Thursday, November 24, 2011

Devil's Kiss by Sarwat Chadda

Devil's Kiss by Sarwat Chadda
Pages: 327
Publisher: Puffin
Release Date: May 7th, 2009
Rating: 4.5/5

As the youngest and only female member of the Knights Templar, Bilquis SanGreal grew up knowing she wasn’t normal. Instead of hanging out at the mall or going on dates, she spends her time training as a soldier in her order’s ancient battle against the Unholy.

Billi’s cloistered life is blasted apart when her childhood friend, Kay, returns from Jerusalem, gorgeous and with a dangerous chip on his shoulder. He’s ready to reclaim his place in Billi’s life, but she’s met someone new: amber-eyed Michael, who seems to understand her like no one else, effortlessly claiming a stake in her heart.

But the Templars are called to duty before Billi can enjoy the pleasant new twist to her life. One of the order’s ancient enemies has resurfaced, searching for a treasure that the Templars have protected for hundreds of years—a cursed mirror powerful enough to kill all of London’s firstborn.

To save her city from catastrophe, Billi will have to put her heart aside and make sacrifices greater than any of the Templars could have imagined.

Devil's Kiss is about a girl named Bilqis, or Billi. Her mother was killed by the Unholy, and her father is part of a group called the Knights Templar, fighters of the Unholy. Billi is training to be part of them.

The book starts off with a bang with Billi trying to pass her Ordeal. One must pass the Ordeal in order to be part of the Templar. The first line was was purely epic, for lack of a better word.

Killing him should be easy; he's only six.

Really, how awesome is that?!

Unfortunately, it slowed down quite a bit after the first couple chapters. Almost to the point where I just didn't want to pick up the book.

Billi was a strong character, but she was also flawed. This made her very enjoyable. Her relationship with her best friend, Kay, was also quite adorable. I found myself loving Kay from when he was first introduced. He's just so...innocent, but at the same time, a major bad-ass.

Kay was a very disturbed child, as he is an Oracle. The Templar knights found him when he was young and took him in. He'd have nightmares every night, and pretty much jump just at the sight of his shadow. He'd talk to things no one else could see, and have fits where he'd scream God-knows-what in several different languages.

Disturbed. Child.

I loved him so much!

The story did pick up again when Billi met Mike, the mysterious boy with amber eyes and tattoos stretching across his neck and torso. She couldn't help but be allured by this boy. So allured that she was blinded by his hideous secrets.

If I said any more, I'd be spoiling the whole book.

This book, though, is painfully obvious if you know anything about the Bible/angelology/ect.

The ending of the book made me tear up, and I really want to read the next book to see what happens. The ending was just not fair!

This was surprisingly a really good book. Don't be fooled by the synopsis. It is A LOT deeper than it sounds.

The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa

The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa

Pages: 359

Half Summer faery princess, half human. Maghan has never fit in anywhere.  Deserted by the Winter prince she thought loved her, she is prisoner to the Winter faery queen.  As war looms between Summer and Winter, Meghan knows that the real danger comes from the Iron fey -- ironbound faeries that only she and her absent prince have seen. But no one believes her.

Worse. Meghan's own fey powers have been cut off.  She's stuck in Faery with only her wits for help.  Trusting anyone would be foolish.  Trusting a seeming traitor could be deadly.  But even as she grows a backbone of iron, Meghan can't help but hear the whispers of longing in her all-too-human heart.

The main characters are Ash, Puck, and Meghan Chase.  Meghan was always, and always will be annoying. I just can't get over her stupidity, but hey, I'm gonna sound like a broken record, but you have to have at least one.  Ash is the every-so-sexy Winter Prince, who at first I thought was an ass but he got better in the second book. Then there's Puck, the infamous Robin Goodfellow.  He's super funny and I would love to meet him in real life. I like him but in the brotherly way, because he reminds me wayyyyyyyy to much of my brother.  The characters really bring out the best in each other. Like Puck and Ash's mini battles that always end up with them both still alive.

The plot of this book was really good.  I think Miss./Mrs. Kagawa really brought out the plot better in this book than the first one.  It kept me interested the entire time.  Plus, there was more going on, not just a quest, but also saving Ash, trying to keep hidden from Queen mab, and several other things. It wasn't just one, straightforward thing the entire time.

It took me about a day to read this book, because it was really, really good. I thoroughly enjoyed it. And I just want to say, that if you are going to read the Iron Fey series don't stop reading it because of the first one, I mean yes the first one was good, but kinda boring, but keep reading and once you get through  the first one the second one is way better, and I'm so ready to read the third!!


Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Pages: 476

When Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother in Victorian England, something terrifying is waitning for her in London's Downworld.  Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, who are members of a secret organization called the Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she has the power to transform into another person.  The Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the club, will stop at nothing to claim tessa's power for his own.  Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons.  She soon finds her self fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James and Will.  As Tessa is drawn deep into a plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, she realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brther and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.


Clockwork Angel in my opinion is the BEST book that Miss./Mrs. Clare has ever written, that I've read.  It definitely made up for my lack of interest in the fourth mortal instruments book. She regained my respect for her as a writer. I applaud you Miss./Mrs. Clare for writing one of the best books I have ever read, and trust me, it's very hard for me to find a book that I can say that about.

The main characters are Will, Jem, Tessa, Henry, Jessamine and Charlotte.  Cassandra Clare put just the right amount of annoying, stupid, funny, smart, sophisticated, and attitude into these characters.  Will Herondale is witty, amused rarely, and very sarcastic, he's my favorite character and his annoyance with the world never got over-done.  Jem (James) is funny, yet sophisticated and he is adorable.  Henry is the crazy inventor of the group. He is decently smart, and his passion is making things for the clave to use, unfortunately he never gets one to work right.  Jessamine is the annoying, stuck up, prick in this book, but like I said you have to have at least one in every book.  Charlotte, is the head of the Institute, but other than that she's just there, to help out and be the mother-like figure.  And lastly, Tessa who is the main, main character is witty, hard-headed, and makes this book amazing.  She's not one of the main characters that try to hard either. 

The plot of this book was incredible. Cassandra Clare stayed on topic and never strayed.  It was very interesting to see how everything unfolded in the end, with several plot twists that I wasn't expecting at all.

It only took me about two days to read this book because it was just so icredibly-fantastic that I couldn't put it down.  I definitely recommend everyone to start reading the Infernal Devices series.  I'm so excited for the next one, Clockwork Prince, to come out!


City of Fallen Angels by cassandra Clare

City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

Pages: 424

Love, blood, betrayal and revenge — the stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels. Simon Lewis is having some trouble adjusting to his new life as a vampire, especially now that he hardly sees his best friend Clary, who is caught up in training to be a Shadowhunter—and spending time with her new boyfriend Jace. Not to mention that Simon doesn’t quite know how to handle the pressure of not-quite-dating two girls at once. What’s a daylight-loving vampire to do? Simon decides he needs a break and heads out of the city—only to discover that sinister events are following him. Realizing that the war they thought they’d won might not yet be over, Simon has to call on his Shadowhunter friends to save the day — if they can put their own splintering relationships on hold long enough to rise to the challenge.

Okay, just to start this off, I actually didn't like this book as much as the first three. I mean, yea, it was good, but I think Miss./Mrs. Clare kind of slacked off a bit.  I like action, and this focused to much on the love lives of everybody, it wasn't until the last hundred pages or so that I started getting interested in it.

The main character, Clary, has always been annoying to me, but that's what makes the book enjoyable, I mean as much as we all hate annoying people there has to be at least one in every book.  I actually enjoyed the fact that she started her training as a shadowhunter. She wasn't a completely clueless a point.  Jace, well he's just amazing anyway, and I liked that it wasn't all about those two this time, I was glad to see that we got to get with Simon too.  Speaking of, Simon is pretty awesome, but not as awesome as Jace. <3 The other semi-main characters were Camille, Magnus, Alec, Isabelle, Maia, and Kyle.  They made the plot at least a little more interesting.

I actually didn't like the plot all that much. It was mostly focused on Jace and Clarys' tedious, never-gonna-happen relationship.  I like a lot of action, and comparing it to the first three books it just wasn't as good.  There was one major battle scene, and I wouldn't even consider it a battle.  More like Simon saving everybodys butts.  That was amusing actually. 

It took me a couple of days to finish this book because no matter how hard I tried I just could not get into it.  And I mean, I'm biased already because I absolutely LOVE Cassandra Clare, but this book actually diminished some of my love.  The ending.....oh. my. God. I hope she's writing another book, because if that's how she's going to end it, then I'm going to cry. So overall, it was decent, but not up to my expectations of her.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Crank by Ellen Hopkins

Crank by Ellen Hopkins

Pages: 544


This book was amazing. It actually made me stop and think to how vulnerable we, as humas really are.

The main character Kristina (Bree) is a confused, teenager who really just needs her mom to care for her, but knowing she can't get that, she turns to drugs.  She's very "out-there" for lack of a better term.  She knows how to put herself out there in order to get the things she wants. Kristina is the actually person, but Bree is the second person that she made up in order to give her that "bad-assed" image.  It's very similar to multiple-personalities. The other characters in this book aren't really the focus so we really don't learn about them, or see them very much.

The plot in this book is very obvious, very precise.  It's about a girl who goes to stay with her dad, and the "love of her life" (so she thinks) gets her addicted to Crank.  Leading her down the wrong path, he turns out to not be who she thought he was, and when she went back home she was still addicted.  She couldn't find the words to tell her mom, and they ended up finding out in the worst way. 

It took me like 3 hours to read this book because it's written in lyric so it only had an average of 30ish or 40ish words per page. I definitely recommend this book. It opened my eyes to just how dangerous the life of a teenager can be, in one aspect of things. I'm in the middle of reading Glass right now. :D

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

Pages: 416
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Release Date: February 9, 2010
My Rating: A

At the age of nine, Finnikin is warned by the gods that he must sacrifice a pound of flesh to save his kingdom. He stands on the rock of the three wonders with his friend Prince Balthazar and Balthazar's cousin, Lucian, and together they mix their blood to safeguard Lumatere.

But all safety is shattered during the five days of the unspeakable, when the king and queen and their children are brutally murdered in the palace. An impostor seizes the throne, a curse binds all who remain inside Lumatere's walls, and those who escape are left to roam the land as exiles, dying by the thousands in fever camps.

Ten years later, Finnikin is summoned to another rock--to meet Evanjalin, a young novice with a startling claim: Balthazar, heir to the throne of Lumatere, is alive. This arrogant young woman claims she'll lead Finnikin and his mentor, Sir Topher, to the prince. Instead, her leadership points them perilously toward home. Does Finnikin dare believe that Lumatere might one day rise united? Evanjalin is not what she seems, and the startling truth will test Finnikin's faith not only in her but in all he knows to be true about himself and his destiny.

I always get afraid when I read high fantasy/adventure books. For me, I either really love them, or really hate them. Finnikin of the Rock falls into the former. I. Loved. This. Book.

I will be the first to admit that I haven't read Jellicoe Road or Saving Francesca or any other of Marchetta's novels. I'm half tempted to pick one up, though, because this book was amazing.

The characters in this book were really well fleshed-out. There wasn't one I feel didn't have some sort of development throughout the story.

This is a very serious book, but also had its light, funny moments. I could help but laugh at all the sexual references. Yeah, this book is definitely for older teens.

I loved how the romance between Finnikin and Evanjalin wasn't rushed. They didn't lay eyes on each other for the very first time and automatically fall in-love. No, they first actually got to know each other before Finnikin wanted to bang her they got all lovey-dovey. Well, actually, they never really did get too lovey-dovey, but you get the idea. They wanted to make little ginger-babies.

The thing that brought this down that .5 of a point was the beginning. It was soooooo slow. I almost didn't want to read it. But, trust me. Just get through the first 100 pages. It does pick up a lot.

Ya know, I find it a lot harder to review books that I like. ._.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Perk!: The Story Of A Teenager With Bulimia by Liza F. Hall

 Perk!: The Story Of A Teenager With Bulimia by Liza F. Hall

Pages: 126
Publisher: Gurze Books
Release Date: October 6, 1997
My Rating: C

Filling the void in written resources for teenage girls with eating disorders, Perk! is the first title in Gurze's new education and prevention series for kids, teens, and young adult. Perk, whose real name is Priscilla, is a high school student with self-doubts, weight concerns, and puppy love--all of which impel her into bulimia.


This is a book I read in my health class. At the time, we were learning about mental disorders. :D

Perk! is about a girl named Pricilla Sinclair (correct me if I'm wrong. I don't have the book on me), also known as Perk. It is her first day back to school after being out with bronchitis. She is VERY self-conscious and constantly refers back to her chubbiness. To make matters worse, she has a crush on the super-hottie, Dom, her "best friend's" ex-boyfriend. He pays her very little mind. She blames it on her "fat."

It is very clear that her distorted image of herself comes from her mom's verbal abuse. Her mother is super-model thin, and always reminds Perk that she was never Perk's weight when she was a teenager.

Good going, mommy. And you call yourself a student counselor?

To solve her problem, Perk turns to purging after she eats. This leads to disaster.

I will admit, Perk was annoying. NOT because of her disorder, but because of the way she spoke. She was always in a "baby-talk" mode. You know, the way you talk to something super cute? I've never been one to baby-talk, so it kind of bothered me.

*So wishing I still had the book on me xD*

I have never had an eating disorder before, so I don't really get why Perk is doing this to herself. As someone prone to migraines, and constantly puking up whatever I eat, I don't get why someone would willingly go through that. I suppose it's just something that only someone who has it would know how it feels.

I couldn't relate to Perk, so it made it harder to enjoy this book.

I think the best part about reading this was my class's commentary. My class is a bit of a...loud bunch, and said some stupid things.

"So, what's Perk's favorite activity?"

"Puking! :D"

"No, guys! It's art"

The ending was kind of...rushed. I don't like how they just threw Jason in there. It also seemed kind of too easy to get Perk to get help. She never seemed to have that "I'm going to die" moment. Maybe it's just me.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Unnatural by Michael Griffo

Unnatural by Michael Griffo

Pages: 420
Publisher: Kensington
Release Date: February 22, 2011
My rating: F

In the town of Eden in northwestern England stands the exclusive boarding school known as Archangel Academy. Ancient and imposing, it’s a place filled with secrets. Just like its students…

For Michael Howard, being plucked from his Nebraska hometown and sent thousands of miles away is as close as he’s ever come to a miracle. In Weeping Water, he felt trapped, alone. At Archangel Academy, Michael belongs. And in Ciaran, Penry, and especially Ciaran’s enigmatic half-brother Ronan, Michael finds friendship deeper than he’s ever known.

But Michael’s only beginning to understand what makes the Academy so special. Ronan is a vampire—part of a hybrid clan who are outcasts even among other vampires. Within the Academy’s confines exists a ruthless world of deadly rivalries and shifting alliances, of clandestine love and forbidden temptations. And soon Michael will confront the destiny that brought him here—and a danger more powerful than he can imagine…

I was so drawn to this book when I first heard about it, mainly because there aren't many M/M paranormal romances in the YA community. I literally jumped on it when seeing it in my local B&N, resulting in my mother yelling at me for inappropriate behavior in public (Sorry, Mommy).

So, can you tell me why I barely got past page 250? Oh, wait, it's my job to tell you...

This story is centered around Michael Howard, whom is raised by his lunatic mother, mute grandmother, and extremely homophobic grandaddy. Wow, I wonder why things went horribly wrong.

Michael is struggling with homophobic thoughts, and has no friends in school. The only one who talks to him is the really lame, self-proclaimed bully, Mauro, who's only real insult it "gaytard." Seriously? Bullies, you are only insulting yourself by using such a phrase.

To make matters worse, his mommy commits suicide. News quickly travels to his school, making Mauro tease him even more. The news also travels to his long-lost father, whom lives in London.

Guess where you're going, Mikey? Archangel Academy! :D

I really could not stand Michael as a character. If his name wasn't on each page a billion times, I'd think it's a girl speaking. I get that he's gay, but there are such things as "manly" gays. Not macho (though, I'm sure there are), but not downright feminine (though, I do know there are those, too). I think he should have had just a bit more of a backbone on him.

Then, there is Ronan, his sexy vampire boyfriend. Uuugh...He was just like Michael, but a little creepier. When he was first introduced into the story, I thought he was just going to jump Michael and drain him Thus making a better story.

The story would quite often go into the minds of several characters. THIS probably ticked me off the most. NO ONE THINKS LIKE THAT. Page long, complete sentence thoughts. REALLY?!

It seemed that every person in the boarding school was A) a vampire, and B) gay. I mean, there are a couple straight, human characters, but not many.

Forget gay clubs. You want a good time, go to Archangel Academy! -_-

The one thing that bothered me before I even picked the book up was that Michael Griffo, the author, named the main character after himself. That could mean one of two thing...

1: Mr. Griffo was writing about himself in a fantasy.


2: The dude is just uncreative.

I hate writing bashing reviews like this, but sometimes I just can't help myself. I do not think I will try picking this up again, nor will I continue the series if I actually do. It's really disappointing when a book you want to read doesn't come close to par...