OF FIRE AND STARS had me hooked from the prologue, when Deena picks up a hot ember with her bare hands, much to the horror of her mother and sister – not because she’s burnt herself, but because she hasn’t. Deena has an affinity for fire magic, and although it’s easy to overlook in her home country, she’s been betrothed to the prince of a neighbouring kingdom where magic users are persecuted, exiled and killed.
Romeo and Juliet has never been my favorite. It’s like teenage angst at its best, something which I’m not generally a fan of. BRIGHT SMOKE, COLD FIRE at least didn’t have nearly as much angst as Romeo and Juliet, but it also wasn’t an amazing story either. Hodge seemed to bite off a little more than she could chew, and the result was a scatterbrained story with zombies, magic, and tons of weird stuff going on.
This series was in serious need of a infusion of plot and villain, and it really seems like we are headed that way. Taking place almost exactly at the same time as the previous book, IMMORTAL NIGHTS tells the story of the second Nolte twin, Tomassino, the other tall, dark and beefy Italian heartthrob. It also introduces another human woman who ends up stealing the show.
Abigail was a fun character. She’s a bit run down, when we first meet her, but she’s extremely clever, and is only one year away from finishing her medical degree. She’s cared for her mother until her death, and that has drained all her energy and all her savings. When the opportunity for a free vacation comes up, she jumps at the opportunity to accompany her childhood friend down to South America. She just didn’t count on it being quite the adventure it was.
Breezy is many things. She could be described variously as a teenager, undead, biracial, bisexual… And yet, she is most strongly and ferociously herself.
With high action, loveable characters (and some quite despicable ones), and an Austen-like setting, NEWT’S EMERALD is a fun ride that is perfect for younger readers, while still having enough to interest adult readers.
It’s a good thing that Truthful grew up with a gaggle of boisterous boy cousins; when her family’s heirloom emerald is stolen, dressing up as a boy to scour the streets of London is as easy as donning a glamour-enchanted mustache and imitating her cousins.
ABOUT A VAMPIRE was a strange book with many fun scenes and characters, but there was definitely something missing: an antagonist. A book without a bad guy or even an big dramatic ending sequence feels a bit like a roller coaster that ends at the top of the ride.
This is all a shame, because the opening chapter was killer. It’s funny, introduces the characters beautifully and has just enough foreshadowing to make you smile when things inevitably hit the fan.
This book was entertaining, but it ran out of steam somewhere around the middle. The story picks up exactly where the first one left off, to the point where I feel that SUPERVILLAINS ANONYMOUS should have just been included in the first book, Superheroes Anonymous. I would have rather read the whole story in one go and saved myself some confusion.
After I called CRUEL BEAUTY my top YA read of 2014, I wasn’t sure that CRIMSON BOUND could live up to the mightily high expectations I had for it. I mean, this is a book that I requested before there was even a description to go with the lovely cover. And, while I’m afraid that for me, CRIMSON BOUND doesn’t top CRUEL BEAUTY, it is still a magnificent story, well written with some great characters.
I need to preface this review with a confession: I have read most, if not all, of the Argeneau vampire series, and if I hadn’t, I am not sure I would have enjoyed THE IMMORTAL WHO LOVED ME as much as I did. Still, there are a bunch of things to like in this latest instalment.
Though the world of SNOW LIKE ASHES by Sara Raasch is a bit uninspired in its construction, Raasch more than makes up for kingdoms named after seasons and capital cities named for misspelled calendar months with Meira and the other refugees of the Kingdom of Winter. An aspiring soldier, desperate to be important to her people and her lost homeland, sixteen-year-old Meira struggles with being kept off the battlefield and forced into a world of political machinations. She’s a pawn, she’s a symbol, she’s a hero – much like THE HUNGER GAMES Katniss, all Meira really knows is that she wants to survive. That, and she’s in love with her best friend, the once and future king.