Saturday, November 26, 2011
Wereworld: Rise of the Wolf (Wereworld #1) by Curtis Jobling -- September 20, 2011 -- Hardcover, 412 pages
Wereworld: Rise of the Wolf takes place in a fantasy world full of werelords, men and women of noble breeding who have the ability to transform into a variety of animals at will, inlcuding foxes, rats, lions, and even sharks. The wolf lord has been overthrown, and all of his kin destroyed as the new king takes over all of the realms. Drew, a young farmboy who feels a little out of place in his own family, finds himself confronted by a werecreature one night, and during a scuffle his mother is slain. Drew is blamed by his father, and banished to the Dyrewoods to fend for himself. While here, he learns of his heritage as the last of the werewolves, and begins a journey to fulfill the prophecy of reclaiming the thrown of which he is the sole heir.
I really wanted to like this book. It was advertised at San Diego Comic Con 2011 where I received an ARC for review. They described the book as Game of Thrones light, and had me hooked when they mentioned the appearance of a wereshark. However, this story was far too flat and cliche to maintain my interest.
Drew is the protaganist of the novel, but he lacks any sort of personality or, how shall I say, the balls to complete any tasks set out before him. His journey is predictable, the settings have all been written before, the characters are flat and lack substance, and I just found the flow of the entire book to be slow and boring. I'm sure this might appeal to someone, maybe a younger boy who is looking for a mildly violent fantasy adventure featuring werecreatures, but as a YA novel this book is written far too young. As far as writing, the POV flips back and forth between characters, making it very frustrating when you are trying to figure out what is going on. Overall, I would say skip this one, read Game of Thrones if you are looking for a similar fantasy novel with a bit more meat to it.
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Thursday, September 29, 2011
Crossed (Matched #2) by Ally Condie - November 1, 2011 - Dutton, Hardcover, 384 pages
Summary: Crossed picks up right where Matched left off. Ky has been captured by the Society and forced to work in the Outer Provinces, where few people have been able to survive for extended periods of time. In order to find out what has become of Ky, Cassia must somehow escape from the clutches of the Society and find her way to the Outer Provinces. However, she is now torn between saving one person, and saving an entire nation with the aid of the Rising.
Review: I loved the premise of the first book in this promising series, but Crossed, like most 2nd books in a trilogy, falls in the zone of the Outer Provinces. There just was not enough story to keep the novel flowing, and even the characters lost my interest this time around. Cassia, who was in a way brainwashed by the Society all of her life, had a much stronger voice in Matched and consistently put herself in danger by going against what the government demanded of its people. That was not the case in Crossed, where we see our heroine loose what little backbone she obtained in the first book and uses up all her energy pining over her lost love in a pathetic, needy way. There were a few interesting storylines that were brought up in Crossed, but failed to have any sort of resolution by the end of the novel. The same is true of the characters- no one grows or changes or makes any sort of intelligent decision concerning the main story arc of the series. What we are left with, my dears, is a cliff hanger that will leave you wanting to read the next book, but with the unfortunate dusty taste of emptyness in your mouth.
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Gossip Girl, Psycho Killer by Cecily von Ziegesar - October 3, 2011 - Paperback, 272 pages
I can't say that I was terribly impressed with the first installment of the Gossip Girl book series, but I must say that the TV series was quite a guilty pleasure for me. Gossip Girl, Psycho Killer, my wait-tastic pick for October, is a slasher retelling of the first book. It combines my two favorite things: bad books and bad books getting bloody makeovers. In the glamorous world of New York's upper east side, beauty is only skin deep.
Monday, September 19, 2011
First Kill (The Slayer Chronicles #1) by Heather Brewer - September 20, 2011 - Hardcover
In this thrilling companion to the popular Vladimir Tod series, readers are invited to hear Joss's side of the story. Joss Mcmillan is an average boy, growing up with a fascination with bugs and treated as an outcast at school. This all changes on the night he witnesses his sister's murder- at the hands of a vampire. Ignored by his family and saddened by the loss of his younger sister, Joss is approached by his uncle, who reveals to him the secret world of the Slayer Society, inviting Joss to join their ranks and avenge his sister's death. Can Joss survive the brutal challenges that await him as he trains to become a full-fledged slayer? Or will his emotions and weakness get the better of him?
Life is killer on the other side of the stake! First Kill was one fantastic read, I must say! I havn't read a book with an interesting male protagonist in awhile, and it really is unfortunate that there are so few YA books with male leads. Although First Kill primarily revolves around Joss's foray into becoming a vampire slayer, don't let the title fool you. This book takes place during Joss's training to becoming a slayer, and although there are plot twists and character deceptions to keep you interested, there is very little in the way of vampire action. This book takes place the summer before the Chronicles of Vladimir Tod begins. I went into this book not having read the Vladimir Tod series, and while I felt like there were things in First Kill that were probably connected to Vladimir Tod, I didn't feel like I couldn't enjoy this book without that having read the other. Defintiely check this one out if you're looking for a good YA horror series.
Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins - December 2, 2010 - Hardcover, 372 pages
Anna Oliphant, daughter of a famous chick lit writer, is sent away her senior year of high school to attend the School of America- in Paris! Pulled away from her best friend, and the boy she has a crush on, Anna must learn to cope with a new country, a new language, and new classmates. In comes beautiful Etienne St. Clair, the American/English/French student with a kind heart and a slew of his own family problems. What’s a girl to do? Can Anna find love in the most romantic city in the world?
As light and delicious as a macaron, Anna and the French Kiss is a lovely little gem of a novel. The characters are realistic and relatable, and Anna and Etienne’s desire for true love will resonate with all readers with a soft spot for happy endings. Written with humor and wit, Stephanie Perkins has delivered a YA novel that will leave readers très heureux!
Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5