Monday, 16 January 2017

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

Sponsored post: I received an advance copy of this book for free. Thanks to Disney Book Group and NetGalley.
A List of Cages
Blurb (from Goodreads):
When Adam Blake lands the best elective ever in his senior year, serving as an aide to the school psychologist, he thinks he's got it made. Sure, it means a lot of sitting around, which isn't easy for a guy with ADHD, but he can't complain, since he gets to spend the period texting all his friends. Then the doctor asks him to track down the troubled freshman who keeps dodging her, and Adam discovers that the boy is Julian--the foster brother he hasn't seen in five years.

Adam is ecstatic to be reunited. At first, Julian seems like the boy he once knew. He's still kind hearted. He still writes stories and loves picture books meant for little kids. But as they spend more time together, Adam realizes that Julian is keeping secrets, like where he hides during the middle of the day, and what's really going on inside his house. Adam is determined to help him, but his involvement could cost both boys their lives.

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A List of CagesThis was a YA contemporary story, about a boy with ADHD and his younger friend.

Adam cared for Julian in this story, and he certainly went above and beyond to try to keep him safe and to work out what was going on with him.

The storyline in this was about Julian being abused, and Adam trying to help him. The pace in this was pretty slow though, and I struggled to keep reading because I was so bored. Things did improve a bit towards the end, and I did feel sorry for Julian, and, yes this book was about an important subject, but I’d have appreciated it more if it had kept my interest a bit better.

The ending to this was okay, and things seemed to work out pretty well in the end.

6 out of 10

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Collector of Souls (Stranded in the Stars Book 2) by Naomi Lucas

Sponsored post: I received an advance copy of this book for free. Thanks to author Naomi Lucas.
Collector of Souls (Stranded in the Stars Book 2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Ophelia was dying.
She was raised on a backwater planet on the outskirts of a Trentian controlled sector, on a planet that was so far out in the fringes that the intergalactic council barely knew of its existence.

One day changed her life. When she was brutally examined to see if her body was viable to procreate– she was found barren. Running from the news, the terrible confession of her womb, the brutality of her situation, she finds herself willing to give up her soul for a second chance at life.

What does eternity mean to a girl who doesn’t understand the concept? When she accidentally summons a mystic force from the ancient ages of Earth?

When science and the supernatural collide?

Seraph is a Soul Collector. His eternal profession is to bargain for the souls of the living in order to control their ether in the afterlife. He has been sitting dormant for millennia as his profession phases out with the Age of Science, the Age of Space, and the Age of Intergalactic Travel.

When he is summoned from his realm by a dying half-alien girl, his static existence takes a turn for a techno-supernatural adventure.

Themes: science fiction, dark romance, horror elements
Warning: mature readers only, explicit sex scenes

Standalone, HEA

Collector of Souls by Naomi Lucas

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Collector of Souls (Stranded in the Stars Book 2)This was an adult fantasy story, set on a different planet.

The characters in this were okay, and I appreciated the situation Ophelia found herself in. Being outcast and left to die would not be a good situation for anyone to find themselves in.

The storyline in this was about Ophelia trading her soul for her survival, and then trading other things for favours too, from the soul collector Seraph. We got a couple of steamy scenes between the two, and Ophelia’s situation just seemed to go from bad to worse time and time again, I did find that the story lost my interest quite a bit as it went along though.

The ending to this was okay, although it wasn’t quite what I expected.

6 out of 10

Saturday, 14 January 2017

A Tragic Kind of Wonderful by Eric Lindstrom

Sponsored post: I received an advance copy of this book for free. Thanks to HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks and NetGalley.
A Tragic Kind of Wonderful
Blurb (from Goodreads):
The heart-rending and inspiring novel from the critically acclaimed author of NOT IF I SEE YOU FIRST.

How can you have a future if you can’t accept your past?
Mel Hannigan doesn’t have it easy. Mourning the death of her firework of a brother, trying to fit back into a school she’s been conspicuously absent from and struggling to deal with the loss of three friendships that used to mean everything. Struggling to deal with a condition that not even her closest friends know about.

So Mel tries to lock away her heart, to numb the highs and lows, to live quietly without hope – but also without pain. Until someone new shows her that it can be worth taking a risk, that opening up to life is what can make it glorious…

And that maybe, Mel can discover a tragic kind of wonderful of her very own.

A Tragic Kind of Wonderful by Eric Lindstrom

My rating: 3.25 of 5 stars

A Tragic Kind of Wonderful “Dr Jordan told me everyone with bipolar disorder is different – endless variations of moods, emotions, intensity, frequency, reactions, episodes, delusions, breakdowns – but even so, according to him, I’m unusual.”

This was a YA contemporary story, about a girl with bipolar disorder.

Mel was an okay character, although I found it quite hard to keep up with the way she tracked her moods. The author did do a good job of showing her ups and downs though.

The storyline in this was about Mel coping with her bipolar disorder, and also trying to deal with her grief over her older brother’s death. We did get a few twists thrown in, and I really did not see some of them coming. The pace in this was a little slow though, and I wanted answers faster than we got them.

The ending to this was okay, although it was clear that Mel still wasn’t really thinking straight.

6.5 out of 10

Friday, 13 January 2017

Confessions (Private #4) by Kate Brian

Confessions (Private, #4)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Sometimes the truth hurts....

Reed Brennan came to superposh Easton Academy to make a brand-new life for herself. At first it seemed as though her dream had come true-she was living in the ultraexclusive Billings Hall, hanging out with the all-powerful Billings Girls, and dating the very hot Thomas Pearson. But Thomas turned out to be different from what she thought...and then he turned up dead. And if that wasn't twisted enough, Reed's new boyfriend, Josh Hollis, was arrested for Thomas's murder.

Now everyone is back to worrying about the regular stuff, like how to sneak to the boys' dorms at night, whether two-ply cashmere is warm enough for fall, and whether to fly to London or Barcelona for Thanksgiving break.

Everyone except for Reed.

Reed is convinced that Josh is innocent, which means the killer is still out there. Now it's up to Reed to uncover the truth. But the deeper she digs, the more secrets she unearths and the closer she gets to the confession that will change everything...if she's alive to hear it.

Confessions by Kate Brian

My rating: 3.25 of 5 stars

Confessions (Private, #4)This was a YA contemporary mystery story, as Reed continued to search for the truth about Thomas’ death.

Reed stuck up for herself a bit more in this book, and wasn’t so scared of Noelle or afraid to voice her opinion which made a nice change.

The storyline in this continued on from the previous book, with Reed trying to find out what really happened to Thomas, and who killed him. We also got a couple of twists, and we did finally find out what had happened to Thomas at the end.

6.5 out of 10

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Unhinged (Underworld #1) by Chani Lynn Feener

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free. Thanks to author Chani Lynn Feener.
Unhinged (Underworld, #1)
Blurb (From Goodreads):
The Underworld is real.

Spencer Perry knew it was a long shot when she started searching for a way into the Underworld, the ancient Greeks resting place for the dead. But three months ago her boyfriend died and now she’ll do anything to get him back, even make a deal with the devil himself. Only, Hades isn’t what she expected, and neither is the proposal he offers. In exchange for Micah’s resurrection, all she has to do is spend every night for the next year down below. From the very first meeting the god makes her feel things she shouldn’t, but she takes the deal anyway, knowing in the end it’ll be worth it. Except, as soon as their bargain begins, strange things start happening. People are being attacked by invisible forces, and all signs point to the God of the Underworld being responsible. Has Spencer inadvertently unleashed hell on earth?

Unhinged by Chani Lynn Feener

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Unhinged (Underworld, #1)This was a YA paranormal/mythology story featuring a girl and her dead boyfriend.

Spencer was an okay character, although I had trouble believing she was quite as special as she was made out to be. She also sounded quite immature when her best argument for why her boyfriend shouldn’t be dead was that it ‘wasn’t fair’.

The storyline in this was about Spencer trying to bring her ghostly dead boyfriend back from the dead by striking a deal with the ruler of the underworld – Hadrian. I did find that the pace in the book was quite slow though, and the emergence of the love triangle was a little annoying also. I did like the book in places, and we did get the occasional entertaining moment, but mainly the book dragged, and it took me a long time to get through it.

The ending to this was okay, although things didn’t go quite as Spencer expected.

6 out of 10

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Until I Die (Revenants #2) by Amy Plum

Until I Die (Revenants, #2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Kate and Vincent have overcome the odds and at last they are together in Paris, the city of lights and love.

As their romance deepens there’s one question they can’t ignore: How are they supposed to be together if Vincent can’t resist sacrificing himself to save others? Although Vincent promises that he’ll do whatever it takes to lead a normal life with Kate, will that mean letting innocent people die? When a new and surprising enemy reveals itself, Kate realizes that even more may be at stake—and that Vincent’s immortality is in jeopardy.

In Die for Me, Amy Plum created a captivating paranormal mythology with immortal revenants and a lush Paris setting. Until I Die is poised to thrill readers with more heart-pounding suspense, spellbinding romance, and a cliff-hanger ending that will leave them desperate for the third and final novel in the series.

Until I Die by Amy Plum

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Until I Die (Revenants, #2)This was a good sequel, although it did leave us with a cliff-hanger ending.

I liked Kate and Vincent in this, and it was nice that they were able to work past the whole revenant thing, and be together as a couple anyway.

The storyline in this was about Vincent and Kate both looking for other ways for Vincent to not die, and we had some new characters in the story as well. We also had news of a champion, and further problems with the numa.

The ending to this was quite action-packed, although we were left with a cliff-hanger right at the end.

7 out of 10

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Beheld (Kendra Chronicles #4) by Alex Flinn

Sponsored post: I received an advance copy of this book for free. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
Beheld (The Kendra Chronicles, #4)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
#1 New York Times bestselling YA author Alex Flinn is back with magical twists on four fairy-tale favorites, each featuring a little help from Kendra, the witch from Beastly, as she searches through cities and centuries for her lost love.

Being a powerful witch, Kendra has survived it all. Since she first beheld James over three hundred years ago, Kendra has tangled with witch hunters and wolves, helped a miller’s daughter spin straw into gold, cowered in London as German bombs fell, and lived through who knows how many shipwrecks. But her powers have limits, and immortality can be lonely. Kendra isn’t ready to stop searching for the warlock she had met centuries ago.

With the help of her magic mirror, Kendra will travel the world to reconnect with her lost love—and, of course, she can’t help but play a hand in a few more stories along the way.

Featuring retellings of favorite fairy tales such as Little Red Riding Hood, Rumpelstiltskin, East of the Sun and West of the Moon, and The Ugly Duckling, Alex Flinn’s latest young adult novel, Beheld, is fresh fairy-tale fun from beginning to end.

Beheld by Alex Flinn

My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars

Beheld (The Kendra Chronicles, #4)This was a YA retelling of 4 fairy tales, all featuring Kendra.

Kendra was an okay character, but I didn’t love her. It was interesting to see the part she played in the other fairy tales in this book though.

The storyline in this consisted of 4 short stories one after another, the first was about a girl in a red cloak (Little Red Riding Hood?) but was actually about the Salem witch trials, and featured Ann Putnam talking to a wolf, and accusing Kendra of witchcraft. The second story was about a girl who fell pregnant and told a story about being able to spin straw into gold to try and save herself (Rumpelstiltskin?). The third story was about a man who was cursed, and had to marry a girl and not let her see his face for a year (didn’t recognise this one at all). And the last one was the ugly duckling. I did like the first story, but as the book went on I lost interest, and I was really bored by the time I got to the end. It was interesting the part Kendra played, but she didn’t feature all that much to be honest.

The ending to this was fairly happy for Kendra, but I was pleased to be finished. I think I’ll give this authors other books a miss in future as I haven’t really enjoyed any of them so far.

5 out of 10

Monday, 9 January 2017

Catch Me by Michelene Esposito

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free. Thanks to author Michelene Esposito.
Catch Me
Blurb (from Goodreads):
BECCA REESE is just trying to get through her senior year of high school and accepted into college before her Career at Carvel nightmare becomes a reality. She’s a shoe-in for a spot at one of the Ivies – at least that’s the general consensus for a Brainic like Becca. She tries not to stress it. After all, since her parents split-up two years ago (finally!) life isn’t bad. No one’s screaming at each other and slamming doors. Her brother Jack says the cutest things. Her Dad, STU, is always handing out the Guilt Dollars and, of course, there’s her mom, CLAIRE, and her comic-relief internet dating.

But then every (every!) one of the Ivy League schools she applied to rejects her and she’s stuck with her joke back-up school, Pitzer (Can you say Ultimate Frisbee Team? Go Stoners!), in (Yes, it gets worse.) Southern California.

Catch Me by Michelene Esposito

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Catch MeThis was a YA contemporary story about a girl in her senior year of high school.

Becca was an okay character, although she was maybe a little bit clueless at times.

The storyline in this was about Becca’s day-to-day life, we got a bit of dating, worries over getting into college, and problems with parents. I did find that the story lost my interest a bit though, especially in the middle.

The ending to this was okay, and was a bit more interesting than the earlier chapters.

6 out of 10

Sunday, 8 January 2017

The Search by S.A. McClure

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free. Thanks to author S.A. McClure.
The Search
Blurb (from Goodreads):
The Search for meaning after loss is the greatest struggle of all.

Small-town girl Lilly Sterling thought she had it all: popularity,
friends, love. But when everything in her world was shattered in a
single blow, she plummeted into a downward spiral that seems to go on
forever. Her boyfriend is gone; her mother is gone; her younger sister
is lost in her own problems; and her father is drowning his problems
in drink.

So when someone new enters Lilly's life, she finds herself caught
between her present and her past. But the whispers of her past aren't
stopping, in fact, they're getting louder.

This coming-of-age tale about love, loss, and redemption follows
seventeen-year-old Lilly as she struggles to find herself in a search
for meaning. Journey with her as she lives through the everyday—and
the not-so-everyday—struggles of growing up.

The Search by S.A. McClure

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The SearchThis was a YA contemporary story about girl struggling with grief.

Lily was an okay character, although she really could have made more of an effort with her sister at times. Especially when it took her 2 months to apologise for reading her sister’s diary.

The storyline in this was about Lily coming to terms with her boyfriend’s death, secretly hiding her pain away as her relationship with him had been a secret. We also got a storyline about Lily’s sister who was being sexually abused by one of her teachers, and a new sort-of romance that Lily was really resistant to because of her grief over her dead boyfriend.

The ending to this was okay, and the letter at the end was a nice touch.

6.25 out of 10

Die for Me (Revenants #1) by Amy Plum

Die for Me (Revenants, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In the City of Lights, two star-crossed lovers battle a fate that is destined to tear them apart again and again for eternity.

When Kate Mercier’s parents die in a tragic car accident, she leaves her life—and memories—behind to live with her grandparents in Paris. For Kate, the only way to survive her pain is escaping into the world of books and Parisian art. Until she meets Vincent.

Mysterious, charming, and devastatingly handsome, Vincent threatens to melt the ice around Kate’s guarded heart with just his smile. As she begins to fall in love with Vincent, Kate discovers that he’s a revenant—an undead being whose fate forces him to sacrifice himself over and over again to save the lives of others. Vincent and those like him are bound in a centuries-old war against a group of evil revenants who exist only to murder and betray. Kate soon realizes that if she follows her heart, she may never be safe again.

In this incandescent debut, newcomer Amy Plum has created a powerful paranormal mythology with immortal revenants. The Paris setting comes enchantingly alive as a relentless struggle between good and evil takes place in its streets. Rich with romance, atmosphere, and thrills, Die for Me will leave readers breathlessly awaiting its sequel.

Die for Me by Amy Plum

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Die for Me (Revenants, #1) “I'm a revenant, not a vampire, chérie."

This was a YA paranormal romance set in Paris.

I liked the characters in this although Kate was maybe a little too reserved at times! The way she argued that it was better to protect her heart rather than to fall in love and then lose that love was a little sad.

The storyline in this was about Kate moving to Paris to live with her grandparents after her parent’s deaths, and meeting Vincent, who wasn’t quite human, but was instead a paranormal creature called a ‘revenant’. The romance in this between Kate and Vincent was pretty good, although it did remind me of twilight a bit at times!

The ending to this was also good, and it will be interesting to see what happens in the rest of the series.

8 out of 10