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Bloody Bookaholic's Commandment:

Thou Shall Read Till Thy Eyes Bleed

Thursday 28 August 2014

NA Review: I Want it That Way by Ann Aguirre

I Want It That Way (2B Trilogy #1)
Title: I Want it That Way
Author: Ann Aguirre
Series: 2B Trilogy
Book #: 1
Pages: 352
Reading Level: NA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 3.76
Published: August 26th, 2014

Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she's determined to make them come true—for her parents' sake as well as her own. But between maintaining her college scholarship and working at the local day care to support herself, she barely has time to think, let alone date. Then she moves into a new apartment and meets the taciturn yet irresistible guy in 1B….

Daniel Tyler has grown up too fast. Becoming a single dad at twenty turned his life upside down—and brought him heartache he can't risk again. Now, as he raises his four-year-old son while balancing a full-time construction management job and night classes, a social life is out of the question. The last thing he wants is for four noisy students to move into the apartment upstairs. But one night, Nadia's and Ty's paths cross, and soon they can't stay away from each other.

The timing is all wrong—but love happens when it happens. And you can't know what you truly need until you stand to lose it.

Taschima's POV:
"I won't survive this, will I? But the fireworks will be spectacular."
I Want it That Way was a surprise to me. A happy surprise at that. With the New Adult genre sometimes you get really good books, or really bad books. There is no in between, so every time I try a new one I dip my toe with some serious trepidation. I Want it That Way was different though, I actually really liked it. Well written with engaging characters that are not cliche. It is the story of two people who find themselves attracted to each other but who have some REAL LIFE reasons why they have to thread lightly around their attraction. Oh, and did I mention it is also a very dirty book? Not crude, just deliciously dirty. I liked it so much I am already conspiring with the gods in order for me to get the sequel NOW.
"Not all love stories end happily. Sometimes they just end."
I liked how real the relationship between the characters felt. Nadia is a College Junior student who is studying to be a teacher. Part time she works for a pre-k day care center. Once she moves into her new building she meets her new neighbor, the red headed grumpy guy. This self proclaimed red headed grumpy asshole's name is Ty. Ty goes to school at night (studying to be an architect) and during the day he works to support his 4 year old child the adorable Sam. Soon Nadia and Ty start having late night balcony conversations, they are clearly attracted to each other, but can this relationship ever end well? Ty has Sam to think about after all, and Nadia is just starting with her future life plans. Will they overcome these obstacles, or will they find a way to make it work?

The thing about this story is that the characters act in such a way to make it not be like every other formulated story out there. They are mature, which is a good thing! Sure we want reckless sometimes, but we also like when characters act in a way that seems real. It makes them approachable and I can definitely see something like this happening to someone in RL. I Like it That Way is about how in life sometimes things don't go as planned, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's bad. Not every standard circumstance fits everybody, everybody is different and with different desires/priorities.
"It gets me hot when you can't help it, when you cut loose—"
Did I mention this book was deliciously dirty? It didn't shy away nor was it too much; perfect balance. The sex scenes? *long whistle* Gotta read it. Though the tender scenes are just as good really. It got the romance part just right.

I Want it That Way is a quick and enjoyable read. This is the kind of well thought out stories that the NA genre needs desperately. I read it in less than 24 hours, and already have the sequel pre-ordered ;)

Taschima's Reading Progress:

Wednesday 27 August 2014

YA Review: Gates of Thread and Stone by Lori M. Lee

Gates of Thread and Stone (Gates of Thread and Stone #1)
Title: Gates of Thread and Stone
Author: Lori M. Lee
Series: Gates of Thread and Stone
Book #: 1
Pages: 335
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 3.84
Published: August 5th, 2014

In the Labyrinth, we had a saying: keep silent, keep still, keep safe.

In a city of walls and secrets, where only one man is supposed to possess magic, seventeen-year-old Kai struggles to keep hidden her own secret—she can manipulate the threads of time. When Kai was eight, she was found by Reev on the riverbank, and her “brother” has taken care of her ever since. Kai doesn’t know where her ability comes from—or where she came from. All that matters is that she and Reev stay together, and maybe one day move out of the freight container they call home, away from the metal walls of the Labyrinth. Kai’s only friend is Avan, the shopkeeper’s son with the scandalous reputation that both frightens and intrigues her.

Then Reev disappears. When keeping silent and safe means losing him forever, Kai vows to do whatever it takes to find him. She will leave the only home she’s ever known and risk getting caught up in a revolution centuries in the making. But to save Reev, Kai must unravel the threads of her past and face shocking truths about her brother, her friendship with Avan, and her unique power.

Taschima's POV:

The first thing to note about Gates of Thread and Stone was the writing. It captured my attention instantly
"But what if she has someone waiting for her? A brother. A sister. A baby hungry for dinner. What would happen to her family if she didn't get up again? Stupid conscience."
Kai tries so hard to be untouchable, to not let the little things about her shit world to get to her. But ultimately she is a good person which means when someone attacks HER and the attacker accidentaly gets stabbed she has to help them not die alone on the street... even if it is begrudingly. I liked her character a lot! She is fierce and unstopabble. She cares for her brother inmmensly. Saving her brother from the clutches of their military is her number one priority in the book, and she doesn't let anyone, specially a teenage boy, derail her.

Yes there is some romance in Gates of Thread and Stone but it is not the main focus of the story so it doesn't take over and make you feel like it is a nuissance. You know these two friends have a connection,and you know they care for each other, but they have their priorities straight. Real romance can wait until after they save Kai's brother, which makes the few scenes that Kai and Avan have together that much more meaningful. Strenght of characters is so hot.

Avan is Kai's childhood "friend". They don't hang out really, Avan is a year older than Kai and stuck in his father's shop all the time helping the family business, but they always look out for each other. Or, more like Avan looks out for Kai. Their tentative friendship strenghtes when Avan offers to help Kai rescue her brother, which I think it would have been the only way for Avan to get past kai's defenses. Avan is strong and reliable, you just know he will go to the ends of the world for Kai.

The magic that Kai wields in the book is super under developed. Which is to be expected since she has always been told to hide her magic, and she doesn't have anyone with similar powers that can help her hone them. I liked the idea of threads of time ("Threads of Time actually sounds like a pretty kick ass title) that you can manipulate. So far Kai has only been able to slightly slow time down (for very short periods of time) but I can see where with a bit more training she could become an unstoppable machine. I am hoping in the next book she gets to hone her abilities, and that she gets to kick some serious ass.

Good world building. The state of the world was explained, no letting the reader wonder aimlessly. I liked the idea of mahjos (descendent's of the Infinites who possess some sort of magical ability), and the Infinites (which are like gods in a way). In the book it is said there are more than 50 Infinites in the world, and so far we have only met a few. Maybe we will get to meet more in the next book. Infinites are god-like entities that personify certain infinite concepts of the world (Time, Famine, etc). I liked how this an original, fresh take on all powerful beings. I give points for trying new things!

I felt like we were a little disconnected from the rest of the world though. There HAS to be more cities, other towns, if not where are all the Infinites making camp? This ONE city can't be all that is left of the world. So where are all the people?

The only things that slightly annoyed me about this book was that the author replaced cuss words with "original" words. It was ONLY the cuss words, which is why I was so annoyed. It is one of my pet peeves. If the author wants to create her own language, sayings, phrases, etc., then that's fine by me! I just don't think it is necessary to replace only cuss words. It breaks you from the flow of the read, and it is quite frankly unneccessary.

The ending was both equally sad and happy. Bittersweet. It doesn't leave at a cliff hanger, but still leaves the door open for a lot of things to maybe develop. I really am looking forward to the sequel, the possibilities are endless!

Tuesday 26 August 2014

YA Review: Unborn by Amber Lynn Natusch

Unborn (Unborn, #1)

Title: Unborn
Author: Amber Lynn Natusch
Series: Unborn
Book #: 1
Pages: 256
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 3.89
Published: August 26th, 2014

Born into mystery. Shackled to darkness…

Khara has spent centuries discovering everything about the Underworld―except her place in it. But when she’s ripped from her home, solving the riddle of her origins becomes more important than ever. With evil stalking her through the dark alleys of Detroit, she finds salvation from an unlikely source: a group of immortal warriors sworn to protect the city. Khara needs their help to unravel the tangled secrets of who and what she is—secrets many seem willing to kill for. But time is running out, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer necessity binds her to an arrogant fallen angel.

Can their shaky alliance withstand that which threatens her, or will her soul fall victim to the unholy forces that hunt her―those that seek the Unborn?

Taschima's POV:

"To Survive in the Underworld, one would show no vulnerability. I had mastered the art of indifference centuries ago."
Karah is the adoptive daughter of Hades and Demeter. Her whole purpose in life is to switch places with Persephone six months out of the year in order for Persephone to spend Spring topside with her mother Demeter. One day put of the blue Karah is plucked from her underworld into the world of the living and put in the path of her real non-adoptive brothers so they can find her and spend the rest of their lives regretting the decision to bring her home.

Karah has supposedly lived for centuries, so you would think she would have all this history and past experiences right? Wrong. Karah has no personality to speak of, no emotion, no passion. She is just an empty vessel of a character really. I did not connect with her in the slightest. She has lived for CENTURIES yet she has no valuable information, no skills, and no talents. What DID she spent doing all those centuries?

*DANGER WHORE SHAMING AHEAD* Also she is such a hypocrite. At one point she is at a club and she needs to go to the bathroom and when she goes inside she finds Oz (I'll get to him later) fucking some girl against the sink. I am not in support of fucking in the club, but to each their own right? What bothers me is not this but Karah's reaction:
"I have seen where your hands have been this evening Oz. I would prefer not to wear your whore, if it is all the same to you."
Yet, moments earlier she had said...
"Expressionless and brutal, Oz embodied his very essence even in his sexual encounters. It made something in the pit of my stomach seize. H e belonged in the Underworld with the rest of the depraved souls that served my father; such brazen acts were rampant there. I knew much about them, having looked upon those activities from a very young age. At times, I found myself involved in them."

Karah, the pot calling the kettle black. No woman in the story is to be better than Karah, all the ladies when they look at her show aggression because of course Karah must the the ONLY female in the story, and the BEST. She is extremely off putting. It is like the author can't decide if to make her a Mary Sue or a part time vixen with experience. She wants her to be the BEST of both worlds. Inexperienced with life but with experience in the dark arts of having sex. As a character she fails miserably. And just about every aspect of her life was either only hinted at (like her "miserable" time spent in the Underworld) or extremely glossed over. She has spent half of her entire life on the surface, but she doesn't know what a cell phone is, but she does know what a car engine is.


A lot of things in this world were just glossed over really. The world development was poor to say the least. It is greek mythology mixed with angels/demons, mixed with a ton of other supernaturals. Which isn't too bad IF YOU DO IT RIGHT. An example of someone who mixes all these mythologies right: Supernatural, the show. It does a fantastic job of bringing everything together. But then again, it took time. In Unborn you are just told that there are a bunch of Supernaturals out there and that the sons of Ares are tasked with keeping the balance between supernaturals beings and humans. Why is this again? Do the other gods have children? What kind of supernaturals are out there?

They have this specific supernatural they fight, The Stealers/Soul Breathers. At one point the children of Ares struck a deal with the Stealers/breathers relegating them to a single city and a strict diet that kept the supernatural population in line. Only, their deal makes no fucking sense. Why would the Stealers, who are able to reproduce like rabbits, struck this deal with their enemy? I do not know why the bad guys would have struck this deal at all! They could have easily win against the Ares children it seemed to me. In a realistic setting the Stealers would have said "screw you very much" and just taken over not only the city of Detroit but the world.

Speaking of the children of Ares, they are probably the sole reason I gave this title 2 stars instead of 1. Even though it is stated that Areas has hundreds of children we are only introduced to five. Drew, Kierston/Pierson (they are twins), Casey, and Sean. Drew is basically the leader of the "children" in Detroit, he is level headed and is just looking to keep everyone alive and in order. Kierston...
"While Kierston behaved like a sex-driven juvenile, Pierson was positively serious in nature, his eyes analyzing everything around him."
This is how WOMEN react to Kierston:
"How's it going, Special K?" She was intoxicated by him, his mere presence alone enough for her to nearly fall to her knees in service of him. When he winked ar her in response, she bit her lip and inhaled deeply."
He is like catnip to women. Seriously, didn't that woman just act like a cat on catnip? He is compared to a drug. He is like "Special K" which I think is a reference to Ketamine. *sigh* Kierston doesn't deserve the reference really, he was actually one of the only reasons the story is readable.

So Kierston is the man whore and Pierson is the analytical twin who is more than a little cold. Kierston though is a sweetie, the one with the most heart. I really disliked how often and frequently the issue of incest was touched upon the novel, like Kierston couldn't control himself around his sister. Which was so not the case, I thought the incest reference was unnecessary and awkward. Despite this I seemed to like Kierston the most, as well as Casey. If you have read The Black Dagger Brotherhood then you might find Casey is like the PG version of Zhadist. I mean, it is UNCANNY:
"They looked wary of him, and, upon further inspection, I understood why. His nearly black eyes were sunk deep in his face, the rest of his features dominating. His head was smooth, with only a trace of hair shadowing the surface. His skin was lighter than the twins', which served to highlight the darkness in his eyes."
Is he inspired by Z? I do not know, but the resemblance is there. Nevertheless Casey turned out to be one of the few instances of amusement you get from Unborn so I am glad to have him around. Kierston's twin, Pierson, was mostly just an intelligent ass. He likes to read a lot (SCORE) but then he is not very approachable so who cares. Sean, the real fearless leader, spends little time in the story so I don't feel like I know him very well. All I know is that you want him on your side in a fight. I feel like the author did a mostly good job with the side characters, if only such attention had been spent on the MAIN character.

Now, for the romantic mess. OZ is a fallen angel that spends his time hanging out with the Ares brothers. He is a self proclaimed man whore (see above paragraph for reference of his activities). This is how OZ described himself:
"I'm irresistible. You've seen the way women fall at my feet. Why would you be any different?"
But of course, as soon as Khara enters the picture his behavior starts to change. Because he LIKES her. WHY? She is bland, emotionless, she doesn't even try to make connections with her brothers or those around her. Empty vessel. There is no real reason why OZ would like Khara, only that she is the main character and so the tortured angel MUST fall for her. Oz is also a clear dick with no redeeming qualities so I don't feel any attachments to him. Maybe they deserve each other after all.
"Oz has proven to be selfish, arrogant, abrasive, and even vile at times, but one thing he has never proven himself to be is a liar. I do not suspect he will do so today."
Since I already spoke of how one of the brothers remind me of Z from the Black Dagger Brotherhood I will tell you that OZ is Lassiter. Inspired by or not the connections are there for the taking. If I were to take it further Pierson would be V, Kierston would be Rhage, and Sean would be... Wrath? The fearless leader? Drew would so be Thorment, no question.

YA? NA? Romance/fantasy? I believe this book was going for the NA territory, but with YA tendencies. I thought it was YA, until I saw the references to sex, drugs, and rock and roll. So, NOT YA even though the cover looks extremely YA. It is New Adult surely, even though all the characters really just act like teenagers (and they are CENTURIES old! Twilight syndrome for sure).

Final Verdict: Better luck next time! I do not know if I will pick up the sequel quite honestly, even though I really would like to go back and see the PG-13 version of the brotherhood. I guess for them I might, but certainly not for Karah. Or OZ.

Thursday 21 August 2014

YA Review: The Aftermath by Jen Alexander

The Aftermath
Title: The Aftermath
Author: Jen Alexander
Series: The Aftermath
Book #: 1
Pages: 288
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 3.86
Published: August 26th, 2014

Sometimes, I dream that I'm someone else.

A girl with dark hair who doesn't worry about hunger

or thirst or running from flesh-eaters.

In her world, those sorts of things don't exist.

Since the spring of 2036, when the world changed forever, Claudia and a small clan of survivors have roamed the streets of a very altered Nashville: polluted and desolate, except for the ever-present threat of cannibal Hoarders. Together they must undergo punishing tests of endurance and psychological challenge sometimes with devastating consequences all just to live another day.

With food and water in dwindling supply, and with danger lurking around every corner, no one can be trusted. And as her world starts to make less and less sense, Claudia begins to realize something terrifying: she is just a pawn in some sort of game, and all of her actions are being controlled from afar by a mysterious gamer. So when she meets a maddening and fascinating outsider named Declan, who claims to be a game moderator, she must decide whether to join him in exchange for protection and access to the border.

If they play the game right, they are each other's best hope for survival and a life beyond the only world Claudia's ever known: the terrifying live-action game known as The Aftermath.

Taschima's POV:
"There was no end of the world. There's only a game called The Aftermath, and I feel stupid for just realizing this."
The Aftermath was quite honestly a really cool idea that wasn't executed as well as I hoped it would be. There wasn't enough action for my taste (the whole idea being a video game-esque scenario), and for the most part the novel went by very slowly. I never felt like the main character was in any real danger, the sense of urgency was just not there for me. Still, the novel is full of fascinating ideas. What if the character you play in your RPG game were real? What if the game you are playing is their reality?

The beginning is confusing as hell, because you don't really know what is going on with this reality. Is the MC a character in a game, or is she a real human being? What is she? What is this place? And who is the girl who seems to be controlling her? I had a lot of questions, tons, and for the most part a lot of these were answered. The world of the Aftermath was well developed (as well as a devastated waste land CAN be developed anyhow) but the world outside The Aftermath is still mostly just a mystery. I don't exactly want to give any of the story away but I still have questions that were not answered about the country's history, questions that could have been easily answered here.
"I am not just some virtual person stuck in a reality that was created by computers. I am something else. Something called a character. A human trapped inside an intentional hell that's been created by designers--other humans."
The character of Claudia was okay. It felt kind of weird she had supposedly been sentient for years but then she just ignored all the weird stuff coming out of her mouth? And the weird shit she would do? She just brushed it off... Yeah, if I felt like my body was doing things without my consent I would FREAK OUT. It would have made more sense for her to have had the mentality of a prisoner inside her own mind, but this is not the case. One day she is just... fully sentient, realizing all the weird shit she has done or said through the years wasn't her. Again, interesting concept, little sketchy execution.

Also the "gamer" that was in charge of Claudia, Olivia, was a complete and total bitch. I absolutely hated her, and I hope to god that was the point. I couldn't sympathize with her at all, not even with her forbidden love scenario because of how ridiculously bad she treated her "boyfriend". Claudia on the other hand was more relatable, and after being under the thumb of Olivia you just wanted her to escape and be free.

Romance between Olivia and her boyfriend is just, blah. I couldn't exactly believe how he could stick by her, or why. She didn't make anything easy. As for Claudia and her romantic interests I thought it was rushed. I am not in awe of the boy she feels the butterflies for. I don't feel butterflies for him at all so... Also the objective of the boy in the game was very unsurprising.

I don't know what is on hold for the future of the series, but I think I would pick up the sequel if only to see what exactly comes next for Claudia. She was the only character I really liked in this book, I also kind of want to see Olivia burn (or at least seriously explain her behavior). Overall not a bad novel, it was just slow and it lacked some much needed action (specially for being in the video game genre).

PS; If you liked The Aftermath then you must try RUSH as well. Much more action, and better romance overall.

Wednesday 20 August 2014

YA Review: Rain by Amanda Sun

Rain (Paper Gods, #2)
Title: Rain
Author: Amanda Sun
Series: Ink
Book #: 2
Pages: 304
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket.5
Goodreads Rating: 4.06
Published: June 24th, 2014

American Katie Green has decided to stay in Japan. She's started to build a life in the city of Shizuoka, and she can't imagine leaving behind her friends, her aunt and especially Tomohiro, the guy she's fallen in love with. But her return is not as simple as she thought. She's flunking out of Japanese school and committing cultural faux pas wherever she goes. Tomohiro is also struggling—as a Kami, his connection to the ancient gods of Japan and his power to bring drawings to life have begun to spiral out of control.

When Tomo decides to stop drawing, the ink finds other ways to seep into his life—blackouts, threatening messages and the appearance of unexplained sketches. Unsure how to help Tomo, Katie turns to an unexpected source for help—Jun, her former friend and a Kami with an agenda of his own. But is Jun really the ally he claims to be? In order to save themselves, Katie and Tomohiro must unravel the truth about Tomo's dark ancestry, as well as Katie's, and confront one of the darkest gods in Japanese legend.

Taschima's POV:

Rain had many of the aspects I loved from Ink. Rich Japanese culture, likable characters, high drama... maybe too much drama. While Ink felt almost effortless Rain seemed to be trying to hard to keep us at the edge of our seat when it came to the romance side of things. So I wasn't a big fan of the romance in Rain but everything else was still golden.

Katie Green made the decision to stay in Japan. She says it is because she would miss her friends, her aunt, because she can't give up on the whole Kami thing... but really, she didn't leave because of Tomohiro. We all know this, but let the girl lie to herself if she must. Katie's staying in Japan isn't without it's complications. She is falling behind on her Kanji, she is not at the same level as her classmates in school because of the language barrier and she refuses to go to English school (even though it would make life 10 times easier for her). Not only is she falling behind in school but she seems to be making Tomohiro worse. She doesn't know where her Kami powers are coming from, but she is sure about to find out.

Katie is still as likable as she was in Ink, though a bit gullible. She does spend a lot of time trying to solve the mystery of her Kami abilities and ways to help Tomohiro control his darker side. She is selfless, and doesn't give up. She also spends a lot of her time putting her foot in her mouth due to cultural differences. It is hilarious.

The one thing that dragged the story down for me was the love triangle that was fed to us. It was just unnatural really. It wasn't necessary to keep the story interesting, and the more page time it was given the more I wanted to put the book down. Or at least hit Katie very squarely upside her head. There are times where a good love triangle is justified but just not this time. It took away from the overall story, plus it deviated our attention from the romance that gave us so much joy in Ink.

Tomohiro is worst than ever. He decided to stop drawing, which is ridiculously stupid of him. The Ink needs to come out somehow. The inheritance of the Kami in him is dragging him over the edge, he is drowning in ink. Katie seems to be making it worse, but nobody knows why. Which is why she spends so much time apart from Tomohiro in this title, but doesn't mean I have to like it. Tomohiro is just as dark and irresistible as he was in Ink, though Katie seems to be having a hard time of getting to him so she spends a lot of time with Jun which I did not enjoy.

The mythology behind the Kami is interesting as well as very intricate. It is complicated and there are a lot of characters playing a role; both old as dirt and present. We still have a lot to uncover about the Kami, but so far it has been a solid fun-filled ride. We definitely dwell deeper into the Kami past and how Katie and Tomohiro are connected to them. The answer may surprise you...

Rain was not a sophomore slump which I am SO happy for. It was entertaining and it answer a lot of questions while posing many many more. Getting to revisit the characters was just what I needed. I can't wait to read the third book in the series, specially since a love triangle isn't something I see in this series future anymore. No to love triangle, yes to Katie and Tomohiro!

Tuesday 19 August 2014

Review: Silver Shadows (Bloodlines #5) by Richelle Mead (ABSOLUTE love)

Silver Shadows (Bloodlines, #5)
Title: Silver Shadows
Author: Richelle Mead
Series: Bloodlines
Book #: 5
Pages: 380
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 4.47
Published: July 29th, 2014

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

In The Fiery Heart, Sydney risked everything to follow her gut, walking a dangerous line to keep her feelings hidden from the Alchemists.

Now in the aftermath of an event that ripped their world apart, Sydney and Adrian struggle to pick up the pieces and find their way back to each other. But first, they have to survive.

For Sydney, trapped and surrounded by adversaries, life becomes a daily struggle to hold on to her identity and the memories of those she loves. Meanwhile, Adrian clings to hope in the face of those who tell him Sydney is a lost cause, but the battle proves daunting as old demons and new temptations begin to seize hold of him. . . .

Their worst fears now a chilling reality, Sydney and Adrian face their darkest hour in this heart-pounding fifth installment in the New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series, where all bets are off.

Taschima's POV:

By far the best book in the Bloodlines series, even better than Fiery Heart (and that one was amaze-balls). Silver Shadows was everything that we have been waiting for. Everything that had been built up over the entire series (the comments on the re-education camps, consequences of vampire/human relations, the danger that is surrounding jailbait Jill...), hell even before Bloodlines more like since VA, come to a budding eruption in this title. Everything has gone to shit and it is up to Sydney and Adrian to find a way back to each other. Best. Book. EVER.

What I love about the Bloodlines series is that it is a continuation of the Vampire Academy world. It takes account of everything that is going on in that world still and it builds upon it. It doesn't just ignore everything that came before. Next we could easily pick up novels with Queen Lissa's POV without much of a hitch. I wonder if Richelle Mead is going to do more novels in the VA world after Sydney and Adrian's story comes to a close... I should hope so. Queen Lissa's life seems like a good option, she has a LOT of stuff going on.

Sydney... is a bad ass. She is so different from Rose, remarkably so, and yet they are both equals in the kick ass chick club. It really shows you there is more than one way to write a character you are able to look up to in the SAME series. I've always connected more with Sydney because she is more real than Rose. Rose is the fantasy, Sydney is much closer to reality. She is human after all... well, a human with magical abilities anyways. In Silver Shadows Sydney just... shined. All her best qualities came out, and she SOMEHOW managed to save everybody's life. She was put in a hole, far away from everything and everybody she loved, and instead of giving up, like so many before her had done, she prevailed. Did I mention that she is a bad ass?

Adrian, poor little Adrian. Adrian was never my favorite in the VA series, I was Team Dimitri all the way, but he and Rose just didn't work. He and Sydney are a total team though. They make each other stronger, better, and I am sad to say that Adrian WITHOUT Sydney is just a hot mess. It is really sad that even after having Sydney in his life Adrian still managed to succumb into old habits once Sydney is kidnapped. Yes, he was hurting but that doesn't mean he has to be weak. Adrian with Sydney is a sight to behold, Adrian without her is just plain sad. I was really hoping he was going to remain strong but that is just not Adrian. If he doesn't have someone next to him to keep him in check he just goes back to old habits and loses sight of what is important. He does not work well win situations that are robbed of all hope. Funny, cause in situations like these is when Sydney shines brightest.

Even though Adrian IS a sad little creature without Sydney I still love them together. They really do complement each other, and they do really love each other. It's the kind of love Adrian wanted with Rose, but that Rose had with Dimitri. The ending of Silver Shadows... Damn, I saw it coming a mile away and it was still the BEST THING I've read in a while. THEY GET MARRIED. It is a way for Sydney to receive Lissa's protection because by marrying Adrian she becomes one of Lissa's "people" and then she can throw her crown's weight behind protecting them. I think their wedding is the only YA wedding that I don't feel was forced or a way for the writer to impart some bullshit wisdom, it was just right

The pace of the book was perfect. The parts that were a little on the more mellow side (Sydney in re-education) were so full with psychological battles that you can't help but BE at the edge of your seat. And after 70% in it was all "Escape! Escape! ESCAPE! Action, action, ACTION!" I was not bored nor did I ever feel the need to put the book down.

I am real sad to see the end of this series coming so soon. I really can't believe Bloodlines was published only 3 years ago, and The Ruby Circle will be published next February. I would gladly keep the party going, maybe (as I've suggested above) let Lissa take the reins. She does have a lot going on in her life after all, would make for an interesting read (specially with Richelle Mead writing it... plus if I manage to get more sneak peaks of Dimitri and Rose, well, that would make my life). I am not ready to let go, could you guess that?

Thursday 14 August 2014

Hot to Get a Personally Autographed Maggie Stiefvater Title (#Raven Boys Series, Shiver trilogy, etc.)...

So, who wants a copy of Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle #3) autographed? Not on this title yet? very well then, how about getting the first title, The Raven Boys, autographed instead? Not feeling it? Well, we do have options. There is also the highly acclaimed Shiver trilogy, Ballad and Lament, Scorpio Races... Basically if you want a Maggie Stiefvater book signed you got it.

This is possible because of Fountain Book Store, and of course Maggie Stiefvater. She is basically signing books for them so I would totally get on board before it is too late and they run out of copies. I myself will be getting a copy of Blue Lily, Lily Blue (so excited!). Not only will you be getting a copy of a book you already want to read (and will probably buy somewhere else) SIGNED by one of the most awesome authors ever (no joke, I've met this woman and she is hysterical) but you would be helping a small independently owned bookstore in the process.

It is basically a win/win/win.

If you want to pre-order from Fountain Book Store you can click here.

Blue Lily, Lily Blue is also coming with a pretty cool drawing on top of it being signed:

I seriously can find no fault with this whole arrangement, I wish authors did it more!

Wednesday 13 August 2014

Review: Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J Maas

Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3)
Title: Heir of Fire
Author: Sarah J Maas
Series: Throne of Glass
Book #: 3
Pages: 565
Reading Level: YA
Book Rating: Photobucket
Goodreads Rating: 4.59
Published: September 2nd, 2014

Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

Taschima's POV:
"When they'd let me out, so much of my mind had shut down in the darkness that the only thing I could remember was that my name was Celaena. Celaena Sardothien, arrogant and brave and skilled, Celaena who did not know fear or despair, Celaena who was a weapon honed by Death."

Such a good, long, satisfying book. Heir of Fire is so far my favorite book in the series, I am not even kidding. I love how Sarah J Maas has slowly but surely gathered all the pieces of all her previous books, and novellas, together to make this one shine the brightest. I would definitely recommend anyone reading this book to pick up [book:The Assassin's Blade|18243700] because there are a lot of references to the novellas you might not get otherwise. Heir of Fire is the darkest and brightest of her books, full of despair, sadness, and sacrifice, but by the end there also full of hope.

Heir of Fire is told in like, seven different POVS. The book is in third person POV though so it isn't bothersome at all. It was just interesting to be able to see what everybody was thinking, where their alliances lied, what they were planning... and even then Sarah J Maas managed to keep some vital information secret from us. She is SUCH a good writer I can't even. The story is more than 500 pages long, but I swear I would have kept on reading even if it was 1,000. I hope the next book is just as long!

Celaena is utterly devastated after she lost Nehemia. But than again, aren't we all? She pretty much spends her time in Wendlyn picking fights and drinking wine while laying atop roofs. She just can't seem to foster the energy to do anything productive, until one person comes and picks her up to bring her back to confront a side of herself she had been hiding from for 10 years. At Adarlan Chaol is questioning everything he has been sworn to protect and Dorian is trying not to loose his shit. Oh the happy trio. We are also introduced to some new characters like Aedion, the ruthless Wolf of the North and general to the king who so happens to be Celaena's cousin, Manon, a Blackbeak witch who has been summoned along with her clan to aid the king in the war, Sorscha, the quiet healer who nobody paid attention to but who is full of secrets, and Rowan, the Fae warrior who came out of nowhere to create havoc in Celaene's life (and to steal my heart, if I might add). I enjoyed every single one of the new characters in their own way, and I even rooted for the ones that are toying the line between potential good and damnable evil.
She was Aelin Ashryver Galathynius--and she would not be afraid."
In Throne of Glass Celaena was competing to be the king's champion. It was a game, a deadly one but still just a game. The stakes were relatively low when comparing with this title. Heir of Fire is about so much more, and the stakes have never been greater. Celaena is not just Celaena anymore, she is Aelin Ashryver Galathynius and she has a fuck ton of people to protect and a lot of time to make up for. She is not just fighting for her freedom, or for love, she is fighting in order to free her entire kingdom. We are talking big scale here, and it shows. But it is not only her who is upping her game, all the characters are. Chaol is making big life altering decisions, and Dorian is already there but he is standing his ground against his tyrant of a father. I love Dorian, and Chaol is all right I guess. A bit too confused for my liking, you would think he could reach a decision a bit quicker.

When it comes to romance there is a lot of heart ache, but other than notorious Dorian who managed to find himself another girl to make googly eyes after (they are actually REALLY DAMN CUTE and they deserve each other) Celaena didn't really spend much time thinking about her love life. She spent a lot of her time grieving, for her dead friend, for her lost family, for her lost identity. There is a lot of learning and training and picking herself up. She is the weakest and the strongest she has ever been in this novel and I love her for it.




It was BRUTAL. Sarah J Maas doesn't spare feelings. As I told my friend, Sarah J Maas is like the George RR Martin of the YA scene, if she must kill her beloved characters to make the story progress, character who we have come to love and cherish, she will. She has already killed so many, it just scares me for the future of the series. There are still three books left! Who else will die?! I don't know, but I am seriously dying to find out. I want everything to work out so badly, but I know casualties are bound to happen. I don't know if my heart will be able to handle it.

I LOVE this series and I would recommend it wholeheartedly to any reader. It is YA fantasy at its best.

Sunday 10 August 2014

Extra YA Content: Bloodlines, Beginning: Adrian's Lost Chapter

*Editor's Note: When Richelle first sat down to write Bloodlines
each chapter was narrated by a different character.
This is Adrian's lost story.


From what I read it doesn't give us much of a story (really short), it stops before it gets to the good part. I want to read what happened at the dinner, how Adrian navigated it and how the assassination attempt went. How Adrian felt in real time when he brought Jill back from the dead. Now THAT would be something! But until then any new content is welcome =]

Saturday 9 August 2014

National Book Lovers Day: Which Are Your Favorite 2014 Reads, So Far?

Around these parts we don't need a special holiday in order to kick it back with a 500 page book in our laps, but we love it that there is a day in the year to celebrate book lovers everywhere! Maybe it'll encourage someone who doesn't read to pick up a book, seeing how many of us love the lifestyle.

With that in mind I think it's time for a recap of 2014. Kind of a midway point to list all of my favorite books so ar this year (it also serves as a recommendations for those non readers out there). So far in 2014 I've loved*...

*This list only contains titles published IN 2014.

Red Rising (Red Rising Trilogy, #1) Sea of Shadows (Age of Legends, #1) The Kiss of Deception (The Remnant Chronicles, #1)
Red Rising, a title I've recommended to ALL of my friends (and even some of my enemies). This story of a boy who gets betrayed by his government, was a slave his whole life, only to rise up and fight agaisnt the system is a classic... only it is set in Mars and the boy is a complete and total bad ass. So it is kind of sci-fi needs dystopian, but not like every other title you have read before. Sea of Shadows is the story of two sisters who's sole purpose in life is to take care of their town from evil spirits, only to have their town be destroyed anyways and all their town's children kidnapped by evil bad guys; some might say they did a bad job of handeling things, I just think they were shit out of luck. The characters and dialogue are what sets this story apart. Kiss of Deception, a cleverly written story with a strong female character some might not have classified as a heroine at the beginning of the title but by the end is well in her way to kicking some serious ass.
The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1) Of Metal and Wishes (Of Metal and Wishes, #1) Salvage
The Winner's Curse is a fantastically written tale of war, and romance. It is simple, elegant, and completely captivating. I would just go ahead and buy it right now if I were you. Of Metal and Wishes reminded me a bit of The Winner's Curse, but it is also a retelling of The Phantom of The Opera with an asian cast. Very dark, and much like The Winner's Curse it has aspects of war and it is completely captivating. Total Win. Salvage on the other hand is unlike every other YA story out there. It is sci-fi and for the most part it has characters with Hindu heritage. Ava is promised to marry someone, only it is not the person she thought she was going to marry. After making a serious mistake she is sentenced to death, only she manages to flee the ship she has lived her whole life in with the help of a friend. It is a very unique story.
The Nightmare Dilemma (The Arkwell Academy, #2) Silver Shadows (Bloodlines, #5) White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements, #1)
The Nightmare Dilemma is the sequel to The Nightmare Affair, and it is so GOOD. It is a little Harry Potter'esque. only instead of a school for just mages it is a school filled with mythological creatures. Both dark and light. The dialogue is witty, the characters memorable, the plot exciting! I loved it just as much as I loved The Nightmare Affair. Good sequels are just so satisfying, which leads me to talk about Silver Shadows. Richelle Mead is an author that hopefully needs no introduction. She wrote The Vampire Academy series, and right after that one she wrote Bloodlines which is set in the same world only with a different main character (a kick ass one). Silver Shadows is the 5th book in ths series, so you might want to start with Bloodlines, or even Vampire Academy, before you get into this one. Let's just say that when it comes to series it is one of the best. White Hot Kiss was a surprising read. I hadn't read many titles by Jennifer Armentrout, though everybody says she is very good, so I didn't go into White Hot Kiss with high expectations. Now I want to read everything else she has written. It is a paranormal romance at it's best, with GARGOYLES! GARGOYLES MAN!
All of these titles are vastly different, but they all have one thing in common; they are incredibly entertaining. They keep you glued to their pages with fantastic characters, great plots, and, in most cases, witty dialogue. I can't wait to see what the other half of 2014 has in store for us all.

Total Books Read so Far This Year:


Wednesday 6 August 2014

YA Excerpt: The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave #2) by Rick Yancey (40 Pages of Free Content!)

Okay guys let's chill out! The 5th Wave's sequel is coming out and I know how we all feel...

 photo tumblr_m3qj9zscCF1r8q9x8o1_500_zpsfe7f910b.gif

... but it ain't coming out until NEXT month; 38 to be more precise. So while we are waiting Penguin, so awesome of them, decided to put us even more on edge by releasing the first 40 pages of Infinite Sea online.

The Infinite Sea (The Fifth Wave #2)

Click on the book's cover and it will take you to the content. Happy reading!

Monday 4 August 2014

YA Releases: So Far This August Must Reads are...

As many of you may know August is upon us, and with every new month comes even MORE book releases that put me more in debt and more behind on my TBR pile. But they are so worth it I don't even care. Here are the seven lucky picks of this month:


I pretty much already have all of these books. My copy of Ugly Love should be arriving sometime tomorrow via UPS delivery, and I got Beautiful Ashes via BEA (Book Expo America) this past June. Beautiful Ashes is a MUST read! I shall put up a review soon on that one. As for the others I am currently reading of Metal and Wishes, as well as Goodbye Rebel Blue (a 2013 release that is actually turning out to be much better than anticipated). After I am going to start on The Aftermath, and then maybe I Want it That Way.

Currently Reading:

Goodbye, Rebel Blue 

Total Books Read so Far This Year:


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