Category Archives: Dystopia

Book Reviews
July 23, 2016 posted by Nichole

Book Review: Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

cinderHumans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

 

 

My Review:

First off, I would like to give a huge thanks to my Secret Sis for getting this book for me! I know, I know. I’m really way behind the times with this series!

I’ve had it stuck in my head for a long time that I don’t like retellings. I can only presume that this opinion stems from the fact that I’m really not the biggest fan of fairy tales to begin with. Why I thought that had anything to do with YA books is beyond me. Cinder is a YA Cinderella retelling and, let me tell you, I LOVED IT. I loved every single moment of it!

Even though I loved Cinder, it did take me a little bit to get into the book. This probably resulted from two different reasons: 1) The first so many chapters were a little slow moving. Nothing major and it didn’t take very long for the story to pick up, but it was a little slow to progress into awesomeness. 2) I honestly just haven’t read very many YA books this year. Cinder is probably like the second or third YA books that I’ve read in about seven months. Since I’ve read close to 60 books this year, you can probably see the gap. I’ve been so stuck on the NA and adult contemporary genres that YA hasn’t really appealed to me. So, even when I decided that I loved this series, it was a little difficult to put my other amazing books down. I’m glad I did, though, because this book rocked!

Science fiction, dystopia, and steampunk genres don’t often appeal to me. It’s just a fact about me: I’m really not the biggest fan of those genres and usually avoid them. Honestly, that’s probably why I didn’t read this series when it first came out. The synopsis just didn’t really appeal to me. After years of other bloggers and readers telling me how amazing this series is, though, I broke down. I put it on my wish list. Let me tell you, I’m glad I did! Even though the above listed genres are incorporated into this book, I would probably lump it more as a retelling with those subgenres. Retellings are a genre of their own, so that makes sense to me. My mom read this book before me and tried to tell me that it was high fantasy………..it’s not. I think sometimes she forgets that, even though she’s read some really cool high fantasy books in the past, I probably have several hundred books on her record. So, if someone tries to tell you that this is high fantasy, please just ignore them. This book is amazing in it’s own right, but it is NOT high fantasy!

Cinder and Kai were amazing leads! I was a bit disappointed that their relationship was a bit cliché. Their moves and actions were fairly predictable. I also would have liked to see maybe some more character development and growth. Same goes for the supporting characters. Everyone kind of stayed at the same pace and not much growth happened from the beginning of the book to the end of the book. This really wasn’t a major complaint for me throughout the book, but it was something that I definitely recognized.

On a more positive note, I really enjoyed some of the twists and turns that happened throughout Cinder. There were some things that happened that I just didn’t see coming. In contrast, there were definitely some roll of the eye moments going on. Some times that happened were definitely a little too predictable for my taste.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I am very excited to read the rest of the books in this series and to see how it progresses!

Rating: : ★★★★☆

 

 

Dystopia
July 17, 2016 posted by Nichole

New Adult Event: Guest Post from Author Courtney Ruggles: New Adult Meets Dystopian!

   Hi, everyone! Welcome back!

I’m excited to continue our New Adult event by introducing you all to author Courtney Ruggles. Courtney is the author of the Domicile series, an NA dystopian series! Today, Courtney has stopped by for a special guest post to discuss why she writes in the NA genre and its connections to dystopian novels.

About Courtney Ruggles:

courtney

Courtney’s love for writing started pretty much when she learned to read, which her mother would tell you was a feat in itself back when she was in the first grade. Once she aced those flashcards with vocabulary words, Courtney’s writing took off.  And her love with it.  In school, she was always writing short stories on a word processor (What?? Word processor with floppy disks?). Oh yes, she literally had a card filing case full of floppy disks.

Now getting her Doctorate in social work, she’s used this education to help her write some of the gritty issues entwined in her stories. When Courtney isn’t writing her next book while drinking coffee, you can find her doing homework (drag) with chocolate chip flavored coffee, reading series of books (because school books are only so interesting) while drinking pumpkin flavored coffee, playing with her little boy, or daydreaming of future beach houses while drinking some other scrumptious flavor of coffee.

 

 

Media Links

Website: www.courtneyruggles.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCRuggles

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCourtneyRuggles/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Instagram: @courtneyruggles

 

   Dystopia is saturating the market is what’s being heard through the industry, that publishers and agents are refusing to publish more dystopians.  And after hits like Divergent and Hunger Games, of course the realm of books would see an upsurge of dystopians. 

                Because we love them.  Whether it’s because of the imaginative worlds, the unique fights, the twists and exaggerations of actual truths in our current society, we cannot get enough of dystopians.  With our new founded love, the subgenre of dystopia will morph into its own genre with established subcategories and flourish.  In my opinion anyway, we just have to give it the coals and oxygen it needs to catch fire.

                I can already see this emergence. With the critics roaring about oversaturation of dystopian, we’ve seen many of those mainstream stories in the YA category.  But I write new adult. Just recently during a panel discussion, I was asked why I wrote new adult dystopian rather than the popular young adult. In a panel of twelve dystopian authors, only two of us strayed from YA into the NA world.  

                Why? It’s rather simple.  I find it more fun.  First of all, it’s more realistic for me. The heroin and hero in The Sixth Domicile are in their twenties.  Because when I was sixteen like some of the other dystopian heroes, I was not worried about saving the world.  Instead, I was worried about buying my next awesome name brand shirt, having enough gas money to drive my friends to the movies, or blaring the coolest bands with my sunroof open in my beat up Mazda MX6. I was too immature to think outside my bubble and when those thoughts of doing more than the shallow teen I was, they simply bounced away. Saving myself was unrealistic, let along an entire people.

                The other author and I shared our reasons for writing new adult with the group. Because teenagers are mostly self-centered (yes, there are exceptions, but it’s the age! They are supposed to be self-centered as they discover themselves) which leaves them unable to understand the magnitude of their choices.  With my characters, one of the aspects which sets them apart from other dystopians I’ve read is the ability to realize consequences of their choices, empathize even with the protagonists, and transition (while stumbling) into those major adult decisions. It’s a new take, a new feel with perspectives that are more mature and perhaps a little more relatable.

                Plus, I get to write sex scenes and that’s a blast in itself.

                As dystopia continues to take off and “saturate” the book world, I look forward to seeing more ways this genre branches out such as in new adult. The creativeness in dystopians will never be limited and the amazing, imaginative people who create these stories will continue to do so. So I write NA dystopian, pioneering through a new genre. Which genre will you pioneer through? 😉


sixthThe Sixth Domicile (The Domicile Series Book 1) by Courtney Ruggles

Published on January 20th, 2016

Published by Elephantine Publishing

Genre: New Adult Dystopian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28405871-the-sixth-domicile?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sixth-Domicile-Book-ebook/dp/B017O08SDO/192-0301566-9071950?ie=UTF8&redirect=true

In a future ravaged by greed and war, The Domicile has emerged. A new civilization governed by clandestine Elders where citizens are united by white masks and uniform identities. To remove one’s mask, to go outside the Domicile, to show defiance, means being sent to the Meurtre, a horrifying death sentence.

Q437B doesn’t follow the rules. She craves sunlight, dares to love her childhood friend B116A, and–the most forbidden of all–has seen the true face of her beloved beneath his mask.

But when Q becomes an Adulte, The Domicile threatens to take away everything that makes her happy. She is forced to marry an abusive soldier who demands she conform.

Whispers spread about the unconventional lessons she teaches her new students. And when Q openly disobeys the Elders, the people become restless, questioning the truth of the world in the wake of such defiance.

Rumblings of discontent stir as others begin to follow the path toward their freedom. The Revolution has begun, and Q is the spark that ignited the flames.

The Sixth Domicile is book 1 in the Domicile Series, A New Adult dystopian. Fans of Veronica Roth’s Divergent and Ally Condie’s Matched series will love The Sixth Domicile.

Blog Tour
January 30, 2016 posted by Nichole

Book Review: The Union by T.H. Hernandez

t h hernandez blog tour banner

The UnionBook 1 – The Union by T.H. Hernandez

Genre: Young Adult/Speculative

Published: November 18th, 2014

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23266680-the-union

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Union-T-H-Hernandez-ebook/dp/B00P0D4VHU/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-union-theresa-h-hernandez/1120967864?ean=9780990868828

Powells: http://www.powells.com/book/the-union-9780990868828

Book Depository: http://www.bookdepository.com/Union-Theresa-Hernandez/9780990868828

Read the first 3 chapters for free! https://www.wattpad.com/story/46383864-the-union
After global warming and a second civil war devastated the former United States, two different societies rose from the ashes – the Union, a towering high-tech utopia, hugging the perimeter of the continent, and the devastated, untamed midsection known as the Ruins.

Seventeen-year-old Evan Taylor has an easy, privileged life in the Union. What she doesn’t have is any idea what to do with the rest of her life. She only knows she wants to do something meaningful, to make a difference in the lives of others.

When she’s kidnapped and taken into the Ruins as a pawn in a dispute involving her boyfriend, Bryce, her ideal world is turned upside down. What she learns while in the Ruins shakes her faith in everything she’s ever known, from Bryce, to her family, and even the Union itself.

Now Evan must choose whether to stay with Cyrus, the sexy, resourceful survivor who believes she’s in the Ruins for a reason, or return to the only life she’s ever known. But when she stumbles upon a dangerous plot that threatens both worlds, her decision could tear her apart.

The Union is a futuristic young adult romantic adventure

The Union - Teaser 2

Read below for an excerpt from The Union:

Once the sun rises, I can make out trees in the distance. Real trees with leaves, which means there must be water nearby. I’m not sure Ruins water is safe to drink, but I do know I’ll die if I don’t drink something.

Even though I’ve been walking for hours, the trees don’t seem to be getting any closer. My legs have taken on a sponge-like quality and I stumble, but manage to stay upright. If I fall, I may never get up again.

I’m almost to the trees. They’re only a little farther now.

There’s no water here. How can there be trees without water?

Despair overtakes me and I drop down, pounding my fists on the barren ground. I stuff a soft green leaf in my mouth, seeking moisture, but my mouth is so dry, I gag on the pieces, tearing my throat like shards of broken glass.

My head spins as I lie on my back and struggle to form coherent thoughts. I take a deep breath and tell myself to think. Think is such a strange word.Think, think, think. It doesn’t even sound English.

Shaking my head to clear my mind, I try to pull myself together, remembering where I am and forcing myself to focus on my immediate situation. What do the Buddhists call it? Being mindful.

My brain works to form rational thoughts, but there’s nothing rational about this. I left home to find my place in the world, is this really where my search was supposed to lead me? It’s more like a cruel joke. If I was on a date with destiny, it just took a bizarre turn into a twisted ending I never saw coming.

God, if only I hadn’t gone to the park that night, none of this would’ve happened. I begin to cry. For my family and friends who will never know what happened to me, and for me. I’m not ready to die, I’m only 17.

I can’t help wondering if I would have spent so much time agonizing over my future if I’d known I’d be dead so soon. If I’d known, maybe I’d have done everything differently. Now I know my future. My life ends here. Alone. In the Ruins.

The RuinsBook 2 – The Ruins by T.H. Hernandez

Young Adult/Speculative

Published: June 16th, 2015

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25952759-the-ruins

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Ruins-Union-Book-2-ebook/dp/B00X6QEITY/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Createspace: https://www.createspace.com/5424209

Read the first 3 chapters for free! https://www.wattpad.com/story/46383864-the-union

Heartbroken, grief-stricken, and wracked with guilt, seventeen-year-old Evan Taylor returned to the Union, leaving behind the boy she loved.

Now, she and her friends must find a way to do the impossible – warn the citizens of the Union about an impending rebel attack without alerting the government and risking retaliation against her friends in the Ruins.

When every move Evan makes is thwarted, it soon becomes clear she’s being watched. Faced with a daily fight to stay one step ahead of her pursuers, she returns to the Ruins. But life in the Ruins has its own dangers, and soon she’s fighting a different battle – to stay alive long enough to discover the truth.

The Ruins - Teaser 2Read below for an excerpt from The Ruins:

Lisa opens the door still in her pajama pants and a tank top. Jack’s behind her in nothing but a pair of sweatpants. I raise an eyebrow in silent judgment. How could she have Jack spend the night with Colin here?

“Where’s Colin?” she asks, looking past me.

“What do you mean, where’s Colin? Isn’t he here?”

“No. He never came home last night. I thought he was with you.”

You were with me.”

“No, I mean after we separated. I figured he showed up at your place.” Her cheeks turn bright red.

“You’ve got to be kidding me.” My hands ball into fists of anger at my sides. “You can’t really be that…” I bite off the words. It’s not my place to share how Colin feels about her.

“He probably left with one of those girls we saw him with,” she says.

I push into her apartment and find Colin’s duffel bag on the floor where it’s been since he began camping out on her couch last week. “So, he just blew off his train?”

“Maybe,” she shrugs.

“Not likely,” I say, stalking back outside, unease gnawing through my stomach. If all this other shit wasn’t going on, I could chalk it up to Colin getting laid, but I can’t shake the feeling something isn’t right. I’m halfway to Bryce’s before I realize that’s where I’m headed. Hopefully he takes me seriously.

My fast walk turns into a jog as I cover the remaining three blocks and two flights of stairs down to the apartment he shares with Jack. I’ve only been here once before, but I think I remember which one it is. I lift my hand and knock on the pale blue door then pace the small empty concrete porch. Thirty seconds pass before I knock again, louder and longer this time. Still no answer. I’m beginning to think he’s not here when the lock clicks and the door cracks open.

Bryce swings the door wider, and my eyes zero in on a bare chest. My gaze drifts from his firm abs and pecs up to meet a pair of gray eyes, squinted against the morning light. Confusion fills his features as he stares at me.

“Colin didn’t come home last night,” I blurt out, my voice breaking.

His gaze rests on my face for a moment before circling the room, reminding me we’re being monitored. “I’m sure he’s fine, but let me get dressed, and we’ll look for him.”

Stepping inside, I close the door and bounce on the balls of my feet while I wait for him. The place is decorated in neo-classic guy. A fireplace and hearth runs the length of the front of the apartment, and opposite that is a solid glass wall overlooking a weedy, overgrown garden. The limited furniture is a jumble of chairs, a couch, and a couple of mismatched tables littered with empty beer bottles.

Bryce dresses in record time and takes my hand, pulling me outside. He leads the way to the depot to catch a train back to the nightclub. “I want to retrace his steps after we left,” he says. “He might’ve just found some company for the evening.”

“That’s what Lisa said, but I think there’s more to it.”

“It’s no secret how he feels about Lisa. He might’ve just wanted to get away for the night.”

“But his bag is still at her place. He would’ve had to come get it before catching his train.”

The nightclub is deserted with the exception of a handful of staff still cleaning up. Bryce walks up to a lanky guy pushing a broom. “Can I talk to the manager?”

A woman in her mid-thirties approaches us a few minutes later, wiping her hands on an apron. She sweeps a chunk of blond hair out of her face with the back of her wrist. “Can I help you?”

“Yeah, I’m Detective Cooper,” Bryce says, flashing his credentials. “We’re looking for a friend. He was here with us last night, but we’re not sure what happened to him.”

She glances between me and Bryce. “Did something happen to him?”

“That’s what we’re trying to find out. Can we take a look at the security feed from last night?”

“Sure,” she says, inclining her head. “Come on back.”

We follow her past the bar and into a small office beyond the kitchen. “Here,” she says, indicating a chair in front of a display screen.

Bryce sits and she shows him how to move through the video files. Bryce locates the one time-stamped from when we were here and forwards through frame-by-frame. I see us leaving for the night and Colin dancing with the girls, getting another drink, dancing some more, then about an hour later, Colin walks toward the exit alone. A guy in a sweatshirt, hood pulled up, hands shoved into his jeans pockets, approaches Colin. They appear to exchange words. Colin nods before following the guy out the front door.

“What the hell?” I ask. “Who was that guy?” Terror sweeps through me, turning my blood to ice. “And where the hell is Colin?”

“I don’t know,” Bryce says, reaching over to squeeze my hand. “But we’ll find him, I promise.”

The UprisingBook 3 – The Uprising by T.H. Hernandez

Young Adult/Speculative

Published: December, 2015

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27152245-the-uprising

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Uprising-Union-Book-3-ebook/dp/B019VNDYPY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1452914112&sr=8-1&keywords=the+uprising+t.h+hernandez

Recovering from a near-fatal gunshot wound, eighteen-year-old Evan Taylor must find a way to stop the Uprising, an underground movement committed to destroying the Union, before her homeland is attacked.

After spending the last four months in the Ruins trying to get back to the only girl he’s ever loved, nineteen-year-old Cyrus needs to get past his jealousy over Evan’s involvement with Bryce or risk losing her again.

Together, Evan and Cyrus join with their friends to devise a plan to save both the Ruins and the Union, but when the pressure’s on, bickering and infighting threaten to undermine their goals. New information revealing a weakness in the Uprising is uncovered, forcing them to act quickly or risk losing everything.

With the help of old friends and new allies they set out to make history, but it might just take a miracle for everyone to make it out alive.

THE UPRISING is the third book in THE UNION series, a young adult romantic adventure set in the near future.

About the Author:

theresa

T.H. Hernandez is the author of the young adult futuristic/dystopian series, The Union. The first book, The Union, was a finalist in the 2015 San Diego book awards in the Young Adult Fiction category.

When not writing, you can usually find her reading, finishing more than 200 books over the past two years. She loves pumpkin spice lattes, Comic-Con, Star Wars, Doctor Who marathons, Bad Lip Reading videos, and all things young adult, especially the three young adults who share her home.

When not visiting the imaginary worlds inside her head, T.H. Hernandez lives in usually sunny San Diego, California with her husband and three children, a couple of cats and a dog who thinks he’s a cat, often referred to as “the puppycat.”

 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8592671.T_H_Hernandez

Website: http://thhernandez.com

Twitter: @TheresaHernandz

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thhernandezSD

Instagram: instagram.com/thhernandez1/

Tumblr: http://thhernandez1.tumblr.com/

 

My Review:

The beginning of the Union started out really interesting. I was a fan of the writing style and the characters. I was a little confused about what the Union was and what made it different from the world we’re familiar with. Some of that became more clear as the book went along, but I was a little confused for a big chunk of it.

The main characters were intriguing to read about. I thought that Evan was a strong female lead. She really seemed to have a sense of herself and was very realistic. The only thing that slightly bothered me about Evan was her name. It’s just a personal thing with me. I don’t care for female characters with male names. I’ve read like 1 or other 2 books like that this month. So, I’m learning that it’s just my own problem.

I did think that this book was a little too insta-lovely, which got a little more complicated with the love triangle.  I would have liked to see some more build up to the relationships, rather than just having them dive into it. Personally, I’m not the biggest fan of either insta love or love triangles. If that’s your thing, though, this book will definitely appeal to you!

One thing that I will say is that this book did a good job with the more action & suspenseful scenes. It definitely kept me entertained and wondering what was going to happen next. I thought that the author did a very good job with those scenes!

Normally, I’m not the biggest fan of dystopian books. I find them to be a little bit too heavy for my own personal taste. One thing I will give this book is that it’s very light, more mellow, and it heavily focuses on the romance. I really enjoyed the fact that it didn’t weigh me down like a lot of dystopian books do.

Overall, I thought that the Union was a pretty good read! I would definitely recommend this series to dystopian lovers who love a good romance!

The Giveaway:

(1) $25 Amazon GC,

(2) $10 Amazon GC,

(5) $5 Amazon GCs

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Reviews
October 1, 2015 posted by Nichole

Book Review: Spinning Starlight by R.C. Lewis

spinning starlight banne

spinning starlightAbout the Book

Title: SPINNING STARLIGHT

Author: R.C. Lewis

Release Date: October 6, 2015

Pages: 336

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks

Sixteen-year-old heiress and paparazzi darling Liddi Jantzen hates the spotlight. But as the only daughter in the most powerful tech family in the galaxy, it’s hard to escape it. So when a group of men show up at her house uninvited, she assumes it’s just the usual media-grubs. That is, until shots are fired. Liddi escapes, only to be pulled into an interplanetary conspiracy more complex than she ever could have imagined. Her older brothers have been caught as well, trapped in the conduits between the planets. And when their captor implants a device in Liddi’s vocal cords to monitor her speech, their lives are in her hands: One word and her brothers are dead. Desperate to save her family from a desolate future, Liddi travels to another world, where she meets the one person who might have the skills to help her bring her eight brothers home-a handsome dignitary named Tiav. But without her voice, Liddi must use every bit of her strength and wit to convince Tiav that her mission is true. With the tenuous balance of the planets deeply intertwined with her brothers’ survival, just how much is Liddi willing to sacrifice to bring them back? Haunting and mesmerizing, this retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’sThe Wild Swans strings the heart of the classic with a stunning, imaginative world as a star-crossed family fights for survival in this companion to Stitching Snow.

 

 

About R.C.:

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R.C. Lewis teaches math to teenagers—sometimes in sign language, sometimes not—so whether she’s a science geek or a bookworm depends on when you look. That may explain why her characters don’t like to be pigeonholed. Coincidentally, R.C. enjoys reading about quantum physics and the identity issues of photons.

 

Website | Twitter |Facebook | Instagram| Goodreads | Tumblr

 

Giveaway Details:

 

1 winner will receive a signed finished copies of STITCHING SNOW & SPINNING STARLIGHT. US Only.

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:
9/28/2015- Fangirlish- Interview
9/29/2015- A Backwards Story- Review
9/30/2015- Supernatural Snark- Guest Post
10/1/2015- YaReads- Review
10/2/2015- Two Chicks on Books- Interview

Week Two:
10/5/2015- Pandora’s Books- Review
10/6/2015- Bookhounds ya- Guest Post
10/7/2015- Just Commonly- Review
10/8/2015- Mundie Moms- Interview
10/9/2015- Please Feed The Bookworm- Review

 

My Review:

I was instantly drawn to this book as soon as I saw who the author was. I first worked with R.C Lewis during the 2014 debut authors bash. I’ll be honest, I have a soft spot for all of my debut authors, and I’m always interested in reading their books! The fact that Spinning Starlight is a companion novel to Stitching Snow was just another perk. That’s right, this is a companion! So, you don’t have to read them in order. And if you haven’t even heard of this series, yet, then you now have two awesome books to read!

What I love about this book is how high-tech it is. There’s so much technology and out of world experiences in this book, and I think that will be a huge hit for readers (especially sci-fi and dystopia lovers!) I will admit that I was a little confused in some parts over what was what and who was who and what was going on. Part of that was probably my own problem, because I’m just not very used to reading sci-fi. However, I did really appreciate the implementation of new technology and a broad range of technological concepts relating to other worlds and discoveries.

One thing that bothered me a little bit was that Liddi couldn’t speak because of the device in her throat that would kill her brothers if she spoke one word. For me, personally, I need a lot of interactions in my books. I’ve read a couple books where the main character isn’t able to talk, and it bothers me every single time. On the other hand,  I thought that it was really cool to witness Liddi learn how to write and interact with a whole different culture than she was accustomed to. The author made it seem so real while I was reading about it. I had a complete visual in my head of what was occurring during each scene.

I’m going to be the first one to raise my hand and admit that I absolutely despise fairy tale retellings. When I started reading this book, I must have skimmed over the fact that this is a retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Wild Swans. Let me tell you right now, that I had no idea this was  a fairy tale retelling until I read the synopsis while creating this post. If you’re not sure about that statement, that’s a huge compliment coming from me. The author made this book her own. I didn’t feel in any way that this was a knock off or a cheap recreation. I loved that I had no idea that this was a retelling and that the author made it her own.

I would definitely recommend this book to sci fi and dystopia lovers. If you haven’t read the first book, then make a date of it and pick both of them up! I think that readers are going to be extremely impressed with the high tech gadgets that this book incorporates into the plot.

 

Check out R.C. Lewis’ 2014 debut authors bash stop HERE

audiobook
November 14, 2014 posted by Nichole

Audiobook Review: The 100 by Kass Morgan

the 100In the future, humans live in citylike spaceships orbiting far above Earth’s toxic atmosphere. No one knows when, or even if, the long-abandoned planet will be habitable again. But faced with dwindling resources and a growing populace, government leaders know they must reclaim their homeland…before it’s too late.
Now, one hundred juvenile delinquents are being sent on a high-stakes mission to recolonize Earth. After a brutal crash landing, the teens arrive on a savagely beautiful planet they’ve only seen from space. Confronting the dangers of this rugged new world, they struggle to form a tentative community. But they’re haunted by their past and uncertain about the future. To survive, they must learn to trust-and even love-again.

 

My Review:

The 100 was a good audiobook to listen to, but it wasn’t overly engaging. It definitely wasn’t something that I absolutely HAD to listen to on the way to and from work every morning….more like something I turned on when none of my stations were playing a good song. So, it took awhile to get through.

My first complaint is that there were wayyyy too many POV’s in this book. Had I actually been reading it, I have no doubt that I would have dnf’d it. As an audiobook, though, the multiple POV’s were kind of interesting. I also really liked how they had male and female vocals for the different chapters.

My absolute biggest issue was the way the audiobook was broken up into past and present segments. It wouldn’t have been annoying if someone said when they were switching tenses, but I often found myself wondering what was going on. All of a sudden we would be 6 months to a year in the past and I had no idea that it happened until part way through the new segment. Then we would shoot into the future and I would be confused all over again. This happened a million times….it’s not something that just happened a few times and can be blown under the rug. I’m not sure if that’s different in the actual book. Maybe it’s more obvious that you’re switching times. In the audiobook, though, it sucked.

There was nothing overly exciting that happened in this book. Honestly, it was more dramatic than anything and was pretty boring in several spots. There were no big explosions; nothing really happened on earth that had a huge wow factor. It was just a lot of talking between the characters and a lot of flashbacks to the past. Again, I probably would have dnf’d the book.

One thing that really ticked me off in this audiobook is that there’s a huge creepy noise toward the end (it’s on the very last disc.) It’s supposed to be some dramatic sound effect for something that’s going on in the book. Yeah….it almost made me wreck. It scared the living daylights out of me. What is WRONG with people? People listen to audiobooks in their cars! It’s not like holding the book and getting super worked up over some dramatic scene. So, I wouldn’t recommend the audiobook for that very reason.

My verdict: I’m interested in watching the TV show, but I don’t care about reading or listening to the next book. It was so underwhelming that I don’t even remember what happened at the end of it. It was okay, though…

 

Publication Date: September 3rd 2013 

Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers

Rating: : ★★★☆☆

Book Reviews
October 16, 2014 posted by Nichole

DNF Review: The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

the infinite seaHow do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.

Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race.

Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate.

 

My Review:

This is a tough review for me to write, because I remember that I LOVED The 5th Wave.  I had a really hard time getting into this book, though. In fact, I DNF’d it….if you didn’t already see that in the title above. It’s just that it’s been so long since I read The 5th Wave, and The Infinite Sea did not go into any background details AT. ALL. I also had a really hard time identifying who the characters were and keeping up with whose POV I was reading in each chapter.

I can’t remember how far I made it in this book. I think I made it around 100 or so pages before I finally just gave up. The writing style was extremely difficult to get into and I found it to be wayyyy too poetic for my personal taste. And seriously…….did I mention that I had no idea what was going on or who was talking?! Give some damn background info! The first book came out a year ago and I don’t like to reread books!

 

Ugh.

 

This one just wasn’t for me.

Book Reviews
September 2, 2014 posted by Nichole

The Jewel (The Lone City #1) by Amy Ewing

the jewelThe Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring.

Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life.

Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence… and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for.

 

 

My Review:

The best way that I can describe this book is “the female contestants in the Hunger Games go live with the females in the Capital and are forced to have their babies.” I actually think that’s a pretty accurate statement when reflecting upon this book. The concept of the book sounded really cool, but I felt that it wasn’t edited or executed strongly enough to push out a powerful read. If anything, I was left a little disturbed and uncomfortable – not to mention confused – for most of the book.

Throughout most of the entire book, I just felt a wave of confusion. I didn’t understand why the royalty couldn’t have their own children and were sterilized; I didn’t understand the Auguries that the surrogates had; I didn’t understand why these surrogates were even important since other people without the Auguries were able to have children. I mean….did it have to do with the powers? Because I didn’t feel that every royal woman was after using their powers. I also didn’t understand why the surrogates were treated so badly when they were carrying the babies for the royal women. So there were a lot of gaps and holes in this book that needed to be refined and edited a little more. I feel that this could have been an amazing book, but it didn’t quite hit that level for me.

Besides my confusing throughout the entire book, I was also really offended over the treatment of the surrogates. It was difficult for me because it wasn’t like there was sexism going on. This book didn’t feature a male dominant world. Instead, it featured a royal female dominant world. The royal females were the ones who treated the surrogates so horribly, and it really messed with my brain to realize that these females were treating other females so harshly. There were several scenes that I was unable to finish because of how uncomfortable they made me. For example, I was unable to read the scenes where Violet goes to see the doctor or when the Duchess was being overly harsh with her. This isn’t something that’s going to bother everyone, but I had a huge problem reading about such an abusive world.

The romance in this book was way too rushed for my taste. All I know is that Ash and Violet were introduced and the next thing I knew they were in love and kidding and doing it. I mean…where did that come from? They met once and then were all over each other? It was also really weird because Ash isn’t even introduced until halfway through the book. So there were 100+ pages of just Violet and then BAM! There’s Ash and insta-lovely-romance ensues. Due to that rushness there wasn’t a lot of chemistry between Ash and Violet. I mean, sure, Ash seemed pretty hot to me, but I didn’t overly care about them as a couple.

Another problem with this book was that it was very repetitive. I felt that at least three scenes happened 2-3 times each. I mean, seriously? SERIOUSLY? That’s not very original. Towards the end I started skimming a little bit because I had already read all that in earlier chapters.

The ending was both predictable and unpredictable. I pretty much expected one thing to happen from the very beginning of the book. The second thing shocked me a little bit, but I wasn’t overly shocked either. I think that the final thing that happens in this book was a great cliff hanger and sets it up nicely for the second book, but I wasn’t wow’d or anything. I was just kind of like “eh.”

Overall, I would probably recommend this book to huge dystopia lovers with a caution that it’s kind of mediocre.

 

Pages: 358

Publication Date: 9/2/14

Publisher: Harper Teen

Rating: : ★½☆☆☆