Saturday, December 31, 2011

Review: Caged in Darkness (Caged #1)

Title: Caged in Darkness (Caged #1)
Author: J.D. Stroube
Rating: 3 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
A witch raised in a cage of darkness... 

Savannah Cross was born into a life of isolation and abuse. 
As a child, she witnessed her parents perform acts of malevolent evil, and now feels permanently tainted by their dark deeds. 

When a coven discovers a tear stricken child, 
wounded on their elders lawn, they offer her a sanctuary she has never known. Savannah spends the next several years shattered, continuously looking over her shoulder, waiting for the darkness to claim her. 

On her 16th birthday, 
Savannah’s life takes a drastic turn. She is consumed by overwhelming power that forever alters her emotionally and physically. 

She must choose between two loves; the one who taught her to smile or the darkly seductive stranger who tempts her towards another path. 

Savannah must decide between the coven that was her haven 
and another one vying for her initiation. Just as Savannah begins to grasp what fate has in store for her, an evil looms over her loved ones; coming to claim an unbreakable debt. 
How will she survive the greatest evil she has ever witnessed… long enough to have a choice to make?

My Take:
Quit an original story. First you are drawn in by a girl who has lived a troubled life. Abused by her parents, you can't expect the girl to be normal. Luckily she has Maye and Ash to take care of her. 

From the very beginning I liked Ash and hoped there would be something romantic between them. Which happens and then there is another boy thrown in the mix. Usually love triangles urk me, but after reading the end of this book, I'm not even sure what's happening anymore! 

The end is something you don't really see coming, and it's not something that makes complete sense to me. In the next book I hope it's explained a little more. (I'm not going to say specifics because I don't want to give away spoilers.)

Overall, it's an interesting read with a huge twist at the end. Lets just say you might think you know what will happen at the end, but you don't. I would definitely like to get to know the characters more and there's another book, so I think that shouldn't be a problem!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Top Ten Favorite Books Read in 2011

Top Ten Favorite Books Read in 2011

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where there is a different list featured every week. Anyone can participate and if you link back to their site you might get a couple extra visitors!

Luckily, I seem to know who my favorites are because I only exceeded the list by one! Picking one to leave out was hard, but I managed to find my absolute top ten. Not in a certain order.
(Not all, probably majority actually, didn't come out this year)

1. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Jace *swoon* what else is there to say? Besides Magnus, who is undoubtably my favorite character ever. So much action in these books.

2. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
This book was different and it grabbed me and wouldn't let go.

3. Beg for Mercy by Shannon Dermott
Soo many boys, loved every minute of this! My first real Succubus book ever too and it's so interesting to learn about Mercy.

4. Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
This just seems how contemporary romances are and I liked that a lot.

5. Divergent by Veronica Roth
Anything about facing your fears is interesting.

6. Madly and Wolfhardt  by M. Leighton
Jackson is added to top 5 book boyfriends and Madly is a character I love reading about. My first mermaid book and it won't be my last.

7. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Who doesn't love these books?

8. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
 So glad I gave in and finally picked this up. This series has so much going on it's hard to be bored (Ok, well maybe in the fourth book a little but I ignore that hehe)

9. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
I can't say what it is about this book that I love the series so much, but I know Patch is part of it.

10. Born at Midnight  by C.C. Hunter
I CANNOT wait for the third book in this series. Derek, Derek, Derek!

Honorable mention to Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. This book was moving and one of personal growth that I've never seen to this magnitude. One I would recommend to anyone, especially high schoolers!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Review: Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2)

Title: Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars 

Goodreads Summary:
In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.
With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

My Take:
My mind is in a million different places after reading this book. 

Sadness for both Will and Jem. For different reasons. Will for being denied love. Jem for not being told the truth.

Happiness for Charlotte, Henry, and the other shadowhunters.

Confusion about what Tessa REALLY feels. Everything she does is because of what's expected, or what won't hurt someone, what do she really want!!

Frustration/Anger because the whole love triangle is RIDICULOUS. Seriously, she should know by now. I think she loves Will and it's cruel to do what she's doing to Jem. I do believe she loves Jem, but not enough. Not the way he loves her.

Shock because I i>never saw Jem doing that. I'm glad he did, but it was basically out of no where. Also, I never saw our little visitor at the end making an appearance anytime soon.

Curiosity/Anticipation about what will happen next, especially with Jessie, and our new visitor, OH, correction, both our new additions to the institute :)

This book was great. I'm glad I read it but I can't honestly say I loved it. I loved some of the scenes, for example the scene in Jem's bedroom - amazing! But basically because of my frustration, I can't love the book. Tessa doesn't seem to grow at all in this book. In fact, I think she just becomes more confused. She isn't listening to herself at all. I really don't think Clare needed to keep this love triangle, but she did, and it's making me angry. Will grows up SO much. I'm glad we saw more of Magnus because he always makes me happy. Jem is more charming then ever. I must say though, that Charlotte and Henry, they're so cute! And they develop a lot in this book. As well as Sophie and another I shouldn't mention.

Overall, the book was good. Not my favorite but not awful. The plot was driven well because we keep getting closer to Mortmain, but there's still so many secrets. But if Clare keeps up this ridiculousness with the love traingle, I'm going to go crazy.

I swear if Jem dies in the next book, I will too!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Tomorrow's Tuesday!

This book comes out tomorrow! It looks so good I can't wait to read it!

Touch of Power
by Maria V. Snyder

Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan absorbs their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Fifteen Realms, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos.
Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader, an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own, is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince—leader of a campaign against her people. As they traverse the daunting Nine Mountains, beset by mercenaries and magical dangers, Avry must decide who is worth healing and what is worth dying for. Because the price of peace may well be her life….

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Review: Blood Warrior (Alexa Montgomery #1)

Title: Blood Warrior (Alexa Montgomery #1)
Author: H.D. Gordon
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
When her home is attacked by muderous vampires, 17-year-old Alexa is forced to leave her mother for dead in order to save her sister. She soon learns that she is the last known member of an elite race of supernatural Warriors, and is thrust into a world full of vampires and werewolves who all seem to regard her as some sort of savior. Meanwhile, Alexa battles a monster within herself that seeks to gain control; a monster that seeks blood.

The hidden city she kinds herself in appears perfect, but Alexa's instrincts tell her that all is not right within its walls. When she is asked to attend a school of fighters, whose exams consister of gladiator-style competitions, she must decide who she can trust among the smiling faces. And, when she meets Kayden, a vampire she feels undeniably drawn to, she must decide if she can trust herself.

My Take:

I really liked this book. A lot! Sorry this review is a bit long!

In the beginning, things were a uncomfortable for me. I honestly thought I was going to get a mentally & emotionally damaged character because there seemed to be some abuse happening. Luckily, that was not the case. The main character is Alexa and I was just as mad as she was in the beginning because we had no idea what was going on. Throughout the story you learn things just as she does and since she's been kept in the dark about everything, it was frustrating to watch her do things and not understand why. It keeps you interested though!

Alexa is a strong character, very strong, and sometimes her head gets in the way. I just wanted to shake her at some parts! Alexa is dealing wiith finding out who she is (the last sun warrior ever!), the death of her mother, and all the boy attention she is receiving! Luckily, for Alexa, she has her sister, Nelly, and Kayden to ease some of that fire. 

Oh, KAYDEN! Kayden is a tough cookie, and he's pretty BA, but he's also not at the same time. He's a great combo of a good guy and a bad guy if you ask me (AKA = PERFECT!). 

The suspense is great because most of the time we don't know what's going on and when we finally get the hang of things, new things keep popping up! For me Alexa took some things a little too easily - like going to school. It surprised me how easily she adapted to her completely different life. Nelly did too, but I think I kept picturing Nelly as so much younger, even though she was only a year younger. Maybe it was just because her personality wasn't very strong yet.

As soon as Alexa and her crew where taken into the city, Two Rivers, I was transfixed just as Alexa was. A whole new world for them and us! A place where two warriors duke it out just for show? A society where they don't even value their warriors lives, they just want them for protection and entertainment? Ya, different and enticing!

I do have to mention that I thought the book resembled to Vampire Academy a lot. I've only read three of their books but the similarities seemed to be hitting me in the face as I read this (I just read them recently too so that could be why). I won't get into how, but I do want to say that this didn't take from the story for me! This book had a lot of it's own originality. Things characters can do in this series, you wouldn't see in VA. There are more different races/species in this series than the other. I also have to point out that I like Kaydem more than I like Dimitri!! So if you liked Dimitri. Just wait for Kayden!! 

I also have to let Jackson have his piece. Jackson is Alexa's best friend, a werewolf, and he likes her. You can tell right from the beginning he does. And I liked him too! He's actually allowed to go to school within the same city as the warriors and searchers (both are vamps). If something happened to Kayden I would be perfectly OK if Alexa ended up with Jackson. 

This book was good. Really good. I will definitely be reading the next in the series. I thought it was already out so I was so angry yesterday when I found out it wasn't. Please get here soon! 

I'd also like to thank Nicole Marie for suggesting this book to me! Great pick :D

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Top Ten Books I Want to Give as Gifts

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where there is a different list featured every week. Anyone can participate and if you link back to their site you might get a couple extra visitors!

Top Ten Books I Want To Give As Gifts 
(and to who...even if I won't actually give them!)

1. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver - to my teen cousin. I wish I had this book when I was in middle school or high school! It's such a moving story.

2. Good in Bed (Cannie Shapiro #1) by Jennifer Weiner - I haven't actually read this one but I have a two friends who don't know each other and they both like the same kinds of books. One of them (Nicole) recommended this to me to I'm recommending it to Katie.

3. Beg for Mercy (Cambion Series #1) by Shannon Dermott - to my youngest sister. This is definitely a book she would love because there is enough action to keep her interested! and lots of boys :D

4. SEAL Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy SEAL Sniper by Howard E. Wasdin & Stephen Templin - I haven't actually read this one either but it sounds so good and something my dad would really enjoy!

5. Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire - I throw a lot of my paranormal/fantasy YA books at my sister and I think she gets a bit tired of them so I would recommend this one. It's a contemporary romance that I fell in love with!

I can't think of any other to give to specific people so these are just others I would give away to anyone:

6. Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1) by Tahereh Mafi - I loved this books originality. Everything from the writing style to the plot. Amazing.

7. The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins - One of the best series I've ever read. Hands down. 

8. Born at Midnight (Shadow Falls #1) by C.C. Hunter - I'm also completely in love with this series. I think this series deserves more recognition than it gets!

9. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert - I have to say this book has played a big part of the person I am today. Will always suggest this one.

10. Madly (Madly #1) by M. Leighton - anyone that loves Indie authors will love this book. She's one of my favorite Indie authors and has some great series!

Monday, December 12, 2011

In My Mailbox #6

In My Mailbox in a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren and all you do is show off all the books you've collected for that week!

I got two books in the mail this week:

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2)
by Cassandra Clare 

and I can't wait to start this one! Anyone read it yet? Whatcha think?
P.S. - so far I'm all for Jem! :)

Tantalize (Tantalize #1)
by Cynthia Leitich Smith 

I had to get this one because I bought the second one not knowing there was a first! Good thing I didn't read that one yet. 

Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)
by Richelle Mead

I only just finished the third but I know I'll definitely be reading the whole series! If you haven't read it yet, I suggest it.

What did everyone else get?

Reading Hiatus

I've decided I need to take a break from all the reading I've been doing. It's not really something I really want to do but I'm forcing myself!! There are other things I need to be doing, and since I can't just read a little, I have to completely stop for a bit. 

I've already been going at it for 3 days and I haven't read anything bookwise since I started :) Doing so good so far so I'm hoping to keep it up. Not that I've accomplished much. So far I've:

- plugged in my TV. Yes, I haven't turned on a TV since May I think?
- researched some grad programs. Not English Education ones but Creative Writing ones. See English Ed. is what I want to do but CW is so enticing!
- got some Christmas shopping done.
- cleaned my room.

So nothing spectacular. I really need to get grad school stuff done so I can start reading again! 

Anyways, in the meantime I think I'm going to revamp my blog. I'm getting bored with it. 

Hope your all having a great day :)

Maybe I'll blog more now?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Review: Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices #1)

Title: Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices #1)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
(After reading it a second time I would probably only give it a 4 star, even though I gave it a 5 the first time, so 4.5.)

Goodreads Summary:
Magic is dangerous--but love is more dangerous still. 

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos. 

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own. 

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

My Take:
This review is written after reading the book for the second time. I'm really glad I decided to read this book again because I realized so much more the second time through! 

First, the Infernal Devices is SO much like The Mortal Instruments. Supposed love triangle, the heroine finding out she's not who she thought she was, a jerk of a love interest and the shadow hunter world. 

When I first read this book this is what I thought about it:
- amazing!
- I HATED Will. Asshole. 
- *loved* Jem :) 
- The story was kinda unpredictable
- the ending took me by surprise

After reading it again, I came to these conclusions:
- I like Will more. He's still a huge ass, but he's tolerable. Clare better have a good reason for making him this way. But I can't imagine what would be worse than what Jem's gone through, and he's not like Will at all.
- I'm more in love with Jem. I mean seriously, he's the boy I would pick, especially for Tessa. She seems too sweet to put up with someone like Will.
- I hate to say this, but there is no love triangle. Tessa isn't into Jem at all :{ All her thoughts are Will, Will, Will. No Jem and it breaks my heart. Jem likes Tessa, but Tessa doesn't see anything more in Jem. It's just him trying to win her affection. 
- There was too much detail in some parts. Got boring to read those parts.

There are still a lot of questions left unanswered like: What is Tessa? What happened to the villain? What is the villain exactly? There are more too but they would be too much of a spoiler to ask. 

Will definitely be reading the next book, but I really hope Tessa uses her head. Bad things happen to people but giving an excuse to be a dick is going to be pretty tough.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Review: Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3)

Title: Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3)
Author: Richelle Mead
Rating: 4.25 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
Is Rose's fate to kill the person she loves most? It's springtime at St. Vladimir's Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. She has dark flashbacks in the middle of practive, can't concentrate in class, and has terrifying dreams about Lissa. but Rose has an even bigger secret... She's in love with Dimitri. And this time, it's way more than a crush. Then Strigoi target the academy in the deadliest attack in Moroi history, and Dimitri is taken. Rose must protext Lissa at all costs, but keeping her best friend safe could mean losing Dimitri forever...

In my personal opinion, this isn't a very good description of the book. It skips SO much inbetween!

My Take:
Blind-sighted. That's the best word I have for this novel. Everyone in the story, including myself, were completely caught off guard. I thought something like this would happen, but THAT? 

Rose and everyone else are back at the academy. Rose starts seeing things and she isn't completely sure they are real. She's keeping things in and trying so much to help Lissa, that it's starting to drive her crazy. Literally. And her temper tantrums aren't what I'm talking about. We see those too, but things are different this time. 

Lucky for me, and Rose, the love story in this book intensifies. I have to admit that I thought something that happened between them kind of caught me off guard. But I'm glad it happened.

The rationalization of why help couldn't have been offered at one point has me second guessing how much I thought Richelle was following a try story and not making things go in her favor. Like when something could obvious go the good way, but the author makes some lame excuse as to why things can't go smoothly. Or even the opposite, when things go too smooth when they shouldn't have. I got a hint of that in this book, and it bothers me.

Rose's character develops through the roof in this book. She did a lot of growing up in the last book, but this one, she does even more. She feels like such a different character than the first book and even she realizes it. I have to say I like this Rose much better. 

The instances with the queen were amusing. I thought what happened with her would fill future books, but now I'm not so sure. Adrian and Christian full some pretty great scenes and we get to hang out with Christian more, which I always like! 

I read someone else say something along the lines of how after the ending of this book, they couldn't see how anything could fall into place for Rose's future, and I have to agree. I can't either :/ I know Richelle can make it happen because author created their own world, I just hate it when they break their own rules, or make exceptions of their characters. I think that might happen soon and I'm really not looking forward to it. Even though it would make the situation SO much better, I just hate to see it. 

I should have cried like my family pet just died at one point in this book, but I didn't. I'm trying to keep my hope up.

Thank goodness I have the next book already. If I had to wait a whole year for the next book, or even six months, someone would be hurtin!

Clockwork Prince Release!

So yesterday Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare was released!! 


Clockwork Angel  is the first in The Infernal Devices trilogy. This series is kind of a prequel to The Mortal Instruments series. I would highly recommend you read both, ASAP. 

Sadly, I haven't gotten my hands on my copy yet because it's in the mail. But once I get it, I probably won't be putting it down for a while :)

In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.
With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Review: Frostbite (Vampire Academy #2)

Title: Frostbite (Vampire Academy #2)
Author: Richelle Mead
Rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

Rose loves Dimitri, Dimitri might love Tasha, and Mason would die to be with Rose...

It's winter break at St. Vladimir's, but Rose is feeling anything but festive. A massive Strigoi attack has put the school on high alert, and now the Academy's crawling with Guardians - including Rose's hard-hitting mother, Janine Hathway. And if hand-to-hand combat with her mom wasn't bad enough, Rose's tutor Dimitri has his eye on someone else, her friend Mason's got a huge crush on her, and Rose keeps getting stuck in Lissa's head while she's making out with her boyfriend, Christian! The Strigoi are closing in, and the Academy's not taking any risks... This year, St. Vlad's annual holiday ski trip is mandatory.

But the glittering winter landscape and the posh Idaho resort only create the illusion of safety. When three friends run away in an offensive move against the deadly Strigoi, Rose must join forces with Christian to rescue them. But heroism rarely come without a price...

My take:

I finally see what all the VA hype is about! This book was great, fantastic. I devoured it. 

Although I didn't cry like some people I know did, I can understand why so many people thought this book was so sad. It was. For some reason those series isn't just hitting me on an intense emotional level yet. Maybe because I'm reading them too fast? I just can't seem to stop :) hehe

Well I've finally met Adrian and I'm very glad I did! He's sultry and sexy. Even though people say he's trouble, well I understand how Rose feels about wanting to be near him. I can't wait to learn more about him! 

There was a lot more action and this one, and thankfully, there weren't as much social drama. Well there was, but public things, not really this person hates someone else and blah, blah, blah. 

Rose matured SO much in this story and I've learned to like her a lot better. I'm beginning to think Lissa is a little naive about a lot, but I still like her. Christian I still love and I gained a lot more respect for him in this one!  I liked Mason a lot more and I still feel the same way about Dimitri, he's great. In this one we met in famous Janine Hathaway (Rose's mother). I also felt differently about Mia in this book and I started to like her more.

Ok, enough talking about this. I also have the third sooo I'm going to go read it now :) 

Monday, December 5, 2011

Review: Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy #1)

Title: Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy #1)
Author: Richelle Mead
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
Vladimir's Academy isn't just boarding school - it's a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Priness. They've been on the run but now they're being dragged back to St. Vlahimir's - the very place where they're most in danger ....

Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy's ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi - the world's fiercest and most dangerous vampires - make LIssa one of them forever ... 

My Take:
At first, I thought this book was OK. And then I started to reread Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare because Clockwork Prince comes out tomorrow, and I loved that book. However, I couldn't stop thinking about this VA story! I must have really liked it more than I thought I did.

The story was intriguing because it's original. At first it was a little hard for me to get all the different types, but eventually I caught on. It wasn't hard. The Strigoi are the bad guys, who try to kill humans, dhampirs (Rose and Dimitri) and vampires, some of who are royal. Rose is a vampire. 

Rose is Lissa's guardian and is training really hard to make sure she is assigned to her after school. She's being trained by the god, Dimitri. The scenes between them are sometimes my favorite. 

My favorite character overall was Christian. I think a lot of people fall in love with Dimitri because he's the dark, sexy type, but Christian was amazing in this story, and he was a minor character. A lot of the minor characters in this story are some of my favorites! Dimitri was great too and some of the situations Rose got herself into with them left me smirking and even laughing. I'm starting a soft spot for Dimitri as well! 

The character development in this story was great. Rose changes a lot and Lissa's emotions and moods switch so much but she eventually starts to learn some things. Lissa and Rose's friendship was really intense. It was great and I enjoyed reading about them together, because they acted exactly like my sisters and I treat each other.

I thought Rose was a little too brash sometimes, and Lissa was a little too crazy, but eventually everything really gets explained and it makes sense. 

This story wasn't lacking any action either. Trying to figure out everything that was happening between characters, besides there emotions because those stories were intriguing by themselves!, was enthralling. 

I'm actually stopping reading Clockwork Angel to start the second. I didn't think it would bother me that much to stop here in the series, but I can't stop thinking about what happens next!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Review: Wolfsbane (Nightshade #2)

Title: Wolfsbane (Nightshade #2)
Author: Andrea Cremer
Rating: 3 of 5 stars 

Goodreads description:
When Calla Tor wakes up in the lair of the Searchers, her sworn enemies, she's certain her days are numbered. But then the Searchers make her an offer, one that gives her the chance to destroy her former masters and save the pack and the man she left behind. Is Ren worth the price of her freedon? And will Shay stand by her side no matter what? Now in control of her own destinry, Calla must decide which battles and worth fighting and how many trials true love can endure and still survive.

My Take:
This was a huge disappointment. I loved Nightshade and was looking forward to this novel, but sadly, I was not impressed. I'll do this review as a list.

1. The first half of the book was a huge history lesson mixed with a bunch of new characters. Basically, way too much information and characters all at once. Especially since the new characters were the ones telling the history of the Guardians, Keepers, and Searchers. Meeting a couple characters is fine but we meet a lot of them. And they all take part in the action of the story. Seriously in the first half there was one action scene - the rest history. Boring. 

2. There was too much bantering going on between the new characters. I understood they were all like family and I think Cremer was trying to assimilate us into their culture quickly but it was too much for me. I couldn't keep characters straight and all of the off-topic things they would throw into conversations confused me even more.

3. A couple of characters made some choices that didn't make me so happy. Particularly since the choices seemed out of character for them. What happened between Calla and Shay in the garden and then what Ren did when they found him. Both left my mouth hanging wide open. 

4. Shay changes a lot. I always thought of Shay as a nice guy. He wants my first pick for Calla but I thought that if she ended up with him I could deal with it. Not anymore. I swear the only thing he wants from Calla in this book is her body. It's ridiculous. 
Ok, he wants her safe too, but that's so he can have her body.

5. Calla. This girl just keeps getting worse. It's ok that you may love two different men but you know what you ultimately want. Stop toying with the idea of being with both. I really think Cremer is going to stick Calla with Shay at the end and I think she's just keeping thoughts about Ren around for a love traingle thing. Just let Ren go. Seriously, I would like the story better if you would quit getting my hopes up. It's obvious Calla wants Shay. Quit trying to keep the love triangle.

Even though I wasn't happy with the story, there were still things I did like.

- The new characters we meet. After, finally, getting them all straight, there are a lot of characters I grew to love. I would LOVE to read a book about Cooner and Adne's past life. Or just a chapter from their POVs. Seriously, Connor is a kick-ass character. So light hearted, charming and sly. He's fun! 

- The second half of the book did have some good action. Once things started rolling it didn't stop, which was great. There were sad parts and shocking parts. Both of which I was happy with (even the sad parts because you feel something finally after all that history!)

- The Searchers were fun people. Even though the Searchers can kick some serious ass of their own, they are compelling bunch. They were seriously a family and it was interesting to see their different powers. Especially the Weavers!

I will still read the third book. Even though I think I know how things will end up, especially with who Calla will be choosing, I'm still curious as to what will happen with all the characters. I seriously want to see Connor, Adne, Ethan, and Sabine make some moves! Honestly too, I'm hoping that Ren finds someone - even if it's not Calla. Maybe he'll find someone better because Calla's really making me mad.

I can say if there's a spinoff with some of the Searchers, I would definitely read that.

Read this book or don't. Your call. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Review: Nightshade (Nightshade #1)

 Title: Nightshade (Nightshade #1)
Author: Andrea Cremer
Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

First, I just have to say that this is probably one of my favorite covers ever! Beautiful!

Goodreads Summary:
Calla Tor has always known her desinty: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essense of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything - including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

My Take:
I could not stop reading this book. I don't know why but I didn't think it would be that amazing when I picked it up, maybe because of this unjustified presumption it made me love the book more? All I know is I read late into the night because I like to read, this wasn't for that reason, this simply was because I couldn't stop.

Calla (Lily - nickname) is a strong female lead and it's really refreshing because she doesn't depend on anyone, and when Ren (her soon to be mate) or any man try to control her, she gets pissed. Granted, she is an alpha. But throughout the book she's basically trying to decide if she should follow one part of her heart and protect a boy she shouldn't, or follow the other side and be with the one, and the pack, she's supposed to be with.

It was hard for me to see Calla's attraction to Shey. She knew nothing about him and at times to me it felt like she really only liked him because she was written to. There could have been a smoother transition into this romance. However, the romance between Ren and her felt completely natural, even though they really seem to fight at times. To me there seems to be huge sexual chemistry there, and I can't figure out why Calla doesn't see it. 
I'm just going to state that I'm all for Ren. If Calla doesn't want him I'll gladly take him :D

The plot was intriguing because this seems like a very original werewolf story. (technically they aren't werewolves, but Guardians) There is a story about love but there's an overarching theme of pack and loyalty.  There are also the Keepers, who are basically the Guardians providers and leaders, and the Searchers, who are the enemies of the Keepers, therefore enemies of the Guardians as well.

I knew the ending because I accidently read something somewhere, but if I hadn't, it's quit a cliffhanger!  All I can say is that I was so frustrated with some of the decisions made near the end of the book that I almost didn't even want to read Wolfsbane. That changed though because I can't give up on these characters, they are a lot of fun!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Review: Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1)

Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Rating: 5 of 5 stars!

Goodreads Summary:
Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days. 

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal. As long as she doesn't hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don't fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color. 

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war-- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she's exactly what they need right now. 

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior. 

In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a world as riveting asThe Hunger Games and a superhero story as thrilling as The X-Men. Full of pulse-pounding romance, intoxicating villainy, and high-stakes choices, Shatter Me is a fresh and original dystopian novel—with a paranormal twist—that will leave readers anxiously awaiting its sequel.

My Take:
WOW. Really, just, WOW. 

One of my top three favorite books of the year. 

There was a lot of hype going around this book so it made me excited to read it, and worried that I wouldn't like it as much as I was hoping I would. Well, there was no need for me to worry. I loved it! 

Juliette: I found a lot of things interesting about this book, but one of the biggest things I liked is that we don't know everything Juliette is capable of from the beginning. We know why she's locked up, and so does she, but there's more hidden underneath that she unleashes throughout the book. 
A couple of times I thought Juliette's character was a little off, but it was only when she was so forward with Adam. They have huge sexual chemistry, and tension for that matter, and some of the things she said seemed to go against her reserved nature. 

Writing: I think a lot of people are going to say this book isn't good because of the writing. There is a lot of repetition from Juliette when she feels strong emotions and I thought they were annoying at first, but I can to see it as her personality. 
I do think that the sentences or phrases crossed out didn't need to be. They are a vital part of the story. A couple time I actually skipped over them and then realized I shouldn't and it messed up my reading. 
Both of these just make the book awesome though because they fit. 

Romance: The romance in this book is great. It's not a love triangle per se but there's elements of one. Although I don't doubt Juliette and her man, there's a voice in the back of my head wondering if she is just dying for attention from anyone. I think she's confused about the man that tries to bind her. Sometimes I think she's attracted to him too. 

The World: I can't imagine how society would get this way. I was confused about how all of this could happen but they explain it a little better at the end. 

Adam: One of my new favorite fictional boyfriends. Oh, yea. He's a Soldier, compassionate, and a family man. Seriously, my heart is swooning :] 

Minor characters: I fell in love with some of the minor characters even more than I did Juliette! Kenjie is halarious and James is so adorable! 

The End - spoiler free: My favorite part. There's no happily ever after here, but it's still satisfying. Thankfully, there will be another book. Juliette finds herself someone she didn't even know existed. She isn't completely sure how she feels about being there, and I think a lot of the next book is going to take place here. Well, ok, maybe I'm just hoping it will! It seems so gosh darn interesting there!! 

Second book, you are toooooo farrrrr awayyyyyy :{

Seriously people, I wouldn't want to miss this one!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Top Ten Books on My TBR List for Winter

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where there is a different list featured every week. Anyone can participate and if you link back to their site you might get a couple extra visitors!

So all of my books will be new releases between now and the end of March. I already have so many on my shelf that need read, but it's more fun to think about what's coming :)

Top Ten Books on My TBR List for Winter 
(TBR- To Be Read for anyone that didn't know)

1. Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2) by Cassandra Clare - after that cliffhanger in Clockwork Angel, who isn't waiting this release? I've heard it's her best book yet too! Dec 6th

2. The Eternal Starling (Emblem of Eternity #1) by Angela Corbett - I'm really excited for this book because the characters are in college, which is closer to my age than most of the YA I read. Dec. 6th

3. Shattered Souls by Mary Lindsey - Not only does the book sound good but I'm in love with the cover.  Dec. 8th

4. Everneath (Everneath #1) by Brodi Ashton - I don't think I've read much about the underworld. Especially about characters that go back and forth between realms freely. This should be interesting. Jan. 3rd

5. Bloodrose (Nightshade #3) by Andrea Cremer - I'm only 3/4 of the way through the first and I'm hooked. Will definitely be crying for this by it's release date! Jan. 3rd

6. Destiny's Fire by Trisha Wolfe - anything with shape shifters intrigues me. Jan 10th

7. Tempest (Tempest #1) by Julie Cross - Ok, college characters and time travel. Sold.  Jan 17rd

8. Fever (The Chemical Garden Trilogy #3) by Lauren DeStefano - part way through the first book and sadly I've read a couple of spoilers, so I know I'll be excited for this book. Feb. 21st

9. Pandemonium (Delirium #2) by Lauren Oliver - with the ending to Delirium, I'm getting this AS SOON is it comes out. I was tempted to evil things to Lauren Oliver when I finished Delirium. March 6th

10. Spellcaster (Spellbound #2) by Cara Lynn Shultz - I can't explain why I liked this series so much. Because it was different? Or because of Brendan? Regardless, I'm getting this when it comes out. March 27th

Anyone else excited for any of these? I have more on my list too but these where the ones I'm most looking forward to. What are you reading this Winter?