It's OK. Perhaps not the best fantasy-romance novel, but it's pretty decent.
If I'll base it solely on the story, I'd give it a four star. One good thiIt's OK. Perhaps not the best fantasy-romance novel, but it's pretty decent.
If I'll base it solely on the story, I'd give it a four star. One good thing about Red Riding Hood is that it didn't focus wholly on the love story, although it had its effects in the flow of the story.
As for the characters... Valerie is not the best lead out there, but she's OK. She's obsessed at some point (which I hate) but she has a few redeeming qualities too. Throughout the story, I knew her basic qualities, but Sarah Blakley-Cartwright didn't put into light her other personalities that made people in the story like her. Which is probably why I feel she's not the best female lead. And Peter is hot, as the author described, and he's not your typical bad boy neighbor--he's really bad, which taints his handsome appearance. (And I like that, since the guy doesn't always have to be perfect.) Though, he lacked character development, big time. Lucie is a great sister, I think. Just some parts left me questioning her motives, though. And I can't say much here or I'll spoil the story. Henry Lazar is probably the perfect guy in the story, but I don't hate him. Actually, he's pretty scarred too, and his character was developed (at least much more than the others) so the readers can actually like him for his personalities, not just because he looks good. And honestly, if Valerie liked Henry, I wouldn't hate her (which was something usually did, because I hate girls who switched from one guy to another). I think I would if I was in her position. XD
Except for one part (perhaps two to three pages), the novel is pretty "clean" and YA-ish.
And if Sarah Blakley-Cartwright was planning on a second book with her ending, I'm still disappointed. She left a lot of questions left unanswered. It's like she opened ten boxes of jigsaw puzzles throughout the story, but answered only one or two. Every reader is left with his/her own to think of the answers....more
It took me a while to finish reading this book, but it surprisingly turned out to be a good one. I rarely read anything based on true story--this is tIt took me a while to finish reading this book, but it surprisingly turned out to be a good one. I rarely read anything based on true story--this is the first, actually--since I thought they'd bore or annoy me in the long run. But apparently Med Head isn't like that.
Honestly, I thought I wouldn't be satisfied with this book. I guess I was wrong. Cory's parents moved me; they're great people, and I'm glad that someone like Cory has parents like them.
After reading this, you'll start thinking more of how fortunate you really are, how normal you are. You'd start appreciating the love your family shows too. James Patterson and Hal Friedman did a good job in portraying the feelings of Cory. It's amazing; you'll understand what he felt.
This is a good read if you're looking for something non-fiction, or perhaps something that centers around family relationship. Anyway, for me, I wasn't looking for that type of book, but I still liked it....more
I was looking forward to reading Between Shades of Gray. I like history, and I like getting a glimpse of whaCovers and titles can be really deceptive.
I was looking forward to reading Between Shades of Gray. I like history, and I like getting a glimpse of what happened in the past--whether they be true story or not. So you can imagine I was pretty hyped.
Honestly, even now, I'm not sure what I was expecting from this book. Angst? Hatred? Loneliness? Hopelessness? Anguish? Torture? Brutality? I don't know. Well maybe not the full scope of that last one, but something. Even just one of these would be good enough, but no. There's nothing. Nothing that stood out. There could have been so many emotions twisted into this story, but there is completely nothing that made my heart ache or made my eyes sting. It felt like, it's almost there, but alas, it came too short. I felt nothing when reading this. And that's saying something, considering I cry easily and I hate easily.
The characters felt flat. Especially Lina. I couldn't really tell what it was she really wanted. To survive? Obviously. But there's so much that entails, and she skips them. I can't really remember the exact details anymore, but I just didn't feel like she was so desperate to live and to make her family survive with her. Well, maybe my memory's getting foggy. Sorry.
The romance seemed forced, too. There was no chemistry between the two. I couldn't get into their love story, much less appreciate the romantic scenes.
(view spoiler)[The only character I may have possibly liked here is the NKVD guy. I can't even remember his name anymore, but I do remember that I looked forward to his appearances, though very little they were. I think I was even rooting for him. Not rooting for him to be the hero, but to be... not exactly the good guy either but... just, to be there, I guess. But even then, I couldn't like like him, because there was nothing more shown about him than from Lina's POV. I don't even know his motives for being kind to Lina and her family. (hide spoiler)]
I've read another book of Sepetys before, and what I felt about that book is pretty much the same with this one. Perhaps something is wrong with me, because many of the reviews I read are praises of a job well done. Maybe Sepetys and I simply don't click.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I really liked the beginning. It wasn't boring, and background infos and histories were spread out through the book, so I didn't have to ski2.5 stars.
I really liked the beginning. It wasn't boring, and background infos and histories were spread out through the book, so I didn't have to skim through the first few chapters reading boring stuff.
The plot was unique, and it's what drove me to read this book. The twists were satisfactory too.
I couldn't appreciate much the writing style. The descriptions of the environment were somehow confusing, and Hardy barely described the characters. And the conversations? Some sounded just...weird, and a lot of them were awkward or cheesy.
The lead girl, Nya, has a very...er--weird name. It felt like everyone calling her turns into a cat for a brief moment. Couldn't Hardy have picked a better name? Nya was the lead, after all. The name's gonna stick throughout the series. Or did the author want a very original-sounding name?
The guy was so awkward. He could be liked, very much I think, and I would too, but towards the end, he became flat. His personality in the beginning didn't stick until the end. And for that, I couldn't like him.
There was character development, though very minimal. The people didn't feel real to me. A lot of those characters didn't seem to have any motive and role in the book. They were just there because someone was needed to be there. It's all jumbled up and confusing.
And it's so strange that Nya kept feeling useless, but a lot were saying she was their hero. Honestly, Nya isn't even very consistent. At one point she feels like this, the next moment she's quite the opposite. Hmm.
I'm probably reading the next book, though I'm not sure I'd be very eager to recommend the series....more
Giving this book a four-star came as a surprise to me, honestly. I thought of giving it three--but it didn't seem fair. It's a really great book.
The pGiving this book a four-star came as a surprise to me, honestly. I thought of giving it three--but it didn't seem fair. It's a really great book.
The plot is very unique. Hooking, yes, and the twists are surprising and spooky. The first part threw me off for a while, and I wondered what it had to do with the rest. But no disappointments there. It's amazing how this and that happened...though, of course, not all questions are answered.
Margaret Peterson Haddix had done a good job in ending the book too. Well, it is a cliffhanger, but that's a whole new story. Can't fit the next into a chapter, can she? And another plus for the series. The plot extends, but not in that unrealistic (but really, what's "realistic" in a fantasy novel?) and annoying and way-out-of-line-already type.
I have to warn you, though, that there are quite disturbing scenes. Not in a rated kind of way, of course, otherwise this wouldn't get a four-star. It's very suspenseful and freaky/spooky/unnerving. Certainly it's not a bad quality, but it may give quite a scare sometimes.
The style of writing is, perhaps, not the best, but it's definitely above average. The story's told in Jonah's POV, third-person kind, and the writer did good with that part. The pacing all right too. Unless I myself read too quickly and didn't notice it much.
And the characters are great too. I really like Jonah Skidmore. He's smart and a loving brother and a good son. He's not self-righteous either. Well, some may call him helplessly weak for a protagonist, but that adds to his charms.
Setting my gushes aside, Margaret Peterson Haddix made it a point to make the characters--especially the big ones--rounded and well-developed. More reasons to like it. And I'm sure as I go along reading the next ones, the characters will feel more alive.
It's not a laugh-out-loud type of book. But it made me laugh at some points, albeit dark they may be. There's not much witty remarks but Jonah's train of thought is an amusing and interesting read.
I'm looking forward to reading the next book, but for now, I'm going to hold myself back and wait until I get my own copy. I believe it's worth the money to buy this series....more
Actually, I didn't think I'd like this book after reading the summary. Since I wasn't anticipating much, I didn't get disappointed either.
I'm not sureActually, I didn't think I'd like this book after reading the summary. Since I wasn't anticipating much, I didn't get disappointed either.
I'm not sure if I enjoyed reading The DUFF. One thing's for sure: there were too many sexy scenes and a lot of cursing.
Bianca annoyed me. And she kind of lacked in making up for it. She was below average for me. And yes, despite her reputation of being smart, she wasn't. Honestly. (view spoiler)[Her thought about her family's problems almost made me pull my hair out. I can't believe she's so stupid to be relying on sex as a distraction. And another thing, I absolutely hated her for being mad at Casey because her best friend was mad at her. And she didn't know why? (hide spoiler)]
Wesley just kind of disguted me. Sure, maybe he was supposed to be funny and witty and sexy, but he was just too much of a pervert. Not really a redeeming trait. So much for having nice, gray eyes. It made me think I'd crush on him. But that was partly my fault.
(view spoiler)[Toby felt unreal to me. He's kind and sweet and polite and patient, and as much as I'm positive those are traits I'd be looking for my partner, he seemed fake. Maybe because he was extremely kind, sweet, etc. Not that I hated him. I guess his green eyes (yes, again with the eyes) somehow made up for it. LOL. (hide spoiler)]
For having a not-so-complicated plot, the book seemed long for me. And the plot sort of sucked, now that I think about it.
(view spoiler)[And though the ending didn't make me feel frustrated or annoyed, it was funny how it ended up that way. Sure I didn't want Toby hurt, but I just found it strange and out-of-the-blue. (hide spoiler)]
This is definitely not on my to-buy list, and I'm very glad that I didn't buy this when there was a sale. I don't think I'll be recommending it to my friends either.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Well, I didn't expect to like this. My sister, who read a different book by Stiefvater, said she didn't quite enjoy it, and I was ready to be disappoiWell, I didn't expect to like this. My sister, who read a different book by Stiefvater, said she didn't quite enjoy it, and I was ready to be disappointed in this. Actually, about third-ways to the book, I was about to drop it.
The beginning bored me. And the switching POVs didn't really help. I didn't like that type of writing because the story's flow is not so...fluid. This was not an exception. My dislike for the writing style somehow lessened towards the end, but I'm not sure I'm ready to read another book with switching POVs. Also, I'm not so fond of long, complicated, kind-of-poetic sentences to describe things, and...well, Stiefvater's famous for that, isn't she?
The book picked up pace somewhere near half of the book, so I suggest for other readers out there to be patient. It definitely gets better.
As for the characters, the girl neither made her way to my hated list of heroines nor to my favorite list. Annoying moments came in rarely I could count them, so I guess that's a good thing. She's impulsive and strong and quite hot-headed, but she had shown her weaknesses too. Another plus.
The boy, on the other hand, didn't make such a big appearance at first. I thought he was going to be in the background forever. But he turned out to be very likeable. His character is different from the other guys I have read and liked, and I found it attractive. (view spoiler)[For some odd reason, Sean reminds me of Percy Jackson (by Rick Riordan). Perhaps it's because they both love the sea. But I never thought that Sean was like Percy personality-wise; they're pretty much the opposite. (hide spoiler)]
I liked the ending too. I think it was just right, the way things ended. I'm not sure if others will agree with me, but the ending did seem abrupt. (It's weird; this has been a problem of mine from the books I've recently read. Is it the authors' problem or just mine? Oh well, whatever.) Suddenness aside, all went well.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
The main plot was blah. The events surrounding it--very much so. Things were so repetitive it got predictable and verAn OK start, and a boring ending.
The main plot was blah. The events surrounding it--very much so. Things were so repetitive it got predictable and very, very boring.
What made the book less enjoyable were the characters. They lacked personality--except perhaps the lead girl, but she's still too jumpy for my taste--and I found no one I particularly liked. Possibly, the only one who could have passed as a well-built character didn't stick through the whole book.
(view spoiler)[I couldn't grasp the idea of Ai Ling's power until I was almost done with the book, but Ai Ling seemed to be such a pro in using her powers, which, let me point out, she found out about merely hours/days ago. It's not like she lived knowing she had some hidden powers, so she couldn't have possibly wondered about having powers. Also, she immediately accepted having weird and uncommon powers--like "snapping" her soul from her body to another. A very strange talent, yet she didn't even freak out. She understood and acknowledged her powers calmly.
And what makes me laugh right now is the fact that Ai Ling always used her powers to defeat every demon thrown her way and save the day--even to Zhong Ye, who, when first mentioned, was described as someone worth fearing and very powerful. Yet, in just ONE night, in probably less than ten minutes, he. is. dead. WHAT! WHAT KIND OF ANTICLIMACTIC CLIMAX IS THAT, AFTER BUILDING UP ALL THAT FUSS? Gosh, the stupidity of it is just so pleasantly annoying.
Lastly, Chen Yong is such a lousy, lame hero. Honestly, I first thought he would be likeable because he's foreign, and he's kind and strong and reliable. But somehow, he became selfish and self-sacrificing all at the same time. He turned from an exotic, dashing young lad to an oblivious, pitiful, useless, weak guy with mood disorder. And I'm not saying he should be a knight in shining armor, always saving Ai Ling, but he didn't exactly do that even once. Unless you count the Ai-Ling-drowning-in-the-river thing. Which I didn't. (hide spoiler)]
Finally, the only thing I could say about the ending is it sucked. Period.
I can't say I'm looking forward to reading the next book, because I'm not really thrilled about it right now, and I have a lot of pending books which I'm sure are better than this one. But for the mean time, I'm not dropping the series.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I'm not really sure I'm very happy with this book; that's not to say I didn't like it either. I just can't place it anywhere between like and not likeI'm not really sure I'm very happy with this book; that's not to say I didn't like it either. I just can't place it anywhere between like and not like.
First of all I must admit: I was about to drop this book. The story was good, actually, but the narration bored me so much. Elliot has this way of explaining and/or describing things in complete detail that makes reading tiresome. It's quite daunting to read such long paragraphs of things the heroine sees, hears or does, and it doesn't even have such a long effect on the story. To be honest, I skimmed through those long describing paras most of the time.
Also, the story really got my interest when I was almost halfway through the book. Maybe because of the long narrations in the beginning. Or maybe because I didn't try to imagine every small detail and make my head ache.
Finally, what I liked (though I can't say I loved it) was the romance. It was very little and quite confusing, actually, but those scenes made me smile. Or it could be that I haven't read anything gush-worthy these past few weeks that my tolerance level for this kind of romance has gotten low.
(I'll probably rewrite this review next time. It's so muddled up and confusing LOL)...more
Bad Apple is, so far, the cleanest contemporary book I have read. That was definitely a plus.
One thing I really liked about this book was the heroine.Bad Apple is, so far, the cleanest contemporary book I have read. That was definitely a plus.
One thing I really liked about this book was the heroine. Tola was a very strong person. I liked her determination in things. (view spoiler)[And despite being marked a rebel in family and in school matters, she was an emotional girl. It made her feel real and whole. (hide spoiler)] But she didn't carelessly fight head on too. And contrary to her image, I believe that she was not stupid.
I also liked the people who, honestly and in a hidden way, supported the lead girl. They didn't exactly say, "You can do it." Rather, in their actions, they made the heroine feel they believed her. Which is such a beautiful way of encouraging someone.
(view spoiler)[The biggest factor of my high rating is because I really appreciated Tola and Madge's relationship as sisters. I think it's rare for sisters to be bonded so nicely, and although between Tola and Madge their convos weren't so sweet and sisterly, they showed their love for each other. It was a nice change because a lot of books with siblings out there, contemp or fantasy, they don't get along well. (hide spoiler)]
The only bad thing I found that I should say in my review is that Ruby made sure anyone reading this would hate the antagonist. I mean, they're humans too, so shouldn't they at least have something someone would like? (view spoiler)[And the fact that she hated Tola for a very simple and idiotic reason just added to her evilness. (hide spoiler)] Not that it really matters, because I'd never root for the villain. But it didn't give the book a real-life feel.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
This was a really fun and exciting read. I didn't think I'd like this book as much as I did.
This series' theme, being about zombies, the undead and otThis was a really fun and exciting read. I didn't think I'd like this book as much as I did.
This series' theme, being about zombies, the undead and other supernatural things, is not the first I've read. Honestly, there are a lot of books with the same story. But this was great and well thought of, from the beginning's mysteries to the end's twists.
I absolutely loved the characters here too. Well, of course not all, but maybe more than I thought I would like. First of all, the heroine's actually sort of fun--I like reading her thoughts and knowing what she feels; her personality and character made me like her too. (view spoiler)[There were times she was quick-tempered, like most female lead out there, but for some reason, those outbursts didn't annoy me like the others did. For her own good or for others', she also held her tongue and tried to understand that person. Her braveness (and recklessness) was quite amazing too. (hide spoiler)] Of course, I can't leave out the male lead. Physical appearances aside, I like how he turned out--his past, his attitude, and everything else that may or may not affect the story. A few other people in the book were also likeable, ranging from a bit likeable to really good characters. This part of the book was really given a lot of thought, considering their build-up and all, and I think it's worth the time Dennard took to make them whole and rounded characters.
The romance really made me giddy and smile like a fool. It's very nice and cute, though I think it's a bit rushed. Well, no, maybe not. It was not insta-love, but a little quick, maybe? But whatever, I ended up liking it anyway. (view spoiler)[It is not, however, very satisfying, especially towards the ending. I was so frustrated at what happened in the hospital that I wanted to rip my hair out. I almost sputtered out a cry when I read Eleanor and Daniel's last conversation. (hide spoiler)]
So I'm definitely looking forward to the next book. It's fun to read a book where you're not annoyed most (or all) of the time.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Somehow, I found that I'm pretty disappointed in book. But I don't think it's the book, or is it the way of writing; it's just me.
In the beginning, ISomehow, I found that I'm pretty disappointed in book. But I don't think it's the book, or is it the way of writing; it's just me.
In the beginning, I had fun reading. I was so into it that if was hard to actually stop reading. Two-thirds into the book and the excitement dwindled. I think that's mainly because of my expectations in regards to the storyline. Not that there were parts that made me think, Now that's just not possible! Or something. The happenings were likely to happen, I know. I just couldn't accept them. And I just felt annoyed by the turn of events.
So, blame me for rooting for something different from what the author planned....more
This is surprisingly a pretty good book, after all the rants and negative reactions I had when reading the first few chapters.
OK, honestly, the narratThis is surprisingly a pretty good book, after all the rants and negative reactions I had when reading the first few chapters.
OK, honestly, the narrative isn't exactly my type. Like, everything is just written there too plainly. Leaves nothing for the reader to figure out him/herself. The mysteriousness of the characters and their secrets are sort of screaming mysterious that could may be implied more subtly. I think. Even so, they were OK, stuck to their personalities in the beginning and had made pretty reasonable and realistic changes.
One of the things I liked is the world setting. I'm not even sure why I like it. Maybe because it feels real. Whatever, I don't know. I just liked it. And the story is pretty good too. It's kind of dark, actually, now that I think about it. But it's not bad, except for one thing I can't accept until now.
(view spoiler)[The super insta-love between Dai and Mei Yee honestly feels so...ridiculous and absurd. I mean, Dai, you're going to hang the success of your operation (and thus, your freedom) on one girl you met less than five times through a freaking window? Well WOW. Super insta-love, right? And unbelievable building of relationship and trust too. Frankly I liked Jin better, even though I did feel that I wanted her to trust Dai, but she couldn't bring herself to up and do just that without proving that Dai can be trusted. I felt sad that she left Dai's apartment when they were finally getting along, but I can completely understand why she did that (and even praise her for her clear thinking instead of blind trust and feelings; because seriously, how can you trust someone so easily in a world like that?). But what happened between Dai and Mei Yee is just...insane. It felt as if the author simply couldn't find any other way to get the story moving in the right direction. And it seemed to me that since Jin isn't Dai's love interest, it's OK to make her not trust him and whatever, but not Mei Yee, because that's just wrong and unfair. Right? Not really. Which is probably why I liked Jin's character more than Mei Yee. Well, I can't say that I actually like Mei Yee. So there you have it. (hide spoiler)]
I'm not sure if I can actually recommend it whole-heartedly, but like I said, it's not awful or terrible. Reading the first few chapters might need some patience and time getting used to, though.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
One warning to my dear friends: Don't read the summary on Goodreads. I read it before writing this review, and it pretty much tells half of the story.One warning to my dear friends: Don't read the summary on Goodreads. I read it before writing this review, and it pretty much tells half of the story.
So, onto my review.
Honestly, I thought this book would be spelling depressing all over the pages, since this is about that and something even darker than simple depression. Yes, it's not all sunshine, and it is still rather dark, but it's not the dark kind that I myself feel like I want to shut myself from the world and be lonely and depressed all alone. Somehow, such a delicate topic was written in such a beautiful way, like I can see where the lead are coming from, including their thoughts and actions; how they turned out to be the kind of people they are; and what effect and to what extent other people had over them. In other, shorter words: wonderfully written.
I also kind of like how things flowed out. The actual time frame in the book may seem short, but I think even that had an effect on why things turned out this way and that way. And the two leads' relationship? The only thing I can say about it is that it was heart-wrenchingly sweet. OK, honestly speaking, I'm not sure if I was just swept up in the story or the writing style or because I like the two leads or because I'm a sucker for ultimate sufferings. But, it could be because it simply was delivered in a very awesome way, too. So, for me, another plus for a beautifully played-out romance, among other things.
This book is surprisingly...satisfying, despite its dark topic. And I really am amazed at how Warga created and portrayed her characters, especially the narrator. I'm looking forward to her other books, and hopefully they're as good as this....more