Gypsy by Trisha Leigh was my first experience with author Trisha Leigh’s work, but I am certain that it won’t be my laPosted to The Bevy Bibliotheque:
Gypsy by Trisha Leigh was my first experience with author Trisha Leigh’s work, but I am certain that it won’t be my last.
In Gypsy by Trisha Leigh, we meet a girl named… well, Gypsy. And her politically incorrect name (fitting for the book’s plot; those who named her aren’t exactly concerned with the PC factor) isn’t the only interesting thing about her.
With powers of a minor magnitude, Gypsy grew up on a secluded Southern plantation with other teens like her– the Cavies (another name that almost didn’t work for me until I learned the contextual meaning). One day, the Cavies are torn from the only life that they’d ever known at a secluded farm called Darley.
Despite the fact that I dug that Darley gave me a vaguely “Xavier’s Institute of Higher Learning” (of X-Men fame) vibe, I was thrilled when our time there was short. The world simply felt too limited while there. Trisha Leigh established the character’s roots there very well, but when the Cavies are restored to the “real” world, well… that was when things got interesting.
Because despite the fact that they’re expected to live like “normal” teenagers, the fact is that the Cavies are not normal. And now that they’ve left Darley, the world knows about them… and some know more than they should. I loved the Cavies coming together to try to work out what’s happening to them– to understand their past and who is targeting them now. The danger and mystery is interesting and engaging, but I admit that my focus lies primarily with character and relationship arcs for this book.
Gypsy is thrilled to be getting the chance to be normal after being united with her father and told that she’ll be attending high school. I liked the fact that Gypsy’s interactions with her new acquaintances and friends feel genuine, but they don’t keep her from missing the other Cavies. She maintains the bond with them while simultaneously finding her own footing, and discovering confidence and leadership that she never would have had at Darley.
Leigh also plays with some love tropes (at least I think she does, though I expect I won’t really know for certain until later books). One thing reminds me the teeeeeeniest bit of The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater but shhhh, I can’t tell you what. Spoilers, after all. There are times when things sort of have a vague love triangle feel, but never overtly. It’s more of a love blob. You have to squint at it.
The blob doesn’t detract though. The blob is fine, all hail the blob.
Going hand-in-hand with Gypsy’s attempts at normal life, one of my favorite things about Gypsy by Trisha Leigh was the blooming relationship between Gypsy– who learns her birth name is Norah– and her rediscovered father. He seems like a genuine dude and I loved the two of them trying to navigate what “normal” father-daughter rules are together.
But I had to respect Gypsy when, in the end, she decides it’s more important to make her own rules.
Basically, Fleetwood Mac would agree… You should “see your Gypsy.”
DNF-ing at 31%. The plot's too messy and the MC/writing fall flat for me. The introduction was fun/interesting, but now that the catalyst has enteredDNF-ing at 31%. The plot's too messy and the MC/writing fall flat for me. The introduction was fun/interesting, but now that the catalyst has entered to drive action, it's falling apart....more
“Hard” sci-fi isn’t the first genre I’ll pick up. In fact, it’s often close to the last. But after reading and lovingPosted to The Bevy Bibliotheque:
“Hard” sci-fi isn’t the first genre I’ll pick up. In fact, it’s often close to the last. But after reading and loving Jamie Grey’s debut novel, Ultraviolet Catastrophe, I knew I’d be on board for whatever she had in store for her readers in her first New Adult book: The Star Thief.
The main character of The Star Thief, Renna, has an edge, which I kind of love. She’s used to relying on herself and with good reason. The girl has skills as a mercenary. Skills that include fighting and thieving, maiming and killing, and seduction. I love that she doesn’t make any apologies for who she is.
And that includes her sexuality. I adored the fact that Jamie Grey doesn’t use the fact that Renna likes sex to teach some false-sounding lesson. Seeking out sex without love doesn’t have to mean some sort of psychological issues are at play. Renna enjoys sex, and there’s nothing wrong with that. It was damn refreshing.
The ~romance in The Star Thief makes great strides. Especially since, at the beginning, Finn is pretty friggin’ unlikeable. I wouldn’t say I quite fell for him by the end of the book but I did grow to like him and like where his character (and his relationship with Renna) are going.
The Star Thief is ACTION-PACKED. From the very first chapter, we’re off with a bang and race along. The Star Thief is the sort of sci-fi that puts me in the mind of sci-fi like Star Trek. It takes place in different worlds, among spaceships and technology we could only dream of. Plus, the aliens look like aliens, with purple skin, multiple eyes, ridged foreheads… you get the picture.
All of these elements add up to a winning combination. I can’t wait to read book 2!
Hmmm… what can I say about Unforgotten by Jessica Brody?
Unforgotten is one of the hardest types of books to review. It was enjoyable. It wasn’t bad. But it also wasn’t particularly remarkable. Let me think about what did strike me about this sequel to Unremembered.
The time travel stuff in Unforgotten was actually really interesting. I’d actually forgotten (haha) that this was a plot element of Unremembered and finding that utilized much more in Unforgotten was a pleasant surprise as we zipped from past to future.
I also definitely liked Seraphina more this go around as she comes more into the humanity that she’s chosen for herself. She’s less… robotic in the way she expresses herself. This go-around, Sera’s got more of a backbone, and has even learned to use sarcasm!
The romance between Zen and Sera still doesn’t do much for me, but I was fairly intrigued with the introduction of the new character Kaelen, and something of a twist on the tired old love triangle. It was a little different, which I appreciated.
I’m going to admit this: I was planning on quitting this series after Unforgotten. It’s not that I disliked either Unremembered OR Unforgotten, more that there wasn’t much about them that struck me. But Brody hooked me enough with her ending in Unforgotten that I’m curious to see what the grand finale takes her readers.
Basically, why I think Unforgotten (and Unremembered) didn’t hook me: Despite the fact that Unforgotten is fun and Brody’s easy writing flow, it fails to stand out from the masses of YA fiction. Plus, something about it makes me think that it would be better for actual teen readers. Somehow, it’s just missing that crossover appeal.
I so enjoyed my reading of Ultraviolet Catastrophe by Jamie Grey.
Jamie Grey has a writing style that flows easily. UltraviolPosted to Almost Grown-up:
I so enjoyed my reading of Ultraviolet Catastrophe by Jamie Grey.
Jamie Grey has a writing style that flows easily. Ultraviolet Catastrophe is a quick read with a fun premise and it’s positively rife with nerdy references and humor. When the main character, Lexie, mentioned owning a TARDIS cookie jar, I about fell over. And the references don’t end there. With a cast of characters that are born to genius and excel at science, the references fit.
Especially when they come from Asher Rosen, who makes nerdy T-shirts look damn good. Guys, I crushed hard on Asher. He has a bunch of one-liners that made me giggle, he’s smart, and he’s gorgeous. He’s a little cocky and has a reputation as a being sort of a ladies’ man, but somehow it works– he doesn’t come off as a douchenozzle.
I really loved the development of his relationship with Lexie. Instant attraction is obvious, but most of the time Lexie is pretty level-headed about her crush, which I appreciated. They develop as friends first– albeit flirty friends. I also enjoyed the side characters as well, such as Max and Zella– though Zella threw me off a bit. She can’t seem to decide if she wants to be nice to Lexie or not.
And I really enjoyed the fact that an important plot element in Ultraviolet Catastrophe was Lexie’s relationship with her parents– most notably her dad. Because of the decisions her parents made in order to protect her, her relationship with her father is a distant one, and even more fragmented over the revelations of her past.
As for Lexie herself, she was a fun character– despite her genius, she’s easy to relate to and funny. At times, I felt like we rehashed her anger with her parents a little too much– and sometimes reacts in a way that made me want to roll my eyes. HOWEVER, did she feel like an authentic teenager in those instances? Most def.
The science of the book was fairly easy to follow. Some explanations made my eyes gloss over, but I suspect that’s years of disengaging in science courses at school at work, rather than Grey’s writing. Lexie’s evolution from her drugged genius to bonafide genius seemed a bit inconsistent at times, most notably in the beginning, but Ultraviolet Catastrophe recovered from that stumbling block as the plot progressed.
Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the mystery at play– someone is sabotaging Quantum’s Einstein-Rosen bridge, and it’s plotted extremely well– including the climax and resolution. I can say no more! You’ll have to read Ultraviolet Catastrophe by Jamie Grey for yourself and find out. ^_~...more
Though I never became involved in superhero fandoms (unless you count Sailor Moon), I love me a good superhero story. Love tPosted to Almost Grown-up:
Though I never became involved in superhero fandoms (unless you count Sailor Moon), I love me a good superhero story. Love them like… I watched Heroes, I reblog almost every Avengers joke I come across on Tumblr, and I’m pretty much the only person I know who likes the movie Superman Returns. (I noticed a few tributes to said superhero culture, and I suspect that bigger superhero fans than I am would notice even more.)
So when I heard about the plot of Leigh Ann Kopans’s One, I had a feeling I wouldn’t be able to resist the temptation. And I’m glad I didn’t because I really enjoyed my time in the One universe with Leigh Ann Kopans’s main character Merrin.
I’m not going to ignore my issues with it. They existed, but they weren’t glaring. I did feel like the parents’ personalities shifted from time to time, certain points were predictable, and a few plot points were a little too “easy” or glossed over. They seemed explained away. And at the beginning, the world was a little info-dumped on me.
But I forgive those things easily when things like superpowers and a main character that I can relate to are around. Merrin had a great voice and is relatable– her fears of relying on others and not living up her her potential came through great. She’s down to earth (…in as much as someone whose power is FLOATING can be) and fierce.
I liked her love interest as well. Elias is handsome and cute and… I’m not sure why, but something about the way Kopans described the glasses he wears had me all swoony. There’s instant attraction between Elias and Merrin, which felt real because it didn’t make the jump to instalove. That developed a over the course of their relationship.
Do I hope to see the issues that I had with the book resolved? Sure. I think those improvements would make Two even better. But even if the sequel has the same issues as One, I think that I’ll still enjoy it a great deal. - See more at: http://www.almostgrownup.net/2013/06/......more
Not to be too punny right off the bat here, but I adored The Adoration of Jenna Fox, which is the first book in Mary E. PeaPosted to Almost Grown-up:
Not to be too punny right off the bat here, but I adored The Adoration of Jenna Fox, which is the first book in Mary E. Pearson’s Jenna Fox Chronicles. It was lyrical and poetic and I didn’t love the sequel The Fox Inheritance quite as much because I missed all of that.
But happily, this book, Fox Forever, got me past all of that.
Now, here’s the thing: I knew to adjust my expectations with Fox Forever. I didn’t have to lower them, but after the last one, I suspected that it wouldn’t be chock full of the lyrical prose of Adoration. It’s still an excellent book: it’s full of swoony moments and some high quality action.
There’s also a kind of spy conflict here– you know the type. The “I can’t reveal my secret mission but I have the FEELINGS” kind. As I’ve expressed on this blog time and time again, I love spy novels so that element made me very happy.
Jenna isn’t the main character of this novel– really not even this series anymore, so the inclusion of her name in the titles and series is a little misleading, but Locke took over in the last book and I really enjoyed getting to know him.
Overall, Fox Forever was a fast and fun read and brought Mary E. Pearson’s Jenna Fox Chronicles to a very satisfying conclusion....more
Okay, so, Unremembered by Jessica Brody didn’t exactly change my life.
I liked it well enough. The book lent itself well to qPosted to Almost Grown-up:
Okay, so, Unremembered by Jessica Brody didn’t exactly change my life.
I liked it well enough. The book lent itself well to quick reading– I was astonished by how quickly I hit those 50 page increments. I even think that I could have read it in one sitting, but to be perfectly honest, I’ve been pressed for time, and it didn’t ‘hold’ me enough. It was… put-down-able? That sounds AWFUL, but I don’t really mean it as a bad thing. I appreciated that I could set it aside and come back to it easily. Through Jessica Brody’s fabulous writing, I would be quickly swept back into Seraphina’s story when I picked it up again.
And the story is… well, fairly predictable. There was one slight twist that I didn’t predict, but almost everything was pretty easy to call. It put me somewhat in the mind of Mary E. Pearson’s Fox Chronicles– which is to say, it’s stuff that’s sort of been done before.
I hate that this is coming off like a negative review: I liked reading Unremembered. If you need a quick read and don’t mind predictability, I think you should read it. But if you’re expecting a whole lot of uniqueness… don’t. ...more
You guys, do not even TRY to hold me down while I fangirl flail over The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken. ItPosted to Almost Grown-up:
Oh. My. Word.
You guys, do not even TRY to hold me down while I fangirl flail over The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken. It’s a little dystopia, a little sci-fi/paranormal, and I was feeling very “meh” about anything even RESEMBLING the dystopian genre, but WHOOSH, Alexandra Bracken whisked my doubts away.
Ruby lives in a world where the kids who are still alive are regarded by society with fear– they’re Psis, or people with psychic abilities, and the government hates them so much that for the past six years, Ruby’s been locked up in a “rehabilitation camp.”
There were small notes of the novel that reminded me chillingly of the Holocaust. Psis, for example, are forced to wear a Psi symbol and a color that denotes which type of Psi that they are. They’re in these awful camps, where experiments used to be performed. It’s awful. The world that Alexandra Bracken created in The Darkest Minds is desolate and depressing. But that makes me that much more sympathetic to Ruby’s plight.
When she gets out of her camp, Thurmond, I bonded with Ruby even more. Because God, she is just so, so scared of the world around her and she has every reason to be. There’s no one to protect her, and if she gets caught, it’s probably a death sentence. With the powers and the way that society regards them, the Psis reminded me a little of the mutants of X-men, but Ruby doesn’t exactly have a Professor Xavier to guide her on her way. In fact, almost no one can really be trusted. But, thankfully she runs into other Psis on the run.
And as Ruby emerges from her shell bit by bit, she and her companions (who slowly earn that trust) become some of my favorite characters in recent memory.
They call a van named Black Betty home, and they are all so different from each other, but have managed to form this pseudo-family regardless. There’s Zu or Suzume, the adorable child (who, by the way, I was terrified the whole book was going to go the route of Rue), who manages to be a fully developed character though she doesn’t speak a single word. Chubs, who is extremely cautious and wary to outsiders, to the point where he comes off antisocial and asshole-ish. He likes books and learning (and book blogging!) and takes a while to warm up to, but then becomes an incredible friend. I related to Chubs EXTREMELY well.
But Liam… he needs a paragraph all his own. Hello, Swoontown USA. With his non-condescending “darlin’s,” and a bit of a hero complex, Liam is just WONDERFUL. He’s funny and stays good and upbeat through most of the novel, which is believable because we get to see the cracks in his molding here and there. And his relationship with Ruby is just… GUH. There is so much SLOW BURN. We see initial attraction, but neither of them jump straight to “GIRL/BOY, I wanna have your babies.” There’s the build-up. From strangers to friends, from friends to more-than-friends, and from more-than-friends to…
To the ending, which left me reeling and screaming.
Look, I don’t want to spoil this book for you, so that’s going to have to be all I say about the ending. Please read this book. Please?
To sum up: Read it. Please please please read it. ...more
When I started For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund, all that I knew about it was that it was a retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Word had not yet reached me that it was science-fiction… or, more importantly, THAT IT WAS AWESOME.
But I am here to vouch for the fact that it is one awesome, sci-fi, dystopian-esque, Austenite retelling.
I found it a little confusing at first as the world and characters were set up, but I’m telling you, guys, if you’re reading For Darkness Shows the Stars or plan to read it, muscle your way past that because it is so SO worth it. Once you get it, the world clicks into place and the story becomes so textured and gorgeous.
I love the world that Diana Peterfreund constructed in For Darkness Shows the Stars and I think that that is a big part of what gives the story such an amazing feel. It’s the future, yes. And yes, it’s science fiction. But the society is constructed in a way that hearkens back to class systems of the old days with the Luddites playing the part of the nobility. Although, HOLLER for a society that isn’t totally patriarchal in this case because women can be Luddite lords just as easily as men.
And, as I said, I think that vibe of old-timey-ness, from the fashions to the fixations on titles and estates, is what gives such an authentic feel.
Also, Luddites? They believe in keeping things “as God intended.” That means basically no scientific improvements. Really, it means no progress. Diana Peterfreund carries that element of nature through with some of her gorgeous metaphors and descriptions. They’re made all the more effective by the fact that the North estate is a farm and thus even more tied to nature than some other Luddite estates might be.
So now we come to Elliot, the daughter of the Baron North. And guys? I adore Elliot. She’s got this great and passionate love in the form of one, Kai alias Malakai Wentforth, but her father and sister are terrible at running the land and taking care of the people on it. She indulges herself in her feelings– she’s only human, but she is so heartwrenchingly mature about the decisions she feels she must make for the good of others.
Further, Elliot is so conflicted because Luddite ideals are entering a stage for her when they don’t completely make sense. They have the tools for improvement, but the protocols have been put in place to keep them all safe… right? It’s heresy– it’s arrogance to think any other way.
And then… guys, then there is Kai. And he is so cold and standoffish to Elliot and it breaks my damn heart when I compare it to the letters (placed between chapters) that their younger selves exchanged. Their scenes have so much underlying tension that–
No lie, I just stopped typing to clutch at my heart. It’s that amazing.
Now. I have not yet read Persuasion. HOWEVER. Diana Peterfreund executed her version of the story so beautifully in For Darkness Shows the Stars that I’m adding it to my classics must-read list.
Overall rating: 5/5. For Darkness Shows the Stars is a positively gorgeous retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion with superb language and layered characters....more
Though I didn’t have the opportunity to read Cat Patrick’s deubt novel, Forgotten, I heard nothing but praise for it. It wasPosted to Almost Grown-up:
Though I didn’t have the opportunity to read Cat Patrick’s deubt novel, Forgotten, I heard nothing but praise for it. It was an easy decision for me to add Revived to my TBR.
Daisy Appleby is, for the most part, a completely ordinary girl. She doesn’t have superpowers. She runs a blog with her best friend and she’s a little overly fond of interior decorating. Totally normal. Except Daisy has died five times. In fact, Patrick sucks you into her novel immediately as Daisy is stung by a bee and dies for the fifth time. I sort of had “Bring Me To Life” by Evanescence echoing in my head when I read this.
Revived is rooted in a contemporary world with one small touch of science-fiction: a drug that can bring people can to life. Patrick doesn’t go overmuch into the specifics of how the drug works, which I honestly appreciated. I bought it anyway due to Daisy’s character the secret organization atmosphere. If she’d gone into technicalities, there was a chance that my head would have have deemed it boring and half started trying to find flaws in the logic.
Many teens– and heck, people in general– seem to feel like they are invincible, taking unnecessary risks. Daisy is no different from them, perhaps a little flippant at the idea of death in certain aspects. But even Revive has its limitations, and watching Daisy come to grips with that is heart-rending.
But no wonder she feels that way. The program is entirely sacreligious, with this flagrant disregard for a higher power or even that death is permanent. The head of the program is nicknamed God because he decides who lives or dies. His agents are disciples. With that kind of power-trip, it’s not shocking when Daisy discovers corruption in the system.
After her fifth death, when Daisy and her makeshift family of agents relocate to a new town, Daisy develops a friendship with a girl a few lockers down from her named Audrey. Audrey is her first real friend outside the program, and you know? Props to Cat Patrick for healthy friendships in Revived. There is not a single instance of one of them trying to tear down the other for her own good.
And then there is Audrey’s brother, Matt. Daisy thinks he’s hot right off the bat, but we don’t jump right into insta-love with this romance. It’s more of a slow burn as we go down the checklist. Cute? check. Sense of humor? Check. Likes to be with his family? Check. Gives me swoony feelings in my chest? Checkcheckcheck. Not one bit of their romance feels contrived, even when Matt and Daisy are trying to find their way back to each other.
Daisy’s family may be makeshift, but she has a stellar father figure in Mason. He raises her with a sense of trust, lets her try to be a normal teen. Despite his secret agent man dealio, I wanted to reach into the book and give him a hug.
Overall rating: 4/5. A believable novel with one major twist of science-fiction, Revived makes you wonder how you’d act if death wasn’t a permanent option....more
I really did not have very high expectations of Eve & Adam. To be honest, the few sci-fi novels that I read this year (Posted to Almost Grown-up:
I really did not have very high expectations of Eve & Adam. To be honest, the few sci-fi novels that I read this year (excepting, of course, Scarlet) left me reluctant to keep on keeping on with the genre. The plots had been poorly executed with little character development and nothing stand-out about the writing. But Eve & Adam stood apart in the best of ways.
Told from dual perspectives, each voice is clear and distinct. Perhaps this is due to the collaboration between husband and wife duo, Grant & Applegate. Regardless of the cause, however, Solo and Eve are both wonderful characters with developed personalities and complex motivations. Also, hooray for Eve having a best friend that was not annoying as hell, but funny, flawed, and a good friend! I believe crappy besties to be a plague in many YA novels
I was particularly fascinated by the compound of Spiker pharmaceuticals. The authors managed to draw it out for me so that I had a clear picture of the setting. I pictured a very sterile, techy environments. The science of the novel is probably questionable, but 1) it’s science fiction and 2) I was an English major, so unless they tried to convince me that the sky was brown or something, nothing jarred me from the world of the novel to point a finger and go “WAIT.”
I really loved the direction that they went with “Adam.” The summary makes it sound super dark and creepy, but instead it was more of an interesting contemplation of perfection and how perfection is really subjective.
Along with this… twists, guys! Twists all OVAH the place! And they didn’t feel contrived, like the authors were just throwing them out there to be like “BAM. SURPRISE.” Not that I wasn’t surprised, but they made sense.
To sum up: If you’re looking for a sci-fi novel that takes place within a world you recognize, you couldn’t ask for a quicker and more enjoyable ride than Eve & Adam....more
So. Ummmm… 172 Hours on the Moon was terrifying. In a totally good way, of course, but my God. If this had been a movie beinPosted to Almost Grown-up:
So. Ummmm… 172 Hours on the Moon was terrifying. In a totally good way, of course, but my God. If this had been a movie being played in front of me I probably would have had my knuckles turning white while I tried not to scream. Or I would have been screaming. EITHER OR.
The novel begins with plans to send another voyage to the moon and as part of a publicity stunt, the powers-that-be decide to hold a lottery across the world to allow three teenagers to join in and spend 172 hours on the moon aboard the moon base DARLAH 2. We’re introduced to Mia from Norway, Midori from Japan, and Antoine from France.
Though we don’t get any major character building, Midori was by far my favorite mostly because I got to see her being adorable in Japan and her name is Midori, just like one of my my favorite drinks. Plus I thought Mia was a little bit of a brat and Antoine was a TOTAL CREEP. I guess it kind of makes sense that if any characters hook up, it would be the two of them, even though it happens so out of nowhere that it feels contrived.
But there’s hardly time to think about that because while 172 Hours on the Moon was mildly intriguing, things started to GO DOWN around a quarter way through. And once they get to the moon? OH MY GOD GUYS, things get REAL. Every twist the book, took I was struck by the urge to flail and yell “WHAT IS HAPPENING?!”
I was comforted by what I knew from the synopsis, but then that comfort gets TORN AWAY. It ends in a way I just did not see coming and when I finished the novel I felt vaguely dumbstruck.
And still a little scared. In fact, I’m a little scared just remembering my reading of it now.
Overall rating: 4/5. A great book to scare the pants off you, if that’s the sort of no pants time you’re into. If I thought my heart could take it, I’d definitely read more translated works by Norwegian author Johan Harstad....more
Issues in bullet points: -Thrown into Zoe’s struggle/”glitching” without any set-up of her world orPosted to Almost Grown-up
Furthest point reached: 13%
Issues in bullet points: -Thrown into Zoe’s struggle/”glitching” without any set-up of her world or life -Insta-love-esque feel -Hard to suspend disbelief that she was not only glitching, but that it created superpowers in her as well -Finally, a certain scene that seemed like it was written to establish a certain character as “good” and the society as “bad,” but only succeeded in making my feminist feels RISE.
Summation: Some of these are personal preferences while others are, I believe, weaknesses in the plotting. The novel may have improved as it went on, and it may work better for others. But it didn’t enthrall me enough to continue on. Unfortunately, I had to mark it as:
Scarlet. Where do I begin, you guys? I’m just coming down from a reread of Scarlet, so how about with the tried and true FANGIRL FLAIL? It is so rare that within a week I have two reviews going up of books that I love this much, and I’m LOVING it.
I suppose the fair thing to do would be to start my review of Scarlet by talking about one of the main characters, and the book’s namesake, Scarlet Benoit. I’m loving how Marissa Meyer managed to make a second kick-ass female MC in this sequel to Cinder, and has a second mystery for us to unravel– the mystery of her grandmother’s disappearance and past. Scarlet and Cinder are both the main POVs in Scarlet and both have distinctively strong personalities. I would want to be BFFs with either one (or both), easy and it was amazing to see their stories come together.
Having talked about the kick-butt girls, I would now like to talk about the boys. GUYS. This is another “Where do I begin?” scenario because there is a cornucopia of swoony boys present in the pages of Scarlet. There’s this guy named Kai (IDK, you may remember him from the first book?), but IN ADDITION, let us add: Captain Carswell Thorne who is so quirkily funny and cocky and perfect.
But Thorne’s day in the sun has yet to come, so really the person we need to talk about here is WOLF. And may I just say? Rawr. (Ah-ooo?) He’s so quiet and mysterious, and it’s a really interesting contrast with the ferocity that he unleashes from time to time. Plus, despite the fact that the events in Scarlet take place in a very short amount of time and the book is extraordinarily fast-paced (Seriously, NEVER A DULL MOMENT), the relationship between Wolf and Scarlet manages to feel fully-developed, without the insta-love element that often drives me mad.
Other things that cannot go without a mention: Marissa’s amazing world-building, for one. I talked about this in my review of Cinder, but now that the world (so to speak– this is a sci-fi novel after all, and there is more than just one world to contend with) is expanding we learn more, and it’s never presented in an info-dumpy way. It grows more and more fascinating.
I also want to nod to the way that Marissa caught her readers up with what happened in Cinder. This was something I noticed on my reread, but it’s so perfectly mixed into the book’s opening. Again, none of the boring info-dump that is a commonality in many series from book to book. The “catch-up” is part of the action.
But one of my favorite things about Scarlet is the humor. I legitimately laughed out loud multiple times. And the dialogue! It’s so snappy and on-the-money. So perfect.
To sum up: Whether you read it once, twice, three times, or ten times, I think you’ll find something new to love about Scarlet on every read....more
I have yet to read a book by Scott Westerfeld that I did not like and Extras is not an exception to this rule. But I had stiPosted on Almost Grown-up
I have yet to read a book by Scott Westerfeld that I did not like and Extras is not an exception to this rule. But I had still been hesitant to pick it up for some time. I knew why. I had grown attached to Tally over the course of the other three Uglies book. I couldn’t imagine stepping back into the world that I so firmly thought of as hers without her!
But when I cracked open Extras, those thoughts vanished because the new world that had grown while Tally had been away was almost unrecognizable. A great deal of the vernacular was the same and the history and events of the Uglies series were certainly taken into account, but the way that things are run have changed.
Everyone is rated and ranked on their popularity on their personal “channel.” The instant you meet someone and know their name, you know their rank and by extension what their lifestyle must be like. I have to say, especially in these days of Klout and social media it doesn’t sound entirely far-fetched. Makes you wonder…
When Aya goes undercover to “kick” a story about her new friends the Sly Girls and what she’s found with them, she’s thrust into fame, her life changing instantaneously. But the cameras aren’t the only things looking for her.
With a touch more romance that the other Uglies book, I finally feel satisfied with the way the Uglies world has been left.
Some bonus factors for me:
-a Tally reappearance
-References to manga eyes (this just made my fangirl heart squee)
Overall rating: 4/5. Don’t wait as long as I did to pick up Extras....more
I'd like to take a moment to thank NetGalley for having this book because I wouldn't have known about it otherwise.Posted on Almost Grown-up: 9/22/11:
I'd like to take a moment to thank NetGalley for having this book because I wouldn't have known about it otherwise. None of my Goodreads friends have added it. Yet.
(Yes, that means I think they should)
Kayla is a Tankborn and now, upon, her fifteenth birthday she has received her Assignment. But it's not what she thought it would be. Not how she's been taught things work. In working for the elderly high-class Trueborn, Zul, Kayla is drawn into a plot that completely subverts everything she's ever known. Everything she's ever been taught. Everything she's ever believed in.
Amid science fiction galore, enduring friendships, and enough romance to make my heart pitter-patter, Kayla and company must race in an alliance fraught with old prejudices to uncover a conspiracy and save innocent lives.
This dystopian novel is well worth the read....more
The Fox Inheritance was… different than I expected.
The previous book in the series, The Adoration of Jenna Fox was a beautifPosted to Almost Grown-up:
The Fox Inheritance was… different than I expected.
The previous book in the series, The Adoration of Jenna Fox was a beautiful read, and I don’t use that word lightly. Not only was poetry used as an aid to the book, but Pearson’s prose itself was gorgeous and poetry in its own right. I suppose I suspected that same quality in reading The Fox Inheritance.
I shouldn’t have.
I don’t want that to sound negative. Because saying that I didn’t enjoy The Fox Inheritance would be an out and out lie. I just felt that the style between the two books was vastly different and it took me by surprise.
Many of the same questions that Jenna Fox brought up are still in question in the latest installment of The Fox Chronicles. What makes a person a person? In fact, there’s a Bot in The Fox Inheritance that seems more human than many other characters.
We learn guilt and loyalty are powerful motivators, especially for Jenna and Locke. I really grew to love Locke as a character. He was always trying to do the right thing by his friends.
We still see glimpses of poetry, but not as much in the prose. There’s more of a focus on how it bonded Kara, Locke, and Jenna back in the days when they were just normal teenagers.
The book leaves off on rather an open note and I’m curious to see how it may be furthered on in the next installment.
Overall rating: 3.5/5. When I threw out my expectations, I found that I really enjoyed The Fox Inheritance. Just not quite as much as The Adoration of Jenna Fox....more
I don't know what I expected when picking up The Adoration of Jenna Fox. I had heard of it, of course and the handy-daTo be posted on Almost Grown-up:
I don't know what I expected when picking up The Adoration of Jenna Fox. I had heard of it, of course and the handy-dandy sticker (complete with colorful little planets) on the side of my library copy informed me that it was Science Fiction.
So maybe I thought that it would be a fun adventure complete with a society with different rules and technology than ours.
And I was right.
But it was so much more than that.
What makes a person a person? What amount of a person must be made of homo sapien DNA to qualify? How much do our memories shape us?
These are the questions that Jenna Fox finds herself faced with. Is she unnatural? Should she still be here? How can she become her own person when she's not even sure that she is one?
Quite the opposite of a run-of-the-mill Sci-Fi novel, The Adoration of Jenna Fox explores these questions amidst beautifully lyrical prose.
Rating: 4/5. This was written in such a way that I had to stop at times to reread sentences because they were so breath-taking that I had to absorb them twice. ...more