Showing posts with label jennifer l. armentrout. Show all posts
Showing posts with label jennifer l. armentrout. Show all posts

Sunday, June 18, 2017

10 YA Series I've Been Meaning to Start But Haven't Yet feat. Rachel Cohn, Traci Chee, Marie Lu & more





This is my list of shame. Some of these books have been on my TBR for years. I'm working on it, I promise. 



Antigoddess by Kendare Blake
I remember really getting intrigued by this after I read an excerpt of this in ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD. This was years ago, omg, I really love Greek mythology, it's a shame I haven't picked this one up yet.

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones
I really want to wait to watch the movie Labyrinth first before reading this and I've been waiting for the perfect time to do so. Soon!

Sea of Ink and Gold by Traci Chee
Okay, this pick is a bit unusual, because I only just now read teh blurb and I still don't think I know what this is about. I honestly just wnt to read this because I'm always there to support authors and publishers who put non-white people on book covers. Hell yeah.



Covenant by Jennifer L. Armentrout
I originally got interested in this because I binged her Lux series years ago and had a lot of fun with it and because people keep saying this is a carbon copy of VAMPIRE ACADEMY, which you know I also loved and enjoyed. Bring it on!

Monsters of Verity by Victoria Schwab
I've been meaning to read more of her books because I really disliked A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC and want to give her another shot, so oh my god, I can't believe I still haven't read this yet. I love urban fantasy!

Annex by Rachel Cohn
I'm pretty sure I've talked about this before on my blog - I love reading about clones and I came so close to buying a copy a number of times, but never actually did it. It's time!



Warcross by Marie Lu
Maybe this is cheating cause it's not out yet, but STILL!!! I've been meaning to try more of her books, because THE YOUNG ELITES really wasn't for me but i did like her writing a lot. I think this is about video games and sci fi things? I don't know, I've been up for it since it got announced!

Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
I've been thirsting for this for months and actually recently finally, finally got a copy. Omg. I'm so excited and I really hope I'll like this because I've been wanting to adore more books by her!

The Great Library by Rachel Caine
Remember how thirsty I was for the first book before it came out? Apparently, I totally forgot about this until literally just now. I still want to read this! Library of Alexandria!



The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury
This has been on my tbr for ages, I don't know what I'm doing. I really like reading about jinni, so it really is time!


What's a series you've been meaning to start?



Connect with me!

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Sunday, August 21, 2016

[Review] Cursed - Jennifer L. Armentrout: Deadly Touch and Familiar Vibes





In CURSED, Ember McWilliams was resurrected by her younger sister Olivia after she died in a car accident. But Ember came back with a supernatural power herself: everything she touches dies.

What intrigued me: I had Armentrout withdrawal.

Copycat storyline?

Armentrout wrote an intriguing novel with an amazing character voice here. What I enjoy most about Armentrout's novels are always the spot on teenage voices with super sassy, sarcastic heroines. Ember is a very strong character and I really enjoyed reading the book from her perspective.

Sadly, CURSED is too reminiscent of a lot of books I know to stand on it's own. The setting in the manor with the evil father reminds me of WITHER, the concept of the deathly touch of SHATTER ME, the gifted children of MISS PEREGERINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN, and Adam, the quirky childhood friend is an absolute YA stock character. It seems like there isn't an ounce of originality in this. 


Forced chemistry

A huge chunk of the novel takes place at the Cromwell residence, and from there it just goes downhill for me. The novel severely lacks in world building and is simply just not well-thought out. Protagonist Ember gets kidnapped a third into the novel by people with similar gifts. Hayden, who lives in said house is also gifted, immediately expresses an interest in her after stalking her for months, and their "tension" is very forced, disturbingly sexual from the start, and just overall awkward.

CURSED wasted a lot of potential, relying to hard on the romance and not backing the story up enough. I could have loved this if there was more behind those abilities, less lusting, and more brains. It's hardly believable how easily Ember let's the Cromwells get away with taking her and her family, especially because she's literally a girl with a deadly touch and could kill anyone she wanted.

I wanted Ember to be a strong, kick-ass protagonist given her extraordinary ability. CURSED disappoints me, because yet again a strong heroine forgets how dangerous and perfectly capable of fighting for her rights she is, simply because there's a pretty boy in sight. Sigh.


Rating:


☆☆

 



Overall: Do I Recommend?

I realize that the rating is probably a little to low for this excellent character voice, however there is just too much material that I've seen in other novels before. The tropes that Armentrout borrows aren't even executed extraordinarily, it just reads like an average novel with little to no planning or world building. CURSED absolutely disappoints by being too similar to novels who have simply done it better before. 


Additional Info


Published: September 18th 2012
Pages: 304
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Genre: YA / Urban  Fantasy
ISBN: 9780983157274

Synopsis:
"Dying sucks
...and high school senior Ember McWilliams knows firsthand. 

After a fatal car accident, her gifted little sister brought her back. Now anything Ember touches dies. And that, well, really blows.

Ember operates on a no-touch policy with all living things--including boys. When Hayden Cromwell shows up, quoting Oscar Wilde and claiming her curse is a gift, she thinks he's a crazed cutie. But when he tells her he can help control it, she's more than interested. There's just one catch: Ember has to trust Hayden's adopted father, a man she's sure has sinister reasons for collecting children whose abilities even weird her out. However, she's willing to do anything to hold her sister's hand again. And hell, she'd also like to be able to kiss Hayden. Who wouldn't?

But when Ember learns the accident that turned her into a freak may not've been an accident at all, she's not sure who to trust. Someone wanted her dead, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she is to losing not only her heart, but her life.

For real this time.(Source: Goodreads)


Have you read books by Jennifer L. Armentrout?

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

[Review] Don't Look Back - Jennifer L. Armentrout

In DON'T LOOK BACK mean girl Samantha is found covered in blood wandering around in the woods. She has no idea how she got there, who she is and why she is there. When she gets home her family tells her that she isn't the only one who went missing:
Reminiscent of Mara Dyer- But Better

I love memory loss novels. This is exactly my niche. DON'T LOOK BACK has all the things I missed in THE UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER. Essentially the story lines are very similar: Girl is involved in an "accident", has no recollection of what happened, but is sure that she played a significant role.
In Mara Dyer, we obviously have a supernatural protagonist. In Sam, we just have an ordinary girl that is involved in some serious high school drama de luxe. I love novels about mean characters, about unlikeable, terrible people who have their reasons for being like this; Or who are maybe just bratty teenagers. It's insanely interesting to have her react to all the terrible things she did before the incident. There's nothing more entertaining to me than mean girls redeeming themselves.

The love interest Carson is just an overall cutie that is just the perfect guy next door. He's the son of their gardener and their romance is really adorable. Still, I'm not a fan of romance as a side plot and I would have preferred either having those two star in an all-romance novel instead of being hastily dealt with in a thriller.

I Didn't See That Ending Coming

Just as in every young adult novel we have a sloppy romance plot in here. I didn't like it the slightest bit and I thought it was extremely unnecessary. Even though the characters, from mean girls to servant's kids to Samantha's family, are all planned out very well, their relations to each other are very cliche. Armentrout obviously took the safe route and only paired stereotypical characters together:

Her brother with the old friend, the mean girls with someone else's boyfriends, the unhappily married unequal couples - the novel is full of things that I've read about dozens of times in literature. Not even once she seems to take a plunge and debut a new idea. In general, you can pretty much say that the novel is a mashup of all clichés in the genres that it combines.

BUT- this doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing. I did enjoy the novel and despite all the cliché characters, Armentrout manages to shock and produce a decent thriller. It's not scary or actually thrilling in the least, but it keeps you up on your toes. I wanted to know desperately how it ends.

Rating:

★★★☆☆

 

Overall: Do I Recommend?

It's all that THE UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER couldn't be. This novel gives you the notion to be predictable read, but it really isn't. You will want to desperately continue and find out what happens next. 


Synopsis:
"Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend.

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her- even if the old Sam treated him like trash.

But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory- someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?"

Have you read any of Jennifer L. Armentrout's books?

Do you prefer her YA or NA novels?

Continue Reading...

Saturday, March 14, 2015

[Review] Stay with Me (Wait for You #3) - J. Lynn




In STAY WITH ME, Calla tries to track her mother down that owes her money and ends up staying in her hometown. There she meets Jax, the new manager of her mother's bar Mona's and hopelessly falls for him.

The Success Formula Strikes Again

J. Lynn seems to have a very clear success formula: Shy Girl + Dramatic Backstory + Hot Guy with Helper Syndrome. STAY WITH ME reminds me a lot of the first novel WAIT FOR YOU, even though it stars different protagonists and features a completely different story:

Calla is a rather introverted 21-year-old virgin who hasn't had any significant experience with men. She's supposed to have no idea about relationships and no experience, but in the novel all she does is think about Jax in a not so subtle way. It's hard to believe that this girl who's constantly making sexual comments in her head, is actually a inexperienced virgin. The authenticity of her as a character is just completely off, I didn't believe her anything for a second. 

Jax is a super attractive bartender that makes all girls' jaws drop. Of course he's interested in her immediately, despite her alcoholic mother and despite that gigantic scar she has on her left cheek. He's not an original character. He's a stock Gary Stu, the dream of every girl's fantasy: The insane attractive, well-built, smart and caring guy that is not just interested in you because you're pretty. 

Wait, Haven't I Seen This Before?

You can read this novel without knowing anything about the series. It can be seen as a standalone. Characters from previous novels make quick cameos, but you don't necessarily have to have read them and know the characters to understand their significance for the plot. Hint: There is none.

They don't know anything about each other, yet they are instantly smitten. Lynn rambles a lot in this novel. There is so much that could have bit omitted, so many little everyday things that the reader doesn't necessarily have to know. I found myself skimming page after page, because I just didn't care and wanted something actually interesting to happen. It feels like the novel only revolves around the relationship of Calla and Jax and everything that doesn't involve these two is just random filler material. 


Rating:

☆☆☆☆

 

Overall: Do I Recommend?

No. In fact, I won't be continuing the series. Her New Adult novels don't seem like my cup of tea.

Both novels felt to me like the plot was going nowhere and were way too long. I had to force myself to push forward and finish this, hoping that it would get better. I was disappointed.



Synopsis:
"At 21, Calla hasn’t done a lot of things. She’s never been kissed, never seen the ocean, never gone to an amusement park. But growing up, she witnessed some things no child ever should. She still carries the physical and emotional scars of living with a strung-out mother, Mona—secrets she keeps from everyone, including her close circle of college friends.

But the safe cocoon Calla has carefully built is shattered when she discovers her mom has stolen her college money and run up a huge credit card debt in her name. Now, Calla has to go back to the small town she thought she'd left behind and clean up her mom’s mess again. Of course, when she arrives at her mother’s bar, Mona is nowhere to be found. Instead, six feet of hotness named Jackson James is pouring drinks and keeping the place humming.

Sexy and intense, Jax is in Calla’s business from the moment they meet, giving her a job and helping her search for Mona. And the way he looks at her makes it clear he wants to get horizontal . . . and maybe something more. Before Calla can let him get close, though, she’s got to deal with the pain of the past—and some very bad guys out to mess her up if she doesn’t give them her mom.
"

Have you read a book from the series?

Did you like it?

Wait for You (#1)
Trust In Me (#1.5)
Be With Me (#2)
The Proposal (#2.5)
Stay With Me (#3)
Fall With Me (#4)
Dream Of You (#4.5)
Forever With You (#5)
Fire In You (#6) - See more at: http://thebookavid.blogspot.de/p/series-reviews.html#sthash.hoQX1lWH.dpuf
Continue Reading...

Monday, February 16, 2015

[Review] Wait For You (#1) - J. Lynn





In WAIT FOR YOU, Avery Morgansten moves to a new town for college and literally walks right into the most eligible bachelor there- Cameron Hamilton, a reformed bad boy who instantly has an eye on her and won't take no for an answer.
Unlikable Characters and an Abusive Love Interest

I feel like there are a million reasons why I shouldn't like this book. It's filled with cliché characters, starting from the flamboyant gay best friend, to the super-shy yet super attractive heroine who doesn't realize it, to the mean, mean girls who are doing everything to make her life hell for minor reasons.

Cam is really an extremely unlikeable love interest. Lynn did her very best to give him some cutesy little twists, like having a pet tortoise and really loving to bake, but seriously, this guy is just not my cup of tea.
Throughout the book he keeps pushing and pushing himself onto poor Avery who basically has to tell him that she won't date him no matter what he's going to do twice a week. That's not fun, that's not flattering; It's a real problem that women nowadays have to deal with a lot, pushy guys aren't romantic or cute in being like this. The fact that our protagonist Avery thinks Cameron is oh-so-attractive doesn't make this okay. 

Promoting Rape Culture?

While having some problematic characters, Lynn does a good job at capturing the reader. I neither liked Avery nor Cameron particularly, but still wanted to know what had happened in their past. I've noticed already when reading the Lux Series that Lynn is really good at making you not quit her books halfway, no matter how much you dislike them/the characters. The novel is solely centered around exploring Avery and Cameron which leads to a rather nonexistent plot and your average high school setting without much of a story. 

Avery's backstory can be pretty much figured out after chapter three and honestly, the way J. Lynn tackles the topic just left me baffled. Instead of doing extensive research or giving us a strong heroine that doesn't let her past get in the way of her future, especially because of things that weren't her fault, we get whiny, whiny Avery who has a problem with physical affection- but only until a hot dude comes around the corner. 

The way she deals with rape just promotes rape culture. It flat out makes me uncomfortable and if you take a look at other reviews, I am not the only one. You can either regard this as a simple plot device and overlook it for entertainment's sake or just squint your eyes and stop right there with the series like I'm probably going to do. 

Rating: 

★★☆☆☆


Overall: Do I Recommend?

I'm not going to lie, I had a hard time finishing this. Just exactly because Cam and Avery don't necessarily have a healthy relationship from the start, I didn't really connect to either of them or root for them to become a couple.




Synopsis:
" Some things are worth waiting for…

Traveling thousands of miles from home to enter college is the only way nineteen-year-old Avery Morgansten can escape what happened at the Halloween party five years ago—an event that forever changed her life. All she needs to do is make it to her classes on time, make sure the bracelet on her left wrist stays in place, not draw any attention to herself, and maybe—please God—make a few friends, because surely that would be a nice change of pace. The one thing she didn’t need and never planned on was capturing the attention of the one guy who could shatter the precarious future she’s building for herself.

Some things are worth experiencing…

Cameron Hamilton is six feet and three inches of swoon-worthy hotness, complete with a pair of striking blue eyes and a remarkable ability to make her want things she believed were irrevocably stolen from her. She knows she needs to stay away from him, but Cam is freaking everywhere, with his charm, his witty banter, and that damn dimple that’s just so… so lickable. Getting involved with him is dangerous, but when ignoring the simmering tension that sparks whenever they are around each other becomes impossible, he brings out a side of her she never knew existed.

Some things should never be kept quiet…

But when Avery starts receiving threatening emails and phone calls forcing her to face a past she wants silenced, she’s has no other choice but to acknowledge that someone is refusing to allow her to let go of that night when everything changed. When the devastating truth comes out, will she resurface this time with one less scar? And can Cam be there to help her or will he be dragged down with her?

And some things are worth fighting for…"
Continue Reading...

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Most Read Authors | Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originating from The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday they choose topics that we are supposed to create a list about, considering our personal reading preferences.



This Week: ITS FREEBIE WEEK!
I decided to torture you guys by telling you who my most read authors are and spilling out my feelings for them. Enjoy!

10. Mari Mancusi (Blood Coven Series)
My heart! She made me fall in love with vampires. I read her series around the same time I read Princess Diaries for the first time and they both had a lasting impression on me. Thanks Mari!

9. Jodi Picoult (Handle With Care, Second Glance)
The Queen of character development! You can tell that she studied Creative Writing because her writing is just over the top amazing! Her characters are real, at least they feel that way and her insanely long novels are always an adventure. She'll hit you right in the face with emotion while still having another plot twist around the corner. I want to be as good as her one day.

8. S.G. Browne (Breathers, Fated)
He's the man for everything comedy and satire. He never ceases to make me laugh and his ideas are equally crazy and likeable. 

7. Sophie Kinsella (Remember Me, Twenties Girl, I've Got Your Number)
Sophie's my girl. My go-to-source for all things Chick-Lit and definitely a happy-go-lucky author! Whenever I'm down I reach for a Kinsella book and I always make sure to have at least one on my shelves in case of a feelings emergency. Thanks Sophie, you're the bomb!

6. David Levithan (Boy Meety Boy, The Lover's Dictionary, Every Day, Dash and Lily's Book of Dares)
My favourite LGBTQ* author, hands down. I will only trust him with these matters because he has got it down! I will read all his novels and I love, love, love and look up to the way he writes. He's truly an artist.

5. Cornelia Funke (Inkworld Trilogy, Igraine The Brave)
My favourite childhood author. She's amazing and I dearly regret growing out of her novels. I loved both the Inkworld Series and Igraine the Brave. I still catch myself rereading the latter even when I'm way out of the group she's aiming at. She contributed to making my childhood reading experience a happy one and I will always be grateful for that, even as an adult.

4. Stephenie Meyer (Twilight Series)
Yo. I'm not ashamed of this. I loved Twilight back when it was released and I probably have seen the movie close to 70 times. Pretty sure that's even an understatement, because I literally know the entire dialogue from side characters to main characters. While I do understand the problematics in this series, I still have to admit that I had an amazing time reading this series and I wouldn't trade it in for the world. I was indeed very young when I read it ~ around 12-14, but I never even for one second let the toxic relationship between Bella and Edward cloud my decisions. Even at that age I understood that it's fiction and hey, to me it's a nice series. So thanks, Stephenie, I don't care what the haters say.

3. Meg Cabot (Princess Diaires Series, Abandon Series, Insatiable)
Meg is my queen. She hasn't only written the one book that had the most impact on me as a child (Princess Diaries #1), but is also an amazing, amazing writer. I've always loved her witty, funny style that isn't shallow like most authors tend to slip into - but it always carries a message. Her novels are more than just about the characters, every novel lets you learn something new and I think that's what every writer should aspire to achieve. I will probably never be able to find the right words to express how much she helped me in life and I will always, always, always be loyal to her. Even when she writes shitty novels like "Insatiable", my god was that bad.

2. Jennifer L. Armentrout (Lux Series)
Insert heavy breathing. This woman, I swear. You guys know that I'm crazy for everything she does and I'm just wobbling around on my seat thinking about the other novels she wrote. I will most definitely read everything she'll ever write and I will probably reread the Lux Series over and over again until the day I die. It's a guilty pleasure really, but I don't feel guilty at all. Bless her.

1. L.J. Smith (Vampire Diaries Series, Stefan's Diaries Series, The Forbidden Games Series)
Well, she kind of cheated to get to first place, because I hopelessly fell in love with The Vampire Diaries. Whether it's the show or her novels, bring it on! I even wrote fan fiction about the characters in this, don't remind me ... it seems whatever this woman touches, turns into gold. Her novel series The Secret Circle even got turned into another TV show. It's funny how some authors can write whatever the heck they want and there's still people like me who'll clap and bow. Thanks, L.J.
Continue Reading...

Friday, October 31, 2014

[Review] Shadows (Lux #0.5) - Jennifer L. Armentrout

SHADOWS is a prequel novella accompanying the Lux Series. It tells the story of how Dawson Black and Bethany Williams fell in love.

What intrigued me: Judging by the fact that I hopelessley fell in love with Dawson as a character (even more than with Daemon!), I was looking forward to reading this, already after I read ONYX. 

Solid back to the roots story

While the other novels where heavily stuffed with information dumps, new characters and alien trivia, we finally get a break from that in SHADOWS. It's relaxing to not have to look over your shoulder expecting another plot twist and simply just following your favorite fictional lovelies do what they do. 

After having seen them mainly in distressed situations and suffering, it makes me so, so happy to get back to the typical High School Setting from OBSIDIAN, which will always be my favorite Lux novel.

SHADOWS is really only about Bethany and Dawson and I'm very thankful for that. Sadly, because it is a novella, the romance feels very rushed. The whole novel is only 150-ish pages, so there isn't much time for the reader to understand how and why they love each other.


Still Want Dee, Still Didn't Get Dee, Very Upset

Also, there is so much room for showing more of the Black Family life in this novel, why didn't she do that? I want to read about them being a family, being siblings! Why didn't she include this? 

There's more of the Williams family life in SHADOWS, which I couldn't care less about, judging by her uncle's morally questionable choices and her parents and brother being cardboard cutout characters. 
Bethany in general stays very flat as a characters, which saddens me a lot. She's really interesting, especially earlier in the series when she appears to be completely driven insane through torture. Wow, what a character was what I thought - well, turns out she is basically a less badass, less relatable Katy, minus the books, plus painting.


Overall: Do I Recommend?

If you've read the entire series, might as well get this one, too. Like I said, it helped me understand Daemon better, Dawson not so much. It's a nice quick read, really NOTHING out of the ordinary. I'm going to go with it's a must for Lux Fans, because it makes me want to start the entire series all over again.


Rating: 

★★☆☆



Synopsis:
"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."
Continue Reading...

Monday, October 27, 2014

[Review] Opposition (Lux #5) - Jennifer L. Armentrout

In OPPOSITION the intergalactic battle to the death finally takes place when Luxen from all over the universe decide to take down humanity the only way they know - bloody, that is.


OOCing Your Own Characters?!

Armentrout's writing is just so off in this one that I didn't even recognize her characters. The Lux Series is rooted in the relationship between Kat and Daemon and to me, that's the only reason I even continued after book three, which was just an overall catastrophe. I don't know why she started switching the POVs mid-series and I still don't like it. With YA that relies heavily on the love interest/protagonist relationship, you CAN'T JUST DO THIS. 

Daemon constantly calling Kat "baby" made me cringe. Their general lovey-dovey gooey gross conversations are even worse. What is - or rather what WAS so special about them was their whole "ugh, I hate you so much now kiss me" -thing they had going on. I fell in love with Kat because she was having none of his cocky attitude and I fell in love with Daemon because he was unreasonably inappropriate.

Still Want Dee, Will Never Stop Preferring Dee

With Archer and Dee we have a serious case of insta-love that just disappoints me. Both of them rose to be favorites of mine and were painfully neglected throughout the entire series. They were ignored so there could be very important, very relevant make out scenes between Daemon and Kat. Very important. Archer and Dee fell in love with each other ('s looks) on the spot and their ending is as obvious as it is cliché. 

In OPPOSITION, just like in every sequel to OBSIDIAN before, a character or two that were presumably dead make a return only to reveal that they're insane/ evil now. I actually made a list in my mind of all characters that weren't dead yet and you can basically guess who's going to come back. JLA makes a mistake by trying to throw in too many plot twists and too many characters with authority problems and misanthropic tendencies. At this point, after Blake, who probably turned badside twice or three times within one novel, I'm not even surprised anymore.


Overall: Do I recommend?

The Lux Series has an interesting concept, but it is by no means developed enough to be stretched onto five (if you count the prequel novella, six) novels. I don't recommend going for the series. Just read OBSIDIAN, swoon over the great characters and pretend there are no sequels because all you're going to get from them is a headache.



Rating: ★★☆☆☆



Synopsis:


"In this stunning series climax, Daemon and Katy join forces with an unlikely enemy to ensure the survival of not only their love for each other, but the future of all mankind. Opposition will bring forth a new dawn to the Lux universe, where man must stand with alien to survive, and the future, no matter the outcome, will never be the same."
Continue Reading...

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

[Review] Origin (Lux #4) - Jennifer L. Armentrout

If you're going to read ORIGIN, you're going to have to prepare to be in pain. A lot of it. The novel revolves around the Department of Defense capturing our beloved protagonists Katy and Daemon, and doing all kinds of messed up tests on them. 









!WARNING!
This review MAY CONTAIN Spoilers for the Lux Series, starting from "Obsidian".

I usually try to keep my reviews spoiler-free but you can't write a comprehensive review about "Origin" without tackling the resolutions of the plot lines. I'm not going to mention any names but you really shouldn't read this if you plan on reading "Origin".
!WARNING!

New POVs

ORIGIN is the first novel in the series that is told from different perspectives. This is a big pet peeve of mine and just makes me want to throw the book against the next wall. I understand that as a writer, it is difficult to describe all events that you want to put in the book when one of your characters is in a temporary exile. But just switching to another character's perspective is plain cheating to me. Besides, having read the entire series told from Katy's point of view, it's just weird to suddenly have Daemon narrate the story. First, because the character's own perception of himself is completely different from Katy's (the reader's) and also because I simply can not identify with that.

As a reader we've got to know Daemon pretty well after three books but that doesn't justify just switching the point of view. I feel like I'm reading a bad fan fiction. If POV-Shifts are essential to the story, I might endure them at times, but don't just randomly switch mid-chapter after three pages? For no reason at all? It drove me nuts to have to listen to Katy being captured and then randomly switching to Daemon running around and trying to beat up everyone.


Sorry I Killed Your Friend... Here's Another.

While the plot isn't very complex, there are a lot of revelations about the character's ulterior motives in the novel. We have some people going badside, other people dying out of the blue and new characters being pushed into future relationships. While I do like the odd sleazy villain that creeps up on our protagonists, JLA is just over the top with the plot twists in this one. 

There is no actual reasoning that would make sense for that certain character to go badside. Is it just me, am I stone-cold, or were all the character deaths really, really rushed? They all died like flies and after the third or fourth one out I was just laughing because it is so ridiculous to keep killing literally everyone that won't have an interesting storyline in the future. 

But when good characters have to die for the sake of a dramatic climax, we always have the introduction of new characters coming with it. I fell in love instantly with Archer, a soldier from Area 51, who is just ... heart eyes. While I do love, love, love Archer, I feel like JLA is trying way too hard to make us ship him and Dee.  



Overall: Do I Recommend?

ORIGIN is not as great as OBSIDIAN but it definitely was an easier read than the previous novels. 

The conclusion is a little over the top and the character deaths really weren't necessary and weren't really dealt with. Nobody is grieving for the dead to the extent that they grieved about Adam (who had like, three scenes?), and that's just ... ugh. I do recommend ORIGIN, but in order to get to it, you're going to have to go through the mess that is OPAL, and good luck with that.


Rating: 

★★★☆☆




Synopsis:

"Daemon will do anything to get Katy back.

After the successful but disastrous raid on Mount Weather, he’s facing the impossible. Katy is gone. Taken. Everything becomes about finding her.

Taking out anyone who stands in his way? Done.
Burning down the whole world to save her? Gladly.
Exposing his alien race to the world? With pleasure.

All Katy can do is survive. Surrounded by enemies, the only way she can come out of this is to adapt. After all, there are sides of Daedalus that don’t seem entirely crazy, but the group’s goals are frightening and the truths they speak even more disturbing.

Who are the real bad guys? Daedalus? Mankind? Or the Luxen? Together, they can face anything. But the most dangerous foe has been there all along, and when the truths are exposed and the lies come crumbling down, which side will Daemon and Katy be standing on? And will they even be together?"
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Friday, October 10, 2014

[Review] Opal (Lux #3) - Jennifer L. Armentrout

In OPAL, Daemon's long lost twin brother Dawson has finally returned. That would be great and a reason to celebrate and all, were there not the teeny tiny complication of his girlfriend still being held captive by the Department of Defense.


Hey, You're Messing With My Girl? Pick A Coffin!

Beth, Dawson's girlfriend, whom we got to know as incredibly powerful and so awesome, that the DOD has trouble catching her whenever she escapes, is now in need of rescue. Yeah, because she couldn't free herself, our group of beloved alien and non-alien heroes has to put themselves through a terrible, terrible form of torture to be able to save her. 

Yet again, I have no idea how Armentrout is able to fill four hundred pages with this. It took me probably more than two weeks to finally get through this novel because it was just so hard to read and simply not entertaining me in the slightest. The plot seemed rather predictable and not very creative to me. From long forgotten characters who used to be plot devices, to random side characters, everyone returns to get a piece of Katy. 

It's a certainty by this point that everyone who turns badside and has the nerve to put up with Katy, whether she's alone or with the Luxen, WILL die. Yeah, she can take about everything when she's on her own, maybe suffers a few injuries that aren't dramatic anyways if youy boyfriend is an intergalactic healer, but when in company, Katy morphs into a baby kitten.

Yawn, Yawn, Yawn, Heroine

I've said it once and I'm going to say it again: I'd rather have read about Daemon's sister Dee. Who, by the way, has about three scenes of dialogue in OPAL. She's so interesting and their friendship was actually fun and nothing like the forced plot-relationship that is Katy's and Carissa's. Or was that Lesa? I don't even know who is who, that's how much I don't care about her filler school friends. 

Because Armentrout dragged this novel so much I found myself contemplating to just stop reading and forget book 3 ever happened. I loved the first book, the second one was alright, but this one is just ... ugh. But in the end, Armentrout made it by inserting a really intense cliffhanger end scene that makes it impossible for me to stop. I still don't care about 70% of the people in this novel but somehow, I'm longing for this to change. There are five books for a reason, aren't there?



Overall: Do I Recommend?

Honestly, if you were as into the Lux Series as I was in the beginning, the answer is kind of obvious.

By this point it feels like an obligation to continue, even if it gets insanely bad. I still think that the Lux Series is worth reading even though it gets worse book by book.



Rating: 

★★☆☆☆




Synopsis:
"After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different...

And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of.

The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back.

Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever. Together we’re stronger... and they know it"
Continue Reading...

Friday, September 26, 2014

[Review] Onyx (Lux #2) - Jennifer L. Armentrout

In ONYX, Katy and Daemon have to face higher powers that are having none of their crazy alien stuff. They also break a lot of stuff. And people.

Full of twists and turns!

Having established all character relationships in the first book OBSIDIAN, the plot is going crazy in ONYX. Turns out that aliens are a bigger deal than everybody thought and this novel will chase you with plot twists. Some of the things I could have guessed but I didn't think she would actually go through with it.

This novel is a roller coaster of emotions, one second you're going to find yourself laughing hysterically, the other second you're crying happy tears like it's nobody's business.

It's the end that hit me like a train and I loved how everything came together and made sense. It wasn't rushed, it was planned and it was very interesting to see the resolutions of some story lines.

Oh Love Interest, How Did I Live Before You?

Daemon is incredibly needy in ONYX. His constant emotion seems to vary between "I Know You Want It" and "TELL ME YOU WANT ME ATTENTION ATTENTION PLEASE EVERYONE LOOK AT ME". The snark and sass from the first novel is just background white noise, but I guess this is what happens to boys when they fall in love. I forgive him because I still love him.

But a thing I really have to note - Armentrout can't write entertaining action scenes. Or character placements in a room. One second they're on top of each other, the other second their limbs are all over the place. I'm having a hard time visualizing the exact positions of characters because she really messes up sometimes. This shows again in action scenes. Her action scenes are messy. Sometimes I just scanned the paragraphs because I couldn't understand who was standing where and who killed whom with what. 

Overall: Do I recommend?


Obviously, if you have read OBSIDIAN you have to read ONYX. The first doesn't work as a standalone and this resolves a lot of issues that you're probably eager to see add to the story. To me it is somewhat of a transition novel though and I'm looking forward to OPAL being the real deal again.

Rating: 

★★★☆☆




 Synopsis:
"Being connected to Daemon Black sucks…

Thanks to his alien mojo, Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days.

But we’ve got bigger problems.

Something worse than the Arum has come to town…

The Department of Defense are here. If they ever find out what Daemon can do and that we're linked, I’m a goner. So is he. And there's this new boy in school who’s got a secret of his own. He knows what’s happened to me and he can help, but to do so, I have to lie to Daemon and stay away from him. Like that's possible.

Against all common sense, I'm falling for Daemon. Hard.

 But then everything changes… I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth.

What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me? No one is who they seem. And not everyone will survive the lies…"
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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

[Review] Obsidian (Lux #1) - Jennifer L. Armentrout


In OBSIDIAN, Katy moves to a new town in Virginia. Nothing ever really happens there, weren't it for her neighbors, who are stunningly beautiful and from a different planet. 
What intrigued me: Aliens!


Kickass Characters!

Protagonist Daemon is the classical hard shell, rude but secretly fragile - type. Typically, YA authors match them with submissive shy kids. In OBSIDIAN, his love interest is the most badass girl I've read about in a while. Katy doesn't take anything from anyone. No matter if you're an alien, a human, a drunk jock - she will call you out on it. Maybe even fight it or stab you with a sharp object. 

Every time I rolled my eyes when he made a stupid pickup line or said something that would've made any other girl swoon, Katy just backfired. That's what made me love Daemon, the fact that he has a worthy match in Katy. I'm in love with characters that aren't built solely for the romance plot, she is definitely a role model.

The other characters are only outlines so far in the first novel because the majority of it deals with Daemon and Katy and alien stuff. It's introductory, you can't really expect perfectly drawn characters in a multi-novel series. So far I'm liking Dee, Daemon's twin sister very much and I'm hoping that she gets to play a bigger role in the second novel. I'm pleasantly surprised by the great characters and I'm so proud that Armentrout decided to give this series a kickass heroine. 

She Makes the Filler Work!

There's a lot of dialogue in the novel due to the fact that the reader has to get to know Katy and Daemon in order to like them. For that reason, the plot suffers slightly. We have cliché scenes I've read about 3729792 times including gems like grocery shopping, homecoming ball and going to the hospital. While that remains definitely a downside I have to say that there is little to no information dump. This is quite impressive given that we are introduced to a whole new species. Instead of just making one character give Katy a 10 page crash course about everything, the information is split brilliantly, making the reader only aware of what's going on a few pages later. 


Opposite to the species that Daemon and Dee belong to, we have the Arum, shadowy-creepy figures that I've read about seventeen times at least. This whole light-business is definitely nothing new. 

Yes, there were some slumps and the plot isn't really worth mention, but Armentrout truly manages to keep my attention with those amazing characters.


Overall: Do I recommend?

 I did have a great time reading it and actually, I think I'm going to even reread it in the near future. Also I'm going to continue with the second book right away which I rarely do - unless I'm really into the world building in a novel. 


Rating: ★★★★☆


Synopsis:

"When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I'd pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring... until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes.

Things were looking up.

And then he opened his mouth.

Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all.

But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something... unexpected happens.

 The hot alien living next door marks me. You heard me. Alien.

Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon's touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I'm getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades.

If I don't kill him first, that is."
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