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Shades of Earth (Across the Universe Series #3)

Shades of Earth (Across the Universe #3) - Beth Revis Shades of Earth picks up when Amy and Elder make the final decision about Centuri-Earth. Do they go or do they stay on Godspeed? That question is answered very much at the end of A Million Suns and in the beginning of Shades of Earth as well.

This book left me gasping and truly intrigued from beginning to the very end. Beth Revis hits this one out of the park. I'm still left with a few questions, ones that I'll never get answers from, just like the show LOST, what was that smoke creature on that show??? lol

Anyway… this novel had some serious twist and turns. The characters had to explore not only the planet, but what they were truly made of in situations that pushed them over the edge. It was a live or die kind of world they were thrust into when it came to the ship borns and the earth borns. This was due to the fact that it was a complete mystery what Centuri-Earth had in store for Amy, Elder, and everyone else.

Orion was still playing games with the both characters. He left clues in a book and pointed them in directions on how to know what dangers were ahead. the very last clue was found by Elder and it painted a picture of WHY Eldest and those before didn't want to deal with Centuri-Earth and the FRX. One of the most pivotal and climatic moments in the story. This was one of the answers I received when reading this book that made sense about everything from the first two books.

Amy and Elder's relationship was also put to the test, not only by the elements of the new planet, but by her own parents! Yes I said her parents. That's one of the very few spoilers I can give away. But it was also inevitable that they would show up soon in the series. Amy's father especially plays an important factor in all of this. And so does the character named Chris, who is a new character. I also just want to say that I'd like to punch Chris for his actions, choices, and lack of communication in general. If you haven't read the book yet, I can't say why because it revels the biggest secret of all! He's important to how the story is shaped and the outcome in the end.

I'm sad about who died in this story. It broke my heart and so much more. It's been awhile since my heart strings were tugged by fictional characters. I wanted to save them, I wanted to save them all! But just reading it and picturing those moments in my mind… its' too much even now. Ugh! Beth Revis, WHY???? You did it again! It's rare for an author to do this to me.

I'm also sad to say goodbye to this world, these characters, and the journey they are going to have even after all this is over. It was truly an amazing time to be invested in such a trilogy and worth every moment that came with it. I wouldn't trade it one bit.

This is a series I would recommend to anyone who loves science fiction, a little romance, mystery, and the boundless world of space. It's everything a reader could want and more.

Devine Intervention

Devine Intervention - Martha Brockenbrough Devine Intervention is different in that not all that is good can be seen, at first. The two main characters, Heidi and Jerome, are an odd-couple pairing. Jerome breaks the rules, while Heidi obeys them 24/7. There was also something real in the characters portrayal and heartfelt at times, more so from Heidi's end.

From the insane moments of Jerome not thinking before speaking/doing to the scared nonsenses from Heidi, it was a true revelation from the characters as they grew up. They finally understood by the end what life means to them, why humanity is important, and why love can conquer.

I enjoyed the scenes where Jerome took Heidi all over town and explored it from his side of things. She was able to smell delicious treats and people watch like never before. However, I thought it was crazy how Jerome just kept talking in her head for over 15 years of her life!

The novel did some lagging a little bit. But by chapter 21 all the way to the end, it improved volumes. The way it played out was fantastic and had a really great twist at the end.

Overall, this book wasn't one of my favorite books, but it wasn't horrible either. I did enjoy a good ⅓ of it. Some books are not for everyone, but some are worth a read at least once. And this is one of those novels. So if you get the chance, give this one a shot just once. Then make the decision afterwards. And I would recommend this to teens and young adults, more so than adults.

Eve (Eve Trilogy Series #1)

Eve (Eve Trilogy Series #1) - Anna Carey The story of a young girl set 20-21 years from now in the future after a plague, riding on the hopes for a better life, is a little orphan annie meets I Am Legend.

Eve has been sheltered her entire life, away from all the males of the world and only a distant memory or her mother when everything was ending. Her need to survive is tested by nature and its elements, but mostly by one boy who proves to her that what she learned isn't 100% correct.

The protagonist is sort of a meek girl in the beginning. She has never seen water outside of a faucet/shower, let alone been outside the walls of her school. The girl is forced to make a choice when she discovers the truth about what really happens after they graduate. This is where the real story begins for Eve, out in New America, located on the west coast.

When Eve meets Caleb, it changes everything. She learns how to swim and how to use a weapon. She learns what love is beyond the love of a parent. It takes time, but Caleb is her saving grace in all of this hellish world. Some would think he holds her back, but I believe he helps her push forward for a better tomorrow for all the children in peril. As for Arden, the girl who went to school with Eve, she pushes Eve's buttons in ways that wakes her up and forces her to make choices. Some of which are life altering. This character is truly stone cold outside exterior, while when you get to the heart of her, is really just a sad little girl who feels all alone. Eve is the only one so far to break through to her.

As for the darker side of the story, the character Lief is a prime example of what I despise in men: ruthless, misogynist, assaulting, teenage boy. He didn't like nor understood women, let alone tried to rape Eve after a night of drinking. Situations like that are scary and do happen to women, 90% know their attacker. So to add that realism to the book is a wake-up call for the heroine. Another set of characters I do not enjoy was the King and all the soldiers that roamed the land. The king alone was a pain in my bum! He had such devilish ideas for the women and in how to rebuild society. People like that tend to be dripping with power and abuse it in horrid ways that makes your skin crawl!

Anyway, it was interesting to read about the scenery that was presented in the story. The way San Francisco looked to the Golden Gate Bridge, was eery in many ways. It was as though you could drop a pin and hear it a mile away from the absolute quiet that swept the city.

Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot. I'm very excited to read the sequel Once and see what happens to the lovely Eve and her beloved Caleb as they overcome their biggest hurdles yet.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer - Michelle Hodkin The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, is an ever twisting road of acid-tripping moments that keep you on the edge of your seat. From the insane hallucinations to the mystery surrounding all the deaths, it leaves a hangover for the reader, but in a good way (I know contradiction since hangovers a a beast! lol)

This is just one of those books that I do believe lived up to the hype. Not everyone would agree, but for myself it did. Not many books can impress nor leave me thinking the way this novel did. I can see this not only being a movie series, but more importantly would rather see this be made into a television series if the rights were ever bought for the book.

Anyway... Noah and Mara have this bizarre chemistry together. From the moment they lock eyes across the quad till the last chapter, you know they belong together; even if you think other wise throughout reading it. I don't know why but there seems to be a trend lately in the books I'm reading of the boys are all broody. And as it was said on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, "he's all Mr. Billowy-coat, king of pain," something of which Noah easily brings to the table when it comes to his past. The one thing Mara keeps on trying to figure out. Luckily but the end she understand a lot about him and why they are drawn together. It's also very dangerous for them to be together. Something of which I won't reveal, but it's an important aspect in the story.

Now for the insanity that swept the book: Jude. That character really has a pivotal role throughout Mara's journey. Everywhere she goes, when her mind starts to slip, he will almost likely be there. The strange part? He's dead! But at the end something is revealed, BIG spoiler that I won't spill, but it changes everything about Jude, in a creepy way. Something that is sure to be explained in the sequel.

Now there were passages in the book that caught my attention. Not sure if Hodkin was trying to make certain references, but I felt that on page 17, the black crows were foreshadowing the many deaths in Mara's future. This reference has been used in other pop culture situations (i.e. - One Tree Hill's pilot episode. Lucas tells Haley that it's a murder of crows.)

Overall, TUMD (aka - The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer), left me feeling baffled by the cliffhanger and desperate for the next installment of Mara's world. This isn't for everyone, but it's worth a go at least once, especially with Halloween just around the corner.

Sweet Evil

Sweet Evil - Wendy Higgins Sweet Evil is a truly twitter-patted roller coaster of a ride, not just with the way Anna feels, but the emotions she sees in humans around her everyday. The journey alone for her in for the thirst to have questions answered is intoxicating.

The level of disturbing graphic detail is maddening to the scene of the characters at their age was like witnessing those movie moments (i.e. - Saw). All you needed was jigsaw and it would have been a gruesome situation by the end of the story.

I commend Anna with her vibrant integrity to say "no" at certain points. Not many teens can get up that kind of courage, but I found such a reflection of myself at her age, that it made me root for her even more. She is also truly confused at best, but as she grows up, I feel she'll know more in what she needs to keep fighting the insanity of the dark side in her bloodline.

Kaidan at best, is her weakness and ultimately is her strength; a double edge sword. He is a contradiction as well. He plays on Anna's desires, tries to lure her in, yet at the same time tries to push her away. He does however warn her from the start, but that doesn't last long by the time they get towards the end of the novel. I've got high hopes for him the sequel and intrigued by how things will play out between him and the choices he makes in regards to the second to last chapter of the book.

Patti was as typical, if not a little overbearing, of a mother. I do like that they kept a few of the southern hospitality traditions, like offering a beverage/sweet tea to guests. She also was really relaxed about Anna's father coming in and teaching her the ways of his life: drugs, alcohol, and excessive use.

The culture is important to add to the story, it's a character within itself. So major points to Higgins for not missing that part.

I've enjoyed the chaos that comes from Anna meeting her father, Belial, and knowing the other Nep. children, and the training she endures to prove herself. Seeing her with Kopano was thrilling and a good change to the story. Knowing he was different than the other Nep's was nice. Let alone when she meets the others in New York. Now that was quit a scene being played out! The cruel jokes and forcing choices on the Nep's like it was everyday stuff, just seemed inhuman to none other than humans, but to them, was part of their lifestyle. It was most certainly one of those worlds I would never ever want to be apart of for those reasons and more. But it was fun to venture into for reading fun.

I love the scene when they are in New Mexico and exploring the little rest stop area. You got to see another side to Kaidan with Anna.

One fact about the book I loved is that Higgins was found on the site Figment (originally was from Inkpop, but they closed down and moved everything to Figment.) If you wish to see more about her Figment page, head on over here to see it! Anyway, on a side note this should encourage other reader/bloggers out there to maybe start writing and publishing their work over at the website. Maybe someday they can get the chance just like Wendy Higgins and Katie McGarry.

Anyway, back to the book.... I'm also dying to know how the story continues with Anna and Kaidan. It left it with such an interesting, yet simple way, that you can't help but crave more. Overall, I've really enjoyed it! Not many straight up paranormal romance books hook me, but Sweet Evil most certainly was worth every page.

A Million Suns: An Across the Universe Novel

A Million Suns - Beth Revis When the first novel left off, Amy and Elder were faced with questions, new unknown struggles, and uncertaintly to when Godspeed will reach its final destination.

A handful of questions from Across the Universe are answered, while new ones popped up for the readers. But for myself, the biggest questions was about the next set of challenges beyond Godspeed.

*SPOILERS!*


From Orion's cryptic messages to the truth about the stand still of the ship, it was any wonder if hope existed for everyone aboard. So much was at stake and obstacles kept getting thrown in Elders way. Riots, death, murder, mayhem... it was the hidden themes for the book. And it works.

I was thrilled by the progression of the story. By chapter 53, I felt twitter-patted and couldn't put the book down. The tory ended on a cliffhanger that left me dying to know the next part of the journey for the two main characters. Revis had not only sucked me into the world, she made me want to be apart of this adventure that exists only in the world of Doctor Who or some other Sci-Fi media.

And speaking of Sci-Fi, all those mysterious deaths with the black patches was truly genuis in a mad man way. Love will make people do some pretty crazy stuff! Especially more so when trapped on a space ship.

Anyway, now let me dive into the parts of the book that fascinated the reader in me...

There were some considerablly wonderful literature references placed through the novel. I was intrigued by how it was all used and the puzzle that was laid out before Amy and Elder.

"Abandon all hope." - Dante's Inferno
"Follow me down the rabbit hole." - Alice in Wonderland


These two quotes alone represent something bigger, almost foreshadowing the coming events to play out in the last half of the book. Dante's Inferno is a dark look into humanity and more. So seeing those exact words already tells of how disturbed everyone will become on the ship before the end. Then Alice in Wonderland points to how both characters may not know everything about the Godspeed and that they may in fact have to follow the trail to the truth or just like Alice herself, follow the white rabbit to wonderland and explore beyond her wildest imagination.

I also was thrilled about the mystery behind the motives of each antagonist; whether they were part of the big picture or not. From the start of the riots to the peculiar realization of their "library", no stone was unturned; except at the end (another cliffhanger!).

And lastly, each fantasy bubble that was popped to make room for reality, truly helped keep the novel at a great pace that surely surpassed the first novel.

Anyway... onto something fun. Now for those that are curious about maybe the year Amy was born in Across the Universe, I did some math from the dates that were in both books. Found out that she would have been born in 2005. This puts Amy in the beginning of her world in the year 2022 at the age of 17. And currently in 2012 she would only be seven years old! Amazing, huh?

I would most certainly recommend this book if you read the first in the series. It answers a lot of questions, but leaves you with more in place of the ones that are answered.

Juliet Immortal

Juliet Immortal - Stacey Jay Juliet Immortal, is a new take on a classic piece of literature there has ever been known for over 500 years. The forbiden love, the sacrifice, the death, everyone and their grandparents knows this tale. But this novel, it begs the question: what really happened to the two love birds?

Something Stacy Jay decidely answers for her readers...

Decite, lies, heartbreak, and immortality... the ingredients that make up the backbone of the story with its main characters, Juliet Capulet and Romeo Montegue. 700 years and the two hate each other; well Juliet has a loathsome anger towards Romeo, but who can blame her. She is still made about the way she died, for how Romeo betrayed her, and the twisted way he took their suppose "love story" to Shakespeare and changed the outcome of it's original ending. Changing the beloved tale and painting it to be this heart stopping tragedy of love, is one piece of the puzzle in Juliet's anger towards Romeo.

I adore the very jouney of this tale. The backstory alone is rivetimng and left me mezmerized by the details. It even had me believing a 'what if' scenario for the actual story that we all know and love.

Now for the chacracters...

Juliet Capulet, everyone knows her; everyone loves her. Yet does anyone truly know this protagonist? That's what the story does, makes the reader really question the original story. I do have to say though that I enjoyed how it played out for Juliet. It was a little insane at first, the way it flooded in the emotions of Romeo with Juliet, but it worked. It had me hooked on her side of the story.

Now as for Romeo Montague, a real antagonist for the story. You just wanted to dispise this fellow and his ways. But then as I read further, I started to realize Romeo's motives and his side of the story every so often. It really made me understand the level of anger and such from this young man.

Then we have Ariel Dragland, who is a timid girl. 75% of her life, she has lived feeling like a freak show due to her face having scar tissue from being burned as a little girl. Then one day everything changes Juliet's soul takes over Ariel's body and finds a way to mend fences with Ariel's friends and family. She also helps Ariel learn to stand up for herself and fall in love too.

Beyond the characters, the details of the landscape and the atmosphere that Stacey Jay had written was superb! I loved every ounce of it and made it feel more real. I could picture the old world of Italy and the delicacies of it's time.

But besides all the historial aspects of the story and the love struck teens, it's truly a great piece of literature that really puts a new spin on the classic tale. I recomment this book to anyone that wishes to read about the timeless piece but in a modern way that is sure to make the reader wonder, "Hmmm, did this happen? Could it happen? I wonder..."

Cold Kiss

Cold Kiss  - Amy Garvey Cold Kiss is a fascinating story, one that is filled with suspense, romance, even a little magic.

The readers are introduced to Wren, the protagonist of the story. She is 17, emotional, and has one big secret: she brought her boyfriend, Danny back from the dead. Her first real love. The only problem is he doesn't seem like he use to be when he was alive. Something is 'missing', besides his pulse, when she seems him.

It's bad enough the way everything fell apart for Wren, but she has no one to talk to when Danny is back. This forces her to lie to everyone, including her own mother and sister. Her best friends are barely talking to her because of Danny. But then someone new walks into town, Gabriel, the new boy. As time goes on he won't leave her alone and he feels compelled to know Wren. From there the two begin a bond, one that started on an off note.

Now for the thoughts on the book...

The story itself was entertaining. However it left me feeling as thought something was missing, not the characters, but the way the plot played out. I think it has to do with how many horror movies I've seen and such shows as Tales from the Crypt that got me to think Danny as going to go a little choo-choo towards Wren and everyone else by the end of the book. But that is just me in regards to the dead boyfriend coming back.

Once I got past that and let those expectations go, I enjoyed the book.

I simply reveled in the aspects between Wren and all of her family, including her Aunt Mari. The reasons for this stem from the secrets that surround Wren's family that her mother just won't talk about; yet it's vitally important that someone should. It all comes down to how everything was before Wren's father left and before her grandmother passed away. When she was a child, Wren was entertained by her aunt and grandmother always being over at her house, her mother laughing, her father smiling and love just filling the air. Overtime, that all changed and Wren is devastated by this during the book.

The character dynamics played out between Wren and Danny start off simple. But by the end, was tangled up and heartbreaking. You could tell she truly loved Danny with all her heart, that kind of young love at 16 that you never forget. But I was worried for Wren, because Danny had changed. He was actually starting to remember things and how he died, which led to his manic moods. The frantic parts were when Danny forget where he was and who was there. It made Wren start to cry sometimes or get scared a little. Something a person shouldn't have to feel about love and was tainting the memories of Danny when he was alive.

And then the other boy, Gabriel. Something about him and the way he interacted with Wren was captivating. I wanted more between them, but they're young and the story wasn't all about how it unfolded in that direction, maybe in the sequel it'll happen more. Anyway, you could tell Gabriel cared about Wren in the way he was being patient and protective. I think he wanted to wrap her up in bubble wrap and keep her away from the insanity, keep her safe from Danny. This storyline needs more development, but I loved how it was in the last few chapters, because that's what sold me on the believability in how Wren finally understood what love should be between two people.

Now the story felt a little flat here and there in the book, which is okay, I was still enjoying the journey. Not sure how to describe it, but it lacked a little fire or a little more action or depth, but first books do that sometimes. It's always the sequels that go deeper and explain more. I have so many questions and I need answers.

Overall, this was a good book and worth every second that I read it. The trek from the beginning to the end was delightful and simmering, but also was cold (no pun intended!)

It may not be for everyone, but if you appreciate a good love triangle story with a twist that has a magic undead element, this could be for you.

Destroy Me

Destroy Me - Tahereh Mafi I'm excited for this because it'll be from Warner's perspective. I'm curious as to how his mind ticks and the aftermath from book one. The best part is when this book finishes (it actually has 150 pages!) it'll go straight into "Unravel Me", which comes out in February. So thank you Tahereh and your publishing team for this awesome gift to the readers! Cannot wait to read this in October!

Catching Fire (The Second Book of The Hunger Games)

Catching Fire  - Suzanne  Collins Catching Fire begins with a soft start. It didn't really give that punch and run with it feeling like the Hunger Games had which is okay because sometimes to get to the interesting part of a story you have first to trek through the mud.

(I would reveal some of the big moments, but for those that haven't read the sequel, I can't say much from here on out. I don't like spoiling good moments from books, especially the important ones.)

It was interesting to see such a new dynamic placed out for Katniss with President Snow. That was the dark horse in the story. You could feel it everywhere, creeping around ever corner. His words had weight and it was keeping Katniss flat on her back in fear.

When Peeta and Katniss reached the capitol, the idea of seeing Mockingjays everywhere being incorporated into the fashion of the citizens really took hold of a bigger message. It was quietly foreshadowing the last few chapters of the book. This is important, so if you aren't read it yet, keep your eyes out for this throughout the novel.

Now for what happens in the 75th Hunger Games, I can say the arena in this book is quite interesting. The complex layout and ingenuity of it was genius on Collins part. I love the science aspect behind the construction the most. Definitely one of the cooler parts of the book and one I'm dying to see constructed for the movie! I can't say what it is and such and hoping they don't reveal anything in teasers or trailers for the movie later this year, but it's one to keep people on the edge of their seat.

It was fun to read more humor being laid out in the book. I actually laughed out loud for some of it, where as with the Hunger Games, not so much. I can tell Collins was trying to balance out and diffuse any tension for the readers. I won't lie, it was dark and grim at certain parts of the book. It made the first book look like a walk in the park. All I have is one word: destruction. It was everywhere and every district was dealing with it

Oh and I love how BOLD Peeta was in this novel. So good and eloquent too. He most certainly was sharp at pulling the rug out from everyone. Laying down some serious ground work for more & weaving a web of Katniss and Peeta's story of "love"… or so as they need to keep doing to prove to every district and the capitol.

I do have to say, the way Katniss keeps describing her kisses with Peeta, it felt like she was falling in love with him or at least falling into lust from her intense physical feeling of burning passion she would get. At one point she didn't want to stop and couldn't get enough, kind of like two teenagers in love with the hand all over themselves groping.

As for Gale and Katniss, it became increasingly clear of how confused Katniss was starting to feel for him and Peeta. She is still confused by the end of the book, so her decision will be finally made in Mockingjay. I'm very curious to see how that plays out.

Overall, I've enjoyed the book. It is something worth reading if 1) you may not have enjoyed the first book or 2) need a new series to pick up and read. I'd highly recommend the first two books to read. And I normally don't endorse such a things!

Welcome, Caller, This Is Chloe

Welcome, Caller, This Is Chloe - Shelley Coriell So far this book has the perfect blend of contemporary fiction and that edge of a CW show from the late '90s (i.e. - see the television show Popular for examples). Chloe is such a lively character living in southern Los Angeles. She has the perfect life: popular, living in a big house, PhD parents (i.e. - surgeon mother & college professor father), 5 older brothers off to med school or doctors, and A+ junior year student.

Anyway, the only problem is: after winter break things unravel. Her best friends alienate her, every student at school is whispering behind her back, and suddenly her favorite guidance consular has retired. Chloe's world has officially gone upside down!

I can say that I adore Chloe, can't relate to her too much since she is an extrovert and I'm kind of more introverted. Besides that, I do love this character. At first in the beginning she was a little too much, slightly irritating. But by the middle of the novel, she was changing and growing as a person. This Chloe I loved! Mostly because she was always talking and never really listening to people. She would talk over others, interrupt and just flat out forget that the conversation wasn't about her. By the end, Chloe learned to bite her tongue, let others just talk and get what they needed off their chest, and really not only hear what friends and family had to say, but listen as well. It's like I'm always saying, "You only hear what I'm saying, but you are not listening to what I'm saying."

A few key quirks that I enjoyed about Chloe include her hobby of buying vintage shoes (circa 1880-1980), her love of all things salsa bars, and the ability she has as being able to cheer people up with making them laugh. She is also the only person in her family, besides her Grandmother, who doesn't aspire to do anything medical. This is due to Chloe's rapid fear of blood and how the sight of it makes her faint.

It was very interesting to see the interactions she had with Clementine, Duncan, and her Grandmother.

Clementine is this nose pierced, black hair girl, who is the general manager of the radio program 88.8 The Edge (aka - portable five) at the high school. Her dream is to one day to own a radio station. With Chloe around, she tends to get snippy, dragon fire breathing, and apathetic towards her. Over time, Clementine eases up on Chloe and they start to bond.

Duncan is this 17 year old boy with dark hair and silvery eyes, who is always serious, fixes everything that breaks at the radio station, and is always wearing knitted scarves with a little crooked red heart at the end of each one. Much to Chloe surprises, Duncan is in her Economics class everyday, but Duncan isn't always there everyday. He works two jobs and because of this he doesn't get much sleep on school nights. As time goes on, Chloe starts becoming interested in Duncan and more. Their interactions together was engrossing. He was a silent kind of guy and rarely said more then two words to Chloe, while she would talk up a storm and Duncan would just listen. Ironically opposites do attract in this story.

Then there is her 82 year old grandmother, who nicknamed Chloe "Poppy", for her poppy colored hair. It's stuck with her since she was born. Her grandmother has an obsession with Brad Pitt, can't bare to live anywhere but her Tuna Can (aka-trailer home), and has Parkinson's. The latter causes Chloe's mother and grandmother, since winter break, to go all "World War III", as she put it.

The backdrop for the story was a great choice, not only for the age the main character is but just the vibe and scenery southern Los Angeles brings to a story. It fit well and flowed with how everything was with the story. I do like the descriptions given about Portable Five. The little portable trailer, the smells, sounds, even the atmosphere was fitting for the band of misfits that hung out at the radio station.

Overall I enjoyed the journey I took with Chloe. From her high points to the lower side of the tipping scale for her social life. It was an all out fun, witty, and delightful read. It's a perfect fit for teenage girls to read or anyone who likes a good contemporary novel with a female lead. Definitely worth a read once.

Tempest (Tempest #1)

Tempest (Tempest #1) - Julie Cross Julie Cross has taken the idea of time travel to another level in fiction. Showing how one minute Jackson Meyer is living everyday life, the next he is thrown back two years into the past like a leaf being lifted on a breeze in fall.

So the story starts out with Jackson doing theories about his abilities with his research side-kick named Adam. They both have so many and Adam is kind of a genius kid in the book, so he is all about the logical mathematics in time-travel. Then again most scientists are logical. Anyway, after the first few chapters you learn Jackson is in college, 19 years old, is a english major doubling in french poetry, all the while living in manhattan and involved with his girlfriend Holly.

Head on over here to my blog for the full review, mostly because I've got minor spoilers and don't want to spoil it on Goodreads!

Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone

Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone - Kat Rosenfield Read an excerpt of the story (just the first three chapters) and it was pretty good. Won't fully review the book till I've read it from cover to cover!

Switched (Trylle Trilogy)

Switched  - Amanda Hocking Amanda Hocking has taken an un tapped world of fantasy and made it into reality with her novel, Switched. Here you've entered a world full of Trylle or as it's coined in the world by most: trolls.

From the moment you meet the protagonist named Wendy Everly, you know her life isn't normal. Her mother tried to kill her before the age of 10 and she ends up moving around to almost 10 different schools by the time she is 15. Her brother Matt and aunt Maggie are what keep her grounded because they love her unconditionally, no matter the mood Wendy is in. Although, throughout the book she was truly just a child in the way she acted which is explained as a trait in those of the Trylle; having a short temper. I did find it annoying at times, but luckily some of the other Trylle were worst in character than Wendy, so she was a sign of relief throughout the novel. I do however love how passionate she is about her family and the bond that was created.

Along the way you meet Finn, mysterious and also comes off at first as arrogant. But once you get to know him, you realize his secret and his ways for this attitude. Behind those brown earthy-tone eyes, lies a someone who has been through a lot and mastered the importance of a strong-will. I admired him for that but at times I kind of wanted to shake the poor boy because he was so convinced he wouldn't let his emotions get in the way of his job. Something that can be hard no just in a fictional world, but in the real world too.

Beyond that, the bond of Wendy and Finn is very much alive in this book. I love how the tension is there, so enriched with fire that keeps on burning through the novel. The love/hate dynamic is engaging for a reader and kept me intrigued. The dialogue interactions between the two was alive and kicking, sometimes kicking: "A foolish man thinks he knows everything. A wise man knows he doesn't," Finn replied absently, still looking down at the book. "That's such a fortune-cookie answer," I said with a laugh, and even he smirked at me. (Hocking, 184)

Then the callus interaction of Kim and Elora with Wendy was tricky. I noticed how cold both were. Kim was frigid and dark, while Elora was intimidating and stoic with the power she had. But the way Elora was described physically in the book made me picture the actress from Revenge, Madeleine Stowe who plays Victoria Grayson, the dark haired beauty of a mother was a cold-hearted way of dealing with people. She is powerful and ruthless, just like Elora. (If there was a movie for this book, I hope someone sends her agent a script to play Elora, because she is perfect!)

This novel has kept me engaged. It's a rare thing and amazing at the same time when this happens and I highly praise books that can do this easily. The world of the Trylle has been very fascinating. From the way the scenery is described to the characters that live in this community, it's no secret that it's filled with magic and adventure.

The real intensity comes in around Chapter 22, when the plot takes on a big twist that later will help lead into an ending that is hard to forget, let alone into the sequel of the trilogy. Hands down this book has been excited, interesting, even fun to read. It took me longer because for two weeks straight I was sick and had a cough that left be unable to read (I once coughed for an hour straight!)

Anyway, all in all, I highly recommend this book to anyone that loves stories about mythological creatures in a new twist and light. The way that Amanda Hocking used trolls and took it to a place that hasn't been tapped into yet for young adult literature is fantastic and really well thought out. I'm excited to read the next installment and the final book in the trilogy as well!

Incarnate

Incarnate  - Jodi Meadows The idea about reincarnation is beyond awesome and adding such things as dragons and other creatures drew me in easily; let alone that cover *sigh!* Oh graphic designer of HarperCollins, you have gone above and beyond with it! Kudos to whoever you are haha. Anyway, this book was interesting. It left me uninterested at some points and other times excited to keep reading. Less the latter for a good chunk of the book sadly. This was one of those highly anticipated reads I had on my list for 2012. One of 5 books I had expectations for this year. I didn't really start to connect with this book till about Chapter 15, which for myself alone, is a bad sign. I felt like the protagonist was just there, not there "there" in the world (I know tongue twister). She felt more as a background voice to the story than a leading lady is suppose to for a novel. But don't think I hate the character, I loved Ana, just that she didn't find her voice in the world till the end of the book, so that was a relief.

So by Chapter 26, that's when I felt the book finally took a hold of me! Ahhh gotta love surprises that sneak up on you. I love how things progressed by this point. It felt more fluid with the writing, the emotions of the characters, and the plot overall. It was too drawn out early on with the details of how it arrived here, which is okay because there are some stories I've had to read for class in college that were super drawn out (thankfully I haven't seen anything like that in YA literature yet lol). But I felt some thing should of just been wrapped up early on and resolved or something to that extent. Felt like I was going in circles, which isn't enjoyable at times.

As I reached the last three chapters of the book, I was blown away! This is the most important part, because so much is finally answered, well not every big secret, but the ones that needed to fill in blanks about Ana, about Janan, and Menehem. I'm glad this was left to the end of the book, because it wouldn't have worked as well if it was in the middle. I'm not a fan when authors do that because it takes away the suspense and that curiosity of a good unraveling of a mystery.

Now about the characters….

I was drawn in by Sam than anything else. He is compelling and made me want to know him increasingly more than the main character, which I also find as a bad sign too. I wish this wasn't the case.

Anyway, the connection between Sam and Ana seemed to lack in certain ways the first 15 chapters in. I just felt like that spark that unites two people together, whether forbidden or not, in literature is something that lingers in the air to let you know it's fueled with passion. Not so much for these two. I could understand with the position Sam is in, but the way they both handled it really didn't sit well with me. I just feel like with how "old" Sam is, wouldn't he at least have one really good romantic bone in his body at this point? That's all I'm asking and that's all I'm lacking.

Also it was are tug and pull on the romance too. Do they kiss, do they not kiss? This was silly. I can understand since Ana had no experience whatsoever with the opposite sex in that manner, but jeez! Sam was such a tease to her. Yet in light of the situation they were both in, I could also understand. I just hope in the sequel this doesn't happen too much.

I do have to say that I enjoyed the creatures of this world, A LOT! They were some of my favorite parts, especially the Dragons. Hands down, really cool in how the author put her own unique spin on them (i.e. they spew acid, which kills people and eats through everything!)

Now for the sylph, good character to add, but I felt they were too flat. Either they should have been way more evil or some twist should of happened to make it a more rounded creature. I wanted to go further into such a malevolent situations when Ana came across them. I actually craved for something more intense. But couldn't find it with these. That was my only real let down of the book. It needs more incriminating versions in the sequel.

Overall, I've enjoyed this book. It may not be entirely for me, but I do feel others may enjoy it more. I will however read the sequel, because I've got this BIG feeling that it'll go deeper, give us more action, and a more passionate romantic scenes that the characters deserve. I also sense maybe something way more cool brewing. I can't wait to see what Jodi Meadow brings to the table and what's in store for Ana and her friends.

Everneath

Everneath - Brodi Ashton If you suffered the pain that made you feel like you wanted to die, what would you do? Would you risk everything and let it be drained away? Would you hide for a 100 years and forget it? or would you fight like hell to feel human again? Nikki Beckett tries to figure out if any of this is her answer beyond the, Everneath.

Brodi Ashton had written for her leading lady to live and breathe on those very pages in such a way that I too could feel what Nikki was going through from beginning to end. No other such character in a long time has shaken me literally in reaction to emotions as this character has done.

Beck, a nickname her friends have given her, is such a fighter, but also scared too. A conflict most heroes/heroines go through. Being that it is also based on greek mythology retelling this story, you can now maybe guess there is going to be some true fights of fancy courage, but of the good kind.

Oh there were moments when I actually spoke out loud saying things I would post here, but one in particular is such a huge spoiler and it's just one thing haha… but this book is so amazing I can't spill it! Damned if i do, damned if I don't…

Anyway… Jack Caputo… I'll be honest, I had the hardest time trying to figure out to properly pronounce his name haha. I think I came up with three different versions by the end of the novel. But luckily he had an easy first name, so *phew!*. But I defiantly LOVE Jack! I haven't seen a male character so strong in his conviction about what he felt and so deeply intense about everything. But he also had a soft and humorous side too which made him well rounded and developed in layers. And boy did he have some layers! He is what Shriek calls an "onion" lol but besides that, Jack in the beginning is very different by the time you get towards the middle of the book, because of Nikki.

And speaking of which, backstories upon backstories is filled through out the entire book, so don't worry if you are confused up front because everything gets explained, even moments that go further back to understanding our characters, Nikki and Jack. Things that make sense once you read it. It gives insight into how they are as people in this world.

Oh and the world they live in! That Cole… he is one_____ yeah fill in the blank, because he is such a pain! I'll say this though, if you haven't read the book yet, you'll want to smack Cole throughout the book, maybe even dropkick him, do a little chuck norris roundhouse kick… just saying.

But overall, I was pulled in by the love story. One that was so intoxicatingly real in some ways that you couldn't help but fall in love yourself with each moment. There was something hollowing and heartbreaking at the same time it was beauty too. A constant influx of confusion in the beginning, like Nikki… then it because apparent in how strongly it feels, the emotions of love. Something so tender that you want to hug it and never let it go; protect it from the Everneath too.

Now the hard part happens: waiting. Waiting for the sequel. Waiting to know what happens to Nikki. Waiting to know the answers to such questions that make me feel like it's real situations with real possibilities. I do however have seen Ashton's post updated and last year she posted about bacon being in the sequel… ahhh yes, the ever yummy breakfast food of most Americans… or at least those of young teenage boys lol *side-note: why do teenage boys eat so much bacon!?*

In the end, this book should get 10 stars/hearts/awards, whatever would deem fitting for this book, because not only was is beyond breath-taking in so many ways, it'll be forever in my heart as a book that truly touched me. Books don't do that often, it takes a lot to move me in literature. So when it happens, I know I've struck gold with the story, the characters, and their world that it's being told from.

(Oh side bar: the retelling greek mythology story is based on Hades/Persephone. If you haven't a clue, a good idea is to read a little about it below! Enjoy!)