Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Review: Almost girl by Amalie Howard

The Almost Girl
Almost girl by Amalie Howard 
Seventeen-year-old Riven is as tough as they come. Coming from a world ravaged by a devastating android war, she has to be. There’s no room for softness, no room for emotion, no room for mistakes. A Legion General, she is the right hand of the young Prince of Neospes, a parallel universe to Earth. In Neospes, she has everything: rank, responsibility and respect. But when Prince Cale sends her away to find his long-lost brother, Caden, who has been spirited back to modern day Earth, Riven finds herself in uncharted territory.
Thrown out of her comfort zone but with the mindset of a soldier, Riven has to learn how to be a girl in a realm that is the opposite of what she knows. Riven isn’t prepared for the beauty of a world that is unlike her own in so many ways. Nor is she prepared to feel something more than indifference for the very target she seeks. Caden is nothing like Cale, but he makes something in her come alive, igniting a spark deep down that goes against every cell in her body. For the first time in her life, Riven isn’t sure about her purpose, about her calling. Torn between duty and desire, she must decide whether Caden is simply a target or whether he is something more.
Faced with hideous reanimated Vector soldiers from her own world with agendas of their own, as well as an unexpected reunion with a sister who despises her, it is a race against time to bring Caden back to Neospes. But things aren’t always as they seem, and Riven will have to search for truth. Family betrayals and royal coups are only the tip of the iceberg. Will Riven be able to find the strength to defy her very nature? Or will she become the monstrous soldier she was designed to be?


Publishes in US: January 7th 2014 by Strange Chemistry
Genre: YA fantasy
Source: netgalley
Series? Yes?

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    I connected with Riven, she wanted to do the right thing, and she had a protectiveness within her that I really admired. Though, the terminology and references almost turned me off. I got answers, but too slow, I didn't quite understand exactly what Riven was, and there was the mystery Cale. I loved reading her action scenes, learning about just how strong she is physically and mentally, but then watching her learn to depend on others when she finds herself weak or injured, and that sometimes strangers can be kind and worm their way into your heart. 
   But I liked her chemistry and interactions with Caden, and I def wanted to know what made her special. The world building was good, just slower than what I wanted. It seemed really well thought out and I liked the other planet and tech that they used. 
    The family aspect of this one took me by surprise in a good way. There is sibling rivalry and then a deeper relationship formed. There is also appearances and betrayal plot twists that were well written and captivating. 
   The action scenes were heart pounding. And Riven can certainly hold her own with a sword, and hand to hand. Living vicariously through characters like this is always great because I am pretty weak and not at all kick ass like this. 
   All of that said, I did skim through numerous parts of the book because it was slow. Yet I still wanted to know what happened, so I stuck with it. 
    I chose Almost Girl because I liked the cover and the synposis on netgalley. I would def recommend for friends who like science fiction with a strong female lead and a romance. 

Bottom Line: Good science fiction with a strong main character but has slow parts.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Do you think you could turn off your emotions?
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Monday, December 30, 2013

Review: The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine

The Promise of Amazing
The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine
Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who's always done what she's supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change, but doesn’t know how.
Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp.” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.
One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.


Publishes in US: December 31st 2013 by Balzer + Bray (Harperteen)
Genre: YA contemp
Source: Harper Teen for review
Series? No.

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    I was drawn right into this one with Wren. I liked her voice and I related with her. Who is supposed to know that they want to  do with their life in high school? I am almost thirty and I don't know, so I feel for those half my age. But she wasn't whiny, just questioning things, trying to figure out the right steps, and she is the average girl, the good girl, smart but not top of the class, and in this book she journeys to figure out how to leave her mark and the person she wants to become. 
    We also have the dual perspective of Grayson, bad boy, kicked out of private school for selling term papers. But it is a wake up call, and he is struggling to turn over a new leaf, and when he meets Wren its extra incentive. But his old friends and old past doesn't want to let go, so we see the ultimate struggle of the good and not so good within him battling out to win. 
    The romance is great, I love their flirting, the awkwardness, how Wren steps in and saves his life, helping him, and them opening up to one another emotionally. There are some nice hot kissing scenes as well that I really enjoyed. 
    The sets of families from both Wren and Grayson each have their own blend of problems, but in the ordinary way of these days, steparents, older siblings with news that shakes up their lives, but all leaning on and counting on each other at the end of the day, and pushing to be the best. 
    It is a a good balance of funny or awkward and deep conversations and trying to work out life. The pacing is great, and it kept me engaged. I decided to read The Promise of Amazing because of the cover, and Wren spoke to me in the synopsis, and I wasn't disappointed. 
     Although I appreciate a dark past, and trying to overcome it, and I realize that people make real mistakes, I do think that one of the things that Grayson did pushed things too far in my opinion, and I couldn't keep him in as high of regards as in the beginning. 
    I would recommend for a balanced contemporary with a romance that is easy to cheer for once you get past instalove status. 
    I did enjoy Wren's character development, and the romance, no matter how insta-lovey it seems at times.
    The ending wrapped things up pretty well, and I was satisfied where it left our characters, even though they had to go through a lot of hard things, I think they learned from them and will be better for mistakes.  

Bottom Line: Overall good contemporary.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Were you top, bottom or middle of your class?
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Saturday, December 28, 2013

Stacking the Shelves, The Sunday Post

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews,  check it out and sign up  here
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~ It's a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

What I read:
Cinderella Screwed Me Over
source: bought
Of Silver and Beasts (Goddess Wars, #1)
source: bought
Being Sloane Jacobs
source:  Random via Netgalley

Last Week on the blog:
Taste of Darkness (Healer, #3)
Source: Netgalley (Harlequin)
Ashes to Ashes (Ashes, #1)
Source: Harper Teen
At Any Price (Gaming the System, #1)
Source: Netgalley
The Book of Love (The Secret Sisterhood of Heartbreakers, #2)
Harper Teen for review

My week: Had a great christmas with the family

Giveaways:  Midwinter's eve Giveaway Hop

What are you reading? Any of my books new to you or have you read any of my books? If so, what did you think?
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Friday, December 27, 2013

Review: Taste of Darkness by Maria V. Snyder

Taste of Darkness (Healer, #3)
Taste of Darkness (Healer #3) by Maria V. Snyder
She's fought death and won. But how can she fight her fears?
Avry knows hardship and trouble. She fought the plague and survived. She took on King Tohon and defeated him. But now her heart-mate, Kerrick, is missing, and Avry fears he's gone forever.
But there's a more immediate threat. The Skeleton King plots to claim the Fifteen Realms for his own. With armies in disarray and the dead not staying down, Avry's healing powers are needed now more than ever.Torn between love and loyalty, Avry must choose her path carefully. For the future of her world depends on her decision.
Publishes in US: December 31st 2013 by Harlequin MIRA
Genre: YA fantasy
Source: Netgalley
Series? Yes. Healer #3

Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | TBD

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    Maria never ceases to amaze me with her writing, being so exciting, plot driven, romantic and the surprising plot twists. 
    I was into it the whole time, always wanting to keep reading, and find out what Avry would disobey and where her instincts would lead her next. 
    My heart was pounding wondering if against all hope that Kerrick would be alive and that he and Avry could get their happily ever after. 
    I still love the secondary characters, the monkeys, Flea and his new ability with the added trouble of wondering what is the moral choice and if the good can possibly outweigh the bad with his magic. 
    She knows how to write an enemy that you just want to hate. They do such evil things, and I never know what to expect from them next. 
    The ending worked well for me, and I am still in love with the characters. Although I am not sure if this is the last book in the series or not, I mean it gave them an ending sounding ending, but it also left some strings open, and I can't find any info about another book. 

Bottom Line: Exciting, fast paced and romantic addition to the series.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
What are your fears?
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