Friday, December 26, 2014

Forgotten Friday: Shadows by Paula Weston

This meme is about books that have been pushed aside while others have gone viral and made into movies. It can be old books, new books, any book that never got its (or enough) time  in the spot light.

This is a book about angels without most of the religious aspects you would expect. Actually, if I'm more specific it's about bastard half-angel children (who are now adults). This book is sexy, exciting, filled with adventure, and a tiny bit of love. This is an Aussie series which is a new one for me, there is a lot of terminology and slang that I'm not familiar with but I love it. It's about a girl name Gabby whose brother passed away and while she's trying to move on with her life discovers that it's not just her brother she has lost in her past. If you like fantasy, action, and a book with a lot of attitude, this book is for you.

Synopsis: It’s almost a year since Gaby Winters was in the car crash that killed her twin brother, Jude. Her body has healed in the sunshine of Pandanus Beach, but her grief is raw and constant. It doesn’t help that every night in her dreams she kills demons and other hell-spawn.

And then Rafa comes to town. Not only does he look exactly like the guy who’s been appearing in Gaby’s dreams—he claims a history with her brother that makes no sense. Gaby is forced to accept that what she thought she knew about herself and her life is only a shadow of the truth—and that the truth is more likely to be found in the shadows of her nightmares.

Who is Rafa? Who are the Rephaim? And most importantly, who can she trust?

Fast-paced and gripping, Shadows, the first book in the Rephaim series.

You guys can check out my full review of books 1, 2, and 3 of the series by clicking the links below. In addition, you can check out my book boyfriend post on our leading male Rafa here




I hope you all had a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Tear You Apart by Sarah Cross ARC Review *SPOILER ALERT*


Tear You Apart by Sarah Cross
ebook, 384 pages (according to Goodreads)
Published by EgmontUSA
Expected Publication Date: January 27, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 2.5/5 Stars

Synopsis: If you want to live happily ever after, first you have to stay alive.

Viv knows there’s no escaping her fairy-tale curse. One day her beautiful stepmother will feed her a poison apple or convince her on-again-off-again boyfriend, Henley, to hunt her down and cut out her heart before she breaks his. In the city of Beau Rivage, some princesses are destined to be prey.

But then Viv receives an invitation to the exclusive club where the Twelve Dancing Princesses twirl away their nights. There she meets Jasper, an underworld prince who seems to have everything—but what he really wants is her. He vows to save her from her dark fate if she’ll join him and be his queen.

All Viv has to do is tear herself away from the huntsman boy who still holds her heart. Then she might live to see if happily ever after is a promise the prince can keep. But is life as an underworld queen worth sacrificing the true love that might kill her? 

If you like Once Upon a Time but prefer something darker, read this book. It was a good book. The plot is very interesting and the writing style is great. The world that Sarah Cross has created is outstanding. So, what stops me from falling in love with this book? The toxic relationship of the main couple. Vivian is so nasty to Henley for no good reason, and he's violent tendencies, although he never physically harms Viv, makes him hard to fall in love with. I think Cross tries to explain away their nastiness with their cursed situation that makes them act crazy, but sorry no dice. It was painful. Usually, I can read a book of this size in half a day (sometimes in a few hours) but I had to keep walking away from this one. Reading about the couple, especially in the first half, was brutal. It made me sick. Otherwise the world is very interesting, the plot is very detailed and well-developed, but the main couple is so toxic that it drags my rating of it down. I would be interested in reading Cross' other books in this realm but only if the main characters were not this nauseating to read about.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I love the basic world and plot of the book. It's a whole new twist on fairy tale retellings. Instead of reading about Snow White herself, Snow White's story is now a curse placed on our heroine. Effectively turning the original fairy tales away from their counterparts. It was brilliant.

2) The writing is great, it's engaging and sucks you right into the story. It's the main reason I haven't given this book an even lower rating.

3) I'm curious if Cross has seen Once Upon a Time because similarly to the show, in this book Vivian (Snow White) once had a happy relationship with her stepmother. Nevertheless, I like this. Usually in these types of stories and fairy tales when the villain is revealed to be the a loved one of the protagonist, all of sudden he/she doesn't have any feelings for that villain. It just never seemed realistic to me. In this book, Vivian has lingering, heartbreaking, feelings towards her stepmother that I think are so beautiful and tragic.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) Maybe the whole "the world is trying to keep us apart but we're going to fight for our happily ever after anyway" is becoming too cliché for people. Maybe someone out there wants more books about dysfunctional relationships because they are more common in real life, but that someone isn't me. Viv and Henley's relationship is so nasty that even when they have nice scenes I still find my mind circling back to those repulsive scenes.

So here's the gist, Viv has a Snow White curse, meaning that a Huntsman (who was cursed to do this) will either cut out her heart to give to her stepmother or will help her escape to marry her prince charming. Well, unfortunately for Viv, the love of her life who's she's known forever has been cursed to be her Huntsman. What does she do about it? Punish him for it. Treat him like it's his fault that their happily ever after was ruined. Even though Henley exhibits no signs that he will kill her, she treats him as if he will. It's disgusting.

Henley is not completely sympathetic either. Although I feel bad for him because in his entire life all he ever wanted to do was protect and be with Viv, it doesn't enable me to overlook his extremely violent tendencies. He never physically abuses Viv but whenever he's angry he feels that it's his prerogative to destroy things. I don't mean just throw things across a room, I mean dismantling a car with a shovel. According to the history of the book, for as long as Viv has known Henley he's been like this.   Of course, he has positive qualities that Cross tries to use to cover this, it doesn't work.

2) Although I love all the mentions of different fairy tale curses, there are too many minor characters to keep track. Viv has a lot of friends and although they are mentioned frequently they don't effect the plot very much. Even though they are present often they don't stick out enough to be important. Therefore, they all seem completely unnecessary.

3) There were a few inconsistencies in the plot. The one blaring one is the wife of the troll king is known to be mentally unstable but there is a part at near the end where she is completely lucid and talking and acting normal. There are a few others but this is the one that sticks out the most.

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1)  "I wish she wasn't here."

"Don't you always with that?" His half smile was cute. It made her wish, even more, that it was just the two of them on this road, with the whole night stretching out, unfinished.

"Maybe if I whistle, a friendly hungry bear will come out and maul her. As a favor to me."

"I'd probably get mauled first."

"That's a risk I'm willing to take." She grinned; he treated her to that same smile again.

"Yeah, I bet."

2) "Be nice to me or I won't let you hang out with us," Garnet told her brother. "I'll order you out the door with my imperious princess voice."

"And I'd have no choice but to go."

"That's right."

3)  "What do we do?" he said finally.

"We try, anyway. And if we fail, we fail together. I'm not leaving you again."

"No. If you have a chance--"

"Henley." She pulled his face down to hers. Kissed him once, hard. "I am never leaving you again."

4) "A brown mouse climbed onto Viv's knee. It held a wilted daisy in its mouth and made sure that she saw the present before dropping it onto her leg. Viv took the tiny, bitten-off flower in one hand and stroked the mouse's back with the other.

"Thanks," she murmured. "Although if you really loved me, you would have given Regina a disease by now."

Thank you Netgalley and EgmontUSA for my ebook copy of this book.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Books VS. Movies: Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

It seems like nowadays that all of our favorite books are being turned into movies. This meme is about the failures and winners of the silver screen in comparison to their books.



Winner:

The book is the clear winner in this round. The book is well-written and even though the plot isn't unique it was well executed. Most of all, it was really sweet. The romance between Edward and Bella was and is beautiful. A lot of you say that Edward is a creepy stalker and that the whole book is cheesy. I agree with those comments to a certain extent but the book is more than that. If you look at most YA romance books, most of them have similar themes are are on the cheesy side but this is one of the good ones.

Loser:

This first movie murdered the entire franchise. The effects were cheap and cringe-worthy. All of the make-up and lighting made the actors all look like corpses. The movie added extra things to the story and script to try to make it more comical and engaging towards their target audience but it didn't work. If anything, those scenes made them more awkward (with the exception of Charlie and the shotgun, I love that scene). Worst of all: the acting. It was so awkward. I'd say it was robotic but robots can display more emotion than Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart do in this movie. There was no passion, no romance, nothing. All intensity and chemistry that Bella and Edward have for each other are completely nonexistent between these two. In general, I blame the ultimate failure of this movie on the direction. Apparently Summit agreed with me since after this movie they changed directors. That wasn't enough to save this trilogy though. The following movies were better but the first sucked so bad that it took away from any positives the franchise had.

You guys can check out my Book Boyfriend post on Edward Cullen here; I have a few book quotes from Twilight and the other books in the series.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Rite of Rejection by Sarah Negovetich ARC Review

4/5 Stars
Details of the book:
ebook, approx. 320 pages (according to Goodreads)
Published by Sarah Negovetich
Publication Date: December 4, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository |

Synopsis: "Before you stands the future."

Straight-laced, sixteen-year-old Rebecca can't wait for her Acceptance. A fancy ball, eligible bachelors, and her debut as an official member of society. Instead, the Machine rejects Rebecca. Labeled as a future criminal, she's shipped off to a life sentence in a lawless penal colony.

A life behind barbed-wire fences with the world's most dangerous people terrifies Rebecca. She reluctantly joins a band of misfit teens in a risky escape plan, complete with an accidental fiancé she's almost certain she can learn to love.

But freedom comes with a price. To escape a doomed future and prove her innocence, Rebecca must embrace the criminal within.

This book is Matched by Ally Condie crossed with Delirium by Lauren Oliver. Rite of Rejection has renewed my faith in self-published novels. Generally, I avoid them because they are not normally submitted to the same amount of editing and revising that books published by a big publishing company are. In this case, I'm wrong. It's a dark dystopian novel where all the teens have to go through the ceremony of Acceptance before they are officially a member of society, except that the ceremony is corrupt and it's not just the criminals and low-lifes that end up in the Pit. It's a pretty dark book but it has an interesting plot and is well-written. The ending--although unique--is a bit unsatisfying but I read on the author's blog that there might be a sequel (big might) so my fingers are crossed.

Strengths/Likes:

1) The basic plot of the book is very interesting. As I said in my intro, it's Matched crossed with Delirium. The main difference is that it's not the protagonist's love interest that winds them up as an outcast of society.

2) There is strong character development especially in Rebecca (protagonist). She starts out as straight-laced, ordinary, law-abiding, scared girl but develops into a strong character that even though she has ones she can depend on is able to stand up for herself.

3) I like the couples in this book. There are two main ones, one that is a homosexual one that hides for most of the book, although I thought it was as clear as day from the beginning. Then there is a interracial couple. I'm so glad that author's are finally starting to write about more than just white heterosexual relationships. It gives me more faith in our world.

Getting back to the book, I have found a lot of books when they try to do this that they put so much emphasis on the difference of the couple's race or that they've written a homosexual couple that it takes the focus away from the actual relationship. Instead it's focuses on how their relationship is not acceptable in society. Although that's understandable and realistic, authors often spend too much time on the social issues aspect of the couple's relationship instead of the relationship itself. This is true in real life but in a book, for me to root for any couple, I have to know each of the characters individual and see how are are together. Rite of Rejection does just that.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) I found that the main twist of the novel was fairly predictable. It was supposed to be shocking and disturbing, and yet I wasn't surprised at all.

2) I go back and forth whether or not that I like the ending. Part of me likes it, the other part of me is wanting more. It's a unique ending but it doesn't give me any satisfaction. Basically, without giving too much away is that you have no idea what happens to all of the characters. Even though the book gives you hope for the future, you just don't know. I hope that Negovetich will write another novel, I read on her blog here that she has written a first draft but she's not sure if she wants to turn it into a full novel just yet. I hope she will though.

Favorite Quotes/Moments: 

1) "The sheer force of will it takes my mother not to roll her eyes at me is astounding. Her facial muscles actually tense with the effort."

2) "Now you'll have time to make it home for a couple of hours of sleep and Cindy won't make you crash on the couch."

"I think I'll pad my luck with a quick stop at the bakery. Nothing says 'please forgive me' like a butter croissant."

3) "When we get out of here, I'm going to take you on a real date." He grips both of my hands and his face is more serious than I've ever seen it, "As soon as we get settled, we can go out for a fancy dinner and dancing. I'll buy you a fancy dress, ten times nicer than the one you wore to Acceptance."

4) "I'm going to be a widow traveling with her sister. Of course, I'm heartbroken and you all feel horrible about my loss." She winks at me and smiles. "I'll wear black."

5) I grip his hand and pull it up to my cheek. His skin is rough but it feels like silk against my face. "Don't leave me."

Daniel reaches behind him with his free hand and pulls a makeshift chair over next to my bed. "I'm not going anywhere."

Thank you Netgalley and Sarah Negovetich for my ebook copy of this novel. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard ARC Review

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
ebook, 307 pages
Published by Orion Publishing Group
Expected Publication Date: February 10, 2015 
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 5/5 Stars

Synopsis: The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.

To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.

Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.

But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?

This book is like Shadow and Bone mixed with The Selection and The Hunger Games. Maybe that makes it sound cliche but it's definitely not. Although it has similarities to the books I listed above, it stands on its own. The plot and characters are so complex that nothing and no one is as they appear. The writing style is well-detailed and evokes a lot of emotion. While reading, I found myself in the character's shoes and feeling all of their emotions. I finished this book yesterday and a few of the scenes are still playing in my head and making me want to cry. This book has it all for you dystopian lovers out there. There's magic, action, suspense, drama, and love.

I had two main problems with this book. First, parts of it are a bit slow but it's understandable because the author has created a whole new world for us so it takes some time to explain. It's very detailed; I could clearly picture everything in my head. I just found it to be a bit slow.

The second was that it was unclear who the main love interest is, which makes it unique but also makes it harder to connect with the main character's emotions. On the other hand, it makes love not the main story line, which I prefer. I would definitely recommend this book and I can't wait for the next one.

Strengths/Likes:

1) The story was just so complicated and dramatic. It was very well thought-out and had a good pace. There is so much that happens but it doesn't feel overwhelming. I forced myself to read this slowly and carefully because I wanted to imagine every little detail so I could be fully immersed in the plot.

2) I'm glad that there is so many other things important to the plot other than the romance. Sometimes when dystopian novels are so focused just on that the rest of the story suffers. This not just the not the case with this book. There is just the right amount of romance and it blends well into the plot.

3) All of the characters are just as detailed and complicated as the plot. No one is as they appear and it's great.

4) The main character has flaws that other characters never forgive her for. It's common in the majority of YA novels that the main character is this righteous heroine, that could do no wrong, and when she screws something up it's somehow not her fault or it was out of her hands. Although Mare has her amazing qualities she is also flawed which makes her more relatable.

5) The main character has other complicated relationships other than her love interest. There are her relationships with each member of her family. Each one is well-defined even though they are not a large part of the plot. I especially loved her relationship with her brother Shade.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) Mare goes back and forth on who she's in love with. One minute she loves someone, then the next she hates them, it's very convoluted. It sounds worse by the way I'm describing it but considering the plot of the book it's understandable as to why she struggles with who to trust and love but I just wanted something a tad more concrete.

2) There are large sections that are a bit slow, but as I said, this isn't a huge problem because Aveyard is world-building and that's to be expected.

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "Kilorn Warren. A fisherman's apprentice, a war orphan, and probably my only real friend. We used to beat each other up as children, but now that we're older--and he's a foot taller than me--I try to avoid scuffles. He has his uses, I suppose. Reaching high shelves, for example."

2) "Dear family, I am alive. Obviously." 

3) "If there was ever a person begging for an elbow to the face, it is Evangeline Samos."

4) "Cal bold and reckless, things he never was before. He takes me by the hand, pulling me to him. He's betraying his only brother. I'm betraying my cause, Maven, and myself, but I don't want to stop.

Anyone can betray anyone. 

His lips are on mine, hard and warm and pressing. The touch is electrifying, but not like I'm used to. This isn't a spark of destruction but a spark of life.

As much as I want to pull away, I just can't do it. Cal is a cliff and I throw myself over the edge, not bothering to think of what it could do to us both. One day he'll realize I'm his enemy, and all this will be a far-gone memory. But not yet."

Thank you Netgalley and Orion Publishing Group for my ebook copy of this ARC.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Moronic Monday: Jasmine Rourke (Breathe by Elena Dillon)

Mondays, the worst day of the week. Despite the fact that it's the start of your school/work week, there is always something extra that just pushes it to the next level. That someone that just permanently keeps Monday at the top of most dreaded days of the week. That's what this meme is about. The one character that drives you mad with their stupidity. Their idiocy is the type that you can spot their impending train wreck from miles away, the type that makes you want to slam their heads into a desk repeatedly. Moronic Mondays are not for your lovable idiots, no, it's for the ones that you think they deserve every bad thing they get it.


If you've seen my review of Breathe by Elena Dillon you know that I'm not a huge fan of this book to begin with but Jasmine (protagonist) really bothered me. Her sister was kidnapped and murdered and when she starts getting stalked by whom she already suspects is the same person who killed her sister, she doesn't tell anyone. She doesn't call the cops or her mother. She tells nobody. Instead she runs off with the killer, puts her life, her friends, family, and her boyfriend's life in danger. I understand she was scared but she was already aware of how her sister was captured, therefore, she should have been more wary and more cautious.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Forgotten Friday: Horton Hatches the Egg by Dr. Seuss

This meme is about books that have been pushed aside while others have gone viral and made into movies. It can be old books, new books, any book that never got its (or enough) time  in the spot light.

I was watching How the Grinch Stole Christmas last night (the cartoon version, not the Jim Carey version) and it got me thinking about the other Dr. Seuss books that I loved. Although, Horton Hears a Who is more famous because of its movie, my favorite is still Horton Hatches the Egg. I think it's such a beautiful story and speaks out about absentee parenting. Admittedly as a child, I was so confused as to why the tree underneath Horton doesn't snap or how he didn't crush the egg but it's Dr. Seuss so anything can happen.



I hope you all are having a Happy Holiday season so far!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

For Real by Alison Cherry ARC Review


For Real by Alison Cherry
ebook, 304 pages (according to Goodreads)
Published by Delacorte Press
Publication Date: December 9, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Synopsis: No parents. No limits. No clue what they're in for.

Shy, cautious Claire has always been in her confident older sister's shadow. While Miranda's life is jam-packed with exciting people and whirlwind adventures, Claire gets her thrills vicariously by watching people live large on reality TV.

When Miranda discovers her boyfriend, Samir, cheating on her just before her college graduation, it's Claire who comes up with the perfect plan. They'll outshine Miranda's fame-obsessed ex while having an amazing summer by competing on Around the World, a race around the globe for a million bucks. Revenge + sisterly bonding = awesome.

But the show has a twist, and Claire is stunned to find herself in the middle of a reality-show romance that may or may not be just for the cameras. This summer could end up being the highlight of her life... or an epic fail forever captured on film. In a world where drama is currency and manipulation is standard, how can you tell what's for real?

This book was a pleasant surprise, I really wasn't expecting to like it since it doesn't fall under the type of books I normally read, but I was really happy that I read it. Alison Cherry's writing style is sophisticated and relatable. It was a great change of pace from the typical YA novels out there. It's not about about a weak heroine finding true love, it's about two sisters trying to rebuild their relationship while taking revenge on the douchebags in their lives.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I really liked the way the story was written. There were many words that were higher diction than I'm used to seeing in YA adult books, and I loved it. I think it's often perceived that teenagers can't be intelligent and books with simple language really feeds into that. The way Alison Cherry writes is in such a way that even though the writing is more refined it's not overdone. It doesn't come off pretentious or arrogant, it's still accessible.

2) I love the two leading ladies, Miranda and Claire. I think they are such strong female role-models. I especially loved Claire. I found her hilarious and spunky.

3) All of the characters are more than what meets the eye. Cherry addresses how people present themselves in certain ways but in reality they could be nothing like the person they show themselves as. It's really brilliant.

4) I love the limerick game!

Weakness/Dislikes:

1) The book for me was a pretty quick read, I wanted more adventure. I wanted "Around the World in Eighty Dates" (the reality TV show our characters participated in) to be much longer.

2) SPOILER ALERT:

I wanted Will to redeem himself. I think that it's great and more realistic that he didn't but the romantic in me still wanted him too.

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "I wish I were watching this on a real television. I fear I'm missing nuances of his six-pack."

2) "It's always nice to see someone who has the shoes you want, or the house you want, or the boyfriend you want, or whatever, but who still objectively sucks as a human being, so you can be like, 'Sure, she's prettier and richer than I am, but I'm still superior."

3) "The girl in the kitchen was telling the truth--there's a large CXLVI inked onto his right bicep. I have no idea if an IQ of 146 really makes you a genius, but even if it does, tattooing it on your body definitely bumps you back down a notch."

4) "She probably has impeccable table manners, speaks twenty languages, and uses some sort of billion-dollar yak's blood zit cream that makes her skin look like rose petals. How could I ever compete with someone like that, boring or not? I don't even know what a prawn fork is. She probably has her own monogrammed set."

5) "Um, if you could choose a superpower, what would you pick?"

He doesn't hesitate even for a second. "The ability to transform things into cheese."

I laugh. "What? Cheese? Wouldn't you rather be invisible or something?"

"No, think about it. I could turn toxic waste into cheese and solve the pollution problem and hunger problem at the same time. And I could turn trash into cheese and sell it, so I'd be filthy rich. Plus, I'd always have a snack."  

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Book Boyfriend: Niklass (Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay)

So I've seen this meme floating around many book blogs, but initially I got the idea from Reading Lark and they got this meme from The Unread Reader. I've enjoyed the meme so much that I will also be joining in on the fun on Wednesdays. Welcome to Book Boyfriends everyone!



Appearance:

  • Tall
  • Thick muscles (Stacey Jay's words, not mine)
  • Smiles all the time
  • Dark blue eyes
  • His hair is the color of a lion's mane


Why Niklass is my Book Boyfriend:

Yes, he's a bit of a womanizing, arrogant, prick, but most of our beloved fictional characters are just that. He has a good heart, and he's hilarious. Not to mention he's a decent fighter with thick muscles haha. Niklass has enough of that princely charm with a bad boy edge. I love that.

Actor to be my Niklass:

Looks-wise and what this role would entail I would have to go with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. Niklass is pretty much Jaime Lannister without the whole sleeping with his sister thing haha.



Quotes from and about Niklass:

1) "Have to keep myself in prime condition for your sister. Girls like insufferable boys. It's the nice ones they can't be bothered with. Store that pearl away for your future Ror, if you hope to fare well with women."

2) "Women fall in love a dozen times before their fifteenth birthday, but when a man falls, he falls heart, body, and soul, and no woman but the one who has captured his imagination will do."

"Is that right?" I lift a brow in his direction.

"It is," he says. "The poor bastard becomes obsessed. Every bit of sense he possesses flees his head to set up camp in his britches, and there's no reason with him until the spell is broken."

3) "Regiene didn't love me; she loved being with a boy with ties to the crown," he says, not a trace of hurt in his tone. "As soon as she had a crown of her own, her true colors began bleeding all over the castle. She's been a terror to the other ladies, including my little sister, and I could never love a girl who treated my Hannah poorly."

4) "I didn't want a girl to marry me because she felt sorry for me. I wanted to win a wife based on my own merits."

5) "Are you all right?" he asks.

I shake my head, my eyes filling.

"Don't cry." He takes the mirror from my shaking hand. "You look beautiful."

My face crumples.

"Well, that's not so beautiful," he teases as he pulls me into his arms. 

If you guys want more of Niklass, you guys should definitely check out Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay, I highly recommend it. You guys can also check out my review of it here, I have some more quotes about Niklass there.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Charmed (The Witch Hunter #2) by Michelle Krys (ARC Review)


3/5 Stars
Details of the book
Paperback, 358 pages
Published by Delacorte Press
Expected Publication Date: May 26, 2015

Synopsis: Indie has spent the last few weeks frantically searching for Paige. She's tried every spell imaginable, but witchcraft has gotten her nowhere, and she's going crazy with guilt. Despite what her warlock boyfriend, Bishop, tells her, Indie knows it's her fault her best friend was kidnapped by the Priory. And with the Priory destroyed, finding Paige feels more hopeless than ever-especially when Indie discovers that Paige isn't even on Earth. She's trapped in Los Demonios, an alternate dimension of Los Angeles filled with evil paranormals. No one who has gone there has ever come out.
Fueled by terror and loyalty, Indie is desperate to find a way into the underworld prison. She'll worry about getting out later. But facing the dark world's most dangerous witches and warlocks on her own means keeping her plan hush-hush-and forging alliances with some sketchy people, including a seriously sexy sorcerer.

Sometimes a witch must keep secrets from the people she cares about most. And sometimes she isn't the only one with secrets…

Does anyone know if this is supposed to be a trilogy? I'm asking because this book felt like it was the end of Indie's story. There was nothing left untied or any unanswered questions and usually that makes me happy, but in this case it doesn't. Maybe because I was expecting it for it to be a trilogy and it's not? Someone let me know.

If it's not a trilogy then I think it needed to be. The action in this book is amazing, but what I loved most about Hexed is how focused it was on the characters as people and their relationships. In this book, that all takes a back seat to the plot. We're introduced to new characters and there is a whole new dark adventure that Indie embarks on, but she basically does this alone and no else seems to matter or exist. You don't feel the spark between Bishop and Indie. In fact, in certain parts it seems like their relationship is coming to an end instead of developing further. The main relationship that the book focuses is on is Indie and Paige. Not in a satisfactory way either. 


Strengths/Likes:

1) I like that nothing keeps Indie down. No amount of warnings stops her. She needs a job done and instead of depending on others, she takes control of the situation herself. 

2) I really liked all the magical and the action aspects of this book. Even though I found aspects of it predictable, I love how Krys involved actual places and tied in all the magical world to make it seem more real. 

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) The main problem in this book are the relationships. The only reason I accepted Paige and Indie's friendship was because it was clear in Hexed that Paige wasn't going just to accept any of Indie's crap in the future. She was not going to deal with being the replacement best friend. For it to be effective that Paige is now Indie's new best friend would be if Krys gave us something in their relationship to understand why they are suddenly so close, but, she didn't. This is because Paige is missing for most of the book, and at the end it's generally accepted that they are best friends. Indie even refers to her as her best friend, but it just seems like the only reason for that is because Bianca turned out to be a backstabber. Therefore, I could not care less that Paige was missing. Yes, I felt bad that she got roped into this awful situation that has nothing to do with her because of her "friend" but I didn't care about what was happening to her at all. Now, if Krys gave us more details of the past where maybe Indie wasn't a complete ass to Paige then maybe I'd care more but without any details I didn't care. If this was a trilogy, there would be room to fix this but I have a feeling it's not. 

Paige and Indie's relationship is not the only relationship that suffers. Indie and Bishop's relationship is practically nonexistent as well. There is little spark, they barely have any time together, and most of the time Indie spends lying to him. 

The above reasons are why I really couldn't fall in love with this book. For me to love a book, I have to care about the people and I didn't. The relationships didn't seem important to Indie, so why should they be important to me? 

2) I found the twists and turns of the this book to be fairly predictable. There were several hints about Indie's power and it's "impossibility."

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) His eyes move over to Bishop, then down over our outfits. "What are you guys supposed to be?" 

"Hockey player and puck bunny," Bishop chimes in proudly."

2) Julia comes up to her side. She's wearing the usual Fairfax High cheerleader's uniform of blue pleated skirt, silver spankies, and a fitted silver shell, but she's got fake rot on her cheeks and blood dripping from her mouth. She eyes my jeans, tank top, and bunny ears and gives a condescending little snort. 

"Nice costume."

"Thanks," I say, feigning nonchalance. "You should have dressed up too. I mean, you do the whole brain-dead-cheerleader thing every day. Where's the fun in that?"

Monday, December 1, 2014

Moronic Monday: Gogol Ganguli (The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri)

Mondays, the worst day of the week. Despite the fact that it's the start of your school/work week, there is always something extra that just pushes it to the next level. That someone that just permanently keeps Monday at the top of most dreaded days of the week. That's what this meme is about. The one character that drives you mad with their stupidity. Their idiocy is the type that you can spot their impending train wreck from miles away, the type that makes you want to slam their heads into a desk repeatedly. Moronic Mondays are not for your lovable idiots, no, it's for the ones that you think they deserve every bad thing they get it.

Anyone else think that Gogol was a selfish brat? I read this book a few years ago, and I was fascinated by the story itself but from when Gogol is a teenager and on--I was just annoyed. His shame for his family and his origins brought a nasty taste in my mouth. His parents did the best they could and still let him run rampant and do whatever he pleased. Was that enough? Nope. Through most of the book, I was just wishing that I could get more of his parent's story because Gogol's just annoyed me to no end. Only after tragedy strikes, near the end of the book, does he realizes his faults but it's too little too late for me.