Review Round-Up

Hi guys! I’ve been a huge slacker on the review front as of late. BUT. I’ve read some amazing books over the past couple of months, so here’s a little round-up of the awesomeness.

ONE, by Leigh Ann Kopans

When having two powers makes you a Super and having none makes you a Normal, having only one makes you a sad half-superpowered freak.

It makes you a One.

I had the honor of receiving an ARC of ONE, and can I just say wow. I adored this book. Merrin, the main character, is smart as a whip and isn’t afraid to show it. Then we have Elias, the sweetest boy I’ve seen in YA in a LONG time. ONE is definitely worth the read, and will be released June 11th. You can add it to your to-read list on Goodreads, and pre-ordering is available through Leigh Ann’s site.

UNRAVEL ME, by Tahereh Mafi

Um…I can’t really say much about UNRAVEL ME without turning into flaily Kermit.

Flail

Seriously. It’s the second book in Mafi’s SHATTER ME series (3rd, if you count the novella, which you totally should because WARNER). This is one of the few books I can read over, and over, and over again because WARNER.

Did I mention Warner? Chapter 62 is all I’m sayin’. Adam and Kenji are pretty amazing, too. But Warner though.

SUMMER RUINS, by Trisha Leigh

This was the fourth and final book in Trisha’s The Last Year series. I blogged about the first three books here and here, and SUMMER RUINS was a perfect tie-up for an amazing series. You want this in your life. Get on it.

THE S-WORD, by Chelsea Pitcher

First it was SLUT scribbled all over Lizzie Hart’s locker.

But one week after Lizzie kills herself, SUICIDE SLUT replaces it—in Lizzie’s looping scrawl.

Another ARC I had the pleasure of reading, thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. An amazing debut from Pitcher, THE S-WORD is haunting and full of twists and turns. So realistic and, at times, painful. It sheds light on just how far the bully mentality can go, and the tragic effect it can have on someone’s life. There’s always more than meets the eye, and THE S-WORD reminds us of that. This will be released on May 7th, and you can add it to your Goodreads list here.

 

My Review of Betrayals in Spring

Can I get away with just saying, “Buy this book because you’ll never ever ever ever regret it”? No? Well, all right, then.

Althea and Lucas have finally been reunited…but something is “off” with Lucas. Althea attributes that to his being alone for so long, forced to survive on his own throughout their season apart, whereas she’s had a companion. His bitterness toward the relationship between Althea and Pax is palpable, but they really don’t have time for jealousy. Because now, they must find the fourth dissident, Deshi, and press forward in their battle against The Others. And in order to do that, they must work as a team, whether the boys get along or not.

You may be thinking, “Oh for Pete’s sake. Another YA love triangle.” Ah, don’t make that jump just yet, readers. While there is tension between the three, this isn’t a love story. I repeat – NOT a love story. This is a story of survival. Of hope. Of doing the right thing when it may not serve your own desires. Though, I do feel obligated to throw in a favorite line from Lucas:

“Where you are, I am.”

I’ll just leave that there.

To strengthen their numbers, the three decide to enlist the help of a select few humans. The question is, will that effort actually work?

BETRAYALS IN SPRING is the third installment of The Last Year series, and I’m already dying for the next book. A very enthusiastic 5/5 stars from this girl!

Some Amazon linkage for motivational purposes.

tumblr_md9k7v97N41qacdjto1_500

My Reviews of Whispers in Autumn and Winter Omens…

…in which I try to refrain from squealing like a little girl.

Yeah. Totally not gonna happen.

Elf

Fair warning – there MAY be series spoilers ahead. I’ll do my best to keep them to a bare minimum.

Let’s back the story up to, oh, a couple months ago, I think. A darling Twitter pal was raving about a book one evening, and by now, you guys know I can’t pass up an amazing book. I mean, it’s just not possible. So, I went to check out this WHISPERS IN AUTUMN on Goodreads…

And it was about aliens. Huh.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve never been an alien girl. It just wasn’t my “thing.” Of course, I never thought wizards would be my thing, and well… *glances at Harry Potter shrine* We know how that turned out.

So, there are aliens, but we’re not talking little green fellas from Mars. We’re talking about The Others – a race of beings who’ve enslaved the people of Earth not through force, but through mind-control that turned them into unfeeling, unquestioning robots. But we have Althea, who’s always known she didn’t quite “mesh” with the others, though she’s not sure why. There is one thing that makes it clear she’s not like her fellow humans – as the seasons change, she travels from city-to-city in a pattern that is unbeknownst to her, making her what’s known as a “dissident.” Then, she meets Lucas.

Lucas.

Oh, Lucas.

LetMeLoveYou2

Lucas is the same as Althea. The two of them soon discover that they are, in fact, immune to The Others’ mind control. And that’s why they’re seen as a threat.

Dun dun dun…

And that brings me to WINTER OMENS. At the end of WiA, Lucas was forced to travel to avoid being captured by The Others. Knowing she’s in danger as well, Althea goes on the run. She’s forced to survive as best she can in the frigid winter. She takes up shelter in a small shack, where we meet one of my favorite characters – Wolf. The dog. He’s pretty amazing. Just sayin’.

Oh yeah, we also meet Pax. He’s pretty amazing, too. He happens upon the shack, and soon, Althea discovers that she’s found another dissident. It takes her a while to fully trust him, of course, but once she realizes she has a new teammate, the struggle to survive becomes a little less daunting. That is, until she find outs The Others have yet another aspect of mind control – they can sneak into her mind while she sleeps. So, now sleep is dangerous. Fabulous, huh?

Lucas was absent for most of this book, which made me sad. That said, Pax grew on me quickly. While Lucas is kind and gentle with Althea, Pax challenges her, forcing her to grow more confident and independent by the day.

Now…drum roll, please…

THE OFFICIAL RELEASE FOR BETRAYALS IN SPRING IS TOMORROW! Stop by and join me as I share my thoughts on this fabulous addition to The Last Year series.

Wordy Wednesday – My Review of Ever

Review is based on an ARC received from the publisher and NetGalley.

There’s no other way to put it – Ever is just all sorts of awesome.

From the get-go, the voice of Ever was spot-on. I felt an immediate connection with her. I loved that none of the characters were flat – each one had his/her own flaws, things that made them tick, etc. Very well done.

Wait…it can’t be over!

^^ This was me once I finished the book, which is a good thing. It means I want more!

I really don’t want to go into too much detail, because there are twists and turns throughout the book. All I can say is – you don’t want to pass this one up!

Ever is available for pre-order on Amazon, and will be released on October 1st.

ALSO! The author will be stopping by for an interview on October 8th. Don’t miss it!

Wordy Wednesday – Review of Pretty Amy

Pretty Amy is gritty. It’s raw. It’s in your face. It’s real.

I’ve seen a handful of complaints about this book since its release, most of which refer to the drug use or language. If you ask me, though, this is what the young adult genre needs more of. There need to be more books, and more authors, that are willing to go there . The place that targets real teenagers, their thought processes, their surroundings.

Amy is confused. She doesn’t really know who she is; she finds her identity through two friends that are essentially her crutches. Her inner monologue is hard to read, because it is very self-deprecating, but it’s so true to life for so many people Amy’s age. I wish I’d had a book like this when I was seventeen.

Find your own identity. Don’t transform yourself into another person’s image just to fit in. It’s okay to not fit the mold. It took Amy a long time, and a crap-ton of consequences, to figure this out, but I’m happy she did before it was too late. I saw a lot of myself in Amy, which is probably why I was rooting for her so strongly.

My Review of The Lost Prince

Image

First of all, can we gush over this cover? Just look at it. It’s gorgeous!

The Lost Prince brings us the story of Ethan Chase. He’s a bad-boy, and in the beginning, he may be downright unlikable to some. Angst may as well be his middle name, but once you read more about him, you can’t really blame the guy. Thanks to the Fey, he’s had a rough go at life.

We’re soon introduced to the “love interest,” Mackenzie St. James, or Kenzie. I loved her, especially since she refused to take Ethan’s crap. She’s tough, spunky, and fiercely loyal. 

When placed in a life-or-death situation, Ethan is forced to transport himself to the Nevernever. In a swift turn of events, he also really has no choice but to take Kenzie, who does a good job at being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

If you’re a fan of the Iron Fey series (if you haven’t read it, I highly suggest FIXING THAT IMMEDIATELY), then you’ll be happy to see some of the old gang in this story.

Julie Kagawa does a fantastic job at pulling us into a world of magic and beauty. Of course, with that beauty also comes evil. 

Huge thanks go out to NetGalley and Harlequin for the ARC.

Buccaneer Blogfest – A Rec for Ya

Good morning you guys! I’ve had my coffee and Little Einsteins is currently playing in the background. Needless to say, I’m pretty peppy this morning.

Today’s topic: a book recommendation. I love this, because although I usually stick to book recs on Wordy Wednesday, I can’t possibly review all of them. So, today I get an extra chance. Woot!

Err, disregard the creepy thumb.

“A million ways to die. One way to live.”

UNDER THE NEVER SKY introduces us to Aria, a girl that lives in an enclosed city known as Reverie. After being blamed for an incident that nearly destroys their perfect city, Aria is exiled into the outside world, where she’s meant to die. Instead of meeting her death, she runs into an “outsider,” or as Aria sees him, a savage. Naturally, Perry has a story of his own. He’s on a mission to save his young nephew, who has been kidnapped by the very people that cast Aria from the only existence she’s ever known. Aria quickly realizes that her only chance of survival is sticking with a guy that both frightens and disgusts her from the get-go. Of course, there’s always more than what meets the eye.

As strange as it may sound, one thing that marks a good book for me is the quotes I’m able to take away from it. Some books simply tell us a story; other books draw us into a world that keeps us captivated from page-to-page. One of my favorite quotes is found in Perry’s POV:

She looked up. “A world of nevers under a never sky.”
She fit in well then, he thought. A girl who never shut up.

Harsh? Eh…wait until you read the story. You’ll see what he means. LOL That said, I do love Aria. And Perry makes my heart happy. It’s definitely worth the read!