A blog dedicated to reviewing and promoting the books I love.
Overall the story was a very nice read. The writing tugged at all my emotional heartstrings and made it impossible for me not to be sucked into the story. The whole story (with the exception of the ending) had a very somber tone to it and that made it all the more realistic.
Leslie was a great character. Though she had her dreams literally crushed when she was halfway to them she never let it get her down. She fought for a future regardless and, for the most part, came out on the other side. I can respect her actions and I was rooting for her to get a happy ending.
Ethan's past breaks my heart because, unfortunately, it's a harsh reality that quite a number of people go through. I can't imagine the guilt he must have for what happened to Leslie. Even though I liked him, the bar scene was such a turn off. I understand he was upset, but there was no need to come on that strong.
The ending felt way too rushed. I also didn't like how Leslie dealt with her loss and forgiving Ethan. She claimed to love it, but after he grovels for a few days he's forgiven? The look into the future didn't sit well with me. It was too perfect. I would have liked to have a continuation of Leslie and Ethan's story in the form of another novel or novella, but not a rushed epilogue.
My Favorite Quotes:
"I was wrong. Some wounds don't ever heal."
"Sometimes the universe makes choices for us because it sees the potential we still have."
"Sometimes you need to hit rock bottom, shatter your dreams in order to create new ones."
When I picked up this novel I was expecting something dark, just not as dark as this started off with. I'll readily admit that I skimmed through the first half of this novel because I just couldn't take it. It was so well written that it was giving me anxiety just thinking of being in that situation.
However, what gave me pause was how incompetent the MC seemed to be at protecting Madelaine and everyone else in her family in the first place. How does a guard go missing and hours after no one has heard from him no one thinks something is wrong? Why not make it clear to the bullheaded heroine that she's in danger once again? Those types of secrets were bound to blow up in everyone's faces.
Madelaine started off as a very strong willed and stubborn character. I started to like her, but after her overreaction to a small mistake Mikhail had made she lost my respect. If it wasn't for the dreaded epilogue Mikhail would still have my respect as well. I can't, for the life of me, understand what the heck he was thinking when he did that.
I didn't understand how Bbrenden had the amount of power that he had. I don't think it's ever said that it was based on money. How did he get another MC to break a four year truce because of a girl and, in theory, more power, and risk 'war'? The ending was a bit of a stretched out miracle, but I was ready for it to be over with by that point.
Overall this was a very well written and anxiety provoking novel. My dislike of both main protagonists made it so I didn't enjoy the novel as much. I may pick up the other novels in this series in the future.
My Favorite Quotes:
"When something bad happens you have three choices. You can let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you. - Unknown"
"Should have, could have, would have. They are dangerous thoughts. We are never going to know what might have been."
I've been waiting for so long to have a book pull this twist and have me blind to it all. This is one of few books in the suspense genre that kept me intrigued throughout the story. This cover is kind of perfect for this novel for some reason.
Lena was a very confused character. When you consider her childhood it becomes painfully believable. Though I didn't understand why she kept up her "farce" for so long and why she didn't rush to read the journal she found. Other than that I liked her as a character. She kept the reader just as confused and pensive as she was. Though I did start getting angry at her for how far she was taking her farce with Jake before everything fell into place.
After getting the whole story I came to the conclusion that I like Jake. I don't agree with his methods and I think he could have handled everything a tad bit better. Overall he's a good guy who's doing everything in his power to "save" Anna.
I enjoyed this novel and the ending was sweet. I liked how she finally got the help she needed after everything she had gone through during her life. I also appreciated that she admitted that she wanted and needed help without being forced into it.
My Favorite Quotes:
"My issues ran so deep that all the therapy in the world wasn't going to help me.
"If there is one sure thing I've learned in my life, it's that people will never fail to disappoint you."
"It just proves that you never really know what people are capable of. Even when you think you know them."
This book was such a let down because it started off so good. The beginning was so intense and heartbreaking, but half way into the audio book the story became more about drama and the relationship. The main couple didn't even seem to have anything in common because they never really talked beyond 'I love you's' and 'we are forever's'. They seemed to have no chemistry whatsoever and in the long run that became a turn off.
I didn't love Baylor. She had a few weird quirks that I could overlook. After State came back into her life it seemed like her life started revolving around him. It got old after they spent, what felt like, their 50th night together and she never mentioned going to her classes or her two jobs.
State rubbed me the wrong way with all of his overreactions and anger management issues. I despised how Baylor had to hide things from him (various times during the novel) because she was scared of how he'd react toward other people after hearing her out. Tiptoeing around someone is never a sign of a healthy relationship.
When the ending finally rolled around I couldn't care less about the characters. Even after the tragedy that took place, it felt like I was listening to a soap opera because it was so over dramatic and cliché (right down to the boyfriend getting angry and wanting to punch hospital staff). To say the least, I was ready for this novel to be over.
The Audio Book:
I can't recommend this as an audio book either. The audio was very fuzzy (I should have listened to the preview on audible before buying it). It wasn't easy to disconcert who said what. I couldn't easily tell the difference between female and male character voices.
What a throw back this book turned out to be! I can see where my particular flavor of humor started off. This is as sarcastic and funny as any middle grade book can be without going too far. This series was a big part of my childhood and it was awesome to read it as an adult. I can see where my twisted self first started appearing.
Jamie Kelly is all kinds of weird and her random theories make her all that much more entertaining to read about. She's in grade school and during that period of her life, she's still discovering who she is and what friends are really there for. This isn't a heartfelt story nor does it strive to be anything like that. It's a humor filled oddity that has found its place in my shriveled up heart.
I would recommend this series to the end of the world and back. That's probably nostalgia talking, but it's an entertaining and quick read! The drawings were adorable and on point with the story.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Of course I can't really say that, I can only write it. But I'm writing it totally sarcastically and rather meanly."
"I treasure how the same people and things make us both want to barf."
"I do call her my friend, the same way I call them my socks or my infection. Nobody would ever suggest that the infection belongs to itself."
I feel numb to this series by this point. I put myself through 5 books (most of them more than ten hours in length) all for that anti-climatic ending. The 'big' villain for most of the books was defeated in the what I consider a half baked miracle. That's my reward? I'd say it's not up to par.
This book had a lot going on with a bunch of (what I'd consider) pointless side stories that I could happily live without. The only side story I've grown to love was the Justus and Paige one. The Adam and Sadie one, in particular, almost made me stop reading because of how insignificant it was to the main plotline in the long run.
Silver was a more enjoyable character in this novel. She seems to have shed most of her impulsiveness and naiveté. What she did for Logan was sweet, but the life and death situation made me roll my eyes so hard. I swear I was going to see my brain at some point (this goes for this series as a whole).
I did warm up to Logan, because his domineering and overbearing nature were at an alltime low for the duration of this novel. That's a huge step to making him seem realistic and I appreciate it very much. There were quite a few sweet moments, but I still would rather never hear from him again.
The ending was very sweet, but it wasn't what I was anticipating. This goes back to the defeat of the villain. I understand that the author wanted to leave loose endings for future stories to develop, but solving the main problem and leaving three and a half hours of story was off putting to me. I'm in the unpopular opinion category when it comes to this series and that still hasn't changed.
The Audio Book:
The narration, as always, was awesome. Nicole Poole has grown on me for quite some time. I love her variations in tones and accents. I could tell everyone apart very clearly. Her narration didn't take away from the story as a whole.
This is the first novel in this series that I enjoyed. The first half was h*ll to get through, but it did give me a new respect for Logan. Don't get me wrong, Silver was still annoying and made bad decisions, but it was better than the last three novels.
It feels like the first half of this novel could have been solved through a text message or Silver writing on a piece of paper what was happening and trying to figure it all out with everyone's help. As you'll soon find out everything hit the fan either way in the middle of the novel. It was all very frustrating seeing a way out, but having the character play the long game and suffering for no apparent reason.
Silver seems to be trying the learn from past mistakes, but still finds it in herself to come up with idiotic 'plans' (if you can call spur of the moment ideas a 'plan'). I did find myself rolling my eyes way less times during this book when compared to the last three novels. I can see she's evolving, but we're on the fourth book in the series shouldn't this have already happened by now?
After everything Silver dealt to Logan he's earned my respect. I also commend him for staying with her. He's also managed to get his anger management issues under control in just under half a novel. I like the change, but it didn't feel genuine. It felt like one beautiful day a literal switch just flipped and here's the new and improved Logan. It also seemed as if his domineering and controlling nature had been toned down and I approve.
I LOVED the Justus side story. I wish it had been a bigger part of the novel. No, I take that back. I wish he had his own separate novel/series so we could get to know him a little bit more. His story also seemed rushed, probably due to the fact that it was embedded in Silver's main story.
Overall, this was the best book in this series so far. For the sake of ending the story I will be reading the last book. After the events of this novel, I guess I'm somewhat rooting for Silver and Logan. They just deserve each other by this point.
The Audio Book:
The narration was awesome. I enjoy Nicole Poole's variety in tones and accents. I could tell all character's apart during the narration.
The story and world building is so good. It's disappointing that the main character ruins it all. This series seems to be going downhill for me because I dislike Silver and Logan so much.
When will Silver learn some common sense and start looking out for herself instead of just ignoring orders, that keep her safe, on a whim? I understand that following rules/orders can be a burden and it can often cause the opposite effect, but wouldn't you expect her to value her own life above her pride? I've lost count of the amount of times (during this series up to this point) that Silver has put herself or someone else in danger just because she couldn't stay put for 15 minutes. How does Justus or anyone for that matter still trust her? Everyone gushes over her and it's gotten old. She isn't a special snowflake....scratch that. In this novel, surprise surprise, we discover that she is in deed a special snowflake.
Logan doesn't have much going for him in my eyes either. He's domineering, controlling, is a walking cliché and has anger management issues that are disguised by his 'chitah' nature. I don't know about you, but that list doesn't describe a guy who's ready for a relationship. I don't care that it's in his 'nature'.
I really enjoy Justus as a character. I hope that he eventually gets a happily ever after. The few enjoyable parts in this book were scenes with him (ex: the car scene (which was hilarious), the ending sad scene, the violent garage scene). I also loved Christen and he also had very entertaining parts in this story.
Overall, my dislike of the heroine and her love interest is taking away from the story. This series has become like a car crash to me: I simultaneously want to look away and keep watching it happen in all it's gore. It still boggles my mind that the same author that wrote such powerful and intricate heroines in other novels, wrote this impulsive and idiotic character.
The Audio Book:
The narration was great. I had no problem with it whatsoever. I could easily differentiate the voices for each character.
This book felt like a huge filler to me. It's either that or the only way the author found it in herself to introduce Logan Cross as a love interest. The story felt like it went in circles and the ending didn't really leave me satisfied because no one was caught. There were a scene or two that was heartwarming, but that's about it.
Silver seemed so naive, in this novel, to the point that it became a running joke in my head of 'What will Silver do next?'. The whole novel only happened because of her idiotic life threatening mistakes. Had she never opened the door or called to ask her guardian or Simon if she was supposed to be expecting someone, then at most she would have had to get out of there by car and meet up with them.
Logan rubbed me the wrong way from the moment he met Silver. Maybe I hold too tightly onto grudges, but I can't forgive someone for doing what he did in the beginning. I don't care about the extenuating circumstances. You don't do that to anyone, ever. He was sweet and protective, but I'm on team Justus.
I'm starting the think that I'm on the wrong side of this 'possible' love triangle because I ship Silver with Justus. So because of that I despised every moment with Logan. Though both men seem to be polar opposites of each other and I'm guessing that's the appeal. I don't like it in the least.
The ending was one of the few parts of the story that I adored. Her moment with Justus was incredible and I want to get to know him a little bit better. The moment with Finn was also high on my list of enjoyable moments.
The Audio Book:
The narration was very good. I could distinguish between all the character voices. I have nothing but positive things to say about this audio book.
This is the third time I've picked this novel up. The only difference this time is that I found it in myself to finish reading/listening to it. I had a hard time getting into this novel because it's different from all the other books I've read by this author. This book was very story driven and romance always took the back seat, which is the complete opposite of her other book series (Seven Series & Closer novella) that I've read up to this point.
I liked Zoë (AKA Silver) overall, but I still think she's too impulsive and acts before she thinks even knowing it's going to get her in trouble. I'm presuming that she's going to end up with Justus (which isn't a spoiler because it's a theory of mine at the moment). Their guardian and learner relationship was very awkward and I liked it. It made that all the more real considering no one in their right mind would be comfortable with all the extenuating circumstances.
Justus seems to have various sides to him and it doesn't look like we've seen what he's capable of. I adored how he tried to help Silver and still follow the 'law'. Everything wasn't thrown to the wind because he brought her into his life. I can't wait for him to open up to her a little more.
I loved Simon. He has a few very crude and very funny one liners. He would break the ice in a serious conversations with the weirdest things. He was a very entertaining character. On the other hand, Adam was one character I didn't particularly enjoy. I liked how it all ended, but I would have been happier if he hadn't become such a big part of the story.
Overall I wish this story had been more romance heavy, but I understand that it doesn't pertain to the genre (urban fantasy). I did enjoy it, which surprised me considering this is my third try with this series. I do plan on continuing on with the next book in this series.
The Audio Book:
I can't really explain it, but something about how this was recorded bothered me. Maybe it's all in my head but the narrator's voice seemed muffled by something. I've listened to other recorded audio books by this narrator and never had a problem. This seems like the odd man out for some reason or maybe my headphones are slowly dying without me realizing. The world may never know...
I wasn't expecting to love this book as much as I did. It started off very typical with the main character pulling the woe-is-me card and having no friends. What happened after that blew everything out of the water. Though I would love it if the author had gotten this book through a few more rounds of editing.
I liked Raven. She's the type of character that I see myself in if I were ever in her shoes. She's suspicious and questions everything. She wants explanations for (what seem to be) very simple and straightforward questions. I love that she doesn't give up. Her attitude and sassy remarks made her all the more likable in my eyes.
Rhyland almost won me over, but the cryptic conversations that Raven overheard and his avoidance of what should have been easy to answer questions got old very fast. He also seemed to read her mind during a few scenes (let me point out that he specifically stated that he doesn't have that ability). He was overall cagey and his brother didn't help matters in the slightest.
By the end, I was already putting a few pieces together and had somewhat of an inkling to what could have been happening. Even though I ended up being wrong, it was even better than I imagined. I want to know if what happened in that ending is what made Rhyland bully Raven when they were younger? Can she actually trust him? These questions are circling my mind and I want the answers to them.
My Favorite Quotes:
"I'm all jokes and sarcasm."
"(...) My future, which felt like it had finally just started, is no longer mine."
"And Fate knows what it's doing (...)"
* I received an eARC from the author in exchange of an honest review.
What an awesome ending to an incredible series! I'm not sure what I was expecting as an ending to this crazy adventure. All I know is what I got blew everything out of the water. I also loved the LGBT+ representation in this novel. It's not everyday that I pick up a book that represents and delves into that community.
I have mixed feelings towards Brooklyn because of what was revealed in the end. There was finally a reason for all her guilt, which makes the story that much more intricate. I don't think I would have welcomed her with open arms after all that though. What can I say? I'm petty. I'll admit to it.
I couldn't stand Julien this time around. Who in their right mind falls for a psychopath (which ended up being redeemed in a way)? I also don't believe that love can fix someone or make them more 'understanding'. Though the omens are all genetically altered and their brains work differently, I couldn't sympathize with the situation.
When everything clicked into place, it was like a light switch flipped and finally illuminated all the dark corners of what was actually going on. I wasn't expecting that to be the outcome. The epilogue took away from the story for me because it felt like everything was too perfect. For a group of genetically modified 'people' to get somewhat of a happy ending without something coming back to bite them in the ass is, to me, an impossibility.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Sometimes reality was disorienting, sometimes nothing seemed real."
"Dead was different than gone. Something that was gone could come back. Dead was permanence."
"Perhaps the war had never been about surviving, maybe it had always been about living."
I have a bit of history with this novel that I'll get out of the way first. In 2014 I was provided an eARC via Netgalley of this book which ended up as a DNF. I was always intrigued by this novel, but couldn't get through it as a book. After I saw that it had an audio book version to it, I decided to pick it back up. It was easier to get through, but it still left a lot to be desired.
Everything about this novel seemed robotic. The grammar was too proper and because of that everyone had only one option: to speak in monotone. The narrator tried to infer emotion through the voices, but it just wasn't possible. Overall, I got very bored listening to this.
I disliked Khara very much. I also didn't understand the dynamic she had with her so called 'brothers'. One moment they were best friends forever and the next it's 'stay here and don't do anything'. To be fair, it did seem like she had a death wish from time to time. She made decisions no one in their right mind would make under those circumstances.
To tell you the truth all her brothers blended together in my head. I couldn't tell them apart even if it killed me. The only one that stood out was Oz, but I disliked him even more. His forced nickname of 'new girl' for Khara didn't have the impact the author intended it to have. It just grated on my nerves through the duration of the novel.
During the story it felt like everyone was holding something back and that bubble finally popped with the ending. It was somewhat predictable considering Khara's known history of bad decision making. After all that, I didn't care enough for the character's to want them to succeed. I won't be picking up the sequel to this novel.
The Audio Book:
Angela Dawe (the narrator) was doomed from the start, so there wasn't much she could do. As much as she tried to project emotion in her narration, the book was too robotic in it's grammar to give her much room for anything. The reading of the novel was good considering what the she had to work with.
This was a very enjoyable book to read. Lately I've been a sucker for military novels and the fact that it ended up with a character having a disability made me love it even more. The disability makes it so the author has to get more creative with how scenes are experienced and that gives the book a whole new dimension.
I liked Ryan. He's been hardened by war for serving in the US military and just because of that he has my respect. This book, through Ryan, wants to shine a light on the struggles of ex-marines who attained injuries during battle. Apparently the statistics are rather high and awareness needs to be brought to this subject. Anyone who has served deserves my respect and, if injured, to get the help he/she deserves after protecting any country.
Lizzy was very cute and nerdy. I adored seeing her geek out over stars and her telescope. It made it all the more realistic. I also loved that this story was about friends turned lovers. It made the romance that much more believable.
The only thing that I disliked about this book was the transition between Ryan pushing Lizzy away and her convincing him that they could give being a couple a try. It felt too cut and dry. Overall this novel was beautiful and the quotes between chapters were adorable. The ending was sweet, but heart wrenching.
My Favorite Quotes:
"My mind fights. My heart is in a battle of a lifetime. And my soul is nowhere near peace."
"Trying to be strong, and being strong, are two separate things."
"Life is a crapshoot, and you never know the hand you'll be dealt until it happens and you're left dealing with it all."
I was expecting so much more from this novel. The second book in this series has treachery and lies throughout the storyline and keeps you on your toes for the majority of the book. This book, unfortunately, doesn't follow that trend. It felt like a filler to extend this series into more books. What sealed the nail on the coffin in this book for me was the ending. That was a major turn off.
Arianna was boring this time around. She wasn't witty or smart about anything. There were times when she acted like a petulant child because she couldn't learn something that took most people years to master in 2 hours.
Fenrus didn't feel like a part of the story anymore. He and Arianna are barely in proximity to each other during the whole novel. Nothing between them got progressed (if you don't count the somewhat irrational decision to finally sleep together after he had gone on and on about wanting to wait and take his time). It was one contradiction after the other.
I will most certainly be part of the unpopular opinion when it comes to judging if this book was worth it or not. I despised the ending and all the different character point of views (with the exception of Arianna and Fenrus). Instead of splitting up the story with different point of views it would have been better to get the characters to have a conversation about it when they finally met up. I dislike different point of views when it doesn't add anything important to the story.
The Audio Book:
The audio book was great. The narrations were very well executed and I could differentiate between characters for the majority of the time. Though I'm not a big fan of Joel Froomkin his voice has grown on me.
If you're reading this review and contemplating suicide please get help. Talk to a friend, parent or teacher. Life isn't as hard as we all make it out to be. Things can and will get better sooner or later. For more information please visit the Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
This story made me feel so many emotions. It ranged from angry, to sadness and outrage throughout the novel. Being a teenager is already difficult enough, but when you add bullying and an already broken girl you're looking for trouble.
This was very hard to listen to in a few scenes. I didn't understand why she just stood around when her friend was passed out and had what happened happen to her. I didn't understand why she never tried to get help before the ending. It's very easy to tell someone to get help, but it's a whole other story when it's happening to you. It's difficult enough to open up to someone on a regular topic, I can't even begin to imagine what it's like talking about suicide.
That counselor played just as big of a role as the people in her class because of the bullying she dealt with during this novel. No counselor in his right mind would have let her slip out of that room after what was said.
The end was tragic with a dash of hope. Clay couldn't have helped Hannah because she never asked him to, but now he can recognize the signs of someone that's in need of help and try his best to not let it get as far as Hannah did.
The Audio Book:
This was a very good audio book. The narrations were on point throughout the novel. It was an overall enjoyable experience.