Friday, December 30, 2011

Review: Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 502
Received: Purchased own copy

Release Date: December 6, 2011
Buy from Amazon


Goodreads Synopsis

In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.

With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.

Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?

As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

My Review:

This book was an amazing follow to Clockwork Angel (check out my review here). I found that so much more happened throughout this one. Though I found this one did not have much action, like the first one did, I still found myself hooked from the first page, and loving it more than the first one (did not think that would be possible).

The one thing that I really enjoyed was that we got to learn a lot more about Will and his family. I was able to feel more for Will after learning everything he went through. It was exactly what I was hoping for, getting underneath Will and understanding why he is the way he is, and after reading this book I fell in love with him all that much more!

I have to say I have not been a fan of love triangles lately (too many books are using this plot line and it has just been overdone). With that said, I love the triangle that Cassandra Clare sets up in these books. Some of the scenes in this book I was just sitting there open mouthed like did that really happen?! And the ending of this book! I have never wanted to throw a book against a wall so badly in awhile (which is a good thing). I love when books get my emotions all over the place.

Reading the description about the one of their own betraying them I was flabbergasted and needed to read it to find out exactly what was meant by that, I had ideas but Cassandra definitely threw me for a bit of loop still and I loved what actually happens!

I also loved how Cassandra ended this book that will definitely bring you back for the last instalment in this trilogy to find out what happens next.

*SIDENOTE I think when I'm done with these I may have to pick up her Mortal Instruments series to see if they are as good. If you've read them please let me know what you think!

Rating: 5 out of 5 comfy couches!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Review: This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel

Publisher: Harper Collins
Pages: 297
Received: Purchased own copy

Release Date: August 23, 2011
Buy from Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

Victor and Konrad are the twin brothers Frankenstein. They are nearly inseparable. Growing up, their lives are filled with imaginary adventures...until the day their adventures turn all too real.

They stumble upon The Dark Library, and secret books of alchemy and ancient remedies are discovered. Father forbids that they ever enter the room again, but this only peaks Victor's curiosity more. When Konrad falls gravely ill, Victor is not be satisfied with the various doctors his parents have called in to help. He is drawn back to The Dark Library where he uncovers an ancient formula for the Elixir of Life. Elizabeth, Henry, and Victor immediately set out to find assistance in a man who was once known for his alchemical works to help create the formula.

Determination and the unthinkable outcome of losing his brother spur Victor on in the quest for the three ingredients that will save Konrads life. After scaling the highest trees in the Strumwald, diving into the deepest lake caves, and sacrificing one’s own body part, the three fearless friends risk their lives to save another.

My Review:

Can I just start by saying OH MY!!! This book was impossible to put down. I am so glad that Cory over at Harper Collins suggest I pick it up. Everything about this book was absolutely amazing. I really love the thought put into this, the idea of a prequel to Frankenstein and Kenneth Oppel does a great job introducing readers to Victor and the idea of how he becomes immersed in the sciences. I love how they show how interested Victor is in finding out the secret to the elixir and showing that he is a great scientist.

I also really enjoyed how Kenneth shows the relationship of Victor and Konrad. He really touches on a lot of things that many sets of twins feel, which made the story seem much more real. He touches on how one brother is better than another at almost everything yet they still respect each other. I loved the relationship of all the characters with one another. The main female character, Elizabeth, is written a strong character who knows how to handle herself (I love books with strong female characters rather than one who takes a back seat to the action).

Kenneth Oppel fills this story with so much action that I felt myself jumping up at times and was on the edge of my seat throughout a lot of it. I couldn't stop reading and wanted the adventures to keep coming. Kenneth also does a great job of throwing some loops at the reader. Just when I thought I had everything figured out and could guess what was coming, something else comes along and I was just like WHAT?!

The ending... wow, I so was getting ready to throw this book against a wall when I came to the last chapter. I really can't see where Kenneth will take this series in the next book!

Rating: 5 out of 5 comfy couches!!

Other books by Kenneth Oppel:


Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays!


I just want to wish everyone a very Happy Holiday, however you will be celebrating this year! I hope many of you will be getting lots of reading done while relaxing and spending time with families. I will be spending a lot of my time working and running back and forth between my family and my boyfriends family. It will definitely be a hectic weekend! Hopefully we will get some nice snow soon for all those taking some vacation time.

I want to thank you all for making this a great time for me, helping me out starting this blog. You have all been a great support these past few months. I wish you all happy holidays and a very happy new year! And also I hope Santa brings you all the lovely books you are hoping for (I definitely hope he brings mine.. already started with my pretties for my birthday :) )

Best wishes!!
Andrea

Review: The First Rule of Ten by Gay Hendricks/Tinker Lindsay

Publisher: Hay House
Pages: 312
Received: Netgalley

Release Date: January 1, 2012
Buy From Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

"Don't ignore intuitive tickles lest they reappear as sledgehammers." That's the first rule of Ten.

Tenzing Norbu (Ten for short) - ex-monk and soon-to-be ex-cop - is a protagonist unique to our times. In The First Rule of Ten, the first installment in a three-book detective series, we meet this spiritual warrior who is singularly equipped, if not occasionally ill-equipped, as he takes on his first case as a private investigator in Los Angeles.

Growing up in a Tibetan Monastery, Ten dreamed of becoming a modern-day Sherlock Holmes. So when he was sent to Los Angeles to teach meditation, he joined the LAPD instead. But as the Buddha says, change is inevitable; and ten years later, everything is about to change - big-time - for Ten. One resignation from the police force, two bullet-wounds, three suspicious deaths, and a beautiful woman later, he quickly learns that whenever he breaks his first rule, mayhem follows.

My Review:

I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading this novel, and I was quite pleasantly surprised. The description of a mystery novel with the protagonist being a monk made me a little weary but I actually found this book entertaining. I won't say it was amazing but it was definitely a good read.

"Ten" grew up as a monk in a monastery and from there went on to be a cop (really how do those two things come together?). He was always a troublemaker and loved reading Sherlock Holmes (there's the connection!). I loved the different mentions of Sherlock Holmes throughout the novel (he really looked to Holmes when thinking of what to do next). The mystery plot was really intriguing for me as well.

I loved the conspiracy aspect between so many differing groups, I was not expecting a lot of what was thrown at me. I really enjoy when mystery books like this one don't make it glaringly obvious as to who is involved, and this one had great twists to it.

The character of Tenzing also had a great sense of humour to him which I enjoy in characters because it gives the story a bit of comic relief instead of being all seriousness. Some of the humour kind of reminded me of the TV show Bones (not understanding a lot of common things because he grew up as a monk). I would recommend this one to mystery lovers all around.

Rating: 4 out of 5 comfy couches


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Cover Reveal of The Chosen Ones

So I got the opportunity to take part in a great cover reveal for a new book coming out from Entangled Publishing. The book is to be the first in a new series and is set to be released in April 2012 at the moment. The title of this new book is called The Chosen One by Tiffany Truitt and it is a YA dystopian novel (yay, I have fallen in love with dystopian lately, thanks to Christa over at Hooked on Books). Here is the blurb:

What if you were mankind’s last chance at survival? 
            Sixteen-year-old Tess lives in a compound in what was once the Western United States, now decimated after a devastating fourth World War. But long before that, life as we knew it had been irrevocably changed, as women mysteriously lost the ability to bring forth life. Faced with the extinction of the human race, the government began the Council of Creators, meant to search out alternative methods of creating life. The resulting artificial human beings, or Chosen Ones, were extraordinarily beautiful, unbelievably strong, and unabashedly deadly.

            Life is bleak, but uncomplicated for Tess as she follows the rigid rules of her dystopian society, until the day she begins work at Templeton, the training facility for newly created Chosen Ones. There, she meets James, a Chosen One whose odd love of music and reading rivals only her own. The attraction between the two is immediate in its intensity—and overwhelming in its danger.

            But there is more to the goings-on at Templeton than Tess ever knew, and as the veil is lifted from her eyes, she uncovers a dark underground movement bent not on taking down the Chosen Ones, but the Council itself. Will Tess be able to stand up to those who would oppress her, even if it means giving up the only happiness in her life?

And now here is the cover!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (8)

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine and lets us shed some light on some new books coming out that we are most excited for. This week I am excited for:

Publication Date: August 21, 2012

There is no synopsis up for this book yet, but I have just finished reading This Dark Endeavour (the first in the series) and I absolutely loved it. I refused to put it down, and I did not want it to end. I honestly can't wait to see where Kenneth takes the story next! Sadly, it is still a good distance away.

What are you waiting for this week?


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Review: Legend by Marie Lu

Publisher: G. P. Putnam
Pages: 305
Received: Through Penguin Razorbill program

Release Date: November 29, 2011
Buy from Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.


My Review:

I absolutely loved this book! Such a great start to a new series. I found there was a great amount of action and unlike some first books where it is all just an introduction to the characters a lot more happens in this book (but there is a great introduction to the background of the characters throughout).

From the first chapter I found myself hooked, the book starts out with a good amount of intensity. I really enjoyed that the book was told from both characters points of view, it really helps the reader understand how both characters feel about everything happening. It was interesting how we would see one thing from one character and the next scene would be the other character thinking about what just happened in the last scene.

The characters in this story are different than usual, the strong female character is actually born into the better side of things, she is privileged whereas in most other stories the women start off in a bad situation. I'm excited to see where Marie Lu takes this, hoping that there are some questions she answers, like how this new world came about from what we know as a world. This is definitely one of the better books I have read this past year, and a great start for a debut author.

Rating: 5 out of 5 comfy couches!

Other books you may enjoy:



Monday, December 19, 2011

Favourite Books of 2011

There have been so many great books published this past year. Here are just a few of my favourites that I have read (there are quite a few that I've heard are amazing but have not had the chance to read yet). Hopefully I can catch up on a lot of the books I'm missing out on over my Christmas holidays.
*These books are in no particular order.

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

At Westish College, a small school on the shore of Lake Michigan, baseball star Henry Skrimshander seems destined for big league stardom. But when a routine throw goes disastrously off course, the fates of five people are upended.
Henry's fight against self-doubt threatens to ruin his future. College president Guert Affenlight, a longtime bachelor, has fallen unexpectedly and helplessly in love. Owen Dunne, Henry's gay roommate and teammate, becomes caught up in a dangerous affair. Mike Schwartz, the Harpooners' team captain and Henry's best friend, realizes he has guided Henry's career at the expense of his own. And Pella Affenlight, Guert's daughter, returns to Westish after escaping an ill-fated marriage, determined to start a new life.
State of Wonder by Ann Patchet

Sometimes being on the vanguard of scientific progress thrusts you into the teeth of danger. For Minnesota pharmaceutical researcher Dr. Marina Singh, that means being sent into the remotest region of the Amazon jungle to track down her former mentor. Finding Dr. Annick Swenson promises to be perilous: The last scientist assigned to find her has disappeared too. What follows is the most ambitious novel yet by Bel Canto author Ann Patchett as its adventure story opens into a penetrating study of personalities, loyalties, and ethics. Editor's recommendation.



Legend by Marie Lu

What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.
From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.


The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

It's 1996, and Josh and Emma have been neighbors their whole lives. They've been best friends almost as long - at least, up until last November, when Josh did something that changed everything. Things have been weird between them ever since, but when Josh's family gets a free AOL CD in the mail,his mom makes him bring it over so that Emma can install it on her new computer. When they sign on, they're automatically logged onto their Facebook pages. But Facebook hasn't been invented yet. And they're looking at themselves fifteen years in the future.
By refreshing their pages, they learn that making different decisions now will affect the outcome of their lives later. And as they grapple with the ups and downs of what their futures hold, they're forced to confront what they're doing right - and wrong - in the present.
The Free World by David Bezmogis

Summer, 1978. Brezhnev sits like a stone in the Kremlin, Israel and Egypt are inching towards peace, and in the bustling, polyglot streets of Rome, strange new creatures have appeared: Soviet Jews who have escaped to freedom through a crack in the Iron Curtain. Among the thousands who have landed in Italy to secure visas for new lives in the West are the members of the Krasnansky family — three generations of Russian Jews.
There is Samuil, an old Communist and Red Army veteran, who reluctantly leaves the country to which he has dedicated himself body and soul; Karl, his elder son, a man eager to embrace the opportunities emigration affords; Alec, his younger son, a carefree playboy for whom life has always been a game; and Polina, Alec's new wife, who has risked the most by breaking with her old family to join this new one. Together, they will spend six months in Rome — their way station and purgatory. They will immerse themselves in the carnival of emigration, in an Italy rife with love affairs and ruthless hustles, with dislocation and nostalgia, with the promise and peril of a new life. Through the unforgettable Krasnansky family, David Bezmozgis has created an intimate portrait of a tumultuous era.

Though it wasn't published this year, I have to add it in to my list as well (I know the second will be on my list as soon as I read it).
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.
Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.
Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.



There are still so many books that I need to read from this year... Delirium, Shatter Me, and so many more. I have a long list of books I will be running to get after Christmas. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

In My Mailbox (6)

In My Mailbox is a great way for everyone to show off what they have got in the past week. This is hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren.

Here are some of the great things that I got this week:

My copy of Clockwork Prince came in from The Book Depository (YAY!) Can't wait to delve into this one!!!

And since my lovely birthday is coming up this week, my boyfriend gave me my gift a bit early (Gift cards to chapters! Oh how excited I was, I went out and spent some of it right away). Cory over at Harper Collins kept talking about how great This Dark Endeavour was so I told him I would pick it up ASAP, and while I was there I decided I couldn't help myself, so I also picked up a copy of Shatter Me. Yay!!


What was in your mailbox this week?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Review: 1222 by Anne Holt

Publisher: Scribner
Pages: 320
Received: Netgalley

Release Date: December 27, 2011
Buy From Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

1222 metres above sea level, train 601 from Oslo to Bergen careens off iced rails as the worst snowstorm in Norwegian history gathers force around it. Marooned in the high mountains with night falling and the temperature plummeting, its 269 passengers are forced to abandon their snowbound train and decamp to a centuries-old mountain hotel. They ought to be safe from the storm here, but as dawn breaks one of them will be found dead, murdered. With the storm showing no sign of abating, retired police inspector Hanne Wilhelmsen is asked to investigate. But Hanne has no wish to get involved. She has learned the hard way that truth comes at a price and sometimes that price just isn't worth paying. Her pursuit of truth and justice has cost her the love of her life, her career in the Oslo Police Department and her mobility: she is paralysed from the waist down by a bullet lodged in her spine.

Trapped in a wheelchair, trapped by the killer within, trapped by the deadly storm outside, Hanne's growing unease is shared by everyone in the hotel. Should she investigate, or should she just wait for help to arrive? And all the time rumours swirl about a secret cargo carried by train 601. Why was the last carriage sealed? Why is the top floor of the hotel locked down? Who or what is being concealed? And, of course, what if the killer strikes again?

My Review:

I found this book thanks to a great post over at Book Spark that highlights some new releases on Netgalley. This one sparked my interest because I love mystery books. I was intrigued with the idea that there are so many people trapped in this hotel together that it makes it hard to figure out who the culprit is.

I had some difficulties in the beginning with this book, not that it was bad, I just couldn't seem to find myself getting interested, I feel like there was a little bit too much going on in the beginning of the book that I couldn't wrap my head around everything and everyone. I found it difficult to remember all the characters, the names made it a little difficult (understandable because they are Norwegian). The main disappointment I had was the ending, there were still questions left unanswered as to what was being concealed throughout the book (I'm wondering if it will be answered in a forthcoming book since this is a planned series).

It did start getting interesting though when the murder happened, I found myself wanting to read more to find out who it was (which after awhile I kind of figured out...) but Anne does a pretty good job of taking the reader in circles of who the culprit is. I felt like I was on a rollercoaster with this book, it would get interesting at points where I didn't want to stop and then I found there was so much happening and I wasn't really interested. I finally got really interested in the last half of the book and just really wanted to find out what happened, and who this secret thing was that was being hidden from everyone.

I enjoyed the mystery to this story and Anne Holt has some great writing, she really gets inside Hanne Wilhelmsen's head, readers get to see how she thinks through things. This was an interesting beginning to a new series and I would like to see where it gets taken from here.

Rating: 3 out of 5 comfy couches

Other books by Anne Holt:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (7)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. This lets us show off some of the things we are most excited for. My pick this week is:

Release Date: February 2012
Publisher: Harper Collins

The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the population. Reduced to tens of thousands by RM, a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island while the Partials have mysteriously retreated. The threat of the Partials is still imminent, but worse, no baby has been born immune to RM in more than a decade. Our time is running out.

Kira, a sixteen-year-old medic in training, is on the front lines of this battle, seeing RM ravage the community while mandatory pregnancy laws threaten to launch what’s left of humanity into civil war, and she’s not content to stand by and watch. But as she makes a desperate decision to save the last of her race, she will discover that the survival of humans and Partials alike rests in her attempts to uncover the connections between them—connections that humanity has forgotten, or perhaps never even knew were there.

Dan Wells, acclaimed author of I Am Not a Serial Killer, takes readers on a pulse-pounding journey into a world where the very concept of what it means to be human is in question—one where our humanity is both our greatest liability and our only hope for survival.

I love the cover of this one. The synopsis sounds really interesting, reminds me a little bit of I Am Legend. I also love how it's described as questioning the concept of being human, that line just made me fall in love with it even more. 

What are you waiting for today?


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Review: The Future of Us

Publisher: Penguin Razorbill
Pages: 356
Received: Received from publisher

Release Date: November 21, 2011
Buy from Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

It's 1996, and Josh and Emma have been neighbors their whole lives. They've been best friends almost as long - at least, up until last November, when Josh did something that changed everything. Things have been weird between them ever since, but when Josh's family gets a free AOL CD in the mail, his mom makes him bring it over so that Emma can install it on her new computer. When they sign on, they're automatically logged onto their Facebook pages. But Facebook hasn't been invented yet. And they're looking at themselves fifteen years in the future.

By refreshing their pages, they learn that making different decisions now will affect the outcome of their lives later. And as they grapple with the ups and downs of what their futures hold, they're forced to confront what they're doing right - and wrong - in the present.

My Review:

Being a kid that grew up in the 90's I can definitely relate to this book, knowing how it felt to get your first computer and learning about what the internet is (I love the mention of AOL and the voice always saying "Welcome" and "Goodbye"). This was definitely a nostalgic read! I loved the mention of discmans and the popular music and movies from that time, I actually went and listened to Green Day (old stuff) after reading this.

I always love the idea of books that are about the characters future. This book was kind of like The Butterfly Effect for a younger generation (and not so depressing). I enjoy how once Emma finds out about her future she tries different things to change her future, it's hard to know everything because she only gets little tidbits of her life. As I was reading, I found myself saying if I was in Emma's situation I would definitely be trying out some of these things, seeing what would happen.

I enjoyed that the book was told from both characters' points of view and that each of them had a different take on what to do with the information. I really enjoyed that you couldn't tell the book was written by two different authors, it wasn't obvious which author wrote which section.

The relationship between Emma and Josh is right on the mark with teenagers who are close friends. I really enjoyed reading how they got through all the complicated parts of their relationship. This story is definitely  good one for anyone that really make you as a reader think about how the choices you make now can affect your future and if you knew things would you do whatever possible to change it until you're happy?

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 comfy couches

Other books by the authors:




Monday, December 12, 2011

Review: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 478
Received: Bought own copy

Release Date: August 31, 2010
Buy from Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: Jem, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa.

As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

My Review:

I absolutely loved this book. I picked it up and refused to put it down. Cassandra Clare draws you into her magical world of London. I loved the characters that Cassandra wrote, she brings them all to the readers' attention, even the secondary characters and really makes you connect with them. I loved Will's arrogance throughout the book, it made him more real (definitely Team Will). I also really enjoyed how Will and Jem are best friends, she writes them as two different parts of one person, always there (it's what is definitely in a great friendship). I did wish for a little more Jem throughout the story, I felt that he wasn't there as much as I would have hoped.

I enjoy that Cassandra devotes a lot of the beginning of the book to let you get to know the characters, I feel that when authors do this it helps me connect with them and actually makes me feel like I'm let in. Because this is part of a trilogy I'm not upset that most of this book was a lead in to the characters with not too much happening at first (not that there is no action, because believe me there is a good amount of actions, it's just more in the second half.)

The way that Cassandra writes the action keeps you at the edge of your seat. And once Cassandra starts the action it doesn't seem to stop for the rest of the time, there are a few breaks in between (of course characters need to rest up) but it just keeps getting more intense. I kept wanting to come back for more. I also love that she keeps you hanging at the end of the novel, ready to come back for more on the next novel.

Rating 4.5 out of 5 comfy couches

Sunday, December 11, 2011

In My Mailbox (5)

In My Mailbox is the weekly meme  hosted by The Story Siren that lets us show off what things we have received in the past week. Here's what I got this week:


This week I got a great package from Razorbill that included Legend by Marie Lu and The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler.

I also got some great titles from Netgalley.


What did you get this week?

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Review: Room by Emma Donoghue

Publisher: Harper Collins
Pages: 321
Received: Borrowed from a friend

Release Date: August 20, 2010
Buy from Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

To five-year-old-Jack, Room is the world. . . . It's where he was born, it's where he and his Ma eat and sleep and play and learn. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma it's the prison where she has been held for seven years. Through her fierce love for her son, she has created a life for him in this eleven-by-eleven-foot space. But with Jack's curiosity building alongside her own desperation, she knows that Room cannot contain either much longer.

Room is a tale at once shocking, riveting, exhilarating--a story of unconquerable love in harrowing circumstances, and of the diamond-hard bond between a mother and her child.

My Review:

I have to start out by saying that it has been a long time since I've been this emotional when reading a book. I found myself crying almost the entire time. I think that the last one was The Lovely Bones. This book will definitely be added to be re-read pile just because it is that amazing in my opinion. Emma Dononghue does a great job at writing from Jack's perspective.

Emma Donoghue gives readers hope and makes you feel for Jack, growing up only knowing about Room. I really enjoyed the innocence of Jack throughout the novel, not understanding anything beyond the four walls he has come to know as his home. She really lets the reader into Jack's mind and I really enjoyed how Emma shows Jack making friends with everything in the room because he doesn't know anything else... he believes that there is nothing outside of Room and believes that everything on TV is make believe.

Even though the entire book is written in Jack's voice, the reader still gets to understand Ma, how she will do anything to protect him. Emma describes in great detail the surroundings and the feelings of the characters.

I knew coming into this book that would be an intense read just from the description, but Emma was able to add in some humour to all the darkness surrounding the characters. This is a great story to show that people push through because of someone else, everything that Jack's Ma does throughout the novel is to protect him, and you understand that early on. As a writer Emma does a great job at pulling at the readers heartstrings and really getting the emotional feeling of what the characters are going through!

Rating: 5 out of 5 comfy couches!

Other books by Emma Donoghue:



Thursday, December 8, 2011

Review: Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Publisher: Penguin/Razorbill
Pages: 398
Received: Bought

Release Date: January 11, 2011
Buy from Amazon


Goodreads Synopsis

Amy is a cryogenically frozen passenger aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed. She expects to awaken on a new planet, 300 years in the future. But fifty years before Godspeed's scheduled landing, Amy's cryo chamber is unplugged, and she is nearly killed.

Now, Amy is caught inside an enclosed world where nothing makes sense. Godspeed's passengers have forfeited all control to Eldest, a tyrannical and frightening leader, and Elder, his rebellious and brilliant teenage heir.

Amy desperately wants to trust Elder. But should she? All she knows is that she must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets before whoever woke her tries to kill again.

My Review: *POSSIBLE SPOILERS*

I bought this book because I received an ARC of A Million Suns, the second one and needed to read this first. I have read a lot of great reviews on this book so I was nervous when picking it up because of the hype. But man was the hype right!! I loved this book from the first chapter, that review that says it has an unforgettable opening scene is so right. I was hooked from the first page, Beth Revis definitely knows how to keep her readers interested.

I couldn't put this book down (and didn't want to) I was disappointed when it ended (glad I have the second one already). I thought I knew what was happening and was on the ball and then I was thrown for a loop at the end, which I loved. I connected with Amy, waking up in this new place and having no control over anything, I would go crazy, especially being trapped with only so many places to go (which isn't much).

I really enjoyed the plot of the book, kind of like a utopia type world, but where everyone is just ready to relinquish control of their lives for the hope to see this new planet. I'm really interested to see where Beth will take this story next, it didn't end in much of a cliffhanger like I would expect a book in a series like this to end with. I also liked how Eldest twists history to make it seem like the way the inhabitants of Godspeed are living is better for everyone (the line I really enjoyed was how Hitler had things right in his time... I definitely had the same reaction as Amy, everyone is crazy!).

I also found the whole idea of The Season interesting, and yet messed up, basically equating people with animals that just mate at certain times. I also really enjoyed the different way the people of Godspeed speak..."frex" was my favourite word throughout the novel and I feel like I'm going to start using it a lot myself... it's so much fun!

I love all these new authors that have been coming out this year with all these new and interesting series!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 comfy couches

Other books you may enjoy:


  

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday (6)

The amazing Jill at Breaking the Spine brings us another week of Waiting on Wednesday to let us show off some things we are most excited for. My pick this week is:


Release Date: April 2012

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae's most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

That catch line just brought me right in, and it sounds really interesting. I always love new series when I find out about them before they've already started releasing. 

What are you waiting on today?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Review: Dead Man's Grip by Peter James


Publisher: Macmillan
Pages: 403
Received: Harper Collins Canada event

Release Date: August 17, 2011
Buy from Amazon
#7 in the Roy Grace series


Goodreads Synopsis:

Here the detective is involved in dark developments after a young woman is traumatised in a fatal traffic accident. The accident has resulted in the death of student – but then the drivers of other vehicles involved are discovered tortured and killed.

The fact that Peter James has built up considerable storytelling skills over the years is hardly an accident; had he not written a single Roy Grace novel, he would, of course, be remembered for a series of highly professional supernatural outings (recently reissued with covers that rather cheekily suggested the books are like his more recent work). But his most signal achievement is to keep us comprehensively engaged in the increasingly overfamiliar field of the police procedural. Not an easy task, but one that James pulls off with aplomb.

My Review:

I haven't read anything by Peter James before this, and I like that even though this is a series you don't need to read the previous ones (though I would have liked to). This book was amazing. Very intense things happening. I am a big fan of crime novels and this one did not disappoint me at all. I was gripped from the beginning.

What I really enjoyed about this is it's been awhile since I've seen a good crime novel including mafia connections and this one was well done. Though Peter James usually deals with the England scene, he decided to cross over and go to New York with this one and it really worked well.

I found even though I could predict some things coming along, Peter James still threw me quite a few loops during the story and I just couldn't put it down. I am definitely putting Peter James on my list of authors that I will keep an eye out for new books (and go through his backlist as well).

I was very lucky to get to meet Peter James a few months ago and learning how he researches his stories makes me see them in a different light, and enjoy them that much more. He is very absorbed in his work and rides along with the Brighton Police often, so he really gets to know and understand how the police work.

There was a great teaser trailer video for this book which can be seen here:


Rating: 5 out of 5 comfy couches
Other books by Peter James


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