STOLEN SONGBIRD is rather like an amalgamation of Hobbit The Movie and Alice in Wonderland, telliOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
STOLEN SONGBIRD is rather like an amalgamation of Hobbit The Movie and Alice in Wonderland, telling of young Cécile's unwitting abduction to Trollus, homeland of the trolls, beneath the Lonely Forbidden Mountain, a magical tale full of intrigue, deceit and whimsical, off-with-her-head monarchs. As her debut book and start to a new fantasy series, STOLEN SONGBIRD's pretty amazing!
A (not so brief) Rundown
Under the fallen rocks of the Forbidden Mountain is rumored to be home to a whole city of a mystical species - the trolls. To enter Trollus, one must navigate the labyrinth of tunnels and evade the sluag, a slug-like creature that nullifies troll magic and strikes fear even in the hearts of the mighty trolls. It is said that Trollus contains piles of gold and riches (ahem Erebor), but many who ventured in never returned.
Cécile de Troyes is a farm maiden of Goshawk Hollow but with the voice of an angel. During a trip home from the city one day, she came upon an old friend but was kidnapped and brought to Trollus to marry the troll prince, Tristan de Montigny. Apparently, the trolls were cursed centuries ago by a human witch to never be able to step foot out of the mountain and a prophecy was told that a marriage between the troll prince and human girl with hair like fire, blue eyes and an "angel's voice" will break the curse.
But it didn't.
Cécile has always dreamed of the romantic wedded life her friends have gossiped wistfully about, but Tristan is far from a loving husband. He is one of the most handsome dudes she has ever laid eyes upon but he is also crude, rude, mostly cold and always confrontational. He picks fights with her at every opportuninty and sleeps on the couch. But in the darkness of the gardens where Cécile goes to sing to calm her riotous emotions, Tristan lets down his guard enough for her to see another side of him - the kind, gentle and loving side.
As Cécile comes to know, Trollus is not just about the amazing architecture and beautiful glass gardens (no sunlight). Humans and half bloods with little or no magic are seen as little more than slaves and any small misstep gives their owners the right to sentence them to be left in the tunnels to be sluag fodder or anything the owner sees fit. A rebellion is brewing and the factions are not clearly delineated. Tristan may seem like an insolent brat six out of seven days, but Cécile knows there is defeinitely more to him than he's showing. What does he do in the early hours of morning, sneaking out of their room and palace? Where does he factor in in the rebellion? And what has any of it to do with her?
Kudos to the author for her effort to reimagine trolls - from 3m, club-swinging, wart-covered monstrosities (I'm thinking of the one in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone) to an intelligent, magic-wielding race. Some look human (just 10000000 times more beautiful), but some are disfigured and some not even remotely human-looking. However apart from that, the concept is really just taking the characteristics of Shakespeare's faries and naming them trolls. Jensen's trolls can't lie which makes them experts at the art of manipulating words, their promises are binding, their thank-you's are favors to be repaid, they have True Names which enables full control over the troll whose name is known, and one of the side characters, Anäis (yes, their names have lots of squiggly-wiggly or dots on top of their alphabets) mentioned that the name for their people isn't trolls, it's "Fai--" then she stopped herself. Well now, it's not that difficult to complete her statement now.
So I didn't really buy the "fresh" new idea of trolls.
But the plot is full of political intrigues, deceptions, and dangers for our protagonist that I was pretty invested in her story. It may be subjective though because like the Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, STOLEN SONGBIRD is about Cécile finding out about trolls, their issues (the social discrimination and off-with-your-head variety) and her transformation from scared maiden to strong woman who found love and her determination to help in the rebellion. There is a sort of non-ending at the end, a sort of closure but we're not even close to the true ending. Just like how Bilbo and the dwarves were dropped off some god-forsaken cliff in the middle of nowhere and the Lonely Mountain was a speck in the horizon and the show ends. Yeah, something like that.
Not to say that it wasn't a good read (Goodreads, haha), Jensen had a very descriptive, simple yet witty style of writing. I loved the typical, easy countryside way of life at Goshawk's Hollow (Gordric's Hollow?!?!), the terror Cécile felt when she was in the sluag tunnels, the awe she felt at Trollus and her heartbreak when she thought that she was doomed to have a loveless marriage. There were quite a few secrets revealed along the way and plot curves dished out, and the alternating POV, which most of the time serves only to unveil secrets early and lessen suspense, worked pretty well here.
The characters!!! Apart from Tristan and Cécile, I thought that the secondary cast of characters were pretty fleshed out. We get to see glimpses of who each of them were really like and all of them had their own distinct personalities - there is mysterious but fiercely loyal Marc with a face split in half, each half having handsome features but freaky when seen as a whole; the Queen and her sister Duchesse who are joined together at the back so one of them has to walk backwards; the twins Vincent and Victoria who're constantly competing to see who should be Baron/Baroness of their house though their competitions are mostly jokes (like archery but with only one foot on the ground and with blindfolds on).
I don't want to spoiler anything more, but I'd definitely recommend this to fans of YA Fantasy. It's got the complicated political drama, the whole-new-world feel and magical boomz of a good fantasy, it's just that I felt that the plot and emotional development were dragged out too much that sometimes it felt like we were going in circles and the ending didn't give enough of a closure for me.
That said, though, there was a tiny part near the end that hinted at a parallel world that lives alongside Trollus and the outside world. This series is heading in a very promising direction with lots of action, suspense and romance, so yes, I will be picking up book 2 to see where Jensen takes Cécile and the rest of the crew.
~eARC courtesy of Netgalley and Strange Chemistry~ Thank you! :)...more
*4.5 stars* LOVED, loved, luuurved Leila. Loved Vlad. Loved the simple yet oddly satisfying, addictive and fast paced plot! Admittedly,Quickie Review
*4.5 stars* LOVED, loved, luuurved Leila. Loved Vlad. Loved the simple yet oddly satisfying, addictive and fast paced plot! Admittedly, there was more focus on the development in the romance department between the commanding, enigmatic Vlad and Leila in TWICE TEMPTED, but that didn't take away from the overall story or pace.
I'm not sure how to describe Leila, other than that she's loyal to the people she loves to a fault, she's stubborn, but oddly vulnerable to her feelings for Vlad and her family. She's such a beautifully flawed yet amazing woman, y'know wha' I mean? After acclimatizing to the harsher, more brutal (and oddly medieval) world of vampires, she's starting to stand on her own again, and she's gotten more badass! I liked that she faces her problems, that she tries to help Vlad any way she can while also thinking for her family, she doesn't make the same mistake of doubting Vlad again when people whisper poison in her ears, and have I mentioned she's definitely become more badass?
A determined new love interest, a vengeful ex-lover, and a stubbornly sexy man unwilling to open his heart. What is an electricity-wielding woman to do when life keeps throwing excretion in her fan? (Ok I tried to be less crude about it, but wasn't very successful I can tell. And sorry I butcher the English language. Whoops.)
Anyway, I couldn't ask for a better sequel, and I am dying to get my hands on book three. (Which still doesn't have any information released yet other than it's the last in the series. *sobs hysterically*) If you enjoyed ONCE BURNED, you'll definitely like TWICE TEMPTED. Maybe even more so! RECOMMENDED. :)
P.S. (view spoiler)[I have some questions about the book as I was reading ONCE BURNED and TWICE TEMPTED... Like when Vlad and Leila were hunting for the mastermind behind Leila's kidnap in OB, why couldn't Vlad just see Szilagyi's face in Leila's mind after she did her essence-tracing thing? Couldn't she just think of Szilagyi so Vlad can pick it out of her mind? And in TT, why Vlad couldn't read Leila's mind after she turned into a vampire? Vlad could read Maximus' mind before, so being a vampire shouldn't have given her extra neuro-protection... I'll email Jeaniene to see what she says. ;) (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
*4.5 stars* I didn't expect to like this so much right after devouring Unchained by J. Lynn (another UF) just a week ago, but I loved ONQuickie Review
*4.5 stars* I didn't expect to like this so much right after devouring Unchained by J. Lynn (another UF) just a week ago, but I loved ONCE BURNED!
The plot was simple yet superbly enjoyable, and there were the action, the gore, the romance, so ONCE BURNED is far from a mindless good read, it's an amazing read. I loved the entire cast of characters - Leila, Vlad (though he does take high-handed to a whole new level), Maximus, Marty, everyone. Each character had their own distinct voice and (very endearing) personality.
Frost's version of vampires (and Vlad, the Dracula of old, the source of inspiration Bram Stoker drew from) was the classic, fly-superhuman-speed-and-strength, kind. If my memory doesn't fail me and Dracula could fly. Well, at least they don't sparkle in daylight (thank you, Jeaniene!). But in addition to the original vamp model, Vlad had an affinity for fire, able to summon and wield it. Others have other powers they inherit from their sires but it will only manifest after some time. The only thing that didn't really sit well with me was Leila's abilities to sense a person's essence - to see said person's defining moment in life, be it their darkest sin or life-changing tragedy, trace the essence to the person's present location and glimpse his/her possible future - and being a walking electricity generator after touching (and almost dying) a downed power line during a storm. I mean, come on, this might be an urban fantasy, but still. And the lack of world-building.
However, even with the minimal world building, ONCE BURNED had all the thrills and fuzzies that reminded me why I fell in love with this genre a long time ago, and it kept me glued to it's pages so much so that I didn't bother to update my reading status on Goodreads and grab the second installment, TWICE TEMPTED, right off my shelf once I was done with it. I don't know why I haven't ventured into Frost's Night Huntress world earlier, but I'd definitely check out Cat and Bones' story. I'd say ONCE BURNED is a pretty classic UF read, but there's just this something I can't put my finger on that makes it so addictive; Strongly recommend this to any UF/PNR readers and vampire lovers out there!...more
*3.5 stars* A fast, enjoyable read with a little mystery, romance, and the typical band of powerful, deadly, badass brothers trying to keep a world on*3.5 stars* A fast, enjoyable read with a little mystery, romance, and the typical band of powerful, deadly, badass brothers trying to keep a world on the brink of war on all sides with the witches, demons, and shifters.
*4.5 stars* Valek didn't have any spotlight moments in the front three-quarters of Fire Study, regrettably. But the action was good, plot was thick, a*4.5 stars* Valek didn't have any spotlight moments in the front three-quarters of Fire Study, regrettably. But the action was good, plot was thick, and the ending was super sweet!! Totally made up for the lack of romance at the start. :D
This was oddly addictive! I finished MS in less than half a day, and it just completely sucked me into the intriguing world of spies, magic, mystery,This was oddly addictive! I finished MS in less than half a day, and it just completely sucked me into the intriguing world of spies, magic, mystery, comradeship, and of course, more sweet moments between Valek and Yelena. You can never get enough of those two. ;)
Liked it a lot more than its predecessor, Poison Study; Guess it has something to do with all the world-building Snyder had to do in book 1.
FIRE BAPTIZED was an unexpectedly captivating novel! I haven't been enjoying the books that are provided forOriginally 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....more
White Witch is a good mix of YA Romance with lots of action and high school drama. The only regrettable thinOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
White Witch is a good mix of YA Romance with lots of action and high school drama. The only regrettable thing was...That cliffhanger!!!
Jax Pherson is a witch from the Miami Coven. Witch covens around the world gained power a long time ago by absorbing the powers from the earth at specific locations, but this in turn filled them with darkness. Jax feels that darkness inside her, her power spiking whenever her temper flares. These covens want absolute control, so whenever a witch tries to leave the coven, they will hunt her/him down and drain them of their powers and subsequently, their lives. Painfully.
Jax watched her mother's powers and life get Siphoned away by her father when she was but a youngin', and she has had a terrible fear of escaping ever since. But as she reaches her seventeenth birthday, she will be expected to kill for her coven. And that's when she plucked up her courage and sneaked away.
All she wants is to have a normal teenage life - go to school, make some friends, go for prom, and such. She's tried enrolling in a few schools, but has never gotten a successful application because apparently, a parent or guardian was required to be present. So when she comes to her next destination, North Carolina, she tweaks her plans and manages to enrol in Baker Gap High School. And there, she meets a new friend and her cousin, Toni and sexy Keller, and also a new enemy in the form of cheerleader Stacy and said cheerleader's mindless cronies.
Keller and Toni's families happened to be witch hunters, and all is fair and well for Jax for a time, normal high school drama and romance, until her secrets start to become harder to hide, and her family will hunt her down to the ends of the earth to silence her and take back the absolute control that they demand...
WHITE WITCH had the epic final battle that BREAKING DAWN didn't have, and the sane romance that Twilight didn't have, but still retaining that little unrealistic instant connection between the heroine and male protagonist. Some cases, like the one in FIRELIGHT by Sophie Jordan, that insta-love relationship was one of the best and most believable insta-loves I have ever read. I could feel the sizzle of attraction between them, the tension when they were alone in some dark place, and the sacrifices that they are willing to make for each other. But I couldn't for WHITE WITCH. Pity, really, cause other than that, I thought that this WW was a pretty entertaining YA Urban Fantasy!
Witches, both female and male, are all beautiful and either really kind-hearted or nasty as hell. Jax falls under the GORGEOUS blonde with a humble heart category. Er, ok. I'm not that big into gorgeous, blonde babe heroines who catches the attention of the entire school - stares and drools from the males, and envy and jealousy from the females. I mean, really? And just so that it is not generic enough, she makes an enemy of the mean head cheerleader and her mindless cronies on her first day of school. But that's not all there is to Jax - thankfully - she's also a mean machine when it comes to using her powers! She's badass and way powerful. More so than anyone could've ever anticipated - even her! Something happened when she fought the people who were after her, who are her power-hungry father and coven, that made them afraid of her. Something big. Something "bright" and magnificent. Ok, bright was a pun. Read it and you'll know it. :) But yes, Jax was not the fragile pretty-face that I thought her to be when I first read about her.
The reason why I said that the romance here was a little unbelievable was because firstly, Jax shouldn't have approached Keller in the first place since she already knew he was a witch hunter. (Abnormal and illogical behavior on her part!) Secondly, she hung out with him. (No sense of self-preservation on her part!) Thirdly, she saw him, "omg big hottie", and suddenly there's a current of electricity flowing between the two of them. Like suddenly. Ok so she went against all forms of normal behavior, hung out with Keller, and she deigned to start going out with him when he wields a gun EVERY NIGHT hunting paranormals like her. And on top of that, she spilled the beans about her identity to Keller after this particular incident. I mean, you don't tell a witch hunter you're a witch just because he's your friend and he suspects you're a witch. If he knows already, shouldn't the first instinct of a person who has been living life on the run to, well, run? Far away from danger zone? But well, Jax didn't and just dumped the cat out of the bag and looked at Keller with goo-goo eyes, hoping he will look at her the same way, heart breaking into a million pieces when he didn't. Well, what did she expect, his uncle died because of witches and his mom left because of that too. Ok, I'm exaggerating, but someone's got to stand for logic.
Keller was cool. Handsome, good with a gun, tough guy, protective and all. The whole package. The reason why I didn't swoon all over him is because I've seen his type plenty nowadays in YA novels. The genre is practically saturated with this type of guys, including adult fictions PNRs, UFs, Fantasy, Historicals, and all, so for me to swoon over another male protagonist, he's gotta have something extra on top of all the others. But Keller was cool. That I'll give credit.
As for the side characters, Toni is the best friend Jax has always dreamed of having, and she also happens to be, so coincidentally, Keller's close cousin. Toni's a cool chick, one who stands up for her friends, plays the drums for her rock band, and wears shirts with funny quotes. As for Jax's evil, heartless bastard of a father, he was rather....fake. That typical You-Have-Failed-Me-By-Running-Away-Thus-You-Are-No-Longer-My-Daughter-And-I-Will-Kill-You-And-Your-New-Friends-Now-Slow-And-Painfully evil villain. It got a little corny at times, but oh well, he is the evil villain, so I'll just get on with things.
Let me tell you that I LOVED that ending battle! It was epic, fast-paced, and...that suspense! They were all in some seriously deep shit, one of them was dying, and I just couldn't see a way out of their predicament. But Milburn did it. She opened a door for Jax and others and everything went out with a BOOM! Epic.
And then we have.. THAT CLIFFHANGER ENDING!!!! Noooooooo! Milburn can't end the book like that...this is just....torture!! And it's not a good cliffhanger ending. Dammit.
WHITE WITCH had action, had romance, had friendship, had suspense, and had the high school drama that most YAs seem to have. It was very generic and stereotypical, but amusing all the same. It made for a quick, light and fun read. Until you reach the three-quarters mark. That's where the thrill comes into play. It was so much more than what I expected actually, and I really liked it!
*eARC courtesy of Bell Bridge Books via Netgalley*
P.S. I was planning on writing a short review, but look how it turned out! Well, please excuse my verbosity. Seems like I had more to say about WW then I thought I had.
Here's a little teaser from Netgalley that convinced me to pick it up:
The guy makes his way down the side of the road, near my hiding spot. My frantic heartbeat increases. He retrieves something from his truck. When he turns back toward the woods, he’s holding a gun in one hand. But when he opens his other hand, it’s the small, dark object lying in his palm, the one with the slight red glow, that really concerns me.I hold my breath, not moving a muscle, and hope that’s not what I think it is. But deep down, I know it’s a bloodstone. If he were supernatural, he wouldn’t be able to hold it. My heart rate skids to a halt. Supernatural beings don’t tote bloodstones around. Humans do. Humans who hunt my kind.He’s not some goon my family hired. He’s a hunter, the real deal. I lean my forehead, warm from the burst of magic I used, against the cool bark of the tree hiding me from my hunter. Why, oh why, did I use my power to zip into these woods? Why couldn’t I have simply run in here like a normal person instead of using inhuman speed that leaves a trail?Because what were the odds the person driving by was a hunter? The crunch of gravel makes me look up. With a final questioning glance in my direction, he slides the gun, no doubt loaded with spirit-killing rock salt, into the truck’s cab then climbs in. Only when he starts the engine and drives away do I let out the breath I’ve been holding for fear he’d hear the slight sound of air escaping my lungs.The ground catches me as I slide down to sit at the base of the tree. In the darkness surrounding me, I spot the night animals scurrying across the forest floor. The occasional pair of raccoon or opossum eyes turns my direction before hurrying away. They sense my power, the darkness from which it was born, and don’t want to be anywhere near me.I lean my head back against the tree’s rough bark, stare at the sky filled to bursting with stars, and let the tears trickle down my cheeks, down my neck to soak into the normal T-shirt of a not-so-normal girl. --Netgalley
*2.5 stars* An Urban Fantasy-Paranormal Romance Erotica that includes explicit m/m scenes, it has the actionOriginally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
*2.5 stars* An Urban Fantasy-Paranormal Romance Erotica that includes explicit m/m scenes, it has the action that I loved both on the battlefield and between the sheets, if you get what I mean.
I wouldn't lie and say I loved CHAINS OF SILVER, in fact, the reading process was rather laborious. But I wasn't lying about the action. I loved how the characters always had to fight for their lives and even navigate emotional minefields since the couples haven't been living long together and are still getting to really know each other.
Silver is an orphan, adopted into the family of a preacher, his wife, two sons and one daughter. She never was fully accepted into the family, and living in their home always felt temporary. Only Jude, her oldest foster brother ever made her feel welcomed. Enter Jude's best bud, Nick. Nick works as part-time vamp slayer and part-time waitor at the local Club Blood. (Not a very creative name, but let's not dwell on the inconsequential.)
Nick has always viewed Silver as a younger sister, sensing in her the girl that was his biological deceased one, but Silver's always had a crush on Nick, and it has been blossoming throughout the years, just like how she blossomed into the beautiful woman with silver hair she now is. And when a gorgeous, determined young woman set her sights on something, how can that something have the strength to reject her? When being with her's so natural, has been for years?
But now that Silver's come of age, she's been granted the right to open the envelope at the adopting agency that contains the only message from her biological family, and in that envelope is a way to contact her brother who was indeed alive. And mated to a female and another male. And that guy happens to be Trevor from Book 1. Now Trev's got the duty of breaking the news that Silver's actually a Were and she'll have her first change after she loses her virginity. Also, Nick's found a nest of vamps to clear, and this time, his "little" extermination escapade could very well kill him and Silver if they aren't too careful...
I thought that the plot was a little dull and boring, to be honest. Nothing ever seemed to be happening and when it does get interesting, it tends to get solved conveniently. Though after the three quarters mark it did get a hell lot more interesting, the last battle was also a little anti-climatic. It consisted more of dialogues, getting to know each other, and sex. Yes, Silver was incessantly thinking about doing the deed, even when Nick and her were going into a closed down amusement park which was most probably the location of the group of vamps they were hunting. Talk about being horny..
However, I did like Bacio's writing style; The humor and unique phrasings were almost enough to cover the dull plot. Example:
"One drink, and she already acted tipsy. The head between his legs definitely wanted to take advantage of her. But the more elevated one on his shoulders knew that playing with Silver was dangerous business."
Head between his legs? LOL.
This book is written in a selective third person point of view where it changes from mainly Silver (heroine), to Lily (protagonist of Book 1, New Orleans Threesome), to Nick (hero), to Trev and Law (heroes of Book 1), then back to Silver. It's good in a way that the shifting perspectives only got confusing a few times, justifiable considering the multiple characters that had to be included, and we got to know what all of them were thinking. Bad in a way that the second-guessing and suspense factors were hence sorely lacking.
One thing I really couldn't tolerate at the beginning was Nick's insensitivity to Silver's feelings, but he slowly became more understanding and gentle towards her, so all's comin' along just fine by me. Silver's a little childish and gay initially, but you could see her mature as she went through some real tough adversities. She was an independent girl who knew how to keep her wits about her when the shit hits the fan, and I really liked that about her. Just the part I mentioned above where she kept wanting to get laid by Nick ticked me off a little, other than that, she's totally cool.
And another thing is how the focus of the book is a little scattered. Yes, I do want to know the goings-on with the Threesome (meaning Lily, Trevor and Lawrence), but shouldn't the focal point be fixated on Silver and Nick? This should be more of their story, but a big portion of the time it reverted back to Lily, Trev and Law's POV and them having sex. I'm fine with sex scenes, it's just I really can't appreciate m/m Eroticas, y'know what I mean?
A teeeensy weensy flaw I spotted. There was one part where Silver saw a ghost in her room in the Threesome's house (and I have no idea why Bacio wrote this scene because she didn't mention anything about the apparition nor the scene anymore in the book), she was asleep in bed with Nick and she jerked up and shrieked. Here's how the scene played out:
"Someone else had joined them, and someone else watched them. Fearful of what she might see, Silver opened her eyes slowly. A small girl, about five years old, stood in a the corner of the room watching her, and Nick.
Silver startled. How the hell did that child get in here, and in the building itself? Lily had mentioned something about ghosts, but Silver thought it was just to keep her from moving in. The lights of a passing car shone in the window, passing through the little girl, and illuminating her transparency.
With a shriek, Silver sat upright, without disrupting Nick’s sleep."
Right, cause if you shriek in the middle of the night and the person sleeping beside you doesn't wake up, that's totally normal, right?
It wasn't that I didn't enjoy CHAINS OF SILVER, it was probably more of I had higher expectations and CoS didn't quite meet them. But otherwise, I thought that it was a pretty cool read, though a little lukewarm, but still fun and enjoyable.["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"]>...more
*2.5 stars* Let's get one thing straight - I didn't like this book. It's not that I relish in writing a badOriginally posted on A Bookalicious Story.
*2.5 stars* Let's get one thing straight - I didn't like this book. It's not that I relish in writing a bad review, but I have to keep to my code of honesty, so here goes.
Liliana "Lily" Anima has been moved from foster home to group home to foster home, and back again. She hope to find her parents one day, and dreams of the happy reunion over and over again. Even though her numerous foster parents discard her because of weird happenings that seem to revolve around Lily and the diners are all happy to see her go because of too many broken glasses, Lily has always harbored a tiny little flame of hope.
Trevor was getting his furry ass kicked by a group of newly-Turned vamps when one Lawrence Justice happened by and, philanthropist that he is, saved Trev's life. Lawrence is a 180 year old vampire who has seen much and experienced tons of heartache, but when Trev enters his life, they both feel a bond between them, a pull and lust develops.
As Lily nears her thirtieth birthday, her strange powers are making themselves more patent that she can no longer attribute all the strange occurences to coincidence. She needs to find out who she is, and how to control her powers, and who better to help her than 2 hunky Others who co-own a bookstore? But what if the truth that she finds out isn't all happiness and daisies? What if, on this journey to find her true self, she finds out that her mother is held captive by one of the most feared demon? Will she risk her two mates (yeah, the twosome became a threesome, as the title suggests) to save a mother that abandoned her at birth?
I'll name the two things that kept me reading this book: 1) This book's sequel is for a blog tour. 2) I liked Bacio's humor, some quotes that stuck, and the occasional bursts of French from Lawrence the 180 year-old vamp.
Humor example: "Something looked different about Law. It was difficult to discern, and Trev tilted his head, evaluating the vampire. He appeared harder, edgier, darker. Coming back from the verge of death could probably do that to a person, especially one who was already mostly dead."
Quote that stood out: "All she knew was that her body hurt, her throat felt raw and she desperately wanted to be back above-ground, feeling the sun’s warm rays upon her cold skin and basking in the attention of her two paranormal boys."
I liked the way Bacio phrased things; It seemed a little poetic, a little romantic, but in a modern way. And about the random bursts of French from our dear Lawrence the oldie vampire, I don't know why authors like to have them have this attribute that is to have a French background. The first few times where they go,"Mon amour" or "Ma cherie", I'll swoon and oooh-ahhh a little, but more than that it'll pass off as a cliche and it becomes, well, an unintended comedy.
Now, let's move on to the things that I didn't like about ANOT.
At the beginning, there was too much and too fast. Lily visited Trev and Law in their bookshop, and oh, they are so handsome and she feel a deep gut-level pull toward them that made warmth pool in her abdomen. Yeah, cause you get high everytime you see a handsome guy, is that it?
There were SO MANY flashbacks in between the CONVERSATION between Lily, Trev and Law when they FIRST met each other. Ok, I'll explain why I capitalized those three words. "First met each other", means that nothing much has happened yet, and I am still not convinced that this book is going to be a good one. "Conversation", means that they are talking, and still no action, which equates to boring. "So many flashbacks", not only was there no action and was boring, Bacio made the book's pace even slower by adding Lily, Trev AND Law do flashbacks by the dozens.
Apart from the exponential development of their relationship and slow pace, Bacio took it upon herself to repeat things that she has already mentioned.
On to the middle and ending portion of the book. Through this, I have learnt that all voodoo witches and fortune tellers and psychics have only 2 welcome greetings: "I have been expecting you..." and "Bout time you three showed up!" First time, oh cool, she's so good at what she does! Next few times, yeah yeah, I know. If you've watched Disney's adaptation of Hercules, you would be familiar with this scene:
If you haven't watched it, then nevermind. Oh wait, scratch that. If you haven't watched it, go watch it. So, I KNOW IT ALREADY! Move on!
Anyway, back to the story. So, give me something new, something cool and mysterious but it has to be original to stand out. The plot and pace was very steady throughout, which is slow, and which means no climax. No suspense. This was one of the most deterring aspect of this book that made me seriously consider not finishing it. And when it reached the part that seemed most like the supposed climax, Lily just scraped through fast and easy, no fight, no major obstacles, no nothing!
Usually one thing that strikes me the most are the alpha heroes or protagonist that exudes this definite aura that screams "male". I'll go hubba-hubba and all, but Trev and Law wasn't that typical males that I like. Law was a vamp who strived to help others and who preached about history and reminisced about his past love after he had sex with Lily and Trev. Wow really? So don't fault me for not believing Lily when she says,"Not only had she finally lost her virginity to two men who were sexier than hell and attentive lovers...". And Lily was all understanding and compassion that he lost his previous lover. Ok, that's totally normal. And I like my book boys bad; They're way cooler and mysterious that way.
And Trev. He was the one who had more potential, and he turned out to be the Sub in bed! Sub's a BDSM term, by the way. He was the Dom one with Lily, but Sub with Law. So no, he didn't make the cut for me.
There were a few minor loopholes here and there. Like after she up and left for New Orleans to find Trev and Law, she still had her "fuzzy pink slippers" to wear. So it's either the slippers magically teleported from her house to Trev&Law's or she brought it along with her in her luggage, which is stupid. Another one is that Lily trekked through New Orleans in a nightgown that hung in tatters, barefoot and dirty. I get that New Orleans is a city where anything is possible, but think about it. A pretty girl in little clothing in the cold, dark streets, what do you think will happen to her? NOTHING! No hypothermia, no rapist/kidnappers, no one who gawked and said,"Lady, you look like hell", and no one who was kind enough to help. She didn't cause an uproar, or spark any episode.
Lily's a nice, kind girl who became sarcastic in the face of danger. Weird, don't you think? She's normally so understanding and gentle, then when she was kidnapped, trapped, and bound in a cave, she started going all sarcastic in her own head. Hm..
Ultimately, this book didn't do it for me. The pace was slow, the characters were mediocre (tho I did kinda like Lily. She's pretty, cool, and powerful) and this one turned out to be an m/m Erotica too, so that was the big no-no for me. I prefer the usual m/f, or m/f/m, but strictly no m/m....more
I've been putting off reading AWAKE AT DAWN for quite some time cause I didn't have an urge to start on it.Originally posted at A Bookalicious Story.
I've been putting off reading AWAKE AT DAWN for quite some time cause I didn't have an urge to start on it. That said, I thought it was not bad, higher than average with lots of good fun. Fun in the romance sense, friends-together fun sense, and lots of plot surprises sense.
My Brief Summary Kylie Galen is back at Shadow Falls, with her best friends, Miranda (witch) and Della (vampire), and boyfriend-in-all-but-name, Derek (faery). She's back to where she belongs, but the one big question and mission of her life is still the one constant burden in her heart - what is she? She's still finding for answers, but the ghost that continuously comes to her at dawn dressed in a gown dripping blood who keeps repeating, "You have to stop it, Kylie. You have to. Or this will happen to someone you love." and nothing more isn't helping, and she's been developing some new powers of late that appears to points to her being a vampire, then a wolf, then a faery. And on top of her shit pile, Derek is starting to pull away from her. And then on top of the top of her shit pile, Lucas is back and her feelings are once again in a mess.
Great. And when Kylie was starting to deal with her problems, there's the other issue of a wolf and vampire stalking her, and two random normals were found dead minutes after meeting Kylie. End of Summary
AWAKE AT DAWN has a very rich content, and many plot surprises. That's one of the things that's best about it. Not taking into account the delicious moments Kylie and Derek had together, but you get what I mean.
Derek took centre stage for this book. I didn't believe it when I read in other reviews how other readers were bought over to Team Derek in AaD, and I strongly believed that I will never sway from Team Lucas. But boy, was I wrong. Derek really won me over too! He was awesome! Cool, suave, hot, understanding. But it was after that when he started pulling away that made me like him a little less. I understand why he wanted distance - which is because of Lucas' return and because Kylie kept feeling guilty about thinking of Lucas and since Derek is a faery and can read emotions, he'd know when she does think of Lucas - but shouldn't he fight harder for her? Why surrender when the war's just started?
Lucas acted more of the infatuated friend when he was back cause Kylie will only accept him as a friend. But boy, was Lucas' reason to leave Shadow Falls cool! And very unexpected. I've been wondering what would constitute as an excusable reason for Lucas to elope with Fredricka (ok fine, elope is too strong a word, but he did run away with Fredricka), and wow, I forgave Lucas the moment he spilled the beans. Good one, C.C.! My love for Lucas has not diminished one bit.:P
Anyway, I thought that the rogue vampire in here was COOL! Everything's so unexpected and twisted that I can't even guess what's going to happen next! But, the reason why I took one star away was because it was a little monotonous for the most part of the front of the book. The hype did rise a few times, but they were more like tiny spikes of anxious moments. There was a climax at the end - a good one at that, mind you - but it was so short! Good, thrilling, suspenseful, action-packed, good Lucas-Kylie moments (oops, did I just spoil that for you?:/) climax, but too short! I want moreeeee!:( Haha. Especially that Lucas-Kylie part.
I wonder how many times I mentioned the word "cool" in this review... So you see, this book is a great sequel to a fantastic start. Even though I read this book in three or four sittings, it didn't disappoint, and I am eagerly awaiting TAKEN AT DUSK, book 3 in the Shadow Falls series....more
I would put this at 4.5 stars if i could..but i didnt think it was perfect so i rounded it down. But oh this book is a really good one. Tho the clima I would put this at 4.5 stars if i could..but i didnt think it was perfect so i rounded it down. But oh this book is a really good one. Tho the climax didnt hit the all time high, for some reasons, i am hooked to this book quite badly. Haha, and im usually one for action than romance. This one is a real mix between Kelley Armstrong's Darkest Powers trilogy and Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series, what with her being able to see and commune with ghosts and the fact that there was a summer camp for supernaturals, in short for people who were special and had powers. Ring a bell?
(view spoiler)[Kylie's life sure is one hellhole, but she manages it all quite well actually. I mean, there were emotional breakdowns and lots of bawling sessions, but in the end, she pulled on her big girl's pant and dealt with everything, and even saved the camp[ok big spoiler]. Anyway, her mom thought that Kylie was more than she could handle cause of Kylie's budding rebellious attitude and with the divorce between her and Kylie's dad, so she sent Kylie to the camp that her counsellor recommended(now this reminds me of James from Robert Muchamore's CHERUBS series..-.-). Kyie arrives and lo and behold, meets her best buds and potential lover, and also mysterious childhood neighbor(slash)terror(slash)saviour. I know, very hypocritical, but dont worry, Hunter made it make perfect sense:). Ok, after which she is in some serious denial that she is also a supernatural. The camp leader, Holiday, told her about her seeing ghosts is a gift, but they're stilling trying to figure out what kind of supernatural she is(for example, half-were, half-vamp, half-fae, hald-witch or half-shapeshifter, all this are the main supernatural groups present in the book), so this becomes her quest, to find out which group she belongs to. Percy Jackson much? Then things happen and the camp is in danger of closing down and Kylie somehow manages to save it with the help of some of her new friends. (hide spoiler)]
Kylie is not really what i would say as my ideal heroine, with her breaking down quite often tho her actions are justifiable, but she is cool and courageous. Her powers can only add on to her many qualities. At first, i thought that being able to see ghosts didnt make her very powerful and that it was creepy, but after awhile, i think i do like her powers after all. At least it convinced me more how good the power could be than Kelley Armstrong did..Bottomline: yeah, i liked Kylie.
The boys...Trey(nehh), Derek(the hot half-fae), Lucas(the childhood neighbor(slash)terror(slash)saviour who is equally, if not more, sizzling than the half-fae). Well, Trey was a downright loser. Ok why do all YA authors make the human boy the most undesirable one..lol anyway. Derek was the steady, cool, calm and collected lover while Lucas was the one who made Kylie all nervous and fluttery. Reminds me of the Strange Angels series by Lili St. Crow.-.- Personally i prefer Lucas cause Kylie had a secret past with him, and it being shrouded in mystery just makes it all the more romantic. haha
It wasnt very climax-y if you get what i mean, and it definitely is kinda cliche, but personally i find it nice and well, relaxing. Sometimes i dread reading the climaxes of books cause i know im gonna have some serious hormonal changes and adrenaline spikes which would result in me being tired and a few wrinkles to appear, which is seriously mortifying. I've been reading more adult fiction nowadays, and reading this book reminds me how awesome YA fiction books can be. Makes me feel more youthful also,haha.(I am still a teen actually:/)
Anyway, i am really looking forward to the release of this sequel called Awake at Dawn which will be released on Oct 11 this year!! Woo! Cheers:) cant wait cant wait.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more