Sunday, June 30, 2013

ARC Review ~ Taste the Heat by Rachel Harris

Taste the Heat (Love and Games #1)
by Rachel Harris
Romance (Adult)
Expected Publication Date: July 8th 2013
Goodreads Link


One sexy fire captain. One Cajun chef, One combustible kitchen...

When chef Colby Robicheaux returned home to New Orleans to save her family restaurant, the last person she expected to reconnect with was her brother's best friend and her childhood crush. As tempting as a sugar-coated beignet, Jason is one dish she doesn't want to taste. Colby is counting down the days till she can leave the place where her distrust of love and commitment originated and go back to Vegas.

Fire captain Jason Landry isn't looking for love, either. He knows he should focus on finding the perfect mother for his daughter, but when he first sees Colby, all grown up and gorgeous, he can't help but be drawn to her. And when she suggests a no-strings-attached fling, Jason doesn't want to say no.

As their relationship grows more intense, Colby finds that Jason isn't as easy to leave behind as she thought. Could turning up the heat on something real be worth the possibility of getting burned?

My Review: 
**4 Stars**
I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review. 

So, as some of you can probably tell from past reviews, I am not a romance genre person. HOWEVER, I loved Rachel Harris' teen book (My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century), so I wanted to give Taste the Heat a shot. I was pleasantly surprised!

I am not a big fan of all the sex in most adult romances, which is why I shy away from them. Taste the Heat, while it had a lot of sexual tension, didn't have much actual sex. And what there was, wasn't described in detail. (Huge plus for me!)

I really liked the story line and how HE had the child and how they both had closed off their hearts. I also like how we see through both Colby and Jason's eyes. I actually almost wish for a novella of Sherry.

Really good read, even if you aren't a romance fan. I look forward to reading the next one.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Review ~ The Witch of Duva by Leigh Bardugo

The Witch of Duva (The Grisha #0.5)
by Leigh Bardugo
YA Fantasy (Fairytale)
Published: June 5th 2012
Goodreads Link


There was a time when the woods near Duva ate girls... or so the story goes. But it's just possible that the danger may be a little bit closer to home. This story is a companion folk tale to Leigh Bardugo's debut novel, Shadow and Bone.

My Review: 
**4 Stars**

Talk about "Creepy!!!" Wow. At first I thought it was going to be like Hansel and Gretel, only without Hansel. But it wasn't. It is definitely on the lines of a Fairytale. This isn't a short fantasy store. No, it is a true Fairytale.

Leigh Bardugo did a fantastic job with The Witch of Duva. I honestly had not idea what the outcome would be until it was happening. And again - creepy! Oh, and when I say Fairytale - I'm not taling one that you read to your kids at night. Nope, I am talking one of the true old style Fairytales where it gets gruesome and dark.

The only thing I don't get is why this is considered part of the Grisha series. I know it takes place in the same country, but it has nothing to do with the series and is written in a different style as well.

Great read. Highly recommended.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Review ~ The Tailor by Leigh Bardugo

The Tailor (The Grisha #1.5)
by Leigh Bardugo
YA Fantasy
Published: May 23rd 2013
Goodreads Link


New scene from Shadow and Bone told from Genya's point of view. Exclusively on Facebook. (Link)

My Review: 
**4.5 Stars**

So, it wasn't enough that we weren't really sure how to feel about Genya at the end of Shadow and Bone and through most of Siege and Storm. Nope, Leigh Bardugo had to go and write a scene from Genya's perspective. Now I really don't know how to feel about her.

I do like how we got to see a little peek into how Genya was treated when she originally was sent to the Queen. She was a prize to be shown off. Then she grew older and caught the eye of the King, like many others in the palace.

Do I like Genya? No. Do I hate her? No. I feel for her. I feel for everything she was put through and given the same opportunities would I do the same thing? I don't know. She was trying to save her own hide - even if it cost others.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Review ~ Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles #2)
by Marissa Meyer
YA Fantasy
Published: February 5th 2013
Goodreads Link


The fates of Cinder and Scarlet collide as a Lunar threat spreads across the Earth...

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison-even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

My Review: 
**4.5 Stars**

Oh wow. Scarlet was great! I think I actually liked it better than Cinder. I love the new characters that were introduced and how Cinder fit in with all of them. There wasn't too much of Kai, but I honestly didn't mind that. IKO!!!! She's ok! Well, sort of. I am so glad she was apart of this book. I love her.

I hope that we see a little bit more of Scarlet's heritage in the next book (trying not to give anything away) and how it possibly effects her. She and Wolf created such a great bond. They were written perfectly for each other and I look forward to seeing their relationship grow in the next book.

I would highly recommend this book, even if you weren't a huge fan of Cinder. (I know - horrible to say right? Someone didn't like Cinder?) I don't know what more to say. I think I am still overwhelmed by the awesomeness of this book.

Review ~ The Stranger by Anna Banks

The Stranger (Of Poseidon #0.75)
by Anna Banks
YA Fantasy
Published: June 18th 2013
Goodreads Link


The Syrena don't trust many humans. Rachel is one of them. The story of how Galen met her - and how they bonded - is both exciting and heartbreaking.

My Review: 
**4.5 Stars**

Finally! We learn how Galen meets Rachel. It is actually pretty funny seeing Galen this young and this unaware of how the human world works. It just really goes to show how much Rachel really taught him.

Of course it is great that Rayna was in there too. And we get to see a little more of her younger personality and her meeting Rachel as well.

Fantastic read for Of Poseidon fans. Actually, it is a must read.

(Sorry my review is so short, but I don't want to give anything away).

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Review ~ Legacy Lost by Anna Banks

Legacy Lost (Of Poseidon #0.5)
by Anna Banks
YA Fantasy
Published: May 22nd 2012
Goodreads Link


He is a mer-prince, she is the mermaid princess that his family orders him to marry so that their kingdoms unite. Grom dreads this arrangement, until he meets Nalia - both beautiful and smart, she's everything he ever wanted. But just when their connection grows deeper, tragedy strikes. Legacy Lost is a prequel story to Anna Banks' debut novel, OF POSEIDON.

My Review:
**3.5 Stars**

While I enjoyed reading the backstory to the Of Poseidon trilogy, it wasn't as good as I had hoped. I think it was because I never really connected with Grom in the other books, so I wasn't as interested in this one.

Legacy Lost is about Grom and Nalia trying to break off their upcoming marriage and ending up falling in love. It ends when tragedy strikes that leads to the Of Poseidon trilogy.

I love how much of Nalia we get to see. I think she is even more stubborn than Emma. Honestly, I wish Legacy Lost was written from her perspective. It would have been really interesting to see into Nalia's mind.

Good story. If you have read (and liked) Of Poseidon you should really read this one.

Monday, June 24, 2013

New Challenge

2013 Personal Novella Challenge

As I have a large number of Novellas to read I have decided to come up with a challenge for myself. I hope to read 15 novellas/short stories by December 31, 2013.

I will be adding this challenge to my challenge page and will update my monthly recaps with this one as well.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Review ~ Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne

Monument 14 (Monument 14 #1)
by Emmy Laybourne
YA Dystopian
Published: June 5, 2012 (I read a newer edition published in May 2013 with bonus content)
Goodreads Link


Your mother hollers that you're going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don't stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don't thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not-you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner. 

Only, if it's the last time you'll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you'd stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus. 

But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran. 

Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne's action-packed debut novel Monument 14, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world-as they know it-apart.

My Review: 
**3.5 Stars**

So, I actually started reading Monument 14 while I was waiting for the Fierce Reads tour to start; which Emmy Laybourne was apart of. In the 15 minutes before the event started, I think I breezed through about 25 pages or so. I didn't want to put it down. I was actually kicking myself for not having started it sooner so I could have asked proper questions.

I love the fact that Monument 14 is written from a guy's perspective. Majority of the YA books out there are from a girl's perspective, and it is such a refreshing change. I really found it interesting how the volcano eruption and crazy weather is what started the "apocalypse", but it was really what we as humans created that made it worse; at least in Colorado. All the weird changes are due to a chemical weapon we created. I love how the author made it based on a person's blood type. If you are A - this happens to you, B - this happens, and of course, O is the worst. Which is kind of ironic as O is generally thought of as the best blood type to have - and it is the most common.

Did I like all the kids? No, but I did like Dean, Alex, and Nico. A few of them were annoying, and you would think that they would get over their differences in a time of trouble, but I guess some people still have hang-ups.

I look forward to reading the next book (which I already own). The only thing I am nervous about is that it seems like book two will jump between Dean and Alex, and I am not a huge fan of character jumps.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Review ~ Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin #1)
by Robin LaFevers
YA Fantasy
Published: April 3rd 2012
Goodreads Link


Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts-and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae's most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany-where she finds herself woefully under prepared-not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death's vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

My Review: 
**3.5 Stars**

Grave Mercy started very slow. I honestly didn't really get into it until about 175-200 pages in. It really picked up towards the end and became interesting. I picked up the book expecting more of a grim reaper feel than an actual assassin. And I really didn't expect her to be a "nun" of sorts.

We learned a lot about St. Mortain, but not really any of the other saints and what they did. What we did learn was really interesting. I like that real countries were used for the background and the fantasy aspects blended in.

All the characters were great. I especially loved Anne (the Duchess) and Gavriel. Gavriel is such a great character and has such loyalty to his sister and Brittany (country). We also see when his feelings towards Ismae start to change and it happens so beautifully and quick that he doesn't even realize it.

All around good read, not the best, but still a good read. I do look forward to reading the next book.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Review ~ Firelight by Sophie Jordan

Firelight (Firelight #1)
by Sophie Jordan
YA Fantasy
Published: September 7th 2010
Goodreads Link


A hidden truth.
Mortal enemies.
Doomed love.

Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki, a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.

Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will's darkest secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away; if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She'll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.

Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

My Review:
**2.5 Stars**

Firelight was ok. I couldn't picture what the draki actually looked like. There wasn't enough description. And when there was - it was confusing. She had hair, but was a dragon... I don't know. I just couldn't picture it.

I couldn't stand Jacinda's mother. I understood her need to try and protect her daughter, but she needs ot give her a reason why she is trying to kill off her draki. Jacinda just feels like her mother hates that part of her and wants it dead without reason - which is how we see it as well. There needed to be more explanation.

Also, Will and Jacinda's relationship was waaay too weird and Twilight-esque with how immediately intense it was. Will's character was ok, but again, not enough description given to really get a grasp of who he is and why. Jacinda was decent enough, but annoying at parts. "I'm going to leave".... "No, I'm not going to leave".... "Wait, I am going to leave".... "No....." Make.Up.Your.Mind.

Overall, not a great book, but I probably will at least read the next one. I would recommend it to people who are just switching over from Middle-Grade level to the Young Adult level.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Review ~ Of Triton by Anna Banks

Of Triton (Of Poseidon #2)
by Anna Banks
YA Paranormal Romance
Published: May 28th 2013
Goodreads Link


In this sequel to OF POSEIDON, Emma has just learned that her mother is a long-lost Poseidon princess, and now struggles with an identity crisis: As a Half-Breed, she's a freak in the human world and an abomination in the Syrena realm below. Syrena law states that all Half-Breeds should be put to death.

And if that's not bad enough, her mother's reappearance among the Syrena turns the two kingdoms- Poseidon and Triton- against one another. Which leaves Emma with a decision to make: Should she comply with Galen's request to keep herself safe and just hope for the best? Or should she risk it all and reveal herself-and her Gift-to save a people she's never known?

My Review: 
**4.5 Stars**

Aaaaa... that's it??? Where is the rest of the book???? (tears running down cheek). Great, now I have to wait a whole year for Of Neptune to come out. And there isn't even a set date yet!!!!

Of Triton picks up right where Of Poseidon left off. Ok, maybe a little after, but it back tracts to some of the action. Even though it is much shorter than the last book, Of Triton doesn't really feel like it when you are done. Yes, it leaves you wanting more, but more in the form of another book - not another chapter or two.

Ok, still love Rayna, and still wishing there was more of her in the book. Oooooo.... Maybe Anna Banks will come out with a short story just of Rayna *hint*hint*hint*. I really like how we were able to see more of the Syrena world and how it works (or in some cases - doesn't). There are a lot of politics going on in the Syrena world during the book, and you would think that politics would be boring - but nope! Exciting! Intrigue! Myster! (insert ghostly Ooooo sound here)

I also really like how we got to see more of the gifts in action. Not only Poseidon's gift, but Triton's gift makes an appearance as well. I look forward to Of Neptune, I am just disappointed that I have to wait so long to read it.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review ~ Outpost by Ann Aguirre

Outpost (Razorland #2)
by Ann Aguirre
YA Post Apocalyptic 
Published: September 4th 2012
Goodreads Link


Deuce's whole world has changed. 

Down below, she was considered an adult. Now, topside in a town called Salvation, she's a brat in need of training in the eyes of the townsfolk. She doesn't fit in with the other girls: Deuce only knows how to fight.

To make matters worse, her Hunter partner, Fade, keeps Deuce at a distance. Her feelings for Fade haven't changed, but he seems not to want her around anymore. Confused and lonely, she starts looking for a way out.

Deuce signs up to serve in the summer patrols-those who make sure the planters can work the fields without danger. It should be routine, but things have been changing on the surface, just as they did below ground. The Freaks have grown smarter. They're watching. Waiting. Planning. The monsters don't intend to let Salvation survive, and it may take a girl like Deuce to turn back the tide.

My Review:
**3.5 Stars**

Overall I really liked Outpost. It wasn't as exciting as Enclave was, but it was still brilliant and a fantastic read. Outpost does start out a little slow. It really picks up once the summer planting starts and you see outside the wall.

Deuce is really trying to fit-in in Salvation, but is having a really hard time because of how she grew up. She is not a girly-girl like she is expected to be. She is a fighter - and always will be. You really see her struggle in this book with trying to maintain who she is in a town that she doesn't really like at first. She is also struggling with her almost non-existent relationship with Fade (who is very stupid in this book). He likes her, but won't talk to her - then he likes her and will talk to her - then back to not talking again. Make. Up. Your. Mind!

O.M.G. did I cry towards the end. I won't give away who, but a beloved character dies in battle. But it was a great way for the character to go - sort of an honor for them.

I can't wait to read Horde. I am really excited to learn how the Freaks become how they are (nope - not zombies!!!).

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Review ~ Crewel by Gennifer Albin

Crewel (Crewel World #1)
by Gennifer Albin
YA Sci-fi/Dystopia
Published: October 16th 2012
Goodreads Link


Enter a tangled world of secrets and intrigue where a girl is in charge of other's destinies, but not her own.

Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift-the ability to weave the very fabric of reality-they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don't want her to become a Spinster-one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.

Thrust into the opulent Western Coventry, Adelice will be tried, tested and tempted as she navigates the deadly politics at play behind its walls. Now caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power. Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it - or destroy it.

My Review:
**3.5 Stars**

So, Crewel almost gor a 4 star review, but (even though I knit and crochet) it took me a little while to grasp the threads/spinning/looms. I actually had to first picture it like the matrix before I could get a grasp on how the world worked. Once I did that, I was able to transfer the mental image over to the looms and was able to understand it a lot better. I'm sure that when I go back and re-read it, I will end up changing my review to a 4 star - but for now, I am going to keep it at a 3.5.

I love the complexity of the world Gennifer created. It is so very male dominated... yet... not, at the same time. You get a fantastic picture of the different locations Adelice travels to within Arras. And towards the end of the book when Adelice is in the tower... fantastic suspenseful writing!

Adelice was written beautifully. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to like her, but then you really got to see how strong and independent she is once she is in the Coventry. Ok, total set up for a love triangle. Erik & Jost. Honestly, I saw the "surprise" twist with them in the beginning. Ok, maybe not the beginning, but when Jost was telling Adelice his back story (sooo sad). Omg - I really felt for Jost. He went through sooo much and I'm sure it isn't over yet.

CONCLUSION: I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to dystopian & sci-fi fans. I cannot wait for Altered! October 2013 - - - not too much longer I guess.

Side Note:

Gennifer Albin was at a local bookstore on Sunday as part of the Fierce Reads tour and I was able to meet her. She is funny, amazing, and so very down to earth. Please follow her on Twitter (@GenniferAlbin) or Facebook (

Monday, June 17, 2013

Format Change

Hi Everyone,

I wanted to let you know that I will be changing the format of my reviews. I have had a couple books that I read a little while ago, but haven't posted a review on yet. I had an idea in my mind how I wanted to write the review, but they never fit into my format. So... goodbye format. Well, for the most part. I think that I will still use it sometimes, but right now, I think it is hindering me from writing what I really want to write.

So, the first book (and the reason why I changed this) that will go out of the norm will be Crewel by Gennifer Albin. Look for it tomorrow!

Thanks for all your support and for following!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Review ~ The Program by Suzanne Young

The Program (Program #1) 
by Suzanne Young
YA Dystopia
Published April 30th 2013
Goodreads Link


In Sloane's world, true feelings are forbidden, teen suicide is an epidemic, and the only solution is The Program. 

Sloane knows better than to cry in front of anyone. With suicide now an international epidemic, one outburst could land her in The Program, the only proven course of treatment. Sloane's parents have already lost one child; Sloane knows they'll do anything to keep her alive. She also knows that everyone who's been through The Program returns as a blank slate. Because their depression is gone-but so are their memories.

Under constant surveillance at home and at school, Sloane puts on a brave face and keeps her feelings buried as deep as she can. The only person Sloane can be herself with is James. He's promised to keep them both safe and out of treatment, and Sloane knows their love is strong enough to withstand anything. But despite the promises they made to each other, it's getting harder to hide the truth. They are both growing weaker. Depression is setting in. And The Program is coming for them.

My Review: 
**1 Star**

MY OVERVIEW: Honestly, I don't even know where to begin. I had so many problems with this book and shouldn't have even picked it up when I read the synopsis. But it got a lot of great reviews, so I decided to give it a shot.

PROS: A huge apology to the author, but there wasn't any for me. Please, please don't take this the wrong way, the book just wasn't for me.

CONS: Ok, so depression and suicide are the main focus of the book - and the society thinks that they can just erase parts of a person's memory to remove these "tendencies." To me, the way it was written was just a slap in the face to anyone who has experienced true clinical depression. You can't just erase memories and make it go away. Also, the main character's whole life revolves around her boyfriend. Without him - she is nothing. What?!??!? Sorry, but that is wrong on so many levels.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: How I wish I hadn't picked up this book so I didn't have to write this review. Please take it for what it is - I didn't enjoy the book - that doesn't mean you won't. HOWEVER... if you are someone who has suffered from depression - you will probably want to avoid this book. It will only make you upset.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Review ~ Innocent Darkness by Suzanne Lazear

Innocent Darkness (The Aether Chronicles #1)
by Suzanne Lazear
YA Steampunk Fantasy
Published: August 8th 2012
Goodreads Link


Wish. Love. Desire. Live.

Sixteen-year-old Noli Braddock's hoyden ways land her in an abusive reform school far from home. On mid-summer's eve she wishes to be anyplace but that dreadful school. A mysterious man from the Realm of Faerie rescues her and brings her to the Otherworld, only to reveal that she must be sacrificed, otherwise, the entire Otherworld civilization will perish.

My Review
**4.5 Stars**

MY OVERVIEW: Steampunk and faeries... how much more awesome can you get? I know a lot of people didn't enjoy this book, but I really liked it! I found the world very interesting and I liked the main character.

PROS: I really liked Noli, V, and Charlotte's characters. I thought they were all written really well. I also loved the Otherworld. It is so beautifully written. And the "boarding" school is just so scary - even more so because that is probably how things were back in Victorian era.

CONS: Even though the book started out strong, it did taper off at one point, then pick back up. I wish we could have known more about Kevighn's sister, but I guess that is going to come up in books to come...

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: I can't wait for the next book! I really did like this book, and after reading some reviews, I can see why some people didn't like it. It is not a heavy steampunk book, but tends to focus more on the fae.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Review ~ Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Siege and Storm (The Grisha #2)
by Leigh Bardugo
YA High Fantasy
Published: June 4th 2013
Goodreads Link


Darkness never dies. 

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land, all while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. But she can't outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling's game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her-or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.

My Review: 
**4.5 Stars**

MY OVERVIEW: Wow! Where do I start? I absolutely loved Shadow and Bone and gave it my rare 5 star rating. Siege and Storm is a fantastic continuation of Alina's story, and picks up right where Shadow and Bone left off.

PROS: There are a lot of great new adventures and fantastic new characters. Who is my favorite new character? Hmm... maybe Nikolai. Sorry for all you Mal fans out there, but I think I might actually like Nikolai more.

CONS: I wasn't thrilled with the bits of steampunk thrown into the book-even though I am a big steampunk fan. It just didn't quite fit in the world Leigh Bardugo created. I also was not a fan of Mal in this book. As expected as his transformation was, it really made you unsure of him and Alina together.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Ok, wiping away tears from the ending of the book and wondering where the next one is. Once again, Leigh Bardugo has created a fantastic story that leaves you not-so-patiently waiting for more.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Review ~ 'Til The World Ends by Kagawa, Aguirre & Duvall

'Til The World Ends
by Julie Kagawa, Ann Aguirre, & Karen Duvall
Adult Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic 
Published: January 29th 2013
Goodreads Link

Reviews are for Dawn of Eden and Thistle & Thorne only. I didn't have any interest in Sun Storm. 

Dawn of Eden
by Julie Kagawa
Warning: Graphic Sexual Content


Before The Immortal Rules, there was the Red Lung, a relentless virus determined to take out all in its path. For Kylie, the miracle of her survival is also her burden-as a doctor at one of the clinics for the infected, she is forced to witness endless suffering. What's worse, strange things are happening to the remains of the dead, and by the time she befriends Ben Archer, she's beginning to wonder if a global pandemic is the least of her problems...

My Review:
**3.5 Stars**

Holy sexcapades Batman! Wow.... Ok, this is not for Young Adults even though the remainder of the Blood of Eden series is. I really enjoyed the story. I liked seeing the reaction to the Rabids first coming about. I also loved seeing some of the interaction with a familiar character and the creation of a familiar sight from The Immortal Rules. Great story - great background on the virus and Rabids. Would recommend to all ADULT fans of the series - and MAYBE some MATURE young adult fans.

Thistle & Thorne
by Ann Aguirre


After a catastrophic spill turns the country into a vast chemical wasteland, those who could afford it retreated to fortresses, self-contained communities run by powerful corporations. But for Mari Thistle, life on the outside-in the Red Zone-is a constant struggle. To protect her family, Mari teams up with the mysterious Thorne Goodman. Together, they'll face an evil plot in both the underworld of the Red Zone and the society inside the fortress that could destroy those on the outside... for good.

My Review:
**3 Stars**

Really interesting concept and executed very well. I actually would have loved for this to have been a new series. Mari's character was well written and very believable. She would do just about anything for her family, and even though most people didn't - she did still care and look after others. I like the society and wish I could have seen just a little more of it.

Sun Storm
by Karen Duvall


Sarah Daggot has been chasing storms since she was a child. But after the biggest solar flares in history nearly destroy the planet, she becomes a Kinetic, endowed by her exposure to extreme radiation with the power to sense coming storms-in the cosmos and beyond. And she's not the only one. Sarah believes the Kinetics are destined to join forces and halt the final onslaught of the sun. She'll vow to keep trying to convince the one missing link in their chain of defense, the enigmatic Ian Matthews, up until the world ends.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Review ~ Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger

Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School #1)
by Gail Carriger
YA Steampunk
Published: February 5th 2013
Goodreads Link


It's one thing to learn to curtsy properly. It's quite another to learn to curtsy and throw a knife at the same time. Welcome to Finishing School. 

Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is a great trial to her poor mother. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper manners-and the family can only hope that company never sees her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. So she enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But Sophronia soon realizes the school is not quite what her mother might have hoped. At Mademoiselle Geraldine's, young ladies learn to finish...everything. Certainly, they learn the fine arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but they also learn to deal out death, diversion, and espionage-in the politest possible ways, of course. Sophronia and her friends are in for a rousing first year's education.

Set in the same world as the Parasol Protectorate, this YA series debut is filled with all the saucy adventure and droll humor Gail Carriger's legions of fans have come to adore.

My Review:
**2.5 Stars**

MY OVERVIEW: Darn. I held high expectations for this book as I enjoyed Gail Carriger's adult series. But it felt like there were middle-grade level characters thrown into a young adult book.

PROS: I liked the whole secret-espionage-finishing-school thing. I would have loved to see more of the classes and what the girls were actually learning about. Vieve is the best character! (S)he (sorry for giving it away) is sooo full of life and spunk!

CONS: I have no idea what the purpose of the finishing school is. Why are they training these girls to be experts in killing people and fact-finding? I also think it was too reminiscent of Harry Potter in the fact that; student comes to school who has no idea what is going on - gets into areas she should - doesn't get in trouble - instead saves the day.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Even though I gave this book a low rating, I do plan on reading the next one in the series.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

~* May Review Recap *~

~* May Review Recap *~ 

The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross
    ~ 3.5 Star Review (Link)
    ~ 2013 TBR Pile Reading Challenge (book 5 of 21)

Wake by Amanda Hocking
    ~ 2 Star Review (Link)
    ~ 2013 TBR Pile Reading Challenge (book 6 of 21)
    ~ Paranormal Reading Challenge (Mermaids/Sirens)

Origin by Jessica Khoury
    ~ 4.5 Star Review (Link)
    ~ 2013 TBR Pile Reading Challenge (book 7 of 21)

Unremembered by Jessica Brody
    ~ 3 Star Review (Link)
    ~ 2013 TBR Pile Reading Challenge (book 8 of 21)

The Elite by Kiera Cass
    ~ 3 Star Review (Link)
    ~ 2013 Sequel Challenge (book 9 of 15)
    ~ Dystopia Reading Challenge (book 9 of 24)

Beta by Rachel Cohn
    ~ 2.4 Star Review ()
    ~ Dystopia Reading Challenge (book 10 of 24)
    ~ 2013 TBR Pile Reading Challenge (book 9 of 21) 

Review ~ Beta by Rachel Cohn

Beta (Annex #1)
by Rachel Cohn
YA Dystopian
Published: October 16th 2012
Goodreads Link


Elysia is created in a laboratory, born as a sixteen-year-old girl, an empty vessel with no life experience to draw from. She is a Beta, an experimental modle of a teenage clone. She was replicated from another teenage girl, who had to die in order for Elysia to exist.

Elysia's purpose is to serve the inhabitants of Demesne, an island paradise for the wealthiest people on earth. Everything about Demesne is bioengineered for perfection. Even the air induces a strange, euphoric high, which only the island's workers-soulless clones like Elysia-are immune to.

At first, Elysia's life is idyllic and pampered. But she soon sees that Demesne's human residents, who should want for nothing, yearn. But for what, exactly? She also comes to realize that beneath the island's flawless exterior, there is an undercurrent of discontent among Demesne's worker clones. She knows she is soulless and cannot feel and should not care-so why are overpowering sensations clouding Elysia's mind?

If anyone discovers that Elysia isn't the unfeeling clone she must pretend to be, she will suffer a fate too terrible to imagine. When her one chance at happiness is ripped away with breathtaking cruelty, emotions she's always had but never understood are unleashed. As rage, terror, and desire threaten to overwhelm her, Elysia must find the will to survive.

My Review: 
**2.5 Stars**

MY OVERVIEW: Well, while I had some problems with the book I actually somewhat enjoyed the story until the end. I will try not to give anything away, but the ending completely ruined the book for me.

PROS: I liked Elysia's character. You can really tell that she is a "defect" and struggling with confusing emotions. I didn't really like any other character, but I knew as soon as Tahir showed up what his twist was.

CONS: Aside from the horrible ending - the society wasn't believable. I am sorry, but a society that creates clones for slaves WOULD have created (ahem) prostitute clones. Especially when they try and create only the best perfect clones. No, I would not have wanted to read about them, but come on - they would exist probably before any other clones did.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Um, I probably would have read the next book in the series, but I don't really see that happening now. Even though the book ended with a pretty big cliffhanger, other parts of the ending completely ruined the rest of the series for me.