Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton

This one was an action-packed thrill ride. It was different from a lot of YA books out there.

Angelfire (Angelfire, #1)Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Alright. Now I'm ready to review ANGELFIRE.

First thing I should say is, this book was good. It really was. If you're a fan of heart-stopping action, forbidden romance, the search for self identity, and a little bit of teenage angst all rolled up into one... well, this is your book right here. I think my only problem was reading it after finishing UNEARTHLY. It's like reading Shakespeare and then picking up a Where's Waldo book. It wasn't really fair to ANGELFIRE. UNEARTHLY was everything I could ask for and more with a dash of surprise. And in comparison, ANGELFIRE was good, but not when another book was still running through my head.

The pace was intense. It seemed like in every chapter, someone was getting head-butted or decapitated, or impaled. Which is nonetheless awesome! But I would've liked a good breather once in a while. It seemed like Ellie, the main character, learned and accepted her purpose in life a bit too quickly. But then again, with all of these reapers swooping down on her, trying to end her life, I guess that's forgiveable.

Ellie was cool. She's like an action hero that still shops for designer clothing. I just felt that some of the things she was upset about, and wanted to lament over, were all complained about before in other books. Every young adult novel has that character that "just wants to be normal" "why can't I be normal?" spiel. It's understandable, given each of their circumstances, but after you've read these lines over and over again in previous novels, it gets a little annoying. Ellie wasn't all about complaining though. She learned to accept things and move on. She had a lot of strength, which was admirable.

Will was pretty awesome as well. It was refreshing to see a guy REALLY try to put distance between himself and the love interest. He didn't succumb to Ellie's every whim, which gives him a lot of points in my book. And I really loved that they had a strong friendship.

The reapers were just a bit too generic for me. Like the demons in The Mortal Instruments series, they just didn't scare me. These are supposed to be monsters. Hell spawn. Apocalypse worthy soldiers. And yet... I find myself yawning at them. Oooh! You have two rows of sharp teeth! Scarrrry! I liked that Ellie still felt guilt over killing them though. It proved that she had a shred of humanity left.

Overall though, I really liked it. It was nice to read a book with this much action. A breather would've been nice, but it was not without it's breathless moments, and that's what makes a good book in my opinion. I'm excited to see where these characters go in the sequel and will definitely be picking up a copy!

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto

A refreshing look at angels and a good read. I might elaborate on this review more later.

Halo (Halo, #1)Halo by Alexandra Adornetto

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

HALO was good.

I hadn't expected much if I was being perfectly honest. When I first stumbled across the cover on Goodreads, I'd been jittery with excitement! I mean it's about angels and the cover art is just stunning. And who doesn't love a good love story, right? But then as the release date loomed closer, I started reading some bad reviews. Many people seem to hate this book or dislike it because of the religious themes and the over-exaggerated romance. I can see where they're coming from, but would like to make a note to all future readers:

Don't pick up a book about angels and expect christianity not to be mentioned!!!

I mean come on, folks... They kind of go hand in hand.

The religious aspect doesn't bother me at all. I'm a christian. I believe in angels. I thought it was brave and original to incorporate such strong points from this into the book. Especially for an author who is so young (eighteen) and has only published three books prior. It was refreshing to read about angels in a more traditional sense.

What I didn't like about HALO?

The romance was a bit much. I mean, I forgot how old Bethany is, but she's only around 16 or 17 I think and Xavier is only 18. At first, I was excited, because he seemed like a real guy. Not the Edward Cullen type that becomes overprotective, crazy in love with his girlfriend, and strangely generous in every aspect of their relationship type guy. It started off sweet. Bethany too- she seemed to be the angelic type of girl thrust into the world of humanity and dealing with all of the experiences and emotions that she had been barred from in the Kingdom of Heaven. But as soon as these two meet, and seemingly develop into an official relationship, things started becoming a little less believable.

For me, the romance in a story has to be sold right. If things are rushed, unbelievable, or over dramatic, I just can't get into it as much. And seeing as how this book is all about love, there were a few flaws in the romance area. Xavier developed into the Edward Cullen type. Bethany developed into the Bella Swan type. And the ladder really hurt the story in my eyes. Bethany is an angel. She shouldn't be as petty as she sometimes comes across in HALO. Overall, this subject and their relationship were just a little too ROMEO & JULIET for me.

Some things that Adornetto goes into detail about in this book seemed too trivial for me. These angels are on a mission to better a community. Why do I need to know what three or four brainless girls are chatting about constantly at lunch? Why do I need to know in accurate detail the prom dresses that they shop for, or Bethany's dream prom dress described right down to the beaded neckline? It just seemed petty in comparison to the bigger picture...

I liked HALO a lot, despite the fact that a lot of aspects were over played or even petty at times. And though the characters got a little out of hand for my taste, I was still invested in how their stories went. I will most likely be reading the sequel HADES when it comes out next.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

I read this back in July, almost immediately after it hit stores. This is one of my favorite books ever.

Linger (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #2)Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Linger has climbed it's way up to the top of my favorite books list. In some cases I liked it even better than Shiver, and it's very unusual for a sequel to out-do the original in my opinion. And the writing, oh my goodness, the writing! If anyone knows how to write directly to your heart, it has to be Maggie Stiefvater! Very few writers can make you feel for a seemingly heart-less character that constantly tries to lose himself and never opens up to anyone about it. But she proved that you could love Cole as you followed him in his transformation from shell of a man to wolf-man realizing he needs to confront his issues.

Grace and Sam. We all loved them in Shiver and there's no love lost there in Linger. Both Grace and Sam have this connection that every girl dreams of one day having with a guy. Both of them face challenges from the previous group, and let me warn you... you're not going to like Grace's parents. I hated them during this book, and let's face it, they weren't so great in Shiver either. Grace's parents are just the small challenge that Grace and Sam have to face though. In Linger, they have to face futures, pasts, and the present possibility of death.

One of the things that I love about this trilogy is that it's so realistic. I mean, if there WERE werewolves in the world, I think Maggie's theory in Shiver/Linger could be the highest probable answer. But the relationships, the dialogue, the thoughts that each character has. They feel like real people. And seeing them as real people makes it easier to fall in love with them :)

I'm warning you, this book made me cry buckets in the last 100 pages or so. But if a book can make me cry like that, I'll recommend it to anyone and everyone, including my cat and two dogs. If you loved Shiver... you're going to adore Linger. Read this book.

Now we must wait FOREVER for Forever to come out.

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Paranormalcy (Paranormalcy, #1)Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

PARANORMALCY is unlike any book I've ever read. It's delightfully weird. It's stupendously humorous. And it's downright cute as a button.

I've been following Kiersten White's blog for the past half a year now and haven't failed to read a blog post yet! The author herself is just so adorable and funny, when I found out that her debut novel was coming out this year I just absolutely needed to read it.

And I wasn't disappointed. Evie is so awesome. I wish that she was real so that we could hang out and be awesomely normal together, despite the fact that she is anything BUT normal. In a good way of course. Sooo let me say that she's a spaz, a great friend, a caring narrator, and simply cool beans. The relationship with Lend is strangely normal. It's not undying love and over dramatic passion, but real. Something any girl can relate to. The way Evie explains it and Kiersten writes it makes the whole thing feel like you're having a sleep over with Evie, gabbing away about she and Lend. It's just awesome and so not over rated. The best word for PARANORMALCY is, relatable.

The only thing that I felt was lacking in this novel was a little more substance. It was a light, cute read with tons of laughs, but I usually like something to chew on with my literature. I don't know that I'm going to ponder over what I just read or analyze it either which kind of disappoints me. But I'm not upset at all. This was a good book. Pick it up if you want a good laugh and something to float on.

Can't wait for SUPERNATURALLY so I can laugh and hang out in Evie's head some more!

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Haunted by Jessica Verday

The Haunted (The Hollow, #2)The Haunted by Jessica Verday

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ummm... holy carp. That was good. And yes, I do mean carp. It sounds funnier. First off, I loved THE HOLLOW, it was unique and descriptive and haunting. (Why not throw in a pun like that for good measure?) In the end, I wasn't getting my hopes up for THE HAUNTED though. Seeing as this is a debut trilogy from an up-and-coming author I figured it would mostly be full of fluff. And that's when the buzzer sounded, ladies and gents. Telling me in a nasely tone that I was so totally WRONG!

In this stunning sequel, we follow Abbey back from her Aunt Marjorie's farm to the ghost-inhabited Sleepy Hollow. She adjusts. Hopes she's not crazy. Keeps making perfumes. Hangs out with Ben, yada yada, but can't get rid of Caspian. Yep... Folks, he's back! And better than ever! I can't believe how head over heels in love with him I am after I put down this book. His personality really came to life in this one. I mean, first off who wouldn't love a guy who sneaks into your room while you're gone just to stick glow in the dark stars all over your ceiling for you? Adorable, insert 'freaking' a smidgeon before said adorableness. But now I'm gushing, so let's move on.

Their relationship really grows in this one. Abbey knows what's going on around her for the most part now and has to come to terms with it all. It was much easier to read without all of my fingers pointed at the suspicious elements. In THE HOLLOW I kept trying to come up with my own answers before we got to the end and figured out some big plot points, but in THE HAUNTED there was much less pointing. Still an occasional narrowing of the eyes, but less pointing nonetheless. And we finally figure out who "D." is from Kristen's diary. And holy carp, he's creepy. Way, way creepy and suspicious.

I'd say I really loved this one. It has become a favorite, though at times it can come off a little cheesey, a little surprising, and even a little bit mature for Abbey's intended age group, but still! Such a great read. I'm going to have to reread soon. After I diminish my pile of unreads first.

And can I leave saying how big of a cliffhanger that was! Yeesh! Ms. Verday expects me to wait a whole freaking year for the next one?! Is she crazy?! I hope she writes fast... Still happy though!

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Friday, October 1, 2010

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

This is one I've been waiting for since I read the summary, but I'm just not sure about after reading it.

The ReplacementThe Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I don't know what to think of this one. It was good. It's not something I'm likely to read again soon. Too creepy for my tastes, but a perfect Halloween book. Mackie Doyle is pretty cool and Tate is freaking awesome. Finally! A girl who can kick some butt and do a pretty decent job of it. The whole faerie thing was dark and disturbing and left me feeling uncomfortable, but I think that's what Ms. Yovanoff intended.

The way she can describe a gorey scene with blood and grime is so accurately painful that I wanted to pass out with Mackie. It's gross and leaves me feeling shakey, but I'm a wimp when it comes to blood and all that.

One thing that I decidedly loved in this book? Roswell. He's an awesome friend. Truly. I think I have a crush on this guy. Mackie's not bad, but I like Roswell.

Over all, I liked it. It's a good book when it comes to self discovery and all that, maybe a little bit more mature than the genre it's for, but still a good book. Too creepy. Too dark. I'm just not into it as much as the next person. It's definitely something to read, but the whole disturbing plot line and mixture of gore and the added oddity of children in that mix. I'm not a fan of involving little kids in horror. It just makes my heart get all twisted up.

The characters were very cool though. I loved Roswell, Carlina, Tate, Danny and Drew, Emma, and yeah I even loved Mackie. I'll probably read the sequel, but I'm not gunning for it.

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