Book Review: Bloodrose by Andrea Cremer

8130839But now that the final battle is upon her, there’s more at stake than fighting. There’s saving Ren, even if it incurs Shay’s wrath. There’s keeping Ansel safe, even if he’s been branded a traitor. There’s proving herself as the pack’s alpha, facing unnamable horrors, and ridding the world of the Keepers’ magic once and for all. And then there’s deciding what to do when the war ends. If Calla makes it out alive, that is. In this remarkable final installment of the Nightshade trilogy, international bestselling author Andrea Cremer crafts a dynamic novel with twists and turns that will keep you breathless until its final pages.

Wow, that was a long book! It was pretty good, consistent with the first two books, but it dragged on longer than it should have. It is so hard to write a review for a book in a series that I have already reviewed. If you want to see my reviews for Nightshade (Book 1) click here and for Wolfsbane (Book 2) click here. Everything seemed to wrap up together nicely and I didn’t feel like things built up to a tragically short ending. The characters kept pulling me in with their developments and achievements and yes, I cried when some were lost.

I got to say though, the ending through me for a loop. Not in a bad way, but in a different way. I won’t give anything away, but it was definitely a change from the normal. The ending also left all the characters at a good place, but also a place where the series could continue in a different direction if the author chooses.  Just to give you a little something to look forward to, I will mention the two gay teen werewolves scuba diving and chasing turtles.  And that is part of the reason I like this series.

4 Bards

fourbards

Book Review: The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost

17158976In a world of shadows, anything is possible. Except escaping your fate.

Ever since she was a child, Ivy has been gripped by visions of strange realms just beyond her own. But when her sister goes missing, Ivy discovers the truth is far worse—her hallucinations are real, and her sister is trapped in a parallel realm. And the one person who believes her is the dangerously attractive guy who’s bound by an ancient legacy to betray her.

Adrian might have turned his back on those who raised him, but that doesn’t mean he can change his fate…no matter how strong a pull he feels toward Ivy. Together they search for the powerful relic that can save her sister, but Adrian knows what Ivy doesn’t: that every step brings Ivy closer to the truth about her own destiny, and a war that could doom the world. Sooner or later, it will be Ivy on one side and Adrian on the other. And nothing but ashes in between.

 

 

Oh. My. God. LOVE!

First off, I already adore the author and both of her other series she’s written. So, I had high hopes going into this book, and she didn’t let me down! Writing this book in New Adult format meant there was some adult content but nothing like the adult novels she’s written before. New Adult is going to be a great genre to write in and she’s leading the way with The Beautiful Ashes. It was fantastic!

I have to admit I was a little shaky on the idea of Angels and Demons battling it out, because I feel it’s been done and done, and never different, but Jeaniene delivered a new take of the epic battle of good vs evil. Taking snippets from the Bible and transforming them to something otherworldly gives the reader something to truly think about and say, hey, that really maybe could have happened that way!

Adrian is your typical bad boy, vintage car and all, but under that outward appearance of bad ass, comes a tortured soul that is determined to change his fate. Ivy is going to be that deciding on factor of if his fate can change, While she’s determined to change him, she goes through tragedies that leads her to have nothing to lose but everything to gain. That being said, she dives head first into a world she knows nothing about, but is destine to be submerged into.

I loved the characters. The tension and passion between Adrain and Ivy was just enough to make me go, awww, at points and want to smack both of them upside the head at others. Their struggles are believable and their goals are obtainable. The secondary characters give the story life and drive and I felt emotions, good and bad, for every single one of them.

My biggest issue with this book is that it’s not even out yet and I want the second to be released so I know what happens next!

5 Bards!

fivebards

Book Review: Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer

7263429Calla Tor wakes up in the lair of the Searchers, her sworn enemy, and she’s certain her days are numbered. But then the Searchers make her an offer–one that gives her the chance to destroy her former masters and save the pack–and the man–she left behind. Is Ren worth the price of her freedom? And will Shay stand by her side no matter what? Now in control of her own destiny, Calla must decide which battles are worth fighting and how many trials true love can endure and still survive.

 

 

Jumping into book 2 of the Nightshade series, I was thrilled to see that it started exactly where book 1 let off. I hate when books have an unaccounted time lapse and this did not, so well done Mrs. Cremer!  And with that, the book had great flow and was adventurous and captivating.

Trusting that the people she was bred to hate would be her and her pack’s savior.  Calla continues her journey towards freedom from a life she can’t go back to. Bumps in the road, betrayals and heartbreaks lead her closer to the goal, yet she begins to feel like she’s going backwards and not forwards. Among the continuing storyline is an undercurrent of a love triangle, one where she must continue to chose between loyalty to her pack or to her heart.

The continuing character development worked well for all the players and the dialogue and descriptions fit the story perfectly. I had a hard time putting the book down!  Book 1 was a little slow and long, but this book was quick and just the write length.

I give this book 4 bards!

fourbards

Book Review: Unbreakable by Kami Garcia

12371862When Kennedy Waters finds her mother dead, her world begins to unravel. She doesn’t know that paranormal forces in a much darker world are the ones pulling the strings. Not until identical twins Jared and Lukas Lockhart break into Kennedy’s room and destroy a dangerous spirit sent to kill her. The brothers reveal that her mother was part of an ancient secret society responsible for protecting the world from a vengeful demon — a society whose five members were all murdered on the same night.

Now Kennedy has to take her mother’s place in the Legion if she wants to uncover the truth and stay alive. Along with new Legion members Priest and Alara, the teens race to find the only weapon that might be able to destroy the demon — battling the deadly spirits he controls every step of the way.

Suspense, romance, and the paranormal meet in this chilling urban fantasy, the first book in a new series from Kami Garcia, bestselling coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures novels.

 

Ghosts. Yes, I believe in them. No, I am not a fan of reading about them. I tend to scare myself into thinking what’s lurking around in the book is lurking around in my house. That being said, I managed to read this book in two days and loved it. Right from the beginning it pulled me and kept me captivated.

The characters in the story are young and the author really captures their youth as well as the desire and need to be older then they are. They are essential thrown into a world that most have trained for but have never experienced. There is always that one person, Kennedy in this case, that has no idea but seems to adapt out of necessity, and I really felt that was done very well.

Diving into the world of paranormal activity can be tricky. At times it felt like Supernatural and teenage Ghost Hunters mashed together, but then something would happen and it pulled me right back into the story. It was a very easy read and everything flowed together very well. The ending showed the readers there will be more books to come but didn’t leave us in a state of shock, demanding the next book at that very moment.

Despite the fear of ghosts, and the inability to read the series after dark, I will be reading the next book in the series and I look forward to seeing what happens to all the characters as they continue their journey through the world of ghost hunting and slaying!

I give this book 4 spooky bards!

fourbards

Book Review: Allegiant by Veronica Roth

18710190The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.

 

Sadly, this book was a struggle for me to get through. The writing was good, the dialogue was good and the characters were the same, but the plot was lacking. It almost seemed like a completely different book with the same characters as the two before it.

I get where the author was trying to go, but it didn’t work. My biggest issue, the one that I just couldn’t get over was that all the main players in this book were supped to be 16 but it was totally non believable that they were that young. Having to fight, plot, defend an entire city, deal with death every other chapter, losing family, falling in love, is all expected of these characters and I just don’t buy it. Regardless of a situation you are thrown into, you will have moments that you act your age, and these people did not.

And let’s not even get started on the genetically damaged and genetically pure aspect of the book. That idea was totally beat to death and not even believable with how much it was played into. Her idea was good in that its an interesting concept to believe the U.S. government would go to drastic measures to try and develop a genetically pure race of humans, but how it was approached in this book made me groan, loudly.

2 Bards

twobards

Book Review: The Taking by Kimberly Derting

17838475When sixteen-year-old Kyra Agnew wakes up behind a Dumpster at the Gas ’n’ Sip, she has no memory of how she got there. With a terrible headache and a major case of déjà vu, she heads home only to discover that five years have passed . . . yet she hasn’t aged a day. 

Everything else about Kyra’s old life is different. Her parents are divorced, her boyfriend, Austin, is in college and dating her best friend, and her dad has changed from an uptight neat-freak to a drunken conspiracy theorist who blames her five-year disappearance on little green men.

Confused and lost, Kyra isn’t sure how to move forward unless she uncovers the truth. With Austin gone, she turns to Tyler, Austin’s annoying kid brother, who is now seventeen and who she has a sudden undeniable attraction to. As Tyler and Kyra retrace her steps from the fateful night of her disappearance, they discover strange phenomena that no one can explain, and they begin to wonder if Kyra’s father is not as crazy as he seems. There are others like her who have been taken . . . and returned. Kyra races to find an explanation and reclaim the life she once had, but what if the life she wants back is not her own?

Boyfriends, pimples, or winning your championship softball game should be the typical worries in Kyra’s life until she wakes up, behind a dumpster, 5 years after a fight with her dad with no memory of those years. Don’t we all wish we could just black out most of our awkward teenage years? Personally, it’s a thought I’ve had more than once. But as Kyra soon discovers, her total black out will lead her into a sci fi adventure right out of the pages of something George Lucas would be proud of.

The subject of alien abduction always seems so taboo to me. Even now, with the massive amounts of science fiction books running around, people still get weirded out about aliens that can abduct or take you at any moment. I thought Derting did a very good job at addressing the subject in a manner that seemed almost plausible. Kyra freaked out but the idea made sense, so she just accepted it and moved on with the “why’s” of the whole thing. The idea that only teenagers were taken and most were only missing for a short amount of time made the idea seem almost real and I appreciated that. I also liked that as the kids were abducted, Derting didn’t go into detail about them being poked and probed. Which is the same old boring things everyone thinks of when they hear the word “abduction.”

The overall development of the characters was believable and I enjoyed watching the main character come to grips with what needed to be done in her situation. The major and minor players of the book all got a long really well and no one seemed out of place or context. There was just enough interaction between people in Kyra’s life 5 years prior to waking up to give you an idea of who she was but not over doing those relationships.

As much as this type of book is not my normal go to read, I did enjoy it and am looking forward to the next book to come out so that I can see how the characters develop and how the story plays out. I do have to say that the overall plot reminded me of every other tv show or book I have read about alien abduction and I hope that the next books in the series twist the plot a bit so they don’t become predictable.

Derting did an outstanding job with dialogue and just enough description to leave a reader understanding where the book is taking place but using their own imagination to really “see” the story happen.

3.5 Bards

3.5bards

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