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review 2015-05-05 00:52
Hodge works her magic again
Crimson Bound - Rosamund Hodge

***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

After falling in love with Cruel Beauty last year, I was ready to see what else Rosamund had to offer. When I found out she had a new book coming out, and that it would be a retelling of Red Riding Hood, I was over the moon! This book was absolutely, a 100%, worth the wait. I stayed up until 5:30 in the morning finishing the book and I loved every single minute of it. Here are reasons why you should read the book.

1. The fantastic female lead. Rachelle is badass and she is almost an anti-heroine but you cannot help love her and want to cheer for her because even though she doesn't believe it, we know that she is a fantastic human being at heart.

2. Armand. ARMAND WAS SO SWOON-WORTHY and I cannot even. Whoever said good boys finish last? I know I didn't because good boys like Armand are definitely not going to finish last. The thing about Armand is that he is so pure of heart and so good but he isn't helpless. He is confident and knows how to take charge. He is a wonderful human being and I love him.

3. The romance. While the romance needed some more development (in my opinion) I will definitely say that it was one of the more enjoyable ones I've read. Armand and Rachelle do not have a case of instalove and it's so great seeing them fall in love with each other (even if it was a little sudden). They work well together and I just love them, okay?

4. The world building. Given how great it was in Rosamund's debut novel, it's not surprising at all that she put so much effort into developing this new world and it's intricate details.

5. The plot. It's well paced and maybe you'll even pull an all nighter reading the book like I did.

So basically, you should read this amazing book.

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review 2014-05-01 18:28
SO MUCH LOVE FOR THIS
(Don't You) Forget About Me - Kate Karyus Quinn

***This review has also been posted on This Social Potato

“There is always a price to be paid”


This was one of my most anticipated books of the year and I am so happy to say that it didn’t disappoint. I read Another Little Piece last year and fell in love and that was when I knew that Kate had to go on my (mental) ‘I will read anything this author puts out’ list. When I heard that she had a new book coming out, I went berserk and flailed and stalked Edelweiss continuously to see when it would be available for request. And then it was.

Some readers who read and didn’t like Another Little Piece might encounter similar issues, but I think that for the most part, this is a lot better paced and will be enjoyed by a larger variety of people than Another Little Piece was. With that said, I definitely prefer Another Little Piece but (Don’t You) Forget About Me was JUST as amazing.

Gardnerville is a small town with secrets. The residents live long healthy lives and no one ever gets sick, but every 4 years, a teen loses it and goes off on a murderous rampage. Lately though, things have been changing. People are coming down with the cold, the old have started showing their age, and the teens aren’t losing control. Something is wrong and Skyla won’t figure it out until she remembers what she is trying to forget

Skylar is an unreliable narrator much like Annaliese from Another Little Piece but the difference between the two is that you don’t even realize Skylar is unreliable until the mystery starts unraveling. For the most part, she seems reliable aside from the fact that she may or may not be addicted to Forget Me Nots which she takes to forget - forget something she can no longer remember. But somehow, in spite of this, you like her. I don’t really know what it is about her; she should be annoying --  she really should be -- but you cannot help but like her. She can read people’s secrets and she should respect their privacy but that doesn’t mean she is tempted. She is very human in some ways, but she is also very mature. She has grown up surrounded by secrets. Secrets call to her. And sometimes she even takes them.

The secondary characters are an interesting lot to say the least. From Elton who you’ll come to hate and pity at the same time, to GG who you’ll have no clue about until the end, to her little brother who is just adorable.

The love interest. Foote.

 

“A boy full of secrets who can take a few bullets and chalk it up as nothing more than a scratch is made for this town. He’s doing just fine here, and I have no doubt that he’ll stay.”


He is mysterious but he isn’t an ass. You’re never quite sure of him but you cannot help, but develop a crush on him like our female lead did. I think one of the reasons I like him is that even though you’re never sure about him, he doesn’t lead her on. Ever. He is himself and that is why he is so hard to discern. He’s had a tough life but while it haunts him, I don’t feel like it changes who he is. A really sweet guy *sigh*

The romance is of the best variety. A good ole slow burn and better yet, it isn’t the focus. Hell, there are times you wonder whether the two will even ‘get together’. This book should not be labelled a romance because it is NOT one. There are hints of one and that’s about it but even those hints are perfect.

The mystery is what makes you giddy though. This book is stuffed with creepy. LOTS AND LOTS of creepy. And you never know what the hell is going on. Was Piper good or bad? Why the hell is Elton drugging all these kids and why is it a good thing? What is so special about the soil? What is so special about the Gardners? What is it that Skylar cannot remember?Everything is so well done.

This book is a giant puzzle and the author takes her sweet time giving us the pieces. You cannot call this one predictable. At all. But at the same time, it’s not unpredictable either. She doesn’t throw in twists, she gives you an honest to goodness mystery that she solves perfectly too. We are right there with Skylar trying to figure out what is going on and Kate isn’t offering the readers any clues. We have the same clues as the main character, but with the added advantage of getting hints from the past.

I absolutely LOVED how Kate incorporated pieces from the past into the novel. It’s usually annoying, but she does it so, so, so well. Like, can I emphasize what a brilliant mastermind she is?

You can also see how much Quinn has grown as a writer since Another Little Piece. This book is just as beautifully crafted as Another Little Piece, but where Another Little Piece took time to capture your attention, this one grabs it right from the start and it takes you on a long ride that leaves your mind boggled and wondering whether Kate sold her soul to the devil in exchange for brilliant writing skills.

This book is definitely a favorite of 2014 like Another Little Piece was of 2013 and really, I NEED MORE OF BOOKS WRITTEN BY KATE. I gots to have more.

I cannot say everyone will enjoy this because everyone won’t, but I’d still recommend it to everyone in the hopes of finding someone who loved it just as much as I did.

Note that all quotes have been taken from an uncorrected proof and may be subject to change

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review 2013-10-08 16:57
Leap of Awesome by Jamie Blair
Leap of Faith - Jamie Blair
"Once you name it, it's yours. 
Someone said that once.
I don't remember who, but it's true. I named her. She's mine."



As some of you might know, I've been in a reading slump, reading bad book after bad book. I was way past my breaking point. I had had enough of reading books that didn't love me back so I picked this one up. I bought it a while ago and was waiting for the 'right time' to read it, which was now, because otherwise I would just start screaming at everyone (I was already half way there, being pissed at everything). And this book was great. It was heart-wrenchingly beautiful and though it wasn't perfect it touched me in a way no book has in (what seems like) a long long long time. 

I read this within 2.5 hours, I COULDN'T STOP!! I needed to know how this would end. I am not even sure how to put everything into words because I am still shocked by the beauty of this book.

Faith has never been particularly brave and has a rather low self-esteem. Her older sister is graduating soon and then she'll be left in the hell-hole all alone. She doesn't think she'll make it out though because she isn't particularly smart and cannot be athletic (like her sister) because she has asthma. It isn't until her mom is having a baby (which she is being paid to have might I mention) that something changes inside Faith. She needs to save the baby from having the kind of crappy life she had and so little by little, subconsciously, she starts planning and the day the baby is born she runs away. 

You cannot but help empathize with her because she doesn't really know anything about babies but she really wants to keep Addy. She'll do anything to keep her safe yet she isn't sure if she made the right decision because what if she cannot sustain the two of them? What IF? 

The way the author portrays the whole situation seems realistic for me. Of course I realize I probably won't be the best judge of that but still. Raising a baby is hard, it has it's ups and downs. 

Faith's interaction with the baby is also really great. She can come off as over-protective but who wouldn't expect her to be? She makes stupid decisions but you really cannot expect her not to seeing the kind of situation she is in. I loved seeing her fall more in love with the baby each day despite all the hard-ships. It really goes to show it really doesn't matter who the birth mother is. 

The romance is actually not the highlight of the book for me because really this is Faith's story, no one elses. I loved Chris but Faith really was the highlight of this book. Their romance is great. It isn't cliched and it's sweet and realistic in some ways. I'll admit to thinking it had a rather insta like feel to it but that really can be justified. When no one has really ever been kind to you in your life or treated you with respect, you're bound to be fascinated with someone who does (and it helps that he is cute ;)). It doesn't hurt that she is realistic about the fact that things won't be so easy for the two of them seeing that she is keeping so many secrets.

My main problem with the story was that there were some what I'll call time gaps. It went by too fast (not in a good way), there just seemed to be some things that didn't connect as well as I would have liked, holes that could have been filled. 

The ending is somewhat open which might bother some people but because I am rather optimistic, I already imagine everything is going to work out.

In the end this was an excellent debut and the author shows a lot of promise. I am definitely reading whatever else Jamie is going to put out.

I recommend this book to people who love emotional contemporary books.

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