May contain some spoilers I was so happy, when I got the chance to read this early! Especially since there was that huge cliffhanger in the first book. Surely you remember the cliffhanger, where Jack took Nikki's place and ended up in The Tunnels? The dark, unpleasant place, you remember that? Well, Jack is still there, and the main goal is to get Jack out of the tunnels. So Nikki and Cole decide to team up! And boy, what a team they make. I mean actual lip contact once in a while. I was just jumping up and down cause I was so happy!! I actually thought they would already forget about Jack and leave him rot in The Tunnels, but NAH!!11 And "NAH" because even though everything was awesome in the beginning of the story and even during, things ended up pretty.. bad.
And what do I mean by "bad"? I mean TOTAL BETRAYAL!!!! And I mean betrayal by the author. Because I can't blame Cole for anything that went on. Because two things happened: 1) Author had to break up the triangle, and what's the easiest way? The other guy does something stupid/evil/both. BUT WHY COLE!? and 2) many times second book ends up being just a "filler", and in the end I got the feeling this was just a little detour before the actual goal. Detour that ruined Cole!!11
Okay, I may be a little upset because of the situation Cole, but I try to think positive. Maybe that whole thing is a scam. Yes, in my heart I have to believe that so I won't loose my positive POV. And I just have to mention this: the cover is breath taking, absolutely corgeus, absolutely love it!
To sum it up: Again, great read, but just can't beat the first book.
First I have to introduce Mind Games' UK cover, though I'm sure this is no news to anyone.
I really can't say which cover and title I like more, cause they're just so different and both suitable on their own way.
I didn't really know what to expect from this book when I first heard about it, except of course some sort of epic awesomeness, thanks to author. We have two narratives, Fia and Annie. They're sisters, but that's probably all they have in common. Annie is blind, but sometimes she has visions. But due to her blindness she's also pretty helpless and that makes her an easy prey. And that's the best way to control Fia; threaten Annie. Since Fia has the flawless instincts, she makes a great assassin (hint, the UK name!).
I wasn't a huge fan of Annie. She's blind, but sometimes I got the feeling she really is using her sister. Fia wouldn't have gone to that school if it wasn't for Annie. Fia wouldn't be used, if it wasn't for Annie. And it takes Annie years to realise this. I just feel she uses her sister sometimes too. But Fia.. I have a total girl crush! And I haven't have one of those in a long time. She's absolutely kickass yet.. she's in her breaking point. She just wants out, but there really isn't way. Until she comes up with a hopefully awesome plan. There's also some romantic action; the whole story starts when Fia doesn't kill Adam, and she hopes there could be something there, but there probably won't be. And then there's James, who is presented as a villain, but Fia actually really cares about him, even when she knows she shouldn't. And in the end, we might have been wrong about him all along.
Why I chose this to be the first review of this year is because this was one of my most anticipated books coming out in 2013, and I was so happy when I got to read this in 2012! I absolutely loved Kiersten's Paranormal series (and absolutely adored Evie), and couldn't wait to read more from her. But I must say I was completely taken by surprise when I realised how different Mind Games was from Paranormalcy! Paranormalcy was mostly just absolutely hilarious, so of course I was expecting more of that. But Mind Games.. it's nothing like Paranormalcy. It's dark and sad and even awful sometimes, yet it's amazing. Kiersten has her unique style of writing which captures you from the first page and keeps you glued to the book until you're finished. And then lefts you wishing you already had the second book. And the cliffhanger really doesn't help with that.
May contain some spoilers You read the synopsis, right? So there's a whole lot of talk about this dude called Dante, and you probably a) rolled your eyes OR b) was like "hell yeah!". I was something in between, meaning I casually rolled my eyes a little and in a small voice whispered "hell yeah". Some small part of me was definitely excited for this kind of dude, but so many times I've been disappointed. Cause many times those badass dudes are written by female authors and you can just tell that right away. Meaning, no matter how tough they try to act, they end up being ridiculous douches, just screaming "Look how tough I try to act yet I wouldn't even dare to use word poop."
And now I got some good news: Dante actually is a badass!! He has a huge ego, bad manners and his duty is to lure good girls into trouble. And he actually sounds like a guy when doing all that! So yeah, Dante definitely can make good girls bad. At least in the beginning. And you tolerate his bad manners because you know he actually has a good heart. Despite the fact he's a demon and all. So the beginning of the book is all about Dante making good girl do bad things, and that was just awesome. But then came the but. The bad boy fells in love with the good girl, and all the bad manners are byebye. Damn! The first actual eyeroll came when I got to the part where Dante swears eternal love to Charlie. Or something like that, can't really remember because of all the eyerolling.
Then there's Charlie, the ultimate good girl. I mean, there's no one better in the world. I'm dead serious. And she definitely would've deserved some extreme eyerolling with all the charity work and beauty flaws. So imagine my surprise when I managed not to roll my eyes until the whole Dante- scene came along! I did occasionally thought about it, but did not roll my eyes! *pat my head* I still didn't feel that connected to Charlie, her character felt actually pretty distant and I never really got to know her that well. But over all, writing characters so good and so evil could've ended up being a complete disaster, so the author definitely deserves the applause for doing such a great job! Not only with the characters, but also with the plot, since she managed to bring some new twists for the old good VS. evil story.
And she managed to give Dante a whole new life, as The Liberator, and that's definitely something to check out!
May contain some spoilers Big girl don't cry.. they get even.
How amazing is that?! I dreamed about something like that even when I was a little girl! Seriously, who doesn't dream about getting your sweet, sweet revenge? So this definitely was a book I wanted to read!
Three girls, Kat, Lillia and Mary, feel they've been treated wrong. But thanks to Kat's great idea, they decide to get even. And that's why I just love Kat! She drinks and smokes and is pretty much considered white trash. She has a big mouth and has some huge problems with the popular kids, but she has a heart in the right place. Her mother has passed away, so it's just her brother and father, so no wonder she acts like one of the guys! All I wish for her is to be happy. And no surprize, I wish things would work out with her and the guy she was hooking up with, no matter how complicated things are.
Lillia.. meh. Just a bit. She's a princess everyone loves and her life is filled with unicorns and puppies. Okay, not really, but her main problem is a bad best friend.
And then there's Mary. Everything else, even Lillia, fits the book perfectly. Together they create a great story about revenge. That idea I loved. But then Mary came along and.. I'm convinced she must be crazy, because there's no other way she fits the story. That's why I couldn't give this 4 cupcakes, like I originally thought. It's as if one author wrote everything else, and the second one wrote things about Mary. She just doesn't fit. Especially, since there's the whole paranormal thing going on. That's the main reason why I think she's just plain crazy. She definitely had some mental issues in the past, so I think that's the best, and only, explanation.
My thanks to Simon & Schuster for providing a copy for review!
May contain some spoilers Remember my reaction to Thirteen Reasons Why? (No? Read here!) Overall, I wasn't very pleased with it, so when another book is compared to that, I feel pretty hesitant. Okay, nearly didn't pick up this book. But man, am I glad I did! The bad memory of TRW is nearly erased from my memory, cause this was nothing like it. This ended up being so emotional read, and I do admit I cried, a lot.
Ellie is a charismatic girl, who everyone feel drawned to. But like with so many other charismatic people, she has something dark inside her. Like there's a black cloud hanging above her head. She never trusts people enough to really give them anything about herself. The closest person for her is her big brother, Jake, who knows some of her secrets. But then he has to move away for school, and she's.. not taking it so well. And then.. Ellie's dead. Her friends and family are left behind, wondering what happened, everyone blaming themselves. And everyone has secrets, secrets that involve Ellie and mostly make them blame themselves even more. Through out the book we'll get to see what life is like after Ellie is gone, but also get to see glimpses of life with Ellie.
What I really loved in this book was the emotions. They were real, and like I've said many times before, I usually fell in love with that kind of books. They're real, in all the ugliness and beauty of life. Characters were also that, both beautiful and ugly, sometimes kind, sometimes awful to each other, but that's just life. So the raw emotions were definitely the strong point in this book. And of course, where there's emotions, there's relationships. Every person had their own kind of relationship with Ellie, but my favorite was with Jess. It was so beautiful, innocent, real, what ever the word you want to use. It was also the most heartbreaking part of the book, and I cried nearly in every scene they had together. And I ended up heart broken myself because of them, because what happened to them was just awful.
There wasn't that many things I didn't like, but I did have sometimes little trouble with following all the characters, since there was several POV's AND we jumped back and forth in time. After few chapters I did get the hang of it, but usually I strougle with so many changes. I was also a little disappointed when there wasn't any "let's-gather-and-reveal-all-of-our-secrets!"- moments in the end. I'm kind of a fan of those kind of scenes, so I felt a little empty in the end, since there was still so many secrets left uncovered.
But, this was believable story about broken people and how they deal with the lost of their loved one. It was heartbreaking and painful, but I'm so glad I didn't miss it, since it was all worth it.
Thanks to Simon Pulse for providing a review copy!
"..And since Rose is older in the next book, I suspect I won't be having that much trouble with the age issue then!"
So that's how I ended the first books review. How stupid of me, that was clearly a jinx. But more on that later, because the main thing is.. This definitely ends up being one of my this years favorite books, and is just as brilliant as the first one!
Things are pretty much the same with Rose, meaning everything is f'ed up and she's kind of angry. Not as angry as before, but somewhat. So she spends a lot of time in therapy with her mother, because why wouldn't that be fun? Her brother is just as absent as before and has some pretty dark secrets. Her best friends seem to have their own things and then there's Jamie Forta, who is even more of a mystery than before! I would be annoyed, too.
Rose manages to surprise my yet again. Even though she's angry and feels betrayed by everyone, she manages to make the best of it. Just like that she finds her true calling and starts to grow up (fast)! She doesn't let anyone else define her, but starts to trust herself and her good heart and.. she just amazes me, again. She's an inspiring main character and I just can't get enough of her! But this time, I wasn't really impressed with Jamie Forta. Or with any other character, really. They made me feel annoyed and basically the same feelings as Rose. And the feminist inside me was all hooray! when Rose finally realized Jamie Forta isn't the answer! Yay! (But why do I keep writing "Jamie Forta"? Can't I just use one name?! Guess he's just one of those guys..)
Then there's the one, and only, but. This is the reason why there's half a cupcake missing, and is the same reason I didn't completely fell in love with the first book. The age thing. I know, Rose is older and wiser, but, again, it's just too much. She's supposed to be 15. How many of you found their true calling at the age of fifteen? How many of you weren't an awkward blob most of the time? And here I'm waving my hand, because I remember what it was like to be fifteen. I was the most awkward girl on my class and just tried to fit in, and so did pretty much everyone else. We were just ridiculous and thinking back to those days just makes me want to cry most of the time. We were childish and so extremely ridiculous and yes, now I'm definitely crying. It was just.. horrible. Nothing like Rose's life, which really makes me envy her.
Huge thanks for the review copy, this was definitely a pleasure!