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review 2018-08-09 20:18
Review: Give The Dark My Love
Give the Dark My Love - Beth Revis

Review - Give The Dark My Love

 

I received a copy from Penguin's First to Read.

 

Initially I had mixed feelings about this book, mainly as the beginning was rather boring and seemed to have some fantasy tropes that are starting to seem rather overdone.  However the latter half of the book took a darker turn and the end was pretty damn good and unexpected. 

 

It starts off with the story's heroine Nedra is leaving her twin sister and her parents to head off to a posh academy she has earned a scholarship to to study alchemy. She comes from a poor village, and despite her reservations about leaving her family they all tell her it's the right thing to do and of course she's destined for greatness. 

 

We learn there is a terrible plague sickness sweeping through the lands and there appears to be no cure, once the symptoms are spotted the sufferer is doomed. There are quarantine hospitals for the sick, the disease spreading mostly through the poor people. 

 

Nedra didn't seem to have much of a personality at all really. She was nice enough, ready and willing to learn, and of course all the fancy rich students who attend the school look down their noses at her. Right away she manages to make a friend with a very rich handsome boy, Greggori And gains the attention of one of the most difficult professors to please. 

 

It's just a tad bit eye rolling. And of course before long it's abundantly clear Nedra is far more talented than anyone initially thought she would. Much to the chagrin of some of the students. The plot is interesting enough as Nedra learns more about the plague and how alchemy can help the victims. The way the alchemy works a little stomach churning. But it seems to be the only thing doing some good. 

 

There's a subplot going on along the lines of some of the wealthy rich men (including Greggori's father and his best friend and their family) don't like the fact that the island they live on is under rule by one Emperor who governs countless lands and empires. They want the island to be free so they can make their own laws. Doesn't help that the emperor is only a teenager. Nor do they like the new governor he has appointed to rule their island is a woman. (This comes into play much more later on the novel).

 

Nedra finds herself caught up in a search to find the cause of the plague which is becoming worse by the moment, and not just affecting poor people throwing everyone's theories on the origin out the window. This is becoming the sole focus of the plot. Along with Nedra's relationship with Greggori is of course growing into something more than friendship. Greggori is slowly starting to realise there's more to Nedra. And his own views on the side plot are changing. 

 

The Governor makes a few appearances in the novel helping the sick at the hospital Nedra is working in and appears to be nowhere near as bad as the press and everyone else is making her out to be. 

 

Biggest problem for me was Nedra is just so dull as a main character. Both she and Greggori are so wooden and uninteresting. I had no interest in their barely there slow burn romance (which is usually one of my favourite romance tropes) Nedra becomes almost dangerously obsessed with stopping the plague. 

 

She finds herself using darker and more forbidden forms of alchemy - necromancy. This was where the plot really started picking up and I just didn't want to put the book down. I needed to know. Nedra becomes much more interesting and so meticulous and careful about her planning. Faced with a personal tragedy  that seems to define a turning point for her. 

 

I can't say I particularly liked her any more as a character but I could certainly empathise with her and completely understood her determination to find a cure, no matter where it took her. Though there is a fine line between using alchemy to help a greater cause but then finding something darker that works to a personal gain. There's definitely an interesting grey area that all logic seems to vanish over once things become more dangerous and intense. 

 

There were some pretty epic twists towards the end that I did not see coming at all. And left at one hell of a cliffhanger. At one point I wasn't even sure I was going to bother finishing this book, but now I have to know what happens next!

 

A bit of a slow start but definitely worth sticking with. 

 

 

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review 2018-03-09 00:03
Rebel Rising
Star Wars: Rebel Rising - Beth Revis,Lucasfilm Ltd

A super short review because I haven’t got much to say:

 

I don’t know if anyone was really clamoring for a YA novel about Jyn Erso’s life in the years between Saw Gerrera rescuing her from Lah’mu and the Rebels breaking her out of prison on Wobani, but we got one anyway. It was entertaining (I enjoyed it a lot more than my last book by Revis, that’s for sure), but it wasn’t necessary. I didn’t feel like I got much more out of this than Freed already gave me in the Rogue One novelization.

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review 2017-06-14 04:08
Star Wars: Rebel Rising
Star Wars Rebel Rising - Beth Revis

Confession: I didn't particularly like Rogue One when I saw it in theaters. I just didn't care about any of the main characters in it, and I'm not a big enough Star Wars fan to have caught a majority of the references in the movie or recognize names of characters beyond the really big ones like Darth Vader. I knew nothing about this book other than it involved Jyn Erso in some way (I recognized her on the cover). I didn't really plan to read this, but my library got the audio book, and I was looking for one really fast to download. This was the only available book in the section I was browsing that I hadn't read and that wasn't a sequel to something I hadn't read or that wasn't a book I had no intention of ever reading. And I'm glad I ended up picking it.

 

Rebel Rising managed to do what Rogue One failed to do which is make me care about the main characters. It tells Jyn's story prior to the movie and gave me a better idea of who she is and why. Her story's not a happy one. She was forced to learn how to fight and survive from a young age under the guidance of Saw Gerrera who took her in after her mother was killed and her father joined the enemy. I loved her complex relationship with Saw who became her surrogate father. And I loved Jyn in general and how she kept trying to keep to herself and not care about others for her own sake, but kept caring despite herself, even when it often led to the very pain she was hoping to avoid.

 

It's a shame this book came out after the movie. I think I would have enjoyed Rogue One if I had read this before seeing it. I would have gone in already caring greatly about one of the main characters.

Even if that would have made the ending hurt more.

(spoiler show)

This book made me a Jyn fan and has made me consider giving the Rogue One novelization a shot just to see if I do enjoy the story (and Jyn) more.

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review 2016-08-06 18:39
A World Without You
A World Without You - Beth Revis

What do I say about this novel? It was entertaining, it was confusing, it was adventurous, and it stretched my boundaries. The book is about mental illness and it has many different points of view. We view the story mainly from Bo’s point of view. At the beginning of the novel, I was entertaining the idea of Bo and the other characters living at Berkshire Academy, managing their special abilities. They each were special, some were dealing with their talents better than others but the whole idea of the Academy was to help the students comprehend and realize who they really were. Some of their teachers even had special abilities which came in handy in some situations.

 

Ryan, he was the deep one in the group. His thoughts and comments made me think and I didn’t trust him. He put too much thought into what he said and I thought he was only thinking of himself and was playing everyone else against each other. Harold, he was special. He kept to himself and it looked like he was talking to himself but Bo believed that his special ability was that he saw ghosts.  I wanted people to leave him alone but some people couldn’t and they pushed him to open up or they taunted him until he crept away. Bo was stressed about Sofia, for he liked her and he felt guilty about what he did. He was consumed about the Timestream and he started plucking the strings along it. Bo’s believed his special talent was time travel and somehow he has taken Sofia back in time and accidentally left her there.   He didn’t know exactly where but he needed to locate her and bring her back. Sofia had died so the Academy has a funeral for her but Bo is set on the notion that he has put her in the past and he can rescue her, if he is just given the time to do so.  Government officials have now arrived on site to investigate the Academy and everything in Bo’s world begins to fall apart.   All the stories that he fabricated in his head are now changing. The confusion shook Bo and I wasn’t ready for the confusion and the change that affected him.   I was inside Bo’s world, he was important and he was calm there. When this change swept over the novel, it shows the effect that mental illness has on an individual and others around them.

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text 2016-08-04 17:33
Who is messed up?
A World Without You - Beth Revis

I'm confused, Bo's confused and I can't read fast enough to ease my head.  Did Bo really take Sofia to the past and accidently leave her there or is all this a mind game?  Why did the "governmental officials" have to show up and mess with my comfortable read?  I was fine with their superpower abilities but no, they showed up and started shaking things up and now....its chaos!  I'm questioning everything I've read from the beginning, someone please start putting the answers together and quit adding more confusion.  

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