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review 2015-03-16 02:50
Dear Bully
Dear Bully: Seventy Authors Tell Their Stories - Megan Kelley Hall,Carrie Jones,Claudia Gabel,Courtney Sheinmel,Crissa-Jean Chappell,Cyn Balog,Cynthia Leitich Smith,Daniel Waters,Dawn Metcalf,Debbie Rigaud,Deborah Kerbel,Diana Rodriguez Wallach,A.S. King,Eric Luper,Erin Dionne,Alyson Noel,Amy Goldman Ko

70 authors contribute stories to this anthology about their experiences with bullying as victims, bullies, or observers.


Normally for anthologies I go through each story separately, but I’d feel weird about doing that with this book since these are all personal stories the authors are contributing to try to raise awareness about bullying and help stop it. Plus, there are 70 stories here, and they are all short, so I don’t have much to say for most of them.


Like most anthologies, this book had a mix of stories I loved, stories I was more neutral on, and stories I didn’t like. The biggest problem I had with the book was just the sheer number of stories that all shared similar themes. After a while, some of the stories started to blur together, and the book started to drag. While having a large number of stories allowed for a variety in experiences, 70 stories just felt like a bit much.


Despite that, the stories were moving, while heartbreaking and infuriating at times.

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review 2014-08-23 00:42
Elusion - Claudia Gabel,Cheryl Klam

I wanted to ESCAPE® from having to read this. There was nothing tense, alluring, nor mysterious about Elusion at all. I was not left breathless. I remained unimpressed and annoyed with Regan. The writing was fairly good, but nothing in this story was able to interest me. 

The idea of the story sounded pretty unique and totally cool. I would so enjoy escaping from reality for a little while, but it feels like I’ve read this story and put up with this dumb girl before and all the clichés that seem to come hand in hand in these sorts of books.

There were supposed to be plot twists, apparently. 

Elusion seemed pretty darn predictable to me. 

I hated Regan after the whole…’I wanted to kiss Josh again’ crap. Like hello, you have other important things to do. Focus on something other than a boy you’ve only known for about a week. A boy who hasn’t exactly been 100% honest with you on certain details. 

I didn’t really like any characters. I didn’t like Patrick and I definitely did not like Josh. There was just something about him and ugh. 

Stuff happens, but nothing really happens. It tries to pick up at the very end. But there’s no way I would ever bother picking up the next book. 

I would give this book about two stars. I didn’t hate it, but I found nothing likable. 

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review 2014-07-10 16:15
Fun book I wish had been a stand-alone
Elusion - Claudia Gabel,Cheryl Klam

A dystopia-lite, romance-lite, mystery-lite story that I had fun with. I like VR stories and Regan's quest to figure out what happened to her father and his creation kept me engaged. My biggest bump was that I didn't realize it was book one of a series. As I slid into home with this, I was looking forward to seeing how it wrapped up - because I really think it could have wrapped up in one book. But no, there was a cliffhanger of sorts setting up our new world of book two. Not sure I'm going to go there with the author. But it was a solid read.

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review 2014-05-28 17:05
Elusion - Claudia Gabel,Cheryl Klam

You all know me, if a book is hugely polarized in the blogger world I have to read it. When there's so much hate spewed against it on one side, and so much love on the other side, I must figure out which side I fall on. I had absolutely no expectations one way or the other when I picked up Elusion from the library. I just wanted to give this book a shot and, you know what? I actually really liked this.


Regan lives in a world that is a shattered version of our own. Acid rain falls from the sky, black poisonous clouds hover overhead, and an O2 shield is pretty much necessary most days if you don't want to choke to death on the chemicals floating in the atmosphere. Nature as we know it is gone. So how do people get away from their problems? An Escape. An Elusion. Before he mysteriously died, Regan's father invented this amazing way to take a "trip" to somewhere new. Sounds amazing, right? Or is it?


I have to say, I was impressed with the world that was built around Regan. Although it wasn't flat out explained, it was immersive enough that I didn't even question it. I was lost in the desolation around these people, and the fact that they just ignored it all. I'm a sucker for new technology, and Elusion was amazing to me. Imagine a way to travel to somewhere new, to somewhere that hasn't existed in years, in complete safety. Of course that kind of technology always comes with its fair share of flaws. This one was no exception.


There was nothing I could do but hold on as Regan flew through one part of the mystery after another, uncovering all the dirty laundry that her father's company was trying to hide. Once again I'll admit, it wasn't exactly a perfectly plausible story line. Still, this was a new world. It was a vividly built world, and I was willing to forgive a lot simply because I couldn't help but feel caught up in it all. I wanted to know what Orexis was hiding, and you couldn't have stopped me if you tried.


The absolute only thing that slightly irked me was the quasi-romance that Elusion brings to the table. Regan was such a strong character. She fought for what she believed in, and never gave up no matter how many people tried to break her down. Seeing her loose it over a guy she just met, no matter how handsome he was, bothered me. I can't deny it. It also made for an ending that, although the cliffhanger is killer, was rushed as well. Still, I know I'll be back for more. This series has hooked me. You can mark me solidly on the "I liked this" side of the Elusion camp, and I'm proud of it.



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text 2014-05-16 20:32
Save Me From the Slump!
Romeo & Juliet & Vampires - Claudia Gabel,William Shakespeare
Airhead - Meg Cabot
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter - Seth Grahame-Smith
Darker Still: A Novel of Magic Most Foul - Leanna Renee Hieber
Halflings - Heather Burch
The Promise of Amazing - Robin Constantine
How My Summer Went Up in Flames - Jennifer Salvato Doktorski
Monstrous Beauty - Elizabeth Fama
The Choice - Nicholas Sparks
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

Hello everyone! 


Just I rode off my Anna and the French Kiss high feely happy as a clam--and then I slammed right into Pretenders. And the high is gone. It was terrible. It was awful. It was pretty much every bad adjective I could possibly think of. (There was a friggin' Monster High reference in it! "Audri was hotter than Ghoulia from Monster High." ARE YOU KIDDING--referencing your OWN book like that?) 


And now I REALLY need something good. I don't want to be disappointed. But I don't really have a lot to work with.


The above books are what I have here at school with me. Since I just finished a NetGalley book, and I switch off between reading what I want and reading for the publisher, I'm not including those books in those list. Please, just recommend me something from here. I'll check back probably in an hour or so. (Not a lot of time, but hey, I really want to start reading, hahah.)


(PS, I am currently leaning towards The Promise of Amazing, but one of my best friends here just read it right after Anna and she said it wasn't nearly as good. So... I'm scared.)

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