Hmmm. I really liked the frame of the story. And the middle section where everything starts building and coming together was intriguing. But overall,Hmmm. I really liked the frame of the story. And the middle section where everything starts building and coming together was intriguing. But overall, the book was way too long. It took too long to get into and too long to end. Felt like the story was trying to take on too many angles, rather than sticking to a core few storylines. Maybe it's more realistic that so many of the "extraneous" things were felt or happened to the characters, but this is fiction and I don't expect complete realism to the point of losing the reader. Did a lot of skimming, especially at the beginning and end....more
I read this book in 3 hours or less. I thought it was really cute and enjoyed that the story twisted in away I wasn't expecting. I already how how theI read this book in 3 hours or less. I thought it was really cute and enjoyed that the story twisted in away I wasn't expecting. I already how how the series is going to end, but that didn't bother me. I really liked Kyle! ...more
So, I didn't notice on the first book but this series on audiobook is ABRIDGED! I was wondering why it was only 5 CDs long, but figured the files mustSo, I didn't notice on the first book but this series on audiobook is ABRIDGED! I was wondering why it was only 5 CDs long, but figured the files must have been smaller so they could fit more onto a cd and maybe the reader talked fast? Nope. I can't tell you what was left out, as it has been YEARS since I last read this series, but it didn't feel as "full" as I remembered from reading. I felt that way after the 1st book, but I was also doing yard work the entire time so maybe I got distracted (was my reasoning after finishing). I will still Irish listening to the series because I don't have time to sit and read, but I'll have to go back and find the time to re-read my paper copies I guess....more
I am annoyed. There is so much I loved about the first book that didn't carry over in this book, and things that I did really love about this one. I tI am annoyed. There is so much I loved about the first book that didn't carry over in this book, and things that I did really love about this one. I think the author is great at writing teenage characters and their thoughts and struggles and insecurities and relationships.
I was annoyed with all the focus on sex in this book. And there was such a big point made about how girls are shamed by it and guys aren't and how unfair that is, etc, but no flip-side view of *maybe* it's a big thing that shouldn't be taken so lightly and that *maybe* teenagers shouldn't be messing with it so casually. There was only 1 character towards the end that says not everyone is doing it and it's not a big deal not to do it, and that's it. As an adult, I could overlook most of this, but I would never feel comfortable giving or recommending this book to a teenager. Even if this accurately reflects what most teens think is going on with their peers and is expected of them, I wouldn't want to encourage it. BALANCE. I guess that's what I think was missing. There was no balance in the thoughts about being sexually active as a teenager. Sure, there's teens doing it, but there's plenty of teens NOT doing it and I'd hate for a teen to feel like it's just inevitable and a part of high school for everyone.
I was annoyed with the relationship of Lara Jean & Peter. I felt like the first book had a way better relationship and chemistry because they were NOT focused on the physical stuff because they were "pretending" so they actually had to talk to each other and get to know each other and do things other than making out, etc.
I was annoyed with how things worked out in the end. I think it is the way it had to happen to keep Lara Jean from just jumping from boy to boy, but the alternative ending seemed like a much better match....more
So this is another clean re-write of a previously released book by the author. I had enjoyed the other two re-writes I read. I read this book right afSo this is another clean re-write of a previously released book by the author. I had enjoyed the other two re-writes I read. I read this book right after finishing another series by the author that was clean from the first release and not a re-write. What I noticed most is that the re-write was still mostly concentrated on the insta-love/lust and physical longing between the characters All. The. Time. Or at least a lot of the time. And, oh yeah with some other story details on the side to fill out the background. Whereas the Age of Faith series had to intentionally focus on a story in which the characters interacted and fell in love, which made the stories more interesting and more was going on besides the feelings between the two love interests constantly. Yes, there was still plenty of mushy "feelings" stuff, but there was more to the stories than just that.
I did think the different setting and situation of this story over others I've read in this time period was very interesting and unique....more
Eh. I was interested to see how the story wrapped up, but it wasn't memorable enough for 6 books. I totally forgot that Sydney & Adrian got marrieEh. I was interested to see how the story wrapped up, but it wasn't memorable enough for 6 books. I totally forgot that Sydney & Adrian got married at the end of book 5! And I felt like the characters lost their individual voices that first attracted me to the series in the first place. Sydney & Adrian ran together and I couldn't keep straight which chapters were in their POVs. Rose & Dimitri lost their shine from the VA series too, which was sad to me. I loved Rose's voice & personality in that series....more
Eh. It would have been a typical fluffy 3-star ebook love story, except that even the "good" guy had some serious possessive behaviors and ways of treEh. It would have been a typical fluffy 3-star ebook love story, except that even the "good" guy had some serious possessive behaviors and ways of treating the girl that made me feel like he could be abusive just like the "bad" guys. And way too much eye-rolling....more
Hmmm. Not sure what to say. There is SO MUCH about this book that I absolutely LOVED! It would have been 5 stars and on my favorites & re-read lisHmmm. Not sure what to say. There is SO MUCH about this book that I absolutely LOVED! It would have been 5 stars and on my favorites & re-read lists ... Except for 2 things.
1. I have heard so many authors speak about how books shouldn't be rated for content, like with movies. They say that the cover and first chapter tell you what to expect from a book - language, violence, sex - how much, how severe, and how descriptive. Well, the prologue gave plenty of opportunity for this book to show what language and sex would be in the book, but it was not a good representation. It felt like a "bait and switch". And it was really annoying to feel like I was going to be reading one kind of book only to have it change on the 4th CD of the audiobook. And really, totally unnecessary for the switch. Which us even more irritating.
2. The ending!!! What? If it's weren't for the last track that said "If you liked this book, them you should read ______ book", I honestly would have thought I was missing the last CD of the audiobook. The story was so interesting and complicated and twisty! And then you finally start to figure out the talisman and more info about it and then the book is over. What the heck does it have to do with the future problems? How come she can do things that the others can't? What about Mr. Mims? What about the emotions thing? How are they going to fix the future problem? SO many major things are not explained and it is not clear from the book, Goodreads, or the author's website/blog if there is a series and there is a 2nd book that continues the story. SO FRUSTRATING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
But other than those things, I LOVED the book. The story, characters, and the humor were great.
EDITED TO ADD: Finally found reference to a sequel in the works. Working title is "Brothers and Sisters" and centers around a new couple with Julia & Nick more in the background, but still in the story. It was ridiculous where I found this info .... It should have been much easier, especially considering how the book ended....more
I think the main reason this was not 5 stars is because I couldn't get it on audiobook. I love hearing the narration and how it forced me to take in aI think the main reason this was not 5 stars is because I couldn't get it on audiobook. I love hearing the narration and how it forced me to take in all the details. I had limited time to "read" this book and was dying to keep finding out what would happen next so I know skip-read a lot. I miss that I missed the historical details ... but I guess not enough to slow down and read more carefully?
A great series that feels "ended". The 3rd book could have been a satisfying ending, but I think I still would have wondered about the major things that happened through books 4 & 5. I don't feel that after finishing book 5.
I'll have to check out some other books by this author....more
**spoiler alert** I tried to finish the book, I *really* did! Early on I wasn't sure it was going to capture my attention but I kept with it, mostly b**spoiler alert** I tried to finish the book, I *really* did! Early on I wasn't sure it was going to capture my attention but I kept with it, mostly because I have no audiobooks waiting in my queue to read. But once it got to the point of repeatedly talking out loud to the characters about the stupidness of everything, I just couldn't take it anymore. And when the princess and the guard are suddenly madly in love? What the what? Before they were totally JUST a princess and a guard, but now suddenly they have deep, passionate, and unending love for each other?? When did that happen? It was just too much. I was so happy when he died right after (how bad does that make me sound???) but I still couldn't take it anymore and had to stop the book. And the audio reader was hard to listen to - the accents of the 3 fantasy kingdoms who all share borders are (1) English, (2) way northern Scottish, and (3) Asian. ...more
Loved this series! I think this was supposed to be the end, but just found out there are 2 more books!
What I Loved About These Books: Multiple conflictLoved this series! I think this was supposed to be the end, but just found out there are 2 more books!
What I Loved About These Books: Multiple conflicts! There isn't just 1 main conflict that the whole book revolves around and then everything wraps up when the conflict is over. There are at least 2 major conflicts in every book, plus multiple little conflicts that are happening alongside and in-between the major ones.
Adventure! Lots of action and adventure. It reminds me of old west historical books where people who really lived through the time say the books did a good job of portraying real life, except that real life was more bloody. It's a wonder anyone lived to 40 in medieval Italy! The action scenes were well-written and kept me in the moment of heart-pumping adrenaline.
Historical Detail! Loved how I got to know the history and period through the book.
Family! Gabi's sister and eventually parents are a part of the story and I loved how they were her allies, not her enemies. Yet she was still given the freedom to do what she did.
Strong Characters! Technically and Literally. I liked that the women were strong - not just Gabi & Lia with their weapons, but the other women in the book. And all the characters were very well-written. My favorites are obviously the main ones - Marcello, Luca, Fortino, Rodolfo .... even the "bad guys" were very good characters and truly worried me with their intent and actions.
Great Romance! It was a big part of the story and yet there wasn't much of it. No annoying "does he love me or not/do I love him or not" whining throughout the story. No excessive breaks from the forward motion of the story to spend pages and pages kissing. But yet it is a very romantic story and the guys will melt your knees!...more