This book moved a little too quick and a little too slow at the same time.
It should've been turned into a full-fledged novel because I think2.5 stars
This book moved a little too quick and a little too slow at the same time.
It should've been turned into a full-fledged novel because I think these characters are fleshed out enough to have their own full story.
I'd especially like to see what's really up with Cooper, explore James Adams' accident a little more thoroughly - perhaps with a detailed flashback - and I'd love to delve deeper into Stella's relationship with her father.
It was short. It was sweet. It was nothing special because it was entirely too short.
But it has the potential to be a real winner because I sense a real story here....more
Because once you crack this baby open, you seriously cannot put it down. And no, it's4.5 stars
The summary of this book does not do it justice.
Because once you crack this baby open, you seriously cannot put it down. And no, it's not because you have to keep reading it until you get to the very end because it's JUST THAT GOOD. Well, maybe that's a bit of the reason. But it's mostly because there is just never a good chapter or scene or moment to put it down. The writing is continuously pulling you into it's plot. It's not a matter of being unable to put the book the down, it's a matter of it feeling wrong and completely ruining the flow of the story to even consider it.
Which is why I went to bed at 4:30am this morning.
Third Degree is a very well-written New Adult novel in the sense that it's completely unlike every New Adult novel that I've read before. The characters are very much real and completely relatable, even if they may only be present for a small part of the story.
The characterization is also another extremely well-developed aspect of this book. Especially so with Izzy. Izzy is a character with a tough past right off the bat. But then she is put into a position where everything immediately starts to go wrong for her. Her dreams of being a surgeon at John Adams are ripped away from her. Her family life is tearing at the seams. She has a family history of mental disorders. And she's basically a social outcast with virtually no hope of ever assimilating into modern society's mold of what's appropriate and human.
Normally, I wouldn't generally like how disconnected her character is portrayed but there are actually a lot of similarities between Izzy and the female teenagers in today's modern society, even if you have to squint for a little while to see them. She's insecure when it comes to being emotional. She internalizes EVERYTHING. She regrets past decisions. She compartmentalizes like it's her third degree. She's actually really relatable. And the way she is and acts is completely understandable when you look into her backstory. It's just displayed in a way that isn't, for lack of a better word, normal. But getting to watch her character grow and overcome these inhibitions she has is the best part of the novel in my opinion, because you're cheering her on right beside her the entire way. And the beauty of it is, you're screaming your head off at her whenever she makes a bad decision. Because if I was her, I definitely would've acted the same way that she did in all those situation. Minus the whole checking her room-mate's one night stand for syphilis. That's a little much for me.
And I absolutely loved how she met her match in Marshall Collins - who is for all intents and purposes a freaking dreamboat. At first, it absolutely disgusted me how much I loved Marshall because he's totally not my type with his whole knight in shining armour persona. But he quickly got under my skin and just stayed there and wouldn't leave until it got to the point where I had to admit I'd fallen for him, hook, line and sinker.
Marshall is by no means perfect - he's stubborn to a fault, has a ridiculously high tolerance for pain unlike most men I know (which isn't exactly a hardship I know), and as a difficult time accepting help from others because he doesn't want to be a burden. Which is ridiculous. And endearing. Marshall is the kinda guy that every girl secretly wants when they're lusting after a bad boy because he's honestly what every girl deserves. And even though I didn't want to like him because I need a little bad (OK more than a little) in a lead male, I still found myself falling hopelessly in love with him. He had just the right amount of arrogance to tide me over through his way too sweet, way too perfect, way too white knight to my dark witch line of thinking. And ugh, the feels for this guy I swear.
Their romance was a little quick but believable, which was also different because it's been a long while since a romance with that kinda speed has actually made sense to me. The length of the novel was also right on the money - I only had to glance down once to see how far I was into the story and was pleasantly surprised to see 37% on my tablet. Nothing was rushed, nothing was slow - it was a picture perfect pace.
I did have a few minor reservations about the book overall. I didn't like how Izzy's parents divorce was such an issue for her in the first half of the novel but was then sort of pushed aside towards the end. Yes, she was dealing with other more main plot issues but she made such a big deal about it earlier and with her family issues I think it should've been tackled more effectively. Another thing to note, Sam's rather unnecessary reappearance towards the end. It wasn't really relevant to the plotline, kinda was thrown in there for some sort of angsty plot twist that didn't really work for me and I really didn't like it because it was just a tad too cliche.
And the last teeny tiny little issue. I didn't like the last line of the novel. Oh sue me. It was a little too cheeseball for my taste and to me, it didn't really fit Izzy's character to be that emotional. In fact I rolled my eyes hardcore at it.
All in all, this was a fantastic read. Julie Cross you've just gained a fan. Now just keep writing stellarly and we'll get along just fine. ...more
I finished this story and I swear the first thing that crossed my mind was Little Red Riding Hood. Which meant the following ensued:
Me: "My Alex StargI finished this story and I swear the first thing that crossed my mind was Little Red Riding Hood. Which meant the following ensued:
Me: "My Alex Stargazer, what big words you use!"
AS: "All the better to get you to open a dictionary my dear."
But I digress.
I kinda wished this story was a little longer and had a little more backstory. I realize this was supposed to be a short story but Leila's situation could've used a little more depth so that the message of the story could've been a little more pronounced at the end.
Other than that, it was a quick and easy read. It kept me engaged. It had a message within. It wasn't spectacular by any means but I think it accomplished what it was trying to....more
Well I mean, look at the summary for Pete's sake. With a summary like that you know the book you're reading is likely to be eitherTotal surprise.
Well I mean, look at the summary for Pete's sake. With a summary like that you know the book you're reading is likely to be either a hit or a miss. Most likely a miss.
But it wasn't. Not at all.
Fanmail was one of those novels that you don't quite know why you picked up but are really happy you did once you've finished reading it. Why? Because of the humour; the hilarious one-liners tht came so far out of left field that you never even saw them coming. And that's what makes them that much more enjoyable.
And sure, the plot is a little holey in some places but with lines like these, it doesn't even matter. I mean, how can you not think this is funny?
Dolores, naturlich (that’s German, btw, because I like German from when I lived there. It’s a very logical language where many small words slot together like Lego to make long words and the scientist in me just liebes it. That’s German for love, btw – liebe. Ich for I, liebe for love, Deutsch for German … though it’s normally which means I love you and similar dross and is rank, vomit-worthy and utterly unacceptable) … Gott in Himmel, where was I going with all that?
‘Oh, for Darwin’s sake,’ I said, tugging the tablecloth out from under the remaining dishes. ‘Put something on, please. You’re very …’ PAUSE TO NOT SAY NAKED THEN THINK, OH, TO HELL WITH IT ‘… naked. It’s putting me off my ice-cream.’
Cat, simply put, is my kinda girl in the humour department and reading from her POV was an absolute treat.
With lines like:
I do not like being crooned at about my cereal. Or my uniform. Or my hair wings. Or anything.
Like it or not, it seemed, we were in this together. Not in the sleeping bag, obviously. The whole “who is the other Jason and where can he be” thing. Definitely not the sleeping bag. No. Stop thinking about the sleeping bag.
I couldn't not like this chick. It actually got the point where I was all I CRY, (see Chemical Reaction You) Cat Andrews.
The characterization of this novel was honestly superb and hands down the best part about this novel. Every character was uniquely different and they all were really fleshed out. Maybe it's because some of them were completely ridiculous and others actually sound like people I know in real life but they were all so enjoyable to read about.
And while the plot wasn't the best plot out there and was just a little too predictable, it didn't detract from the story at all because of the strong characterization.
Which made this a really nice 4 star read. Definitely will be on the look-out for Castle's next read PINEAPPLE, which has intrigued me purely because of the title....more
Hugh was a nightmare. I did not see what was so great about him. Which basically ruined the entire book for me because Delilah's entire existence seemHugh was a nightmare. I did not see what was so great about him. Which basically ruined the entire book for me because Delilah's entire existence seemed to revolve around this man.
And the whole Stacie thing? It was Just. Too. Much....more
This book totally threw me for a loop because the first 10ish pages, you get thrown right into thick of Seven and his reality but also Abby's twistedThis book totally threw me for a loop because the first 10ish pages, you get thrown right into thick of Seven and his reality but also Abby's twisted and skewed sort of reality in which Seven is a part of.
Abby walks the line between two worlds, the one in her head and the one that actually exists outside of her body. And sure, you could be like everyone else and just assume that she has a mental disorder, but Whitefeather makes you look past the obvious and try to view everything from Seven's POV, the POV that makes Abby different from everybody else.
Now that being said, this is a short novella prequel, but it immediately drew my attention in because I don't think I've read a book whose main character could or could not be real. Seven's life revolves around Abby and her 'delusions' but the way the novel is written makes it seem that perhaps Abby isn't as crazy as she seems to be. The idea that Room 103 is some sort of another realm that Seven and his make-believe companions can cross back and forth to is intriguing especially what with the danger that Abby has placed them in within her delusions. The monsters that Whitefeather alludes to are completely reminiscent of the whole monsters-under-the-bed notion of childhood, but these monsters are taken out of that context and put into a more adult situation where they're more than just an idle threat and possibility. They become very real in Seven and Abby's minds which make them that much more terrifying, even though they never actually make an appearance.
There wasn't enough for me to make a definitive opinion on the characterization or plot of the novella because it inherently hinged upon what happens next in the Room 103 series, but the writing is spectacular so far. Whitefeather manages to capture your immediately with this wildly creative plotline she's drummed up. I love how even though Abby seems to be the mastermind behind the world of Room 103, she actually placed some control in the hands of her sister Vanessa, whose decisions will very much affect how the rest of the story pans out.
This is a great little prequel and I for one can't wait to read the next one in the series. I'm excited to see where Whitefeather takes this....more
Here's a big 4.5 stars and a raging cry of 'WHAT THE FUCK AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THAT ENDING???'
OK, so after just finishing this book I can tell youHere's a big 4.5 stars and a raging cry of 'WHAT THE FUCK AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THAT ENDING???'
OK, so after just finishing this book I can tell you that I just had a minor heart attack. I flailed around for a few minutes. Flapped my hands in desperation, squealed a little tiny bit and raged at the cat who was undoubtedly NOT impressed at being woken up from his cat nap just because I couldn't handle my feels for a book.
Because hello, cliffhanger. I'd like you to meet my fist.
Girl Lost is a spectacular rendition of the fairy tale Peter Pan. It's a sequel of sorts - a take on what would happen if Peter Pan went to fetch Wendy after she left the island. Basically Peter Pan has grown up. And he's still got his red hair and green eyes and mischievous smirk. It's just swoon-worthy now. Peter goes from being an orphan boy to a possessively aggressive man - and oh how I loved how he grew.
Andrews took the tale of Peter Pan and put it back into the real world and modern society. She makes Gwen emotionally broken and mentally unstable. And sassy. And aggravating in the best way possible. She makes Peter a figment of imagination turned real. She brings in Micah as the ever vigilant and worried sibling. She forces Orchid into Gwen's life and hints that she is way more than she seems to be. And she throws in James who is best described as:
I wave a dismissive hand.
"He's such a charming rake. And unapologetic about it. And he's drunk all the time. How is that NOT a pirate?
Even though Peter was the male lead it was James who I fell hardcore for. Hook, line and sinker. (See what I did there?) And then there was Belle. Who was a darker, more fierce version of who she was meant to be but was still fantastically amazing at everything she did.
The characterization was pretty well spot-on for how one would expect those iconic characters to be in real life. The mannerisms of the AGZ, the spiteful hate from Belle, the sly smirks from Peter - everything could be properly attributed to each of the characters because everything they did or said just made sense.
The setting was also wonderfully set. Northern University itself wasn't mentioned much as whole but specific areas like the ocean or the frat house were described with minimal detail that actually enhanced the locations. Setting didn't play an important role in the physical sense - it was important in a metaphorical one, which is why less was more.
And then the plot. Which was nothing less than stellar. I spent a good portion of this spinning around in circles with anticipation as to what would happen next. Andrews just has this way of telling you a story but then throwing out the next piece of the puzzle in a way you just wouldn't expect. It's like walking through a haunted house, not knowing what's going to pop out at you next. The majority of the novel places you directly in Gwen's shoes, so you can't but be completely and utterly lost. But you love every crazy moment of it.
Filtered throughout the story were a variety of flashbacks from Gwen's accident - all of her delusions that apparently aren't really delusions - and they while they were interesting and helped pushed the story along at times they detracted from the story a little because they were distracting. But they explained everything really well and added to the whole storyline - like there were 2 plotlines being told at once. It was like you were really looking into Gwen's past whenever she remembered something.
The idea that Gwen was mentally unstable was a really great premise for this retelling. An obvious way to go, yes, but again, Andrews made it seem like it was a completely original idea. There was an incredibly detailed backstory that explained why and how she came to be that way and it really help feed into the allusion of magic that was forever present within the story. Was it ever fully mentioned? No. But there's a constant inkling that can only be explained by magic throughout the novel.
Which brings me to that horrid, horrid, horrid, cliffie at the end.
The last 4ish chapters of the novel? Total and utter chaos. This is the climax of the entire story and then you're immediately cut off from any and all sense of dénouement and conclusion. You get a dying person, and a pirate following you around, you get some crazy important flashback that IS NOT EXPLAINED and you visualize your insanity in the modern world - with that same pirate standing beside you experiencing the same thing.
Which means you're both crazy.
Or are you?
You have got absolutely NO BLOODY IDEA what to think because the guy that's causing you to question everything that you've worked so hard to put together? You don't actually know what to think about him either.
Belle smiles. “Do you remember now, Gwendy bird? We’ll tear you from the clouds and rip you to pieces. You can’t have our Thief.”
“It’s not real,” I mumble, my lips numb. “It can’t be real.”
I’ve spent seven years hearing that. Learning to believe that.
She smiles, a bloody rictus, and I shake my head, nausea swimming through me.
“Belle, who is Peter?” I demand.
“Peter? He’s a thief. The best and worst of all of us. He’s ours, and you stole him.”
The ending drove me insane with need for MORE. And yet as of now there's no mention of a sequel. Which means all you're left with is a memory. And you return to the place where you first met him.
He’s backlit by the sun, a fey, smiling boy dressed all in green. There is a shock of red hair poking out of his strange hat, and a mischievous smile brightens his slanted, exotic eyes. The Boy stares at me and grins, a crooked little smile.
“Hello, pixie girl. What are you doing out here?”
“I’m lost,” I say.
His smile grows a little, and he shakes his head. “Can’t be. I found you. And I’m a bit of an expert on lost things.”
“Where did you come from?” I ask.
“My island. Would you like to see it?”
I hesitate. “I’m not supposed to go with strangers.”
“Would you rather stay here? It seems dangerous.”
There’s a certain unassailable logic to his words. I shrug, though, trying to seem very above it all and distant. “I don’t know you. You could be dangerous.”
He laughs. “Oh, I am. But I would never hurt you, Gwendy.” He takes a step closer and extends a hand in a childlike caricature of an adult gesture. His eyes sparkle, and it feels, for a moment, like the whole world is holding its breath. “I’m Peter.”
I KNOW. I'm dying too. It all ends at the freaking beginning and I just can't right now.
From Drew and Rich, to Vicky, to Cait, to *fans self* Art.
Now let's get"I smith hard, right?"
"And deep. Cocksmithery."
I love, love, loved, this book.
From Drew and Rich, to Vicky, to Cait, to *fans self* Art.
Now let's get this out of the way first, because when you're first introduced to the it at the beginning of the novel, it's guaranteed to be the first thought that drifts into your head. I know, I know, that last sentence is completely encumbered with way too many firsts, but so is this: YES, the male lead in this story's name is Art, short for Arthur. And, YES, nobody, and I repeat NOBODY, expects to completely fall in love with a guy named Art. It just doesn't happen.
Which is why when I tell you that, YES, you will stumble and tumble and trip and completely fall for a man named ART, I don't expect you to believe.
But trust me on this.
I am predicting your future.
YOU WILL LOVE HIM.
And now onto the actual review.
The beauty of this novel is the fact that both Cait and Art (get your shivers from his name out of the way now so you can get to the good stuff) have problems. Real, honest to God problems with themselves that they have to overcome. And being allowed to watch them overcome these issues together is what the real treat is. Everything down to the freaking title of this book is just so meticulously pieced together with lines that just touch the part of your soul that just feels. The two leads are so completely perfect for each other that you can't help but be swept away into their passionate romance. And passionate it is.
Cait and Art are different in the sense that they're opposites in how they came to be broken, but at the same time are extremely similar in how they are dealing with the pieces that are left over. Like Cait says so eloquently,
I can't join up the idea of wanting a boy who barely touched me with wanting a boy who touches people for a living.
Like two sides of the same coin:
Here I am, wary of touch, and he'd demonised his own.
They seem like they should be two puzzle pieces that don't fit together, but they manage to defy logic and make it work. Once they deal with their issues exes. Which is easier said than done when, A] Cait's ex Dominic doesn't seem to want to leave her alone and B] Art's ex Priya is dead and forever stained upon his skin and C] Cait has a small problem with physical touching while Art has small problem with emotional touching. Not to mention the whole Rich and Vicky situation and Cait's increasingly distancing sister Millie.
Talk about issues that need to be overcome.
Yet Morgan manages to not gloss over a single one of these issues. I was constantly being surprised at exactly how many pages I had left to read, because usually all the sub-plot tends to get conveniently shoved to the side in favour of a neat bow-tie ending. This is not case here. Every single problem that arises is addressed in a realistic amount of time and with the perfect amount of detail. There's not too much emphasis on tiny details, but not too little info that things seem unnecessarily irrelevant. Morgan just has this way of spinning a tale into the plot that is interwoven with all the other sub-plots - and altogether with the main storyline, they make a truly amazing story.
So plot? Definitely check.
Characterization? And other big check.
While Cait and Art are meant to steal the show, in my opinion, it was all the secondary characters that actually did. Rich and Drew were priceless as a twin duo, just like Vicky and Mills were quirky and excellent smithers.
And what do I mean by smithing?
"Smith. Word-smithing. It's a thing me and Vicky invented–or at least, I think we invented the term," I explain. "When you're being all smug and clever and enjoying yourself far too much with words, you're smithing."
I'm sorry, what? I have totally just adopted that word and it's definition. It is now a permanent resident of my vocabulary and for all intents and purposes belongs to me.
And with smithery like that, exactly how can this novel not be perfect?
Well, to be honest? I only really have two teeny tiny complaints. One? The Dominic issue didn't really feel completely resolved to me. The way that he and Cait talked their issues out? A little bit too unbelievable considering how that conversation stops. And two? The boxing aspect. It really didn't make as much of an appearance as I'd have liked to. But other than that?
There's something about a romance novel where I just can't get into the lead male character that drives me insane. Because eventually it gets to the pThere's something about a romance novel where I just can't get into the lead male character that drives me insane. Because eventually it gets to the point where I come to hating the male lead so much that it completely detracts from the entire story.
And that's exactly what happened with me and Mad Love.
Instead of falling in love with Clayton, I just couldn't get past his manipulativeness and assumed entitlement to anything and everything that his heart desired. Namely Sophie. The way that he acted towards her made her seem like more of an object rather than a person. His possessiveness was not nearly attractive. To be honest, Clayton himself wasn't even attractive.
Which all in all made up a rather unattractive novel.
The plot was more of an un-plot. There wasn't really a lot to it. I didn't really know what it was. Didn't really see it's point either.
And that rather crappy cliffy at the end.
But I liked Erik and Orie.
And that's about it.
So a star to each of them and we'll call it day. ...more
Tell me more about you being naked. I want the sexy back.
I’ll bring it back ;)
Now I don't want to go as far as to say that the sexTell me more about you being naked. I want the sexy back.
I’ll bring it back ;)
Now I don't want to go as far as to say that the sexy was brought back. If we were to give it a rating on the scale of hotness, a ghost pepper it would be not.
But a jalapeño? Sure, why not?
This book was pleasantly surprising to me, on many scales, because New Adult books tend to disappoint me plot wise. But this one? This one managed to kind of pull off a somewhat decent plot. And the reason why? Because when it all comes down to it, the plot was deceptively simple.
Premise: Girl takes internship to learn about her dead father. Finds hot guy who is her adversary for her internship position who happens to be her employer's grandson. Conflict: Girl lies to her employer and falls in love with her adversary. Denouement: The lies fall apart. Relationships suffer. Resolution: Neatly tied ending that solves the conflict.
Really, the plot was so simple, the story should have been one catastrophe after another. But Grey managed to take that simple plot and word it in such a way that the plot points fell into place like little stepping stones that let you get from one end of a rushing river to the other. She took simplicity and made it all seem significant somehow. Was it predictable? Yes. But it wasn't boring and it wasn't far-fetched. It seemed completely realistic for what it was.
But things got a little wayward with the characterization. For the most part, the best way I can think to describe it is clean. It was really clean characterization when it came to Caleb and Amy. Neither of them were trying to be something that they were not. The same went for the majority of the characters in the novel like Linus and Ingrid. But when Caleb's friends came into the picture, it was almost like a thread was loose in the or something because Brooke and Sabrina and even Nick didn't seem like complete characters. They were all over the place from nice and friendly to bitchy and jealous within 2 pages and there was never any in depth explanation as to why.
I guess I was looking for a little more background, a little more angst to a story which didn't really have a lot of angsty business to begin with. It was clearly attempted, but all in all resolved much too quickly for me. I wanted a little more gut-wrenching moments, a little more emotional investment, a little more in general.
That said, the book was still worth 4 stars. It had a few gun-slinger lines, which I loved because quips are totally up my alley. And the romance was definitely one of the better ones I've read in the last while, although again, everything was a little too neat and tidy for my liking so it wasn't perfect.
But in the end, the surprisingly pleasing plot made up for the inconsistencies. Which is a win in my book, any day. ...more