Monday, August 13, 2012

Book Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

GoodReads Summary:

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. 

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom. 

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best. 

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

I just finished reading this book.  Like literally two minutes ago.  I had it on pre-order for my Kindle and it was delivered yesterday.  I haven't put it down since I got it!  I've been waiting for this to be published since I first set eyes on it on Fictionpress about 10 years ago and it did not disappoint.

There were lots of changes to the original storyline, which was to be expected, but nothing so drastic that made me sit there, scratch my head and go "what the hell?"

I have read some reviews on Goodreads that said they felt like they were missing part of the story, that the mythology wasn't explained, but I know that it's coming, and I feel confident that the author wouldn't just leave us hanging like that.

Celaena Sardothien is Adarlan's Assassin, sent to the salt mines of Endovier as punishment for her crimes, but after a year as a slave, she is released under close guard so that she can compete with other warriors/criminals, all vying for their chance at freedom and to become the King's Champion.

I'll be honest, I am annoyed with her at times.  For a world class assassin, she sure doesn't stir one bit when someone enters her room.  Someone could have easily killed her in her sleep if they wanted.  She is completely arrogant, and at times, childish...but then I have to remind myself that despite her accomplishments, she is only 18.

I kind of wish there wasn't so much of a love triangle scenario going, that she wouldn't waver so much in her affections for Chaol and Dorian.  It almost seems like she's playing them both for fools, but the love triangle seems to be prevalent in most YA novels these days.

As a standalone story, I can see how those who had never read the original could be disappointed.  There's much that isn't properly explained, such as what Celaena's connection to Elena is, or what the real story of Celaena’s past is.  Those who aren't familiar with the story might not realize that this is just a slice of a much larger pie.

Now for the good.  It was AWESOME!!  *squeals like a fan girl* I was counting down the days until it was released and was not disappointed with the final product.  Ms. Maas has a fluid writing style that has always been able to capture and keep my attention.  She doesn't waste time with flowery description, but instead focuses on the important stuff.  The plot flowed smoothly and was exciting, with a bit of mystery, magic, and intrigue.  Throughout the book, I was completely sure of who the culprit was and I was right, but that didn't stop me at all from being riveted to each page.

Even the action sequences, which I normally gloss over because I'm bored with them, were very well written.  And despite the fact that Celaena is, essentially, a "bad guy", you're rooting for her the entire time because you know there's something deeper there, unlike Cain, who seems to be bad just because he likes it.


Get it here

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Book Review: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Goodreads Summary:
Young Katniss Everdeen has survived the dreaded Hunger Games, not once, but twice, but even now she can find no relief. President Shit has declared an all-out war on Katniss, her family, her friends, and all the oppressed people of District 12. The thrill-packed final installment of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy will keep young hearts pounding.
This book, for me, was a big disappointment when compared to the first two books of this trilogy. I had a hard time even getting through it, where with the first two books I read them in a couple days each, it took me almost a month to get through this one. I really didn't feel like anything was really resolved, and there were only more questions left to answer.
I was really disappointed with Prim's character development and how the author just seemed to discard he'd like yesterday's leftovers. The story didn't even really start to pick up until about three-quarters of the way in.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

To-Read List

Books that I currently have in my possession or on my Kindle, ready to be read. Updated from my previous list.
1. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
2. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
3. Ripple by Mandy Hubbard
4. The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton
5. Jenny Pox by JL Bryan
6. Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick
7. The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare
8. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
9. Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
10. The Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon
11. The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

Book Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Goodreads Summary:

Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark won the annual competition described in Hunger Games, but the aftermath leaves these victors with no sense of triumph. Instead, they have become the poster boys for a rebellion that they never planned to lead. That new, unwanted status puts them in the bull's-eye for merciless revenge by The Capitol...


Another excellent read by Suzanne Collins. Like the first book, I couldn't put it down! Katniss and Peeta were victorious in defeating all the other districts' tributes, and it seems that their stunt with the berries doesn't go unnoticed by either the Capitol or the people. Its being seen as an act of rebellion and the cause of uprising from other districts. Katniss is then sent into the arena again to battle the other remaining victors of previous Hunger Games.

Sequels are usually hard for me to like as much as the first book, but there are some exceptions (Harry Potter, The Fever series, and now The Hunger Games). I think that this one may be a bit more difficult to read than the first for the younger audience (it is a young adult novel, after all) because its dealing more with government uprising as well as the killings.




Get it here:

Barnes & Noble

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Book Review: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Goodreads Summary:

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love.


I am in love with this series and the writer's style. I picked this book up two days ago and couldn't put it down. I had a paperback copy, an e-book copy on my computer, phone, and kindle, as well as the audiobook to listen to. I just didn't want to miss a moment where I could finish the story.

The story starts out kind of slow, building up the background of where Katniss is from, and how much she has had to shoulder to take care of her family. But by chapter 3, it really begins to get good. By that point, I was hooked. I don't think there was a point in the book where I ever really got bored. I've already started on the sequel, Catching Fire.


Get it here:
Barnes & Noble

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Book Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

Goodreads Summary:
Meghan Chase has a secret destiny; one she could never have imagined. 
Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school or at home. 

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change. 

But she could never have guessed the truth - that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face; and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

I actually really liked this storyline so far.  The characters aren't flat; they have personalities that actually seem realistic (even if Meghan is kind of whiny).  There were times that I felt the reading was somewhat childish, especially when it came to Puck.  I mean he is this ageless character, but he came off as being really childish.  The action scenes were a little boring as well.  There was one fight between Ash and Puckk wwhere it felt like this is what h append:

"You wanna fight?"

"Yes...yes I do."

*draw swords and attempt a fight to te death but end up as allies instead*

And all the while Meghan just stood there and watched.

Other than that, I kind of liked it.  At first, I thought it was going to be as bad as Wicked Lovely, but it proved me wrong.  I doubt that I'm going to be re-reading this book, but I will be picking up the rest of the series.


Monday, November 7, 2011

Giveaway: Carrier of the Mark (offsite)

Feed Your Reading Habit is giving away a copy of Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon.  Entries are open until 5pm EST on Wednesday 30th November 2011.  The competition is open to residents of Australia, New Zealand, Canada, USA, and the UK.  The winner of the competition will be announced on Thursday 1st December 2011.  So head over to Feed Your Reading Habit to enter!

Goodreads Summary:
Their love was meant to be.

When Megan Rosenberg moves to Ireland, everything in her life seems to fall into place. After growing up in America, she's surprised to find herself feeling at home in her new school. She connects with a group of friends, and she is instantly drawn to darkly handsome Adam DeRÍs.

But Megan is about to discover that her feelings for Adam are tied to a fate that was sealed long ago—and that the passion and power that brought them together could be their ultimate destruction.