Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Review: Iron Gold

Iron Gold Iron Gold by Pierce Brown
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It has been ten years since Darrow spearheaded a revolution and began the changes that he thought would transform the Society. Unfortunately, the Rising brought many unwanted changes … a war that doesn’t seem to want to stop. He now wants to initiate another mission with the hopes that he will save the world. Darrow is not alone; there is a Red girl, an ex-soldier and an heir in exile that will impact the story and the fate of the Society. Will Darrow’s mission succeed? Will he survive this last revolution?

Iron Gold is the fourth book in the Red Rising Saga. It doesn’t matter if the reader has just finished Morning Star or has been waiting the twenty-three months between the release dates, they won’t have any trouble falling right back into the storyline and enjoying the newest additions to the character list. The alternating characters give the reader variety without being overly distracting. Iron Gold is a great read and online sources say there are two more books to come. Let’s hope we don’t have to wait two years!

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Friday, December 1, 2017

Review: Unearthed

Unearthed Unearthed by Amie Kaufman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Earth is suffering from environmental damage and limited resources when they receive a message from an alien race that went extinct before humans had language. The Undying were advanced beyond anything humans have invented and the people of Earth hoped that this would be the key to reversing the devastation that has ravaged the planet. Jules wants to study this alien culture and Amelia is only interested in earning enough money for herself and her sister. When this unlikely pair ends up stuck with each other, the stakes change and the outcome cannot be predicted.

Unearthed is the first book in a new series with the same title. This science fiction tale is set in the not too distant future when humans realize their mistakes and are trying to find solutions. As most people know, the ends do not always justify the means and our two lead characters discover many shady transactions and not so honest people. Kaufman has created a new storyline that is easy to relate to and readers will quickly find themselves wanting to know what will happen to Jules and Amelia. Readers be forewarned, the ending is not a cliff hanger, but it also will leave you the undeniable need to know what happens next.

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Sunday, November 26, 2017

Review: Someone to Love

Someone to Love Someone to Love by Melissa de la Cruz
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Olivia Blakely has been under a lot of pressure. She is the daughter of a politician and she is younger than everyone else in her class. Liv has always struggled with accepting her body and her weight, but when her normal pressures are compounded with trying to get into art school and the attentions of the boy she is interested in, her careful devotion to her weight spirals into a case of bulimia. Will her family and friends notice these changes? Will Liv learn to love herself and not worry about what the world thinks?

Someone to Love is a stand-alone novel that leaves a lot to be desired. It is a hard topic that is even harder to relate to, yet it seemed that many parts of the story were disconnected and forced into the greater story. De la Cruz has a large fan base and many people will pick this book up. It may not be for everyone, but if it helps one person struggling with self-acceptance and encourages them to ask for help, then it is worth reading and recommending. Someone to Love will be an enjoyable read for the right reader.

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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Review: Alone

Alone Alone by Cyn Balog
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Seda is happy to spend her summer in an old mansion that her mother has inherited. Her aunt and uncle had converted it into a haunted residence and Seda and her siblings enjoy the scary rooms and all of the secret passage ways. Unfortunately, her mother doesn’t want to sell it and she is now stuck in the boonies with no contact with her friends back home. Then a group of teenagers arrive at her door following a car accident and Seda and her family have no choice but to let them in. As the blizzard rages outside, the creepiness level inside begins to climb. Are Seda’s worst fears coming true?

Alone is a mystery novel that will keep readers engaged throughout. Most readers will think they know where the storyline is going, yet Balog has created an ending with several twists and a few extra turns. The characters are exciting and readers will slowly discover more about them as the story progresses. Since this book is relatively short, readers may find themselves stuck in their favorite reading nook turning page after page until the very end. A great read that should be added to everyone’s TBR list.

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Saturday, November 18, 2017

Review: Forest of a Thousand Lanterns

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Xifeng is beautiful and knows she is destined for greatness. Her aunt has instilled in her that the stars have predicted that she would one day become the Empress of Feng Lu. It doesn’t matter that she is a lowly peasant girl, the witch Guma has regularly read her cards and has seen Xifeng’s future. What will Xifeng need to do in order to bring these predictions into truth? Will she be willing to give up her true love in order to follow her destiny?

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is the first book in the Rise of the Empress series. Although Dao has created an East Asian world that is deep with history and legends, readers won’t feel like they are inundated with excessive world building. There are portions of the story that drag some and the ending felt rushed, yet readers will still finish the book with an anticipation of the next volume. A good read but will not satisfy all readers.

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Friday, November 10, 2017

Review: Dear World: A Syrian Girl's Story of War and Plea for Peace

Dear World: A Syrian Girl's Story of War and Plea for Peace Dear World: A Syrian Girl's Story of War and Plea for Peace by Bana Alabed
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Bana may be seven years old, but due to the war in Syria she has needed to grow up quickly. Her family has been devastated by loss and she has been exposed to truths that most seven year olds are never aware of. She is encouraged to express her concerns to the world on Twitter and she quickly has a large following. Dear World is told in Bana’s own words with some additional chapters written by her mother. This woman and child wanted to tell their story in the hopes that the world would not underestimate the atrocities that are taking place. This is a short non-fiction book that will inform readers about a very timely topic in the world today

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Saturday, November 4, 2017

Review: Rosemarked

Rosemarked Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Zivah has just passed her exams to become a healer when the rose plague hits her village. She was infected and lived but is now a carrier of this disease and it is only a matter of time before it will finally kill her. Her life can be lonely or she can choose to use her gifts to help her people overcome the Amparan Empire. Dineas has also survived the rose plague, but his healing was complete. As these two unlikely people work together to infiltrate the capital, they must weigh the cost of spying alongside the chance that their hearts may be broken.

Rosemarked is the first book in the Rosemarked series. The story is told in the alternating voices of Zivah and Dineas, yet Blackburne has created a story that moves along smoothly as the reader unravels new information. It is hard to put this into any one genre. It is obviously not our world, but there isn’t a lot of magic or non-human creatures that would lend it to a fantasy classification. It still gives off a fantasy vibe and readers of that genre will be excited to delve into this world’s issues. A great read with just a little bit of romance along the edges.

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