Honestly, my review need only be short and say: It's Neil Gaiman. He has yet to disappoint me with his brilliance, character portrayal, writing style...moreHonestly, my review need only be short and say: It's Neil Gaiman. He has yet to disappoint me with his brilliance, character portrayal, writing style and story lines. If you like imaginative children's books (That really, more adults should read) then you have selected one of the best!(less)
I received this book from the author in exchange for a review. This did NOT impact my ability to be critical and honest.
First, I'd like to start off w...moreI received this book from the author in exchange for a review. This did NOT impact my ability to be critical and honest.
First, I'd like to start off with the areas that I think could use some work and the work my way to the great things about the book. As far as Jeff as a character goes, I felt he could have been more solid. I think a lot of effort went into making him sound like his own person rather than fleshing him out a bit more. Also, in my opinion, the "oh man" and "you know?" kind of got distracting once I started noticing how many of them there were. It seemed to crop up at least twice a page, sometimes more and that got a little old. The other thing I had a bit of a problem with was that he was perpetually having his mind blown away by this new stuff. I totally understand that in that situation, I would have felt the same way, but it seemed like the same things were being said over and over after every little thing just in different ways. It felt like an attempt to fluff out the book and make it a big longer, honestly.
Now, to the good stuff. I loved carla as a character. She was modern and down to earth, but very old fashioned in the way she spoke and carried herself. And she just didn't care about what anyone thought as long as they were being good people haha she cracks me up! Very lovable and a relatable character. The imagination this author has is outstanding! His use of imagery is unique and inspiring. I loved the bit about the eyes and the window and the Ball of Realities. The author also does a phenomenal job of painting out what he wants you to see and boy oh boy does it make an impact! Wonderful! Lobo... gotta love Lobo! What story is complete without a salty-dog type of leader? None, I tell you! Another great character. The author is also very good at detailing and scene setting. The war scene was intricate and realistic as well as the description of St. Augustine.
Overall, a great novel with some amazing potential. I think if the author just worked on his character creation a bit more and maybe synced up with the character mindset a bit more, this would have been flying off the shelves! Doug, do NOT lose that ability to paint such unique pictures with words. That was the golden ticket in my opinion.
I would definitely recommend this diamond in the rough to anyone, especially history, supernatural and philosophical buffs.(less)
I have yet to read the first book, as I picked this little gem up at my library without realizing it was part of a series. Now that I have read it, I...moreI have yet to read the first book, as I picked this little gem up at my library without realizing it was part of a series. Now that I have read it, I am hungry for the other two! Rick Yancey has writing down to a science, making it an art form and sticks to tradition with the spice of enticement and plot twists of a new era. It was such a smooth read that it's akin to realxing in a warm bath on a cold rainy day. Not only that, it is extremely unique and well-crafted. Amongst the ever-growing populace of hit or miss teenage vampire and werewolf novels, Yancey has offered a tall glass of refreshment. The story is about a boy in his in-between years, Will Henry, and his monstrumologist mentor, Doctor Pellinore Warthrop, who has taken him under his wing after his parents die. Dr. Warthrop being the crotchety old, yet highly intelligent, recluse that he is declines a feverish plea to save his once-was best friend and ex fiance's new husband from a suicide mission to find the wendigo. Succumbing to his heart of hearts, though, he decides to run a fools errand to find John Chandler. What he and Will Henry encounter on that journey tries friendships, breaks hearts and strengthens resolve and morals in a beastial bloodbath that leaves both mentor and pupil near death and clutching to each other when the world begins to fall to pieces.
An absolute must-read for the deeply imaginative! I loved every second and savored every small detail that makes the book what it is. Hats off to you, Rick Yancey, you did a hell of a job!(less)
This book was one of the most spectacular and inventive books I have read since the recent eruption of teen paranormal books. A hearty and warm thank...moreThis book was one of the most spectacular and inventive books I have read since the recent eruption of teen paranormal books. A hearty and warm thank you and bless your soul to author Marissa Meyer!
The story in itself is incredibly unique amidst the swarms of vampire and werewolf novels, but what really hooked me was her integration into the world itself. It seemed to me that every word was chosen specifically with the story in mind which i think sadly a lot of modern authors are neglecting. I literally whooped when I read the simple line "Cinder called forth every nanobyte of strength she possessed..." We've all heard the variants of that phrase but the fact that she used the word 'nanobyte' instead of ounce or something proved to me that she did not just come up with a quick hot seller, but really submergered herself into a world she created which is what makes writing an art form to me. Not every author can catch those small but atmospheric details.
Anywho! On to the actual story. Cinder is a shy but strong female lead who just so happens to be a cyborg (how's that for flipping the fairytale on its head). Cyborgs are outcasted in society, but Cinder has left her mark as a renown albeit poor mechanic, and as test subjects to find a cure to letumosis: a deadly rapidly spreading plague the clutches of which no one can outrun. That is, until our heroine comes along. After her beloved stepsister contracts the virus, her grieving and hateful stepmother volunteers her as a test subject in the hopes of getting rid of Cinder, thinking that she was the one to set up Peony's encouter with letumosis. Upon closer inspection though, Cinder could be the cure to everyone's biggest problem.
Loyalty, integrity, love, hatred, self-doubt, secrets, betrayal, the power of will and determination, murder and political agendas are all beautifully wrapped in this wonderful, tasteful book. Divinely captivating and magically written, this book should belong on everyone's shelf as a bit of classic entertainment with moral fiber and a bit of a kick.(less)
This is definitley one of the books that makes being an author artistic. Truly a work of art on par (in my personal opinion) with the likes of Illusio...moreThis is definitley one of the books that makes being an author artistic. Truly a work of art on par (in my personal opinion) with the likes of Illusions. You could read this book a thousand different times and take away just as many new meanings or hidden clues, missed character dynamics or rediscovered plots shed with new light. Absolutely brilliant. Everything was so delicately detailed and deliciously descripted. A vivid, chaotic, blossoming and soothing mad house with all those character quirks and interlocking relationships that would instantly make this a cult classic if more people just gave it a chance.(less)
This book I think, tried way to hard to pose religious and philosophical questions on the human condition that it came off full of itself, unoriginal...moreThis book I think, tried way to hard to pose religious and philosophical questions on the human condition that it came off full of itself, unoriginal and rushed through very important thought process steps. As a reader it seemed that the main character just skipped the why's of his change and just showed him on the other side. And while the why's are obvious, it didn't show him going through the process and coming to that conclusion. As a matter of religion, been there done that, is all I have to say. I've read this type of book before and it wasn't even as well done as others. Was it entertaining? Yes. Did it kill a few hours pleasantly? Sure. Is it something I would lay my name on as a perception changing story, even though that's clearly what the author WANTED to accomplish? Not by any means. Poorly executed but some of the concepts were thrilling and the world design was new and I did find enjoyment in that. It's really a fluff piece. It has no value pertaining to the innate human condition, but it is a decent way to pass the time for avid readers. I hope that my review was helpful and that is my honest opinion on it. (less)
Definitely not for those that are really sensitive to big issue subjects. This man is hilarious!!! Rude, crude, disturbing, witty, intelligent and fun...moreDefinitely not for those that are really sensitive to big issue subjects. This man is hilarious!!! Rude, crude, disturbing, witty, intelligent and funny! I loved everything about this book. Humor that's bold enough to smack you right in the face! Shaking my head. Bravo Sir.(less)
Such a phenomenal read. Absolutely perfect in every way. It has everything that readers look for: drama, tragedy, betrayal, lust, love, treachery, dec...moreSuch a phenomenal read. Absolutely perfect in every way. It has everything that readers look for: drama, tragedy, betrayal, lust, love, treachery, deceit. Accompanying that, it was extremely well written, had a solid plot and pace, intriguing events, captivating anecdotes. It prompts the reader to question the rights and wrongs of human instinct when going through major societal and personal changes, the credibility of power, religious fanaticism and how that pertains to governing the lives and wills of others. Such and all encompassing and powerful read and every line can be related to modern life and the decisions we make every day. When you start reading this book, everything appears black and white and simple to assign meaning to, but throughout the course of the book, it shatters that safe place and forces the reader to take a deeper look at complicated life events that seem so trustworthy and simple.
All around the best book I have had the pleasure of reading in such a long time. So glad my husband made me read it! A solid five stars because I can't rate it any higher. How wonderful it was to read a book that completely shift the perspective of such a classic! A breath of fresh air.(less)
I really really wanted to like this book and in a lot of ways it was awesome. However, I just couldn't shake the waves of grammatical and spelling err...moreI really really wanted to like this book and in a lot of ways it was awesome. However, I just couldn't shake the waves of grammatical and spelling errors, the overwhelming and unrealistic portrayal of love and the strangely and disturbingly pornographic sex scenes that did not in ANY WAY fit in to the rest of the book. Not to mention, every time after that, when they showed what should be innocent affection, I got a sludgy gross feeling because not only was the love hilariously and laughably over the top and cheesy, but that paired with the words (view spoiler)[hard cock, warm pussy and graphic descriptions of oral sex and fingering (hide spoiler)] it just came across as gross and kind of funny at the same time. There was just absolutely no realism in the love aspect at all.
Now I understand that some view sex as a physical way to show love and that it has the potential to be a beautiful and respectable thing. If the sex scenes were sweeter and less detailed, it probably would have fit in perfectly with the mooshy gooshy love. But just how raunchy, graphic and badly written porno they turned out just makes it seem like they were thrown in there because the author was particularly "lonely" that day if you know what I mean.
Also you can definitely tell that this book was under the female influence. Anything and Everything revolves around how precious women are, how much they need to be protected, but conflicting messages also say that they are strong and courageous without really showing me that in the main female character, she freaked out over a bunch of things and only really showed courage a couple of times and only when her darling lover was there to fortify her desire to help. Oh, please.
This whole book was just laughable at best. GREAT premise and I really wish those two things were toned the hell down or taken out of it because the story itself is interesting. All in all, it gets a two only because I liked the underlying story. I just hated that I had to dig through a swamp of stiff and lusty penises, gyrating hips, hard nipples and lovingly passionate embraces which no evil could touch because of their love for each other. Gag. Will not be rereading this, but if that's your thing then more power too you and I hope you enjoy.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
The collections of stories were from phenomenal authors. Each one, I thought, was well written, original, fascinating and true to itself. Short storie...moreThe collections of stories were from phenomenal authors. Each one, I thought, was well written, original, fascinating and true to itself. Short stories are harder to write in my opinion because there's so much you want to say about the character development or scenery. However I feel these stories wrapped themselves up rather nicely. The person that assembled this book knew a thing or two about which stories worked well together and what short story writing entails. Very nice variety, wonderful authors and a great sense of originality. There's not one story in there that I didn't like and I love that it didn't stick to one particular supernatural creature, it really spread itself out. Would recommend any of these stories in this book to anyone so it gets a two thumbs up and a five star review from me. Enjoy! (less)
Now, just to start off, I would have given this book 3 stars. For a couple of reasons but I gave it 4 because they were all personal taste conflicts....moreNow, just to start off, I would have given this book 3 stars. For a couple of reasons but I gave it 4 because they were all personal taste conflicts. I don't tend to mind the "You're the last of your kind" type of thing, but it definitely gets tiresome. However I understand that, in this case, it was such an interesting concept that I let it pass. It honestly bothered me though that there was so much of it! "You're the last of your kind and this stereotypical rough and brooding blonde chisel-chest is the last of HIS kind which perfectly fits everything you need in life right now so you fall head over heels a little too quickly, get mildly upset that within the first day when he doesn't fall all over you, buuuut you manage to turn this dark badass into a mushy puppy quickly enough and see his not so subtle hints that he 'loves' you too... Therefore you are the last COUPLE of your kind!!!! And all when you're a teenager! My how fascinating!" For MY PERSONAL TASTES I have seen this type of budding romance story so many times it got really stale really quickly. Also I would think that this story would be better narrated in 3rd person because with how complex the main character is, it came off a biiiit narcissistic and flaunty. Also describing physical paranormal attributes (the eyes and teeth of the main character hint hint) in that way seemed to take a lot of the mysticism and power out of it. It dulled the overall picture in my head because it made Alexa sound a little vapid and lovepuppy-ish. Also with Kayden... He needed to be toned down a wee bit... His stereotype was overwhelming. Please please please keep in mind that all this is my personal opinion.
NOW! On to the good stuff. The creature concepts were amazing. Very happy to see some old world elements and legends come into play with a slight twist in character development. Kept my attention really well. Strongly written even though some phrases were overused. I definitely want to know what happens in the next book (I can't WAIT to read it :D). The personalities of the characters are relatable and lovable while the villains are intense cold and distant in the writing which adds a lot of depth and mystery to them. Genuine concern spikes up when there is danger (which is to say I was right there in their shoes... It was an easy book to fall into and feel as if you're a part of the story). I also really liked that while Alexa is extremely unique with some amazing capabilities there was still such a human aspect to her. She wasn't superman here. She could still be hurt and was still in the development stage psychologically which helped the reader grow right along with her. There's also this high governmental power against a few citizens/Oppressive, lying, cheating, stealing corrupt politician out to destroy truth and honor vibe which, as a reader, placed strong alliance with Alexa and her do-gooder crew. I was rooting for her throughout the good, the bad and the ugly!! :D
Over all a good read with great potential. I ate it up despite my own tastes and I am definitely interested in reading the next one! Great read for people with open-minds and can push past stubborn tastes and desires to enjoy a good book for what it is.
I really enjoyed the concept of this book! The idea was original but not overwhelmingly so. It didn't try too hard to be something it wasn't, which I...moreI really enjoyed the concept of this book! The idea was original but not overwhelmingly so. It didn't try too hard to be something it wasn't, which I respect in a book. It was wonderfully crafted and easy to follow, for the most part. I was shocked how easy it was to really put yourself into the character's roles and how flawless it was to identify with them. There was a very real element to the people Whicker created.
The plot was exaggerated in a dramatic way that added this edgy and dangerous element that was still subtle and palatable (i.e it still felt real enough to enjoy and get lost in and not hen-peck any unnecessary details, which there weren't too many). The love scenes, Thank God, were not nauseating or overbearing. They were simply stated yet still dramatic and effective. So glad it didn't drone on and on and on about how they felt and still focused on the characters as strong, individual people, not lovesick puppies.
The ONLY problem I faced was sometimes it was a bit unclear as to why he/she popped up here, why is he/she saying that, what were the motives. The book did a decent job of explaining the big picture but sometimes I got a little lost and had to refer to other chapters to grasp big concepts and other times I was completely lost and had to just let it go and move on to the next page.
Over all it was a fantastic read, I loved the plot and the characters (it was slightly out there and original while still making sure the audience could grasp it quickly and sink into the book). I would definitely read it again and I can't WAIT to read the next one! Hooked for life! :) Thanks for the book Juliann and please keep writing similar books because, ah, your style of writing is so fun and easy to get into!(less)
**spoiler alert** This book was awful. I got rid of it as soon as I could. I felt it was tainting my bookshelf! I grabbed it because of the mythos att...more**spoiler alert** This book was awful. I got rid of it as soon as I could. I felt it was tainting my bookshelf! I grabbed it because of the mythos attached to it, thinking it would embrace natural femininity. I was so so wrong. I can't believe anyone would allow their teenagers to read this! Most of the emphasis was on their bodies. Not like I am completely against that (every girl has to feel sexy every once in a while) but these were teens here. It seems like the characters were developed in a way that said "I have no respect for myself." When they were dressing for "battle" it involved about 15 lbs of glitter, tons of makeup, getting their hair juuuuust right and slipping into some sleazy costume. To me, when I think of a powerful woman, I don't think about her damn aesthetics. I don't picture a powerful woman slathering on the makeup and hair gel and glittery body paint and four inch high heels (very impractical for fighting in if you ask me).
The book seemed to feed into the female stigma and stereotype (Uh the club dancing scene anyone?) rather than intelligently back-handing it and really emphasizing the real reasons women are strong. I was so ashamed of this book when I read it. It just added to the media circus on how women should look and portray themselves. If that was the point, to embrace femininity, and use it as a weapon she did an awful job. Boobs are not a weapon girls and if you think that way I am very sorry for you.
Some scenes in the book were alright and concentrated on the mythos and the plot but a lot of it was filler and crappy filler at that. No self-respecting woman would "battle" like they did in the book.
But that is just my opinion and if you liked it then I can be glad that you enjoyed a book.(less)