Note: I decided to repost my review of this book. I originally took it down for the many cyber attacks I received for my opinion of this book. I under...moreNote: I decided to repost my review of this book. I originally took it down for the many cyber attacks I received for my opinion of this book. I understand many people view this book differently and are upset by how they interpreted the content. If I reread this book today, would my opinion have changed? Probably. But this review below was how I felt about the book a long time ago. I can't change that. I just ask that you please not bully or attack me anymore for my opinion. I respect how you feel about this book, please respect me back. Thank you.
The Good Eden lives in a dystopian world where the darker your skin, the more desirable you are because those with dark skin can more easily stand the excessively hot environment that the earth now nurtures. Eden is a Pearl, a white person, which pretty much categorizes her as the dregs of society. Eden can only hope that a desirable Coal, a black person, will pick up her mate-option. But the story really begins when Eden and her father are swept away by Ronson Bramford, one of the most desirable and wealthiest Coals, and taken to a secluded part of the rainforest. This is after Eden compromises her father's vital experiments and Bramford is turned into something between beast and man. But Bramford's new transformation might be the key to helping society gain a semblance of what it once was, with everyone on more equal footing and with a better adaption to the environment.
To tell you the truth, I was scared out of my mind while reading this book. I always put myself in the position of the protagonist and to live in the world Eden lives would be like a death sentence without a defined date. To be so disposable and surrounded by people who hate your kind is just terrifying. But despite my fear, I devoured this book in one night. I don't often read dystopian type novels, but I have to admit this was a great introduction to the premise.
Eden was an interesting character that I couldn't help but feel sorry for. She tries to do the right thing but seems to always make things worse. Even though she has learned to be subservient and fear her superiors, she still has this inner strength that I think comes from her father's determination, her mother's love for life, and her "aunt" Emily's beautiful words. Oh, I can't forget to mention that. I think Foyt's concept of making Emily Dickinson Eden's "aunt" was wonderful. Her integration of Dickinson's poetry was quite fascinating. It brought a sense of realness to an otherwise fantastical world.
Bramford was a mystery most of the book. We can see that he views Eden not as a Pearl but as a woman, even when her childish actions say otherwise. But his past haunts him and his future is very much uncertain. He envisions a better world, just like Eden's father, but it has cost him some of his humanity. Though Foyt doesn't provide a very detailed description of what Bramford looks like after his transformation, I can't help but think of him as hot. It's the way Eden sees him that helps me visualize his undeniable masculinity and inhuman strength.
Watching Eden and Bramford fall in love was quite endearing. They couldn't be more opposite but they find something special in each other. It's as if they see the real person inside, the one each had to hide from the rest of society.
I think Foyt did a great job of writing a story that speaks to the many issues we face each day. How our culture defines what beauty is and what such beauty gets you. The issues of racism and the ever-increasing destruction of our environment and earth. The plot was intriguing, the characters were eye-catching, the action was amazing, and the concept was unique. Oh, and the mystery. Most of my question's didn't get answered till the very end, but I liked that. To keep guessing till the last turn of the page made it so much more exciting.
The Bad It's hard to pinpoint exactly what I didn't like about the book. One thing that was a little annoying was that from the summary and blurbs about the book I was expecting a different story. With the emphasis of the Coal/Pearl relationship and dystopian type world, Revealing Eden didn't focus too much on this aspect. The majority of the book was set in the rainforest away from the oppressive society I assumed was going to be the focus of the book.
The other thing that bothered me, though this is probably just me, the relationship between Eden and her father was depressing and how it was "resolved" was very unsatisfactory. And I know Eden can be a pain in the butt but you can't fault her for the decisions she makes when no one would tell her the whole story or truth.
The Snuggly We get some kissing and a little touching. This is a young adult book all the way, though we do get a little cussing.
Overall Though young adult is not my primary source of reading material, I have to say this book surprised me. It caught my attention from the get-go and never let up. Though the story took a turn I wasn't expecting, I still enjoyed myself till the end. I can't wait for part two. And I wanted to thank Foyt for signing my copy. Revealing Eden was the first hard-copy ARC I ever received, and your message only made it that much more special. Highly recommended for all ages. (less)
The Good Cursed is the first of five short stories from the Touched series. The Touched series is actually one of three series of The Sidhe, a...more4.5 stars
The Good Cursed is the first of five short stories from the Touched series. The Touched series is actually one of three series of The Sidhe, a linear set of stories that interweave the Champion of the Sidhe, Rise of the Unseelie, and Touched series.
In Cursed we meet London, an investigator of paranormal problems, who may have bitten off more than she could chew with her next assignment. After Rico curses London to crave his Touch, London has no choice but to let Rico drag her into a war among the parahumans. It is her job to gain the information Rico desires because without his Touch, London may be forced to make some decisions that will change her life...or cause her death.
I don't even know where to begin. This book was brilliant. I was sucked into this dark world of magic and paranormal creatures and pretty much didn't want to leave. I don't know how he did it, but Archer created an amazingly fantastical story that said so much in so little words.
London is a tough chick who's been put in a rather crappy situation. But she takes it all in stride as she does what needs to be done to save her bacon. She kicks ass and takes names, then kicks more ass. It's awesome!
Oh, and the Fey. The creepy, beautiful Fey that have no limits and will doing anything for their brethren. I both hate and love them. I hate what Rico did to London, but I soon found myself seeing his side of things and understanding why he takes such drastic actions.
I loved the action in this book. The fights were fast and gritty. London not only utilized her amazing skills with a gun, she also knew how to use her body as a weapon. A girls gotta be multi-talented this day in age. Especially living in the world London does.
I loved the assortment of creatures and species. A dash of mischievous wizards, a trickle of crazy changelings, a dollop of sexy Fey, and a drop of blood thirsty vampires. It was all so very exciting and terrifying at the same time. I don't know how Archer had me so nervous and eager to continue reading with such a short story. He even had time to supply us with some important history that helped the world building. Oh, and I can't forget the writing. Archer knows what he is doing when it comes to a flawless writing style and structure. Cursed was a seriously dark adventure, and I can't wait to see what happens next.
The Bad The only part that bothered me was how short it was. But I can't really fault the author since that was his goal the whole time. But it does take some time getting use to the abruptness of some of the scenes in the novelette.
The Snuggly We definitely get some sexy scenes but no real sex. Expect some bumpin' and grindin'.
Overall Even though it was very short, something I will have to get use to, I really loved this story. No doubt in my mind, I will be reading this whole series and the two companion series that go with it. If you like urban fantasy, adventure, and some good fighting scenes, then you will love this novelette. Highly recommended.
Quotes The scuttling sound of claws and scales against stone came from above. London searched the shadows overhead. As the creature hung upside down from the rafters, its huge eyes glistened wetly. Humanoid in basic anatomy, the thing was skeletal thin. Arms legs half again as long as a human’s and oddly jointed so the knees and elbows angled backward like a mosquito. The flesh, as best as she could make it out, was a nearly black green. The ears pointed a full hand span above the top of its bald head. The rows of teeth it bore in its gaping mouth were needle sharp and inches long. Show… No… Fear… http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good I am so happy I decided to read more young adult books. Ties to the Blood Moon was an adventure and a half that kept me enthralled from beginning to end. I just wish book two was already out because I can't wait to see what Waldrop has in store for her characters.
After her mother's death, Genevieve moves in with her aunt in Alaska. Everything may seem normal at first, but slowly Gen finds out that not all fairytales are myths. And as her world takes a turn for the weird, Gen finds out that her role in the chaos is vital to bringing peace amongst supernatural beings. And through all this, Gen falls in love with one guy while feelings for another start to surface.
This book was really fun. I read it in two days, staying up pretty late both nights. I couldn't help but turn the page to see what happened next. It kind of starts out a little slow but picks up pretty quickly a few chapters in. Even when it was frustrating as hell, I loved the constant mystery throughout the whole book. It kept me guessing.
Gen was a very interesting character. For a seventeen year old she is slightly immature, but I thought it gave everything a little more humor. Even when you feel bad for Gen and her many humiliating moments, her reactions cracked me up. I've never seen someone cry so often. But it worked with the circumstances of the book since Gen is going through some very terrifying and emotional changes. But she manages to keep on going, no matter the obstacles and many secrets constantly surrounding her.
William was a very mysterious sort of character. You don't know his true motives until the very end, which made it a little hard to really like him. Doesn't mean I didn't fall in love with him just as much as Gen did. There is something about him that makes me want to smile. I got all giggly every time he showed up and charmed Gen (and me, apparently) once again.
Gen's best friend, Luna, was very hot and cold. At first she is like the best friend everyone wants, then she has major jealousy issues. But considering this is a young adult book, it's to be expected that teens have their ups and downs and emotional dramas. I actually thought it was all very entertaining. Now Joseph, Luna's twin brother, was my favorite character. When you get to know him, he is a really sweet guy and you only hope for his happiness. But his feelings for Gen have only brought him grief since she is obviously in love with William. It's hard to watch Joseph's pain, and I can only hope he has something to look forward to in the future.
The fighting scenes were very fast-paced and exciting. I liked that at first Gen couldn't really take care of herself, but as she accepted her destiny, she became a better fighter and more skilled. I hate when books portray their main character being instantly strong for no reason. Gen is still growing into her new powers, which is how it should be. I still can't believe how many twists and turns this book had. When I thought I had things figured out, Waldrop would find a way to surprise me with each chapter.
I can't stress enough how much the mystery behind every action and dialogue between the characters really made Ties to the Blood Moon an intriguing read. If this is what I should expect from most young adult reads, then I am on the path to becoming a young adult junkie.
The Bad There were some inconsistencies in this book that were a little annoying. Sometimes places or movements were described in an odd way and did not hold true the whole scene. Transitions were sometimes awkward and confusing, and I had to reread parts to understand what just happened.
I felt the ending was a little too convenient. Like Waldrop had to find a way to ensure a second book of the series, so she kind of threw things together to make everything fit. But it just felt forced to me. But it didn't take away from my enjoyment of the book overall.
The Snuggly The romance was a little more like an obsession at first, but eventually things begin to take a more loving turn. I, of course, like the love triangle in this book, even when I was sad when one guy gets left behind. There is a little sexual content which gets heavy near the end, but nothing over the top; it is a young adult book after all.
Overall I can guarantee you that I will be reading the next book in this series one way or another. I loved the teen drama, the love triangle, and the unfinished business that will hopefully be solved in book two. The characters are interesting and I know they have the potential to grow into even stronger, mature characters. I recommend this book to all young adult book lovers. And be on the look out for a giveaway of this book, an author interview , and a guest post from Waldrop.
Quotes All during class I sat with my head propped on my hand and kept catching myself staring at William. You know, one of those open-mouthed stares. Then, the most embarrassing thing of my teenage life happened.
“Miss Labreck,” Mr. Donovan snapped at the same time as he slammed his pointer stick on someone’s desk in the front row.
I jerked and sat up straight. “Huh … uh, yeah?”
“You can worship your Romeo after class. Right now we are talking about Juliet’s Romeo.”
A burning flush flew over me when the entire class busted out in laughter. I pulled my hoodie further over my head and sunk down into my seat as far as I could go. I would have gotten under my desk if I could have fit.
A couple hours later I woke up, my head felt like lead, and I had an awful taste in my mouth. It was cold and the wind was blowing. I cracked my eyes open and glanced around. Everyone was still asleep, except the pilot. His seat was empty and the back door was wide open. It took longer than normal for everything to register. I even looked behind me, thinking he might be in the bathroom, before it finally hit me … we had been drugged. (less)
At A Glance LOVES!!!! I loved almost everything about The Host. I am totally going to fangirl all over this review because I can't help but squee every time I think of this book.
The Good Holy Crap! I don't even know where to start. Oh, oh, I know. If you hated Twilight, never fear, The Host is 100% better. Twilight for me was a fun story about obsession more than love that was badly written. The Host is very well written and has way more substance and character development.
I could go on and on about The Host and character development. That's what made this book The Bomb. Oh yeah, I still use that 90's phrase. I'm bringing it back! Each character made me feel so much emotion, so much joy, so much sadness that it felt like I was part of the story. I actually cried near the end of this book. Cried! Me, the unemotional robot actually cried! Stephenie made me care for everyone. They were all multi-dimensional characters with their own stories, even if their individual stories were not outright told. They had obvious depth and unique personalities. I had to know what was going to happen to them, what was going to happen next. It was a "keep reading or die of deprivation" scenario. Yup, I was that dramatic while reading this book.
The concept was somewhat unique. Sure, we have movies and books with alien's taking over the human race, but The Host felt different. Because it's from the alien's perspective and how she comes to love the humans she is meant to dominate. We have Melanie, the body, the human, and Wanderer (Wanda), the soul, the alien. Though Wanda has control of Melanie's body, Melanie refuses to let Wanda take complete control. She will not be silenced. So Melanie does the only thing she can, she shares memories of the man she loves, Jared, with Wanda. Wanda slowly falls in love with Jared through Melanie's memories. But it's when they set out to find Melanie's lost love that the story really begins. Because this is not a story about an alien takeover. This is a story about friendship, love, and sacrifice. It's about what a species is willing to do for survival. It's also about finding out who you really are and what you are willing to do for the ones you love. The Host is more complex than it seems.
Wanda was one of the best characters ever. She has lived many lives, in many bodies. But it's Melanie, a girl who won't give up, that changes her outlook on life and humanity. Wanda takes risks for a love that has grown only from memories. But she finds mostly hatred from the rebels from which her "beloved" lives. Having Wanda fall in love with Jared because of Melanie's memories was simply genius. I felt horrible for her when she is attacked and treated like an outcast amongst the rebels, even if I knew that it was logical for them to be cautious of her. Wanda is brave beyond reason though. She is strategic in what she says, what she shares. She knows how to stay alive. And her compassion for others is admirable. It's still hard to grasp the close friendship Melanie and Wanda had considering the circumstances. Then Ian came into the picture and changes everything...for the better.
Melanie was also a very strong and determined character. She held on to her soul, her conscienceness and fought with Wanda for control over the body they shared. And her love for Jared was simply beautiful. It kept the whole story going. Jared was a little iffy for me at first, but I grew to love him like Wanda and Melanie did. He was somewhat hardened by the rough life humans now had to live, but he still held on to the kindness and compassion that seems to be ingrained into his person. Ian was a whole other story. He starts out as the bad guy (kind of) but he turns into the most amazing love interest ever. We should all be so lucky to have someone like Ian in our lives. He loves with wild abandoned and I admire him the more for it.
There was just enough action to keep my attention the whole way through. The Host was well written and the plot was well thought-out. The world-building was interesting and had me wanting to learn more. I love how Stephenie wrote a sci-fi book that had less to do with the human perspective. This was about the alien's perspective. It was less about a hostile alien invasion and more about human nature in all its glory.
I actually read this book years ago and I remembered almost everything about it even today. I reread/skimmed it for this review, but it was unnecessary. This book left such an impression on me that the whole story was imprinted into my mind.
The Bad I almost gave The Host my rare 6 stars, but I had to concede that it wasn't perfect. Close, but not quite. The beginning is slow, as well as other parts of the novel. I still wanted to continue reading, I just wish more happened in certain areas.
The Snuggly Stephenie labeled this book as Adult but it's not. It has a YA feel, especially in the romance department. We only get some kissing and touching. But the sort of love triangle was freakin' awesome. I really didn't know how Stephenie was going to handle the relationships in this book since it was all very complicated. But she did an excellent job of giving us a satisfying resolution for each couple. Jared and Melanie, Wanderer and Ian, it was all so romantic and crazy at the same time.
Final Thoughts The Host is one of my favorite books of all time. It may not be perfect but it's pretty damn close, for me at least. You will grow to love each character with ease. And the storyline will leave you wanting more. Trully, this is not a book to be missed. Highly recommended.
Quotes “It's not the face, but the expressions on it. It's not the voice, but what you say. It's not how you look in that body, but the thing you do with it. You are beautiful.”
“I love you,” I whispered. “Don't say that like you're saying goodbye.” But I had to. “I, the soul called Wanderer, love you, human Ian. And that will never change, no matter what I might become.” I worded it carefully, so that there would be no lie in my voice. “If I were a Dolphin or a Bear or a Flower, it wouldn't matter. I would always love you, always remember you. You will be my only partner.”
“I held you in my hands, Wanderer, and you were beautiful.”
“You are the noblest, purest creature I've ever met. The universe will be a darker place without you," he whispered.” (less)
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)
At A Glance I loved the characters bunches and bunches but aspects of the story were just okay.
The Good It seems like almost everyone starts out their The Collector review with, "You will not like Dante at first." What!!!!??? I loved that MoFo. Dante was awesome from beginning to end. He wasn't just an anti-hero in the beginning, he was also mean, funny mean, but mean all the same. He was (and still is) conceded. Life revolves around him. He's got swag and he knows it. He's a smooth talker who knows how to get his way. And though some of this sounds bad, it so worked for this book. It was perfect, it was different. What's better than reading about a main character who is sooooo not a hero? Maybe it's just me but I sometimes need this kind of change in my books. I don't want to always read about the perfect couple, or perfect character. So sure, prepare yourself for Dante. He's manipulative, he's full of himself, and he's full of awesomesauce. He's the shiz! He's Dante Effing Walker.
But Dante also has his sweet side. His feelings for Charlie are like the sweetest ever. He's kind in an messed up way. And his heart is so big but he never realizes it. His evolution as a character was fascinating. I just can't see how anybody couldn't love this guy, even with all his faults.
The other characters are just as amazing. Charlie was literally so caring, sweet, and endearingly geeky it was ridiculous. Her innocence is almost unbelievable, but you believe it in Charlie. And I loved that she wasn't pretty, or that she was ugly if you want to be harsh. It was nice to see someone so focused on helping other people and caring for her friends instead of focusing on herself. Her friends were also great characters. Annabelle was amazing with comedic relief. She is a popular/sexy/conceded girl at heart even if she is an outcast like Charlie. But even with her wanting to be more than what she is, she cares for her friends just as much as Charlie does. Then Blue. My poor, sweet, brooding Blue. I never really knew what to think of him. His obvious love for Charlie leaves him between a rock and a hard place with Dante's pursuit of her and Charlie's attraction to Dante. It's Blue who surprises me the most in this book. He ends up being an accidental badass...and hero. Then there was Dante's best friend, Max, who was just down right hilarious.
I really had fun reading this book. Every character had a great sense of humor. Of course nothing could beat Dante's one-liners. The Collector really is a great book that will see you laughing often. The mystery was pretty good. The emotion was often intense. I felt it as Dante's heart broke. I felt it as Charlie thought Dante cared nothing for her besides changing her looks. The concept was also very interesting. I am excited to see where this all goes. There is still so much for this series to get to.
OMG, I just realized what this book reminds me of. It's like a YA Bad Santa. If you saw that movie, then you would totally get it. Of course this book has more of an endearing romance.
The Bad It's kind of hard to pinpoint exactly what I didn't like. I think the story building lacked a great deal. Certain things aren't explained well or at all. And some things are just unbelievable. Like having 6 Collectors for the entire world but they stick close to each other. How does that work when they are suppose to be collecting bad souls everywhere?
The ending was meh. So generic and predictable. And nothing is really resolved. We are left with more things needing to be explained than anything.
The Snuggly Though I feel like Dante doesn't deserve Charlie, I really liked them together. Their relationship was rocky at first, obviously. Dante spends the majority of the book trying to make Charlie change herself, make herself into someone "pretty" instead of ugly. Yeah, yeah, we all know Dante is kind of a douche in that respect. Making Charlie feel ugly. It was his job, give the boy some slack. But as they grew on each other, their relationship really bloomed. I loved Dante's inner struggle with falling for Charlie. And that damn trusting Charlie was so puppy dog eyed over Dante, it was hard to watch. It all worked for some reason. It was like a beautiful disaster you couldn't look away from.
Final Thoughts Though the plot and story as a whole could have been better, I still had a lot of fun with The Collector. These were the best band of characters I have seen in a long time. I had some great laughs and held back a few tears. I would really like to read the next book in the series to see what is going to happen next. A recommended read.
Quotes “In this trunk," she says with a serious face, "is God's gift to women." "Chocolate?" "No." "Midol?" "What? No." "Tampons?" "Stop guessing," she says.”
“I'll never understand the friendships Charlie has. Friendships where it doesn't take cash or hookups, or saying the right things to stay in the circle. No, Charlie's friendships are different. She tries to protect her people, and they in turn protect her. They accept each other's imperfections and support one another. My friends weren't like her friends, which makes me wonder if I ever had any at all.”
Annabelle laughs. "Oh, so you think you're hot, do you?" "Girl, I got swag for days." (less)
The Good Love or Hate... I've noticed that many people either love this book or just feel so-so about it. I can understand the split verdict because there is nothing hugely unique or amazing about White Witch, but I for one had a good time reading it. It was well written, the characters drew me into the story, and the suspense was good. I can't wait for the next book in the series to come out.
Playing Human... Jax has committed one of the worst offenses according to the covens, she has abandoned her family and ran from her duties as a black witch. Now there is a death warrant on her witchy little head. Jax knows exactly what kind of death she will receive from her evil father, the very man who controls her old coven. And the fear of the pain alone keeps her powers in check, for if she uses too much, the covens can trace it back to her hiding spot. And Jax is just finding a place to fit in within her new sanctuary. A new best friend and a scrumptious boyfriend. Sure, her boyfriend might be a hunter who kills her kind, but nobody is perfect. But as secrets are revealed, new alliances are made, and old and new evils make themselves known, Jax will have to fight for her life, and her friends' lives. Maybe playing human was a bad idea after all.
Innate Evil...and Love Jax was a perfect mix of feistiness, tenderness, and strength. Her life has not been easy. She has witnessed so much suffering at such a young age that anyone would cringe from her memories. Her coven only believes in one kind of witch, a black one. But Jax struggles with the innate evilness every witch is supposed to foster. Things only get harder when she meets Keller, a hunter. Though she knows he would kill her if he found out about her true identity, she can't help but feel an instant attraction towards him. Their romance was a little rushed but I still liked the young lover feel to this couple. Keller obviously felt the same way about Jax, but only through the encouragement from friends do they finally give in.
Toni's the WoMan... Keller came off a little standoffish, but you grow to admire his determination. But the character that I loved the most was Toni, Jax's friend and Keller's cousin. She had a great sense of humor and a great sense of taste. She didn't follow the norm, she did what she wanted. She played in a band and wore hilarious shirts that only a few people would understand. She was the kind of friend every girl wants. But I did feel like she lost a little of herself when Egan came into the picture. I am not going to say too much about him since it would ruin the surprise, but overall he was an enjoyable part of the team. I just didn't like Toni's response to him. I figured her for a stronger personality.
Witchery... I thought the story and plot were very well done. It kept a good pace and the added mystery layered in really amped up the storyline. Revelations came at perfect times, just enough for us to still ask questions but feel satisfied with what we just learned. The bad guys were absolutely horrible and creepy. The suspense was spot on; I felt like a was taken on a thrill ride of witchery, teen angst, and evil.
The Bad As many of you may know, I always find reading present tense a little awkward. So as you can guess, it took some time getting use to it in White Witch. The plot and storyline were not very original, but it was different enough that it didn't bother me that much.
I felt like the big action scene at the end fell a little flat. It was simply too short. The whole book was leading up to this point and it was over in a couple of pages. Not very dramatic or frightening.
The Snuggly Romance and sex wise this is a pretty clean book. A lot of heavy kissing. I liked Jax and Keller together. They had a bumpy beginning, and the whole shy love thing was adorable. Jax and Keller were irresistibly drawn to each other, and I enjoyed reading about their relationship.
Overall I am going to keep an eye out for Milburn. This is the first book I've read of hers and she did a good job. The story, though not terribly original, was well plotted and fun to read. I didn't get bored. I read White Witch in a day and had a smile on my face at the end. And speaking of the ending, there was definitely some good foreshadowing for future books. The end was left open-ended, which I didn't mind since I felt like I got my money's worth (yes, I got it for free, but you know what I mean). A recommended read.
Excerpt I gasp when I feel cold hit my scalp. It takes a moment for me to realize Stacy has upended a milkshake on the top of my head.
"Oh, look at that. All her glorious blond hair doesn't look so glorious anymore." Stacy and her followers laugh. "Don't mess with me, witch."
I surge to my feet, anger at how Stacy has filled "witch" with venom propelling me, the blackness of my kind rising inside me until even my vision turns dark. It breathes like a distinct entity inside me. As I catch Stacy's gaze, a gust of wind sweeps papercups and napkins from the outdoor tables, sending them sailing down the street. It makes my chocolate-soaked hair stir around me. (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 Like effing poetry! I held my breath, I cried, I almost threw up. That's the best way I can describe Shadow of Wrath.
The Good I was blown away by Shadow of Wrath. I was really iffy when signing up for this blog tour. But I am more of a fighter than a lover (in books that is) so I knew I had to read this book. This book reminded me of raw, gruesome poetry. The concept was just horrific but Patricks did a great job of turning a frightening idea into a compelling story.
Dog has been on the streets since he can remember. That is until a man with a scary smile snatched him up and put him into an arena to fight for his life. The dregs of society and sociopathic rich people come to watch kids fight each other to the death for pleasure and money. Dog has been forced into this nightmare but he actually takes it better than I expected. He's lived on the streets, he knows about survival and violence. But he still has anger and resentment towards his capture. When him and Allegra get close, Dog's view on survival changes. Because now he must find a way to get them both out of this world of slavery and degradation, not just himself. Dog was so brave and confident it made me believe he could really save them both. And that hope kept me reading.
Allegra has spent most of her life as a slave in this underground fighting ring. She is Ryker's, the man behind this monstrous Arena, personal slave. Her virginity is being saved for when she reaches puberty so Ryker can sell her as a sex slave. But she is still abused every day by Ryker. Unlike Dog, she remembers her life from before. Her family, her friends, the joy of being free and young. Now she is the Arena's unofficial doctor. Every night she tries to keep the slave boys alive to fight another day, even if it makes her ill to give them false hope. But she keeps her emotions hidden to deter Ryker from using them against her. When Dog comes to the Arena, Allegra sees hope. Maybe together they can be free.
Both Allegra (14) and Dog (around the same age) are very young, but they act very mature. I think anyone would learn to grow up quickly if put in the same situation. Shadow of Wrath is the kind of book that gets better and better with each page. You hope and pray that these kids will get free and the monsters will get what they deserve. Some hopes are answered, as others are horribly crushed.
I have to warn you, this book has a sad ending. Luckily I knew that before going in, so it wasn't as hard to take. Even with the sad ending, it was also beautiful. If I am going to read a book that ends like that, then I want it to end the way Patricks did it. This book was amazingly written. It was edgy, gritty, and lyrical. The concept of humanity, survival, and pure evil all played a huge part of Shadow of Wrath. What would you do if you were put in an Arena and given the choice of fighting for your life or dying on the spot?
The Bad I wish we got a chance to actually see Dog and Allegra build a relationship. The book skipped years ahead so we never really got to see them fall for each other, we saw more of a friendship.
I would have liked to see the fighting described more. It may be horrifying to read about, but it would have made a bigger impact. Instead the fighting was often skimmed over.
The Snuggly This is not a great love story. This is about two people who build a friendship over their shared misery and confinement. But near the end, we do start to see a little love peeking through. By the end, I was crying over what this couple had went through together. Sex wise, there is none, but we get a little sexual assault.
Final Thoughts Though this book wont be for everyone, it for sure will hit some people in the best way possible. Shadow of Wrath was a thrilling ride filled with blood and desperation as well as hope and friendship. This book WILL make you cry. Highly recommended.
Quotes The crowd roared above them, screaming obscenities and cheering for the fight to begin. Dog realized that they were a part of some sadistic game. When he was younger, he heard stories about ancient fighting arenas and warriors that were forced to fight to the death in front of live audiences. Gladiators they were called. It looked like he had just become one.
Sunny began to cry.
"Don't do this," he pleaded. Dog ignored him. He had already accepted the harsh reality of this twisted event -- another thing gone wrong in his life. It was nothing new. Perhaps it was all those years of living in a harsh environment that made him callous to the situation, but it all boiled down to one single thing for Dog.
Survival. It was his natural instinct, despite death staring him in the eye constantly.(less)
This review has minor spoilers. I do mention what supernatural creatures are in this world besides the zombies.
At A Glance Well that was a hell of a thing. Zombies, Vampires, AND Spirits! This is the kind of book that you end up loving for it's uniqueness.
The Good The Harvesting blew my mind. I never expected it. It gives off the persona that it's just another zombie book. But it's a lie. This isn't just a zombie book. This book has everything: fantasy, horror, folklore, zombies, vampires, spirits, romance, action, drama, death, and survival. I was drawn in from the beginning when Layla's grandma foresees the zombie apocalypse and helps Layla prepare for the coming fight. When Layla helps her hometown survive and thrive during the zombies. And when Layla does everything--like walking into a nest of vampires--to protect the people she loves.
The first thing that made this book different from every other zombie book is that there is not much fighting between the humans. Zombie books always seem to portray people going after each other as the world gets consumed. But in The Harvesting, the town works together, very effectively I might add. Sure, there are a few glitches, but it was nice to see a town that can work together in a world that is falling apart.
Layla is an amazing character. She isn't super woman or anything. She has her moments of fear and insecurity. But she is one tough chick overall. She knows a lot about weaponry, both from her job in ancient weapons and through her grandmother's teachings. She takes her "crazy" grandmother in stride. She humors her when she makes Layla gather supplies and board up the house, knowing her grandmother may have a good reason for being paranoid. And when the zombies come down on the town, Layla risks her life immediately to save the few people left who are not infected. She is an amazingly thorough leader who knows how to delegate tasks accordingly. I respect people like that. I am all about take-charge attitudes from people who are competent.
I really liked both love interests in this book, but for different reasons. There is Ian, the old boyfriend who left Layla heartbroken. Then Jamie, Ian's brother, who is like a brother to Layla but might be something more now. I loved to hate Ian. He isn't a bad guy per se, just a screw-up. His actions are not always appropriate. Jamie is just pure awesomeness. He also has a take-charge attitude, like Layla. The three of them made a pretty great team. But it's Layla's feelings for Jamie that was the funniest to watch. Layla's struggle between the two love interests was completely believable, and it was nice to see her work through her feelings slowly.
The supernatural element--besides the zombies--made this book even better. We get these mystical forest spirits that help Layla with her rough journey. Then there are the creepy vampires who use the zombie apocalypse to their benefit. It's a pretty good set-up on their part, but what a creepy concept. Zombies wanting to eat you is one thing, but throw in vampires wanting to eat you, DOUBLE WHAMMY.
The action was really great. Melanie does not hold back on the horror and gore of zombie killing. The world-building was amazing. I was sucked into the writing style right away. The story flowed easily; I kept forgetting I was even reading a book. The twists and turns kept my adrenaline going the whole way through. I can't wait for book two.
The Bad I think the first half of the book with zombies was the best part, the second part with the vampires lacked a little.
The ending left us with a lot of questions on what's going to happen next, so it was a bit frustrating.
The last chapter of the book confused me. I am assuming it is a segue to the next book, but it left me scratching my head with why it was included at all.
The Snuggly This is not a romance heavy book, which is common in zombie books. We have an interesting sort-of-but-not-really love-triangle that works out perfectly. I loved the slow build and past love drama. I great addition to spice up the story. No sex though, but some sexual situations.
Final Thoughts I was so pleasantly surprised by The Harvesting. It seems like books from blog tours have been really disappointing me lately, but The Harvesting broke the bad book streak. I will be keeping my eye on this author for now on. She knows what she's doing. Highly recommended.
Quotes "Who would have thought that the end of the world would bring me the one thing I thought I wanted most."
“If you ever need to slice someone’s head off, this is the blade you want.”
"The world, it seemed, had gone silent. It was something we knew but did not talk about. We were alone."
“Now, this is .44 Magnum, like the Dirty Harry movie. It has good stopping power. Lift up the safety and boom,” Grandma said pulling the trigger. The gun barrel let out a resounding noise, shattering Grandma’s old mantle-piece vase. “The man told Grandma this is a kill-shot gun, very powerful.” (less)
The Good When Paranormal Seems Normal... I realized this time around what I like about Murray's writing. He has a way of making the paranormal seem normal. Sometimes I forget that I am even reading about shape-shifters because the concept is so expertly interwoven into the story. In that, I have to applaud Murray on a job well done.
My Summary... Adri and Alec's relationship is still at a stand still. Even with Alec's rival shifter pack effectively taken care of, no longer in the way to ruin their relationship, Alec can't help but fear his shape-shifter touch will addict Adri. An addiction that has been proven through other human-shifter relationships. But their shaky relationship has to be put further on hold when an even bigger threat rolls into town. One that tests and weakens the bond between Alec and his pack. And this new threat might just be the last straw for Adri's willingness to wait for Alec to become what he was meant to be: a true leader and protector.
It has Teeth, Maybe Alec Can Borrow Them... I was really into the viciousness in Splintered. The fighting between the shifters was awe-inspiring. It really amped up my adrenaline, and I simply couldn't look away (or stop reading as it were) at the ferociousness that took place in the world Murray created.
I feel like Adri is finally finding out who she is and what she wants in life. She takes a more active role in maintaining friendships instead of pining for Alec. It made me respect her a whole lot more in this book. Alec was a different story. This was the first time I didn't like him. He just didn't handle any situation very well, and I wanted to yell at him to grow a pair. But I liked that Murray had Alec become a little more human. Alec made mistakes and let fear control his actions. While I disliked him more, I also liked that he wasn't perfect and that he could mess up his life as easy as the rest of us.
A World With No Limits... The bad guys were simply perfect. I literally got chills every time they walked into the scene. In this world, shape-shifters have many rules but all the rules tend to make life harder to live and cause way more bloodshed than needed. And the people in charge, who happen to also be the bad guys, are the worst kind of people. They use their power for their own good and to spread fear amongst their brethren. I'd like to see a lot more of their kind in future books because they add that needed dread that makes this series so entertaining. You just never know what is going to happen when they are around because they have no limits.
Second Verse, Luckily Not the Same as the First... All my complaints about the two previous books were wiped clean in Splintered. There was less writing focused on school and mundane things and more on action and relationships. We also got to learn a little more about the other pack members which was nice. They have interesting stories all on their own.
The Bad Since this series does lean a little more toward paranormal romance rather than urban fantasy (though this book was way more in the urban fantasy area), I was sorely disappointed by the lack of romance and the ending, which was left very much open. I understand why Murray thought it was best to end it the way he did, but it does not negate the fact that I was left dissatisfied.
The Snuggly I am getting hugely annoyed with Alec's reluctance with Adri. I understand why he wants to protect Adri from his addictive touch, but this cannot go on. He either needs to get over it or end the relationship. That being said, there was very little romance in this book and I wish there was more. When it comes to sex, this is the cleanest young adult book out there.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It kept my interest the whole time and the character development was superb. Though I didn't like the ending, I like the direction this whole series is going. I for one can't wait for the next installment. A recommended read.
Quote Marco leaned down and whispered into my ear. "How about you and I get a little more friendly? I can show you things Graves hasn't even thought of yet."
My voice came out even and strong. "If you touch me I'll do my absolute best to kill you. I'll probably fail, but you're going to have to kill me to stop me. Trust me, you don't want to be the guy who kills me. Alec will tear you apart regardless of what else it might cost him." (less)
At A Glance I just love Jennifer Estep so much. I think everything she writes is gold. This book was no different. But you know me. I found one or two things that bothered me. But I still loved every minute of Crimson Frost.
The Good Here's The Story... It was all going so well. A little coffee, a little flirty banter, a little murder accusation. Yeah, you heard me. Finally Logan and Gwen had a chance to go on their first date, then the Mythos Academy "police" came and took Gwen away for freeing the evil Loki from his prison and taking part in the Reapers overall mayhem and murder schemes. Now on trial for crimes she didn't commit, Gwen has to watch her back as every student at the school comes after her. But they aren't the only ones who want her dead. There is more to these accusations than meets the eye. Gwen has to figure out who is leading the charge against her and kill them before they kill her.
Nerves of Steel... OMG. This book scared the crap out of me. If I were Gwen I would be hiding in a corner, rocking back and forth, trying to think happy thoughts. How Gwen faces her entire school, in which almost every student wants her dead, is beyond me. She may be self-deprecating, but we all know she has nerves of steel. I was so, so pissed when the Academy "police" took Gwen into custody, paraded her around and accused her in front of everyone without letting her state her side. It was horrible. Like a nightmare.
Trooper Gwen... Gwen is a trooper though. She may break down internally, but she always keeps a brave face in front of everyone else. She follows her normal routine despite all the hate and accusations. Her friends also stay by her side through it all. Gwen handled herself well and I felt proud of her. She has always been strong and determined and she is only growing more so in each book.
*Sighs* Logan.... Logan was very supportive of Gwen as his dad, the head of the Academy "police," treated her like crap. It was like his father's mind was set that she was guilty, no matter how much the evidence might say otherwise. Logan was so caring and sweet. He tried to keep Gwen positive no matter how far she was kicked down. But the ending was devastating. I can't reveal much, but that damn Logan really knows how to throw a pity party.
And Who Might You Be? Alexei was an interesting new character. He was assigned to guard Gwen. He was so mysterious at first. I didn't know what to make of him. I hated him sometimes because of his actions, but I also understood his position. I don't want to reveal too much but I was so happy to find out his connection to one of the beloved characters in the series. I can't wait to see what other tricks this guy has up his sleeves.
Here's My Heart, Estep... Crimson Frost left me raw. My emotions took a hit because Gwen goes through so much crap that it felt like I went through it all right along with her. The unfairness was off the charts. Sure, Estep tore out my heart but her amazing writing and perfect pacing made it all worth it. The story sucked me in right away and never let go. The ending was gasp worthy as well as heart-wrenching. I love Gwen's story and can't wait to see what it going to happen next.
The Bad The only thing I can complain about is that I feel like the series as a whole is now dragging a bit. The plots are becoming too similar and not enough forward momentum is happening. I want the fight between the goodies and the badies to be more progressive. Some big changes would be nice.
The Snuggly Logan and Gwen's relationship is still slow going. They are very cute together but it seems every time they take one step forward, they take two steps back. Really, it's Logan's fault. He needs to grow a pair. Harsh but true.
Final Thoughts Though I would like to see some more plot variation for the next books, I was very pleased with Crimson Frost. We were introduced to new characters and taken on an emotional roller coaster and it was all worth it. This series and book is highly recommended.
Quotes "How is it that you always know just what to do and say to make me feel better?" I said.
Logan grinned. “Just another part of that Spartan killer instinct. I can slay the ladies just as well as I can reapers.”
"I can't believe you just walked in here this morning like everything was okay, like we all don't know what you did--and what a traitorous Reaper bitch you are."
The kids circled around me murmured their agreement. My gaze went from one face to the next, but all I saw was anger--anger and no mercy. I wasn't psychic, not like Grandma Frost was, but I knew what would happen now. The other kids couldn't take their rage and frustration out on the Reapers who'd murdered their loved ones, so they were going to lash out at the next best thing--me.
Mythos Academy Series: Book #1: Touch of Frost Book #2: Kiss of Frost Book #3: Dark Frost Book #4: Crimson Frost (Dec 24, 2012) Book #5: Midnight Frost (Aug 2013) (less)
At a Glance I have not read the two previous books in this series, but seeing as it's a paranormal romance--with a new couple each book--I don't think it made a difference in regard to the likability of this book. With that being said, I did not enjoy reading The Half-Breed Vampire.
The Good The last one-fourth of the book was pretty exciting. I actually felt the suspense as I fidgeted from the stress of what would happen next. The action was also entertaining and scary at the same time.
The mystery behind Slade's true origins was interesting. I was genuinely curious to see how everything fit together. I was surprised by the end and thought the revelations were pretty juicy.
The Bad First off, the premise was boring. I never got into the story until the end. The plot had holes and the pacing was horrible. There was a lot of wandering in the beginning and middle. Meyers also had the bad habit of telling not showing. I don't like being spoon fed the story.
Raina was super adamant that other supernatural creatures didn't exist, as if the idea was laughable. But this book was placed in a world where vampires have made themselves known to the rest of the world. It made Raina seem stupid and close-minded.
There was a huge inconsistency that made me throw this book across the room. So, Raina doesn't know that other supers exist, but she admits to Slade that she was informed a long time ago that he was actually part werewolf. ??? I thought she didn't know werewolves existed?
The ending wasn't really an ending at all. I would have to read the next book in the series to see what happened after the big fight.
Slade was a whiner. His internal struggle over fitting in made me cringe. It made me think less of him and his "family" for treating him differently because of his heritage.
The Snuggly The romance between Raina and Slade was just okay. I didn't feel the need to root for them. The sex scenes were mediocre, nothing that got me hot under the collar. But yes, there are full sex scenes in this book.
Overall I think some people can enjoy this book. Maybe the people who started from the beginning and have developed relationships with the characters will like this installment. But for me, there was not much that appealed to me. The plot was weak, as were the characters. I will not be continuing this series. Not recommended.
Excerpts Ty shook away the particles of wood clinging to his muzzle and brazenly stepped forward a pace. "There are two of use and only one of you."
Slade turned and shot the second wolf in the shoulder. He crumbled with a whelp and a whine.
"No we're even." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Raina let her head tip back as the heated waves of sensation overtake her, lifting her up, shaking her to the core, only to leave her breathless and boneless. His fangs slipped from her skin and he lapped at her neck. "You drive one hard bargain, lady," he muttered against her skin. "Maybe next time, I can touch you, as well."
"Next time?" Raina could barley breathe. Her world was fuzzy about the edges with a pleasant glow that suffused every cell in her body. She tilted forward and clung to him for support. "I don't know if I could survive a next time. That was--that was, wow. What was that?" she panted. (less)
The Good Once I started reading this book I could barely put it down. It has romance, heartbreak, nail-biting moments, and mystery. Every character had...moreThe Good Once I started reading this book I could barely put it down. It has romance, heartbreak, nail-biting moments, and mystery. Every character had their own personalities and own agendas. Hood has created a world that's both magical and nerve wracking, for evil is lurking in Cherry and Hope can't always come out unscathed. But it's the continuous guessing game on who Hope can trust that really thrilled me. Can she trust Slade, the guy with a bad reputation, who sings in a band, who has tattoos and a dark secret, but is the only one who is truly nice to Hope. Or can she trust Tucker, the mayor's son. The popular guy with outrageous good looks and wandering hands. Of course Tucker and Slade are enemies and the fact that they both want Hope just adds fuel to the fire.
Hope was smart, loving, and all-around interesting. You easily feel and care for her character from the get go. She takes care of her father and twin brothers while trying to make friends in a town full of rich snobs.
Slade took a little more time to get use to. He's more cutting in his comments but usually means well. He has had a bad life and only wants to be happy. When he finally reveals his secret I was so excited. I thought his background was very well thought out and gave a nice dash of paranormal to the story.
Reading about Tucker is like taking a shower while the washing machine is going: hot and cold. You get all hot and bothered by his self-confident demeanor and flirtatious nature, then you get smacked with cold water as he reveals a more sinister side of himself. But which is the true Tucker? That's something you will keep wondering till the end. But his father just straight creeped me out from the start. Wouldn't want to be trapped in a room with him.
The mystery in this book was amazing. I was always surprised by the turn of events and could never guess what was going to happen next. The premise was unique and made me want to read more. There were parts that terrified me, made me laugh out loud, and made me scream in frustration. The book overall was well written and the dialogue was very realistic.
The Bad Hope's best friend Karsen frustrated me. I felt like she was unsympathetic to Hope when it came to the many terrifying situations Hope was put in. She easily brushed away reasonable fears Hope had, and I just didn't understand why. Some things about Karsen really put me off to her, though she did have some funny moments.
I wish some things were explained more. I still had questions in the end. Some people's actions were very odd throughout the book and I wish the reasons behind their behavior were explained more thoroughly.
The Snuggly Hey, it's a paranormal romance, what do you think? Of course we get sex. Three sex scenes, a lot of heavy petting, and a little peep show (OMG, I am still laughing about what Hope walked in on). But these are very mild scenes. They are actually really cute and well written.
Overall Hope is only seventeen so you would think the book was young adult. But I would not categorize Ink as young adult. This book is full of adult situations. This is what actually intrigued me the most: getting to read about a younger set of characters that face real life scenarios like sex and alcohol. My complaints are pretty minor and in no way took away from the book's overall awesomeness (hey, it's my blog and I can create words all I like). I thought the whole story was very endearing and it held my interest the whole time. Highly recommended. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
At A Glance I liked four stories out of the six. Though not all were for me I do believe that many people will enjoy this anthology.
The Good Sacrificial Oath I loved the concept of this story. The idea that the Sovereign's daughter is to be made a virginal sacrifice to appease a Goddess because of an unhappy accident is interesting. Alesuela takes the news as you might expect. She is sad and depressed but she tries to stay positive for her father. Her father is just as heartbroken. This was a very sad story until the very end but I was enthralled the whole time. The lead up to the sacrifice was nail-biting.
The Amulet of Ormisez This story had so much potential. The idea that an amulet can turn people greedy and malicious was fascinating. I think if this story was expanded on and lengthened it would have been great.
Birthright Another great concept. It was spooky at first which kept my interest. I didn't know were the story was going to go until the author wanted me to.
Petrified Now this story I liked. Once I got my head around what was happening, I was pulled in. The characters were well developed in such a small time frame and the mystery was excellent. I was genuinely surprised by the end. This was a really well written story.
Last Winter Red Now this is the story to read. I would buy this book just for this story. If the author decided to expand on this story by turning it into a full novel, I would be all over it. The concept was both eerie and complex. Nothing is as it seems. Emily has lived a life separated from other societies. All she knows is that she was made to birth healthy babies, free of the disease that ravages the Outside.
Emily is so naive it's sad. People take advantage of her and all she wants to do is be an active part of her society. But on the Outside she finally learns the truth about the world and the people she grew up with. Along the way, she finds a few friends who grow to love her as much as she loves them.
I loved the twists in this story. I was genuinely surprised by what was really going on. I only wish there was more to read.
Escort to Insanity This one is a whole bunch of insanity. This story has everything one would want: action, flirting, shapeshifters, and naked men. Nicole thought getting an escort for another one of those horrible charity events would make things run smoothly. No such luck. Benjamin is not just a escort, he is a whole lot more. Unwittingly, Benjamin drags Nicole into his world, one with violence and shapeshifters. And when the bad shapeshifters take Nicole's roommate as hostage, Nicole finds the courage to take matters into her own hands.
I really had fun reading this story. The characters were cute and funny. The action was superb. And the drama was constant. I would also like to see this story turned into a full length novel.
The Bad Sacrificial Oath I think the ending was a little too convenient for my taste.
The Amulet of Ormisez This story needed more substance. It needed to be longer. It felt so rushed and it was confusing the way it was written. It spent too much time on the little things and not enough time on the action and drama.
Birthright There was so much potential but I just didn't enjoy the story in the end. It was somewhat awkward and didn't have enough going on to make me want to read the second half.
Petrified The story confused me at first. It took me a little while to figure out what was going on.
Last Winter Red There is nothing bad about this story. I loved it all.
Escort to Insanity I just have one thing to say: Benjamin better pay Nicole back because that's not right for her to lose that much money because of his problems.
The Snuggly We get some sexual situations but no sex scenes. I did like the potential romances that bloomed in many of the stories.
Final Thoughts I enjoyed enough of the stories in this anthology that I would definitely suggest it to other people. The last two stories are pretty much a knock out. If only they were longer so I could enjoy more of them. Recommended.
Quotes I followed him when he headed for the rear of the car, trying hard not to get distracted by the sweet, sweet curve of his bum as it tick-tocked with each step. "I swear I've seen you without clothes more than with."
"And she says that like it's a bad think," Kellie piped up from her seat.
"Tracing family trees is harder than you think. I've marked each point of change where the women have moved to a new point of origin, but I've not been able to find the reason behind the change. Not all women stay in that place. They'll live somewhere and return when they're ready to settle. Salmon do a similar thing. When they're ready to spawn, they'll return to the place they were born."
"You're comparing me to a fish?"
"A tasty fish." His eyes sparkled in the low light. (less)
At A Glance I did a book blitz/giveaway of The Voice a little while a ago and the concept interested me so much I begged the author for a copy. Being all awesome, Davis agreed to send one my way. That was one of the best decisions I ever made.
The Good Mind. Explosion. I went into this book nervous as hell. What a deep and scary subject matter to write about, right? Davis pulled it off beautifully. I felt like I got a real life look at someone's life post sexual assault and kidnapping. I swear, I still have chills just thinking about this book.
Audrey was an amazing character. She felt so...authentic. All her decisions made sense to me based on what happened to her. She moves to her aunts to get away from the people who know what happened to her and takes on a new identity, which seems logical to me. She's quiet and lost. She feels like she is no longer living, just moving through life. I felt all those emotions with her. Davis made me care and sympathize with Audrey every step of the way. But with the help of the twins next-door, Audrey starts to find herself again. She finds strength to be herself and to fight the nightmares of her past. Audrey's transition was an amazing thing to behold.
I loved Caleb and Justin from the beginning. Caleb is so carefree and friendly. He is easy to get along with and you just want to smile when he is around. He became like a big brother to Audrey and I think she needed that. Justin is quiet, distant, and sometimes a little rude. But you can tell it's not his naturally personality. He has his secrets just like Audrey. It's hard to talk about Justin since his depth is something you have to experience first hand.
I loved Audrey's interactions with both twins. Her easy joy with Caleb and confusion with Justin. Audrey sees something in Justin that draws her to him but she doesn't know why. I loved the complication and misunderstandings between these three. It added some great tension and drama.
Davis did an amazing job of taking an uncomfortable topic and turning it into a must read book. I could not put it down once. The writing was captivating and the heartbreak was intense. The characters felt real. The paranormal aspect with the voice in Audrey's head was well done. It added a little spice to the whole story. I am only sad that the journey had to end. I want to read more.
The Bad Two things annoyed me in The Voice. First, I think Justin's stand-offish attitude was pretty silly even knowing why he acted that way. And he held that attitude for the majority of the book. I would have liked to see him act normal more often.
Second, the climax of the story happened really fast. I wish the author took her time and added more suspense to the ending.
The Snuggly The Voice does deal with rape and sexual abuse but Davis handles everything very well. Nothing is graphic or explained in too much detail. I tend to have problems reading about sexual abuse, but Davis wrote about the subject in a way that I could handle.
As for romance, it is very slow in coming, which worked for the book. I loved reading about Audrey slowly learning to let someone in after what she went through.
Final Thoughts I can't tell you how much I recommend this book to everyone. It's emotional, intense, and heartfelt. The characters blew me away. Davis is an author too look out for. She knows how to write a book that can appeal to anybody and everybody. Highly recommended.
Quotes Then the voice came, comforting me. He helped me hold myself together, and he gave me hope. He offered companionship that developed into friendship. He made me feel safe.
My body trembled. “Please help me,” I begged the voice. Audrey, calm down. It’s okay. “No, it’s not. Nothing is okay.” It will be. I promise. Just know that I’m watching out for you. Even if you don’t feel me or hear me, I’m with you. Okay? “I need you.” I know.
Lying in the dark cabin, I tried not to think about the foul smell of body odor mixed with the stench of urine. I tried not to think about how hungry I was, or when I would eat again. About the plastic zip ties cutting into my wrists, or the spider crawling up my arm. I kept trying and failing. There was nothing to do but think. (less)
The Good Usually I would do my own little recap of the book but there is no need. The summary hits it right on the button. So let's get straight to the review.
One, Two, Threesome... I have to say, the characters of this book were very interesting. Beatrice was a strong, vivacious woman that I think many could respect. She knows how to survive and have fun doing it. She was very open-minded for a young lady in the 1890s and I admired her willingness to try anything and her view on enjoying life.
Richie knows what he wants and isn't ashamed to grab life with both hands. His passion for Beatrice was so raw and sweet at the same time. He may have secrets but he is a good man overall. He's strong, ruthless, and has a business savvy that all men would revere. And Richie and Beatrice together make an adorable couple that don't hold back their passions.
It was actually Jamie, Charlie, and Polly who where the funniest threesome. And I mean THREESOME. All three were mischievous in their own way and had me smiling every time they entered the scene. Jamie is still a mystery to me, and I liked that. Kept me guessing, wanting to know his story.
Times Long Passed... I did enjoy the banter between all of the characters. That was probably the best part of In the Flesh. The writing was beautiful and the lush description was very well done. I really got a feel for the time period. I truly do love reading historicals because I find it captivating to read about how people lived in times long passed.
The Bad My biggest problem is the lack of plot. Okay, yeah, Beatrice's reputation has been ruined by her nude photos, so she sells her charms to Richie in exchange for money. Cool. But that was literally the extent of this book. Nothing else to add. We get a little side story with Beatrice's brother and some servants. We have the villain that wants to tear the couple apart. But he doesn't even try anything evil until the end of the book. And even that was lackluster.
There were barely any obstacles or huge events that tested the love of Beatrice and Richie. Just one small inconvenience that was eventually taken care of quite quickly. In the Flesh is only about the lead up to a month of sex, then the actual month of sex. Then the couple both start to have feelings for each other. Bam! Done. I told you the whole story. Where was the drama, the action, the twists?
Now, I do realize that the cover and description are very sexual, but I have read many book summaries and seen lots of book covers even more racy than In the Flesh and they still followed the guidelines of a true romance, not erotica.
The Snuggly Well, if you are looking for sex, you found it. This book is chalk full of sexual situations. A lot of them I felt belonged more in a soft erotica sort of book. I just don't see how this book can be called a romance, it goes way beyond that. I am in no way a prude, I just didn't like being surprised with such graphic sex when I expected to read a romance (Which in my experience has sex but not to this extent. It's more about the love story). Did this book have romance, sure. But the focus was the sex, that simple. I did like Beatirice and Richie together though. They were quite cute together.
Overall Though there were a few redeemable qualities in this book, overall I would not recommend it for romance readers. But if you are looking for a soft version of erotica with a little plot, then this might be the book for you. So this one will have to be a judgement call for most of you. Me, if I knew then what I know now, I wouldn't have requested this book from NetGalley. It was not what I was looking for.
Excerpt "Who is that man over there?" demanded Charlie, "See the one I mean? The tall impertinent looking fellow by the ballroom door, talking to Sir Horace Rumbelow."
Beatrice Weatherly suppressed a sigh. Her brother always got peevish when he drank too fast, and the champagne was disappearing down his throat at an alarming rate.
"I advised you to wear a more conservative dress. Something dark and modest," Charlie went on "and now look what's happened. I swear that if he doesn't stop ogling you this minute, I'll go across there and box his ears for him!"
I'd like to see you try, brother dear. He looks as if he could swat you like a gadfly with just one hand.
"Please, ignore him, Charlie. He isn't bothering me in the slightest, so I don't see why he should bother you." Keeping her face carefully averted, Beatrice sipped her own champagne. She was determined to make every glass last as long as she could tonight. Just look what had happened the last time she'd drunk it.
But, truth be told, her bold scrutinizer across the reception room did bother her and it wasn't an urge to box his ears she felt. No, it was something far more alarming. Her heart pounded and her entire body felt deliciously strange every time she caught his hot gaze on her. Something that seemed to happen every few moments or so because try as she might, she couldn't help looking back at him. And he hadn't taken his eyes off her since they'd entered the room.
Of course, when she and Charlie had been announced, almost everybody had swiveled around stare at them. "Oh look," she imaged them all saying, "There she is, Beatrice Weatherly, the 'Siren of South Mulberry Street'… the shameless hussy who posed naked for those dreadful cabinet cards…" Men who probably owned copies of the said cards had eyed her with salacious interest when their wives weren't looking. Their wives had frowned and pursed their lips as if worried that their men would be so overcome with lust that they'd flock around the indecent Siren, unable to help themselves. Even the discreet servants circulating with their trays had seemed to study her covertly. (less)
At A Glance I was drawn into this story right away. It was unique, scary, and beautiful. I was just often disappointed in Adelice's actions and behavior. (Warning: there will be spoilers in this review because it cannot be helped. I have to reveal some of the story so I can talk about what I loved/hated about it)
The Good Here's The Story... No matter how hard Adelice tried to hide her talent, she couldn't help but use her weaving abilities at the wrong time, in front of the wrong people. Now the Guild will come for her and she will become a Spinster, a weaver of time and matter. When they finally come, all hell breaks loose. In a matter of minutes she loses most of her family and is taken away from all she knows to work for people who don't have her best interest in mind. The Guild needs to maintain control, to keep their secrets, and the spirited Adelice threatens all of that. If only she wasn't so important, so vital to their "cause." But she is and that means she won't go down without a fight.
Wow... How to start? Ummm, WOW! Yeah, I like that. It's accurate and fitting. Just...WOW! What the hell did I just read? I have never read a book like this. It was eerie in its concept, fascinating in its cruelty, and awe-inspiring in its beauty. I couldn't put it down. After the hundreds of books I have read in the past four years, this one blew my mind with its premise and creativity. I want to live in Albin's head just for one day to see what other stuff she can come up with. I mean, come on!! A world in which specially picked young girls become the weavers of time and matter. What. The. Hell? It's both complicated but simple. Anyone could have thought of it but Albin brought it to life.
Makes You Think... We simply can't have the creators of life not be controlled by a horribly corrupt organization now can we? Crewel makes you wonder. How do you stop a group of people who wipe out people's memories or lives just to keep their power? They have such a tight rein over everything. They segregate living arrangements and assign jobs based on gender, they portion control food, and they marry together whoever the hell they want to. The world no longer has a choice in its path. And the benefit for all this manipulation and lack of choices? People now live in a world of peace. There is no violence or problems to face. Just put your life in the hands of the government and all will be well. Pffttt! Yeah, right (can you hear my sarcasm?). It is so easy to let others take care of us, to let them take care of everything, but at what cost does their control take? Shouldn't we be able to question what the government decides is best for us even when on the outside they look to be making all the right decisions?
The Horrific Truth... The writing was beautiful and the story was terrifying. Albin creates a descriptive world with love and hate. We see the extremes people will go for power as well as friendship. Albin does not hold back the horrific truth of the kind of world Adelice lives in. It has an outer shell of peace and serenity, while the inside is rotten to the core. How Adelice can survive is still mind-boggling.
Adelice... In the beginning, Adelice reacts to her new situation like any of us would. But even with the fear, the loneliness, and the cruelty she gets introduced to, she finds a way to hold on to herself, to stay who she truly is. She is both strong and weak, human. She is one person against a whole organization. She gains friends and even allies but the Guild easily takes them away one way or the other. Adelice knows that though death is a scary thing, it might be the only peace she will find in her future. But with all that weighing down on her, she never completely crumbles or gives up. I give her credit for that.
Unknown... I liked the constant unknown throughout this novel. We never know who Adelice can trust. We hope she can trust Jost and Erik, the two boys she has feelings for. She even has a mentor that seems to try to help her as best she can. It gives us some hope that this world is not a complete lost cause. That was my favorite part of the book. I never knew where it was going to go, who was truly evil or good. I had my eyebrows arching in surprise till the very end, now that's a good sign.
The Bad Surprisingly, it was the protagonist that bothered me the most. I loved Adelice. She wasn't super dramatic or overly depressed, even though I think she might have been entitled to feel that way. She reminded me of what any of us would go through and feel if we were in the same situation. But as time went on I expected Adelice to become smarter, more active in her escape, or something. I feel like the majority of the time she was resigned to her fate and really didn't do much until the last 30 pages of the novel. But what really irked me was how she treated the guy who had her parents murdered. Maybe it's just me but I couldn't be civil to the person who murdered my parents, no matter the consequences. So, I just couldn't relate to Adelice for most of the novel.
Also, the love triangle was a little blah. I didn't fall in love with either Jost or Erik. If you are looking for a book without another one of those dreaded love triangles, or at least a new spin on the love triangle, then this is not the book for you.
The Snuggly We get some smooches and sexual tension but nothing overdone. This is very YA-ish and readable by most. Though the cruelty is pretty heavy.
Overall Crewel wasn't perfect. The love triangle is too much of an overused concept for such a unique book. But Albin has set herself up for one amazing series. I can't wait to see what is going to happen next. Highly recommended.
Quotes "We have more important things to worry about.” “Have we run out of mascara?” I ask in mock horror. ~~~~~~~~~~~~
"You must make the hard choice, Adelice, before you can move forward. Decisions must be made. Often between life and death. It is hard to make a decision to save thousands when it compromises one." Her voice is a hollow whisper, and ghosts echo in her eyes. "It is easier not to be put in that position." ~~~~~~~~~~~~
I erase and rebuild the world in my sleep, and in the morning I try to remember how to rebuild myself. Every day I wonder how I can go back to the loom. Can I keep weaving now that I know? (less)
At a Glance I think we all know how controversial Fifty Shades of Grey is. Some people love it and some people hate it. There are a lot of things about the book I can nitpick, but I decided to go into this book with an open mind. I focused more on the story and how much it intrigued me. After turning the last page, I was dying to read the next book in the trilogy.
The Good Here's the Story... Ana has very little sexual experience, but when she meets ultra-rich, ultra-sexy Christian Grey, her desires awaken. But Christian is not looking for a plain vanilla relationship, he's looking for a submissive to satisfy his dominate needs. The question is whether Ana can fulfill his desires and her own at the same time. Can she go down this dark road for the only man that has ever made her feel wanton and sexy? Or will Christian's horrible past be too big of a road block?
Ana... Poor, naive Ana. She really didn't know what she was getting herself into. A 21 year old virgin who hasn't really stepped out into the real world yet. She is days away from graduating college and searching for a job when she meets Christian and her life changes forever. It's hard for her to stand up to him. She both wants him but is weary of his dominate tendencies. Then he introduces her to the world of BDSM (a light version if you ask me). Ana often battles with her sexual desires for things she thinks are forbidden or demeaning. I felt bad for Ana when it came to her sexual confusion, but I also admired her when she stood up to Christian and was even brazen enough to initiate both sex and a relationship. It may have been a rough introduction to intimacy and dating, but Ana really grows into her own throughout the novel.
Mr. Grey... Christian. Oh dear. How should I phrase this? Christian is kind of a jerk. A hot jerk, but a jerk nonetheless. But as the story progresses, you realize that his life has not always been so elegant and fruitful. With a childhood like his, it's understandable why he is so closed off and pushy. Becoming so successful at such a young age hasn't lessened his traumatic childhood memories but it has shaped him into a confident (mostly) and self-indulgent man. He knows what he wants and he takes it without a backward glance. He just so happens to want Ana. Her exterior screams submissive, and Christian can't help but want to entertain his dark desires with her. He is a dominate in every way, and he can't wait to exert his power over the lovely, innocent Ana. But Christian starts to feel more for the young woman. He wants her like no other and might just change his wicked ways to keep her close. But can he ever get over his past? Can he be the man Ana needs?
Forbidden... I had so much fun watching Ana and Christian's relationship build. It had more ups and downs than any other relationship I have ever read about. They both know what they want, but neither can give the other the kind of relationship they hope for. I also like the questions Fifty Shades of Grey brings up. Should one change in order to satisfy their significant other? What are the limits in which one should explore sexually? Is being dominated or wanting to dominate a bad thing? I can see why this book intrigues so many people. There really isn't another book like it out there. It's naughty, it's rough, it's heart breaking, and it's dazzling. It takes us to places we are not use to exploring but interest us nonetheless. We all wonder about the forbidden, and here, in this book, we get to explore those fantasies safely behind the pages of a book.
Flawed Yet Beautiful... Ana and Christian are not perfect characters. They annoy us, they make us cringe, and they make us want to scream. But they also beguile us with their uniqueness. They are so flawed, they become beautiful. I almost felt honored to witness the journey they took together. James has written a story that draws us in and doesn't let go until the very last word. I was emotionally exhausted by the end, which can only attest to the fact that this book is a must read.
The Bad I have two big complaints. There really wasn't much of a plot. The relationship between Christian and Ana, their ups and downs, that's the plot. That's it. It still kept my interest, but as a writer it made me cringe. Also, the writing was just okay. It was a little corny, it was often repetitive, and it wasn't up to par considering some of the amazing authors out there. But I often got lost in the story and simply didn't care about the amateur writing after a little while.
The Bad but Good... I would like to mention that yes, Ana was a little too insecure, a little too "innocent," and an overall pushover. And Christian was domineering, aggressive, rude, and an overall asshat most of the time. But it was the flaws in the characters that I loved. So though this may bother many people, I found it refreshing to read about characters so overly imperfect.
The Snuggly This book is not so much about romance but about sexual awakening. It can get romantic, but mostly we got hot sex with some kink. Surprisingly, I didn't think the BDSM was that extreme. Christian may have his playroom, with sex toys galore, but we never get too deep into the kinky sex. We get spanking (not just with a hand), bondage, stuff like that, but I was never uncomfortable reading about it. I'd label this more of an erotic romance instead of erotica--which tends to have more aggressive sexual language and no holds barred sex. Frankly, the most squirm-worthy moment was when Ana reads the contract for her to become Christian's submissive. Yikes. I had a good laugh though.
Overall Some of you are going to love this book, some of you are going to hate it. All I suggest is going into this book with an open mind. Don't let either bad or good reviews sway your opinion. Just try it out for the sake of reading such a controversial book. Read this book for the engrossing story...and for the naughtiness. It was fun, it was thrilling, and it was HOT. You can't miss out. Highly recommended.
Quotes “Your stepfather? I'd like to meet him."
Oh no... why?
"I'm not sure that's a good idea."
Christian unlocks the door, his mouth in a grim line.
"Are you ashamed of me?"
"No!" It's my turn to sound exasperated. "Introduce you to my dad as what? 'This is the man who deflowered me and wants to start a BDSM relationship'. You're not wearing running shoes.”~~~~~~~~~~~~
“Don't get your panties in such a twist... and give me back mine.” ~~~~~~~~~~~~
“I want you sore, baby,” he murmurs, and he continues his sweet, leisurely torment, backward, forward. “Every time you move tomorrow, I want you to be reminded that I’ve been here. Only me. You are mine.” (less)
The Good Merit has a lot on her plate. Her House has tasked her with the nearly impossible: finding out who is bringing down Chicago, one magical eleme...moreThe Good Merit has a lot on her plate. Her House has tasked her with the nearly impossible: finding out who is bringing down Chicago, one magical element at a time. No pressure, right? But that's not all. Merit, along with the rest of Cadogan House, is also dealing with the after effects of the untimely demise of her Master, Ethan Sullivan. One of these nasty after effects happens to be Frank Cabot, the vampire who wants to see the House fall then rise under his name.
When I started this series, I was pretty much an obsessed fan from the get go. I was team Merit and Ethan all the way. I loved the story, the action, and the politics. But my obsession has slowly dwindled down to just a fond liking of the series as it stands. I feel each book is slowly losing the quality that I hoped would continue from book one. That being said, I still enjoyed Drink Deep, but not with as much vigor as the first few.
I do and always will love Merit. I love her personality, her tenacity, her drive. Plus, she has kickass skills with a Katana sword. Gotta admire a girl with steel. Reading about her and Ethan has been quite entertaining, even when it was sad. Like many, I was devastated when Ethan died. However, I like when people die. Wait, before you call the Po-Po on me, I meant to say, I like when authors kill off main characters. It may be heart-wrenching, I may be depressed for a couple days, I may eat waaaaay too much chocolate to drown my sorrows, but I think it spices thing up, makes the series unpredictable.
So with Ethan dead, I was super excited when Jonah and Merit started getting close in this book. Ethan's bipolar tendencies when it comes to loving Merit always bothered me, so I was glad to see someone more stable getting his flirt on with our girl.
The action was okay. I did like the hairy situations Neill placed Merit in. I truly didn't know what was going to happen next. I like to be surprised, especially since I've noticed that many books in urban fantasy have become a little predictable.
Personally, Frank Cabot was the best part of this book. He is such a great villain because he isn't an obvious bad guy. We all know what he is doing is super devious and underhanded but he maintains an outer shell of righteousness. Even though it frustrates the hell out of me, I enjoyed watching Frank's plans reveal themselves ever-so-slowly.
We get to meet a couple new supernatural characters in Drink Deep, which I think was a nice touch. I like my urban fantasy packed with various creatures and species.
I wasn't too surprised by the ending but, even though I saw it coming, it was still shocking. I can't believe Neill went there. But I guess I shouldn't be surprised. She has made it apparent that she has no limits on what she does to her much beloved characters.
The Bad I am kind of getting tired of Merit not really doing anything. Yeah, she researches the problem and talks to people in the know, but she rarely has anything to do with defeating the bad guy anymore. I felt like I was reading The Day in the Life of Merit this time around, not an action packed, urban fantasy novel.
Um, can anybody say 'convenient?' That's how I classify the big "reveal" at the end of this novel.
I think this novel was simply dragged out. I could easily put it down time after time and not pick it up for a day or two. For me, the only really exciting parts were when Frank Cabot got his nails deeper into the Cadogan House.
The Snuggly We don't get any good snuggle in this book. Just kisses. Though, I loved the kisses.
Overall I want Merit to have more to do with getting the bad guy or saving the day. It's like she's always the forerunner but someone else always arrives and does the dirty work. I can't say this book wasn't entertaining in it's own way, but the spark has fizzled a little. For people who are already following this series, this is a must read. Too many important things happen that you need to be aware of. I am just hoping the next book has a little more flare.
Memorable Quotes (I am a total, full-on, Evil Dead fan, so...)
"What's your schedule tonight? We're thinking about an Evil Dead and Army of Darkness marathon."
I blinked. "Like, the Bruce Campbell movies?"
The table went silent.
"Show a little respect, Merit," Lindsey said with more than a little offense. "Have you ever been overtaken by a Candarian demon?"
I glanced among them all, trying to ferret out whether they were joking or I had stepped into some kind of Bruce Campbell cult. "Not in the last few hours."
"Yeah, well, it's not really funny, is it? With the crazy eyes and uncontrollable limbs." She shivered, and I honestly couldn't tell if she was serious.
At A Glance This was a great start to a hopefully great series. The concept was pretty interesting and draws you in right away.
The Good The beginning was like a punch in the face, but with a velvet glove. It was shocking but oh so stimulating. The story really caught my attention. All the aspects came together to make one hell of a concept: curing vampirism, a school for training gods and guardian angels, and even supernatural high school drama.
I really liked Ruby in the beginning. Her past is pretty dark but she handles things pretty well. She comes off as vulnerable but tough at the same time. She sticks up for herself and her friends against bullies which I respected. She's also very witty and made me laugh, even during the dark times.
Eli was also a cool character. The whole forbidden love between him and Ruby gave spice to story. I actually liked how serious he was. With Ruby being a little immature, they balanced each other out well.
Ruby's stepfather, the vampire after her, was truly evil and made a great villain. I loved the mystery behind who was helping him and how the whole situation played out.
The Bad I found it hard to like Ruby sometimes based on her decision making. People try to kill her or use her big secret as a bargaining chip and she's mad for a hot minute then forgives them. Yeah, well, no wonder bad things happened to you, Ruby, you let your guard down around devious people. Smarten up!
Some of the characters felt flat to me, and there could have been a lot more world building. I wanted to know more about what kinds of powers the supernatural beings had.
The Snuggly Though Eli was a bit stiff for my taste, I thought he and Ruby made a great couple. They each have so much passion. But, OMG, the ending. So sad. Yes, there is a cliffhanger.
Just kissing and touching as far as the snuggly goes.
Final Thoughts This book is not perfect, but it's a very enjoyable read. Though the characters could use some work, I think the premise will keep most people reading. Very recommended.
Quotes “Brilliance is impossible without a touch of insanity.”
“Sometimes, I have to look twice at you just to see if you’re actually real. That much beauty is dangerous.”
So you're a guardian angel?" "Yes." "Where are your wings?" I wondered aloud, as I often did. Eli laughed. "I assume you expect angel wings to be big and white and feathery." "Well...yes." "No, they aren't like in books at all...Our wings aren't physical. They are a mass of energy, in the shape of wings, yes, but not really." "Wow, what a rip off."
The Good I have to say, I really enjoyed this book. I was on edge pretty much the whole time. Apparently, the coven of moral and ethical standards no l...moreThe Good I have to say, I really enjoyed this book. I was on edge pretty much the whole time. Apparently, the coven of moral and ethical standards no longer just wants Rachel shunned from the witch community, they want to magically lobotomize her, too. Yeah, not good. Obviously, Rachel likes her magic right where it is, so she does what she's good at, fights tooth and nail for her rights.
This book starts out with a bang and ends on an even bigger explosion. Everyone and their mother wants a piece of Rachel. With Rachel's ability to perform demon magic, and what that means for her future, we have the coven, Al, Trent, Pierce, and Nick all running after her. Which of course equals a good time for us readers.
First off, OMG. I truly hate Nick. I have to give Harrison credit for creating such a dynamic character. At first we love him, but slowly, book by book, we start seeing his true colors, and boy are they black. If you didn't hate Nick before, you will after reading Black Magic Sanction.
Pierce is a big part of this book. I personally don't like him, but he and Rachel are definitely forming a connection, especially after Al sends him to watch over his investment (Rachel). Speaking of the best freakin' demon in all the urban fantasy world. Al is my favorite character in this series. I love to hate him, and hate to love him. He adds spice to every scene. If you are going to read this book for only one reason, it'll be to see what Al does next. Trent is still complex in his logic as he is devious in his plans for the future. He may not be the best kind of person, but he knows how to handle his business. I respect him for that.
Alcatraz Prison, where the black magic practitioners are held, was the best part of the book. I don't want to give too much away but we get to see what witches get when they turn bad, and it ain't cotton candy and lollipops. Though that would be kinda cool.
Be ready to cry a little in this book. Something huge happens that really plucks the heart strings. I think we all knew it was going to happen because Harrison was preparing us for it, but, dear Lord, it was still hard to take.
There is no denying that Black Magic Sanction was packed with action, suspense, and mystery. Again, not all things end in the best of ways, but you can't help but admire Rachel for her ability to somehow always make it through a crises.
The Bad Here is my main problem. I feel the series really isn't going anywhere. The developments and forward progression of the characters and stories take FOREVER. It's almost like Harrison is stalling. For what? I don't know.
Rachel's decision making just seems to be getting worse and worse. I know it's horrible to say but I'm starting to actually wish bad on her.
Many of the plot twists and turns were a little too convenient for my taste.
The Snuggly One sex scene. Nothing much to note. It gets a little more physical than the last session of "witch sex" Harrison likes to create, but still pretty mild.
Overall Overall this book was very entertaining. You will laugh, cry, and scream in frustration. Rachel may not be the most intelligent and logical character, but her friends are ruthless and smart enough to help her triumph in the end every time. I am still a devoted reader to this series and I highly recommend this book to my readers. http://readingandwritingurbanfantasy....(less)
The Good The building romance between Elena and Raphael is lovely. With each book, the couple are starting to fit better and are actively trying to mak...moreThe Good The building romance between Elena and Raphael is lovely. With each book, the couple are starting to fit better and are actively trying to make it work. They are learning what neither can live without and what leniencies they can allow to satisfy each other's needs.
We get to learn more about Raphael in this book. His past and history with his mother is quite enthralling. Besides the romance, this is the best part of the book. Raphael also opens up more, which is a nice change of pace.
The character development with the Seven makes me went to beg Singh to write books on these people very soon. I want to know what their stories are because I know each one will be fascinating.
I noticed that the characters is what keeps bringing me back the Guild Hunter Series. Singh has done a great job at catching my curiosity and solidifying my invested interest in the future of each person.
The Bad Elena's continued issue with her father is kind of exhausting. She's an adult, she needs to move on.
Archangel's Consort was very repetitive when it came to Elena's past. Not sure what Singh was doing there.
The depth and complexity of plot we saw in Angel's Blood and Archangel's Kiss was not present in this book. The pacing was slow, and we get another anticlimactic ending.
The Snuggly LOTS of sex. Many, many sex scenes, so be forewarned. I did enjoyed the playful aspect in their sex lives.
Overall Though I found some faults in this book, I did still enjoy reading it. I might have put it down a few times, but it wasn't bad by any means. It just missed the mark in comparison of its predecessors. If you liked the first two books, I would suggest reading this one, too. Elena and Raphael's continued relationship is worth reading. Just know it's not the best book you will ever read. (less)
At A Glance This is one of the most poetic books I have ever read. It was quite beautiful. Too bad it wasn't as engrossing as I hoped.
The Good Here's The Story... Lena has been waiting for this one moment for years. To finally be cured for love. Love is a nasty disease that makes people go crazy. Without love, the world is at peace and no one has to worry about anything as long as the government keeps curing everyone. Then Lena finds out the truth. Love is beautiful, love is amazing, and love is powerful. Love is worth living but the government will never let love "infect" anyone again. They will brutalize, maim, and kill to keep love from getting out. Lena has fallen in love, but will she survive long enough to enjoy it?
Crazy Little Thing Called Love... Love is a disease? Come on, like I wasn't going to try out this book after hearing that. You know for a fact that once you read the book summary, you can't help but pick up this book to see what all the fuss is about. And just a few pages in, I was blown away by the lyrical and poetic quality of writing Delirium had to offer. Oliver knows her way around a word. Sometimes I got lost in the overall rhythm of the book. It's very cohesive and relaxing. I don't think I am describing it right, but trust me, you read this book and you will notice the difference from other books.
Lena In Love... Lena really interested me. In the beginning, she's a dream citizen. She wants the procedure that will cure her against love. She wants what the government is spewing, that she will be happy and safe after the procedure. But as she slowly finds out the truth, she becomes an accidental rebel. You think the people around her are the ones who take chances and fight the authority, but Lena grows into an awesome rogue of her own. Especially after meeting Alex. Alex is everything she should be staying away from. But Lena can't stay away from someone so different. He's not like the other "robots"--what I like to call the cured. When Alex looks into her eyes, Lena's world narrows. All she wants is for them to be together. Through the love they share, Lena empowers herself to take chances, to fight her fate.
Alex... Alex is a tricky little bugger. I was a little scared of him at first. I wasn't sure what his deal was. But as I saw his love for Lena grow, I fell in love with him too. He's sweet, deep, and caring. I knew Lena was safe whenever he was around. I found myself wanting to know more about him, about his life before Lena. And I wasn't disappointed. Oliver is really good at providing the information we crave about our characters.
The Fam... I was excited to see Oliver added some major drama about Lena's mom and other family members. I would read separate stories for all of them because they each have a story hidden somewhere.
Don't Touch My Brain... The world in Delirium was simply terrifying. I would be scared out of my mind to go against the government. These people will kill with glee to keep their world controlled. They mess with people's brains! Not cool. My thinking bits are just fine where they are.
This is the End... The ending was pretty awesome. I was so freakin' nervous and excited at the same time. I think the ending was perfect for this book, though some may be a little sad about what happens. I can tell you one thing, you won't be able to stop yourself from buying book 2 because Delirium leaves you desperate for more.
The Bad My biggest problem is nothing really happens until page 220. It was so slow. I often found myself bored and just wanting more out of the whole thing. There was so much potential left untapped. The concept is amazing but the plot didn't utilize the uniqueness of the topic. And the descriptions were too long. It was like Oliver was trying to fill in space. This book could have been written in half the pages and been better.
The Snuggly The romance was very YAish. I very much enjoyed the the slow build of romance between Lena and Alex. It was extremely sweet...and forbidden.
Final Thoughts If it wasn't so boring for a good two-thirds of the book, this would have received a 5 star rating. But not enough happened for me to have fallen in love with Delirium. That being said, I still enjoyed it. I loved the characters and the concept still intrigues me. I might buy the second book someday. Recommend for those who don't mind slow books with great concepts.
Quotes “I love you. Remember. They cannot take it” ***** “Love: a single word, a wispy thing, a word no bigger or longer than an edge. That's what it is: an edge; a razor. It draws up through the center of your life, cutting everything in two. Before and after. The rest of the world falls away on either side.” ***** “Love: It will kill you and save you, both” ***** “Mama, Mama, help me get home I'm out in the woods, I am out on my own. I found me a werewolf, a nasty old mutt It showed me its teeth and went straight for my gut.
Mama, Mama, help me get home I'm out in the woods, I am out on my own. I was stopped by a vampire, a rotting old wreck It showed me its teeth and went straight for my neck.
Mama, Mama, put me to bed I won't make it home, I'm already half-dead. I met an Invalid, and fell for his art He showed me his smile, and went straight for my heart." (less)
Miss Nobody pulled me in from the very beginning and never let go. This being my first family saga, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed t...moreMiss Nobody pulled me in from the very beginning and never let go. This being my first family saga, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. My emotions were raw by the time I turned the last page.
Miss Nobody is about a family with more secrets than one family can handle. Lies, greed, and fame have dismantled each of their lives and none of them can break the destructive cycle.
I found myself alternating between caring for certain characters and hating others. Dunlap knows how to develop a variety of characters that leave lasting impressions on the reader. And the complexity the storyline kept me reading page after page. I simply had to know what was going to happen next. Miss Nobody focuses on the young Raven and her estranged mother Charlene. I found them compelling in different ways. They both go through struggles in finding their true identity. Raven just wants to learn more about her mother and father, while Charlene works towards becoming famous with very little luck. And though mother and daughter couldn't be more different, they also share more in common than either would like to admit.
I would highly recommend reading Miss Nobody. The surprises are abundant and the revelations are shocking. You will not be disappointed. (less)
At A Glance Yay. I love any book with Elena and Clay in it when it comes to this series. I just wish I got to see more of their twins.
The Good As many of you know, Elena and Clay books are my favorite and this one is no exception. Frostbitten really tied up some loose ends for me, especially with the couple's relationship. We know that Elena and Clay don't always communicate well and even act like children sometimes, but since they had their twins, I see a huge change in them. They are more mature, more responsible, and closer than ever.
This is really Elena's book where she considers her past, present, and future. We get glimpses of Elena's past and how she dealt with the horrors of being a foster child. We also see her for the woman she is today: a loving mother, supporting wife, and kickass werewolf. We finally see her as a true future alpha with responsibilities she can now easily handle. Clay too faces his past and proves to be the best father ever and comes to truly embrace his partnership with Elena. I can finally see the happy ending they so deserve and it makes me smile.
The Alaskan setting was a nice change up and the plot was intense. We encounter some really effed up werewolves who eat humans. That's a big no-no, so Elena and Clay are sent to investigate while trying to save this one rogue Mutt from getting into deeper crap than he can handle. The mystery about the "creatures" was awesome. I always love learning new supernatural mythology.
We get some intense life or death situations and heart-pounding twists that I didn't see coming. Frostbitten is fast-paced and full of action. We don't see too many of the other characters we know from the series, but that's okay. All I need is Elena and Clay and I am content.
The Bad I was a little disappointed that we didn't get to see more of Clay and Elena's twins. I wanted to see them interact together but we only got a few scenes with them and I felt jipped. This is Elena and Clay's last book in the series, it would have been nice to see them as a family more.
The Snuggly We get a couple love scenes that are well done but not overly explicit.
Final Thoughts This is a quick read that will keep you glued to the pages. I love that we delve even deeper into both Elena and Clay as individuals and as a couple. Armstrong is really great at characterization. That's what keeps me reading. Highly recommended.
Quotes “Next Clay gave the house rules for living with the Sorrentinos, which sounded a lot like the Ten Commandments. Thou shall not lie, steal anything, kill anyone, disrespect your hosts or covet any of Nick's girlfriends. And if you break the rules, you'll get your ass kicked and handed to you in pieces—a part I suspect God left out.”
“Did you use a chainsaw?" Joey said. "I seem to recall you like chainsaws."
"There wasn't a power outlet." Clay turned to me. "That's what I want for Father's Day, darling. A gas powered chainsaw.” Women of the Otherworld Series: Book #1: Bitten Book #2: Stolen Book #3: Dime Store Magic Book #4: Industrial Magic Book #5: Haunted Book #6: Broken Book #7: No Humans Involved Book #8: Personal Demon Book #9: Living with the Dead Book #10: Frostbitten Book #11: Waking the Witch Book #12: Spell Bound Book #13: Thirteen
Similar Reading: Mercedes Thompson Series Chicagoland Vampires Series Night Huntress Series Kate Daniels Series (less)
At a Glance My first thought: "This was way better than Dime Store Magic." I enjoyed the appearance of old characters and introduction of new ones. The action was good and the plot was interesting and fast-paced.
The Good I was surprised by how much was revealed in this book. We learn a lot more about the Cortez family and why there is such a strain between Lucas and Benicio (his father). Then we get a peek into vampire society and why so many supernaturals hate them. Cassandra was an interesting vampire, cold and creepy. She was pure awesomeness. I never knew what to expect from her...or whether to trust her.
Jaime Vegas was also fascinating. A necromancer with bite. She's upbeat and entertaining to watch. She doesn't let people push her around, but she's not super kickass either. She's a good mixture of witty, strong, and feminine. I was hooked to every word she said, especially when she was bickering with Cassandra.
Clay and Elena also make an appearance, which I know us fans of the couple appreciate.
This book was really exciting and suspenseful. Definitely a character driven story. Both with Paige and Lucas growing in their relationship and the other characters appearances and their relation to the world Armstrong has created. I found myself laughing and gasping in horror quite often. This was a very emotional story that caught my attention and held it, especially in the second half of the book.
The Bad Though I liked Paige better this time around, and her bad decision making in Dime Store Magic has lessened, she still isn't my favorite character. She just bugs me sometimes.
The Snuggly There is a sexual scene not meant for the youngins but no full-on sex scenes, so it's pretty mild for adult standards.
I liked Paige and Lucas better as a couple in this book. They realize that this isn't just a fling, they have true, strong feelings for each other. Of course it takes them forever to figure this out, but it's still a good progression.
Overall I enjoyed this book overall. It kept my attention most of the time and the many characters were entertaining. I don't think I will ever love Paige as a character but Armstrong writes great enough stories for me to keep reading. A recommended read.
Quotes “I thought you were all-seeing.” "All-knowing, not all-seeing!” he snapped. “I’m a God, not Santa Claus!” ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ “I can just imagine what the humidity has done to my hair. I'm going to meet your family looking like a poodle with a live wire shoved up its butt." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ “Last time I was sick, the guy I was seeing brought me a bottle of ginger ale… and expected me to pay him back for it." (less)
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)
At A Glance This is not a stand alone type of novella. You have to start this series from the beginning, and if you do, you will be hooked.
The Good London has been cursed with the Sidhe Touch. It's like a drug addiction, you can only function so long without another hit. London will do anything to get her magic fix through the touch of a sidhe. She will even leave her morals at the door and become a hired gun to a not so nice Changeling. But London might find she has bitten off more than she can chew this time around.
I was sucked in from the beginning. I am obsessed with London's journey. The injustice of the curse that has taken away most of her free will is unbearable. I both hate and love the sidhe. They treat London like trash, like a thing to play around with, and all I want her to do is get her revenge. But in the other two series that intertwine with this one, I find myself cheering on the sidhe. I am so conflicted.
There was a great mixture of action, sex, and conflict. Like always, the writing drew me in and never let go. I'm interested in seeing how far London will go to feed or rid herself of her curse. I consider her one of the good guys so I only hope she doesn't fall too far, but she does deserve her revenge.
I liked the addition of Joe. He is hard and merciless, as well as a well trained fighter. He's almost like a darker version of London. Now that they are helping each other find more sidhe, I'm hoping they can work together to find a cure or some kind of solution. But I think there is more than meets the eyes when it comes to Joe. I guess we will see.
I can't wait to see where this story goes. I get excited every time the next book comes out, this book was no different.
The Bad The only thing I can complain about is that the book ended. It's hard to read these novellas when they are a part of a series because they end way to fast. I just want to keep reading. Then again, this could be considered a good thing.
The Snuggly There is definitely a steamy moment that will make you blush but nothing is overdone.
Overall If you are looking for a complex urban fantasy that intermingles the lives of a few people in a supernatural world that is falling apart, this is the series for you. The writing is descriptive and engaging, and the storyline just gets better and better with each novella. A recommended read.
Quote Her hands moved and she could have sworn it was either by their own accord or because they followed the unspoken summoning of the Sidhe’s lure. London brushed the brunette locks from his face without touching the skin of his forehead, just fingering aside the soft silk of his hair so nothing blocked her view of those amazing eyes that drew her in with unnatural magnetism. With trembling hands, she cupped his smooth face, intending for it to be an introductory contact, something small and nearly innocent. Instead, London jolted as her palms locked into place as if by electricity. Her entire body jerked with the instantaneous pleasure of the Touch. The Sidhe’s magic flooded through her hands, up her arms, and burst through the rest of her body so violently that she cried out. No build up at all, just immediately intense and utterly shattering. (less)
At A Glance I loved the concept right away and was pleasently surprised by how much I liked After Ever.
The Good After her mother's death and father's slow withdraw from the world, Winnie's focus becomes rebelling against her old self. Tattoos, face piercings, and dreadlocks is her new look, and sullen, trouble-making teenager is her new persona. That is until she dies. And the afterlife or "After" is not all its cracked up to be. The After is not much different from the living world except for the Unkowns trying to steal your soul and the elusive answers you get from your geeky but cute guide. Everything gets worse when Sam, the guide, is taken by an Unkown and only Winnie can save him. But will she get there in time?
I was so excited when I first read the description of this book. I like unique concepts. They seem hard to come by in the paranormal world recently. I have to admit, it was hard reading the beginning of the book knowing Winnie was going to die. It made me so sad. All she has left is her little brother, Brian, who is like the cutest kid ever. I would want a little brother like that. Winnie and Brian keep each other strong while their father tries to bury the past with young, money-grubbing girlfriends or by avoiding his daughter who reminds him of his wife. Winnie only wants her dad to really look at her. To deal with his wife's death and become the dad he was before. The whole family is pretty messed up and with Winnie dying, I don't know how Brian and her dad are going to survive.
Winnie was hardcore entertaining. She is rude and snarky, but also brave. I liked her attitude because it rang true for a teen who recently lost her mother. She also took things in stride. She didn't freak out (much) when she found out she was dead. She went with the flow as much as she could. And Sam made the experience of reading After Ever that much more fun. He may not be the best guide, but he is a hero in my eyes. He protected Winnie through everything. And he doesn't take Winnie's crap. He actually gives her a run for her money. Their snarky banter was the best part of this book.
The After was exciting to explore with Winnie. I like seeing other people's idea of the afterlife. Eaton's was both scary and beautiful. The Unkowns freaked me out. I am not going to spoil it by telling you what they are but you can bet your butt you would not want them chasing after you.
The writing was good and the pace kept me interested the whole time. It was a quick read. I read it in one night. I am definitely interested in continuing this series.
The Bad I find myself wishing there was more world building. So much is kept secret from Winnie, which means a lot was kept from us too. I wanted to know more about the After and experience more of it too.
Also, the plot could have been more structured. It was a little aimless sometimes. There's no real main goal, just small side ones that pop up through the novel.
One last thing. I don't know who is responsible for it, but the last 30% of the book wouldn't come up right on my Kindle nor my Kindle for PC. A lot of the sentences were cut off and missing. It really took away from me enjoying the last part of this book since I missed a lot. Maybe I just got a dysfunctional copy. (Update: This problem has been fixed)
The Snuggly Don't read this book for the romance. We get some awkward crush stuff between Winnie and Sam but that's it. But I liked it that way. Not every YA book needs to have a huge romance. This was about Winnie's journey and it worked.
Final Thoughts I really had fun with After Ever. It made me want to cry and laugh at the same time. The ending was well done. I wasn't sure how Eaton was going to wrap it up and not leave readers heartbroken. But she worked it out. Recommended for those looking for a book with an orginal concept.
Quotes “For God's sake put on your glasses, Sam. You're staring right at my boobs.”
“I am like a ship, cast out in the ocean to bob aimlessly amidst the waves. No, I correct myself silently. Not a ship. More like the buoy that the ship runs over.” (less)