Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Shadows (Lux 0.5)

Shadows (Lux, #0.5)Shadows by Jennifer L. Armentrout
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Summary:  The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane. Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable.Bethany can’t deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren’t a complication she wants, she can’t stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she’s drawn in. Captivated. Lured. Loved.  Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence...and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can’t stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself.

As much as I loved Obsidian, I enjoyed this one as well. This is a Prequel to Obsidian, and gave a lot more background to Daemon and his attitude.

This book focused on Dawson, Daemon's brother, whose personality is completely opposite of Daemon. Without giving any spoilers away to both this book or Obsidian will be difficult, but I am giving it a try.

Dawson ends up falling for Bethany, which is against the rules with their kind. Having fun with humans is ok, but they cannot ever find out their real identity. That could be the death of both of them. The love and connection that both Bethany and Dawson end up feeling pushes away the need to stay safe.

The reason I gave this book 3 stars instead of 4 was because I felt like it was too close of a repeat to Obsidian. Sure the people and personalities are different, but I felt like I was reading Obidian again at times. Similar things happen in this book as they did in the other and I felt a little jipped. As much as I love the series, I was a little disappointed in this one.

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Obsidian (Lux #1)

Obsidian (Lux, #1)Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary:
Starting over sucks.
When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I’d pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring…. until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.  
And then he opened his mouth.  Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something…unexpected happens.  The hot alien living next door marks me.  You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon’s touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades.  If I don’t kill him first, that is.

This was a book that my kindle suggested, I can't remember if it was free or a really good price, but I definitely got a great deal!
At first, the word "alien" threw me off. YUCK-O! My first thought of an alien was a sticky, fat-round-headed, E.T.-looking thing! Then I thought.. What the heck, might as well dive into new territory and WOW! Was I wrong!


I have to admit that I am usually immediately turned off by guys who are crude and arrogant. But somehow, the author seems to get Daemon into my heart. Daemon is so frustrating! So unpredictable! But then there is a side to him that shows his true feelings. The bad boy image does crack here and there.


Katy, such a sweet girl and a complete book-blog nerd, moves with her Mother after her father dies. Deciding that she is going to make the most of their move, finds out pretty quickly that people in the area are not normal. Especially after meeting Daemon, her neighbor, she never knew that anyone could be so cruel. Daemon sister, blackmails him into making peace with Katy, completely baffling Katy he seems kind and sincere, but then switches in to jerk-mode again.


By accident, Katy learns their true identity which puts her into danger and the only way to keep safe is by staying close to the unpredictable Daemon. Then the heat turns on! WOW...(ok, I said that already) but there is a definite heat and connection. May need to get a fan out while reading this book! But of course Daemon seems to say something ignorant to cool things down real fast. UGH!


Even though I really enjoyed this book, not sure I would approve of my kids under the age of 18 read this. There is some language and the "heat" I was referring to, gets pretty steamy as well as the sexual innuendo.


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Monday, February 27, 2012

A Healing Heart by Melissa A. Hanson

A Healing Heart A Healing Heart by Melissa A. Hanson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary: On a bitter cold winter night Bailey Walsh’s family was killed in a traffic accident. Two years later as she lives with her aunt and uncle in Southern California, Bailey is still plagued by the nightmares of that terrible night. Everywhere around her are reminders of what she lost. Even her aunt, in a cruel twist of fate, is not just her mom’s sister, but her identical twin. Babysitting Riley, a spunky two-year old, is a sweet distraction and one constant light in her life. One day as she takes Riley to the park she meets Collin McKenna, a senior at her high school and her life is changed forever as he helps her find herself and realize her life is worth living. As the romance between them grows her broken heart begins to heal. However, still nagging in the back of her conscious is the fear that her new found happiness could come crashing down and she could lose everything she loves, yet again. Outside forces begin to tear them apart and Bailey must learn to trust in herself and realize that she is worthy of happiness. That sometimes love and healing comes in unexpected forms

Bailey, having lost her whole family, tries to keep on living with the deep pain of loss and survivors guilt. Helping her keep from deep despair is a little boy, Riley, show she babysits. Eileen, the boys mother, becomes an example of strength. Bailey has grown to love them dearly. Then... literally running into Collin turns out to be the best thing, in a long time, to happen to her.

Collin, having his own loss, focuses his life around his little sister, Lacey, making sure she has what she needs. When Bailey collides into his life, his world is never the same again. His thoughts are consumed by her. He cannot deny there is an immediate spark, a thread that pulls them together.

I am a sucker for books like this one, which are told from both sides of the story. Getting to hear inside their heads keep the plot rolling on an equal balance. I got a better feel for the characters, instead of one-sided judgement. I fell for Bailey and Collin, with their innocense, but with the weight of the world on their shoulders. I cried my eyes out during both the beautiful times and the hard times that life threw at them, so much like real life. Bailey blossoms into a beautiful, strong young woman, while Collin sees that sometimes loving means doing the hard thing.

If you are looking for a clean-read, full of life, love and romance, I would recommend this book. Being a debut novel for Melissa, I will definitely be looking for her next book!


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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Review and "About the Author"

I have been wanting to expand my reading to something other than YA paranormal, but haven't had the nerve to do so until the author Tony Bertauski asked if I would review his book.  He told me it was a YA sci-fi, fantasy so I figured this was my chance to jump into something different.  I was not disappointed in any way!

Book Summary


When kids awake on an island, they're told there was an accident.  Before they can go home, they will visit Foreverland, and alternate reality that will heal their minds.  Reed dreams of a girl that tells him to resist Foreverland.  He doesn't remember her name, but knows he once loved her.  He'll have to endure great suffering and trust his dream.  And trust he's not insane.  Danny Boy, the new arrival, meets Reed's dream girl inside Foreverland.  She'e stuck in the fantasy land that no kids can resist, where every heart's desire is satisfied.  Why should anyone care how Foreverland works?  Together, they discover what its' really doing to them.  

If I had to narrow it down, I would say it is a book where Inception meets Evil Peter Pan.  The concept and idea of this caught my attention and after I got into it, I couldn't put it down.  I have to admit I was a little confused at first with the articles, but as I kept reading, things fell into place.  There were many twist and turns, just when I thought I had it figured out, something proved me wrong. I would put this into the thriller/mystery category as well.  The beginning was dark, creepy, and a little frightening as the plot began with the suffering and how they were "persuaded" to go to Foreverland. 

 I loved the characters immediately who drew me in to their hearts and stories. Danny, who wakes up in a place he doesn't know, does not remember his past.  Being an intelligent boy, he begins asking questions, determined to figure out why they are there.  Reed, being strong and only remembering a girl from his dreams, fights off the torturing techniques with her words to comfort him. How could you not get involved with these boys?   The ending was sort of a shock to me, but it was thrilling, kept me on edge, but left me with a satisfied smile.  

For those who aren't really into the sci-fi fantasy books, I would give this one a try.  It will not disappoint you!    It is a fairly clean book with a few "guy terms" of the body, but with a book of teenage boys, it is what I would expect.  Being a Mom of 4 boys, I am going to let my 17 year old read this, not sure my 12 yr old is ready for it, but I think it is something most teen boys would enjoy as well as adults.

About the Author


Toni Bertauski
Husband. Father. Son. Teacher. Writer. I am all these things.

Novels

I wanted to write a full-length novel and just the mere effort of putting 80K words in some sort of story felt like a success.  Well, it was!  Just having a coherent string of related thoughts is a success for the average person (I don't have any data to back that up, bur I'm going with it).  I put together a few novel-length stories, then proceeded to bore the sh** out of everyone I knew.  After learning the craft, however, I've done some decent work (see the Socket Greeny stories).  But I would like to apologize to the people that read the early stuff.  Really, really sorry, folks.  You deserve a medal or something.  I've gotten better.  Inspired by consciousness and identity, I've written story that explore our place in the universe.   

Other Novels
Young Adult/ Science Fiction
Claus, Legend of the Fat Man (Coming 2012!)
The Annihilation of Foreverland
The Socket Greeny Saga
Science Fiction Novellas (Drayton the Taker series)
Drayton, the Taker
Bearing the Cross
Swift is the Current
For more information about Toni Bertauski here are his links... 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Hallowed





Hallowed by Cynthia Hand
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

After not fulfilling her purpose -the thing she was created to do-, Clara tries to figure out if there is more to that fateful day of the fire, when she was supposed to save Christian Prescott. She also starts having a recurrent dream where she discovers she will lose someone she loves within months. Clara is torn between her deep new feelings toward Christian and her love for her boyfriend, Tucker. She continues being drawn into the battle between Black Wings and White wings while learning more and more about herself, her family and what part she plays in all this.

I knew that Christian had to make a big comeback in this book because I didn't feel like I got to know him at all. As much as he was made to be some kind of mysterious, gorgeous, hunk, and the fact he was Clara's purpose, I knew I was in for a lot of Christian. I was not disappointed at all, my feelings for Christian grew to love him as much as I do Tucker. Christian is determined, but patient with Clara, being her friend and helping her with "Angel" things that Tucker couldn't know or understand. Even when Clara was pushing him away, Christian didn't give up on her.

Oh Tucker! How could you not love Tucker and Clara's relationship? So wonderful and warm, despite all the huge and larger than life things Clara can do, they still are the average teenage couple; telling jokes, laughing, playing, kissing, going to dances, breaking rules, getting caught,and grounded. Clara fights to hang on to what they have.

Clara is stubborn, rebelling against her purpose which includes Christian. She fights to change her visions because she wants to be in charge of her life, not what is expected of her. As life changes, her graduation coming up, blackwings wanting her, the death of someone coming up, Clara has to grow up quickly and make some serious decisions.

Ms. Hand created one of the best young adult romances that I have read. My heart was breaking at the end of this book, but for some reason I felt at peace with it. I look forward to the next book of this series.



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Saturday, February 4, 2012

I WON my first giveaway!


I am so excited to announce that I have won my first blog giveaway! It is the YA book "Supernaturally by Kiersten White".  Yes, I am a newbie with all this blog stuff, but I am getting quite addicted to it besides reading all these great books.  
I have not read this book yet, so I am really looking forward to getting it in the mail.  As my blog gets up in number of followers, I hope I can get to the point where I can start some giveaways myself!  Heaven knows I buy enough books that I can start "SHARING THE LOVE" of these wonderful books!  So if you haven't joined by GFC... on the left side where it says "follow", or by "networkedblogs" just under that, please do!  That way YOU can help me start up my own fun!!!  THANKS!!

Thanks to Mary, from the BookHounds YA Blog for this fun giveaway! Check out her blog, it is completely awesome!!  She has some other super giveaways going on.

BookHounds

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Hunger Games Theatrical Trailer #2


Here is the new longer trailer for "The Hunger Games".

The pull of Katniss' story of courage and determination is calling me after watching these great trailers. I look forward to seeing how the story is portrayed compared to how I read it to be. I am impressed with the casting, with Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth. Jennifer seems to be a really good match of what I had envisioned for Katniss especially as to what she looked like in my head.. and for Peeta... Josh is perfect!

Now that time is fast approaching for the release of this long awaited movie, I feel the need to dig out my slightly used book of "The Hunger Games", dust it off and dive into the story once again. Anyone want to join in me???

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