Saturday, 18 July 2015

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Mass I Review

Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses
Author: Sarah J Maas
Series: same name
Genre: Fantasy, Fairytale retelling, New Adult
My Star Rating: 

Blurb: Feyre is a huntress. She thinks nothing of slaughtering a wolf to capture it's prey. But like all metals, she fears wha lies mercilessly beyond the forest. And she will learn that taking the life of a magical creature comes at a high price...Imprisoned in an enchanted court in her enemy's kingdom, Feyre is free to roam but forbidden to escape. Her captor's body bears the the scars of fighting, and his face is always masked-but his piercing stare draws her ever closer. As Feyre's feelings for Tamlin begin to burn through every warning she's been told about his kind, an ancient wicked shadow grows. Feyre must find a way to break the spell, or lose her heart forever.

A Court of Thorns and Rose is a fairy tale retelling of Beauty and The Beas. Every retelling has a twist and in this instance the twist is that this book is set n the Faerie world.
One thing I really loved is that there is a guide in the back on pronouncing the difficult names which, as I am sure you all know, can be a big problem. I've even heard people go as far as to say it takes them longer to read a book if they can't pronounce a character's name. Our protagonist is called Feyre (which is a gorgeous name).

In terms of characters there weren't many and I wasn't massively invested with any of them, although I did kind of like Lucien.
This book has been labelled as New Adult, but if you're not into that kind of thing I wouldn't let that put yu off. There are only a couple of sex scenes and they don't go into massive amounts of detail, nor are they very long.

I gave it 3.5 stars which is pretty good. If you're into romance and really quite complex world building you'd probably love it, the missing star and a half was mostly due to thee lack of comic relief and the complicated ending.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally Carter I Review

Title: I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You 
Author: Ally Carter
Series: Gallagher Girls
Genre: Romance
My Star Rating: 


I'd tried reading this a few years ago but I'd put it down because it seemed stupid and I was convinced the main character's love interest would be her hot new teacher, but I should have given it longer because her teacher remained her teacher and it was a nice story. Normally I stay far away from romance novels as they don't interest me at all but I liked this one because there was more to it than the romance, and honestly the story's romance lost it a star. I loved the setting of a spy school it was nice to have an intelligent protagonist for once.

This book was funny, the narration was not only first person but friendly and written as if the main character had sat down with a pen and paper. Normally I prefer a more distant, third person narration but I think in this kind of book the friendlier approach worked well. 

I liked the characters, especially Cammie's friend Liz and, of course the rest of her entourage. I wasn't a huge fan Cammie's love interest because he was a bit thick and not in a Joey Essex kind of adorable way. Cammie's character development was great, she learned to realise people weren't always as bad as they initially appeared and she also learned some valuable lessons. I loved the "organised St. Trinian's feel" the book had to it.

The romance was nothing special, which was an issue as it was the main theme of the book but despite that it was still enjoyable and earned a solid three stars.

Love Always,

Percy Jackson's Greek Gods by Rick Riordan I Review

Title: Percy Jackson's Greek Gods
Author: Rick Riordan
Illustrator: John Rocco
Genre: Mythology
My Star Rating:

So begins Percy Jackson's Greek Gods, in which the son of Poseidon adds his own magic--and sarcastic asides--to the classics. He explains how the world was created, then gives readers his personal take on a who's who of ancients, from Apollo to Zeus. Percy does not hold back. "If you like horror shows, blood baths, lying, stealing, backstabbing, and cannibalism, then read on, because it definitely was a Golden Age for all that."

The books begins with the ancient Greek beleif of how the Earth was created, then moves onto the titans and how the olympians were born and how they defeated their father, Kronos. Percy then gives the twelve main olympains (and a few extras: Hades, Persephone and Hestia) a chapter each in which Percy tells us about the God's early days then some of their most well known adventures, including those relevent to the happenings of PJO and HOO books. Although, effective this format could be confusing at times as it wasn't in chronological order and it was never clear how far apart these events were occuring, especially with all the different human kings and queens involved.

The stories were all accurate to the mythology, although Percy tells them in the way that makes the most sense to him in some cases he also provides alternative versions of the stories. The mythology is indeed accurate but in order to keep the book interesting Riordan did use poetic licence, adding modern comparisons, jokes etc. to these old timey stories. 

The illustrations were amazing so I'm very glad I spent the extra money on the fancy American addition, as the UK cover was much less impressive and I don't think it had Jon Rocco's pictures.

I liked that Percy (the narrator) showed the bad side of the Gods, that they made rash desisons, were hypocritical and in many cases raped people (which he made very clear, was not okay). There were some refrences to PJO and HOO but I would have liked to see more, I saw plenty of oppurtunites for refrences and at some points I wanted confirmation that the creature/weapon Percy was telling us about was the same one i recignised from his adventures. I suppose Rick Riordan was trying to avoid spoilers.

Love Always, 

Monday, 29 December 2014

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins I Review

Title: Hex Hall
Author: Rachel Hawkins
Series: Hex Hall
Genre: fantasy
My Star Rating:

When sixteen-year-old Sophie Mercer discovers she's a witch, the imagines life will be full of magic, fun an...well...broomsticks! But her first attempt at a love spell goes disastrously wrong and, as punishment, Sophie is shipped off to Hecate "Hex" Hall, a reform school for witches, shapeshifter and fairies.
By the end of her first day among her fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite the score card: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tag-along ghost, a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person on campus and the only vampire.
Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students and her only friend is the number one suspect.

The world building was good, we had some traditional mythology in there with of course the authors new spin on it thrown in, as well as some original baddies. The characters in this book were great, Sophie wasn't as funny as I'd been led to believe but she still got the odd laugh out of me. I loved the love interest: he was nice, but not annoyingly nice, he insulted people, but never anything more than banter.

This book was always interesting because the main character was so different from myself and I'd always think what I'd do in the situations she was put in but she always did something completely different, which meant it was fun and unpredictable. Speaking of unpredictable, THAT PLOT TWIST (which I won't spoil) was amazing. As I have said on multiple occasions I love a good plot twist and this one is defiantly going on my list (my metaphorical list) when it happened I had to read the sentence again to make sure my eyes weren't deceiving me.

I will most definitely be reading the sequel, Demonglass, and I very much look forward to it.
Love Always,

Sunday, 28 December 2014

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe I Review

Title: The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe
Author: C.S. Lewis
Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
Genre: childrens, fantasy
My Star Rating:

When Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy took their first steps into the world behind the magic wardrobe, little do they realise what adventures are about to unfold. And as the story of Narnia begins to unfold, so to does a classic tale that has enchanted readers of all ages for over half a century.

I've had this book for years and I've read it's prequel "The Magician's Nephew" about three times but for some bizzare reason never continued onto the next book. The story was lovely, but simple which in a way I suppose is good, you don't want to add unessesary details, it will only make the book slow and confusing.

The  writing style was odd but I don't like to critise it because it would most definately appeal to children (the target audience). The narration was friendly and it felt like you were being told a story, but one from memory, not one being read strait from a book.

I wasn't a huge fan of the ending (which I won't spoil) as it seemed like the ending of the last book in a series, or a standalone but certainly not the first one. Besides that it was a lovely book and next time I go to a fancy dress party I'll go as the White Queen or Aslan...I haven't quite decided yet.

Love Always,

Sunday, 21 December 2014

The Iron Trial by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black I Review

Title: The Iron Trial
Series: Magisterium
Authors: Holly Black and Cassandra Clare
Genre: Children's, Fantasy
My Star Rating:

Blurb: Most kids would do anything to pass the Iron Trial.Not Callum Hunt. He wants to fail.All his life, Call has been warned by his father to stay away from magic. If he succeeds at the Iron Trial and is admitted into the Magisterium, he is sure it can only mean bad things for him.So he tries his best to do his worst - and fails at failing.Now the Magisterium awaits him. It's a place that's both sensational and sinister, with dark ties to his past and a twisty path to his future.The Iron Trial is just the beginning, for the biggest test is still to come . . .

When reading this book I hate to admit it but the similarites to Harry Potter were hard not to pick up on, there were even entire scenes where all I could think about was JK Rowling wrote this part better. Cassandra Clare is obviously a big fan of popular fiction in the genre she writes in, which was a problem because I think at points, the parts she stole from other books weren't even intentional.
I decided not to include these points when deciding my star rating because I wanted to look at it as a book on its own and not compare it to other books of an unrealistic standard.

I didn't have any attatchment to any of the characters but I quite liked Aaron and I suppose Call was tolerable. I gave the book its four stars for the story line. To start off with it was more of a three star and I wasn't to interested in the story but soon enough I found it got much more exiting. I was expecting the ending to be predicatable but it wasn't quite what I expected, which is always nice. 

There was a bit of "convienient information dropping" which could have been done much more subtly. The pacing was good and I was glad the story only took up 295 pages as often fanstasys like this one are much longer and I would have hated to see unnecesary filler scenes in a book like this one. 

It must have been well edited because there was no distinct difference between the two authors voices as I know can be a common problem in dual writer projects. 

Love Always,

The Awakening by L.J. Smith I Review

Title: The Awakening
Author: L.J. Smith
Series: The Vampire Diaries
Genre: Vampires, Romance
My Star Rating:

A deadly love triangle Elena: beautiful and popular, the girl who can have any guy she wants. Stefan: brooding and mysterious, desperately trying to resist his desire for Elena . . . for her own good. Damon: sexy, dangerous, and driven by an urge for revenge against Stefan, the brother who betrayed him. Elena finds herself drawn to both brothers . . . who will she choose?

As a big fan of the TV show I didn't know what to expect from this book, the show made A LOT of changes from the book, but it was nice to notice where Julie Plec got all her ideas for character names and such like. One detail which I really did appreciate was that in both the book and the TV show Elena had a seat on her window sill. It was an odd experience because I'd seen the show first for me what the show said was canon so I felt myself getting annoyed with things that were different from the show then having to remind myself L.J Smith wrote this first.

This book had a horrible case of insta-love, literally. She kissed him once and was talking about how much she loved him and how she was going to spend the rest of her life with him. The plot twist at the end was pretty preditable, weather that was because there had been a similar story line in the show I'm not sure. 

Even though when I am reviewing the book all I can come up with is critisisms I still gave the book three stars because despite all the flaws it was quite enjoyable and I've found myself reading the sequel.

Love Always,