Saturday, September 28, 2013

Review: Broken Stone by Kelly Walker

UNABLE TO AVOID HER DESTINY ANY LONGER, Emariya has become the leader her mother always envisioned. Before she can focus on embracing her gifts to unify her three lands, she must first stop her own land from dissolving into civil war. Spurred by her brother’s devious policies and thirst for power, the people of the Uplands have surged into revolt. If Emariya cannot convince her own people to stand down and follow her, she will never convince her uncle she can lead all three lands. And he’s only given her half a year to do it.

AS SHE TRIES TO WIN HER OWN PEOPLE'S HEARTS, the love of her life, Torian Ahlen begins to lose his mind. While Torian is driven into a dark depression by his visions of Terin, Emariya realizes the only way to bring him back from the brink is to confront her brother once and for all and rescue Torian's sister. Unfortunately, because of the pull of the stones, his sister isn’t sure she wants to be rescued.

IF EMARIYA IS TO HAVE ANY CHANCE AT SAVING TORIAN'S MIND and his sister’s virtue, she will have to go directly to the source, those that bestowed the gifts (or curse) in the first place. But will whoever is waiting at The Cradle Of The Three be willing to help her? Her only chance to get Terin away from Reeve will be to nullify the pull of the Stones, accepting whatever changes that may mean for her and Torian.

Title: Broke Stone
Series: Souls of the Stones #3
Publisher: Kelly Walker (May 22, 2013)
ASIN: B00CYHVE16
Warning: Again. If you haven't read the previous two books, which I will link, and you willingly read this review, don't be surprised when you run into spoilers. I feel like I can't write this review without them, and now you can't complain, because you've been forewarned. No worries, there aren't any spoilers from this book though. 

This book--wait, this entire series has been so completely amazing (and is now one of my favorites, I am dying to buy the books and just cast them loving looks every time I pass by, is that weird?) and has made me excited to read. It's these kind of books that make me love reading, and are totally the reason that I plan on having a library for myself (and my books), with the perfect comfy chair. Ah...even this cover is pretty, I love it.

Riya hasn't had it easy, yet I feel that overall she has been pretty graceful at dealing with all of the problems that come her way, from having the person she trusts the most, her brother, betray her so severely, or her father, who was kidnapped for years, die by her side soon after she gets him back. She may be slowed down by difficulties of this sort, but it never completely stops her, and she'll take any risk, go to every length, if she can save her people, and her prince, who she is stronger with, but not hopeless without. 
With that being said, her people do desperately need her, more than they may even know. Her father left her the high seat of a corrupt council, although having them believe that may be a challenge within itself, and her uncle has only given her six months to bring peace to her lands if they are to sign a treaty to bring together the Three Corners, each of which has something the other needs. While trying to bring together the three lands she has to find a way to help Terin, who stays with Reeve by choice because of the pull of the stones, but if the pull is nullifiied, will Torian still love her? Somehow, throughout all of this, she continuously shows herself as a leader, not someone to be feared, but admired. This is why she is one of my favorite female heroines, because of her growth throughout these books, her strength and her independence.

Riya may have all of this on her shoulders, but she certainly won't face it alone. Garith and Jessa, her best friends from the start, will be there for her no matter what happens. Garith has certainly shown that he can be a leader, and in this book I think Jessa shows just how strong she can be, deciding to go with Blaine during one of the most dangerous points in the book. Blaine and Jessa may also spend a little more time together in this book, and by the end Garith finds someone too, who I didn't find too surprising, though the circumstances weren't necessarily ideal. Torian, who I love lots (and totally didn't expect to when I first started the books), did have the fate of his sister to think about. If she were to have a child, it may turn out evil and become dictator of the three corners, yet, he loves her, the last thing he wants to do is kill her, that's enough to drive anyone insane. Although he has his problems, along with Jessa and Garith, he's there for Riya, supporting and protecting her. 

Every moment of this book, and it's wonderful plot, had me entranced the entire time. I certainly had a hard time putting his book down because of the romance, action, surprises and overall awesome plot. Not only that, but I never got bored, I thought this was a well paced book. Be warned, it certainly has some scenes that made me tear up, yet others that made me laugh or brought a smile to my face. 
The ending was amazing, better than I expected, and I appreciated the epilogue, telling us what happens 15 years later. It ended the series on a great note and tied everything together perfectly, I am sad this series is over yet I'm so happy with the ending, having no questions left to be answered. 

Book Nerd and Proud, 
K.G.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Memorable Quotes Monday: Divergent by Veronica Roth

"Moths," repeats Will. "You're afraid of moths?"
"Terrifying," Will says with mock seriousness. "That's my girl. Tough as cotton balls."
"Oh, Shut up."
"Not just a cloud of moths," she says, "like...a swarm of them. Everywhere. All those wings and legs and..." She shudders and shakes her head.
*
"Statistically speaking...you should have hit the target at least once by now, even by accident... I think you’re actually defying nature."
*
“Sorry, am I being rude?" she asks."I'm used to saying whatever is on my mind. Mom used to say that politeness is deception in pretty packaging”
*
“Can you be a girl for a few seconds?"
"I'm always a girl" I frown.
"You know what I mean. Like a silly, annoying girl."
I twirl my hair around my finger. "Kay.”
*
"Got that gun?” Peter says to Tobias.
“No,” says Tobias, “I figured I would shoot the bullets out of my nostrils, so I left it upstairs."
*
"You know, most boys would enjoy being trapped in close quarters with a girl." I roll my eyes."Not claustrophobic people, Tris."
*
"What did you do, memorize a map of the city for fun?” says Christina.
“Yes,” says Will, looking puzzled. “Didn’t you?"
*
"We could visit him," suggests Will. "But what would we say? 'I didn't know you that well, but I'm sorry you got stabbed in the eye'?"
*
"Looks like someone had a mood swing.” She rolls her eyes. “Like you don’t want to know what his fears are. He acts so tough that he’s probably afraid of marshmallows and really bright sunrises or something."
*
"Okay. Then...I can talk. Ask me something."
"Okay." He laughs shakily in my ear. "Why is your heart racing Tris?"
I cringe and say, "Well, I...I barely know you. I barely know you and I'm crammed up against you in a box, Four, what do you think?"
"Maybe you were cut out for Candor," he says, "because you're a terrible liar."
*
“Yeah, well," I say, "I left Abnegation because I wasn't selfless enough, no matter how hard I tried to be."
"That's not entirely true." He smiles at me. "That girl who let someone throw knives at her to spare a friend, who hit my dad with a belt to protect me-that selfless girl, that's not you?"...
"You've been paying close attention, haven't you?"
"I like to observe people."
"Maybe you were cut out for Candor, Four, because you're a terrible liar.”
*
"I think it would be easier to fight in a dress,” says Marlene, tapping her chin. “It would give your legs freer movement. And who really cares if you flash people your underwear, as long as you’re kicking the crap out of them?”
Lynn goes silent, like she recognizes that as a spark of brilliance but can’t bring herself to admit it.“What’s this about flashing underwear?” says Uriah, sidestepping a bunk. “Whatever it is, I’m in."
*
"So, the thing we’re all not talking about,” he says. He gestures to me. “You almost died, a sadistic pansycake saved you, and now we’re all waging some serious war with the factionless as allies.”
“Pansycake?” says Christina.
“Dauntless slang.” Lynn smirks. “Supposed to be a huge insult, only no one uses it anymore.”
“Because it’s so offensive,” says Uriah, nodding.
“No. Because it’s so stupid no Dauntless with any sense would speak it, let alone think it. Pansycake. What are you, twelve?”
“And a half,” he says.
We really hope to get on a more regular posting schedule soon.
Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G. & C.J.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Review: Wings of Nestor by Devri Walls

Kiora needs answers. Who is the Shadow? Who is Jasmine? Are they connected? And even more pressing—how can she stop the Shadow from using her dreams as a map to find them? They have escaped three times, but are living on borrowed time—and everybody knows it.

Kiora’s search will push her closer to Alcander, send her to the dragon mountain of Toopai, and lead straight back to Meros—where magic will finally return to the land of no magic. Answers will be uncovered and plans unearthed that have been waiting for thousands of years.

But with the Shadow’s forces gathering, the rebels are hurtling toward one outcome: war. Armed with knowledge and hope, Kiora is determined to change that path, but will fate allow it? Or will it teach her a hard lesson about following her own destiny?

Title: Wings of Nestor
Series: Solus #3
Published: June 24th 2013 by StoneHouse Ink (first published 2013)
ASIN: B00DMC4068
Xpresso Book Tours
I know, we never do this, posting a review for the third book in a series before the first but these are for a book tour so once it's over I'll have up the reviews for the others, I promise! At which time I'll rewrite this, because I'm not sure what I'll be adding to the first and second review, and I really don't want to spoil anything. 

One of the best parts of this book must be the writing, which I feel is an odd thing to say so I'll explain. Devri Walls is an amazing writer, creating an amazing world and then adding imagery truly allows you picture this world without any trouble or confusion. It makes these books a pleasure to read, and so sad that the next book isn't out yet, but then again I don't want the series to end.

Kiora is a very strong female lead, and has grown a lot throughout this series. Usually with love triangles it's very obvious who is going to be picked, but I think many readers will come to like both of the males, Emane and Alcander, and have a hard time choosing just one.

Aside from the romance, there are a lot more dragons, some pretty awesome magic and cool fight scenes. Overall, it was a great read and I'll be waiting for the next book!

Also, I had to mention the Xpresso Book Tours link goes right to this tour, so you can go check out all of the other wonderful bloggers reviews too! 
Book Nerd and Proud, 
K.G. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Review: Nine Parts of Desire by Geraldine Brooks

As a prizewinning foreign correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, Geraldine Brooks spent six years covering the Middle East through wars, insurrections, and the volcanic upheaval of resurgent fundamentalism. Yet for her, headline events were only the backdrop to a less obvious but more enduring drama: the daily life of Muslim women. Nine Parts of Desire is the story of Brooks' intrepid journey toward an understanding of the women behind the veils, and of the often contradictory political, religious, and cultural forces that shape their lives. Defying our stereotypes about the Muslim world, Brooks' acute analysis of the world's fastest growing religion deftly illustrates how Islam's holiest texts have been misused to justify repression of women, and how male pride and power have warped the original message of a once liberating faith.



Title: Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women
Published: December 1st 1995 by Anchor
ISBN: 0385475772 (ISBN13: 9780385475778)




As some of you read this review, you'll probably wonder why it sounds so much more formal compared to my regular reviews and why it's so long. Well, to answer your possible questions, it's an essay for my AP World History class, and since I've been doing nothing but read this book and write this essay, I don't really have anything else to post this week...so enjoy!


“Nine Parts of Desire,” written by Geraldine Brooks, gives readers a glimpse into another world through her first hand experiences as a reporter in predominantly Muslim countries. Because Geraldine Brooks was a Middle East news correspondent for two years, she covered stories and met people that average people could not, and wrote during the time of Khomeini’s death and conflicts in the Middle East. When she began, Brooks was outraged women were oppressed in such a way that she did not have the same rights as she would in Western cultures. She could not report in the same areas as men because women were considered a distraction, but later she realized she had been given a greater opportunity to write countless stories about women and gain knowledge about their daily lives.

Muhammad, the founder and prophet of Islam, received his first revelation from God after his first wife, Khadija, passed away. He was told, “Men are in charge of women, because God has made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property [to support them].” Then after, he was told, “Marry of the women, who seem good to you, two or three or four; and if ye fear that ye cannot do justice [to so many] then one [only]." However, Muhammad himself was the exception to this rule and took up eight or nine wives. Each of the wives was scrutinized by those against the new religion, and soon there jealousy grew against the prophet’s favorites. Because of this, Muhammad received another revelation from God telling him to seclude his wives and stay concealed in their rooms; they could only go out when they were completely covered. Soon the rules applied to the prophet’s wives spread to other Muslim women.

While Brooks didn’t have much to say about Saudi Arabia, she explains other countries aren’t always so restricted. In the United Arab Emirates there are women soldiers, and in Iran, women have been voted into Parliament. While Pakistan is the first Islamic country to elect a woman prime minister, Turkey has both a female economist and prime minister, and within Bangladesh, there is a woman prime minister and leader of the opposition.

Geraldine Brooks poses the question, “Islam did not have to mean oppression of women. So why were so many Muslim women oppressed?” It is not necessarily the religion of Islam that represses women, but rather it is the varying interpretations of the Islamic religion that create different cultural and political influences. For instance, many people assume genital mutilation in order to preserve a girl’s chastity is solely an Islamic practice, but in reality, Christians also do this. It is not either religion that sanctions this act, but occurs because it is a traditional African practice.

While genital mutilation is influenced by cultural traditions, it is the political influences in that deny women the right to stay in a hotel room without a husband, the right to drive a car, and the right to an education. Few girls are given the opportunity to an education and only because if parents are able to afford it, and the literacy rates in Saudi Arabia show this. By 1980, while 62% of men were literate, only 38% of women were literate. While countries have made strides in women suffrage, but there is still much work to be done.

Rana Kabbani, a Muslim woman wrote, “I am always pained by Western misconceptions about the lives of Muslim women. Western ignorance is often inseparable from a patronizing view that insists on seeing us as helpless victims, while hardly distinguishing between the very different cultures we come from.” While there is injustice towards women, they should not be considered weak. Despite everything that keeps females from doing what they want, they still manage to find ways to accomplish their goals. Because of the restrictions of the hijab, many women living in Islamic countries cannot compete in the Olympics. So in 1993, the first Islamic Women’s Games were to take place in Tehran. This alternative gives Muslim females the chance to do sports they wouldn’t be able to do otherwise.

When Emirates’ Muslim authorities were against recruiting women soldiers, they pointed out Nusaybah, a woman soldier who saved Muhammad’s life on the battlefield when all the men had run off. Soon a ragtag group of 74 women were chosen from over 1,200 applications. United States female specialists from Fort Bragg were to run a basic training course for these women. None of these women had been physically active, and were brought up to “lower their gaze and be modest,” so it was an immense change for them to learn to look their officers in the eye and go through four mile runs. Because of their accomplishments, some Emirates officers found it hard to acknowledge their success. Lieutenant Colonel Mohamed Nasser, the commander of the academy, could not believe the shooting scores, and ordered the women to redo the test on the men’s shooting range. He was surprised to see each woman shoot with such precision that each bullet hit dead center of the target.

For years, Geraldine Brooks observed the lives of Muslim women. She sheds light on the injustice towards women in the world, but she also shows women who carry out their ambitions despite all the obstacles in the Islamic lifestyle. Whether that is to become a politician, or an athlete, or a soldier, these women pave the path for others to follow.

Finally finished!
Book Nerd and Proud,
C.J.


Saturday, July 27, 2013

Review: Second Stone by Kelly Walker

You are only a pawn if you don't know the game you are playing.

In the second installment in Souls of the Stones, the stakes are higher, the romance is hotter, and Emariya's power as a Cornerstone is growing.

DETERMINED TO MAKE SENSE OF THE BETRAYALS, lies, and her undeniable attraction to Torian, Emariya and her prince begin the journey to Sheas to confront her uncle and bring her father home.

Only days after leaving the castle, devastating news threatens to tear Torian and Emariya apart. Overcome by guilt, Emariya wants to repair the rift between them but first she must answer one important question: why can't she wake up?

A DEADLY FORCE HAS COME FROM THE SEA to claim its daughter, and if Torian wants to save Emariya, he'll first have to find a way to forgive her...and himself. That's easier said than done when both his sister and Emariya are counting on him at two separate ends of their world and the only people who might know how to help him are hiding in exile.

TO WIN THE BATTLE FOR THEIR LIVES, they will first have to win the battle for Emariya's mind. Only then can she rise up strong enough to face what she has to do.

Title: Second Stone
Series: Souls of the Stones #2
Published February 15th 2013 by Kelly Walker (first published February 1st 2013)
ISBN: 1482357100 (ISBN13: 9781482357103)
Warning: There isn't a way I can write this review without spoiling major plot points for Cornerstone (link to that review here), the first book in this series, and you've been forewarned so there shall be no complaining. 

Even from the beginning I was absolutely enthralled, after I had read that Riya's brother, Reeve, was behind all of it! I couldn't see him being evil, really, but, what you learn in the second book about that is also very interesting, and I thought unexpected. I thought this book had less twists, but more action and more romance between Torian and Riya. There might even be another couple forming, however unlikely it usually would be. 

Something I thought is important to mention is the flawless changing between POV's, and there were a quite a few of them. I never thought the transition was jumpy and erratic, plus in some books there's that annoying re-account of events that JUST happened, and truly provide no further information to the reader, but that didn't happen in this book. Even more important than that is that I could automatically tell who was speaking, I never encountered a moment when I was thinking: "Is this Riya or Jessa? Or maybe even Terin...?" 
Jessa groaned. "So he told you he loves you, and you said 'see you later.' Brilliant, Emariya.
Flashes of Torian's distant and strange looks earlier at the campfire came surging back. Once more, she pushed to her feet. "I think I need to go find Torian"
As I mentioned there's even more romance between Torian and Riya, I think they're a great couple. It started out as just an arranged married meant to bind the lines but now it's so much more than that. They both understand that part of their pull is because of them both being stones, but I think they would be in love even if there wasn't a pull. They make each other the best they can be, and that's a great kind of love. As mentioned in the description of the book, Riya does make a very bad (unintentional) decision, which really did test them. 

While Torian and Riya are very important, some pretty important things happen to other characters too. Riya's accidentally slip may end up risking the life of Terin, (I was really excited when I got to see things from her POV), and I don't think I'm spoiling anything because it basically says the same thing reworded in the description, plus you learn about this either at the end of the first book or during the first 10 pages of the second book. I can see the third book being important for Jessa, but this book was for Garith. He really grows, showing how strong and smart he is. He graciously takes the leadership he is given (but didn't ask for), leading better than most would've expected, and maybe even better than their formally trained leader did. Someone else you can't forget about is Riya's father, while we all know she's taking a trip to the Shea's to find her father when Reeve actually has him, and maybe they'll figure that out once they find out they've assumed the wrong person has had her father locked up for years. Will he finally be freed? 

While this book isn't free I totally believe it's totally worth the $5 it costs (as an eBook), I'm sad the series is ending with the next book but I'm also very excited to read it.  
Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review: Obsidian by Jennifer Armentrout

Starting over sucks.

When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I'd pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring.... until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.

And then he opened his mouth.

Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something...unexpected happens. 

The hot alien living next door marks me.

You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon's touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I'm getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades. 

If I don't kill him first, that is.


Title: Obsidian
Series: Lux #1
Published: May 8th 2012 by Entangled Teen
ISBN: 1620610078 (ISBN13: 9781620610077)
Barnes&Noble|Amazon

For all you blog readers who have been here for awhile, just for your information, Jennifer Armentrout's writing is just as amazing as it was when I read the Covenant series that I fangirled over. There's just something that I love about a relationship that starts out with hate. Even though it's so obvious what will happen in the end, I enjoy it all the same. Like when I read The Host, I didn't expect an alien story to be so entertaining. When I think of aliens, I imagine those nerdy sci-fi movies, which for some odd reason have the hottest main characters. Anyways, this book is a must read!

Katy Swartz moves from Florida to a small town West Virginia before her senior year in high school. She is definitely one of my favorite female characters to read about...maybe it's because she's a reader and blogger like Kayla (HEY!) and I! 
"The day my internet was hooked up was better than having a hot guy check our my butt and ask for my phone number." 
Daemon Black...he definitely goes on the "Favorite Sexy Heroes" list up there with Jace and Will. The constant witty banter kept me laughing and I loved Daemon's arrogant attitude. Dee, his twin sister had a happy personality and befriends Katy when she first meets her. Daemon, being the protective brother that he is (doesn't that just make him hotter?!), doesn't want his sister hanging out with a human, because he knows that they can destroy his life. Why would that be? He's a freaking alien, that's why, and humans tend to enjoy poking, prodding, and experimenting on things that are unknown. Daemon and Dee are Luxen that take on a human form as they choose, but their real embodiment is light, and they have mind boggling powers. 

While Daemon and Katy try to avoid each other, they find themselves in situations together all the time. He teases and baits her which makes their relationship all the more fun. 
"Beautiful face. Beautiful body. Horrible attitude. It was the holy trinity of hot boys." 
Kiss or kill was the real question throughout the book. There were definitely some hot moments -fans self- which made even laptops explode...you'd get it if you read it. It was such a fun novel to read, and I will never make the mistake of waiting to read one of Armentrout's books again...

Book Nerd and Proud,
C.J.


Saturday, July 20, 2013

Review: CornerStone by Kelly Walker

Emariya's life was nearly over before it started. Hidden under the floorboards while her mother died above her, she escaped a brutal death then—only to go racing toward it now, sixteen years later.

After learning her father has been captured, Emariya is desperate to save him, no matter who she has to turn to for help. Oblivious to her potential gifts and the secrets surrounding her dual heritage, Emariya makes a bargain with the prince of a rival land, Torian Ahlen. In exchange for her hand in marriage, he agrees to send his forces to rescue her father. With the arrangements made, Emariya embarks on a tumultuous journey through two kingdoms as different from each other as the families that rule them.

Before long, Emariya comes face to face with her mother's killers, and learns of an ominous prophecy: her and Torian's bloodlines must never be combined. Armed with this frightening new knowledge, Emariya begins to fear the handsome prince may desire more than to steal her heart, and it will take all of her newfound skills to survive.

Title: CornerStone
Series: Souls of the Stones #1
Published: October 22nd 2012 by Kelly Walker (first published October 1st 2012)
ISBN: 1480086711 (ISBN13: 9781480086715)
Barnes & Noble|Amazon
"Your parents, they chose their own path. The time has come for you to choose yours. Don't loose sight of what her path cost her. She tried to save her people, and not only did she fail, but she lost herself. Milady, some bargains, they just aren't worth the risk."
When starting this free book I didn't expect much, but by the end of the novel everything you've learned in the beginning has changed. Riya may have unknowingly placed her trust in the wrong people, enemies becoming friend and friends becoming enemies? Well, both are very likely with all of the twists throughout the story. I loved this book for that reason, when I started the book I wouldn't have guessed it would be this good, and I definitely wouldn't have guessed what happens during the last few pages.

I must also mention that when I started the book it was rather slow, the main reason that it lost a star, and it wasn't this way the entire book, but I would guess ABOUT the first third of it was. For me, it really didn't take away from the book itself that much, but it wasn't ideal. I should admit that I wanted to just forget about this fact, and give it five stars anyways, because she does create a wonderful world during this time, it wasn't mind-numbingly boring, just slow. If I was you I wouldn't give up, I think that it truly does get a lot better has the book progresses, and really, the ending is so stunning and wonderful that even if I didn't enjoy the slow beginning, it would've totally made up for it. 

Riya is a great main character, while she is saved by men occasionally she isn't the damsel in distress, if she's captured she doesn't sit there and wait for someone else to save her, she tries to save herself. She's also great in the way that she can admit she wants to be protected, and she knows it doesn't make her weak. Adding onto all of this while her family is the head of the council, she doesn't let it get to her head. Her two best friends are the blacksmiths son, Garith, and her handmaiden, Jessa. Riya even mentions that yes, Jessa does work for her but she will always first and foremost be her best friend, and that they all do keep up appearances to keep the public eye happy, because a being best friends with a handmaiden could be very scandalous. 

Before I forget to mention, the cover to this book is amazing, plus it's free, so if I was you I'd read it. Today. Right now.
Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Review: UnEnchanted by Chanda Hahn

Mina Grime is unlucky, unpopular and uncoordinated, that is until she saves her crush's life on a field trip, changing her High School status from loser to hero overnight. But with her new found fame brings misfortune as an old family curse come to light. For Mina is descended from the Brothers Grimm and has inherited all of their unfinished fairy tale business. Which includes trying to outwit a powerful Story from making her its next fairy tale victim.

To break the fairy tale curse on her family and stop these deadly events, Mina must finish the tales until the very Grimm end.






Title: UnEnchanted
Series: An Unfortunate Fairy Tale #1
Published: 2011 by Chanda Hahn
ASIN: B006ROK1UM
I really like the cover of this book, which just so happens to be a free eBook on Barnes & Noble and Amazon, so if I were you I'd go pick it up right after I finished reading this wonderful review. I'm glad I decided to read it because it turned out to be a great book, I thought it was about a 4 star book, but then I had to consider that the book wasn't edited. It didn't bother me that much, but at times it would ruin the flow of the story and get annoying.

This is also a very fluffy, stereotypical book. Mina is the ordinary girl, who isn't really pretty and has little to no friends, until she saves Brody from death and he suddenly realizes he needs to be with this girl. He's the most popular guy in school, and a catch for any girl, but now he has fixated on her and they become best friends, the unlikely pair that will get married with a happily ever after. 

Only this book has a twist, one that I love and will not reveal, but great nonetheless. It is definitely part of the reason I am dying to read the next book, but I've heard the third is coming out by the end of this month so I'll try to find the will power to wait until then. When it does come out I will read and review the second and third book, which I do have high expectations for. 

Mina didn't believe in herself in this book, and I would really like that to change. Her younger brother is the next of the Grimm's, he'll get the curse if she doesn't break it and she knows this! She even says that she wants to protect him, yet she relies so heavily on other people, what happens when they're not around? If she wants to stand up for her brother she first has to learn how to stand up for herself. 

Nan is a beautiful girl who is Mina's best friend, but she is also friendly with everyone, and obsessed with twitter, even tweeting a picture of Mina running for the bus. When Mina is need of help, or just a friend, Nan is there, even listening to her crazy story about how she is a Grimm and has to finish a task that the Grimm brothers couldn't. I thought she was a great character because she knew how to laugh at herself, and her confidence could be beneficial to Mina. 

I'm still not sure what to think of Jared and Brody, because of the ending and how mysterious Jared can be. It was either Jared or Brody that would be there to save her whenever she was in any kind of distress. Brody has a great relationship with Mina and I truly liked it but I'm not sure if I rather her be with Jared yet, once I learn more about him in the next book I'll probably have an easier time picking. 

Overall this was a great read, and I'm very glad I read it. The author also has another free book out The Iron Butterfly, and I'll probably try to read that too, sometime in the near future. I can see the next book being better, and cannot wait for the third. 

Now that my review is finished you should really click the Barnes & Noble or Amazon link and read this book (:
Book Nerd and Proud, 
K.G. 

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Review: Turned by Morgan Rice

Eighteen year old Caitlin Paine finds herself uprooted from her nice suburb and forced to attend a dangerous New York City high school when her Mom moves again. The one ray of light in her new surroundings is Jonah, a new classmate who takes an instant liking to her.

But before their romance can blossom, Caitlin suddenly finds herself changing. She is overcome by a superhuman strength, a sensitivity to light, a desire to feed--by feelings she does not understand. She seeks answers to what’s happening to her, and her cravings lead her to the wrong place at the wrong time. Her eyes are opened to a hidden world, right beneath her feet, thriving underground in New York City. She finds herself caught between two dangerous covens, right in the middle of a vampire war.

It is at this moment that Caitlin meets Caleb, a mysterious and powerful vampire who rescues her from the dark forces. He needs her to help lead him to the legendary lost artifact. And she needs him for answers, and for protection. Together, they will need to answer one crucial question: who was her real father?

But Caitlin finds herself caught between two men as something else arises between them: a forbidden love. A love between the races that will risk both of their lives, and will force them to decide whether to risk it all for each other…

Title: Turned
Series: Vampire Journals #1
Published: January 24th 2011
ISBN13: 9780982953723
Barnes & Noble|Amazon
Lately I've been insanely busy, and without much time to read a book. I wanted something short to help me get ahead on my reviews, and that is why I chose the free book Turned. I have nothing against free books, I've found a few that have been delightfully surprising, and become a favorite series of mine, but I must say that I didn't start this book with high expectations, thankfully so, because I felt this might make a decent novella, but not a novel. It has so many holes with no explanations for simple concepts that don't even need a lengthy explanation like what are the difference between good vampires and bad ones? Neither of them would take in a half breed, and I doubt "good vampires" don't eat humans. 

Caitlin is a vampire, but by all means she's is not cunning, manipulative or smart, maybe that only comes with age. It is something I've come to expect with vampires and I must admit that I was disappointed to find that Caitlin was even a bit below average, she quickly decided to run away from home, with what? Only the clothes she has on her, and an extra pair of fancy clothes for her date with Jonah.

Jonah is the first, and only, person she bonds with at school, which isn't surprising because I think over the course of the book she only goes to school for a full day once or twice. Needless to say, her and Jonah hit it off and he asks her on a date, to which she accepts. Their date really doesn't go as planned, and after it you don't see much of a chance for Jonah as Caitlin has met the all encompassing Caleb, who she immediately falls in love with. 

Caleb saves Caitlin when she finds herself in some trouble with a clan of vampires. This is their first meeting, and by the end of it he says he loves her. I don't know what to think of their ridiculous relationship, or Caleb because he was just introduced and I know nearly nothing about him. 

Unless I get the other books for free, or at the library, I wouldn't read them. I don't expect to read the rest of the series because I truly do not see much potential.

Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Review: The Luxe by Anna Godbersen

Pretty girls in pretty dresses, partying until dawn.
Irresistible boys with mischievous smiles and dangerous intentions.
White lies, dark secrets, and scandalous hookups.
This is Manhattan, 1899. Beautiful sisters Elizabeth and Diana Holland rule Manhattan's social scene. Or so it appears. When the girls discover their status among New York City's elite is far from secure, suddenly everyone--from the backstabbing socialite Penelope Hayes, to the debonair bachelor Henry Schoonmaker, to the spiteful maid Lina Broud--threatens Elizabeth's and Diana's golden future.

With the fate of the Hollands resting on her shoulders, Elizabeth must choose between family duty and true love. But when her carriage overturns near the East River, the girl whose glittering life lit up the city's gossip pages is swallowed by the rough current. As all of New York grieves, some begin to wonder whether life at the top proved too much for this ethereal beauty, or if, perhaps, someone wanted to see Manhattan's most celebrated daughter disappear...

In a world of luxury and deception, where appearance matters above everything and breaking the social code means running the risk of being ostracized forever, five teenagers lead dangerously scandalous lives. This thrilling trip to the age of innocence is anything but innocent.


Title: The Luxe

Series: Luxe #1
Published: November 20th 2007 by HarperCollins
ISBN: 0061345660 (ISBN13: 9780061345661)
Barnes&Noble|Amazon
This book was the perfect break from all things paranormal. It seems like after you read a continuous line of magical beasts and hidden powers, everything starts to seem the same. The Luxe focuses on the  lives of Manhattan's teenage socialites during the 19th century.

Elizabeth Holland is the belle of the ball, whom every man wishes to court. Her mother has already arranged her perfect counterpart and very sought after bachelor, Henry Schoonmaker, and her to be married, but Elizabeth finds that her tastes in men aren't quite the same as other society women. Her heart is with their coachman, Will Kellar. Because of his social status, their affair is kept hidden, but when all she wants to do is run away with Will, her mother urges her to marry Henry in order to save the family when they are in financial distraught. In the end, she decides that helping her family wasn't going to give her the life she wanted.

Diana is Elizabeth's younger sister, who is usually eclipsed by her older sister. While Elizabeth is arranged to marry, Diana is in love with her sister's fiancee, and Henry feels the same way. As this goes on, Elizabeth's best friend, Penelope Hayes, developed a sort of infatuation on Henry. She isn't used to not getting what she wants and is infuriated when she discovers Elizabeth is engaged to him. Penelope is the sort of girl to go to any lengths to break up the wedding. When she begins to plan, there is no such thing as "friendship" in her vocabulary. Anything and everything is fair game.

When Elizabeth was a child, her closest friends were Lina and Will, who were part of the help. Her mother decided as she grew older, it was no longer appropriate. Elizabeth could not openly speak to either of them, so when Lina and Will became closer friends, Lina fell in love with Will. She became upset with Elizabeth when she found out her secret affair with Will and her jealousy got the better of her.

It seems that nobody in this book fell in love with the right person. Either because society told them it was wrong, or because that person loved someone else. This was such an amazing novel with pages filled with scandal and jealousy, and with so many twists and turns it makes you wonder if being a part of the elite is worth all the trouble to keep up appearances.

“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.” -Groucho Marx
Book Nerd and Proud, 
C.J.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Review: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson

Fourteen-year-old Maximum Ride, better known as Max, knows what it's like to soar above the world. She and all the members of the "Flock"--Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel--are just like ordinary kids--only they have wings and can fly. It may seem like a dream come true to some, but their lives can morph into a living nightmare at any time--like when Angel, the youngest member of the "Flock," is kidnapped and taken back to the "School" where she and the others were genetically engineered by sinister scientists. Her friends brave a journey to Death Valley, CA, to save Angel, but soon enough, they find themselves in yet another nightmare--this one involving fighting off the half-human, half-wolf "Erasers" in New York City. Whether in the treetops of Central Park or in the bowels of the Manhattan subway system, Max and her adopted family take the ride of their lives. Along the way Max discovers from her old friend and father-figure Jeb--now her betrayed and greatest enemy--that her purpose is save the world--but can she?

Title: The Angel Experiment

Series: Maximum Ride #1
Published: May 1st 2006 by Warner Vision Books
ISBN: 0446617792 (ISBN13: 9780446617796)
Barnes&Noble|Amazon
Warning
Do not put this book down. I'm dead serious. Your life could depend on it. I'm risking everything by telling you- but you need to know. If you dare to read this story, you become part of the Experiment. I know that sounds a little mysterious- but it's all I can say right now.
Max 
Though I have not read this book recently, I'm fairly confident in my ability to review this novel considering the fact I have read it no less than five times! Ever since the beginning of middle school, this has been one of my favorite series, however, I do not plan to review the rest of the series since I've been doing a lot of re-reading lately, and it can become tiresome...The only reason this review is given four stars instead of five is because in a way, I'm rating the series as a whole. Yes, there is a few books in between the series that don't capture my attention quite as well as the others, but it is definitely well worth the read. 

Max, the leader of the Flock, is my favorite combination of brave and witty in a heroine. While she is only fourteen years old in "The Angel Experiment" she acts well beyond her years, caring for other the other members in her group like a nurturing mother. Gazzy, otherwise known as the Gasman (for more obvious reasons), and Angel (the youngest) are the only actual siblings among the group, but from the way the others act, they all seem like a big family...with their own share of problems. Nudge is the little fashionista of the group, and Iggy, who is blind because of a failed experiment, is a genius in both the kitchen and with explosives (with the help of Gazzy). Fang is the most reserved and mysterious out of the group, but that doesn't keep Max's complicated feelings about him away. 

Like Max, they are all 98% human and 2% bird, but that small percentage makes the biggest difference. They have wings. Most of us dream about such things...the freedom of being able to fly, and while this is a bonus for the Flock, not everything is fun and games. The White Coats are a group of scientists who created these genetically modified humans to begin with, but most of their experiments don't usually have the best of outcomes. However, the avian-human hybrids were one of the few successes, and they want to run more tests. Hoping to never have to face the poking and prodding of needles, the kids hide and run. The Flock may be able to remain unseen from your average human, but the scientists have created the "Erasers" which are a race half human and half wolf hybrids designed to hunt the Flock down. 

From the first page, this book keeps you on the edge of your seat. It takes the simple path of  good vs evil, but takes a few turns on the way. The novel was fast-paced and exciting, and keeps you wanting more...

“There is no friend as loyal as a book.” - Ernest Hemingway
Book Nerd and Proud,
C.J.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Review: Fall for Me by K.A. Last

“Angels aren’t supposed to fall in love, especially with each other. But for the record, you were worth it.”

Grace Tate is a Protection Angel and Vampire Hunter, and she has always followed the rules. But some rules are made to be broken…

Until now the fight against evil has been simple, and falling in love was never part of the plan. So what happens when it’s beyond Grace’s control, and when she least expects it she falls for the wrong person?

All hell breaks loose, that’s what.

At Hopetown Valley High, not everything is as it seems, and the one person Grace thought was her enemy becomes her most important ally.

Blood will be shed, lives will be lost and friendships will be tested. It all comes down to one decision, and when Grace tries to save all those dear to her, she realises not everyone can be—or wants to be—saved.

Title: Fall for Me 
Series: The Tate Chronicals #1 
Published: January 17th 2013
  • ISBN-13: 9780987384904
My one wish would be to keep Archer and my friends safe. I figured if angels and vampires existed, why not genies? I needed to get one of those. 
Grace was a great character, in specific points of the book especially. One of the best examples is when Grace, a protection angel sent on to Earth for two basic purposes: to protect her brother and to kill vampires, is the person trying to protect a vampire with a white soul, someone she believes to be a good person who doesn't deserve to die, yet her superiors in Heaven tell her that she needs to "release its soul" (or something along those lines). Grace hasn't seen said vampire commit any acts of cruelty and decides to protect it, sticking to what she believes in. I loved this part of the book, it shows how everything isn't good or evil, there are lot of gray areas, which is really realistic, and I like that.

Many points in the book I did get a little annoyed with Grace, she's supposed to be a strong protection angel but I would say that she cried more than anyone else in the book, way more than the average human does. Yes, all of this does happen over a week, and I see how it could be very overwhelming, I just wish she wasn't so weepy all of the time.
So much had happened since the first day back at school, was it really just a week ago? I'd fallen in love, betrayed by my home, lost my best friend, hurt Josh, and fallen in love again.
Which also brings me to my next topic, the timing of the events in the book. The book, which is short already at 237 pages (or that's what it was on my nook) seems to try to cram everything in a little too fast. The book is fast paced but I will admit it lost my attention at some spots (could be because I didn't like Josh at all). Grace meets an entire new kind of vampire, falls in love with a guy she's barely said two words to before, has a problem because she kind of likes another guy who she has actually known for a long time, and....I'm afraid to mention the other things, and give away the story, so I won't.

Seth and Grace were best friends, until Seth decides he can't live with Grace but without her love, and he refuses to let her fall for him, so he falls himself and hides how he feels for her. He ends up providing her with some pretty important information, like how angels can be killed (which I found it to be very creative and interesting). I didn't have any problems with Seth, I liked him and I thought it was cute that he tried to protect Grace, in his own way without her knowing.

Josh, however, I did have a few problems with. They both admit that they barely know each other, and haven't even had a real conversation, but they quickly start a relationship and fall in love. At the start of the book Josh is still with his long time girlfriend who he hasn't loved for a while but just didn't find the "right time" to end it. Okay, he was trying not to hurt her, but ended up stringing her along in the process, it isn't the greatest thing to do but I can forgive him. She was a bit shallow, maybe she never had any true feelings for him anyways. Except, he decides to publicly humiliate her, which isn't right at all. You just broke up with her at the beginning of the day, do you truly think she'll be over it by the end of the day? I've never known anyone to move on from a relationship so quickly, even if it didn't have its spark anymore! He just seemed like a bad guy to me, not in the sexy way either. It could be hard to tell Grace and Josh apart, but then I'd hear a mean thought and know it was him.

Sacrifice, the prequel, is supposed to be read after this, but I don't think it gives much away that you don't already know within the first 10 pages. I loved it, I thought it was better than this book. For what I think are two good reasons, it has more Seth, the fallen angel who has fallen for Grace, and it's about when they were still best friends and going on angel missions together. I definitely will read the next book, I have a feeling that the it will be much better.

Sometime this week was my birthday, so happy birthday to me, and everyone else!
Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G.  

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review: Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor

Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a world free of bloodshed and war.

This is not that world.


Art student and monster's apprentice Karou finally has the answers she has always sought. She knows who she is—and what she is. But with this knowledge comes another truth she would give anything to undo: She loved the enemy and he betrayed her, and a world suffered for it.

In this stunning sequel to the highly acclaimed Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Karou must decide how far she'll go to avenge her people. Filled with heartbreak and beauty, secrets and impossible choices, Days of Blood & Starlight finds Karou and Akiva on opposing sides as an age-old war stirs back to life.

While Karou and her allies build a monstrous army in a land of dust and starlight, Akiva wages a different sort of battle: a battle for redemption. For hope.

But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dream?


Title: Days of Blood & Starlight

Series: Daughter of Smoke & Bone #2
Published: November 6th 2012 by Little Brown Books for Young Readers
ISBN: 0316133973 (ISBN13: 9780316133975)
Barnes&Noble|Amazon

I wanted to finish the book as quickly as possible, yet I needed to savor every word. Again, Laini Taylor has built a world that goes beyond simple understanding. She has not kept anything back, so we feel the suffering and pain that the characters try to overcome in a world marked by suffering and death, and the only thing that kept them going was hope. Similar to the last book, Laini Taylor's writing is at an artistic level with beautiful descriptions and plots. 

The last book it ends with Karou realizing that the man she loves has done far worse than she expected, and finds out that sometimes yes, ignorance can be bliss. She tries her hardest to hate Akiva for his actions, but finds that she can't. Karou is living in the middle of the desert acting as the new resurrectionist, creating a new army which gives the chimera a fighting chance. As much as Thiago would like, he cannot outright kill Karou because of the knowledge she possesses. Instead, he turns the rebel forces against her, making sure that she doesn't win their trust by spreading lies. He does this because he continues to hold a grudge from years ago that she did not choose him in her past life as Madrigal. However, not everybody believes the deceit. Ziri who was once in love with Madrigal as a young boy sacrifices much for Karou in order to help her and gain the trust of the other rebels. These circumstances have turned her into a stronger and determined woman, but many times you see how she wishes for her old and now seemingly mundane life. 

While this goes on, Akiva attempts to prove he is better man by helping the chimera whenever he can, and surprisingly sometimes with the aid of his brother and sister, Hazael and Liraz. At first, he was lead to believe his only love was dead, but discovers that she is alive and is helping the rebels. And though he believes Karou hates him, he watches over her and makes sure she is safe. 
"Soon, everything else would come rushing at him. Like the ground to a falling man, it would come rushing up and hit hi all at once - the place, the company, her worlds; one implication would lead to another and shatter him - but around that intake of breathe the world hung silent and bright, so bright, and Akiva only knew this one thing, and help on to it and wanted to live in side of it and stay there forever.
Karou was alive." 
Laini Taylor has written a beautiful sequel fueled by the concepts of prejudice, hate, and war. However the beacon of light for both races was hope. Hope that there would be no more loss, hope that everything would be over, and hope to finally be with the love of your life. There is without a shadow of doubt in my mind that I will be reading the final book in this wonderful trilogy next year!

“I know exactly what I would do with immortality: I would read every book in the library.” -Mark Jason Dominus
Book Nerd and Proud,
C.J.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Memorable Quotes Monday: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

"Memorable Quotes Monday" is definitely new to our blog, but we've decided it's time to change things up a bit! To start off, this is one of our favorite books, and has made us laugh on numerous occasions, no matter how many times we read it. Not only is it witty but it has an amazing story line...and did we mention how hot Jace is?
"Have you fallen in love with the wrong person yet?'
Jace said, "Unfortunately, Lady of the Haven, my one true love remains myself."
"At least," she said, "you don't have to worry about rejection, Jace Wayland."
"Not necessarily. I turn myself down occasionally, just to keep it interesting."
*** 
"Is this the part where you start tearing off strips of your shirt to bind my wounds?"
"If you wanted me to rip my clothes off, you should have just asked." 
*** 
"Do you remember back at the hotel when you promised that if we lived, you’d get dressed up in a nurse’s outfit and give me a sponge bath?" asked Jace.
"It was Simon who promised you the sponge bath."
"As soon as I’m back on my feet, handsome," said Simon.
"I knew we should have left you a rat."
*** 
"Don't order any of the faerie food," said Jace, looking at her over the top of his menu. "It tends to make humans a little crazy. One minute you're munching a faerie plum, the next minute you're running naked down Madison Avenue with antlers on your head. Not," he added hastily, "that this has ever happened to me."
*** 
"One of the Silent Brothers is here to see you. Hodge sent me to wake you up. Actually he offered to wake you himself, but since it's 5 a.m., I figured you'd be less cranky if you had something nice to look at."
"Meaning you?"
"What else?" 
*** 
"Don't." Clary raised a warning hand. "I'm not really in the mood right now."
"That's got to be the first time a girl's ever said that to me," Jace mused.
*** 
"Come in. And try not to murder any of my guests."
Jace edged into the doorway, sizing up Magnus with his eyes. "Even if one of them spills a drink on my new shoes?"
"Even then." 
*** 
"Out of the corner of her eye she thought she saw Jace shoot her a look of rage - but when she glanced at him, he looked as he always did: easy, confident, slightly bored.
"In future, Clarissa," he said, "it might be wise to mention that you already have a man in your bed, to avoid such tedious situations."
"You invited him into bed?" Simon demanded, looking shaken. 
"Ridiculous, isn't it?" said Jace. "We would never have all fit." 
"I didn't invite him into bed," Clary snapped. "We were just kissing." 
"Just kissing?" Jace's tone mocked her with its false hurt. "How swiftly you dismiss our love." 
*** 
"Don't tell me," Jace said, "Simon's turned himself into an ocelot and you want me to do something about it before Isabelle makes him into a stole. Well, you'll have have to wait till tomorrow. I'm out of commission." He pointed at himself - he was wearing blue pajamas with a hole in the sleeve. "Look. Jammies."
"Jace," Clary said, "this is important."
"Don't tell me," he said. "You've got a drawing emergency. You need a nude model. Well, I'm not in the mood. You could always ask Hodge," he said as an afterthought. "I hear he'll do anything for a -"
"JACE!" she interrupted him, her voice rising to a scream. "JUST SHUT UP FOR A SECOND AND LISTEN, WILL YOU?" 
*** 
"What are all these?" Clary asked.
"Vials of holy water, blessed knives, steel and silver blades," Jace said, piling the weapons on the floor beside him, "electrum wire - not much use at the moment but it's always good to have spares - silver bullets, charms of protetion, crucifixes, stars of David-"
"Jesus," said Clary 
"I doubt he'd fit." 
"Jace." Clary was appalled.
*** 
Even in half demon hunter clothes, Clary thought, he looked like the kind of boy who'd come over your house to pick you up for a date and be polite to your parents and nice to your pets.
Jace on the other hand, looked like the kind of boy who'd come over your house and burn it down just for kicks.
*** 
"A diary with no drawings of me in it? Where are the torrid fantasies? The romance covers?"
*** 
Clary felt suddenly annoyed. "When the self-congratulatory part of the evening is over, maybe we could get back to saving my best friend from being exsanguinated to death?"
"Exsanguinated," said Jace, impressed. "That's a big word."
"And you're a big-"
"Tsk tsk," he interupted. "No swearing in church."
*** 
"Jace?"
"Yeah?"
"How did you know I had Shadowhunter blood? Was there some way you could tell?"
The elevator arrived with a final groan. Jace unlatched the gate and slid it open. The inside reminded Clary of a birdcage, all black metal and decorative bits of gilt. "I guessed," he said, latching the door behind them. "It seemed like the most likely explanation."
"You guessed? You must have been pretty sure, considering you could have killed me."
He pressed a button in the wall, and the elevator lurched into action with a vibrating groan that she felt all through the bones in her feet. "I was ninety percent sure."
"I see," Clary said.
There must have been something in her voice, because he turned to look at her. Her hand cracked across his face, a slap that rocked him back on his heels. He put a hand to his cheek, more in surprise than pain. "What the hell was that for?"
"The other ten percent," she said, and they rode the rest of the way down to the street in silence.
***

Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G. & C.J. 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Review: Enchantment by Nikki Jefford

Barcelona. Summer escape. Or so Graylee Perez thought until her old adversary, Adrian Montez, brings his magic show to Spain.

Gray seeks out a Spanish wizard to help banish Adrian from her life once and for all. Instead, she tumbles headfirst into a love spell with the arrogant warlock.

After Gray follows Adrian to Paris, she must face her true feelings and decide if Adrian’s worth fighting for.








Title: Enchantment
Series: Spellbound #3
Published April 6th 2013 by Nikki Jefford (first published April 5th 2013)
ISBN13: 9781939997425
Barnes & Noble|Amazon
From Entangled: 
“Love is a more powerful force than magic. You can trick the mind and even the heart, but never the soul. When a person is not free to love with their soul, that is not love and that is why a love spell can never truly work.”
I realize I expressed some concerns about the plot in the last book, but even if it's only purpose was so Nikki Jefford could write this book, I wouldn't complain. Lately, I've had a hard him really getting into books. I'll read one a week, but the second I picked up this book I had a hard time setting it down. I read it in two sittings, and boy, did I wish it went on forever. I guess that's part of the reason I love books--the intoxication of it all. It's like having a whole new set of friends, who go on journeys to marvelous places, and you can feel what they do, visualize the world around them. It's so entrancing, but not every book does that, it's those books that's make you want to get to the last page, but you savor every word, and once it's over you wish that there was more.  There were so many twists I didn't expect, so, I feel it's a bit difficult to review without unveiling a few, and I definitely do not want that, so I'll step around it as much as possible.

Gray chooses to go to a retreat for young people who want a break from magic. Well, considering that Gray is the only person enroll on her own, maybe the other students aren't taking a willing break from magic. She means new people, makes new friends, and finds a cute guy, everything is going great. That's until the cute guy is groping another girl, and her friends decide to take her to a magic show. A magic show featuring the one and only Adrian Montez. Now, could it be a complete coincidence that Adrian took his magic show to Spain? Sure. Does Gray think it is? Definitely not. She uses one of her new friends contacts to try to get rid of Adrian, make him leave her life, forever. When she least expects it, she gets put under a love spell. It just so happens that Adrian didn't put it on her.

He keeps pushing her away, knowing that once the spell is broken she'll regret their time together. After a while Gray starts to doubt the spell is the only reason she has feelings for Adrian. I loved the romance between Gray and Adrian, you get to see another side of Adrian, a loving and caring side. A part of Adrian that will protect Gray even if she doesn't love him. Adrian's past is also uncovered, and we learn what the accident is, and why he's in this body. 

Charlene does make an appearance in this book, and an amazing one at that. I was actually glad she made a come back, not that she's suddenly a good person or anything, but she was a great addition to the book. 
Lee and Raj also make a small appearance in the book, an interesting one at that.
I love seeing the two different sides of Graylee, I think it shows how one event, or decision can change a person so drastically. 

This book did not disappoint me, it was even better than the first two, with even better writing and an entrancing plot line that left me hanging on to every last word. The ending was amazing, and not bittersweet at all this time, I loved it. I love this cover too! The entire series had great covers.If not another book, a short story would be so great.

“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” ― Charles William Eliot
Book Nerd and Proud,
K.G.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Review: Edge of Truth by Natasha Hanova

Citizens who report to work on time, obey the Overlord’s laws, and stay off the Synbot’s radar, live long lives. Long, dull, monotonous lives.

It’s not a bad plan for someone with a hidden, emotion-based ability to trigger earthquakes. In a world pitted against her, sixteen-year-old Rena Moon strives for a life beyond working herself to death at the factory. Seeing an alternative, she risks selling relics from the forbidden lands at Market. It becomes the worst decision she ever made. Someone kidnaps her best friend in exchange for the one thing that would end her oppression.

Driven by loyalty, Rena and seventeen-year-old Nevan Jelani, soulful composer, green thumb extraordinaire, and the secret love of her life, plot to rescue her friend and reclaim her salvage. Still, the thought lingers whether Nevan is a true hero or another thief waiting for his chance at her loot. Events spin wildly, deepening Rena’s suspicions and pushing her limit of control. With more than her chance for freedom at stake, she must decide if she’s willing to kill to protect what’s precious to her. For once, the Overlord isn’t holding all the power, but can Rena live with being reduced to what she’s trying so hard to escape?

Title: Edge of Truth
Publication date: June 6th 2013 by Sapphire Star Publishing
ISBN-10: 1938404599 (ISBN-13: 978-1938404597)
Xpresso Book Tours

Budding love, new friendships, and undying loyalty are only a few reasons I loved this story.

I did have a few problems with the book. Well, not problems really, just questions that weren't answered. Two of them being: How did Overlord Andrick come to power? Why are some people Others? It doesn't seem to be genetic, but I would've liked to know a lot more about them. Although, because they're all in hiding, Rena might not know either. A second book definitely could answer all of these questions and then show us what happens after the ending. The great ending, which I will expand on later.

Rena has a huge secret, she's Other, and even her best friend doesn't know. That's until she accidentally caused an earthquake bigger than she expected and almost hurt her. Blaze promises to keep her secret, about her powers and the cave they find with treasures. Treasures that later cause Blaze to be kidnapped. Her kidnappers will try to have her show them the caves, but with her awful sense of direction, she doesn't know where they are. Blaze might have sold some of them treasures, but that's because of her amazing bargaining skills (and because Rena was grounded), only Rena knows where the caves are. Rena will go to all lengths to get her best friend back, but Nevan finds out and won't let her do it alone. I'm really glad Rena wasn't alone, Nevan was a great addition to the story (as well as his sister, Chai, but I rather you find out how amazing she is on your own), once they started talking I knew they'd be a great couple. Nevan seemed like he would be a very quiet character in the beginning, but he opens up as the book goes on.  

Rena and Nevan had never spoken before, but when she and Blaze show up to his house after curfew looking for a place to stay. His presence makes her heart race, and she can't thin or stop saying exactly whats on her mind. 
"Sweet Mother Earth. I'm sorry. I didn't know. I didn't mean to sit on your bed. I mean, I always wondered what it would be like but..." She caught the flash of crinkles on Nevan's forehead and the slackness of his jaw before she spun toward the door.
Their romance was sweet, and took it's time. They were friends, more than that even, but Rena would be confused when she was with Blaze and Nevan, should she sleep on her side facing Nevan, or Blaze? She wanted to keep her long term friendship while also nurturing the new friendship with Nevan, someone she's dreamed about being with, and maybe, she finally can be.

So I won't ruin the plot, I won't mention who kidnapped Blaze, but I can mention the Synbot's, and the Overlord. Synbot's are like the police of this world, only worse. Rena hasn't started earning wages yet, and she's already over 200,000 units in debt, for simple things like kicking a can or twig and talking back to the Synbot's, if only to explain that what she did wasn't wrong. The idea of Synbot's is nice, but the Overlords laws seemed very overwhelming.

I must mention I love the entire time they're in the Underground, but I won't say anything more about it. The ending made me so happy, but I really, truly think she left ample space for another story to be written. The book, as a standalone, would be fine. With another book to tie up all of the loose ends, plus tell the readers more about the Others and the world Rena lives in would be great. I would definitely buy the second book, and hope enough people agree to convince the publisher to publish another one of these books, and Natasha Hanova to write another.

"A blessed companion is a book! A book that, fitly chosen, is a life-long friend." -Douglas Jerrod
Book Nerd and Proud, 
K.G.