“Maybe love was superstition, a prayer we said to keep the truth of loneliness at bay. I tilted my head back. The stars looked like they were close together, when really they were millions of miles apart. In the end, maybe love just meant longing for something impossibly bright and forever out of reach.”
The ending. FUCK THAT SHIT I still couldn't believe that is how this amazing series ended. It was too easy. I hated the ending. There I said it. This book could have ended better. The last few chapters were anti-climactic But despite all of that, I would give this book a good rating. Why? Well because a book or a book series, is not all about the ending. It is never just about the ending, no matter how stupid, or disappointing it may be. It is about the journey that it took you. It's about all the new places, new people, new experiences you've had as you have been reading this.That to me is more important than a fucked up ending, which sadly, this one had.
I would still have to say though, that this series is one of the best series that I have ever read. The world-buidling had been incredible from beginning to end. The writing didn't fail to wow me. The characters didn't fail to surprise and draw me closer to them. I just love this series and would always be a favorite.I love you Leigh Bardugo.
I won't be talking about the gist here because I have no idea how to summarize this book... I really could not. There's just too many things that happpened and wouldn't want to miss anything... I'll go straight to the characters.
WARNING:If you have not read this book yet, please STOP right here. This part might contain minor, or major spoilers... YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
There were old wants too, to be loved for who I was, not what I could do, to lie in the meadows with a boy's arm around me and watch the wind move the clouds. But those dreams belong to a girl, not the Sun Summoner, not to a Saint.
Alina officially just became a member of my top 5 favorite heroines of all time, if not my favorite. This girl has done some pretty heavy decision making. I felt her struggle on what was more important to her.
Was it love or was it her responsibility to Ravka?
If I was in her position, I probably would make the easier choice. I would probably be more selfish with my decisions, but she didn't. She choose the one that would benefit her country. Her people. She was willing to give up the one person she loved, the one thing she knew she had, to give her people freedom. She was willing to give all of that up. Oh how I love you Alina.
She also had her moments of weakness, especially towards the end when she had to make the decision of killing Mal. I was never a fan of MALINA, but at that point, I was almost in tears. I wanted to hug them both and fucking kill off my beloved Darkling so that they could be together, even if I am totally against it. They did end up together, but the ending still sucked for me. I will be explaining this more later as I go along why I disliked the ending.
I'm glad she had her happy ending, but I knew she wasn't completely happy. There would still be a part of her that wanted the power she had, but also had to giveaway..
I have never been a fan of Mal. But oh boy, did he swoon me so bad in this book. There were times that I felt he was a bit too cheesy, but it was fine. I was fine with it. I felt his love for Alina, and how much he respect whatever her decision maybe, even if it would mean he could lose her. I get teary-eyed whenever there is a Mal-Alina scene.
"I wanted more for you," he said. "A white veil in your hair. Vows we could keep."
"A proper wedding night? Just tell me this isn't goodbye. That's the only vow I need"
"I love you, Alina."
Oh boy. I broke to tears right there. Those simple words. I felt how much it means. It drove me insane. I reread these lines a lot of times. It made me think of the depth of Mal's love for Alina. Made me realize how fucking wrong I was about him on the first two books. I love Mal now too.
"Deep breaths," Nikolai said. "I could be overwhelming at first.
I think I won't be able to stress enough, how much I LOVE THIS GUY! On the second book, he was the one that made the difficult times light, he was... like a burst of sunshine. He was funny. He was smart. He was good-looking. He was cocky. He was a prince. I mean come on? What more could you ask for?
But here... The Darkling was a man of his word... He took revenge on Nikolai and what he did on book two. I was distraught. I was scared that Nikolia would die and would not get what was rightfully his. I was really scared for him. I was like fuck Alina, fuck Mal, fuck the Darkling... I want to know what happened to my Nikolai. I am obsessed. I know I may have said that with other book boyfriends of mine but it's different with this guy.. I really, sincerely like him. His personality. His humor. His wisdom. His courage. His ambition. If he was a real person, we would be perfect for each other. Plus he's a prince... a would be king... so that would make me...the would be princess I think you could see that now on my username.. Hehe.
Although I already knew, Nikolai had to chance with Alina, I was already happy that he was a part of this book. He's an amazing character and he is mine.
Before I move to the Darkling, I just saw this picture...
“I will strip away all that you know, all that you love, until you have no shelter but mine.”
I feel bad that the Darkling didn't get a good ending. I felt that he deserve more than a stab in the heart. It was too easy. All of that build up from the first book to the last... that was the ending he got. Disappointing.
Also, the reason why I feel really bad was because... You see what he really is. And he is not purely evil. I think he was blinded by ambition. He reminded me of Jay Gatsby. He was blinded by his ambition to see that the Grisha's rule the world, just like Jay Gatsby's blinded by his love for Daisy. Jay did whatever he could to gain more money to take Daisy away. In the end, his love for Daisy got him killed. The Darkling's love for acceptance is what got him killed. For me, the Darkling didn't really want the power, what he seeks is for the Grisha's to be accepted in society. Power is just a prerequisite for the Grisha to have a proper place in society. I learned of this when Baghra was telling the story of Morozova and his family.
Also, the burden of being the only one who has power like his is enough to make you want a companion, which is why he continually seeks out Alina.
From book one, I already felt that Alina and Mal would end up together. The prologues and the epilogues are enough to actually prove that. And if you have read my previous reviews, you'll know that I am not a fan of them. I don't like Mal and Alina to end up together. Although I love Mal now, I still felt that them ending up together was a bit.. dull.
So there are some things I need to point in why I couldn't give this book 5 stars like the first two.
1. While the first two books gave me all the info that I need at the time, I felt that this book lacked explaining a couple of details. One being, if Mal was a decentant of Morozova and somehow related to the Darkling (hence why he was the amplifier), how did Alina get hers? It was never explained where Alina came from and why she was the Sun Summoner. No mention of it at all, if there was... Please point me to the right direction, I might have missed it somehow.
2. The ending.that stupid mo-fo ending was a big let down! Mal should have died. I would have cried happy tears if Mal died, not because I hate him, No... but because I felt it was necessary. Mal lived, but the Darkling died... i mean really? just a glowy dagger to the heart and that's it? but didn't she stab Mal too? but somehow Tamar and Tolya revived him??? No. Just no. Mal and the Darkling should have died together. If Alina doesn't become queen, I don't really have a problem with that... But I felt Mal dying was necessary... But no that didn't happen... so... fuck that.
So there was just two main reasons why I couldn't give this 5 stars..
here are the reasons why I loved it.
1. The characters. They were so three-dimensional that it felt like I have known them for a long time. All of them were familiar. And I'm not only talking about the main characters herer. There's Genya, David, Tolya, Tamar, Zoya, Misha, even the Apparat had their own characteristics that you'll know and either love or hate.
2. The unexpected twists I'm talking about the entire series in general. The unexpected encounters that I was never really expecting from book 2. Then there's the relationship between Mal and the Darkling. And also the punishment that Nikolai had to go through and Alina losing her powers. I like those.
3. The whole Grisha world. If you've read this you'll know what I mean.
4. The romance. I liked that the author remained consistent about who she wants her character to end up with. Although, I wish Mal dead, I liked that Mal and Alina's love endured despite all the trials and struggles they had to go through. Sigh. True love.
I guess that's all for me and my review of Ruin and Rising. Again, I didn't make notes so these are just random ramblings from what I remembered from the book and the entire series as this is the last book.
If you haven't read this series, I would suggest picking it up because it's extremely addicting. I love this series so much. And hope you guys would do too.
If you've read it and loved it, please comment below.. I would like to chat with you guys about it. Most especially Nikolai Hehe.(less)
I started Siege and Storm first, and was thinking I'd skip the novellas all together, but when the too clever fox was mentioned on the first few pages...moreI started Siege and Storm first, and was thinking I'd skip the novellas all together, but when the too clever fox was mentioned on the first few pages... I just picked it up and devoured it in a few minutes.
That was one hell of a novella.
I liked how Leigh Bardugo even took the time to make a short novella about a myth that was being told in the world she created. Usually, authors get lazy and would fail to elaborate on stuff like that. I think these are important to really engage the reader.
The myth of the The Too Clever Fox has a lesson of its own (which really won me over). If you think you're clever, think again. There is always someone cleverer than you.
I didn't it a 5 star because I saw the clues on what would happen. I don't want to spoil anything but I would have to say it was a bit predictable... And unpredictability is one thing I love in books.
Honestly, reading classical books scare the shit out of me... I 'm scared that i might be too stupid or too ignorant to understand what the author mea...moreHonestly, reading classical books scare the shit out of me... I 'm scared that i might be too stupid or too ignorant to understand what the author mean soooo... This might take a while..
Here we go.
Vonnegut, I'm gonna devour this shit and I'm gonna fucking enjoy it.(less)
So I've been working as a customer service rep for almost 5 years already. wow. didn't realize it has been that long. it also says something about my...moreSo I've been working as a customer service rep for almost 5 years already. wow. didn't realize it has been that long. it also says something about my age though... damn. And I would have to say, that I've met (okay not met, more of talked) some interesting people. I've only worked for two contact centers; one of them would be the publishing company I'm currently working for and the other was for an automotive company which I was an employee for three years.
Although I haven't worked for a bookshop, I felt that I could still relate to this book because, seriously, customers sometimes ask and say the weirdest things. I am not joking. And those moments, make working with customer service enjoyable.
I'd love to share a few of them. I don't have much experience with funny scenarios when i started working for the publishing company because... our customer's are mostly in a hurry and it's mostly, just price and availability enquiries, it's very rare that they ask something outside of that... but I have plenty to share from my experience with the automotive company.
Here are a few.
Me: Thank you for calling blah blah Customer Service. This is Sandra. How can I help you?
Customer:Hi! Listen, I have a problem. Can you help?
Me: Depends on what problem it is. Can you tell me what's going on with your car?
Customer: The thing is... my car broke down and I need a new one. I need it to get myself and my wife to work. Do you think you can request that I be provided with a complimentary car? I promise. I swear I'd name my son or daughter after one of your cars in return. It will be some sort of advertisement
Me: ... I'm so sorry to hear about your vehicle, but unfortunately I cannot provide you with a new vehicle. You might want to check with used car dealerships to see if they will have any that will fit your budget.
Customer: Please. I don't usually beg, but I am going to do that now. If naming my first kid's not enough, then how about my second child too... then my third... and all my kids.
Me: Sorry sir. I can't help you. You can try to send us an e-mail, but I can't guarantee you that will work either.
Customer: I want to speak to your manager.
And after my manager and this customer spoke for about half an hour more... He finally gave up and said that he will be contacting the media about how we have treated him unfairly, by not giving him a free car... Sheesh.
And here's another one.
Me: Thank you for calling blah blah Customer Service. This is Sandra. How can I help you?
Customer: I'm hoping you could. You see I'm an inventor and I have a very innovative invention that I want to share with your company.
Me: That's good to hear. We do have a website where you can submit these ideas and inventions.
Customer: Oh. I'm so sorry but I don't have any access to a computer at all. Would it be fine if I tell it to you over the phone and you can give the information I give you to them? I'll tell you all about my invention, but if I find out you stole it I'm going to hunt you down.
Me: ... I'd love to hear what you have invented, but I think it would be best to mail it to us, if you don't have any access to e-mail.
Despite my best efforts to recommend the customer to send it via e-mail or physical mail. He told me all about his plan to make a bubble car. All the specifics, like engineering stuff, which I have no idea what it was or what it was for... So after an hour of talking with him, he finally ended the call and thanked me for listening. I actually ended up really liking the guy. And although he totally wasted my average handling time, he was a smart and interesting guy.
When I said that we deal with all types of people, and I mean all types. Including perverted ones.
Me: Thank you for calling blah blah Customer Service. This is Sandra. How can I help you?
Customer:I can see your underwear!
customer disconnects call.
And me being an extremely paranoid, checked myself it there was anyway people would be able to see my underwear... fucking perverted prank caller!
But there are those that are extremely sweet. *insert me being swooned over*
So this is me working for the publishing company.
Me: Blah blah Customer Service. Sandra speaking.
Customer: Wait. I'm calling Blah Blah Australia right?
Me: Yes. What can I help you with?
Customer: Oh okay. I thought I called the amercian number because don't sound Australian.
Me: You did call the right number. But you're right. I'm not Australian.
Customer: I do love your voice. though I have a thing... for... american girls... and I have a thing for guys with Australian accent sooo... I guess we clicked.
Me: *a 10 second pause.* uhhh thanks I think. *nervous giggle* I'm actually not American either. I'm a Filipina.
Customer: Wow. Nice meeting you.
Me: Likewise. So? How can I help you?
So I assisted Mr. Swoony customer. Turns out he was just asking for a book's price and availability. The good thing was... he left me a good survey!! So thank you Mr Swoony customer!
PS: I did not talk to this customer again. Don't get the wrong idea. And I didn't give him any of my personal details. It's against CS ethics. LOL :D
Anyways... I'm not sure where I'm going with this review.. I did have fun writing it. I really did enjoy this book and see that there's another one like this... And if someone ever thought of making a book based on customer service phone calls... You'll know where to find me.. LOL.
I have finished quite a few, because despite the awesomeness of the first book, most sequels tend to disappoint me (i'm...moreI usually don't finish series.
I have finished quite a few, because despite the awesomeness of the first book, most sequels tend to disappoint me (i'm talking about you Hunger Games, Divergent and The Mortal Instruments specifically book 4 for TMI). So most of the time, if I really like the first book, I get anxious when I'm about to pick up the next book...
and this was how I felt when I picked up Siege and Storm.
But this book, did not disappoint me at all. Instead, it exceeded my expectations to a height I wasn't expecting it to reach. Not only was the plot getting more amazing by the minute, the characters... oh boy.. i loved each and every one of them. With much emphasis on a certain prince who I'm going to talk more about later.
On to the gist of this book:
Just when Alina and Mal thought they were finally free of the Darkling.
The only light came from a single grimy window at the end of the hall. As Mal fumbled with the key, I looked down through the smudged glass to the carts and carriages rumbling by below. Across the street, a man stood beneath a balcony, peering up the boardinghouse. He pulled at his collar and his sleeves, as if his clothes were new and didn't quite fit right, His eyes met mine through the window, then darted quickly away.
As soon as Mal was able to open the door to their room, they were captured by the Darkling and his Grisha. The Darkling still wanted Alina. Although he looked weakened, the Darkling gained more than just a scar on the face from his last encounter with Alina. He gained something far more terrible.
His gaze was gray flint. "That all men can be made fools. No, Alina, the gift you've given me is so much greater."
He turned away. I darted another glance at Mal.
"Unlike you," the Darkling said. "I understand gratitude and wish to express it."
He raised his hands. The darkness tumbled through the room.
The Darkling was now able to summon creatures from the dark. He called them the nichevo'ya. They were vile, merciless creatures that feed on anything it can. They were as dangerous as the volcras from the fold, only now, the Darkling can summon them as he pleased.
Alina and Mal are not prisoners of the Darkling. Despite the Darking's hatred towards Mal, he needed him. He needed Mal to track the sea whip, the second of Morozova's amplifiers. But should Mal fail to find the mystical sea whip, Alina would pay.
"Because every day we don't find the sea whip, I'll peel away a piece of her skin. Slowly. Then Ivan will heal her, and the next day, we'll do it again."
But an unexpected rescue happened, when the owner of the ship, Strumhond, saved both of them from the clutches of the Darkling. Despite having saved Alina from the Darkling, Strumhond has his own plans for Alina.
"As I would have explained to the Darkling had he bothered to ask - which, thankfully, he didn't - the problem with hiring a man who sells his honor is that you can always be outbid."
I gaped at him. "You betrayed the Darkling for money?"
"Betrayed seems a strong word. I hardly know the fellow."
Strumhond wants Alina to meet with his client. And if she decides that what his client is something she does not want to be involved in, they would let her go. Yeah right..
So after the last unfortunate events that led them to do an emergency landing, Alina finally met who Strumhon's client was.
"I am Nikolai Lantsov, Major of the Twenty Second Regiment, Soldier of the King's Army, Grand Duke of Udova, and second son to His Most Royal Majesty, King Alexander the Third, Ruler of the Double Eagle Throne, may his life and reign be long."
Oh boy I love this guy!
Nikolai made a proposition to Alina. Despite having rescued her numerous times, did she really found an ally with Nikolai, or would trusting him be another mistake? Just like it was a mistake that she trusted the Darkling.
WARNING:If you have not read this book, I suggest that you stop here because I might be giving out a lot of spoilers on the next part of my review.Read at your own risk. LOL.
Aside from the plot development, another thing absolutely loved about this book was it's characters.
Alina: Was the weakling no more. Oh boy. This girl just really surprised me. She went from the weak orphan who had no idea what to do with her powers to a power-obsessed Sun summoner who wants to defeat the Darkling. I kind of like Alina here because she became sort of an anti-heroine. There was a part of her that was changing, and she had no control over it. Just as the Darkling and Bahagra predicted she would become.
I felt the collar at my throat, the pressure of the fetter at my wrist. My other arm felt naked. I was incomplete.
It was said that a Grisha could only have one amplifier, but now, she had two. But after finding out that there was a third one, she wanted it. She felt the hunger inside her that desires for more power.
You would still see moments of weakness from Alina, but that's understandable. She has to show everyone that she's strong. She has to show them that she could lead the Grisha that remained loyal to Ravka. She asked Nikolai to be the leader of the Second Army, and he gave it to her.
"Mal, we always said we'd find a way to come back to Ravka, that we'd find a way to help. If we don't do something, there may not be a Ravka to come back to." He shook his head, but I turned to Nikolai and plunged on.
"I'll return to Os Alta with you, and I'll consider helping you make a bid for the throne." I took a deep breath. "But I want the Second Army"
I read reviews saying that they didn't like Alina on this book, but I felt otherwise. She's amazing and her struggles felt real to me. Way to go Alina.
Mal: I was okay with Mal on the first book, but I sort of hated him here. He was an emotional mess most of the time. I get that he has been with Alina ever since they could remember, but still, the Darkling and Nikolai is right... He couldn't hide Alina forever and pretend she doesn't have the power that she does.
Although I have to give it to Mal, he was loyal to Alina like a puppy is to its master.
I felt that the relationship between Alina and Mal didn't work well with me from the start. Mal didn't really took notice of Alina before. For him, they were only best friends. He was the pretty boy who everyone wants to be with. He had Alina ever since they were kids, but he only really knew that he loved her when she became a Grisha? NO.Just no. I didn't like that he was making Alina feel guilty.
"No, Alina. You came here for Ravka. for the firebird. To lead the Second Army." He tapped the sun over his heart. "I came here for you. You're my flag. You're my nation. But that does't seem to matter anymore. Do you realize this is the first time we've been alone in weeks?"
Oh boy. And this wasn't the only melodramatic line Mal used on Alina on this book. There were a bunch more. And although I like drama, I felt that it was uncalled for on this book. I do want romance on my books - don't get me wrong - but I also want consistency in the plot, I don't want any subplots to get in the way. And in this case, this lover's quarrel wasn't rubbing well with me. It was a bit too overpowering.
Nikolai: Oh my friggin' god! I love Nikolai. Seriously, Ms Bardugo? Isn't it enough that you made two amazing male character that you have to put another one in? Waaaahh! Oh boy I can't even begin to tell you guys how much I love this guy.
First of all, Nikolai was not who I expected him to be. I mean come on? I was so not expecting that Strumhond and this charming prince were the same person. That really surprised me. Oh boy!! I had my doubts at first about Strumhond's intention, but when he came out in the open. Oh-la-la, I was in love.
"So talk," Mal retorted. "Who are you, and what are you playing at?"
"Nikolai Lantsov, but please don't make me recite my titles again. It's no fun for anybody, and the only important one is prince."
I mean come on? How could anyone not love a wise-ass prince. Not only is he a wise-ass, he's pretty clever too. Plus, I also believe he has ADHD. He said it himself anyways, he couldn't keep still for a long time. LOL. How cute.
Another thing I liked about him, was how honest he was to Alina. He told her his plans. Despite her not completely trusting him at first, he told her anyways, and he even gave her tips. Which I think Alina found really helpful in most circumstances. Nikolai gained Alina's trust eventually.
Oh and another thing that made me love this guy more was how much he tries to infuriate Mal. Oh boy those were always fun moments. Haha.
"It would be marriage in name only," Strumhond insisted. Then, as if he couldn't help himself, he flashed Mal a taunting grin. "Except for the matter of producing heirs."
But he's not all fun and games with him. He really does sincerely care about his country, unlike his useless brother. And he is quite a swooner too.
"I want to kiss you," Nikolai said. "But I won't. Not until you're thinking of me instead of trying to forget him."
See what I mean? So Nikolai, you are on my bookbf list ! :)
The Darkling: So you don't see much of the Darkling on this book, aside from the first few chapters and his ghostly visits to Alina. I missed him really. I missed the connection that Alina and the Darkling has. I know they won't end up together, because honestly, the Darkling's evil. He might have his reasons which I don't know yet, but.. I like him still. He still has that slight shed of humanity in him.
"Why don't you leave me alone?" I whispered one night as he hovered behind me while I tried to work at my desk. Long minutes passed. I didn't think he would answer. I even had time to hope he might have gone, until I felt his hand on my shoulder. "Then I'd be alone too, too." he said, and he stayed the whole night through, till the lamps burned down to nothing.
If ALINA DOESN'T WANT YOU! I DO!!
Anyways, towards the end of this book, I felt that he was still hoping for Alina to side with him. I think it's because he finally found someone who could understand his longing for power because Alina's feeling it too. He felt that somehow, she would understand that, only Alina still couldn't, and her loyalties still belonged with Ravka.
I honestly think, the Darkling is one of the best villain I've ever read about. He was unbelievably lovable for an evil person. I don't know what that says about me, but hey, I think I'm not the only one who the Darkling has ensnared.
While this book had its misses, I still loved it. The highlight of this book was really the characters. Although, I mostly hated the drama between Alina and Mal, individually, their characters grew into something more than from the first book. Alina wasn't the scared little girl who didn't know what to do with her powers anymore, nor was Mal just the good tracker. The both changed. And of course, with that change, the change in their relationship too. Which was totally realistic. I'm glad that Ms. Bardugo made sure that their individual changes, also manifested on their relationship.
The way the story unfolded on this book was just so good. I loved every minute of it. I didn't think there were any lowlights on this book for me. It didn't feel rushed at all. As I was reading, I felt all the hours, days, months of work put into it, to make it as perfectly constructed as it is. I JUST LOVE THIS SERIES. I felt that it was crafted so perfectly I couldn't pinpoint anything wrong with it at all. There were stuff that had to be there that I didn't enjoy, but what the heck, they could easily be overlooked I'm talking about the stupid lover's drama between Mal and Alina. It had to be there, but I hated it.
So... What else. I think that's it for my review of Siege and Storm. I am currently reading Ruin and Rising which honestly, didn't start too well with me. But, I like the series, and even though I already know that Alina and Mal would end up together, I still would like to know how everything ends.
Ms. Bardugo, you better start writing more books because I will be waiting for them. (less)
His eyes were beautiful - ice blue and intense - and I found it hard to look away.
Oh fuck me...
Insta-love on the first few pages of this book!
At first, I thought it had potential, because I sort of (and I really mean the sort of) like the female character Dez short for Deznee or something. She was spunky. I liked that, but when I read further... her spunkiness got a little too much that it became really annoying.
Another thing, when she said those words up there... she lost me... that was about at around 2% of the book.. 2 fucking percent! That was breaking the record. And I thought, Bella had the worse case of insta-love.
Insta-love is a pet peeve of mine when it comes to books. I'm not saying that insta-love is always a bad thing, it's not. There are some authors who could execute that very well and with those instances, it is acceptable for me... But this book... I think that about explains it.
Here is how the typical insta-love book scenario goes:
Girl meets handsome, hunky boy with blue eyes. Lovestruck girl gets smitten by hunky boy staring into her eyes. Lovestruck girls thinks it must be love. Hunky boy looks at girl and thinks she's the most exquisite thing in the entire planetuniverse galaxy. Hunky boy thinks lovestruck girl's so fragile she needs protecting all the time this one hunky boy is totally right about... Hunky boy vows to protect lovestruck girl until he dies which usually never happens, because authors don't usually kill their lead male character. Lovestruck girl and hunky boy gets into trouble. Lovestruck girl does something stupid. Hunky boy saves the day. Lovestruck girl and hunky boy lives happily ever after.
Does that sound familiar?
On this book, lovestruck girl saves hunky boy. Think lovestruck girl's impressive? Don't be.
I don't know why I rambled all about insta-love up there. It's just that... it gets so annoying sometimes that most ya books follow the same plot line add the stupid insta-love... it gets tiring to read about... *insert tons of random ramblings about how stupid insta-love is hlfdsahhgkahdglkjhgi*
anyway, on to the story shall we?
Dez, the Queen of Crazy Shit (that's what people call her... oh so she said.), decided to call it a night after doing some crazy stunts at a party.
Hair lashed like a thousand tiny whips along my face. The rough and rumbling texture of the barn roof beneath my board. Then nothing.
Flying. I was like flying. fucking idiot jumped off the top of a barn without anything to land on but cushy hays!
For a few blissful moments, I was weightless. A feather suspended in midair right before it fluttered gracefully to the ground.
Okay. So I sort of like her on these early parts.
Then, when she was walking him, she heard noises. Shouting. Then heavy footsteps. It was getting closer and closer to her. Then out of the blue, someone was tumbling down the hill who landed near the stream.
He'd landed in an odd angle. how odd was the angle? an odd obtuse angle? an odd right triangle?, bare feet and covered in several nasty looking slices. I squinted in the dark and saw he was bleeding through his think white T-shirt in several places as well as from the small gash on the side of his head. The guy looked like he'd gone ten rounds with a weed whacker.
If someone drops in front of you panicking and obviously, wounded... what are you going to do? I think the most human thing to do is help the person right? To ask if he's alright. To ask what happened. I know the guy could be a criminal. He could be a serial killer... and in that case running away, would be the best option... but do you want to know what the Queen of Crazy Shit did? she did the shittiest thing She took note of how good-looking the injured guy was. Thinking of whether he was from the part and if he was there, she would have remembered... Plus his hair was long... And he was missing he signature Parkview T-shirt tan... Give me a fucking break! Oh and he has well-defined arms and broad shoulders...
This guy obviously hit the gym - something the local boys could've used.
Uuuuhhh.. I mean come on. Are those really the things that girls think about when you see a severely injured guy? Really? I didn't like it Dez. Wrong move.
Anyways, so there. After all that, mysterious wounded guy demanded for her shoes. Yep. I'm not kidding. He asked for her shoes. She gave it to him and fallen on the mud during the process. Did hunky guy help her? Nope. He didn't.
So here's where the fun part stars. The people who were looking for mysterious, hunky guy caught up with him. too much time was wasted with Dez oogling Mr. Mysterious and Mr. Mysterious borrowing shoes Dez pointed the goons to the wrong direction and the bad guys were on their merry way of finding Mr. Mysterious, who were right there all along... hiding under their noses.
So... After the entire thing with the goons and the shoe borrowing... Mr. Mysterious finally says something...
"I'm hungry." He was staring again. "Do you have any food?"
So lovestruck girl leads hunky guy home. She felt that by doing this, she's getting even with her dad. Our girl has some daddy issues. Plus... I think she also have some wicked plans of her own...
But while the thought of pushing Dad closed to the edge gave me warm tingles, it wasn't my only motivation. I kind of wanted a little more time with the guy.Ooohh holllyyyhelllll puuuhhhlleeassseee... you don't even know where this dude came from or what he did with his life? Those arms... Those eyes...I'm not even kidding. She really said these..
Oh shit. I don't think I could continue with this anymore. That summary I gave, was just from the first chapter. While I'm a fan of fast paced book... This was just way too fast for my taste.
I had a lot of issues with the book. I didn't stop because this was a buddy read. And I wanted to, for once in my life, finish a buddy read. And I did. Only my friend didn't. We seem to share the same thoughts on this book. She gave up earlier than I did.
Okay so... Dez She was extreme... It seems that the author was trying so hard to make her look badass, but in the end, she just became really annoying for me. I like rebel girls, but there had to be a valid reason. I get that she and her dad stopped spending time together, but what she does to gain attention? I don't agree with. Take for example that stunt she did at the barn, that could kill a person done incorrectly. She does it all the time she says, but I don't buy it. Her dad has reasons, which I wouldn't reveal because... it's part of the story.. so I'm going to shut up now.
So.. yeah it's crazy. Hmmm. What else am I going to say about this... Uhhh.. Kale, that's Mr. Hunky's name. He's weird. He's not book boyfriend material at all. So, Kale has some sort of an ability. If I wasn't too lazy, this part should have been on the summary.. but there it goes... Kale's touch could kill people. Sounds familiar?Sounds exactly like my favorite series of all time! He was kept in a facility ever since he could remember. I remember a certain female who was kept in a facility too because of her deadly touch too so they could experiment on her. But Dez, was immune to his touch. WAIT WAS I READING SHATTER ME? ONLY DIFFERENT CHARACTERS? A SPINOFF MAYBE?
No, Sandee, you're reading Touched. And although, I initially thought this was similar to Shatter Me, it wasn't. There were plenty of similarities though, which I won't be enumerating, because... I'm fucking lazy. But there are quite a lot. Difference? This wasn't dystopian.
I like the writing - sometimes. This book was entirely on Dez' POV and like I said she was extreme... and it just gets annoying at first... then after a while, I started to hated her and her decisions... she did do some good towards the end though, so I was pretty impressed with that. Everything was wrapped up too perfectly and I didn't like that. It was too coincidental. Like how one person was some sort of psychic and she knew they would be able to accomplish the assigned task for Dez. And how Mr. Mysterious was someone special.
I don't know. This review's all over the place, because this book was too. I made notes, but just too lazy... I don't know why but writing this review... made me really lazy..
Anyways, if you've read this and liked it, good for you. But if you didn't like it and would like to talk about it... Leave me some comments below so we could discuss.
What if this book was fast paced. What if this book was a not in Cal's POV. What if this book wasn't too long I would have liked this book.
This book was...moreWhat if this book was fast paced. What if this book was a not in Cal's POV. What if this book wasn't too long I would have liked this book.
This book was hard one for me to review. It's not that I hated it. No. Not at all. I didn't hate this book, but I didn't quite like it either. The BIG SECRET was a big let down for me. It didn't satisfy me at all. I would have thought it was something REALLY BIG. and would really WOW me. The secret was built up so much, that when it was revealed... I was like... not too interested anymore.
Also, I kind of felt the secret was very obvious. There were clues... And if you look closely enough... you'll get it... soo... yeah... that was a big let down.
I'm not gonna spoil anything on this review because the author made a note at the end of the book to not put any spoilers on the reviews. So, I won't.
To start, here's the gist.
Cal grew up with three girls Rae, Richelle, and Nicole. They were the best of friends. But some things, just don't always stay the same.
The four of us grew up together in the same small-town California neighborhood. Rae lives next door, although she's pretty much an extension to my family at this point. Nicole and Richelle were neighbors a few houses down the street. When we were kids, we were inseperable. But things change when we got older.
Time changes people. When Richelle moved away without saying a word, Nicole started to drift away from Cal and Rae. The takls became less and less, until they don't even talk to her anymore.
Richelle moved away. We stayed in touch for a while. And then we didn't. Nicole chose popularity over our friendship soon after. Rae never gotten over Nicole's betrayal. And I never gotten over Nicole.
What a dickhead seriously! See that statement right there? That's one of the reasons I didn't like Cal and will never like Cal. It's so annoying why I can't even say why...
Graduation came and gone. It was time for college.
Cal was at a party. His girlfriend just dumped him to hook up with another guy. His night was not going too well. He then decided to leave, but then he met someone on his way out. Someone he didn't think he'll meet again, especially not on the school he was currently in. She was supposed to be at Harvart. They met at the party. And then, they met again the next morning at a coffee shop.
Then i just stand there and stare at her. She doesn't notice me, and that's probably a good thing because I look like a creep hovering above her. I have no idea what to say because I am standing in front of Nicole Bentley. But this girl looks... different.
But this wasn't Nicole. This wasn't the girl he grew up with overprotective parents who makes her wear dresses and was not allowed to get dirty. The girl standing in front of Cal was outgoing and carefree. And most of all, her name wasn't Nicole, but Nyelle Preston.
So the mystery is... WHO THE FUCK WAS NYELLE PRESTON?
I had lots of theories you know. A lot. I got it right eventually.
So there are a lot of things I couldn't reveal about the plot so... I'll just tell you about the things I could reveal.
Writing: I'm not a writer. Let's just make that clear. I don't claim to know much about how writers write their books and what type of devices they use on their writings. But I am a reader. As readers, I think we would know if the writing style of the author would suit our taste or not. I would be in the minority for this book again.
I read a lot of rave reviews for this book. But for me? I was just... okay. And most of the time, I just find it really boring and dull. It dragged on a lot of scenes. It wasn't really engaging for me. I had to force myself to finish this one, I was almost at the point where I was ready to put this on my DNF shelf... but I had to not do that because I'd had a lot of those recently.
I didn't really like reading Cal's POV. The only reason I continued on with reading this was to find out what the BIG SECRET was. I think I liked it better reading Nicole and Richelle's POV from the past. I honestly feel that Cal was not a very effective character and narrator. Meeeehhh..
Plot: UUuggghh. Where do I even start? It would have been good, but for me, I think the story was told in the wrong POV. I understand that the author wanted to add that mystery element to the story, and I admire that, but... It didn't work for me. I felt the story unnecessarily got dragged too long because of that. And because I really think Cal's stupid and naive. It probably would have been nice to have the story told on both Nicole and Nyelle's POV. There would still be mystery. There would still be questions. But the narrator would be more realiable... Hope that makes sense. Because honestly, I'm not sure I'm explaining this quite as much as I want to.
Majority of this book was Cal trying to figure out if Nyelle and Nicole are the same person. He was trying to comprehend whether they were separate people or not. Because they were alike physically, but not their actions, not the way they talk or the way they dress... Cal could have figured it our early on, if he only know how to fucking use his head. He should have asked.
I think this book went on, and on, and on. Seriously, a chunk of this book for me was a waste of paper. The longer it went, the more annoyed I become. The only thing that was keeping me from stopping was the secret... disappointing as it was.
And... I was right.
Again, sometimes, the simpler the story, the better the readers could connect with the characters and thee story.
Okay let's talk about the characters.
The book didn't focus too much on the characters. This book was an event-driven that caused the characters to become bland and one dimensional. No scratch that... That only applies to Cal. Haha.
Cal: I didn't like him at all. I thought he was douche, to be honest. He was obsessing over Nicole when he should be focusing on finding out why his ex-gf/gf stopped writing back. This book was majorly on his POV, and I didn't enjoy it one it. He was too passive for my taste.
I didn't like how obsessive he sounded everytime he talks about Nicole. He just mentioned his ex-gf once. ONCE!!! I'm not gonna say who is ex was because that's a spoiler. Buf if have picked up on some clues I left, you probably would have figured it out. He cared about her sure (probably), but didn't show it too much. He only finds out later on the story on what happened to her, but it still wasn't enough emotions on his part. What a fucking asshole! People just don't move away without saying anything without any reason. Right? Right? He should have at least tried to figure out at least what went wrong and why his ex stopped chatting with him.
Every time I read about Cal thinking on whether this Nyelle girl was Nicole, I want to slap some sense to him. Why didn't he ask her upfront instead of frying his brains trying it figure it out?
He was just stupid. I hate him. Book boyfriend material? That would be a big no.
Rae: I liked Rae. Rae is Cal's best friend and she's awesomje. I think she's the only character I liked from this book.
I understand why she's angry, that's a normal reaction to someone who was supposed to be your friend, but just stopped talking to you and pretend you don't exist. Nicole was a dick. I didn't like that she was such a pushover. I kind of feel Rae knew, but she had to let it go. Which is what Cal should have done too.
Richelle: The story was told in both present and past. We hear Cal's POV on present events while we hear Richelle's and Nicole's on the past ones. Based on the one's I do hear from Richelle, she was okay. She was that outgoing kid that liked to be friends with everyone. How could you hate a kid like that? Really? She's such a sweetheart.
There was a time though that she asked Nicole to do something, just because spoilery section... and did it because they wanted to remain friends. That was so... unrealistic to ask someone as they were just kids... Tsk tsk. That was a bit WTF moment.
Nicole: I feel bad for her, but it wasn't enough for me to sympathize with her situation. Does that make sense? I feel that the situation she was in, was not enough for her to do the things she did. I really hate when I couldn't say anything. She was the typical i'm-rich-so-a-lot-is-expected-of-me problem. Her parents had a bizarre way of treating their kid. If every rich family's kids were treated like that, I wouldn't want to be rich.
Okay. I'm not a fan of her either. Like I said earlier, she was a dick.
Nyelle: She was weird. And I like weird, but I still didn't like her. She was quirky which is a thumbs up. But the author overdone her mysteriousness that it was too obvious what happened to her. I felt that her illussiveness gave away the secret. I'm not particularly sure really if I like her or not. I could relate to how she thinks sometimes, because we share the same opinions on some stuff.
But.. I didn't really like her that much still.
So, let's talk about the books predictability. I have already got a good idea on what happened, right before the second half of the book started. So... it was a little predictable. There were a lot of clues here and there which totally destroyed the whole mystery aspect for me.
The pacing was a slow burn for me. Thumbs down for this one.
For enjoyability, not really sure if I did. It was okay. I couldn't rate it higher than 2 stars though. For books that I have a problem with the plot, my rating actually gets raised because of the characters. They compesate for the obvious lack of plot development which wasn't the case here. There was a plot. But... I just didn't enjoy the plot. I have to give the author props for trying to keep the mysteriousness althroughout the book. It really kept me reading, although I was getting a bit upset when it dragged too long.
This book wasn't for me.
Usually, books that deal with real life issues, move me to tears. I cry easily over sad books, movies, stories, even songs. But this book, didn't do anything for me. It didn't make me cry. It didn't touch me. I felt bad for some of the characters, but wasn't sad about it. I didn't sympathize with a lot of stuff that went on.
Anyways, that's all for this review. For those of you who want to know the secret and is not in any way interested in reading this... message me... we'll talk. (less)
Firstly, I would have to say that this book has so many kids of love in it: love for a significant other, love fo...more
If I stay. If I live. It's up to me.
Firstly, I would have to say that this book has so many kids of love in it: love for a significant other, love for family, love for friends, and love for whatever it is you like doing (which in Mia's case, was playing the cello). This book is overflowing with so much love - it's contagious. I wanna feel love too.
After the movie came out, I decided to reread If I stay. For some reason, the first time I read it, I wasn't as moved by it as Where She Went. I felt Adam's POV was more heartbreaking and beautiful than Mia's. But after this reread, it felt different. The whole book felt different to me. It felt more alive now that I was able to put faces on the characters. I could clearly see Mia, Adam, Kim, Mia's family, their friends and everyone else around them, and somehow, that changed the way I felt about this book.
I like vividness when I read. I like seeing things in my head (as weird as that might sound). I like imagining things happening as I'm reading it, and with this book, it became really easy. Rereading it, felt more like I was reading my diary. Reading my thoughts rather than Mia's. It was like a memory. My memory and it was damn beautiful.
It was a snowy morning when Mia's life changed forever. It was supposed to be just an innocent road trip, but suddenly, it turned into a tragedy.
The car is eviscerated. The impact of a four-ton pickup truck going sixty miles an hour plowing straight into the passenger side had the force of an atomic bomb.
Her family got into an accident. After the crash, Mia was still conscious of what was happening around her - only she wasn't conscious inside her body.
I edge closer and now I know that it's not Teddy lying there. It was me. The blood from my chest seeped through my shirt, skirt, and sweater, and is now pooling like paint drops on the virgin snow.
She couldn't believe she wasn't where she needs to be - inside her body. She was scared, but she followed her body that's being taken to the hospital. She had to figure out what was going on, where her parents and brother were, and how to get back inside her body.
Am I dead?
I actually have to ask myself this.
Am I dead?
Like every normal human being, Mia freaked out, seeing that her body was unmoving and still, while she was there staring at it. She was lost, confused, and afraid. She had no clue what was happening to her and why she got out of her body. She was there, but no one could see her. She also wondered, if her parents and Teddy was feeling the same way as she did.
Everyone she loved and care about was at the hospital. Her grand parents. Her best friend, Kim. Her parents' friends, Willow and Henry. And then, there was Adam.
She walked around the hospital, seeking answers to her questions about where her parents and brother were. After a while, she found out that they have already passed on. They all left her, which led her to think was there still anything to live for? Was there anything that would make her want to stay> Now that her parents and brother were gone, was there still anything else to make her want to stay?
Mom and Dad are gone. This morning I went for a drive with my family. And now I am here, as alone as I've ever been. I am seventeen years old, this is not how it's supposed to be. This is not how my life is supposed to turn out. In the quiet corner of the ICU, I start to really think about the bitter things I've managed to ignore so far today. What would it be like if I stay? What would it feel like to wake up an orphan? To never smell Dad smoke a pipe? To never stand next to Mom quietly talking as we do the dishes? To never read Teddy another chapter of Harry Potter? To stay without them?
It would be so easy for her to let go of life, now that her family's gone. Her grandfather wanted her to choose what she wants to choose, that would not beg her to stay, even if he wanted her to. He understood that it would be easier for her to just let go now that her family wouldn't be there when she wakes up. Although, it was hard for him, he was willing to let her go. But... there's still Adam.
"If you stay, I'll do whatever you want. I'll quit the band, go with you to New York. But if you need me to go away, I can do that, too. I was talking to Liz and she said maybe coming back to your old life would just be too painful, that maybe it would be easier for you to erase us. And that would suck, but I'd do it. I can lose you like that, if I don't lose you today. I'll let you go, if you stay.
THIS FUCKING LINE FROM ADAM MAKES ME CRY EVERY FRIGGIN TIME!!!My shirt's soaked again with tears!! I'm not kidding.
But in the end, it would still be Mia's decision. Will she stay, or will she go?
Mia: What's not to love about Mia? When I first read it, I already liked her. But reading her the second time, made me love her more. She was such a loving sister and daughter. She loved her family so much, even though sometimes, she felt that she doesn't belong.
Dad Sometimes joked that the hospital where I was born must have accidentally swapped babies because I look nothing like the rest of my family. They wer all blond and fair and I'm like their negative image, brown hair and dark eyes.
But as I got older, Dad's hospital joke took on a more meaning than I think he intended. Sometimes I did feel like I came from a different tribe. I was not like my outgoing, ironic dad or my tough-chick mom. And as if to seal the deal, instead of learning to play electric guitar, I'd gone and chose the cello.
Another thing I love about Mia, was her passion for playing the cello. Although, she and her parents don't share the same love for the same musical instrument, the love for music was still there. She pours out her heart and soul when she plays, and Adam saw that too.
Mia was shy. She wasn't into fights, but that thing on how she and Kim became friends was pretty hilarious. She lacked confidence, when she clearly shouldn't. Adam brought her out of her shell. Most of the time, she was insecure because Adam was getting a lot of attention from his femake fans. I think it's a valid concern actually, but she shouldn't worry, because Adam was madly, crazy in love with her. She didn;t like going to any of Adam's gigs because of that, but when her mom encouragedher to give his world a try... She started to enjoy it.
Adam: What's not to love about Adam? Seriously. He wasn't perfect, but he sure was pretty damn close to it. Like Mia, I loved his passion for music. It was like, his music was an extension of who he is. He says he doesn't like writing songs that makes him happy and I could tell why. Deeper emotions are let out when you're sad, depressed, or almost at the brink of breaking down. And Adam, liked to write when he is on that state, because that's when all his emotions come out. It comes out and it becomes something that other people could relate to, not just him.
Adam didn't have a good family. Unlike Mia's, his was nonexistent. I liked that he fit perfectly with Mia's family. He knew how to migle with them. He was respectful. He was sincere. And he was polite. He was a musician. He was good with kids, He was liked by parents. And he loves deeply, like with his music.
"This is the you I like. You definitely dressed sexier and you are, you know, blond, and that's different. But the who you are tonight is the same you I was in love with yesterday, the same you I'll be in love with tomorrow. I love that you're fragile and tough, quiet and kick-ass. Hell, you're one of the punkest girls I know, no matter who you listen to and what you wear."
Like I said, what's not to love about Adam?
Again, Adam was not perfect, and I liked that. He wasn't the typical hunky type of guy with all good looks, muscles, and a heartbreaking smile. He was slim - I think that's how he was described. He was average in appearance, but he had a big heart. Although, he and Mia had a lot of misunderstandings (which is normal), they fix it. He makes up for his mistakes, or at least he tries.
I love Adam. Rereading this, made me remember all the reasons why i love him.
Kim: I really like her. She was the best friend I never had or at least used to have. I'm not gonna go into details, but she really reminded me of my former best friend, who I don't really talk to anymore. We sort of drifted away I guess. Anyway, Kim, I love her. How she understood that Mia needed her Adam time too. Kim and Adam don't really get along very well, but they manage to be civil to each other for Mia. And when the accident happened, she was there not only for Mia, but also for Adam.
Mia's Family: I have no words to explain how much I love them. Her parents were the best ever. They were... unconventional. Which is not always good, but in their case, it worked very well. Their kids love them, and so does the people around them. I think I have a new favorite fictional parents aside from the Weasleys. They weren't the perfect parents, but they sure hell did try the best they could.
ADAM + MIA = MATURE TEENAGE LOVE
Their relationship was nothing short of perfect. Okay, it wasn't perfect in the sense that they get along all the time. They don't. They fight. They have misunderstandings. They argue. But at the end of the day, they realize that they're insanely crazy for each other and couldn't live leaving things the way they left it. What they have is a really mature relationship, that even most older people don't even have, and even Mia's mom seen that.
"That's not what I meant. The opposite, really. You and Adam never struck me as a 'high school relationship," Mom said making quote marks with her hands. "It was nothing like the drunken roll in the back of some guys Chevy that passed for a relationship when I was in high school. You guys seemed, still seem, in love, truly, deeply.
And what Adam said to Mia when she was at the hospital, about how he was willing to let he go just so that she could live, was a very, very admirable thing to do - giving up your own happiness so that other people could have their own. Shit! I'm getting teary-eyed again.
Sometimes, I wonder if I will ever find my Adam.
MY FINAL RAMBLINGS
I'd have to say that this book, although short, tackled some good stuff. When I started this review, I said that this book had a lot of love in it. It had almost all the types of love. It wasn't just a love story about two people romantically involved, it was also a love story of her relationship with her family, her friends, and her music. It was so damn good. So fucking good.
This book made me ask myself, what would it have been like to be in Mia's position? To lose everything in one day. To lose all that she'd ever known in a blink of an eye. Would I have wanted to let go even when i knew someone would still be waiting for me to go back? Would I have stayed? Lot's of tough questions.
Another thing I really liked was the way the story was told. I like Mia's voice better now that before. I felt a little disconnected with her the first time I've read it, but now I totally get it.
Movie Reaction: I'd have to say that the movie was just as amazing as the book. I think they touched on parts of the book that needed to be shown. I think they chose the perfect actors to play the role. I liked Chloe for Mia and Jaime for Adam. They were perfect. And Adam's line towards the end? Jaime nailed that! I couldn't have imagined it any better. It tore my heart open, just like when I was reading it. Amazeballs!!! It made me cry... so hard. If you haven't watched the movie yet... Please do.
After making this review, I changed my former rating to 5. Why? Because why not? I don't even remember why I rated it a 4 when I first read it. I felt every tiny thing from the beginning to the end. It was executed perfectly. It will definitely pull your heart strings and will leave you wanting for more Adam and Mia.
This was ony of the first YA contemporary romance books I've read, and like Twilight, it will forever hold a special place in my heart. No matter how many new books I'll read, I'll always remember this book, that showed me that bad things are unpredictable, that family are not always just those you are related to by blood, and how love can change you forever.