Thursday, September 17, 2015

Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton

 Title: Seeker

 Series: Seeker #1

 Author: Arwen Elys Dayton

 Publisher: Delacorte Press

 Date Published: February 10th, 2014

 Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian

 Pages: 448 (Hardcover)

 Age Range: 14+


     The night Quin Kincaid takes her Oath, she will become what she has trained to be her entire life. She will become a Seeker. This is her legacy, and it is an honor.
     As a Seeker, Quin will fight beside her two closest companions, Shinobu and John, to protect the weak and the wronged. Together they will stand for light in a shadowy world.
     And she'll be with the boy she loves--who's also her best friend.
     But the night Quin takes her Oath, everything changes.
     Being a Seeker is not what she thought. Her family is not what she thought. Even the boy she loves is not who she thought.
     And now it's too late to walk away.


     Honestly, this book felt like it was going through second book syndrome, even though this is book one. Some things felt rushed, other felt too drawn out, some things left me scratching my head asking for some semblance of a explanation. This wasn't a bad book necessarily, but it was so all over the place that I'm wavering between giving it two stars, or one. That is not good.
     As usual, we'll start with the characters. Quin was just okay in the beginning. I didn't find her to be the kick-butt assassin type that I was expecting, but she also wasn't much of anything else. She didn't fit into any character mold that I've read of, but that's not a good thing in this story. Quin felt like a bad actor- someone just going through the motions. After stuff hit the fan, and Quin was... indisposed, I liked her a lot more. I actually liked watching her struggle to find herself. After that disgustingly long word vomit, we come to John. I never liked John, and, personally, I find him to be a lazy villain. He just spends time trying to convince people to follow his "evilness". John just got on my nerves. Shinobu was probably my favorite character. I actually really liked reading from his POV, and I found his story fascinating. All of the other characters bled into each other, I hated all of the Dreads, didn't give a single thought towards Fiona, and couldn't care any less about Briac of Shinobu's father.
     The plot was super jumpy, and I feel that this story would have benefited from chapter headings. I understood so little about the athame, and powers (are there even powers?), and, perhaps the worst thing, the ambiguous time frame of this book. There are buses and trains and planes, but people live off of the land like crazy people just for kicks. nothing really shocked me, but the plot was something that I enjoyed over-all. Nothing was wildly original, but I have hopes that book two will pick up.
      Now, we have to address the love shape in this book. I dislike love triangles- I just do. However, if a triangle is tastefully done, I can definitely get into it. This triangle, though, was pretty sloppy. John starts off being The One for Quin (not a spoiler, this established in the first chapter or so). Later, John gets a little flippy floppy, and Quin is just so, so lost without him. *facepalm* Shinobu is related to Quin (againaddressed in the first chapter or there abouts) very very very distantly, but this is mentioned so many times that I wanted to scream. If they're barely related, he's a love interest, and they may as well not be related for how much blood they share, then why did Arwen make them related? I UNDERSTAND NOTHING. I feel like this is gonna become a get-it-on-with-your-cousin thing-or-be-a-functional-person internal battle, OR that something magical happens to them because of their bond. More powers maybe??
     All told, this book is a 2.9, may as well be a three. I just don't even know anymore... Book two? Eh, may as well. I must be a glutton for self-punishment. *facepalm*


Thursday, September 10, 2015

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

 Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses

 Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses

 Author: Sarah J. Maas

 Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's

 Date Published: May 5, 2015

Genre: Paranormal, Fantasy, Romance

Pages: 432 (Hardcover)

Age Range: 14+


      When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin--one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.
As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow over the faerie lands is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin--and his world--forever.


     Sarah J. Maas has done it again. I am slightly disappointed because she published this while the Throne of Glass sextet is only four-sixths of the way finished, BUT BUT BUT this book is totally worth waiting on Throne of Glass for.
     Feyre is this girl, and she starts out being an incredible Katniss rip-off. Feyre isn't a parody, but a serious re-representation of this girl. Feyre hunts to provide for her otherwise-screwed family, and she shoots with- guess what??- a bow and arrow. I could draw more similarities from The Hunger Games to this book than I could with Beauty and the Beast; this book is supposed to be a Beauty and the Beast re-telling, and while I did find some of those traits, I found more Hunger Games characteristics, especially in the characters. So while Feyre can be renamed Katniss, her younger sisters can be renamed Selfish Idiot, and Prim. Nesta got on my nerves, and I never really ended up liking her. I actually forgot the youngest sister's name. Their father, too, got on my nerves. He was so weak, and he truly became his ailment.
     Moving on to the actually juicy drama, Tamlin was all sorts of amazing. Of course, I could see the Beast in him, but I could really see the Beast in Rhysand the most. Tamlin reminded me of Fluffy from Harry Potter: big and scary, but secretly cuddly. Rhysand was kind of a mixture of the opposite, and some weird form of secretly good. I'm team Tamlin, but I have a sneaky feeling that we'll be seeing a lot more of Rhysand. And Lucien!! We MUST have more of him!!!
      The plot of this book was all over the place- in a good way! First we have the whole thing going on with The Evil Queen, then we have the thing going on with Tamlin, and then we have stuff going on with Rhysand and faeries. I can't say much without being spoilery, but things went in fantastic directions.
     Now, I must read Queen of Shadows. I do believe that Sarah J. Maas can do no wrong.


Saturday, September 5, 2015

In the After Light by Alexandra Bracken

Title: In the After Light

Series: The Darkest Minds #3

Author: Alexandra Bracken

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Date published: October 28, 2014

Genre: YA fiction, romance, action, thriller, suspense, adventure, sci-fi

Pages: 544 (hardback)

Age Range: 13+


Ruby can't look back. Fractured by an unbearable loss, she and the kids who survived the government's attack on Los Angeles travel north to regroup. Only Ruby can keep their highly dangerous prisoner in check. But with Clancy Gray, there's no guarantee you're fully in control, and everything comes with a price.

When the Children's League disbands, Ruby rises up as a leader and forms an unlikely allegiance with Liam's brother, Cole, who has a volatile secret of his own. There are still thousands of other Psi kids suffering in government "rehabilitation camps" all over the country. Freeing them--revealing the governments unspeakable abuses in the process--is the mission Ruby has claimed since her own escape from Thurmond, the worst camp in the country.

But not everyone is supportive of the plan Ruby and Cole craft to free the camps. As tensions rise, competing ideals threaten the mission to uncover the cause of IANN, the disease that killed most of America's children and left Ruby and others with powers the government will kill to keep contained. With the fate of a generation in their hands, there is no room for error. One wrong move could be the spark that sets the world on fire.


I was up until 1am finishing this book. I was a little upset about how things ended, but I was also happy. I'm about to explain why but let me get through the characters first! This review is going to be full of spoilers so if you haven't read the book, go away. Shew!

The writing was just as amazing as always. The characters were fantastic! Even though Jude was no longer with us. I was really, really sad throughout the book because of this. I could really feel Vida and Ruby's pain as they struggled to come to terms with his death. I loved how they leaned on each other--they really bonded in this book.


I was really surprised but not surprised by Chub's and Vida's relationship. We could kind of see how they were glued to each other throughout Never Fade and In the After Light, but I wasn't sure what sort of relationship was developing between them because they were always bickering and snapping at each other, or punching each other.

Liam and Ruby. What can I say? I don't know what to say because they're just...*sigh* amazing. I love them together, so I was worried when their relationship was rocky. Ruby was being protective of herself and Liam's feelings, I get that. She was putting a wall between them because she couldn't tell him a lot of things, I get it, but why did Alexandra have to play with their, and my, feelings?

When Ruby found the note Liam wrote, I was torn. Torn, I tell you! I was devastated that he wrote something like that, but I understood. I thought that Cole was going to make him leave too, but I didn't think that Ruby would take his memories again--not after everything that happened. I was so upset when Ruby found it because she was completely broken up about it. I wanted her to mention it to him! But of course she didn't so that put an even bigger strain on their relationship!

Okay, I think I need to talk about something else now. This is still kind of spoilery. Zu! Let's talk about Suzume a little bit. We didn't really so a whole lot of her in Never Fade, or in this book really even though she's back with the gang.

I was really hoping that Zu was going to start talking again, but I started having my doubts when I was more than half-way through the book because I thought that there was going to be a big show-down at Thurmond. I was so relieved when she finally spoke during the interview. Vida finally warmed up to her and was cheering her on. I was really happy about Team Reality's reactions! The moment was truly heart warming.


The Thurmond Op. Okay, so I was expecting a little more of a battle scene, like I wanted a serious show-down. I wanted to see Liam and Ruby fighting side by side, Ruby protecting Liam from harm, Vida having Ruby's back. I wanted all of that.

I didn't like how the book just kind of abruptly ended. We don't really know what happens during the camp hit because Ruby was being interrogated, and then kicking some PSF ass. I wanted to see more fighting, though I thought it was really awesome how Ruby wouldn't let Liam kill anyone as they made their escape, and how Ruby refused to be carried out of Thurmond. She wanted to walk out of there even though she was severely injured and couldn't walk on her own.

We also don't know what happens to the kids in the end. Like, what happened to Sam for example? I want to know what happened to her and we didn't see her after Ruby yelled at her in the mess hall.
Also, at a conference, Senator Cruz was giving a speech about the new laws that would be placed and talked about the cure that has recently been developed. Kids 18 and older had the opportinuty to choose whether to keep their abilities, or not, and the children who chose to keep their abilities had to live in a "community" where other Psi kids would live.

Chubs complained and it was agreed that things would be reconsidered, but what if they didn't change their minds? What if things got bad again? I don't think they did but there's a chance, and we won't know because this is how the book ended.

I really wanted to get a glimpse of what Liam and Ruby's lives would be like after all this. They mentioned it a little but I want more! I want details, a short story, anything! Gimme!

And, back to the Sam-thing: I'm pretty sure Alexandra is releasing a book that has 3 different short stories. Its called Through the Dark and it comes out in October. It consists of In Time, Sparks Rise, and a new, unpublished short story called, Beyond the Night. I need this book! I need to know what happened to Sam!

Anyway, the last thing I want to talk about is...Clancy. Yes, Clancy Gray! I really wanted Ruby to kill him, or for Clancy to accidentally get shot or something! I just wanted him dead. He was one of those characters that you just hate. He's so evil! After what he made Ruby do, and after Cole...if I were Ruby, I woulda shot him! Yes yes I know why she didn't: she didn't want to stoop to his level blah blah blah, but couldn't someone have killed him? I didn't want to see him walk away, not after what he did to Cole.

Okay, I think I'm done with my rant. This is a long review but I'm not sorry. I was up late last night so I could finish the book and I woke up and things just started popping into my head. I feel like this series is unfinished and I don't think Alexandra Bracken is going to write a fourth book so I'm very upset because I want to read about Ruby and Liam's lives, and find out what happens to the rest of Team Reality.

"The Darkest Minds Never Fade In the After Light"

I've been buying young adult books left and right, but now that school has started back up, I have a lot of books I have to read for school so I'm going to be gone for a while. Sorry, I love writing reviews but I don't think anyone is interested in reading a review on a Jane Austin book.
I'll be back soon though with more reviews!

If you want to read more of my posts, I have a personal blog and a tumblr, links are below. Follow me!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid

 Title: Never Always Sometimes

 Author: Adi Alsaid

 Publisher: Harlequin Teen

 Date Published: August 4th, 2015

 Genre: Contemporary

 Pages: 320 (Hardcover)

 Age Range: 13+


     Never date your best friend 
     Always be original 
     Sometimes rules are meant to be broken 

     Best friends Dave and Julia were determined to never be cliché high school kids—the ones who sit at the same lunch table every day, dissecting the drama from homeroom and plotting their campaigns for prom king and queen. They even wrote their own Never List of everything they vowed they'd never, ever do in high school. 
     Some of the rules have been easy to follow, like #5, never die your hair a color of the rainbow, or #7, never hook up with a teacher. But Dave has a secret: he's broken rule #8, never pine silently after someone for the entirety of high school. It's either that or break rule #10, never date your best friend. Dave has loved Julia for as long as he can remember. 

     Julia is beautiful, wild and impetuous. So when she suggests they do every Never on the list, Dave is happy to play along. He even dyes his hair an unfortunate shade of green. It starts as a joke, but then a funny thing happens: Dave and Julia discover that by skipping the clichés, they've actually been missing out on high school. And maybe even on love.


     It is no secret that I loved Let's Get Lost by Adi Alsaid. I found that book funny, and perfect. Of course, I was expecting nothing but perfection in this book (is that too much to ask for?). Unfortunately, I was really let down. This book was nowhere near where I was hoping it would be.
     First off, the writing wasn't the light, goofy, rawness that I really liked in Let's Get Lost. I think  part of the reason that I didn't like this book as much as I hoped was because I couldn't fall in love with Julia and Dave. Julia felt pretty forced, and like her whole character was forced. Yes, I understand that part of the whole point of the book was Julia being way too busy being un-cliched to live- yes, I realize that forced-ness was part of Julia's character. However, Julia was far too unreal and forced for my liking. Dave was much more natural for me. He seemed to flow as a character, and I actually liked him. I really liked Gretchen too, surprisingly. And Brett, oh my gosh.
     Besides having a forced lead, the whole love between them felt...fake. David's love for Julia, I understood- he loved her for his whole life. But it felt like Julia started to "love" David as soon as another girl came on the scene. I think that Julia was jealous, and she didn't want to lose her friend. Because of this, half of the story seemed tedious to get through.
     Some of the things that they did were adorable. Like when Julia helped David ask someone to prom. And when they went camping together. However, most of the cute moments came with Gretchen and David. Honestly, we had an oddly-shaped love pentagon because SPOILERS: Gretchen and Julia loved David, David loved them, and Brett loved Julia. I actually totally ship Brett and Julia, and thoroughly choose to believe that they get it on later. This is one of the few books I've read where the two best friends don't get together, and it was an interesting take. END SPOILERS
      Basically, this book wasn't as good as Adi Alsaid's other book. But it is worth a read anyway.


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The New "The Mortal Instruments" & "The Infernal Devices" Covers!

   How is everyone this week? I hope the answer is somewhere along the lines of, "Good."

 A new month has started and not just any month; it's September. Everyone should be starting back at Hogwarts by now, right? Well, I--like many--still haven't gotten my Hogwarts acceptance letter so I'm just sitting here at my computer like any ol' boring Muggle.

 But, I'm a boring Muggle that is here to share some news with you. I'm writing a blog post about my book-nerdiness today, instead of blogging about writing, mostly because I don't have time to sit down and write about writing when I should be editing. So let's get to it so I can get to work :)

 So a few new books got released today, but the only ones I cared about were the beauties in the photos below. I've been waiting months to get my hands on the new The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices (by Cassandra Clare) covers, and they have finally arrived!

These are photos I took today as soon as I opened the box:

 Look at how gorgeous these covers are. Look! These covers are every author's dream. I love the covers so much that I don't even have a favorite! That's very unlike me. The art is amazing and the characters on the covers look how I imagined them, and every single person on The Mortal Instruments covers look bad-ass! I'm just loving these new and improved covers!

   The Mortal Instruments covers BEFORE:

   The Mortal Instruments covers AFTER:

   The Infernal Devices covers BEFORE:

   The Infernal Devices covers AFTER:

 I am just amazed. I didn't think this series could get any better, and then Cassandra Clare releases new covers for the series that are just breathtaking.

 Cassandra Clare (as well as many others) has been an inspiration to me for years. She crafted this amazing story that just sucks you in every time you sit down to read one of her books, and has lovable and funny characters to take you along for the ride. I can't wait to read more of her work!

POST FROM:  as Happy Semtember 1st (Back to Hogwarts)