Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Sunday Salon- January 31, 2016

The Sunday Salon

I finished and reviewed the following book last week:

Up next is Dreamology by Lucy Keating and then it will be The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White.

Book Review- Outside In

I just finished reading Outside In (Inside Out #2) by Maria V. Snyder.

From Goodreads:

Me? A Leader? Okay, I did prove that there's more to Inside than we knew. That a whole world exists beyond this cube we live in. And finding that led to a major rebellion - between worker scrubs like me and the snobby uppers who rule our world. Make that ruled. Because of me, we're free. I thought that meant I was off the hook, and could go off on my own again - while still touching base with Riley, of course. He's the one upper I think I can trust. But then we learned that there's outside and then there is Outside. And something from Outside wants In.

Well, we get to find out a little bit more about the Outside as well as the Outsiders in this sequel.  And it was definitely interesting.

The characters got a little confusing for me.  There were so many secondary ones that sometimes they got mixed up.  But once again I loved the main ones, especially Trella and Riley.  And of course Sheepy :)

There was lots of action in this book between the rebuilding of their society and dealing with the Outsiders.  I never really knew who to trust.  Even at the end, I didn't really trust anyone.

The book left off quite nicely.  It wrapped up enough to end the series but I think it could have gone on longer too if the author had wanted.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I traded this book with a friend.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

The Sunday Salon- January 24, 2016

The Sunday Salon

I finished and reviewed the following books last week:

I am currently reading Outside In (Inside Out #2) by Maria V. Snyder and up next is The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Book Review- Inside Out

I finished reading Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder last night.

From Goodreads:

Keep Your Head Down.
Don't Get Noticed.
Or Else.

I'm Trella. I'm a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I've got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own…until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution.

The idea of this world Inside a building...with uppers and lowers was interesting.  I liked reading about the differences between the worlds and trying to figure out just how it happened. 

I liked Trella.  She was strong but still had just this little hint of vulnerability to her.  And I liked how Riley brought that out in her.  I did tend to get lost in the details and descriptions of the inside world with the Gaps and different levels and pipes and stuff.  And the ending seemed a little too quick and easy for me to really accept.  But all the of twists and turns kept me hanging on.

Once of the twists I saw coming.  But the other, about the Outside---not what I thought it was going to be at all.  I really want to know about how that became the outside.  I'm hoping we get more insight about how this came to be in the next book.  And I'm hoping we get more of Riley and Trella together.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher for a review. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Book Review- Light

Last night I finished reading Light (Gone #6) by Michael Grant.

From Goodreads:

It's been over a year since all the adults disappeared. Gone.

In the time since every person over the age of fourteen disappeared from the town of Perdido Beach, California, countless battles have been fought: battles against hunger and lies and plague, and epic battles of good against evil. Light, Michael Grant's sixth and final book in the New York Times bestselling Gone series creates a masterful, arresting conclusion to life in the FAYZ.

And now, the gaiaphage has been reborn as Diana's malicious mutant daughter, Gaia. Gaia is endlessly hungry for destruction. She yearns to conquer her nemesis, Little Pete, and then bend the entire world to her warped will. As long-standing enemies become allies, secrets are revealed and unexpected sacrifices are made. Will their attempts to save themselves and one another matter in the end, or will the kids of Perdido Beach perish in this final power struggle?

I have to say, I'm glad the series is over.  It was getting a little stale to me.  Although the grossness factor was definitely back in this one.

Definitely a lot of senseless violence thanks to Gaia.  But to me it seemed like she killed a lot more kids than she did (we're given numbers that make it out towards the end).  The final "battle" was interesting.  And satisfying in a way.  Redemption and all that.  

I liked reading about the aftermath although one thing bugged me--it said that Sam's mom emancipate him.  I didn't really get why.  I mean, we get more details about him and Caine from her, but I don't see why she would leave him.

I didn't like the whole view of what the outside world thought of the kids of the inside of FAYZ.  I'm pretty sure people would rally around those kids and try to understand what they went through.  

Overall, it was an interesting series but it went on too long for me.  I think I could have been done after 3 books.

I gave this book a rating o 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I received this book from a friend.

Monday, January 18, 2016

In My Mailbox- January 18, 2016

In My Mailbox: Here's what I got in my mailbox last week: 

The Peach Keeper- Sarah Addison Allen--PaperbackSwap

Reign of Shadows- Sophie Jordan--Review for an Around the World ARC Tour

The Kill Order (The Maze Runne #0.5)- James Dashner--PaperbackSwap

Burn (Four Sisters #2)- Elissa Sussman--received from friend

What You Always Wanted (If Only #8)- Kristin Rae--received from friend

Ignite Me (Shatter Me #3)-Tahereh Mafi--received from friend

Light (Gone #6)- Michael Grant--received from friend

The Sunday Salon- January 17, 2016

The Sunday Salon

I finished and reviewed the following books in the past 2 weeks:

I am currently reading Light (Gone #6) by Michael Grant and up next is Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder (if I don't get a tour book).

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Book Review- Relativity

I finished reading Relativity by Cristin Bishara last night for an Around the World ARC Tour.

From Goodreads:

There are so many moments Ruby Wright wishes she could change. The moment her dad uprooted her from California to live in backwoods Ohio with their new stepfamily. The moment she moved away without telling her best friend George she loved him. The moment a car accident ended her mother's life.

But no one can rewrite time. At least, that's what physics-obsessed Ruby believes.

Then she stumbles upon a lightning-powered tree—a doorway to a series of parallel universes. How many possible worlds will Ruby have to explore to find the one with the perfect combination of people, relationships, and experiences? And is she willing to risk everything she has to get back what she has lost?

With a deft blend of science and heart, Cristin Bishara's thought-provoking debut novel explored the laws of time and space...and the even more mysterious nature of love and loss.

The premise of this story was definitely interesting.  Or at least the part about being able to go into a tree, turning a wheel, and coming out in a parallel universe.  I loved reading about the differences in each universe (well, most of them--the native american one was weird).  I liked reading how  just one little difference could change so much.

But the whole scientific part of the story just lost me.  String theory and all that just doesn't really interest me that much.  As for Ruby, I liked her and didn't like her.  I liked that she was different, mostly.  But once again, some of the science parts bored me.

I felt like the book kind of wrapped up too quickly.  It was pretty short so I think that more could have been added towards the end.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I was given this book for free for an honest review as part of the Around the World Tours.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Book Review- Reign of Shadows

I finished reading Reign of Shadows by Sophie Jordan on Thursday for an Around the World ARC Tour.

From Goodreads:

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

With lush writing and a star–crossed romance, Reign of Shadows is Sophie Jordan at her best.

This story has the makings of a great fairy tale.  And it had me hooked.  There was romance, and evil king, crazy characters (night dwellers), and even a tower!

I really liked Luna.  She has a unique characteristic that I didn't see coming at first.  And it made her seem so strong.  I feel like her birth has something to do with the eclipse and why they're in the dark, but I can't put my finger on it yet.  And I liked Fowler too--classic tough guy turned softie.  

There was lots of actions in this one.  And just enough romance.  I wanted to keep reading to find out what was going to happen.  It ends on a cliff hanger.  And quite a weird one, at that.  It'll be interesting to see where the next book goes!

I gave this book a rating of 4/5.

Reign of Shadows will be released on February 9, 2016.

*FTC Disclosure: I was given this book for free for an honest review as part of the Around the World Tours.

Book Review- Fear

I finished Fear (Gone # 5) by Michael Grant last week.

From Goodreads:

It's been one year since all the adults disappeared. Gone.

Despite the hunger and the lies, even despite the plague, the kids of Perdido Beach are determined to survive. Creeping into the tenuous new world they've built, though, is perhaps the worst incarnation yet of the enemy known as the Darkness: fear.

Within the FAYZ, life breaks down while the Darkness takes over, literally—turning the dome-world of the FAYZ entirely black. In darkness, the worst fears of all emerge, and the cruelest of intentions are carried out. But even in their darkest moments, the inhabitants of the FAYZ maintain a will to survive and a desire to take care of the others in their ravaged band that endures, no matter what the cost.

Fear, Michael Grant's fifth book in the bestselling dystopian Gone series, will thrill readers . . . even as it terrifies them.

So thankfully we get more of an idea of what's going on with the FAYZ.  We discover that the rest of the world still is there.  I was glad to finally understand a little more.

This installment wasn't as gross or disturbing.  I mean, it was still crazy to think about, especially with the dome turning black.  But I didn't find myself grossed out like I had been.

 Diana and the baby was interesting.  As was the turn Petey's character took.  Really kinda weird.  I'm still trying to figure out that one.

I'm glad the next book is the last one in the series.  I'm ready for it to wrap up.  And I'm interested to see just how Michael Grant goes about that.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I traded this book with a friend.

Monday, January 4, 2016

In My Mailbox- January 4, 2016

In My Mailbox: Here's what I got in my mailbox during the last 5 weeks (still falling behind!):

The Unwanteds- Lisa McMann--PaperbackSwap

Something Deadly This Way Comes (Madison Avery #3)- Kim Harrison--traded with a friend

The Bite Before Christmas (Argeneau #15.5 Night Huntress #6.5)- Lynsay Sands, Jeaniene Frost--PaperbackSwap

The Word Game- Steena Holmes--from publisher for review

Sunday, January 3, 2016

The Sunday Salon- January 3, 2015

The Sunday Salon

Yeah, so apparently I haven't done one of these in almost 4 months..oops!

I finished and reviewed the following books in the past 17 weeks:
Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

The Legacy of Us by Kristin Contino

House Trained by Jackie Bouchard

Shallow Graves by Kali Wallace 

Hotel Ruby by Suzanne Young

The Queen (The Selection Stories #0.4) by Kiera Cass  

The Favorite (The Selection #2.6) by Kiera Cass

The Heir (The Selection #4) by Kiera Cass

In Real Life by Jessica Love

Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

Gone by Michael Grant

The Shadow Queen by C. J.  Redwine

Hunger (Gone #2) by Michael Grant

Lies (Gone #3) by Michael Grant 

Plague (Gone #4) by Michael Grant

I am currently reading Fear (Gone #5) by Michael Grant and up next will either be a tour book or Light (Gone #6).

Book Review- Plague

I just finished reading Plague (Gone #4) by Michael Grant.

From Goodreads:

It's been eight months since all the adults disappeared. GONE.

They've survived hunger. They've survived lies. But the stakes keep rising, and the dystopian horror keeps building. Yet despite the simmering unrest left behind by so many battles, power struggles, and angry divides, there is a momentary calm in Perdido Beach.

But enemies in the FAYZ don't just fade away, and in the quiet, deadly things are stirring, mutating, and finding their way free. The Darkness has found its way into the mind of its Nemesis at last and is controlling it through a haze of delirium and confusion. A highly contagious, fatal illness spreads at an alarming rate. Sinister, predatory insects terrorize Perdido Beach. And Sam, Astrid, Diana, and Caine are plagued by a growing doubt that they'll escape - or even survive - life in the FAYZ. With so much turmoil surrounding them, what desperate choices will they make when it comes to saving themselves and those they love?

Plague, Michael Grant's fourth book in the bestselling Gone series, will satisfy dystopian fans of all ages.

Ok so this one was really gross.  The wording of the illness that spreads.  And then the giant bugs growing inside people.  I found my stomach often churning and would have to stop reading for a minute or so.  So I didn't enjoy this one as much.  It was too intense--too scary (I've never been a fan of horror unless you count R.L. Stine as a kid).

The ending of this one shows that what I was thinking might happen was wrong.  And its foreshadowing that I might have been very wrong.  I have two more books left to read in this series, but really, I'm about done with it.  I'm kinda ready for it to be over.  

And with all that said, I still can't put the books down.

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I traded this book with a friend.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Book Review-- Lies

I just finished reading Lies (Gone #3) by Michael Grant.

From Goodreads:

It's been seven months since all the adults disappeared. Gone.

It happens in one night. A girl who died now walks among the living; Zil and the Human Crew set fire to Perdido Beach; and amid the flames and smoke, Sam sees the figure of the boy he fears the most: Drake. But Drake is dead. Sam and Caine defeated him along with the Darkness—or so they thought.

As Perdido Beach burns, battles rage: Astrid against the Town Council; the Human Crew versus the mutants; and Sam against Drake, who is back from the dead and ready to finish where he and Sam left off. And all the while deadly rumors are raging like the fire itself, spread by the prophetess Orsay and her companion, Nerezza. They say that death is a way to escape the FAYZ. Conditions are worse than ever and kids are desperate to get out. But are they desperate enough to believe that death will set them free?

Still so, so weird.  And creepy.  But I was hoping I'd understand it a little more by now.  Instead I find myself more confused.  The world that Michael Grant has created just gets more and more disturbing. What really happens when you poof out?  I thought I knew until the end when we get a glimpse of what might be.

The characters kind of annoyed me this time around.  I have to keep reminding myself that they're just kids and acting like kids.  And the religion part of this one I could have done without.  

But I'm still hanging out and dying to know what's going to come of all of it!

I gave this book a rating of 3/5.

*FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher for a review. 

2015 Year in Review-- Stats and Favorite Books

I read 57 books, 6 less than last year.  I read 18,483 pages.

I didn't read any 5 rating books.  But I read 4 4.5 rating books.

Jesse's Girl by Miranda Kenneally

The Lies About Truth by Courtney C. Stevens

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

The Heir (The Selection #4) by Kiera Cass