Review-arama – by Kristen

Posted 12 April, 2012 by Danny in Book Review, Kristen / 6 Comments

Well hello there! It seems like Spring is upon us and my book blogging has been lacking and sadly not crackalacking. The good news is that I’m still reading! So here is a quick and dirty synopsis of what’s been keeping me up til 2am every night.

A Million Suns (Across the Universe, #2)

A Million Suns (Across the Universe #2)

by Beth Revis (Goodreads Author)
Godspeed was once fueled by lies. Now it is ruled by chaos. It’s been three months. In that time, Amy has learned to hide who she is. Elder is trying to be the leader he’s always wanted to be. But as the ship gets more and more out of control, only one thing is certain: They have to get off the ship.
Hardcover, 386 pages
Published January 10th 2012 by Razorbill
ISBN 159514398X (ISBN13: 9781595143983)
Oh…..I read this the first one (Across the Universe) because of Heather’s review, and then after the 2nd review I was chomping at the bit to start this one. It DID NOT DISAPPOINT. I’ll even say I liked it better than the first one…Yeah, really! Usually the second book of a series is the weakest link for me.  Authors have the tendency to use book two as filler for a big finale in book three (or *cough* four *cough* annoying *cough*). This one, however, stands alone. The story moved forward, we learned even more big secrets about Godspeed and her crew and Amy just kicked butt. Can’t wait for the next installment!

How to Save a Life

How to Save a Life

Jill MacSweeny just wishes everything could go back to normal. But ever since her dad died, she’s been isolating herself from her boyfriend, her best friends–everyone who wants to support her. And when her mom decides to adopt a baby, it feels like she’s somehow trying to replace a lost family member with a new one.
Mandy Kalinowski understands what it’s like to grow up unwanted–to be raised by a mother who never intended to have a child. So when Mandy becomes pregnant, one thing she’s sure of is that she wants a better life for her baby. It’s harder to be sure of herself. Will she ever find someone to care for her, too?As their worlds change around them, Jill and Mandy must learn to both let go and hold on, and that nothing is as easy–or as difficult–as it seems.Critically acclaimed author and National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr delivers a heart-wrenching story, told from dual perspectives, about the many roads that can lead us home.
Hardcover, 341 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
0316036064 (ISBN13: 9780316036061)

Ok – this one I read on a recommendation from my friend, Greta.  Basically, I kinda love the quirky stuff that Greta loves, and the synopsis looked like a great heartstrings puller sort of humanistic book.  I have to be honest, it took me a little while to get into – I really had a hard time figuring out and feeling for Jill. I mean, I GOT that her dad had died, and she was emo and she was pushing people away and being kinda bitchy.  And I felt bad for her, but I didn’t like her. And then I was actually kinda mad at her mom for this whole ‘adopting a baby’ thing.  So I was all kinds of annoyed. Then we get to Mandy, who was a bit too much like a lot of girls I went to high school with, so she annoyed me as well….But then, something happened…these people and their story grew on me and I had to see it through, and by the end I was snot sobbing. What a great progression and how awesome that the author was able to make me feel one way and then completely change my tune at the end. GREAT writing!

The Immortal Highlander (Highlander, #6)

The Immortal Highlander (Highlander #6)

Enter a world of timeless seduction, of ancient intrigue and modern-day passion. Enter the dazzling world of Karen Marie Moning, whose acclaimed Highlander novels have captivated readers, spanning the continents and the centuries, bringing ancient Scotland vividly to life. In a new novel brimming with time-travel adventure and sensual heat, the nationally bestselling author of The Dark Highlander delivers a love story that will hold you in thrall—and a hero you will most certainly never forget.BEWARE: lethally seductive alpha male of immense strength and dark eroticism, do not look at him. Do not touch him. Do not be tempted. Do not be seduced.

With his long, black hair and dark, mesmerizing eyes, Adam Black is Trouble with a capital T. Immortal, arrogant, and intensely sensual, he is the consummate seducer, free to roam across time and continents in pursuit of his insatiable desires. That is, until a curse strips him of his immortality and makes him invisible, a cruel fate for so irresistible a man. With his very life at stake, Adam’s only hope for survival is in the hands of the one woman who can actually see him.

Enter law student Gabrielle O’Callaghan, who is cursed with the ability to see both worlds: Mortal and Faery. From the moment she lays eyes on this stunning male, Gabby is certain of one thing: He could be her undoing. Thus begins a long, dangerous seduction. Because despite his powerful strength and unquenchable hungers, Adam refuses to take a woman by force. Instead, he will tease his way into Gabby’s bed and make her want him just as he wants her.

Oh – I can’t even tell you how badly I just wanted to print the synopsis and simply write, “Of course I liked it: Faery, Hot, Loins, Throbbing, Tease.”  But I can’t leave you with a review like that, mini review or not!  First of all, I love Karen Moning. And I love how her writing gets more complex and grows in each book.  She started out with book 1 which was definitely more your fantasy/romance sort of genre, but now, she has developed her Highlander stories with a bit more complexity. As fluffy and mindless as it is, Adam is such a fun character to read about – and his story is one of my favorites! You might know Adam black as Puck or Robin Goodfellow. Definitely a must read for some light and steamy between all that YA out there!

Micah (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #13)

Micah (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter #13)

“RAISING THE DEAD IS EASY. LOVE IS HARD…”There are lots of reasons to raise the dead-some private, some public. In this case, the feds have a witness who died before he could speak on the record. They want him raised so his testimony can be taken. So here I am, on a plane to Philadelphia, flying off to do my job.

But I’m not alone. Micah is with me. Micah, head of the St. Louis wereleopard pard. King to my Queen. The only one of my lovers who can stir my blood with just a glance from his chartreuse cat’s eyes. I was happy to have him at my side.

Until he mentioned that this will be our first time alone together. No Master Vampire. No Alpha Werewolf. Just me and Micah. And all my fears and doubts..

Ok – If you’re still with my in this review-arama. Here is my first cricket review. Ok, first of all, I have reviewed the Anita Blake books so far. Ass-kicking-zombie-raising-federal marshall-paranomal-loving-polyamorous-sexy-chick books that they are, this one made me laugh the most. And if you really wanna crack up – check out some of the reviews on Goodreads. First off, this was my first digital loan on my Kindle, so that was exciting. I couldn’t sleep so opened it up. Less than two hours later I was done with the entire book. It was 1am and I felt a bit like I read some Anita Blake fanfiction. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy some good lovin’ scenes and some zombie-raising. But other than that, this book didn’t move along anything in the story line. And I thought my digital loan screwed up because I finished an entire book in about an hour and a half.

Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles, #3)

Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles #3)

by Kami Garcia (Goodreads Author), Margaret Stohl (Goodreads Author)

Ethan Wate thought he was getting used to the strange, impossible events happening in Gatlin, his small Southern town. But now that Ethan and Lena have returned home, strange and impossible have taken on new meanings. Swarms of locusts, record-breaking heat, and devastating storms ravage Gatlin as Ethan and Lena struggle to understand the impact of Lena’s Claiming. Even Lena’s family of powerful Supernaturals is affected – and their abilities begin to dangerously misfire. As time passes, one question becomes clear: What – or who – will need to be sacrificed to save Gatlin?

For Ethan, the chaos is a frightening but welcome distraction. He’s being haunted in his dreams again, but this time it isn’t by Lena – and whatever is haunting him is following him out of his dreams and into his everyday life. Even worse, Ethan is gradually losing pieces of himself – forgetting names, phone numbers, even memories. He doesn’t know why, and most days he’s too afraid to ask.

Sometimes there isn’t just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there’s no going back. And this time there won’t be a happy ending.

Paperback, 518 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
ISBN 0316123528 (ISBN13: 9780316123525)
edition language English
original title Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles, #3)

Now, I was really looking forward to this book, having been a fan of the Caster Chronicles for quite some time. I guess I have been living under a rock because I assumed this one was the last book? So, I read it slowly and enjoyed how the story unfolded…I really liked how the world was completely falling apart and I wasn’t really sure where it all was going. Yay for mystery and suspense. But then when I was about 3/4 of the way through I realized there was no way this book was going to be it, and then that kinda turned me sour. I’m totally find if the author’s decide to do that – but really? I think we could have wrapped this baby up and possibly started something else? I sound like such a darn Debbie Downer about this. Despite my little mini tantrum, I enjoyed the story and watching both Ethan and Lena grow up a bit and face their responsibilities. However, let’s just say I’m gonna need my socks blown off in book 4. *crosses fingers and sucks on a lollipop*

Ape House

Ape House

Hardcover, 306 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Bond Street Books (first published January 1st 2010)
ISBN 0385664443 (ISBN13: 9780385664448)
edition language English
original title Ape House

Please take the five minutes to watch the video – it is awesome!

I’m not exactly sure how to describe this book. I would give it 5 stars for sure because I couldn’t stop thinking about it days and months after I read it.  I have to admit, I’m a linguist junkie. If I knew in college that this sort of field existed, I’m pretty sure my life would have taken a different path. I love talking about language, accents, slang, and regional dialects. I read lots when I was younger (yes, I was a bit of a geek) about Koko the ape who knew all the different signs and lexigrams. So, this book spoke to my heart about our culture. How we treat the people and the animals around us. As well as poking fun at some of our faults as humans.  I didn’t enjoy the “human” story as much as I did what was going on with the bonobos and how the book was going to turn out. I also LOVED that Sara wrote in some of the things she did at the Great Ape Trust (just 2 hours from where I live!) about the backpacks full of goodies.

The Scorpio Races

The Scorpio Races

by Maggie Stiefvater (Goodreads Author)
It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.
Hardcover, 409 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Scholastic Inc.
ISBN 054522490X (ISBN13: 9780545224901)
edition language English
I feel like a jerk. I wanted to like this book. I’m a huge Maggie Steifvater fan and really liked the writing. But I just couldn’t get into it. Maybe it’s because I’m one of those girls who was never into horses? Or because I was too dense to figure out if it was written in the past or in the future or in some alternate universe? I didn’t swoon over Sean, or over the Puck/Sean romance. I just felt kinda sad about the whole thing and was really happy when I was finally done (it’s a long book.) It just wasn’t my cup of tea. Sadly.

Silence (Hush, Hush, #3)

Silence (Hush, Hush #3)

by Becca Fitzpatrick (Goodreads Author)
The noise between Patch and Nora is gone. They’ve overcome the secrets riddled in Patch’s dark past…bridged two irreconcilable worlds…faced heart-wrenching tests of betrayal, loyalty and trust…and all for a love that will transcend the boundary between heaven and earth. Armed with nothing but their absolute faith in one another, Patch and Nora enter a desperate fight to stop a villain who holds the power to shatter everything they’ve worked for—and their love—forever.
Hardcover, 405 pages
Published October 4th 2011 by Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing
ISBN 1442426640 (ISBN13: 9781442426641)
edition language English
original title Silence
Yes! Here we go, it’s book Three! I wasn’t as thrilled about the second book (curse of the lackluster number two) and so I had high hopes for Silence. And I loved it! As frustrating as it was for Patch and Nora to not be together for the majority of the book as their normal couple, there was finally some resolution.  Even if they stopped the epic battle before it began which leads us to…Finale, book four…*pulls hair* I’m telling myself that it’s not the money, or hopes of a book deal for these authors to beat a dead horse…BAck to Silence, I was so glad to have my bad boy Patch back, the evil villains were evil and Nora was finally able to sort herself out and piece together what was going on despite finding herself totally blanking on the past few months of her life. I loved it!

Life of Pi

Life of Pi

Life of Pi is a masterful and utterly original novel that is at once the story of a young castaway who faces immeasurable hardships on the high seas, and a meditation on religion, faith, art and life that is as witty as it is profound. Using the threads of all of our best stories, Yann Martel has woven a glorious spiritual adventure that makes us question what it means to be alive, and to believe.
Mass Market Paperback, 356 pages
Published August 29th 2006 by Seal Books (first published September 11th 2001)
ISBN 0770430074 (ISBN13: 9780770430078)
edition language English
original title Life of Pi
I’m jumping the gun on this one. I haven’t finished it yet! That said….it started out a bit rough. My friend who loaned it to me told me to just get to page 100 and it will be great! And you know what – it is! This is a much, hm, how shall I say as I poke my head out behind a highland plaid, a bit more “higher brow” than what I’m used to. But every now and again I need to challenge the grey matter. Once I got used to the cadence and flow of the story it’s clicking along and I CAN NOT WAIT to get back into it!
Library hold list: Please chill out a bit so I can get back to this book!!!
There there it is – A quick and dirty Review-arama! Hope you enjoyed my reviews and I’ll see you next time when I chat a bit more about those Highlanders!
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6 Responses to “Review-arama – by Kristen”

  1. I very much enjoyed your “review-arama” format. I read Life of Pi when it first came out (over 10 years ago! wow!) and I loved it. You have made me want to read it again — if only I could find the time! Thanks.
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    Kristen 4/12/2012

    I’m hoping to finish it soon, but those dang Black Dagger Brotherhood guys are giving me the run around!
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  2. I was disappointed with Beautiful Chaos. I plan on re-reading it closer to the next book’s release. I didn’t like Beautiful Darkness much on my first read, but I fell in love with it on the second read. I’m hoping BCh is the same.
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    Kristen 4/12/2012

    I liked BC more than BD….but I couldn’t put my finger on what went wrong for me, exactly. I honestly think it was when I realized there was going to be a 4th book….
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