Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Dystopian Giveaway Hop - Saving Mars by Cidney Swanson

I am super excited about this hop because I love Dystopians and I love this one especially!

Blurb (from Goodreads):

When the food supply of Mars’ human settlement is decimated, seventeen-year-old Jessamyn Jaarda, the best pilot Mars Colonial has ever seen, flies to Earth to raid for food. Earth-Mars relations couldn’t be worse, and her brother is captured during the raid. Breaking rules of secrecy and no contact, Jess finds an ally in Pavel, nephew to a government official, but their friendship only makes more agonizing the choice before her: Save her brother or save her planet?

Saving Mars by Cidney Swanson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Saving Mars (Saving Mars 1)(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to the lovely Cidney Swanson.)
17-year-old Jessamyn Jaarda lives on Mars with her parents and older brother Ethan. It has been nearly 2 centuries since the initiative to populate Mars began, and a lot has changed in that time. The Earth has cut Mars off, and there is a treaty in place that means that Mars is to have zero contact with Earth.
The Marsians have been unable to produce an edible food source on Mars though, and with supplies running out they must journey to Earth secretly, to exchange trillium (a very expensive product found in abandon on Mars) for ration bars which the Marsians live on.

Jess has wanted all her life to be a pilot, and a trip to Earth is her ultimate dream, so when her pilot license is suspended, and her brother is going to Earth without her, she’s determined to find a way to get to Earth, and also a way to help her brother who shows signs of autism, and is also a geneius with technology.
Can Jess find a way to Earth? Can she get the ration bars that Mars is so desperate for? And can she get the Marsians back safely?

Wow! This book was really good! Jessamyn was such a strong character with a remarkable drive and determination to help her people. I totally loved her, and loved how she always strove to be the best at what she was doing, and never wanted to give up even when it seemed that all was lost.
Ethan (Jess’ brother) showed signs of autism, but was also incredibly intelligent, I like how this was woven into the story, and how Jess took time to help her brother through difficult moments. I think it’s inspiring to see an author writing characters who have ‘disabilities’ but work with them, rather than showing people with disabilities as being worthless.
There were also a lot of wonderful ideas about the future society of both Earth and Mars which were brilliant little touches. At one point I was so into the book that I had to remind myself that no, this wasn’t real, and no, I am not really a Marsian (I know – silly, but the book just had me totally hooked.)

The storyline had a bit of everything, and there was never a dull moment! There was sci-fi, dystopian societies, mystery, and even a bit of romance. I really loved the excitement and anticipation in this book! I was so on edge by the time I got towards the end of the book, and was desperate to know what would happen next!
Overall; a fantastic YA dystpian/ Sci-fi novel. Definitely one to watch out for!
9 out of 10.

(Amazon Prime members can read for free!) 

Interview with the author -

Cidney Swanson

Hi Cidney! Welcome to the Blog!

When did you start writing?

I was seven when I started writing stories, eight when I began my first novel. (I didn’t finish it.)

What was your inspiration for The ‘Saving Mars’ series?

Since before I was a teen, I’ve wanted to read books about a real, possible, life on Mars. With a girl as the hero! Eventually I think it occurs to every writer that they need to write that book they wish they could read.Then a couple of years ago I had this inkling of a question: How far would humans go to solve the perceived issue of “youth is wasted on the young”? Once I had an imagined answer to that question, I realized I had a perfect set of worlds with vast philosophical disagreements about what it meant to be human, to live a good life, and so on, and I knew I’d established the “world” for my Mars book. And then Jessamyn showed up, all fiery and red-headed and in love with flying fast, fast, fast!

What three words would you use to best describe The ‘Saving Mars’ series?

Conflict. Choice. Family.

What are your favourite things about Jessamyn?

I love how fearless she is. I love writing a flying scene from inside her head because she’s all, “Yes! Faster! This is freaking awesome!” I love how she notices beauty and it just stabs right through to her core even when she’s facing devastating loss or impossible odds. I love how fiercely she acts on her alter-abled brother’s behalf, and how some of the time she’s so busy trying to protect him that she doesn’t see he is really doing quite well on his own. I think love for our family members can make us really blind in areas like that.

Can you tell us what you’re working on at the moment?

Oh, that’s easy! I’m in final revisions on the next book in the series, of course!

Will we have to wait long for the next installment in this series?

Not too much longer. It will be out just before Christmas.

You also have another popular series about a girl who can ‘ripple’, could you tell us a bit about this series?

Absolutely! The Ripple Series is about a girl who can turn invisible, the boy she’s crushing on, and the neo-Nazi geneticist who is after them both. The story begins in central California, a beautiful part of that state that most people aren’t very familiar with. Of course, before long we are off to France, Italy, and lots of places! The heroine, Samantha, is quite different from Jess. Where Jess is just born brave, Sam had all of that ripped away from her when her mother was killed before her eyes. So Sam’s journey is one of building back those beliefs about herself and the possibility of safety, of love, of a future worth living.

Other than your own, what are your favourite books?

I love all the Laini Taylor and Maggie Stiefvater titles I’ve read. I like C.S. Lewis’s fiction. I adore Possession, but not all the A.S. Byatt I’ve read. Huge HP fan . . . Sara Zarr’s writing is passionate, honest, and frankly divine.

Random Questions
-          What’s your favourite treat?
Anything dark chocolate with a cuppa tea (white)!
-          What’s your Favourite place to read/write?
For reading, outside on a hot sunny day in this lounge chair I have by my teensy fake pond. Unfortunately it isn’t hot and sunny here much. For writing, I have a desk set up in a little-used part of the house. It is cozy!

-          If you won the lottery what would you most look forward to spending money on?
Traveling to places I haven’t seen and meeting people there and trying new foods and then putting it all into my stories!

-          If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I would love to live in Montecito, California or Sonoma, California. They both have these gorgeous oaks and sunshine and manzanita. At least Sonoma has manzanita (a shrub with lots of mahogany colored branches that look like skin and small silvery-green leaves) although now I’m not sure if Montecito has manzanita or not. But Montecito has the ocean, so that works! I also have a strange interest in spending 6-12 months in Los Angeles someday. And I adore Somerset and Cornwall. Gosh, I’m terrible at limiting myself! I really need to win the lottery!

Find Cidney here:
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4904826.Cidney_Swanson
Website: http://cidneyswanson.com/
Blog: http://cidneyswanson.com/blog
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Cidney-Swanson/e/B005344OTQ/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1350135388&sr=8-2-ent
Twitter: https://twitter.com/cidneyswanson
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cidneyswanson
Pintrest: http://pinterest.com/cidneyswanson/

Thanks so much to Cidney for visiting the blog and for making this giveaway possible!


one lucky winner will win an ecopy of saving mars!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Trial By Fire by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Trial by Fire (Raised by Wolves, #2)
 Blurb (from Goodreads):
There can only be one alpha.

Bryn is finally settling into her position as alpha of the Cedar Ridge Pack—or at least, her own version of what it means to be alpha when you’re a human leading a band of werewolves. Then she finds a teenage boy bleeding on her front porch. Before collapsing, he tells her his name is Lucas, he’s a Were, and Bryn’s protection is his only hope.

But Lucas isn’t part of Bryn’s pack, and she has no right to claim another alpha’s Were.  With threats—old and new—looming, and danger closing in from all sides, Bryn will have to accept what her guardian Callum knew all along. To be alpha, she will have to give in to her own animal instincts and become less human. And, she’s going to have to do it alone.

Bryn faces both the costs, and the rewards, of love and loyalty, in this thrilling sequel to Raised by Wolves.

Trial by Fire by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Trial by Fire (Raised by Wolves, #2)(Source: I borrowed a copy of this book.)
This is book 2 in the ‘Raised by Wolves’ series, and kicks off around a month after the end of book 1. **Unavoidable spoilers for book 1 ‘Raised by Wolves’**
Bryn is now Alpha of the Cedar Ridge pack, and along with Devon, Maddy, and Lake she has gone back to school.
The action kicks off this time with the arrival of a foreign wolf on Bryn’s doorstep. A wolf (Lucas) that has been badly beaten and tortured, and belongs to the Snake Bend Pack – the pack of which Devon’s brother Shay is Alpha.
Shay was vocal in his dislike of Bryn and her pack, and now it seems that he’s using underhand means to try and shake Bryn and her pack, without crossing any real lines between werewolf packs.
Shay isn’t the only one who wants Lucas though, and Bryn has even more problems than she realises.

I enjoyed this book, and I have to say that it was definitely better than the first, which is often a rare thing with the second book in a series.
Bryn seems more grown up in this book, and older than her 15 years. She has a slightly different mentality now, one which has come about through the events of the previous book, and through being an alpha in her own right now. She’s definitely more mature, and has taken over a lot of responsibility in leading her own pack, especially as she is still human and female. This is obviously a problem to Shay, and probably some of the other alphas/packs, and I’m sure that this won’t be the last we hear on this subject. I doubt Shay will ever be happy until Bryn is dead.

The storyline was once again quite complex, and I wasn’t able to guess where it was going, even with the little clues along the way. There were several little twists in the tale that I didn’t see coming, and I felt for Bryn who kept having more problems thrown at her. Just when she would think that she had solved something, some other twist would come along to put her in a whole new hot-seat.

I liked Bryn’s relationship with her friends and pack mates – Devon, Lake, and Chase, and I liked how they supported each other. There wasn’t really anything in the way of romance in this book, which was a shame, but I’m hoping that Chase and Bryn’s relationship will develop more in the next book in the series.
Overall; a great second book in the series, better than the first, and full of clever twists and turns.
8 out of 10.

Today I am Reading...Anathema by K. A. Tucker

Anathema (Causal Enchantment, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
 Evangeline has spent her teenage years in obscurity. Her foster parents have the emotional aptitude of robots and her classmates barely acknowledge her existence. About to turn eighteen and feeling like a social pariah, she is desperate to connect with someone. Anyone.

When Evangeline meets Sophie after literally stumbling upon her café, she believes she’s found that connection. Willing to do anything to keep it, she accepts a job as Sofie’s assistant and drops everything to fly to Manhattan, where she is thrust into a luxurious world of Prada, diamonds, and limitless cash.

With such generosity and kindness, it’s easy for Evangeline to dismiss certain oddities... like Sofie’s erratic and sometimes violent behavior, and the monstrous guard dogs. She’s even willing to dismiss her vivid dreams of mob-style murders, beautiful homeless people living in caves, and white-eyed demons that haunt her each night as figments of her imagination—especially when one of those figments is the gorgeous Caden. When she wakes up with bite marks on her neck, the fairy tale quickly turns into a nightmare. She slowly unravels the mystery surrounding Sofie and friends, and the reality of the bites and the “dreams.” What she discovers is far more mysterious and terrible than anything she could have imagined.

In a world where everyone has motive to lie for personal gain, Evangeline must decide which deception is least likely to get her killed.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, #1) Blurb (from Goodreads):
Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, #1)(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Books4Reviews.)
Karou is an art student, but she is different in that although she is human, her adoptive family are not.
Karou has been raised from a baby by a group of Chimera, beings who are crosses between animals and humans. They look like monsters, but they have nurtured and loved Karou all her life, and they are the only family she has ever known.
Karou’s adoptive father Brimstone is a wish master. He collects teeth – human and animal, and uses them for something – Karou does not know what, and in exchange for teeth, for gives wishes. Wishes come in different denominations, and have different wish granting powers. Karou is given wishes as gifts, but she doesn’t really understand how Brimstone makes those wishes.
Suddenly though, burn marks appear on all the doors between the human world and Brimstone’s world, and Karou’s only access to her family is destroyed. Now Karou must try to find a way back to her family, a mission that is fraught with danger and deceit.
Can Karou find her way back to her family? Why did the angels burn the doors to Brimstone’s world? And who is Karou really?

I liked this book in the beginning. I literally didn’t want to put it down, however by the time I got about 65% of the way through it, it lost its thrall for me.
I liked Karou, although I agreed with Brimstone about her making wasteful wishes. I liked how unique she was, how much she loved her art, and how she went to such lengths to do ask Brimstone asked her. I also liked her blue hair!
I wasn’t all that taken with Akiva, (Akiva was one of the angels who burned the doors) it was when he became the narrator at around 65% that the book started becoming dull and dragging. I just couldn’t follow exactly what was going on, especially with the flashbacks and talk of old battles and stuff. I totally lost what was happening, or even the significance of what was happening, and when Karou’s heritage was finally revealed, I can’t say I was all that shocked or interested. The whole revelation just fell a bit flat to me. I also didn’t really get the ending, I didn’t really understand what had happened to Brimstone and the Chimera, and I can’t say that I’m all that eager to read the next book, although I would like to know what happens in the end.
Overall; liked the beginning but the end really let it down for me.
8 out of 10.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, #1) Daughter of Smoke and BoneDaughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1)Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #1)La chimera di Praga (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1)Dcera kostí a dýmuDari Asap dan Tulang - Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, #1)Fille des chimères (Fille des chimères, #1)Dcéra dymu a kostí  (Dcéra dymu a kostí , #1)Άγγελος και Δαίμονας연기와 뼈의 딸 (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, #1) 

Today I am Reading...The Baby Game by James A. Thomas and Vidya Samson

The Baby Game
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Schoolteacher Samantha Morgan wants only to go to India and pick up
the baby that's being carried by a surrogate--the baby belonging to
her and her beloved late husband.

But a mysterious woman contacts her and brings up a long forgotten
event: her seduction by an older man at age fifteen. Samantha tries
to put that back in the past, but a friend and fellow victim of the seducer delivers some startling news: that older man is now the Republican candidate for president.

It becomes apparent that some people want her to come forward and
destroy his chances. She wants no part of the notoriety. Then her friend’s home is blown up, and it's obvious that another, more sinister group wants her silent forever. She flees to India to get her baby, and there her real troubles begin.


Sunday, 28 October 2012

Club Dead by Charlaine Harris

Club Dead (Sookie Stackhouse, #3)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Sookie's boyfriend has been very distant--in another state, distant. Now she's off to Mississippi to mingle with the underworld at Club Dead--a little haunt where the vampire elite go to chill out. But when she finally finds Bill--caught in an act of betrayal--she's not sure whether to save him...or sharpen some stakes.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Club Dead (Sookie Stackhouse, #3)(Source: I own a copy of this book.)
This is the third book in the Sookie Stackhouse series, and picks up several months after book 2 finished.
Bill has been spending a lot of time at his computer, and now says he has an errand to run for the Queen of Louisiana. Unfortunately though Bill goes missing, and Eric comes to her with news that he believes Bill has been abducted by Russell Edgington, and he expects Sookie to use her telepathic powers to try to locate him. There’s also the added complication of the fact that Bill seems to have gone missing with an ex-girlfriend however, which obviously doesn’t please Sookie.
Good news comes in the form of the gorgeous werewolf Alcide, who Eric is using to take Sookie to Jackson to try and find Bill. Can she really find him and rescue him in time though?

This is probably the best in the Sookie Stackhouse series so far. Sookie has more than a love triangle in this one, with Bill, Eric and Alcide fighting over her, although thankfully there is a lot less time spent on Bill in this book.
I like the addition of the were’s and their politics, and I like the way that Sookie begins standing up for herself a bit more! The corpse count keeps rising though!
Overall; a good third book in the series.
7 out of 10.

Kindle Freebies...Today 28th October 2012

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Author and Book Spotlight - Colors like Memories by Meradeth Houston

Julia has a secret: she killed the guy she loved. It was an accident—sort of. 

Julia is a Sary, the soul of a child who died before taking her first breath. Without this 'breath of life' she and others like her must help those on the verge of suicide. It's a job Julia used to enjoy, until the accident that claimed her boyfriend’s life—an accident she knows was her fault. If living with the guilt weren't enough, she's now assigned to help a girl dealing with the loss of her mother, something Julia's not exactly the best role model for. If she can't figure out a way to help her, Julia's going to lose her position in the Sary, something she swore to her boyfriend would never happen.
Available from MuseItUp Publishing. 

 Interview with the Author -

Meradeth Houston

 Hi Meradeth! Welcome to the Blog!
Thanks so much for hosting me!

When did you start writing?
I started writing for fun when I was around 11 years old. I had always been one of those students who got in trouble at school for reading under their desk, and writing kind of grew out of that habit.

Can you tell us a bit about ‘Colors like Memories’ and your Inspiration for it?
Colors is really Julia's story, and her working through loss, and finding a way to forgive herself. Honestly, where the inspiration for her story exactly came from, I have no idea. But the story itself came to mind while listening to Linkin Park on my drive home one day. It all just sort of came together from that (which is sometimes a little creepy--my subconscious has a very wild imagination!).

What three words would you use to best describe ‘Colors like Memories’?
Love, Loss, and Kissing. Or maybe Flying. Honestly, I've been sitting here for five minutes trying to think of something good, but I'm not coming up with anything better than that :).

Can you tell us a bit about Julia, the main character in ‘Colors like Memories’?
Julia's a Sary, a guardian for those who are about to take their own life. She's immortal, and once had a partner who died during the Civil War (in the States). She feels really responsible for what happened to him, and can't quite get past it. But she has to now, because the girl she's been assigned to, Marcy, is not just her assignment, but her best friend, and saving Marcy's going to take everything Julia's got. Oh, and then there's Edison. He kind of leaves Julia completely confused--in a good way.
Is ‘Colors like Memories’ a standalone novel or will this be part of a series?
There will be several other Sary books (book #2, The Chemistry of Fate will be released next April). Book #3 is currently being written. These three are all stand-alone books set in a world with the Sary, but tie together in subtle ways. For example, there are a couple of characters that link between Colors and Chemistry.

Can you tell us what you’re working on at the moment? 
Book #3, which still needs a title other than "The Story" as I believe it is currently titled in my files :) I also have a completely different sci-fi book that I can't wait to whip into shape.

Other than your own, what are your favourite books?
I have far too many! But I adore A Wrinkle In Time by Madeline L'Engle, really enjoyed the Fallen series by Lauren Kate, and The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clair (well, all of her books, really). Hmm, oh, and anything by Maggie Stiefvater, too. I should stop now--this list could get out of hand way too easily!

Random Questions 
- What’s your favourite treat? 
Hot chocolate! (I'm about to make some as I'm writing this :)

- What’s your Favourite place to read/write? 
In the world, I'd have to go with Planet Cafe in Barcelona (I kinda lived there while I was in the city for a few months earlier this year--such good hot chocolate!). Where I'm living now, probably the cafe in Hastings, which is this big book/DVD store that has a pretty nice little spot for coffee and relaxing.

- If you won the lottery what would you most look forward to spending money on?
Books. And clothes. Purses. Probably some shoes. A big house with a giant library first though, lol!

- If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? 
Hmm, that's a tough one. Stateside, San Diego, near the beach. Worldwide: Spain (Barcelona especially), or Kyoto Japan, or maybe London. I kinda love to travel and those are some of my favorite places. In all honesty, I'd probably move around a lot if I had the money to do it!

Thanks a million for the wonderfully fun questions!!
Thanks to Meradeth for stopping by the blog!

A bit about Meradeth Houston:

Meradeth’s never been a big fan of talking about herself, but if you really want to know, here are some random tidbits about her:

She’s a Northern California girl. This generally means she talks too fast and use "like" a lot.
When she’s not writing, she’s sequencing dead people’s DNA. For fun!
She’s been writing since she was 11 years old. It's her hobby, her passion, and she’s so happy to get to share her work!
If she could have a super-power, it would totally be flying. Which is a little strange, because she’s terrified of heights.

http://youtu.be/HFRNJ-Yn7So (teaser trailer)

Friday, 26 October 2012

Kindle Freebies...Today 26th October 2012

34 Pieces of you by Carmen Rodrigues

34 Pieces of You
Blurb (from Goodreads):

A dark and moving novel—reminiscent of Thirteen Reasons Why—about the mystery surrounding a teenage girl’s fatal overdose.

There was something about Ellie... Something dangerous. Charismatic. Broken. Jake looked out for her. Sarah followed her lead. And Jess kept her distance, and kept watch.

Now Ellie’s dead, and Jake, Sarah, and Jess are left to pick up the pieces. All they have are 34 clues she left behind. 34 strips of paper hidden in a box beneath her bed. 34 secrets of a brief and painful life.

Jake, Sarah, and Jess all feel responsible for what happened to Ellie, and all three have secrets of their own. As they begin to confront the darkest truths about themselves, they will also find out what Ellie herself had been hiding all along...

 34 Pieces of You by Carmen Rodrigues

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

34 Pieces of You(Source: I borrowed a copy of this book.)
Ellie is dead, whether it was suicide or an accidental overdose nobody knows. Sarah did it with her, but she survived.
Ellie was a live-wire, but she also self-harmed, cutting herself, drinking too much, and getting high all the time.
Now she’s gone and it’s up to everyone left behind to pick up the pieces.

This book is an emotional journey of how the three people closest to Ellie perceived her and her actions, how they made things better or worse, and how they feel about Ellie and certain events after she is gone. Thankfully though, this book is not depressing, which I find many books about these sort of issues to be.

The story is told from the points of view of Sarah (Ellie’s best friend), Jessie (Sarah’s sister), and Jake (Ellie’s brother), and also from multiple points in time both before and after Ellie’s death. Each of the character’s lives is so complex, and the interweaving of their lives is really beautiful to read.

Ellie’s life is messed up. She’s hiding secrets that have really messed with her head, and she’s acting crazy in defiance of the way she feels inside. She’s sending out self-destruct signals, only they’re difficult for people to spot, and as so often is the way, nobody believes that she will really damage herself to the point where she dies. Ellie’s strange, and destructive behaviours are a cry for help, only she finds it difficult to accept help if it’s offered. This same pattern is mirrored by Sarah in the time after Ellie’s death.

This book obviously deals with the very real problems of depression and suicide in teens, but instead of focusing directly on Ellie it focuses on how her behaviour affected her friends and family and how nobody was brave enough to accept the reality of how Ellie was feeling and do something about it.

There is a hint at romance in this book, but again it’s tangled in with everything else that happens to Allie, Sarah, Jessie, and Jake, and it’s not really an over-riding theme. Each of the characters are totally real and flawed in their own ways, and it’s easy to get inside their heads as you read their chapters. I liked the way the book moved on from character to character to give you a more rounded idea as to what was going on, and who was thinking and feeling what.

I think the idea of this book is to bring the subject of teen depression, self-harm, and suicide into a public forum, and I think it does this well. I just hope that people take the advice to ask for help after reading this, rather than going Ellie’s route and resorting to drinking, drugs, and cutting.

If I had one complaint it would be that the cover for this book bears no resemblance to the story itself at all. I think the girl is supposed to be Ellie, but does that girl look depressed, self-destructive, and suicidal to you? Can you see the multiple scars on all that exposed flesh from where she’s used blades to slice her skin?

And the other thing; I had absolutely no idea that the little handwritten messages at the start of each chapter were written by Ellie, none at all – until I read the blurb (which I read after I read the book (I didn’t want spoilers)). The box of notes in question also doesn’t play as key a role in the story as the blurb leads you to believe either. (Okay, sorry, maybe that’s 2 complaints…)

Overall; this is an insightful, poignant book, with an important message, and I really enjoyed it. I will definitely be buying a copy of this to keep.
8.75 out of 10.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

JLA Summer Blog Tour - Obsidian


Obsidian (Lux, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
When seventeen-year-old Katy Swartz moved to West Virginia right before her senior year, she'd pretty much resigned herself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring, but then she spotted her hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up...until he opened his mouth. Daemon Black is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. It's hate at first sight, but when a stranger attacks her and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something...unexpected happens. The hot guy next door? Well, he's an alien. Turns out that Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities and Katy is caught in the crosshairs. Daemon's touch has lit her up like the Vegas Strip and the only way she's getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until her alien mojo fades. That is if she doesn't kill him first.

I know, I must be one of the last people on Goodreads to finally get round to this one!

Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Obsidian (Lux, #1)(Source: I won a digital copy of this book.)
17-year-old Katy has just moved to West Virginia with her mom, and the last thing she expects to encounter are a pair of gorgeous aliens living right next door! While Dee quickly becomes her best friend, Daemon is a different matter entirely, being annoying and irritating and so damn desirable that Katy doesn’t know what to do with him.

The aliens have enemies though, and humans absorb some of the aliens glow if they use their powers in front of them. Because of the way things have worked out, Katy is now glowing like a beacon, and it’s only so long until the enemies come after her, and after the aliens too.

Can Dee, Daemon, and Katy avoid the enemy who want to kill them? And can Katy keep her temper around Daemon for long enough not to kill him herself?

I enjoyed this book. Daemon and Katy had real chemistry, and I really wanted their relationship to evolve into something more!
Katy was a real, down-to-earth kind of girl, and I liked how she handled Daemon, without needing any super-powers, or masses of confidence. Dee was a real upbeat kind of character who I really liked, and Daemon was just infuriating. I wasn’t sure if I wanted Katy to kiss him or kill him in places! There was something a little lacking from him for me though, he just kept pushing Katy away without giving enough signals that really he liked her, and I really wanted there to be more development of their relationship.

I haven’t read many books with aliens in them so far this year but this one was done well, and I liked the way that the ‘aliens’ weren’t invincible, or able to hop back to their home planet at a moment’s notice. I also liked that there were no UFO’s involved in the story.

I did however cringe at some of Katy’s book blogging stuff. She was absolutely desperate to post one moment, and then the next couldn’t be bothered because she wasn’t reading anything new! JLA – you don’t need to make your main character a blogger to get us to read your books. And seriously, how the hell could anybody possibly concentrate on reading with Daemon living next door? I mean really? She should be prancing around in that red bikini and fanning herself with a book whilst strategically placing herself where he could see her.

Overall; an interesting storyline, and different to the normal vampires. No, I didn’t love it as much as everyone else, but I will be reading Onyx. In fact if I had had my kindle this week I would probably have bought it and read it already!
8 out of 10.