At A Glance I've died and gone to heaven. Why, oh why must it end? Can I just live in this book?
The Good Decimation... Yes, ma'am, may I have another? This book will tear you apart, stitch you back together, then decimate you once again. Reading Unravel Me was like reading macabre poetry in a cold, dark room with just a sliver of hope sunlight peeking through the bars of my window. It is both a salvation and a torment. Why must good things come to an end? Because Mafi likes to torture us, that's why.
Juliette... Where to begin? I feel so lost and found at the same time. Like everything is so clear but also muddled. Okay, let's start with Juliette. We met Juliette in Shatter Me and she was effed up a mess. Being locked up in a prison with no human contact will do that to a person. But we saw her grow and fall in love after Adam rescued her. In Unravel Me, we see Juliette revert back to the shy, self-deprecating, emotional timebomb we have come to know. All her old insecurities came rushing back as the people in Omega Point, a place that is suppose to be a safe haven, started treating her like a leper. With her ability to kill with just a touch, no one is willing to go near her. And the fact that she has killed people before causes everyone give her a wide berth, even the few friends she had. You can't help but feel bad for this girl. It can't be easy to be the freakiest amongst freaks people with special powers. Though I feel Juliette often brought on the misery herself by not even trying to engage people, my heart still broke every time she cried in defeat. Juliette did try to be strong but blow after blow brought her farther into a pit of disappear. But by the end, there was definitely light at the end of the tunnel. I think Juliette will find her resolve because it's there, it's just hidden beneath layers suppression.
Adam... Adam was his same sexy, caring self. His love for Juliette is so strong it's frightening. I truly think he could not live without her. In the beginning, they had some hot moments. I was surprised they both didn't combust from the sexual tension. Any of us would be lucky to have a love like they do. But then this horrible HUGE revelation about Adam's power comes and all bets are off. Juliette and Adam's relationship takes a hit and I truly don't know how it is all going to work out. Adam is beyond devastated, he is broken. :(
Team Warner... The biggest surprise was Warner. I love hate him so much sometimes. He has done some horrible things in the past but the question is, can the devil be redeemed? In this book, we really get the full impact of why Warner is the way he is. Warner is not naturally a cold killer. He has been raised and formed to be heartless. Only Juliette can see the real Warner, the one who lays beneath the surface, the one that can love care. I didn't think it was possible to ever see Warner as the good guy. Really, he's not, not yet anyways, but oh the possibilities. And then there is Juliette and Warner...together. I hate to admit it but they have the most out of this world sexual chemistry ever, it's not even right. Them together makes sense, and by the end, you want it to happen. I know, crazy, right? Don't throw things at me when I say this because it must be said. I am so TEAM WARNER. AHHHH!
The War... Unravel Me takes us further into the war between the corrupt government and the rebels. We see how the people of Omega Point are rallying together to fight The Reestablishment. With their unique powers on their side, I can see the rebels having a fighting chance. But no one could have predicted what the bad guys were willing to do to win this war. We can only hope things will get better from here.
She's A Poet And Didn't Even Know It... The action was really good and the pacing was spot on because Unravel Me kept my interest the whole time. But, as always, it is the writing that hits this book out of the park. This series is not your basic book. This is art in the form of words. It's as close as a novel will ever come to poetry. I want to live in Mafi's head for forever just a day. It must be like Disney World for book nerds.
The Bad Juliette continues to self-deprecate and make horrible decisions because of her whacked out emotional/mental state. At one point I just wanted to yell at her, tell her to get her ass up and stop whining.
The Snuggly Holy Sexual Tension, Batman! Have you ever read a book that actually made you shiver? Not a chill, not a twitch. A bone-deep shiver that eats consumes your being and takes over your body. When sexual tension is so solid, so consumable that all you want to do is ingest it, gobble it up till there's nothing left. Well, that's what Unravel Me is like. I have never read a hotter YA book in my life. If you thought Shatter Me was naughty, then you will pass out, dream of the Hemsworth brothers feeding you calorie-free chocolate drizzled on their bodies, and wake up naked and crying after reading Unravel Me. And yes, we get some sexual touching this time and it is delish.
Final Thoughts Trying to review Unravel Me is like trying to describe Starry Night by Van Gogh to a blind person. No matter how hard you try, the full impact of the piece can only be fully realized by experiencing it first hand. There is nothing more I can say other than, READ THIS BOOK NOW! Chop, chop. Stop dilly-dallying. Highly recommended to EVERYONE.
Quotes All I know next are his arms, the desperate edge to his voice when he says my name, and I'm unraveling in his embrace, I'm frayed and falling apart and I'm making no effort to control the tremors in my bones and he's so hot his skin is so hot and I don't even know where I am anymore.
“The man is moody as hell.”
“I am not moody—”
“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—”
***** I want to study the secrets tucked between his elbows and the whispers caught behind his knees. I want to follow the line of his silhouette with my eyes and the tips of my fingers. I want to trace rivers and valleys along the curved muscle of his body.
"I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head. I want to be that kind of friend," he says. "The one who will memorize the things you say as well as the shape of your lips when you say them. I want to know every curve, every freckle, every shiver of your body, Juliette--" (less)
The Good My Happy Place... I am so giddy right now I just want to punch someone in the face. Okay, yeah, my happy place is a little violent but that's okay because I can blame it on Gin. She just brings out my feisty side. I can't even begin to tell you how much I LOVED By a Thread. It had everything: fighting, violence, suspense, horrible villains, kickass heroes, and a little side of romance. It's no secret that Gin is one of my favorite protagonists ever. And she's only getting better book by book.
Trouble with a Capital 'T'... So Gin takes a vacation. What? Oh yeah, you heard right. Our lovable assassin (please don't tell her I called her that, I 'd like to keep all my appendages attached to my body) has finally decided to take a break. It's the only logical decision since everyone wants a piece of her after she came out of the assassin closet. But don't worry, we are talking about Gin here. Where Gin goes, trouble follows. This trouble happens to be a very powerful vampire (Dekes) who wants to obtain Callie's (Bria's best friend) restaurant by any means possible. Callie has no interest in selling her restaurant but as Dekes' goons like to say, "Accidents can be arranged." In steps Gin to save the day. But Gin might have bitten off more than she can chew because this vampire knows way more than he should. And we all know the saying, knowledge is power.
'D' is for Drama...and Donovan I can't stress enough that this book had EVERYTHING. We get what we always expect from Estep: descriptive writing, dynamic characters, action galore, and drama, drama, drama. And when I say drama, I mean Donovan Freaking Caine. I actually hate Donovan more than I hate the villains. Why? Because we know the villains are bad guys, we expect it. Even they know that they are bad. They don't try to hide it. Gin knows the bad guys are going to come after her, hurt her, and she prepares herself for it. But Donovan is a whole nother story. He is the good guy, the detective who we should all trust. And he has hurt Gin more than anyone else ever has. His hatred for what Gin is is so strong that even our cold-hearted assassin breaks just a little under the scrutiny. Assassin's have feelings too, people. Donovan's conviction has uglied him in my eyes, and there is no coming back from what he did to Gin in the past. So when Estep brought him back for this book, my heart sank, but in a good way. I think it was time for Gin to finally confront him. I have to admit, I was stressed out over what would happen between Owen and Gin when Donovan came back into the picture. And that's all I am going to say about that because I don't want to spoil what happens.
Slices and Dices... Gin was her old kickass self. She still slices and dices when the need arises, she still has her family to support her, even if Bria and Gin's relationship is a little strained, and she's still the ultimate survivor. I literally had to put the book down three times because I got so flustered and became a nervous wreck when she got into some hairy situations. I, one hundred percent, didn't have a clue how she was going to get out of this one situation. It seemed impossible. But Estep amazed me once again with her plausible and creative twists. Her writing actually pulled me into the story so much that someone was calling my name for five minutes and I never heard them until they shook me out of my reading coma. True story.
I am so happy Estep finally brought this certain concept up for a plot. I am not going to tell you what it is because that would ruin the surprise, but I have been thinking of this certain connection with vampires from book one, Spider's Bite. So to finally have it addressed and fully explained was very exciting.
The Crew's All Here... Owen, Finn, and Bria were all there and awesome as ever. Bria still carries resentment towards Gin for being an assassin, which broke my heart because it's really starting to get to Gin. But how Estep addressed this issue was perfect. It all tied in very nicely. Owen is still the sweetest boyfriend ever. I don't think anyone could have written a better partner for Gin than Estep did. He is everything Gin needs: someone who loves her for who she is, not despite it, has the same need to take care of his family no matter the means, and who sees her strength and determination as something to admire, not belittle for. He is a male lead to revere and drool over. *Owen, will you marry me? Woah, Gin, I was just kidding. Put the knife down.*
When I turned the last page, I actually let out a breath of satisfaction. By a Thread addressed a lot of problems that have been weighing on Gin for a long time. Her life may not be perfect, but it's getting damned close. Which kind of makes me suspicious, like something bad is going to happen soon. But I will take my happy ending and sleep well for now.
The Bad I truly can't think of anything I didn't like about this book. I use to complain that Estep wrote too much backstory and recap, but I didn't feel this way about this book at all. I am starting to think that the recap bothered me only because I read the first five books in a row. This book had the appropriate amount of recap that helped the reader get back into the story very easily.
The Snuggly We get our token sex scene that is oh so naughty but not too risque. It's just enough to show us how much love Owen and Gin have for one another. How they crave each other no matter each other's pasts. Owen is the perfect man for Gin, and I can only hope that they stay together. Even Gin, with her coldness, has warmed up because of Owen and his unconditional love.
Overall If you don't want to read this book or series, then something is wrong with you. lol. Just kidding. But come on, people, this is a fascinating series and book. It shouldn't be passed over. This is a true urban fantasy story that hits all the levels of perfection. I read By a Thread in a day and my nails were all but bitten off because the heart-pounding suspense on almost every page. A highly recommended read.
“Yeah, yeah,” I said. “I know exactly what you’re going to say. I’m a bitch, this isn’t over, and I’ll be seeing you again real soon. If I had a dollar for every time I’d heard that, I’d be even richer than I already am.”
Pete kept glaring at me, so I leaned forward so that my face was level with his.
“Trust me, dude,” I said, letting him see the cold violence that always lurked just below the surface of my wintry eyes. “You do not know who you are messing with, and you do not want to find out. Do yourself a favor. When your boss Dekes springs you from the pokey, tell him that Callie Reyes is off-limits and to find somewhere else to build his fancy resort—or he will be sorry that he didn’t. You got that?”(less)
At A Glance I want to marry this book and have beautiful book babies with it.
The Good Abby is trying to live the straight and narrow life. She has a sinister past that she never wants to relive. Enter sexy, dangerous Travis. He likes to fight in the ring, sex up the girls, and flirt with everyone. But Abby seems oblivious to his charms. Trying to find a way to spend more time with Abby, Travis makes a bet with her that pretty much guarantees that Abby is stuck with him for a month. That's when the fun begins.
Holy sheep shearers this was a fantastic book. It wasn't perfect but a book doesn't have to be flaw free for me to love it. When I finished this book, I missed reading it right away. I almost reread it the next day. I could not put it down and I don't even know why. Did you ever read a book that just hit you in the right way? There is something about the combination of the characters, the story, and the romance that made me fall hopelessly in love with Beautiful Disaster.
First, we have Abby. I admired her right away. She's smart, funny, and kind, but she also knows how to have a good time. She's not afraid to voice her opinion or call Travis out on his crap. She was also flawed which made her feel real. She was way too stubborn sometimes and dragged out Travis's suffering for too long. But even the things that annoyed me about her were all part of the experience. I was genuinely surprised by what was revealed about her past but she handled it very well. I was like the characters in the book that got even more enamored with her once we found out her secrets.
Travis went through a lot of stages as a character. At first he is so cocky you want to grinned your teeth. Then he is so sweet your teeth almost hurt. Then he becomes so crazy, obsessed, and needy you want to pull out your own teeth. (Okay, where the hell did my sudden infatuation with teeth come from???) Travis took me on a rollercoaster of emotions and I loved every minute of it. I think because he became best friends with Abby first, his love for her ran so deep that once they got together it physically hurt him to be apart from her. Even though it was a bit much, it was also cute. Who wouldn't want a guy that loved you that much?
I was thrilled when Abby and Travis finally got together and so dejected when they split; it was like I was living their lives as well. I was emotionally invested in this story the whole way through. I think that's what McGuire is so great at: She draws us into the story without effort. I forgot I was even reading a book. I could picture every scene, every tear, every sexual encounter. (hehehe) Hey, don't judge, I have to get my kicks somewhere. ;)
Even the side characters were amazing. America, frick yeah!!! Abby's best friend, America, is like the best friend we all want. She is loyal and supportive like no one I know. And Shepley, America's boyfriend, is the sweetest guy EVER!! I love him as much as I love Travis. Even Parker was interesting. I hated watching Abby be with Parker while Travis drowned himself in other girls. *Sighs* I wanted to yell at Travis and Abby as they tortured each other by denying their feelings. But it made for great entertainment!
The pacing was spot on, the plot was well written, and the drama was plenty. McGuire gave us flawed characters that made mistakes but knew how to love with all their hearts. McGuire made me love the contemporary romance genre, and that's a hard thing to do.
The Bad I don't have to wait for perfection to give a book 5 stars. I rate based on how much I loved the book, no matter the good or bad. Suffice it to say, I loved this book with every fiber of my being but that doesn't mean it was perfect.
There were three things that bothered me the most. I think this book was more about obsession rather than love. Travis was OBSESSED with Abby, and though I think they did love each other, this kind of obsession would be dangerous in real life.
I also think Travis was too violent. I got uncomfortable as he beat people's faces in many a times.
The ending was not my version of perfect. I can't say much since it would be a major spoiler but I don't like decisions that big being made by such young people.
The Snuggly So this is my first New Adult book. I was wondering how far the authors went when it came to sex. All I can say is yummmmm! I think this is the perfect amount of sexual content for older teenagers and so on. It's hot but not hugely detailed like you would find in an adult book.
Abby and Travis may have had a disastrous type of romance, but it was still endearing and sweet. They were also sizzling and hot together. It really was the perfect combination.
Final Thoughts I am like depressed now that I am not reading this book this minute. I think I caught Travis's obsessive tendencies because I am bananas over this book. I have the ebook but I think I want to buy the physical copy just so I can hold it and sniff it. Woah, who said that? I think many people will love this book, and, unfortunately, many will not like it at all. It's not for everyone, but it sure as hell was for me. Personally, I think this is a must read. Highly recommended.
PS: I am seriously going to reread this book right now. After talking about it so much, now I have to relive it.
Quotes “To douchebags!" he said, gesturing to Brad. "And to girls that break your heart," he bowed his head to me. His eyes lost focus. "And to the absolute f**king horror of losing your best friend because you were stupid enough to fall in love with her.” ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
“You can’t tell me what to do anymore, Travis! I don’t belong to you!” In the second it took him to turn and face me, his expression had contorted into anger. He stomped toward me, planting his hands on the bed and leaning into my face. “WELL I BELONG TO YOU!” The veins in his neck bulged as he shouted, and I met his glare, refusing to even flinch. He looked at my lips, panting. “I belong to you.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~ “It's dangerous to need someone that much. You're trying to save him and he's hoping you can. You two are a disaster." I smiled at the ceiling. "It doesn't matter what or why it is. When it's good, Kara... it's beautiful.” (less)
At A Glance Daughter of Smoke and Bone is not like any other book I have read before. The writing and imagery is beautiful and the premise is completely unique. I die a little inside every day having to wait for the second book to come out.
The Good Here's the Story Karou has a unique life. Her days consist of drawing fantasy scenes in her sketch book, learning language through wishes, and collecting teeth for her monster friends. She was raised by monsters, nice monsters who have cared for her since birth and now have her collect teeth for a mysterious reason they have yet to reveal. It's a lonely life sometimes but at least she has some sort of family. Then everything changes when winged strangers mark certain doors around the world. These marks change Karou's life forever. Now separated from her family, Karou finds solace with one of the winged beings who hates the monsters she's involved with but loves her for everything she can't remember.
A New Favorite Author... The biggest thing I want to gush about is the beautiful writing. It was so descriptive and lyrical. It flowed flawlessly and rhythmically almost like a poem. I could picture everything in my head to precision. I almost feel like I had just watched a movie because all the pictures and scenes are still running through my head. Taylor knows her way around words, that's for sure. She built up the mystery and suspense in a way that made it hard to put this book down. And she is perfection when it comes to showing instead of telling. I can't wait to read more of Laini Talyor's work.
Karou... Karou, our blue-haired artist, was everything I would want in a protagonist. She has a mysterious past, she is smart, funny, and strong, and she has depth beyond imagining. I was drawn into her world and her role in it. I knew there was more to her than meets the eye and when all is revealed it is both heartbreaking and mesmerizing. Her part in the supernatural war is far more important than anyone can guess. Well, that's what I think anyways.
Akiva... Akiva is on the opposing side of the war. But even though being with Karou is against all the rules, he can't help himself. He is drawn to her, it's a pull that goes soul deep. He just has to convince her that she is more than just Karou. Akiva has many up hill battles ahead of him. His life is closely tied to Karous but he is hiding things that can ruin everything they ever had together. I feel bad for Akiva because I believe he is a great person but he has done some unforgivable things. But I have hope for him and Karou.
Zuzana is the Sh!t... I had to give Karou's best friend, Zuzana, her own paragraph. I just love everything about her. She is my favorite best friend character in all of bookland. She is beyond hilarious, she cares without prejudice, and...and...did I mention she was hilarious? I actually couldn't wait for her to come on the scene. You have to experience her to get what I am saying, it's hard to explain her because I can't do her justice with just words, that's Laini's job.
This is a SPOILER: I have to mention why I loved this story so much but it will spoil the surprise for some people who have yet to read Daughter of Smoke and Bone. You have been warned: I loved the concept of this story. Two races, the monsters below and the monsters above, call them demons and angels if you will. They both fight a war for war sake. They do not discuss compromises because neither will yeld to the other. And thousands are dying for reasons barely remembered. One side sees the war through gilded eyes and the other wants freedom but at the price of their souls. Neither will stop to see reason, which means this war is far from over. Is there ever really a winner when a society sacrifices it's own to win a war?
The Bad Only a few things to mention here. First, the POV shifting took me a little while to get use to but in the end I barely even noticed it.
When I thought back to this book after reading the last page I realized not a lot happens for a portion of the book. The first half is amazing, descriptive and beautiful, then the second half focuses on Akiva and Karou and them doing...nothing. Bad, bad pacing on Laini's part. The whole point of this book is finding out who Karou really is, which we only find out in the end. When it comes to action and story climaxes, it lacked a little in the second half and then was awesome again at the end.
The Snuggly There is definitely some yummy chemistry between Karou and Akiva. I like how deep their bond went, even farther than any of us could have imagined. It felt pure and...right. Any sexual activity or mention of it is YA-ish, so it's pretty safe for the teenager crowd. But it is still very hot and romantic. I love everything about Karou and Akiva being together.
Overall I enjoyed almost everything about Daughter of Smoke and Bone. It has mystery galore, it has a romance like no other, and we get left on a cliffhanger that was actually very exciting and not annoying like so many other cliffhangers I have read. This might just be my next favorite series. Highly recommended.
Quotes “Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there's no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.” ~~~~~~~~~~~
“She craved a presence beside her, solid. Fingertips light at the nape of her neck and a voice meeting hers in the dark. Someone who would wait with an umbrella to walk her home in the rain, and smile like sunshine when he saw her coming. Who would dance with her on her balcony, keep his promises and know her secrets, and make a tiny world wherever he was, with just her and his arms and his whisper and her trust.” ~~~~~~~~~~~
“It is a condition of monsters that they do not perceive themselves as such. The dragon, you know, hunkered in the village devouring maidens, heard the townsfolk cry 'Monster!' and looked behind him.” (less)
The Good O. M. G. I was genuinely surprised by Undone. I did not expect to love this book as much as I loved Caine's Weather Warden series. But I truly did. It was everything one comes to expect from Caine and her beautifully descriptive writing.
Now that Cassiel has been struck from the Djinn race and turned into a kinda, sorta human, she has been having trouble assimilating to human living and emotions. And her assimilation process is violently cut short as something tragic happens that will change the rest of her life, short as it may be. But with the help of Luis, a strong earth warden, Cassiel is hell bent on destroying the evil entity that seems just as determined to eliminate the ex-Djinn. Of course, it's not going to be that easy as this entity gains power and followers each day, and its final goal might be more catastrophic to the human race than Cassiel first assumed.
I just love the world Caine has created in both series. There's never a dull moment in her books because enemies are just too abundant. Even the weather, earth, and closest friends are never what they seem. The action is ridiculously constant (which I love), and Caine's characterization is superb. Not one character is the same. Each have their very own personalities, mannerisms, and motives. And for those who miss the characters we have come to love from the Weather Warden series, you will get your Joanna, David, and Lewis fix in Undone since they do appear at the beginning of the first few chapters.
Cassiel is pretty much one of the most amazing characters ever. Reading about her transformation and journey in a human body was inspiring. Especially when she was one of the old Djinn who thought humans and the new Djinn were worthless beings. I loved how Caine made everyday human things seem so weird and odd through Cassiel's eyes. It made me see our world in a whole new light. Cassiel is both hilarious in her ignorance and frightening in her seriousness. It was so endearing how human emotions crept up on her ever so slowly. Her fondness for Ibby, the daughter of the warden who provides Cassiel with her energy to stay alive, was the sweetest thing I ever read. And Ibby was pretty much as cute as a button. She almost made me like kids...almost. Oh, and I am totally obsessed with Cassiel's hair. You'll understand what I mean when you read this book.
I really didn't get Luis at first. He seemed a little unnecessary, but as the book progressed he became vital to Cassiel's survival. I like the idea of him but he has not won me completely over yet. But I do love that he doesn't put up with Cassiel's crap. Come to think of it, he is probably a perfect match for her.
I was stunned with the twists and turns in this book. I didn't expect Undone to turn out the way it did. I wanted to cry most of the time because Cassiel's constant regret and sorrow over events she in no way could have prevented. But it's understandable why she blames herself, especially when loss is a new experience for her.
The big reveal at the end made my jaw drop. I wasn't expecting Cassiel's big secret to be so monumental. With this new information I know the next few books will not lack in the action or drama department. This series looks very promising.
The Bad I truly loved every part of this book. Okay, maybe I wanted to pull my hair out when it ended on a cliffhanger. Okay, okay, maybe I DID pull my hair out, but just a little. My hair grows pretty fast so it's all good.
The Snuggly Don't hold your breath for any snuggly. Cassiel was an unemotional Djinn who is now a slightly less unemotional human. Sex is not in her current equation, either is romance. But there is a scene that signifies future romance.
Overall The constant adventure and "who done it" feel of this book made it one amazing read. Cassiel's haughty attitude and struggle to fit in with humanity make her a fun and unique character. And as her human emotions start to crack through her iron tough shell of her past Djinn attitude, you can't help but love her. Any fan of the Weather Warden series will easily adore the Outcast Season series. Highly recommended.
Quotes I learned more of my human body, and the more I learned, the less I liked. Its machinery was too fragile and required too much maintenance. Food. Breathing. Finally, sleeping. The humiliating process of waste elimination was enough to make me wish fondly for oblivion.
The child bounced up from the couch and jumped in place, face alight with pleasure. "Cassie, Cassie, Cassie!"
I sighed. "Cassiel, please." For all the good I sensed it would do. Angela stifled a laugh.
I had no idea of the human protocol for such things, but I knelt down, and the child rushed my arms. Warm, chubby arms around my neck. A moist kiss on my cheek. "Ewwww, you smell like burning things," Ibby said. (less)
The Good Simply Intense Beautiful... Um...Wow. What else can I say? I was completely blown away by how much I LOVED this book. I literally read it in one sitting. I would not could not put it down. Shatter Me grabbed my attention from the first page and wouldn't let go until the very last. The writing was intense beautiful and eerie at the same time. The narration from the protagonist Juliette took this read from good to amazing. Watching her layers peel off one by one to expose reveal her complexity and passion was breathtaking.
Reestablishment... One touch and Juliette's life changed forever. After accidentally killing someone by simply touching them, Juliette is locked away, forgotten about, left to rot for the ability she has no control over. And as Juliette slowly goes crazy from isolation, The Reestablishment tries to get ahold of a dying world. But is The Reestablishment out to make the world a better place for everyone or just a select few? Either way, they have set their sights on Juliette because her curse gift might just swing the upcoming war in their favor. Who can Juliette trust? What can one girl do to save a dying world?
It is the East, and Juliette is the Sun... Juliette made this book. I loved being in her head. Her inner ramblings musings and thoughts helped the reader to be drawn into a world of cruelty and ugliness. A place that has lost most of its humanity because the bad people are now running what's left of the world. But Juliette also shows us the beauity and love still left in the world. What really captures the readers attention is Juliette's time in the insane asylum. Her thoughts are so fascinating. She sees things differently than the rest of us because of what she has went through. She fears, loves, hopes so much more intensely that it really helped me care for her character. Her observations were both analytical and sporadic at the same time, so I couldn't wait to see what she thought up next. She is lost fragile and fearful but also surprisingly strong and resilient at the same time.
The world she paints for us is terrifying, poignant, and stunning. Reading through Juliette's point of view helped everything seem more vibrant, more real. Her interactions with Adam both saddened me and made me hopeful. Juliette is that kind of person that just needs that one person to complete her. She needs an anchor that she can trust. Is Adam that person? You will have to read to find out.
Adam and Eve Juliette... Adam was a complex character that I can't say much about because it would be too spoilerish. We meet him when he is thrown into the same cell as Juliette, her first human interaction in over 250 days. As you can imagine, a somewhat hardass boy being thrown in with a fearful, timid girl was a very exciting frightening situation that played out in a way I was not expecting. I can tell you this, when it comes to Adam you will hate him, love him, then hate again, then love, then hate once again, then... Well, you get the idea. His role in the whole book was very complex so there was never a dull moment between him and Juliette. You always questioned and were cautious, never knowing what was in store for any of the characters. But the times when its good between Adam and Juliette it's very good (yummy).
Horribly Fascinating... Now, Warner was a truly fascinating horrible character. I found myself getting both excited and nervous whenever he walked into the scene. His abnormal obsession with Juliette left me unsure of what he had in store for her. He thinks he can use her as a weapon against his enemies but fails to realize that Juliette is a good person through and through. But he's adamant that he can make her see things his way. And through his determination, he finds himself drawn to Juliette in ways that made me shiver. He was the perfect creepy bad guy.
Mafi's the Bomb... For those who don't know, this book is written with many strike throughs throughout the whole book. It represents what Juliette really thinks but never says or can't admit. Many people didn't like that. I think it fit perfectly with the book. It helped with the theme of learning to accept and love one's self no matter what, freakishness and all. Mafi did a great job of taking the reader into a whirlwind of Juliette's thoughts and inner pain. It was beautiful, intriguing, and, (though I said this already, I have to say it again) breathtaking. I can only imagine what it's like to have never enjoyed the touch of another human being. That lack of love comfort has taken away a very vital piece of life from Juliette, but how Mafi handles it makes you hopeful for a better life for Juliette in the future.
Our Future? Out of the many dystopian novels I have read, this one rings the most true. I can easily see our world turning into the distorted version in Shatter Me. Global warming, nuclear war, and diseases can easily turn our world upside down just as easily. We already see the cost of corrupt governments to their countries. Who says it can't spread throughout the world, become a global problem? This book hit a little too close to home for me. I felt like I was seeing a possible future for us, even if it may be decades centuries away from now. It helped pull me into the world Juliette lives in because the reality of the situation was not unimaginable.
The Bad Can I nitpick and point out some faults in this book? Yes. But truthfully I enjoyed reading Shatter Me so much the minor annoyances really didn't make a difference, so I am not even going to mention them. Okay, maybe I will mention one thing. The ending was a tiny bit anti-climactic but it in no way took away my love for the book. I still can't wait to read the next book.
The Snuggly Expect some mild sexual situations but no actual sex. The romance was sweet between Adam and Juliette. And the sexual tension was simply heart pounding.
Overall I am so happy I have been reading more young adult and dystopian novels lately because they have really made my reading feel more complete. Shatter Me has all the elements one looks for in a book: action, romance, obstacles, triumphs, villains, and heroes. I knew that this was going to be an amazing book when I couldn't put it down. The real world was lost to me because Mafi did such a great job at creating characters that I cared about and didn't want to leave until I knew they were safe. The writing was superb and the world Mafi built was frighteningly realistic. This is one absorbing read. Highly recommended.
Excerpts I tuck a piece of hair behind my ear only to change my mind. "Why do you stare so much?"
His eyes are careful, curious. "I figured the only reason they would lock me up with a girl was because you were crazy. I thought they were trying to torture me by putting me in the same space as a psychopath. I thought you were my punishment."
"That's why you stole my bed." To exert power. To stake a claim. To fight first.
He drops his eyes. Clasps and unclasps his hands before rubbing the back of his neck. "Why'd you help me? How'd you know I wouldn't hurt you?"
I count my fingers to make sure they're still there. "I didn't."
"You think I'm some kind of freak you can show off to your friends?" Locked. Loaded.
Kenji clears his throat. "Not a freak. Just...interesting."
I point my gun at his nose. "I'm so interesting I can kill you with my bare hands."
A barely perceptible flash of fear flickers in his eyes. He swallows a few gallons of humilaty. Tries to smile. "You sure you're not crazy?'
At a Glance It's as simple as this, Rotter World is the best zombie book I have read by far.
The Good Flesh Craving... There is no need to summarize this book because Baker did an excellent job of that in his own book summary. So let's get down to the nitty-gritty. I loved this book so much I had a hankering for some flesh once I turned the last page. After satisfying my hunger by chewing on my pinkie for a bit, you couldn't stop me from spreading my love of this book. A zombie book is a zombie book, until you read Rotter World. A story of raw emotion, gore beyond comprehension, and the lengths self-righteous people will go to justify their hate.
The Leader... We spend a lot of time in the perspective of Mike Robson, once an officer of the law, now the leader of the team that goes into the thick of zombie territory to find supplies and survivors. Mike was the perfect hero. Loyal to a fault, caring but strict when needed, and a strong sense of morals. He is the kind of guy you would want to follow. I knew with him leading the group, with him being the voice of reason that no matter how bad things got, he would find a way to help the others survive.
Angels of Death... Natalie was another great character. She was the leader of the Angels of Death, a group of girls who she taught to shoot a gun and take care of themselves. The stories of what these girls had to go through to survive were gut-wrenching. The many rape gangs roving the world has made zombie-land even more terrifying for the female population. Natalie showed these women who have been victimized to fight and survive. I love reading about women who don't let their horrible pasts dictate who they are now. It added a lot of emotion to the novel that made me feel for the characters even more.
Zombies vs. Vampires... I loved the added twist of vampires amongst the Zombie Apocalypse. I really felt bad for them though. Their brethren had pretty much started the end of the world by releasing this virus on the population. Too bad for the vampires that they were not immune to the virus either. Now there are only a few vamps left in the world and almost every human would relish wiping them out. The vampires aren't too keen on having to rely on humans to survive. They need someone to watch over them during the daylight hours. This vulnerability only strengthens the vampires' hatred for the humans that wish them dead. Dravko was the secondary leader of the small vamp group, and he did a great job of keeping them safe. He remained logical the whole time, never letting his emotions get the best of him. He knew who was a threat to his team, and which humans he could trust. I like how some of the humans and vamps started to work together as a common threat emerged.
Humanity is Gone... The themes in this book were thought-provoking: How human frailty can destroy communities. How disaster rarely brings people together, but dismantles the basic structure of humanity. How morals and chivalry are often set aside as each person fights for their own life. How to some people hate and revenge are worth more than the rebuilding of a thriving society. I don't think anyone could really say what kind of person they will become if put in this kind of situation, but we can only hope we keep at least a thread of compassion and civilty even during the end of the world.
Can't We All Just Get Along? It was so easy for the people in Rotter World to blame the vampires for the destruction of life on Earth, but hate is what will continue the road of complete human elimination. When we are met with despair and a bleak future, one can only try to make things better by working together, not against one another. In Rotter World, some people just couldn't let go of their disdain and distrust and it got them killed. It also got innocents killed along the way. But Rotter World also showed us that there is always hope for humanity. Even when surviving seems impossible, there is always light at the end of the tunnel. People make mistakes but holding that against them and continuing a feud during a larger war is just counterproductive. I loved reading about a group that comes together to overcome the impossible. It made me want to cheer out loud.
Zombie Apocalypse... Rotter World was gory, terrifying, and heart-wrenching. It took my breath away and made me shiver at the same time. The action was sublime and the pacing kept my attention till the last page. I couldn't put this book down. There was a constant sense of dread the whole way through. I wanted so bad for everyone to survive, but that kind of wishful thinking is useless with a zombie book. People die, we mourn, and then move on. Because after killing the first fifty zombies, a hundred take their place. The Zombie Apocalypse waits for no man...or vampire.
The Bad Only two things bothered me. The beginning (after the initial zombie scene) was pretty slow but it was understandable since Baker had to introduce us to all his characters. Then there was a bit of a lull about three fourths into the book, when the crew finally gets to the underground facility.
The Snuggly We get some fun sexual tension and sex scenes. Yaaay. I like my zombie books with at least one sex scene. What the hell else are these people to do when they might be eaten any second?
Overall This is the kind of zombie book I have been looking for. Nothing was held back. I was face deep in rotting skin and gooey innards as Baker took me on the ride of my life. I loved the characters, even the bad guys. They all contributed to producing one hell of a zombie story. Highly recommended to all.
Excerpt "What's in there?" Sam asked nervously.
"Trust me," said Natalie, "you don't want to know."
"We'll see." Sam yanked Natalie off the truck, knocking her into the grass. He stepped back and spoke to the others. "Check it out. If you find anyone inside, kill'em."
The three gunmen climbed up onto the loading dock. The lanky one pushed aside the curtains with his AK-47 to allow the mustachioed gunman and the one in the Harley Davidson vest to enter, and then followed them inside.
A moment later, a scream emanated from the back of the Ryder, followed by gun shots and a growl, an ungodly guttural sound that was neither animal nor human. All three men started screaming now, the intensity of their panic terrifying. Then, one by one, each cry devolved into a muffled gurgle. The mayhem stopped as quickly as it had started, leaving in it's place an eerie silence. (less)
At A Glance Hehehehehe. I just want to giggle every time I think of this book. It's hot, sexy, and hilarious. The perfect trio.
The Good Here's The Story... Saying Jocelyn is messed up is putting it lightly. She has worked hard at burying her emotions and forgetting her traumatic past. Friendships and relationships are a no-no because they only cause more pain in the end. Determined to start over, Jocelyn moves to Scotland to become a writer. First mistake: having a roommate. Ellie is sweet, kind, and inviting. But Jocelyn tries to keep herself distant even though Ellie is slowly crawling into her heart. Then comes Ellie's brother Braden. Second mistake: meeting Braden while naked. Yeah, no going back from that one. Braden is hot, charismatic, and charming. And he has his sights set on Jocelyn. But Jocelyn will not disrupt her perfect balance of solitary and aloofness for anybody. Then Braden proposes a 'just sex, no relationship' arrangement. Who can turn down a few nights with a sexy man with an accent? But Jocelyn doesn't know that Braden wants more, and he always gets what he wants.
Switching It Up... I have never read a book like this before. First off, its a romance but an unorthodox romance. In On Dublin Street, it's Braden who chases Jocelyn. Jocelyn is the one with relationship and intimacy issues. Because of her past, she doesn't trust getting close to people; she has become emotionally closed off. She continues to push Braden away while Braden tries to find new ways to win her over. I liked the somewhat role reversal, the idea of the woman not wanting a relationship. But don't feel too bad for Braden because he is a serial monogamist. But what did you expect. He's freakin gorgeous. Women throw themselves at him and he has every right to partake as long as he is single.
Jocelyn = Jennifer... Another thing that sets this book a part for me is that Jocelyn reminds me of myself...in a small way. She is a fantasy writer and hides her emotions. That's me in a nut shell. Sad, right? That's okay, it's still fun to pretend I am a real person. Maybe if I wish hard enough the blue fairy will come and make me a real girl. :) All I need is Braden to walk into my life and bam! Call me Jocelyn. Okay, enough about me and my robot emotions.
Jocelyn... I think Jocelyn is one of my favorite female characters of all time. I love strong, independent women who don't always go goo goo over guys. Jocelyn doesn't take Braden's crap. She holds out being with him longer than any sane girl could have abstained. Her stunted emotions made her unique and fun to read about. Her past is pretty horrible and I totally got why she is all messed up. I felt for her even when she was letting down the people around her. You can't always be there for other people when you yourself have issues to work out. It made her human and real because no one can handle every situation with grace. It was nice to see her grow and deal with her past, no matter how reluctant she was.
Braden... Braden is all sorts of yummy and charming. But he also comes across as an all around good guy. His relationship with his family and sister is the sweetest ever. He is understanding when it comes to Jocelyn's freak outs. He's also successful, rich, and lickable. Okay, okay, I'll stop. My brain is in the gutter today. Braden was one of the most perfect leading men ever. I literally can't think of one bad thing to say about him. He is a gentlemen in public and a tiger in bed. He can chitty chitty bang bang me any day. OMG, someone stop me! What does that even mean???
I'm a Real Girl Now... I felt all sorts of emotions in this book (yeah, yeah, earlier I said I was an emotional robot, but I didn't say I was consistent). It went darker then I could have guessed. Young pretty much almost ripped my heart out a couple times (hey, it may be small and shriveled but it still beats, people). On Dublin Street will take you on an emotional rollercoaster as you follow this couple as they weed through their past hurts and find love in each other's arms. (Wow, that last sentence was so profound I want to quote myself somewhere). But this book also has loads of hilarious moments where you will cry from laughter. Braden and Jocelyn are a perfect combo to brighten anyone's day.
The Bad I was going to give this book 4 stars. But once I started writing this review, I realized I liked it a little more than 4 stars but still not quite 5 stars. What stopped me from giving it 5 stars is that it took me a little while to really get into it and the ending was too rushed for my taste.
The Snuggly Ummmm, yeah. Expect some very steamy sex scenes. Though this book is not full-on erotic--which to me means a lot of sex with heavy sexual language--it toes the line for sure. It has crude language and detailed sex scenes but there is barely a handful of actual sex scenes. Still not for the faint of heart. But really, the awesome sex took this book to a whole other level. It added the perfect amount of spice.
Final Thoughts I am so happy people suggested this book to me. On Dublin Street blew my mind. It was different and fun to read. You know I'm mainly a paranormal reader, but I can't pass up the few contemporaries that know the meaning of a great story and characters. I will be looking into Young's other books because she really surprised me with this one. Highly recommended.
Quotes Best Quote Ever right here but very naughty. You have been warned: “A**hole.”
“Just for that, I expect you to wrap that dirty mouth of yours around my c**k tonight.” He narrowed his eyes on me.
I couldn’t believe he’d just said that to me in a fancy restaurant where anyone might overhear. “Are you kidding?”
“Babe,” he gave me a look that suggested I was missing the obvious, “I never kid about blowjobs.” Our waiter had descended on us just in time to hear those romantic words and his rosy cheeks betrayed his embarrassment. “Ready to order?” he croaked out.
“Yes,” Braden answered, obviously uncaring he’d been overhead. “I’ll have the steak, medium-rare.” He smiled softly at me. “What are you having?” He took a swig of water. He thought he was so cool and funny.
“Apparently sausage.” Braden choked on the water, coughing into his fists, his eyes bright with mirth as he put his glass back on the table.
"Are you okay, sir?” The waiter asked anxiously.
"I’m fine, I’m fine.”
“You’re good with the words, I’ll give you that.” “I’m good with my hands. Will you let me give you that?”
“I would say it was nice to meet you, but I was naked so… it wasn’t.” (less)
The Good No Mercy... Right from the beginning I was drawn into Ismae's character and her dismal life. I could feel her despair from her early years of life, then her hope as she finds a place in the world. A place where no man can ever hurt her again, for she now hurts them first.
I can't ever pass up a chance to read about female assassins. It's like my Achilles' heel. So far, not one assassin book has let me down. And Grave Mercy has now joined that list.
Death to the Rescue... After years of abuse from her father and a marriage to a man just as worse, Ismae's future looked pretty bleak. Luckily, she is rescued and brought to a convent. A convent that worships the god of Death. It's here that she is trained in the art of assassination, for she has a natural gift from Death himself, and nothing can stop her from fulfilling her destiny. Except, maybe, Duval. A man like no other. A man she follows to the high court in the hopes of keeping the Duchess of Brittany safe from those who wish to hurt her. But the question is, is Duval there to help Ismae complete her mission, or is he another traitor to the crown?
Ismae the Assassin... Ismae is one of the most interesting characters ever. She is both strong and vulnerable. She is loyal but also skeptical because when it comes to taking a man's life, you want to be sure he is guilty. Your heart aches for her as we witness a fraction of what she went through most of her life. Then when she is taken in and taught to fight back, you can't help but feel elated. She finally gets to have a meaning, a purpose in life that she loves. But when she is ordered to watch over the Duchess of Brittany, Ismae finds herself ill-prepared for the extent of court intrigue and betrayal she finds herself involved in. And the worst part is that she begins to have true feelings for the people around her. Watching her struggle to trust, kill, and manipulate made this a fascinating read. Her internal struggles to stay true to her god's will but also stay true to her inner voice made me care for her even more.
A Shy Love... Duval irritated me at first. He was so snippy and treated Ismae like she was worthless. But when he started warming up to her, and she to him, they were almost a perfect match. They had that nervousness towards each other that was just too dang adorable. Scared of accidentally touching or getting caught staring at one another. That's what gave Grave Mercy that young adult feel. And once I got to know Duval, the more I saw the man that cares about his family and would do anything to protect them. But is that the true him or is that the front he puts on to convince Ismae of his loyalty?
And I Was Glued... I loved the political intrigue in this book. Never once are you sure who is the bad guy(s). LaFevers does a great job of keeping the mystery unpredictable and the suspense gut-wrenching. Almost nothing goes the right way. People you care about die and the people you trust turn out to be liars. The killing was efficient and precise, just what you expect from an assassin. Nothing extremely gruesome though.
LaFevers really knows how to make your heart skip a beat with her numerous plot twists and turns. There was barely a dull moment. I was glued to this book the whole time, and with it being over 500 pages long, that's a major feat. I can't wait for the next book.
The Bad The only thing that really bothered me was the ending. I hate unfinished endings. The whole book works up to some pretty important things that were suppose to happen but we only reach a couple resolutions and the rest is left unresolved.
The novel is written in present tense which can be disconcerting at first since it's so rare, but I got use to it. Also, the lack of contractions made reading this book a little awkward, made it sound too formal.
The Snuggly We get a little romance. Ismae and Duval are very cute together, though it takes them forever to finally admit their feelings. Their time together is pretty clean but the book covers some sexual topics. I loved how Ismae struggled with her feelings for Duval and her dedication to the god of Death.
Overall Jeeze, I kind of wanted to wipe my brow when I turned the last page. I pretty much sweated with anxiety and fear this whole book. I never knew what to expect. It's like LaFevers had no limits. She was just horrible to her characters, and that's what makes her an amazing writer. Without that drama and suspense, reading fiction just wouldn't be as fun. And, come on, this book is about a female assassin! Enough said. Highly recommended.
Excerpt "I am looking for Jean-Paul. And you, sir"--I tap him lightly on the chest--"are not him." I squish my lips into a pout and pray I do not look like a hooked fish. I am close enough to see the ruby he wears in his left ear.
Looking down at my bodice, the fool relaxes. Are men truly such idiots that they cannot resist two orbs of flesh? Martel glances at the door behind us and licks his lips. "Perhaps, after I conduct my business, I can come to demoiselle's aid," he suggests. His eyes stray again to my bodice, and the dagger at my ankle calls to my clenched hand. Not yet, I tell myself. Not yet.
"That is a very kind offer." I let my eyes wonder up and down his body, as if assessing his charms. In truth, I am searching for the marque. His forehead is clear, as are his lips. Uncertainty raises its head. I sigh as if smitten. "But Jean-Paul," I say, then sigh again. I tilt my head, considering. "Well, as you say, he is not here. Mayhap Monsieur will do. "As if I am a mare in heat, I think in disgust, and any stallion will suffice. (less)
The Good Jane Yellowrock is a mix between our favorite heroines Kate Daniels and Mercy Thompson. She's sassy, mysterious, and lethal. Some of her herit...moreThe Good Jane Yellowrock is a mix between our favorite heroines Kate Daniels and Mercy Thompson. She's sassy, mysterious, and lethal. Some of her heritage is still unknown and her childhood memories are just starting to come back. She shares her body and mind with Beast, the secretive entity with an even more cryptic background.
The introduction of history and the detail of the vampire world was expertly woven between fast-paced action, vampire hunting, and tantalizing secondary characters, like Rick (the bad-boy) and Leo (head vampire).
The storyline was intriguing and Jane's narration only made it better. Her tendency to give nicknames to everyone she meets is hilarious. I liked "Troll" more because of his nickname.
It's also nice that there is no real love interests in this book. Sure, Jane meets a couple people she is attracted to but that's it. It was more realistic, more in tune with her character.
I really enjoyed the description and details of weapons and motorcycles. I like when novels teach me random information while entertaining me.
Oh, and we can't forget that Jane is six feet tall and eats a lot of meat. Gotta love those kind of gals.
The Bad I couldn't find anything to complain about in this novel. I know some people feel aspects of the series have been done before, like the American Indian shapeshifter and vampire hunter thing. But I feel the plot was different enough to bypass any similarities this series has to others. And, let's face it, there are so many urban fantasy novels out there now that there's bound to be common ground covered between the many series eventually.
The Snuggly If you want sex, this is not the book for you. The focus is on characterization and the introduction of the Faith Hunter world. Just expect a little flirting.
Overall Faith Hunter laid down a solid foundation for the first novel of the Jane Yellowrock series. The plot was well executed and very gripping. Really loving the secondary characters, and Jane's point of view only makes the world and everyone in it more exciting. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
At A Glance If I could turn this book into a man, I would chitty chitty bang bang him all night long!
The Good I'm going to be totally honest. I didn't really remember signing up for this tour and when I saw it on my schedule, I looked up the book and read the blurb and was like, "Really, I signed up for this? This doesn't sound that great." Begrudgingly, I sat down to read it. After the first couple chapters, I mentally whipped myself for judging this book so harshly just from the blurb (which isn't bad I just wasn't feeling it that day). Touched mindf**ked me. Everything about it was so thrilling and fun that I had to move around while reading it to walk off the excited energy it instilled in me.
Before I go further, I did want to say that this book has a totally urban fantasy feel even if it's not labeled as such.
Marnie, Marnie, Marnie. What can I say about her? She is a badass in some ways, effing hilarious in most ways, and horny always. She rivals some of my favorite heroines of all time, like Kate Daniels, Cat Crawfield, and Rachel Morgan. She has spunk, she has insecurities, she is every woman...but with paranormal powers. Marnie may not have skills with a gun and she may not have super strength but her mouth makes up for any of her downfalls. I swear, if I could say the things she does I would be a happy woman, a laughed at woman, but a happy woman. Marnie really steps into some major crap in Touched. Almost everyone wants a piece of her. Some want to kill her, some want to make her suffer, and some just want to do her against wall. You know, the usual. But Marnie is damn good in scary/bad situations. She may not know it but she is the ultimate survivor. She does everything but pull a rabbit out of her butt to save herself and others.
Harry is Marnie's vampire companion. Their relationship is based on shared benefits. All vamps and psychics work together. I wont say too much since it'll be fun to find out on your own. Harry and Marnie's relationship is both an emotional nightmare and adorable friendship. I want my own vampire teddy bear that always puts me down as he picks me back up. Yeah, yeah that's not healthy, but damn reasoning! Sometimes I hated or straight out distrusted this silver tongued vamp. He has more than a few secrets. But even when I hated him, I loved him. It's like he has an unnatural draw even through the pages.
Mark Batten. *girly sigh* As Marnie likes to say, if he was any more of an a**hole he would be a sphincter. FBI agent Batten is everything you hate/love in a man. He knows how to take charge, to keep a girl on her toes. He is so mean sometimes but you can tell he has a huge capacity to love, it's just buried deep inside. He's the bad boy teenager you loved so much when you were young but he's all grown up...and now hunts vampires...and knows how to use a gun...and likes to sit with his legs open, in tight jeans, so you know what you are missing. You will not like him in the beginning, but he will grow on you. He can ride me up against a bathroom door any day.
The action was superb in Touched. I literally got tingles with every fight scene. I felt like I was there watching the whole thing in real-time. Aalto is also a great writer. I got so lost in this book time after time, it was hard top put down. The pacing was perfect. The paranormal elements were different enough to make the story feel fresh. The character development was amazing, obviously. I feel lucky to have read this book.
The Bad Though I gave it 5 stars, there were two things that irked me in Touched. First, Marnie's insistence on putting herself in dangerous situations without being armed. She may not have known every situation was dangerous until it was too late, but if I was being stalked by a killer, I would be armed even in the shower.
Then, I was so peeved when we were left hanging with some unanswered questions. Marnie finds out about a lot of secrets being kept from her by people close to her but she never confronts them.
The Snuggly Holy love triangle Batman! Best. Love. Triangle. Ever. So yummy yummy. Batten and Harry were both so fun, but in their own ways. Batten's a-holery and Harry's condescending, uppity attitude worked well with Marnie's snarkiness. It's funny how you don't even see the love triangle until it's too late. Like a drive by love triangle. Sneaky, sneaky, Aalto.
There is sex in this book and hot damn I wish there was more because it was HOT! Even Marnie's flashbacks to her fast romp with Batten was oh so sexy. *shivers*
Final Thoughts If I don't get a chance to read book two of the series, I will cry. This is now a must read series for me. I want to read about all these characters again and again. I really don't see how anyone could not like this book. Very highly recommended.
Quotes I straight up LOLed at this:
"Amateur dunce," Batten corrected, taking a pull from the beer bottle Harry put in his hand. "There's no way you're a professional anything."
"Goes to show you haven't had my very pro blow job yet." I gave him a neener-neener smirk and poured myself a Dr. Pepper on ice while Harry choked out about a hundred old English admonishments that no one else in the room understood.
"Funny things occur to you when you're dying. Bleeding out for the second time in three months, I thought deliriously, I could have used that damned No. 2 pencil. And: I think Batten waters down his cologne. How can I prove it? And then: I'm going to die, here. I don't want the reek of vomit to be the last thing I smell." (less)
The Good Poor Kaia. After years of being banned from the Harpy Games from an incident she caused that resulted in the death of a good chunk of the harp...moreThe Good Poor Kaia. After years of being banned from the Harpy Games from an incident she caused that resulted in the death of a good chunk of the harpy population, Kaia has finally been asked to compete in the Games once again. But the past is definitely going to bite her on the butt, for her enemy is in charge of the Harpy Games. So pretty much Kaia is screwed. And to make matters worse, her destined consort denies her at every turn. If they can just work together and admit their love for each other, then maybe they can make it out of the Games alive.
I was trying figure out why I loved this book so much. I mean, the plot is interesting, the action is almost the best in the series, and the love story was adorable. But what really made me smile while reading this book was Kaia and Strider. Not just because their the most awesomist (oh yeah, totally made up a word) characters ever, but because their humor is almost identical to mine. I actually felt a kinship with these characters and couldn't help but crack up constantly at their snarky banter and dry wit. (Ergo, I crack myself up).
Strider annoyed me as first. It was heartbreaking to watch him shoot down Kaia's advances over and over again. I wanted to slap him. But he definitely grew on me. He's sarcastic, loyal, and up for a fight morning, noon, and night (WIN!). His demon, Defeat, was just plain fun. Poor Stridey probably doesn't like him so much as he doubles over in pain for three days if he loses a challenge, but I can't help but love a demon that hates to lose and pretty much makes everything a challenge. I'm totally with you, Defeat, I hate to lose, too.
Kaia is just freakin' hilarious. Her and her sister Bianka are pretty much the best duo ever. They love to cause trouble and look good doing it. But Kaia has a past that has haunted her for years. Her confidence has been ripped to shreds and Strider's constant denial of their mutual attraction only drags her confidence further through the dirt. But she hides behind a huge wall of awesomeness, as she would put it. To look at her, you would never know that on the inside she's a huge ball of sad. But she's also sassy, cute, and knows her way around a fight. Pretty much the perfect match for Strider.
The Harpy Games was the best part of this book. It made everything else that much more exciting. Watching a whole bunch of vicious harpies going at it with pretty much no rules to hold them back was just exhilarating. Harpies have no limits. Now that's my kind of species.
As always we get snippets of what's to come in future books. Sometimes this irritates me because I like to focus on the main couple, but this time it actually made the book better. I know I, along with every other Lords of the Underworld fan, can't wait for Paris's story. The little sneak peeks of his adventures has done a great job of preparing us for his story and book, which is coming out very soon. I'm so excited!
The Bad I was sitting here, getting ready to write my review, and for some reason I was trying to find something wrong with the book. I don't know why. I guess I assume there is almost always something a novel can improve on. But The Darkest Surrender truthfully had no bad parts. Was it the best book of all time, no. But I thoroughly enjoyed it and I rarely put it down. I was actually so anxious to see how everything turned out that I did the unthinkable. I skipped ahead to the end. I know, I know. I'm a bad, bad reader for doing so, but I couldn't take the stress another minute. I always take this as a sign of a great book.
The Snuggly We get a couple hot sex scenes.
Overall The Darkest Surrender was a whirlwind of fun, action, and blood. The superb action that cannot be denied and the amazing dialogue made this book a five star success. Kaia and Strider are close to being my favorite characters of the paranormal romance genre. Showalter has done a great job at keeping this series fresh and interesting. Can't wait for the next book. Highly recommended. (less)
The Good Crazy as Hell... O. M. G. I am still shocked, days later, by Yours, Mine, and Ours. I don't know how Davidson can have a mind like that and create such brilliance and live in the normal world. Where has she been all my life? Sure, I read her Undead series and I love it, but this new BOFFO series goes beyond what is normal. It's crazy as hell and I love it! Sidenote: I did not read the first book of this series but this book can easily stand alone. I had no trouble figuring out what was going on. I can guarantee you that I will be buying the first book very soon.
Set a Thief to Catch a Thief... Cadence is special. She is kind of a package deal. A 3-in-1 sort of thing. She's not only peaceful Cadence, she's also kick-ass Shiro and crazy Adrienne. Oh and she's also a FBI agent for the Bureau of False Flag Ops division. Why would the FBI hire a girl with Multiple Personality Disorder to help them catch bad guys? Yeah, good question. They also have sociopaths and other people with psychological quirks working for them. It's that whole "set a thief to catch a thief" idea. Who knows more about a sociopath serial killer than a real live sociopath...who works for the FBI? Yeah, it's best not to think about it too much because the possibilities are pretty frightening.
Anyway, Cadence's life is going pretty good. She has an awesome boyfriend and her sociopathic partner George hasn't tried to kill her yet. But then this serial killer ruins everything by killing teen boys the same time every year. And it's Cadence's job to figure out the secrets behind this case that is beyond out of the ordinary.
No, You Have Not Lost Your Mind...Yet I know, I know. You read the concept of this series and you shake your head and read again because you know that you must have read wrong. Oh no, as a witness to the insanity, I can tell you right now that this book is a hundred percent real. And it is one of the most amazing books I have ever read. But I still can't get my head around it. How can Davidson write about such a far-fetched concept and make it so realistic and interesting? I think it should be illegal to be that brilliant. I almost want to be mad at her for writing something I wish I could have thought of. Warning: when you read this book, you might go a little insane. But hey, sanity is overrated anyways.
Three-in-one... Cadence/Shiro/Adrienne were simply amazing. Cadence is somewhat the main personality. She is sweet and a little timid compared to her "sisters." But she actually loves her sisters and all their oddities. She doesn't bitch about having to share her body with others, she takes it in stride...most of the time. Shiro is pretty much all around badass. She helps Cadence deal with things when it gets rough. She is her sisters' protector of sorts. And she likes guns. Yaaay. Shiro has taught me a lot about guns and it has made my life that much better. Stop looking at me that way, guns are awesome and you know it. If the protagonist I am reading about isn't shooting something, it just isn't the same. Then we have Adrienne. She is almost like a petulant child that likes oatmeal cookies and punching people. Good times. She is the fighter of the bunch because she pretty much has no limits.
Who Knew Sociopathy Could Be So Fun... George is my new hero. Sure, he's a sociopath, but he is a hilarious sociopath. And in the end, isn't that all that matters? Sure, he has no true emotions or feelings except for himself but that's what makes him awesomesauce. He is the ultimate antihero. He gives Cadence a hard time but is a little more cautious around Shiro because she will kick his ass. I don't think he likes Adrienne, but that's just him overacting. All she did was beat him up a little. He's just being oversensitive.
Love and Other Drugs... Then we have Patrick, the baker boyfriend who makes a mean pie. He is too freakin' adorable. He actually loves everything about Cadence, her sisters and all. He would do anything for them. He is almost too perfect which makes me a little suspicious, but for now, who the hell cares. He's my new book boyfriend and that's all there is to it. But the only problem is that this new Dr. Max Gallo has caught the attention of Shiro, which is just awkward since her sister is dating Patrick and they share the same body. Yeah, and you thought you had problems?
There are a few other unique and interesting characters but I simply can't mention them all. Let me just say, Davidson is a mastermind when it comes to creating one-of-a-kind characters that all leave an impression.
Character Driven... The story was very well done. I loved the mystery and watching "the girls" work it out slowly but surely. I was genuinely surprised by the twists and turns of the plot. The relationships between all the characters were actually realistic and felt authentic. This book is extremely character driven. You easily get caught up in their lives and how they work together. I'll be very interested to see what comes next because Davidson doesn't seem to hold anything back.
The Bad I loved this book so much that even though it wasn't perfect, I couldn't imagine giving it less than 5 stars. But I do want to mention the couple things that bothered me.
I felt like there could have been a little more action. I loved the ramblings of the protagonist but some of them went on for pages and it could get a bit much. Some of the lucid conversations between the characters confused me a bit. I had to read a couple pages over to understand what they were talking about.
The Snuggly Though this is not a romance novel, there was a romance going on that I found just too damn delectable. Patrick is the most caring, understanding, and lovable man ever. He accepts and loves all of Cadence, even the two other people who live in her head. He almost makes Multiple Personality Disorder seem normal because it doesn't phase him. Then we have Max Gallo who has made quite an impression on Shiro. I gotta admit, there is something about Max that almost makes me wish Patrick wasn't in the picture. Almost. Expect some sexual tension and some kissing and heavy petting. Nothing explicit though.
Overall I don't think I can ever do this book justice with my review. I could go on and on but I know people will yell at me if I write a research paper sized review. But, dear God, is the temptation to do so high. This is another one of those fun books. You will actually have fun reading Yours, Mine, and Ours. I laughed out loud so many times I was asked to leave the house because I could be heard through my bedroom walls. To say my laugh is annoyingly loud is being kind. But to get back to what matters, Davidson has composed something I have never seen before. The concept is ridiculous but it works so well. I have to give Davidson major props.
However, do I think this book is for everyone? No. I think it takes a person with a bit of oddity, someone who likes unconventional thinking and writing to really appreciate this book. But I think everyone should at least give it a try because not many books blow my mind but Yours, Mine, and Ours blew like a category five hurricane. Highly Recommended. Also check back soon for my interview with Davidson. You will not want to miss it. It was one of the funniest interviews I have ever done.
Quotes (lots of quotes because I loved this book so much and couldn't just choose one or two) Karen looked at Agent Thyme. "It's the same Pinkman. He saved three of the girls and killed all the bad guys. Um. Accidentally."
"Accidentally?" Emma Jan asked, arching dark brows.
"Three of George's (Pinkman) hollow points," Karen admitted. ~~~
"Cancel my lunch plans, I'm eating your pie. Oh, awesome. I can't believe I got to say that to your face after all this time."
"I've got three words for you, George," I said sweetly.
"Merry Christmas, baby?" he guessed, sticking a finger into the delicate meringue and scooping some up for a taste. "I want you? What a stud? Please bang me? Little Debbie blows?"
"Splenda Sugar Blend."
"What? F#ck!" He shook his finger like it had burst into flames and he was trying to wave it out. "Get it off, get it off, get it off off off!" Then he thrust the pie at me and sprinted toward the men's room.
After a long, thoughtful moment, Emma Jan said, "It's really weird around here. Are there forks?" ~~~
One of their many atrocities was kidnapping George, trussing him up like a roast ready for a slow cooker, and bundling him into a closet for hours and hours and hours and hours.
Even now, months later, I wasn't sure if George had gotten mega-pissed because of the trussing/stuffing thing, or because the ThreeFer Killers had framed him, or because he deliberately pooped in his pants to provide us with a clue to his whereabouts, and no one noticed. (We can be a pretty self-absorbed bunch. Also, there were all sorts of weird smells on the floor, all the time, so what was one more?) ~~~
Sociopaths were commonly believed to have indulged in three particular behaviors as kids: they liked to torture animals, they liked to set fires, and they wet their beds for years, long past the age of five.
Suddenly, the three of us were very careful not to make eye contact with George.
"I can read all of your minds, you worthless jerks," he sighed. "Hey, the dog attacked me, okay?
The Good Bone Crossed picks up immediately from the previous book in the series. Mercy is trying to coop with her traumatic ordeal from Iron K...more4.5 stars
The Good Bone Crossed picks up immediately from the previous book in the series. Mercy is trying to coop with her traumatic ordeal from Iron Kissed and Adam is there to help her anyway he can. I think this book really helps Adam and Mercy move along as a couple. No longer are we worried about the love triangle. Mercy has chosen her mate. But, of course, that is not as simple as it seems. Mercy has to get over her fears and learn to live with Adam's pack as well.
That's not the only problem Mercy is facing in this book. Marsilia, Vampire Queen, has learned that Mercy killed the evil vampire Andre, a favorite of Marsilia. Now Marsilia is taking out her vengeance on Mercy's friend, Stefan.
This book never slows. We get all of Mercy's problems dropped on us from the beginning and there is never a dull moment as Mercy tries to solve her many dilemmas. Nothing is as it seems and the twists and turns are never-ending. We get helpful insights on the world that Briggs has created, especially concerning vampires and fae. We learn more about vampire politics, which is just as nasty as you would assume.
And, wait for it... we get to meet Mercy's mother. Yes, you heard right. And boy what an entrance. I hope to see more of her mother in future books because I find her character quite interesting.
I was glued to this book from the get-go. It was action-packed and smoothly written. Briggs is excellent at expanding on ideas and concepts previously introduced in her other books. I also love Mercy as the heroine. She's gutsy, impulsive, and strong-willed. She has problems and flaws that make her more real and likable.
I really enjoyed the side plot with Mercy's college friend Amber. Previous books have been hinting on Mercy's ability to communicate with ghosts. This talent is finally developed in this book. But even the ghost problem at Amber's house is not as simple as you might think. This was the part of the book that really surprised me and made me sick with nervous energy. Very well done.
The Bad My only problem was the many plots that seemed to be mushed together. This book was not as clean as Briggs other books. The ending was somewhat anticlimactic.
The Snuggly We get some foreplay but the sex is off-screen.
Overall I really did enjoy this book. Mercy's problems were never ending and the action was non-stop. I was so nervous half the time I had to force myself to put the book down and calm myself. As you might have guessed I get very emotionally attached to certain books. And when a book can make me feel that much, I know it's a winner. The Mercy Thompson series is definitely worth your time. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good Read Hard and Put Away Wet... Okay, I have been sitting her for 10 minutes and I still don't know what to write. I guess it is fitting since Divergent left me speechless. How do I write a review about a book like this? A book that revitalized me, a book that made me bite my nails for the first time in 3 years, a book that ripped out my heart and made me want more. My face actually hurts from the emotions I went through. I've been caught smiling like an idiot, crying like a wuss, laughing to near hysteria, and waving my hands around from nervousness all while reading Divergent. I swear I found a new wrinkle between my eyes because I read this book so HARD. You ever do that? Reading a book hard is when you squeeze the cover from anxiety, rip the pages in your haste to see what happens next, and having to actually get up and stand while you finish a scene because of your nervous energy. Oh yeah, everyone in my household knows that if I am reading standing up then that book is the BOMB! (Don't laugh because I used the word Bomb, I am totally bringing it back.)
Choose a Faction... Beatrice lives in a world where one of five virtues dictates the rest of a person's life. Once someone turns 16, they must decide which faction (virtue) they will live with the rest of their lives. You have a choice between Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent), but once a faction is chosen, there is no turning back. That faction is your family, your only family.
Beatrice loves her family, but she struggles with the choice of staying with them within a faction that no longer suits her or going with the faction that has fascinated and called to her most of her life. Finally gaining the courage, she leaves her family, joins a new faction, and renames herself Tris. But the hard part is not over yet. Tris must now survive the horrifying training process, cruel initiates, and political intrigue that might just bring destruction upon the faction system.
Tris... I don't think this book would have been the same without Tris. It is her that takes us on a journey of self-discovery, the concept of virtues, and the trials one must go through to be accepted. Her struggles between being selfless, brave, and intelligent at the same time were captivating. It's hard for her to be just one, but she knows showing signs of too many virtues can get her killed. She was so meek and small in the beginning that her surviving the training seemed impossible. However, she was like a blooming flower in the sun, the more she was exposed to the life of her new faction, the more she became stronger, resilient, and flourished in her new surroundings. I think any of us could look up to Tris (not literally, that girl is short as all get-out). She never gave up no matter how much she was hurting or felt unwanted.
I Am Number Four... Four is the kind of person you'll love and hate through most of the novel. He's a bit mysterious, somewhat caring, and a whole lot intimidating. He goes through these moods. One day he's as sweet as pie, then the next he is nicking your ear with a knife (true story). But underneath his mood swings, he has a heart that beats for Tris. His goal is to help her survive the new cutthroat world she has been thrust into, even if that means being her enemy from time to time. I liked finding out about Four in short bursts of emotion. His background and his true motives stay a mystery for a good chunk of the novel. Of course, this made him all the more interesting.
It's the End of the World as We Know It... The concept behind Divergent is undeniably frightening and intriguing at the same time. In this dystopian world, war has been eradicated by simply cultivating the best virtues that any human being can poses. But in Divergent they have separated these traits into factions that live apart. The problem is, acting in accordance to one virtue does not guarantee a peaceful society. Eliminating people's innate kindness or mercy to be brave or doing away with a conscious self-worth to be solely selfless leaves people open to attack on many fronts. What makes us human is the ability to experience all that life has to offer; to be brave when it's necessary or honest when it's appropriate. To focus on only one part of yourself can warp your ideals into something dangerous.
That is what's happening in the world of Divergent. Factions are being corrupted. And if the one faction meant to protect you is unraveling, what do you do? Maybe, just maybe, Tris and her uniqueness will be able to fix what has taken place and find a way to triumph over the darkness in the world. I guess we shall see as the trilogy goes on.
A Punch in the Gut... I was shocked by the direction this book took. We do not get a happy ending--at least not yet. The initiation Tris goes through was nerve-racking on its own, and then Roth decides to punch us in the gut by bringing the world down around our ears. It was a nice surprise because it only made me want to read book #2, Insurgent, even more. The plot was well structured, the pacing perfect, and the suspense was phenomenal. I was terrified for Tris most of the time. I felt her emotions as she struggled to become what her faction required. The fear of her fellow cruel initiates was a constant throughout the book. The betrayals against Tris hit me just as hard as her. The astronomical changes in her left me out of breath and craving more. Every multi-dimensional character--the bad guys, the good guys, and the in-betweeners--contributed to this amazing story. Roth's ability to write such outstanding fiction at her young age gives me hope as a young writer myself.
The Bad The only thing that bugged me was when Tris forgave people that I think were unforgivable. There was some major backstabbing in the book, and no matter what happened to those people, I would've never forgiven them. But maybe I'm just pigheaded.
The Snuggly The romance is pretty minor. It takes quite some time for Tris and Four to get together. I like the fact that Tris is not very attractive but Four likes her because of her strength and determination. It gave their relationship a solid foundation because they grew to respect each other first. I'd say the book is pretty clean except for some unwanted sexual touching.
Overall I actually have Insurgent on the way to my house right now. I couldn't wait to read book#2, and since it took me so long to read Divergent, I didn't have to wait but a couple of days. Roth did an amazing job of taking captivating characters and a kickass and compassionate heroine, throwing them into a terrifying world, and adding just enough political corruption, action, and drama to produce one hell of a read. This is not the kind of book you can pass up. Any adult or young adult out there will fall in love with Divergent. It's a must read!
Excerpt I hear the crash of water against rocks. We are near the chasm--we must be above it, given the volume of the sound. I press my lips together to keep from screaming. If we are above the chasm, I know what they intend to do to me.
"Lift her up, c'mon."
I thrash, and their rough skin grates against mine, but I know it's useless. I scream too, knowing that no one can hear me here.
I will survive until tomorrow, I will.
The hands push me around and up and slam my spine into something hard and cold. Judging by its width and curvature, it is a metal railing. It is the metal railing, the one that overlooks the chasm. My breaths wheeze and mist touches the back of my neck. The hands force my back to arch over the railing. My feet leave the ground, and my attackers are the only thing keeping me from falling into the water. (less)
The Good This is the kind of book that grabs you from the beginning. Unlike many authors, Andrews (a wife and husband team who wrote this book) doesn't...moreThe Good This is the kind of book that grabs you from the beginning. Unlike many authors, Andrews (a wife and husband team who wrote this book) doesn't bog down the book with elaborate explanations of her world. She integrates the basics throughout the whole book as to not bore the reader with pages of explanation.
What was even better was the actual world Andrews created. I have never come across another concept like this before. It made it more exciting to read because I never knew what was next. It was as if the normal rules did not apply, so the limits were endless.
But the best part, the thing that made me almost cry when it was six in the morning and I still hadn't gone to bed because nothing was going to come between me and my book, not even unconsciousness, was the characters.
Kate is the kick-assiest (yup, not a real word, but it has a ring to it) protagonist ever. She is fearless, has mad fighting skills, and does what the hell she wants.
Curran. Oh, Curran. He is the Beast Lord in every sense of the word. He's strong, brutal, and knows how to push Kate's buttons (and vice versa).
The dialogue is down right hilarious. I literally laughed out loud for half of the book. I like those type of characters that don't hold anything back.
The combat scenes where excellent. Very clear, concise, and interesting. Gory at times, but I like that.
The air of mystery around Kate Daniels is by far the most tantalizing part. It's obvious there is more to her history that has yet to be revealed, which only guarantees people will be picking up book #2 Magic Burns.
The Bad I can truly say there was nothing I disliked about this book. I guess some could find it a little too gritty and gory, but I think it made the book interesting and raw.
The Snuggly There was a little sexual tension but there is no sex.
Overall This is one of my favorite books (and series) I have ever read. The characters are the best part and the action is beautifully written. I actually became a writer because of this series. My protagonist is slightly based off of Kate Daniels because I believe she is one of the best characters ever created. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good Gin Blanco, the somewhat mild-mannered restaurant owner by day and semi-retired assassin by night, has declared war against the city's worst s...moreThe Good Gin Blanco, the somewhat mild-mannered restaurant owner by day and semi-retired assassin by night, has declared war against the city's worst sort of mobster, Mab Monroe. What's a cold-blooded, deadly, self-assumed ruler of Ashland suppose to do when the notorious assassin Spider (Gin) is systematically taking out her underlings and working her way to the top? Easy enough, hire an assassin. And so we meet Elektra LaFleur. One of the highest paid assassins out there with an electric element that she has no qualms using on anyone and everyone, even on Gin's sister Bria. Elektra will soon find out what happens to naughty girls who mess with Gin's family. They get dead, as Gin would say.
I truly get super excited when I get to read Estep's books. I am currently reading Spider's Revenge, which is the latest book published in the series as of now, and I can't help but be a little sad. I tore through this series in two weeks flat and I don't want it to end. Though Estep does produce books faster than most authors, so hopefully I only have to wait a couple months.
Gin is her same old self: smart, witty, and deadly. But it's her love life that interests me. Sexy Owen Grayson is making his presence known in this book. Owen is slowly easing himself into Gin's life and her heart. Though Gin is still being cautious after the the whole fiasco with Detective Caine, she is starting to realize Owen actually accepts her for who she is, all of her, even the bloody parts. I hope Owen is a keeper because I want to read more about this relationship that seems to be blossoming, well, as much as Gin is letting it. But I can tell that the tentative relationship Gin is trying to build with Bria, her baby sis, is starting to crack some of that confidence Gin has slowly rebuilt after the time with the "good" Detective. It seems not everyone can be as accepting of Gin's killer tendencies.
Which brings me to Bria and Finn. Oh yeah, there might just be a Bria and Finn. We may know Finn as a player, but something is brewing between these two that I don't think even Finn can deny. I'm liking this pairing. Especially as Bria plays hard to get, which only intensifies Finn's interest.
I know we have all been waiting for Gin to finally take down Mab once and for all but it's not going to happen in this book. Tangled Threads is about Gin and Elektra facing off, in more ways than one. Elektra has been hired to eliminate Gin Blanco the restaurant owner, Spider the assassin, and Bria Coolidge the cop. So as Gin tries to keep her secret identity hidden, she also has to find a way to save her sister from getting the shock of her life. *laughs* Get it? The shock of her life. Elektra electrocutes people to death. I'm super funny. I know this because I never fail to laugh at my own jokes.
Estep has done a great job at creating a fast-paced series that shows no signs of slowing down. Each book gives us excellent character development and killer action. I find the fact that Gin's elemental abilities are slowly increasing in power an exciting side storyline. Of source, I'm also still waiting to find out more about the dwarf sisters, Jo-Jo and Sophia. Estep really knows how to lay on the mystery super thick.
The Bad Same stuff, different book. Way too much recap. It really slows down the book. The writing was repetitive, which was just annoying. And the descriptions can be a little too much.
I always have the same problems with each of Estep's books but I simply skip these parts. That's why I gave this book 5 stars. Everything else was so great that the bad stuff, that can be easily skipped, still can't make me like this book any less.
The Snuggly One sex scene. Wasn't too risque or anything. It was playful and cute actually.
Overall What can I say? I LOVE this series. I can rarely put one of Estep's books down once I start reading. The story is interesting and the action scenes are simply perfect. We get yummy men, a heroine who never quits, and writing that tantalizes the senses. If you haven't read this series yet than I don't think we can be friends. Just kidding (not really). Highly recommended. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
At A Glance Except for the slow beginning, The Edge of Never rocked my book socks off. I want more already.
The Good Here's The Story... Camryn has had one of the worst few years of her life. Her parents got divorced, his brother is in jail, and her boyfriend, someone who might have been the love of her life, died in a car accident. Trying to move on with her life, she planned to move in with her best friend and start a new job. But after one fateful night at a club that went horribly wrong, Camryn just has to get away. She knew she always wanted something more in her life, and she is determined to find that on the road. With just a few belongings, Camryn boards a Greyhound bus to anywhere and nowhere. But she never expected to find Andrew on her journey. Camryn has closed her heart to love, but Andrew is slowly wedging his way in. Now on a road-trip together, Camryn is finding it harder to ignore her growing feelings for Andrew as he makes her feel alive for the first time in a long time. But Andrew has secrets that can ruin everything. Will Camryn be able to live through another heartbreak?
Laughing and Crying... Just. Wow. This book kicks you in the stomach, rips your heart out of your chest, and runs away laughing. Seriously. I had to sit alone for a little while after finishing The Edge of Never and just process the whole thing. There is such raw emotion emanating from each page. I wanted to laugh half the time and cry the rest. I am a little sad that it's over. I want to spend more time with Camryn and Andrew. I miss them.
Camryn... Camryn's past broke my heart. She has had bad thing after bad thing bring her further down into a spiral of sadness. She really does try to continue on with her life, but the sense that something is missing, that sense of adventure that has been stirring in her won't go away. And after what happened with her best friend, I think Camryn felt like it was the last straw. When Andrew came into the picture, Camryn was so grumpy and standoffish it was cute. Andrew thought so too. I totally understood why she kept Andrew at arms length. Letting people in after so many have let you down or left you is hard. But it was also frustrating. I just wanted to yell at her, "Love him already, you both deserve it!"
Andrew... When I first found out we also got to experience this book through Andrew's POV, I squealed like a little girl. Andrew opened my eyes to so much more of the world than Camryn did. Without his POV, this story would not have been as compelling. Andrew had so much passion, but he also had a past that had affected him greatly. I felt for him every step of the way. Especially when he was waiting for Camryn to finally admit that she loved him. When his secret was revealed, I wanted to punch him and hold him at the same time. I was genuinely surprised, I never guessed this twist.
Bone Deep... The writing was well done and the story was beautiful. The characters all made me feel something bone deep. The relationship between Camryn and Andrew built slowly from friendship to lovers to something so much more. These two are so intense it was hard to handle sometimes. Andrew pushes so many boundaries I was often left giggling or red with embarrassment.
In The Moment... The message behind this book is inspirational. To live in the moment. To never let love pass you by no matter the heartbreak that can come from it. To live everyday like it is your last. I want to be more like Camryn and Andrew. I admire them and respect the paths they chose. The Edge of Never is like a breath of fresh air.
The Bad The only part that really sucked was the beginning. It was soooooo slow. It finally picked up around 40% the way through. So yeah, be ready to grit your teeth and bare through the beginning before you get to the good stuff.
The Snuggly Though the feel of this book is New Adult, the sex is Adult. Well, I think so anyways. Andrew does not hold back anything and he loves to talk dirty, and it was SO FREAKIN' HOT! I loved how Andrew drew Camryn out of her sexual shell. I ended up blushing as much as she did. Hehehhe.
Final Thoughts I would love for there to be a book 2. I want to know even more about Camryn and Andrew. They fascinate me. Their love is so raw and consuming it made this story that much more amazing. This is a very highly recommended read.
Quotes “Heart always wins out over the mind. The heart, although reckless and suicidal and a masochist all on its own, always gets its way.”
“I don’t think you ever really fall out of love with someone. I think when you fall in love, like true love, it’s love for life. All the rest is just experience and delusions.”
“I think if past lives are real then we have been lovers in every single one of them. I've known you for a short time, but I feel like I've known you forever.”
"She looks slightly relieved, until she realizes I was making fun of her and she sticks her tongue out at me and crosses her eyes. Not sure why that made me want to do her in the backseat, but to each his own, I guess." (less)
At a Glance So, yeah, I actually read a contemporary book. *gasps* I know, I know, so unlike me. But I saw everyone reading Pushing the Limits and I just had to see what all the fuss was about. The verdict: Oh. My. God. I think I will have to start reading more contemporary fiction from now on.
The Good Here's the Story... Echo had a great life. She had been dating the most popular guy in school and she had her brother to always lean on. But after her brother's death and her mom's breakdown, nothing has ever been the same. And after one horrible night, Echo comes back to school a recluse with scars on her arms. Now all she wants to do is remember the suppressed memories of the night she got her scars, the night she almost died.
Noah has been screwed over by the foster care system. He doesn't want his little brothers to suffer the same fate. Ever since his parents died all he can think about is rescuing his siblings and starting a new life away from lying, abusive adults.
Echo and Noah are drawn to each other. Their traumatic pasts make them outcasts in a world of "normal" people. All they want to do is be normal. But together they find that normal is overrated, being with the ones you love is what counts.
Good to Amazing... There are a few books that affect me enough for me to think about them long after I finished them. Pushing the Limits stuck with me for days. I went through the story over and over again in my head just reliving the awesomeness that is this novel. McGarry does an excellent job of creating dynamic characters that take a story from good to amazing.
Echo...Echo...Echo... Echo's story was simply devastating. She is alone in a room full of people. She is unheard when she speaks. And she is lost among memories that won't resurface. She hasn't seen her mom in a year, her brother--the person who always understood her--is gone forever, and her father only cares about his new bride and baby on the way. Most of her friends abandoned her because hanging around a freak with scars is social suicide. The worst part is that no one will tell her what happened the night her world changed, the night she got her scars. And the not knowing is driving her to madness. You can't help but feel bad for Echo. She is so broken and depressed. But she is mendable. We get to watch as Echo tries to rebuild her confidence, her passion for life. She learns to love and forgive. And she learns to trust.
Noah... Noah is just as lost as Echo. Labeled troubled and violent, he is often refused visitation with his brothers. This only kindles the fire to rescue his brothers from foster parents probably as bad as his were. But first he must finish high school. So he drowns his sorrows by getting high. Then he meets Echo. And from there, I fell in love with him. He is both strong and determined. He doesn't let anything stand in his way. And he truly cares about Echo more than he ever imagined he was capable of.
Selfless Love... Together, Echo and Noah go on a roller coaster of a ride. They have euphoric highs and devastating lows. They aren't a typical couple. They help each other deal with the drama of their daily lives and even start to heal each other's deeper wounds. They have each lost a part of their souls, and together they start to fill those voids with selfless love. A love that transcends each other. They both compromise and risk losing it all just for the other to be happy.
Healing... McGarry does an excellent job of bringing to light some very real problems any one of us could face--God forbid. She has developed realistic characters that make the reader feel an array of emotions with every page. Even funny and caring Ms. Collins, Echo and Noah's counselor, played a huge part in healing these teenagers from the neglect and pain they have suffered. I left this book feeling like I had physically witnessed these characters' lives every step of the way.
The Bad Is this book perfect, no, but I really have no things to complain about. I loved the journey, even when it was overly dramatic or heavy on the puppy love.
The Snuggly OMFG. This book is hot...in a YA sort of way. No sex but sooooo much kissing and touching that it gave me butterflies in my stomach.
Echo and Noah are seriously a cute couple. I want to be friends with them just so I can witness their love blossom. I liked that their traumatic pasts brought them closer together, each of them relating to the other over loss. It's a crappy thing to have in common but it can unite people in many ways.
Overall I think almost anyone could enjoy this book. You can get lost in this world of pain and love. The characters invite you to love them, to cry for them, and to jump with joy as they rebuild their lives. Highly recommended.
Excerpts Like always, she stared straight ahead as if I didn't exist. Hell, I probably didn't exist in her mind. People like Echo Emerson irritated the crap out of me.
"You've got a f**ked up name," I mumbled. I didn't know why I wanted to rattle her, I just did.
"Shouldn't you be getting high in the bathroom."
So she did know me. "They installed security cameras. We do it in the parking lot now."
"My bad." Her foot rocked frantically back and forth.
Good, I'd succeeded in getting under the perfect facade. " Echo...echo...echo..."
Her foot stopped rocking and red curls bounced furiously as she turned to face me. "How original. I've never heard that before." She swept up her backpack and left the office. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Her shoulders never shook. No tears streamed down her face. The worst type of crying wasn't the kind everyone could see--the wailing on street corners, the tearing at clothes. No, the worst kind happened when your soul wept and no matter what you did, there was no way to comfort it. A section withered and became a scar on the part of your soul that survived. For people like me and Echo, our souls contained more scar tissue than life. (less)
At a Glance Squeeeeee! So. Freaking. Excited. Many of you know I am obsessed with all things Kate Daniels. So to have more of her world through the eyes of Andrea was awesomesauce. Really, Ilona Andrews can do no wrong in my eyes when it comes to her books (Well, mostly).
The Good Here's The Story... Andrea has just come back into town after a messy firing from the Order of the Knights because of her shapeshifter status and a maybe-maybe not breakup with the only man she has ever loved. Left with no other choice, Andrea begins working for her best friend as a private investigator. But before she can move on with her life, the Pack asks her to investigate murders of some of their own. And since these dead shapeshifters happen to have died on a job run by Raphael, Andrea's ex, she is forced to work close with him to uncover the murderer. But this is not a simple case by any means because the killer has a few tricks up their sleeves.
Andrea... Our poor, poor Andrea. Her life really does suck right now. She was fired from her job for being a shapeshifter and she comes back to town to find out her boyfriend has moved on with another woman. It really doesn't get worse than that. My stomach was in pain as I read the hit after hit Andrea took. I girl can only take so much. I didn't really blame her when she snapped and...well, I wont give that away. You will have to read the book to find out. Overall, Andrea handled herself the best she could. She is still our strong, independent woman we have come to love. She knows she has made some mistakes, some bad decisions. She is even willing to own up to them, but she will not put up with Raphael's crap. She is a fighter like Kate, and she definitely shows her teeth and unsheathes her claws in Gunmetal Magic.
Now it All Makes Sense... I think Andrews did a great job on explaining the reasoning behind Andrea's bad decisions from the Kate Daniels series. Truthfully, I didn't like her for a little while. I just couldn't believe what she did, picking the Order over the Pack. But after Andrews had Andrea explain her side of it all, it totally made sense. Andrea has risen up from some pretty bitter and dark ashes, she has the right to do what's best for her. Oh, and before I forget, Andrea handled Aunt B PERFECTLY. I finally feel settled when it comes to Andrea's position in the Pack.
Damn That Handsome Devil... But Raphael. Grrrr. I wanted to kick him in his twig and berries many a time during this book. He was insufferable. He hurt Andrea more than I thought he was capable of. I get it, I do, but I just wish he could have taken the high road instead of the asshat road. But, then again, it made for great entertainment. I was glued to the pages every time Andrea and Raphael were put together. And, once again, Raphael ended up capturing my heart. Damn him! That irresistible bastard can freakin' do no wrong because he always finds a way for us to forgive him and love him once more.
Andrews Strikes Again... Okay, now on to the story. Again, Andrews spins a tale of complexity and mystery beyond comparison. The lore and mythology were fascinating. I love how Andrews never does simple, she interweaves storylines that make you actively think and analyze along with the characters. I am always blown away by how far Andrews goes and who the culprit turns out to be. The action was off the charts, the blood and gore were terrific, and the suspense was spin-tingling. The humor was, once again, above and beyond hilarity, and the romance was sizzling.
Ilona Andrews Rocks My Socks Off... To just crawl around Andrew's brain for one day is my life's dream. No one can compare to her writing style and expertise in entertainment. She knows what her fans want and she gives us everything plus more. Without her, I don't know if I would have the same passion for books as I do. (Side note: Yes, I am aware Ilona Andrews is a husband and wife writing team but it's just easier to refer to them as one person.)
The Bad Though Andrews often has lengthy descriptions of Atlanta in her books, this was the first time I found it irritating. I just wanted to get back to the story, not spend 3 pages on how a building looks and its extensive history.
The Snuggly We get some hot scenes with Andrea and Raphael but nothing overdone. Andrews doesn't ever focus on the sex, but when she spends those few pages on some snuggly, she freakin' scorches the words off the page in a surprising minimal way.
Overall I pretty much loved every minute of reading Gunmetal Magic. Andrews knows what she's doing. She writes characters we care about and stories that keep us reading. If you haven't read at least one book from Ilona Andrews, then you have never really read a book. Please read this book, like now!! Highly Recommended.
Quotes Kate smirked "What?" "Your horse is pink." "So?" "If you paste some stars on her butt you'll be riding My Little Pony." "Bugger off." I patted the mare's neck. "Don't listen to her, Sugar. You are the cutest horsey ever. The correct name for her color is strawberry roan, by the way." "Strawberry Shortcake, more like it. Does Strawberry Shortcake know you stole her horse? She will be berry, berry angry with you." "I can shoot you right here, on this road, and nobody will ever find your body.” ~~~~~~~~~
“Did those nice church ladies come by again?" He nodded. "I asked them if a man died and then the woman remarried, and then the three of them met in heaven, would it be a sin for them to have a threesome, since they were all married in God's eye. And they decided they were late to be somewhere else.” (less)
The Good Yup, you read right. I gave this book The Sixth Star. I have read, as of now, four books that are worthy of The Sixth Star. To achieve...more6 stars
The Good Yup, you read right. I gave this book The Sixth Star. I have read, as of now, four books that are worthy of The Sixth Star. To achieve six stars, instead of the usual five, a book has to be so exceptional that I have read it over and over again and still want to read it again. Magic Strikes is that kind of novel.
This book was an action-packed, thrill ride that oozed continuous tension. How Kate can live the life she does and remain calm is beyond me because I was sweating just reading about the "fun," new ways she had put herself in danger. But you can't fault her motives. She is loyal to her close friends. So when Derek, her friend from The Pack (shapeshifters), is nearly beaten to death, she has to right the wrong. This is why we love Kate, she is fearless.
But we also get to see a more vulnerable Kate this book. She starts to open up in the relationships she has built. Especially with Curran. I love where their relationship is going and how Andrews took her time in bringing them together. The playfulness is hilarious. But Kate's mouth is what's going to get her in trouble in the future. She makes some scandalous promises in Magic Strikes that will for sure make Andrews next installment in the series a book to remember.
Finally, after the many hints about Kate's origins and parentage, all is revealed in this book. And with the new outlook on Roland, the ruler of The People (vampire navigators), I can't see the series getting boring anytime soon.
I am also digging the potential relationship between Andrea and Raphael. I like that the supporting characters get their very own lives and storylines that we get to live through Kate.
The Bad Absolutely nothing.
The Snuggly We get a little steamy action in this book, but not enough to sound the alarms. It's pretty mild.
Overall As a whole, the plot was amazing, the writing was tight, and the descriptions were so realistic that I could literally taste and smell the sweat, blood, and tears. This was the book I had been waiting for. The real reason I became a writer. If I could ever be half the writer Ilona Andrews is, then I will consider myself lucky. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good Let us all rejoice, Mab's reign of terror is finally going to bite her on the ass. This is what we all have been waiting for: The Gin Blanco a...moreThe Good Let us all rejoice, Mab's reign of terror is finally going to bite her on the ass. This is what we all have been waiting for: The Gin Blanco and Mab Monroe showdown. This book was bittersweet for me since it meant the end of my reading binge of the Elemental Assassin series. I now must wait like everyone else for the next installment. *wipes away tear that would have been there if I was a real girl with real emotions* But at least this book did not disappoint. Expect an action packed, stress inducing, emotional roller coaster of a story that will leave you both exhausted and riled up at the same time.
From the get go, you will be high on adrenaline and then shattered as things don't always work out for Gin. Luck is a fickle wench who will screw you at ever turn. Just ask Gin. Gin's many attempts at finally killing Mab, the murderer of her mother and older sister, aren't going so well for our spunky assassin. And the longer it takes to assassinate Mab, the more time Mab has to figure out who Gin really is. And once that happens, it will be open season on Gin's friends and family.
I was very happy with the plot and how Estep decided to end this part of Gin's life, something that has been in the making since book one. Her makeshift family is also there for her every step of the way. The character development was very well done and the ending was to die for. And you gotta love the last sentence of Spider's Revenge. It was simply perfect.
Gin is still Gin. Smart, feisty, and has mad skills in both her elements and with silverstone knives. I like the vulnerability she shows in this book. Who wouldn't be a little uncertain of her skills when facing her ultimate enemy? And her and Owen are just too freakin' adorable. I love them together. You finally see Gin's emotional walls crumble as she realizes she truly loves Owen as he loves her, despite her violent past and possible bloody future.
Finn and Bria. One word: hilarious (with a side of endearing). Okay, that was more like six words. Their relationship really starts to fire up in this book. I won't way anything else though, don't want to ruin it for you. But when it comes to Sophia and Jo-Jo I have to at least tell you that Estep finally reveals the mystery behind the dwarven sisters. We learn what happened to Sophia and why her voice is so damaged. A very compelling and sad story.
I'd say it was the ending that really made this book. I was terrified and excited the whole time as I read every word. Estep did a lovely job of creating a symmetry between how the series started and how this chapter of Gin's life ends. I am so happy that Estep added the Fletcher part, too. It really gave Gin some closure. It made something within her settle, letting her be more well with herself and her possible future.
The Bad Same old, same old. Once again the description was a little lengthy, repetition was rampant, and the recap was redundant considering that we have heard the same crap over and over again from every book. Expect infodumps to the extreme as well. I recommend that you skip these parts.
Beside my usual complaints, this book had some parts that just got on my nerves. Without giving anything away I feel one action, or lack thereof, on Gin's part just wasn't consistent with being a cold-hearted assassin. I was yelling at her to kill this person but of course she doesn't. After what this person did, I would have killed 'em, and I'm not an assassin (or that's what I want you to think, *laughs evilly*).
This book was a little hokey in the emotion department. I caught myself rolling my eyes at some of the conversations between the characters. Too heartfelt for my taste, especially for an assassin book. My suggestion: less heart, more stabbing.
The Snuggly One sex scene, which is the usual. Nothing over done or too graphic. Simple and to the point.
Overall Many people are saying that Gin, who is suppose to be one of the best assassins in the world, often fails or botches too many of her missions in this book. I get their annoyance but people have to remember, the heroine can't always win every fight, that's just boring. She has to make mistakes no matter how good she is at her job or the book would be 30 pages long and uneventful. Plus, I think Estep does a great job explaining why Gin seems more sloppy in this book. She's dealing with the woman that slaughtered her family, emotions will undoubtedly run high, making Gin waver in her steadfast resolve.
But let's get back to the big picture. I loved this book overall. There were a couple things that just plain annoyed me to the point that I had to put the book down before I threw it. But I can't deny that I ate this book in two days and loved (almost) every minute of it. This is a must read for those who love Gin and the crew as much as I do. Highly Recommended http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good A great sequel to a promising series. Andrews has once again found a balance in her writing that combines fast-paced action, emerging romance,...moreThe Good A great sequel to a promising series. Andrews has once again found a balance in her writing that combines fast-paced action, emerging romance, magical beings, and temperamental characters and makes it believable.
In this book, Kate's ever-mysterious origins start to emerge. Curran and Kate's strained "relationship" begins to show signs of future romance. And we get to meet Julie, the young teenage daughter of a missing witch who is somehow involved in the mess Kate has found herself in. Because Kate without danger, excess fighting, and world destruction just wouldn't be Kate.
Anytime Kate has to work with The People (vampire navigators) and The Pack (shapeshifters), the action and mayhem are sure to follow. The supporting characters, like Ghastek, Saiman, and Andrea, continue to add their own flavor to each page.
The mythological research woven throughout the novel was superb, and we slowly learn more about each supernatural group, which has helped the story to come more alive, more real.
The precarious balance of dark adventure and comedy has in no way fazed Andrews. I love how this book can be both dark and light, serious and funny.
Kate grows some from the character we left in Magic Bites. She develops more relationships and finds more compassion, maybe to a fault. She risks her life continuously for her friends without hesitation.
The Bad Um, nothing. Everything pretty much got better from the first book, which I thought was impossible based on how much I loved Magic Bites.
The Snuggly Again, no sex. But the sexual tension makes an appearance again.
Overall I think Ilona Andrews is one of the best writers I have come across. Her story lines are interesting and keep their momentum. The action, description, back story, and dialogue are balanced to ensure the reader never gets bored. I am only falling in love more with each character. There is no doubt I will continue to read this series. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
At A Glance I. Die. You know the dreaded question: If you were stranded on a deserted island and you can only bring five books with you, which ones would you bring? Most readers would panic because the idea of only 5 books is sickening, but it seems that question is not so hard for me anymore. Because, hands down, The Sea of Tranquility would be one of those five books, and I would enjoy it again and again for years on end. That's why I had to give it my rare 6 stars.
The Good I had to wait some time to write this review after reading this book because I needed time to let the awesomeness soak in. If I hadn't, I would be a rambling mess of emotions. Even now, I don't know what to say. How can I describe the perfection of this book? Maybe it's not perfect for everyone but I can guarantee that most of us readers will fall madly in love with The Sea of Tranquility. Right now this book has almost 14,000 ratings on Goodreads and is averaging a 4.56 star rating. That's pretty damn amazing.
Let me start off by saying that this is not a perfect romance. This book is more about two troubled souls, who have horrible pasts of lose, who find kinship with each other. It's a slow build and it's so worth the wait. Nastya and Josh remind me of the peanut butter and jelly in a PB&J sandwich (yes, that's what I had for lunch today). They couldn't be more opposite in their structure, in their overall essence, but together they meld and blend into rightness. It just takes that one time for them to come together and you know from then on they should never be separated. And then you see how similar they really are.
And let me also mention that this book may seem slow in the beginning, but believe me, it needs to be that way. You can't jump into something like this without having your heart be ripped into shreds. You have to be eased in. This book packs so much emotion that I still feel raw weeks after reading it. The writing is not just words and sentences. It's art incarnate. I don't know if I have read a better written book in all my life. The dialogue is both witty and soulful. The pacing is perfect for this kind of book. The characters' inner thoughts broke me, then healed me, then broke me again. I was an open wound for a couple days while reading this book, and I loved every minute of it. I think my bottom lip even quivered from time to time as I forced myself to hold back the tears.
This is definitely a character driven novel. Millay goes above and beyond when making Nastya and Josh into real people. I never once thought that I was reading a book. I felt like Nastya and Josh were recounting their lives up close and personal. Even the side characters like Drew became real to me. I know these characters more than I know any family member, best friend, or even myself.
I don't think anything with a beating heart could not feel bad for Nastya. She went through a heartbreaking and tragic experience that no one should have to endure. And because of this event, she has stopped speaking, to anyone. Being mute can make it hard when you go to high school, but when you dress like a Russian hooker on purpose, it's apparent no amount of teasing or bullying will ever affect you. Nastya is the living, breathing version of the doorknob sigh reading "Do Not Disturb." Everything she does is to keep people away. After losing a piece of her soul, she wants nothing to do with the world. But then she meets Josh. And for the first time in a long time she's interested...interested in interacting and living. Nastya is troubled and emotionally fragile but she is also a very strong person. She has to be with what she's gone through. She's bright and talented, even if she doesn't think so anymore. But what she needs is to heal. And even Josh may not be able to do the job, because sometimes we have to heal ourselves first.
Josh has lost everyone some way or another. And when everyone close to you seems to die, you kind of become a social void. The high school kids are a little afraid of Josh and he likes it that way. He'd rather be left alone. Then the mute and exotic Nastya comes into town stirring controversy and Josh can't help but notice. But it's not until Nastya starts forcing herself into his daily routines that Josh starts to see the girl no one else sees. He sees someone emotionally damaged but beautiful nonetheless. She's unique and mysterious and Josh wants to solve the mystery of her past but he let's Nastya reveal things on her own time. He gives her the space she needs and offers her security in his house and his garage where they work on his woodworking together. Josh is quiet and understanding, which is exactly what Nastya needed.
The Sea of Tranquility was powerful, deep, and beautiful. It has everything a reader can hope for in a book. The plot was well thought out and executed amazingly. And the mystery behind Nastya was handled so well I still feel tense from the suspense. Ugh, I wish I was a better writer because I still don't think I even skimmed the surface of what this book is like or how it made me feel. It's indescribable.
I have to mention how perfect that ending was. I was a little nervous it was going to be a sad ending but no, it wrapped up everything very well and even has the best last sentence ever in the world. My heart broke into happy little pieces then formed back together stronger than before when I read the last page.
The Bad How dare anyone suggest something is bad about this book!!! :)
The Snuggly Mercy! Nastya and Josh have the most complicated, messed up relationship. They start out ignoring each other, then become awkward friends, then you think there can be more after a special night, then Nastya ruins it all, then Josh makes it worse. You will want to yell and scream when it comes to these two. They are both emotionally stunted and how they even became friends is beyond me. But you will also love them to the little red recesses of your heart because no two people deserve to be happy more than these two.
We get a sex scene that isn't graphic. It's appropriate for YA readers. However, there is a sexual assault scene. So be prepared.
Final Thoughts Remember, this is not a full blown romance type of book. The romance and relationship building takes forever, but it's perfect for this book. You just have to give it time. This is a character driven book with a lot of tragic elements but has inspiring moments in it that makes it so worth all the heartbreak. VERY, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Quotes “People like to say love is unconditional, but it's not, and even if it was unconditional, it's still never free. There's always an expectation attached. They always want something in return. Like they want you to be happy or whatever and that makes you automatically responsible for their happiness because they won't be happy unless you are ... I just don't want that responsibility.”
“I wished my mother was here tonight, which is stupid, because it’s an impossible wish.” He shrugs and turns to me, drowning the smile that cracks me every time. “It’s not stupid to want to see her again.” “It wasn’t so much that I wanted to see her again,” he says, looking at me with the depth of more than seventeen years in his eyes. “I wanted her to see you.”
“There are so many things that can break you if there's nothing to hold you together.”
“We're like mysteries to one another. Maybe if I can solve him and he can solve me, we can explain each other. Maybe that's what I need. Someone to explain me.”
“People who go around advertising their birthdays are douchebags. It's a fact. You can look it up on Wikipedia.”
*Free book from netgalley for honest review*(less)
The Good Yup, you read right. This is another of The Sixth Star books. Andrews creating two sixth star books is why the Kate Daniels Series is m...more6 stars
The Good Yup, you read right. This is another of The Sixth Star books. Andrews creating two sixth star books is why the Kate Daniels Series is my all-time favorite series. Andrews knows what it takes to keep a reader interested, emotionally invested, and continuously guessing.
Why is this such a great novel? Let's put it this way: I picked up Magic Bleeds and started going over the book to refresh my memory and figure out what I wanted to write about it. Two and a half hours later, I am just starting my post because the book lured me in once again, and I couldn't help but reread some of it.
Magic Bleeds has everything a great piece of fiction should have. A great plot, romance, action, and mystery.
The introduction of Kate's family makes for an awesome storyline. The more I learn of Kate's origins, the more I respect Kate's purpose in life and her means to achieving her goal.
Curran and Kate's relationship takes one giant leap into complicated, frustrating, then hilarious. They are the most adorable (well, my version of adorable may be a little skewed for I have odd tastes) couple in Urban Fantasy. They can yell at each other, beat the crap out of one another, then kiss and make it all better. I love the odd dynamics and complications that accrue because a simple romance just wouldn't be as much fun to read. The pranks between Curran and Kate are what make this book for me. I couldn't stop laughing half the time from the peculiar ways these two decide to love (hate) eachother.
Grendel, the dog, is just pure entertainment. Anyone who can say they don't love the addition of the attack poodle has issues. He's cute (and in cute, I mean ugly), he's resourceful (he will eat anything that's dead, alive, or stagnant), and he barfs all the time (well, that one is pretty self-explanatory).
And I wanted to make sure and give props to Maxine, The Order's secretary. She is all kinds of cool. She is the kind of person that would ask if you liked cream in your coffee as the world was crumbling around you and would respond to a threat with a bright smile and a knife in your gut. Well, that's my opinion anyway. She intrigues me, makes me want to know what her story is.
The Bad Bad? Are you crazy? This book is perfection.
The Snuggly Yup, we finally got a sex scene. Nothing that will cause your eyes to bulge from the scandal of it all. It was simple but nice. It fit the characters we have come to love.
Overall Beautiful writing. Character development just keeps getting better and better. The plot was super interesting and kept my attention. The action was phenomenal. And the romance is building. There are, and I counted them, thirteen sections in this book that I am obsessed with. I have read and talked about them over and over again. I can't help but reread the perfection that Andrews has produced because I am in awe of her skill. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good Wow. This fresh new concept blew me away throughout the whole book. Singh's take on angels and vampires was unlike anything I have ever read....moreThe Good Wow. This fresh new concept blew me away throughout the whole book. Singh's take on angels and vampires was unlike anything I have ever read. For her to establish a presence of angels on earth was the most fascinating thing about the book. These angels are ancient, powerful, inhuman beings that can scare the crap out of anybody.
The cast of characters are amazing as well. Elena, a born hunter, has her own abilities and heightened senses that make her a perfect vampire hunter and all around bad-ass. She doesn't take flack from anyone, even the frightening archangel, Raphael, who has a sudden need for her talents.
Raphael is arrogant and cruel and ridiculously beautiful. He expects submissive tendencies from all, but he doesn't get that from Elena. Because of her suicidal courage and a kind of innocence, Raphael begins his not-so-innocent pursuit of Elena. And Singh does a great job of slowly giving Raphael a sense of humanity that makes us all slowly fall in love with him.
All of the secondary characters had their own personalities that fit perfectly with how Singh presented them. They felt real, and each one was uniquely different enough that I was never bored.
The Guild Hunter world is full of both scary and beautiful beings. I felt like I got enough backstory and world building to help me assimilate into this new world with ease. And this world was full of hard-truths and could get a bit gritty some of the time.
The Bad I found no faults with the book. Some say it's not romantic enough, but I disagree. Raphael and Elena's relationship is different, more complicated, which for me is only more enticing. Others feel the backstory was lacking. For me, it's nice when all is NOT revealed in the first book. It leaves room for future storylines and character building.
The Snuggly A lot of sexual tension. Many almost sex scenes and a full sex scene. The intimacy was woven between action and mystery, so it wasn't overboard or too often.
Overall Angels' Blood made me suffer from a real bad case of wing-envy. Singh's detailed descriptions of angels' wings and what it is like to fly was so inspiring. The plot had twists and turns at every corner but was not overcomplicated like some books. The story and characters were slowly built up until you had a major interest in what happened to each character. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
At A Glance You know that feeling when you finish a f**king amazing book and you just sit there, shivering from your bookgasm, basking in the giddy high of fiction art? Yeah, Magic Rises was better than that.
The Good If you haven't read this series by now, something is wrong with you (just kidding *cough* but not really *cough*) But seriously, anyone who knows me, knows that the Kate Daniels series is my FAVORITE series of all time. When I first got into reading, urban fantasy was my choice of drug, and that has never changed. And that's all because of Ilona Andrews (a married writing duo, but I will refer to them as one person for the sake of this review). Ilona is spot on in everything that makes fiction so damn enjoyable: the humor, the action, and pacing, the detailed plots and storylines, the descriptions, and the supernatural aspects. They are all flawless. And Magic Rises is another example of perfection.
I want to get this out now, even if you are not a huge fan of urban fantasy, please, please try the first two books of this series (some say they really get into it by the second book). Not one person who I have recommended this series to has been disappointed. They have all come back with 4 and 5 star ratings for every book. You cannot go your whole life without at least trying this series out. It would be a travesty.
Okay, okay, on to the review. I couldn't devour this book fast enough. I had a pit in my stomach the whole time, stressing out that Kate and Curran were walking into a trap, and I loved every minute of it. The frightening parts seem a little more bearable knowing that Kate and Curran are so capable of taking care of themselves and others. And they are smart, they know it's a trap, they are just that confident. Total badasses, right?
I care about these characters like they are my family. I know it's weird, but I can't help it. They feel so real to me. I think it's the dialogue. Ilona is the all-star in writing dialogue. It flows so naturally and is packed with wit, sarcasm, and sincerity. I dare you to read this book without laughing and cracking a smile every page. I straight up laughed out loud throughout all of Magic Rises. Even during the serious parts, Ilona doesn't hold back even then.
OMG, the action. I don't even know what to say. It's so real, it's so detailed, it's so f**king awesome. No one writes action like Ilona does. It's art the way she does it. You can tell she does extensive research to make sure all the movements, sword swipes, and offensive and defensive strikes are realistic and factual.
The background detail on supernatural creatures is beyond even my expectations. The mythology is so well organized and integrated into Magic Rises I am still speechless. It blows my mind how in-depth Ilona goes when it comes to the history of every creature.
Kate is still the badassiest badass ever made into being. She is really taken on a rollercoaster ride of f**kedupness in Magic Rises. She is hit hard as more shapeshifter children turn loup (crazy, mindless monsters). She can't help but think that if she ever had children with Curran, this might be their fate. And even though the cure requires Kate, Curran, and the team to walk into a trap, they do it anyway. Kate would do anything for her pack. Even face pure evil. And she does. I love Kate's commitment and love for Curran and his pack. Even when they don't always show it back, she takes her responsibilities to keep them safe seriously. But I also love the Kate who needs to fight, to cause pain, to kill. Kate's vicious side is what makes her so fearless and strong. Without this scary side of her, she would have never survived the world she lives in. We see a lot of different side's of Kate in Magic Rises, and I loved every one of them. Especially jealous Kate. Oh yeah, that made for so much fun.
Curran scared me a bit in this book. He does some crazy things, but I never really doubted him. He's still my Beast Lord. Uh, I mean Kate's Beast Lord. Yeah, that's what I meant. *looks around for any signs of Kate* Hey, that bitch is scary, don't judge. The rest of the gang made an appearance and they were all wonderful, just like I remembered them. Derek is walking a fine line though. I am worried for his future. I hope something good happens to him soon. And, I have to warn you guys. An important character dies in Magic Rises. Some of you are going to be mad. Their death will change a lot of things. Personally, I like when authors kill off important characters. I like the change up. I was sad, but honestly, there is no love lost between me and this character. But I know some of you will be devastated.
I could go on and on about this book. But I think you got the hint. Read this series, read this book, become obsessed with Ilona Andrews like the rest of us.
The Bad That's blasphemy just hinting anything was wrong with this book.
The Snuggly Oh jeeze, Curran and Kate are put through the ringer in this book. It was so hard for me to watch Kate struggle with what was going on with Curran. She reminds me a lot of myself, by shutting down emotionally when people mess or play with her feelings. So I totally got where she was coming from, her reactions made perfect sense to me. But no matter what, I will always love Kate and Curran because I know that they will always end up together. There is literally no better "made for each other" couple out there in the world of fiction. They are soulmates in ever sense of the word.
There is a pretty hot sex scene or two that will get your blood boiling. Nothing over the top though. Personally, I want more details, but that's because I have no limits when it comes to Curran. He should be mine. I want to know every inch of his body.
Final Thoughts I gave Magic Rises my special 6 stars because it was perfection from beginning to end. Which reminds me, the ending was perfect, a little sad, but mostly happy. In my eyes, Ilona Andrews can do no wrong because she is consistent in her awesomeness. You can tell this author never gets tired of her work. She has found her calling. If that doesn't make you want to read this book, I don't know what will. Extremely recommended.
Quotes “You’re taking a nap? Come on, Kate, I need you for this fight. Stop lying around.” “You must think you’re funny.” “Just saying, you have to pull your own weight. A hot body and flirting will only get you so far.” “Everything I do, I learned from you, boy toy.” “Boy toy?” Curran asked. “Would you prefer man candy?”
“Aha! So I’m not crazy.” “You are most definitely crazy,” Derek said. “But in a deranged, endearing way.”
“Five minutes later, we were rolling around on the helipad as he tried to muscle his way out of my armlock, after slamming me onto the helipad. “I finally realized the source of your mutual attraction,” Saiman said, his voice dry. I looked up. He was standing a few feet away. “Do enlighten us.” Curran tried to roll into me to break the lock. Oh no you don’t. “You both think violence is foreplay.”
“One time I was dying in a cage inside a palace that was flying over a magic jungle. And some idiot went in there, chased the palace down, fought his way through hundreds of rakshasas, and rescued me.” “I remember,” he said. “That’s when I realized you loved me,” I said. “I was in the cage and I heard you roar.”
“Are you hungry, baby?” Curran asked. “Starving.” “I think we should go to dinner.” “Great idea.” “What are you going to wear?” “My badass face.” “Good choice,” he said.”
“Outside the windows the day was bright: golden sunshine, blue sky, pleasant wind ... I wanted to punch the happy day in the face, grab it by the hair, and beat it until it told me what the hell it was so happy about.” (less)
At A Glance Mind. Explosion. If you aren't reading this series, then something is wrong with you. And I mean that in the most respectful way. ;)
Caution: I get a little rough and sweary when writing the Foul Mouth book reviews. These books bring it out of me.
The Good You know what, Raley? I don't even trust you anymore. I don't know if I want to punch you in the throat or lick your brain. Seriously, that ending. My brain has still not processed it. That's one hell of a knee in the crotch. Didn't see that one coming. You might as well have paid a hobo to jump out and flash me his junk and add little tassels on his testicles just for sh*ts and giggles, but even then, that wouldn't have been as shocking as what you did. And damn you to hell, I loved it. So effing amazing.
Anyways, I guess I should get to the review. Though ranting at Raley a little more would be more satisfying, but duty calls. Let's start with what this series is about. King Henry Price (effed up name, I know, but kind of what makes the whole thing funnier) is one of a few who have special abilities in which they can manipulate energy and...stuff. Sh*t, I don't know, its complicated, get off my back (Yeah, my inner King Henry coming through). Anyways, they are called mancers. They are recruited to a special school to learn about their abilities. This series follows the personal recordings of King Henry. He tells us about his time at the school and his life after the school. Sounds simple. It's not. King Henry's life is full of complications, danger, and a lot of swearing. In each book, we go back and forth between the recounting of stories of young King Henry (15) and older King Henry (23). I really, truly love this set up. Because both King Henrys are awesome. Young King Henry is a mixture of smart, stupid, and horny while older King Henry is more a mixture of smart, stupid, and horny...wait!! I have to rethink this. No, sounds about right.
King Henry is a one of a kind character. He's a jerk. No doubt about it. He's even mean sometimes, but it's always in good fun. He may call you a fire crotch but he would put himself in the line of fire the next minute to save your life. You have to take the sour with the sweet. I think this book is a major turning point for King Henry. His on again off again girlfriend, Valentine, is back in town. Val needs King Henry to convince her sister, Christmas (I swear, I want to pop out a kid just so I can name her Christmas. I never thought of that as a name until now), that going to the mancer school is the only option for her unless she wants to go insane by age 30. Spoiler: But as King Henry and Val's family sit down for dinner to have a talk, men in combat gear come and snatch Christmas up for God knows what reason. Now it's up to King Henry and Val to get her back. But the people behind the kidnapping are some scary mofos and no one is brave enough to take them on, except King Henry.
I was so happy to finally get to know Val more. She seems like a complicated character, and she is, but she is also so simple. She doesn't play games. She is up front and almost as aggressive as King Henry. She is the only one who truly put up with King Henry's crap all these years and still stayed friends with him. She never tried to change him, she loved him for his humor, his courage, and even his foul mouth.
This story blew my mind. The twists and turns about blew my socks off. The action kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. The humor, as always, was top notch. If you want to laugh, if you want to be shocked, if you want to be entertained, then read this series. The writing is different and it works perfectly for the feel of the book. These books have personality, a whole bunch of face-smacking personality. And after that ending, there is so much tasty possibility for the rest of the books. This sh*t is going to get real, people!
The Bad All I can say is that it took me a little longer to get use to the writing style this time around. But after a chapter or two I was fine.
The Snuggly I was so happy to see a little romance this time around. The Foul Mouth books are not romantic by any means, so it was a pleasant surprise to find it in The Foul Mouth and the Troubled Boomworm. I am a girl after all, so I got all doey eyed just seeing King Henry go gooey over Val. It was freakin' adorable.
Expect a lot of cursing and sexual references. And a little sex.
Final Thoughts Love! I have a whole bunch of sloppy love for this book. There are three or four series in my life that would be hard to live without and the King Henry Tapes is one of them. Everyone needs to give these books a chance because they will give you bookgasms. Lots and lots of bookgasms. Highly recommended.
Quotes "Fine!" Raj sulked, accepting his broken state and giving up on just the tinniest bit of his usual polite and reserved attitude, "I'm in love...with Miranda."
"Can people be in love with gingers, is that allowed?" I asked.
Terminator seemed to think both sides over before motioning towards Matrix to holster his weapon. There was no argument once the decision was made. "Don't think this means you're going to survive this," he warned.
"I always plan for death," I mouthed off, "find it keeps me alive."
"I don't want to leave you."
"Worried I have a concussion?"
"...More like sure you have one, given that you're King Henry Price and you haven't looked at my breasts once this entire time."
The Good Okay, before we get to the nitty gritty, let me just tell you what Raley's elevator pitch is for his book: Harry Potter meets Pulp Fiction. S...moreThe Good Okay, before we get to the nitty gritty, let me just tell you what Raley's elevator pitch is for his book: Harry Potter meets Pulp Fiction. So, you can say my mind was officially blown from that little statement. How the heck can a book be the combination of these two totally opposite films/books? Well, Raley did the impossible because I can't think of a better statement that sums up this book.
The Foul Mouth and the Fanged Lady is now all cozy in my shelf of the top ten favorite books I have ever read. As I was reading this book, I kept pestering the author with my annoyances, for he has no right to be this talented. I want his brain now. But I doubt he is willing to trade, so I guess I will just do my job and write my review.
This book is effing awesome. Sorry, had to get my semi-curse in. Read the book and you will know why.
The whole book is about King Henry Price recalling his time in Asylum and his later adventures on a voice recording. It was a brilliant way to organize this book because we get to enjoy the foul mouth fourteen year old King Henry as he is just learning what he is capable of and the twenty-two year old King Henry who can now kick-some major butt with his honed skills.
You cannot read this book and not find King Henry one of the most interesting characters ever. He's hilarious, smart-mouthed, and has mad skills both in fighting and as an Artificer. You never doubt that he can take care of himself, but you have to love the support he so often receives from Ceinwyn Dale, the Institution of Elements recruiter. Their relationship really was both hysterical and adorable. Dale kind of takes the guardian role that King Henry so sorely needs. His parents aren't the best role models and the whole story with his mom is just sad.
Then there's Annie B (Anne Boleyn). At first you're not sure how to feel about her. She's as ruthless as she is beautiful. And as Annie B and King Henry get to know each other, they form this kind of "trust", and I use the term loosely, that make them a badass pair.
The plot was somewhat simple which I liked because I wasn't spending my time trying to figure out a complicated mess that distracts from the enjoyment of reading a good book. But the world Raley has created is not at all simple. It's intricate and well researched. We get a scientific spin on the world of Mancy and the vampires were just scary. I have never read a more interesting version of a vampire in all the 300 books I have read about vampires.
The pace was smooth, the action was well written, and the description was well blended to make one absorbing read that I personally couldn't put down.
The Bad I really loved everything about this book. Though it may not be for everyone because it is a little different from the norm, it really worked for me. So if you are even 10% like me (a little odd, loves to laugh, obsessed with all thing urban fantasy) then you will love this book. I should mention the language. There is a lot of foul language, but without it, it simply wouldn't be the same book. It was needed.
The Snuggly Sex is insinuated but no actual sex scenes. King Henry is a gentleman, he doesn't kiss and tell. Hahahahaha. Sorry, tried to keep a straight face but couldn't last. Gentleman and King Henry are three words that shouldn't be used in the same sentence.
Overall I am officially a Raley fan. He is an amazing writer that has created something unique in the urban fantasy genre. I loved everything about the book. King Henry was an out-of-the-box character that almost anybody can love. The secondary characters were both scary and fascinating. This book will make you laugh out loud, which I did often. Just want to take this time to apologize to those around me as I read this book. I know my laugh can be kinda scary...and loud. But it's who I am, stop hating. Anyways, The Foul Mouth and the Fanged Lady is a must read. Highly recommended. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)