Friday, May 31, 2013

Book Review: Prom and Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg

Oh, this book. The feels. (Excuse me while I fangirl.)

A prom-season delight of Jane Austen proportions.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single girl of high standing at Longbourn Academy must be in want of a prom date.
After winter break, the girls at the very prestigious Longbourn Academy become obsessed with the prom. Lizzie Bennet, who attends Longbourn on a scholarship, isn't interested in designer dresses and expensive shoes, but her best friend, Jane, might be - especially now that Charles Bingley is back from a semester in London.
Lizzie is happy about her friend's burgeoning romance but less than impressed by Charles's friend, Will Darcy, who's snobby and pretentious. Darcy doesn't seem to like Lizzie either, but she assumes it's because her family doesn't have money. Clearly, Will Darcy is a pompous jerk - so why does Lizzie find herself drawn to him anyway?

If you're looking for the perfect book on a rainy day, I suggest this. It's quick and easy, short and fun. Obviously, it's a remake of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, one that is done very well. No matter how many times I read this, the characters always cheer me up.

The story takes place in high society New York, where our main character, Lizzie Bennet, is a scholarship student at a prestigious academy called Longbourn. All of the girls are nasty and horrible to the 'hobo' as they have called her. However, she finds shelter in her kind roommate, Jane, and the other scholarship student, Charlotte.

I really love how true to the story this book is. It is a colorful spin on the original classic. Every character was true version of their teenage selves, if not amplified. The story wasn't forced or sluggish, either.

Lizzie was strong, stubborn, and independent. I'm sure that, if Jane Austen were able to read this, she would approve. Darcy was the equivilant, always steady throughout. One of the main things that I love about both the original and this version is how the characters grow and develop in natural ways through each other and the situations that they go through.

I loved how, just when you knew that the adaptation was going downhill, it immediately picked up and continued strong.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Over and out,

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Book Review: Pulse by Patrick Carman

It's been raining lately- a common word that is highly attributed to a degree that isn't quite right. For example, who would have ever guessed that reading indoors on a rainy day would have been fun, enjoyable? Not the person who invented the nursery rhyme to accompany rainy days. But, in the case of dear ole Nerdalicious, I have been able to do some extra reading lately.

In the year 2051, who has a pulse?
With the help of her mysterious classmate Dylan Gilmore, Faith Daniels discovers that she can move objects with her mind. This telekinetic ability is called a "pulse," and Dylan has the talent, too.
In riveting action scenes, Faith demonstrates her ability to use her pulse against a group of telekinesis masters who are so powerful they can flatten their enemies by uprooting streetlights, throwing boulders, and changing the course of a hurtling hammer so that it becomes a deadly weapon. But even with her unusual talent, the mind—and the heart—can be difficult to control. If Faith wants to join forces with Dylan and save the world, she'll have to harness the power of both.
Patrick Carman's Pulse trilogy is a stunning and epic triumph about the power of the mind—and of love.

There are two books that instantly come to mind whilst reading this, at least for me anyway. With that cover, I can only think of Taken by Erin Bowman. I'm not quite sure why (possibly the extraneous amounts of abstract detail). Secondly, when it came to the story, I couldn't help but think of Gone by Michael Grant (take a guess at which one was better, though). Storytime over.

I do rather like some aspects to the cover. I really like the proletarian-style homes that are laid out at the bottom, signaling a dystopian society where everything is seemingly perfect. I still can't figure out why there's a floating tree on this, though. I didn't realize we'd be getting a heaping dose of late-night-deadline-due-soon logic. I don't also like the color scheme, as it lends itself to being like a chameleon, as well as not popping to the eye.

Wow, I'm in a pessimistic mood today. I apologize in advance, Patrick Carman.

I doubt I have ever read a book so sectioned off as this was. When it has Part 1 and Part 2 (etc), it means Part 1 and Part 2. For example, when the first section has their school's name on it, it means that the main character, Faith, will be leading you through 100 pages of her futuristic school life (how original).

Somehow, this first section was able to blend two very different aspects that accompany a novel- the intrigue and the story. The story, until it picked up, I would give a B-. Not bad, not brilliant. Passing. I was really wondering if I was reading a story about a girl named Faith and her futuristic boy problems, or if I was reading a story about kids with a 'pulse'. However, I was still held fast, hoping that the story would pick up and everything would be resolved.

I have to say, I liked how Faith was tall and blonde. Seriously, being blonde and tall has become such a cliche that no one uses it. Hence forth, everyone is a short brunette (oh, I can't fight for myself! I'm a wimpy girl), leaving the blondes gone.

I liked how Faith's friends really captured me. I enjoyed how Liz loved touching people's hands and surfaces. I don't think I've ever seen any love like that before. I also enjoyed Hawk, who felt like a little brother to me.

I really liked how Faith didn't live within the futuristic community, like say Divergent or The Hunger Games, where they were always trying to escape. Here, it was more of a just-barely-apocalyptic setting where people were still living on the outside. And, surprisingly, the outside wasn't dead and barren. (However, it was headed there.) That was something that really set apart this book.

Once the book delved into the second part, I really felt like the pace picked up heavily as Faith's strange abilities were uncovered. The book really held my attention after that.

I really started to enjoy Wade and Clara's characters about halfway through as well. They brought a pinch of intrigue and spice to the story that would have been left out if not for them.

The ending tied up everything quite well, in my opinion. It still left space for the next novel, yet it kept me turning the pages. Once I was finished, I had to say that I really wanted to read the next book, which I definitely will. Even with the particularly sluggish star, Patrick Carman has definitely not let me down.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Over and out,

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Book Review: The Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Have you ever had a day where you know what you did (ex: went to school) but had no idea what happened throughout the day? I had one of those with this book. Tough times.

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.
In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.
And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.
Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages--not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.
When one of the strangers--beautiful, haunted Akiva--fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?
Firstly (is that a word?), I would like to say that this was a really great book. The writing style and setting were superb. However, with the use of names like Skjhdfjakds and, my favorite, Iudfiudsfc, it was really quite difficult for me to know what was going on. 
The book takes place in Prague, so that explains the weird names. Even though I only know about 1/2 of the actual plot, I can tell it was a good book. Twists and turns were placed accordingly; the ending had a nice cliffhanger, for those of you who like that sort of thing. 
I was really confused, if you haven't picked up on that. I have no idea why I was so confused, but I'm not going to lie and tell you I wasn't. This was clearly a good book, but really, if you aren't looking for a nice read, don't pick this up.
Over and out,

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Cover Talk: United We Spy by Ally Carter


This is the final book in the Gallagher Girls series, which if you haven't had a chance to read yet, you should. At first, they are fun and light reads which eventually become very dark and make me want to throw it against the wall make me appreciate her unique ability to create such suspense and surprise.

Do I spy . . .  graduation approaching? AHH. AHH.

Seriously, if you haven't read this, go pick it up. It's really a great series that all of my friends have enjoyed as well as myself.

Over and out,

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Book Review: The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

I have to say that I loved Maureen Johnson's contemporary series, 13 Little Blue Envelopes. It was so creative and fun, so immediately I was drawn to this book because I was interested and hopeful for her.

The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it's the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.
Soon "Rippermania" takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn't notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.
At first, I thought that this was going to be set in around the 1800s, during Jack the Ripper's time. However, I found that it actually took place in modern times at a boarding school.
This boarding school, Wexford, that Rory attends makes me want to move to England. It really added the classic English feel to the book- American girl, English school. It tacked on just the right amount of a light feel to the murders and creepiness that was happening.
I was a bit confused from time to time as to what was happening. I felt like the boarding school scenes (the light ones) were really drawn out compared to the Ripper-ish scenes that were quick. I felt like you really had to pay attention to fully grasp what was going on.
Once the main plot was revealed, the story really picked up. In the beginning, it was mainly a 'oh boarding school!' kind of vibe that I felt but then it was just 'CIA investigators'. No? Well.
Then, for pretty much the second half of the book, they are like crime scene investigators and they are trying to figure out how to stop this crazy Ripper knockoff (or is it?). The pages turned by themselves, I swear.
Jazza, Rory's roomate, irked me and pleased me both. In the beginning, she was nice and normal, until Boo showed up (read the book to find out who that is). And then, she went all crazy and all #letsstalkthisgirluntilwefindoutALLofhersecrets. It was a little weird (so weird that I used a hashtag to describe it like some 40 year-old mom who just discovered what a "hashtag" is. Life.) But, praise the Lord, she became a bit more normal again.
Jerome was a bit weird as well, but I liked him. He really fit into the relief category with this book- the category where a character is created just so you as the reader don't lose your sanity. I didn't, in case you were wondering. Anyway, his relationship with Rory was a bit weird but it was a nice addition to the plot.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Over and out,

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Book Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

So, for all of you people who love just fantasy and science fiction books and won't even go near a contemporary book, I'm going to stop you right there. Go read Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. Now.

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris - until she meets Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he's taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.
As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near - misses end with the French kiss Anna - and readers - have long awaited?

This book has the most simplistic but intriguing plot for a contemporary. As you may have figured out, I tend to only read fantasy and science fiction YA. Yup, take note, I just read a non-fantasy/science fiction book. And I liked it.
Now you may be skeptical because of that title. Listen, judgmental peasant (only teasing, before I seriously offend someone) it's set in Paris. There's a girl. There's a boy. Now do you understand the reference to France and kissing? It's not some sappy, unrealistic romance. It was interesting and nice.
The setting for this plot is so detailed and accurate and rich. It makes me want to eat a cake with Paris written on it. (Because, let's get real, the closest I'm going to get to Paris is a tiny figurine on a macaroon or something.)
This girl had a lot of first world problems. But who else has first world problems? Not me. Not me one bit. But then, Anna would (thankfully) realize that oh maybe her problems weren't so bad! But then they'd be ruined again. It was like HJigh School Musical in France. (Ok, maybe not.)
Crazy stuff.
I have to say that, however though I loved Anna and Etienne's relationship (it was very thought-out and realistic) I hated his last name. Of all names to choose. St. Clair? Really? No. Noooooo. NO. Um, anyway . . .
But somehow, morphed together, was a really good book that I thoroughly enjoyed. (I may or may not have read it in less than half of a day.) I definitely recommend you read it if you are looking for a light read that is still hooking and interesting.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Over and out,

Friday, May 17, 2013

Book Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Ok, so let's get to the point: I have an audition in like five minutes so anything I say in these next couple of paragraphs is simply a figment of my erratic, completely nervous imagination. I'm trying to get my mind off of it, but I think talking about it makes it worse.

Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.
She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.
She’s wrong.
After Mara survives the traumatizing accident at the old asylum, it makes sense that she has issues. She lost her best friend, her boyfriend, and her boyfriend’s sister, and as if that weren’t enough to cope with, her family moves to a new state in order to give her a fresh start. But that fresh start is quickly filled with hallucinations—or are they premonitions?—and then corpses, and the boundary between reality and nightmare is wavering. At school, there’s Noah, a devastatingly handsome charmer who seems determined to help Mara piece together what’s real, what’s imagined—and what’s very, very dangerous.
This book made me feel like I was going in-sane. Wow. I don't think I'd ever felt so literally crazy whilst reading a book. Everything was muddled together, making me wonder whether or not every single thing that happened to Mara was real or apart of her imagination.
Oh, and that little tidbit that serves as a prologue in the beginning? Well, it said that her lawyer made her choose a new name. There was not mentioned ever again, which made me sad. Her family called her Mara, her friends in her memories called her Mara as well. I think if your freinds were all killed in an accident, that wouldn't qualify a need to change your name. Especially if, to the government, you were innocent.
This book also made me mad because it has a huge cliffhanger. Like, middle of the climax, cliffhanger. Ugh, emotions.
The male lead was just perfect. I really liked how brash he was, considering most YA protagonists are just completely average. Most. (WARNER.) Anyway, I felt like he was a breath of fresh air after the insanities that were frequently occurring. I felt like he was just enough cliché to make me appeased.

Anyway, I really liked this book. I can't wait to read the next book, The Evolution of Mara Dyer.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Over and out,

P.S. I had my audition. It was better than I expected.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Delirium and The Selection TV Pilots Dropped

Two separate YA book-to-television pilots were dropped by Fox and The CW recently.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

They say that the cure for Love will make me happy and safe forever. And I’ve always believed them. Until now. Now everything has changed. Now, I’d rather be infected with love for the tiniest sliver of a second than live a hundred years smothered by a lie.

The Selection by Kiera Cass

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.
But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.
Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself—and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

The CW released a rather peculiar (that's as lightly as I can put it) script that would have been broadcasted for The Selection. If you dare, here's a link:
(I'll be honest, I did think it was a joke when I first read it. That's how off it is from the actual book.)
I'm not upset.
Over and out,

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Book Review: Oblivion by Anthony Horowitz

After dutifully waiting for five years for this book, it has come. It is the fifth and final book in the Gatekeepers series.

Matt. Pedro. Scott. Jamie. Scar. Five Gatekeepers have finally found one another. And only the five of them can fight the evil force that is on the rise, threatening the destruction of the world.
In the penultimate volume of The Gatekeepers series, a massive storm arose that signalled the beginning of the end. Now the five Gatekeepers must battle the evil power the storm has unleashed - and strive to stop the world from ending.

This book was simply a whirlwind of events and action. Considering that it flipped between all five Gatekeepers point of views, unlike in the other four books, it really kept the action rolling and open.
I really enjoyed this book, as I know that Horowitz is a deserving acclaimed author. Normally, after taking over five years to finish a series, I would have given up on it, but not with this. Besides the Goliath size, this book was a fantastic conclusion to the Gatekeepers series. (I am curious, though, to see how many words this book is.)
Each character was strong and resilient in their own way, but I have to say that my favorite character was Matt (and not for the distinct Meerkat allusion). He was very withstanding throughout the entire novel. I really liked how much of a leader he was to the other kids. 
But I also liked how some of the Gatekeepers weren't just an image of mental perfection. One character in particular (who I won't mention for the sake of spoilers) wavered more than quite a bit, which kept his story interesting.
One other thing that I enjoyed was how the POV's weren't just from the Gatekeepers perspective. They were also from Holly, for example. She was a new character to this book who really captured a side to the story were you could see someone who was experiencing this pandemonium that wasn't strong and resilient like Matt. You got to see the perspective of someone who wasn't a superhero like the rest. They were as confused as the reader.
I also liked how there was little to no romance. It was a nice break from YA books riddled with Edwards and the like.
All in all, I really thought that this was a really great conclusion to the series even though I was very skeptical about reading it (5 years is enough of a reason) but it was worth it. I highly enjoyed this series as a whole. If you haven't, you should definitely pick up a copy of Raven's Gate, which is the first in this five-part series.
Over and out,

Friday, May 10, 2013

Ansel Elgort Cast In The Fault In Our Stars

Ansel Elgort, pictured to the right, has been reportedly cast in The Fault in Our Stars, a movie adaptation based on the acclaimed YA contemporary novel by John Green. He is set to play the male lead Augustus Waters.

We caught up with some of our local residents of Tumblr to see how they felt about this.

"This isn't working- you can't just simply play a character's sibling and then play their love interest! THEY CLEARLY DON'T REALIZE HOW FRAGILE MY FANGIRL WORLD IS," said Camcorder Lewis, a fellow lover of many Young Adult books.

Her emotions were clearly shaken and provoked by the feels. We ask that you give her the privacy she deserves in this time of overwhelming, confusing emotions surfacing.

In case you weren't aware, Elgort is also partaking in Divergent, another Young Adult book to movie adaptation. Not only is he in two YA films, but he is playing opposite Shailene Woodley in both, one playing her sibling, the other playing her romantic love interest.

Many fangirls are very conflicted about this controversial topic. If you happen to come across a fangirl who is losing her mind, you can help her in three easy steps.

1) Hand her chocolate, because chocolate doesn't ask silly questions. Chocolate listens.
2) Let her vent about the problem. Even when she blubbers and makes a noise similar to asdfghjkl, do not question it. Nod and smile.
3) Tell her the upside to the situation. Using The Fault in Our Stars as an example, you can easily tell your upset fangirl this: Well, at least they're almost the same age. Almost.

Note: When comforting a fangirl, on any circumstance, do not mention soiled adaptions, especially of the P to the J to the O range. (What? That's not Percy Jackson at all.) This will only sink her hopes.

Hopefully, the conflicts will settle themselves with time.

Over and out,

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Cover Talk: Allegiant by Veronica Roth

Jesus, take the wheel! Earlier today, Veronica Roth unveiled the cover for Allegiant, the final book in the Divergent trilogy.


Over and out,

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Book Review: Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

So, to put it simply, this book was absolutely amazing. If you want to read on and see every last thought that I had whilst reading this, don't let me stop you. However, if you're skeptical, don't be. This is a fantastic sequel to Shatter Me. I give you my opinionated blessing to go out and buy this.

Juliette has escaped to Omega Point. It is a place for people like her—people with gifts—and it is also the headquarters of the rebel resistance.
She's finally free from The Reestablishment, free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch.
Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible.

If you were physically anywhere near me in the few hours that it took me to devour this book, you know that I squealed and sighed more than enough times to be qualified as "sane". If you read my Shatter Me review, then you are fully aware of my absolute, undying love for a certain fictional character named Warner.
Oh man, Warner. He was absolute perfection in this. Mafi, I love you, girl. Remember how I begged and pleaded to her telepathically (BFFS, I know) to give Warner some character development that I never thought would come?
IT CAME. (Happiest moment of my immediate life.)
Anyway, back to the actual review and not just a rant about how much I love Warner. Well, somewhat a review. I couldn't find too many serious complaints because this book was terrific. I literally want to read it again just to soak in more details.
First, I felt like the first few pages were a little dull and cliche (X-Men, anyone?). I know why; Warner wasn't there. What? Nothing. Nothing at all. But, then it was like BAM. TAKE THAT, EMOTIONALLY UNSTABLE READERS.
Mafi sure knows how to make me feel allllll of the emotions capable in my . . . body, I guess.
Have you noticed my recent love for crossed out words? This book didn't inspire that. Not a single bit, folks. 
One of the things that I loved (once again, I might add) was Mafi's writing style. (See? This was a positive thing that didn't involve Warner. Baby steps.) It was so poetic and raw. The way she rights makes every moment seem valuable, like every second is slow and detailed, every thought and emotion clocked in. It was very interesting.
I loved 90% of the characters. Juliette earned my check-plus in this. She, for once, actually admitted that Warner maybe wasn't such an evil person, and developed in the way that, not only did she want to fully kick-butt, but she wanted to peel back Warner's layers. Castle and Adam, however, were predictable. Castle felt like Anderson 2.0 and Adam was like Peeta from The Hunger Games all over again. (Did I mention I'm Team Gale?) I'm sick of Peeta. Warner, though, was so perfect. His character was literally amazing.
I loved how, near the end, he didn't let her push him around as far as his emotions go. He told her that he wouldn't be her toy and I yelled in happiness- ish. I was upset that he was upset, though. But then, something spoilerific happened, and their love was renewed.
I apologize for being so dreadfully unprofessional, but I must confess that my mind is literally identical to a plate of scrambled eggs right now after 450 pages of Warner.
Juliette did annoy me once, though. There was a certain moment (cough cough Chapter 62) which Juliette did something utterly dumb that made me slam the book into my forehead. And yes, it insinuated the Warner-emotions-sassy kid side that was portrayed above.
All in all, THIS BOOK. (Sorry. I had to get that out there.) I doubt that everyone else liked it as much and now they're thinking what a weirdo. She likes Warner way too much. I doubt I'll be sleeping tonight.
Rating: 50 million stars
Read this book! (Read Shatter Me first though.)

Over and out,

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Book Review: The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse

Hear ye, hear ye! Today I will be reviewing The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse.

As an obedient orphan of the U.N.A. (the super-country that was once Mexico, the U.S., and Canada), Alenna learned at an early age to blend in and be quiet—having your parents taken by the police will do that to a girl. But Alenna can’t help but stand out when she fails a test that all sixteen-year-olds have to take: The test says she has a high capacity for brutal violence, and so she is sent to The Wheel, an island where all would-be criminals end up.
The life expectancy of prisoners on The Wheel is just two years, but with dirty, violent, and chaotic conditions, the time seems a lot longer as Alenna is forced to deal with civil wars for land ownership and machines that snatch kids out of their makeshift homes. Desperate, she and the other prisoners concoct a potentially fatal plan to flee the island. Survival may seem impossible, but Alenna is determined to achieve it anyway.
First off, I would just like to say that I think that this book is really underrated and shoved to the side, all because of explosively popular books. This book, in my opinion, is one that I think many people won't ever even know about because of books like The Hunger Games (not that I have a problem with their success, I just like to spread the love).
Considering that I came in with such low hopes, not to mention the fact that it sat on my shelf for four months, I was really surprised and happy with this book. 
The beginning of the book really reminded me of Divergent by Veronica Roth, simply because of the personality test, but that was where all similarities ended. Personally, with that comparison set, I was expected a Divergent knock-off, just another reason why this book was really pleasing to me.
I really liked the idea of finding the criminals in the UNA's world, something that I can see many countries may even trying to do in the future. I can see it happening. Maybe someone will write a book about it. Or some poetry (not naming any names).
I really liked the Wheel, and how it reminded me of Catching Fire (sorry for the plethora of book references). I feel like the savagery that took place was real and potent.
I can't say I really enjoyed the romance. As of late, I feel like every character I read is boring and flat, so it's all or nothing with me. Sadly, I felt nothing for him. He wasn't even there for 200 pages, and then suddenly, Alenna loved him. Man, I sure do that in real life. 
The dystopian world was incredibly crafted. It wasn't overpowering, but it was still present and powerful, unlike some where I can't even tell if it is a dystopian novel. 
However, I felt like I couldn't really connect with Alenna's character. It was like I was watching a movie with a protagonist who wasn't the main character. But, it was hardly even noticeable. I didn't realize that I still didn't even know what Alenna looked like until around page 200.
I also enjoyed how every plot revelation would come hit-after-hit, not like one moment after a 300 page lead-up. It was very action-packed and kept my eyes glued to the page. But, hey, you know what's hyphen-packed? This paragraph. Though, I have heard some people say that they could predict the moments, but in my experience, I could not.
I did really enjoy this book, in the end. Parts may have irked me, but the overall story had a very nice vibe to it. I will be recommending it to my friends.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Over and out,

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Book Review: Taken by Erin Bowman

May the fourth be with you, everyone! In celebration, today I will be reviewing the new YA dystopia Taken by Erin Bowman.

There are no men in Claysoot. There are boys—but every one of them vanishes at midnight on his eighteenth birthday. The ground shakes, the wind howls, a blinding light descends…and he’s gone.

They call it the Heist.

Gray Weathersby’s eighteenth birthday is mere months away, and he’s prepared to meet his fate–until he finds a strange note from his mother and starts to question everything he’s been raised to accept: the Council leaders and their obvious secrets. The Heist itself. And what lies beyond the Wall that surrounds Claysoot–a structure that no one can cross and survive.

Climbing the Wall is suicide, but what comes after the Heist could be worse. Should he sit back and wait to be taken–or risk everything on the hope of the other side?

This cover. Holy poop. It's so beautiful and unique and lovely and colorful and ugh. I love it. I can't exactly describe my emotions pertaining this cover, mainly considering how scatter-brained I am after just reading this.

Ok, now back to the actual review of this book. Let's kick off this shindig with a little romance, shall we? I have to say, I actually really liked the romance in this book. Not only is it unique as it has a love triangle with two girls and one boy, but it also was interesting for him.

I really liked how Gray wasn't thinking of his original love interest all the time, unlike some books. When she wasn't present, she wasn't present. Not that I'm saying that the characters should just forget about the others, but still. It was nice to only be reminded that she wasn't dead every fifty pages or so.

However, when it came to Gray's relationship with Emma, I didn't like how he "loved" her so quickly. Is it just me or is anyone else sensing Romeo and Juliet here? I can understand how that would make sense, considering how primitive and loveless his lifestyle had been before her. All his life, he lived in a community were marriage wasn't even an idea, and finally, he's discovering a love of his own.

I really enjoyed the world that Bowman has created. It is unique and compelling, something that I highly enjoy in a book. Normally, the world outside of the protagonist's original life is worse and threatening, however, Taken was different. The world outside wasn't just one-dimensional and flat. It was sparkling and fresh.

I didn't like how Gray just completely forgot about Claysoot and their lives. Gray ran around for 350 pages, world outside dominant- hometown subsided. I mean, it's not like your own mother is still inside of Claysoot, oblivious to everything, Gray. Not a bit. I really hope that this is a setup for a sequel, though. Otherwise, I will be quite angry at Bowman for forgetting that monumental plot hole.

One of the nice things was that you'd know that something was bound to happen, but I had no suspects of what was to come. Whenever a plan or a plot detail was revealed, I had no idea that that was coming.

All in all, I was quite satisfied with this read. I think it's a great read for anyone seeking something fresh and interesting.

Rating: 4.75 out of 5 stars

You'll like this if you like: The Maze Runner, Divergent

Over and out,

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Cover Talk: Champion by Marie Lu



Somebody hold me!

If you've been living under a rock, Marie Lu is the author of the New York Times bestselling and acclaimed series, Legend. The sequel, Prodigy, is also out.

Is anybody else excited?

Over and out,

Book Review: Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza

Where to begin, where to begin? *takes wizard staff and sits down on a tree stump* Today I will be reviewing Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza.

Mila was living with her mother in a small Minnesota town when she discovered she was also living a lie.
She was never meant to learn the truth about her identity. She was never supposed to remember the past—that she was built in a computer science lab and programmed to do things real people would never do.
Now she has no choice but to run—from the dangerous operatives who want her terminated because she knows too much, and from a mysterious group that wants to capture her alive and unlock her advanced technology.
Evading her enemies won't help Mila escape the cruel reality of what she is and cope with everything she has had to leave behind. However, what she's becoming is beyond anyone's imagination, including her own, and that just might save her life.

First, let's take a look at that cover. I'm pretty sure we can all agree on the fact that that cover is great. It has a really unique look to it that no other cover can claim to. The cover easily lends itself to being symbolic of how Mila, the heroin, is losing her humanity.

I really felt like Mila's personality and character was a separate entity from the plot, if that makes sense. I felt like she'd have her thoughts and whatnot, and then, a new character with the same name would come out when the action picked up. Some side characters I really enjoyed, but for Mila, I just couldn't make up my mind. She seemed very typical-teenager and bland. However, certain points in the plot were very nice and made up for my lack of connectivity with Mila.

I hated her romance with the boy, Hunter, though. I couldn't get into his character, whether it be for the reason that he was immediately developing feelings for her, and then we didn't see him again for 400 pages. Literally. No need to worry, though, folks, because Driza constantly reminded the reader of him.

I really liked the villains in this story. They were great. The antagonistic group was like a breath of fresh air after being cooped up in a cage of . . . awkward.

Switching back to the bad, her 'friend' Kaylee, who we also saw for even less than Hunter, was literally such an annoying character. She made me lose mostly all of my faith in humanity. Literally, she was whiny and obnoxious, everything bad wrapped up in a teenager. I have no idea why Mila would even consider being acquainted with her, considering how opposite their personalities came off as.

All in all, I may rant about this story's problems, but I feel like the good portions could outweigh the bad. If you haven't had a chance to read this, I recommend getting it from your local library or buying it. Even if you buy it and don't like it, I feel like that cover will make a nice addition to any YA bookshelf.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Over and out,