4 stars I've heard of Robert Frost's poems before, but I have never really thought or took interest in them. In Golden by Jessi Kirby however, I've c...more 4 stars I've heard of Robert Frost's poems before, but I have never really thought or took interest in them. In Golden by Jessi Kirby however, I've come to appreciate and fall in love with them. Golden provides an insightful outlook on life and the chances you're given. While I thought the plot was a little slow-moving throughout the story, the ending sold me thoroughly and it left me breathless and happily fulfilled.
Just to get it out of the way, the plot is very draggy throughout the entirety of the novel. Things happen, yes, but nothing monumental or drastic. I was fine with it, but it surely is nap-inducing. I wish the storyline was more eventful and perhaps more heart-palpitating. Nevertheless, the conclusion works out so well that the initial plot is not as negative as it looks to be.
Everything else in this novel is pure gold. First off, the characters are absolutely endearing. The main character Parker Frost is beyond relatable. The connection I felt between Parker and I was so genuine, I could hardly believe she was only a fictional character in a book. Following her mother's restrictions her entire life (LIKE ME) and then breaking out of her shell is truly something I aspire to do. Parker turned out to be one of the most inspirational characters I have ever read. There's also a love interest, and I have to say that it is very well done. He's swoony and flirty, but deeply profound at the same time. I fell instantly for this boy, and while the romance is definitely there, it's also subtle and doesn't take away from the main point of the story.
My favorite part of Golden has to be the addition of poetry. Usually when a book has little poetry lines at the beginning of each chapter, I tend to wave them off and not think much of them. However, the lines at the beginning of every chapter in Golden really supplemented the story and added so much more. It's the little things. Not only is there poetry at the start of each section, but there's also beautiful prose interwoven in the story that acts as a catalyst itself. Kirby does this strongly and in a breathtaking way.
So even though the plot is incredibly slow, it's definitely well worth the read. The reader is able take away important life lessons after reading Golden, and I'm even more fond of Jessi Kirby's writing and books now. The characters are intensely original and palpable, as well as delightful and engaging. The prose doesn't fall short, either. And after you flip the last page in this book, you won't be able to help but wonder, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
Title: Timepiece Author: Myra McEntire Release Date: June 12, 2012 Publisher: Egmont USA Pages: 336, Hardcover
"I'm a bad ass. A bad ass who bakes when he's depressed." -Timepiece (quoted from eARC, not final.)
I was beyond excited to dive right into Timepiece after finishing Hourglass. I was so utterly satisfied with Myra's writing and story, and I had heard nothing but great things about Timepiece. Sadly, while it still had it's enticing characters from Hourglass that I loved, there were many points in the novel that left me in confusion, leaving me frustrated; I wasn't able enjoy the story as much.
Heading into the story, I had no idea that it was told from Kaleb's point of view! I was completely surprised, and while it was really interesting and portrayed very well, I couldn't get into it until about halfway through it. I guess I was just so used to reading in a female's POV. However, after familiarizing myself with his personality, I found it very enjoyable and he was a very blunt (and honest!) character. His comments and thoughts cracked me up.
I also really adored Lily and Kaleb's relationship, much, much more than Em & Michael's! (I loved Em & Michael's relationship, so that's saying something.) I loved how it started out terribly, but graduated into something sweet and tender! They are perfect together. I hated seeing Kaleb chase after Em in Hourglass, so I'm extremely happy that he found someone.
Other than that, Timepiece was quite the roller coaster ride. There was about 3-5 new characters that were introduced, and I felt that Myra could have spent more time elaborating on them. She whipped by them so quickly that I couldn't seem to recall who they were or what their abilities were. What were their motives? What role did each character play? I got so confused at one point that I had to ask one of my blogger friends for confirmation and help (thanks Nina!)
There was also the plot. Sure, Myra keeps the reader on the edge of their seat, but there was just too many things going on! I was jumping from one situation to the next-- my mind was just about ready to erupt. Why couldn't she just keep it simple? It was very difficult for me to follow the plot and story when so many factors were affecting one another. And the fact that it was about time-travel? Even more puzzling.
I do have to give credit for Myra McEntire for still having that amazing ability to write so smoothly and with ease. She was still able to entrance me and bring me into the story. It was very well crafted and there was some serious world-building in this sophomore novel! You can tell she really thought it thoroughly!
On the whole, Timepiece is an intricately designed novel with fantastic characters brought in from Hourglass that readers will continue to enjoy. At times, the plot and new addition of characters may leave readers perplexed, but it is overall still a delightful read. I am still looking forward to Infinityglass, the third and final installment in the Hourglass trilogy!
Source: Publisher via Netgalley--thanks Egmont USA! (less)
4 stars I don't remember the last time I read a faery book, so I was pleasantly surprised to see one being published in 2014, in the midst of all the d...more4 stars I don't remember the last time I read a faery book, so I was pleasantly surprised to see one being published in 2014, in the midst of all the dystopians and post-apocalyptic stories. In some ways, All That Glows was incredibly refreshing to read, and really well done. Don't be scared off by that pretty pink cover, because I thoroughly enjoyed Ryan Graudin's 2014 debut, All That Glows.
All That Glows is about fae, but also of course, with the involvement of other supernatural creatures. What makes this particular story stand out amongst other fae stories is that Graudin creates new supernatural creatures; no, they're not your typical warlocks, witches, elves… There are beings such as Green Women, Banshees, and Black Dogs. Curious yet? This difference certainly attracted my attention, and I was immersed in the world Graudin created.
What supplements this world even more is Graudin's writing style. It's nothing out-of-this-world, but it is remarkable in its own way because it suits the faery world perfectly. I couldn’t have asked for a better writer to compose this mystical, glowing world of the fae.
Alas, the downfall for me in All That Glows was the characters and romance. Emrys, the female protagonist--also the faery-- was a character that I liked, but didn't love. Nothing made her particularly stand out, but she was admirable. Richard, the prince, was also tolerable and nowhere near cringe-worthy. But them together is a whole different story. I'm sad to announce that there is in fact--wait for it--insta-love in this fae story. *Sigh* This book would have been phenomenal if it weren't for the romance. And the thing about this insta-love is that the romance plays quite a big part in the plot. Throughout the entire story, I just couldn't let my heart open up to believe Emrys and Richard's romance (it got really cheesy towards the end). If the romantic relationship was believable after time passed, the insta-love probably could have been forgiven, but it just didn't happen for me.
To finish, All That Glows was an immensely enjoyable story with the original fae world (set in London!), and gorgeous writing despite the doomed insta-love romance. I'd say that if you want to take a break from the influx of dystopians nowadays, pick up All That Glows if you don't mind some insta-love!
MINI-REVIEW Being a relatively short story from Chelsea's-- Lizzie's best friend-- point of view, it was fun and interesting to see the story her way....moreMINI-REVIEW Being a relatively short story from Chelsea's-- Lizzie's best friend-- point of view, it was fun and interesting to see the story her way. I think that the overall plot was well-paced and while it was a little mediocre and not over-the-top-exciting, Vengeance was an adequate read that fits between the first and last installment in the Transcend Time series.
Aside from the competent plot line, I think that this story was entirely negative. Let me explain. Chelsea, as mentioned before, is Lizzie's best friend. I'm not going to spoil anything, but she is extremely angry with Lizzie, and basically, this entire story illustrated Chelsea as an unfaithful best friend, as well as cruel. All Chelsea wanted was to get back at Lizzie for what she did. It really downplayed Chelsea's character, and made me hate her more than I did before. However, I think that this was Madow's intention, so it's actually good that I hated her.
The story doesn't exactly end on a cliffhanger, but the reader definitely wants to know more by the end. In my opinion, I think that Vengeance is a completely necessary read, even it's a novella/short story. It would have been great if it was longer! In all, Vengeance was a satisfying read that wasn't too little, but wasn't too much, either.
3 Teacups for Vengeance! *Thanks to Michelle Madow for providing me with a copy to review!*
Just One Day by Gayle Forman follows the story of an 18 year-old girl Allyson, on tour with her best friend Melanie, in Europe. There, Allyson meets a...moreJust One Day by Gayle Forman follows the story of an 18 year-old girl Allyson, on tour with her best friend Melanie, in Europe. There, Allyson meets a charming Dutch boy, Willem, and he decides to take her on a one-day trip to Paris– just the two of them. After a series of events that causes her to end up alone, she returns home in the US, wondering where Willem went. As she starts school at her new college, she learns to find herself in the most unexpected way.
I have rather conflicting feelings about Just One Day. Mostly it was the beginning and middle where things were shaky, but by the end, I was completely and utterly satisfied. Nevertheless, I still had problems with this book, and I have to admit that I was a tad disappointed with Just One Day.
One of my first issues with entering Allyson’s story was the fact that I couldn’t connect with her. It’s always hard to explain why a reader doesn’t or isn’t able to connect with a character since it’s based solely on personal experiences, but in this case, Allyson was not relatable for me. She wasn’t a bad character, but she wasn’t exactly outstanding, either. Allyson does grow and there is some self-discovery going on (which I love), so my liking for her does get better, but the connection between me and her was a significant problem in the start. Additionally, the romance between Allyson and Willem wasn’t the strongest. It is technically a case of insta-love, since they do fall in love within a day in Paris. After Willem mysteriously disappeared, I didn’t understand why Allyson was so hung up on Willem, even after a year. I saw a bond between them, but not the strongest one.
I was also bothered by the way the Paris setting was executed. Don’t get me wrong, the Paris atmosphere that Forman told was gorgeous and extremely realistic, but the time that the characters (Allyson and Willem) spent in Paris felt too much like a copy-cat of Anna and the French Kiss. I found myself constantly comparing the two stories, and I hated how similar it was. So, the general comment about the Paris setting: loved all of the imagery, but I disliked the intense similarity to Anna.
As the reader delves deeper into the novel, there comes a point where Allyson returns to the States, and this is where the story slows down. A lot. Even though tons of new characters are introduced in this section of the novel, I wasn’t particularly interested in any of them. It was quite boring to read about Allyson’s college life, also because she was sulky and dark the entire time.
It wasn’t until the last part of Just One Day that it started to pick up again. By this point, Allyson is set on doing what she wants to do: find Willem. The obstacles that she went through were highly entertaining and definite page-turners. Allyson meets even more characters; these characters I easily fell in love with, which probably added to my enjoyment factor. The ending wrapped up beautifully and it wasn’t until then that I realized what the entire middle section was for: the buildup for the conclusion. It was done quite masterfully, so this ended up being a redeeming factor.
In all, Just One Day was a let-down for me. There were so many factors that bothered me the entire time, and it wasn’t until the ending that really bumped it up a star for me. However, it is Gayle Forman, for which her writing definitely made this book a whole lot more enjoyable. From the main character and romance to the Paris setting, these were factors that left me disappointed. Luckily, the way the story wraps up is breathtakingly so, leaving the story on a good note. I’m not sure if I’m willing to pick up Just One Year, but since it’s Gayle Forman, I think just might.
Prior to reading the book, I didn't really know what Gravity was about. The synopsis is a bit vague--you've got a rebellion-like thing going on, a mil...morePrior to reading the book, I didn't really know what Gravity was about. The synopsis is a bit vague--you've got a rebellion-like thing going on, a military legacy girl who is falling in love with a guy she shouldn't be falling in love with, and a planet on the cover. Out of the world creatures, perhaps? I don't know about other readers, but I was still confused as to what this supernatural creature exactly was until nearly halfway through the book, thus causing an instant downfall in my enjoyment for the book. No one likes to be confused for THAT LONG. It took much too long for the concept to be introduced. Other than that, Gravity had an exciting plot and a kick-butt main protagonist that was able to keep my interest throughout the entire novel.
As I mentioned before, the reader doesn't find out what the supernatural creature of the novel is until about 30%-50% of the novel is done. Ancients, is what they're called. I was confused and wondering to myself for the longest time, and God knows it's the most frustrating thing ever! No reader likes to be kept in the dark for so long. It also makes it a bit difficult to enjoy the story. Not only was the identity of the creature difficult to fathom, but also "the Taking". What was its purpose? It didn't make sense to me; I think it could have been explained better.
While the concept was a bit confusing, the plot was not. In fact, the plot was really exciting and there were tons of great plot-twisting! It kept me flipping pages; I HAD to know what happened next! Melissa did a great job keeping the reader intrigued.
The best part I think was Ari, the main character. Even though her father was a Commander and she was a military legacy, Ari wasn't strong because of this. I felt like Ari was bold and strong on her own, and I totally admired that about her. While she was hesitant about being with Jackson, she wasn't ever… afraid. She was confident in what she had to get done; in other words, she's a good rebel. *oooooooh, gasp*
Overall, Gravity was a highly enjoyable novel if you are able to see past the confusing section in the beginning of novel. Rebellions, out-of-this-world creatures, and a kick butt character, Gravity is a novel that will captivate you until you finish turn the last page.