Saturday, April 28, 2012

Under the Never Sky Book Review

Hi Guys,
Today I'm going to review Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi, this is the first book in the series. Veronica Rossi is a 2012 debut author, so if you are entered in a debut author challenge, this can be one for you to read. This is the first and only "debut author" book I've read this year, so... I'm going to have to cram the other 11 in pretty soon. I'm glad I finally finished this book, because it was amazing! Here is the synopsis from the front flap:

Since she'd been on the outside, she'd survived an Aether storm, she'd had a knife held to her throat, and she'd seen men murdered. This was worse.
Exiled from her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland - known as The Death Shop - are slim. If the cannibals don't get her, the violent, electrified energy storms will. She's been taught that the very air she breathes can kill her. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He's wild - a savage - and her only hope of staying alive.
A hunter for his tribe in a merciless landscape, Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile - everything he would expect from a Dweller. But he needs Aria's help too; she alone holds the key to his redemption. Opposites in nearly every way, Aria and Perry must accept each other to survive. Their unlikely alliance forges a bond that will determine the fate of all who live under the never sky.

My first impression of this book was: "WOW! This is going to be the next big thing!", and that was just from the cover alone. Once I read the synopsis I thought that I was going to LOVE the book (Air that can KILL you?!? AWESOME!). My first impression was definitely right, I saw several blog posts, and videos, that were dedicated to the review of Under the Never Sky. I pre-ordered it, and yet I only finished this book two weeks ago. The reason for this is that I lost interest about half-way through, and I had other books that were given to me that I wanted to read more at the time. After finishing The Long Walk by Stephen King, I thought I might as well try and finish it. I'm glad I did! I loved the rest of the book! It was amazing! Not that the beginning wasn't, but the last couple chapters of the book were the best. I don't know why I sat the book down to begin with... I think it might've been that I was tired of the chemistry between Aria and Perry, just because they would feel attracted to each other one minute, and hate each other the next. I believe I stopped reading this book the first time after they learn something very important about Aria in the safe Haven that they went to to learn about the Smarteye. When I learned who Aria really was, I thought the chemistry between the characters would blow up, and I would hate it until the end. When I picked it up again, I learned that that wasn't the case, and I enjoyed the book for it. I give this book 4/5 stars, because I stopped in the middle, and because I didn't really like the ending. I'm almost certain it was Perry at the end... but there is always that small contemplation going on inside my head saying it might be someone else. I loved all the characters, I think my favorite character was Roar. I ended up hating people towards the end, who I liked at the beginning, and I love how authors can make you do that. Another small problem I had with the book, was the name of the leading male... Perry... I HATE IT! I like the name Peregrine, and I wish he would be called that more often, because Perry just seems to casual for me, and it almost ruined my idea of the book. Plus, every time I hear the name, Perry, I think of Tyler Perry... and I don't want to think about that when I'm reading about a futuristic world in which I want to live. But other than those miniscule dislikes, I LOVED the book, and I can't wait until the second book in the series, Through the Ever Night, to release. Check this book out when you get the chance! It's a nice book, with great character chemistry, and AMAZING plot-twists!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

April (2012) Book Haul

Hi Guys,
Today I received a package in the mail, which was a huge surprise to me. The only book I was expecting in the mail was Insurgent, which doesn't release until next week. So, like I said before, I was caught off guard. When I opened the package, I saw the pure white cover, with a hummingbird in a jar in the center of the book. I HAVE AN ARC OF SURRENDER BY ELANA JOHNSON! I was so excited when I saw it, and then I was wondering how I received it. In the middle of the book was a business card from Simon and Schuster, but there was not any info about why they sent it to me. I then went online, and I sent a message to the e-mail left on the business card. The woman e-mailed me back almost instantly. Apparently, I won a copy on her blog after leaving a comment on one of her posts. I'd forgotten all about it, and was not expecting to win... BUT I'M GLAD I DID! I haven't read Possession yet, but I believe this will motivate me to do so. I've wanted to read it since I saw the amazing cover, and now that I have an ARC of Surrender, I can finally read it. Here is the synopsis from the back of the book (remember it's a sequel, I don't know if it has spoilers, but this is your warning!) :

Forbidden love, intoxicating power, and the terror of control…
Raine has always been a good girl. She lives by the rules in Freedom. After all, they are her father’s rules: He’s the Director. It’s because of him that Raine is willing to use her talent—a power so dangerous, no one else is allowed to know about it. Not even her roommate, Vi.
All of that changes when Raine falls for Gunner. Raine’s got every reason in the world to stay away from Gunn, but she just can’t. Especially when she discovers his connection to Vi’s boyfriend, Zenn. Raine has never known anyone as heavily brainwashed as Vi. Raine’s father expects her to spy on Vi and report back to him. But Raine is beginning to wonder what Vi knows that her father is so anxious to keep hidden, and what might happen if she helps Vi remember it. She’s even starting to suspect Vi’s secrets might involve Freedom’s newest prisoner, the rebel Jag Barque...

I'm very excited for this, and I can't wait to buy Possession, and read both of them. The covers look amazing, and the synopsis' sound even better than the covers look. I hope the book meets my expectations I hope the book exceeds my expectations! 

A special thanks to Elana Johnson, and the group of people working with S&S! I look forward to reading these novels!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Long Walk Book Review

Hi Guys,
This week I'm going to review The Long Walk by Richard Bachman, which is a pseudonym for Stephen King. This, as King has confessed, is the first novel he's written. I never really had an urge to read a Stephen King book, I don't know why I didn't want to, but none of them really seemed that interesting to me. I didn't know what all the "King Rage" was about. After reading this novel, I now know why he has so many fans, and I also plan on reading most of his other books. Here is the synopsis of this book:

Every year, on the first day of May, one hundred teenage boys meet for an event known throughout the country as "The Long Walk." Among this yea's chosen crop is sixteen-year-old Ray Garraty. He knows the rules: that warnings are issued if you fall under speed, stumble, sit down. That after three get your ticket. And what happens then serves as a chilling reminder that thee can be only one winner in the Walk--the one that survives...

My first impression of this book, as you all know, was poor. I didn't want to read any famous Stephen King book, let alone a lesser known story of his. The only reason I picked it up is because a vlogger that I follow, Priscilla a.k.a. the founder of "The Readables", posted her March book haul video and this was one of her books for "Epic Month". A friend of her's told her that the synopsis of the Hunger Games reminded him of The Long Walk. This video was posted a couple weeks before The Hunger Games movie was released, and since I wasn't going to re-read the Hunger Games, I decided to read this until the movie was released. This is one of King's lesser known works, but it was phenomenal. I thought that the characters, the plot, and all other aspects of this book were amazing. Since the plot of this book was constant, the characters are what the book rested upon. I LOVED IT! I love reading about characters, and King made me change my opinion on certain characters several times. For instance, Barkovitch is a character that I changed my opinion of numerous times... Olson is another example. Ray was a pretty good main character, I liked him at first, but then towards the end my feelings started to change in a negative way. I know that the walk is a stressful experience, but he didn't have to change so drastically, in my perspective. My favorite character was McVries, who was a close friend of Ray's from the beginning of the Long Walk. There friendship grew stronger with every hour that passed... both of them saving the others life a time or two. As it grew stronger though, it also grew weirder, a few conversations came up that I was a little uncomfortable reading, but they were dismissed quickly in the book, normally by another conversation. The book had a lot of vulgar language and sexual references, but I mean... they are teenaged boys. I give this book 4/5 stars because of the constant vulgarity, but other than that it was an amazing read. I recommend it to anyone. As an extra bit of pretty cool info... while I was reading the Long Walk, I had my Ipod on shuffle, and when I finished the book, the song "Teenage Wasteland" by "The Who" was playing... and I thought it matched the mood very well. I would definitely re-read this novel. I loved the characters, I loved the plot, and I LOVED the plot twists at the end. I just wish I knew what the winner wished for...

Additional Announcement: The film rights for this movie have already been bought, but they have no intentions on starting soon. They would like to make it a low budget film, with lesser known actors.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Vampire Academy Book Review

Hi Guys,
Today I'm going to review Vampire Academy, the first book in the Vampire Academy series, by Richelle Mead. This is a story about a vampire princess and her dhampir bodyguard, who go on an adventure, and find themselves in some trouble. Here is the synopsis from the back of the book:

 St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger...
Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.

My first impression of this book was "it's too girly, and a knock-off of every other vampire book I've read". For this reason, I didn't pick up the book and read the synopsis for... well, until the fourth book was released. When I read the synopsis though, I knew it wasn't going to be like any vampire book I've read. I was correct, this book is unlike any other vampire book I've read (and I've read a lot). I loved how they had an academy for both vampires and dhampirs,  and I also liked the cool "power" element that was added to the vampires. I liked the characters for the most part... Rose was a little too hot headed for me, and I didn't really like that, also Lissa was a little too selfless. But I liked all the other characters... oh wait, except for Mason, for some reason I didn't really like him either. Wow, that really doesn't leave that many characters... well, I hope the characters I've listed can mature a little in the next book. I give this book 4/5 stars, because the lack of great characters... major or minor. I'm hoping the series gets better as I keep reading... but if the characters remain the same through the rest of the series, I might not want to read them as much. Hopefully the amazing plot, dialogue, and twists, can overpower the characters. 

Additional Announcement: This book has been offered many movie deals, but so far I don't believe there is a real, "We're going to start casting next week", chance that this book will become a movie... at this time... I can't tell the future, but I hope it does become a movie.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Beautiful Creatures Book Review

Hi Guys,
This week I'm going to review Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. This is the first book in the Caster Chronicles. This book tells an amazing story with bewitching characters, and plot twists. Here is the synopsis from the back of the book:

There were no surprises in Gatlin County.
We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere.
At least, that's what I thought.
Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end, there was a grave.
Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.
Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.
In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

My first impression of this book was that it was going to be amazing, just simply because, after reading the synopsis, it left me with so many questions. I hardly knew anything about what this book was about, and yet I bought and read it anyway. That's something that's never happened to me, and I loved it. I read half the book in anticipation of who Lena really was, I had my suspicions of who she was, one of which was very close, but not exactly who she was. I loved that when we learned who she is, it's something that has a very unique twist on it. It was very easy to connect with the characters in this book, even the minor characters held my attention when the story drifted to their scenes. I could really connect with Ethan, he reminded me of myself in some ways. I really enjoyed the fact that the male character was the "normal" one. I also liked how Ethan wasn't just a dumb jock, but he was somewhat intelligent. I also liked Lena and her family, one of my favorite characters was Macon, and I loved learning more about his character. I loved the "powers" in this book, I thought they were very unique. I give this book 4/5 stars. I don't believe there is a specific reason that this is a 4/5 star book, it just simply was not a 5 star book to me. I hope the books get better as they go, not that this book was bad, but I would love to see how amazing this series could be. 

Additional Announcement: This book is also becoming a movie that is set to release in 2013. Most of the actors/actresses are not that well known, and I love that. They will start filming for this movie in just a couple of days. I can't wait to see this book come to the big screen.

City of Bones Book Review

Hi Guys,
This week I'm going to review City of Bones, the first book in the Mortal Instruments series, by Cassandra Clare. I read this book in January of last year I believe... so I hope I remember this correctly, but I did jot down some key points I would focus on, I just hope that's enough for you guys. This is about a girl named Clary Fray, and the discovery she makes about her world, and even herself. Here is the synopsis from the back of the book:

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder -- much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing -- not even a smear of blood -- to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?
This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . . 

My first impression of this book was good, I thought that it looked very interesting, I don't know what it is but books that have something special happen with tattoos, I tend to read them. A few examples are: Mortal Instruments, House of Night, and (I'm not 100% sure, but the cover has a guy with a facial tattoo) Reckless. Anyway, when I read the synopsis, I thought it sounded unlike anything I've ever read, so I bought the first three books right then. I started this book in 2010, and I got about 100 pages into it, but for some reason, I lost interest, and their it sat in my "debt-pile" for a couple months. When I finally decided to pick it back up, I was on the part with the motorcycle gang of Vampires, right before you meet Magnus. From that point on, I couldn't put this book down, I believe I finished it that night, and I was confused as to why I put it down in the first place. This book had TONS of action, there was hardly a moment without action. I give this book 4/5 stars, just for the simple fact that for some reason I was disinterested enough to put it in my debt pile. I definitely recommend this to anyone who wants to read a book that is different than anything else they've read. 

Additional Announcement: This book is becoming a movie that is set to release in 2013 with the actress Lily Collins as the role of the heroic Clary Fray. It has had a bumpy start, but I believe that it's finally coming together, and very excited for it. It's going to be an amazing movie.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Winner of Giveaway #1

Hi Guys,
             A few weeks ago, I posted info on the 1st Giveaway that YAB has had. We got 133 entries for the giveaway, and I was very excited that we had that many for our first giveaway. Through a random selection, the winner was chosen, and e-mailed about their win. The winner of this giveaway was Laura Wood, I mailed her book a couple days ago, and I hope she receives it soon. CONGRATULATIONS LAURA! I HOPE YOU ENJOY THE BOOK!

*Stay tuned for the upcoming giveaway, and I believe it will probably be something about angels... and temptation!  :D

(I hope you guys enjoy the picture (Above) from the book Laura won: The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making.)