Saturday, September 29, 2012

Review: Dark Kiss by Michelle Rowen

Dark Kiss by Michelle Rowen
ebook, 304 pages
Published June 1st 2012 by Harlequin Teen
Source: NetGalley, ARC
Buy the book: Amazon : B&N : Goodreads
From Goodreads:
Smart, ├╝ber-careful, ordinary Samantha—that's me. But I just couldn't pass up a surprise kiss from my number one unattainable crush. A kiss that did something to me…something strange. Now I feel hungry all the time, but not for food. It's like part of me is missing—and I don't know if I can get it back.

Then there's Bishop. At first I thought he was just a street kid, but the secrets he's keeping are as intense as his unearthly blue eyes. If he's what I think he is, he may be the only one who can help me. But something terrifying is closing in, and the one chance Bishop and I have to stop it means losing everything I ever wanted and embracing the darkness inside me….

 I could not wait to see how Rowen wrapped a story around her take on the angel and demon concepts. It is really a different look compared to many others that are on the market right now. The story and plot fall into place beautifully. They have just enough of action, romance, and intrigue to keep you interested and the story flowing. There were a couple of things that seemed odd or inconsistent at times, but they are too spoilery to put on here. Trust me, you'll recognize what I am talking about when you read it. It would also be nice if locations were shaken up some. It seemed everything happened in one or two spots. Otherwise, the characters follow a somewhat predictable path, but the twists that Rowen puts on the angel/demon lore make it worth while. It is one of those books that blurs the lines significantly and makes you wonder if you have ever been told the truth about them before...I love this way of thinking and writing in a book.

The characters were hit or miss with me. Sam is pretty straight up front: ordinary girl that turns extraordinary. There were times I couldn't completely connect with her, but for the most part she is an enjoyable character. I did get really tired of her being called "special." For the love of all that is holy, calm that down please... Bishop is a great character and love interest, but he and Sam's relationship seems so typical and contrived in an otherwise distinctive story. He needs to be brought up a notch or two in the bravery part as well. If this would happen I think I could fall for him on another level. However, Kraven was definitely my fav character in this book. He's snarky yet serious and has wonderful good and bad sides that make you want to hug him one minute and slap him the next. Rowen, if anything slows down in the story just insert one or two lines from him and it will make the scene! I hope that we can learn more about the characters in the next book. It feels like we just got the basics in this one. I think it would greatly help both with connecting with them and totally immersing the reader into this awesome story.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday - September 26, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme from Jill at Breaking the Spine. To join in, share the book or books that you are currently drooling over as you await their release and report back to Breaking the Spine with the link to your post. The gorgeous badge above is brought to us by Lindsay at The Violet Hour!

I can't wait to get started on this series! I will be headed to the Southern Book Festival in October to meet these authors as well. Can't wait to put my books on the "signed by author" shelf!

Beautiful Redemption by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Hardcover, 576 pages
Expected publication: October 23rd 2012 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers 

 From Goodreads:
Is death the end . . . or only the beginning?

Ethan Wate has spent most of his life longing to escape the stiflingly small Southern town of Gatlin. He never thought he would meet the girl of his dreams, Lena Duchannes, who unveiled a secretive, powerful, and cursed side of Gatlin, hidden in plain sight. And he never could have expected that he would be forced to leave behind everyone and everything he cares about. So when Ethan awakes after the chilling events of the Eighteenth Moon, he has only one goal: to find a way to return to Lena and the ones he loves.

Back in Gatlin, Lena is making her own bargains for Ethan's return, vowing to do whatever it takes -- even if that means trusting old enemies or risking the lives of the family and friends Ethan left to protect.

Worlds apart, Ethan and Lena must once again work together to rewrite their fate, in this stunning finale to the Beautiful Creatures series.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Review: Timepiece by Myra McEntire

Timepiece by Myra McEntire
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published June 12th 2012 by EgmontUSA
Source: ARC, NetGalley
Buy the Book: Amazon : B&N : Goodreads
From Goodreads:
A threat from the past could destroy the future. And the clock is ticking...

Kaleb Ballard's relentless flirting is interrupted when Jack Landers, the man who tried to murder his father, timeslips in and attacks before disappearing just as quickly. But Kaleb has never before been able to see time travelers, unlike many of his friends associated with the mysterious Hourglass organization. Are Kaleb's powers expanding, or is something very wrong?

Then the Hourglass is issued an ultimatum. Either they find Jack and the research he's stolen on the time gene, or time will be altered with devastating results.

Now Kaleb, Emerson, Michael, and the other Hourglass recruits have no choice but to use their unusual powers to find Jack. But where do they even start? And when? And even if they succeed, it may not be enough...

The follow-up to Hourglass, Timepiece blends the paranormal, science fiction, mystery, and suspense genres into a nonstop thrill ride where every second counts.
Revisiting McEntire's world with Emerson was as eventful as always. However, this time we get to see it from Kaleb's point of view. Fortunately, there is a lot personality background work done this time around and it illuminates the inner workings of the characters. This is especially true for Kaleb and helped me understand what exactly made him the playboy that he is. It also means that there is more Lily this time around and you are in for a ride with her! I loved having more interactions with her this time. Em and Michael are back with their plights and sarcasm, but with everything coming from Kaleb's view they have whole new dimensions as well.
There is so much additional information in this installment. I believe McEntire must have waived holy water over the plot to keep it from completely bogging down. Whatever she did, it worked pretty well. Rips and secrets are deeply dug into and lays a definite path for the next book. I loved the details and thought-provoking aspects of the rips this time. I do wish that the book could have picked up the pace a little more though. It still carries a great steady pace, but it feels like it was just a notch below that of Hourglass. Regardless, the book is still a solid folllow-up and journey that you won't want to miss.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Review: Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Shultz

 Spellcaster by Cara Lynn Shultz
Paperback, 371 pages
Published March 27th 2012 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Netgalley, ARC
Buy the Book: Amazon : B&N : Goodreads

From Goodreads:
After breaking a centuries-old romantic curse, Emma Connor is (almost) glad to get back to normal problems. Although…it's not easy dealing with the jealous cliques and gossip that rule her exclusive Upper East Side prep, even for a seventeen-year-old newbie witch. Having the most-wanted boy in school as her eternal soul mate sure helps ease the pain—especially since wealthy, rocker-hot Brendan Salinger is very good at staying irresistibly close….But something dark and hungry is using Emma's and Brendan's deepest fears to reveal damaging secrets and destroy their trust in each other. And Emma's crash course in ├╝berspells may not be enough to keep them safe…or to stop an inhuman force bent on making their unsuspected power its own.

Shultz's writing is absolutely some of my favorite. The quirks and personalities she gives her characters are very easy for me to relate to and follow. I really liked the growth in the main characters this time, especially Angelique. I'm happy that Emma advances and stays true to herself, but Angelique is definitely my favorite character in these books. I loved the fact that she now has bigger role in the grand scheme of things. Brendan, Brendan...He is still his wonderful self in this installment, but we get to learn more about him and why he is the way he is. Unfortunately, some things come up and it makes him even more protective and annoyingly broody. However, I am really glad they progressed in their relationship...get ready for some steamy scenes in this one! I liked the adversary a lot better this time. Instead of the sniveling fool we had before there is someone a little more worthy of battling this time. Overall, there was good character development this time, but there were a few things that were over the top.

The plot is both good and bad this time around. It is the book's greatest savior from over the top personality aspects, but is also its biggest demon for several reasons. The first is its predictability. If you pay any attention at all you will catch the not so subtle hints early on of what is to come and who is going to do it. Another aspect that really irritated me was the languishing love and sacrificing for each other. This is essential to the story I know, but it really went overboard and got old quickly. It is a good thing that these aspects were wrapped in a series of events that kept me turning the page. The action is kicked up a notch and the pitfalls keep coming. While it has its draw backs, Shultz's second installment will leave you satisfied and eager to see what is in store for next time.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Beautiful Creatures Trailer!!

Let another era of booky-movieness begin!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday - September 19, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme from Jill at Breaking the Spine. To join in, share the book or books that you are currently drooling over as you await their release and report back to Breaking the Spine with the link to your post. The gorgeous badge above is brought to us by Lindsay at The Violet Hour!

The torture of all tortures is having to wait on the next book in a favorite series. This is one of the hardest for me. Well, it and the 2014 release date for City of Heavenly Fire....When I think of that, March 2013 doesn't seem to far away!

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare
Expected publication: March 19th 2013 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
 From Goodreads,
If the only way to save the world was to destroy what you loved most, would you do it?

The clock is ticking. Everyone must choose.

Passion. Power. Secrets. Enchantment.

Danger closes in around the Shadowhunters in the final installment of the bestselling Infernal Devices trilogy.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Review: Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz
Paperback, 341 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon : B&N : Goodreads
From Goodreads:

Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Connor, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn to—Brendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight. But even when Brendan inexplicably turns cold, Emma can't stop staring. Ever since she laid eyes on him, strange things have been happening. Streetlamps go out wherever she walks, and Emma's been having the oddest dreams: visions of herself in past lives—visions that warn her to stay away from Brendan. Or else.
 The first thing you will love about this book are the characters. Emma is an awesome, sarcastic character that I easily relate to. Her snide look at things in life is hilarious and I found myself laughing several times at her antics. Then she meets Brendan...and their meeting is pretty stereotypical of course, love at first sight. However, there is an interesting twist to this romance. Instead of the female bringing the issues into the relationship, it is the male. Brendan brings his family's past into them mix and it pretty much blows up from there. Angelique is the glue that holds this book together. Her distinctive style  and personality single-handedly keeps an excellent focus on what needs to be done. Then she uses her own methods of fixing it... Love it, I want to see more of her!
On top of this, school is absolutely miserable for everyone. Anthony and his little followers do not discriminate with who they torture, they simply do it to all. He is a good "evil, crazy" bad guy, but even after the final scene I feel like it all could have been umped up a lot more.The book keeps a steady pace of events and should keep your interest till the end. The grand finale was ok, but it could have been better. The interesting turn of events there had me confused at first. After a quick re-read I think it worked out the best it could have with all things considered. I would definitely recommend this book to others, it is completely worth it.