Sunday, March 31, 2013

Six Years by Harlan Coben

Jake Fisher, spends three blissful months with the love of his life, Natalie and then --- she abruptly ends things, telling Jake, she is going to marry her old boyfriend. Jake attends her wedding and she asks him to leave her and her husband alone and to never contact them. Jake holds this promise for six long years, until he finds her husband's obituary in the paper.

Jake having held on to this love feels the need to see her. He attends, her husband's  funeral only to find out that the women Jake is married to isn't his beloved, Natalie but someone else. Jake is determined more than ever to find her.

In his quest to find her, he is met with many obstacles. His life is threatened and finding her proves to be more difficult than ever.

Coben writes a wonderful thriller, that will keep you on your toes. It is multi-layered and the plot has many twists and turns. A super fast and suspenseful read.

Grade: A

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Requiem (Delirium) by Lauren Oliver

Requiem is the final installment in the, Delirium, Trilogy. It starts off rather slowly and then builds up. There are essentially two stories being told, Hana's and Lena's. You would expect Lena's to be the most interesting since she is the main character but Hana's is by far more engaging.

Lena's is basically about the resistance, being in the wilds and questioning her choices. Hana has been given the cure but it didn't work quite right. She struggles with it, while planning her upcoming nuptials with, Fred --- who will eventually be the mayor.

Requiem is a bit darker then its predecessors and it just doesn't measure up to the delivery of the first book, Delirium. The ending is probably not what many readers will anticipate or want because a lot is left unanswered. Just keep in mind that this isn't about whom, Lena chooses but that she had the freedom to do so and to love who she wants.

Grade: B-

Monday, March 25, 2013

And When She Was Good: A Novel by Laura Lippman

Lippman produces another thrilling novel. It is absolutely interesting and Heloise is a an intriguing character. She escaped an abusive home and into the hands of a pimp. She manages to get away and restart her life ---- yet something is amiss.

Heloise is doing the very best to hide from her past --- she is a single mom and a secret madame catering to the elite. Then --- another madam in a neighboring town, turns up dead. Is a killer on the lose and is, Heloise's life at risk?

The story is told in alternating chapters, jumping between the past and present, until the merge together perfectly. There are twists and turns that will keep you turning the pages.

Grade: B+

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala

First and foremost, I have to say that reviewing this type of book is often extremely difficult for me. It becomes hard to objectively criticize a book that is about events in which so many lives were lost. In this case the author lost not only her husband but also her beloved children and parents. With that being said please realize that I am NOT criticizing the choices she made on that fateful day but her uninformative, lackluster writing.

Nearly everyone knows what happened on, December 26, 2004. If you are one of the few who don't know or remember, it was the day of the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami. Which is one of the deadliest natural disasters on recorded history. This book is the authors account of what happened that day and the following, days, weeks, months and years.

The book starts off strong --- your pulled into that day,  her choices, feelings and the chaos the occurred but then it all falls apart. It becomes rather self involved and trite. It isn't organized. You want to feel this agonizing compassion for her and pride her on her courage to share her story but her writing didn't fully compel you -- something was missing. Don't expect too many details of the event. It's more about her, her feelings and grief.

I can't recommend this book but it is very small and takes maybe two hours tops to read, so you don't "lose" anything by reading it.

Grade: N/A 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Prodigy: A Legend Novel by Marie Lu

Prodigy is a phenomenal follow up to the, "Legend" trilogy. You seldom find a second book in a trilogy with this much spark.  Prodigy is engrossing, intriguing and impressive. There isn't one dull moment in this book!

Read, Legend first, in order to get the full impact of this novel. The world, characters and plot line created by Lu are amazing. There is the dreaded love-triangle situation but it works for this series. The book is told from alternating points of view, June and Day's. They flow seamlessly into one another and give you insight into the character's feelings, actions and motives.

I really don't want to give anything away. I was taken by surprise quite a few times, which is a rare feat for me. The last book come out in 2014, it's going to be a long, anxious wait!

Grade: A+

Overview: [B&N]
June and Day arrive in Vegas just as the unthinkable happens: the Elector Primo dies, and his son Anden takes his place. With the Republic edging closer to chaos, the two join a group of Patriot rebels eager to help Day rescue his brother and offer passage to the Colonies. They have only one request—June and Day must assassinate the new Elector.
It’s their chance to change the nation, to give voice to a people silenced for too long. 
But as June realizes this Elector is nothing like his father, she’s haunted by the choice ahead. What if Anden is a new beginning? What if revolution must be more than loss and vengeance, anger and blood—what if the Patriots are wrong?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Fire in the Sky: The Walton Experience; the Best Documented Case of Alien Abduction Ever Recorded by Travis Walton

Fire in the Sky is a well written documentation of, Travis Walton's UFO experience. I am using experience in the broadest term --- since very little off the book actually deals with the abduction itself. It is more about what occurred before and after. The events leading up to the abduction and the process of proving that the UFO experience actually did happen.

There is a lot of technical explanations and if that type of thing bogs you down, you might want to skip this particular book. Do, not compare this to the movie ---- because a lot of creative vision was taken by the script writers, for dramatic and entertainment purposes.

Travis Walton is intelligent, perceptive and straightforward. The only issue I have, is that it, is extremely difficult to find a copy of this book without having to pay big bucks! If it's something you are really interested it, I strongly suggest going to your local library and using there resources to locate a book for you. You can also visit Travis Walton's website here and purchase one from him, in which he will autograph for free. (I have no association with, Walton nor has he asked me to provide a link. I have given one to make it easier for you, reader, to find this book at a much cheaper price, since finding it proved to be a huge pain in the a@@ for me.)

Expect a compelling and entertaining read.

Grade: A

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Fuse (Pure Trilogy) by Julianna Baggott

"Fuse" is the second installment in the, "Pure" trilogy and it is a huge, HUGE disappointment. I had a extremely difficult time getting into it. It was long winded and at times, I felt lost. Reading this book required a lot of energy and time because I wasn't able to enjoy it, since I had to struggle to recall things (which, I've never really had to to before in previous series).

I was rather annoyed because I enjoyed, "Pure" so much, so to really dislike, "Fuse" was disappointing.  I rather enjoy the character's and the unique story line, so I will be reading the last novel in this trilogy.
It's very imaginative...

The parts that were, entertaining, we excellent. I just felt as though, Baggott could have produced a much better book if she had gotten rid of all the tiresome parts.

I strongly suggest you re-read or skim, "Pure" so that you can get more enjoyment out of, "Fuse" than I did.

Grade: C-

Overview [B&N]

We want our son returned.
This girl is proof that we can save you all. If you ignore our plea, we will kill our hostages one at a time.
To be a Pure is to be perfect, untouched by Detonations that scarred the earth, and sheltered inside the paradise that is the Dome. But Partridge escaped to the outside world, where Wretches struggle to survive amid smoke and ash. Now, at the command of Partridge's father, the Dome is unleashing nightmare after nightmare upon the Wretches in an effort to get him back.
At Partridge's side is a small band of those united against the Dome: Lyda, the warrior; Bradwell, the revolutionary; El Capitan, the guard; and Pressia, the young woman whose mysterious past ties her to Partridge in ways she never could have imagined. Long ago a plan was hatched that could mean the earth's ultimate doom. Now only Partridge and Pressia can set things right.
To save millions of innocent lives, Partridge must risk his own by returning to the Dome and facing his most terrifying challenge. And Pressia, armed only with a mysterious Black Box containing a set of cryptic clues, must travel to the very ends of the earth, to a place where no map can guide her. If they succeed, the world will be saved. But should they fail, humankind will pay a terrible price . . 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Sever (Chemical Garden) by Lauren DeStefano

"Sever" is the last book in the Chemical Garden, trilogy. The title is very appropriate and we finally find out exactly what is behind the meaning of, chemical garden.

Everything ties up fairly nicely and nearly all questions are answered. The plot moves a lot slower than I would have liked but it is definitely worth the read. All the character's have grow up quite a bit by the end of this series, which is fantastic since most often character's stay stagnate.

I enjoyed, "Sever" but isn't not as clever or as well written as, "Wither" but that doesn't mean it isn't worth reading especially if you've come to enjoy the characters as much as I did.

Grade: B

Overview: [B&N]

Time is running out for Rhine in this conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Chemical Garden Trilogy.
With the clock ticking until the virus takes its toll, Rhine is desperate for answers. After enduring Vaughn’s worst, Rhine finds an unlikely ally in his brother, an eccentric inventor named Reed. She takes refuge in his dilapidated house, though the people she left behind refuse to stay in the past. While Gabriel haunts Rhine’s memories, Cecily is determined to be at Rhine’s side, even if Linden’s feelings are still caught between them.
Meanwhile, Rowan’s growing involvement in an underground resistance compels Rhine to reach him before he does something that cannot be undone. But what she discovers along the way has alarming implications for her future—and about the past her parents never had the chance to explain.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Here I Go Again: A Novel by Jen Lancaster

Jen Lancaster had done it again. She's written another fabulous novel. This is her second fiction novel and it is better than her first.

Jen's character, Lissy Ryder takes us on on an adventure back into the 80s. Lissy goes back in time to revisit her teen self. Lissy soon finds out that rewinding the clock isn't always best and sometime the consequences are dire. Lissy finds out that redoing the past --- just doesn't change her life but that of others.

Expect to laugh a lot and be entertained. I absolutely loved this book.

Grade: A+

Overview [B&N]
Twenty years after ruling the halls of her suburban Chicago high school, Lissy Ryder doesn’t understand why her glory days ended. Back then, she was worshipped...beloved...feared. Present day, not so much. She’s been pink-slipped from her high-paying job, dumped by her husband and kicked out of her condo. Now, at thirty-seven, she’s struggling to start a business out of her parents’ garage and sleeping under the hair-band posters in her old bedroom.
Lissy finally realizes karma is the only bitch bigger than she was. Her present is miserable because of her past. But it’s not like she can go back in time and change who she was...or can she?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Heart Like Mine: A Novel by Amy Hatvany

Heart Like Mine, will be released March 19, 2013.

If you haven't read anything by Amy Hatvany, you should start now! Her writing is superb and she can really capture her audience. She makes character's that you think you couldn't relate to relatable.

I can't begin to understand what it is like to have a children, to be a single mother or in a relationship involved with a man who has children, yet ---  Hatvany put me in each of these character's shoes and made it possible to feel what they were going though. She, tells her story though point of view, narrative.

When, Grace fell in love with, Victor she had to put aside her feeling of motherhood and when Kelli (Victor's ex-wife) if found dead, Grace had to readjust her entire life. Grace should be celebrating, she is newly engaged but instead of celebrating she is helping, Victor picking up the shattered lives of his children.

Change is never easy and it just might destroy the very victims it touches. Marriage, death, divorce, love and family can create obstacles you never knew existed and it's up to these character's to find their way.

Grade: A

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult

This is absolutely the very best novel, written by Picoult. This is historical fiction at its very best!

The story is navigated by three strong characters, who each have their own story to tell. Picoult is no wimp when it comes to tackling difficult subjects and this is perhaps on of the most horrific --- as it deals with the holocaust.

Sage befriends a former Nazi, who asks her to not only forgive him for the atrocities he committed but to also end his life. Forgiveness isn't something, Sage can grant because in Judaism forgiveness can only be granted by the offended person and when the person is dead --- it's an impossible task.

This book moved me to tears on more that one occasion. The pain radiates off the pages and will haunt you.

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...