Friday, March 29, 2013

My Ex from Hell

My Ex from Hell
by Tellulah Darling

Sophie Bloom only remembers living with her adoptive mom followed by being sent to boarding school and meeting her two best friends.

Except for being the obvious bully target of the popular group (probably because of her snarky attitude and smart mouth), her life is actually pretty good.

She's even got a plan of revenge against her worst tormentor that should be foolproof... until she meets HIM.

Sophie goes from not being interested in anyone to being completely addicted to Kai. 

And then they kiss.  

And then Sophie's world is forever changed.

It turns out that she's no regular girl.  She's the human reincarnation of the murdered Persephone.  Kai is the son of Hades and her sometime lover.  One of her besties is Prometheus.  She's suddenly got a few god-like powers.  And, oh yeah! both Hades and Zeus want her, if only to kill her and stop her from stopping their plans.

What's an ex-goddess to do?

Final thoughts: Fairly decent read, though there were a few times I had to go back and re-read because things went so fast they became unclear.  Action moments were extremely detailed and a little long, while a few other moments could have been detailed a bit more.  Nice enough that I'll happily read the sequel (of yet another trilogy).

Rating: 4/5

Monday, March 25, 2013


by Amalie Howard

After Victoria's parents died in a car wreck, she went to live with her "aunt" Holly.  Life has been pretty normal for her since then, if you count being an outcast as "normal".

On her 17th birthday, everything changes.

When Victoria's blood changes from bright red to nearly black, the spell that has been in her family for generations finally comes to her.  She inherits the curse that gives her great power and slowly destroys her at the same time.

When she moves to a new town to get away from the rumors about her, she meets Christian Devereaux, a boy who is more than he appears.

Why she's drawn to him, she doesn't know.  What he knows about her could be her end.

Final thoughts:  Ugh! Awful!  It's so blatantly a Twilight rip-off with the added issue of witches, fairies, etc... And yet, Howard seems to be constantly screaming "THIS ISN'T TWILIGHT!" Victoria has a nickname (Tori). She's in love with a vampire. They are deeply in love, but can't be together because it's too dangerous for them. There's a second guy who seems to believe that Tori is meant to be his and his alone.  He and Christian hate each other on sight and it only gets more powerful between them.  There's Angie who can see what people are and knows it will affect the future if they know what she knows.  There are fairies who "sparkle", and it's like an in-joke with a whole, "See! It's NOT Twilight!" vibe.  The writing is horrendous and choppy.  The dialogue is forced.  None of the relationships are believable.  Too many things happen on the fly like, hey! she's a witch!  Hey! There's a prophecy about her that no one mentioned before!  Let's have him go to Paris... oops! No. He needs to be back in the states.  But now they both need to go to Paris.  No.  They need to be back in the states.  I love you and want to be with you forever! We can make this work!  Nope!  Too dangerous.  We'll never it make it work.  We really should be together! We can make this work; I know we can!  No.  We can't do it.  
It's a freakin' yo-yo of bad ideas and poor follow-through.  

Rating: 1/5

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Frost Burned

Frost Burned
by Patricia Briggs

The honeymoon is over and Mercy Thompson is now Mercy Hauptman, mate of the Alpha.  He's one of the strongest Alphas out there and she now shares his power.

She also shares his daughter as she is now her stepmother, which means she shares those duties as well, including protecting her from all harm.

And harm has come their way.

In fact, all but one of the members of the Pack has been captured, including Mercy's new husband, and all signs point to the abductors coming after her and her new stepdaughter.

In addition, she finds out that all of their phones, and the phones of those who are considered allies, have been tapped, so calling for help is out.

Now Mercy must find a way to save her new family, all of them, whether they like her or not.

Final thoughts:  Much better than the last one, though still with some flaws.  Great to see Mercy at her best.  While I loved seeing a few things from Adam's point of view, it felt like Briggs was desperate to convey some story features and couldn't figure out how to do it with Mercy, so she's added him to the story, but only where absolutely necessary.  Essentially, his chapters felt out of place and forced.  Otherwise, still pretty darn good.

Rating: 4/5

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Oh. My. Gods.

Oh. My. Gods.
by Tera Lynn Childs

For years, it's been just Phoebe and her mother.  After the freak accident that killed her father when she was just a child, Phoebe's adjusted to life without him.  In fact, she's on track to having the best senior year ever!

USC has already expressed interest in giving her a scholarship the following year.  Her best friends are with her and have gotten her over her rotten ex.  And her final race is her best yet.

Things are looking magical.

Until her mother comes back from a trip to Greece with a new fiancé and an order to move.

Phoebe's on her way to Greece to live at her new stepdad's house, whether she wants to go or not.

It's bad enough that she's got to move to the other side of the planet, away from her friends and extended family.  It's worse that she's got to take courses so different from what she knows that a B-average will be difficult to maintain.  It's still worse that she's now related by marriage to one of the meanest girls ever born.

But the worst part of all is that her new school is filled with the descendents of Greek gods.  Every single student, including her evil stepsister, has a god for an ancestor... except her.

Thank goodness Phoebe can run because she'll need that talent more than ever.

Final thoughts: Fun cotton candy book.  There's nothing here that's a brain drain.  Phoebe's fun and the world that Childs has created is realistic enough.  There are a few awkward moments and a few things that didn't work perfectly, but it was definitely a decent read.  Sadly for me, I had heard about this book because I read the preview for the sequel, which gave away one of the twists from this book, so I spent much of the book looking for the twist to occur; but that was not the book's failing and it's still worth the read.

Rating: 4/5

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Going Vintage

Going Vintage
by Lindsey Leavitt

Even though Mallory just moved to town about two years ago, she's already set in her high school ranking.  She's the girlfriend of one of the hottest guys in school, so she's got an identity and hundreds of "friends" on her Friendspace account (think MySpace merged with Facebook).

After an intense make-out session at her BF's house, she goes onto his computer to write his philosophy paper, only to find his Friendspace account open and a virtual "wife" who is a complete stranger to Mallory.

Is it cheating if it's only online?

Hell YES!

While Mallory is recovering from the ultimate betrayal, she comes across a list her grandma made in 1962.

        Junior Year: Back to School Resolution.
             1. Run for Pep Squad secretary
             2. Host a fancy dinner party/soiree
             3. Sew a dress for homecoming
             4. Find a steady
             5. Do something dangerous

This list is simple.  This list is powerful.  This list is exactly what Mallory needs.

In order to make this list authentic, Mallory immerses herself in a tech-free environment.  No more cell phone. No more computer. No more digital anything.  And definitely no more Friendspace.

Now she has just a couple of weeks to finish the entire list, while dealing with the real world ramifications of an online smear campaign.

Final thoughts:  This is a cotton candy book.  It's light and fun, but you have to let some concerns go as you read to really enjoy it.  There are far too many things that line up for Mallory, as well as go wrong.  It's just a bit much to see all of this happening in the space of about two weeks.  Some of the things are just a little out of the realm of believability, but are still interesting to read.  Mallory's voice was really true to that of a high school junior, sometimes annoyingly so.  However, the overall story is a decent one and one that many people will be able to relate to.
One annoying thing, from this Librarian's point of view, is Mallory's research project.  Because she's sworn off technology, she has to write her report the old-fashioned way, which includes researching in the Library (YEAH!), but then she procrastinates too long, gets bored and frustrated, so she sneaks onto a computer, copy/pastes from different articles, changes a few sentences "so the words are my own", prints the paper, and submits it.  The author just endorsed plagiarism??  We already have a HUGE problem with students doing this every day and the author just put it in a book?  I know she's going for reality, but this is just frustrating.

Rating: 4/5

Friday, March 1, 2013

The Shadow Society

The Shadow Society
by Marie Rutkoski

Darcy Jones was left at a fire station when she was just five years old with no idea who she was or how she'd gotten there.

Eleven years and far too many foster homes later, Darcy has finally found a town, a foster mother, and a school that she's been able to stay with for more than a year.  But just when she seems to be getting everything on track, she finds herself drawn to a boy who seems to know more about her than she's ever known about herself.

He knows where she comes from.  

He knows what she is.  

He knows what she's capable of.

And he knows how to hurt her.

Will she be able to find out who she is and what she can do before everything she has worked so hard for is taken away from her forever?

Final thoughts:  It's another supernatural book with a clueless, but powerful heroine, and a hunky, dangerous boy.  This is a decent read and it has its moments, but some of the things that happen are just too unbelievable and the love triangle/quadrangle/whatever is predictable.

Rating: 3/5


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