2nd reading 3/22/2015: I remember why I loved this so much! Just as good the second time around and a really good refresher before I start Shadow Scal2nd reading 3/22/2015: I remember why I loved this so much! Just as good the second time around and a really good refresher before I start Shadow Scale!
At first glance, I must admit that this book didn’t jump out at me. A pretty cover and a unique premise just weren’t enough. Add in the lengthy list of awards that were racked up – 2013 William C. Morris YA Debut Award, Cybil Award for Teen Fantasy and Science Fiction, Kirkus Reviews Best Teen Book of the Year – just to name a few. You’d think I would be ready to tear into this one – but it still wasn’t enough to pique my interest.
Until I was in the mood for DRAGONS. I wanted a good dragon story and, boy, did I get what I wanted.
Seraphina starts out rather slow and I did feel a little like I’d been thrown into the deep-end without any proper explanation of what was what or who was who, but this is just one of those books that immerses you into its world within 50 pages and then you forget how or where it even began. The writing is absolutely stunning – rich descriptions of music and dragons – with politics, philosophy, and religion thrown into the mix to make the reader think.
Questions that I thought to myself while reading this book: What does it feel like to feel? What do I feel like when I’m sad? What about when I’m happy? Could I choose between my family and the one I love? How do people bring peace to times of war? Could (or rather, would) I be willing to put peace and my country in a place of higher priority than my own heart?
This series has the potential to be multiple books – and I would gladly read them all! And there is a sequel, Shadow Scale, but the release date is set for MARCH 2015 (insert sobbing here).
Overall, a magnificent debut that I can’t believe I didn’t read sooner. Exquisite....more
There are people in the world who have so much potential but just let everything go right down the drain. People who can’t help but make bad choices.There are people in the world who have so much potential but just let everything go right down the drain. People who can’t help but make bad choices. And though they’re witty, kind, and charming – they have issues – they have problems. But they just can’t seem to help themselves. Have you ever known anyone like this? I haven’t and I think that may be why I felt both disconnected and connected with this book and with Sutter Keely. Disconnected in that I genuinely did not understand why he was doing what he was doing. And connected in that my heart ached for him – I wanted him to make the right choices for himself. I can’t recall how many times I wanted to jump into this book and scream at Sutter – tell him how he was going down the wrong path, suggest to him how to get help – that he needed help.
Addiction and substance abuse are scary – but these things real – and there are people out there battling them every day. To watch someone self-destruct is a painful and sad thing I think mostly because there is nothing you can do about it – the person is doing it to themselves. Even when loved ones and friends try to intervene, it doesn’t always work – the person doesn’t always listen. I enjoyed this book because it shows the pain and that sadness that accompany these types of situation. The Spectacular Now reminded me that these people are real and these things are happening to them. I think the saddest thing in the book is that Sutter doesn’t even realize what he’s doing to himself.
Though this book isn’t one I’d recommend to everyone, if you like books with a more serious tone to them, pick this one up....more
2.5 Meh, not my favorite. Maybe E. Lockhart is just too chick lit-ey for me? Ruby was whiny; her and her friends were too immature and too much drama 2.5 Meh, not my favorite. Maybe E. Lockhart is just too chick lit-ey for me? Ruby was whiny; her and her friends were too immature and too much drama! Though I became less irritated with her as the book progressed. I plan to come back to this series in a little while....more
1888 Russia. Can you imagine it? Snow filled landscapes. Dazzling debutante balls. A royal family. And..a neocromancer?!
That's right, people. Katerina1888 Russia. Can you imagine it? Snow filled landscapes. Dazzling debutante balls. A royal family. And..a neocromancer?!
That's right, people. Katerina aka Katiya is a necromancer! She brings people (and any other kind of living thing) back from the dead. And she's a duchess. She's strong, she's smart - I loved her. When she involuntarily shows her "talent" in order to save a member of the royal family, trouble ensues in the form of an evil family with plans for her. What will she do?
This was exactly the kind of book I needed to get me back into the mood for paranormal reads. After reading so many, I was feeling like there was a slight lull in creativity; but not here, folks. This was a magical setting - Ms. Bridges was able to take Imperial Russia and immerse me into it. It felt like a totally other worldly place. I loved the fancy balls and the way they call each other by their proper titles (though, yes it was slightly confusing at times). And so many crazy twists and turns.
I can't wait for the second installation in this series. If you're a fan of paranormal reads, you will love this....more
Okay you guys, historical fiction is seriously not my thing; especially when the setting is in the 1700s. I’ve reviewed a few historical fictions hereOkay you guys, historical fiction is seriously not my thing; especially when the setting is in the 1700s. I’ve reviewed a few historical fictions here on the blog – Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood, Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys, and The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell – only 3! That’s not very much considering how many books we review on the blog. And the reason for that is that I don’t usually enjoy historical fiction but oh my wow, Jennifer Donnelly’s Revolution was amazing.
It does go back and forth between the two girls, and Andi, our main character, lives in present day (Brooklyn, but the book also takes place in Paris). Her younger brother has died and she’s kind of like a manic pixie girl (read: emo) but when she finds young Alexandrine’s diary, I feel like Andi is able to find an outlet for her grief – or at the very least, something that she’s interested in. Is Andi emo? Yeah, but she never crossed into the “annoying emo” girl for me. And then she’s transported into the time of the French Revolution while she is in the catacombs, which kind of ties in a supernatural element to this historical fiction.
Despite the fact that I don’t consider historical fiction a favorite sub-genre of mine, Revolution has been one of my favorite reads this year. It’s a great read and a good introduction to historical fiction if you’re looking to dabble in it....more
Another great contemporary (and great audiobook!)! I read this one when I was really in the mood for some contemporary and it hit the spot. Lucy is loAnother great contemporary (and great audiobook!)! I read this one when I was really in the mood for some contemporary and it hit the spot. Lucy is looking for a graffiti artist named Shadow and her and some of her friends (and non-friends) go on a hunt to find him. This was fun, and yet not what I would necessarily call “light-hearted”. Some of her non-friends are in a bit of trouble and Lucy isn’t aware of this at the beginning. The book is broken up into three different points of view – Lucy, Ed, and Poet – and each POV brings something different to the table. Lucy tells us of dreams of art and glassblowing and finally get out into the world now that she’s done with year 12. Ed shows us kind of a sad story – he’s dropped out of school and yet shows incredible promise. Poet has a way with words and is also absolutely hilarious and brings a gritty type of feel to the book.
Once again, another author has got me loving a book set with a 24 hour timeline. When the pacing is just right for these kinds of books, it works wonderfully. All of the scenes – from the party to the school – felt so right. What also felt so right was the best friendship between Lucy and Jazz. The way they spoke to each other was so real and just how best friends act.
A very quick read (I listened to this one in less than a day) and still meaningful. I absolutely adored this book and fans of Melina Marchetta will enjoy it as well!...more
A very good contemporary (and extremely character driven). I can totally understand why some people might think it's a bit odd. If you're a hardcore cA very good contemporary (and extremely character driven). I can totally understand why some people might think it's a bit odd. If you're a hardcore contemp reader, I highly recommend....more
Both Nick and Silla are discovering who they were always meant to be in this story of magic and mystery. Is it dark and disturbing? Ohh yeah. But I reBoth Nick and Silla are discovering who they were always meant to be in this story of magic and mystery. Is it dark and disturbing? Ohh yeah. But I really really enjoyed it.
The beginning portion of this book was interesting for me because the majority of it is the internal workings of Silla's brain. What she's thinking about and her take on events that have occurred in the past and what's going on in the present. I'm a big fan of dialogue so the lack of it in the first part of the book took some getting used to but once the book really got going, there was plenty of dialogue/interaction going on to keep me happy.
Speaking of interaction, there is some serious chemistry between Nick and Silla. Some of it was pure teenage chemistry (hello sultry make out scenes) but some of it was just..paranormal in a creepy, sexy way. Clasping bloody hands together to show how much they are connected to one another? I found this seriously dark but hot at the same time. (Am I weird?)
I was a little surprised at how well Silla took to the idea that blood and magic go hand-in-hand. I probably would have been more like her brother, Reese. And by that I mean, skeptical and thinking that Silla was crazy.
Overall, I think a really good first book for a series....more