Tag Archives: Book Review

Because sometimes you just want a nice, light read… A review of Beastly by Alex Flinn

Beastly by Alex Flinn (Ebook) A handsome, but arrogant son of an television news anchor is cursed by a witch and turned into a hideous beast. Terrified anyone will find out (thus ruining his career) the news anchor father sets him up in a lavish home with servants to wait on him, but he can never go outside (for fear someone might see him). The only way to break the curse is for the boy to fall in love, and have her love him back (and kiss his hideous face)

 

I really loved this contemporary retelling. I think what drew me forward was the interesting way the author wove in the scenes from the classic Beauty and the Beast tale into the present-day setting. Yes, I knew what would happen, but that didn’t mean the ride was not enjoyable. I’d definitely recommend this book for a light, fun read that will keep you smiling.

Add this one to your TBR!


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What’s you’re sign? I hope it’s not Cancer. A Review of Zodiac by Romina Russell

Zodiac by Romina Russell (Audiobook) This is a space opera with a complicated, interesting world (or WORLDS to be more accurate) People are living inside different constellations, called the Zodiac. There is a planet Virgo, planet Gemini… you get the picture. They all live in peace, until a horrible accident explodes one of planet Cancer’s moons, propelling it into the two other moons. Parts of the moons tumble into the atmosphere, wreaking planet-wide havoc. In the aftermath, we find out it was not an accident, and the person responsible plans on destroying one world at a time, unless a 16-year-old-girl (made leader because everyone else qualified died) can convince all the other planets that the cosmic fairytale Boogey-Man exists.

I found this book wildly entertaining. It is the first in the series, and you do not get complete closure at the end, but you do get a feeling that you finished a book.

This is an awesome high-paced thrill ride that will keep you guessing with a few gasps and surprises along the way. I would give this book 4 stars, subtracting one star because the beginning seemed to drone on before anything interesting happened. I almost considered moving on to something else, and all of the sudden chaos ensued. I’d definitely recommend, just be aware that when you start reading, it will get much more exciting and engaging.

Add this one to your TBR!


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When you are rooting for the bad guy… a review of CITY OF ASHES

City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare (Audiobook) This is book two of THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS series. This is a really interesting world with a wide cast of characters having to do with a secret group that fights bad paranormals (like werewolves and vampires).

I think I liked this more that the first book because we get to see more of the bad guy, Valentine. While yes, Daddy is a jerk, I have to give the guy credit for standing up for what’s right. Shadow hunters are supposed to protect humans (mundanes) from vampires and werewolves and the like. That’s their job. This guy wants to take it to the next level and wipe them all out.

Part of me – the part that has watched monster movies and read horror novels, is on his side. “Protect the innocent!” The only reason I’m not 100% rooting for him is because the monsters in this book aren’t all monstrous. (It’s kind of like hating everyone in one country because a few of them are bad apples) Okay, yes, Valentine’s methods are not the best, but I do UNDERSTAND why he does what he does. And maybe a little part of me is rooting for him. I actually find him a little more interesting than the male lead, to be honest. I will be continuing this series (maybe next year). I’m brushing off my pom poms for Valentine.

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Dorothy Must Die. No, seriously. She must.

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Page (Audiobook) This book is about a girl named Amy who gets whisked to Oz by a tornado, only to find out Dorothy has taken up residence as an evil dictator, and Glinda, the Lion, the Scarecrow, and the Tin Woodsman are her evil cronies. Amy teams up with the Wicked Witches in their plot to kill Dorothy and bring Oz back from the brink of destruction.

This is a very neat tale showing what can happen to you when you get everything you want. I love how the author built on the classic tale, and shows us a new, dystopian future for Oz.

I must say, I was slightly disappointed with then ending. This is a several book series, and nothing gets closure in book one.

At All.

I’m not a fan of that trick. I’d rather have the main conflict completed, and something new pops up to entice the reader to continue. However, I am intrigued by the possibility of where the author might be going with this. I hope I’m right, because if I am, this light, fluffy read might get deep.

So yes, I will probably reach for the next book, maybe next year. This one is worth a read.


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Get your dragon on! A review of Fledgling by Nicole Conway

Fledgeling by Nicole Conway (Ebook) This is a fantasy adventure about a hybrid boy elf/human who kinda-accidentally binds himself to a wild dragon that no one else can tame.

While this book is middle grade, it did not suffer from all the juvenile mannerisms that would annoy the adult reader. Nope, no whining and sticking out their tongues in this one (thank goodness)

Our Half-Elf is in an interesting situation. As a dragonrider, he must train to be a flying soldier in an army bent on destroying the elves. That’s kind of a pickle, but this conflict isn’t touched on in book one. I hope they delve into it further in future books.

Anyway, this book deals with the prejudice that this boy faces in the world of men for being half elf, and you also see a hint that the elves don’t care for half breeds, either. Poor kid! The only ones who seem to like him are his roommate, his trainer, and his trainer’s daughter. (Yep, dangerous ground there, and the beginnings of what might be a love interest when these characters age-up a bit)

This book deals with the struggle of a middle grade boy who just wants to fit in, while he sets off on a pretty impressive (and almost believable) adventure to save one of the few people who’d ever shown him kindness. Throw in a couple of dragons, and this reader is totally sold. I wish I’d picked this book up sooner!


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Don’t. Ever. Peek. A Review of Gravity by Melissa West

Gravity (Ebook) This book is about an alien race that has created portals between our worlds. They visit Earth every night, and by law from an interplanetary treaty, they are allowed to “suck” antibodies from humans while they sleep. They do this so someday they will be able to inhabit Earth.

(The humans are not harmed in any way)

I have mixed feelings about this book. I enjoyed it, but I think it was the overall premise of “The Taking” at night and how the humans had to wear blindfolds that bothered me. While it was explained, I never really bought in to the overall premise, which left the story falling a bit flat and unbelievable to me.

Afterthought—The cover may have messed the book up for me as well.

“Don’t. Ever. Peek.”

While they are not supposed to “peek”, this sets itself up for something a little spookier than actually happens in the book. Maybe my issues had to do with expectations. I don’t know. I got nothing.

Anyway…

The human race also gets themselves into a little bit of a pickle when they rebel, and at the end, both their worlds are in some trouble. There was a lot of great action in this book, especially at the end, which is ten tons of readerly-fun.

I might pick up the next book someday, but it’s not going to be at the top of my TBR. Which makes me sad. In some ways, I wonder if it is really this book, or the fact that I have read so many five-star books this year, that anything that rates lower really stands out. You know what… maybe I’ll read the second book anyway. I’m wondering, now as I write this, if the author can work through my niggles in the next book. I’ll let you know.


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Ashes and Fire2You can find Fire in the Woods and Ashes in the Sky at all these awesome bookish places!

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Twelve Year Old Reviews “My Brother is a Super Hero” by David Solomons

This book is about two brothers who hang out together in a tree house. One day, while the younger brother goes into the house to go to the bathroom, aliens come down and make Zach, the older brother, a superhero.

There is a guy who always wanted super powers so he tries to kidnap Zach.

What I liked about this book was I really liked the action and the mystery since the little brother was trying to stop his friend from finding out that Zac had super powers.

The ending was also great. It was really intense and I liked the way it all worked out. There is a really good theme, but I can’t tell you or it would spoil the ending.

I would rate this book a four out of five Oreos because I really like action books and this is a really really good action book. So, yeah, I recommend this book for young readers who like action.

Oreo Four

 

Learn more about this book HERE


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Ashes and Fire2You can find Fire in the Woods and Ashes in the Sky at all these awesome bookish places!

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What happens next? A Review of Queen by Kiera Cass

Queen by Kiera Cass (Audiobook) This is a “prequel” novella in THE SELECTION series. Here, we find out how Queen Amberly becomes queen in her own Selection experience.

This novella really can’t stand on its own. The Selection process is not explained or defined, and situation and characters happen in this book that you would have no idea what is going on unless you’ve read the first book. Also, the writing and world-building is nowhere as deep and intricate as the full novel. But that isn’t really a problem, since its target audience would have read the first book.

QUEEN is an interesting look into the past of the king and queen, and we find out why the king does some of the “meaner” things he does in The Selection.

My real beef about this novella is that it suddenly just STOPPED. I mean, we go through general selection stuff, then the prince tells Amberly that he likes her, and introduces this whole new conflict that had me sitting upright, suddenly really interested and engaged and ready to take on this new part of the adventure.

Then… nothing.

Amberly is happy that he says he liked her, and we don’t get to take the journey with them through that conflict.

Yes, this is just a novella, and if they delved into that plotline, it could have been its own full-length book, but then why not just have him choose her and not act like that conflict existed? It just left me feeling a little unfinished, if that makes sense.

I’d give QUEEN two stars, because the ebook is listed at $2.99 which is really disappointing for what you get. This should be a freebee. I look at books like this as little gifts to readers. – just little tidbits to keep them excited about a series until the next book arrives. At $2.99 (maybe even at $.99) I’m not sure this really delivers.

If you can pick this up at the library, or as a free read (in a legal promotion) And you’ve read THE SELECTION already, I think you will really enjoy this. Just don’t expect the big whirlwind romance you experienced in the first novel.


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Plugging the Holes and Dragging out the Claws: A Review of Rogue by Julie Kagawa

Rogue by Julie Kagawa (Audiobook) This is book two of the Talon series, about a young dragon girl who gets mixed up with a rogue on the run from dragon law. She is also involved (unknowingly at first) with a human soldier assigned to kill her. Book On (Talon) was the first book I read in 2016 and for six months had remained my number one. Book two MAY have overtaken this position (I want to give it some time to simmer) The reason being that book one left on a cliffhanger, with no real resolution to the original story. In my review, I mentioned that Talon seemed to stop mid-chapter in an action scene. This left me feeling just a touch annoyed, because I prefer a “hint” of conflicts to tease me into a new book, but a satisfactory ending to my current read. TALON did not provide that.

But Rogue totally delivers

However ROGUE did deliver on a satisfactory ending to the current conflict, all the while introducing a totally new one that I can look forward to in the next book.

ROGUE totally delivered on giving me more action, adventure, intrigue, and backstory on Riley and Wes, that was missing in book one.

I am definitely a fan of this series, and look forward to the next book, SOLDIER.


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Ashes and Fire2You can find Fire in the Woods and Ashes in the Sky at all these awesome bookish places!

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Breathing Life into the Evil Twin: A Review of SPARK by @BrigidKemmerer

Spark by Brigid Kemmerer (Audiobook) This is book two of “The Elementals” series, which is about a family of brothers that can control the elements (Fire, water, earth, and air).

Book one, “Storm” was about the brother who can control water. Spark, if you hadn’t guessed already, is about the brother who can control Fire. I read book one as a free read last year (or maybe a discounted read. I don’t remember. It was a BookBub find), and I was really surprised how much I loved it. I am even more surprised how much I loved the second book.

Spark in no way suffers from “second book syndrome”. Instead of continuing the story of the two MCs in the first book, we now get a look into the life of the “evil twin”. Gabriel was a very unlikable character in the first book. At the start of the second book, I felt no different. But as the story moved on, and I fell deeper into his point of view, I discovered that this stuck-up *&**%&#* was actually a deeply troubled boy, and I found I could relate to his struggles on so many levels. And then we match up our guy who can control fire with a girl who has serious scars from being caught in a blaze as a child… It is perfect conflict that slowly lead up to chemistry and understanding.

If a year ago someone told me I would be rooting for Gabriel, I would have said “no way.” But Spark really brought this character to life for me. I think this is probably going to be one of my top five reads for this year. Maybe even in contention for number one. An easy five out of five stars for me. Really loved this one, and I’m holding myself back from grabbing book three right away, because I like to suffer like that.


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Ashes and Fire2You can find Fire in the Woods and Ashes in the Sky at all these awesome bookish places!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Kobo | Chapters Indigo! | iBooks | IndiBound |


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