30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 11 – Catching Fire By Suzanne Collins

Catching Fire Suzanne CollinsCatching Fire By Suzanne Collins

SPOILER ALERT: This is the second book in a series and therefore may reveal things that are discussed in the first book.

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Rating:★★★★☆

Synopsis (Taken From Goodreads):

Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale. Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be. Gale holds her at an icy distance. Peeta has turned his back on her completely. And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol – a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she’s afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she’s not entirely convinced she should try. As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

Review

This book is brilliantly written, Collins established her world in The Hunger Games and she has completely started to re-create it through an uprising of the districts.

Meanwhile, Katniss who thinks she is free from the arena and all of its facets after returning from her rip across the districts is sadly mistaken. And she is soon thrown back into that world. For a teenage girl it’s a hell of a lot to deal with. Not to mention her boy problems right now.

Peeta’s character always irked me a bit. I love him don’t get me wrong but I don’t know there’s something about his character that always made me though Katniss would end up with Gale instead. But I guess I’m the only one haha.

Some of my favourite characters in this book at the contestants like Finnick, Beetee and Wiress because of their loyalty and unique qualities. My favourite all time character remains to be Cinna. Forever.

REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE FILM! 😀

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 10 – City of Glass By Cassandra Clare

City of Glass Cassandra ClareCity of Glass By Cassandra Clare

SPOILER ALERT: This is the third book in a series and therefore may reveal things that are discussed in the first and second book.

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Rating:★★★★★

Synopsis (Taken from Goodreads)
To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters – never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City – whatever the cost?

Review

Okay my original warning is not strong enough this review is choc-a-block full of spoilers!

THEY’RE NOT RELATED!!! OMFG I couldn’t be happier about this revelation! Seriously! Team ClaryxJace 5EVER.  Excuse my outburst … but I’m completely thrilled by this reveal in the third book! I was totally smitten with this pairing in the first novel and to have it taken away was just beyond upsetting. To have it back is like Christmas come early! Especially with 3 more books left to read and a possible sequel!!

This book is a good one for couples! Magnus and Alec finally resolve their secrets and Alec accepts himself for who he is! AND TALK ABOUT LOVE, Jocelyn and Luke!!! <3 I’m just totally fangirling in this review and I don’t even care!

A couple of things I do want to talk about though is that this book definitely made up for the repetitive structure leading up to now since it had a lot of character development, heaps of it.

I’m a bit sad that Ithuriel died, there were so many things that could have been asked and answered but alas I’m sure Clare has her reasons. What I’m very interested in is how she intends to plot the next three novels in the series! Who’s going to be the bad guy now that Valentine is out of the picture!

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 8 – City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

city of ashes cassandra clareCity of Ashes By Cassandra Clare

SPOILER ALERT: This is the second book in a series and therefore may reveal things that are discussed in the first book.

Get the book here!

Rating:★★★★★

Synopsis

In the second book in The Mortal Instruments Series, Clary and Jace struggle with their feelings for each other, now they know they can’t be together in the way the hoped. So instead Jace becomes an overbearing older brother and Clary tries to find love in other people. Simon has some unfortunate luck and finds himself a downworlder, how does everyone react?

Meanwhile, Valentine is after the second of the mortal instruments and the Clave are after Jace, thinking he is a spy for his father. How will they manage to get the instruments back?

Review

I enjoyed the sequel just as much as the first book! I’m already half way through the third and I’m genuinely addicted to this series! Cassandra Clare has a brilliant style and her characters have such depth that it makes them relatable and fun to see interact.

The total love triangle going on between Jace, Clary and Simon is simply hilarious and watching the way Jace tries to be her big brother while both of them are aware of their original feelings for each other is torture (I was totally ClaryxJace in the first book before they became siblings!) I am interested to see how this develops in the novels to come.

The overall plot of the novel was similar to the first, bad guy makes threats, bad guy gets what he wants, good guys go after bad guy, bad guy gets away. However, I’m willing to overlook that because the finer details to the depth of the novel are explored enough to allow for some repetitive features. Though I expect a different tune in the third novel to avoid a cliché.

I would definitely recommend this series to anyone who loves fantasy!

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 4 – City of Bones By Cassandra Clare

City Of Bones Cassandra ClareCity of Bones (Mortal Instruments #1)

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Rating:★★★★★

Synopsis

Clary Fray is just an ordinary girl with a mundane life, that is, until she meets Jace, Isabelle and Alec. Shadowhunters. Her life is turned upside down when she discovers a whole new world of Shadowhunters and Downworlders (Vampires, Werewolves etc) and now she has to help them because a psychotic Shadowhunter, Valentine Morgenstern, kidnapped her mother. Everything of this world is new to her, imagine her surprise when she belongs right in the centre of it.

Review

I love this book and the series is slowly becoming one of my new favourite fantasy series. The Shadowhunter world is one filled with so many emotions and it’s at a great pace that I find myself totally engrossed in the plot. Clary is a good protagonist, she has an air of naivety which is soon overcome when she really steps up. She is an eager person but not unaware of the danger she faces. In contrast, Jace and the Lightwood Family are strong characters for her to contend with, their air of mystery at first gives them a unique aura from the start. The plot of this book is simply brilliant it keeps you wondering what will happen next and the chemistry between Clary and Jace is enough to have you sitting on the edge of your seat for the whole duration. I demand that you read this book! Especially if you’ve avoided it because of the hype, because that’s what I did and I definitely regret it!

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 3 – The Passion By L J Smith

The Passion L J SmithThe Passion By L J Smith

PLEASE NOTE THIS IS THE FINAL BOOK IN THE SERIES SO THERE MAY BE SPOILERS!

Rating:★★★☆☆

Get the book here!

Synopsis

Everyone thinks they have found their retreat. Mr Zetes has no idea where the five psychic children are and they have a pure crystal to tap into. That is, until Gabriel goes AWOL and returns to Mr Zetes and the institute. Not feeling welcomed by the people of the crystal he leaves. So the other four teens decide to go and get him back but also get back at Mr Zetes in the same score. Rob has decided that Gabriel cannot be helped and is willing to put him down if he gets in there way, but something pulls Kaitlyn to Gabriel. She wants to help him so she leaves the others and sets off on her own. But will her gamble pay off or will it put her in more danger than ever?

Review

Out of all the books I felt this had the best plot of the series, it really helped show the diversities to to Kaitlyn’s personality and how she develops from naïve to courageous. We also see how cunning she can be, my favourite part is when she decides to go undercover. As for her and Gabriel, I always preferred him to Rob. As a token bad boy, Gabriel has more fibre than Rob and makes for a more exciting plot. Their connection is more intense but the third book really shows how Gabriel holds himself back to save others. I think Smith wrapped the series up nicely and I didn’t find myself asking a bunch of questions at the end like I normally do. This was a refreshing finale and I definitely would recommend it.

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 2 – The Possessed By L J Smith

The Possessed L J SmithReview of The Possessed

Rating:★★★☆☆

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Synopsis

The Second Book in the Dark Visions Trilogy finds Kaitlyn and her four psychic friends following a trail to nowhere. They are looking for the house in Kaitlyn’s dreams in hopes that they will be able to save them from Mr Zetes. Meanwhile, Gabriel is harbouring secrets of his own and Kaitlyn must figure out how to help him without increasing the tension between he and Rob. Can the People of the Crystal help her?  We’ll find out in this novel.

Review

I found this book to be more focused on the development of the characters, because for the majority of the plot they are travelling there are mostly subtle changes in their whereabouts. But mostly the focus is on the romance brewing between Kait and Rob and Gabriel’s mysterious secret. Anna and Lewis are left at the picket fence a bit, they’re characters receive little to no attention and act mainly as fillers and voices of reason between the main trio who seem to take the spotlight in this novel. The addition of Lydia is an interesting development though her part seems minute at first she becomes key in the decisions Gabriel makes. The ending to the second novel wasn’t a total shock to me but it did add to the sinister nature of the plot and give the novel a cyclical value in that it reminds the reader of the original struggle the character’s face and sets up the climax for the third novel. Overall I did enjoy this sequel but I feel like it was overpowered by the romantic aspects to a degree (especially when the reader was aware of what the characters were not.)

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30 Days, 30 Reviews: Day 1 – The Strange Power By L J Smith

So to celebrate my new blog design and URL I’ve decided to set myself a challenge! I’m going to bring you one review each day for the whole month of September! Starting today there will be 29 more to come! Some will be books I read a while ago and others will be books I read this year. Think of it as a bit of a catch up session. Anyway hope you enjoy and here’s day 1!

The Dark Power L J Smith
Review of The Strange Power

Rating:★★★★☆

Get the book here!

Synopsis

The book follows Kaitlyn Fairchild who is different from other girls her age. She has a power, that has caused her to become an outcast, shunned by her peers. Her power allows her to draw the future, but the things she sees scare people and never tend to be pleasant. That is until she is asked to join in an experiment, told that her power can by useful and with the promise of a college scholarship, she agrees. It is only when she comes to be settled with new friends and a possible romance brewing that things start to take a turn for the worse. She is there only a week before mayhem starts to occurs and she discovers that the Institute might not have told her everything about their plans for the five psychics.

Review

This is a great first book to a well-rounded fantasy trilogy, by acclaimed author L J Smith. The third person narration adds to the effect of feeling the emotions of multiple characters, despite following Kaitlyn for most of the novel. L J Smith gives you reasons to keep reading from the mystique of the institute and the brooding dark personality of Gabriel that contrast Kaitlyn’s innocent nature. This book has a great twist though slightly expected. The overwhelming amount of mystique that the Institute emits can only mean trouble. I did find the plot gripping and the elements of romance are well moulded into the story, because even though they are in the institute only a week, it feels like a lot longer. However, I still wasn’t totally convinced by the immediacy of the romance.

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Bout of Books 8.0 – Day 1

So this readathon is already going so much better than anticipated! I finished The Strange Power (Dark Visions #1) By L J Smith so here’s a quick review!

To come soon

Current Readthon Status:

The Strange Power By L J Smith (250 pages) – COMPLETED

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GIVEAWAY and Review of Rule by Jay Crownover

Howling Reviews Rule by Jay CrownoverClick here to see an extract of Rule by Jay Crownover

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Rule by Jay Crownover is a New Adult Novel that focuses on the lives of Shaw Landon and Rule Archer. Shaw loves Rule but can he look past her past relationship with his twin brother? One night changes everything and after that they are forced to address their future.

Where do I possibly begin with this book except by stating that it is the sexiest book I’ve read this year so far. New Adult is a fairly new genre concept and so the definitions are still somewhat hazy. However, I feel this book fits that genre to a tee. It is filled with romance, angst, sex and real life issues while also having similar trials as, say, a classical novel; as it looks at the contrast between bourgeois and proletariat using humour and satire to address it.

Crownover’s writing style is both descriptive and honest and her use of dialogue is brilliant. The characterisation of Shaw and Rule create a unique dynamic that really sets this book aside from others. Shaw is a confident, sassy woman who studies and tends a bar. Whereas Rule is a deviant who works in a tattoo parlour. Two people who couldn’t be more different but somehow seem the best thing for each other. When we meet Shaw she isn’t in the best of situations, her relationship with her parents is crumbling and she desperately needs to concentrate on her degree, but she can’t stop herself when it comes to Rule.

I genuinely enjoyed reading this book and found it quite addictive, the characters evolve with the plot. It surprises you at multiple turns. I don’t want to say too much more about this other than that you should read it, because I don’t want to spoil it for you!!

Happy Friday everyone! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

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Extract of Rule by Jay Crownover

Click here for Harper Collins Giveaway!

We ran back to the house to get dolled up for dinner. I put on one of my new outfits, a super tight pencil skirt and a sheer blue top with a black cami underneath. I curled my new hair, put on more makeup than I normally wore, and decided, just for the hell of it, to wear my awesome black boots that looked like something a Harley-Davidson model would wear. They gave my look a certain edge that I was feeling after a day of letting the real Shaw off her perpetual leash.
At the restaurant, Ayden’s slinky red dress, which made her long legs look endless, had our waiter practically drooling into our water every time he stopped by to refill our glasses. She made me try out my new ID by ordering a drink, and it worked like a charm. Before I knew it we were both feeling no pain and having a great time bouncing from club to club in LoDo and hitting the hip dive bars in Capitol Hill. I was surprised that I didn’t even need to show the fake ID at most places—turns out a tight skirt and exposed cleavage work just as well.
I was laughing hysterically at Ayden doing an impression of some guy flailing around on the dance floor. We had drawn a fair amount of attention everywhere we’d gone and had had to pay for very few drinks. At the moment a guy from CU–Boulder was telling me all about his illustrious football career, or rather he was telling my boobs about it since I don’t think he had looked up from the girls once. Ayden was rolling her eyes and trying to avoid some guy in
a banker suit who was offering to do her taxes for free if she gave him her number. It was silly and fun and I didn’t have to work hard at the flirting or being charming. I was well on my way to being wasted, so conversation was out. All I had to do was smile and sit prettily on the bar stool, two things I was apparently getting really good at. Another cosmo, which I definitely didn’t need, had just appeared before me and Mr. Football was leaning even closer to me when some sixth sense, or maybe it was my fight-or-flight response, suddenly kicked into overdrive.
I lifted my head and swivelled around on the stool, practically kneeing the leering football player. I looked around, craning my neck to see what had my skin suddenly feeling too tight, but all I saw was the regular bar crowd mixing and mingling. The football player was trying to get my attention back by running a finger up and down my bare arm; I guess it was supposed to be sexy, but now I was drunk and unnerved and I wanted him to get lost. I was suddenly ready to go, and looked around for Ayden so we could get a cab and get out of there. Before I could find her a warm hand slid under the heavy fall of my hair and settled on the back of my neck. A deep voice growled in my ear, “How in the fuck did you get in here, Casper? And what did you do to your hair?”
The football player’s eyes went huge because, well, Rule was Rule. Gone was the purple hair spiked up in a crazy mess. Now he had it all shaved on the sides and bleached out into a startling white Mohawk that was several inches tall. He had on a tight black shirt with a flaming skull in a Viking helmet on it, showing off both sleeves of tattoos, a pair of black jeans with a hole in the knee, and his heavy black motorcycle boots. He should have looked sloppy and unkempt next to the V-neck-sweater-wearing footballer, but he didn’t. He looked hot and rumpled and clearly not someone to be messed with. The footballer pushed away from the bar in a hurry and vanished into the crowd.
I was drunk, admittedly probably not the best state to try to go toe-to-toe with Rule, but I liked my hair and he wasn’t going to rain on all my birthday vibes, especially since he clearly didn’t even remember what day it was. I shook his grip loose and sucked back the tart drink in one swallow.
“What are you doing here?”
He lifted an eyebrow at me and took up the same spot the football player had vacated, looking down my low-cut top.
“This bar is right around the corner from the shop—Nash and I stop by all the time after work. I just finished with a client. I know they ID at the door, how did you get in?”
I flipped my hair over my shoulder like I had seen endless annoying girls do, only I practically fell off my stool because that last drink was letting me know just how bad an idea it had been to chug it. I grabbed the edge of the bar and Rule reached out a hand to steady me. I felt like it burned where he gripped my upper arm. Definitely should have listened to my flight response a minute ago. I put a hand on my forehead because it was warm and I suddenly felt clammy. “I need to go.” It was too hot, too loud, and if I didn’t get out into some fresh air, like now, I was pretty sure I was going to puke everywhere.
I tried to climb to my feet but the room started to spin around like crazy and I had to grab on to Rule’s biceps just to stay upright. I was so glad I opted for my boots instead of heels—I would have ended up on my face otherwise.
“Who drove?” Rule’s voice was coming from far away and he smelled really good. With a sigh I leaned into him and buried my nose in his throat. He was so tall I had to use my leverage on his arms to reach. “Seriously, Shaw, how did you get here?”
“Ayden and I, we took a cab.”
“Where is she?”
“With a banker. I need to go home.” I felt my boozy legs start to wobble and he locked a heavy arm around my waist to keep me anchored to his chest. It was nice. Not bothering to think about it, I wrapped both my arms up around his neck. He felt as good as I always knew he would.
“Her roommate is running around somewhere; wanna see if you can grab her? I’m gonna walk her to our place.” I wasn’t sure who he was talking to but a familiar voice rumbled an affirmative. The next thing I knew I was being half marched, half carried out the front door of the bar. The cold January air made me snap my head back and Rule moved me from the front of his body to his side, securing me with an arm around my shoulders. I hooked an arm around his lean waist and cuddled into him. I knew logically it was the vodka making me act crazy, but I couldn’t stop it.
“We’re only three blocks from my place. I’ll pour a gallon of coffee down your throat and shove some chips or a frozen burrito in your face and get you a cab. You’re even paler than normal and if you try to get in a car right now you’re gonna puke everywhere. Why are you drunk and dressed all sexified tonight anyway?”
I shivered a little as the wind breezed across my bare legs. I turned my cold nose into his ribs and inhaled. He smelled like the antiseptic from the shop, like cigarettes from Nash, like the hair product in his Mohawk, and underneath it all the warm, earthy smell that was just Rule. In the six years I had known him, I’d never been this close to him for this long. It was enough to send my sex-deprived and alcohol-soaked system into overdrive.
“You think I look sexy?” That seemed like the important part of the conversation. We stopped at a stop sign and he looked down at me with exasperation clear in those pale eyes.
“Shaw, every guy in the bar was circling you like you were bait in the water during shark week. You know you look good, what I think shouldn’t matter. What should matter is why you’re suddenly dressing, looking, and acting like a different person. What’s going on with you?”
I wanted to scowl up at him but that seemed too hard, especially when his T-shirt rode up in the back and my arm was brushing against nice, warm skin. I stumbled off the curb as we made our way down another block and his familiar Victorian apartment building came into sight. He pulled me in tighter to his side and I didn’t even try to hide the soft sigh that fell out of me.
“Everyone thinks I need to act a certain way—you, my parents, your parents, the girls from work, Gabe. Everybody always wants me to be this, do that, walk this line, toe that line and I’m sick of it. Maybe for just once I just want to act how I want and feel how I want to feel without someone judging me and expecting something from me in return.”
He was quiet as we walked up the front steps to the apartment. Maybe he was trying to translate my drunken speech because even I could hear that I was slurring between my chattering teeth. He pushed the door open and twisted the lock. It was warm inside so I shook off my jacket and pushed my shaking hands through my hair. I turned my blurry eyes on him and almost swallowed my tongue. He was leaning back against the door watching me with hooded eyes. He wasn’t throwing sarcastic barbs at me or ignoring me, he was just watching me. I blew out a breath and tasted the tartness of the cranberry juice across my tongue.
I took a few unsteady steps toward him. He was so tall that I had to stand on the very tips of my toes to reach his ear. I put a hand on his shoulder and one on the door beside his head and whispered, “It’s my birthday, Rule.”
I expected him to move away, to gently shove me to the side, but he uncrossed his arms and placed his hands on either side of my waist. Those pale eyes flared for a second and his mouth twisted down, making the hoop on the side of his mouth glint at me. “I’m sorry, Shaw. I had no idea.”
I shrugged it off and moved a step closer to him. “It’s okay—my own family didn’t even remember it.” I pressed so close to him that my chest was flat against his. I could feel that the close proximity was having an effect on him. If I hadn’t had to concentrate on my balance since I was on my toes I might have grinned at that. All I had ever wanted in life was to affect him, to get him to feel something, anything, other than simple tolerance for me.
“I know what you can do for me to make this officially the best birthday ever.” I wanted to sound sure, to sound sexy and sultry, but I’m pretty sure I just sounded horny and drunk. I didn’t care. I was here—the real me—the one who wanted him so desperately and always had. There was no chance at putting her back in her cage now.

 

I didn’t think—didn’t reason—just used the grip I had on him to pull myself up even taller and plant my mouth solidly over his. The ring in his lip was shockingly cold against my own; the rest of him was undeniably hot and hard. It was everything I had ever wanted, and even though he didn’t kiss me back, I still ranked it up there as the best birthday gift ever. I went to settle back down on my booted feet when something shifted, something changed, and Rule went from a passive recipient to something else entirely.
 
Click here for my Review of Rule and a chance to win Wait For You by J Lynn or The Edge of Never by J A Redmerski.
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