Monday, June 11, 2012

Baby Review: Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25

Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans
Pages: 326
Published: August 9th 2011
Publisher: Simon Pulse/Mercury Ink
Find: Goodreads I Amazon

My name is Michael Vey, and the story I’m about to tell you is strange. Very strange. It’s my story.
To everyone at Meridian High School, Michael Vey is an ordinary fourteen-year-old. In fact, the only thing that seems to set him apart is the fact that he has Tourette’s syndrome. But Michael is anything but ordinary. Michael has special powers. Electric powers.

Michael thinks he's unique until he discovers that a cheerleader named Taylor also has special powers. With the help of Michael’s friend, Ostin, the three of them set out to discover how Michael and Taylor ended up this way, but their investigation brings them to the attention of a powerful group who wants to control the electric children – and through them the world. Michael will have to rely on his wits, powers, and friends if he’s to survive.

Baby Review

Well, I really wanted to like this. The main idea sounded interesting - kids with electrical powers - but it was just nothing new. The teens didn't act or speak like real teens. They seemed more like middle grade students, actually. The plot was predictable, even the parts that were supposed to be surprising twists were just sort of cliche. I was bored almost all the way through, even near the end where there was a lot of action. This isn't a horrible book, it's just average. I've read and really liked some of Richard Paul Evans' books, but I just don't think this was his ideal genre. If you want to read something of Evans', read Grace. It's nothing like this, but I really enjoyed it, and it's more what Evan's writing style seems to be.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Baby Review: Jinx by Meg Cabot

 Jinx by Meg Cabot
Pages: 262
Pub Date: August 1st, 2007
Publisher: Harper Teen
Find: Goodreads I Amazon

 It's not easy being Jinx.

Jean Honeychurch hates her boring name (not Jean Marie, or Jeanette, just . . . Jean). What's worse? Her all-too-appropriate nickname, Jinx. Misfortune seems to follow her everywhere she goes even to New York City, where Jinx has moved to get away from the huge mess she caused in her small hometown. Her aunt and uncle welcome her to their Manhattan town house, but her beautiful cousin Tory isn't so thrilled. . . .

In fact, Tory is hiding a dangerous secret one that could put them all in danger. Soon Jinx realizes it isn't just bad luck she's been running from . . . and that the curse she has lived under since the day she was born may be the only thing that can save her life.

Baby Review

 I'm disappointed. I was really looking forward to reading this book. I love Meg Cabot (except these last couple books I've read from her), and this just looked good. And. I got it for 3 dollars. But this didn't even sound like Meg Cabot to me. Her books (Princess Diaries and All-American Girl at least) were always clever, funny and sweet but this just wasn't. For one thing, I didn't like the main character too much. She was okay, but sooo naive and blind. I mean, I know about naivety. I'm a homeschooled bookworm. I'm pretty sheltered. But Jean can't figure out things that I've known from about the third chapter of the book. SO blind in a certain aspect in particular. Also, I don't think anyone's that nice. My favorite thing about the whole book was probably Zach. I like seals too, Zach.
 I wouldn't really recommend this to anyone, unless you REALLY love Meg Cabot and supernatural sort of stuff. I mean, it wasn't horrible, and it got semi-entertaining toward the end, but just a so-so read. You'd be much better off reading the Princess Diaries series, IMHO.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Review: Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown

Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown
Pages: 303
Release Date: June 12, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Find: Goodreads | Amazon

Cover Comments: I love it. It fits with the book, and it's beautiful, but even a little bit spooky since the red near the top could remind you of blood.

 Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.


Lies Beneath has a lot of things going for it. There's a fresh and interesting take on mermaids, it's written from a guy's point of view, and it has a gorgeous cover. So I'm really disappointed that I didn't like it as much as I had hoped.
  The story starts out with Calder, our main character, and his three sisters plotting to murder the man who caused their mother's death. If Calder succeeds in helping with Jason Hancock's murder, he'll no longer be tethered to his sisters. He'll be set free. To do this, he'll have to get close to Hancock's daughter, Lily. But, of course, he gets a lot more attached to her than intended.
 I really do like the new angle on mermaids as vicious and electrical. It's just a new way of looking at them that I'd never really considered before. But I wish that there had been more about that aspect in the book. There's a tiny little mermaid history lesson near the end, but I wanted to know more about this new mermaid mythology.
  One of the big reasons I wasn't crazy about this novel was the pace. It felt pretty monotonous until the climax. The writing is fine and everything, and I was never really bored per se, but I would have loved a little variation from just the wooing Lily storyline.
    Calder and Lily are our main characters, and the love story in Lies Beneath, but I never connected to them much at all. Calder, of course, is focused on killing and revenge for a lot of the book, and all I really know about Lily is that she likes poetry, dressing in, erm, "unique" clothing, and she has a thing for guys with tails. Can't say I wouldn't be with her on that last point though. Characters are an important part of the story for me, and since I didn't care much about Calder and Lily, I didn't care much when they were in danger. There is a pretty adorable scene between the two of them near the end of the book though, where I really did enjoy them. I just wish all the scenes had made me like them as much as that hammock scene did.
  The ending was pretty much the  best part of the book for me. The pace picked up, there were a couple cool, although slightly icky twists, and I was genuinely surprised by the turn the story took. It took me a minute to puzzle it all out in my head, but I like that. I got sort of a stand-alone feel from the end of the book, but it turns out this is a series. I probably will pick up the next one, to hopefully learn more about the unique mermaid mythology, and to find out where the characters go from here.
  I would recommend Lies Beneath for its unique twist on the fairy tale mermaid type and the fairly interesting storyline. I really do think the majority of people will enjoy this more than I did, so just try it out, and hopefully it'll work for you.


Sunday, April 22, 2012

Review: Unbreak My Heart by Melissa Walker

Unbreak My Heart by Melissa Walker
Pages: 240
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Release Date: May 22nd 2012
Find the Author: Melissa Walker
Find at: Goodreads l Amazon

 Cover Comments: Really cute, nothing absolutely fantastic, but fitting to the story.
A Little Like: Past Perfect by Leila Sales & Stay by Deb Caletti

 Sophomore year broke Clementine Williams’ heart. She fell for her best friend’s boyfriend and long story short: he’s excused, but Clem is vilified and she heads into summer with zero social life. Enter her parents’ plan to spend the summer on their sailboat. Normally the idea of being stuck on a tiny boat with her parents and little sister would make Clem break out in hives, but floating away sounds pretty good right now. Then she meets James at one of their first stops along the river. He and his dad are sailing for the summer and he’s just the distraction Clem needs. Can he break down Clem’s walls and heal her broken heart? Told in alternating chapters that chronicle the year that broke Clem’s heart and the summer that healed it, Unbreak My Heart is a wonderful dual love story that fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Susane Colasanti will flock to.


I received this book through Netgalley, and I was so excited to get started, due to the gorgeous cover, and living on a boat! I love it when characters live in unique places.

 Unbreak My Heart takes place mostly on a lake and on boats. This really intrigued me because I don't think I've ever even been on a boat, much less spent months on a small one with my whole family. I really liked the descriptions of the lake and sailing and everything to do with their trip. The cheesy boat names, boat food, eccentric boaters, it was all perfect.

Clementine is a great main character, although she does sulk a LOT in the first half of the book. This is understandable though, considering the circumstances. Clem fell for her best friend Amanda's boyfriend, and it did not end well. We don't know the whole story in the beginning, but scenes from the past come up every other chapter or so. I loved getting to know what really happened in little snippets like that, and my feelings toward various characters went kind of up and down as events happened.

James is Clementine's love interest in Unbreak My Heart, and, oh, he is a good one. I absolutely love funny, care-free guys who aren't afraid to be goofy or embarrass themselves. Sure, we've probably all fallen for the dangerous, serious mystery guy *coughEdwardCullencough*, but James is the kind of guy I'd fall for in real life. Not to mention, he's also the kind of guy that exists outside of books too.

Clem's sister, Olive, and her mom and dad are also absolutely amazing. They're just SO so sweet, and so understanding of what Clementine's going through, even though she hasn't told them the whole story. Amanda, Clem's ex-best friend, is such a great character also. And I'm not just saying that because she has my name and is described as beautiful and fantastic. Nope, not at all. I just love how random and fun she is. It reminds me a little bit of me and my best friend.

I would have loved to see more resolution between Clementine and her friends at home, but I still liked the ending.

Unbreak My Heart is a thoughtful, cute and funny quick summer read. I'd definitely recommend this book; I finished it in two sittings, and it has one of the best, most real love interests I've fallen for in a while, other very lovable characters, and an interesting setting. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Review: Grave Mercy by R. L. LaFevers

Grave Mercy by R. L. LaFevers (His Fair Asassin, #1)
Pages: 549
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: April 3rd, 2012
Author Website: R. L. LaFevers  
Cover Comments: Love it! The fancy dress actually relates to the story, too. Plus I'm loving the crossbow. Goes very well with the dress. ;)
First Impressions: Wait... NUN assassins?!
Like: Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae's most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Holy nun assassins. I loved this book. I read most of in 2 days (549 pages, baby!) and loved practically every page of it. This is definitely one that you're going to be hearing about for a long time.

Ismae escapes from an abusive father and an arranged marriage and into the arms of the convent of Saint Mortain, Lord of Death. They take care of her and train her in the art of assassination, or vengeance as the convent sees it. But when Ismae is sent out on her second mission, everything she knows about the convent, Death's wishes, and love comes into question.

Ismae is definitely a guarded, prickly main character, but for good reason. The men she's known in her life have been nothing but cruel, so she jumps at the chance to learn the deadly arts of the convent. I really loved Ismae, she's a very strong, smart heroine. The YA genre could use a lot more of those. I loved Duval, how he respected Ismae and treated her as an ally rather than just a woman, which seems like it'd be pretty rare in the time the book is set in. Sybella was another character that I'm very interested in, although we don't see a lot of her in this book. It looks like the sequel is going to be focused on her though, so hopefully we'll get to see the reasons behind why she appears so cray-cray.

 Saint Mortain was a character that I didn't think I'd care much for, (Lord of Death, anyone?) but I really like what LaFevers did with his character. I don't want to spoil anything, but he's not the coldhearted murderer that Death god characters are often portrayed as, and I loved that.

There is a LOT of court intrigue and politic type talk in Grave Mercy. Now, I'm not really a politics kind of girl. I can't even remember who ran against Obama last election. But I was actually pretty interested in the politics in Grave Mercy. I can kind of see how you might get lost in the who's who of everything, and what side everyone's on, but I wasn't affected by that because I read the book in a short amount of time, so every detail was fresh in my mind. The Duchess Anne and her little sister just melted my heart. To see such young people in the middle of war and never being able to fully trust almost anyone was heartbreaking. I will say I predicted who the traitor was, but not the reason why, so it was still a great little twist.

The romance! I loved it. Ismae is so shielded from men at the beginning, that she flinches at the slightest touch and has trouble with the "womanly arts" (hahaha) portion of her assassin job. But Duval comes along and very very (very) slowly, changes that.

This book actually reminded me a bit of Poison Study by Maria Snyder. The poisons, an abused, slightly prickly girl getting a job that involves a lot of politics, having to live in close quarters with a man she hates in the beginning. Also, both Poison Study and Grave Mercy are classified as YA (I believe) but read more like adult novels. Nothing inappropriate, but like all the inappropriate bits were toned down or taken out. I didn't mind these similarities at all though, and they're still very different books. If you loved Grave Mercy, you should definitely check out Poison Study as well.

Grave Mercy is a fantastic book that I'd recommend to anyone who can tolerate historical fiction. No, you don't even have to really like it, I think even if you don't, you can still enjoy this book. With the great characters, intriguing court politics, unique & interesting premise, twists and turns, and perfect romance, there's something for everyone.



Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Awesome Giveaway @ I'm Loving Books!

Lots of ARCs Giveaway from!

I'm Loving Books has a fantastic ARC Madness giveaway going on right now! There will be six winners who will have their choice from 5 lovely ARC's. Go enter. :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Review: The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

  Don’t Sweat.  Don’t Laugh.  Don’t draw attention to yourself.  And most of all, whatever you do, do not fall in love with one of them.
Gene is different from everyone else around him.  He can’t run with lightning speed, sunlight doesn’t hurt him and he doesn’t have an unquenchable lust for blood.  Gene is a human, and he knows the rules.  Keep the truth a secret.  It’s the only way to stay alive in a world of night—a world where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood.
When he’s chosen for a once in a lifetime opportunity to hunt the last remaining humans, Gene’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble around him.  He’s thrust into the path of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible—and into a ruthless pack of hunters whose suspicions about his true nature are growing. Now that Gene has finally found something worth fighting for, his need to survive is stronger than ever—but is it worth the cost of his humanity?


   Weird. That's the first word that comes to mind when I'm thinking about The Hunt. The vampires in this book are a whole other kind of monster. I was so so excited to start this book, but unfortunately, it turned out more strange and gross than anything else.

Gene is a human living among monsters. He's stayed alive this long pretending to be one of them, but when Gene is picked to be a participant in The Hunt, things start getting messy. Literally. I've never read about so much drool in one book. The Hunt is an event where a lucky few get to hunt down the few remaining humans, or Hepers. This is a problem for Gene, since The Hunt threatens to reveal his true identity, plus the hepers he's supposed to be hunting are the only other humans he's met since his father.

Okay, these vampires? Not your mom's vamps. There are no sparkles or luurve here. The equivalent of kissing seems to be putting your elbow in your honey's armpit. Yes. That's a thing in this book. The vampires also sleep on the ceiling, drool when excited, and SCRATCH THEIR WRISTS when something is funny. Somehow that was the grossest part to me. I appreciate what Fukuda is trying to do here, with the new, ahem, unique characteristics for vampires, but there doesn't seem to be a reason behind any of these new behaviors, other than just being different.

Another problem I had with The Hunt was the main characters. I'm sorry Gene, but you're way to dim to have survived this long. Although people are constantly talking about how smart and handsome he is, I just didn't see it. Ashley June is alright, and I actually liked Sissy quite a bit. However, the romance in the book fell flat for me. Maybe it was all the elbow-armpit action, but I never felt a spark between Gene and... anyone. Just a touch of insta-love.

The plot moved very slowly. Most of the book is just getting ready for The Hunt, and not that much goes on, really, except for a little romantic storyline. The first part of the book kind of reminds me of The Hunger Games, except without the part where I want to keep reading. Then the climax came up, and a bunch of stuff happened, and then there's a cliffhanger ending and it's over.

I didn't enjoy The Hunt nearly as much as I thought I would, but the ending gave me hope for the sequel. I think I like the way the story is going, and the cliffhanger actually surprised me. I'd recommend The Hunt for someone not easily grossed out and looking for a unique take on vampires.