I read this one because my friend Tara (who has her own ‘green’ themed blog GreenCycledDesigns) checked it out of the library. Having finished said boI read this one because my friend Tara (who has her own ‘green’ themed blog GreenCycledDesigns) checked it out of the library. Having finished said book ridiculously quickly, she dropped it off in my library with the enticement of at least an hours worth of laughter to be found in the pages.
She wasn’t lying! Even with no plans on the horizon to start my own family I couldn’t seem to put this book down. It’s not a masterful work of literature, it’s even better…An honest-to-goodness conversation with your funniest girlfriend. And while the laughter you’ll have over picturing Jenny McCarthy herself pissed at her husband for wanting to watch Playmates on a TV reality show in the chapter entitled “Die, Model B*tch, Die! (Hating Skinny People)” you’ll forgive her for being one of those genetically blessed people in her 9 to 5. Especially after she admits:
“…I couldn’t take it. He said I was being silly, considering I had been a Playmate once myself. Well, if I had known what the sight of a Playmate did to women during pregnancy, I would have done us all a favor and been the fattest and hairiest Playmate of all time.”
And while her dear, loving hubby still refuses to change the channel after some not-so-good-natured tantrum throwing Jenny follows up with sage advice:
“…so I resorted to the only thing I knew would work. I began crying. It worked. We switched to the Disney channel.
Another effective strategy and one that feels devilishly good is this: While your husband is getting undressed at night, look in a magazine and shout out, “Damn! That George Clooney has a fine a$$!” See how he likes it.”
Let me tell you, this is by far the tamest of her anecdotes. I won’t even begin to quote the chapter on pregnant sex which involves an analogy involving pigs, pastures, dogs, and farmers…honestly laughed for a good 5 minutes after that. Or when she goes to see a “butt doctor” when concerned about her bodily functions; Tears, I tell you, Tears from laughter.
This one is worth picking up. If a girlfriend has it, or you see it in your local library take a few minutes and give it a little look. The 3 page chapters and conversational voice will have you at hello. Take the hour (and a glass of wine if you’re not carrying your own bundle of joy) and listen to a funny girl tell her story. This book isn’t the most informational…but I’m willing to bet it’s the most honest and enjoyable.
Rating: 5/5 It was funny, scary, then hilarious again. Like chatting with your funniest girlfriend!...more
The scariest thing about this novel is how close to our reality it comes. Written in 2002 this story becomes ever more apt as the years pass. The citiThe scariest thing about this novel is how close to our reality it comes. Written in 2002 this story becomes ever more apt as the years pass. The citizens of Anderson’s world have a Feed inserted in their brain as babies creating a constant connection to society, practically from birth. Invasive as this may have sounded almost 10 years ago, we’d all have to admit that our own society is just as connected…if not in such a physical way.
In the book everything from entertainment, to social interaction, to sex is performed through the Feed. Not too different from the prevalence of YouTube, Facebook, or sexting. I’m sure there are people in our own society who would sign up in a heartbeat if someone offered to rid them of that pesky, and often lost item, ‘the cell phone’ for a more permanent direct connection. This novel hits hard the theme of corporate dominated culture. Showing how as a society we’re all trained to want the latest and best trends whether they be technological or a new hair style. The obsession with following these trends serving to limit our own free thought and creativity.
Anderson also includes an environmental aspect. The Earth of this novel is dying. Oceans have become inhospitable to life, women can no longer conceive naturally turning instead to in-vitro fertilization, and clouds can no longer form in our atmosphere. Again, the parallels of today’s world are scarily similar. While the environment is a secondary theme in this book it makes for great discussion given the Green trend that has formed in recent years.
What drives the reveal of these themes is the romance between Titus and Violet. Because of this Titus ends up dealing not only with the ramifications of his first true relationship but his own burgeoning awareness of the society he’s been trained to follow. He’ll deal with the loss of friendships and the weight that knowledge and adulthood bring. Titus does not end this story as a finished person. Instead the end only serves to bring Titus to his beginning as someone ready to fight the Feed.
Worry not, this book was published before the advent of the YA-series-explosion. It’s actually…gasp…a stand-alone novel, and a very good one at that. Again, the timelessness of this tale lies in it’s ever more accurate portrayal of our society. Take away the space-age setting and the physicality of the Feed and you’ll see a story too chillingly close to our own for comfort.
This is the sweetest Christmas Romance. It falls into a category of Romance classification called Traditional. An adult Romance read without any overtThis is the sweetest Christmas Romance. It falls into a category of Romance classification called Traditional. An adult Romance read without any overt sex. it reads just like a trashy romance…without the trashy bits. I think the best way to show my love for this book is to breakdown all the bits that worked for me.
The Clean Romance. It’s not exactly a secret that I like my romances trashy. I love the buildup to a bedroom scene…extra points if it happens somewhere other than a bedroom, the garden perhaps? the stables? It’s all lovely in my book. Which is why I had a bit of trepidation in learning that this book was Traditional…and squeaky clean.
Uh oh, I was a bit nervous to leave the tried and true path of the trashy romance…
I should have worried not. This book was wonderful. The romance between Marian and Gil built quickly. There were plenty of sweet moments, and a few slightly sensual. It’s obvious Gil is a man who knows what he’s doing even if Marian is pure as snow. Watching him fall for such a naive girl was thrilling. As a reader you know what must be going through his head, you know exactly when Marian catches his eye and exactly when he falls in love…even if Marian is a little slower on the uptake.
Marian’s age. I’ve mentioned that Marian is a bit naive. She’s also a bit immature at the start of this book. I’ll even admit there were times when I was wincing at her reactions. You see, Gil, the very hunky spy, is about 13 years her senior. I’ll give you a moment to ‘ick’ before we put this all in the perspective of Regency England where poor Marian could have potentially married someone old enough to be her father…or grandfather.
So beyond the massive [by modern standards] age gap Marian’s youth served the story well. It forced the relationship to move a little slower. And it was fun watching Marian mature under Gil’s instruction and stolen kisses. You can see the potential in Marian from the beginning…But the woman you find at the end of the story is worthy of any full-blooded Regency Romance.
Marian’s Brain. Oh, my, does her intelligence get her in trouble! The last place an intelligent woman was desired was a Regency dining table. True, we’re reading a story about a man who falls for this witty woman, it’s what we love as a reader. But Kelly bars no punches when Marian speaks out of turn.
Most of the time Marian is right.
All of the time it amuses Gil and endears her to his love.
And Marian is still struck down every time. It’s fun to watch her speak her mind, score little points with the reader and with Gil. But Kelly never lets these slips of the tongue endear her to anyother character. And rightfully so. If we’re introducing the correct age gap between marriageable couples…we’re going to keep the society rules too. I love an author who sticks to her guns and who gives me a smart character to boot.
Gil aka Lord Ingraham. He’s hunky, he’s mysterious, he’s sweet, he’s amusing, and he’s a spy. I. Love. This. Man. How he plays puppet master behind the scenes for so much of the book. It was so much fun to watch his plans come to fruition. Then, when Marion goes and saves him herself…*sigh*…so wonderful to see the two of them support each other. Because, as much as Marian obviously needs a bit of help growing into a woman…Gil needs as much help rectifying the choices he’s made as an adult. Together their romance is oh, so, sweet.
Christmas. Is there anything better than a Regency England Christmas? I don’t think so. It’s the golden age of Christmas. Full of traditions like Mistletoe, the Yule Log, Christmas Pudding wishes, and Midnight Mass in the family church. Of all my Christmas reads this year I found this one to be the most festive. I felt such a part of the celebration. I could just feel the Christmas spirit pouring off the page. It made me want to read this one with a fresh snow-fall and a hot chocolate…and my mother’s Christmas tree…It’s ever so much more traditional than my own.
This tale really is a wonderful Christmas read. If you’re hankering for a new book this holiday season that will make you smile, laugh, and even bring a tear or two to your eyes. It’s the perfect soft romance for a snowy day.
This is a book that sticks with you. It’s a sticky book. You wade through the pages full of thick and wonderful writing. You push your way through theThis is a book that sticks with you. It’s a sticky book. You wade through the pages full of thick and wonderful writing. You push your way through the varying ethical situations and character personalities. Like a train wreck, the knowledge that these people – kids really – are able to alter their view of reality so much that they’re able to commit murder drives you on.
The plot is full of darkened spaces, omens, and antiquated ways of living and thinking that as a reader I began to feel completely unmoored in time. Moving from the feeling of a Hitchcock movie and then in some Victorian scene where everyone drinks tea and speaks formally, then in the bathroom of an 80′s era coke addict…asking for a few more pills. It all swirls together at times charming the reader into thinking that perhaps Bunny had to die…perhaps they can really pull this of…perhaps I’ll be next…it’s eerie.
And as much as I want to bow down to the masterful crafting of this book. The sheer muscle of its author to drop all of these different connections and feelings into one tale. I still don’t know how much I liked this book. Before I started I read Maggie Stiefvater’s blog. She loved it. Thus my bff RachelKiwi and I threw it on the top of our own TBRs. RachelKiwi got to it first. She absolutely HATED it. I think she mentioned something about feeling as though there was a pox on humanity or something when she finished…maybe she said that it made her feel dirty just for reading it? Hmm, it’s all a little foggy now that I’m on the other end but needless to say I sallied forth reading between intermittent emails to RachelKiwi where all I said was “I don’t hate the characters yet…” Ha. How do you like that? Reading an entire novel worried that you’re going to hate everyone. Now that it’s over, and I’ve marinated on it, All I can say is that while I don’t hate them [the characters], I don’t know that I can like them either.
The plea of our narrator is the defense of not being an evil person. Henry – the ringleader – even says at some point (after the first “accidental” murder I think) That while he feels bad he has no desire to go to jail for a crime he barely remembers committing. The sick part about this particular read? You understand and even sympathize with him in this moment. You don’t want to see him go to jail either. It doesn’t seem fair to you either. Then you remember that they killed a man – someone should be punished! This is probably when RachelKiwi began to feel icky.
Really it’s not until Part 2 that the shit hits the fan. The aftermath of Bunny’s death. All the taboo, the crazy, the drug use, and the relationships are revealed. All of the secrets floating up begin to bring the reader back to the surface. They Give a little space to truly see what has happened. You’ll never see the ending coming, and while it didn’t have the payoff I’d been expecting…It haunted me as it so obviously haunted our narrator.
Rating: 5/5 For brilliant writing and Author craft. No Star Rating for enjoyment, ’cause I’m still not sure…...more
I loved that when this book started I didn’t have the full details of Ruby’s damaging social drama. I was so intrigued to meet the players in the storI loved that when this book started I didn’t have the full details of Ruby’s damaging social drama. I was so intrigued to meet the players in the story and to find out exactly what went down in that horrible week. There were times that I thought Ruby did a lot of damage to herself based simply on her passive personality. But I really wanted some of the mean girls to get what was coming to them…and that doesn’t really happen. At least not in this book.
I’m sorry, but if this whole story basically hinges on the “stealing” of one’s boyfriend then I have no idea why Ruby’s friends would side with Kim. Seriously, on page 131 all I could think of was ‘B**ch, no you didn’t!”. I wanted to leap into the pages and stand up for Ruby; maybe a little reader smack-down. Ruby is just so normal, you connect to her so easily. Her situations with guy range from a crush to her first actual boyfriend. Any girl will find sympathy and a pang of knowledge. Trust me, you’ve been there.
I think that the biggest lesson I took away from this story was what really makes a person good/or bad in our public judgement. I’m not talking someone who is doing evil things, like maiming puppies or some such practice. I’m talking about our friends, our acquaintances. Especially in high school often times we label people as being good or bad based on shallow acts. The girl who always smiles and does tons of charity work is good. The girl who thinks for herself, makes a social snafu is bad. So much of high school politics (both in high school and the world beyond) asks us to withhold what we’d like to say…we have to follow rules set down socially that allow for no amendments. It’ll make you think twice about that gossip you just heard. And it really makes you feel for Ruby, nobody is meaner than a teenage girl. Kids really are cruel.
But quirky Ruby will rise above. The book ends on a note that really feels like a beginning for this series. You’ll finish this book wondering what is in store for our newly psychologically aware heroine. With the hope that she’ll wake up and find a few new friends. It’s a good thing that this series has been out for awhile…you can pick up the rest of Ruby’s adventures without delay.
Vishous is one of the most complicated characters in Ward’s paranormal world. He is a sexual deviant favoring S&M and his mated roommate Butch. DuVishous is one of the most complicated characters in Ward’s paranormal world. He is a sexual deviant favoring S&M and his mated roommate Butch. During a Lesser fight V is wounded and wakes up to find himself in a human hospital under the care of Dr. Jane Whitcombe. At first scent V senses that Jane is his female and proceeds to kidnap her during his hospital escape.
Jane’s history includes a lack of parental love and the early death of her sister. A driven but emotionally lonely woman, Jane will find that to give both Vishous and herself the gift of love she’ll have to give up the life she’s built.
This is the rough one…the hated book. The book people quit the series for. Vishous and Jane. There were complaints of unbelievably quick romance, the change in sexual preference, the lack of Lessers, and the now limited powers of the Scribe Virgin.
Let me start with the quick romance. I’ll remind readers that in book 1 of the series Wrath and Beth were in bed the first night they met. He was all bonded by the second time they had sex. I’d call that a quickie.
Now let me tackle the unbelievable aspect…No one is reading about 7 foot, leather-covered, Vampire Warriors and the woman they love for the realism. Enough Said.
The change in sexual preference is a little rough. Ward may have taken the relationship between Butch and Vishous a little too far. It’s definitely not a friendship, and the Bi-Sexual label even seems a little thin for what they have. Even with the various rationalizations (Butch was just the first person Vishous cared for, or that Vishous’s S&M fetish means he was depraved and/or into all sex) Ward couldn’t reason the readers away from the strong ties the boys have. Vishous’s quick switch to bonding with Jane after so many books of pining for Butch does ring a little untrue even for a paranormal series. I think it’s because the love Vishous feels for Butch had developed over the course of 6 books. Where as the bonding with Jane (while technically as quick as others) happens instantly, the entire romance from kidnapping to marriage proposal happens in a 3 day span. There’s just not enough room in Ward’s already busy novel to emotionally attach to the couple.
As for the lack of Lessers, it didn’t bother me in this book. Again the entire book happened over 4 days. Not nearly enough time for another major Lesser plan to go down. Also, Ward hints at lesser interaction which kept them in the forefront of my mind so I didn’t really miss them.
Finally the limited powers of the almighty Scribe Virgin. She pulls out an acceptable ending. I think had she been able to magically fix everything perfectly it wouldn’t have matched Vishous’s trajectory. In the end she does pull out some pretty heavy magic it’s just not the classic save the reader was expecting. Which, in my eyes proves that Ward is a great series writer, constantly giving the reader a new plot rather than publishing the same story with different character names.
This was still not my favorite of the series, but much better than anticipated.
This romance happened sooo quick. Like 6 days start to finish. Granted the whole shebang starts off with a tragic death, instant attraction, babies, aThis romance happened sooo quick. Like 6 days start to finish. Granted the whole shebang starts off with a tragic death, instant attraction, babies, and a dramatic plane crash…that’s like 6 years of action tucked into less than a week of time…guess they didn’t need day seven, but hey, don’t we all need a day of rest? Though it was fast I found myself very wrapped up in the action. I liked the survival aspects of it all. It was a lot of emotion very quickly, but this served to enhance (or excuse) the insta-love. I mean if a huge Scottish warrior saves you and your 4 week old nephew from certain death in a plane crash, then from being frozen on a mountain top in Maine, I might fall a little in love too. Especially if his kisses were as good as Grace claims.
I loved Baby, he was the sweetest addition to the cast of characters. Watching all those Scottish warriors fall for him was one of my favorite parts of the novel. My only hesitation was that I couldn’t quite connect with Grace’s inability to tell Michael that he was Baby’s true father. I thought it was pretty obvious from the start that not only was Michael a good man (Grace was concerned about this) he was hurt and lonely after losing the woman he loved. Baby would have gone a long way toward easing this man’s pain from the very beginning.
This is a quick formula read. If you’re in the mood the instant attraction, fast plot, and dramatic situations this read will drag you in pretty quick. Just don’t be surprised when it’s all over faster than a Kardashian marriage…In both situations the key is to enjoy the absurdity and remember that you’re enjoying characters that never exist in real life.
Bring on the massive, time-traveling, Scottish warriors, lol.
Rating: 3/5 Leave your critic and logic behind; it’s a bit of fluff (and Scottish muscle!) to fill a wintry afternoon. ...more
It was awesome because of the romance, because of the inspiration, and because of its scope. This book isn’t in any way new. So my love of this book It was awesome because of the romance, because of the inspiration, and because of its scope. This book isn’t in any way new. So my love of this book may not surprise many out there. It’s been beloved by readers since its original publishing date in the fall of 1991. But it’s classified as inspirational, and it’s no shocker that I prefer my romances slightly less strictly moral. And I’m also not a fan of a “preachy” voice in a book…No matter the subject matter being pushed.
So, as someone who doesn’t read inspirational literature I can whole-heartedly say that I loved this book. This rendition of the story of the prophet Hosea and his wife Gomer was so accessible. Rivers set out to tell a tale of love and also of the struggle of people who try to play God themselves. And by “Playing God” I’m not talking about the people doing crazy movie-villain type things…or of Doctors making life changing calls. Instead it’s talking about that desire in all of us, especially women, to fix it all ourselves and not to give in to a higher will in our lives. One of my favorite meditations is “If you want to make God laugh tell him your plans”. When I practice yoga I follow the intention “to be”. I try to focus on being wholly present in the moment. That’s what this novel asks of its character, to give up and enjoy the gifts we’re given, whether it be the simple beauty of fresh summer flowers or the awesome gift of love.
It was so great to see this mission set forth in a pretty standard romance plot. What would a romance be without a character who thought themselves unworthy? Where would the payoff be if not for the redeeming quality of that love? That’s what pushes this story into the level of lifetime favorite for so many; the compound redeeming grace of both romantic and Godly love.
The characters are so fully developed. They’re not just archetypes of a saint and a sinner. I loved Michael. He was such a strong good man. Also, seeing his thoughts kept him from being too much of a paragon. That we were privy to his anger and frustration helped. It made the process he was putting Angel through seem less demanding. Without it he would have been a Duke of another extreme.
Angel’s history is laid out in a heartbreaking, but realistic fashion. When you think of the biblical prostitute Gomer, heck, when you think of any adult woman who chooses to sell herself it’s difficult not to look at that woman without prejudice. Not to think there must have been another way…another path. Thus, Angel’s childhood of hard knocks and forced prostitution helps contextualize her as a fallen dove who really seemed to have no other way. Only through the love of Michael and God does she begin to see another path.
A few tidbits for those who’ve already read this one. I found Paul to be sooo annoying, wish he would have been slapped with the truth a little earlier or that Miriam had shared the reason Angel left. Also, totally cried when Jonathan Axe brought Angel out of the brothel. Cheered when she took the girls with her as well. Fist pump when they walked out the front door exposing Duke’s sick desire for little girls. And finally, I know it was true to biblical story but wish Angel wouldn’t have run away so much.
“All the omens spoke of change. I woke up on Saturday morning and thought I heard them calling me; they want me to getLink to Original Review
“All the omens spoke of change. I woke up on Saturday morning and thought I heard them calling me; they want me to get up, I thought before I came fully awake and remembered they were dead.” (58)
Constance and Mary Katherine – Merricat – are sisters, two of the three remaining members of a family that was murdered en masse at the dining room table a few years before. Constance and Merricat live in the very home of the homicidal occurence. In fact they eat dinner every night at the table where their family perished. Retaining their usual seats, leaving the rest to the ghostly memory of their parents and brother.
For years the sisters lived isolated, meticulously maintaining their home as it was on the day of their family’s death. Guarded by Constance’s fear of society and Merricat’s strange talismans created of valuables from their dead loved ones. But change is afoot. Constance is more curious of the world beyond, Merricat’s talismans are failing and falling, and a long-lost cousin is to come to their doorstep with motivations all his own. Narrated by the obviously sociopathic Merricat, and full of the macabre feelings of living in a haunted home, you’ll learn what’s really terrifying in this world…and it may not be the murderer…
To read this tale you must forget all you were expecting from The Lottery (though it’s a great story if you haven’t done it…just click the link to read!). This does not have a surprise ending. No horrific shock to be found. Instead this is a tale of death – of living in a haunted house – with two sociopaths. One will be your guide. One will turn out to be her family’s murderer.
Merricat (Mary Katherine) will lead you down this journey. She and her sister Constance are at a cross-roads. A few years away from the horrific death of the bulk of their family. Constance has been tried and found innocent of the crime involving arsenic in the sugar bowl. You see, Constance never takes sugar, though she does cook all of her family’s meals. Her innocence looks fishy to say the least. The only other survivors of the evening meal were the girls’ Uncle Julian, who didn’t consume as much sugar and thus not as much arsenic and Merricat, who had been sent to her room without dinner that evening. Constance has lived through the spectacle of the trial and is, as the years pass, becoming mentally stronger – considering rejoining the society outside the family home. For that is where Constance has lived all these years, in the home where her family died, never moving one tea-cup or hair brush out-of-place, never moving beyond the garden gate. If Constance decides to move out into the world of the living normalcy may return.
Merricat on the other hand moves beyond her home and into town. She bravely grocery shops amongst the townspeople enduring their insults and cruel stares. Merricat worries for Constance. She knows what it’s like to wander outside the garden gate she worries for Constance’s mental state to do so as well. However, we’re never quite sure if Merricat is more worried that Constance will find life outside the home difficult, or if Constance will begin to enjoy it.
To say much more about the sisters and their intimate relationship with death would ruin the tale for anyone wishing to enter into their decidedly macabre world. But in the end I think that the true horror of the tale isn’t these two girls. It’s not ‘who done it’ or even ‘why’. As a reader once you’re used to living life through their eyes…Once you’re used to the death, and the creepiness…you too will become scared of the ‘normal’ population. Watching those who are a stranger to the occult, strangers to murder and the assumed violence that goes along with it you realize that this unknown makes them terrified of the unknown. The mob mentality of people who are both scared and jealous is horrific. What a group can accomplish – disgustingly amazing. You’ll end up realizing that to accept the macabre and to not just dole out death but live with it produces a kind of sociopathic happiness. And causes the mentally competent become unhinged.
This is a tale of that house you held your breath in front of as a child. The place in your town you walked faster past – knowing that there were watching eyes. It’s the home the you’re never quite sure someone occupies. The place where friends dared you to tread. It’s the story of that house before it became that house.
Rating: 3.5/5 It’s a well written and creepy tale…marred because I was expecting something different…...more
I don’t know how scared I was by this book. I mean it has all the elements. Kid with paranormal connections, Father who goes crazy, Creepy hotel fullI don’t know how scared I was by this book. I mean it has all the elements. Kid with paranormal connections, Father who goes crazy, Creepy hotel full of ghosts…lots of death and murder…not to mention those moving topiaries. Yep, nothing scarier than a hedge in the shape of a bunny.
I do kid. This book really was freaky. I think I’m just more scared by things that chase you, by stuff like the apocalypse and a deadly virus taking over the world. I also think I was distracted by the bits and pieces I knew from the movie. While I’ve never seen the film through general culture I knew what Redrum meant, and knew that Jack Nicholson went crazy in a hotel during winter trying to kill everyone.
But I was also expecting those creepy twins. While in the book, they played a smaller and completely uninvolved role. They were not the ghost hiding behind 217. The biggest surprise from my read was how well written a book this was. I’m not a reader who thinks that in order for a book to be good it needs to be “well written” in an old-school literary canon kinda way. I’m just as ‘in awe’ of a writer who is a good story-teller or one who can create tension and play on my emotions. But as a former English major, and a general literary devotee I do appreciate a man who has full command of his writing skills.
King manages to combine horror, paranormal, and a bit of rawness while still showing masterful writing chops. Sometimes I found myself enjoying the read, not because I was so into the story…but because I loved the way King was playing with his words, with his use of punctuation. Very well done, and still accessible. Bravo.
I’m not going to reveal too much about the plot. It’s not my place to ruin the mystery for the next reader. I liked that the book delved into the history of the characters. Showing how the experiences that formed them was twisted and used by the hotel. And I loved Danny. I really liked the kid, and for all of his 6th sense abilities he didn’t creep me out. And finally the end was slightly happier than I expected. Don’t get me wrong…it’s all super-horrific and gory…but it ends with hope. Didn’t see that coming…
Publisher’s Weekly gave this the enticing review of: ”darkly sexy prose and suspenseful storytelling”. On Amazon and Barnes and Noble hundreds of readPublisher’s Weekly gave this the enticing review of: ”darkly sexy prose and suspenseful storytelling”. On Amazon and Barnes and Noble hundreds of readers give the paranormal novel a combined star rating of 4.5 stars along with reader reviews titled things like “Highly Recommended”, “Yummy”, and “My Absolute Fav”. 12 years after it was originally published I still had to wait list the title from my local library’s e-book collection. Needless to say, I had high hopes of a Twilight-esque read. I wanted that sexual tension that can only come from the combination of hormonally charged characters who can’t consummate anything…due to being of different species…and the restrictions of sex in YA lit. I’m telling you, it creates a tension you could cut with a knife!
I was utterly disappointed with this book. Such a fail for me that I felt as though I was literally choking down the pages. During the reading I sought out every distraction possible…I responded to e-surveys for goodness sake. I felt the main character of Vivian Gandillon was difficult to connect to. I understand the author’s premise, teens in a love triangle, two-thirds of which is paranormal. What makes it unique is that this time it’s the girl who is the creature of legends: The Werewolf. Vivian is rebelling against her pack by dating (and loving) a human boy, Aiden. She attempts to stay in a relationship with him while fending off the far more interesting relationship of ‘Queen Bitch’ to the older, but super sexy ‘Pack Leader’ Gabriel. The problem is Vivian loves apparently loves Aiden’s sweetness. Why, I’m not quite sure, because Klause includes very few scenes of the two interacting. Instead the reader is generally told that they had some type of date/conversation/make-out session and it was beautiful, sweet, and perfect. But as the reader I never really felt the connection.
What makes it difficult is that Vivian has a fully imagined, wolf-like, internal dialogue. This thought process, while realistic, alienated me as a reader. I didn’t get Vivian, she was more wolf than human, and spends the better part of the book distracted by sex and mating. If in Vivian’s head I didn’t like her or understand her, I was unsure how other humans were responding to her so well. I was left wondering about the human response because there were so few scenes involving interaction! Klause does give explanations for all of her character’s motivations, but they fall flat because the reader never feels that they ring true.
Another issue I had with the book was that the mother was so sexual and open with her daughter. Like, slinky dress wearing, alcohol offering, knowing look exchanging, open. Again, I’ll chalk it up to the wolf mentality…but lets just say that Vivian and her mother end up going for some of the same men…And everyone is ok with it. Weirded me out!
My advice is to skip this one. There is far better YA lit out there to read. If you want teen paranormal look in another direction.
To be honest when this novel started I thought it was going to go in a different direction. Something not so ambivalent. I thought it was going to havTo be honest when this novel started I thought it was going to go in a different direction. Something not so ambivalent. I thought it was going to have something to do with a prank gone wrong. Maybe a sudden disaster or accident. What eventually happens is unsettling. Not so much because the turning point is a dramatic scene. It’s the swiftness, the unexpected and yet quietly shown change that is so challenging.
I’ll admit that I don’t often look to my covers for book inspiration. While I love a good cover as much as the next person rarely do I rely on the image to portray an actual person/theme/feeling that exists in the book. But that image of the candle just blown out…That is the perfect image for the novel. That is exactly what happens. And that is exactly why dealing with the major plot point of the novel is so hard. There is no reason, no one to blame. Not even clear 20/20 hindsight with which to deal with your emotions. If it’s this hard as a reader imagine the thoughts, feelings, and actions of the characters.
This is the shortest review ever…Looking for Alaska is a YA classic for a reason. Perfect for the high school reader. I won’t go any further because if you’ve read it…you know what I’m talking about. And if you haven’t, I’m not going to ruin a classic.
Zsadist is one scary guy. Even the other members of the Brotherhood fear what he is capable of doing. In the words of his twin, Phury, Zsadist is “notZsadist is one scary guy. Even the other members of the Brotherhood fear what he is capable of doing. In the words of his twin, Phury, Zsadist is “not just broken, he’s ruined”. After being stolen away as a child to become the abused blood slave of an aristocratic vampire, Zsadist is hardened almost beyond his humanity. Bella is a sheltered vampire who has a taste for the bad boy in Zsadist. But after enduring her own trial of being held hostage she finds that Zsadist is the only soul who can help her through her tragedy. Together they’ll heal and find a passion few are lucky enough to experience.
Loved it…Loved it soooo much. Perfect bad boy. Lots of gruffness on the outside, big wounded man on the inside. And the addition of Bella’s fresh experience with capture helps the two connect on a deeper level. They are saving each other. Neither one is without their ghosts and together they overcome it all. A must-read romance.