Monday, February 24, 2014

Til Death by Kate Evangelista (E-ARC)

16129271Til Death by Kate Evangelista
Series: Fractured Souls, #1
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Format: E-ARC
Pages: 282
Source: Netgalley for review

Sixteen-year old Selena Fallon is a dreamer. Not a day-dreamer, but an I-see-the-future kind of dreamer. Normally this is not a problem as she has gotten pretty good at keeping her weird card hidden from everyone in her small town. Except from her best friend Kyle and her grandparents, of course. But when Selena dreams of her own rather bloody death, things get a little too freaky even for her.

Enter Dillan Sloan. Selena has seen the new guy in a different dream, and he is even more droolworthy in person. Beyond the piercing blue eyes and tousled dark hair, there is something else that draws her to him. Something…electric. Unfortunately, Dillan makes it more than clear that he does not feel the same. They just met, so why would he act like he hates her?

When Dillan and Selena are forced together one weekend to work on a school project, Selena prepares to be ignored as usual. But when she stumbles across a few undead in the backyard, Dillan comes to her rescue and reveals a whole lot more. Not only is he part of a society that hunts otherworldly creatures…she is too. And she is being targeted by a force bigger and darker than anything she ever imagined. Despite her death dream, Selena is not going to give up easy, especially when she discovers that Dillan might not actually hate her after all.


 This book started off pretty slow for me. It took quite a while for me to really get interested. About halfway through that really changed for me and I found myself unable to stop reading at that point.

When I read the description I thought that the book sounded really interesting and that it had a lot of potential. I think my biggest problem with this one was the pacing. It was really slow in the beginning but towards the end it goes by really quickly. It made the book difficult for me to get into at first.

The dual point of view was both a plus and a negative for me. I really liked Dillan's point of view but at the same time I really preferred him over Selena. I thought his point of view was far more interesting while Selena was just normal and didn't really understand anything that was going on.

I liked Dillan more than Selena. I found him to be more interesting and he was funny and one tough guy. He had no problem fighting and would stand up to protect the ones he cared about. Selena was living a life that was pretty normal and routine, until Dillan came along. Once she finally started to understand what was happening she became more likeable and a lot more interesting.

This book has action and paranormal elements and if these things aren't enough to sway you there is some sweet romance going on. I recommend that you at least give this one a chance even though I didn't love it as much as I hoped. I will definitely be continuing on with this series, after the ending to this one I need to find out what happens to Selena.

**Copy provided via the publisher on Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.**

Friday, February 21, 2014

Night of Cake & Puppets by Laini Taylor

18360128Night of Cake & Puppets by Laini Taylor
Series: Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #2.5
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Format: Kindle
Pages: 89
Source: Purchased
In Night of Cake & Puppets, Taylor brings to life a night only hinted at in the Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy—the magical first date of fan-favorites Zuzana and Mik. Told in alternating perspectives, it’s the perfect love story for fans of the series and new readers alike. Petite though she may be, Zuzana is not known for timidity. Her best friend, Karou, calls her “rabid fairy,” her “voodoo eyes” are said to freeze blood, and even her older brother fears her wrath. But when it comes to the simple matter of talking to Mik, or “Violin Boy,” her courage deserts her. Now, enough is enough. Zuzana is determined to meet him, and she has a fistful of magic and a plan. It’s a wonderfully elaborate treasure hunt of a plan that will take Mik all over Prague on a cold winter’s night before finally leading him to the treasure: herself! Violin Boy’s not going to know what hit him.

When I saw that this had been published, I knew right away that I would be buying it. If you know me at all you know that I am absolutely in love with the Daughter of Smoke & Bone series, and this novella is no different. The only problem I had with it is that I wish it had been longer!

The fact that it's told in Zuzana and Mik's points of view just make it even better. I love Zuzana, she's actually one of my favorite characters in the series and I love every chance we get to see her in the books. She's just so funny and strange and lovely that it's impossible not to love her. Mik is a definite bonus in this story. There's not too much about him in the series and I really hope that changes with the last book. It was great to really get to see his character, plus he plays the violin.

The novella was sweet and completely adorable. I loved the insecurities that they both had and the way they come together is really unique and had me smiling the whole time. If you're a fan of the series then you definitely need to check this story out.

Monday, February 17, 2014

City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

3777732City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
Series: The Mortal Instruments, #3
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 541
Source: Borrowed from my sister
To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters - never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City - whatever the cost?

Love is a mortal sin and the secrets of the past prove deadly as Clary and Jace face down Valentine in the third installment of the New York Times bestselling series The Mortal Instruments.

There's just something about this series that has me captured. Cassandra Clare's writing definitely drew me in from the first book and I'm glad to say it hasn't let go of me yet. There's just something about it that's completely magical yet has themes that any person can relate to.
What I really loved about this installment is that there is so much more action. Yet at the same time we also get to see the characters when they aren't fighting. We see relationships strengthen and even ones begin to form. I love the humor throughout this book, yet it's bittersweet because there are moments that tore my heart to shreds.
The biggest thing for me was getting to see more of characters that weren't really focused on too much in the first two books. Magnus Bane and Alec Lightwood get a lot more time in this book and you really get to see them grow as characters and I loved every single minute of it. Magnus happens to be my favorite character and whenever there's a scene with him I'm usually laughing my butt off because he really brings a lightness to the heavy moments in the book.
If you haven't started this series yet what are you waiting for? It has action, huge plot twists and really sweet romance. I highly recommend this series it's quickly become one of my favorites and this book just may be my favorite in the series so far.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Project Cain by Geoffrey Girard

17334309Project Cain by Geoffrey Girard
Series: N/A (Though there is an adult companion novel)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 368
Source: Purchased

Fifteen-year-old Jeff Jacobson had never heard of Jeffrey Dahmer, the infamous serial killer who brutally murdered seventeen people more than twenty years ago. But Jeff’s life changes forever when the man he’d thought was his father hands him a government file telling him he was constructed in a laboratory only seven years ago, part of a top-secret government cloning experiment called ‘Project CAIN’.

There, he was created entirely from Jeffrey Dahmer’s DNA. There are others like Jeff—those genetically engineered directly from the most notorious murderers of all time: The Son of Sam, The Boston Strangler, Ted Bundy . . . even other Jeffrey Dahmer clones. Some raised, like Jeff, in caring family environments; others within homes that mimicked the horrific early lives of the men they were created from.

When the most dangerous boys are set free by the geneticist who created them, the summer of killing begins. Worse, these same teens now hold a secret weapon even more dangerous than the terrible evil they carry within. Only Jeff can help track the clones down before it’s too late. But will he catch the ‘monsters’ before becoming one himself?

Let's start off by reading the description shall we? Sounds amazing right? That was the same thought I had when I first read it. Starting the book however I quickly realized that wouldn't be the case. I had to pretty much force myself to even finish this book despite my love for serial killer related things.

The info-dumping was a huge turn off for me. It was pile upon pile of information just shoved at you and some of it I really didn't think mattered too much, case in point there was a whole section where Jeff talks about the likes and dislikes of a man. And then when the information wasn't be thrown at you Jeff had very little clue about anything. Stuff about his dad? No clue. The laboratory? No clue. Nothing at all. It was frustrating and really made the story hard to get through and choppy.

I disliked Jeff. I really did, for a Jeffrey Dahmer clone you'd think he wouldn't be so boring right? Wrong. I had absolutely no connection to him besides the fact that he liked to read. He was of no use to Castillo for the first half of the book and just kept wondering why his dad wouldn't talk to him while there were serial killer clones running around murdering families. The only two who made the book somewhat interesting were Castillo and Ox. They had all of these conspiracies about the government and what was going on.

This book had so much potential but just seemed like a watered down version of Criminal Minds for me. I was expecting awesome serial killers and gore and violence but there wasn't much of anything. It seemed to mostly revolve around Jeff not knowing much of anything and Castillo trying to catch the clones.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

10866624Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
Series: The Lynburn Legacy, #1
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 370
Source: Purchased from Random Buzzers

Kami Glass loves someone she’s never met . . . a boy she’s talked to in her head ever since she was born. She wasn’t silent about her imaginary friend during her childhood, and is thus a bit of an outsider in her sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Still, Kami hasn’t suffered too much from not fitting in. She has a best friend, runs the school newspaper, and is only occasionally caught talking to herself. Her life is in order, just the way she likes it, despite the voice in her head.

But all that changes when the Lynburns return.

The Lynburn family has owned the spectacular and sinister manor that overlooks Sorry-in-the-Vale for centuries. The mysterious twin sisters who abandoned their ancestral home a generation ago are back, along with their teenage sons, Jared and Ash, one of whom is eerily familiar to Kami. Kami is not one to shy away from the unknown—in fact, she’s determined to find answers for all the questions Sorry-in-the-Vale is suddenly posing. Who is responsible for the bloody deeds in the depths of the woods? What is her own mother hiding? And now that her imaginary friend has become a real boy, does she still love him? Does she hate him? Can she trust him?

This book was difficult for me. I went into it expecting a fantastic Gothic story and I guess that's where it went wrong for me. It didn't live up to all of the expectations I had for it and in the end I was disappointed even though I really did enjoy the book.

The mystery was definitely enough to keep my attention. It had so many unexpected twists throughout the story and I found the outcome of what the Lynburn's were really exciting.

I liked Kami. She was quirky and had strong beliefs and didn't sit down and let everybody walk all over her. She stood up for herself and what she believed in and wasn't afraid to find out the truth. I admit I wasn't a huge fan of Ash. From the beginning I thought things were kind of off with him and he really just seemed to perfect. I loved Jared. He was obnoxious and snarky, but you could tell he really cared about Kami.

I was iffy about the whole talking to someone in their mind thing. It just seemed kind of weird when I first read the description but once I got into the story it surprisingly worked for me. The ending to this one was devastating. I am so glad that I read this one after the sequel was already out. That way I don't have that long to find out what happens with Kami and Jared next.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Bubble World by Carol Snow (ARC)

Bubble WorldBubble World by Carol Snow
Series: N/A
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co. (BYR)
Format: ARC
Pages: 352
Source: Won

Freesia’s life is perfect. She lives on the beautiful tropical island of Agalinas, surrounded by idyllic weather, fancy dress shops, and peacocks who sing her favorite song to wake her up in the morning. She has so many outfits she could wear a different one every day for a year and not run out.

Lately things on the island may have been a bit flippy: sudden blackouts, students disappearing, even Freesia’s reflection looking slightly . . . off. But in Freesia’s experience, it’s better not to think about things like that too much.

Unfortunately for her, these signs are more than random blips in the universe. In Bubble World by Carol Snow, Freesia’s perfect bubble is about to pop.

 This was a difficult book for me to rate. On the one hand I did enjoy it, on the other however, I wasn't wowed by it. Going in I wasn't really expecting much and I do have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the whole revelation about Freesia's perfect world.

We get to see quite a bit of the world Freesia is living in. With it's fancy clothes, perfect weather and extremely laidback style. Though as the book progresses it becomes clear that things aren't exactly as they seem. Things start to get weird on the island and pretty soon Freesia is exposed to the truth of Agalinas.

My one major issue with the book was the made up words. Face-linking? Couldn't they just say kissing? There's quite a few more that could have been left out or at least explained.

I wasn't a fan of Freesia. She was shallow and vain. She talked about people and was a pretty nasty person if you weren't one of her "friendlies". My favorite character had to be Ricky Leisure. He was totally laidback and just kind of chilled all day but you really get to see a whole deeper side of him as the story goes on.

This book is an extremely quick read and would be perfect for the beach. It doesn't take long to get through and is also a pretty easy read.