Monthly Archives: May 2015

Fracture Me (Shatter Me/The Juliette Chronicles #2.5)

Finished on 31st May, 2015

Author: Tahareh Mafi

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3.75 Stars

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Discover the fate of the Omega Point rebels as they go up against The Reestablishment. Set during and soon after the final moments of Unravel MeFracture Me is told from Adam’s perspective.

As Omega Point prepares to launch an all-out assault on The Reestablishment soldiers stationed in Sector 45, Adam’s focus couldn’t be further from the upcoming battle. He’s reeling from his breakup with Juliette, scared for his best friend’s life, and as concerned as ever for his brother James’s safety. And just as Adam begins to wonder if this life is really for him, the alarms sound. It’s time for war.

On the battlefield, it seems like the odds are in their favor—but taking down Warner, Adam’s newly discovered half brother, won’t be that easy. The Reestablishment can’t tolerate a rebellion, and they’ll do anything to crush the resistance . . . including killing everyone Adam has ever cared about.

Fracture Me sets the stage for Ignite Me, the explosive finale in Tahereh Mafi’s epic dystopian series. It’s a novella not to be missed by fans who crave action-packed stories with tantalizing romance like Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and Legend by Marie Lu.

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I honestly have no idea how to rate this book. As usual, Tahareh’s writing is amazing, but on the other hand we have Adam – which is where the dilemma hits.

Fracture Me cemented my hate for Adam and my love for Kenji and James. I applaud Tahereh for creating a character that we fall in love with in Shatter Me, but becomes absolutely horrible and just a real jerk.

I despise Adam with a passion. Why, you ask? Well, not only is he revealed to be incredibly stupid and impulsive, but he is horrible to the people he loves. In the beginning, we see that although he loves James, Adam is a complete jerk to James. I mean, he isn’t entirely horrible, but he does and says some questionable things. Most of all, Adam’s perception of Juliette is cringe-worthy and I feel like tearing him to pieces. Adam sees Juliette – the girl he claims to have loved for over a decade – as weak, pathetic and incapable of doing anything. To him, she is fragile and to be protected. And when she goes out of that convenient little box that he’s put her in and starts acting like a bad-ass? It scares him. It scares him. I just – I can’t.

If I could punch any fictional character in the face – with a brick – I would choose Adam over Umbridge. Umbridge, people! Surely that should give you some perspective. Adam is a coward and does not deserve Juliette in the least – if they get together in Ignite Me, then I will be seriously vexed.

In spite of all this, I do believe that Fracture Me is a good addition to the trilogy. Aside from solidifying how much of a jerk Adam is, from chapter seven onwards we see what happens to the other characters during the final section of Unravel Me, which I believe is not included in the original trilogy.

I recommend Fracture Me to fans of the series that still like Adam – for they will see how much of a moron he truly is. (I’m so cruel, I know.) But in all seriousness, I would recommend reading this novella if you’re curious as to what happened to the other characters after the battle at the end of Unravel Me.

Destroy Me (Shatter Me/The Juliette Chronicles #1.5)

Read on 29th May, 2015

Author: Tahereh Mafi

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5 Stars

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In Tahereh Mafi’s Shatter Me, Juliette escaped from The Reestablishment by seducing Warner—and then putting a bullet in his shoulder. But as she’ll learn in Destroy Me, Warner is not that easy to get rid of. . .

Back at the base and recovering from his near-fatal wound, Warner must do everything in his power to keep his soldiers in check and suppress any mention of a rebellion in the sector. Still as obsessed with Juliette as ever, his first priority is to find her, bring her back, and dispose of Adam and Kenji, the two traitors who helped her escape. But when Warner’s father, The Supreme Commander of The Reestablishment, arrives to correct his son’s mistakes, it’s clear that he has much different plans for Juliette. Plans Warner simply cannot allow.

Set after Shatter Me and before its forthcoming sequel, Unravel Me, Destroy Me is a novella told from the perspective of Warner, the ruthless leader of Sector 45.

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This book… This book.

Warner is just so amazing and complex and ohmygoodnessIcan’teven.

I absolutely loved seeing inside of Warner’s mind, what his childhood was like, why he acts the way he does, as well as his reaction to reading Juliette’s journal. There were a few instances where I shed some tears. Chapter sixteen broke my heart.

There’s nothing much else that I can say about Destroy Me without spoiling people, but if you like the series at all, if you love Warner, then read this book. I don’t care if you have something against novellas – just read it.

Even though Destroy Me is listed as #1.5 in the series, I would recommend doing as I did and reading it after Unravel Me. I found that it was better to get to know Warner as Juliette did, and then switch to his perspective on everything that happened – let’s just say that you will come to understand that certain were not as they appeared and if you didn’t love Warner already, you will after reading this novella.

You can find my reviews for Shatter Me and Unravel Me here and here.

Please comment your thoughts so I can fangirl with you about the brilliance that is Warner!

Unravel Me (Shatter Me/The Juliette Chronicles #2)

Finished 28th May, 2015

Author: Tahereh Mafi

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5 Stars

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Our lips touch and I know I’m going to split at the seams. He kisses me softly then strongly like he’s lost me and he’s found me and I’m slipping away and he’s never going to let me go.

Juliette has escaped from The Reestablishment. Now she’s free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch. Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible. Haunted by her past and terrified of her future, Juliette knows that she will have to make some life-changing choices. Choices that may involve choosing between her heart – and Adam’s life.

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Shatter Me was fantastic, but Unravel Me is ten times better – which was something that I didn’t think was possible.

The characters, the writing, the plot, the setting… I couldn’t get enough. Unravel Me is a simply phenomenal read and I can’t wait to dive into the next installments.

Warner’s potential was revealed in Shatter Me, but in Unravel Me he simply blew me away. I love him so much! I just- wow. I love how his character, personality and past was revealed. I cannot adequately express my feelings for him – he is such a beautiful and well put together character and I could not – can not – get enough of him. To put it into perspective: my love for him is currently more than that of which I have for William Herondale. Yes, he’s that amazing. Did I mention that he also loves to read?

I really liked how the character arc with Adam turned out. I still think that he was important – crucial even – in getting Juliette where she is now and I did love them together for that. But for where she is at the moment (and for the future), Warner is perfect. Adam was the first love, and Warner is endgame.

While she did irritate me at times (namely the scene about three quarters in when everything is amazing but then she says that one word which screws it all up), I really liked Juliette and seeing her character develop. I love the realizations that she came to in herself and where she ended up when the novel left off. I am really excited to see where her character goes and what she will do. She has the potential to be an absolutely amazing, kick-ass character – made even more so by how far she’s come.

Honourable mention to Kenji (you are the bestest friend ever), Sonya and Sarah, Brendan, James and Winston. You guys are amazing.

I don’t know how she does it, but Tahareh’s writing is not only unconventional, but beautiful, poetic and entirely quotable.

I recommend the Shatter Me trilogy to anyone, really. I feel that it has a lot of different elements that could appeal to a wide variety of readers.

To hear more of my thoughts, be sure to check out my review of Shatter Me here.

The Sway (Hidden #1.5)

Read on 24th May, 2015

Author: Amy Patrick

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5 Stars

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A member of the Dark Court, Vancia has spent her life among humans—together but separate, hiding in plain sight. Now Pappa says it’s time to put her glamour to use against the unsuspecting humans and worse, agree to an arranged political marriage with the reclusive Light Elven prince.

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Amy Patrick knows exactly how to mess with my emotions.

The Sway is a brilliant novella that focuses on Vancia, Lad’s proposed bride-to-be, and takes place before and during the last few scenes of Hidden Deep. (You can find my reviews of Hidden Deep and Hidden Heart here and here).

I love Vancia – so much. She is just such an awesome character who was not flushed out at all in the first two installments of the Hidden trilogy. I loved her perspective and I wish that I had read The Sway before Hidden Heart. I just- she is absolutely amazing.

I also loved finding out what Davis was actually like. He’s mentioned in the first two books of the trilogy, but this is the first time that we actually met him. It was… Interesting. Let’s just say that I am certainly not a fan.

In Hidden Deep, I shipped Ryann and Lad; in Hidden Heart, it was Ryann and Nox; and now… I’m conflicted. I really do love Ryann and Nox, but then after reading The Sway, I’m partial to the idea of Nox with Vancia and Lad with Ryann… You could say that I’m somewhat of a mess right now.

I would like to give a huge thank you to Amy Patrick, the author of the Hidden trilogy, for gifting me with a copy of this book in the anthology Faery Tales: Six Novellas of Magic and Adventure.
The Sway will be available for individual purchase after June 15, 2015.

Be sure to check out this series and let me know your thoughts! Who do you ship? Have you wound up as conflicted as I?

ARC Review: Hidden Heart (Hidden #2)

Read from 23rd-24th May, 2015

Author: Amy Patrick

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Release Date: Today (24th May)

4.5 Stars

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17-year-old Ryann Carroll thought she knew who she was… a small-town Southern girl just trying to survive her parents’ messy divorce and find some peace for herself. She thought she knew what she wanted… a summer job, a car, a first date that didn’t suck, and NO complications from a serious relationship— any guy in her life would simply be icing on the cake.

But now… she’s not only in love, her boyfriend Lad is a member of a secret race that’s lived secretly among humans for thousands of years, mentioned only in flawed and fading folklore. Things could hardly get more complicated than that.

More importantly, she’s learned the world’s top celebrities… those actors, musicians, athletes, and politicians who seem a little too beautiful and talented to be true… actually are. They’re not human, and they’re using their glamour and the increasing popularity of fan pods to control more and more humans. But why?

With her best friend Emmy leaving soon to join the fan pod of a famous actor, Ryann has to find out the answer. And she can’t do it alone. But after a shocking murder, Lad can no longer fight his destiny or his duty, and Ryann’s not sure whether his top priority is their relationship or his people.

In this second book of the Hidden Trilogy, true friendship will take Ryann from rural Mississippi to the glittering city of Los Angeles. And true love will take her to places she never expected to go…

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You can find my review of Hidden Deep, the first book of the Hidden trilogy, here.

First of all, I would like to give a huge thank you to Amy Patrick, the author of the “Hidden” trilogy, for supplying me with an advanced reader copy (ARC) of this novel.

I really appreciated the world building of this series. Hidden Heart really showcased the fan pods – the dynamics, purpose and execution of them were brought to light in a scarily realistic manner. It was not hard to believe that this could happen in our society, our world, in the present time (or near future).

Although I loved Hidden Heart, it did take me about a hundred pages or so to really get into it – mainly because Ryann (the protagonist) was really frustrating me. She was stubborn and made some decisions that I didn’t necessarily agree with. However, she did have some growth and character development throughout the novel which I appreciated and the story really picked up towards the second half of the book.

As for Lad… I don’t even know. Hidden Heart made me fall in love with Nox, and now I ship him with Ryann way more than Ryan and Lad – I loved Lad in Hidden Deep, and I appreciate that he was her first love, but in real life, first loves are often not the last – or only – love someone has in their life.

I also currently love Nox’s character more than Lad’s. I don’t understand how anyone can read Hidden Heart and not fall in love with Nox. That end revelation only solidified my love for him. However, as much as I’d like to believe Nox is endgame, Amy has left space for it to go either way.

Despite my initial frustrations, I really admire Ryann’s loyalty to Emmy and I feel that it is a large part of what kept her grounded as a character.

I’m not sure what to make of Vancia. I wish that I’d read The Sway (a Hidden novella) before Hidden Heart as I would love to know what’s going on inside her head. We don’t really see much of her in the first two installments of the trilogy, but enough to get me intrigued. I feel that she will be a featured character in the next book, which I hope is the case.

Davis. Although I didn’t mention anything in my review of Hidden Deep, I had my suspicions of his true nature even then. – He was dating Ryann’s mother and despite exchanging a few phone calls, had never met Ryann in person. Also, he turned Ryann’s mother lovestruck, which is certainly a feat in itself. Everything about him screamed too good to be true…

I highly recommend the Hidden trilogy to fans of urban fantasy and faerie lore.

Shatter Me (Shatter Me/The Juliette Chronicles #1)

Finished on 22nd May, 2015

Author: Tahereh Mafi

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5 Stars

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I have a curse.
I have a gift.

I’m a monster.
I’m more than human.

My touch is lethal.
My touch is power.

I am their weapon.
I will fight back.

No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal, but The Reestablishment has plans for her. Plans to use her as a weapon. But Juliette has plans of her own. After a lifetime without freedom, she’s finally discovering a strength to fight back for the first time – and to find a future with the one boy she thought she’d lost forever.

In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a riveting dystopian world, a thrilling superhero story, and an unforgettable heroine.

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Shatter Me is a beautifully written novel set in a dystopian society that hits alarmingly close to home, yet also touches on the paranormal. It certainly lives up to the hype.

The writing in Shatter Me is extremely unique. Some may (and have) found it hard to get into, but I absolutely loved it. The novel is written almost as a stream of consciousness – complete with crossed out words and phrases. It’s rather hard to describe, but I found that through it I really connected to Juliette – perhaps even more so than I would have if it was written traditionally.

On that note, I really liked Juliette as a character. Despite being isolated, discriminated against and hurt by the world since she was small, she is so innocent, so pure, so good. I loved seeing her experience love for the first time and look forward to seeing her continual growth and character development.

Now, the big question: Adam or Warner?

I really liked Warner, but at this point in time I don’t like the idea of Juliette and him in a relationship – while it may be interesting, it would not fit into Juliette’s character or moral values (at this point in time). However, I have been told that he gets a lot better as the series progresses and he does have a lot of potential, so I’ll see how it goes – I really want to find out why people ship them together so much.

I wasn’t expecting to love Adam, but I did. Warner must turn out to absolutely brilliant if so many people ship them over these two. Adam is fantastic, loving, compassionate, protective, and exactly what Juliette needs while still being a great person in his own right. I am really interested to discover the story behind the white bird (and if Warner dreams about it too).

The world building is so well done that it isn’t hard to believe that the destruction of their world could easily happen to us. In short: the ozone layer is decimated and because of that the environment is all but screwed, the animals have all been killed off or have been genetically mutated and the human population is starving under the rule The Reestablishment – a military organisation that took advantage of people’s desperation and lured the world into complete submission through empty promises. Now The Reestablishment are a dictatorship bent on destroying books, culture, language and anything that makes the human populace unique.

A brilliant read, I highly recommend Shatter Me to people looking for a unique, beautifully written dystopian with a touch of paranormal – or just someone looking for a good read. Shatter Me is a story of a girl who has been abused, tossed out and abandoned by the world, yet is still able to find light and hope and goodness. It is a journey of self discovery and fighting back. I look forward to continuing on with this series.

Nothing But Shadows (Tales From the Shadowhunter Academy #4)

Read on 20th June, 2015

Authors: Cassandra Clare & Sarah J. Maas

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5 Stars

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Simon challenges the setup of the Shadowhunter Academy and in doing so learns the story of James Herondale and Matthew Fairchild and the unusual way that they became friends and parabatai.

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As I repeatedly find myself saying, these installments just keep getting better and better… There is absolutely nothing about Nothing But Shadows that I didn’t like – the characters, the storylines, even the title…

I loved all of the characters. Aside from Simon, Catrina and all our other favourites, we see more of Ragnor (who is just as brilliant as I recall from The Bane Chronicles), James Herondale, Matthew Fairchild, as well as Thomas and Christopher Lightwood (cousins). The main cast from The Infernal Devices were also referenced and some had cameos.

Despite its short length, Cassandra and Sarah really fleshed out these characters and added hidden depths that you do not see coming. I’m completely in love with James (he’s an adorable bookworm for one and his “legacy” is super awesome too) and half in love with Thomas – but they’re all absolutely brilliant.

A fast, enthralling read, Nothing But Shadows had me hook, line and sinker. As I was reading, I either bookmarked or highlighted pretty much every other page.

I highly recommend Tales From the Shadowhunter Academy to any and all existing Cassandra Clare fans. That said, Tales From the Shadowhunter Academy is not a standalone – there are spoilers for people who have not read The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices. Also, it’s a much more enriching reading experience as you are able to pick up on and appreciate the cameos and references that are scattered throughout these installments.

Cover Reveal: Death Before Daylight (The Timely Death Trilogy #3) by Shannon A. Thompson

The day is finally upon us! Today, the new cover of Death Before Daylight, the third and final installment in the Timely Death trilogy, is revealed! This is an extra special occasion as Death Before Daylight never got the chance to be published. However, I was sent an eARC of this finale and it is brilliant! You can check out my review here and if you missed my cover reveals for Minutes Before Sunset and Seconds Before Sunrise you can check them out here and here.

Letter from the author, Shannon A. Thompson

It’s here! It’s here! The final cover of The Timely Death Trilogy has finally been released. A special thank you goes out to Clean Teen Publishing and this lovely Member of the Dark who is helping share this message today. Minutes Before Sunset, book 1 of The Timely Death Trilogy, re-releases on July 28 – with an all new interior and exterior – and both are beautiful. Seconds Before Sunrise follows on August 25, and Death Before Daylight (the only novel of the trilogy to never see the shelves before) is finally getting it’s day . . . hehehe . . . Well, it’s releasing September 15. Even more exciting? You can win prizes throughout all of these events and more by becoming a Member of the Dark . . . or a Member of the Light. Check out the details below! I look forward to speaking with you!

Shannon A. Thompson (a.k.a. SAT)

So, without further adou…

Original Cover:

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Another beautiful cover for this trilogy! I actually prefer this one to the original… Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Synopsis:

Two eternities. One ending.

“Harmony would only come with destruction.”

The moment Eric and Jessica are reunited, they are torn apart. After the appearance of a new breed of shades and lights, the powers shift for the worse, and all three descendants find themselves face-to-face in the Light realm. When Darthon is in control, the last thing everyone expects is to finally hear the truth.

While Jessica learns the reason of her creation, Darthon’s identity is exposed to Eric—and only Eric—and Eric can no longer defend himself. With the eternities of the Light and the Dark resting on Jessica’s shoulders, she must choose who she will be—a light or a shade.

In the end, someone must die, and the end is near.

Dark Activities:

Become a Member of the Dark (or Light) by emailing ShannonAThompson@aol.com. Your email will never be given out, and you are not required to do anything, but you will win more prizes the more you participate.

Win a paperback of Minutes Before Sunset via Goodreads! 

Pre-order Minutes Before Sunset

Stay Updated via The Timely Death Trilogy FB page

Visit the Extras Page

Pin your favorite photos from The Timely Death Trilogy Pinterest board

But most of all . . .

Stay Dark.

Teaser Tuesday #9

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

– Grab your current read.
– Randomly open a page.
– Share two “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page.
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!
(Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
– Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

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Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

There’s an ache in the pit of my stomach that’s gnawing on my nerves. I want to hate him and judge him and scream forever but I’m failing because all I see is an 8-year-old boy who doesn’t remember that he used to be the kindest person I ever knew.

What are your Teaser Tuesdays? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll be sure to check them out 🙂

A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)

Finished on 17th May, 2015

Author: Sarah J. Maas

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4.5 Stars

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A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

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A retelling of Beauty and the Beast (which just so happens to be my favourite classic Disney movie) – with fae – and written be Sarah J. Maas? I never stood a chance.

A Court of Thorns and Roses is beautifully written with an amazing plot, brilliant world building and complex, loveable characters. Plus, all the faerie men are smokin’ hot (*cough* Tamlin *cough* Lucien *cough* Rhysand *cough*), so no complaints here.

I am not an artist in any way whatsoever but I really enjoyed seeing the world from an Feyre’s perspective – all the different colors and hues that I simply take for granted. In the same way that Belle and myself are passionate about books, she is passionate about art and I loved that. It was wonderful to read how she expressed herself through her art and could read the stories behind other artworks.

Admittedly, I was slightly irritated with Feyre in the first hundred pages or so, but I understood her reasoning and motivation as to why she acted the way she did. If anything, it simply made her character more realistic. That said, Feyre underwent huge character development and I really liked her as the story went on.

I fell in love with Tamlin right from the get-go and Lucien shortly afterwards. They are both so wonderfully deep, attractive and brilliant characters. I love their backstories and how we were really able to get a feel for their personalities. Their friendship is so strong and rather inspiring. Plus, you know, they’re fae. Two new book boyfriends right here 😉

Aside from Amarantha (for obvious reasons) I loved all of the characters. At the very least, I was intrigued by the social dynamics and how that played into their behavior.

The world building was beautiful, believable, intriguing and absolutely magical. I cannot wait to discover more about Hybern, the other courts and Prythian in general.

The plot was also brilliant. I love how everything ties into each other – things that, until that point, seemed completely irrelevant and were easily forgotten. I really enjoyed the parallels between Beauty and the Beast and A Court of Thorns and Roses, yet loved that A Court of Thorns and Roses is incredibly unique in its own right.

A must read for fans of Sarah J. Maas (whose last name I recently found out is actually pronounced Mass), fairy tale retellings, fantasy and fae, A Court of Thorns and Roses is the start to a fantastic new series.