If I’ve learned to expect one thing from Lauren Oliver, it’s unbearable cliffhangers! When you read Pandemonium I can almost guarantee you, like me, w...moreIf I’ve learned to expect one thing from Lauren Oliver, it’s unbearable cliffhangers! When you read Pandemonium I can almost guarantee you, like me, will end up begging for the next book!
Pandemonium was a slow start for me. At the beginning I felt that it just didn’t compare to the first book. Boy did I change my mind during the second half!! Just as Delirium was emotion filled, Pandemonium certainly had its moments as well. There were a few particular scenes that I struggled with… If you’ve read this you probably have an idea of what I’m talking about. The story wasn’t completely focused on emotion, however. There was plenty of action to keep me satisfied as well, even more so than the first book.
Many new characters were introduced into Lena’s story. The character I found most intriguing, like many others, was Julian. I loved the contrast between the two: how each of them came from different backgrounds but managed to work together. I loved watching the suspicion between them melt away as they learned to trust one another!
I enjoyed Pandemonium just as much, if not better, than Delirium. The characters, action, and turn filled plot left me begging for more. As I mentioned earlier, be prepared for yet another cliffhanger! Yes, I am still recovering from it! Be sure to check out the Delirium series: Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem (coming March 2013)! (less)
Delirium is one of those books that I had no interest in reading initially. The plot seemed a bit too familiar and sounded as if it could easily go wr...moreDelirium is one of those books that I had no interest in reading initially. The plot seemed a bit too familiar and sounded as if it could easily go wrong. Then came the gushing reviews from my fellow bloggers. So what did that make me do? Naturally, I put off reading it even longer (I've since learned to listen to them)! Eventually I gave in and now I can’t believe how I could put off reading such a fantastic book!
Delirium contained all my favorite elements: A bit of action, a pinch of mystery, a killer ending, and a romance seemingly doomed from the start. Yet, even in the face of that doom, the main character, Lena, maintained hope. There's just something about underdog characters like Lena that I love. They manage to both inspire and intrigue me. Up against all odds, will they make it or break it? You'll have to read this one to find out!
Delirium evoked all kinds of emotions: anger, sadness, love, and hope to name a few. Expect a rollercoaster! While, yes, this is a very emotional book, it is none of the fluff that one might expect from reading the blurb. There is legitimate thought and meaning in Delirium! Yes, it is about love, but there is so much more to it!
Don't be like me and put off reading Delirium! Life's too short to miss out on the good ones!(less)
Julie is an author that, no matter the topic, I will always love her books. Yes, you may even call me a fangirl. I can always count on her rich, beaut...moreJulie is an author that, no matter the topic, I will always love her books. Yes, you may even call me a fangirl. I can always count on her rich, beautiful settings and unforgettable characters. The Lost Prince is no exception.
The Lost Prince is a book that, despite being a spinoff of The Iron Fey series, can be read without reading through the original books. I do, however, strongly recommend reading The Iron Fey series first. Not only are they fantastic books, but they will definitely help fill in some plot gaps for unfamiliar readers.
For those who have read The Iron Fey series, do you remember Meghan’s tiny, little brother, Ethan from the first book? Yeah, he’s all grown up now and shirtless on the cover! Seeing him at a young age and seeing him grown are two opposite sides of the spectrum! I loved the contrast between the two. The fey have tortured him his entire life, so I can completely understand his broodiness and complex personality. You can tell Julie really took the time and effort to develop his character!
The Lost Prince features some fantastic action scenes and quirky characters! I thoroughly enjoyed the relationship between Ethan and Kerrian. It was vaguely reminiscent of Ash and Puck. So if you’ve liked the banter between those two in the past, you will definitely find some entertainment here. I’ll be honest and say I really wanted a glimpse at the present day life of Ash and Meghan. Luckily The Lost Prince delivered. While the story doesn’t revolve around them, there are still some beautiful scenes between the two. I didn’t know it was possible to miss two fictional characters so much… Special thanks to Julie for not leaving them in the dust.
The Lost Prince is nothing short of a showstopper! It has proven itself to be just as engaging and exciting as the The Iron Fey series. I have no doubts that it will continue to meet or even surpass my expectations of the original books. *Impatiently waits for next book* (less)
I did not expect to love Pushing the Limits as much as I did! Guys, this book is seriously incredible. It is a must read for contemporary fans… Actual...moreI did not expect to love Pushing the Limits as much as I did! Guys, this book is seriously incredible. It is a must read for contemporary fans… Actually, I would say it’s must read for everyone! I’m not a big fan of the contemporary genre, but this book just blew me away. Trust me, this is worth it.
There is a fantastic story to be found here. Well really, there are two fascinating stories: Noah is on a quest to be with his brothers again and Echo is trying to find some sort of peace in her life after the loss of her brother, Aires, and what we will call “the incident.” She has difficultly remembering the night of “the incident,” and this book is all about her path to that memory. It was easy to see just how fragile Echo’s mind was after her episodes, aka when she remembered bits of that memory . Like Echo, I found myself consistently asking: Can she handle the truth? Will she crack? What is the truth!? McGarry writes in such detail that it is hard not to question if she has experienced much of this story herself.
The voices of Echo and Noah were completely different and easy to identify. I felt that I was actually reading from a male point of view, which can be hard at times when there is a female author. The romantic scenes were to die for. Noah’s character is not so noble at first glance, but trust me, he warms up on you FAST. Echo was real: She was flawed, she was insecure, and yet she had this inner strength that truly amazed me. Even though her world came crashing down at times, she still persevered. She was quite inspirational. Noah and Echo really complemented each other and made for a great read with dual point of views.
Despite being a bit slow at the start, Pushing the Limits, has earned its place on my favorites shelf. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone and everyone who will read it. (less)
Under the Never Sky is unlike any book I have read. With a mix of dystopian and sci-fi elements, it is no surprise that this has become one of my favo...moreUnder the Never Sky is unlike any book I have read. With a mix of dystopian and sci-fi elements, it is no surprise that this has become one of my favorites!
Told from the perspectives of Aria and Perry, Under the Never Sky provides two sides to the story. Reading from both point of views was fantastic! It was so interesting seeing the interactions and knowing the motives behind them. Not only did I get to experience the great dynamic between the two main characters, but I got to see the trust between them develop as well. There was some serious tension between Aria and Perry. They, in addition to a slew of great side characters, were the highlight of this book.
The world building in Under the Never Sky was on par with that of a great fantasy book. If you are looking for a complex, original dystopian setting, this book has it. I was as intrigued with the outside, 'Death Shop,' world as I was with the dome setting. Both groups had their own views on the other. I really enjoyed seeing Aria and Perry challenge the views of each other. The differences between the two made for some great, and at times tense, interactions.
Under the Never Sky is a book that will most definitely please readers across genres. It has so much to offer! You have to check this one out, trust me. Not only is it a quick read, but it is a very satisfying one that will have you dying for the next book. Had I only known how amazing this book was, I would have picked it up the day it was released! (less)
A very useful guide!! Provides many alternatives for standard exercises and has a great intro section! Because it provides tips to get the right form,...moreA very useful guide!! Provides many alternatives for standard exercises and has a great intro section! Because it provides tips to get the right form, it is perfect for novices. I would imagine it would be a good reference for experienced lifters as well due to the sheer number of exercises available. Definitely worth the money!
Update 4/24/12: Pages within this book are unfortunately starting to fall out. Despite this, it will continue to be one of my favorites. I am, however, removing a star for the poor physical design of the book.(less)
I picked up The Selection expecting a light romantic read. What I got instead was a reflective, romantic, and beautiful story with surprising depth. F...moreI picked up The Selection expecting a light romantic read. What I got instead was a reflective, romantic, and beautiful story with surprising depth. For having a Bachelor-esque type set up, I was amazed by the sincerity, legitimate emotion, and lack of cat fights between the girls. If I had to use one word to describe Kiera Cass' take on this story, it would be "tasteful."
The Selection features a terrifying love triangle. I was happy to see that there was no insta-love! After being with Aspen for years, it was expected that America have feelings for him, so I didn't feel cheated there. I especially enjoyed the relationship between America and Prince Maxon! America was the one person that Maxon could expect to be honest with him. And believe me, she could be a feisty one! The banter between the two was quite entertaining. A choice between two fantastic guys: How will she ever choose!?
The crazy part is that I almost stopped listening to this book due to the narrator! She has a very... different voice. She was almost robotic at times. Once I adjusted to her voice, I was able to focus on the story. I might recommend reading the book instead of listening due to the difficulty I had with her narration.
If I have one complaint about the content of this book, it would be the abrupt ending! Talk about a cliffhanger... If you have issues with cliffhangers, you might want to put this one off until the next book, because it is a bad one! All I can do is hope it doesn't take too long for the next one...
The Selection is a book that could have easily gone wrong. Instead Kiera Cass made it tasteful, fun, and intelligent. Don't be turned off by the reviews saying that it is a Bachelor spinoff. There is so much more to this book! It is definitely one to add to your summer reading list! I'm certainly looking forward to the next installment in this series.(less)
Days of Blood & Starlight is the perfect sequel to Daughter of Smoke & Bone! Not only is it epic as sh!t (excuse my language) but it is also h...moreDays of Blood & Starlight is the perfect sequel to Daughter of Smoke & Bone! Not only is it epic as sh!t (excuse my language) but it is also heartbreakingly beautiful. I simply cannot express my love for this amazing series...
Aptly named, Days of Blood & Starlight is far more dark and serious in tone than its predecessor. Not only does Karou have the fate of the Chimera resting on her shoulders as the sole ressurectionist but she also hosts an internal struggle surrounding her feelings for Akiva. There was a much larger focus on Akiva and his history in this book. I loved getting a better idea of who Akiva was and what led him to be that way. Much respect and sympathy was gained for him in this book. Finally, in Days of Blood & Starlight, Akiva became a fully fleshed out character and one of my favorites! In addition to Akiva, I absolutely fell in love with Ziri, a Kirin from Madrigal's past. He plays a HUGE role in the story and plot twist toward the end of the book. His courage, sacrifice, and integrity really shine in Days of Blood & Starlight and I cannot wait to see more of him in the next book!
I loved the addition of new characters and storylines! The puzzle pieces start to fall together in this book as histories are revealed. It's amazing how Laini Taylor has made things interconnect. How does she think of this stuff!? Really.. it's crazy! It is no surprise that Days of Blood & Starlight far exceeded my expectations! The well placed action, intense emotion, and surprise filled plot left me dying to find out what happens next. Laini Taylor, you have done it once again!(less)
The Fault in Our Stars is absolutely brilliant. It is perfect… Though it may be early to make this claim, it could possibly be my favorite book of the...moreThe Fault in Our Stars is absolutely brilliant. It is perfect… Though it may be early to make this claim, it could possibly be my favorite book of the year! It’s always difficult for me to write reviews on books that I love this much. I feel that I can never quite do them justice. I will let a quote from The Fault in Our Stars describe it for me:
“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” – The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green
That’s exactly how I feel... All of us have had our lives touched in some shape or form by cancer. Whether it be watching an actor fight it or a family member, It’s not a foreign thing to us. This book is not just about Hazel and Augustus, it’s about humanity. Anyone who reads this will be able to find some truth in Green’s words. Yes, I have never read any of his previous books… *GASP* I know, crazy right? But this experience has made me contemplate why have let such a gem of a writer go unread for so long… Green’s writing is beautiful, poetic, and completely genius!
Green wrote about a dark subject and yet maintained some glimmer of hope throughout. While this story did make me cry, it did not devastate me. In fact, it was extremely inspirational. The characters were easy to love, understand, and relate to. I couldn’t get enough the playful banter between Hazel and Augustus! Even living on borrowed time, their relationship progressed naturally and developed into a beautiful, deep love.
I cannot forget to mention the phenomenal narrator of this audiobook, Kate Rudd. It would have been easy for the narrator to take the emotion too far and overdue it. But not Kate! She portrayed the perfect amount of emotion in every single situation. That narration was so real and believable, that it only added to the beauty of Green’s words! She is genuinely talented.
The Fault in Our Stars left me with what can only be described as "that wow feeling." As readers, you all know what I’m talking about: When you sit silently for awhile after finishing a book because you are so in awe of what you had just experienced. You don’t just read or listen to this book, you experience it in the deepest sense… It will make you want to live your life differently! It will change you. And it has certainly set the bar high for the rest of the upcoming YA books this year. The Fault in Our Stars receives my highest recommendation for any reader, regardless of genre!(less)
Perfectly titled, Hallowed is darker in tone than its predecessor, Unearthly. Faced with knowing someone very near to her will die: Clara's relationsh...morePerfectly titled, Hallowed is darker in tone than its predecessor, Unearthly. Faced with knowing someone very near to her will die: Clara's relationships are stressed, her inner strength is tested, and her true purpose is revealed. On top of that new characters bring with them unexpected twists and back stories. Cynthia Hand has done it again! My love for the characters drove me to quickly and gladly devour Hallowed.
I was surprised that I found myself disliking Tucker quite a bit in this book. After Unearthly, I didn't think that could ever be a possibility! Though Clara obviously felt strongly for Tucker, being an angel-blood stressed their relationship to the max in Hallowed. I'm sad to say that I slowly converted to Team Christian over the course of this book. Crazy, right!? Reasons being: He was always there for Clara, but never pushy or selfish; She could confide in him about angel related things, something she couldn't really do with Tucker; and they clearly had feelings for each other outside of their purposes.
While this book is sad, it is also filled with hope. Strong characters and an emotion filled plot will engage and inspire readers. I highly recommend this book if you read and enjoyed Unearthly!(less)
Awakened is, by far, the most emotionally charged book in the House of Night series. I found myself tearing up during numerous parts, both happy and s...moreAwakened is, by far, the most emotionally charged book in the House of Night series. I found myself tearing up during numerous parts, both happy and sad. Until this book, I never realized just how much of a hold the characters have on me.
Like the other books, the story is read from the different point of views of select characters. The Casts do a great job with this! I never found myself getting bored of reading the different point of views. I especially enjoyed getting in Rephaim's head. So much inner turmoil! He has an entire battle of light vs dark raging inside his head. He's one of the most interesting and original characters in the series and my personal favorite. The turn in the relationship between Stevie Rae and Rephaim was the highlight of this book for me. I cannot express how happy I was with the outcome of this relationship in Awakened. The Casts did a wonderful job working the plot to make that outcome possible. I really love Rephaim... I'm just a sucker for bad guys gone good! I hope to see more of him in the next book.
Though there was plenty of drama in this book, it was not the stupid teen drama from the previous books. It's good to see the kids have finally grown up a bit! While there were not too many advances in the plot of the series, I still found the story to be engaging and interesting. Awakened paves the way for some true action in the next book, Destined.
Awakened has rekindled my love for the House of Night series. I think it is safe to say it is my favorite of the series so far! For those wondering if this series is worth pursuing, it is! There were rough patches in the beginning, but I think those have finally been smoothed over. (less)
As with all House of Night books, I was nervous starting this one. Surprisingly, there is little I can complain about… I think I might even say that B...moreAs with all House of Night books, I was nervous starting this one. Surprisingly, there is little I can complain about… I think I might even say that Burned is the best of the series! While the female characters still speak like valley girls, this book features little guy related drama (my biggest pet peeve with the other books). Zoey isn’t going back and forth from guy to guy through the whole book! She actually sticks with one! Thank god.
Burned offers a great opportunity for character growth and exploration; namely Stark, Zoey, Stevie-Rae, and Rephaim. The best part about this series is that we get to read from all the main character’s point-of-views! The alternate POVs add an entirely new dimension to the story. I really enjoyed watching Rephaim and Stevie-Rae explore their imprint through their POVs.I’m developing quite the soft spot for the evil birdman <3! He is very intriguing and a more complex character than I originally thought. Each character’s perspective was interesting enough that I wasn’t skimming through one to find out what happens to the other. I think that shows some skill on the authors’ parts.
There is something that keeps me coming back to this series every time! Burned was worth suffering through the previous books! I’m hoping that Awakened continues this move in the right direction. (less)
In market flooded with vampire books, The Immortal Rules stands out as a refreshingly original and brutal dystopian tale.
Allison was given a choice: d...moreIn market flooded with vampire books, The Immortal Rules stands out as a refreshingly original and brutal dystopian tale.
Allison was given a choice: die or become the very thing she despises. She chooses life… well kind of. Allison chooses to become a vampire. Throughout the book she struggles with this fact. There is a never-ending battle waged between her heart and her body. Her hunger doesn't discriminate: She fights it around everyone, even those she cares about. Despite her new vampire nature, she sacrifices herself many times for those she loves. I found her to be an extremely honorable and strong main character.
Not only did Allison struggle with her new vampire state, but as the story progressed she began to unravel a much larger mystery. Julie created the perfect balance between personal and large scale issues: neither overshadowed the other. I really felt for Allison’s situation. Being a vampire, people looked at her different, as if she was a monster. Even she, herself, pondered that thought at times. Did she have a soul? When Zeke and his group came into the picture she was given some purpose and direction in her new life. She grew to love, appreciate, and trust them, Zeke in particular.
The tension and love between Zeke and Allison grew to impressive levels, but in the end left me a bit disappointed. I was looking for something more from them... But maybe that's the beauty in it: They found a plain love in a complicated world. Both had duties that came before their personal desires; creating a love that was believable and realistic. If you are looking for insta-love, I'm happy to say you will not find it here!
I’m a huge fan of Julie’s Iron Fey series! Unfortunately, so far, The Blood of Eden series doesn’t seem to be surpassing it…. yet. I see so much potential, but I feel that parts of this book were rushed and the ending was somewhat anticlimactic. I imagine I will like the upcoming Blood of Eden novel more so than this one. Saying that, I still believe that The Immortal Rules is one of the best YA vampire books out there. The combination of dystopian and paranormal elements is sure to please readers across genres!(less)
I started reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone not knowing anything about the storyline. I had, however, heard many people say that it was one of the be...moreI started reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone not knowing anything about the storyline. I had, however, heard many people say that it was one of the best books of the year. That it is a statement I can wholeheartedly agree with now having read it. I found it to be a completely original, compelling, and exciting read.
The premise of this book is a hard one to describe without actually giving away any spoilers. And trust me, you want to go into this plot-blind! Originally, I pictured Daughter of Smoke and Bone as being a very close range, personal book, but I could never have imagined the vastness and epic-ness (yes I just made that up) of it all. Contained within the 418 pages there is a beautiful, transcendent romance, some very unforgettable characters, and lush, thought-provoking mythology! I was very impressed by Taylor's ability to provide a full back story without having it feel long-winded, or it being too short, which can make readers feel cheated. Despite the books length, I was never bored! In fact, I was amazed because, what I thought was a good story in the beginning, grew to be even better - something I didn't think was possible! I devoured the last quarter of the book, and the ending (ahhh the ending!!!) was so perfect! I absolutely cannot wait to see where this series goes!
Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a story of fates intertwined, transcendent romance, and adventure. I believe that this is a book that should grace everyone's shelves! Not only does it have a gorgeous cover (one of my favorites of the year) but it is filled with an action-packed, epic story that promises to please readers across genres. As many have said before me: Daughter of Smoke and Bone is easily one of the best books of the year, so don't pass it up!(less)
Cinder is a freakin' brilliant take on the Cinderella fairytale! It was completely addicting, well paced, and featured a cast of unforgettable charact...moreCinder is a freakin' brilliant take on the Cinderella fairytale! It was completely addicting, well paced, and featured a cast of unforgettable characters.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that Cinder was a very strong character even though she was based on Cinderella. Despite her situation, she always took an active, not passive, approach to changing her life. She wasn't content with being her stepmother's doormat and I loved that about her! Being a cyborg, she was considered a lesser citizen of New Beijing, but she didn't let that hold her back. It was quite inspiring really. Her conversations with her android Iko kept things light and humorous. Though Iko wasn't human, it didn't keep her from having one of the most entertaining personalities in the bunch.
While the love story isn't too prevalent in this book, it's definitely there. I loved that fact that it was subtle and didn't overshadow the main plot. I really liked Kai! He had a really good heart. He wanted what was best for his people even if it meant sacrificing his life and his happiness. He was such an honorable guy and a true leader.
While the characters were fantastic, one aspect of the plot was extremely predictable! It wasn't exactly a small piece of the story either... Allow me to explain: When I say predictable, I don't mean something that you could predict based off of the Cinderella story. It was something completely different, but very integral to the story. I could understand predicting something from the Cinderella fairytale, but this was unrelated and pretty obvious from the beginning. Regardless, the predictability didn't take away from my enjoyment of the story! Another thing I found difficult about this book is that when it came to the setting, my imagination really had to come into play when thinking about what the city might look like. Meyer doesn't give the reader all that much description to go off of. Be prepared for a little legwork in this area!
Despite a few flaws, I easily give Cinder 5 stars. I couldn't imagine a Cinderella retelling being any more original! I've certainly set myself up for torture knowing that I need to wait until next year for the second book...(less)
Unearthly is the first angel book to completely blow me away! It was well paced, well characterized, and extremely addicting. It was hard to pull myse...moreUnearthly is the first angel book to completely blow me away! It was well paced, well characterized, and extremely addicting. It was hard to pull myself away from the pages. Surprisingly though, I'm at a loss of words to describe the exact elements that made me love this book as much as I do!
While it is difficult to describe the allure of this book, I think what pulled me in were the characters. Clara was easy to relate to, a normal girl. She didn't let her being an angel-blood get in the way of her having a life outside of her "purpose." I liked that there was that paranormal to normal life balance. And Tucker! AH <3 (fangirl moment)! Watching his relationship grow with Clara added depth to an already amazing story. At the beginning I hated him, but he won me over effortlessly as he did with Clara. Who would have known that he had a soft side!?
In addition to the great characters, I think the conclusion really sets Unearthly apart from the rest. This book could not have had a more perfect ending: no cliffhanger, a good resolution, and me dying for the next book! I recommend this to ANY paranormal fan. I can almost guarantee you will be as captivated as I was by the characters in Unearthly.(less)
Ruby Red is absolutely fantastic!! I kept putting it off because, usually, I’m not a fan of books involving time travel. I. WAS. SO. WRONG! I devoured...moreRuby Red is absolutely fantastic!! I kept putting it off because, usually, I’m not a fan of books involving time travel. I. WAS. SO. WRONG! I devoured this book. Ruby Red alone has changed how I view the time travel genre!
What really surprised me is that there is so little romance, but this book still demanded my attention. I feel that sometimes I rely on the romantic side of a book to get me through a mediocre plot; but definitely not in this case! In my mind, that is the sign of a truly special book. I definitely foresee a budding romance in Sapphire Blue, the next in the series.I’m super excited to see how that plays out!
Kerstin Gier manages to weave history, time travel, and secret societies together seamlessly. Ruby Red felt so authentic! She included excerpts of secret writings, letters, and maps that give readers a deeper look into the secret society that plays such a large role in this book. Throughout the Ruby Red I couldn’t help but feel that there was much more going on behind the scenes with that society. The air of mystery was ever-present. Not much of the mystery is actually revealed in this book. Ruby Red left me craving for more!
On another note: I’m amazed at how beautifully this book flows. Anthea bell did a really great job with this one; the translation was perfect! With consistent characters and a wonderful, gripping, and mysterious plot, Ruby Red delivers!! My only problem now is that I have to wait to get Sapphire Blue! I NEED it!(less)
Vetch, a serf working for a terrible and abusive master, knows nothing but servitude until Jouster Ari comes along. Taking Vetch under his wing, he gi...moreVetch, a serf working for a terrible and abusive master, knows nothing but servitude until Jouster Ari comes along. Taking Vetch under his wing, he gives him no more work than he can handle, teaches him the ways of dragons, and trusts him with the care of his dragon, Kashet. Soon after, Vetch has dreams of raising a dragon of his own.
I must address an issue here before I start my review. Many people see this series as comparable to The Pit Dragon Chronicles by Jane Yolen, and in many ways it is… But how many vampire and werewolf books do you see these days with familiar stories and plots? This book was far original enough for me to feel like I was reading something separate and different. It evolved into it’s own type of beast. To be honest, the hope that this series would be similar to The Pit Dragon Chronicles is what originally attracted me to it. I was very delighted to give it a try! Joust did not disappoint!
Normally I would remove a star for this book not having some sort of love story, but it doesn’t need it!! Vetch’s developing passion for dragons took that place for me. I don’t know how Lackey did it, but I was hooked... This book became like a drug for me. I couldn’t stop reading! And yes, because of the attachment to the characters, I did cry.. but only once.
The one problem I have is with the cover. The dragon looks great, but the man on the front is nothing like how I pictured a jouster. Ok, maybe it’s just the helmet... I don’t think I’d want to look like I was wearing a freakin’ vase on my head. Real intimidating. Just my personal opinion.
I’ve read Mercedes Lackey’s books in the past and liked them, but where was this series all my life!? The characters, setting, and plot were all perfectly conceived to build this sure-to-be epic series. I love how Joust ended and cannot wait to delve back into this amazing world.
After reading Maberry’s Patient Zero earlier this year, I knew I would love Rot & Ruin. Once again, he did not disappoint. He has such a great wri...moreAfter reading Maberry’s Patient Zero earlier this year, I knew I would love Rot & Ruin. Once again, he did not disappoint. He has such a great writing style and true talent for keeping readers’ eyes on the page. It was incredibly hard not to finish this in one sitting..
At the start, I found the main character, Benny, to be naïve, ignorant, and a bit obnoxious. He frustrated me so much initially… But I later found that the beauty of this book was seeing Benny grow from that ignorant child into someone to be respected and proud of. I really enjoyed watching the change in the relationship between Benny and his brother Tom as well. Benny had originally thought Tom was a coward, but slowly learned that he was actually quite the opposite! Tom was easily my favorite characters in Rot & Ruin. His wisdom and compassion were awe-inspiring. I personally think that the character and relationship development in this book is what truly makes it shine. There is so much emotional substance to this story.
Rot & Ruin is not your everyday zombie book! It is an action packed read that will make you reflect on what it is to be human. I cannot wait to get started on Dust & Decay to see where this adventure leads next!(less)
I don’t even know where to start with this book… It’s amazing, heartbreaking, tragic, beautiful, and perfect. My re...moreOriginally posted at Inklings Read.
I don’t even know where to start with this book… It’s amazing, heartbreaking, tragic, beautiful, and perfect. My review, and the 5 stars I give it, will not do it justice. I was so emotionally torn up after reading this… There was no possible way I could write a review. That would mean that the story was over, that it was done, and the idea of such a thing left me utterly heartbroken. Now, a day later, I finally stop tearing up at just the thought of it.
First let me say, this is about incest, a very touchy subject for most people. But, I can promise you, if you open your mind and your hearts to the characters you will not be disappointed. I started reading this out of pure curiosity and out of a desire to have my beliefs challenged. And challenged they were.
My favorite thing about this book was the characters, especially Lochan. If the entire book was written from his point of view I would have been fine with it. His struggle, seemed much worse to me than Maya’s. Not only was he dealing with providing and caring for the family, but he also had a crippling social anxiety that prevented him from communicating with people he didn’t know well and from speaking in class. He was the most selfless character in the book… He was always putting his family before himself, unlike the mother who was rarely present, and hung-over when she was. She frustrated me so bad! I hate her… I hate her SO much. And I blame her too… For everything. I loved cute little Willa, Tiffin, and rebellious Kit. They weren’t the perfect family, but as I was reading it, they were mine…. they were real.
Suzuma’s writing pulled me into the story in ways that I never thought possible. Her writing was just so… real. When Lochan was having his panic attacks, I was right there with him, pulse increasing and eyes bulging. When he was breaking down…. so was I… It was a wonderful and terrible thing to become so invested in these characters, particularly Maya and Lochan. I felt for them and empathized with them… I wanted them to be happy. I wanted them to be together without shame or guilt.
Even knowing this book was not going to have a happy ending, I kept hoping, wishing, and praying that it would. I hoped that we would find out somehow through some crazy scenario that they weren't siblings. That never happened… but I continued to hope. The ending of this story was so shocking and came up on me so fast, that it absolutely ripped me apart. I was helpless. Forbidden has devastated me. It has left me with a gaping hole in my chest. I feel so empty and lost that I truly believe this story will haunt me forever.
I can’t recommend Forbidden to everyone, particularly young readers, because of the subject matter, but for anyone who is willing to invest themselves emotionally, I strongly, strongly, recommend this…(less)
This is seriously one of the best debut novels I have ever purchased! Roth does an amazing job of pulling you into this crazy wo...moreOriginally posted here
This is seriously one of the best debut novels I have ever purchased! Roth does an amazing job of pulling you into this crazy world. At first I shied away from it thinking Divergent was just a fad and wouldn’t compare to the other dystopian books I have read. Boy was I wrong! This book is so deserving of each and every bit of praise it receives.
I loved all the characters, but Tris and Four were written so well. They were definitely my favorites. Forgive me if I’m wrong, but is Four not the most romantic bad-ass that you’ve read?! I was swooning over him the entire book… Following Tris and Four as their relationship developed was certainly a treat. Roth has a great skill with romance.
Divergent was not all rainbows and butterflies… Tris faced quite overwhelming odds, heartbreak, death, and betrayal. Reading this, I couldn’t help but put myself in her place and wonder if I would be strong enough to survive. She was a very inspirational character for me..
I’m so happy that I decided to read this! This story is not only original, but action-packed and filled with twists! I swear I had no idea they were coming. I became so engrossed that it was an extremely quick read for me. I would sit in bed and think to myself “Just one more chapter…” and before I knew it, it would be 1am. I was so tempted to stay up and finish it. You definitely need to pick this up if you get a chance. It is an original, strong story one that I likely will not forget. I’m very excited to see where the next book goes!(less)
As of 9/6/11, the Kindle version of Mistborn is available for $2.99 on Amazon
If you are looking for an innovative, epic fantasy, Mistborn is it! This...moreAs of 9/6/11, the Kindle version of Mistborn is available for $2.99 on Amazon
If you are looking for an innovative, epic fantasy, Mistborn is it! This book is so much more than your typical lord of the rings type fantasy. It contains one of the most original and innovative magic systems I have ever seen. I love the way that Sanderson managed to thoroughly describe the world, politics, and magic system without ever making me bored. Trust me, politics in books normally bores the crap out of me! That is a feat in itself.
To start, Brandon Sanderson writes some amazing characters! Not only are they believable and consistent, but they are just plain likeable. And I’m not just talking about the main characters! Some of the most entertaining and heartbreaking scenes involved the secondary characters. There was something about Kelsier and Vin that I just fell in love with. Their relationship was like that of father and daughter. Kelsier, though he could be egotistical and manipulative at times, maintained hope in even the most grim of situations. Seeing Vin go from a scrawny, insecure, abused girl to a confident and trusting woman was incredibly rewarding and inspiring. She certainly grew throughout the story, thanks to the incredible cast of characters. I could go on and on about how much I love them all… I’m just happy I should have another couple books to get to know them better!
The plot of Mistborn was extremely well thought out. Sanderson constantly had me on edge thinking that the crew might give up or fail. I don’t want to go in depth with the plot and give something away though. I can, however, tell you that the fight scenes throughout the book were amazing and well choreographed. What a treat!
I was excited to find a developing romance in this book as well! I honestly did not expect one but it was a most definitely a pleasant discovery. Once again, you won’t squeeze the details out of me! Just know that the relationship is cute and awesome.
If you are a fantasy fan like me, then I can pretty much guarantee that you will love this book. It was refreshing and original like no other fantasy I have read. I already have the next two books and will hopefully get around to reading them before the end of the year! What was originally supposed to be a trilogy will have a new addition, The Alloy of Law (Mistborn, #4) on November 12th, 2011!
Imagine for a second that you are a teen living in a world where at any moment your parents or guardians may...moreReview originally posted at Inklings Read.
Imagine for a second that you are a teen living in a world where at any moment your parents or guardians may choose to have you unwound. If you disobey them or are become unwanted in any way, they may sign the papers and have you shipped off to a “harvest camp” where you will be prepped and then taken piece by piece. If you’re born into the right religion you may even have the privilege of being tithed (aka unwound with an honorable connotation). Satisfying both pro-life and pro-choice advocates, the justification of unwinding is that the teens live on within the bodies of the people given their parts. Disturbing? Definitely. Unrealistic? A bit… But this story and the characters brought such life to the idea, that is quickly became real.
Unwind has a very chilling concept! I loved it. Being my first audiobook experience, it took a little getting used to. I think I adjusted to listening vs. reading pretty fast. The narrator, Luke Daniels, was great!! He must have had over 10 original voices. It was very impressive and brought another dimension to the story.
Surprisingly, this was not a very emotional book. I expected it to be, but it was more- sit-at-the-edge-of-your-seat I-must-know-what-will-happen-next addicting. I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was a little love story in the background that was not gushy whatsoever.
Neal Shusterman has a definite winner here! Unwind is a chilling, action-packed, nail-biting, thriller. Supposedly Neal is working on a second book in the series titled, Unwholly that is due out in September 2012. You can bet I will be trying to get my hands on an ARC of that one! It also appears that Neal is working on the script to a movie based on Unwind. I’m extremely excited for that as well! Give this book a shot, or better yet try this as an audiobook, and you will guaranteed a thrilling ride.(less)
This book was by far one of the most emotionally draining books I have ever read. It has haunted me all day and I'm sure it will for quite awhile long...moreThis book was by far one of the most emotionally draining books I have ever read. It has haunted me all day and I'm sure it will for quite awhile longer.. I have sat here for at least two hours struggling to find the words to describe this amazing book. What I know I can say is this: This book is by far the most moving and heart wrenching book of the series. It has left me with an immense feeling of loss, even if it is not necessarily an unhappy ending.
This book follows the others and is absolutely packed with action. Katniss never gets a break! I would say that it is more gory and graphic than the other two as well, but very realistic. If you thought you had seen human cruelty at its worst in the first two books: prepare yourself. You will feel all of Katniss' emotions: frustration, fear, helplessness, terrible loss. All of them. If you were concerned about the Gale vs. Peeta dilemma, then you will be happy to know it is resolved in this book.
I cannot say more for fear of spoiling the plot. This definitely needs to be experienced spoiler free.. There are so many twists and turns that Suzanne Collins had me guessing the entire time. I believe everyone should experience this amazing trilogy.. You will not be disappointed. (less)
What I Loved I loved everything about this book. The characters, the plot twists, the lush settings, and the cliffhanger ending (love-hate relationship...moreWhat I Loved I loved everything about this book. The characters, the plot twists, the lush settings, and the cliffhanger ending (love-hate relationship with this) all lend themselves to form this amazing, perfect, and epic tale. And I mean it when I say that this book is epic!
What I Didn't Like This is one of those books where you really need to struggle to find something wrong... I don't think I was as emotionally invested into this book as I was in the first, but that's not necessarily bad. I found that I was more concerned with the politics in this one.
Review Take everything you thought was going to happen in this book and just throw it out the window. There is a major plot twist that I was not expecting AT ALL! A word of caution: be prepared. I didn't know what to do with myself after that... I had to finish it at once! Also know that the ending is one of the worst cliffhangers I have ever experienced. I promised myself I would take a break between this book and Mockingjay to read some other books I need to review...but I honestly don't know if that will happen.
All of the hype around this book is certainly deserved for it is one of the best I have ever read.
This book will make you think. It will make you reassess you values, your government, and your relationships. It will challenge you.
Wow… just… wow. A perfect end to an amazing journey and an EPIC love story; one against all odds. Julie Ka...moreOriginal Post can be found at Inklings Read.
Wow… just… wow. A perfect end to an amazing journey and an EPIC love story; one against all odds. Julie Kagawa you have outdone yourself once again. Each book in this series is better than the one proceeding it (Note: I was pretty blown away with the first). The Iron Fey series forever holds a place on my favorites shelf, this one being the best of them all.
The Iron Knight begins with Ash continuing his journey to find a way to keep his vow to Meghan. His drive and commitment to this task was inspiring. In this book you get a deep look into Ash’s past. In the other books, Ash was so cold and closed off that it was hard to learn anything about him! I loved reading from Ash’s point-of-view, and I’m so happy to had the opportunity to learn more about one of my favorite characters. Speaking of characters, I love them all. Julie has written some of the most memorable characters I have ever read.
My return to the Nevernever was as pleasing as the last. Kagawa’s settings are so descriptive and imaginative, without being overbearing. I particularly loved the Gauntlet and Testing Grounds. I’ve never read anything like them. They weren’t just action packed, they were incredibly critical to the plot! I love how Kagawa used them as a channel to learn more about Ash’s past.
Kagawa really surprised me with the twist about 1/4 of the way in. It challenged Ash… and turned his world upside down. Honestly, I wasn’t sure how/if he would overcome it. Though it was painful, I loved getting a deeper look into the mind and emotions of the Winter Prince.
The Iron Knight was such a quick read for me… Before I knew it, it was all over. It' so sad to see this series end. Boy, did it have a spectacular ending. And yes, if you must ask, there were tears. This is definitely one of my favorites. If you have not read the rest of the series, get on them now so you can get to this one right away! You won’t be disappointed one bit.(less)
* How attached I became to all of the characters. * The action- MUCH more than the rest of the series. * The romance- Meghan's relationship with Ash is definitely solidified in this book. * The unpredictable, open, but satisfying ending. Have kleenex handy! * Lastly, RAZOR the gremlin. What a great character. Very well written.
What I Didn't Like
* The crazy feeling of loss and sadness knowing I have to wait until the fall for book #4 in the series.. * The standard this sets for YA fantasy books... Will I ever find a series that compares??
Overall Rating:5/5 stars. I would give it more if possible!
This series will forever hold a special place in my heart and bookshelf (Uh, I mean...kindle space), particularly this book. For me, this was the best in the series so far. It had everything I wanted more of from the other books, specifically action and romance. I wanted to see Meghan and Ash's relationship fleshed out. Here that definitely happens.
Ahh the romance... Who doesn't love romance? The difference between the romance in this book and the romance in the other two books is exactly this: Here the romance makes sense. In the other books it seemed too "Twilighty" to me. You don't just instantly become infatuated with a person! In "The Iron Queen" Meghan and Ash have a background and have been through many hard times. This makes their love far more believable and understandable. The thing that I like about Julie's writing in this book is that the romance was not overdone nor underdone. In my opinion, it was very balanced. If you've been waiting for more romance between Meghan and Ash, this is the book!
Here we see Meghan become stronger and more passionate about her mission. We see her grow as a character. She is no longer the self conscious girl from the first book. She has faith in her abilities and more importantly knows what needs to be done. I love this... It was strangely inspirational looking back at her from the first book.
At first I thought the ending was terrible, but I didn't know then that there was another book on the way. I was like "WHAT!? HOW CAN YOU END THE SERIES LIKE THIS!?" I cannot explain my relief when I discovered that the next book is set for release this fall.
Overall, every second of this book was a joy to read. Warning though: Be prepared for some tears. I was sick with the stomach flu and exhausted but I just could not put this down. I ended up passing out with it the first night. Took me two days to finish.. Do not pass this series up!(less)
What I Loved - The descriptive writing skills of Suzanne Collins. - The added humor to a grim storyline:
"It's lovely. If only you could frost someone to death," I say. "Don't be so superior. You can never tell what you'll find in the arena. Say it's actually a gigantic cake -- " begins Peeta.
- That the violence was not camouflaged to protect readers like some other books. - Katniss' firey personality! - Several unexpected twists that keep you guessing.
What I Didn't Like - This book was a bit slow in the beginning, but looking back I could see that it was all necessary. It was still a joy to read despite this! Note: The games themselves don't even start until about a third of the way in.
Overall Rating: ★★★★★
In the beginning you are introduced to the strong protagonist, 16 year-old Katniss Everdeen. She certainly is a survivor: hunting, gathering, and providing for her mother and 12-year old sister, in a world where hunting outside town borders is prohibited. Her sister, Prim, is elected for the Hunger Games and Katniss volunteers to take her place not wanting to think about losing her little sister. This is where the real story begins. I do not want to give too much away!
I found Katniss to be a very likeable character. She is smart, clever, and a great hunter. She is a survivor. She can come off as harsh at times, but this only makes her character more believable.
Suzanne Collins' writing is raw and descriptive. She does not hold anything back. This is exactly what made me love this book so much. The picture she paints in my mind is of a future government that is oppressive, controlling, and merciless. Panem is world where only the strong or rich survive. Her characters are deep, believable, and relatable. The plot is raw, unheard of, and original. Her settings are extremely rich and descriptive. This book will become a classic read, no doubt. I would not be surprised to see this as a common read in schools in the future.
There is romance, action, heartbreak, sorrow, happiness, and rebellion all stuffed into the 374 pages of this excellent read. Expect a few unexpected plot twists as well! I did not think I would like this book as much as I did. I cannot recommend it enough and I will be starting the next book ASAP! (less)