Book Review – The Winner’s Crime

The Winner's Crime (Winner's Trilogy Series #2)

Kestrel is back in this exciting new book, The Winner’s Crime. This is the second book in the Winner’s Series Trilogy by Marie Rutkoski. See my review of book one, The Winner’s Curse. I won’t say too much in this review, because I don’t want to give away spoilers from book one.

I suppose, however, I can say Kestrel and Arin are back. Kestrel has sworn to marry the prince, and someday will become Queen of all of Valoria. But Arin is just on the periphery, tugging at her heatstrings and distracting her from her promise. What secrets lay hidden in the magnificent palace? What does the King have planned for Arin and the rest of the Herrani? Kestrel will become a spy, risking everything she loves and her very life to find out the truth.

This exciting second book is just as good as the first. Rutkoski is a powerful writer, weaving beautiful prose with sometimes harsh and horrifying imagery. We long for Kestrel to get what we know she really wants – Arin. But we’re scared of what might happen if she does! I’m utterly engrossed in this series. It’s romantic, intriguing and paced like a thriller. Right up my alley! So start the series today! You won’t regret it.

 

#AmReading

DCCMealy reading a book.

Hey everyone! What are you reading this week? Is it time for Beach Reads yet, or are you still ensconced in fantasy or thriller reads from Winter? Re-reading Harry Potter?

It’s okay. I won’t tell. Right now I’m reading The Winner’s Crime, book two in that series. So good! Read my review of book one here.  And on CD I’m listening to Independent Study, book two in The Testing series. Also, totally amazing. Read my review here of book one. I can’t wait to finish them and get reviews up! They are both amazing.

I’ve recently started and stopped reading two very famous books. Does that ever happen to you? Everyone goes nuts over them, they make movies about them, and you go out and buy it. Then you get five chapters in and you’re like, “Soooo is anything GOING TO HAPPEN HERE?”

Now I understand I might not be the target audience here, but sometimes I just don’t get books where nothing happens.

Unless it was a book just following character’s around from HP. That would be alright. Molly Weasley grocery shopping, anyone?  I can see it now…

Okay I’m back. Sorry, I imagined her levitating oranges into her shopping basket. Heh.

So what are you all reading? How do you feel about starting and stopping books? Yes or no?

Book Review – The Testing

The Testing (The Testing Trilogy Series #1)

The Testing, by Joelle Charbonneau, is a fascinating dystopian adventure. And the best part of coming late to this party is the whole series is already out. No waiting for the next installment with bloody nubs for fingernails! Woot! If you liked The Hunger Games and Divergent, you’ll love The Testing.

Malencia is sixteen years old and fresh out of school. She’s smart, resourceful, and ready to take on the world and help any way she can. But only the best of the best are selected for the testing, and only a select few pass and move on to the University. There, Cia will learn what it takes to help their nation piece humanity back together.

So when she’s chosen, she’s thrilled. Over the moon. Ecstatic. That is, until her father, a former testing candidate, admits his darkest fears. He has no memory of the testing – his memory was wiped. But strange nightmares haunt him. Death, destruction, mutilation and worse play at the edge of his memories. He warns her to trust no one, just in case his nightmares were very real.

But why would the government harm their best and brightest?

Of course the testing is nothing like what she imagined. She’s lucky enough to travel to Tosu city with a few kids from back home, as well as distractingly attractive Thomas. And as they dive into the first days of testing, Cia realizes that her father was right. She and Thomas plow through challenge after challenge, watching other kids fail or die. How far will the testing committee go? What happens to the candidates who disappear after failing a test?

Will Cia and Thomas survive?

This is an exciting and well-written book that will keep you turning those darn pages late into the night. I loved how resourceful Cia was, including mechanical intelligence. That’s not a skill many heroines have! Her burgeoning romance with Thomas is sweet and helps drive along the story, especially when twists near the end question everything she thinks she knows about the candidates from back home. Will Cia make it through the testing? What will she be willing to do to make it out alive?

I’m so excited to dive right into book two, and love that I don’t have to wait for the series to finish! Pick it up today!

 

Book Review – Burning Kingdoms

Burning KingdomsBurning Kingdoms is the second book in the Internment Chronicles by Lauren DeStefano. You can read my review of Perfect Ruin here and find out how awesome this series is! No lies, start it today! But, I will warn you – don’t read on if you don’t want any spoilers!

Morgan and her squad of friends and frenemies are back. They’ve made it out of Internment, the utopic floating island in the sky. But the Earth below isn’t how they thought it would be. In some ways, it’s fascinating. Water called rain falls from the sky, people own homes bigger than office buildings, and people can marry whomever they want.

But there is also war. Terrifying war that threatens the haven they’ve found and demolishes whole cities. Morgan and Pen creep over their new surroundings, learning everything they can about this new place. We see this world, so like our own world, through their new eyes. It’s charming and dangerous and very exciting. Then the bombs hit too close to home, and everything turns more dangerous than they ever imagined.

Throw in a dash of forbidden romance and unexpected attractions, and you’ve got a potent mix of drama from all angles. This is a fascinating, unique low-fantasy that will entrance readers of romance and genre fiction alike.

 

Book Reviews!

Image result for too busy funny meme

Okay, well I’m not actually doing nothing. But! But, but, but.

Now I’ve said that so many times it’s lost all meaning.

Soon I’ll have two new book reviews on the blog. One for THE TESTING (SO GOOD GUYS REALLY) and one for BURNING KINGDOMS (ALSO SO GOOD).

I can’t wait to tell you all about them! Stay tuned! And in the meantime, what are you reading?

Book Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest

The Darkest Part of the Forest (Signed Book)Hazel and her brother, Ben, live in the magical town of Fairfold. In Fairfold, humans and fae share the forest that surrounds their little town. Tourists come from all over to witness fairy magic and tricks, but most of all, tourists come to see the horned boy in the glass  coffin. Nothing has awakened him since anyone can remember. And to the locals, the horned boy is just another strange part of their strange town. Hazel and the other kids have keggers surrounding the glass casket, and dance the night away on the casket itself.

Until one day, the boy wakes up. It turns out that Hazel isn’t an average resident of Fairfold. Ever since she was little, Hazel and her brother were self-styled knights who fought evil in Fairfold forest. After an incident that left Ben unwilling to participate, Hazel finally stopped hunting the evil as a child. But now Hazel finds herself drawn back into the twisted mysteries of the fae, where she must decide who she is, and what she’s willing to fight for. Can she stop the dreaded evil in the forest and save the horned boy, and her town, before it’s too late?

Filled with forbidden love, plot twists and just the right hint of magic, this exciting stand alone novel is a real treat! I absolutely loved reading it while on my last beach vacation. This is such a great mix of fantasy without getting too incredibly dark. I highly recommend it!

 

Book Review- The Family Romanov

The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia

The Romanovs, Russia’s last imperial family, were beautiful, rich and out of touch. This book follows Tsar Nicholas II’s rise to the throne, his years leading the country during World War I, and their eventual imprisonment and murder. Written almost as a novel, Fleming takes us on a journey into the court of the royal Romanov family. A fascinating look into the lives of infamous Anastasia…

Read more!

Book Review -The Winner’s Curse

The Winner's Curse (Winner's Trilogy Series #1)

 

Kestrel is the General’s daughter. That means that her life is a series of expectations – he would love nothing more than for her to follow him into the Valorian army. Kestrel has a unique talent for strategy that could lead to a successful career. Or, she could marry a fellow Valorian and bear handsome babies.

But Kestrel doesn’t want any of that. Instead, she enjoys nothing more than playing her beloved pinao, a forbidden hobby that makes her odd and eccentric in the eyes of society. And her reputation couldn’t be more strained, until she finds herself at the Herrani slave market. Impulsively she purchases Arin, a handsome slave who can supposedly sing and is a master blacksmith.

So begins the sexually tense, forbidden relationship between Kestrel and Arin. She knows that he has more in his background than he lets on, and isn’t surprised to discover that before the war, Arin was a member of the Herrani aristocracy.

What Kestrel doesn’t know is that Arin is a spy for the Herrani, who are planning on overthrowing the Valorian usurpers. Will she admit her feelings before the inevitable attack? And are Arin’s feelings real, or just a clever trick by a clever spy?

This expertly written, deliciously addictive and suspenseful romance is a must-read! Rutkoski is an extremely talented writer, and readers will love following her into this forbidden world of romantic intrigue. Spys, forbidden love and class strife make for a fantastic book! I can’t wait to read the next one :) I’m already on the waiting list at the library!

Get it today!

 

Book Review – UNDIVIDED

UnDivided (Unwind Dystology Series #4)

Neal Shusterman’s UNWIND Dystology (set of four books) has come to a close. UnDivided is a stirringly poetic end to the supremely screwed up, fascinating and nauseating world of “dividing” teens for body parts.

If you haven’t had the privilege of reading the series, read my review here. This series is not only an exciting thrill-ride, but acts as a thought-provoking social commentary:

In the future a war was fought over the concept of abortion. Essentially there were two sides – Pro Life and Pro Choice. Both sides wouldn’t budge on their views and stirred up a holy war that threatened to tear the country apart. To appease both sides, a deal was reached. Abortions were illegal, but between the ages of 13 and 18, a parent could retroactively “Unwind” a child who wasn’t living up to potential. “Unwinding” is essentially harvesting 100% of the body as donor materials. In this way, children never ‘die,’ but simply live on in a divided state. This is the story of three such children marked for unwinding.

This is an excellent choice for your more serious teen reader and adults. It’s easy to fall in love with charismatic, flawed Conner and his quest for freedom. Will he survive? Will he successfully fight to end unwinding? Will he and Risa end up together?  Shusterman is a master of emotion, drawing you deep within the psyche of the bullies, the heroes and the misunderstood rebels of the unwinding revolution. His unique approach of jumping from main characters to secondary, and in some cases, random characters allows the reader a sneak glimpse into other’s perspective. They’re not always thinking what you might expect them to be. It’s hard not to feel a pang of sympathy for the parent who made a horrible, life-ending decision for their child and now lives to regret it. Or to see the past of a horrific bully, and why he is so tortured and treats the world as he does (see my previous review of UNWIND for that one). I was in tears more than once with this series! However, as dour as the circumstances are, we have a pretty happy ending with the series, making the whole thing worth it. I won’t give it away, but I felt satisfied as the series came to a close. It was the best kind of book – poignant and well-written!

I absolutely love this series! Rush out to your library or book store and get it today!