MY.GOD. This book was AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!
Full of political intrigue, murder, assasin nuns, and of course romance...oh the romance...so sweet and real. It starts of as a relationship in disguise, Ismae posing as Duval's mistress, where neither of the pair trusts the other, until they get to know each other better and weave their way through the fog of lies at court, united in their devotion to their Duchess...they begin to trust each other. Trust turns into friendship, and friendship turns into a love that creeps up on the pair. I loved it, now making it one of my favourite romances in a book to date :-)
It was a little hard at times to keep up with all the players at court, who's allegience lies with whom, but as the book progresses, this number of would be traitors trickles down to a select few (through a variety of spying techinques to ascertain the motives, and then dismissal of some not actually being a threat, changed allegiences...and of course assassination).
The thing that made this book so fantsatic was the strong characters. You will fall in love with some and loathe others. They drive the plot so well. Besides Isame and Duval, there is 'Beast' who will win you over with his compassion and loyalty, De Lornay who will slowly grow on you, and the Duchess and her sister, as well as Ismae's fellow novices from the convent, who I think will play much bigger roles in the next few installments in this series.
This one is a little more mature in its content, especially for a YA book, as it does have explicit killing scenes and sexual scenes, so I would reccommend it for over 16s or a sensible younger reader.
Overall, I would definately reccommend this book. If you loved the books from Juliet Marillier, Maria V.Snyder, Rhiannon Hart, Lisa T.Bergren, Michelle Zink, Jennifer Bradbury and Sasha Gould then you're onto a winner with this one :-)...more
I LOVED this book!!!! It is the first Alien book I have read, and I like what I got. Its action packed, its got attitude, smexy aliens that live nextI LOVED this book!!!! It is the first Alien book I have read, and I like what I got. Its action packed, its got attitude, smexy aliens that live next door and a bucket load of romantic tension between said smexy aliens and Katy (or kitten as Daemon calls her LOL) The characters are all distinct in their own attitude, strong and independant. The tormenting and arguing that goes on in this book between Daemon and Katy is hilarious, and oh so HOT!!! cause you just know that they are gonna jump each other soon enough....
Daemon is an ass. But Katy holds her own against said ass over and over again, until a weird kind of respect and acceptance develops. As the story progresses, we begin to see another side of Daemon as he fails to resist the fireball that is Katy. There is the obligitory school room teasing, to the point where Katy wants to "find and destroy that stupid pen". It makes sense when you read it, kind of a running joke between Daemon and Katy that pretty much sums up the gist of their relationship: Daemon pokes and prods until Katy reacts. Makes for some pretty funny scenes.
I felt there could have been a little more the story dedicated to Katy and Dee's relationship. They meet each other and the next thing we know its skipped a month without so much as a detailed scene between them and they're calling each other sisters. But it was somehting that also evolved.
I wouldnt say this book has a romance so much as ALOT of sexual tension. We are left with a cliffhanger that may elude to a romance, but definately continues with the relationship that Daemon and Katy have going. Its very cute in the last few pages, and then it gets funny again when Katy decides Daemon has to work for her love. This protangonist is not a push over!
AND she also reads books and has a book blog that reguarly makes an appearance!!!! Brilliant!
This book may have knocked some of my other YA favourites down a notch and its now firmly placed in the the top 5.
This book is AMAZING!!!!!! First of all you should know that its a dystopian. I started reading it thinking that it was set in modern times, but in a mThis book is AMAZING!!!!!! First of all you should know that its a dystopian. I started reading it thinking that it was set in modern times, but in a mental institution. Its not until Juliette starts explaining the state of the world and the fact that birds can no longer fly that you realise that somehting is a little different.
Juliette is a wonderful protagonist. She is bordering crazy when we first meet her, and Mafi's writing style conveys everything Juliette thinks and feels wonderfully. You literally feel like you are inside her head. Its a lonely and sad place to begin with. Juliette had little hope; locked up in a cement cell for a year with no contact with another human being. Until Adam becomes her cellmate. This makes sense later.
Juliette is obsessed with numbers. Something that becomes apparent in the first few pages of this book is that its not going to be written like any other book. The grammar is terrible, numbers are used instead of letters, things are constantly repeated and crossed out. This is intentional, as we are seeing the world through Juliette's eyes and this is how her brain works. I liked this style of writing. It gave the book extra character and depth. Juliette starts out broken and unwanted; discarded by her own parents, put in a cell and left to slowly starve, staring out the one tiny window dreaming about a white bird with a golden crown (this becomes a meaningful little element throughout the whole book, and is explained later in the story).
The world that is constructed is bleak and seemingly hopeless. Juliette is a comdoity that Warner seeks to possess and control (we'll get to Warner later). It reminds me a little bit of the set up in The Hunger Games, except in this one there is no escape. The Re-establishment is the governing authority, supressing citizens into an extreme state of hopelessness and poverty in an attempt to control them. There are somehting like 2000 sectors, each with its own leader. What the Re-establishment wants every one to believe is that food is running out, deseise is taking hold and that they are their only hope. To resist the Re-establishment is to sign your own death warrant. Their are of course the Rebels, and that is where things get oh so interesting!
Adam is Juliette's slavation. He makes her see her worth, opens her eyes to the real world, protects her from all that will harm her, gives her the love and attention that she has been so deprived of her whole life. Their romance is cute, but also so much more substantial than you might think.
Warner. What to say about Warner??? He's one twisted antagonist. When we first meet him, all we want to do is punch him in the face. As the story progresses, we aren't so sure. There are moments of tenderness and kindness that randomly come from him, to be immediately cut through by cold hearted, murderous, sadistic tendancies. Im still not sure what to think of him. He reminds me of a lost little boy, looking for someone to love and care for him; something he tries to make Juliette the perfect candidate for. Im hoping we get to know a little more about his history throughout the next 2 books in this series.
The ending is the perfect set up for all hell to break loose in the next 2 books. There is a big reveal about Juliette and her abilities, also something about Adam and then Warner.
This is a definite must read for all who love a brilliant pshycological, dystopian thriller with a little bit of an X-Men vibe coming through towards the end. :-D...more
"Should a daughter not recognise her own mother?" This is about the crux of the story. The Twin's daughter is a story about challenging if we can ever"Should a daughter not recognise her own mother?" This is about the crux of the story. The Twin's daughter is a story about challenging if we can ever really know someone, a thriller that has many twists and turns, a murder mystery/investigation, a coming of age story, a war story, a love story....Its got a lot in it.
The Twin's Daughter is told as though Lucy is telling the story about her Aunt. It is set in England sometime in the late 1800's, so its the perfect setting for all Victorian gothic lovers, with lavish parties, beautiful descriptions of dresses and stately, the social structures of the time, etc. It begins with Lucy at the age of 13 when her Aunt Helen, who is a twin to her mother, turns up on her front doorstep. Things start off smoothly and progress into a sort of new happy reality, where her Aunt Helen becomes more of a mother to her, than her real mother is turning out to be.
This book can get a little confusing, as it deals with the concept of identical twins, and as Aunt Helen is molded into a woman of class, the differences between Helen and Aleise (Lucy's mother) lessen, making it hard to distinguish between the two.
We are with Lucy for about 5 years, from 13 - 18, so she does alot of growing up in this book. There is also a love story in this book, which is very sweet; with lots of love letters and clandenstine meetings in secret tunnels and park trysts. I loved this romance, as the relationship between Lucy and Kit develops and changes as they both get older.
The biggest twist happens at the end of the book, when Lucy comes to realise the truth about certain events that have happened over the years. The biggest shock is when she comes to realise that she doesnt, and has probably never truly known her mother.
This book captures your attention and has you thinking about it long after you finish reading. ...more
Wrapped is a cute little novel that draws on themes from jane Austen's novels, as well as a bit of National Treasure. I loved how Bradbury wove the thWrapped is a cute little novel that draws on themes from jane Austen's novels, as well as a bit of National Treasure. I loved how Bradbury wove the threads of this story together to create a intelligent, intriguing and entertaining masterpeice. Theres also a cute little romance thrown in as well :-D
Agnes is not your typical 19th century lady. She may appear delicate and fragile, but she proves continually throughout this book that she is anything but. And she is also extremely integlligent! together with Caedmon, her beau, they work to solve the mystery of a note attached to the Jackels head that Agnes smuggled from an unwrapping party, at her would-be suitors London mansion.
The character develpment is nicely paced, matched with the steady progression of the plot. By that I mean, that as the mystery is solved, we begin to see characters as they really are. Agnes does have a few silly school girl moments - mostly to do with day dreaming about Caedmon - but this just makes it more sweet when they finally acknowledge how they feel for each other.
Wrapped has a few action scenes, but it is mostly an intelligant read, that requires some flipping of pages to read over a clue to the mystery that you might have missed. I love the types of books that require a little thought on behalf of the reader, and this one did not dissapoint.
I would reccomend this to everyone, not just younger teens as it seems to say on the description - I think it sells itself a little short by saying that, as this book is intelligent enough to appeal to all ages.
This book was FREAKIN AWESOME!!!!!!! haunting, suspensful, witty and smoking hot!
Okay, first things first: I dont think you are supposed to understanThis book was FREAKIN AWESOME!!!!!!! haunting, suspensful, witty and smoking hot!
Okay, first things first: I dont think you are supposed to understand this book. Period. And if you did, could you please send me your report on a)what the bloody hell just happened and b)how you figured it out!!
The blurb for this book is extremely, enticingly vague. Overall it is a story about Mara Dyer (duh!) and her coping and coming to terms with her new found reality and remembering what happened on the night of the accident. We find out in bits and peices what happens that night, as Mara slowly remembers. The concept of reality is constantly tested in this book. What is real, and what isnt? This book is spooky and thrilling. As it is told by Mara, the reader is left just as confused, scared and frightened by the events in the book. Things happen that seem to be real, for example Mara burns her arm after thinking she drops her mothers earrings in water and cant take her arm out of the water. She goes to the hospital to have it treated for second degree burns. A few days later it is completely healed. This kind of makes sense later, as we get to know Noah and his story however, what doesnt make sense is that the earrings were never actually in the water to begin with. There are many more things which are partially explained by the end of the book, but there are so many more things that are left unexplained that STILL have my mind spinning even though its been a few days since ive finished the book.
Hodkin is a brilliant author. She grabs your attention so thoroughly at the beginning of the story and takes us on a rollercoaster ride until we reach the end, in which we are left hanging over the railing, breathless and confused.
There are times in this book where you have everything thrown at you at once: ghosts, delusions, psychotic breakdowns, memory loss and tests of reality. And there are times where seemingly nothing happens at all, which only leaves you hanging again, because you know something big is gonna go down soon. There are MANY times where where you are left wondering if the thing that just happened was real, or was it something happening inside Mara's head?? There is one bit, which takes up quite a few chapters on telling the particular event in the story, where by the end of it we are left scratching our heads wondering if it was real...only to find out it wasnt...only to find out it was...Confused??? yer, dont worry that happens alot in this book. And I loved every minute of it!
The characters are all brilliant and well developed. The love story is gorgeous. And Noah...ahh Noah. Read the book, you'll understand. But Noah adds so much to the book, I dont think it would stand without him. When Mara and Noah are together its hilarious. Their conversations are full of wit and such FANTASTIC comebacks! The romance is absolutely sizzinling in this book!
Mara is a fantastic main character. She is not passive or meek. She is however, an extremely confused young girl, and you cant help but feel for her. She holds it together remarkably well; I would have had myself committed well before the thought even popped into her head.
Her family is adorable, the scenes with them are hilarious as well as heartfelt. The relationships in this book grow as the characters change and react to what is thrown at them.
The writing style is addictive, I couldnt last a few hours without getting my Unbecoming of Mara Dyer fix, it literally oozes attitude. The story is just SO GOOD! (And i finally just got the Warbucks reference! YAY for me!)
I honestly cant praise this book enough. It completely blew my mind. And i didnt fully believe what everyone was telling me about the end of the book. But OMFG!!!! THAT ENDING!! WTF???????!!!!!! I NEED the next book NOW! cause by the time I do get it, I myself will possibly be going insane!!!!
This is not your typical YA book. It is SO much more. Everything is going to pale into comparison with this now. It is also one that you will want to re-read immediately after finishing, so that you can go back and pick up all the clues you missed. Which is what I am going to do now.......more
A cute little romance, in a time travel masterpeice. Gorgeous medieval dresses, good old fashioned chivalry, hot knights in shining armor, action andA cute little romance, in a time travel masterpeice. Gorgeous medieval dresses, good old fashioned chivalry, hot knights in shining armor, action and political intrigue (as well as the resident biatch) and sweet romances. With strong, likeable characters, an attention grabbing and gripping plot, this book is perfect. I'll let the book speak for itself...
“I cursed myself for my stupid romantic teenage fantasies. This guy was not in my league. By six hundred years, at least. Give it up, Gabi. Give it up! Keep your mind on getting home!
But then he had his big hands on my waist. He bent down a little, getting ready to lift me into the saddle, just as I looked up at him. Our lips were so close, I could feel the heat on his breath on my skin.
We froze. Neither of us moving, simply staring at each other, wondering if the other was going to move first. “You are,” he whispered, “uncommonly stirring.” He closed his eyes then, as if he had to in order to break the bond between us, then he lifted me to the saddle and stared at the ground as he guided my feet into the stirrups.”
And some more....
"I was starting to squirm out of his magnetic pull when he moved an arm around me and tugged me closer. "Gabriella," he said lowly, tracing my temple and cheeck with the back of his right hand. He stilled, staring at me. So tender, so warm. I melted. "There is something I must know," he said, "something ive wondered about for days."
He leaned down then and kissed me, softly at first, then deeper, searching. I knew I shoudl stop him, push him away, but I didn't have the strength. All I wanted was more of him, more of his wramth, more of his comfort. When he stepped back he looked as dazed as I felt. He rubbed his lower lip with the pad of his thumb, still staring at me intently, as if reliving our kiss. And then his eyes sharpened again with a glimmer of victory. He nodded at me. "I was correct" "
To say this trilogy is brilliant is an understatement. There are no words that I could think of to describe just how good this series is. Action packeTo say this trilogy is brilliant is an understatement. There are no words that I could think of to describe just how good this series is. Action packed, emotionally charged, intellectually stimulating, absolutely riveting. I could go on, but that would get boring. This is the series that has me choking up in the first book, The Hunger Games, tearing up in the second book, Catching Fire and bawling by the end of the third book, Mockingjay. There is countless heart stopping moments, many cases of “Ooohhh, I get it now!” and “NO WAY! That did not just happen!” This series starts out as an action packed fight for survival, and continues in the same way throughout the next 2 books, but layers of emotional and intellectual elements are continually being added, characters are constantly being tested and relationships continue to evolve.
The characters in this series are some of the most damaged I have encountered yet. The world they live in, relationships, the games themselves. And yet, Suzanne Collins doesn’t give these characters a break. Ever! Just when you think you know about the happy ending that is SURELY going to come, considering all these characters have been through, there is a twist so huge you have to re-think everything. These characters are pushed to the edge and beyond, and don’t come back the same, or completely stable. Many don’t come back at all.
The relationships are also damaged, but somehow beautiful. Finnick and Annie’s story is beautiful because despite her mental stability (or lack of) he still loves her completely and unconditionally. Katniss and Peeter never fully realise the depth of their feelings for each other (Well Peeter does, but Katniss doesn’t) until the very end, but there are still so many *sigh* moments and beautiful moments of desperation and need for these characters, that you can see, slowly developing into deeper feelings between these two. This trilogy is not a love story, but there are so many elements of a love story that fans will not be disappointed. The stand out relationship was between Katniss and her sister Prim. As a reader you get to see Prim grow up through Katniss’s eyes, and her desperation to keep her family safe grows as Prim gets older and becomes more involved in the rebellion. No relationship is left untouched in this series, mother/daughter, sisters, friends, lovers, enemies. I’m not going to even hint at what had me bawling by the end of Mockingjay, because you just don’t see it coming. You never fully understand why. And I think because of that, the impact of shock and disbelief is greater, and therefore makes it a greater read.
After two books solely focused on surviving the hunger games, twice surviving them, it was fantastic to see things really pick up in the third book. Where previously we see the seeds of rebellion and dissolution, Mockingjay really amps up into a full scale rebellious war being waged on the capitol. But it’s not your straight forward good vs. evil battle. Nope. There are yet more twists and heartaches and interwoven in with all this are beautiful little reminders of the humanity behind this tale of political subjugation and rebellion.
This trilogy is full of action, romance, intrigue. I don’t think this review does much to tell you just how brilliant this trilogy is, but I had to try. So I guess the only thing to do now is to go out and read it!
My full review of this series is under the Mockinjay book review, because in my opinion, this story is so huge, and I read them all at once (I didnt hMy full review of this series is under the Mockinjay book review, because in my opinion, this story is so huge, and I read them all at once (I didnt have to wait between books) that I reviewed it as a compound story, rather that 3 seperate books. But I will say this about Catching Fire. Brilliant. It carries on with the previous story of the Hunger Games, with HUGE twists in the plot. I finished the Hunger Games thinking, where will it go from here? Well im almost sorry i asked, because I got the answer and I wasnt dissapointed. Shocked? Yes. But thats what this series does, it continually shocks you. Just when you think these characters might finally get a break, something blows up, or President Snow turns up.
This book ends on the biggest cliff hanger EVER! and the rebellion that you could see brewing in The Hunger Games finally picks up speed, but thing is, it always has been, its just been in the background, and because the story is being told through Katniss's eyes and she has been so focused on just surviving, we as readers gloss over important details, that arent fully realised until the end of Catching Fire.
This book surprised me. I had been eagerly been waiting for it to be released for a few months, fully expecting a lenghty high fantatsy adventure. I gThis book surprised me. I had been eagerly been waiting for it to be released for a few months, fully expecting a lenghty high fantatsy adventure. I guess you could still call it a high fantasy adventure, but it is also so very different and original. This book is small, 290 pages small to be exact, which to me is a very quick read. As it is, the book is fantastic; original, mysterious, romantic, action packed, with a few balls (as in the dance type) thrown in to satisfy my liking for perdy dresses and chivalry :-D
The characters were all strong, and there were no background characters that we meet for 2 seconds and leave you wondering, why did we need to meet that character? They are all fleshed out and distinct. The main character, Zeraphina is a feisty little thing. She is quick witted and rather ditzy at times, but its hilarious when that happens, and its usually when she is arguing with Rodden, and knows she's loosing. I loved the relationship between Zeraphina and Rodden (her love interest). Because neither of them realise that they love each other, even though everyone around them can. Their bickering is funny and its not until Zeraphina and her mother decide they have to leave soon, that they begin to realise that they have grown to like eacher other. Its a very slow build to the relationship, which I found refreshing to find in a YA fantasy. Even at the end, when there is usually the pouring out of hearts from the two lovers, there is never a full blown confession of love, rather its a mutual understanding of each others feelings.
There is a little bit of content that may not make it suitable for under 15's. As it is set in an historical setting, and the plot working around the journey for Zeraphina's sister's marriage, there is some talk about the wedding night, and how the couple were tucked into bed before the whole court on the night and the bed sheet being displayed the morning after (mortifying if you ask me!). But honestly, it is very well handled and there is no graphic scene in which we see this acted out, rather a gossip session between the two sisters the morning after. Something minor, but still could be a little shocking for younger readers.
The only thing that dissapointed me about this book was the length. I wanted so much more!! I felt that Hart could have spent more time world building, stretch out the mystery a bit more, take a little more time with each character interaction or scene, describe the world around the characters a bit more. I dunno, I just wanted more of the fantastic world that Hart has created. I guess I shouldnt have compared it to my favourite Fantasy (Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier, which is nearly 600 pages long)before I had even laid eyes on it, but I did, and was shocked when I saw it in the shops with how many pages there is. Im seriously gonna have to get over it though, because I loved the story, loved the writing, the characters, the setting, the whole thing.
Also I was amused by how light the story was. I mean it was still dark, but when I looked at the cover, I expected some serious dark and twisted story. Its still there, but Zeraphina has a personality that doesnt allow the reader to wallow in the misery behind it all, with her surprising sass and hilarious antics. I also loved her little pets (one of them you can see on the front, the Gold eagle, but the other one, the cat is on the back cover.) The cover is amazing, in that it tells some of the story itself.
So im gonna stop gushing about this now and just say that this is a fantastic little book, full of adventure, mystery, romance and glitz and an entirely original twist on the Vampire myth. This one is going on the favourites shelf (Im gonna have to get a new one I think) :-D...more