Sunday, November 23, 2014

Red Queen

Sooo, I've been reading a lot lately. I haven't posted in forever, but I finished a book today that I had to write about. I picked up a book Friday at NCTE called Red Queen. It was in an awesome package, check it out:
I picked up an ARC of this book at a conference and finished it in a day. It is FABULOUS! It is a little similar to a few books I have read (Red Rising and The Selection come to mind), but so much different that it is definitely in its own category. The story is fast-paced and engrossing. The world is similar to our own but also in disrepair. The chasm between the poor and the rich is great and seemingly insurmountable, but isn't that what makes for a great story? The characters are likable and relatable. And the ending? I should have seen it coming but I didn't. This is a world where blood distinguishes the haves from the have nots. Until one doesn't. What happens when everything everyone has believed is proven to be otherwise? Loved this book, and I am dying to know what happens next. Unfortunately, I will probably have to wait a while to find out. SO Great! When it comes out in February, READ IT!! In other news, I have also recently finished The Program & The Treatment, a two-part series about a world where suicide has become a teenage epidemic. Also, it is contagious. To solve this problem, the government develops THE PROGRAM. Basically, a "treatment" program that removes selected "painful" memories and turns teenagers into "happier, calmer" versions of themselves. Basically, they sort of become stepfords. But the question turns into this: Can you really change a person's nature? What happens when the program doesn't exactly "work"? And is the program a major cause of this "epidemic" itself. This is a great little series that follows some lovely rebels as they explore these questions and try to work things out for themselves. I picked it up last year at NCTE and I was not disappointed. I also recently read Belzhar, which was a really neat book. This is a story about troubled teens who have experienced hard things in their life that more or less set them on edge. Since they have had problems coping with what happened, they are sent to a special school known as "The Wooden Barn." This is story about new friendships and letting go, all centered around a Special Topics English class. Because what could be more therapeutic, right? :) It might also include a reference to Plath's Bell Jar, which is where the title is derived from. Either way, I found it engrossing and enjoyable, if not a little sad and unexpected in the end. A while back, I read Gaiman's Ocean At the End of the Lane. In a day. Yeah, it was good. Weird and slightly disturbing, but good. I have to say, there are some images from that book that I will never be able to get out of my brain, specifically, the worm. If you read this book, get back to me on that. I will never be able to shake that one. *shudder* Anyway, it is a delightful book, as is always the case with Gaiman. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and you should, too. So I have just returned form this year's NCTE with another load of books that I am eager to read. At some point. :) For now, I am trying to finish up the Heroes of Olympus series and have started House of Hades. Soon to finish (hopefully) so I can get Blood of Olympus and put that series to rest as well. Also, best news I have heard lately? Kiera Cass has another installment in the Selection series in the works. I talked to the publishing company rep and SHE was stoked about it, too, but no ARCs yet as the book is not quite there. BUT I can't WAIT to read it. Like, now. OH, and another highlight of my NCTE? Meeting Ally Condie and telling her how much I frickin loved Matched (although I kept mum on the fact that I did NOT care for Crossed) and saying hello to James Dashner and getting Kill Order signed. Woot! He has signed at almost every NCTE I have been to, but his lines were OUTRAGEOUS this year. I guess that's what happens when you have a mega-hit that's turned into a movie. Can you imagine the clamor if Suzanne Collins showed up? Or if they brought Veronica Roth back now that Divergent has hit theatres? Oh my. Anyway, hope you have some ideas for more books to read and that you find some inspiration over the holiday weekend. Until then, Happy Reading!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Under the Never Sky

So, I loved this book. It's actually part of a trilogy. I picked up the second and third books at NCTE the past few years, but I didn't have the first one so I finally got it. Let me just say, I loved this book. It is a YA dystopian novel, but it is definitely an original idea. I can't really say that it's like any one particular other book out there. There are a lot of really unique aspects to the storyline. I think this would be a good choice for anyone who's looking for a book that's not like all the rest. It encompasses a post-apocalyptic society, special skills, loss, and journey for multiple characters. I can't wait to read the rest of the series. More info as I finish them!

Saturday, January 25, 2014


Hi folks. Well, I am on a short reading streak right now. I think I am reading to avoid doing what I should be doing, :)

Yesterday I finished up Veronica Roth's Allegiant. Now, don't get me wrong. Veronica Roth is a sweet, sweet lady. She really is. But I have some issues with this book. Surprisingly, it's not the ending. I have no problems with how she ends it even though it seems that some people are unhappy with how she chooses to close it off. I actually find the very last part of the book quite fitting for the story as a whole. I am good with that.

It's the meat of the book that I'm kind of meh about. Maybe it's just me, but I feel like this book is much more rushed than the other. It was like she was just trying to find some kind of way to tie all her loose ends together so she just started throwing some things out there. I don't really know. It just feels like she tries to do too much in too little time and it throws off the fluidity.

All in all, I did enjoy the series. I think there are a lot of interesting ideas within it. Just kind of anticlimactic for me.

Currently, I am kind of on a "finish the series" kick right now. Finally finished that one. Next up is Beautiful Redemption, then either Requiem  or Reached.

Happy reading!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Multitude of books

Well, friends, I've read quite a multitude of books since I last posted, but I haven't done a very good job of updating. Crazy schedules and whatnot. But here are a few I've been through recently: The Fiery Heart (Richelle Mead): I just finished this one last night. OMG. I am in love with her writing. I am definitely a bigger fan of the bloodlines series than the Vampire Academy series (though I loved those, too). I think this lady is only getting better the more she writes this series, though I do suspect that the next book in the series might be the last. We can still hope for another spinoff though! Beautiful Chaos/Beautiful Darkness/Beautiful Creatures: Ok, so those are out of order, but I have finished the first three books in the series. I definitely find these interesting. I like the whole magic/supernatural powers aspect that run through. The ways the characters are connected interest me as well. The end of the third book, oh my goodness. I am glad I have the fourth to start on straight away or I would be ticked. Looking forward to seeing the conclusion of this series! Uglies (Scott Westerfield): I read this back in December and really enjoyed it. I think it plays a lot into our society's view of appearance and the way it affects people. What the characters learn and reveal throughout the story are quite intriguing, too. I have purchased the second book, Pretties, but haven't had a chance to read it yet. More on that later. The Selection & The Elite (Kiera Cass): These are quite possibly my current favorite books. I'm not sure why as they are kind of like a royal verison of the Bachelor meets Panem. I think the author's writing style is what makes her work so fascinating. That and the fact that the relationships are so realistic. Yeah, a love triangle is a little cliche, but, hey, that's how life is and it often makes for the best story. I am dying to read the next book, The One, when it comes out in May. Also, for anyone who enjoyed Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, the second book in the series just came out. I don't have a copy yet, but I am dying to get my hands on one. So if you happen to get it, please let me borrow it? :) Until then, happy reading!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Mark of Athena

HI all. Just a quick posting for today. I have just finished reading the latest installment in the Heroes of Olmpus series (I know, I'm a little behind), the Mark of Athena. Once again, I was not disappointed. I have really enjoyed this spin-off series just as much as the original Percy Jackson series. I like the familiarity of the characters and the new twists that continue to be added. The reworking of both Greek and Roman mythology is sometimes genius (in my humble opinion). I love the blending of the style and the new additions to the quest. I look forward to seeing where this adventure goes in the next book as well. (I can't help but wonder just how long this series will continue. I feel like it has one, two more books max before Riordan has tapped it out as well). I have to admit, I was surprised by some of the paths taken in the book as well, but I enjoyed following them to their endings. If you're a fan of the series, definitely check it out!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Every Day

So today (yes, just today), I read David Levithan's Every Day. I have had this book for a while, but I hadn't picked it up yet. I heard it was good, and I can definitely agree with that. I haven't read any of his books before, but wow. The man writes good stuff.
Imagine what it would be like if every day you woke up in someone else's body. You didn't even have a body that you can remember to begin with. You have always been someone different. Every. Day.  How would you survive? What would you do? How could you have any lasting relationships.
That's what this story is all about. The main character, A, is not truly male or female. A just is. And every day A is someone else. He/she gets used to being unobtrusive in his host's life. But then he meets a girl. And he falls in love. And everything changes. This story is all about A's discovery of this love and his/her quest to discover whether such a relationship can even exist based on his/her life path.
This book is different. And imaginative. I really, really enjoyed it. Definitely an improvement over the last book I read. If you're looking for something out of the ordinary with a great storyline, then look no further.
Happy reading, folks!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Dead Ever After

So, I just finished the final installment of the Sookie Stackhouse series. I am not impressed. Excuse me while I go on a mini rant. Ugh, Charlaine. Just ugh. Why'dyouhavetogodothattoagoodseries? (forgive my Diantha speak for a moment).

Now, I guess I should be fair for a moment and say that it is not the worst book I've ever read. But it definitely felt a Like Charlaine didn't really know what to do with it and just picked a direction. Sometimes, it felt like an entirely different author was writing this book. I dunno if she just lost sight of her original vision or got overtaken by her enjoyment of the tv show or what. But this is not the Sookie series I came to know and love and told everyone to read. It just isn't.

On a positive note, I can appreciate that some loose ends were tied up. Some characters that I quite enjoyed made cameos in the book and tied up their storylines, which was good. The villain was a bit unexpected, so I suppose that works okay, too.

I will say, though, that I hated what she did with some of the characters. And I am conflicted about the ending. On the one hand, it could be the perfect way to end the story. On the other hand, no. Just, no.

So if you're a true Sookie fan and you have the desire to know how it all ends and who Sookie chooses, then definitely read the book. Get the closure. See where it goes. But don't expect the fireworks that you found in some of the earlier books from the series. (And, I'm sure I've said this before, but I just really haven't truly enjoyed any of the books since the vampire convention at Rhodes.)

Not sure what my next book will be, but expect to find out soon!