Beautiful Creatures by Margie Stohl and Kami Garcia
"There were no surprises in Gatlin County.
We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere.
At least, that's what I thought.
Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end, there was a grave.
Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.
Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.
In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything."- summary from Amazon
Yes, yes, I know. I'm like 4 years too late to this party, but hey, at least I finally read it (which I mainly did cuz of the movie). I did enjoy this book, but not as much as many others have. I didn't think it was absolutely amazing, but it was pretty good.
Stohl and Garcia do a great job making the setting come alive through their prose, and that really makes the book, I think. It pulls you in and lets you be part of the story. All the mythology behind everything was explained very well and I was never confused by anything. Learning along with Ethan was a good way to let everything unravel before the reader. I also loved that this was a paranormal book being told from a guy's perspective as opposed to the girl.
I will say that another thing that initially put me off reading the book was the length. Yes, I love reading with a passion but long books scare me. I feel like it'll take me forever to read and with running the blog, I need to stay ahead and all that jazz. So long books tend to be ignored for a while. And yes, it did take me a while to read this book, but whenever I was reading, I was enthralled and turning pages quickly. What mainly took so long was just fitting it into my reading schedule and just getting it from the library (it was always on hold). It didn't feel like a long book at all.
This is a great book and I'll definitely be reading the sequel, which I actually have an ARC of because when I was at BEA 2010, they were trying to get rid of the last few on the final day and my friends and I happened to be walking by so I grabbed a copy. I'm excited to see where the story goes next!
FTC: Received hardcover from library. Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.
Dr. Frankenstein's Daughters by Suzanne Weyn
"When Doctor Victor Frankenstein died, he left behind a legacy of horror...as well as two unacknowledged, beautiful twin daughters. Now these girls are seventeen, and they've come to Frankenstein's castle to claim it as their inheritance.
Giselle and Ingrid are twins, but they couldn't be more different. Giselle is a glamorous social climber who plans on turning Frankenstein's castle into a center of high society. Ingrid, meanwhile, is quiet and studious, drawn to the mysterious notebooks her father left behind...and the experiments he went mad trying to perfect.
As Giselle prepares for lavish parties and Ingrid finds herself falling for the sullen, wounded naval officer next door, a sinister force begins to take hold in the castle. Nobody's safe as Frankenstein's legacy leads to a twisted, macabre journey of romance and horror."- summary from Amazon
This was just an average book- it wasn't that good, but it wasn't that bad. I thought the concept was intriguing and there's some interesting plot points, but I could've definitely gone without reading this book. There was a lot of telling rather than showing and maybe that was just a consequence of it being told in journal format from both daughters' perspectives, but still. The dialogue was a bit stilted too, and not just because the book took place in the 1800s. The ending was a bit abrupt, and a little too tied up (and you all know how I like my endings tied up nicely, but this was just too much and didn't feel right).
Overall, if you wanna read this book, get it from the library. It's a fairly quick, scary(ish) read, but nothing to run out and get.
FTC: Received e-galley from Netgalley. Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.
For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley waited for the day when her Resource would be harvested and she would finally be an adult. After the harvest she expected a small role in the regular, orderly operation of the City within the Wall. She expected to do her part to maintain the refuge for the last survivors of the Wars. She expected to be a tiny cog in the larger clockwork of the city.
Lark did not expect to become the City's power supply.
For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley believed in a lie. Now she must escape the only world she's ever known...or face a fate more unimaginable than death."- summary from Amazon
I really enjoyed this book, though I don't think it's for everyone. There's very little dialogue, at least not until the end, and Lark spends a lot of time trying to get somewhere. So there's a lot of prose and internal thoughts and occasionally events happen for some excitement. If you're looking for more of an action book, this isn't it. But I loved following along on Lark's journey and her voice made it easy to read the book and it kept a good pace.
Spooner does a good job setting up her world in such a short space since Lark escapes within the first 100 pages, and of course Lark compares the new world to the one she just left, and also reminisces about it. It's interesting the way magic is used and utilized in various settings, and it's clever to have it be used in more than one way. It's very versatile.
I'm intrigued to see where the story goes next (there's two more books) and I hope to spring back into Lark's world soon!
FTC: Received hardcover at BEA (signed!). Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.
Golden by Jessi Kirby
"Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap—one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery—she decides to take a chance.
Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High—perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story—one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury.
Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live—and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference."- summary from Amazon
I absolutely loved Kirby's debut and have been meaning to read her second book In Honor since I got it last year, but being on this blog tour forced me to find time for Golden, her third book. Reading this really made me want to read In Honor, which I'll probably do very soon. Kirby crafts these wonderful coming-of-age tales that are just perfect; I really loved Parker as a main character and seeing her grow over the course of the novel.
The mystery of the novel made it very interesting too; that, along with Kirby's compelling writing, really kept the story moving. I had problems putting the book down. I wanted to see how everything would turn out and it was simply amazing. I just loved it.
In terms of characters, there's mainly just Parker, Kat and Trevor. Yes, there's Parker's mom, and the teacher, but it felt to me like those three were the main focus. It was nice to see a small cast of characters and get to know them. Their interactions were very realistic and they just felt like real friends. Seeing Parker and Trevor get closer throughout the novel was fun too.
Overall, seriously, just pick up this book. It's awesome and a perfect way to start the summer!
Follow the rest of the blog tour by clicking here and here's a giveaway for all of Jessi's books:
SPOILERS AHEAD!! Of Triton by Anna Banks
"Emma has just learned that her mother is a long-lost Poseidon princess, and now struggles with an identity crisis: As a Half-Breed, she’s a freak in the human world and an abomination in the Syrena realm. Syrena law states all Half-Breeds should be put to death.
As if that’s not bad enough, her mother’s reappearance in the Syrena world turns the two kingdoms—Poseidon and Triton—against one another. Which leaves Emma with a decision to make: Should she comply with Galen’s request to keep herself safe and just hope for the best? Or should she risk it all and reveal herself—and her Gift—to save a people she’s never known?"- summary from Amazon
So I read this book pretty quickly. After the events in Of Poseidon, I wanted to continue Emma and Galen's story as soon as possible. And oh my goodness, I loved it!! I did want to punch a few characters (the bad guys, not like Emma or Galen), and most of the beginning of the book could've been shortened if people just stood around and talked things out. I was seriously thinking that the whole time, even though I loved the drama and action of it; I was like "OMG just stay there, listen, and talk things out. It will be so much better that way.". I tend to think that a lot when reading some books.
But anyway, I really enjoyed the new dilemma that cropped up and how it was resolved. I also liked the occasional tackling/punching of the bad guys by the good guys throughout the book and may have said "YES!" while pumping my fist. The ending was really nice too and I loved how things turned out. I was positive this was a trilogy though, but it feels like this is THE end so maybe it's a duology? I don't know, but at least if there is another book, this one didn't have a big cliffhanger like the first one.
Overall, a great sequel and I'm so glad I read these books. Definitely check them both out when Of Triton comes out next month!
FTC: Received ARC from publisher. Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.
I'm a 26 year old male who started a book blog over on Myspace back in June 2007, which can be found here: http://www.myspace.com/bookchicclub - feel free to add me as a friend! I have since moved completely to Blogspot as of July 2009- feel free to follow me on here! I mainly review YA books, but will also do the occasional MG or adult title, as well as interview authors and sometimes have them guest blog.