Let me just say this: I love Anita. LOVE. She’s one of the most awesome authors I’ve ever talked to! I enjoyed Splintered, but Unhinged was even bett
Let me just say this: I love Anita. LOVE. She’s one of the most awesome authors I’ve ever talked to! I enjoyed Splintered, but Unhinged was even better! And no, I’m not biased just because I like the author. The world is a deliciously macabre version of the original, and I was thrilled to dive back in!
I love Anita’s writing. She can paint the scenes in my head vividly and beautifully! The world building is one of my favorite parts of this series. The other is Morpheus.
Oh dear lord, how I love that moth man! I don’t care if he’s part bug (and *ahem* fictional), he can feel free to snatch me away on his wings any day!! Forget Alyssa, Morph, I’m right here! I loved him even more than I did in the first book. His intentions were still questionable at times, but everything he did, he did for her. And it really pissed me off that she couldn’t see that! I know that she just looooves lil ole vanilla Jeb, but c’mon. Morpheus wasn’t afraid to let her stand on her own because he knew she had the strength to. Sure, Jeb may have been her knight in shining armor, but Morph didn’t come to her rescue in tough situations because he believed in her and had faith that she could handle herself.
I’m finding it difficult to hold a grudge when he was only trying to show me how strong I really am. When it’s in fact what he always does.
And that made me love him even more! He came to her rescue only when she truly needed it.
Jeb annoyed me more than ever. He was so focused on his job that he repeatedly put it before Alyssa. I understand it’s a great opportunity, but don’t you see what it’s doing to the person you’re supposed to love? That was not okay. I didn’t care about Jeb in Splintered, but in this one I downright disliked him. Morpheus stole the spotlight for me!
“Fair warning, I intend to make good use of that time. I will be gentle, but I will not be a gentleman. You will be the center of my world. I’ll show you the wonders of Wonderland, and when you’re drunk on the beauty and chaos that your heart so yearns to know, I will take you under my wings and make you forget the human realm ever existed. You’ll never want to leave Wonderland or me again.”
*shoves Alyssa aside* TAKE ME INSTEAD!!!
There were SO many amazing and swoon-worthy Morpheus moments that I thought my heart would explode. Team Morpheus FOREVERRRR.
I loved the development between Alyssa and her mom, too! <333
“It’s kind of like a fairy tale.” “Maybe. And you’re our happy ending.” Her gaze returns to mine, filled with love.
And the ending! GAH! Anita, how could you do that?! Morpheuuuussss. I can’t wait to find out what happens in the next book! I just wish it wasn’t so far away. :(
The one star? Yeah, that was for the cover. Thank God this book was less than 300 pages. It was awful and the only reason I read it so fast was to force my way through it and make it to something more interesting. I'm actually quite proud of myself for making it through at all.
Starting out, your first thought is...WTF? Ava doesn't have a clue what's happening, and since the story is in first person POV, neither do you. She has random flashbacks of a dystopian alternate universe where you only get a vague glimpse of what once was (dream, memory... what?). The story is intriguing at first, but after the first page, the broken, sporadic writing starts to get annoying and hard to follow. And repetitive. Here's an example: I turn away and start to run. I run, and no one comes after me. I run, and I am alone. I am in a place where I never asked to be. I am an Ava I'm not. I run, and there is nowhere for me to go. There are no exits. There is no out. I am here, and Morgan-- I run, and don't let myself finish the thought. I can't. I run, and everything I know is nothing again.
Alright we get it, you're running. See what I mean? Exhausting.
There is even more unnecessary repetition, such as 1) everyone she sees, she says that she sees "a different (name). A (name) that I know" or "I remember (name). But not this (name)." And I mean it's every freaking person she meets. 2) She doesn't belong and that's she's not supposed to be there. Don't worry, if you forget, she'll remind you. Every chapter. Sometimes twice a chapter.
There isn't a lot of character depth. You can't really get a feel for any of the people's looks or personality because she doesn't do a great job of describing them. Most of the characters were a blurry unidentifiable blob in my head because she didn't give me a handle on their identity. Ethan has dark curly hair. And? And nothing. I think later on she mentions blue eyes. Tall? Short? Skinny? Not? Who knows. Your guess is as good as mine. Greer - tall with straight hair. Oliva - curls and a heart shaped face. May as well make them up in your head, cuz that's all you're gonna get.
The only character she really goes into depth with is Sophy (this spelling makes my eye twitch). But again, it's not much. She's short and wears attention-drawing clothing. That could mean anything. Chains and studs? Or bright ass colors? Hmm. One thing you get about Sophy is she's on some kind of power trip. She's evil and wants power. Which is another thing you won't forget, because once again - she reminds you every time Sophy shows up. Power this, power that. Power, power, power. Oh, and did I mention Ava doesn't belong here?
There's one point where Ava is watching/listening to Morgan (this is her job in the alternate dystopian world) and she says something about his breathing and how she knows he's masturbating. So she then proceeds to touch herself. Like, W..T...F?! Random and unexpected raunchy scene in a YA fiction? Okaaaaay. It had nothing to do with anything and didn't contribute to the plot in any way whatsoever.
Another really irritating thing - like, really...my eye literally twitched a couple times - was the dialogue. Aside from putting two different people speaking in a paragraph (which, if you're skimming, gets really confusing) the characters would frequently stop mid-sentence and start to say something else without ever finishing the original train of thought. When I say frequently, I mean at least twice on every page. Seriously Scott, just because you know what your characters were gonna say, doesn't mean we can guess it. And that Sophy girl, she really wanted power. Okay, we get it!
The only thing I even remotely liked about this story was the idea that love transcends time and space. Even after having her memory taken away in a new world, Ava eventually remembers Morgan and what he meant to her.
In the beginning, every time Ava tries to remember something she gets a headache. By the end of the book, I was definitely sympathizing with her. This book gave me a headache. Maybe if I sit and stare at the pretty cover it will go away.
OVERALL ASSESSMENT: Plot: 4/5 I love the idea of other selves in alternate universes. It just wasn't carried out very well.
Writing Style: 0/5 I hated it. It was monotonous and irritating.
Characters: 1/5 Like I said, no character depth and little to no description.
Pace: 1/5 This book moved extremely slow. I was bored 99% of the time.
Cover: 5/5 The cover is extremely appealing to me. Too bad the book was terrible. ...more
My feelings about this were so hot and cold that I felt the need to make an infographic for it:
My hate is stronger than the dimensions, stronger
My feelings about this were so hot and cold that I felt the need to make an infographic for it:
My hate is stronger than the dimensions, stronger than memory, stronger than time. My hate is now the truest part of who I am.
I was SO onboard with this story in the beginning. The prologue blew me away and completely grabbed my attention. Then we enter a futuristic feeling, technologically advanced London. And it was AWESOME! I loved the world, I thought that Claudia Gray did a fabulous job bringing it to life, and I wanted more. I was curious about who this Paul person was, why did what he did, and the reason behind the betrayal. I was intrigued by the Firebird and the idea of traveling to different universes. So cool! I was also highly impressed by how much Claudia Gray's writing style had improved.
Then we get to Russia. It's not that it was bad at this point, but I can definitely say my enjoyment level dropped because it had a historical feel. I didn't start really losing interest until princess version Marguerite got the letter from Theo and starts to think about both guys as more than friends.
...how difficult it will be to get out of this dimension if I even can, and of all the emotions for him - and for Paul - that I can't afford to explore right now.
UGH. I despise love triangles. (view spoiler)[ Not to mention the fact that several chapters ago she was talking about how much she hated Paul. If she cared about him so much before he "betrayed" her, why was she so quick to believe that he was the one who did it? She clearly didn't know him at all, if she thought him capable of something like that. Then she believed his story about being framed almost immediately. THEN, when she gets to another reality and Paul has "betrayed" her parents again, she's "too stunned by Paul's betrayal" and says that she "thought she was beginning to understand him." You say you love him and you're not even going to give him the benefit of the doubt?! Really? (hide spoiler)] Thankfully she only waffles for a moment before finally sticking with Paul. But still, the quasi love triangle brought it down...then it all went to hell.
Why? The romance. Good heavens. I know that Marguerite had feelings for Paul previously, but the fact that she fell for this "different" Paul so fast despite later saying how he was like a completely different person kind of annoyed me. After that, the romance was front and center. And it was SO annoying. They were being freaking SHOT at, her alternate reality family (including a young brother) were MISSING and she didn't even know if they were alive, and she's making out with Paul out in the snow. (view spoiler)[And they have sex. (hide spoiler)] Way to go on your prioritizing skills, Marguerite!
(view spoiler)[The best part is, despite having falling "in love" with him (and you can't have almost-feelings for someone else if you were actually IN love, just saying) so fast because he's similar to her original Paul, after the alternate Paul is killed she finds it difficult to be with her REAL version of Paul because he's too different. WTF? (hide spoiler)] The entire middle of the book (which is basically nothing but romance) just felt like every other YA paranormal out there. The only thing about this book that stands out is the beginning and the end. The middle has already become a blur.
There was also something that really didn't make sense to me. Sadly I can't talk about it without giving anything away! (view spoiler)[When Marguerite found her dad in another dimension, she was worrying about how to get him back to her home dimension. She even considered giving him her Firebird, leaving her trapped in the underwater world so he could go back home. Even if I have to give him my Firebird. Even if I'm the one that stays here forever. Um, HELLOOO, there are freaking THREE of them!! So leave someone behind while the other three go home, then send one person back with two Firebirds. Duh? There was nothing ever stating that you couldn't return to the same reality twice, and no explanation to negate the obvious conclusion. Can two Firebirds not go with one person? If so, why not say that? "I'll be stuck here FOREVER" just sounds melodramatic. You people are supposed to be smart for crying out loud. (hide spoiler)]
I wasn't a fan of Marguerite. I just couldn't find anything in her to relate to. I can't pinpoint why, but she got on my nerves sometimes. I also didn't care about Paul or Theo. Paul didn't have much personality to speak of, especially for a romantic interest. The only character I really cared about was Marguerite's father.
Seriously, I am SO disappointed in this book. If the whole book had been like the first several chapters, it probably would have been a 5 star book for me. I can definitely see the potential in this series. The world building ROCKS, Claudia Gray's prose has proven that it can be engaging and interesting when she wants it to be, and the idea of alternate realities interests me. I'm still on the fence about whether or not to read the next book...
This review was originally posted on Novel Heartbeat. To see a breakdown of my assessment, please visit the full review here.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
*This book earned my King of the Sea Award (5+ stars)
h e l l i s e m p t y. a n d a l l t h e d e v i l s a r e h e r e.
HOLY. CRAP. SO MANY FEELS. I'm not sure anything I say could really do this book justice. But here goes... I liked Shatter Me. Liked, not loved. But I still wanted to read Unravel Me, although I wasn't sure I was going to love it as much as everyone else that had been raving about it all over the internet. I WAS SO INCREDIBLY WRONG. It was absolutely amazing! I would have never thought I'd love this book as much as I did. I devoured all 465 pages in one single day! That doesn't happen very often for me (ok, pretty much never). The only time I ventured out of my reading cave was to check on my laundry and feed myself. Other than that, I sat on my arse all day because I didn't want to put this book down. It was almost midnight by the time I finished, and I was seriously up until at least 2 in the morning because I couldn't sleep for thinking about it!! Even now my brain is like WARNERWARNERWARNERWARNER. I wish I could bottle up how I felt while reading this I wish I could unread it just so I can read it for the first time all over again!
I can't even begin to tell you how much emotion I felt while reading this. Happiness, sadness, shock, outrage, disappointment, excitement, anger, adoration, and...er....other things...inappropriatethingsthatshallremainunnamed. I gasped, I laughed, I very nearly cried (it takes a lot though), I stared agape at the ceiling for immeasurable amounts of time. There were spans that were so intense that I was engrossed, enraptured, enchanted, my heart was pounding, I couldn't have put the book down if I had to, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough!
WARNER. OH MY FREAKING GAWD. Be still my beating heart!! He is such a deep and complicated character with many layers and facets! And since I read Destroy Me right before starting this one, I was still stuck in his head. It was hard for me to switch to Juliette's POV, and not gonna lie, I had a bit of Warner withdrawal for the first half of the book. After a glimpse inside his head, I was DYING to see him come face to face with Juliette again. The dog scene!!! ERMAHGERD. It was in Destroy Me, so I already knew exactly what was going to happen, but I got to see it from her perspective. Knowing where it was going, waiting to see what she thought of it - my heart was pounding SO HARD. (Okay, so my heart almost beat out of my chest a million times in this book, but still) The scene - to me, at least - is monumental.
CHAPTER 62 OMG OMG OMG I forgot how to breathe, I almost had a heart attack I think I need a cold shower. I had NO idea what was really in store for me in Chapter 62 because I plugged my ears to all of the spoilers and ignored this video entirely (seriously, don't watch it until you read Unravel Me, it will totally ruin it). Although I knew exactly what I hoped it would be (I pretty much knew the what, it was the who I was dying to figure out for myself in a completely spoiler-free way)! I thought my ovaries head was going to explode. I almost burst into flame. That's all I'm going to say!
Chapter 52 was huge, too. Almost as huge for me as 62 was. Warner's apology just about had me in tears! And his tattoos! OMG. I'm so madly in love with this guy it's not even funny! I mentioned his feelings for Juliette in my review of Destroy Me, so I'm not going to elaborate that again - only to say that the way he regarded Juliette made me love him so much! She was the beauty that tamed the beast.
Even though Destroy Me firmly shoved me into Team Warner territory, the scenes between Adam and Juliette were so heartbreakingly tragic that I felt the sadness, the anger, the unfairness right down to my bones. I hated how unfortunate Juliette's situation was, and I felt absolutely terrible for her and everything she's been through. She was always the outsider, always regarded with fear and mistrust for the destructive ability that she didn't even ask for. I was so caught up in the way she was feeling, I didn't even realize it had become a pity party until Kenji pointed it out. And then I felt shame and embarrassment right along with Juliette. I connected with her to the point that I pretty much felt everything she did. Although SOMETHING she did in one scene to totally KILL my buzz....ARGH. I wanted to cry. Or smack her. Or both.
Speaking of Kenji. I freaking love this guy!! (Not nearly as much as Warner, of course.) He was sarcastic, funny, and arrogant - which is usually a bad thing but his narcissistic moments were hilarious! Plus he would randomly go off on tangents and ramble on and on. I loved it! Despite being a bit of a jokester - because 'The world is going to hell out there and I suppose if I'm going to be shot dead before I'm twenty-five, I'd at least like to remember what it's like to laugh before I do.' - he was still capable of being serious when necessary. He wasn't afraid to tell Juliette the brutal truth, or that she needed to keep her head in the game and stop wallowing. And he made her stronger because of it. He pushed her to be stronger and I loved him for that.
I am entirely blown away by how much Tahereh Mafi's prose has improved. One of my major complaints from Shatter Me was that there were too many metaphors, so many in fact that it bogged down the story and distracted me. The use of metaphors was drastically lower in Unravel Me, and when they were used, it was perfect. There are many run-on sentences, unfinished sentences, missing punctuation, and of course the strike-through text. But it works. Oh my goodness, it really works. Mafi has such a fabulous way with writing in pure emotion, and so many scenes were so raw and cracked open that I felt it.
"You're going to go on to do incredible things," he says. "I've always known that. I think I just wanted to be part of it."
I CAN'T EVEN.
I didn't realize until after reading this that Shatter Me #3 doesn't come out until FEBRUARY 2014. I think I may die I'm going to rip out all of my hair. Until then, you can find me huddled in a dark corner, hugging my knees while rocking and mumbling to myself. *assumes fetal position*
**Note: I highly suggest reading Destroy Me BEFORE reading this one!
Favorite quotes I want to study the secrets tucked between his elbows and the whispers caught behind his knees. I want to follow the lines of his silhouette with my eyes and the tips of my fingers. I want to trace rivers and valleys along the curved muscles of his body.
On the darkest days you have to search for a spot of brightness, on the coldest days you have to seek out a spot of warmth; on the bleakest days you have to keep your own eyes onward and upward and on the saddest days you have to leave them open to let them cry. To then let them dry. To give them a chance to wash out the pain in order to see fresh and clear once again.
Nothing in this life will ever make sense to me but I can't help but try to collect the change and hope it's enough to pay for our mistakes.
Loneliness is a strange sort of thing. It creeps up on you, quiet and still, sits by your side in the dark, strokes your hair as you sleep. It wraps itself around your bones, squeezing so tight you almost can't breathe, almost can't hear the pulse racing in your blood as it rushes up your skin and touches its lips to the soft hairs at the back of your neck. It leaves lies in your heart, lies next to you at night, leeches the light out from every corner. It's a constant companion, clasping your hand only to yank you down when you're struggling to stand up.
"Yeah, bro." Kenji puts his utensils down. "You are moody. It's always 'Shut, up Kenji.' 'Go to sleep, Kenji.' 'No one wants to see you naked, Kenji.' When I know for a fact that there are thousands of people who would love to see me naked..." OMG BAHA. This makes me laugh every time I read it!
"Why even have a love affair?" Kenji asks. "I never understood that kind of crap. If you're not happy, just leave. Don't cheat. Am I right?" A chuckle. "Of course I'm right. Doesn't take a genius to figure that out." I loved him for that quote!
Before I read this, with the mention of Night and Day students I just couldn't help myself...I immediately thouFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
Before I read this, with the mention of Night and Day students I just couldn't help myself...I immediately thought of this:
So of course I was intrigued! It ended up being almost nothing like Vampire Knight, though, and I was pleasantly surprised at how unique the story was.
I usually despise love triangles, but this one wasn't bad at all. I gotta hand it to Phoenix, she stuck with her decision. It was never really a competition for her. And who wouldn't love being surrounded by two important and sexy men?
Demitri. Cold, distant, aloof. Sexy. A buttface most of the time, but has a protective streak for Phoenix. And did I mention he's sexy?
Luka. Arrogant yet playful and carefree. Tortured past. Sexy. I'm not a fan of blondes, but I must say I'm team Luka all the way!! His infatuation with Phoenix was rather sudden, but his commandeered kisses had my heart beating faster! I'd be his villyat any day ;D
So why isn't it 4 or 5 stars? Well, the problem I had with Taste was that I simply couldn't connect to the story. I felt a bit detached and emotionless as things were happening. Also, I didn't care much for Phoenix most of the time - she kind of annoyed me. It seemed like she overreacted a lot and she was a bit childish and whiny.
Favorite character: LUKA, DUDE.
ASSESSMENT Plot: 3/5 Originality: 5/5 Writing style: 4/5 Characters: 3/5 All 3 starfish go to Luka ♥ World-building: 3/5 Pace: 4/5 Cover: 4/5...more
I think I've said this a thousand times already, but there is literally nothing that Julie could write that I wouldn't be excited to read!
1) I was su
I think I've said this a thousand times already, but there is literally nothing that Julie could write that I wouldn't be excited to read!
1) I was surprised by how much I loved the relationships between Ethan/Kenzie & Keirran/Annwyl. I loved the romance! (Even as picky as I am about romance!)
2) THE ENDING. How could you leave it like that, Julie?!?! I had heard things about the ending - including Julie saying we would hate her after finishing it - so I was mentally preparing myself through the whole last half of the book for possible heartbreak and probable outrage. Did it help? No, no it didn't. I was still left gaping at the book after finishing the last sentence, lifting my face to the sky asking 'WHYYYY JULIE, WHYYY?!?!' while shaking my fist.
3) GRIMALKIIIIIIN. How I love you! <3
Full review to come closer to release date!...more
This cover should be flagged for false advertisement. After all of the glowing reviFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
Passion. Fate. Loyalty. Stupidity.
This cover should be flagged for false advertisement. After all of the glowing reviews, I'm left to wonder....WHY DIDN'T I GET THE COPY THEY READ?! Ha ha, very funny, now where's the REAL Tiger's Curse?? The one that everybody LOVED because it was such an awesomely awesometastic book of awesome???? Guess the joke's on me...
Alright, where to start? First of all, the writing. GOOD LORD. Talk about sophomoric. I dealt with it for the first half because the premise was just so absolutely stunning that I thought I would like the story anyway. And for that half, I did. If it had continued that way, it would have easily been a 3.5 for me. But, after the first half everything went downhill. There were things that I just couldn't look past.
First of all, our protag Kelsey. OH. MY. LORD. I kept hoping she'd stab herself in the eye with a spork. Or throw herself off a cliff. But alas, there were no cliffs or sporks in this story. Sad face. So, Kelsey is almost 18, right? I had to keep reminding myself of this, because frankly she acted more like 14. She was SO naive. And whiny. And lame. Example: The little love plant in my heart was grasping at each wispy though, absorbing his words like sweet drops of morning dew. I felt the little love plant inside me stretch, swell, and unfurl its leaves, like he was pouring Love Potion #9 over the thing. I gave up at that point and decided what the heck. I could always use a rototiller on it. And I rationalized that when he breaks my heart, at least I will have been thoroughly kissed. I was able to deal with her ridiculous words (who actually says twitterpated, really?) and 'jokes' for a while, but towards the end she got so bad that I wanted to chuck the book at a wall (while picturing her face). Characters are supposed to grow as the story goes on, not regress. She continuously belittles herself throughout the whole book. In the beginning it's one thing, but surely there should be some realization somewhere in the book that she's not so mundane?? Nah. Not here. I found it very difficult to respect her when she couldn't even respect herself. Sure, all female leads don't have to be kick-ass, but I like them to at least be somewhat strong. Kelsey was weak and spineless, with absolutely no character to speak of. I really don't understand what Ren (and Kishan for that matter) could possibly have found interesting about her.
Ren. In theory, I should have loved him. He can change into a tiger for crying out loud!! (I love tigers, by the way) But he was portrayed as too perfect in my opinion. Sure, he was a bit stubborn, but that's the only flaw he really had. He was gorgeous (of course), a perfect gentleman, sweet as can be, and a Prince to boot. And he changed into a tiger. Sound like every girl's fantasy? Yup. Well okay, maybe just mine, ha. But still. He was TOO perfect. A few flaws would have made him more convincing. Like, asshat tendencies. Where were those? Surely a man of nobility is entitled to a little arrogance.
Now. The relationship between Kelsey and Ren - this was what really ruined it for me. When he was a tiger, she loved him unconditionally. Duh. If I could get up close and personal with a tiger and have it lick me rather than eat my face, I'd love it too. But, then he changes into a man. And when their relationship steps up a bit (kissing, oh my!!) Kelsey freaks. As far as I can tell, Ren never does anything to elicit such a strong reaction. He's a gentleman yet she treats him as dangerous: He nuzzled my neck, and an image came to mind of him beckoning me to jump off a cliff and then laughing as my body broke on the wet rocks below. Okay? I don't really understand this, because he never showed an ounce of cruelty towards her. Ren appeared to be sweet and attentive, as harmless as a little kitten. He was about as harmless as a Kappa [vampire monkey]. I, on the other hand, was like a porcupine. I was bristling. All of my quills were standing on end so I could defend my soft belly from being devoured by the predator who had taken an interest. I just felt like she viewed her innocence as a bit exaggerated and overreacted about Ren's intentions.
She seems fine with the kissing, then out of nowhere starts pushing him away - ignoring and avoiding, because she doesn't want to get hurt. I had never been in love with anyone before. I had never even had a boyfriend before, and these feelings were exciting and scary all at once. For the first time in my life, I felt out of control, and it was a feeling I wasn't sure I completely liked. The problem was, the more time I spent with him, the more I wanted to be with him. And I was a realist. My brief moments with him now, though exhilarating, wouldn't guarantee a happy ending. Sorry but what the hell kind of 17 year old thinks like that? When you're that age, you don't think about being out of control, you just jump head first into love. The "realism" only comes after you've been through 3 or 4 bad ones and have been burned, and you finally learn to use caution. I just found it a little strange that with all of her previous naivety, she has this random moment of maturity and insight. She started thinking WAY too much and became a driveling, pathetic excuse for a female. I felt quite sorry for Ren at this point. Even he could only take so much, and after her being shut out for pages on end, he gets frustrated. And of course, she gets angry that he's frustrated and calls him a jerk. What? She acts like a cold distant bitch, and he has to roll over and take it? Okaaay.
Then the fighting starts. Ugh. I think conflict is necessary in a relationship, and I enjoy a little banter...but they were straight up just bickering like children. I mean, yelling "FINE" back and forth. Really? I think that's a bit unnecessary. That's basically what the last quarter composed of. Immature bickering. I'd expect it from her, because she acts 12 anyway, but not from Ren who was cursed at 21 (and anyway he's a little old for her, don't you think?) and has been stuck that was for THREE HUNDRED YEARS. Surely at some point he's got to be the mature one. Right? WRONG. Almost 80 pages of this crap. I was getting so annoyed at the book that I had to stop at very frequent intervals and count to ten to calm myself down so I wouldn't throw it and break something. There were lots of heavy sighs, UGHs, and facepalming on my part. Kelsey also continuously flip-flopped. One minute, she'd be dead set against Ren, the next, she'd be getting jealous over his attention to another woman (even though it's obvious he's fixated on her). She kept saying how she wanted them to go separate ways, but then Mr. Kadam mentions home and she panics? WTF. Make up your mind!!
The scenes between Kelsey and Ren just got a bit too outlandish for me at this point. He looked me up and down. And not a quick look. He took it all in slowly. The kind of slow that made a girl's face feel hot. I got mad at myself for blushing and glared at him. Nervous and impatient, I asked, "Are you finished?" "Almost." He was now staring at my strappy shoes. "Well, hurry up!" His eyes drifted leisurely back up to my face and he smiled at me appreciatively, "Kelsey, when a man spends time with a beautiful woman, he needs to pace himself." I quirked my eyebrow at him and laughed. "Yeah, I'm a regular marathon alright." He kissed my fingers. "Exactly. A wise man never sprints...in a marathon." ................................ Then Ren tells her she smells like peaches and cream................awkward turtle.
Other issues were the far-fetched scenarios. So many things just seemed totally unrealistic to me. Yes, it's a fantasy world, but...surely the research could have been done better? We were in India, yet for the majority of the book I forgot this fact. I feel like the culture wasn't portrayed properly. And anyway, what kind of a moron would travel across the world with a total stranger? Also, the way the Phet guy talked was outrageous and I feel as if it should be an insult to Indian people everywhere. He talked in broken and sporadic English, and I'm talking so broken I could barely understand what the hell he was trying to say. It was worse than Yoda. Yeah, that bad. Yet he was able to use big words? And he couldn't string together a simple sentence? Riiiiight. It just felt like most of the dialogue and happenings in this book were downright silly. Even the scenes with supposed 'danger' were ridiculous.
There were also a lot of unnecessary details. Long paragraphs to explain small and pointless things...why couldn't that kind of attention have been used for the world building?
I feel like this should be considered middle grade, not YA. When I was 12 or 13, I might have loved this. If I could get through the length at that age. But at 23, the writing was just too novice.
Favorite character: Kishan. He was the only one with even an ounce of personality.
ASSESSMENT Plot: 3/5 Something about a prophecy. What were they supposed to do again? Who knows. Writing style: 1/5 Characters: 1/5 World-building: 1/5 A little more research would really have helped. Pace: 3/5 Cover: 5/5 Shame. Maybe if I sit and stare at the pretty cover, I'll be tricked into forgetting what's underneath. ...more
Let me just say right now that I didn't read the whole thing (made it to page 169, little more than halfway), but thFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
Let me just say right now that I didn't read the whole thing (made it to page 169, little more than halfway), but this still isn't totally a DNF for me because I skimmed the last half and read the ending. So I can, in all fairness, give it a one starfish rating.
I do not want to hear even ONE more person compare this book to The Little Mermaid. The only thing remotely similar was that the mermaid (in this case merman) saw the human and became obsessed. Oh, and there was an evil sea witch. Other than that, this book has absolutely nothing to do with the wonderful Disney story that I love so much.
The first problem I had with this book is that it was slow. God awful, spoon my eyes out SLOW. I was bored to tears for the majority and had to force myself to return to reading. Except for the boat "wreck" 25 pages in, there was basically nothing happening. There was WAY too much filler and not enough plot. I really don't give an ass rat's about Miranda's life story or her friends' dating escapades.
The second major problem - the blaming. Okay, I understand that Miranda was actually driving the boat, but can she really be blamed for a total freak accident? The only reason that would in fact point to her was ...she was driving. Uhh.....okay? That's it? Riiiiight. She tested negative for drugs and alcohol. But I guess nobody else in this book had any logic, because she was confronted with outright hostility from EVERYONE. Even her boyfriend's parents, who she supposedly had a close relationship with. Even her teachers and the guidance counselor? Come on now. I can understand her blaming herself, but not everyone else. Sure, the thought might cross their minds, but for the school to basically suggest that she shouldn't come back? That was a little too outlandish for me.
There was seriously almost 100 pages of this. Just straight moping and blaming. Everyone acts like she's cursed and stares at her while simultaneously avoiding her. A nurse actually crosses herself - seriously? Like she's the devil because she was involved in an accident? The other friends involved hate her: one girl says, "I think you've done enough," and another girl's parents say, "Stop calling for the sake of all of us," and a guy says, "Stay away from me. Because of you they're gone. Can't you just leave us alone?" Okay, she lost 4 friends too. She was in the accident too. She got injured too! Good Lord.
Then, her brother (her own brother!) tells her she's been weird because she a) has a hysterical meltdown at a tribute to her friends and runs away crying and b) she finally snaps at her bitchy-ass grandma. Um? The grandma kinda had it coming anyway, and either way SHE JUST LOST 4 FRIENDS. I think she has the right to a bit of a breakdown. But that's just me.
Now, for the romance obsession. Oh for the love of kittens!! Miranda and Christian didn't officially meet until page 150. PAGE ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY. Like I said, too much filler. Anyway, creepystalkerdude does his creepy stalking from the water, and she sees him (again). They say hi, exchange a few sentences, take a swim together, then go cuddle on the beach. *whips head around* Whaaat? Yeah, you heard me. "Hi, you're hot, let's spoon!!" Sorry but if I met some guy (no matter how hot) that was randomly out in the water of a deserted beach at night with no car or boat in sight, I don't think I'd want to get cozy with him. But maybe that's just me?
As if that wasn't bad enough, LITERALLY 18 pages after they meet, this line: Killing Miranda would mean his own soul would die. He had fallen in love that quickly. STALKING SOMEONE FROM THE WATER DOES NOT EQUAL LOVE. This was the final straw for me. I skimmed through the rest and read the ending, only to find that I was indeed not missing anything. Christian drops the M bomb, Miranda freaks out and runs away... while screeching hysterically and ripping her hair out (okay I made that up). Then, after a conversation with Coral in which she's told "that boy is bad for you," she goes running back to him...with stars shining in her eyes and her heart beating a merry rhythm (alright, I made that up too)...aaand they proceed to make out. Um? Huh. Right. Anyway...
Other irritating parts: "Well, you could have told someone. You could have talked to the police and told them what you saw. And you could have let me know. I thought I was crazy, kept having all these visions of you. I didn't know if you were real or what had happened. I had so many nightmares," she said, tears finally falling. "Shhhh...," Christian said, reaching to pull her body toward his. Miranda began to push him away, but he continued to make the shushing sound, and finally, she relaxed into his shoulder. Nevermind that you're not listening to me and you don't have a reason, you're hawt! *hold me*
"I miss them. So much. So, so much," Miranda said dully. "And I just don't understand. How did you save me? Fletch threw me overboard and then...?" "Shhh," Christian said, continuing to rub her back, "Shhh." SOMEBODY PLEASE PUNCH THIS GUY IN THE FACE. I mean, er, uhh...just shutup and hold me!
(in the same page as the L word confession, 18 pages after they meet) When Miranda fell asleep on his chest, he felt something tug at the very core of his being. It wasn't his heart, and it wasn't his lungs, constricting from too much oxygen. Those were all physical symptoms. This was something different, an unseen force that was telling him how much he needed Miranda, and how much she needed him. No, not needed. It was more than that, when Miranda slept next to him, in his arms, he felt that she and he were one and the same - killing her would be killing part of himself.
Yeah, that about sums it up. There really wasn't anything else happening to speak of. There's a revelation about a character 300 pages in that I figured out as soon as she was introduced on page 100something. Um, hello, her yacht's name was Sephie for crying out loud!
Honestly, I was kind of hoping that the evil sea witch would smite Christian and Miranda both and we could all go about our merry way. But alas, the outcome of that battle was predictable. And then the ending was terrible. Uhh okay? Just like that? Whatever dude. Toodles.
I was truly inhuman. Humans were prey. I craved their blood like the worst addict on the street. They were sheep, caFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
I was truly inhuman. Humans were prey. I craved their blood like the worst addict on the street. They were sheep, cattle, and I was the wolf, stalking them through the night. I had become a monster.
Oh jeez, where do I begin? Let me just say that I'd probably adore anything Julie writes. But in the sea of other vampire books, this one was in a league of its own. She stuck to the typical myths of vampires and still managed to add her own unique spin on them as well. Gotta say this was the best vamp book I've ever read!
The romance..ahhh! It wasn't the perfect Twilight romance where the vampire can control the Hunger, the human is totally okay with said vamp being a monster, and they live happily ever after. It was beautiful and flawed, sometimes disastrous. It was so realistic and I felt that glorious slow-burn that I love oh so much - because they both resist each other. Zeke was hard not to like. He was sweet and wonderful, and even when you saw the hard and distrusting side of him, he was still endearing!
The characters were so realistic and convincing! I value a book that can make me feel outright hatred for certain ones, instead of them all being perfect and amiable. People are despicable sometimes, and Ruth and Jeb were great examples of that. I loathed Ruth with the passion of a thousand suns! She was a jealous, heinous bitch and I may have fantasized about stabbing her in the eye repeatedly. I kept wishing she would die, that's how much she irritated me. Jeb wasn't much different, but overall he had good intentions. I think that's what made him so disturbing. He was a fanatic about his cause, no matter what the cost. Allie was a fantasic protag! She struggled with control because she was a vampire, but still managed to cling to her humanity. Jackal was creepy and a bit off the deep end, and Kanin was a fantastic mentor. They all had their own separate personalities.
The visuals were amazing. In certain intense scenes, I could picture them almost perfectly (like I was indeed watching a movie) and I found myself riveted, tearing through page after page on my Kindle app, unable to stop. The rabids were terrifying, and Allie's turning was incredible! I think that was one of my favorite parts.
What I loved most about this book? It wasn't all rainbows and unicorns. It was dark and desperate, and most certainly not a HEA. This book would make a PERFECT movie. It reminded me a bit of Doomsday meets Blade. Can we say awesomesauce?
Quotes: "And like I said, if the tent falls on you in the middle of the night, don't panic. You'll get used to it. No one really worries about keeping things erect around here, and... Wow, that sounded bad."
I knew Ruth was terrified of snakes - something I took great pleasure in when I found a garter snake on the road one night and snuck it into her tent. The memory of her screams made me snicker the rest of the evening.
ASSESSMENT Plot: 4/5 Writing style: 5/5 Even though there wasn't much happening, Julie still managed to keep me entertained! Characters: 5/5 World-building: 5/5 Pace: 5/5 Cover: 5/5 I absolutely love the eyes and the bloody tear!...more
Oh my GAWD, where do I even start? First off, Karen is my FAVORITE. AUTHOR. EVEERRRRR. Seriously, guys. She could prFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
Oh my GAWD, where do I even start? First off, Karen is my FAVORITE. AUTHOR. EVEERRRRR. Seriously, guys. She could probably write a book about paint drying and I'd love the crap out of it. She has a fabulous talent for writing riveting stories. Iced was no different! It gives me peace of mind to go into a story knowing for sure that I'll every minute of it.
"You'll never be just anything, Dani. A tsunami can never be 'just' a wave. Waves are banal. Tsunamis reshape the Earth. Under the right circumstances, even entire civilizations."
I love Dani! While I don't condone what she did - and yes, I lost a bit of respect for her because of it - I still love her to pieces. She's stubborn, headstrong, and opinionated (qualities I see in myself, haha), not to mention arrogant and fiery. And totally kick-ass! She's one of my favorite heroines. I enjoyed reading from her perspective instead of Mac's for a change (not that I don't love Mac, too).
Ryodan. Oh, Ryodan. It was like going through the Barrons/Mac banter all over again. You gotta love him, but at the same time you want to brain him for being such an arrogant prick. He sure knew how to get under skin! Especially Dani's. But she gave it right back, of course.
Christian's part was...er, interesting. He was a little disturbing and creeptastic at times, but endearing in his affection (despite being a bit twisted) for Dani. "Dani, Dani, Dani. Don't fight me. You don't need to fight me. I'll never hurt you. Not you. You're my brightest shining star." I ain't nobody's bright shiny nothing! He's a certifiable lunatic! I had trouble getting a handle on him, and at times he gave off the creepy-stalker-vibe, but in the end he won me over with what he did for Dani.
It was awesome to finally meet Dancer! I would love to delve deeper into the world of Dancer, because I feel like there's more to him than meets the eye. I want to know what his story is! I also can't wait to see how things play out between Mac and Dani. I neeeeed to know! Gah!!
The world building was stupendous as always! I found it so easy to picture everything just like it was a movie playing in my head. Even the monstrous baddies. There was plenty of danger and action, with a touch of mystery mixed in from the 'icings.' The Crimson Hag - totally disturbing! In the scenes where she made an appearance I was horrified yet engrossed. And the Hoar Frost King - creepy! The villains were scary and imposing, I loved it!
Something else I love about KMM's writing - the humor! Her books never fail to make me laugh out loud at the witty sarcasm!
Favorite quotes: Rule #1 in the Universe: the crap always hits the fan. It's the nature of crap. It's a fan magnet.
I figure if there is a God, he or she isn't paying attention to what we build or if we follow some elaborate rules, but copping a ride on our shoulders, watching what we do every day. Seeing if we took this great big adventure called life and did anything interesting with it.
I don't like to lie unless the payoff is huge. Lies are horny little buggers, they breed like rabbits and bound around just as insanely and then you have to try to keep track of them.
I totally didn’t realize this going in, but this book is a companion novel to Some Quiet Place, not a sequel. I was disappointed to say the least, an
I totally didn’t realize this going in, but this book is a companion novel to Some Quiet Place, not a sequel. I was disappointed to say the least, and sadly, I feel like maybe that could have affected my overall judgement of this book.
My first issue? I wanted Fear. I loved Fear in the first book. Actually, he was what made that book for me! If you didn’t already know, I gave Some Quiet Place 4.5 heartbeats. While he had a few small cameos in this one, there was basically little to no parts with him in it. I’m not basing my opinion of the second book off of that (because that wouldn’t be fair), but I really do think that Fear was 90% of what made me love the first so much. Whatever the case, the sequel lacked the magic that the first book had.
My main problem with this was that I didn’t like our main character, Alex. She was selfish and impulsive, and did idiotic and reckless things with no thought to how it would affect the people around her. There were times when I wanted to throttle her! I felt bad for her aunt and uncle for the way she treated them. Actually, I didn’t particularly like any of the characters. I was really hoping to love Revenge, but it just never happened.
I didn’t care about the relationships, either. There was a love triangle in there, and almost instalove (instalust?) with Forgiveness. While I understand the appeal that he has, and that Alex’s attraction to him was kind of a double meaning, it still annoyed me. I thought at some point I would start to feel something for one of the Choices, but again, it never happened. I never chose a side and I didn’t care who Alex chose, either. I think I was disappointed because neither Revenge nor Forgiveness ever stood out like Fear had. Terrible, isn’t it? I kept expecting to fall in love with one of them.
The second major flaw that this book had: It was forgettable. It didn’t leave an impression on me, and within days I’m already I’m forgetting details of the story.
What I did love, though, which was what struck me about the first book, were the Emotions and Choices as people. How awesome is that?! It was always interesting to see how each Emotion would be interpreted in physical form. I also liked the mystery aspect of the story with all the experiments and secrets! That was what kept me going when I wasn’t otherwise invested in the story.
Favorite quote: “The most painful emotions are better than none at all. Ironically, we make you human.”
I knew going in that this book involved bad influence. What was I expecting? I dunno, maybe just a short walk oFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
I knew going in that this book involved bad influence. What was I expecting? I dunno, maybe just a short walk on the wild side. Some drinking, steamy makeout sessions with a bad boy. Not drugs, sex, cheating, lying, and excessive underage drinking. This book really should not be labeled YA. I would NOT want my 13 or 14 year old to read something like this. As an adult book, it would have been somewhat alright. I say somewhat because, let's face it, God awful morals aren't the real problem I had with this one.
In the beginning, this book was a solid 3 stars for me. It was a bit boring, but the premise sounded interesting. You're aware of the seven deadly sins, yes? Pride, Envy, Greed, Gluttony, Sloth, Lust, and Wrath. Well, there are 7 demon Dukes that lord each of those sins, and 6 more for an additional 6 sins: Lying, Murder, Hatred, Theft, Adultery, and Substance Abuse. (Which really, those just stem from the original 7) Brilliant, right? Then when those demons have children, known as Nephilim, said children have to go forth and spread the sin of the father.
Sure, all that sounds interesting, but I felt that the delivery was lacking. There were too many things that rubbed me the wrong way.
Let me just make a few statements here. 1. DRINKING AND HAVING SEX DOES NOT MAKE YOU A BAD PERSON. I just felt like at the beginning the general feel of the book was to look down on those people. It portrayed virgins as 'beautiful people' and non-virgins were lowly and sinful. Being 'deflowered' is the first step on the 'road to sin.' 2. BEING A VIRGIN DOES NOT MAKE YOU PERFECT. Ugh. Just because you're not a perfect, straight-edge, goody-two-shoes doesn't make you less than anyone who is. 3. HAVING A FEW DRINKS FROM TIME TO TIME DOES NOT MAKE YOU AN ALCOHOLIC. It's okay to enjoy a drink sometimes. Really. This also does not make you a 'bad person.'
Now that I got that out of the way...
No, wait. One more statement. FOR THE LOVE OF KITTENS, YOU CAN'T BE IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE AFTER KNOWING THEM FOR FOUR DAYS. Spending four nights in a hotel room with them and almost having sex does NOT equal love. This was where the book really lost me. I despise instaluv with the fire of a thousand suns; if the L word rears its ugly head anywhere before the very last 1/4 of the book, it's likely to lose my interest very fast. Especially if it's in the first 1/3. Yup. I wanted to chuck the book at a wall. I almost put it down right then and there, but I pushed through with valiant effort in hopes of improvement. Alas, my struggle was in vain.
After that, I started to develop a hatred for Anna that bordered unhealthy. I mean, I wanted her to be a real person just so I could beat the living crap out of her and then gouge her eyes out with a rusty spoon. Oops, the Duke of Wrath is rubbing off on me. She was a whiny, sniveling, dependent little girl. After being shot down by the buttface Kaidan (after knowing him for FOUR DAYS), she goes into a 'depression' and shuts out the rest of the world in favor of crying in a fetal ball, wondering how she'll ever get over him. Shuns friends, skips school, fails tests, loses weight. Can someone please hand me a rusty spoon? Anyone?
I don't even know what she saw in Kaidan. His redeeming qualities were: he's hawt, and.....hmm, let's see....he's.......hawt. Nevermind that he's a bipolar asshat. I swear that dude had more mood swings than a girl. It's like a freaking Katy Perry song. Oh, and did I mention he's also a man slut? That's such a quality trait right there. I'd be throwing myself at him too. Every time he said he had to 'work' (aka go screw some random chick's brains out), I threw up a little in my mouth. Being a female, how could this not bother you? What reason could you possibly have to still want a chance with him in these circumstances?! Oh right, because he's so totally dreamy. I forgot.
The relationship - if that's what you want to call it - between Kai and Anna gave me major mental whiplash. They 'broke up' 3 or 4 times (seriously, with the fetal crying and snot and all), and things were so complicated I couldn't even keep track of whether they were on speaking terms or not. For example, after the 2nd (or 3rd? Who the hell knows) 'breakup,' desperate little Anna says, "I can't keep living like this, Kai. I need to know how you feel. I need to know one way or another so I can have some sort of closure." And what does Kai say? "I thought you'd be over it by now." The next page - literally - he grabs her in his sweet embrace and tells her he wants to 'introduce himself to every freckle on her body.' (ralph) Um what? Huh? *stares at ceiling for answers* No kidding, this is how the last half went. "I can't be with you, we need to stay away from each other...but let me give you really confusing mixed signals then drag you into a dark alleyway and kiss you stupid!"
Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse: enter Kopano and an almost love triangle. I say almost because I'm not really sure what was going on between Anna and Kopano. Most of the time they were just staring at each other sentimentally. Then Kai gets all jealous because she's looking at him - God forbid she look at anyone - and throws a sissy fit and starts acting like even more of an asshat, if that's even possible. He almost gets in her pants, then tells her to go away, then kisses her passionately, then tells her to go away, then gets jealous over another guy staring at her like a creepy stalker. Again with the whiplash. Somebody call a lawyer, my neck hurts.
But wait, it gets better! Anna catches Kai having dry sex with another random chick, then goes and gets totally schmammered and kisses every guy she sees. The first part wouldn't have bothered me at all had she not gone super skank.
Another bad portrayal: Motherhood. Anna's mom, Patti, tells her to stay away from Kai. So what does Anna do? She blatantly defies her, going to see him immediately and then bringing him home to meet mommy. Instead of getting angry, Patti sends her on a road trip with him. Huh? What mother on Earth would let her 16-year-old daughter go cross country with a stranger? And this same mother freaked out because Anna had some nightmares. But it's okay to be in a hotel room alone with some guy she just met.
A lot of the interactions and happenings were just absurd. Patti and Anna were driving, and Anna noticed they were being followed. She tells Patti she's going to tuck and roll and to go on without her (of course, Patti's fine with it). So she jumps out of a moving vehicle in favor of footing it away from the bad guys chasing her. Who end up being Kai's friends, and one of them tackles her to the ground. What's wrong with just yelling out, "Wait! I'm Kaidan's friend!" And maybe it's just me, but if someone were following me, I'd floor it and call the police, not jump out of the safety of the car.
Something else that rubbed me the wrong way - aside from looking down on non-virgins, the looking down on non-beautiful people. Apparently Pharzuph was not the only demon to choose an attractive body to inhabit, and an attractive mate to give him a child, which was smart. Charming, good-looking people could get away with a lot. Now, I'm not so naive that I don't believe this statement is true to an extent, but it just irked me. Then later on with the daughter of Gluttony and all the fat gibes such as attempting to taunt her with a candy bar, commenting on 'rolling her to the stage,' and calling her a "salad dodger" (which is really a pretty lame one anyway but you get the idea). That part just pissed me off. I was unsatisfied with the whole situation with Gluttony in general though. Why was she in trouble? The Nephilim are supposed to sin, and Gluttony is her specialty. It made no sense to me. The daughter of Substance Abuse didn't get in trouble for getting trashed. The son of Lust didn't get in trouble for boning a different bimbo every night. I just felt like the book was trolling with the fat people hate. It's okay to be a slut, but it's not okay to be overweight
ASSESSMENT Plot: 1/5 Was there one? I mean, unless getting drunk and crying over Kai counts as a plot. Writing style: 2.5/5 Characters: 1/5 Characters were one-dimensional and vapid. World-building: 3.5/5 The idea was fantastic. Pace: 2/5 Cover: 5/5 Don't mind me; I'll just be sitting in a corner, staring wistfully at the beautiful cover.
Not recommended for anyone under the age of 17....more
I’d rather be shot dead screaming for justice than die alone in a prison of my own making.
Oh goodness, where do I even start? I don’t even know if I
I’d rather be shot dead screaming for justice than die alone in a prison of my own making.
Oh goodness, where do I even start? I don’t even know if I can write a review that can do this justice. This book got to me, just like Unravel Me did. So many times I was in danger of drowning in feels!!
We found out in Destroy Me that there was a reason for the way Warner is. In Unravel Me, we realized he’s not so much of a bad guy. But in Ignite Me, you realize that everything you thought you knew about him was wrong. The things that he did in Shatter Me that I thought were awful were a complete misconception! And here I thought I couldn’t love him any more than I already did!
“Why share your secrets with me?” “Don’t do that,” he says. ”Don’t ask me questions you already know the answers to. Twice I’ve laid myself bare for you and all it’s gotten me was a bullet wound and a broken heart. Don’t torture me,” he says, meeting my eyes again. “It’s a cruel thing to do, even to someone like me.”
ARGH. Damn you, Juliette! That killed me. I hated the way she always doubted him when he had made it 100% clear how he felt about her, and had bared his soul to her just to have her reject him over and over again. But while Juliette pissed me off in the beginning when it came to Warner, she reached a whole new level of badass as the story progressed.
I am no longer afraid of fear, and I will not let it rule me. Fear will learn to fear me.
I will be unapologetic. I will live with no regrets. I will reach into the earth and rip out injustice and I will crush it in my bare hands.
I loved that she finally found her strength and learned to use it! The things she did toward the end – GAH, so freaking badass!! The choreographed display of Omega Point survivors was EPIC. (view spoiler)[I loved how Juliette parted the crowd and they just became invisible from out of nowhere! I could picture it perfectly, and I would love to see that on the big screen!! (hide spoiler)] And the ending, on the ship? ACK. *dies of badassery*
If my hate letter to Adam didn’t clue you in, I despise him. This book only solidified that even more. Just when I thought he couldn’t dig his hole any deeper! When he told her – Juliette, the one who was locked in solitary for 264 days, the one who had never been able to touch a human being, who had unintentionally killed with her bare hands – that she doesn’t know what it means to truly suffer, I wanted to punch his teeth out. In fact, pretty much everything he said to her was awful and I wanted to beat the shit out of him for it. She didn’t deserve the things he said to her. (view spoiler)[He would seriously rather see her die than be with Warner? Really, Adam? He tells her to go be with him and – I quote – “drop dead,” and says he was happier when he thought she was dead. AND he forced Juliette to touch Kenji…there was no guarantee it wouldn’t kill him! F*cking asshole! (hide spoiler)] Warner said it best:
“Do you ever get exhausted being so wholly unbearable? You have as much charisma as the rotting innards of unidentified roadkill.”
Seriously, I couldn’t have said it better myself. In fact, I love this insult so much that I want to file it away for future use, haha! And I totally love Kenji for laughing at it:
I hear an abrupt wheezing noise and turn toward the sound. Kenji has a hand pressed to his mouth, desperately trying to suppress a smile. He’s shaking his head, holding up a hand in apology. And then he breaks, laughing out loud, snorting as he tries to muffle the sound. “I’m sorry,” he says, pressing his lips together, shaking his head again. “This is not a funny moment. It’s not. I’m not laughing.”
I LOVE KENJI. I seriously do, he’s hilarious! Plus he was the perfect best friend for Juliette, and I think he’s my favorite fictional best friend ever. I was SO glad that he and Juliette finally went back to normal! Their friendship is awesome – it’s refreshing to have an important male in a story that isn’t a love interest! There needs to be more of those!
“And we are quotation marks, inverted and upside down, clinging to one another at the end of this life sentence.”
So, now to go over my favorite subject: WARNER. OH MY GAWD I LOVE HIM. *presses hand to forehead* He cared so much for Juliette, did so much for her (including putting his own neck on the line to make her happy) that it killed me! Adam could never amount to that. (view spoiler)[Warner was willing to give Adam a place to stay to make Juliette happy, yet Adam would rather her die than be happy with Warner. (hide spoiler)] What really killed me? Warner’s story about his birthdays and what his father did to him. I wanted to cry! It broke my heart. I was amazed at how much I felt for Warner and the empathy that story sparked with me.
Pretty much every scene with Warner in it made me want to die from the feels. I think I spontaneously combusted and melted into a little puddle several times over! (view spoiler)[I’m SO glad she chose Warner!! THANK YOU TAHEREH THANKYOUTHANKYOUTHANKYOOOUUU. I love that when she found out she could control her power and touch anybody, she ran right to Warner! I ALMOST DIED. Ahhh, be still my beating heart <333 (hide spoiler)]
Adam and Warner’s reunion was beautiful. I’m glad that they were willing to put aside their differences to be a family, and that it was a bright spot of light in the darkness. And the ending was so perfect! Although I have to say, I was worried there for a minute. (view spoiler)[I was going to DIE if something had happened to Warner! It was scary!! D: (hide spoiler)] But I’m very happy with the way everything turned out, and it was an epic ending to a series that I’m sad to say goodbye to!
Favorite quotes: Okay, so I couldn’t really narrow it down, sorry. This book is so quotable!
But there’s something about the darkness, the stillness of this hour, I think, that creates a language of its own. There’s a strange kind of freedom in the dark; a terrifying vulnerability we allow ourselves at exactly the wrong moment, tricked by the darkness into thinking it will keep our secrets. We forget that blackness is not a blanket; we forget that the sun will soon rise. But in the moment, at least, we feel brave enough to say things we’d never say in the light.
Words, I think, are such unpredictable creatures. No gun, no sword, no army or king will ever be more powerful than a sentence. Swords may cut and kill, but words will stab and stay, burying themselves in our bones to become corpses we carry into the future, all the time digging and failing to rip their skeletons from our flesh.
I head straight into the living room, eager to put distance between me and whatever keeps happening to my head when Warner gets too close. I need air. I need a new brain. I need to jump out of a window and catch a ride with a dragon to a world far from here. Haha, Warner has that effect on me too ;D
“That’s because you’re not fragile,” Kenji says, “If anything, everyone needs to protect themselves from you. You’re like a freaking beast,” he says. Then adds, “I mean, you know – like, a cute beast. A little beast that tears shit up and breaks the earth and sucks the life out of people.”
“Hey – jazz hands!” Kenji barks. “Get your ass back over here.” He makes it a point to look as irritated as possible. “Back to work. And this time, focus. You’re not an ape. Don’t just throw your shit everywhere.” Warner actually laughs. Out loud.
“You don’t know what it was like in my head. I lived in a really dark place. I wasn’t safe in my own mind. I woke up every morning hoping to die and then spent the rest of the day wondering if maybe I was already dead because I couldn’t even tell the difference. I had a small thread of hope and I clung to it, but the majority of my life was spent waiting around to see if someone would take pity on me.” Wow, this really captures the feeling of depression.
Words are like seeds, I think, planted into our hearts at a tender age. They take root in us as we grow, settling deep into our souls. The good words plant well. They flourish and find homes in our hearts. They build trunks around our spines, steadying us when we’re feeling most flimsy; planting our feet firmly when we’re feeling most unsure. But the bad words grow poorly. Our trunks infest and spoil until we are hollow and housing the interests of others and not our own. We are forced to eat the fruit those words have borne, held hostage by the branches growing arms around our necks, suffocating us to death, one word at a time.
“Are you out of your goddamn mind? You think we can take on two hundred soldiers? I know I am an extremely attractive man, J, but I am not Bruce Lee.” “Who’s Bruce Lee?” “Who’s Bruce Lee?” Kenji asks, horrified. “Oh my God. We aren’t even friends anymore.” “Why? Was he a friend of yours?” “You know what,” he says, “just stop. Just – I can’t even talk to you right now.”
Just so you know, I never really liked alien stories. I do now. Let me start by telling a story (it's kind of long, I apologize in advance). I have wanJust so you know, I never really liked alien stories. I do now. Let me start by telling a story (it's kind of long, I apologize in advance). I have wanted this book sooo incredibly bad since it came out. Aliens don't really appeal to me, but I did like Smallville (I was an avid watcher for the first couple seasons) and even though I only saw episode 1 of Roswell, I liked it too. This book sounded a bit like those. That and I'm a major sucker for love/hate relationships. Anyway, I wanted to wait and see if I got it for Christmas (it was on the top of my list), but I ended up getting a Barnes & Noble gift card. So I ordered it, along with Shattered Souls, Everneath, and Incarnate. Mind you, the latter doesn't come out until the 31st of next month. Didn't really think that one through, did I? So, when I got the email informing me of my expected ship date and 'Jan 31' was on there, I almost had an apoplectic fit. Wait another month? Uhh, I think not. So the next day (the day after Christmas), I cancelled Obsidian from that order and drove all around Hell and creation trying to find it. NOBODY had it, so I had to re-order it. So, I have been all but sitting around for the last 4 days, staring at my door, waiting to tackle the UPS man. I passed him on my way home from work today and it was everything I could do to not drive 80 down my road. After all that, I was reeeaaaaaally hoping this book wouldn't disappoint. It didn't.
In case you didn't know, our main character Katy here is a book blogger. Awesomesauce, right? So I was hooked from the very first paragraph. She's a reader, she's from Gainesville FL, and she's sarcastic. Oh, and she sometimes fantasizes about punching people and considers being around children the perfect abstinence program. I liked her immediately. (Now don't get me wrong, I like children, as long as I can hand them back at the end of the day...)
Then there's Daemon. She really wasn't kidding about him being stab-worthy. In the first chapter of meeting him I already wanted to punch him in the teeth and gouge his eyes out with a rusty spoon. Frustrating. Insufferable. Asshat. Exactly the kind of guy we tell ourselves not to fall for and do it anyway (ladies, you know exactly what I mean). "Beautiful face. Beautiful body. Horrible attitude. The holy trinity of hot boys." I thought I was going to get mental whiplash from his mood swings. Yep, I wanted to punch him.
As much of an ass as he was, I loved him anyway (go figure). And I loved Katy for standing up to him. She never gave in, meeting his cockiness with a fiery attitude. The banter between them had me giggling at every turn...brownie points for the humor! It makes a book so much more interesting when I laugh out loud.
I'm not a mushy kind of gal, but I do like that wonderful falling stage of developing romances. Particularly when they start off with hatred. Yeah, I don't know why either. But I really enjoyed the romance in this one because of that. At first they really do hate each other, but they're forced together and as the book goes on, they start to not hate each other. Yet they continue to go on pretending like they can't stand one another, even though it's obvious to everyone else but them that they are developing feelings. And many times I found myself getting frustrated because GOSH DARNIT, they just would not kiss already!!! You get through most of the book, and you think it's not going to happen - but don't worry, it will happen, and when it does, it is HAWT. Hawt like that scene in Mr. and Mrs. Smith where they have their guns pointed at each other's heads ready to kill each other and realize they can't so they go for an attack make-out session instead.
Other than the sexy sparks flying, there was a satisfying amount of danger and action as well. The pace never slowed and I found myself soaking up the words, greedily wanting more and more. The supernatural parts were realistic and easy to imagine. There were many parts when it really did remind me of Smallville - and Daemon kinda reminded me of Tom Welling (Clark) in that one episode where he gets the red kryptonite ring and goes all bad boy sexy rebel (for anyone who saw that, remember the motorcycle and the leather jacket? Mhmmm).
While it didn't really delve deep into the history of the Luxen, I enjoyed what pieces I got of it. It was interesting and convincing. "In this vast, neverending universe, do you think Earth is the only planet with life?" You know, he does have a point. While I don't particularly believe in 'aliens' as the majority of stories portray them, it is kind of narrow-minded to think that we're the only life out there.
I cannot wait for book 2!!!
And now for the quotes:
I couldn't figure out why he was here, talking to me, when the last time we'd spoken, he'd acted like I was the antichrist and practically had me pinned to a tree, talking about ways to get dirty. And why hadn't I brushed my hair this morning?
And for us bloggers... I checked on the review I'd posted last night. No comments. People sucked. But I did gain five new followers. People rocked.
Daemon followed me home after school. Literally. He tailed me in his new Infinity SUV. My old Camry, with its leaky exhaust and loud muffler, was no match for the speeds he wanted to go. I'd brake checked him several times. He'd blown his horn. It made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I loved that she got her kicks out of pissing him off. He acts so disagreeable, it'd be hard not to push his buttons a little.
I loved Throne of Glass, and I must say Crown of Midnight was even better! It was intense and heartbreaking, packed with lies and betrayals and shock
I loved Throne of Glass, and I must say Crown of Midnight was even better! It was intense and heartbreaking, packed with lies and betrayals and shocks at every turn.
“I didn’t really snore, did I?” His face was utterly serious as he said, “Like a bear.”
The banter I adored between Calaena and Chaol in the first book was present in the sequel. And Chaol was totally jealous of Archer, it was adorable! I was Team Chaol all the way before, and this one only reenforced that fact! There were so many squee-worthy moments! *swoons* Not that I have a problem with Dorian, because he was pretty awesome too. But he just can’t compare to Chaol. Sorry, Dorian!
In that moment, after ten long years, Celaena looked at Chaol and realized she was home.
Celaena irritated me a bit at times. I love how badass she is, but she could be as stubborn as a mule! Even petulant at times. And her reaction to certain things disappointed me, to be honest. I can understand the anger, but she kind of took it out on the wrong people. And the wallowing. Geez, get up and do something about it already.
Awful things happen. There was one part in particular that I was horrified, mouth agape, as the events unfolded. I was hoping against it as desperately as Celaena was, and it totally sucked. And the aftermath broke my heart a little. I hated how things changed and the devastating turn that they took. It made my heart ache and made me feel sick to my stomach!
There were so many shocking revelations! I can’t wander into spoiler territory, but we finally get bits of Celaena’s past, as well as the king and Dorian’s. It was crazy!
There’s not much else to say other than I loved it. It was very engaging! And the ending! It left me staring, gaping at my Kindle. I was speechless!! I can’t wait to get my hands on the third book! If you loved Throne of Glass, you need to read this book asap! And if you haven’t read Throne of Glass yet, what are you waiting for?!
I knew going in that this was a companion novel and not an actual sequel. I was a little worried that it wouldn't be the same without Nisha and *coug I knew going in that this was a companion novel and not an actual sequel. I was a little worried that it wouldn't be the same without Nisha and *coughs* JERRIT, but this book was still awesome. First of all, the setting was magnificent! Miriam is a pro at bringing a world to life. She has just the right amount of detail without making the story boring. There were also little snippets of history and teachings in between the chapters that I enjoyed!
Mara was pretty freaking awesome! I was intrigued by her from the start because she was Sune, but she earned my respect with her fierce loyalty and perseverance. She was damaged, but was a stronger lead because of it. I enjoyed her journey in earning her honor back! (view spoiler)[Not to mention she's a freaking tiger! How awesome is that?! When I found out she was Sune, I was assuming she was a spotted cat as well. Pretty epic that she's a top predator :D (hide spoiler)]
I really enjoyed Mara and Revathi's relationship. At first Revathi seemed a bit condescending and cynical toward Mara, but as time passed they developed a very strong bond. It's the kind of friendship that you don't see very often in books anymore. They defended and protected each other no matter the cost. It was a beautiful relationship!
Okay, so...Mara and Emil. WTF?! Talk about instalove!! This was the one dark spot to this novel, and honestly it kind of ruined it a little bit for me. I like the idea of their romance, but the fact that they had had literally two interactions before the major turning point of their relationship (aka Mara getting injured and Emil holding her while she bled half to death and then kissing her) made it feel very forced. Mara saved his brother, he saw her for like 3 seconds; they saw each other again in the market and he gave her a carved tiger...then BAM! he loves her? WHAT?! I wanted to shake him and scream, YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW HER!!!! ARGH!! They were barely together at all; in fact, by halfway through I was wondering when their paths would cross so they could get to know one another because I knew from the beginning that they would fall for each other. Nope. Love at first sight, apparently. *sighs*
I do have to say that I love love LOOOOVED the way it ended! ALL THE FEELS!! The last word of the book floored me! (view spoiler)[The whole time I was hoping some of the characters from the first book would make a guest appearance, and as it kept going without an appearance I started to get disappointed...until the end. EEP OMG OMG IT WAS NISHA'S PARENTS OMG YOU GUYS. I totally loved that! Squee! (hide spoiler)]
Sadly there was no Jerrit. My heart was broken a little bit :(
This review was originally posted on Novel Heartbeat. To see a breakdown of my assessment, please visit the full review here.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Rating this book was a huge struggle, because I can't even pin down exactly how I feel about it. As you can see from my Overall Assessment, my rating Rating this book was a huge struggle, because I can't even pin down exactly how I feel about it. As you can see from my Overall Assessment, my ratings are all over the place, so overall I just feel confused about the impression this book on me. I almost didn't even rate the 'feels' category because I didn't know whether to give it a high feels rating for pissing me off so much or give it a zero for the same reason. Because this book did piss me off. Royally. But, there were also times where I kinda enjoyed it. Confusing, right?
Pages 67 -80 were so rocky that I very nearly DNFed this book. I was getting SO pissed at the characters that I almost threw the book across the room! I hated Britt, I despised Korbie, and they were both such vapid freaking morons that I wanted to slap the shit out of them. First of all, their "friendship" bordered on frenemies rather than actual friends. I hate hate HATE those friendships. Why the hell would you want to call someone like that a friend? WHY?! Korbie was a horrendous person. She was the snobbiest of snobs, complaining about the quality of the food while trapped in a blizzard, and overall a total royal bitch. (Actually, I have another word for her - a word I don't even like to use - 'bitch' just isn't strong enough, if you get my drift) She was constantly taking digs at Britt, making herself feel superior by demeaning her "friend." She even had a list in her diary keeping score of who was better. Really? When Korbie would goad Britt, Britt would take shots back as "payback." Payback? Seriously? And you call her your "best" friend?! Jesus. If someone treats you like shit, you're constantly taking shots at each other, and it feels like a competition all the time, they are NOT your friend! "We're more like family - we love each other, but we don't always like each other" is no excuse to keep someone toxic in your life. I didn't like the values that their "friendship" portrayed for younger girls that may be reading this book. A REAL FRIEND IS BETTER THAN THAT. Trust me. On top of being the not-so-nice synonym of female parts, Korbie was a skank, too: Her response to Britt saying she has Bear (her boyfriend) when she's flirting with Shaun is "Shaun's here, Bear's not" and "So we aren't forever. What's the point of being completely loyal when I know our relationship is going to end?" THEN WHY THE F*CK ARE YOU WITH HIM?! What kind of message is that sending?!
Britt wasn't much better. She was annoying, petty, and naive to the point of utter stupidity.
1) She had NO common sense:
"And it's really only you and Korbie? Your parents aren't meeting you up here?" I hesitated, almost mentioning Calvin and Bear, but at the last moment changed my mind. First rule of talking to a boy: Never drag your ex into the conversation. It makes you look clingy. And bitter.
First rule of talking to a boy? How about the first rule of talking to a total f*cking stranger?! Why yes, we came up here alone. By all means, proceed to mug and rape us, then dump our bodies in the woods.
2) She drank an unidentified liquid and didn't even make the connection that it was alcohol:
"Take this." Jude offered me a small bottle from his coat pocket. I was so rattled, I hardly felt the liquid burn down my throat. It was cold like water, but bitter, and I sputtered and coughed as I tipped the bottle for more. Soon a certain warmth crept into my body, and my breathing relaxed.
[Later] "Do you have the bottle of moonshine I gave you earlier?" Moonshine. Of course, he'd given me alcohol. I'd never drunk it before, so the taste had been foreign.
I had moonshine once. It literally took my breath away. And that was back when I could toss back 8 shots of Jäger without batting an eyelash. How the HELL could you not have some realization that you were drinking alcohol, even if you'd never tasted it before? A liquid that burns going down? What, did you think it was water? Anyway, I'm pretty sure a first time drinker would have immediately spit that shit out, no matter how "rattled" they were.
3) She supposedly studied survival and she ATE SNOW to stay hydrated:
Compacting snow between my gloves, I made a slushy ball, and pushed it into my mouth, letting the icy mixture melt down my throat. It was painfully cold, but invigorating. If I was sweating, I needed to drink. It seemed impossible that I could dehydrate in such cold weather, but I trusted the guidebooks and my training.
Eating snow will only lower your temperature more and waste useful energy as your body tries to heat it up! Isn't the "don't eat snow" rule common knowledge? Or has Girl Scouts just helped me learn survival things?
4) She supposedly studied survival and was DRINKING ALCOHOL while stranded in a blizzard. If you're dehydrated and freezing, drinking alcohol is the worst thing you can do! It makes your blood vessels dilate, which only makes you feel warm. Again, you're lowering your core temperature more. How could a survivalist not know these things?!
5) She was locked out of a building in a snow storm and completely panicked, immediately trying to look for shelter. DOES THIS PLACE NOT HAVE WINDOWS?! Oh, wait. It does. And whaddaya know, they're made of GLASS. Not like that's a breakable material or anything. It's sad that she had to see a broken window to realize she could get in through a window. So I wanted to strangle Britt, I hated Korbie with the fire of a thousand suns (no seriously, I was actually hoping she would die), and then there's Calvin; who walked away from Britt with no explanation, cheated on her, lied to her, and justified his horrible actions by blaming them on his dad. (view spoiler)[Oh, and he kills people. (hide spoiler)] And let's not forget Shaun, who was a sociopathic asshole, plain and simple.
The only character that was halfway decent was Jude, but really he just felt like a regurgitated version of Patch from Becca's Hush, Hush series. Dark and broody FTW. Not. Honestly, though, I did kind of like him, because he was more of an antihero than an actual hero and I am a fan of antiheroes. But, there were times he reminded me so much of Patch that I expected there to be a paranormal twist in the story where Jude revealed that he was secretly an angel.
I feel the need to mention: I am a fan of Stockholm Syndrome stories. There's just something twisted about it that appeals to me. But the romance in this (and this book IS a romance, by the way, not much else) didn't really work for me. It moved much too fast to be convincing. There weren't nearly enough positive interactions between Britt and Patch, I mean Jude, to outweigh all of the negative from the beginning of the kidnapping. I think there should have been more time in between that and the realization that Britt had SS, rather than having it occur so early (and by early I mean page 213, barely more than halfway through the book). It pretty much went straight from her loathing and fearing him to her being attached and finding him attractive. It was more like a lightbulb flicking on than a gradual transition sneaking up on the victim.
This was the point the story got a bit ridiculous for me. It was so cheesy, to the point that I may have vomited in my mouth a little. There's a span after the attachment forms where the only thing Britt can even focus on is how attractive he is. Then there's about 4 pages straight of them just talking about kissing/seducing each other. It was horrendous. Then there was their...."banter":
"When you bluff, your left eyebrow twitches. [...] When you're amused, your mouth takes on a mischevious curl. [...] When you're angry, you press your lips together and three tiny lines jump out between your eyebrows." "Anything else?" I asked hotly. "When you kiss, you make a purring noise deep in your throat. It's so faint, I have to be touching you to hear it." Now I turned bright red. "We should kiss again and see what other observations I make," he suggested. "Fat chance after you insulted me!"
It was also predictable. (view spoiler)[I predicted that Calvin was actually the Lauren's killer after he shot Shaun, and that Shaun and Jude were hunting him because Shaun was related to her. I was close about the relation - it was actually Jude, not Shaun - but I was 100% right about Calvin. (hide spoiler)]
I said earlier that I still enjoyed parts of it. I did, truly I did, but the parts that ticked me off vastly outweighed the parts that drew me in. I did really like the idea of it, I found myself actually rooting for Jude,and I have to admit that I enjoyed the relationship between Britt and Jude before it got all disgusting; but the awful characters and the lack of common sense in the story telling ruined the book for me. I make it a point to avoid EVER talking about the author directly, but I really think that there should have been more research involved in the survival parts. The drinking alcohol and eating snow really bothered me for some reason. I mean, what if someone reads this book, then gets trapped in a snowstorm, and dies because they thought eating snow and drinking alcohol would help their situation? (Ok, so maybe I'm just being a sarcastic asshole now.) I dunno. Do your research before you put it in a book!
(view spoiler)[The ending was a bit too fluffy for this story. I think I would have been more satisfied if Jude had sacrificed himself (in the scene where he and Cal both had guns, he could have taken a fatal bullet wound to in order to take Calvin down) to save Britt and he had died...at least then it would have elicited an emotion from me, since he was the only character I remotely cared about. But the fact that they walked off into the sunset and pretty much lived happily ever after, yadda yadda, bugged me. It made it seem like a girl's fantasy rather than a story about a kidnapping and Stockholm Syndrome. I understand where Becca was going with it - something good came out of a horrible circumstance - but I think after suffering through that much trauma the characters would be changed forever, wanting to forget and thus go their separate ways. As was mentioned in the ending, before the epilogue of rainbows and unicorns. (hide spoiler)]
This review was originally posted on Novel Heartbeat. To see a breakdown of my assessment, please visit the full review here.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Not gonna lie, I really waffled on writing this review because I wasn't sure what I was going to say. I liked it butFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
Not gonna lie, I really waffled on writing this review because I wasn't sure what I was going to say. I liked it but it wasn't amazing...the end. Ha. I've been looking for a good reaper book for a while, because I've read a few in the past that I didn't care for at all. This book didn't wow me like I had hoped, but it was a light and cute read!
I was a little overwhelmed at first, because I had some confusion with the world building. It took a while for me to get to know what everything meant. I didn't know anything about the Inbetween until much later in the book. Once I got used to it though, it was interesting. The way the reapers feel the 'pull' when they're called for a reap, and how there were different reapers for Heaven, Hell, and the Inbetween.
I feel like there wasn't much happening plot-wise. There wasn't a whole lot of action until the last half when Maeve really made a full appearance. Most of the first half was just Finn following Emma around longingly. I was caught between thinking it was romantic and thinking it was creepy. While it was a little weird that he watched her 24/7, I understood his feelings for her. It's hard to want someone that you can't have. And the fact that he had waited so many years for her was endearing.
I couldn't connect with the characters the way I'd hoped, either. While I generally like switching points of view, this one didn't exactly pull it off. There were times when I couldn't tell the difference between Finn and Emma, resulting in a lot of confusion on my end. The secondary characters - Easton, Anaya, and Cash - didn't stand out, either. Don't get me wrong, I liked the book. But again, it didn't wow me. It's one of those that I enjoy in the moment but just doesn't stick in my mind.
I think this book had fantastic potential. I do believe I'll read book 2 when it comes out to see how it develops. :)
This book reminded me a lot of a cross between The Hunger Games and The Golden Compass! I don’t particularly like to compare books, because that
This book reminded me a lot of a cross between The Hunger Games and The Golden Compass! I don’t particularly like to compare books, because that usually insinuates that one is a cheap ripoff of another, but that was not the case with Fire & Flood. Yes, it was similar; but Victoria Scott made it her own, and it was a unique and intriguing read!
The egg is small and ugly, and if I’m not mistaken, it’s got a little stank rolling off it. But it’s mine. And I’m going to take care of what’s inside.
So, let me just take a minute to fangirl over Madox. Scott could have picked any animal, and she picked a fox. Did I mention that I freaking adore foxes?! *nods appreciatively to Victoria Scott* MADOX WAS SO AWESOME CAN I PLEASE HAVE ONE PLEASE CAN I PLEASE?! Seriously, I loved him so much!!! I felt a very keen affection for him, the kind that rarely happens for me with fictional characters. I want my own Pandora!! Especially if it’s as cute and badass as Madox! He was what made the story for me. That, and the idea of Pandoras in general. Think The Golden Compass‘ demons, only they’re not part of the person. They’re hatched. From an egg. And they each have their own unique abilities. How awesome is that?!
I loved the journey Tella took in finding the egg and being with it when it hatched. I loved that despite the fact that the egg seemed damaged and hatched late, Madox was adorable and ended up being the best Pandora of them all. I loved finding out what his power really was!! I pretty much just loved everything related to Pandoras, haha.
At first, Tella kind of annoyed me. She seemed rather spoiled, vain, and kind of shallow in the beginning; but as the plot progressed, I could see a clear change in her. She ended up being pretty awesome! I found her protectiveness over Madox – even before he hatched – endearing. While most people may have given up on the egg, or tossed it away because they deemed it defective, she clung to it and loved it despite its misgivings, and was rewarded for that!
I liked the secondary characters, too. Jaxon intrigued me and Harper was a badass! I really liked Harper for some reason, and hope to see more of her in the next book.
I have to give kudos to Scott, because one part in the story shocked the hell out of me! I didn’t see that twist coming at all, and these days it’s hard to surprise me. With as much fiction as I watch/read, I can usually predict things pretty easily. I love it when an author can catch me by surprise!
The idea of it was pretty cool, although I found it a little strange in the beginning because it kinda came out of nowhere. But the farther it went, the more interesting it was. I would love to get a little more world building in the second book, because I want to know more about the Brimstone Bleed and its origins!
I very nearly DNF’ed this book in the first 20-30 pages. I managed to stick through it somehow – my masochistic nature? or morbid curios[image error]
I very nearly DNF’ed this book in the first 20-30 pages. I managed to stick through it somehow – my masochistic nature? or morbid curiosity? who knows – and honestly, I wouldn’t have been missing much. I was really looking forward to reading this because of the idea, but the delivery was so lackluster that it all just fell flat for me.
My first problem happened very early when Eva is chosen to go to the PODs and she realized she has to leave her family and friends behind (to die, basically). Maybe it’s just me, but if someone told me I could go underground to survive a murderous virus while everyone that I loved had to stay upside, there would have been a full on battle because I’d have thrown a fit. I would have been kicking, screaming, and crying. I would have fought the decision tooth and nail. In the end, I probably would have elected to stay behind altogether. What kind of a life is it if you lose everyone? I wouldn’t be able to stand knowing that everyone that mattered and made my life worthwhile had an expiration date.
But no, not Eva. She barely even reacted. She was quick to accept the decision, and acted rather bland to the situation. And she wasn’t scared. What the hell kind of a 17-year-old would not be terrified to leave behind her whole life and watch everyone she loved die? WTF?
When her ‘best friend’ called (and by the way she didn’t even tell her supposed best friend that she was chosen):
“I can’t believe it, Eva. We’re gonna die.” She started crying again. I didn’t know what to say. What do you say to someone who’s just been given a death sentence? “I know.” She cried harder, and I couldn’t understand what she said. I sat and listened and let her cry. What else could I do? I was her best friend. I cried with her, for her. “Why aren’t you more upset, Eva?”
Yeah, Eva, why aren’t you upset? Because there’s nothing you can do? Why should you be worried when you’re the one that’s going to live? Ugh.
Then when she finally did start crying, I felt absolutely nothing. She said she was sad, said she didn’t want to leave them, but there was no show. Don’t tell me something, show me! Make me feel it. I felt so disconnected and apathetic to the story that I didn’t even feel like finishing it. She said it was the last night she’d ever spend with her parents, and I think she should have been waaaay more fazed by that realization. It didn’t help that the scene where she actually said goodbye to her parents was skipped over and shown as a flashback. That made me care even less! I should have been crying while reading it because I would be torn up just thinking about leaving my parents behind. I didn’t even get a twinge of sadness. Nothing.
And you know something I always hate? When a character says ‘I didn’t even realize I was crying.’
She held her arms out for me. I walked into them and she hugged me tight against her. I hadn’t realized I’d been crying until then. The hot tears stung my face.
HOW can you not realize you’re crying? The hot tears stung your face, but you didn’t feel them coming out of your eyeballs? That line always drives me crazy when writers use it. It’s ridiculous. Even when you’re overcome with grief, in the back of your mind you can still feel the tightness in your throat and the sting in your eyes before you start to cry. Jeesh.
Something else that irritates me: Females who ‘hate the sight of blood.’ It’s blood for crying out loud. Suck it up! She completely flipped her shit because she had to prick her finger. It’s a tiny needle. It barely hurts. Grow up and stop being so freaking weak. This was from the same girl that wasn’t afraid to leave everyone she loved to die. Yeah, okay. *eye roll*
The only reason I gave this book even 1 starfish is because of the idea. It really was a great idea: There’s a virus rampaging through humanity and a select few of the population are chosen to live in underground units called PODs (Populace Obliteration Defense) until the virus dies out and it’s safe to go above ground again.
But, unfortunately, the world building was lacking. Sure, I loved the idea, but the delivery needed some work. First of all, the virus has no name. Something along the lines of ‘because there were be no one left to remember it anyway.’ They don’t know what it is, where it came from, or how it even spreads (talk about lazy writing). But they can test for it? How can they know what they’re looking for?
I couldn’t picture anything. When the PODs system was explained, I couldn’t get an image in my head for what it would look like. And while it was cool, it didn’t really make sense. Their means of getting supplies was ‘like a bank teller’s window.’ A chute with air flow and suction. I’m not sure how you’d be able to transport food that way, but okay. I tried not to think to hard about the system, because a lot of it didn’t really make sense. They could only have a specific amount of people, yet they had co-ed PODs? Wouldn’t they want to keep males and females separated to avoid sex/pregnancy? Not to mention that everyone in the PODs were from age 12-25 (no adults? Really?), and they were all 4.0 students. Um, what about common sense? Knowledge can only get you so far if you don’t have common sense. Just because you’re book smart most certainly does not mean you’re street smart. There’s a major difference between the two. And no offense, but in order to survive the apocalypse you need the latter a bit more.
And now we come to my greatest issue: The 'romance.' It moved waaay to fast! Eva already said she was ‘falling’ for David on page 82. They had been studying together every night for a month, so the time span was longer, but us readers barely saw any interaction at all. Maybe a few times at the most. So to us, it looks like they barely even know each other. He had been in the story for maybe 40 pages. I didn’t even have time to get to know him, so there was nothing to relate to in the relationship. I couldn’t have cared less. It felt much too soon and needed more development. Then, there was about 20 straight pages of nothing but kissing. There was nothing else happening but Eva and David making out. In fact, I kinda feel like that’s all the last half of the book was. Them kissing and wanting to jump each other’s bones. It was too much for me, and to be honest I skimmed every time they started kissing because it made me want to ralph. I mean seriously, people are dying and you guys are kissing each other? Yeah, that’s realistic.
[After cutting off a POD - aka killing everyone in it] I’d seen the picture on his laptop before he’d shut it. People ruuning around their POD, a look of terror in their eyes. I reached out and opened the lid of his computer. My arm brushed against his, sending goosebumps racing across my skin. I had to concentrate to remember what I was asking about. [um, the f*cking people dying on the computer screen?] The screen was nothing but static. “They cut off another one? Who?” I let go of his computer and started to pull my hand away. He grabbed it, folding it into his own, threading our fingers together. He grazed his lips over my knuckles. Oh. Wow. Do that again. My insides swirled out of place and did things I’d only read about in my mother’s racy romance novels.
Really?! Let’s just ignore the disgusting cheese of that last statement – you literally just watched people die and you’re thinking about that? Is your heart shriveled and black? And again, the cheesiness made things even worse, because there were things like this:
Did David just tell me he loves me? He loves me? David…loves me. David, Greek-god handsome…no…underwear model sexy…no…Greek-god underwear model sexy David loves me. Oh wow. There is going to be so much kissing!
First of all, if I wasn’t drowning in cheese I’d reach out and slap her so she could get a grip. Second of all, he told you he loves you and you’re thinking about how much you two are going to make out? Yeah, cuz that’s what love is. UGH.
(view spoiler)[Another reason I didn’t feel the romance was because they didn’t act like they loved each other. There was no feeling (just like everything else in the book), and it was more of lust than love. Because they spent pages and pages doing nothing but make out, yet when it came down to it, they didn’t seem to actually ‘love’ each other. When they found out they were going to be separated after leaving the PODs, there was little to no reaction. Again, no screaming or crying, just acceptance. Huh? Then, when Eva finds out that if David hadn’t left his compound in search for her, he could have been transferred to her compound anyway, she barely even seems to care.
“We would have worked together…lived in the same district. We could’ve had a life together.” George reached out and awkwardly brushed a tear off my cheek. “I’m sorry, Eva.” “Yeah, well, it is what it is.”
And that’s the end of it. She didn’t even dwell on it. What the hell? How could you not be upset about that? Then, when they start sneaking around to see each other, David randomly decides it’s time to ‘cut losses and move on,’ because they know so little about each other and don’t even know if they could have a relationship outside of the POD. So you admit that you barely even know each other, even though you ‘love’ one another? Physical attraction does NOT equal love, guys. That’s called lust. (hide spoiler)]
Towards the end I started noticing this more than the beginning, but the characters constantly say each other’s names. What, like we’d forget what their names are or something? Every time they addressed each other, they used their names. It was SO annoying!
“I read your letters, Eva. I love you, too. And I want to be with you. I’ll wait. We’ll find a way to be together.” “It’ll work out, David. I can feel it.”
“Eva, are you crazy?” he yelled, grabbing me in his arms. “I can’t stay in there, David. Not without you.”
Who talks like that?! UGHHHH. We get it, guys. You have names. You know them. Good for you.
When they’re topside, they hear about a safe haven with survivors. But Eva doesn’t want to go, no, she’d rather just stay and hide like a coward. Wouldn’t you want to see if your parents survived? No matter how small the possibility?
“And you’d stay here and give up the chance at seeing your family again?” “My family is dead. And it’s likely yours are, too. If the first wave of the virus didn’t kill them, the mutated strain did. If they lived through that, the infected have probably killed them by now.”
What the f*ck, dude. She really does have a withered black heart. Or none at all. I’m sorry but if it was me, I’d be looking for them, just in case. (But again, if it was me I probably wouldn’t have left them in the first place.) If you have no hope, what is left? Gawd. I couldn’t stand her.
All in all, the story was very rushed, and I feel like it should have been developed better and broken into two books. They were only in the PODs for about 100 pages of the book. That’s the title of the book, for crying out loud! Being back above ground should have been the sequel. Then there would have been more time to focus on the world building and flesh out the characters and the horrific romance.
Also, in the synopsis of the book we have this line: But the infected follow and are relentless in their attacks. Leaving Eva and David to fight for survival and pray for a cure. There was little to no action, and basically no ‘fighting for survival.’ There was really only one part where the infected attacked. This book is NOT an action-filled dystopian story. It is a ‘ROMANCE.’ And a cheesy one at that. I want to make that clear to anyone who feels the need to read it.
My thoughts: I. HATE. LOVE. TRIANGLES!!!! Ok, now that I've gotten that out of my system. I was thoroughly unimpressed by this book. The plot was good, sure, but it just lacked for me. Even the ending - with everything falling apart and the death of an important character - felt rushed. Maybe because I was skimming to get to the end and get it over with, who knows. It wasn't a bad book necessarily, but it wasn't memorable at all. Her prose wasn't too bad, but she really needs a synonym for mirth. I got extremely sick of that word after seeing it every chapter in the first half.
In the first 10 pages, I had already skipped to the very last page and read the ending. I seriously considered returning it to the library then and there simply because of the love triangle - and also because I had no clue what the hell was going on. It was like Williams dumped me right in the middle of a series. There really should have been a first book setting the scene of her world and telling the background and history (and also the "love" between Kyol and McKenzie). I was confused and lost because she didn't explain anything, just threw terms at you like fissure and jaedric. I didn't really understand what was going on until I got pretty far in and finally got a feel for the world she creates.
Then there's McKenzie. Stubborn, fickle, and hard-headed. I didn't care much for her. While I like a female protag to have some fight, she just took it too far. First, she claims to have "loved" Kyol for ten years, but then Aren comes along and kidnaps her, and she's immediately resisting developing feelings for him. Then, she continuously blames Stockholm Syndrome. Like, every chapter. Saying that the 'damn Stockholm Syndrome' is messing with her mind. Ok first of all, it's not an actual illness. It's just the term used to describe feelings toward a captor. While I love stories of Stockholm Syndrome or hate turning to love, this one irritated me.
McKenzie is a dumbass. Along with the constant blaming of Stockholm Syndrome for her developing feelings of Aren, she also repeatedly tries escaping. She knows that the fae are faster and she's outnumbered. She even states this. Yet she still keeps trying, even after she earns a broken arm from an attempt.
Then there's Aren. How is he 'fierce and uncompromising?' Because right from the beginning he is compassionate and gentle toward McKenzie. There's only a couple instances where he is anything other than benign, and that's because she really deserved it.
I probably won't be picking up book 2 when it comes out. If it was in Aren's POV maybe, but I don't want to hear any more of McKenzie.
OVERALL ASSESSMENT Plot: 3/5 The plot wasn't too bad, but I'm not big into books about war.
Writing Style: 3/5 A little mirth would have been nice. Ha, ha.
Characters: 1/5 I mainly just wanted to slap McKenzie. I couldn't really relate to any of the characters, and even when one died I had trouble feeling any emotion at all.
This was a re-read for me - it's been a couple years since I last read it, and I had pretty much forgotten everything except for the very end. Lookin This was a re-read for me - it's been a couple years since I last read it, and I had pretty much forgotten everything except for the very end. Looking back, I wondered why I gave it 4 stars, but reading again I realized why. While it's not exactly memorable, it was enjoyable while I was reading it!
First of all, this book is a romance. We all know how Jessi feels about romance. But, it wasn't bad at all. In fact, I forgot how beautiful Grace and Sam's relationship was. It's not overbearing or gag-worthy. It's strong, steady, and sincere. It's believable. It's what a relationship should be, and I wish more were portrayed like this. Which makes it even more tragic, because the world seems hell-bent on keeping them apart! (view spoiler)[Even the second time through, I was struck with how unfair it was that they beat (or at least they thought) the werewolf issue and could finally be together, only to have it unexpectedly come between them again. (hide spoiler)]
The characters were well written and realistic. I really liked Isabel! She's kind of bitchy, but I think at her core she's a good person. She just doesn't know it yet! She puts on a cold facade to keep people at a distance so she can protect herself. Even though Cole is a horrible person, I'm wondering how it will play out between them. Maybe she can help him find his humanity.
One complaint I have about this book is that I didn't feel much while reading. It's not that I didn't care, necessarily - I like the characters - I just didn't connect very well to the story.
I have to say I'm very intrigued about the scientific aspect of lycanthropy. I'm curious to see how Maggie explains it, and what the connection is between shifting and the werewolf deaths. What is the trigger?! I can't figure it out!
Side note: The writing is green!! Overall Assessment
This review was originally posted on Novel Heartbeat. To see a breakdown of my assessment, please visit the full review here.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
They can fly.
They can breathe fire.
They have scales as armor and are practically invincible.
Why dragons are cooler than humans:
They can fly.
They can breathe fire.
They have scales as armor and are practically invincible.
THEY CAN FLY.
It's no secret that Julie Kagawa is my favorite author. I've read and loved every single book she's ever published. So of course, I was DYING to get my hands on this one. I requested the ARC, tried trading on YA Book Exchange, even tried to see if any of my friends had received it. No luck. Then, Amanda @ Confessions of a Bookie Monster scored a copy and was awesome enough to let me borrow it! THANK YOU Amanda! <33 Anyway, when I finally got it, I was a little nervous to read it. I'd seen a few bad ratings by people who enjoyed her other books, and even book quadruplet #1 (aka Ashley @ Nose Graze) didn't love it. I held it in my hands for a good ten minutes before I finally cracked it open, thinking: What if I don't like it? All of her other books were 5 stars for me. What if it doesn't live up to my sky high expectations? I shouldn't have worried!
I loved Talon. LOVED it. (So much that I gobbled it up in one sitting - I don't even remember the last time I did that!) It was everything I'd hoped it would be! Julie is awesome at bringing a setting to life, and this one was cinematic. I can't WAIT until it comes to the big screen!! (Although now I'm worried it won't be good enough, of course.) I could easily picture everything in my head like I was there. I was engrossed from page 1, too! Even when there was nothing happening it still held my attention. Julie has a way of making the most mundane things interesting. And of course, there was the usual humor that Julie is awesome at. I found myself smiling or giggling many times!
And the best part? DRAGONS. That was awesome! I loved the bits and pieces we got about the Talon organization. Their branches were cool: Basilisks, Gilas, Chameleons, Vipers. I would have loved to know more about that, but I'm sure we'll find out all about it in the next book. I saw quite a few complaints about the lack of dragons in this book. I didn't have that problem. Sure, they weren't front and center - honestly, this book was more about Ember assimilating into human life than actual dragons - but there was still plenty of dragon action!
The history of bigotry and hatred between The Order of St. George and Talon was well done. Both sides were raised to believe that the other was the enemy, raised to kill each other on sight. The Order was raised believing that dragons were cold, emotionless, lethal monsters. It was very interesting to see Garret start to realize that everything he had known was wrong. Likewise, as Ember started learning more about Talon, her perception of the world was shattered as well.
I think one of the reasons I loved this book so much is it reminded me a bit of Blood and Chocolate, which has always been a favorite of mine. I have a strong interest in forbidden romances, so of course I was sold on a romance between a dragon and a dragon hunter!
I do have to say that Ember kind of irritated me a little at one point. ALL the signs were there, pointing to the fact that Garret was part of St. George, but she didn't see it. The scene where she saw his bite scars and didn't even have a suspicion made me want to smack her! She did redeem herself soon after, when she had a fleeting thought about him being one of them. So the realization was there, she just ignored it. That made it much better!
I loved the characters, though. Ember was a great lead - eager and a bit naive, if only because she doesn't know the ways of the human world; but fierce and defiant. On the other hand, Garret was practical, logical, calculating. He was so used to being a cold-blooded soldier that he was completely out of his element when trying to blend in. I loved seeing his cold exterior slowly melt as he got to know Ember! In the beginning, the mission was the only thing he cared about, but his feelings for Ember snuck up on him. I loved it!
I have to warn you: There is a love triangle in this book. As many of you know, I despise love triangles. BUT - with this, it worked. Ember's human side cared for Garret, but her dragon side needed more, thus it was drawn to Riley. It made sense. It wasn't like most love triangles, where a vapid human flip flops back and forth between two hot boys because she can't make her mind up. Ember was almost two people, her dragon and human sides nearly completely separate. So, it worked.
I liked Garret, but I am so Team Riley ;) I loved him! I was intrigued by him from his first appearance, and his cocky attitude was endearing rather than annoying. I want more Riley! And the ending totally left me craving more...I'm very excited to see where Julie takes the series next! Can't wait for the movie!!
Side note: I so want to tell someone to rnesh karr slithis. (Translated: "eat your own tail," or the dragon version of go screw yourself :D)
This review was originally posted on Novel Heartbeat. To see a breakdown of my assessment, please visit the full review here....more
Since I was young, I have always known this: Life damages us, every one. We can’t escape that damage.
With all of the hype and the negativity surround
Since I was young, I have always known this: Life damages us, every one. We can’t escape that damage.
With all of the hype and the negativity surrounding the final installment of the Divergent series, I was kind of afraid to read it! I can’t really say it lived up to the hype, and I wasn’t blown away by it, but I still enjoyed it.
Tris improved greatly in this one. In Insurgent, she pissed me off so badly that I wanted her to be a real person just so I could throttle her. Unfortunately, that role switched to Four in this book. He annoyed the crap out of me! My main issue with him was that he supposedly loved and trusted (and respected) Tris, but when times got tough, he didn’t trust her judgement. There was one time in particular that she was right and he was too blind and petty to see it, and royally f*cked up because he didn’t trust her. I do like that he screwed up, because it made his character more real, but I hated him for it because of the outcome of his mistake.
I’m glad that Tris and Four finally came to an understanding, though. I hate when couples fight when things get tough, because I think that if they really loved each other, tough times should bring them closer together and they should turn to each other for support and understanding. It came much later than I was hoping, but better late than never I suppose.
I did however love Tris and Christina’s relationship! Now that is what it means to be a true friend. Even though they both screwed up and hurt each other (Tris more than Christina), they still stuck together and supported each other. Their friendship put Tris and Four’s relationship to shame!
I can’t say I cared for the switching POVs. It was confusing, and there were many times when I got lost in them and forgot who I was reading. They didn’t have distinct voices, so it was difficult to tell them apart. I got so used to reading Tris that I forgot when it wasn’t her. Although I do see the need for the dual perspective, I think it could have still been mostly written in her POV to minimize confusion.
And am I the only person that saw then ending coming? (view spoiler)[I mean, why write the first two novels from one perspective and then suddenly switch it up in the last installment? The answer seemed rather obvious to me. (hide spoiler)] But just because I was prepared for it, didn’t make it suck any less. I was very surprised that this book made me cry at the end. I didn’t get much feeling from anything else in the series, so I truly didn’t expect it to affect me much, even less because I kinda saw it coming. That is what ultimately made me go for a higher rating, because the majority of the book would only elicit maybe 3 heartbeats.
I know many people didn’t like this one, for the same reason that most didn’t like Mockingjay. But I did. Why? (view spoiler)[The shock factor: it takes some major balls to kill off a main character. I like that! (hide spoiler)] Life sometimes requires sacrifice. Not everyone gets a happy ending, especially in war. It was real.
While the ending wasn’t necessarily satisfactory for some, it was wrapped up nicely and it made sense. Actually, it was a great ending in my opinion, and that’s what made this book worth it for me.
But now, I am also learning this: We can be mended. We mend each other.
Favorite character: Cara. She was blunt and sometimes abrasive, but she called things like she saw them. She was a good person with sound judgement under the tough, no-nonsense exterior. She was forgiving and was true to herself and to the people she cared about. I loved her!
Favorite quote: I used to think that when people fell in love, they just landed where they landed, and they had no choice in the matter afterward. And maybe that’s true of beginnings, but it’s not true of this, now. I fell in love with him. But I don’t just stay with him by default as if there’s no one else available to me. I stay with him because I choose to, every day that I wake up, every day that we fight or lie to each other or disappoint each other. I choose him over and over again, and he chooses me. If only that realization had been earlier than page 372…
My thoughts: After reading several awesome reviews for this book, I was really itching to get my hands on it and see what the fuss was all about. So, let's get the complaints out of the way first. The purple prose really disappointed me (even though I tried not to let it because I was so looking forward to reading this). And the metaphors, good LORD, the metaphors. Every freaking page. A few is one thing, but after the first like, 20, I think my eye actually started to twitch and I found myself rolling my eyes frequently. Here are a few examples:
I'm wearing dead cotton on my limbs and a blush of roses on my face. Ugh. Roses, fine. But dead cotton? Really?
His eyes are the perfect shade of cobalt, blue like a blossoming bruise, clear and deep and decided. Since when was a bruise a perfect shade of blue??? Sure, bruises are fun to poke, but pretty? Hardly.
He says it with a small smile the size of Jupiter. Uh...what? Oxymoron much?
I want to bury my tears in a bucket of regret.
My heart is a field of lilies blooming under a pane of glass, pitter-pattering to life like a rush of raindrops.
He leans back against the couch. Runs a free hand over his face. Seasons change. Stars explode. Someone is walking on the moon. Anyone else seeing that condom commercial, describing sex with random imagery? Maybe it's just me.
Heat rushes up my neck and I fall off a ladder holding a paintbrush dipped in red. What does that even mean? And no, she didn't literally fall with paint.
He closes his eyes for half of a second and I marvel at the drop drop drops of hot water caught in his eyelashes like pearls forged from pain.
His lips are spelling secrets and my ears are spilling ink, staining my skin with his stories.
And that wasn't even half. Just the really annoying ones. So distracted I was by the flowery writing, it took me a long time to get through this because I had to go back and re-read paragraphs multiple times. And some of the words - like, lackadaisical ennui - WTF is that? Does anyone know? No? Didn't think so. Other irritating comparisons were the ones about the eyes:
My eyes break open. 2 shattered windows filling my mouth with glass.
His eyes are 2 buckets of rainwater: deep, fresh, clear.
His gaze is fixed on me; 2 buckets of river water at midnight.
My eyes are 2 windows cracked open by the chaos in this world.
Which brings me to something else that I found irritating....the numbers instead of words. Always 2 knocks or 4 walls instead of two knocks or four walls. I don't know why, but this really bothered me. It was like Mafi refused to spell out any numbers. Despite how annoying most of the metaphors were, there were a few that I liked. Such as:
My life is 4 walls of missed opportunities poured into concrete molds.
1 word, 2 lips, 3 4 5 fingers form 1 fist. 1 corner, 2 parents, 3 4 5 reasons to hide. 1 child, 2 eyes, 3 4 17 years of fear. Okay, not really a metaphor, but flowery. But still I liked it.
Hope in this world bleeds out of the barrel of a gun. This one really conveys the desperate conditions of the world painted in Shatter Me.
Hate looks just like everybody else until it smiles. Until it spins around and lies with lips and teeth carved into the semblance of something too passive to punch. That last quote describes Warner perfectly. He's a bad dude, that much is clear, but he treats Juliette with kindness at times. At first I had mixed feelings about him, but then I realized he just wanted power. Toward the end he became so obsessed with Juliette that it was almost sad. So strong was his obsession that he deluded himself into believing he loved her. I almost felt sorry for him.
This book may have taken a little more time and effort to read to see past the flower garden of writing, but I still really liked it. There were a lot of run-on sentences, incomplete sentences, missing punctuation and broken, sporadic writing, but somehow Mafi made it work. Surprisingly, it really added to Juliette's point of view. She's been locked up in solitary for so long it's a wonder she hasn't lost her mind. So the way it's written gives you an idea of how she thinks. At times there was too much feeling for words (mostly times with Adam) that Mafi writes in feelings. That's the only way I can describe it. Words so beautifully (and randomly) mashed together to create feeling that I felt what Juliette was feeling.
I really felt sadness on Juliette's behalf, because all she really wanted was to be loved. Her parents didn't want her, she didn't have any friends, and she wasn't ever allowed to touch people. The general public viewed her as a freak, and kids would throw rocks at her. She has so much power but still retains her humanity. Even with the horrible way she had been treated.
There were moments were I was absolutely rapt by this dystopian world. It's a future where books are destroyed, artifacts are burned, and all diverse languages are banished so one new language can be made. Different is bad. The sick and the old are locked away or discarded. Only the strong should survive. When Mafi was describing this future, I was horrified. No diversity? But that's what makes us human. What makes us who we are, what separates us from the next person. She makes it sound utterly convincing that this could come to be in the distant future. How we could let the world go and it would come to such extremes.
I gave this book 2 stars (it was ok) even though it wasn't ok for me because I didn't really like it at all. But theFrom my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
I gave this book 2 stars (it was ok) even though it wasn't ok for me because I didn't really like it at all. But there wasn't anything fundamentally wrong with it except for the simple fact that it just wasn't for me. There was pretty much nothing happening for the first 3/4 of the book except a bunch of music jargon - all stuff about bands/singers I either a) don't like, b) don't give an ass rat's about, or c) have never even heard of. So all the talk about music that I'm not into really dragged the story down for me. Until the last quarter or so, that's basically all the book was about. I was bored for the majority of it, but kept reading in hopes of something happening. It never did.
In addition to not being able to connect to the story line, I also couldn't connect with the characters. The main character...Maria (had to look it up, already forgot) has to go through some pretty terrible stuff, but I never felt the empathy I should have for her and her situation. I couldn't relate to her and I felt very detached emotionally.
Anyone who is big into the Eagles, Nirvana, and Patti Smith would love this book. If you don't care, maybe not. But if you were planning to read this, don't scrap the idea just because of me. Who knows, maybe you'll love it like I wanted to. It just wasn't for me.
ASSESSMENT Plot: 1/5 There was little to no plot at all. Writing Style: 3/5 Characters: 1/5 World-building: 3/5 Pace: 1/5 I had trouble getting through because I was so bored with it. Cover: 5/5 I absolutely adore the cover, it's probably my favorite out there. Pity.
A millions suns stretch out beyond me, their light piercing the darkness. I feel so insignificant, aAll my reviews posted on Auntie Spinelli Reads
A millions suns stretch out beyond me, their light piercing the darkness. I feel so insignificant, a tiny speck surrounded by a million stars. A million suns.
This book was so intense!! Everything starts falling apart, people are dying, and the ship is one step short of a full out mutiny. Just when you think nothing else could go wrong, something does, again and again.
I loved the clues that Amy had to follow! It made me eager to try and figure out what would happen. Once or twice I figured out the next step before she did, but for the most part I was surprised. Especially at one particular part - POSSIBLE SPOILER!!! - that reminded me of the ending of the movie Pandorum. I won't say anything else...if you've seen it, you know what I'm talking about. That was crazy! Here you're thinking one thing (for the entire first book and half of the second), and then you find out you're completely wrong. I value books that have the ability to surprise me.
The character development was great. I enjoyed learning more about everyone from the first book. I even warmed up to Vitria, who was a bit of a bitch in Across the Universe. While she wasn't necessarily lovable, I came to understand her more and, in turn, pitied her. I felt sorry for Amy as well - she's still the freak, the outsider, and people continue to regard her with hostility and mistrust just because she's different.
Amy and Elder's romance was sweet. There wasn't an overload of it, and it was slow and steady. Their relationship is a bit complicated, so at times you don't really know where they stand with each other. I think that really made the moments of closeness even sweeter. It had tension and disagreement just like a real relationship.
I am very excited to read the final installment and find out what Centauri-Earth will be like!!
I loved Stung. LOVED it. The world was amazing, the idea of it was unique and intriguing, and the beasts were scary. I rated it 4.5 stars. Somewhere
I loved Stung. LOVED it. The world was amazing, the idea of it was unique and intriguing, and the beasts were scary. I rated it 4.5 stars. Somewhere between Stung and Cured, the magic was lost.
Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed it. But, there was none of the epic world building that I adored so much in the first book. There was little to no talk about the bees or the virus, and the beasts only made an appearance once or twice. This book was really more of a story about a girl finding her way in the world, coping with living life as a boy (because women are viewed as precious property and their only purpose is procreation, so rape is a high risk), and falling in love. This book is a romance. I’m just going to say that right now. There was much more focus on that than there was the world, or, you know, the cure. (It’s not like the book is titled ‘Cured’ or anything, that would just be silly.)
I did not like the romance. It happened too fast, and was cheesy (Okay, granted, there was kind of a reason (view spoiler)[because Kevin already knew Jaqui long before she knew who he was (hide spoiler)], but still – knowing what you know about the world’s views on women, why would you be kissing someone you don’t even know? And talking about living with him for the rest of your life? Seriously?!). There was too much lovey dovey crap (yes, that’s a technical term) for me! I had to skim the kissing scenes because they were too irritating. (Who wants to make out when you’re in a hurry to escape with your life? You’ve got to be kidding me!) I just couldn’t connect with Kevin and Jaqui’s relationship, so I didn’t enjoy the romance one bit.
I also wasn’t too thrilled about the change in MC’s. I liked Fiona in Stung because she was a badass. It’s not that Jaqui was weak, she just…annoyed me. She was kind of childish, and sometimes I felt like she really was the 12-year-old she was pretending to be. I didn’t really connect with her at all.
It was also predictable. (view spoiler)[I knew immediately that Kevin was a Siren, and when he “betrayed” Jaqui, it was obvious it was just a cover. I also got the vibe the moment I met the leader of the Raiders that he wasn’t actually a bad guy…so finding out that it was actually Dean wasn’t a surprise like it should have been. (hide spoiler)] When things got dangerous, there was never any feeling of danger. When they were all “OMGSH I’m gonna die! He’s gonna die! We’re all gonna die!!” I was just like:
STFU, you’re fine.
The ending did improve because we finally got some action; but all in all, it just felt the same as every other dystopian book I’ve read in the past.
Partials blew my mismatched little socks right off. From the first sentence to the very last, I was riveted. Honestly, it had my attention even beforePartials blew my mismatched little socks right off. From the first sentence to the very last, I was riveted. Honestly, it had my attention even before I started the first chapter, with this: This book is dedicated to the rule breakers, the troublemakers, and the revolutionaries. Sometimes the hand that feeds you needs a good bite. What a brilliant open to a dystopian novel! Then it leads in with this: Newborn #485GA18M died on June 30, 2076, at 6:07 in the morning. She was three days old. The average lifespan of a human child, in the time since the Break, was fifty-six hours. They didn't even name them anymore. Wowza! A world that can't reproduce? How terrible would that be? There's only 40,000 people left in the world and no babies survive....humanity has an expiration date. That really struck home the importance of finding a cure for RM, the virus that wiped out the population.
I thought Kira was a great character. She was determined and stuck with her cause, no matter how desolate it seemed. She wasn't weak or whiny. I even liked the minor characters - Marcus, especially, since he was the funny guy of the bunch and kept the mood light. I think Samm was my favorite, though. Despite being a Partial, he seemed very human - I found myself forgetting that he wasn't. He was intriguing and I wanted more of him.
I loved the hint at something between Samm and Kira, even though it never developed. Which would have made for a love triangle - something I typically despise but would have been okay with in this case. But, romance took a back burner in this one...which was a refreshing change for me, but if you're looking for a love story Partials isn't for you. Instead it was full of danger, action, and suspense. I had major trouble putting it down, and when I did, I was still thinking about reading it. Despite the length, it was a very fast-paced and gripping read. One moment in particular, where a giant bomb was dropped about a certain character - man, I was speechless! I just sat there, gaping at the book as I tried to process the idea. Wow! Never even saw it coming!
I thoroughly enjoyed the science aspects of Partials as well. I thought everything was tidily explained without any loose ends or much confusion (for me, at least - if you're not big into science it may be a bit hard to follow) and I found it absolutely fascinating.
The ending killed me, I felt like a dog with a piece of juicy meat dangling just out of reach. I look forward to continuing Kira's journey for answers and will be anxiously awaiting book 2!
Quotes: When she fell asleep, she dreamed of death - not just for her, not just for her species, but for every living thing she had ever known. The Earth was flat and wide and brown, a field of dirt as barren as the moon, a single road stretching into the endless distance. The last to fall were the buildings, distant and solemn, the gravestones for an entire world. Then they disappeared, and there was nothing left but nothing. I just like this one because it fits perfectly with the cover.
"Why on earth is that called a minigun?" asked Kira. "It's bigger than I am - is it like calling a fat guy Tiny?" Tee hee!
I've only seen the first Alice movie once, forever ago, and I've never read the book. But I loooove retellings!From my blog Auntie Spinelli Reads
I've only seen the first Alice movie once, forever ago, and I've never read the book. But I loooove retellings! Howard did a fantastic job at making Carroll's twisted world even more twisted. I think the world-building was one of my favorite parts of this story, because as I was reading I was able to picture everything vividly in my mind. The imagery was beautiful!
Let me just say one thing first....I. LOVE. MORPHEUS. Seriously. I am so Team Morpheus all the way! Jeb never stood a chance in my mind! Which is probably why I didn't care about the romance between Jeb and Alyssa. It fell a bit flat for me. There was one scene that went from arguing to kissing that I felt something for their relationship (I adore that kind of thing), but other than that I just felt....meh.
The main problem I had with Jeb was that he was all touchy-feely with Alyssa while he was DATING ANOTHER GIRL. Real classy. And he basically said he was with Taelor because he wanted to fix her. Then something else he said toward the end about why he was really with Tae...that was even worse. I wanted to punch him. Not that I'm on Taelor's side or anything, because she was a complete and total Bitch, but no girl deserves that. I actually felt sorry for her.
Anyway, Morpheus was waaaay more awesome than Jeb. Jeb was sweet, and caring, and perfect...a bit too perfect for me. I don't like the nice ones, I like the bad boys. I like a little conflict in relationships, it keeps things exciting! Jeb was just plain boring. That and he was WAY too overprotective of her, it was annoying. Morpheus stood back and let her do her thing and be independent, because as he put it, 'I've complete faith that she can fend for herself. You, on the other hand, can't seem to grasp that concept.' Plus, did I mention Morpheus had blue hair? And tattoos around his eyes with color-changing jewels in them? And wings? Mhmmm. Way cooler. Not to mention sexy! When Alyssa went a bit...ah, wild on the special juice and he said he'd have 'found a means to slake her ravenous hunger,' I almost had a freaking coronary. Ohh Morpheus, forget lil Alyssa, you can slake my ravenous hunger any day!! *bats eyelashes* He was incorrigible and his motives were sometimes questionable, but I loved him!!
The way Howard took the old tale and molded it was fabulous. Everything was so twisted! It was interesting to see the changes, the dark side of what Alice 'misunderstood' out of innocence (especially Rabid White and March Hairless - brilliant!). I also enjoyed the new things thrown into the mix - netherlings, and the idea of the birthmark and 'Melding.'
As I was reading this, I felt like it would rate more of a 4 star for me. But, it has stuck with me even after putting it down (mainly due to Morpheus, I think), and I find myself drifting back to the story. I've gone back a couple of times to read my favorite parts (with Morpheus, of course), and because of that I'm giving it the extra half star. Obviously Splintered made an impression on me! I'm really hoping Howard will write something else in the very near future, I'd love to read more of her work!
Favorite quotes: "You left. I was hurt...and you left me." "A mistake I vow on my life-magic never to make again." *MASSIVE SWOON*
"You don't have the equipment to satisfy anything. Moth. Remember?" He laughs, dark and soft, under his breath. "I am a man in every way that counts." Don't mind me, I'll just be down here on the ground, melted into a puddle...
Porcelain-pale skin, eyes as black as the makeup lining them, lips full and dark. With the gray smog swirling around his sooty wings, he also reminds me of Jenara's window display: A dark angel. Although he's more of a devil.
"You want me. Admit it." "Why would I want you?" "Mysterious. Rebellious. Troubled. All those qualities women find irresistible." "Such an optimist." "My cup is never empty." "Too bad your brain is."