Monday, September 30, 2013

Somebody Up There Hates You | Hollis Seamon

"Chemo, radiation, a zillion surgeries, watching my mom age twenty years in twenty months; if that's part of the Big Dude's plan, then it's pretty obvious, isn't it? 


SUTHY has landed me here in this hospice, where we- that's me and Sylvie- are the only people under thirty in the whole place, sweartogod. We need to keep things interesting. I mean, we're kids, hospice hostages or not. We freak out visitors; I get my uncle to sneak me out for one insane Halloween night. Stuff like that. And Sylvie wants to make things even more interesting. 
That girl's got big plans. 

Only Sylvie's father is so nuclear-blasted by what's happened to his little girl, he glows orange, I swear. So we got a major family feud going on, right here in the hospice. DO NOT CROSS line running down the middle of the hall it's crazy.

In the middle of all of this, really, there's just me and Sylvie, a guy and a girl. And we want to live, in our way, by our own rules, for whatever time we've got. So let's get to it. "

This book is a very typical cancer book, much like The Fault in Our Stars, the two main teenage characters just want to live a normal life, no matter the cost. Of course at the ripe age of fifteen and seventeen the foremost thing in their minds is getting laid, unfortunately achieving that goal may take a lot more than just one night alone. 

Sylvie is a strong female character; she makes her own rules and she expects others to follow them. She doesn't let anything, not even cancer, break her down. Before getting sick she was perfect: popular, smart, pretty. After getting sick she's been stuck in the hospice and meets no one other than Richard. 

Richard is at a much more advanced level of his cancer, he can barely walk: most of the time he uses a wheelchair, his eyesight is almost completely gone, he doesn't eat, from here it's all pretty much downhill. Then one night his uncle takes him out and he gets a taste of the real world, one somewhat normal night. No one knew about his cancer and no one judged him. Then he gets an offer from Sylvie and everything becomes about her, fulfilling her wish, but then living with the consequences that come after. 

I thought this was a pretty good book, although it didn't impact me as much as the TFIOS did. It's not so much emotional as it is just watching the rite of passage for a seventeen year old with cancer, and his hurry to do it. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Shadows | Jennifer L. Armentrout

"The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are...well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane. 

Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable. 

Bethany can't deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren't a complication she wants, she can't stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she's drawn in. 

Captivated. Lured. Loved. 

Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence...and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can't stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself." 

This story is a prequel of the entire Lux series and it gives us an insight to more of the Lux community. In context with the rest of the series, it fits very well but as a stand-alone book, I thought it was incredibly disappointing compared to the rest of the series. Personally I think this is mainly because of the couple. Through many of the books I have liked and haven't liked, I came to the conclusion the the love-hate relationship is crucial factor in my opinion of the book. Katy and Daemon (Kaemon) hated each other at first and it took them at least two books to even admit their like, much less their love for each other. However Bethany and Dawson fell for each other within a day of meeting each other. It was too cliché for my liking. 

I think the best part about this entire book was getting more of an insight into Daemon's personality before he was smitten with Katy. Strangely it made me love him even more. Reading about when he was with Ash made me feel jealous for Katy, which is ridiculous I know, but I have to live my life somewhere. 

Personally I think this book or novella should be made more available. I'm not sure if it was just me but the entire book took me forever to find. It didn't have it at my library, I couldn't order it from Amazon or Barnes and Nobles because there is apparently no paperback edition. Then I tried to get a digital version or an audiobook. But audiobooks are mad expensive and then I found a free kindle version on Amazon and finally read it on my computer. So instead of doing my homework, I spent the day looking for and reading this book. Glad I have my priorities straight! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Saving June | Hannah Harrington

"If she'd waited less than two weeks, she'd have been June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn't consider that.""When Harper Scott's Sister, June, commits suicide just before her high school graduation and Harper's divorcing parents decide to split the ashes, Harper steals June's urn and embarks on a journey with her best friend, Laney, and the mysterious and aggravating Jake Tolan to take her sister to the one place she always wanted to go- California. An intense and romantic debut novel. " 

I have to say I wasn't too impressed with this book, I've felt like I've read it before in Ordinary People by Judith Guest and Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. All of them consist of the same main elements. The book begins with the sibling/ close friend committing suicide while the rest of the book follows the protagonist as they attempt to acquire closure. This book in particular had many of the clichéd and overused character personalities.
  • The protagonist who hates everything and feels like a complete failure. Harper was this girl. She never expected anything of herself and did whatever she wanted, regardless of the environment or situation. Even though I found qualities of myself in her, I found her extremely unlikable throughout the book.
  • The perfect sibling. The one who was also considered better, more successful and perfect. These characters end up being the ones who commit suicide. Throughout the book, everyone looked down on Harper and considered June as the better sibling, but of course she killed herself, so that just shows how much they know. 
  • The "wild and free" best friend. There's always that one friend that is more outgoing than the main character but has deep problems that the reader doesn't get to see since the book isn't focused on them.Throughout the book, Laney was known for doing careless things and of course that resulted in her pregnancy. But we also discover she has some problems with her family, which I definitely would have liked to learn a little more about. 
  • The mysterious hot guy/girl. In every book there's a hot guy/girl whom the main character knows nothing about then they find out how awesome that person is and end up hooking up with them. I wasn't too fond of Jake, he was too "I'm better than most guys" for lack of better words. 
  • The divorce. In every book, just to make the protagonist's life harder, there is always a divorce or some kind of rift in the marriage of the parents. I personally didn't like either the mom or the dad. The mom was somewhat of a hypocrite, she blamed Harper for not being there for her when she herself was leaving Harper alone. The father was just a jerk. People like him make me hate mankind. He has absolutely no right to walk out on his family but claim he had a right on June's ashes.
I'm not saying that I hated this book, but while I was  reading I did feel a sense of deja-vu, as if I'd read so many books like this before, which I have. Did I cry during this book? Yes, of course. But other than the whole death aspect, this book didn't connect with me as a lot of other books have. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Origin | Jennifer Armentrout

First thing first: the cover. I'm a teenage I didn't exactly mind the shirtless guy on the cover. But the cover was definitely overdramatized. "He'll burn the world to save her." It makes it sound like Kat is a weak damsel in distress like Bella. She's not. At all. It also just makes it seem like the entire book is revolving around him saving her, when really he gets to her in the middle of the book.

I have to admit I was somewhat disappointed with this book, but that's only because the first two books were mostly the brewing romance between Katy and Daemon, while at this point the real plot is beginning to thicken. And in fact it's this plot that brought the book back to the high standards I had. The entire system the DOD had of testing the human DNA with the Luxen DNA in order to create a near perfect society is just intriguing, very much sparking the science geek inside me. Then there was the whole revealing of the Luxen species to the human population. Thankfully though, the cliffhanger wasn't as bad as it was in Opal.

Now for the characters...I absolutely love Kat, which is really strange considering I usually don't like the female characters of novels. But Kat is strong, she's independent, she absolutely refuses Daemon to treat her like a princess, she's a fellow book nerd. And through all of this she's stayed so strong except for one night, which is completely understandable. She's also grown so much throughout the books, she's learning from everything that happens to her. But unlike her, Beth is completely weak, at least that's how it seems to me. She constantly needs Dawson by her side, reassuring her which I guess is fine, considering all she's gone through and whatever but I still love the character of Kat. Now Daemon...I love him too. I've loved him from the beginning. He is arrogant and a complete jerk and (call me crazy) this just makes me love him even more. Especially now that we get a little look into his brain we know he's not a complete jerk, he's ridiculously arrogant but has a soft mushy center. Finally the person I pitied the most was Kat's mom. I know she's barely mentioned in the book, but I can't help but think "How is she getting through all of this?" I know my mom would completely freak if I disappeared one day. But to have your husband die of cancer and they a few years later have your only daughter disappear, that's gotta be rough. I'm really hoping that in Opposition, Kat and her mom have a happy reunion, otherwise it would be kind of upsetting.

I can't believe I have to wait a whole other year for the next one to come out...

Friday, September 6, 2013

Opal | Jennifer Armentrout

So just read this book…I have such conflicting emotions I’m not even sure how to react. 
First there’s the cover. To be honest, the cover doesn’t do justice to any part of the book. It shows the girl (presumably Katy) leaning against or holding onto the male (presumably Daemon) as though she is heavily dependent on him, which she is obviously not. 
Then the actual book. I have to admit, my expectations for this book for really really high. I wasn’t sure what to expect. But I have to admit I didn’t like the fact that Katy and Daemon got together. I think their entire love-hate relationship is what made them so atypical to the normal couple (of course besides the whole alien thing). This book wasn’t as action-packed nor was it full or romance. It was lacking a certain quality. 
Now moving to the characters. Can we all just agree that Katy needs to get a lock for her door? First Daemon continually walks into her house, I guess that’s acceptable since he’s her boyfriend and all. But Carissa, Will and Blake are just mad creepy. Especially Blake. I think it’s accepted that if a you like a girl the best way to get her NOT to date you is to climb into her bed and sleep with her in the middle of the night. 
AND THE ENDING OMG. I think I would have imploded if I didn’t have Origin (the fourth book) right next to me. Thankfully I did. So I’ll be reviewing that soon. 

Obsidian and Onyx | Jennifer Armentrout

Let’s be real, any cover with an extremely hot guy is bound to hook any teenage girl. When the book begins with him being shirtless on his front porch, we’re bound to continue reading. I thought both of these books, Obsidian and Onyx were pretty good, and by pretty good I mean I couldn’t put them down until like 4 in the morning. 
The first one begins with Katy, a seventeen year old book blogger, moving in next door to the Blacks (Daemon and Dee). Upon first impression, Daemon is the douchebag overprotective older brother while Dee is the enthusiastic little sister. Around them Katy notices strange things happening (time stopping, being underwater for over 10 minutes, random storms, your usual run of the mill). Of course she finds out they’re not humans, they’re aliens. But not the typical green blobs we find in movies, they can move and bend light. Of course, no one can know about them, they have enemies, a lot of them. First you have the Arum who just want their powers, then you have the DOD (Department of Defense) a part of the government that wants to discover more about these aliens and finally there’s the general population who just don’t like change. 
Of course there’s also something about the increasing sexual tension between Daemon and Katy. They are constantly fighting, arguing, but we all know they should be together. Daemon's a jerk, Katy fights back. It's not the most typical relationship and I absolutely love it. In other words I ship them. 
I think the only probably with this book was how close it resembled Twilight. I’m not a huge Twilight fan, in fact I’m not really a fan at all. Anyways, here’s just a list of them. 
1. First there’s the obvious one of the last name. Daemon Black vs. Jacob Black…probably just a coincidence since Sirius from Harry Potter also shared the last name.
2. The whole concept of ‘you shouldn’t be friends with me but I’m gonna keep talking to you’ The male, some strange nonhuman creature, will take the female, typically a human, into a wooded area, basically forcing them to “talk a walk” with them. In the woods, they then proceed to tell the female that she shouldn’t be there with him…what kind of logic is that? And I thought females were complicated. 
3. The lack of shirts. For some reason, hot guys in books don’t seem to own shirts…not that I have a problem with it…
I do recommend this book for mainly girls who enjoy fangirling, like moi.