Thursday, 24 July 2014

Ascendant (Killer Unicorns #2) by Diana Peterfreund


Ascendant (Killer Unicorns, #2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Astrid Llewelyn is now a fully trained unicorn hunter, but she can't solve all her problems with just a bow and arrow. Her boyfriend, Giovanni, has decided to leave Rome, the Cloisters is in dire financial straits, her best friend's powers seem to be mysteriously disintegrating, and Astrid can't help but feel that school, home, and her hopes of becoming a scientist are nothing but impossible dreams.

So when she's given the opportunity to leave the Cloisters and put her skills to use as part of a scientific quest to discover the Remedy, Astrid leaps at the chance. Finally, she can have exactly what she want--or can she? At Gordian headquarters, deep in the French countryside, Astrid begins to question everything she thought she believed: her love for Giovanni, her loyalty to the Cloisters, and most of all her duty as a hunter. Should Astrid be saving the world from killer unicorns, or saving the unicorns from the world?


Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars



Ascendant (Killer Unicorns, #2)(Source: I own a copy of this book.)
This was an interesting story, but I did get bored in places.

Astrid was brave as usual in this story, but I also found some of her choices a little odd. I wasn’t sure why she’d want to leave her unicorn hunting behind her, or why she’d want to spend time with her ex-boyfriend, but she did.

The storyline in this was okay, although it wasn’t really what I expected. I was surprised when the true mystery behind the Remedy was revealed though!
I really want there to be another book in this series, because it doesn’t really feel complete to me. As it’s now 4 years since this was released though I don’t hold out much hope that this story will continue.
Overall; interesting revelations!
7 out of 10.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Dream Boy by Madelyn Rosenberg and Mary Crockett

Sponsored post: : I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to SOURCEBOOKS Fire and NetGalley.
Dream Boy
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Annabelle Manning feels like she’s doing time at her high school in Chilton, Virginia. She has her friends at her lunchtime table of nobodies. What she doesn’t have are possibilities. Or a date for Homecoming. Things get more interesting at night, when she spends time with the boy of her dreams. But the blue-eyed boy with the fairytale smile is just that—a dream. Until the Friday afternoon he walks into her chemistry class.

One of friends suspects he’s an alien. Another is pretty sure it’s all one big case of deja vu. While Annabelle doesn’t know what to think, she’s willing to believe that the charming Martin Zirkle may just be her dream come true. But as Annabelle discovers the truth behind dreams—where they come from and what they mean—she is forced to face a dark reality she had not expected. More than just Martin has arrived in Chilton. As Annabelle learns, if dreams can come true, so can nightmares.


Dream Boy by Madelyn Rosenberg

My rating: 3.25 of 5 stars


Dream Boy(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to SOURCEBOOKS Fire and NetGalley.)

This was an interesting story, but I did have some issues with it in the middle.

I liked Annabelle, Martin, and Will, although Annabelle was so clueless when it came to Will! He was so obviously in love with her, and she had no idea!

The storyline in this was okay, although I felt that things weren’t really explained enough for me. While I could follow most of what happened, I did have issues with the whole ‘how the dream-people came to be’, and I did get confused because of this.
There was some romance, and I have to say that Annabelle and Martin made a cute couple, even though at times I really wanted Annabelle to be with Will instead. The romance was the best part of the book for me though.

The ending to this was okay, although things were a bit touch-and-go at times. I did find that I lost interest after the half-way mark, but I was happy with the way things ended.
Overall; an interesting YA paranormal romance story,
6.5 out of 10.


Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Strange and Ever After (Something Strange and Deadly #3) by Susan Dennard

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
Strange and Ever After (Something Strange and Deadly, #3)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In the conclusion to the trilogy that Publishers Weekly called “a roaring—and addictive—gothic world,” Eleanor Fitt must control her growing power, face her feelings for Daniel, and confront the evil necromancer Marcus...all before it’s too late.



He took her brother, he took her mother, and now, Marcus has taken her good friend Jie. With more determination than ever to bring this sinister man to justice, Eleanor heads to the hot desert streets of nineteenth-century Egypt in hopes of ending this nightmare. But in addition to her increasingly tense relationships with Daniel, Joseph, and her demon, Oliver, Eleanor must also deal with her former friend, Allison, who has curiously entangled herself in Eleanor’s mission.

With the rising dead chomping at her every move and Jie’s life hanging in the balance, Eleanor is convinced that her black magic will see her through to the bitter end. But there will be a price. Though she and the Spirit Hunters have weathered every battle thus far, there will be consequences to suffer this time—the effects of which will be irreversible. And when it’s over, only some will be able to live a strange and ever after.

Susan Dennard will leave readers breathless and forever changed in the concluding pages of this riveting ride.

 

Strange and Ever After by Susan Dennard

My rating: 2.25 of 5 stars


Strange and Ever After (Something Strange and Deadly, #3)(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)
This is the third and final book in the ‘Something Strange and Deadly’ series, and picks up where book 2 leaves off.


I really liked the first two books in this series, but this was a disappointment.

Eleanor did what Eleanor wanted in this book, to the detriment of everyone else, and I actually started to get a bit annoyed with her. I didn’t even feel sorry for her over what happened, as she didn’t exactly help matters.

The storyline in this just bored me. I tried so hard to like it and to get into it, but it just didn’t happen. It dragged, and I got bored; I didn’t really care what happened, and just kept wanting to put this one down. Considering that I had looked forward to this book, and saved it especially for my holiday, I was disappointed.
There was a little bit of romance, but I wasn’t impressed really.
The ending was not good. While some things were tied up, the death of an important person was just not appreciated, and ruined the ‘happily ever after’.
Overall; disappointed,
4.5 out of 10.


Monday, 21 July 2014

Honey Queen by Christina Mercer

Sponsored post: : I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Christina Mercer and NetGalley.
Honey Queen
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Love is honey sweet, but it comes with a fatal sting . . .

Melaina Maris needs wings to fly the gap between loving Sam and her family’s ancient curse that forces carnal love and then kills the male lovers. She won’t let the same fate that killed her father befall another. She refuses to allow her goddess-created bloodline to continue. But there’s no easy way out, especially after the curse turns her into the Honey Queen—savior to honey bees—intensifying her charms.

To help her fulfill the curse’s demands in the least harmful way, her grandmother takes her to mate with terminally ill Boyd. But Boyd’s gay. And an expert in mythology. Instead of having sex, Melaina learns how she might summon the goddess who created the first ancestor bee-charmer and cursed her bloodline. Melaina's magic—tears to save honey bees from endangerment—could be enough to persuade the goddess to end the curse. But an unexpected discovery soon changes that hope, spinning Melaina into a swarm of love, friendship and death.


Honey Queen by Christina Mercer

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars



Honey Queen(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Christina Mercer and NetGalley.)
17-year-old Melaina is the last of her line – a line of females who have an affinity with honey bees, and are cursed to bear a daughter, and have the child’s father die on the same day.
Melaina is adamant that she will find a way to break the curse before killing her best friend (and the boy she loves) Sam.
Can Melaina find a way to break the curse? Or is she doomed to fall victim to it?

This was an interesting paranormal story about a girl and her bees, and I found it quite unique.

Melaina was an interesting character, and it was clear that she loved her bees. She was also devoted to her grandmother, and fought valiantly to save the life of the boy she loved, even if it meant not getting what she wanted.

The storyline in this was good, and although there was a lot of information in there, it was good to learn more about bees, as well as more about mythology, and the gods and their connections to animals.
There was some romance, although Melaine tried so hard to not fall victim to the curse, so there wasn’t a great deal of romantic scenes.

The end was okay, although I wasn’t 100% convinced by the way things turned out. Things seemed to end too happily, and in quite a rushed fashion as well. It seemed that all the rules and problems that had been facing Melaina all book were just suddenly gone, and the best possible scenario won out. I don’t know why, but that just didn’t sit right with me, and it almost seemed like having your cake and eating it too. I did enjoy this book for the most part though, and I am tempted to read the author’s other books now.
Overall; an interesting YA paranormal romance,
7 out of 10.


Sunday, 20 July 2014

Stacking the shelves - July 20th 2014

STSmall_thumb[2]



Books Read:

Glitch by Heather Anastasiu The Little Android by Marissa Meyer Override by Heather Anastasiu Shutdown by Heather Anastasiu If He Had Been with Me by Laura Nowlin Four by Veronica Roth Asylum by Madeleine Roux Allegiant by Veronica Roth Conjured by Sarah Beth Durst The Merciless by Danielle Vega Isolation by Dan Wells The Arrangement 9 by H.M. Ward The Arrangement 10 by H.M. Ward The Arrangement 11 by H.M. Ward Lover at Last by J.R. Ward

Books Received:

  None!




 

One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Elodie Nowodazkij and NetGalley.
One, Two, Three
Blurb (from Goodreads):
When seventeen-year-old Natalya’s dreams of being a ballerina are killed in a car accident along with her father, she must choose: shut down—like her mother—or open up to love.

Last year,seventeen-year-old Natalya Pushkaya was attending the School of Performing Arts in New York City. Last year, she was well on her way to becoming a professional ballerina. Last year, her father was still alive.

But a car crash changed all that—and Natalya can’t stop blaming herself. Now, she goes to a regular high school in New Jersey; lives with her onetime prima ballerina, now alcoholic mother; and has no hope of a dance career.

At her new school, however, sexy soccer player Antonio sees a brighter future for Natalya, or at least a more pleasant present. Keeping him an arabesque away proves to be a challenge for Natalya and his patient charms eventually draw her out of her shell.

When upsetting secrets come to light and Tonio’s own problems draw her in, Natalya shuts down again, this time turning to alcohol herself.

Can Natalya learn to trust Antonio before she loses him—and destroys herself?


One, Two, Three by Elodie Nowodazkij

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars



One, Two, Three(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Elodie Nowodazkij and NetGalley.)
17-year-old Natalya was once a ballerina with an exciting career ahead of her, now she’s a girl with a damaged knee, a dead father, and a mother who drinks way too much.
Will Natalya ever dance again? And will her mother ever stop drinking?


This was a good story about a girl with a messed up life, and I enjoyed it.

Natalya was an interesting character. I felt really sorry for her with regards to the accident, and her grief, and then when she got more bad news I couldn’t blame her for feeling awful, and having problems coping. The amount of difficult events in this girls life was not good, and I felt so sorry about her messing up her dancing career.

The storyline in this book was pretty good, although the writing did feel a bit rough around the edges in places. I liked finding out about what had happened to Nata and her father, and I also liked the romance. Natalya and Tonio were so sweet together, and I liked how the relationship built slowly. I also liked how we actually got some real ballet stuff in here! I hate it when books claim to be about dance and then there’s no dance in there, but this one actually had dance! Yay!

The ending to this was good, but I was left with questions. I liked that Natalya got a bit of a happy ending, but I also wanted the mystery of what happened to her father to be solved, and I also wanted to know what would become of Natalya’s dancing career, as it didn’t really feel like those things were tied up enough at the end of the book.
Overall; good story, but I wanted more answers at the end,
7 out of 10.


Saturday, 19 July 2014

Threats of Sky and Sea (Threats of Sky and Sea #1) by Jennifer Ellision

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Jennifer Ellision and NetGalley.
Threats of Sky and Sea (Threats of Sky and Sea #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Sixteen year-old Breena Perdit has spent her life as a barmaid, innocent to her father’s past and happily free from the Elemental gifts that would condemn her to a life in the Egrian King’s army. Until the day that three Elemental soldiers recognize her father as a traitor to the throne and Bree’s father is thrown in jail—along with the secrets from his last mission as the King’s assassin. Secrets that could help the King win a war. Secrets he refuses to share.

Desperate to escape before the King’s capricious whims prove her and her father’s downfall, Bree bargains with him: information for their lives. It’s a good trade. And she has faith she’ll get them both out of the King’s grasp with time.

But that was before the discovery that she’s the weapon the King’s been waiting for in his war.

Now, time is running out. To save her father’s life and understand her own, Bree must unravel the knot of her father’s past before the King takes his life– and uses her to bring a nation to its knees.


Threats of Sky and Sea by Jennifer Ellision

My rating: 3.25 of 5 stars


Threats of Sky and Sea (Threats of Sky and Sea #1)(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to author Jennifer Ellision and NetGalley.)
16-year-old Breena lives with her father, and helps him run his Tavern – The Bridge and Duchess.
When strangers come to their small village looking for people who are able to control the elements, Breena is sure they’re in the wrong place, until suddenly they intrude on her life.
What is Breena’s father hiding from her? And who are the strangers really looking for?


This was an okay story, but it was slow in places.

Breena was an okay character, but I did expect her to work out what was going on a lot sooner than she did! Even with the clues she was given, she seemed to take forever to work out what was going on at the palace, and I just expected more of her.

The storyline in this was alright, I did like it more in places than in others, and the pace was a bit slow. I found myself putting this down a lot whilst reading, and switching to a different book.
There were a few twists, but I thought that a lot of them were quite predictable.
There was some romance, but it wasn’t developed enough for me personally, I would have liked more on the romance front.

The ending was good, and we did get a few twists revealed. I didn’t love this book though, it was just missing something for me.
Overall; okay story, but slow in places,
6.5 out of 10.


Friday, 18 July 2014

Perfected by Kate Jarvik Birch

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.
Perfected
Blurb (from Goodreads):
I was bred to be the perfect pet. I was bred for my beauty and grace, to be a showpiece, an ornament to sit upon the couch, to sing, to dance, to play the piano and paint. I was bred to willingly put my owner's happiness before my own.

Until Penn. The handsome and rebellious son of the congressman who owns me, he's the only person who's seen past my perfect exterior to the girl underneath. Falling for him is forbidden. Falling for him is freeing.

But there's a dark underworld lurking beneath my pampered life. The only thing more dangerous than staying with Penn's family is escaping it, because if I fail, I face a fate far worse than death...

For fans of Kiera Cass's Selection series and Lauren DeStefano's Chemical Garden series, Perfected is a chilling look at what it means to be human, as well as a stunning celebration of the power of love to set us free, wrapped in a glamorous—and dangerous—bow.


Perfected by Kate Jarvik Birch

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Perfected(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.)
16-year-old number 8 is a pet; genetically engineered, bred in a kennel, and raised to be subservient to her master.
When she is bought by a councilman, she’s given the name Ella, but is totally na├»ve about the world around her.
What does being a pet really mean? And is it a life that Ella can really live with?


This was an interesting YA dystopian, and I really enjoyed it.

Ella was such a good pet! She totally had the whole subservient thing down, and her training really showed. I felt so sorry for her that she had never been taught to read and write though! Why wouldn’t you teach a pet to read and write? What if their owner wanted them to read to them, or take notes? Ridiculous! I also thought it awful that Ella hadn’t been taught how to swim! Talk about an important life skill!

The storyline in this was pretty good, and reminded me a bit of ‘The Selection’. It was quite difficult to know in places whether being a pet was a bad thing when you were owned by a rich family, and never had to work to support yourself, but then at other times it was obvious that it was a bad thing.
There were some twists and turns in this, but some of them were a bit obvious. Especially the reason that Ella’s owner’s previous pet got ‘sick’ and had to be returned.
There was some romance, and again, it was a little predictable, it was sweet though.

The ending was pretty good, but it was a cliff-hanger. I really want to read the next book in the series now to find out what happens to Ella next!
Overall; an interesting YA dystopian, and I really enjoyed it,
8 out of 10


Thursday, 17 July 2014

The Rain by Virginia Bergin

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Pan Macmillan and Netgalley.
The Rain
Blurb (from Goodreads):
One minute sixteen-year-old Ruby Morris is having her first proper snog with Caspar McCloud in a hot tub, and the next she’s being bundled inside the house, dripping wet, cold and in her underwear. Not cool. As she and Caspar shiver in the kitchen, it starts to rain. They turn on the radio to hear panicked voices – ‘It’s in the rain . . . it’s in the rain . . . ' That was two weeks ago, and now Ruby is totally alone. People weren’t prepared for the rain, got caught out in it, didn’t realize that you couldn’t drink water from the taps either. Even a drip of rain would infect your blood, and eat you from the inside out. Ruby knows she has to get to London to find her dad, but she just doesn’t know where to start . . . After rescuing all the neighbourhood dogs, Ruby sets off on a journey that will take her the length of the country – surviving in the only way she knows how.

The Rain by Virginia Bergin

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


The Rain(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Pan Macmillan and Netgalley.)
15-year-old Ruby is more concerned with snogging some boy than the ‘Rain’ – contaminated water that kills you if you touch even one drop.
Will Ruby survive the Rain? Do we really want her to?


Not only did this book have a really stupid and annoying main character, it had a really rubbish ending!

Ruby was annoying. It was that simple. Why on earth you’d be worried about your make-up, wear a sequined dress, or go looting stores for rhinestone jewellery when 99% of the population was dead was a bit beyond me. How she even survived for as long as she did was pure luck, this girl was just a little too stupid to survive in my opinion.

The storyline in this sounded good, but just didn’t work out all that well. Whether it was just Ruby’s stupidity that ruined it I don’t know, but I didn’t really enjoy this book. I usually like this kind of dystopian/survival story, but this one just didn’t cut it. I also wonder why the heck the animals that were chewing on dead people didn’t die when this thing was supposed to be so contagious?
There was one surprise in there, that was a bit shocking, but unfortunately that was it, and ultimately it just led me to believe that Ruby was even more doomed.

As if this darn book wasn’t bad enough, just when I was thinking I might be generous and give this book 2.5 stars, we got to the ending. So, did this end with a happily ever after? Did we get some idea that Ruby might be safe? Might go on to live a long and happy life?
In short. No. The story just stopped. Ended. Dumped Ruby right back to square one, and abandoned her there (moaning about the loss of her mobile phone). I kid you not. Do I have to tell you how unimpressed I am about that?
Overall; an annoying main character, and a non-ending,
4 out of 10.


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Dangerous Creatures (Dangerous Creatures #1) by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and NetGalley.
Dangerous Creatures (Dangerous Creatures, #1)Blurb (from Goodreads):
 A new series returns to the world of Beautiful Creatures. Some loves are cursed...others are dangerous.

Ridley Duchannes will be the first to tell you that she's a bad girl. She's Dark. She's a Siren. You can never trust her, or even yourself when she's around. Lucky for her, Wesley "Link" Lincoln can never seem to remember that; quarter Incubus or not, his heart is Mortal when it comes to Ridley. When Link heads to New York City to start a music career, Ridley goes along for the ride-and she has her own reasons. As if leaving small-town Gatlin for the big city, trying to form a band, and surviving life with a partially reformed Siren isn't hard enough already, Link soon learns he has a price on his head that no Caster or Mortal can ever pay.

Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, the #1 New York Times bestselling coauthors of Beautiful Creatures, are back and casting another magical spell. Their signature mixture of mystery, suspense, and romance, along with a dash of fun and danger, will pull fans in and leave them begging for more.



Dangerous Creatures by Kami Garcia

My rating: 2.25 of 5 stars


Dangerous Creatures (Dangerous Creatures, #1)(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and NetGalley.)

Well, I thought that Beautiful Redemption was a let-down after Beautiful Chaos, but Dangerous Creatures was actually worse.

Ridley wasn’t my favourite character from the Caster Chronicles, but she did have moments when I kind-of liked her. Unfortunately, there weren’t many of those moments in this book. Ridley annoyed me, she was irritating, and boy did she moan! Then, after telling us how big of a b*tch she was (her words), she suddenly developed feelings, and got ‘worried’! I mean really? Either your charcter is a b*tch, or she’s not. No half-measures please.

The storyline in this was just dull. I could tell from the first page that the magic was absent from this book, and I proved to be right. I did not care about Link’s band, I did not care for the petty arguments this pair had, and let me just say that Link’s songs were awful. Songs about chicken wings? Not good.
There was a backwards sort of romance that just irritated me. If you like him just freaking be with him and stop arguing over nothing! If you’re going to get insanely jealous if Ridley kisses someone else, then try to talk her into being your girlfriend again!

The ending to this was also less than wonderful. Although I was glad that it was over, the cliff-hanger was akin to the one at the end of Beautiful Chaos! You know the one I mean! Although to be honest, I was so bored by this book that I’m not sure I care what happens… Oh who am I kidding? Even though I don’t want to read the next book I want to know how that cliff-hanger pans out! Ugh.
Overall; a big disappointment,
4.5 out of 10.