I enjoyed this. I felt that the ending was rushed, and that the info-dump at the end was slightly irritating, and I wanted Flora to take more controlI enjoyed this. I felt that the ending was rushed, and that the info-dump at the end was slightly irritating, and I wanted Flora to take more control in the end, but overall I found it satisfying. Longer review to come....more
An intriguing story that leaves many things unsaid. It does follow a lot of common tropes, but Jamie's voice is unique enough that it's more of an enjAn intriguing story that leaves many things unsaid. It does follow a lot of common tropes, but Jamie's voice is unique enough that it's more of an enjoyable jaunt into the plot. Definitely a 'it's the journey, not the destination' moment. ...more
To be honest, I have exhausted myself on books on self-harm and books on girls choosing The Worst Guy Ever. Seriously, so manyI really enjoyed this.
To be honest, I have exhausted myself on books on self-harm and books on girls choosing The Worst Guy Ever. Seriously, so many books on those things, and so few of them feel genuine.
This feels genuine, and heartbreaking. I'll say that it reads like fan fiction - but in the very best of ways. In the way I could absolutely sink into the world with complete focus; the flow of each 'section' rather than traditional chapters; Charlie's genuine voice, with her grief and pain and trauma. It is the writing, the authenticity, that rescues this book (and I love the cover. My inner design geek adored the red edition, with the embroidery. Gorgeous design.) from falling into the holes others on this subject have.
And I loved that this book is underscored with the idea that the most unexpected person can help you.
(view spoiler)[Also, Riley and Mikey can take gold and silver in 'douchebag of the book' Olympics. Charlie is SEVENTEEN, and Mikey isn't really there for her. I understand that he has a life and a career, and apparently has time to report on her to her mother, but he wasn't really there for her.
Riley was just a total shit, and no whiny emo song can redeem him. (hide spoiler)]
Novellas are always a little underwhelming, and this doesn't escape that trap. The fact that we've jumped so far ahead in time also makes me concernedNovellas are always a little underwhelming, and this doesn't escape that trap. The fact that we've jumped so far ahead in time also makes me concerned about Remembrance. I love Suze and Jesse, so I hope that this doesn't spoil what was one of the most exceptional series' of Meg Cabot's career.
I also wonder if the sudden reboots of two of her more successful properties isn't a sign that publishers have noticed the obvious decline of the quality of her YA work in the last couple of years.
I was happy to see Heather Wells was back! I really enjoyed the previous books, though the previous book was rather flimsy. I think the mysteries needI was happy to see Heather Wells was back! I really enjoyed the previous books, though the previous book was rather flimsy. I think the mysteries need to be less murder and death, and other crimes. There's a lot of potential for crimes in a dorm room; though that's probably a moot point as I feel like this book is the last in Heather's series.
(view spoiler)[- SO FREAKING DISAPPOINTED at the appearance of Heather's mother. All her scenes were so shallow and glossed over; the gift of the jewelry was cliche and stupid. I expected better for this series than this introduction of Heather's mother.
- I felt like this whole book had tons of flimsy plotlines that weren't quite big enough to sustain as a B-plot, but crammed in together, they feel rushed and ruined. Lisa's pregnancy? The Prince and his secret wife? Cooper getting hurt, with his PI friends? The Cartwright twins? None of those plotlines felt satisfying because there were too many of them.
- The wedding was plain weird. It should have been the pinnacle of the series, but instead it fell utterly flat. It just happened and it was over. And there was so much potential in the wedding plotline! The uninvited guests! The snooty, overpriced planner! The complete insanity of the Cartwright family!
- I know Meg Cabot has had difficulties with her publishers in the past regarding the length of her series (1800WhereRU is a prime example; The Mediator to a lesser degree), so this may be the sign of an ultimatum regarding the series. But then, in the last few years, Meg Cabot's writing has been falling far short of what she's capable of, so I'm on the fence about what precisely went wrong.
Overall, a rushed book full of potential that fails to provide satisfying closure to what I suspect is the entire series, and lets down all the characters. Continues a pattern of unsatisfying, substandard work from Cabot, but whether this is the sign of behind-the-scenes issues with the publisher, or just how Cabot is writing now remains to be seen. ...more
Okay, so I love the Persephone myth. I have a soft-spot for urban fantasy. I love narratives that aren't quite linear. Clearly a recipe for me to LOVEOkay, so I love the Persephone myth. I have a soft-spot for urban fantasy. I love narratives that aren't quite linear. Clearly a recipe for me to LOVE Everneath.
I did not. At all.
(view spoiler)[- I hated Cole and Jack equally. Am I literally meant to care about either of them, let alone pick one as a romantic lead? Yeah, no. There's more sex appeal in the housework I'm putting off. Jack is so bland, he could be replaced by a cardboard standee of 90s era Aaron Carter, and Cole is just freakin' irritating.
- Of all the things that could have pushed Nikki into going to the Everneath, they picked THAT? Not her mother's death, her mother's murderer getting off scott-free? BUT THE MOST CONTRIVED BOYFRIEND AND EX-GIRLFRIEND SITUATION EVER? FFS.
- I felt no connection between Jules and Nikki, or Nikki and her family. And the thing is, there was some good stuff there. Nikki returning weak and miserable? Her father worrying about drugs? Her little brother, having lost his mother, his sister and being bullied? All great material.
- It's touted as being the Persephone myth, but it's not really. It's Orpheus or Osiris. Don't spit on my cupcake and call it frosting. Don't say 'Persephone myth' without bringing the bacon. I am SO TIRED of shitty books about Persephone.
- The 100 years = 6 months thing was frustrating. It meant nothing, except to reinforce how much suffering poor Nikki went through. It is meaningless in the grand scheme of things.
- Usually, I frelling adore non-linear narratives. This one just irritated me. (hide spoiler)]
Overall, if I'm looking at the page numbers because it feels long, you've taken a wrong turn somewhere. Disappointing and forgettable. Not bothering to finish the series. ...more
If I had to pick one word to describe this book, it would be 'boring'. So boring. I cannot believe I made it to the end.
(view spoiler)[- The writingIf I had to pick one word to describe this book, it would be 'boring'. So boring. I cannot believe I made it to the end.
(view spoiler)[- The writing is quite solid. The world building isn't bad, but a little thin.
- Kestral needs a good, hard kick.
- Jess was generic best friend, Ronan was generic good-guy love interest who will be inevitably ditched for the unexpected emo loner. I thought Irex was going to be way more of a threat. Benix could have been replaced with a lamp.
- There were really no stakes. Like, I have no idea why the Lady Faris's babydaddy thing was such a big deal. A lot of things were established that had no payoff, whatsoever.
- Slavery is bad. Please, please stop trying to convince me in YA books that there is any kind of redemption for people who buy slaves. Or trying to justify it.
- Would have had far more respect for the book if they'd killed off Ronan and Jess. Just FYI.
- The political discourse was excruciating, since there were no stakes. No risk.
- Cheat was a disappointment. He ended up a parody of himself, sadly, when he had a lot of potential early on in the book.
- WHY WHY WHY is a seventeen year old the spokesperson for a nation? General father or not, not enough world building established this as slightly believable, just convenient to the plot. (hide spoiler)]
Solid writing, just not enough plot - I'm predicting that it's been spread out to create a trilogy, when only two books were truly necessary. Doubt I'll be continuing this series, simply because I don't care what happens to anyone in the book.
Far and away better than Cass's Selection series, but with a few weak spots. A really interesting look at sirens - possibly one of the most original tFar and away better than Cass's Selection series, but with a few weak spots. A really interesting look at sirens - possibly one of the most original that I've read. Longer review to come. ...more
Frothy, kind of shallow, really weirdly paced and a few characterisation issues. Definitely for a younger set, like 12ish. The premise (though genderFrothy, kind of shallow, really weirdly paced and a few characterisation issues. Definitely for a younger set, like 12ish. The premise (though gender flipped) has been done MUCH MUCH better in Jen Calonita's Hollywood Secrets series.
I also have a fundamental problem with Zoe Sugg's name being on the cover, and the claims that this is her first novel when it was written by a ghost writer. Either you wrote or you didn't. ...more
This wasn't what I was expecting. The Deviantart-esque cover, the premise - I was expecting something fairly terrible.
I was rather surprised. (view spThis wasn't what I was expecting. The Deviantart-esque cover, the premise - I was expecting something fairly terrible.
I was rather surprised. (view spoiler)[ - This is a story set in a fairy-tale world, and tries to examine the tropes of fairy tales. It does its best to be quirky and unique and almost satirise the fairy tale princess trope. It doesn't quite work - it felt a bit fan fictiony in its descriptions.
- There were a few words misused - like 'benefactor'. And a few small continuity issues (sixty students drops to fifty in roughly a chapter.
- Sophie irritated me but I rather liked Agatha at the beginning. By the end - and the sequel - she's kind of a simpering twit. The supporting characters like Anadil, Dot and Hector are quite good. I can't freaking stand Tedros, though.
- The plot was quite convoluted for the age group that it was aimed at.
Overall, it didn't prove the extreme LOVE or HATE I was told I'd feel. Written for a younger audience than YA, it has some interesting ideas that probably would have been better received in a YA format. And I also think the cover design has let this book down
And for a moment, we briefly glimpsed a world where 'Fifty Shades of Grey' did not exist. And it was exquisite.
Okay, that might be a bit confusing.
OAnd for a moment, we briefly glimpsed a world where 'Fifty Shades of Grey' did not exist. And it was exquisite.
Okay, that might be a bit confusing.
Of course, a book with the author's note 'quick and easy' doesn't exactly assure us of quality.
Stephenie Meyer set out to convince us that Bella wasn't a 'damsel in distress' (or in an abusive relationship). And failed miserably. (view spoiler)[ - Edythe shits me less than Edward, but still enough that I was disappointed. Beau was a non-entity. I could have mentally replaced Beau with a cardboard standee, a belligerent hen or a single cup of jello and it would have made no difference. His dialogue was stilted and unconvincing, if not outright terrible.
- I'm only here for the Cullens, truly. Currently a little bit obsessed with Brosalie and his man-bun, the idea of Jessamine and Eleanor still running afoul of a bear. Archie fell so flat. Maybe because I adore Alice, but I just felt that Archie was going through the motions rather than being his own character. I would have loved more interaction between him and Jessamine, and I did appreciate that we were given more information about visions and time from Archie's perspective. Carine and Earnest were there, though I love the idea of Carine as a nurse throughout history and Earnest being the stay-at-home dad figure. What I take from all this is half a dozen Jessamine and Alice plotbunnies.
- The Volturi were intriguing; I'd be interested to see how the Lady!Volturi approached Breaking Dawn. If it would even be an issue.
- Joss was super creepy. I approve of creepier James/Joss. But then, I like creepy things.
- The ending pissed me off on new levels. It felt very, very rushed, and I don't think Beau had a realistic reaction to freaking dying and never being able to see his parents again. It was kind of 'and I died, but I'm going to marry Edythe". Fuck that shit.
- If anything, I felt like this actually emphasised how controlling Edward was and Bella was the most distressed of damsels. I'm wondering if this was because of the adjustments made due to the gender swap - drug dealers vs rapists, Renee teaching dance vs Bella taking dance.
- I have INCREDIBLE problems with the fact that all the sexual violence was removed because the victims had become male. So many issues with that aspect that I won't go into it any further, aside from saying really? (hide spoiler)]
The possibility of more thoughts as they come. But overall, if this had been Twilight, Twilight as we know would not have existed at all. I remain convinced that Stephenie Meyer is a writer through the luxury of time (to write) and an incredible editing and marketing team behind her. ...more
This was so deliciously dark. I called the twist ending early on, but it didn't spoil the journey for me. The world building and charactYes, so hard.
This was so deliciously dark. I called the twist ending early on, but it didn't spoil the journey for me. The world building and character development were enough to cause me to open the book, and spend the entire day with my nose buried in it.
I, foolishly, assumed this was a standalone, and nearly pitched it over the fence when I realised I have TO WAIT TIL 2017 to see how this all turns out.
(view spoiler)[I kind of want the triplets' mother and old queen to make an appearance. Or their father. I want complete and utter unprecedented chaos.
I want Rho, Luca, Pietyr & Genevieve to all burn on a fire. Joseph and Natalia can get in there too. Horrible people.
Mirabella does nothing for me. Arsinoe and I are on slightly better terms, but I'm Team Katharine all the way. Having spent a decade being endlessly poisoned when it is implied she's the naturalist (or possibly war - since they can make things float; how else would she have gotten out of Braccia Domain?), I just want to give her cupcakes and wrap her in a blanket.
Another totally unpredictable and engrossing story from Kendare Blake. Think I'm hitting the unhealthy level of fangirling, tbh. Loses a star because I'm currently filthy I have to wait another year to know the ending.
A quiet and rather subtle book that I enjoyed. Something about Sydney and Mac caught my imagination, along with Sydney's desperation. Definitely a retA quiet and rather subtle book that I enjoyed. Something about Sydney and Mac caught my imagination, along with Sydney's desperation. Definitely a return to form after The Moon and More. ...more
Probably the least objectionable of the books focusing around this concept. Kind of beige and bland but not hideously frustrating or terrible. Irked tProbably the least objectionable of the books focusing around this concept. Kind of beige and bland but not hideously frustrating or terrible. Irked that its a series, honestly. I'm not invested enough to be waiting with bated breath for the sequel in November. ...more
Kind of a paint-by-numbers formula that feels way too much like Gallagher Girls. I loved the premise but this was a letdown. I honestly want more HeisKind of a paint-by-numbers formula that feels way too much like Gallagher Girls. I loved the premise but this was a letdown. I honestly want more Heist Society rather than a continuation of Embassy Row. Longer review to come....more
I loved the premise so much. But it felt so rushed and skimmed out!
(view spoiler)[ - I hate writers writing a series for the sThis was disappointing.
I loved the premise so much. But it felt so rushed and skimmed out!
(view spoiler)[ - I hate writers writing a series for the sake of writing a series but this actually could have been a much, much longer book or a duo because there was so much potential. Instead, we get a very shallow look at what could be an incredible world with interesting politics, mythology and human rights. I initially thought they didn't speak for religious or spiritual reasons. And the mythology! Nuan's extinct village! SO MUCH POTENTIAL, I could weep. The fact is that the glossing over of much of the world building makes this book feel like it is for younger readers.
- What, exactly, was the point of mentioning Fei was going to marry Sheng? It was redundant. He could have been replaced by a lamp or a standee of Mickey Mouse. Remove him from the story and nothing changes. The same could be said about a lot of characters. Even Bao and Jing Zhang - they were there to motivate Fei and Li but could have been replaced by a bale of hay and nothing much would have changed.
- The characters were terribly flat. I wanted to like Fei, but she wasn't substantial enough. Jing Zhang irritated me, especially when she's embarrassed about taking the maid job. It's a hell of a lot better than mining.
- I was hoping for the line keeper to be kind of like the Wizard of Oz, not just an overbearing King who really has no affect on the plot.
- The pixius were interesting but their entrance and miraculous rescue was very much deus-ex-machina, especially since Li and Fei had to convince everyone to scream to get their attention. I don't know, the ending seemed quite quickly rectified - though I do like that the pixius didn't heal everyone straight away.
- I did like the fact that sign-language varied, and that Fei didn't get the miraculous ability to speak out of nowhere. Though much of the dialogue and narration was very modern and Americanised, which pulled me out of the story. The Chinese mythology aspects were superfluous - they kind of felt like an afternoon on Wikipedia than any in-depth research had actually taken place.
- The whole inn thing was really, really random; the scorpion was rather clever though the red dress scene was cheesy and predictable. I did LOVE the line about Fei being about to rescue herself, and Li offering to help her out. (hide spoiler)]
Overall, really disappointing. A deaf POC female protagonist in a story based about Chinese mythology sounded amazing - and it could have been mindblowing. Instead, we got something very shallow, rushed and nowhere near as engaging as Mead's previous work. ...more