Netgalley provided this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
They really mean it when they tell you not to judge a book by it’s cover. TheNetgalley provided this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
They really mean it when they tell you not to judge a book by it’s cover. The cover for Coral & Bone is stunning, but the contents inside are sorely lacking. It feels like it was written by a tween to cater to a tween. The story isn’t bad, but it’s poorly executed. The author created two new worlds and added things to our current one, but the history that was made is thin, a lot of things are left open, and descriptions for the worlds are cliche and poor.
The characters are awful. The few that were interesting had roles so minor they aren’t worth even mentioning. The main character, Halen, was super annoying. I hated her name and just chose to call her Helen as I read. Her emotions were all over the place. I’ve had pregnancy hormone related mood swings that flip flopped less than she did. “No no! I can’t do it! I don’t want this! I am strong and confident! How dare they treat me like this! I can do this! I can’t do it!!!” All in the same chapter. She was a complete Mary Sue. Stronger than anyone else and her only “flaw” was that she couldn’t control her powers because of her anger from everyone lying to her, at least until she suddenly could control them after about 12 hours of training and trying. The characters were so hard to like, that you aren’t invested in what happens to them at all.
The story is poorly written, things happen because of convenience, not because they are woven into the thread of the plot properly. The story itself isn’t bad, but the writing kills it. It’s hard to get into, overly simplified to make it dull, and doesn’t have a hook to keep you in. The climax is spottily written, things happen too quickly, then slow, then pick up again in a blur of nonsense. The entire thing leaves you horribly disappointed.
I feel cruel, but perhaps honesty needs to be so from time to time. With dull, unremarkable characters and a story that tries too desperately to be epic and mysterious, this isn’t a book I really find to be all that entertaining. I can’t deny that it does get better towards the end, but just as it starts to shine, it’s tarnished by the horribly written climax. I can overlook the punctuation errors, being that I read a galley (however, other reviews make me think those weren’t repaired for the release) but I can’t overlook the fact that most of this book’s problems could’ve been repaired/avoided had there just been a story and flow editor or collection of beta readers before its actual release. This book had a chance to really shine, but it wasn’t polished nearly enough, leaving this diamond as an unrecognizable stone.
The copy of this book was provided for free from Netgalley. I pre-ordered it back in September, but now I get to read it early. Thanks Netgalley!
PixieThe copy of this book was provided for free from Netgalley. I pre-ordered it back in September, but now I get to read it early. Thanks Netgalley!
Pixie and Levi share a secret, a dark horrible painful secret that makes them certain that staying far away from each other is in the best interest of everything. But when Pixie moves into her Aunt's inn for the summer, she is stuck sharing a bathroom with Levi. Tension, guilt, and feelings long buried surface through the summer, can they find a truce and heal each other, or are they meant to stay broken?
OMG. Only Chelsea Fine. Seriously, the woman is basically a drug dealer, hooking you on her stories until you are addicted. No worries, you don't need rehab, this is the very best type of drug, after all. I will forever read anything she puts out. I have read everything she's put out, but yeah, the trend will continue. Only Chelsea Fine can make me cry like a baby and laugh like a mental patient in the same paragraph. This book took me too many hours to read, but the fault was because I kept having to stop to wipe my eyes and blow my nose. At one point, my husband asked if I was reading a good book or having a pregnancy induced hormone episode. He doesn't understand literary perfection.
Chelsea amazed me with her Archers of Avalon series, by showing she could weave strong characters with darker themes without leaving you feeling depressed. She has only strengthened this skill with Best Kind of Broken. The story is a sad one, about two broken people afraid to heal together because they are so certain that there is hate on the other's part. The story is heart-wrenching, and if you plan to make it through, you better have a box of tissues handy. The secret they share is slowly introduced and is done in such a flawless way, that you feel their pain. The build up of the story is perfection, a perfect speed that keeps you glued to the pages and invested in the story.
Pixie and Levi are brilliant characters. They are so weak and so strong all in the same breath. I found myself loving them more and more as I got to know them on the pages. They are so perfect together, and for each other, and the longer it takes them to get their act together, the more you just want to scream. The other characters in the story aren't the focus, but they are all just so sweet. They work perfectly into the story and make the book feel so real without needing to be focused on.
My only complaint, is the tiniest thing ever. I always fall for the best friend's in Chelsea's books. I did it with Heather in the AoA, and now there is Jenna in Best Kind of Broken. She is perfect and sassy and amazing and I love her because she kind of reminds me of me. I really would've loved to hear a bit more about her and Jack, at least in the epilogue, but that's fine. I can live. Pixie and Levi were the key characters. I am perfect with things as they were.
In case it's not insanely obvious, I totally recommend this book. There is talk about drinking, drunk driving, and some fairly mild sexytimes (well, insane tension aside) so it is for a mature audience. So do yourself a favor and go get this book. And then her other books. And then count the seconds until the next one comes out. Because Chelsea Fine can do no wrong.
This book was provided for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
For the last year, Miranda has been harboring a deep secret relatingThis book was provided for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
For the last year, Miranda has been harboring a deep secret relating to her parent’s death that has caused a rift between her sister and her. She decides to come clean, but before she can, she is taken by a stranger during a midnight swim. Awakening in the underwater world of Marin, she learns that King Marko arranged her kidnapping so that he could keep her as his bride. The women in Marin have become infertile and without an heir to the throne, he runs the risk of losing it to his deranged elder brother Damir. Miranda is desperate to escape, and befriends Marko’s personal guard, Robbie, in attempts to bargain her way out of the city. Trouble is brewing and terrible secrets are being revealed, Miranda will have to figure out who she can trust, and if she will ever get back home alive. Captivate wasn’t what I expected it to be. It starts off in past tense and either slowly changes to first person or else I just got used to it. I hate past tense. Always have, always will, it just throws me off when I am reading. I just prefer first and third person in “real” time. You also have to take note, that this book is from Australia, so the language and slang are written accordingly. It isn’t hard to follow really, the few times I felt a bit lost I could basically guess what was being said. That, and I have a bunch of British friends, so I knew some of the terms that the countries share. My biggest thing at first was the “misspelling” of certain words like “color”, but that is just because I am American. You learn how to spell something and then you start adding u’s into the words and even spell check is like “What is this nonsense?” None of this ruins or takes away from the story, it just threw me off and made the first bit slow to start until I fell into the groove of the book. I knew it was an Australian book and it still threw me, which is the only reason I mention it at all.
The story was nothing like I expected. Based on the synopsis and the listed genres for this novel, I expected a mer tale. I was expecting an underwater world where people could morph between human and mer depending if they were in the water or not. Instead, you are given a world where everyone is human, they just all live in a big dome underwater. There are mermaids in the story, but it is talked about in more of a mad scientist type of way than anything. The plot was unique and easy to follow and the character interactions were quite realistic. Some of the plot elements, such as the pull of the city that makes people not want to leave, felt a little convenient to me, but they didn’t take away from the story either. The traitors were relatively easy to spot for me, with the exception of the one who is caught in the middle there.
I found myself liking all of the characters. I especially liked Robbie. I had trouble warming up to Marko, much more trouble than Miranda did. I don’t completely agree with the quasi-triangle there, but at the same time, it felt right. I don’t know, I found myself rooting for the both of them and neither of them both at the same time.
The ending was the worst for me. Mostly, because I hate waiting between installments. It feels like the next book in the series will feature a large time skip that I really don’t want to deal with. I feel like there is more story happening right now, so I don’t want to wait the months into the future to see how things either mend, or more likely, fall apart.
I found this book to be highly entertaining and compelling and I will be looking forward to the second book in the series. While I was disappointed at the lack of real mermaids in the story, I still enjoyed it thoroughly and recommend it to everyone.
Seven months have passed, and London and her friends aren’t any closer to rescuing Rye or getting the answers they so desperately need to defeat the TSeven months have passed, and London and her friends aren’t any closer to rescuing Rye or getting the answers they so desperately need to defeat the Tycoons. Everywhere they go, the Tycoons seem to be a half step behind them, catching up and keeping them on their toes so they can barely think straight. Add to that, London’s guilt that she hasn’t looked back and is slowly falling for Zen, and emotions are running high. Can they find the answers they need on the Astral Plane, or will their emotions keep them from growing and learning with their Others? Astral Tide jumps in after a bit of a time skip from Otherborn. Roughly seven months have past since the conclusion of the last book, and we find out that our group have been traveling from camp to camp trying to gather what they need to move forward with their plans. Relationships are evolving, emotions are growing, and the dreaming is spreading.
The story is simple really. They are on the run from the Tycoons, and somehow always getting caught. They are wearing out their welcome everywhere they go, because they are basically a plague on the world. Everyone who lets them in, gets hurt in the process. London is filled with guilt because it’s been seven months and they are still no closer to freeing Rye, and she is starting to fall for Zen despite herself.
Which brings us to the only reason this didn’t get another star. A love triangle. It will be the death of me. I foresee it! There is a part where London and another are told about a choice in the end that could end in their deaths. I just.. I froze when I saw the words on the page. It won’t happen until the next book, I am certain of that, and if it happens the way I think it will, I will cry forever. I hate love triangles where you root for the obvious loser instead of the one you are supposed to. I just, don’t see my favorite winning this one. That leaves me horribly disappointed. I get too invested into the romance in a story, and this is going to be a heart-wrenching one for me. I am falling too much in love with London, and by extension, the other characters. It just cannot end pretty. It won’t go my way. I am beyond depressed.
Speaking of the characters, you get to see a lot more Zen and Kim, and even Tora in this book than you did in the last one. I was really happy to see that. Kim remains a side character. The really endearing thing about him is his extreme loyalty. It is unshakable and I adore him for it. I loved seeing more and more about Zen. He is such a nice character and I just want to snuggle him forever. The story was very character driven, and because of it, they are learning more and more about what they need to do.
There were times where things seemed to lag, but only for them to get rocked immediately. The lags are barely noticable. I would find myself starting to wonder when the story was going to pick up, just for it to toss me back into the squall, and I would realize, I had never left, the wind had just given me a chance to catch my breath. Second novels are usually so difficult to like because they are bridges, nothing more. They bridge the way to the third installment. That is how trilogies work. Book one is for world building and character introduction/development, book two is the bridge for preparing and build up to the final conflict, and book three is the end to all ends. Because of it, most of the bridge books end up being horrible and boring. While, I feel there might not have been enough progress made towards their final goal, this bridge was not boring in the least and is a regular tome of knowledge, giving us a lot of answers about the Astral that we were left with from the first book. I can’t fathom how it will go from here, and the semi-cliffhanger ending was confusing and a bit frustrating because I can’t see the direction like I feel I should be able to. I am horribly excited for the third installment. This series has hooked me in a way most dystopians can’t seem to do. ...more
When Yara trusts a stranger to keep her safe from a hurricane, she never expects to wake up with fins. Stolen away and turned mer without her permissiWhen Yara trusts a stranger to keep her safe from a hurricane, she never expects to wake up with fins. Stolen away and turned mer without her permission, Yara hates the merfolk and the handsome boy who turned her. Treygan doesn’t care about the feisty girl who does nothing but snap at him and whine about loathing his kind. All that matters is unlocking the gateway home so that his people can flourish again. The selkies want to return home just as badly as the merfolk do, but when Treygan falls for Yara, they have to take action to ensure that their love doesn’t stand in the way of them getting home, no matter who has to be sacrificed to see the gate open. I had read this book before when it was still with the original publisher, but things were edited when it switched companies and I had honestly forgotten most of the story so I elected to re-read it. I noticed some changes, I know that some of the slang was removed and that some of the bratty comments from Yara were toned down. Unfortunately, the changes weren’t enough to make it a winner. It’s almost jarring reading newer fiction by an author and then reading their older works. You can see their growth and the differences in their skill. Karen Amanda Hooper has clearly grown since this was written. Her Kindrily series is so much better written than this was. That aside, it’s the book that you have to judge when you review something, not the other works you have read.
The story jumps right in. The plot takes hold by page 6 and so there is no time what-so-ever for any real character development or even a plot development. There is no build up. One minute Yara is a human trying to prep for a hurricane, the next she is trusting a stranger and being turned into a mermaid. The beginning of the story is annoying and repetitive. Yara goes on and on about how worried she is that her boyfriend will learn she is a monster and then she just stops caring. The switch between her emotions is far too quick and stunted. It’s a testament to the lack of character development that everything she feels comes across as shallow and unrealistic. The whole C-weed and Seagarettes thing was annoying and really didn’t need to be added into the story at all. I would’ve rather not seen that as a plot point. After 100 pages or so, the story starts to take off and shows real promise. I feel like the climax could’ve been better written, but it served it’s purpose well enough. The ending wraps up rather nicely, making you wonder why this is a series. It doesn’t need to be, but I can imagine what else might need to be told.
The characters are poorly written. Yara is intolerable. She spends the entire time whining and everything she feels is quick to change and really there for story progression more than it is to make her relatable. Treygan and Rownan were barely tolerable. Rownan is a horrible character. No depth and he was played as the boyfriend but his description wasn’t even swoonworthy. Treygan was slightly better, but not enough to save Yara. Their relationship developed too quickly with no substance to back it. I couldn’t believe in their unshakeable, undying love like I was supposed to. Pango and Koraline were the most interesting of the characters, and yet they were complete side/background characters. I wasn’t pleased with how the background characters felt better developed than the main characters.
Despite the poor development across the board and the slow to start plot, I did enjoy the book. It wasn’t horrible, but it could’ve been better. I’ve seen Hooper’s other work to know this for a fact, but everyone has to start somewhere and this was very entertaining for a debut novel. While is wasn’t the best Mermaid story out there, I am happy to have read it.
Tristan has survived the change, and with it, created a new bond to Savannah. As he struggles to regain his memories and get used to his new vampire aTristan has survived the change, and with it, created a new bond to Savannah. As he struggles to regain his memories and get used to his new vampire abilities, not all is well at home. Tensions and fears within the Clann are growing, and before long, an all out war erupts. When tragedy strikes, Savannah and Tristan’s relationship is tested to it’s limits when revenge becomes a welcomed thought. Can they find a compromise and save their people, or will everything they love be destroyed in the crossfire? I actually found the story this time around to be a bit dull. It’s a very simple premise and it is almost like the author didn’t know how to continue to perfect blend of angst in the story. The angst was still there, but it didn’t have the same depth to it. The majority of the book had Savannah, Tristan, and their families on the run, dealing with internal conflicts within their group. The tension of living together, getting used to Tristan as a vampire, wanting to return and set things right but not being able to agree upon a course of action. I felt like this story was more of a second in the trilogy than a completion. Yes, the story was meant to end, but the interactions and the way things came about, it didn’t feel like the epic completion needed for the end of a trilogy.
That aside, everything did wrap up really well. The connections, while they took eons to appear, were clean and easy. The climax was nice, though the build up to it wasn’t intense enough. While I was glued to every word, I didn’t feel as invested or emotionally moved at everything that happened. When heartstrings were meant to be tugged, mine barely vibrated.
The characters remained the same for the most part. We got to see a darker side of Tristan, which while I understand why Savannah disagreed and how it could make for a couple’s spat, it didn’t hold the weight it should’ve. Much more is learnt about Savannah’s mother, in a way. We see more of her, and get an idea of how she operates, but even as a character she was rather dull.
For the completion of this series, I was disappointed with this book. I felt like it needed more build up and tension and to go out with a bang instead of a pop. As a series though, I enjoyed the Clann novels very much. The series was strong and ended nicely so long as you look at the trilogy as a whole and not book to book.
Being a redhead is all that matters in Scarletville. Redheads hold all the power and popularity and everyone knows it. Felicity’s life has been devoteBeing a redhead is all that matters in Scarletville. Redheads hold all the power and popularity and everyone knows it. Felicity’s life has been devoted to building her status in the redhead society. She is popular, has the perfect boyfriend, best friends, and is well on her way to winning the Miss Scarlet pageant, just like her mother before her. But her life starts tumbling down when she receives a note in her locker: “I know your secret.” Because Felicity’s hair color comes right from a bottle. If anyone found out she was really a “strawbie”, everything would be ruined. Her life, her friendships, her relationship, her mother’s expectations of her, her chances at art school, all of it, gone in an instant. But as the blackmailer’s demands begin to hurt her friends and loved ones, she has to wonder, how far is she willing to go to protect her secret? And will it even be worth it in the end? I expected this book to be entirely ridiculous. I wasn’t holding out much hope for it in the beginning, but it actually turned out to be quite enjoyable.
Felicity is borderline unbearable in the beginning. Her vanity is annoying and it feels like her worries should be unfounded until you really start reading through things. I wasn’t a fan of her boyfriend, Brent I think his name was? He was such a dull character that I didn’t find him memorable in the least. It was obvious she wasn’t meant to be with him and who she should be interested instead. Plus, she even said herself she wasn’t fond of Brent, so why should I care if she doesn’t? Her friends, Ivy and Hailey, are really sweet. I liked them a lot, especially Ivy. And Jonathon was such a cutie. I was rooting for him from the start. I couldn’t dislike Gabby. I knew there had to be more to her, and sure, once figuring her out I still didn’t adore her, but I understood her.
The plot is simple, but the flow is just perfect. Granted, it gets a little predictable. In the end, I knew her plan wouldn’t happen. I knew what she would end up doing. I had a feeling what the outcome would be, and I was right. But it didn’t matter because even with the predictability, I was entertained the whole way and actually rather impressed with how smoothly it was written. The build up of the town is perfect and you really begin to understand how important being a redhead is. She could really lose everything if she is discovered. It wouldn’t seem like it would be much out in the real world, but when the only world you have ever known is Scarletville, it’s hard to think about the outside world. Scarlet has been so sheltered, that she doesn’t know what is out there. It’s nice of her to start realizing what it really is that she wants, especially when she decided to go for it.
This was an easy, simple read with a nice, well-written story. Perfect for a rainy day or a desperate need for some contemporary drama. It was shockingly entertaining. Recommended.
The Caputo/Monte rivalry has gone on for decades, and no one in the respective families is even sure what started it at this point. They only know theThe Caputo/Monte rivalry has gone on for decades, and no one in the respective families is even sure what started it at this point. They only know they loathe one another and want the other’s Italian eatery to fail so they can mark themselves as the winners. After a Monte prank closes a struggling Cap’s for repairs, the Caputo family plan a grand reopening under the guise of their daughter, Gigi’s, sixteenth birthday party believing that not even a Monte would ruin a young girl’s party. When a handsome young man and his friend crash the party and takes Gigi’s first kiss, she finds herself quickly losing her heart to her enemy. Roman Monte shares her feelings, but being together is harder than they want it to be. Hoping to gain the approval of their families, they set out to discover the cause of the rift between them, hoping to right the wrongs to unite their families. Can they do it? Or will only a tragic ending bring their families together? I should probably start off by telling you, I never liked Romeo and Juliet. I first read it when I was about five years old and hated it from the get go. Yes, the Disney movies I grew up with were far reaching, but a three day relationship that resulted in six deaths and was toted as being a tragic romance just wasn’t doing it for me. In true Twisted Lit fashion, my dislike for Romeo and Juliet wasn’t a deal breaker for the story. If anything, Anyone But You made me enjoy the story slightly better.
The story is written in two parts, switching between time periods alternatively between chapters. While reading about the current goings-on about Gigi and Roman, you are also getting to see Nick and Benny’s interactions and what caused the feud between the Caputos and Montes to begin with. The chapters aren’t advertised with font or header effects to tell you from the start which time period you are reading, but after being jarred by the story a few chapters, I got into the habit of scanning the page for a name before diving back into the story. While that is something that bothers me, it might go unnoticable to someone else. I think I just get carried away by the story and forget that things might change. My galley didn’t start new chapters on a new page, and sometimes I found myself just skipping over the chapter titles as I read, which is a habit I have always had. The writing is done well enough though that you never need to re-read more than a paragraph if you get the same jolt as I did.
The characters are nice. It’s fun to see who is playing the part of the original in this modernization. While Gigi had more depth to her than Juliet did, the rest of the characters were still rather shallow in their development. This kept it similar to the original, but didn’t exactly make the new characters endearing. What really saved the story was the relationship between Nick and Benny in the past tense. Showing their relationship with one another, seeing what caused the feud, really saved the story for me. Yes, Benny over-reacted, but trying to place myself in his shoes, I understood it. He was being horribly stubborn, but after everything he had been through, I at least understood why. I found his story to be far more captivating than anything Gigi and Roman had to tell. Just as Romeo and Juliet fell for one another quickly, Roman and Gigi jumped into their relationship just as quickly. I found their relationship to be more believable, but I did like how the homage to the original was left intact in an obvious way instead of changing it to be unrecognizable.
I did really enjoy this book. I laughed, I cried, I had a nice time with it. My heart just broke for Benny, even once he started acting the jerk. I’ve recommended the series before, this book just re-enforces that recommendation.
Skye is a bit of a wallflower, a shutterbug who prefers to see life through the lens of her camera instead of fRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Skye is a bit of a wallflower, a shutterbug who prefers to see life through the lens of her camera instead of from the center of the action. When a student is found dead at a party Skye attends and she knows who might be involved, she has to deal with the idea of being an accessory to murder. As relationships shift and change around her, Skye starts to really take a look at her life, and she doesn't like what she sees. Can she really change herself now, or will harboring her secret destroy her first?
While not as good as Tempestuous was, Exposure was another great retelling of an old classic. Macbeth is probably one of Shakespeare's more difficult stories to try to modernize. While subtle, the homages to Macbeth were cleverly woven into each page. If you go looking for a flashy retelling, then you might be disappointed. Exposure was written in such a way to make a Shakespeare buff smile without alienating someone who has never read Macbeth. I believe that it was done well enough to make it easier to understand if you can match these new characters to their old counterparts.
The characters weren't as nice as I wanted them to be. Skye felt unlikable to me. For her to be "stunning" and not know it, and for her to be so tall and people to just overlook her, it didn't feel realistic. If you are "stunning" and tall and have model potential with a little bit of makeup, then how do people not notice you? Skye actually asks this same question in the book at their Prom. Everyone kept telling her how she was so beautiful and how they didn't recognize her, but what, she was ugly the day before? It's one thing to be withdrawn, but she just didn't feel as realistic as I wanted her to. She was also really hard to like. It wasn't until well into the story that I started to like her at all. I didn't understand what she saw in Craig. Not once. From A to B, I never saw Craig's appeal. Beth was seriously unbalanced. The rest of the characters were just alright. They didn't hold enough importance for me.
The story was nice. It held mystery and did well at capturing the essence of Macbeth as it went along, but the plot was lacking. Or maybe it just fell for me. I feel like most of the elements in the story served very little purpose, and yet I enjoyed every page. I loved the whole story and everything that happened. I just couldn't see the point of many things that happened and it left me uninvested in the story. It all wraps up in the end. The ending is unsettling. It isn't tragic by any means, but it is a bit of a downer. There is promise for joy again, but it's left on enough of a downer to leave you upset with things. Not enough to rage or cry, but enough that you might be disappointed.
While not as great as it's predecessor, it was still a good read and I did enjoy it. But if you are looking for warm fuzzies, look elsewhere. ...more
Tatiana's world changed with a single kiss. Torn between her hatred for Azor andRead this and other reviews at my blog.
**Beware of possible spoilers**
Tatiana's world changed with a single kiss. Torn between her hatred for Azor and her unwanted love for him, she must fight through the bond's effects and decide what she really wants. But lies and deception run rampant in the kingdom, and if she doesn't find out who she can truly trust, and fast, she might not live to see things change. Everlost takes place at the same time as Evergreen, only from within Natatoria.
This book was really hard for me. The characters were the same as ever, although the entirety of the book until the very very end followed Tatiana and her bodyguard Jacob's point of views. The two of them, joined with Azor and a few supporting characters are the bulk what what you are exposed to until they very end.
The story and writing were amazing. There were a few plot holes, which have lingered throughout this series and never been fully addressed or fixed, but otherwise it was perfect. The writing is compelling and fast paced and leaves you wanting more with every turn of the page.
What didn't work for me, really was the point of views. In my review of book #2, Evergreen, I had said that not having an eye into the kingdom made the book unsettling for me. After reading Everlost, I can understand why the book didn't flop between the land and sea. It would've made the story too incredibly long and wouldn't have been possible to split between two novels because of the fact that the conflict would have taken far too long to build. Everlost was no different. Not having any knowledge of land, although you already know what happens there, was unsettling. This started out as Ash and Fin's story and then Everlost steals it and makes it Tatiana's story. I feel like the end of the novel didn't have enough resolution and stole the story away too extremely. There should have been a better balance.
Aside from those issues though, this was still a wonderful read. It attaches itself to you right away and you cling to the words, desperate to make it to the next page and see how things go. While I enjoyed every moment, I was left disappointed in the end. I'm not sure if this is the end of the series, but if it is, I am left saddened and unfulfilled....more
I really wanted to like this book. It has some problems though, which kept me from being able to really dive into it and not look away. The writing stI really wanted to like this book. It has some problems though, which kept me from being able to really dive into it and not look away. The writing style is really stiff, which is hard to deal with, as the book is long. The flow was stunted and jerky and it became quickly obvious that English isn’t the first language for our author. It felt like the author came up with her ideas in one language and then wrote them down in another and a good part of things were lost in translation.
The writing style got to me. It was full of description. I read very far into the book and felt like I had read more details than dialogue, and when you do see dialogue, it’s awkward and superfluous. The writing is far too formal, for any novel really in my opinion, but especially a novel with teenagers. Teenagers don’t speak like that. It would’ve been fine if the Arkanians spoke formally only, but it leaks into other parts of the novel until the other characters are speaking and thinking formally and it doesn’t work. There were a lot of unnecessary scenes that could’ve been cut to make the book shorter, which would’ve been nice because the story repeats itself in places. There were a lot of plot elements that were tossed in there randomly for convenience with little to no purpose or explanation, which is one of those things I have problems forgiving. I hate when I can’t see the buildup. The lack of buildup leaked over into the plot as well. Usually, you can see threads of the climax as the story goes. You might not know which thread will be pulled, or how hard it will be yanked, but you know that you need to follow one of those threads because they will lead you to the climax. Having multiple threads is the way to keep the readers guessing and engaged. This story had no real threads, just wisps that were trying to become strings. By the time the climax happened, it was hardly led into and ended up being a let down because of it.
The characters needed better development. I couldn’t relate to them, or even care for them or their relationships. The interactions were unnatural, the dialogue uncomfortable to even read, and their emotions and actions hard to believe. Molly annoyed me the most, she could’ve been such a great character, but she spent too much time pining over Viktor (Who, by the way, switched between being “Victor” and “Viktor” often through the novel) and stressing over nothing. I hated being in her head. She was dull. Her motivations were shallow and tedious.
Despite the flaws with the story, lack of climax, poorly executed resolution, and underdone character development, the winning ticket of this story is Whelan’s imagination. I found the descriptions of Arkana to be captivating and beautiful. It is such an interesting place that it actually makes me want to spend more time there. So while I probably won’t rush out to continue the series post haste, I will eventually get the next because I want to see more of Arkana. I feel like this could’ve been a really great story with more polish. It needed more storyline input before being sent to publishing and probably more editing to make the writing and dialogue feel more real.
Samantha and her family have moved around the country all her life, supposably searching for better weather forRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Samantha and her family have moved around the country all her life, supposably searching for better weather for her father's severe allergies. Lacuna Valley quickly shows itself to be different than anywhere else. She meets a boy who seems to know more about her and her family and she does, and her sister's praying is starting to look like she really can make things happen just by wishing for them. As Sam learns more about her family, she has to wonder, does her mother really want to kill her?
This novel was really hard for me to review. I was on the fence about a lot of it. The characters were hard to get attached to. I honestly couldn't tell you what Nick looks like. If his description was there, it was rushed so quickly to make it unmemorable. I was able to get more of a visual for some of the side characters than I could for the main characters. But beyond that, Sam and Nick especially were really poorly fleshed out. There were boring. I didn't hate them, but I couldn't root for them either. I just didn't care. I found myself more interested in Violet and Zach than anyone else. Danielle was the hardest to figure out. One minute it felt like she was just mentally unbalanced. Then the next it would seem that she was nothing more than a self absorbed, heartless, monster. She was too hot and cold and it made her difficult to deal with. She felt very one dimensional at that. You could've put in a cardboard box with a knife and you would have just as much of a villain.
The story was nice. Muddled and felt poorly thought out or executed, I'm not sure which, but it was still nice. The plot is intriguing. You want to know what happens. However, when you get to the end of the book, although you kind of want to know what happens next, because of the weak characters and the thin plot, you don't care as much as you should. The plot only feels thin because of the writing. If it had been better written, I think it would've been amazing. But instead it jumps around, confusing you. It was also really really slow to start. You have all these scenes or whining and that characters going back and forth, arguing about the same thing they were in the previous chapter with no new information coming out of them. It wasn't until the last quarter of the book that things really pick up, but by then, it's too late to save it. Not enough can be fit into that remaining section to satisfy you. You finish the book and are left with far more questions than you should have and a sense of frustration at the lack of resolution.
It had it's moments, and I will still read the next in the series, but I hope that some of the flaws are fixed for it, because a little gem of a story is hiding in here just waiting to be shined. ...more
Thank you Netgalley for providing my advance copy.
After being roped into the greatest cheating scandal her prepRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Thank you Netgalley for providing my advance copy.
After being roped into the greatest cheating scandal her prep school had ever seen, Miranda is forced to take a job at Hot-Dog Kabob in the mall as a way to repay her "debt to society" for her involvement. Banished and ridiculed, unfairly, by her classmates, Miranda struggles to maintain her dignity in her low-wage, highly embarrassing job. When the biggest snow storm of the season traps the mall workers and last-minute shoppers in the mall overnight, Miranda decides to use her charm and cleverness to get back at her former best friends, the ones who had shoved the blame of the scandal on her shoulders. With the help over her over-zealous coworker, Ariel, and the cute loner, Caleb, from the video game store, she gets her revenge and discovers a lot about herself in the process.
This was super cute. I should let it be known that I haven't read The Tempest since I was about nine and I honestly don't remember it at all. Not being familiar with the original tale, will not hurt this story for you. I wasn't able to see how many nods there might have been to the original story, but it didn't feel lacking to me at all.
Miranda is a great character. She is a great planner, and people seem to rely on her to solve their problems. She does get sick of being everyone's go-to girl for their problems, but at the same time, she relishes the attention. It was great to watch her realize who her real friends were, and get over her anger as the night went on. Caleb is a great male lead. He is sullen and cynical and just makes for a great companion to Miranda. They are so ridiculously perfect for one another that it just makes their interactions that much better to watch. Ariel is the cutest friend. She is not one to be underestimated either. The characters were really good, and they had a lot of fun throughout the night. It made for great entertainment.
The plot was cute and simple. It had underlying things that needed handled, but a lot of the book felt really random. In any other story, that wouldn't work, but it totally worked here. It was a lot of fun to see their adventures through the night play out. The one thing that was a recurring issue in the book that wasn't mentioned in the summary is that there is a shop-lifter locked into the mall with them. They spend the night getting increasingly more worried about it until they realize who it is. The danger element was there, but it was done in a way to not be a killjoy. This book wasn't meant to be a mystery, so it turning into one would've been really unsettling.
This story was short, easy to read, and hard not to love. This is definitely a series that I plan to keep my eye on. I can't wait till this one is released so I can buy it for my book shelf. I recommend it to everyone....more
Emma has made the worst mistake you can make, she kissed her best friend's boyfriend, Colin. To make it worse,Read this and other reviews at my blog.
Emma has made the worst mistake you can make, she kissed her best friend's boyfriend, Colin. To make it worse, she lives in a small town, so she runs the risk of everyone knowing about it. Somehow the kiss keeps quiet, but now her best friend doesn't trust her, the boy is ignoring her, and Emma is feeling awful. When scandal breaks out in the town, and only Emma and Colin know the truth, she must decide what is worth giving up to save someone else. With so many people in town asking what Jesus would do, she discovers it's time to start asking what she should do instead, and live her own life.
This book kind of disappointed me. Alright, so it's obvious from the title alone that this was going to have religious themes. That is fine, I set myself up for that. I wasn't expecting, but I certainly didn't miss all the hinted relation to The Crucible. The town Emma lives in, is one of those highly religious small towns that tend to get a little carried away by their faith. They like to bring their faith into everything, even places it doesn't really need to be focused on, and anyone who questions it is singled out and shunned.
The characters were a little lacking. Emma was decently fleshed out, but the other characters didn't feel real enough to me. A few of them, like Colin, I thought was going to have more role to play in the story and then he was hardly around. I guess in a way it make sense, but the whole thing felt off to me. Sure, I flew through the pages to see what happened next, but I wasn't compelled to keep reading.
The plot was off from the summary. There was so little to do with having kissed Colin that it felt like the summary was stretching it. I was really disappointed in the lack of romance. Being a book with religious tones does not mean you have to skip on the love. Aside from a few kisses, there was nothing. Even the crush Emma develops seems silly. This was one of those books that I felt like, the summary was pulled from the things far off on the side. Or maybe it was written before the book was finished and never changed to make up for the fact that the book took a completely different direction.
While I was reading through, I kept flashing back to my youth when I was sitting around reading Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume. I feel like this would be a great book for a younger crowd who is fans of that one. This wasn't a bad book, it just didn't click with me. ...more
Thank you Netgalley for providing my advance copy.
Jody is horribly addicted to her favorite band Regulators, esRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Thank you Netgalley for providing my advance copy.
Jody is horribly addicted to her favorite band Regulators, especially it's frontman Jackson Gatlin. She eat, sleeps, and breathes Jackson. So when she gets the chance to see Regulators in concert, she is super happy, waiting all day in the bitter cold for a front row perch. But things don't go as she plans, as she goes home with a concussion and Jackson himself, who she somehow managed to kidnap with a candy bar. Now she has the rock star holed up in her garage, and he doesn't really want to leave.
This book was nothing like I expected. It actually started out really boring. The chapters with the concert and the lining up outside the concert hall especially were turn offs for me. It was all inner monologue with lots of description. It gets better quickly after, but even then the book itself was rather slow paced.
The characters were good. I loved Mac so hard. He is just such a great guy. Jackson was a jerk and a half for a good portion of things. You kind of grow to understand him. He has no people skills, being a celebrity has killed any he might have had prior. Jody begins very unlikable. She is such a "hardcore" (see: "obsessed") fan that she is annoying. She gets better. Jackson quickly highlights her delusions and crushes her dreams. She spends a good part of the book being either really dense or really blind.
The story is actually really fabulous. The interactions between the characters all lead up to a very touching end. The tie ins with Jody's grandfather are perfect. He seems like he would've been such a fun old man, a "legend" as Jackson describes him. But the realization at the end is just brilliant. The ending makes up for what seems like a lame story. Everything builds and weaves rather slowly and when it all comes together at the end you are just left with fuzzy feelings. Not all of them are good fuzzies either. You are left feeling sorry for celebrities, feeling happy for Jackson's fate, feeling enthralled by the items that improve Mac and Jody's lives.
This was really a great book. It was hard to rate because of how slow it is for most of it. The ending really saved it. It was a great read, so I do recommend it. It will feel slow for a really long time, don't give up on it! It is worth finishing. ...more
Twenty-two, about to graduate from college, and the only virgin among her friends, Bliss decides that it is timRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Twenty-two, about to graduate from college, and the only virgin among her friends, Bliss decides that it is time to lose her v-card. What better way than through a one-night stand right? Getting the gorgeous British man she met in the bar back to her place was the easy part, calming her nerves to sleep with him is another story. Creating a lame excuse, she leaves him naked in her bed. If that wasn't embarrassing enough, when she gets to her first class the next morning, the boy she had left naked in her bed is her new teacher.
I really liked this book. It wasn't overly imaginative or exceptionally great writing. It was just fun. You know that face you get when you get really good news? Like, the fluffy news face. Or maybe that face you get when your best friend tells you that your crush was just checking you out. You smile so large you can't contain it, you dance around a bit, and you squee in happiness. That's what this book was. It was a squee-worthy fluff-fest. It isn't the type of book to leave you with any deep emotions. It's a light read that is meant to make you smile and then let you get on with your life. It does it's job well.
I found it hard to get into Bliss' voice at first. It passed really quickly. I had this feeling that I wouldn't like her, or that her reasons for running out on the cute boy would make me dislike her or find her unbelievable. I found her quite believable. Her reactions to things made quite a bit of sense. Garrick was fabulous. I loved everything about him. I was a bit bothered to see a British male lead, as that is overdone in books I read lately, but whatever. Guilty please. I have no regrets.
The plot is light and simple. It is really easy to get through. I think what bothered me the most was that the timeline can get lost in things. There is one point where they exchange "I love yous" and it felt a bit abrupt for me. I had somehow expected that less time had past than had actually gone by. Otherwise the writing was smooth and quite enjoyable. There were quite a few times where I laughed out loud at something funny that Bliss would say, usually in her head.
All in all, this is a really nice read if you just want a quick squee. Perfect length for a rainstorm and completely easy to read in one sitting. ...more
Julius P. Heil High has about 250 students, and a general ratio of more girls than guys. But when budget cuts dRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Julius P. Heil High has about 250 students, and a general ratio of more girls than guys. But when budget cuts drive the desired football couch across the country, a lot of families pull their boys out to go to private schools where they can have a shot at getting their coveted football scholarships. This has left the school with a 4:1 ratio of girls to boys, making even the geekiest boys a hot commodity. Kelly is a down-to-earth girl, not the type to get noticed by boys to begin with, and because of the lack of boys, her friend Hunter has gotten quite popular. When she realizes that she likes him, she can't think of how she could possibly compete for him. Now she is out to try to make him see her so that she might win his heart.
This book was cute. The idea was really nice and I was looking forward to it, but in the end I was rather disappointed. The story switches points of view between Kelly and Hunter, which I loved. I loved being able to see both sides of things. It really allows you to get to know both characters and it helps give you a connection to them. You want to root for them.
Kelly and Hunter are both really likable. They are also pretty cute together, which is a plus in a romance setting. Their friends are all fabulous as well. They all had their faults and strengths and were just generally well-rounded. The friends were all funny to read about as well, which was nice. It made for quite a few places where I would laugh aloud or smile to myself from something cute happening.
The plot was really simple, and that's where the story suffered. Things felt rushed. There were time skips randomly through things, and things would be mentioned as an after thought. Like, someone would break up and it would simply say that they had broken up "a few weeks ago" and that would be the end of it. No reason for a lot of things. It was all convenient plot points. Things happened because they needed to, not because the story wanted them to. It made the story feel really stiff and jarring. Kelly going out with the Freshman was a great example. By the summary for the book you think there will be more to it, but nope, she goes out with him to try to make Hunter jealous and then they hardly do anything. How can you make someone jealous just by being taken in name with someone. There was next to nothing about their relationship in there. I feel like things wrapped up too nicely. There wasn't enough conflict, there wasn't enough problems. Everything that happened was fairly small and unexciting.
So this was a cute read and I really did enjoy it, but I was disappointed. I had expected it to be quite a bit better from the summary, and there just wasn't enough there to thrill me. This is defiantly something you want to rent or borrow from a friend before you jump into buying it. ...more
Harper grew up with her father, a career Marine, after her mother died. Her father was rather tough on her, treatinReview originally posted at my blog
Harper grew up with her father, a career Marine, after her mother died. Her father was rather tough on her, treating her more like a soldier than his child. Deciding that she wants to break out and live her own life, she chooses a college across the country. Her new roommate immediately takes her under her wing and helps her figure out who she is. She quickly finds herself falling for her roommate's brother Chase, who seems like the worst guy in the world for her, but the one she wants the most. She meets Chase's roommate Brandon shortly after and finds her heart split in two as she also falls for him. They would both do anything for her, even stepping aside to make sure she is happy.
I want to say first off, that this is a tear-jerker. Don't read this outside of the house, people will think you are a blubbering mess. Make sure you have tissues handy. At about midway through, you will need them. I got to the point where I was crying so hard, from the good points and the bad, that I had to stop and wipe the tears from my eyes or blow my nose about every three pages.
I really liked Chase and Brandon. Even when they were being stupid or aggressive, I loved them. They are two wonderful men, and you get to the point where you really want Harper to have both of them. Obviously, she can't truly have both of them, and the "solution" to this problem was just.. yeah. Tissues. I refuse to spoil it.
Harper I wasn't crazy about at first. I mean, I can understand her breaking out like she did, but I felt like she jumped into things rather quickly. It's one thing to indulge, but it is another to forget common sense, and I felt like she had. I ended up liking her, it was hard not to, but she irked me at first.
The story is fabulous and tragic. Some of it seemed rather predictable, but it was told in a way that made that acceptable. You wanted to keep reading. The characters and writing were engaging enough that a predictable plot was nothing.
Most people who recommended this to me did so because of my love for Easy by Tammara Webber. I think I cried harder for Taking Chances but I liked Easy more. A fabulous novel and I highly recommend it. ...more
Jenna is a Green Teen activist from Jersey. She is all about saving the enviroment, but when her family decide that theyReview also posted at my blog
Jenna is a Green Teen activist from Jersey. She is all about saving the enviroment, but when her family decide that they will be staying with her grandma in Florida while her dad is on an overseas business trip, she decides that it's time to really become one with nature. Best way for her to do this, is to spend her summer in Canada at her Godmother Susie's home. She is excited to see the beauty of nature that her activism is so eager to save, and the hot boys are certainly not a downside either. She quickly realizes that her ideals are far from perfect, and that nature has a lot to teach her about herself.
After reading Getting Over Garrett Delaney, I was anxious to read something else by Abby McDonald and this was the first thing I could get my hands on. I was really worried I wouldn't like the story. I have no problem with conservation or activism, but they usually don't make for an entertaining read for me.
The characters were enjoyable. They weren't as fun as I had hoped they would be, but I did enjoy reading about them. The plot was really simple. Things kind of fell flat for me. The story seemed like it was going to have a real direction about it, and it ended up being just a coming of age story. It's like the summary was too hard to write for what the story was. Now, don't let that sell you off of it, because it was really fun to read.
I dislike how the best friend eventually got painted out to be the villain, but the way the story needed to go, it was kind of needed. It becomes obvious right away that the friendship will crumble based on this summer. It's sad to lose friends, but considering Jenna really found herself, which seems like it was something she didn't have before, it was worth losing a friend over. It has to be a horrible thing to realize that you were trying so hard to fit in somewhere that you lost yourself, but Jenna handles the realization with her head held high.
It's prom night, but the perfect night of dances, dresses and lipglosses is going anything but perfect for threRead this and other reviews at my blog.
It's prom night, but the perfect night of dances, dresses and lipglosses is going anything but perfect for three very different girls. Popular girl Bliss just saw her boyfriend cheating on her with her best friend, Bad girl outcast Jolene is completely out of her element, and in pink, wondering why she thought he would show up. Shy, invisible Megan is ready to take control of her life and stand out, until her date cancels on her at the last minute. When the three girls come together for a little revenge and rebellion, then end up with a night that none of them could've imagined.
This book was cute. It wasn't special, it wasn't unique, it wasn't fabulous, it was cute. This is one of those cute coming of age stories where the characters look at their lives, hate what they see, and change it in ways they didn't think would happen. It's light, it's fluffy, it puts a smile on your face and then you move on. It isn't the type to endear itself to you and leave you thinking about it for hours afterwards. It entertains you until the last page, and then you move on.
The characters are cute. I liked the three main girls. Their stories make sense, they fit the roles that were created for them. They have a lot of fun, they fight, they yell, they laugh, they have a great time with each other. The other characters in the story were perfect as well. There was nothing wrong with any of them. None of them really stand out and make you think about them, but they all played their roles really well.
The plot was simple and it was written smoothly. The story keeps you glued and you want to know what happens. It's all fairly predictable, but it leaves a smile on your face as you watch each girl grow in their own ways, as well as the friendship between them growing.
So while this isn't a remarkable book, I have to recommend it. It is a great short little read. I would've given it a 4stars, but I usually don't rate fluff books that high unless they really impress me. This one entertained me, but I wasn't impressed. That doesn't make it any less worthy, just not memorable. ...more
Weeks after the tragic death of her father, Dawn's life is coming back together. While she is still dealing witRead this and other reviews at my blog.
Weeks after the tragic death of her father, Dawn's life is coming back together. While she is still dealing with the pain, her and her team of misfits have been officially inducted as Guardians and a new President sits in the Scarlet House. When Sebastian and a beautiful vampire from his past disappear on a rescue mission and Born are being abducted and the President won't do a thing to help, Dawn knows she must act. Teaming up with Razor, a smooth talking rebel, and her team, Dawn sets out to solve the mystery of the missing Born before anymore can be taken. But it soon becomes clear that everything is coming back to her. Someone wants her dead and will do anything to make it happen.
I love when Sophomore novels are better than their predecessors. Just when you think a series couldn't possibly get better, it does and then you have to curse the limiting five star rating system. I did notice that this novel wasn't written as linear as the first one, and that might not even be the right word. ReVamped was written in a fairly straight-forward fashion. It like like walking down a straight road. Now, this road might have had hills, valleys, random roadside explosions, and gone from perfectly paved to rocky in a heartbeat and made you wish you were wearing hiking boots instead of wedges, but it was straight-forward all the same. ReAwakened was not like that. You know when your GPS starts recalculating? That was ReAwakened. Now before you run off screaming into the night, that isn't a bad thing. The writing was frustrating. It was frustrating to the characters and to the reader. Just when you thought they had a real solid clue about what was going on, it became apparent that they knew nothing. Each time you thought you knew where the story was going, it proved you wrong. This works out perfectly with the story. There are questions of health and sanity in this novel and the writing just accented those issues. It made it better. I can't get into detail without spoilers, but it works. It really does.
The characters are still fabulous. You get to really learn a lot about Hunter, Brooke, Sebastian, and especially Dawn. I loved getting to discover more about these side characters and watch their relationships change and grow. Sophie really gets her chance to shine as well, which I loved. She deserves that chance. Then there was Razor. I had seen a bit about Razor thanks to a teaser that Ada Adams had posted on her website which piqued my interest in him, but he was nothing that I expected. His relationship to another character was surprising when it should've been so obvious. Although it will get me shot, I actually found myself liking him more than Sebastian. I know!! Blasphemy! He was a perfect addition to the series and I am so happy he was there. He added the right touch of humor and mischief that was needed to keep the darker tones stable. ReAwakened would not have been as good if not for Razor. He was a necessary balance.
The story was intense and enlightening. I found myself focusing more on the darker tones and background story than I did on the immediate story. The immediate story is the Born kidnappings. I barely paid attention. They weren't exactly a Red Herring, but they were the gentle foundation for a much larger and intense story. The ending revelations were insane. Just as I started to suspect them they twisted by being much worse than I thought they would be. Books that make me scare me cat by yelling out "OMG really?!" are always good ones in my eyes. That is until they end on a cliffhanger. I can name one other series who used such an unfair cliffhanger (*cough*Archers of Avalon*cough*). Cliffhangers are evil. They hook you and force you to read the next installment. Bah, as if Angel Creek needed it! I was addicted already!
This series is proving itself to have more twists and turns than many I have found in a while and I am ensnared into it. If you haven't yet given it a chance, you are being foolish. This series is amazing and Ada Adams is brilliant for writing it. Recommended to all. ...more
Sadie has been in love with her best friend Garrett for two long years. Two years of waiting and wishing that he would reReview also posted at my blog
Sadie has been in love with her best friend Garrett for two long years. Two years of waiting and wishing that he would realize that they were perfect for each other. But when they are separated for the summer and he calls to say that he is in love and the girl he loves isn't Sadie, she decides that enough is enough. Armed with her new barista job, some fun coworkers, a rejuvinated friendship and a selfehlp program, she is determined to get over Garrett Delaney, and maybe even discover a new love in the process.
This novel was so cute! The characters are fantastic. They are all unique and fun. You can't help but just like them all. Their banter with one another is real and natural. I spent so much of the book either laughing out loud or smiling. I smiled for the whole what, three hours I tore through this book in and now my cheeks hurt.
The plot was really simple, Sadie wants to get over Garrett, she tries and fails miserably and then her friend and coworkers step in to help. Between them, she makes great progress, learns a lot about her friends, love in general, and herself. It's a wonderful coming of age type tale. The light writing and fun dialogue really help keep you reading.
Overall this book was too precious. It's a perfect rainy day read when you need to clear the storm clouds away and find a smile. I usually don't give fluff books 5 stars, but I couldn't help myself here. It was just too cute....more