Saturday, December 31, 2011

Secrets She Left Behind by Diane Chamberlain

The Secrets She Left Behind is an great story and Chamberlain is a wonderful storyteller.
This book is intriguing, full of suspense and fast paced.

I had no idea there was a book before this one, so it does and can stand alone. That being said, I will be reading the first book, Before the Storm because these characters are so well developed that I am anxious to learn more about them and their stories.

Maggie is a young women who just spend time in prison for causing a fire that took lives and damaged others. She returns to her community on the same day one of her victims mothers goes missing.

The characters have emotional, physical and biological ties to one another and as their stories unravel, you find yourself sinking deeper into their world.

Grade: A

Friday, December 30, 2011

Shelter: A Mickey Bolitar Novel by Harlan Coben

Harlan Coben is a best selling author and Shelter is his debut novel for the young adult audience. Don't let the YA genre fool you --- because this book is for all ages.

The plot and characters are quite interesting and I'm anxious to read more about them in future books, however it moved slower than his usual fast paced books.

The book is fairly suspenseful and the ending is quite unexpected. If you enjoy his previous work you will enjoy this one too and if you aren't familiar with him, this is a good book to sink your teeth into.

Grade: B

Overview: [B&N]

Mickey Bolitar's year can't get much worse. After witnessing his father's death and sending his mom to rehab, he's forced to live with his estranged uncle Myron and switch high schools.

A new school comes with new friends and new enemies, and lucky for Mickey, it also comes with a great new girlfriend, Ashley. For a while, it seems like Mickey's train-wreck of a life is finally improving - until Ashley vanishes without a trace. Unwilling to let another person walk out of his life, Mickey follows Ashley's trail into a seedy underworld that reveals that this seemingly sweet, shy girl isn't who she claimed to be. And neither was Mickey's father. Soon, Mickey learns about a conspiracy so shocking that it makes high school drama seem like a luxury - and leaves him questioning everything about the life he thought he knew.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Dust & Decay by Jonathan Maberry

Dust & Decay is the sequel to Rot & Ruin. Mayberry has the entire, Zombie Apocalypse down. He does an exceptional job of keeping you interested from start to finish.

Dust & Decay is better than Rot & Ruin, which is rare for a second book in a series. The writing style and technique stays the same. The characters are further developed and newly introduced characters are awesome. They are full of intrigue and originality.

Expect an action packed thriller with characters that crawl under your skin and stay with you long after you've put the book down.

Grade: A

Summary [B&N]
Six months have passed since the terrifying battle with Charlie Pink-eye and the Motor City Hammer in the zombie-infested mountains of the Rot & Ruin. It’s also been six months since Benny Imura and Nix Riley saw something in the air that changed their lives. Now, after months of rigorous training with Benny’s zombie-hunter brother Tom, Benny and Nix are ready to leave their home forever and search for a better future. Lilah the Lost Girl and Benny’s best friend Lou Chong are going with them.

But before they even leave there is a shocking zombie attack in town, and as soon as they step into the Rot & Ruin they are pursued by the living dead, wild animals, and insane murderers, and face the horrors of Gameland—where teenagers are forced to fight for their lives in the zombie pits. Worst of all…could the evil Charlie Pink-eye still be alive?

In the great Rot & Ruin, everything wants to kill you—and not everyone in Benny’s small band of travelers will survive….

Monday, December 19, 2011

Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

Benny Imura lives in a post-apocalyptic, zombie infested world. First Night took places when he was just a toddler and memories of it haunt him. His brother, Tom is a famous and well respected Zombie hunter but to Benny he is coward and wants to be nothing like his brother.

Benny is 15 years old and that means he is required to find a job or his rations will be cut in half. He tries out different trades and isn't successful at them. His only and dreaded choice is to join the family business and become Tom's apprentice.

This take him on a journey, in which he learns the truth about his past. He also learns that the people he idolized aren't all the great and his brother, Tom is someone to look up to.

The characters are well developed and some are quite frightening. Maberry sets up a interesting storyline full of twists and turns.

Grade: A

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Ashfall by Mike Mullin

In a matters of moments, fifteen year old Alex's life changes forever. A cataclysmic event occurs and life as he knows it is over. Yellowstone National Park's supervolcano has erupted, spewing ash hundred of thousands of miles away. Changing the face of earth, climate and humanity.

Alex is home alone when the tragic event occurs. His family is visiting relatives just a few hours away. Alex decides he is going to travel over 100 miles on foot to find his family. He sets out and picks up a companion on the way. They do what is necessary to survive. The journey is exhausting, deadly and frightening.

Mullin has created a page turner. That what if scenario of the eruption is well researched and this book will keep you up for hours.

The sequel, Ashen Winter is set to come out in October of 2012 and I can't wait!

Grade: A+

Monday, December 12, 2011

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks

If you had to picked between Brooks, World War Z or The Zombie Survival Guide ... pick World War Z every single time

The book is made up of a collection of interviews basically short stories of what individuals went through and saw during the zombie war. The interviewees are basically telling the same story but at times things can get a bit confusing since there is no overlap in characters or settings, which creates a bit of chaos for the reader.

There really isn't a way to connect emotionally to the characters because you don't get to know them, just their story.

At first the books starts off great. It is exciting and fun. The world is being overrun, stories are very interesting but then it's as though Brooks lacked imagination to continue. With the exception of a few stories, they all became rather flat and lack suspense or drama.

Brooks creates a semi-intriguing book that has a lot of promise. It just lacks execution.

Grade: D

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Destined (House of Night) by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

The House of Night, series started off really strong. The characters were interesting and engaging and now they seem to be walking in circles. They are stale and repetitive.

Destined is the 9th book (Cast has a 12 book contract) and as much as I hate to say this --- it needs to end. The characters lack development and the plot is going no where. Once again -- there is a huge amount of insensitivity by the authors, using terms such as short bus and retard are not only cruel but unnecessary. It adds nothing to the story --- nothing at all.

Everything is rather predictable. I can honestly say that I do not care for this book but I will continue to read the rest of the series because I need to know what happens to the characters. I just hope it all wraps up rather soon.

If you are just starting this series, I recommend that you stop at book 6 because after that it takes a deep dive downwards.

On a more positive note --- A new character is introduced that has an amazing "power" perhaps one of the most interesting so far. I look forward to seeing her make more appearances in the next book(s).

Grade: D

Overview [B&N]

Zoey is finally home where she belongs, safe with her Guardian Warrior, Stark, by her side, and preparing to face off against Neferet – which would be a whole lot easier if the High Counsel saw the ex-High Priestess for what she really is. Kalona has released his hold on Rephaim, and, through Nyx's gift of a human form, Rephaim and Stevie Rae are finally able to be together – if he can truly walk the path of the Goddess and stay free of his father's shadow…

But there are new forces at work at the House of Night. An influx of humans, including Lenobia’s handsome horse whisperer, threatens their precarious stability. And then there’s the mysterious ...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Silence (Hush, Hush Saga) by Becca Fitzpatrick

Silence is the third and most exciting book in the Hush, Hush Saga.

Nora awakens in the cemetery with no recollection of how she got there. She is dirty, confused and finds out that months of her life are missing. She has amnesia and the silent world of her unknown past pulls you into her world... You are along for the ride and feel as though you are walking in her shoes since you don't know anymore than she does.

An, Angel (Patch) willingly lets his wings be torn off --- new characters are introduced and old ones make cameos. Stakes are higher than ever and many lives are threatened.

The characters are well developed and have grown. The story line is intriguing and Fitzpatrick takes you on a wild ride. I can't wait to see what happens next.

It must be noted that there are predictable moments but they aren't enough to spoil the overall mood of the book.

Grade: A

The Accidental Beauty Queen by Teri Wilson

Charlotte Gorman is a librarian, a "nerd" and enjoys being casual and comfy. Her twin sister, Ginny is an famous instagram conte...