Tuesday, February 25, 2014

3 Stars: Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott

Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood, #1)Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
A modern day thrill ride, where a teen girl and her animal companion must participate in a breathtaking race to save her brother's life—and her own. 

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can't determine what's wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She's lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she's helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It's an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother's illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there's no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can't trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

My Thoughs:

Let me start by saying this: Fire & Flood is NOT The Hunger Games...

Yes, the MC is a girl (what's the percentage of female MCs in YA right now? It's gotta be in the 80s)
Yes, this is a competition (not uncommon)
And yes, there are monkeys (and they're not terrifying, they're territorial and present for about a page & a half)

That's about as similar to THG as Fire & Flood gets

For one, this isn't a dystopian
Contenders don't have to play
Contenders don't have to die
Contenders get these interesting things called Pandoras

So yeah, if you're worried about reading this because of the similarities people are claiming it has to THG don't listen to that and just read it

I have severely mixed emotions about this book

It was very plot driven, but lacked everything else that would have allowed me to give this book a four or five star rating

For one, I do not like our MC, Tella. She was shallow and vain, and I didn't like being in her head in this book
Some of her thoughts made no sense and contradicted themselves.
I did like all of the other characters though

There was a bit of humor but I did no laughing out loud
Bad things happened but I felt emotionally detached
There was no relationship development between Tella and Guy. It felt like Insta-love to me and even though I really did like Guy, I didn't like how they fell for each other with no development except her seeing him before the race and following him in the jungle
Also, I would have liked to see more development with Tells and her brother because at this point I don't really care what happens to him I just want to see what happens with the race. Some flashbacks with the siblings I think would have been extremely helpful and would have made me care about Tella winning the race and curing her brother (this did not happen in this book so it's not a spoiler!)

The writing in the beginning was off to me. It felt rushed and choppy and I had a hard time staying focused. Also, about two or so pages in, I REALLY didn't like Tella. Towards the end, I felt less annoyed with her, but I still am not a fan. I'm hoping that she was made to be unlikeable, so I can watch her develop and learn to love her in the next book, I'd be okay with that

The last 75 or so pages of this book were amazing, they are the only reason I will be picking the next book up AS SOON AS IT COMES OUT! I don't mind that we had to wait until the end to get the story behind the Brimstone Bleed and I though it was great!

The twist with Dink was COMPLETELY unpredictable
I actually gasped when I read it!

All in all, I liked this book. Maybe enough to give it a 3.5 but because of Tella, I won't round it up to a four star.
If the second book can be more than just a story, I know I will love the crap out of it because I am very intrigued with the last 3rd of the book and I've gotta know what happens!

Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood, #1)    Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood, #1)    Fire & Flood (Fire & Flood, #1)

3 "Fire & Flood"s

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Top Ten Debuts I'm looking forward to in 2014

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Since I have started blogging, I've seen a lot of bloggers reading ARCs and their reviews have gotten me excited for their release! So I listed the top 10 debuts I am looking forward to getting my hands on!

Cruel Beauty
Why I will be reading it:Aside from the fact that this is one of the most gorgeous covers I've ever laid eyes on, the story looks great. I've seen some mixed reviews but I am definitely going to give it a try!

Fates (Fates, #1)
The synopsis is quite different and I am intrigued!
Why I will be reading it:  In this book, we are able to see from the point of view of the antagonist. How cool is that?! I always like to see how the same story can be told in many different ways! 

Alienated (Alienated, #1)

 Epic fantasy in a jungle? Sign me up!

Prisoner of Night and Fog (Prisoner of Night and Fog, #1)

Why I will be reading it: I have read a one historical fiction novel and I loved it. I would love to read more! Along with this catchy title comes a fascinating story that takes place in 1930's Munich.
Love Letters to the Dead

Why I will be reading it: This book looks like it will be soul shredding and beautiful. Am I ready for that? Probably not but I will still be picking this one up!
Why I will be reading it: "Alex is one soul with fifty-six past lives, fifty-six histories." 
Why I will be reading it: For fans of the Uglies series...While I am not the number one fan of the Uglies series, I did enjoy it very much and I haven't read dystopia in too long!

In Defense of: Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)The heart-stopping conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, which Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, called "a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love"

Juliette now knows she may be the only one who can stop the Reestablishment. But to take them down, she'll need the help of the one person she never thought she could trust: Warner. And as they work together, Juliette will discover that everything she thought she knew-about Warner, her abilities, and even Adam-was wrong.

In Shatter Me, Tahereh Mafi created a captivating and original story that combined the best of dystopian and paranormal and was praised by Publishers Weekly as "a gripping read from an author who's not afraid to take risks." The sequel, Unravel Me, blew readers away with heart-racing twists and turns, and New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia said it was "dangerous, sexy, romantic, and intense." Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and climactic end.

Okay so, after going on goodreads after reading this book, I found a lot of the issues people were having were quite common. I loved this book. While these things bothered me as well, they didnt stop me from giving this book 5 stars. This is because I was able to understand (for the most part) why Mafi chose to do this (I could also be 100% wrong but whatever!)

My Thoughts

Let's move on to the 3 main issues I found people seemed to have with this book:

The Writing: Okay, as annoyed as everyone was with Juliettes ridiculous metaphors and cross outs in Shatter Me and Unravel Me, I loved it. She was locked up, broken, and severely lacked social skills. Where did she turn to? Her writing. I also feel that her writing was developed intentionally as Juliette developed. So, I did miss that in Ignite Me, but I completely understood. Juliette was a different person in this book, she was stronger and had more experience with the world, so she was able to form a sentence without finding 4 different metaphors for the rain. 

Adam (minor spoiler maybe?): I have been all for Warner since the beginning, so this Adam stuff did affect me but I wasn't devastated. I also understood. On both sides of the argument. One, I get how this seems like Mafi just wanted to get everyone on Warners side by making Adam a huge douche nozzle. However, with a first person point of view, we cannot trust that Adam was such a sweet guy because Juliette said so. YOU CAN NEVER TRUST A FIRST PERSON POV ON ANOTHER CHARACTER! Have you ever dated someone and after a while they turn into a completely different person? It's called showing your true colors and we saw that with Adam. Big time. Another thing...The man was dumped! On multiple occasions! And, I'm sure (like everyone else), he noticed something more was going on between Juliette and Warner. The Warner who treated his soldiers like crap, who seemed like a sociopath on the outside and who TRIED TO KILL ADAM! I'm sorry but if my special someone were to leave me for someone who tortured and attempted murder on me, I'd have a few choice words myself. So, if you find yourself saying, "That was so out of character for Adam", ask yourself two questions..1:How well did you actually KNOW Adam, not the "OMG I'm so in love so I'm going to be as mushy and lovable as possible" Adam, but the real Adam. People act differently when they're "in love" (usually more annoying) and that's how I feel it was for Adam. Question 2: How would you feel if this all happened to you? Adam was dumped by the girl he loved and saw something going on between her and the guy who tried to kill him. He was then left by all of his friends for these two, when all he wanted to do was keep his little brother safe. I get that you're upset Team Adam chicks, I do, but to me, this was not out of character, this was the real Adam.

The "World-Building": I find myself slightly irritated when someone complains about the world building. We got a decent amount of it, so when I see people who weren't satisfied with it, all I can think of is "you just wanted more so you're blaming it on the book". The world Mafi built I feel was solid. she gave us a bit of history and description of the way the world is during the time the book takes place. Yes, the ending was rushed and there could have absolutely been more, but battles don't always have to last for fifty pages, and sometimes there are more important things, like the characters. This main point is one I have difficulty defending though, because I do wish there was more, but that's just because I love these books and I'd take all I can get!


I feel that the strengths of this final installment absolutely dwarfed the weaknesses. The characters made this book. Kenji actually made this book; I swear 90% of my marked quoted were from Kenji. Warner was wonderful; I fell for him over and over again. Juliette developed remarkably. James was adorable and brave and I just want to squish him! The writing, though not the same, was still beautiful. This book was also hilarious. Thanks to Kenji of course. This book sent my emotions all over the place, and I am still trying to grasp how much I loved this book and this series overall!

Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)
5 "Ignite Me"s

Happy Reading! :)

5 Stars! Into the Still Blue by Veronica Rossi

Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)The earth-shattering conclusion to Veronica Rossi's "masterpiece" Under the Never Sky trilogy and sequel to the New York Times bestsellingThrough the Ever Night (Examiner.com).

Their love and their leadership have been tested. Now it's time for Perry and Aria to unite the Dwellers and the Outsiders in one last desperate attempt to bring balance to their world.

The race to the Still Blue has reached a stalemate. Aria and Perry are determined to find this last safe-haven from the Aether storms before Sable and Hess do-and they are just as determined to stay together.

Meanwhile, time is running out to rescue Cinder, who was abducted by Hess and Sable for his unique abilities. And when Roar returns to camp, he is so furious with Perry that he won't even look at him, and Perry begins to feel like they have already lost.

Out of options, Perry and Aria assemble a team to mount an impossible rescue mission-because Cinder isn't just the key to unlocking the Still Blue and their only hope for survival, he's also their friend. And in a dying world, the bonds between people are what matter most.

In this final book in her stunning Under the Never Sky trilogy, Veronica Rossi raises the stakes to their absolute limit and brings her epic love story to an unforgettable close.


“We all have the potential to do terrible things. But we also have the potential to overcome our mistakes.”


The strength of all three of these books has always been the characters so that's what I am going to "dwell" on (get it?)

Rossi makes her characters so real, so lovable (and so very hateable as well!)

Of course he had his faults but Perry is wonderful. I absolutely adore the love that Perry has for his nephew, Talon. He is fierce and brave when it comes to protecting the ones he loves

So beautifully broken and passionate, so funny and caring. I was so heartbroken at the beginning when Roar was lashing out, but it was interesting to see another side of him and even better when he reverted back to his old self. I loved .

He surprised me. Just like Rossi had promised! It was fascinating to watch Soren go from a psychopath to a character essential who played a VITAL role in making it to the Still Blue


it was expected, I am oh so bummed that there was no way to get around Cinder having to die but a good book isn't always just sunshine and rainbows! I love Cinder for his bravery and I really wish things didn't have to end the way they did for him, I really wanted him to be able to be normal :(

Oh Aria, can we all just take a minute to bask in the glow that is Aria? I don’t know about anyone else but she is one of my favorite female characters. Can we talk about this chicks character development throughout this series?!?! She went from a spoiled Dweller scared out of her mind over everything and she became a strong woman (stronger than all the men!) Also, I can't remember if she was always such a smart ass in the other two novels but I couldn't get enough of it in this book! So funny! I just LOVE Aria! I loved how she wouldn't give in to Sable how she was always just telling him how she wished him dead rather than drowning in her grief and moping. RESPECT!

Talon, Willow, Reef, Marron, Brooke/Laurel, etc., etc. The love I have for all the characters is unending!

Along with the amazing characters Rossi has created and perfected, wonderful relationships formed as well. Although I not a hater of the love triangle, I do appreciate that there wasn't one because it would have ruined and beautiful friendship between Aria and Roar. 

Some Minor Issues I had:

I really wish we could have had a bit more of Aria's Dweller friends. Caleb seemed like a sweet funny guy and I would have liked to see more development with him and all the Dwellers.

Everything leading up to the loss of Cinder was devastating. However, when it finally happened, I felt emotionally...lacking. Then afterwards I was back to being upset but I wasn't connected to the moment         like I should have been

The biggest problem I have with the series is that IT'S OVER but I WANT MORE!!!

Veronica Rossi I'm gonna need for you to write some more books particularly ones with Roar as the MC
kthanksbye! :)

All in all, I loved the crap outta this book! 5 Stars!

Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)  Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)  Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)  Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)  Into the Still Blue (Under the Never Sky, #3)

5 "Into the Still Blue"s