4... 4.5 stars, definitely. Okay, so I loved this book… even though it had a total ‘Harry Potter’ feel to it. Only exception was that the main charact...more4... 4.5 stars, definitely. Okay, so I loved this book… even though it had a total ‘Harry Potter’ feel to it. Only exception was that the main character, Sophie Mercer, always knew she was a witch. She lived in the real world up until she tried to make a friend with a classmate by casting a love spell for her. The love spell went awry and because she made her powers known, she was shipped off to ‘Hex Hall’-Boarding School for the Gifted.
Not only did this book have very likable characters, an intriguing storyline, but it was hilarious. There were so many quotes I could have added as favorites; however, I stopped at 3…maybe 4. Lol
And the incident with Archer and Sophie in the cellar… Ahhhh! That had my mouth gaping. Even though I should have seen that one coming, it still threw me for a loop.
So now I must decide whether to jump right into Demonglass or wait… Decisions decisions. :)
No one… except for Rhiannon Frater. Her vision of a Zombie Apocalypse was far more gruesome, gory, sli...moreInterested in more of my reviews? Visit my blog!
No one… except for Rhiannon Frater. Her vision of a Zombie Apocalypse was far more gruesome, gory, slightly funny and violently delightful.
The Characters Katie is an ex-prosecutor (in pre-zombie days) who was married to the love of her life, Lydia. When Katie drove back home to get Lydia, well… Lydia was in the front yard chewing on the mailman. So, Lydia didn’t make it past the first day so Katie flees and seeks shelter somewhere and ends up running into Jenni.
Jenni (with an i, and don't you forget it) is a stay at home mom who was in an abusive relationship and mighty unhappy with life in general. When she wakes up the morning the zombies first rose, she discovered her husband shoving chunks of her baby’s flesh into his mouth. Not exactly an ideal situation to wake up to first thing in the morning! There’s also a moment involving tiny fingers that will make several appearances throughout the book. I’ll let you discover that for yourself.
Jenni kinda drove me nuts. She was so odd sometimes, being a completely freaked out whiny chick one minute and then laughing maniacally and stabbing zombies in the head the next minute. And ironically, Maja and Wendy both claim that Jenni reminds her of me, minus the craziness. Suuuurrrreeee, guys.
Katie was odd too and I think the writing focused entirely way too much on her ‘lesbianism’, not that I’m against it, it’s just the town and the people had wayyyy too big of an issue with it and it kind of started to wear on me after a point.
Insta-Love and Love Triangles But of course some insta-love and the occasional love triangle needs to be tossed in, why not? Insta-love pretty much makes my eye all twitchy so when this situation developed I was quite irritated. Not only was their insta-love but a love triangle to boot. I? Was not a happy camper.
So we have Jenni who falls madly in love with Travis (instantly) and OF COURSE Travis loves Katie (instantly). *yawn* Where’s a zombie when ya need one? But once Jenni realizes that Travis loves Katie she (instantly) falls for Juan and they end up hooking up in a janitor’s closet. Hmm… need I say more? I think not.
The Writing So I didn’t realize this until I was towards the end of the book that this was actually a self-published novel (there is a newer published version that's super shiny and new for those of you who are interested), which I can see in retrospect. It’s definitely one of the better self-published novels that I’ve read and I did really enjoy it. The action scenes were spot on intense, scary, and extremely ghastly.
Once the book began focusing on the living and everyone was settling down building up walls and doing all kinds of normal stuff… the book went a little downhill for me. The interactions between the characters weren’t all that natural and it came out sounding stiff and unbelievable at times. I began hoping that a zombie would show up and eat someone.
The first half of the book (or so) was a solid 4 stars for me but the second half really lost some steam so I’m settling on a solid 3 star rating. The ending wasn’t exactly a clean wrap-up so I feel like I stopped at the end of the chapter, rather than the end of a book. Will I be continuing the series? Most likely.(less)
4.5 stars Sarah Water’s debut novel set in 1890s London is a delightfully shocking tale of exploring th...moreInterested in more of my reviews? Visit my blog!
4.5 stars Sarah Water’s debut novel set in 1890s London is a delightfully shocking tale of exploring the boundaries of gender roles in the Victorian era. It's about finding out who you really are and being comfortable in your own skin and about overcoming heartache and finding love again.
The Storyline ’And was there at her side a slender, white-faced, unremarkable-looking girl, with the sleeves of her dress rolled up to her elbows, and a lock of lank and colourless hair forever falling into her eye, and her lips continually moving to the words of some street-singer’s or music-hall song?
That was me.'
Nancy is an oyster girl who works quite dutifully in her parent’s restaurant. It’s not until she goes with her sister Alice to Palace, an old-fashioned music hall, that her life is changed forever when she sets eyes on Kitty and sees her performance for the first time.
’Piercing the shadows of the naked stage was a single shaft of rosy limelight, and in the centre of this there was a girl: the most marvelous girl – I knew it at once! – that I had ever seen.’
When Nancy becomes intent on catching Kitty’s eye and having her notice her she begins going back to the Palace every night just to see her again and again. When Kitty throws a flower to Nancy in the crowd the two finally meet afterwards and a friendship is cultivated that slowly becomes much much more. Nancy becomes Kitty’s dresser and when she is offered a job in London Nancy decides she simply must go with her.
The story continues to develop and as time progresses the two become even closer and eventually become lovers as the two eventually team up together on stage.
’The act, I knew, was still all hers. When we sang, it was really she who sang, while I provided a light, easy second. When we danced, it was she who did the tricky steps: I only strolled or shuffled at her side. I was her foil, her echo; I was the shadow which, in all her brilliance, she cast across the stage. But, like a shadow, I lent her the edge, the depth, the crucial definition, that she lacked before.
Final Thoughts What follows is simply the beginning of Nancy’s story and it’s quite a memorable one. I must admit there were parts that were quite shocking that I wasn’t expecting (like when I found out what Tipping the Velvet really meant… haha!), but that was the beauty of the story, the beauty of Nancy’s story. The writing was honest, the characters were vibrant, and I loved each and every page. Sarah Waters is an absolutely gorgeous writer. Her words will intrigue you, they will astound you, and you won't be able to get them out of your head. I can’t wait to get my hands on more from her. (less)
Very hard to really discuss this book... one of those that really needs to be experienced in order to be understood. But if there was word to sum it u...moreVery hard to really discuss this book... one of those that really needs to be experienced in order to be understood. But if there was word to sum it up, it would be: Bittersweet. :)(less)
My rating: 4 of 5 stars A copy of The Waking Dark was provided to me by Netgalley/Knopf Books for Young Readers for review purposes.
The killing day. The...moreMy rating: 4 of 5 stars A copy of The Waking Dark was provided to me by Netgalley/Knopf Books for Young Readers for review purposes.
The killing day. The day the devil came to Oleander. That day.
Oleander, Kansas is a small, quiet town that was never cause for much attention... until the killing day. The day when twelve people were killed in a few short hours by the hands of their friends and neighbors. Once all surrounding them were dead they then killed themselves having outlived their purpose. One survived to tell her tale, but she remembers nothing of the horrors that she dealt out. When the town is placed under quarantine after a horrific storm does further damage to the town, a darkness wakes in the citizens. The deacon decides this is the perfect opportunity to cleanse the town and the remaining citizens begin to take the law into their own hands.
This book is insanity incarnate. It's dark and distressing. It's maddening and stupefying. It's one of the most horrific books I've ever read. It was fantastic. I have never been left more shocked and appalled by a single chapter and that's just what Robin Wasserman managed to do. The Waking Dark is horror, but it's not exactly scary. The madness that consumes this small town is more vexing and mortifying than anything and showcases perfectly the mentality of a small town and what can happen when it all goes wrong.
The story is extremely character driven and is told from several different points of view with very distinct characters so it didn't cause any confusion as its fantastically written. It's a sordid tale told over the span of a few short weeks with enough violence to last a lifetime. The Waking Dark has drawn comparisons to Stephen King and Gillian Flynn, I believe for good reason. Having read both authors I feel that they both possess a subtle eeriness in their writing, a creepiness and unflinching details that sneaks up on you and takes you by surprise.
I feel it must be said that this is one of the most violent and mature YA books I've read and is definitely not meant for a younger crowd. It involves infant murders, detailed meth use, crucifixion and people being burned at the stake (and that's not even half of the craziness that goes down in these pages). This is not for the faint of heart.
There is so much to say about this story, but so much that needs to be experienced firsthand. I have to say though, I was extremely pleased at how the violence was maintained throughout the story because I figured it would letup at some point, (nope) but I expected it to end in a manner as shocking as the first chapter but it was a bit too tidy of an ending for my liking. Nevertheless, I am most impressed with this author and will be seeking out her past works.(less)
‘One moment. One picture. One glimpse – that’s all it takes to make someone think they know the truth.’
When Anna’s father moves her to Hillcrest Prep...more‘One moment. One picture. One glimpse – that’s all it takes to make someone think they know the truth.’
When Anna’s father moves her to Hillcrest Prep to increase her chances of getting into an Ivy League school, she meets Elise and the two become quickly enmeshed in one another’s lives. When the two go with a group of friends on a Spring Break trip to Aruba, it ends the brutal stabbing of Elise and Anna is accused of her murder, thrown in prison, refused bail and months pass in her cell as she waits for her trial to begin. But did she really do it?
Dangerous Girls is everything I love about a good mystery; it completely captivated me. The mystery kept me completely in the dark leaving me feeling like the book was taking me on one wild carnival ride. It helped that DG reminded me a lot of some of my favorite novels: the rich group of young friends that have no concerns for their wild ways was reminiscent of The Secret History and the twisted mystery with unlikable characters that you still can’t help but be intrigued by was reminiscent of a Gillian Flynn novel. The legal aspects and court room scenes were especially interesting to me and were done quite well. They read realistically without treading into the corny type of court room scenes we’re always given in movies. It was an all-encompassing mystery that started with the initial 911 call, took us through investigation, the legal proceedings and eventually answers the most important question: Who killed Elise?
Dangerous Girls was fantastically written and completely entranced me. I couldn’t put it down until the pages shared all their secrets with me. The author has written several other books, mostly YA contemporary, and while I’m more inclined to check them out now I do hope that she continues writing mysteries because she wrote Dangerous Girls like a total pro.(less)