Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Cadet of Tildor Review

400 pages

There is a new king on the throne of Tildor. Currents of political unrest sweep the country as two warring crime families seek power, angling to exploit the young Crown's inexperience. At the Academy of Tildor, the training ground for elite soldiers, Cadet Renee de Winter struggles to keep up with her male peers. But when her mentor, a notorious commander recalled from active duty to teach at the Academy, is kidnapped to fight in illegal gladiator games, Renee and her best friend Alec find themselves thrust into a world rife with crime, sorting through a maze of political intrigue, and struggling to resolve what they want, what is legal, and what is right.

Review:
I love a book with a strong female heroine and this one is no exception. Renee is the type of character I admire, strong and practically fearless although she is also headstrong at times. Renee is able to navigate the noble world as well as the rough and tumble life of cadet training. The other characters all have different personalities that make them memorable and most aren't what they seem to be from the beginning. There are a few romantic interests for Renee but that doesn't overshadow her as a character nor the events going on in this book. Tildor is a place of serious unrest so there is a lot of shady things going on especially in the poorer parts of the kingdom. The world created here mixes magic, intrigue, and war in a way that makes it an exciting and fun read. There is plenty of action and adventure as well as a mystery to solve. I definitely recommend this novel if you like fantasy fiction with a historical feel to it.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

New Releases This Week






Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Lost Girl Review

432 pages

Eva's life is not her own. She is a creation, an abomination--an echo. She was made by the Weavers as a copy of someone else, expected to replace a girl named Amarra, her "other," if she ever died. Eva spends every day studying that girl from far away, learning what Amarra does, what she eats, what it's like to kiss her boyfriend, Ray. So when Amarra is killed in a car crash, Eva should be ready. But sixteen years of studying never prepared her for this. Now she must abandon everything and everyone she's ever known--the guardians who raised her, the boy she's forbidden to love--to move to India and convince the world that Amarra is still alive. What Eva finds is a grief-stricken family; parents unsure how to handle this echo they thought they wanted; and Ray, who knew every detail, every contour of Amarra. And when Eva is unexpectedly dealt a fatal blow that will change her existence forever, she is forced to choose: Stay and live out her years as a copy or leave and risk it all for the freedom to be an original. To be Eva.

Review:
I'd imagine it would be hard being a clone of someone else. So many ethical dilemmas, with some people considering you to be human and others thinking of you as an abomination. This is exactly what Eva has to deal with in her life as an echo. Eva has her own personality and feelings but she's forced to mimic someone else's. When Eva's time to take Amarra's place finally comes, she's not sure if she is completely ready, and she's not. Both Amarra's family and friends have differing reactions to Eva's presence and we also discover Amarra's true feelings towards Eva as her echo. Eva is sucha strong person who wants to do what is right for everyone but also what is right for herself. The other characters in this novel all have their individual personalities that make them stand out as well. This story is so complex, at times heartbreaking, and at others full of hope for Eva being able to embrace her own identity and stop trying to live Amarra's. I definitely enjoyed reading this and I would recommend it to those who like science fiction type novels.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Darkest Minds Review

496 pages

When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control. Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones. When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents. When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.

Review:
People always seem to get scared when others have something that they themselves cannot control. Kids are developing crazy abilities and of course the government decides the best option is to lock them up. Most of the kids don't understand their abilities fully and Ruby is one of them. All Ruby knows is that she survived a disease that killed most of her classmates and was locked up for it. Ruby is not the strongest character, she has a problem with standing up for herself and others. When Ruby escapes the camp she finally has a chance to grow and learn more about the reason behind her imprisonment. Along the way Ruby meets a variety of new people and learns that not everyone is what they appear to be on the surface. Liam is a pretty amazing character, he is strong and kind and willing to do whatever he can for those he cares about. Ruby's power makes it hard for her to be with Liam and they struggle throughout the whole story to be together. This story is full of action and adventure and seemingly everyone wanting something from Ruby and the power she carries within her. I can't wait to see what happens and where the story goes for Ruby in the next novel. I loved reading this and I would recommend it to anyone who likes dystopian novels and mutant like abilities.

Monday, January 21, 2013

The Farm Review

420 pages

Life was different in the Before: before vampires began devouring humans in a swarm across America; before the surviving young people were rounded up and quarantined. These days, we know what those quarantines are—holding pens where human blood is turned into more food for the undead monsters, known as Ticks. Surrounded by electrical fences, most kids try to survive the Farms by turning on each other… And when trust is a thing of the past, escape is nearly impossible. Lily and her twin sister Mel have a plan. Though Mel can barely communicate, her autism helps her notice things no one else notices—like the portion of electrical fence that gets turned off every night. Getting across won’t be easy, but as Lily gathers what they need to escape, a familiar face appears out of nowhere, offering to help… Carter was a schoolmate of Lily’s in the Before. Managing to evade capture until now, he has valuable knowledge of the outside world. But like everyone on the Farm, Carter has his own agenda, and he knows that behind the Ticks is an even more dangerous threat to the human race...

Review:
I rarely get tired of dystopian vampire novels and this is not an exception. This is an interesting twist on typical vampire lore which makes for an exciting story. Imagine communities being built within fences where after a certain age you are fed to vampires to keep them satisfied. This new world is a harsh one where all kind of atrocities are committed in order to survive. This story is mostly told from Lily's point of view, also alternating between Carter and Mel. Lily, quite honestly, gets on my nerves. She never listens and is extremely stubborn when she's wrong most of the time. Mel is interesting as an autistic character since to others she seems like she doesn't see much but really she notices way more than most. Carter is such a great guy although he has his own motives behind his reappearance in Lily's life. There are a lot of secrets and mysteries to be solved about the truth behind the vampires destroying most of the human race. There is plenty of action that keep this story going at a great pace. I definitely recommend reading this if you like dystopian vampire novels.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

New Release This Week


Friday, January 18, 2013

Through the Ever Night Review

352 pages

It's been months since Aria last saw Perry. Months since Perry was named Blood Lord of the Tides, and Aria was charged with an impossible mission. Now, finally, they are about to be reunited. But their reunion is far from perfect. The Tides don't take kindly to Aria, a former Dweller. And with the worsening Aether storms threatening the tribe's precarious existence, Aria begins to fear that leaving Perry behind might be the only way to save them both. Threatened by false friends, hidden enemies, and powerful temptations, Aria and Perry wonder, Can their love survive through the ever night?

Review:
I really enjoyed this novel as the second book in the Under the Never Sky series. Aria has really grown as a person since being on the Outside. Perry has also changed and you can see the weight of his responsibilities from being the new Blood Lord of the Tides. The relationship between Aria and Perry have a lot of difficulties since Aria is still seen as a Dweller by Perry's tribe. I really enjoyed the new characters that were introduced and while there are quite a few sad moments, there are also some humorous ones as well. There is a lot of action and adventure as Aria tries to find a place where Aether storms do not threaten humanity's existence, and while Perry tries to ensure his tribe's survival. The pacing of this novel is excellent and brings it to a climatic cliffhanger of an ending that will leave you wondering where Aria and Perry's adventure will take them next. I definitely recommend reading this novel if you like dystopian fiction but make sure you read Under the Never Sky first.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Shades of Earth Review

369 pages
Release date: January 15th, 2013

Amy and Elder have finally left the oppressive walls of the spaceshipGodspeed behind. They're ready to start life afresh--to build a home--on Centauri-Earth, the planet that Amy has traveled 25 trillion miles across the universe to experience. But this new Earth isn't the paradise Amy had been hoping for. There are giant pterodactyl-like birds, purple flowers with mind-numbing toxins, and mysterious, unexplained ruins that hold more secrets than their stone walls first let on. The biggest secret of all? Godspeed's former passengers aren't alone on this planet. And if they're going to stay, they'll have to fight. Amy and Elder must race to discover who--or what--else is out there if they are to have any hope of saving their struggling colony and building a future together. They will have to look inward to the very core of what makes them human on this, their most harrowing journey yet. Because if the colony collapses? Then everything they have sacrificed--friends, family, life on Earth--will have been for nothing.

Review (ARC):
Wow the ending to this series was so explosive and exciting that I couldn't put the book down until I was done! The new Earth is nothing like what Amy and Elder may have imagined it to be. Centauri-Earth is dangerous and mysterious with a lot of secrets. There is so much more to Godspeed's story and what the connection is to the original Earth. Both Amy and Elder still have a lot of growing to do especially when they wake up the frozen people. Amy grew into a leader on Godspeed but having her parents back reverts her to their child again. Elder feels himself being pushed out by adults who don't know or understand what Godspeed has been through. There is a lot of action and mystery in this novel that keep things exciting and moving at a good pace. I definitely recommend reading this if you like dystopian and sci-fi novels but you should read Across the Universe and A Million Suns first.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

New Releases This Week



Thursday, January 10, 2013

Twisted Thursdays






Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Opal Review

382 pages
No one is like Daemon Black. When he set out to prove his feelings for me, he wasn’t fooling around. Doubting him isn’t something I’ll do again, and now that we’ve made it through the rough patches, well... There’s a lot of spontaneous combustion going on. But even he can’t protect his family from the danger of trying to free those they love. After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of. The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever. Together we’re stronger... and they know it.

Review:
This is the third book in the Lux series and while the story gets more complicated as it continues, it does not become any less exciting. There are so many unanswered questions and things that just don't go right. Katy has become stronger with her newfound transformation, but she still doesn't think things through before she does them. I actually think Katy became more reckless in this novel than previous ones. Daemon shows more of a softer side now that he's with Katy, that you can't help but love. Due to all of the tragedy in the previous novel, there is a lot of broken friendships and loss of trust that make life a bit more difficult for Katy and everyone involved. We see a few familiar faces reappear and just generally make life harder for everyone. There is a lot more to learn about the aliens and the changes they make to humans and exactly what the government's deal with their enemies is. The ending is absolutely explosive and leaves off on a cliffhanger that will leave you yearning to read more. I definitely recommend reading this novel if you like novels about aliens but first pick up Obsidian and Onyx.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Jinx Review

368 pages
Release date: January 8th, 2013

In the Urwald, you don’t step off the path. Trolls, werewolves, and butter-churn riding witches lurk amid the clawing branches, eager to swoop up the unwary. Jinx has always feared leaving the path—then he meets the wizard Simon Magnus. Jinx knows that wizards are evil. But Simon’s kitchen is cozy, and he seems cranky rather than wicked. Staying with him appears to be Jinx’s safest, and perhaps only, option. As Jinx’s curiosity about magic grows, he learns to listen to the trees as closely as he does to Simon’s unusual visitors. The more Jinx discovers, the more determined he becomes to explore beyond the security of well-trod paths. But in the Urwald, a little healthy fear is never out of place, for magic—and magicians—can be as dangerous as the forest, and soon Jinx must decide which is the greater threat.

Review (ARC):
This is such an intriguing and entertaining fantasy novel! I love Jinx although I had to keep reminding myself of his age sometimes when his decisions didn't seem too well thought out. The other characters Jinx meets along the way all have differing characteristics that make them both lovable and memorable. The world created here is one in which magical creatures run rampant and the only place to be safe from them, as far as Jinx knows, is on the path. Jinx has a lot to learn about the world outside of the village he grew up in especially since everyone in his village lives in fear of it. I loved the way that this novel portrayed that the outside doesn't always reflect the inside as well as a message about overcoming your fears. I really enjoyed reading this and can only hope that Jinx is brought back in a future novel. I definitely recommend reading this if you love fantasy and magic novels.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

New Releases This Week





Friday, January 4, 2013

Revolution 19 Review

272 pages
Release date: January 8th, 2013

Twenty years ago, the robots designed to fight our wars abandoned the battlefields. Then they turned their weapons on us. Only a few escaped the robot revolution of 2071. Kevin, Nick, and Cass are lucky —they live with their parents in a secret human community in the woods. Then their village is detected and wiped out. Hopeful that other survivors have been captured by bots, the teens risk everything to save the only people they have left in the world—by infiltrating a city controlled by their greatest enemies.

Review (ARC):
This is an exciting and fast-paced mix of dystopian and science fiction. A world where robots have taken over and I must say that their reasons are even more fascinating. Kevin, Nick and Cass are all quite different despite having grown up the same way. Kevin is practically obsessed with technology despite the fear of robots that everyone has. Nick is the strong older brother who tries to keep his family protected at all costs. Cass is more of an enigma, she is strong and capable but also level-headed and intelligent as well. I have to admit that while I was reading this novel and found out more about the robots and the cities they controlled, I found myself a bit conflicted about whose side I was on. I appreciated the robots reasons, yet I can also understand the rebels need for freedom. Most of this novel takes place in the robot-controlled city and its interesting to see the changes there. The ending is a cliffhanger so I can't wait to see what happens in the next novel. This novel isn't hard-core sci-fi so as long as you don't expect that I would definitely recommend it as a great read. 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Prophecy Review

312 pages
Release date: January 2nd, 2013

The greatest warrior in all of the Seven Kingdoms... is a girl with yellow eyes.
Kira’s the only female in the king’s army, and the prince’s bodyguard. She’s a demon slayer and an outcast, hated by nearly everyone in her home city of Hansong. And, she’s their only hope... Murdered kings and discovered traitors point to a demon invasion, sending Kira on the run with the young prince. He may be the savior predicted in the Dragon King Prophecy, but the missing treasure of myth may be the true key. With only the guidance of the cryptic prophecy, Kira must battle demon soldiers, evil shaman, and the Demon Lord himself to find what was once lost and raise a prince into a king.

Review (ARC):
I feel like this novel could have been so much better than it is. I liked Kira, she's strong and one heck of a fighter. However, I feel like for a Demon Slayer she definitely took too much crap from people in the kingdom. Kira isn't very strong in her convictions or sure of herself as a person. The rest of the characters weren't very memorable or remarkable so that made their inclusion in the story seem boring at times. Other than that the action is pretty good and I'm curious to learn more about this strange Dragon King Prophecy. I can't particularly say I recommend reading this novel although it isn't a terrible read, I just hope that the next one is better than this one.