THE BONE SEASON was AMAZING!! Samantha Shannon has crafted a wonderfully intricate and complex world of clairvoyants (oracles, augurs, s...moreQuickie Review
THE BONE SEASON was AMAZING!! Samantha Shannon has crafted a wonderfully intricate and complex world of clairvoyants (oracles, augurs, soothsayers, etc), the amaurotics (normal people without voyant abilities like you and me) and Scion London, a London that is ruled under the iron hand of the government and brutal law enforcers, and a London that hates, discriminates and arrests voyants.
There was so much tension and suspense, action, plot curves, and an unexpected but sweet romance. The textured and layered worlds that Shannon built was incredibly real, each character had a distinct personality and depth, especially Paige and Warden. They've lived rough lives and as the story progressed, you'll learn bits and pieces of them that you'll feel like you really know them when the book has ended. Paige isn't just like any other strong, gutsy heroine out there. She has her own unique voice and struggles.
Paige is a dreamwalker, one of the rarest abilities and also the highest order of clairvoyancy. Clairvoyants can't survive in Scion London, not unless you count living like a fugitive hiding from the SVDs and NVDs (said brutal enforcers) all day and the low-paying jobs acceptable. The only place with better employment prospects is to work for Scion, but if you work as a clairvoyant in thei employ, you might as well sign away your life cause now they'd own you. But if you sign on as an amaurotic, you'll run the risk of getting bagged and hanged. So Paige works for a mime-lord of the Underground. She's one of the top dogs and she's found a family of sorts there, and she's happy, until the day she accidentally killed an Underguard (just another Scion guard) in self-defense and she was hunted down.
She thought her life was over, but then she was sent to another place, a place not on the London map and a place ruled by creatures called Rephaim. Amaurotics and voyants that are captured are sent there. Each of them will belong to a Rephaite that will train them to fight the Emim, terrible creatures that feed on human and Rephaim flesh. Thing is, humans are second class there; They're beaten and given tests, if they fail, they'll be forced to live like slaves. Paige doesn't want to live like that. She wants to go home, to her makeshift little family. But no one's ever managed to escape the Rephaim.
I've grown so attached to the world that Shannon had built, and to the characters!! GAH, there's still no news about book 2, but at least in the "Note from the Author" page there's this part where they said "The Bone Season is the first in a projected series of seven novels". :)) THE BONE SEASON is officially my favorite read in 2013 and I can't recommend it more to all fans of Dystopia and maybe even Fantasy.
P.S. This is a quickie review cause I really don't want to spoil anything from TBS! Coming from a fan of spoilers, that's saying something. It's THAT good!
P.P.S. For those of you who've read TBS, AHHH THERE WAS THIS PART around 85%, the scene under the stage!! I swooned and sighed so many times!! And and and my other favorite scene was Paige running away during her first assignment and Warden and Nick were there. Wow. *End of Gushing*
P.P.P.S. Thanks Kara-Karina for recommending this to me!!(less)
It's just some bird flying by, that's all. That's all. But I'm already panting with panic. I force myself to look up. All I see is endless dark sky. But then, I do see something. Another, larger feather floats down lazily toward my head. Sweat prickes my brow. I break out into an all-out sprint.
ANGELFALL is nothing less than YA Dystopian at its best. It has everything this genre has to offer, and it gives back ten-fold. The action, the tension, uncertainties, the start of a budding rebellion, and the unlikely romance between mortal enemies when circumstances thrust them onto an adventure that'll blow all yer little asses off yer seats!
*Many spoilers ahead!*
A Summary The apocalypse came, harolded by beautifully terrifying angels of destruction. Buildings collapsed or decayed, connection lines are a thing of the past, the streets are ruled by gangs that loot and kill in the day and by nightmare creatures in the night, and your home is not your haven anymore.
Penryn, her little, crippled sister, Paige, and their slightly unstable mother have been delaying migrating to a safer place for quite some time, but they have to get out now. When they set off at sunset, they're risking a lot by being out that late, and as they made their way hastily down El Camino, through Silicon Valley to Page Mill, things were still looking hopeful. They were doing fine, until a white feather, soft as down, floated down from the sky. That's when they knew that they were going to get screwed ten times over.
An epic - albeit gruesome - angelic battle was going on, and though the angel who had wings of such magnificent white was heavily outnumbered 4 to 1, the others are still wary of him. When Snowy Wings (as Penryn calls him in her little funny inner commentary) looked like he was about finished, Penryn and her family were spotted and Penryn did something to distract the other angels, unwittinly helping Snowy Wings turn the tides and angering one of the other angels enough to kidnap Paige as he flew away.
Penryn managed to get Snowy Wings - which turned out to be Raffe (Rah-fie) - to tell her that Paige was most probably taken to the angel's aerie. Raffe's wings had been brutally amputated in the battle previously, needs Penryn's help to travel on the ground, and Penryn needs Raffe's help getting to the aerie and getting into the aerie. So for now, they're on an uneasy truce, and set off for an amazing and heartpounding adventure.
My Thoughts I had to put off writing this review because of my Term exams, but a week later and everything is still fresh in my mind! All that emotion and mindblowing awesomeness. If you'd known me before, you'd know that I was a huge hater of Dystopian novels because the first Dystopian I read (coughReaperscoughArecoughThecoughcoughcough) was SO BAD. But just recently, Julie Kagawa made me a believer, and now Susan Ee has made me a FAN. They're really amazing writers.
There's so much development and depth in ANGELFALL. All the characters, Penryn and Raffe especially, had their own personality, their own history, and their own distinct way of thinking. A few pages of Raffe talking and you know he's just not like us. He's proud and strong even when he's down on the ground or lying face down on a couch with his hands and feet tied and taped together. However as the book progresses, you see how he gains a little humanity while retaining his mysterious, very-sexy immortal persona. (view spoiler)[AND OMG, Raffe is...*hyperventilates* Raffe is...His true identity is OMG-ly cool. (hide spoiler)] Penryn is a girl who had to toughen up due to very shitty circumstances, but when things got too much, she let her body handle it the way it knows, puked in some bushes and gathered up her Big Girl Panties. She's smart and resourceful in a very funny, sarcastic way that I liked her immediately.
Along the way, we meet characters like Obi and Boden. Obi's the rebellion leader while Boden's the rebellion thug. They're cool. Obi's the typical inspiring, good-looking military leader who has to make unpopular choices for the good of the rebellion, and Boden's the typical thug with the snarl and always picking a fight with the new kid on the block - in this case, Penryn. (view spoiler)[I liked that scene where Penryn was expecting help from Raffe when Boden picked a fight with her and Raffe not only didn't rush to her aid, he started betting with the other guys on who'd win! Haha, oh how Penryn pounded Boden to the ground in her anger! (hide spoiler)]
I loved seeing how the arc unfold and how all the characters changed.
THIS is so true for Angelfall. Ee's descriptions are so vivid it's literally a movie in my head!
Ironically, since the attacks, the sunsets have been glorious. Outside our condo window, the sky flames like a bruised mango in vivid orange, reds, and purples. The clouds catch on fire with sunset colors, and I'm almost scared those of us below will catch on fire too.
~Para 1 of Chapter 1
When you see a starting like that, you know that you can expect some badass writing.
I loved the final battle. I loved how the humans made their stand, how they showed a united front in the face of such adversities unlike how most fiction novels protray humans as weak and expendable and ugly. Ugh. The ending was so, so, terribly bittersweet. What happened to Paige and all the other kidnapped kids was...disusting, inhumane and... Ee is one author who doesn't mind killing off some of her characters and roughing up most of the others. That's all I have to say about this. And poor Raffe! However, I did like how the story started and ended with Penryn, her sister and mother being together on the road, only with all the wounds and scars - both mental and physical - at the end.
Anyhoo, this review is getting long and all I have to say now is, if you're a fan of YA Dytopian novels, or not a fan at all, just as long as you can stand a little Dystopian, you'll 99.99999999% fall IN LOVE with ANGELFALL.
P.S. THERE IS NO DATE OF RELEASE FOR BOOK 2. OMG I CAN GO KILL ME AN ANGEL NOW.
P.P.S. Y'know that part where Penryn was at the rebellion camp and was talking to this woman called Dolores about training domestic dogs into a tracking/police/army one?
"This is the reason the guards are dog-free. It's hard to patrol when your K9 partner keeps running off to chase after rodents and barks all night long."
P.P.P.S. Thank you Donna (@ The Happy Booker) for introducing this book to me!["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
*4.5 stars* One of the best fairytale retellings I've read thus far! Finished it in one sitting even though I'm sick and supposed to be sleeping like...more*4.5 stars* One of the best fairytale retellings I've read thus far! Finished it in one sitting even though I'm sick and supposed to be sleeping like the dead! I'm so epically glad that SCARLET (book 2) is out already. Hehehe, but people who've read it are all practically dying with the wait for book 3, which will only be out in 2014.. Dilemmaaaaa. To read or not to read?
CRAZY-AMAZING. I haven't read a YA book this good in such a long time! Definitely a favourite, and one that I will be revisiting very soon. Pity the n...moreCRAZY-AMAZING. I haven't read a YA book this good in such a long time! Definitely a favourite, and one that I will be revisiting very soon. Pity the next book will only be out next year October..
A tortured, kickass heroine backed up by an amazing hero with a mysterious past and a gripping plot. SANCTUM talked about a friendship forged in iron that will last through time (quite literally) and a romance frought with trials; A bittersweet ending with just a little nugget of a cliffhanger!
It is either the pace of this book was dull, or I'm just generally not that into Dystopian novels... God knows, I've not rated any of the Dystopian no...moreIt is either the pace of this book was dull, or I'm just generally not that into Dystopian novels... God knows, I've not rated any of the Dystopian novels I've read higher than a 3. Not one that I can remember, that is.
It's been 13 days since I started this book, and for me to have taken this long to get to the three-quarters mark...
Shall not rate this book since there is potential, but it's going to be a DNF for now.
FIRE BAPTIZED was an unexpectedly captivating novel! I haven't been enjoying the books that are provided for...moreOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
FIRE BAPTIZED was an unexpectedly captivating novel! I haven't been enjoying the books that are provided for the blog tours that I've signed up for for the past few months, so I wasn't expecting much from FB initially and was even a little prejudiced toward it at the start, somehow convincing myself at page 2 that I will not like the book. But imagine my shock when, as I continued flipping its pages, the flippin' got faster and faster, and I just had to finish it in one sitting (I did it in two, actually, because I still need my beauty sleeps at night:P).
Lanore Simone Vesta is a Mixie, a mixbreed with both Fairy and Demon blood within her, who can create and manipulate fire with any part of her body. She lives with a childhood friend and past lover, MeShack. He happens to also be a Were-leopard. A really protective, possessive, and ultra hot one.
Lanore is part of the Mixbreeds For Equality (MFE), a revolutionary group that aims to fight for the rights of Mixies who are looked down upon by both the Humans and Supernaturals (Supes) which is headed by Zulu, Lanore's current lover and an alpha-male Mixie who has the connections and wealth.
The Supernaturals and Mixbreeds live in the Habitat, where there is a boundary that they cannot cross. It's not a bad world, with proper schools, universities, clubs and such, but when Lanore stumbles upon a live murder scene one day, she becomes a target of a serial killer with a fetish for draping the crime scene with the victim's decorated body parts. But what if the serial killer isn't just dismembering random passers-by? What if, there was a pattern and a purpose to all these killings?
Not only must Lanore solve these issues and handle MFE matters, she must also deal with the emotional confusion that is Zulu and MeShack, two very hot-headed and sexy half-Shifters...
I was honestly hooked to FB while I was reading it, and felt so sorry when the epilogue came up. I even chanced reading it in class! There was that steamy hot love triangle that I was seriously not expecting, and a complicated murder case that was mind-blowing. The suspense was intense, and the plot scared me a little for awhile, and I LOVED it.
Lanore's a very cool heroine. She's just the right amount of kickass and feminine; She sticks up for herself, fights her own battles, but when things got real bad and horrific, she did lose it for awhile, and had to be taken care of by the boys, but that all just made her seem all the more real and....well, cool! MeShack and Zulu too. I thought that their names were so odd when I first read about them, but it didn't matter anymore as I got to know them. They. Were. HOT. Haha, and so protective, possessive, romantic, cheeky, hot-tempered, testosterone-y, and sexy.
I liked Kenya's writing style too - the plot flowed smoothly and the scenes were illustrated vividly. The murder scenes were portrayed in all their gory detail which did gross me out quite badly, and it truly seemed like a horror story at one point. But that just goes to show how truly well FB was planned and written. Lanore was becoming obsessed with finding the murderer as it was becoming clear that she was going to be one of the next victims, and I was as confused as she was while she was still trying to solve the case. But when the big revelation came, you would go, "Why didn't I make the connection?!" It was so shocking, and I couldn't, for the life of me, have guessed who the bigass mastermind was! That part was fantastically well done.
I'd recommend FIRE BAPTIZED to fans of Paranormal Romance and Mystery/Thrillers. I'm so glad I took this tour up, and I'm anxiously awaiting for book 2, THE BURNING BUSH.(less)
*2.5 stars* I thought that THE GUARDIAN'S WILDCHILD was a very philosophical and mature Dystopian novel - fu...moreOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
*2.5 stars* I thought that THE GUARDIAN'S WILDCHILD was a very philosophical and mature Dystopian novel - full of moral righteousness and teachings. I'm not a big fan of Dystopian stories, but when the synopsis told of a love story amidst military disputes and harsh conditions, being the romance-junky that I was, I decided to give it a try.
The world is slowly falling into ruin, but only Hawk's Island remains to be inhabited by long-extinct flora and fauna, and this is where the Guardians reside. It was said that everyone on the planet was once a Guardian, but that evil, greed, and ambition has infiltrated the hearts of many that they lose their connection to their spirit guide and conscience. Hope is not all lost though, many outside of Hawk's Island have not lost their powers completely, and are merely Sleeping. The Guardian's sole mission is to awaken said Sleeping Guardians, and teach them of the higher purpose.
Sidney and Danik Davenport, orphaned siblings who came into the care of the Guardians on Hawk's Island, where only the hearts who seek the higher good are permitted entrance. As they grew older and learned the ways of the Guardian, using the mind to unlock doors and for telekinesis and telepathy, they left the sanctuary of their home and began to hold singing performances around the world to spread the Guardian's word. However, not everyone supports this type of talk of freedom and such, especially not the military commanders who control the population.
And even within the military ranks, high ranking generals and an outside connection have been secretly researching on a source of power so great, that even the Guardians back at Hawk's Island have been given a vision that was a result of them unleashing that power. A vision of a barren world.
Sidney and Danik was told of a plan to stop this, but Sidney was captured by one Captain Samaru Waterhouse, who is a husk of a man after his wife died and his children taken from him. But as they got to know each other, Sam's icy heart begins to thaw, and together, can they stop the destruction of the world?
The beginning of the book was rather dull, and I have to say, info-dumping is seriously overrated. Why can't you just tell it in the narrative way like how a novel is supposed to be written? I was excited initially to get started on TGW, but my enthusiasm was sadly doused quickly. The pace was slow, but it did pick up after the middle, and then there was that climax at the end! There was a battle that our protagonists barely scraped through, one didn't though, but that is for a later paragraph to elaborate on. It was quite epic, and was what saved the rating. Kind of.
Sidney was too.....mature/philosophical. Not that it was a bad thing, but you don't go around telling your friends, "Trust in your heart and the higher good." Y'know? It's just not natural. But she was brave, and very courageous, that I'll give credit. She's also really innocent too. For some reason, I thought that her saying "dust bunnies" was real cute. As for Sam, he's a family guy, and for the better part of the book, he was set on betraying Sidney to get his boys out of his enemy's grip. I didn't like that about him, not that his actions were unjustified, I just couldn't stand a man who would sacrifice a defenseless woman. But he still protected Sidney in the end, so he redeemed himself in my eyes. :P Haha, and yes, since he is a man in uniform, he is also hot and handsome.
TGW is written in shifting POVs - starting mostly with Sidney's, then as the story progressed, it was more of Sam's head we're privy to. Another thing that I'm not a big fan of, and that's selective third person or shifting first persons. I've said this in quite a lot of my reviews that this sucks out a lot of the suspense and mystery for the novel, revealing quite so much of the other parties, and I like it when I can relate with that one heroine/hero (mostly heroines cause well, I am a girl) instead of a multitude of other people's thoughts. I like to guess what the other party's true intentions are, what they are thinking, and stuff like that that keeps me wondering. I mean, what if the the other party is one of the bad guy? Then wouldn't divulging that at the start kill the surprise?
Other than the points above, I liked the ending battle. It was a long and hard-fought one, and one that was quite amazing and fantastic. The tables turned so suddenly, and it all progressed so fast that the pages were turning of their own accord, I swear!
And now we come to the aforementioned one-of-the-characters-died part which is probably the one that I liked the least - the part that...
[If you're not one for spoilers, please skip the next paragraph of this review]
(view spoiler)[THE FREAKING HEROINE DIED! Of all the bloody things in the world to write about, she died. Seriously. What kind of a book lets the main character die? This is...I endured how many pages of info-dumping and dull, slow-paced plot processes for a short, sweet bit of romance and...this. This is seriously some headbanging moment. A total FML moment. (hide spoiler)]
I don't really read that many Dystopian novels, so I wouldn't know who to recommend this book to, but compared to the few others that I've read, I thought that THE GUARDIAN'S WILDCHILD was not bad; The writing flowed smoothly, the plot developed nicely, and the world-building was well done too. A bittersweet Dystopian novel with a little hint of romance and kinship.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
“Frantically, I wiggled out from beneath the shelf and limped to the steps, gazing up. Through the hole in the roof, the night sky was hazy and starle...more“Frantically, I wiggled out from beneath the shelf and limped to the steps, gazing up. Through the hole in the roof, the night sky was hazy and starless, but a sickly yellow moon peered through the clouds like a swollen eye.
I was in trouble.
... I had to get back to the city. I couldn’t stay here. I’d heard stories of rabids tearing through walls and floors to get to their prey; they never gave up once they sensed you.”
Julie Kagawa made me a believer of faeries, and now a fan of dystopian stories. I've only read one dystopian novel as far as I can remember (The Reapers Are the Angels), and I disliked it so much I shied away from that genre entirely, even my love for a good romance notwithstanding. And come on, faeries? A long time ago I would've just scoffed at the idea, but Kagawa managed to create such a magical world with an amazing, memorable cast of characters but with an undercurrent of darkness and mystery, I just fell right into it. The world in The Immortal Rules is just plain dark, let me get this straight. And terrifying. No enchanting places or eccentric cats. But it's a place where, with this cast of characters in it, I just can't get enough of.
I neglected my homework and finished TIR in one sitting, and it was totally worth it. Another favorite among the favorites! Full review to come.(less)