ARC Review: Warrior by Heather Todd

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Detailed Rating:

  •  Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★★

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Mary Houston didn’t expect to come home late at night to see her entire neighborhood in shambles; doors ripped off their hinges, windows smashed, trash on lawns. She’s sure her family has been captured by people who call themselves Warriors, who train humans to become a part of The Platform for World War III.  And she ends up captured herself as well. Now, in order to save herself from losing herself, she must make them believe that she is one of them.

She meets Xavier, who is set to train her one-on-one at The Shelter where she is staying with hundreds of other trainees. Can she survive while hiding her true self behind this mask, risking her entire life in the process? 

Review:

Sooooo, I’ve tried something different this time… Let me know how you feel about it in the comments’ section below! *monkey hiding his face with his hands emoji*

 

Publisher: Createspace
Date of Publication:  9th August 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Page Count: 227
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: I Am Sleepless: Sim 299 by Johan Twiss

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Book Rate:
 ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

I would like to start by saying I read this book in 3 days. “And why is this important?” you ask me. Because I’ve been on a reading slump since January (I guess it was my post-“the year is almost ending and I gotta finish my Goodreads Reading Challenge” exhaustion period) and it’s currently the 6th of April and no book had gripped as hard as this one did. So there you go, relevance.

If I had to describe I Am Sleepless without reading the synopsis I would say it is a mix between Ready Player One and The Darkest Minds Trilogy. It’s not as well-explored, not as detailed, not as unforgettable, true. But that may also be because I read those two first so this one didn’t come as much as a surprise to me. Nevertheless, I Am Sleepless managed to grab my attention very efficiently!

Johan Twiss’s characters are quite wonderful, very different and real, but I which I had gotten to know them better. The reader gets to see them all interact as a group a lot but we rarely learn about them as individuals – except for the main character, Aidan.

The story line was very consistent and interesting and then again, I wouldn’t change its structure a single bit, I only add more depth to it. I feel like a lot of the situations presented could’ve been better explored (as in more explored). The fights on the Pit, the Sim 299,  I think they would’ve won a lot if they had been more intense for the reader.

But apart from what I pointed out, I have to say I enjoyed everything else in I Am Sleepless. The book’s structure was charming, full of drawings of this world’s creature and relevant excerpts of old books. I was captured!

So if you’re wondering if I recommend it? Yes I do, specially if you’ve read Ready Player One and The Darkest Minds and you’re craving more of the kind. Personally, I’m really looking forward to the sequel!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★☆☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★★☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

The planet Ethos is at war with an enemy known as the Splicers. Their only successful defense is the Prime Initiative. All newborn babies with the compatible genetic code are taken from their families and injected with the Prime Stimulus. Each child that survives the stimulus develops an extraordinary ability and is conscripted into the military for training.

After turning 12, Aidan is moved to the upper-class at the Mount Fegorio training complex. His special gifts allow him unprecedented success in the virtual training simulations, advancing him further than any prime cadet in history. No one knows what lies after sim 299, not even Director Tuskin, the reclusive ruler of their planet. But something, or someone, has been guiding Aidan there. If he can pass the final tests, he may discover the key to ending the Splicer War.

Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Date of Publication:  October 28th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Page Count: 286
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever by Jeff Strand

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

I’m not even sure this still counts as an ARC review since the books was published 2 days ago… But since I received an ARC copy 3 months ago and simply wasn’t able to finish it due to my reading slump: I’ll consider it an ARC review.

Firstly I would like to express my appreciation for this book because it took me out of my reading slump. I’m forever grateful Jeff Strand!

Now on to the review itself: If I had to sum up Jeff Strand’s The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever in one sentence it would be “I wish I had picked it up earlier”! Jeff’s writing is very light and accessible, the plot and characters are wonderfully funny and it’s never “too much”. I know we all have read some comedies with jokes that sounded forced, but not The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever. If this book was a sound it would be a laugh with a smile in the end. Because underneath all the fun and zombies there were very important messages like when to know to give up, and when to know to not. That friends are important, and everything has measure. That we don’t have to live everything in High School, there’s still a world of things to live after that.

A light read full of meaning. I recommend 100%!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★☆☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★★★

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

After producing 3 horror films that went mostly ignored on YouTube, Justin and his filmmaking buddies decide it’s time to make something epic. In fact, they’re going to make The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever. They may not have money or a script, but they have passion. 

Hemmed in by a one-month timeline and a cast of uncooperative extras, but aching to fulfill Alicia’s (the female lead and Justin’s crush) dreams, Justin must face the sad, sad truth: he may, in actuality, be producing The Worst Zombie Movie Ever.

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Date of Publication: March 1st 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Comedy
Page Count: 272
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

 

Review: Rising Tide: Dark Innocence by Claudette Melanson

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Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

If I saw Rising Tide on a bookstore I probably wouldn’t even pick it up, I’ll be honest. But after reading it I wouldn’t hesitate to pick up its sequel.

As you probably already guessed this book surprised me in a very positive way. I was expecting something in the lines of Twilight but with the genders reversed (so kind of like Life and Death). Well, Claudette tjrew a “no” at my face with the turning of every page!

Not only were the characters very lovable but I also found myself really caring about what happened to them! Claudette writes in a very simple but gripping way and she managed to created a little nest of love around Maura. Even though they were all very different I loved Maura, Caelyn, Ron, Merinda, Susie and Shane.

While most vampire books focus on how the protagonist deals with the situtation of either being a vampire or being with a vampire, Rising Tide focus on how to deal with becoming a vampire. How you notice the changes but really you don’t think they add up, its puberty ad first and the maybe a disease. I would characterize Rising Tide as an accurate portrait of what it would be for a regular teenager from our “real world” to have her life overlapping with the supernatural world. The word “vampire” only appears in the last sentence of the book! A very refreshing prespective!

The only thing I would add to Claudette’s book really would be a bit more of emotion in some excerpts (I won’t specify more since this is a spoiler free review). But other than that, great job!

I would recommend if you’re looking for a different vampire series with very good characters with an interesting sense of humor.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★☆☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★☆☆☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Maura seems to drive her classmates away but she doesn’t understand why. Maura considers herself to be a freak of nature, with her unusually pale skin and an aversion to the sun that renders her violently nauseous.

Even her own father deserted her before she was born, leaving Maura alone with her emotionally distant mother, Caelyn. Even though Maura is desperate for answers about her unknown parent, Caelyn remains heartbroken and her daughter can’t bring herself to reopen her mother’s wounds.

When a cruel prank nearly claims Maura’s life, one of her classmates, Ron, rushes to her rescue. Darkly handsome & mysteriously accepting, Ron doesn’t seem to want to stay away, but Maura is reluctant to get too close, since her mother has announced she’s moving the two of them to Vancouver…nearly 3,000 miles away from their hometown.

If life wasn’t already challenging enough, Maura begins to experience bizarre, physical changes her mother seems hell bent on ignoring, compelling Maura to fear for her own life. 

Publisher: CreateSpace
Date of Publication:  February 18th 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Page Count: 274
Source: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: The Casquette Girls by Alys Arden


Book Rate:
 ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

First thing I did after finishing this books was checking goodreads to see if there would be a sequel. Guess what? There is! The only thing we have so far is the title (The Romeo Catchers – which sounds very interesting) but I’m excited anyway!

Reading The Casquette Girls was such an immersive experience! I had never read a story that takes place in New Orleans but I think this was the best one to start with: I fell in love with the city through Alys Arden’s words. Everything seemed so real and hypnotizing, The Casquette Girls truly transmits the reader the essence of this magical and oh-so-full-of-life city!

With some unexpected twist and turns the plot was very gripping, as were the characters. Although there are a few details I think could’ve been more worked on… The love triangle (beware, there’s a love triangle guys!) was “comme ci, comme ça”, never during my reading experience did I feel even slightly sure about any of Adele’s choices… And Emilio’s plot twist would’ve contributed a lot more to the story if it had been darker. But I can see a reason for it not be, since there’s a sequel coming out and there’s lots of angles that can be worked on about this character…

All in all, this was pretty intense. If you’re ever in the mood for a Halloween-ish read or even just a good book to escape “real life” for a bit: this is your guy! Or book… I don’t really know how to adapt this expression, ups 😉

The Casquette Girls brings New Orleans and Paris to you in just 560 pages!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★☆☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★★☆☆

Synopsis (from goodreads):

Seven girls tied by time.
Five powers that bind.
One curse to lock the horror away.
One attic to keep the monsters at bay.

After the storm of the century rips apart New Orleans, sixteen-year-old Adele Le Moyne wants nothing more than her now silent city to return to normal. But with home resembling a war zone, a parish-wide curfew, and mysterious new faces lurking in the abandoned French Quarter, normal needs a new definition.

As the city murder rate soars, Adele finds herself tangled in a web of magic that weaves back to her own ancestors. Caught in a hurricane of myths and monsters, who can she trust when everyone has a secret and keeping them can mean life or death? Unless . . . you’re immortal.

Publisher: Skyscape
Date of Publication:  November 17th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Page Count: 565
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

ARC Review: Hello? by Liza M. Wiemer


Book Rate: ★★★☆☆ (3/5)

Review:

Hello? was good. Hello? is one of those books right there in the middle, the perfect definition of “a good book”, “a nice book”.

Liza Wiemer created characters with very interesting backgrounds but very dull personalities. The way their pats intertwined and changed their futures was very well done, I can surely say the plot was really gripping from this point of view.

And the writing style? Oh, the writing style! I loved how each character had a specific writing style that represented their personality so incredibly. Excellent result!

My main problem with Hello? was the characters’ personalities… They all had this amazing stories and they all sounded very empty for someone who is overcoming their past and the fears that come with it… They all forgave in a heartbeat, like nothing had meaning, and they all moved on so all of a sudden! I didn’t feel comfortable reading about them, they didn’t strike me as strong characters when they should have, after all they’ve overcome just by themselves.

I have mixed feelings about this book and I’m not sure until what point would I recommend it… Maybe if you’re looking for a story that will thake your mind off something going on in your life, something creative but not life changing or mind blowing. Just an imaginative and different read.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★☆☆
  • Characters ★★★☆☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

One “Hello?” can change a life. One “Hello?” can save a life.

Tricia: A girl struggling to find her way after her beloved grandma’s death.
Emerson: A guy who lives his life to fulfill promises, real and hypothetical.
Angie: A girl with secrets she can only express through poetry.
Brenda: An actress and screenplay writer afraid to confront her past.
Brian: A potter who sets aside his life for Tricia, to the detriment of both.

Linked and transformed by one phone call, “Hello?” weaves together these five Wisconsin teens’ stories into a compelling narrative of friendship and family, loss and love, heartbreak and healing, serendipity, and ultimately hope.

Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Date of Publication:  November 10th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama
Page Count: 400
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: Lois Lane: Cloudy With a Chance of Destruction by Gwenda Bond


Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

Acording to Goodreads: “This is an official teaser short story for the young adult novel Lois Lane: Fallout that takes place before Lois moves to Metropolis. Fallout is forthcoming (…) in May 2015.”.

Well, this short story got me really excited for Lois Lane: Fallout. We only get a sneak peek of the characters and a sense of where this story might go… but it’s enough! I have high expectations for this series and I’ll definitely pick it up. I just hope it is as good as this bit was, otherwise I think I’ll be really disappointed…

Lois sounds like a smart, kind and confident character and her world is pretty intriguing. Throughout these 18 pages I developed a serious need to figure out who SmallvilleGuy and what role he will play in Lois’ life.

I’m waiting for the series to come out but if it maintains its quality then I definitely recommend it!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★☆☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★★☆
  • Cover ★★☆☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

In a high school science class, Lois Lane must deal with some bad chemistry…

Publisher: Capstone
Date of Publication:  April 6th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Short Story, Contemporary
Page Count: 18
Source: I was approved by the publisher on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: Under The Dusty Moon by Suzanne Sutherland


Book Rate: ★★★☆☆ (3/5)

Review:

Do you guys know how we usually complaint that pretty much every contemporary young adult book has a main character whose problems and complexes derivate from a traumatic childhood experience or… from a bad relationship with their parents? Or or or that the parents are super secundary characters that almost never interfere with the story?

Well, brace yourselves for Under The Dusty Moon, because this is one of the best mum characters I’ve ever read about. Vic and Micky are truly best friends and it’s incredibly refreshing to read about a relationship like this, that is also very common in the real world and with which I related a lot to in some ways.

It’s true that Vic has problems because she suposedly “lives in her mum’s shadow” but it didn’t feel so much like that to me. I always saw Vic as her own person through the book, just someone who the older generations recognized as Micky Wayne’s daughter.

There were a few improvements I believe could have made Under The Dusty Moon a better reading, though. I felt like A LOT of good content was created but not explored, for example Shaun’s mums: their relationship with their with Shaun and his little brother would have been so interesting to read more about (not to talk about how Vic would fit in their family). Or Vic’s grandmother, there was also a lot that could be talked about regarding the whole “I care about my daughter but not my granddaughter” thing.

Overall I just felt like there was a lot of potential in this book that was mostly left unused. The storyline itself wasn’t such a big deal but I truly believe the refreshing and interesting characters could’ve made up for it…

Still it was an enjoyable book, I recommend if your looking for a light and fun reading.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★☆☆
  • Characters ★★★★☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

She’s with the band, whether she likes it or not.

Victoria is the sixteen-year-old only daughter of rocker Micky Wayne, whose band, Dusty Moon, took the world by storm when Micky was just a teenager. The band broke up, but, after years spent off the road, Micky’s solo career is finally starting to take off.

With her mum going off to tour in Japan, Vic is left to spend the summer under the care of her grandmother, and without her built-in best friend. Will a boy with a secret geek side and a group of feminist game-makers be enought to save the season? And will this summer change Vic in a way that will endager her relationship with her mum and best friend?

Publisher: Dundurn Press
Date of Publication:  February 16th 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Page Count: 232
Source: I was approved on Netgalley to receive a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interested in reading more of my reviews? Check out my Reviews page!

Review: The Dream Walker by Michelle Murray


Book Rate: ★☆☆☆☆ (1/5)

Review:

The Dream Walker made me check its goodreads page twice in the time it takes me to read 118 pages. Twice. I had to make sure this is definitely considered a young adult book before writing this review because it surely didn’t feel like a young adult read to me…

Michelle Murray’s writing style stroke me as oversimplistic and somewhat childish. There was a consistent storyline with beginning, middle and end, true! But I cannot say I got to know the characters and the world at all. After finishing The Dream Walker I feel like someone just showed me a map of the world and a diagram with the characters’ names and relationships. Everything was described too quickly or not at all. The story was so fast-paced it seems like it didn’t really happen.

Besides this I also found the characters to be a bit incoeherent and their behaviour unrealistic on some occasions. Just to give you an idea: if the situations I’m referring to and that are described in the book as non-fantasy situtations, happened in real life and I witnessed them I would be screaming “What the hell are you doing lady/sir???” at the top of my lungs.

If this was a Middle Grade book my review probably would have been very different in some aspects, but since it’s not: here’s my opinion of it as a Young Adult.

I’m sorry to admit I do not recommend The Dream Walker.

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★☆☆☆
  • Characters ★☆☆☆☆
  • Writing ★☆☆☆☆
  • Pacing ★☆☆☆☆
  • Cover ★★☆☆☆

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

Miranda is having vivid dreams of a world she’s never been to. A world full of castles, Forests, Ice Caves, and Dragons. She goes to a bookstore to see about these dreams, and discovers she is a Dream Walker. She has been called to save this mystical, magical world. 

On Mystica, the evil wizard Midnight has been released. Midnight is gathering an army, and preparing for war. Miranda needs to find and release the white wizard Lightning from his stone prison to save Mystica. Can she achieve this?

Publisher: CreateSpace
Date of Publication:  August 16th 2014
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Page Count: 120
Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Review: Black Ice by Stephen Tesher


Book Rate: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Review:

I think this is officially the book rating I felt more conflicted about so far in my reading life.

On one hand I felt like some parts of the plot were a bit exaggerated and that there were fascinating characters and intereting situations that could’ve been explored further and weren’t. A quick example: David falls for a mysterious girl, Kris, by the end of the book we discover why Kris is so mysterious but throughout the story the reader doesn’t get the chance to feel as wrapped up in her “mysterish” aura as could be.

On the other hand: Oh My Feels! Black Ice has one of the most perfect endings I’ve ever read! I won’t give you a big and enthusiastic speech about it (even though I would love to) since this is a non-spoiler review but I’ll tell you the following: at the start of this book I was stuck with the idea that this story was a good representation of how hard it can be to move on from you first love. I finished it realising not only that but also how important it is that you free yourself. If a person is keeps telling you how he/she wants you but also that they can’t be with you right then, if you’re stuck in a vicious cycle because you really like them and feel unable to move on, you have to realize that they will never let you go. They like having you there fully commited even thought they’re not. You have to let go, you have to free yourself. And Black Ice presents the reader with an amazing prespective on this topic.

I loved it I loved it I loved it. The only reason I won’t give the fifth star really only has to do with a bit of character/situation exploration that lacked in my opinion and could’ve made this book a perfect read.

Nevertheless it is still an amazing read and I strongly recommend it!

I can do a book discussion about Black Ice‘s spoilery parts later on if some of you guys want it. So if you do just say the word!

Detailed Rating:

  • Plot ★★★★☆
  • Characters ★★★☆☆
  • Writing ★★★★☆
  • Pacing ★★★☆☆
  • Cover ★★★★★

Synopsis (adapted from goodreads):

David Fischer is slipping and he’s hoping to meet the perfect girl in order to fix that. Meanwhile David finds his escape in alcohol and drugs.

Then David meets Kris, a mysterious, sexy older woman, and his world is changed. But David discovers that the mysteries of Kris’ life may be darker than he’s ready for. 

Publisher: CreateSpace
Date of Publication:  October 27th 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Drama
Page Count: 328
Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.