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Prodigy (Legend Series #2)

Prodigy - Marie Lu awwww, loved it! :) definitely an exciting read.review to come

Quintana of Charyn

Quintana of Charyn - Melina Marchetta "Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book." - John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)That quote kind of describes my feelings for Quintana of Charyn. For any Melina Marchetta book, really.I would talk about the plot, the vast, sweeping, intricate plot that was weaved through the trilogy and came to a completely satisfying conclusion, but this book is not about the plot. It really isn't, it's about the characters. These characters I hold so dear to my heart. And a part of me hates the way Marchetta has put them through so much hell and heartbreak, so much pain. Lucian. The Tom Mackee that became more and more apparent, who's surrounded by so many strong women, who keeps trying to do the right thing yet keeps screwing up. Who's too proud and too stubborn but loves so fiercely without abandon.Phaedra of Alonso. You wonderful, brave, capable, compassionate woman. I don't know how I didn't notice you before, but that Lucian sure is an idiot sometimes, isn't he? Isaboe and Finn. I don't know how to describe it. There's so much I could say about them, about their relationship. I love them both so dearly; I love Isaboe's strength and her ties to her kingdom, her adoration for her husband and child, and I love the flaws of Finnikin. It's hard to comprehend Marchetta's ability to weave so much soul into these two characters.Gargarin. Arjuro. Lirah. My heart aches so hard for these three, whose lives have been shattered and dragged through pain and suffering and imprisonment. To have lost so much and been hurt so deeply by circumstances and forces outside their control, it's unfathomable and so heartbreaking. And they are complicated and messy and stubborn and loving. I hope that their side of wonder will forever shine brighter than the side of disaster. "Gargarin shoved him and although Froi wanted to beat De Lancey black and blue, he knew the Provincaro had spoken the words out of hurt. Froi didn't know how he came to that realisation. All he knew was that pain placed the wrong words into their mouths. All of them. Forces outside their control had destroyed the lives and friendships and loves of De Lancey and Lirah and Arjuro and Gargarin long ago, and now even the future would keep them apart."And Quintana of Charyn. Quintana the Brave. "Greedy with hope." When she has sacrificed herself and her body to protect the lastborn girls, a reader grows to understand her savage need for survival. Her small, crooked teeth. Her immense strength and courage and bravery to live through all the tragedy and horror of her life and of the brutal, brutal men she has known. "There it was. Suddenly the strangeness of Quintana of Charyn's face made sense. Because it was a face meant for laughing, but it had never been given a chance."And finally, Froi. Froi of the Exiles, Froi of Lumatere, Froi of Charyn. The boy from the streets of Sarnak without a history, who did awful things and had awful things done to him. The boy who grew up into a man who belonged to many, who belonged to Lord Augie and Perri and Trevanion and Isaboe. Who was a brother to Finn and Lucian. Who was a son to Gargarin and Lirah. Who had a list of thirty people he would trust with his life. Who is bound to the women in his life, and loves fiercely and leans on the side of wonder. Froi is simply a magnificent character..Ms Marchetta, I don't know how you do it. Thank you for writing a book filled with brave, strong women. For a book about men who would be nowhere without these women. There was a lot of fist-pumping. Thank you for a book that has characters that are flawed so deeply yet love so strongly. And yes, you may have pulled some of these beloved characters into crevices so dark and painful but thank you for pulling them out. Thank you for creating characters that are going to be etched into my heart forever.

The Raven Boys

The Raven Boys - Okay. Here it goes.I adored The Scorpio Races much more than I expected to, so The Raven Boys was riding on some high expectations. In addition, many of my favourite bloggers absolutely RAVED about the book... so... I really liked it. I loved some parts of it, truly, truly loved some other, and yet I thought a few other parts were really just satisfactory. But let's start with the pros: the boys. Stiefvater has this extraordinary ability to characterize the people in her novel, and that stand out against so brightly and I loved it. I love the uniqueness of each boy; the old yet young-ness of Gansey, the wild card Ronan, the scholarship kid trying to make it Adam, and the questionable Noah. I loved the closeness of their friendship, but I also loved the dynamics and the unexpectedness that comes along with it. The writing just described each of the beautifully, and I can't get enough of it. And that also meant that the boys often overshadowed Blue, our "main-ish" protagonist. Blue's smart, capable, and sensible, yet I not as compelling. I liked her, but I didn't love her. I liked what she stood for and the mystery around her 'first kiss' and her connection with Gansey were all interesting, but it wasn't enough for me, to be honest, I just didn't connect to her character the way I think I was supposed to.And that brings me to the last, and largest point in this review: the plot. Please don't kill me... but the thing is, I didn't find it interesting. (enough). Seriously, that's my problem with it. Maybe it's my non-love for paranormal or something, but I couldn't really get myself to care about this ley line, the Glendower, the magic... I'm not sure if it was as if it wasn't "epic" enough to warrant 4 books or what, but it just didn't capture me. Which means this point is a very big "it's not you, it's me" type of thing, and I wish it wasn't so, but yeah. I didn't find the plot or the mystery compelling, which meant that I lacked the urgency when reading and it was easy for me to get distracted. In addition, the ending was kind of disappointing, it wasn't grand enough and felt way too much as a set-up for a series, which is understandable but..yeah. HOWEVER, MAGGIE STIEFVATER, YOUR WRITING IS GORGEOUS. I can't say that enough, I loved the weight behind her words, the softness, the heaviness, the intricacy and the different-ness that she embraced and used so wisely. There are phrases to stop your heart and there are sentences that describe the boys so flipping well that my jaw drops. I love her writing in The Raven Boys.So yes, ultimately, I'll be recommending this book often because I enjoyed it quite a bit and I thought it was a great book with fabulous characters. The writing is superb, and while the mystery didn't really appeal to me, there is enough going for this novel that I'll definitely be checking out the sequel.

Gone Girl: A Novel

Gone Girl - Gillian Flynn hahahahha I just want to say.... what the fuck did I just read? Not bad, it's.... different from what I usually read.And I do feel like if I read a few more adult books, I can guess why so many adults read YA. I prefer my idealistic, strong-headed heroine to these twisty, dark, complex...adults. #nevergrowup Everything about this book is strangely enthralling yet I can't say "I liked it" completely, I can just say the book definitely grabbed my attention and the characters are psychotically deranged sometimes. The first half was kind of meh but it really picked up during the second half as things got like, woah.

This Is Not My Hat

This Is Not My Hat - Funny, engaging, pretty, and perfect.

For Darkness Shows the Stars

For Darkness Shows the Stars - Diana Peterfreund Everything I wanted it to be! loved the characters because this really is a book about characters. Choices. Consequences. The ending was a bit too neat, but everything else was just delectable. Fabulous book, highly recommended. Now I gotta read Persuasion!

Rebel Heart (Dust Lands Trilogy)

Rebel Heart - Moira Young HOLY HELL WHAT A BOOK.My most anticipated read of the year (or the last few months) and it is so good. I'll completely admit I may be wearing rose-coloured glasses because I've been pining for this book for so long and to finally read it was like... just amazing. But that aside... no spoilers for this mini-thoughts-reviews.Those characters. like 100 shades of freaking grey, I had a love/hate relationship with pretty much all of them-- that's how three-dimensional they are.Plot twists you will NOT see coming. holy hell Moira Young, you know how to throw a curveball. Might I add that she's fearless with her characters as well. Prepare yourself with tissues.There is a fabulous villain. The best villains are those who think they are doing the right thing.A slight bit sequel-syndrome-y, but not enough to make me not love this book.Dammit, I can NOT wait another year for book 3. Yes there are a few faults with Rebel Heart but I am refusing to hear them right now. Just let me bathe in the awesomeness of this book, thanks.(order from The Book Depository, the UK version has been released!)

The Disenchantments

The Disenchantments - Nina LaCour The Disenchantments is kind of like Zooey Deschanel. I like Zooey, I really do. She's pretty awesome. But sometimes I think she goes a bit overboard with the quirky. But other than that, she's cool. That awful metaphor aside, I really liked the way LaCour tackled the themes in this book. There is nothing really unfamiliar in the subject matters dealt with in this novel, but the author really did exceed my expectations in the way she carefully explored these themes and depicted harsh realities of growing up. About finding yourself and the vast unknowing thing of a "future", the feeling of doing the right thing or wanting to.. all very familiar feelings. The characters were interesting, but I was fond of Colby's growth more than him as an individual. Bev was fascinating because I could both resent her for her decisions yet they made perfect sense in my head. The plot was alright (but sometimes overboard with aforementioned quirkiness and coincidences) and the writing was lovely."We all want to feel something, we want to be someone to one another.""Because things seem so clear when you're fourteen. Now, nothing seems clear."
Girl of Nightmares - Kendare Blake oh this is one helluva book. I thought the build up took a bit too long but as things built up to the half-way mark, the whole story just took off. One of the coolest, most intense climaxes makes for a thrilling read. Blake does horror pretty well and I loved how different this book is from what I usually read. Of course, I have a soft spot with boys with knives, and Cas, I adore you. Funny, snarky, and quite a smart-ass, he's entertaining and full of personality. I also appreciated the word "bumblefuck" which I am now inserting permanently into my vocabulary. Thomas and Carmel were both further developed as well, which was nice. Lastly, the book's "packaging" is just stunning, I mean, that cover and the dark red font just makes me so happy. I like pretty books.

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin Trilogy Series #1)

Grave Mercy - Robin LaFevers MILD SPOILERS AHEAD.One of the biggest issues I have with this novel is the portrayal of the convent and the whole daughter of the God of Death thing (which is admittedly, a huge part). Personally, I felt that this premise was used as a tool to set up a novel without thinking about repercussions and discussions that should follow. Could you imagine a person just going on a killing spree because God told him/her to do it? And to blindly follow "his" instructions without a second thought, and justifying every action with this very excuse? And then oh wait, it turns out someone this person kind of likes is in danger. Time to bend the "will of God" to suit his/her own preferences. In the real world, imagine what a shitstorm that would be. I feel like LaFevers just thought that this whole gist would sound "cool" and "hip" went with it. And I don't like how so many people think it's all okay.In addition, there is this part on page 301 where Ismae is listening in on a conversation only to have some completely random guy spring up from a trapdoor, then runs away. Then this random guy is NEVER mentioned again, dammit, that just pissed me off so much. Yes, it's irrational, but I was seriously raging. WHY do you have useless things like that happen in a book that is already over 500 pages long? Lastly, and this is a BIG SPOILER, I am so sick of these heroines purposely putting themselves in a horrible position only to get rescued by the "knight in shining armour" love interest. Ismae tries to seduce D'Albret, who is a KNOWN abusive person who has gone through (yes, GONE THROUGH) SIX wives. It is constantly mentioned how awful of a suitor he is. It could not be any clearer, yet Ismae goes and tries to SEDUCE this dickhead thinking "it's for the greater good, I must follow my God's will and whatnot" and oh, lo and behold, she is in trouble. WHO WOULDA THUNK IT. OBVIOUSLY not her, like holy shit how stupid do you have to be to do that? Is that the best way, is it? I mean, I can sit here in my non-assassin mind and think of at least 2 better ways to reach your goal that does not involve putting yourself in such a dangerous position. And then I hate it when authors think "oh, here's the time to make the love interest look good! Save the damsel in distress, you!" GAHHHHH STOP NOT COOL. STOP BEING STUPID. Sorry, that wasn't the last point. The last point is that I don't really like how LaFevers did a lot of "telling" in this special author-to-reader relationship. Sometimes for a full page, Ismae will go through every single possibility of who the bad guy must be/etc, yet it felt very much like the author was shoving the things that I as the reader should be thinking. It just felt like that because it was like "here's a bullet list of every single possibility/suspect that you should be keeping a close eye on in case you weren't paying attention" and I was slightly insulted. Maybe I'm reading too much into it, who knows. UGH.Okay, after that ranting is done, we can ignore all of my qualms and focus on everything else that is this novel-- and it was good. Very good. If I didn't spend so much time annoyed at various details, I can say that it is quite a special novel with interesting heroine and plot. It was very reminiscent of Kristin Cashore with the political intrigue, as well as Poison Study with the characters. These are both very good compliments :) I thought Ismae's voice was distinct and unique, and I like how the novel got rolling right away. It had an extremely good start full of action which was refreshing. I really thought Ismae's growth as a character was done very well, but I can't say the same for the others. Duval was interesting but one dimensional ( we get it. He's super honourable and cares a lot about the duchess. Did I miss anything? as were most of the side characters. I wish that some of the characters got a bit more screen time Duval's mother just kind of appears for this critical moment, and then kind of disappears for the rest of the book but in general, it was interesting. I don't really know what else to say, I've been really picky in this review but I'll say that for a big book, it kept me reading and flipping the pages, and I was really, really happy about that. Despite my protests, I'd highly recommend this.


Moonglass - Jessi Kirby I expected sooo much more from this book. I didn't really like any of the characters, I thought Tyler was too perfect and Anna was too judgmental and selfish (mostly by how he treated Ashley). The story never grabbed me and it just felt like a chore to read. I liked the inclusion of sea glass and running, ad the setting was very well done. Overall, I'm disappointed, and I never even bordered on tears, much to my disappointment. 2.5/5

Perfect Escape

Perfect Escape - Jennifer Brown It felt like something was missing and it didn't necessarily feel very.. typically road-trip-y. However, Jennifer Brown completely nails the complicated relationship between siblings, I thought the parts when they're discussing "shadows" was just perfect. And it was also my favourite part of the book.Perfect Escape lacked a stronger plot, and depended a bit *too* much on the characters' relationship to drive the story, and while I am usually all for character driven books, I was left a bit wanting. 3.5/5full review to come.

Stealing Parker

Stealing Parker - Miranda Kenneally This one's going to be tough to review, I'll have a full review up at a later date, hopefully.For one, this is much more than a book about forbidden romance and baseball.It was not what I expected (I adored Catching Jordan, I thought that book was awesomesauce, so I really wanted something similar to it)... and what I got, I wasn't sure how to feel about it.I like many aspects of Stealing Parker, but I really lacked the reading "groove" or "flow" because it kept the gears in my head spinning. I kept thinking and thinking about the issues and themes and characters and analyzing my reading experience AS I was reading it that I couldn't truly throw myself in and get engrossed. It didn't have the smoothness and addicting feeling as CJ, and it lacked.. the charm.This is a very good book. And my review will be a VERY BIG "IT'S NOT YOU, IT'S ME" type of shin-dig. I just needed to shut down my thoughts a bit, but I couldn't.Some wickedly awesome references thrown in, Harry Potter fans will love it, and Melina Marchetta fans just may pick up a few...cool mentions.edit: My head is still turning, and I decided to delete a chunk of my mini-post-reading-thoughts because I realize that I've turned into the type of reader I would absolutely detest if I were looking it from the opposite side of things (walking around in their shoes, so to speak).

Lovely, Dark and Deep

Lovely, Dark and Deep - Amy McNamara marking this as to-read only based on the cover. damn, what a cover.

Something Like Normal

Something like Normal - Trish Doller I kind of knew exactly what to expect going in to this.. I've only been waiting on it for like a year. I loved Travis. Amazing protagonist, I thought his PTSD was well done and never felt sloppy/self indulgent.I like how honest Travis' character was, perhaps it was the large doses of cold showers, but hey. I adored Harper though I would have like to see more dialogue from her, to be honest. The voice was like, perfect.Although a bit short, I didn't feel like the ending was left wanting, despite what I've read from reviews. I thought when the climax rolled around, I felt everything falling into place and though "yeah, time to wrap it up" and I personally really liked how the book ended. I wanted to mention how much I effing love Travis' mom. It's a different YA book, not your typical protagonist, plot, or character. Hugely recommended. (I think such a good book deserves a more worthy cover, but that's just my opinion)

In Honor

In Honor - Jessi Kirby grief and road trip. what's there not to like? can't wait x^ I was obviously excited for this book.In Honor is what I'd point to if someone asked my what I would call a YA book. I has the relatable characters, the fun situations, and the emotional impact that isn't dumbed down for an audience. And Kirby sure knows the fastest way into my heart-- it's 1967 Chevy Impalas and Kansas. Eat your heart out, fellow Supernatural fans (and FNL fans, from what I know).