Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Top Ten Characters I would switch places with for 24 hours

Heist Society: I feel bad, but I’ve always wanted to pull off a heist like they do in the movies (and this book). Of course I wouldn’t do it in real life, unless I was Katarina Bishop for 24 hours. Plus, when she steals it’s for something important.

Fragile Eternity: I can be a little dark sometimes, so I’d really want to be Niall for 24 hours to see what it’d be like to be ruler of the dark kingdom. I guess I’d be the emo queen.

Hunger: I’d want to be Lisabeth, but after she’s gotten the hang of things as Famine. Because I’d never want to deal with the demons she had to deal with in this book. But I’d love to be famine one night and ride across the earth on my black steed.

Spray: This book was so fun! I’d just like to be any character involved in the game. But I’m very competitive, so I’d compete to win.

Vampire Academy: I just want to be Rose for a day so I can kick some butt.

Daughter of Smoke & Bone: The writing is so beautiful that I’d want to be Karou for a day just to experience the world that the author described.

Divergent: I want to be a Dauntless because I want to do something daring. I think I’d like to be Christina for a day.

Au Revoir Crazy European Chick: I love those books that take place in one day but a million things happen despite the lack of time. I’d want to be Gobi after she stops pretending to be the “mousy teenager” and becomes the fierce assassin.

The Scorpio Races: I’d definitely want to be Sean Kendrick since he knows how to handle the horses. I want to be close enough that I can see the horses. And even ride Corr, who is magnificent.

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight: I guess I’d only have 24 hours to be Hadley Sullivan.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Storyteller trailer

I haven't even finished this book and I already feel like it'll be one of my favorite books this year.

Book teaser

He was laughing. He lifted the little girl up again and placed her on his bike carrier, said something else, and got on the bike himself. Anna didn’t understand any of his words, but his voice sounded different than it did at school. Somebody had lit a flame between the sentences, warmed them with a bright, crackling fire. Maybe, she thought, he was speaking a different language. Polish. If Polish burned so brightly, she would learn it. Don’t fool yourself, Anna, Gitta said from inside her head. You’d probably learn Serbo-Croatian if it helped you talk to Tannatek.

My Top Ten Most Vivid Book Worlds/Settings

Some of these worlds were so vicious (Hunger Games, Allison Hewitt is Trapped, Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Icefall, The Girl of Fire and Thorns) that I'd never want to be caught dead in them (*nudges your shoulder* get it? :) ). Others include tragedies in their stories, but they're worlds are just too awesome not to want to visit (e.i. all the other books on this list). Either way, all ten books can thank their authors for being awesome enough to create such impeccable worlds.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Description: Humanity is all but extinguished after a war with partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the world’s population. Reduced to only tens of thousands by a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island. The threat of the partials is still imminent, but, worse, no baby has been born immune to the disease in over a decade. Humanity’s time is running out.

When sixteen-year-old Kira learns of her best friend’s pregnancy, she’s determined to find a solution. Then one rash decision forces Kira to flee her community with the unlikeliest of allies. As she tries desperately to save what is left of her race, she discovers that the survival of both humans and partials rests in her attempts to answer questions of the war’s origin that she never knew to ask.

Combining the fast-paced action of The Hunger Games with the provocative themes of Battlestar Galactica, Partials is a pulse-pounding journey into a world where the very concept of what it means to be human is in question—one where our sense of humanity is both our greatest liability, and our only hope for survival.

My thoughts: This is what I look for when I read the first book in a series! Forget what the book was about, or whether I liked the characters. My favorite thing about Partials was that something actually happened! This wasn’t one of those books where an author drags you along the whole first book, only for nothing to happen except that cliffhanger that forces you to read the next book. So much happens in this book. From some things I thought would happen to other things that didn’t correlate with my predictions at all.  

Besides being happy that this book wasn’t a 400+ page filler, I was impressed by the political related topics that surfaced. These topics included freedom of speech, women’s rights, and the freedom to choose. What made these aspects even more interesting is the fact that humans are dying out. And with survival being the main focus in the book, it forces the characters of the story and the readers of the book to question things. For one, how important is the freedom of choice when we’re all about to die? And do the need for other freedoms change when extinction is right around the corner?

Something that also made the book stand out was the main character.  Kira was smart, strong, and could definitely take care of herself. And something that was refreshing about her as a female character was that she dealt with the problems at hand, and not the romance related aspects in her life. There were bigger fish to fry in this case, and thank God she didn’t worry about the shrimp.

With that said (I feel like I’m about to contradict myself), I am actually excited about the romance that seems unavoidable in the next book. And although a lot happened in the first book, a lot is (thankfully) going to happen in the next one too. I can’t wait!

What are you reading on Mondays?

Book(s) read last week:
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Partials by Dan Wells
Touch of Frost by Jennifer Estep

Currently reading:
The Storyteller by Antonia Michaelis

Upcoming read:
The Drowned Cities by Paolo Bacigalupi

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Ship Breaker review

Description: In America's Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota--and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it's worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life...

In this powerful novel, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi delivers a thrilling, fast-paced adventure set in a vivid and raw, uncertain future.

My thoughts: After finally reading this book, I can see why it won the Printz award! Every aspect of this book was well fleshed out by the author, especially the worldbuilding. This is weird because I almost felt as if I was physically dropped in the middle of this world with a limited amount of time to know more about it. Yet, I close my eyes and I can still see the waves that Nailer saw. I can feel the poverty and the hope, or the lack thereof, all around me.

This feeling of actually being there also comes from the plot pacing.  There were times that I’d be reading (normally at a particular moment where Nailer was nervous or scared) and my body would literally jerk away from the book as if I had to pull myself from the story because someone touched me or called my name (then they’d look at me strange). That’s how into this book I was! Everything was intense and fast.

And it’s amazing how every point the writer made led to many other points down the line. Everything in this book was connected to something else. If something interesting happened in the beginning of the book, it was always some type of foreshadowing for the future. And its crazy how Nailer’s one decision at the beginning of the book led to the future adventures he would be forced into. If he had chosen differently, this would have been a very dull book. Or there would have been no book at all.

Side note(s): I love having romance in the books I read. But I always enjoy finding an author who can make a book exciting without the need of a love triangle, or the star crossed lovers “ploy.” This book was a reminder that I don’t need two main characters to be madly in love with each other for a story to work.

Another thing that stuck with me throughout that book and even after I’d finished it was the idea of family.  Blood is just one thing that COULD bind you to someone, but not necessarily. Basically, the definition of family shouldn’t just be limited to the group you were born into.

Monday, July 9, 2012

A Midsummer’s Nightmare review

Description: Whitley Johnson's dream summer with her divorcé dad has turned into a nightmare. She's just met his new fiancée and her kids. The fiancée's son? Whitley's one-night stand from graduation night. Just freakin' great.

Worse, she totally doesn't fit in with her dad's perfect new country-club family. So Whitley acts out. She parties. Hard. So hard she doesn't even notice the good things right under her nose: a sweet little future stepsister who is just about the only person she's ever liked, a best friend (even though Whitley swears she doesn't "do" friends), and a smoking-hot guy who isn't her stepbrother...at least, not yet. It will take all three of them to help Whitley get through her anger and begin to put the pieces of her family together.

Filled with authenticity and raw emotion, Whitley is Kody Keplinger's most compelling character to date: a cynical Holden Caulfield-esque girl you will wholly care about.

My thoughts: I’m not sure how, but despite not much happening or the main character’s constant complaining, I still liked this book. Any other time I would have had to force myself to finish this type of book, but it was an easy read. And despite all the questions I had about Whitley and her character development (or lack of, at times) it never deterred me from wanting to know what she would do next and how everyone would react.

As far as the characters go, I felt like I never got to know enough about them. It’s like seeing somebody from afar and thinking they look nice. From afar, the little I got to learn about them (Bailey, Nathan and Harrison) made me like them.

 I guess what could have turned me from liking this book to loving it was being able to know more about everything! I wanted more information about the past, the characters, and just everybody’s interactions with each other during this summer in general. But overall I still really liked the book and am excited to see what else Kody Keplinger has up her sleeve.

Side note: I was also a little (too) excited about characters from one of her past books popping up. I love seeing how characters are doing after I finish reading “their” book.

What are you reading on Mondays?

Book(s) read last week:
A Midsummer's Nightmare by Kody Keplinger 

Currently reading:
The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi

Upcoming read:
The Drowned Cities by Paolo Bacigalupi 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Darkest Mercy

Description: The Summer King is missing; the Dark Court is bleeding; and a stranger walks the streets of Huntsdale, his presence signifying the deaths of powerful fey. 

Aislinn tends to the Summer Court, searching for her absent king and yearning for Seth. Torn between his new queen and his old love, Keenan works from afar to strengthen his court against the coming war. Donia longs for fiery passion even as she coolly readies the Winter Court for battle. And Seth, sworn brother of the Dark King and heir to the High Queen, is about to make a mistake that could cost his life.

Love, despair, and betrayal ignite the Faery Courts, and in the final conflict, some will win . . . and some will lose "everything."

The thrilling conclusion to Melissa Marr's "New York Times" bestselling Wicked Lovely series will leave readers breathless.

My thoughts: I have been avoiding this book like the plague. This is my favorite series, so of course I didn’t want it to end. But I thought, it’ll be 2013 and I still wouldn’t have read this book. So, I begrudgingly started this book. And like I’d predicted, I couldn’t stop once I started. I wanted to savor reading this last book, but it was just so good that I'd finished it before I knew it I was over. My mother now thinks there is something wrong with me because I would be happy and then sad two seconds later for those two days it took to read it.

As far as what actually happened in the book, all of the loose ends were tied. The war came to a head, and some surprises were sprinkled all throughout the book. Besides wanting to know more about Ash and who she choose in the end (their future) and wanting to know how Devlin and Ani were doing (because I’m selfish like that), I was satisfied with just about everything that happened. I just wish this series could last forever. But there’s nothing wrong with going back over the series.

How I felt during this book:
Which means I was two parts sad, two parts happy/excited throughout the whole book.
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