Gripping. Haunting. Thrilling. Night Film gripped me for one week of my life aThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Gripping. Haunting. Thrilling. Night Film gripped me for one week of my life and wouldn’t let go. I couldn’t rest until I turned that final page and got to the bottom of the mysterious Cordova family.
Which is startling in itself, because my addiction describes the experience of investigative journalist Scott McGrath, who investigates Ashley Cordova’s death, the daughter of cult horror film director Stanislas Cordova. The family is shrouded in mystery, with everyone who ever worked with the film director refusing to talk about their experience. After a failed publicity blunder, Scott’s career was inadvertently ruined by Cordova, and he now has a personal vendetta to get to the bottom of the Cordova family.
At 600 pages, it’s one of the biggest books I’ve read in a while, but I was never bored of Night Film. Written with such natural prose, the horrors described, the investigation of Ashley Cordova’s death and the enigma of the Stanislas Cordova swooped in and grabbed me. These two characters can only be described as a force, prodigies in film making and piano. They are brilliance personified, but should mere men be placed on such a pedestal? With legions of Cordovites or fans speculating about the man himself, you can only wonder what he really is like behind all the smoke and mirrors.
Sprinkled throughout the pages are snippets of medical reports, news articles, photos and interviews which make you feel like you’re in the midst of the investigation. It also made everything about Cordova and his cult films seem so real, almost as if the words brought his films to life in your head. They’re horrific, they’re gripping, they’re absolutely brilliant, in such a way where Night Film feels like it’s more than words. It’s an experience like no other.
There’s an ominous vibe threaded through the entire novel, with Scott, Nora and Hopper constantly feeling as they’re being watched. Night Film will play tricks with your mind, and question your sanity. The investigation will lead in one direction, with an unforgettably obsessive narrator at it’s helm, but then facts will be revealed that make you question your belief. While the final reveal is more elegant than the big usual whammy, it left me with a lasting impression. Was the ending fact or fiction and is the thirst for knowledge finally abated?
The novel takes time to build, words upon words, facts upon fiction, multiple perspectives into an insane reality. It makes you suspect and experience a darkness like no other, a devil’s curse. While you just want to know the outcome with a sense of urgency, Night Film is worth reading cover to cover to get the full blown effect. At about 70%, it will launch into a crescendo of events which will leave you in shock and awe.
I can hardly believe it’s over. Night Film wrapped it’s way into my heart and mind, inspiring me to write great words and haunting me to no end. I’m so glad it will be made into a movie, because this is how great stories are told. Everyone has a Cordova story, and this is mine....more
Imagine if you lived in a virtual reality. You’d have all the powers, weaponsThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Imagine if you lived in a virtual reality. You’d have all the powers, weapons and equipment you could dream of at your disposal and you’ll achieve the impossible.
Ready Player One puts Wade (or his online identity, Parzival) in the center of a OASIS, a virtual reality world that has taken over the internet in the year 2044. OASIS is like our version of the internet, except you can literally live, eat, feel, smell, talk and breathe in the countless worlds due to an amazing breakthrough invention by Gregarious Games. It’s like Second Life or World of Warcraft but even better, because thanks to the haptic equipment and retinal projecting goggles, it feels like you’re experiencing everything firsthand.
Who wouldn’t want to project your ideal self to the world around you? Why would you ever leave your home, if everything you could have ever imagined be right in front of you?
It’s not all fun and games however, as Ready Player One also describes a world hooked on virtual reality, instead of living their own lives. From school, church, browsing and hobbies, everything is accessible through OASIS. Many people neglect the real world, leading to malnutrition, obesity, addiction, and the deterioration of social skills and human relationships.
The whole novel is based on a hunt for the creator’s inheritance also dubbed ‘Halliday’s egg’ – through a quest filled with seemingly impossible challenges of riddles, games and movie re-enactments. Aside from it being incredibly difficult, the world is filled with an evil global conglomerate of “Sixers” who wish to take control of the egg for their own nefarious uses.
I loved Wade for his fearless leadership, intelligence, humour and bravado, yet his one weakness was his infatuation on fellow gunter (or Halliday’s egg seeker) Art3mis. He was a fantastic strong hero character, but he had enough vulnerability about him to make him relatable. He just felt so honest and his feelings so real.
The romance, this is how I like it guys. Slow burning and sweet, formed over a deeper connection than just physical with someone who just ‘gets’ you. Although the romance was certainly a big deal for Wade, it never takes over the central story but adds just enough to make you ship the couple wildly.
The other characters were also incredible and endearing. Art3mis, for her ‘internet famous’ personality, her chemistry with Wade and her insecurity about her real self, Aech for his natural friendship and banter with Wade, and Shoto and Daito for their brotherly samurai bond. Although they started out as competitors, and their relationships weren’t always smooth, they banded together with a common purpose.
I absolutely LOVED every minute of Ready Player One. The whole novel was tense, exciting and jampacked full of pop culture and fun. It’s the best geeky fantasy I’ve ever experienced, paying homage to 80’s pop culture icons from TV, music, movies, games and books.
However, I don’t think my words could do this book justice. You’ll really need to experience its brilliance first hand. Definitely read it before the film comes out, directed by Stephen Spielberg!...more
I’m wrapped in a warm, fuzzy blanket of Simon and Blue, and oh what a wonderfulThis book appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
I’m wrapped in a warm, fuzzy blanket of Simon and Blue, and oh what a wonderful feeling it is.
Despite the mouthful of a name, Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda is completely adorable and a must read! It features platonic friendships between guys and girls (THIS should happen more often), and a wonderful developing relationship between two guys.
I loved how the relationship developed over email, where Simon and Blue got to know each other by sharing their innermost thoughts and feelings, on being gay, school, family and friends and the love of Oreos. Because they both go to the same school, they avoid giving any clues away. Their friendship just felt so real and genuine, and when they becoming more and more bold flirting with each other, it was just so cute. I fell in love with Blue before we found out who he was.
The wonderful thing about how gay people are portrayed here is that they’re not flamboyant or stereotypes, they simply just were. Simon’s this totally hilarious, unknowingly popular kid with a close group of friends who everyone likes. He has this hilarious, really dry sort of humour which I really connected with, and I loved seeing things from his perspective. Without giving too much away, Blue was completely normal as well, and I loved how their peers accepted it. There was no drama or meanness just for the sake of it.
There are platonic friendships between guys and girls, which is absolutely fantastic! I have a lot of guy friends myself which I have never felt romantically about, and YES it’s completely okay. There should be more platonic relationships in YA! Simon is the perfect BFF (although his friend’s don’t know it yet) with his childhood friends Leah, Nick and recently, Abby the bright and bubbly new girl in town. He’s supportive, he admires the good traits in his friends and loves them, flaws and all.
Family is obviously a big part of every teenagers life, and Simon, and even his friends have realistic relationships with his parents. Given they be hipsters and are a little bit quirky, I just loved how they were supportive in their own ways. And totally hilarious.
Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda captures the fluffiness of a cute developing relationship really well, it gave me all the feels as Simon starts falling for Blue. You can really feel his sense of longing, his constant thoughts on his new crush and how he just wants to know who he is. I just loved how adorable this book was, and how it portrayed healthy relationships for couples (gay, bi or straight), family, and friends. You all need to read this guys. It’s out today. Get ready for the feels!
Thank you to Penguin Australia for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review!...more
Tamlin. Lucien. Rhysand. These are the names of the Fae Lords in Prythian whoThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Tamlin. Lucien. Rhysand. These are the names of the Fae Lords in Prythian who gripped my heart with their strength, fierce protectiveness, power and bonds they will form with the heroine. How is it, that Sarah J. Maas can make us desire and fall in love with every single male character there is? I’m sorry Chaol, Dorian and Rowan, but these three Fae have stolen my heart.
A Court of Thorns and Roses featured a brilliant take on the Faerie world called Prythian. It’s divided into Faerie lands and Mortal lands, with each faerie court ruled by a different lord. I was drawn to the imaginative fae creatures, from the beautiful and powerful rulers, to the ones that wear a mask, to the truly monstrous creatures that could shatter your mind. There was such a magical, glimmering beauty about the world, with a shot of absolute terror at these powerful creatures, and it was executed perfectly.
The book is split up in two distinct parts – the first where Feyre is imprisoned in the Faerie lands. We’re kept relatively in the dark about her strange circumstances and where she stands with her two captors, but patience will be paid off as she slowly learns her boundaries with them and later, her purpose in the world. The start didn’t make sense to me, but Feyre’s capture will leave a simmering sense of mystery that will be eventually unveiled. Although this part was much slower than the 2nd half of the book, I lavished the development between the characters as Feyre learnt about the world.
Once all is revealed, Feyre will unleash her true potential as a strong, brave, passionate huntress character. While she’s a relatively mild character in the first half, she’s given the chance to exhibit her loyalty, her strength and her power, as a temptress and as a huntress. She’s totally badass, who isn’t scared to test the waters and would do anything to protect those she loves. I love how she truly earnt her place as an equal amongst the Fae, even at the disadvantage of being a human.
The romance was totally hot, with super sexy scenes between Feyre and Tamlin. Although it isn’t as graphic as some NA books, it doesn’t shy away from the hot bedroom action and talk, and it will have your heart pounding. I think it would be safe to read for the typical YA reader though, if you choose to skip particular scenes. Although the romance has a clear front runner, there’s a lot of chemistry between her and Lucien with their fun and wary banter and the handsome and dangerous Rhysand. She definitely flirts with danger and knows how to use her charm and intellect to get what she wants.
A Court of Thorns and Roses, brings me back to a time when I lived for paranormal romance. From a heart pulsing and sizzling romance, to a strong heroine that develops over the course of the book, to an incredible world of monsters and beauty, this book excels in every element. It takes time to build the story through Feyre’s capture into the Prythian – the Fae world, the trust which Feyre will develop for the mysterious Lucien, and the love that she will form with the powerful Tamlin. This was a brilliant, sexy and strong paranormal book, with a guaranteed book hangover as no other book may compare.
Thank you to Bloomsbury Australia for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review....more
It’s been a while since the last Vlad and Leila book, but Bound by Flames wasThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
It’s been a while since the last Vlad and Leila book, but Bound by Flames was worth the wait with both of them coming to their absolute power in this installment.
As my favourite Night Huntress couple, Vlad and Leila’s relationship really shone with the toughest enemy they’ve faced yet – Vlad’s nemesis and uncle, Mihaly Szilagi. The book had some really dark, disturbing scenes, with rape and torture following Leila’s capture. If there was any other woman that could withstand that treatment, it would be her, as she came close to experiencing what Vlad did in his dark past.
I’ve always enjoyed Leila’s defiant, passionate and tough character, and Bound by Flames made me realise all over again how much she really complimented Vlad. Her incredible strength, power and independence makes her his perfect match, and she’s earned a place beside him. What I loved about Leila aside from her kickass power of electricity and lightning, is her practicality and humanity. While Vlad would blast through the end of the universe in order to get vengeance, Leila knows how to pull him back and redirect his power. She’s often reflective about herself, her family and her relationship which shows a tough maturity about her.
Vlad was an intense flaming inferno of power, passion and vengeance where his influence had no boundaries. He’s incredibly passionate and can be overbearing at times, but he learns to trust Leila as a handy weapon to have in a fight. Leila also brings out a softer side to this bristly centuries old vampire, which is rarely seen by everyone else. I loved their flirty banter and you can really see just how much he loves her in this book.
The rest of the book is told through an escalating power play between Vlad and Mihaly, as they search each other out, provoke each other and pit their oldest allies against one another. What I’ve always loved about the Night Huntress series is how these vampires have powers- fire, lightning, psychic ability and even necromancer abilities.
After the Night Huntress series ended last year, I was glad to relive the world through Vlad and Leila, a completely badass couple who kicks ass. It’s action packed and filled with so much epic vampire magic, yet you’ll see a brilliant romance strengthening in its wake, mystery, intrigue, betrayals and even some time spent discovering new grounds with family and friends.
If you’re put off by the 10 book long Night Huntress series, the Night Princes series is a good place to start too. ...more
The whole internet is gushing about Cress and now I know why. It’s superior toThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
The whole internet is gushing about Cress and now I know why. It’s superior to Cinder and Scarlet and I loved every single page of the book. At 500 pages, that’s a big call, but the plot was paced so perfectly with the perfect amount of action, laughs, and character development that I wanted more. Each of the characters’ stories are interwoven seamlessly here, even with the changing point of views (which is a criticism I had with Scarlet). They each get plenty of screen time, except for poor Scarlet being pushed to the side due to her captivity on Luna.
Cress was a fantastic addition to the cast and so different to the snarktastic, loyal Cinder and the straight talking, fiery Scarlet. Her social awkwardness, obsession with Thorne and unrealistic ideals for romance makes her completely charming in her own way. Seeing Thorne finally get his match warms the heart as he takes center stage in Cress.
“Since we have a few minutes…maybe we should talk about how to handle this girl. If she’s been stuck on a satellite for seven years, with no one to talk to but a Lunar tharmaturge, she might be…socially awkward. I think we should all make an effort to be extra welcoming and supportive and…try not to terrify her.” – Scarlet
With so many leading ladies and men, Meyer manages to avoid the ‘too many cooks’ syndrome with each character shining on their own accord. You’ve got Cinder who is now taking on the weight of the world on her shoulders. The broody, fists first Wolf who only has his eye on Scarlet. Scarlet, the fiery, tough as nails orphan who unfortunately gets kidnapped. The shy, socially awkward but brilliant hacker Cress. The upbeat android Iko who narrates the ship. And of course, the witty, self confident Thorne who gets by with style and swagger. This cast of characters is absolutely brilliant and I adored every single one of them.
It’s not often that I find myself rooting for several couples in one series, but I love all of the pairings here, especially my favourite Cinder and Kai who are perfect for each other. Thorne and Cress had a really cute dynamic, with Cress being a socially awkward, idealistic romantic at heart and Thorne with his charm and overconfidence.
“How are your eyes?” she asked. (Cress) “Well, I’ve been told they’re dreamy, but I’ll let you decide for yourself.” (Thorne)
Cress is noticeably heavier than previous books, with the plot more serious than it ever has been before. Thorne is blinded at the start of the book, Cinder uses her Lunar powers in a dark way and Scarlet is not treated well on Luna. Even Cinder’s trademark sarcasm is wit is bogged down with the weight of responsibility, as she assumes a leadership position within the crew. We are ramping up for some pretty major political breakthroughs, with Kai’s forthcoming marriage with Queen Levana and Cinder planning to stop the Lunar war. But Thorne’s hilarious remarks and Iko’s charming personality were a much needed reprieve from all of the seriousness.
Marissa Meyer is a genius for reinventing these fairy tales into something fresh, vibrant and completely enthralling, placing beloved fairy tale characters into the futuristic world of Lunar. When the story for each book is interwoven into the single point of awesomeness that is Cress, you know that the author has a plan for the series as she takes us to its epic finale in Winter. Cress is a magnificent, flawless story that just makes me want to squeal like a fangirl over the characters, the cover, the writing and Kai. If you haven’t read this series yet, do yourself a favour and READ IT NOW. You can thank me later....more
If you haven’t read this series yet, you have to read it now. It’s the best YAThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
If you haven’t read this series yet, you have to read it now. It’s the best YA fantasy series I have ever read, and the sequel is somehow even better. Crown of Midnight is an incredible sequel, delivering even more intrigue, action and romance than the first.
While Celaena Sardothean rarely practiced her trade in the first novel, the book opens with her performing her duties as the King’s Assassin. She walks into court room dropping her target’s head in front of the King. It appears that the Celaena we know from the first novel has hardened, now that she’s taking instructions from the king, and we knowingly witness tense relationships with her two suitors, Dorian and Chaol.
Our assassin has a few secrets up her sleeve with surprise reveals in Crown of Midnight. She shows us her ruthless dedication and manipulative side, and an event will have her unleashing all of her fury and rage at the world. Even Dorian and Chaol add their own dose of kickass to the mix, and I was pleased to find how action-packed the book was throughout.
Even more than the first, Crown of Midnight involves multiple layers of deceit, secrets and betrayal that will have you constantly guessing throughout. Sarah J. Maas holds no bars when it comes to deaths, mentions of gore and the horrors of the castle, which adds a morose and threatening air around the castle.
The romance in Crown of Midnight was done beautifully again, with Celaena choosing the man that is the most right for her and all she stands for. Others have mentioned how every guy seems to fall in love with Celaena and that’s certainly the case here. Luckily the Captain of the Guard is someone I can certainly get behind, with his loyalty, dedication and protection of Celaena being at the forefront of his mind.
Overall, Crown of Midnight was a brilliant follow up to the first novel with the series creating a hardcore fandom worldwide. I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to read this series and can now join everyone in waiting eagerly for the third book – Heir of Fire.
Thank you Bloomsbury for sending me a copy of this book for review....more
Where a simple act of defiance and moral justice transforms into a web of deceThis review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Where a simple act of defiance and moral justice transforms into a web of deceit, betrayal, and death, The Assassin’s Blade completely blew me away as a prequel to Throne of Glass. It all starts from a simple mission which Celaena Sardothien chooses to disobey, leading into her entire livery being crushed before her very eyes and into the bitter, jaded assassin that we know today.
The five novellas each cover separate missions: one, to rescue thousands of slaves from a Pirate Lord, to teach a healer how to defend herself, to learn from the Mute Master of Assassin’s in the desert, to help fight slavery from an evil crime lord and lastly, the assassination that was never going to pan out. In the first story, we see Celaena rescue thousands of slaves from a Pirate Lord, which sets the tone for the rest of the novellas. Celaena’s past is one I couldn’t tear my eyes from, as the events all lead up to her inevitable imprisonment in Endovier.
The stranger couldn’t have been older than seventeen but…But Adarlan had made them all grow up fast. Too fast. - Yrene the healer
In The Assassin’s Blade, we see what shapes Celaena into the person she is today, with her love of finery, cocky confidence, intelligence and mastery of assassination present here. Her master and mentor, Arobynn has taken her in as his protégé and like a cult leader, she doesn’t question his decisions. As the King of Assassins, he’s given his group board, missions and even gifts in exchange to do his dirty work.
One in his position of power cannot be infallible however, as his anger towards Celaena and Sam are enacted throughout the novel. With multiple layers of deceit and trickery, Arobynn’s cruelty knows no end as he toys with Celaena and Sam with his influence and missions.
Celaena is certainly a kick ass character and we are given some background as to why she holds herself to high standards and morals. Pampered and entitled as Arobynn’s favourite, she has high regard for herself and her master, and she lets everyone know it. She even treats Sam as a competitor ready to swoop into her title, but slowly warms to him across the course of the novel. With all of her morals and penchant to do the right thing, we wonder why she’s in her chosen career. The Assassin’s Blade demonstrates to us that her love of finery and skill actually allows her to right wrongs against slavery and evil by dispatching the toughest enemies.
The romance with Sam is slowly developed over the course of the novel, and we see her slowly regard him as a competitor, to companion, to someone who she truly cares for and loves. With his never ending devotion to Celaena, his honour and power protecting her throughout, he holds on his own against Chaol and Dorian. Having grown up with her, he really does know her the best out of all them. Sam just feels totally right for her, which reinforces my belief that there is no The One out there for us. There are several people who could become them, each with their different things to offer us.
“I love you…I have for years. And he hurt you and made me watch because he’s known how I felt, too. But if I asked you to pick, you’d choose Arobynn, and I. Can’t. Take. It.” - Sam
The Assassin’s Blade is a compelling, in-depth prequel filled with fantasy, romance, action and deceit that fleshes out Celaena’s background as Adarlan’s Assassin. The author has taken her time to illustrate to us Celaena’s relationship with her mentor, her moral high ground, and the protectiveness that her and Sam share. This is a MUST READ for any fans of the series and even as an introduction to the novel. I couldn’t put it down, and it’s the perfect filler until Reign of Fire is released.
I received a review copy from Bloomsbury in exchange for an honest review....more
Love Wizard of Oz and Wicked? Be prepared to have your mind bloOriginally posted on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Actual Rating: 4.5
Love Wizard of Oz and Wicked? Be prepared to have your mind blown with this darker retelling of Oz. In Dorothy Must Die, everything we know about the Wizard of Oz has flipped on its head, with Dorothy as the evil princess and the Wicked witches as the good guys. Dorothy has let magic and fame get to her head and those who were formerly Wicked, have banded together as the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked to be rid of her omnipotent rule.
I enjoyed the detail that went into the world building and how the author weaves in parts of the original story, while making it her own. Horror permeates every detail to demonstrate just how twisted this new version of Oz is, like the existence of permasmile, gothic munchkins, ravens with human ears, monkeys who get dismembered and lots of gory happenings. Horror in YA is something that traditionally hasn’t been done well, but this mish mash of horror, fantasy, magic and a retelling was really unique and done really well, without the usual YA tropes pulling it down.
“Down is up, up is down. Good is Wicked, Wicked is Good. The times are changing. This is what Oz has come to.” - Glamora
Each character in Dorothy Must Die is vibrantly re-imagined to fit in with the horror theme. The cast of villains were all scary in their own right; Dorothy is this evil, attention seeking and power hungry villain who doesn’t bat an eyelid at brutalising people and reveling in it. Her original entourage are characters from nightmares, with the big, bulging lion who feeds on people’s fear, the scarecrow who does horrible experiments on the monkeys and other living things, and the Tin Man who has knives and other sharp objects as his limbs. The other secondary characters are just as compelling, as Glinda the good witch chills us with her permasmiled perkiness and Ozma walks around with brainwashed vacancy.
Amy Gumm, the replacement of the heroine in Oz, was also a fiery, rough and unique character who I enjoyed. With her pink hair, candid personality, ability to stand up to bullies, she’s not afraid to right wrongs and fight for what she believes in. As a girl raised in a trailer by her drug-addicted mother and being bullied at school by a pregnant cheerleader, her life in Kansas pre-conditioned her to deal with the horrific happenings in Oz. I loved how she had street smarts and had the brains to question things that didn’t make sense, and knew when to run away. I also liked her compassion when it came to saving Oz’s lesser beings, as she quickly makes allies in this deep, dark world.
So this was what I was up against. A psychotic midwesterner with a reservoir of magic who was never alone, surrounded by loyal killers that would disfigure one of their own without a second thought. - Amy
I was really pleased to find the romance not take center stage, with the focus on the mission and the plot. Amy doesn’t turn stupid or fawn over Nox, they don’t fall in love at first sight and they don’t lament about each other’s looks. They get attached because of the amount of time they spend with each other over training, which is how a relationship should develop. The romance was more of a side dish to the main plot though, and admittedly it doesn’t get too much of a focus.
There were however, quite a few flaws. The blurb of the book outlines a checklist of things that must happen before Dorothy Must Die. Most of these things don’t happen in this book and instead, will span out to the rest of the series.
The supposedly powerful gang of the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked also devise a master plan of killing Dorothy, which involves keeping her in the dark about the major details. Which results in her attempting to murder the princess with a small knife, a plan that was doomed to fail. The last 2 pages of the book is also an incredible rush, shoving major plot reveals in just a few words, resulting in a major cliffhanger.
Dorothy Must Die is a fantastic fairy tale re-imagining of the beloved Wizard of Oz story, and turns everything on its head and churns it out into a twisted, nightmare version of Oz. With just enough of the source material, Danielle Paige takes creative license on the series and makes it into her own. Although it had a few flaws, it’s one of the most original retellings I’ve read in a long time as a wonderfully sensationalised, fun and nightmarish version of a classic tale. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series and if you’re thinking of picking it up – do so now!...more
This review has been posted on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more review on Crown of Midnight and more!
It's not often that a book like Throne ofThis review has been posted on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more review on Crown of Midnight and more!
It's not often that a book like Throne of Glass comes along, with it's epic fantasy lands capturing and captivating me into a land filled with royalty, assassins, outlawed magic, romance, beautiful dresses and different kingdoms. I knew I would love it after countless recommendations from other bloggers, and it surely lived up to its name.
I now see why Celaena Sardothien is everyone's favourite heroine, she's beautiful, kick ass, alluring, intelligent and deadly, but her vibrant personality makes her come to life. Moments of vulnerability, a sharp wit, arrogance and alluring charm really flesh out her character, and the book delivers wonderful character development throughout. Every line delivered is with sarcasm, sharp wit and humour which is entertaining and hilarious to read. She's not totally perfect however, as the Celaena we first meet is arrogant, ruthless and bitter after being imprisoned for years. I liked her strength and dedication, as well as her vulnerability which made her all the more believable as a character.
"I'm already notorious as an assassin - I don't particularly feel like being notorious for sharing your bed." - Celaena
While the book is mostly centered around a tournament to find out who the King's Champion will be, it also features a healthy dose of mystery with the competitors being slowly killed off in a gruesome way. Celaena takes it upon herself to investigate these murders to find out who is behind them, while she's also strengthening and honing her skills for the tournament. With horror, magic and hidden secrets hidden between the Castle's walls, this part of novel reminded me of Harry Potter in a way.
With her charm and wit, she's captivated two sexy guys under her spell - Prince Dorian, and the Captain of the Guard, Chaol. This is a love triangle that is done well, it will have you rooting for both guys who are both suitable companions. Dorian is charming and handsome, who is attracted Celaena because she treats him so differently to all the other ladies of the Court, but he's the Prince of a Kingdom who has taken everything away from her. Chaol is a man of honour, responsible for training and disciplining Celaena but he also puts his duty for the Kingdom's safety first, and an assassin is first and foremost a threat against the Kingdom.
"I think you have far more attractive suitors vying for your attention. I'm boring company to keep." - Chaol
She haunted his thoughts, made him wish to do grand and wonderful things in her name. - Dorian
The romance, like the various subplots of mystery, history and politics, is weaved intricately into the story without losing sight of the plot. Celaena doesn't turn into jelly at the sight of these two men but instead, plays them to her needs to win the tournament and attain freedom. There is a lot of witty, teasing banter between both of the males and Celaena, which is exciting to experience.
An honourable mention goes to Princess Nehemia, one of the castle dwellers who quickly becomes friends with Celaena. She is exotic, feisty, honourable, wise and loyal to her own kingdom, and she shows Celaena how you can be family, even though you don't share the same blood. Her knowledge of the ancient magic of Wyrdmarks makes her a valuable source of knowledge for our assassin.
"Something about him makes me want to beat in his face." - Nehemia
Throne of Glass is a superb debut in high fantasy for YA readers, and it truly deserves all its praise. Rarely do you find a multi-layered book that does everything well, from the romance, to the action, to the plot and romance. What truly makes Throne of Glass shine are the characters are the heart of the novel, two strong male leads and an incredibly memorable heroine....more
Harvard University’s most famous Professor returns in Dan Brown’s forth installFull review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Harvard University’s most famous Professor returns in Dan Brown’s forth installment of the Robert Langdon series, Inferno. Inspired by the poem of the same name about a man’s journey into the depths of hell, the major focus of Inferno includes deciphering some mysterious lines that can only be solved by Robert’s intellect.
As my most anticipated book of 2013, Inferno did not disappoint. Despite a contrived beginning where Robert suffers from short term amnesia, the research conducted into a centuries old poem, the magnificent daydream setting of Florence, and the historical references of major artifacts is a literary feast for your senses. As Dan Brown’s trademark, Inferno takes us through famous museums, old crypts and celebrated tourist spots, where Robert’s knowledge of symbolism, secret passages, and historical secrets may flourish.
Only one person can masterfully envelop multiple points of historical and current research into a thrilling, yet eerie plot and that person is Dan Brown. Filled with twists and turns, the novel entices us with it’s nonstop action with Robert and Sienna, his trademark lady accomplice running from armed soldiers. Their mission is to decipher an obscure poem left by master geneticist and Dante devotee, Bertrand Zobrist which hints at solving over population, human kind’s biggest threat.
The conspiracy within the book is as chilling and realistic as ever, captured in this confronting quote: “If you could throw a switch and randomly kill half the population on earth, would you do it?…What if you were told that if you didn’t throw that switch right now, the human race would be extinct in the next hundred years?”
Multiple plot lines seemingly converge at a perfect pace and the pockets of intellectual research never seem to interfere with the fast-paced plot. The novel covers a myriad of topics, from theories into bio-weapons and geneticism, Dante’s life and other historical figures, the trademark opera masks, to the significance of ancient artifacts such as the death mask. A book like this can be digested over and over again, and each time we can take away something new from it.
While Robert is as sharp as ever (despite his brief lapse in memory), it’s his companion Sienna Brooks that steals the show. From the start of the book, we find out the doctor is also a child prodigy, where her intellect and smarts blow the rest of his peers out of the water. While being a master actress, skilled fighter, multi-linguist and being able to think quickly on her feet, she seems to have a mysterious agenda which she only hints at alluding to throughout the book. Since Sophie Neveu from The Da Vinci Code to Vittoria Vetra in Angels & Demons, Dan Brown has always been proficient at creating intelligence female characters that match Robert’s intellect in one way or another.
The facts are all presented to us in a thrilling way, and the ending is definitely not a happily ever after. It leaves us with some thoughts to ponder on what will be done to solve a real threat to life as we know it. Dan Brown is extremely adept at his craft and his gutsy, intelligent, and controversial reads will always be at the top of my favourites list....more
Marked for Vengeance is about Alyx Rayer, a seemingly normal humanPosted as part of a review tour on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Marked for Vengeance is about Alyx Rayer, a seemingly normal human working a day job and hanging out with her best friend Cinda. She is beautiful, smart and dates a rich, handsome doctor but she has a hazardous secret – spying on Isaac, a mysterious ‘painter man’ from a roof top at night. There’s more to Alyx than meets the eye, as she hides her strange scar on her shoulder and seems enraptured with the strange man. And so the journey of Alyx Rayer begins, as her life slowly falls apart and we gradually find out her purpose.
I loved the way the plot was revealed in this book. When we meet Alyx, we don’t know what to expect as she seems like she lives a normal life. Then strange cues pop up here and there about her stalking, her scar and calling Isaac her ‘Marked’. She also alludes to the fact that this may not be her first life time and she needs to do normal things to blend in, like date and hold a job. We don’t find out what Alyx is until the later half in the book, as the pace speeds up and we transition from Alyx the human, to stalker, to supreme being. The sense of mystery captivated me from the start and I couldn’t put this book down.
While not appropriate for the YA audience due to sex scenes and violence, the book is written in a first person YA style that is refreshing and easy to read. I read a particularly heavy book beforehand and this is exactly the type of read I was looking for, one that is entertaining, not a brain burner and a general good read. I would classify this as a dark NA fantasy, sort of similar to Angelfall in that it isn’t appropriate for the younger audience.
The point of view transitions between Alyx and Isaac as we delve into their lives. Isaac is a middle-aged widower whose sole mission is to raise his teenage son. He hasn’t dated ever since his wife passed away and upon stumbling into Alyx at the cafe where he works, he also feels a mutual attraction to this beautiful but strange girl. While there are traces of insta-love going on between the two, they have an interesting relationship to develop as Alyx’s ‘Marked’ target and also someone who she’s been stalking for a while.
The book speeds up towards the last half with a really interesting reveal. I don’t want to give away too much so that you can enjoy the plot for yourself, but I’m interested in seeing how this forbidden romance will continue in the next book, Tethered by Fate. Lucky I don’t have to wait a long time as it’s just been released!...more
I’m an emotional wreck. Adrienne Kress has charmed me with her unusualFull review has been posted on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
I’m an emotional wreck. Adrienne Kress has charmed me with her unusual writing, warm characters and quirky storyline, and then wrung my heart strings with that emotional ending.
Outcast is about a small town that is visited by angels each year, who abducts a few humans in a yearly event called ‘the taking’. Riley Carver has lost Chris, her best friend and love interest from the taking, and in the sixth year of the taking, she’s determined to find answers. So when an angel turns up for her, she shoots it in the face.
That angel turns out to be Gabe McClure, a boy who is compared to James Dean on a variety of occasions, who lived about 50 years ago. While it all sounds like a typical YA fare, Outcast is like the Zombieland or Hot Fuzz of conventional genres. It is charming, quirky, and yes – a little out there but we love it all the same.
I definitely didn’t expect Outcast to hit me in the way it did. The first few chapters took a bit of getting used to, with a slightly awkward way of putting things and stunted conversations. It took me a while to realise that the character voice was perfect for Riley Carver herself, the tough, awkward, no nonsense teenage girl who doesn’t care what anyone thinks. And that’s what makes her charming in her own little way.
This is a girl who, instead of preoccupying herself with crushes, social groups and clothes, spends her time planning how to get Chris back and finding out more about Gabe and how he came to be. I grew really attached to Riley over time, she has that gung ho no nonsense attitude about her yet she’s awkward, smart, and resourceful, and a leader and motivator without knowing it. I had so much more fun reading about Riley and delving into her thoughts, and the way she accepts supernatural things happening around her, rather than the million insecure and boy-obsessed ’Mary Sues’ that we see so much in YA fiction today.
Gabe himself was cute, and the way he ruffled Riley’s feathers was adorable. He’s in denial about what he’s went through and adopts everything high school life has to offer, unlike Riley and it’s interesting to see how these two mix.
Outcast is one of those novels that adds magical elements into real life, but in a way that is believable (as unbelievable as the Taking sounds) but doesn’t take itself too seriously. For example, Riley is stalked by this ‘ghost thing’ that has a white sheet over its face with two holes. She talks to the ghost, who talks back in a literal manner. I found the whole exchange between them to be quite hilarious (and although it’s slightly creepy, it wasn’t really presented that way).
What was creepy though, was Pastor Warren and the way he weaseled his way into the town. The story has come alive so vividly for me that I’m picturing this whole thing like a movie, and in the movie, he’s the villain who needs to be defeated by Riley and Gabe.
I could go on about it but I think I’ve communicated that I absolutely loved Outcast and everything about it! I highly recommend it to everyone looking for a charming, witty novel. I received this novel from Diversion Books via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, thank you so much for this opportunity. I only wish this was a series so I could read more!...more
Finishing Prodigy gave me goosebumps. I mean after building up the emotThis review appears on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews!
Finishing Prodigy gave me goosebumps. I mean after building up the emotions throughout two books, this major cliffhanger happens? No, this can’t be the end.
That just shows you how attached I got to both June and Day. These two are amazing characters that the whole series underpins itself on, and boy, are they fascinating to read about. June is the perfect military agent who lets instinct, military ability and keen sense of observation guide her. She’s cold, calculating, and forever observing. The only one to make her relax is Day, who could win the hearts of the people from his personality alone. He’s often constantly putting other people’s needs before his, and unlike June, lets his emotions cloud his vision. It’s refreshing to read about a guy that actually has emotions other than being a bad boy, and I really enjoy the contrast between them.
In Prodigy, June and Day are public figures that have the most influence over the people and are recruited by Patriot rebels to overthrow the Republic and assassinate the new Elector Primo. June is sent to charm and mislead the new young Elector, and Day will join the Patriot’s forces on the front line. As the young lovers are forced apart, other admirers attempt to convince them about the fate of their relationship (who needs a triangle when you can have a square)? After all, Day has been brought up in the slums and he’s been stricken by poverty all of his life, and June has been brought up as a preened prodigy with a life of aristocracy and refinement. Can these two work out based on their differences?
Prodigy brings forth a complexity between characters that many other novels fail to address. It’s not just “no matter what, love will bring us together”. It’s more about what’s best for the each of them and how to utilise their skills and status the best.
The heart of the novel contains nonstop action and a high intensity covering the revolution between soldiers and rebels. As June and Day individually uncover the truth behind the Republic, we learn how the Republic came to be, the richness of the Patriots and the tightly controlled Colonies of America. The author truly excels at creating a thrilling story heavy on military antics, manipulation, politics and espionage
The writing encapsulates a certain beauty, gripping your emotions and painting a vivid picture about the life in the Republic. Overall, the strength of the characters and the world building that makes Prodigy an excellent sequel to the ground-breaking dystopian of Legend.
I received a review copy of this book courtesy of Readplus in exchange for review....more
This review has been posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews, and a free copy of Fire Country until 15 September 2013!
Fire CThis review has been posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews, and a free copy of Fire Country until 15 September 2013!
Fire Country swept me away with the strength of the main character, Siena, the imaginative dystopian setting based on different tribes, and the language and slang used within the book to demonstrate the cult-like, tribal setting of the Heaters of Fire Country.
Siena is a 15 year old girl who has been brought up within the strict laws of Fire Country by her dad, one of the ruling Greystones. When she turns 16, she will take part in the momentous event called The Calling, where she is matched with a partner to bear his children. At the ages of 19 and 22, she will have another child, while her partner takes on more wives, her call sisters. There’s no choosing who your partner will be or being with the one you love. That is the law.
Siena is a strong, brave character who is just beginning to question her rights and the treatment of women in her village. Through Siena’s beliefs, teachings, and brave nature, David Estes does a great job in showing how the laws of Fire Country affect Siena and her friends. With her Calling just around the corner, she undergoes discord in her life with an unusual tomboy hinting at choice and independence, and her father’s treatment of her best friend Circ who cares for her deeply.
Her father Roan, is a great villain who rules with an iron fist. Not only does he beat Siena, send her to Confinement (or jail), and match her up with the most disgusting guy around, he sets up rulings that are harmful to the villagers and that only benefits himself.
The vivid, dystopian world that David has created is compelling and unique. I’ve never read anything like Fire Country, and I love how the slang and language used within the book is easy to pick up without actually saying what these words are. The language really captures the heart of being in hot, heated Fire Country, with its deserts and cactus, with words such as blazin’, wooloo, and scorch. What the scorch do these words mean? You’ll just have to read to find out why I’m so wooloo about this story.
Fire Country also features the greatest inanimate character I’ve ever encountered - Perry the prickler! Perry speaks to Siena when she has no one else by her side and she’s personified him throughout the book. “I wonder how Perry looks now, whether he’s changed. Probably not – in my memory he’ll always be the brittle-brown wisecracker I know”.
I loved the strong character development with how Siena grew as a person. She starts off young, innocent and law abiding but slowly begins to question the world around her. She’s been bullied by her peers who call her scrawny, bony and unattractive, but as she develops throughout the course of the novel with some positive influences, this negative self talk dissipates.
David’s writing has gone from strength to strength since his previous series, the Moon Dwellers. It brings forth vivid imagery of this tribal village and the laws they must abide by in emotions, world building, and strong characters. Many authors focus heavily on either one of these elements. David excels in all three.
If you love dystopians with strong character development and amazing world building, definitely pick up Fire Country. The unusual world and language takes a bit of getting used to but in no time, you’ll be drawn into a deep and vivid story.
I received a review copy of this book from David and the Never Too Old For Y.A. & N.A. Books group, in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much!...more
Carter and Sadie Kane are descendents of the HouseThis review has also been cross-posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog, check it out for more reviews!
Carter and Sadie Kane are descendents of the House of Life, an Egyptian temple of magic. In The Red Pyramid and The Throne of Fire, the Kanes learnt to command their unique abilities and revived the sun god Ra, a worthy opponent to the god of chaos, Apophis. In the third and final installment of this electrifying trilogy, Apophis is hell bent on bringing forth the end of days, and the Kanes have a limited amount of time to defeat the god of Chaos himself and save mankind.
Following on from the Percy Jackson phenomenon about Greek gods and their offspring, the Kane Chronicles breathes life into the Egyptian gods and goddesses. From an off-kilter exuberant hippopotamus epitomising Hapi, the god of the Nile and an incredibly feline and agile female depicting Bast, the cat goddess, Riordan’s creativity shines as he interprets the quirks of these ancient beings.
The Serpent’s Shadow picks up where The Throne of Fire left off, as Carter and Sadie discover an ancient spell that may defeat Apophis. With magical abilities and an academy of magical students, these siblings have the weight of the world on their shoulders. Told through interchanging perspectives, we learn about Sadie’s inner turmoil between two boys, and Carter’s insecurities about his role as a leader.
It’s the creativity and immensely imaginative world that Riordan has created that’s the focus here, and you’ll be constantly entertained with The Serpent’s Shadow. Whether we’re stumbling upon the next Egyptian god, hearing from Sadie’s ghostly mother, visiting the underworld or seeing Carter turning into a falcon, The Serpent’s Shadow is full of surprises.
You’d definitely need to read the first two books of the Kane Chronicles before delving into this one, as it’s full steam ahead from the first chapter. If you’ve read the Percy Jackson series and you’re hankering for more, or you simply love Egypt, this series will not disappoint and you’ll be wondering why it’s just a trilogy.
I received a review copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review....more
Black Moon really intrigued me from the description, and little did I know that I’d be in for a treat when I started reading it.
Meet Paige Taylor, youBlack Moon really intrigued me from the description, and little did I know that I’d be in for a treat when I started reading it.
Meet Paige Taylor, your average, socially awkward teenager just going through the motions of high school. While she’s in class, she begins to see bright white lights and hear the thoughts of her classmates. Pretty soon after, you learn that she’s half Fae, and her mother takes her off to the strange land of Varulean.
It’s here where she learns about her true heritage, how to take control of her powers, and the secret behind her father’s death. We also meet Naialah, a cocky, smart-mouthed, beautiful instructor that teaches Paige how to harness her powers of controlling nature and seeing auras.
While there’s a few things here that are a bit contrived, ie. Paige actually being royalty in the book and being more powerful than most, I really enjoyed the rich descriptions surrounding the world of the Fae. With all of its politics and niceties, there’s something a bit off about this world and Paige’s matter-of-fact comments are really enjoyable.
The book was really fast paced and there was never a dull moment. If you’re not learning about Varulean and how the Fae operate, you’re being dragged off to another training session with Paige and Naialah. Paige’s first person perspective also interweaves with Rachel, a werewolf who is after Paige’s blood. The action sequences and character development are excellent.
What an emotional rollercoaster. Sacrificial Magic is an aThis review has also been posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews!
What an emotional rollercoaster. Sacrificial Magic is an amazing journey as Chess, Church witch and drug addict, appears to spiral deeper into depression, self-loathing and drug dependency. The case she's thrust into this time is perilous and someone appears to have a personal vendetta against her.
Her relationship with Terrible has gone through the ups and downs, but it only gets stronger. She's still got Lex on the other end who appears to still have feelings for her. These are two important men in her life, and her drug use appears to affect her actions a bit too much here.
What made this book entirely worthwhile though, was the ending. As much as they can be, these endings are uplifting especially with the Church and Terrible in Chess' life.
I found Sacrificial Magic to be so far, the most powerful in the Downside Series. It's less about the fake hauntings and gang violence and more about Chess's incredibly journey. Forget those Mary Sues, Chess is one woman who needs a bit of love. We want her to find happiness. ...more
Inevitably, all good things must come to an end. JoanneThis review has been cross-posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews!
Inevitably, all good things must come to an end. Joanne Baldwin’s journey has been wrought with magic, fear, power struggles between Djinn and the forces of nature itself, some incredibly brave and charming people and with death itself. After following Jo since she discovered her weather warden powers to dating a Djinn who will go on and become one of the major players in the world, to coming back from near death and having to walk away from everything she’s ever known, you realise that a good character is someone who’s become as familiar as your closest friend. Reading Total Eclipse is a bittersweet experience, it’s sad to say goodbye to some of the finest characters (and book boyfriends) out there, but you’re glad to finally see them at peace.
Weather Warden series is one of the most epic I’ve ever read, and has definitely become one of my favourite series out there. No matter what, Rachel Caine seems to always keep on surprising you with the depth of emotion and plot twists so unique that you’d never see them coming. If you think about the unpredictable nature of the weather itself, that’s what your journey will be like experiencing this series. I won’t deliver any spoilers here, but this is probably one of the most satisfying endings you’ll ever encounter. Jo’s journey comes full circle at the conclusion of the Weather Warden series, as she faces the largest nemesis the wardens and Djinn together will ever encounter – Mother Nature herself.
As you’ve probably come to expect from Rachel Caine, Total Eclipse delivers everything that you would want it to, and more. The entire story arc to the series has been leading up to this final moment, and the climactic ending is emotional as is it heart-breaking and satisfying.
To some of the best characters in modern day fiction, I will miss you. You’ve opened my eyes to a world I would have never known, and for that I am thankful. For now, the story of Jo and David has finished, and I’ll move onto the Outcast series to discover Cassiel and Luis’s story.
I read this for a buddy read here. Check it out for our discussions on the plot....more
Melissa Marr’s Carnival of Souls is an intoxicating journey into a fantastical world called The City, where daimons and witches reside. Every generatiMelissa Marr’s Carnival of Souls is an intoxicating journey into a fantastical world called The City, where daimons and witches reside. Every generation, The City offers its inhabitants an opportunity to join the ruling elite through the Carnival of Souls. Plagued by an unforgiving caste system, the Carnival gives fighters a beacon of hope – and the chance for those at the bottom rung to escape from dirty ‘black mask’ work which involves fighting and killing.
We follow the perspectives of fascinating multiple characters told in third person. Aya is the ambitious ruling class daimon who enters the fight to break free from female conventions such as marriage and breeding. Kaleb is a lower caste daimon called a cur, who can shift forms and forms a pack with those he feels a connection to. Finally, we have Mallory, a teenage girl in the human world raised and trained to fight by a witch and just wants to be normal. Each character has their own intricacies and are fascinating to read about. The third person view was also refreshing, as we’re spoilt for choice with first person in YA novels.
Blood Debt is an amazingly unique book about Camille, a girl born from a CThis review also appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!
Blood Debt is an amazingly unique book about Camille, a girl born from a Centaur bloodline, who discovers that shes a revered Centauride (or female Centaur) within a hidden society filled with strange customs. I've never read a book about Centaurs and found the mythology within this quite fascinating.
Centaurs live amongst humans and are not half horse half human, instead they are derived from the descendants of Chiron, the god of Centaurs. Female centaurs are incredibly rare amongst their kind, as they hold psychic powers like mind reading and ability to interact with ghosts.
When Camille stumbles upon a family she never knew she had, she faces danger as she discovers that she needs to fill her mothers 'blood debt' to another family. Her hand is marriage is controlled by a sinister Centaur, and we soon discover there are other forces at risk here.
I quite enjoyed Blood Debt and was impressed with its imaginative setting and mythology. The story evolves quite quickly from Camille discovering her new family, to her bloodline, to meeting a handsome Centaur and to sinister circumstances out of her control. There's quite a lot happening here, and it certainly keeps things interesting.
I can't say too much more without spoiling things, but the circumstances seemed perfect with her newfound love interest, Drake and her new best friend, Bianca. The author however delivers shocking twists and constantly changing circumstances to keep you guessing.
Downsides to the book, was Camille herself. I found the way she questioned everything and her stubbornness to comply with some of the newfound rules quite annoying. Surely she could be more open minded when it came to some things. Without an editor, the author has done a fantastic job at this indie title, but I could see where the dialogues between characters could be tightened up a bit.
Overall, this is a read that you absolutely have to pick up if you love the thought of reading about Centaurs. I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you so much Nancy!
I also recommend checking out her Meeting Destiny series, if you prefer a more realistic fiction/romance. ...more
A fantastic novella about 18 year old Chess before she became a Debunker. It answers a lot of questions about how she came to be, and neatly adds insiA fantastic novella about 18 year old Chess before she became a Debunker. It answers a lot of questions about how she came to be, and neatly adds insight into Chess as a person, her insecurities, trauma, drug abuse, and skill and dedication with her role at the Church.
It's a great place to start as a tester to whether you'd like the Downside Ghosts series or not.
Unholy Magic is the 2nd in the Downside Ghosts series and boy, is it emotionally gripping and extremely intense.
Chess is a debunker for the Church whUnholy Magic is the 2nd in the Downside Ghosts series and boy, is it emotionally gripping and extremely intense.
Chess is a debunker for the Church who exterminates ghosts and more frequently, busts those who are set up fake hauntings for financial gain. She's also an extremely drug dependent, which helps her deal with the scars that early life experiences have caused.
In this book, we see her making horrible decisions that lead her to drive a divide between her personal relationships and the only person she really cares about, Terrible. Somehow, she's found herself wedged in between two opposing gang members, Terrible and Lex. It's evident throughout the book that she doesn't know how to deal when she actually cares about someone.
Chess is such an interesting, complex character. We find out the reasons why she is so dependent on drugs and see her hit rock bottom in this book. Somehow, you just can't help but sympathise with her and wish that she will one day find solace in something that isn't drugs. Stacia Kane has a way with conveying heavy emotions throughout the book. This is not an easy read, with so many dark themes involving sex, drugs, and murder.
The world of Downside is so corrupt, dark and gritty. The crimes performed within this book are not for the squeamish, involving mutilated bodies, necrophilia, and the like. Once you become adjusted to the world of Downside, you'll be in for a heck of a ride as you follow Chess on her journey of debunking and ghost-busting.
I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Water from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Like the fluidity of water, the story continually evolI was lucky enough to receive a copy of Water from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Like the fluidity of water, the story continually evolved from one simple concept of a girl being held captive, to her becoming a Gaia (a controller of the elements) in order to save the environment, and more. Environmental issues are a topical issue, and having a controller of the elements to deal with these issues is definitely a unique and relevant take on the paranormal genre.
I was hooked on the riveting story and the great ability of the author to convey the character's emotions. Scenarios and the complexity of the relationships between people within a secret organisation are pictured vividly. Kaitlyn, the protagonist who can control the elements, has a great refreshing quality about her, able to think on her feet and to handle her situation (however difficult it becomes) with evolving strength.
As an elemental magic user, I enjoyed the scenes where Kaitlyn learnt to harness her abilities and to tap into the power of nature. It's quite believable and not too technical (unlike Rachel Caine's Weather Warden series) and clearly depicts how the power is being used.
This is definitely not a YA story, but definitely an adult read, as there are some incredibly dark themes which are delved into later on. It was surprising as the first half of the book felt like a YA book evolving with the romance between Kaitlyn and some other characters, before it takes a turn for the darker half of the book. Without revealing too much, I felt quite disturbed at the circumstances which Kaitlyn had to endure (there was rape involved), and hope that justice makes its way to the sequel.
Featuring several twists and turns in the storyline, ulterior motives, and a host of interesting characters, I recommend Water to any mature reader out there who can handle the darker themes within this book. It really hooks you in and deals with some heavy emotional themes, and by the time I finished the title I was ready for more.
As everyone else had said, it's a fantastic ending for an incredible series. This series has gripped me from start to finish, getting better with everAs everyone else had said, it's a fantastic ending for an incredible series. This series has gripped me from start to finish, getting better with every volume. Juliette is one of the most well-rounded characters I've ever had the pleasure of reading about. Everything about this book has been well-crafted with a clear conclusion in mind. I could go on raving about this book, but I suggest you go and pick up these right now :)
Wool 4 ramps up the action and delves deeper into the mystery of the silos. You follow the literal footsteps of Juliet as she discovers the shocking hWool 4 ramps up the action and delves deeper into the mystery of the silos. You follow the literal footsteps of Juliet as she discovers the shocking harsh reality breaking everything she ever learnt about her own world.
It's evident the author has a grand plan for the whole series to finish and I can't wait to find out what happens in the concluding book, Wool 5.
Amazing, freaking amazing. Now that all that world building is out of the way, the author can focus on the plot. And what a plot it is, there's mysterAmazing, freaking amazing. Now that all that world building is out of the way, the author can focus on the plot. And what a plot it is, there's mystery brewing in the silos, suspicion of a greater force at work causing a line of deaths that constantly keep happening..
Great commendations for Hugh Howey's work, a short, concise, lyrical masterpiece. Even the most mundane parts of everyday life is painted beautifully, placing you right there in the desolate life of being trapped in a silo. Each of these novellas have so far has featured a different protagonist, their internal dialogue ringing true and tying you deep into their character.
A minor warning for those who pick this one up - you'll want to have the rest close at hand because this one ends with a whopping cliffhanger. First thing I did was jump onto Amazon and purchase the next one.
If you're a fan of sci-fi, dystopia, or just excellent self-published works, Wool is definitely for you.
We’ve reached the halfway mark for the Weather Warden series and as fThis has been posted on my Happy Indulgence Blog. Check it out for more reviews!
We’ve reached the halfway mark for the Weather Warden series and as far as I’m concerned, Thin Air is the best in the series so far. Since the epic world-domination build up from books 1-4, Thin Air throws all of this out the window and gets us back to basics.
Joanne Baldwin, our favourite weather warden with a wicked sense of humour, wakes up naked and shivering in a forest with no recollection of who she is. She is approached by Lewis, her colleague who tells her they have impending danger ahead. Slowly throughout the course of the book, she learns who she is by absorbing other people’s memories with the help of a Djinn and her own mysterious abilities.
There’s one thing evident about Rachel Caine ever since Ill Wind, and that is her skill in delivering flashbacks to supplement the current story. Thin Air is all about flash backs, but it’s from other people’s perspectives. Ever wanted to see what swimwear model Cherise thinks of Jo and Sarah, her money-grabbing sister? What the cold hard life of a twisted killer is like? Thin Air delivers all of these and more, and it really adds to the character development in the story.
While Joanne is trying to figure out who she is, we know exactly what has happened and the whole memory loss thing didn’t affect the brisk plot moving forward after the whole Djinn aftermath. We pick up where the previous book has left off, not knowing what’s happened to Ashan and Imara. There’s this awesome ‘Evil Twin’ plot thread happening too, an evil Demon who is trying to take over Joanne’s life.
I devoured the whole book in just 3 days, and things are really looking interesting in the weather warden universe. If you haven’t started it yet, you’re missing out on a really unique and exciting series!...more