School of Fish Out of Water (Undertow – A Book Review)

Undertow (Undertow #1)
Author: Michael Buckley
Published: 2015

On Goodreads

Scarlet Reader

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt Half bolt

Rated A for Aquaman approved.

 

First, we feared them. Then we fought them. Now they might be our only hope.

Lyric Walker’s life is changed forever as is everyone’s in Coney Island when 30,000 warrior Alpha storm the beach shore. Now, a few years later, the small town has turned into a military zone and the government is ready to try an assimilate Alpha into society. Not everyone is on board with this.

Lyric get assigned to help with the integration by helping the crown prince of the Alpha, Fathom. While he is aggressive and resistant, she can’t help but to start falling for him. There’s something about him that isn’t all bad. It’s dangerous to feel this way though, for both of them.

More so, there is a greater threat on the horizon than the Alpha. The darkness that drew the remaining race to shore.

 

This was a wild and intensely action-packed book with tension seeping out of the cracks. I really enjoyed it! While I do get the Aquaman vibes, I do find this to be interestingly unique and original! The in-depth look at the Alpha is really nifty. They weren’t just some Adonis god-like race to melt at, though Fathom is pretty attractive hehe. Though they have some epic abilities, like controlling water and fast reflexes and mega strength as well as some unique weaponry. Fathom, the prince, can actually pop out bony swords from his arms. Alpha also take on the features and characteristics of creatures of the sea. It’s freaking awesome!

Scarlet Reader

Tenor

I loved all of the characters, even the assholes. They were all epic. Buckley really wrote some powerful people from the teens to the adults. I can’t find one I didn’t like, because even though there were characters I hated *cough* Mrs. Novakova *cough* it was for legitimate reasons! They were jerky, prejudice asshats. Just some powerful characters here!

I’ve also never read a book where Coney Island was the setting. It was wicked to get a close-up view. Crowded and mucky and not the Disneyland on the dock people imagine it is. In fact, Coney Island is turned into a scary place. (The cover art of it is G-O-R-G-E-O-U-S. And chilling. It’s that too.)

Scarlet Reader

The Tropix

The comical and honest look at racial lines in society was fantastic! Lyric gave such a great perspective on not only skin color, but culture, and with the Alpha, race. Diversity played a major role in this book and I really liked it. It was so well done and truly added more than just typical them versus us. It was everybody.

More so, the added element of domestic abuse and not just for humans but for the Alpha was heartbreaking. Both of these major themes expressed, in a sad way, that everyone shares these hardships in common. As well as these, they share their love for those they care about.

There was just so much more than I expected and I fell in love with this book.

Dead of Winter

There were many shocking twists and turns. I was caught off guard a few times. Being left guessing is one of my favorite things with a book and this one was successful. Unexpected romance, and expected, of course LOL. And the loss ripped all of it away. Stop ripping things and people I love away from me!

 

Overall

This is really different from other YA I’ve read. It’s humorous, yet filled with love and heartache. There’s such a real spin on this and it really added to the salty imagery. I can’t wait to be blown away in the next book. The ending really left me hanging! I have so many questions.

 

Quotables:

“There’s also this idea that the Alpha caused all the weird racism and xenophobia, too, but whatever. This part of town was always a hotbed of racial sludge, and the various groups never played nice.” (Lyric, p.34)

“When someone is grieving, even a kindness feels like a slap in the face.” (Lyric’s mom to Lyric, p. 265)

“What was I supposed to say to you, Bex? I’m half mermaid and I have the hots for Edward Scissor arms?” (Lyric to Bex, p. 308)

“Nothing will stop me, because I am bigger than the world; I make the sea tremble. I am a wild thing.” (Lyric, p. 376)

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

P.S. Song today? 100 Years by Five For Fighting.

 

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Thoughts? Let talk about them in the comments below!

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The Feminism Book Tag

In honor of International Women’s Day, I bring you the Feminism Book Tag!!!

I snagged this from Novel Darlings book blog. It was too grand not to take part in.


1. Your favorite female author.

There are MANY women authors I read from and love, and as the indecisive little shit I am, it comes down to two women who I really enjoy reading from and that’d be Rachel Caine (The Morganville Vampires and The Great Library) & Kresley Cole (The Arcana Chronicles). Fantastic ladies and superb, epic, mind-blowing authors. I’m always recommending their YA.

 

2. Your favorite heroine.

Buffy Summers has always been an inspiring heroine for me. Many argue that she isn’t a feminist icon, but to me, personally, she’s a hero.

Scarlet Reader

Gifer

Then again, if you are asking for a legit superhero, I’m going with (and this is thinking quick) Raven of the Titans. It takes a lot of strength to fight what your evil shitbrain of a father wants you to do AKA the apocalypse of hell and even more strength to protect those you care about from the darkest parts oof yourself.

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Giphy

 

3. A novel with a feminist message.

Caraval
Author: Stephanie Garber
Caraval

Goodreads

Here’s where the message could be tricky and even argued by many. How can love and a game be a feminist message, right? Here you have the main female character getting played over and over in a game and betrayed multiple times. How is that any kind of message!?

The message to me: Take risks, especially with your heart. Be brave because in a world that’s always changing, and in many cases, is pitted against you, you must find a way to play it your way. Let yourself fall in love rather than settle for what’s safe. There’s nothing wrong or weak with wanting to be in love. Fight for what you want. Be trusting and know it doesn’t mean your naïve. It just means you are kind, strong, and willing to give your everything, because that is rare.

 

 

4. A novel with a girl on the cover.

Children of Blood and Bone
Author: Tomi Adeyemi
Children of Blood and Bone

Amazon

The cover is gorgeous, depicting the magical, Zelie. The story, too, is incredible and magical, and I can’t wait to continue reading the series with the sequel: Children of Virtue and Vengeance.

 

5. A novel featuring a group of girls.

Daughters of the Moon
Author: Lynne Ewing
Scarlet Reader - Daughters of the Moon

It is about the only one I can think of right about now. A group of girls in high school are graced with being moon goddesses and are tasked, as have girls before them, to protect and save the world. Pretty awesome and mystical, though of course they have the typical teenage hormones to deal with too.

 

6. A novel with a queer feminine character.

That’s Not What Happened
Author: Kody Keplinger
Scarlet Reader - that's NOT what happened

Goodreads

While this book centers around surviving tragedy, it’s no stranger to queer characters. Eden, though she isn’t a main character, is a great character. Though struggling in her own way, Keplinger doesn’t shy away from showing how she isn’t special because of her sexuality. She is loved and goes through pain just the same as everyone. She is a part of the world and not as some token.

 

7. A novel with different feminine POV.

This one is complicated because I can’t tell if it means, alternating female POVs or just a book that had a female POV that rocked you. I’ll be going with the latter.

The Rules of Magic
Author: Alice Hoffman
The Rules of Magic

Goodreads

Jet, Franny, and Vincent. Each sibling got their POV spotlight, but the sisters were truly amazing. Franny especially. I was rocked by her story and the way it was told. Utterly breathtaking.

 

8. A book where a girl saves the world.

LUX
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Scarlet Reader - LUX

Amazon

Kat, though dragged into it accidentally, becomes a heroine unexpected. Granted, she’s not alone, but she does take up the calling after being turned into a hybrid of sorts by LUX, Daemon, her next-door neighbor and alien, and helps to protect world from a mass invasion from the aliens. Crazy? Not at all. Her world is flipped upside down, but she’ll do whatever it takes to protect it.

 

9. A book where you prefer the female sidekick to the male main character.

Harry Potter
Author: J. K. Rowling
Hermione Granger is the one you think I’m going to choose, isn’t it?
Scarlet Reader

Maximum Pop

Alas, Luna Lovegood has always been my champion in this series. The quirky little Ravenclaw has always been nothing but her strange self, embracing the weird, and open to everything, but never allowed anyone make her feel unimportant or inferior. Her weirdness has kept me tough.

 

10. A book written by a male author and featuring a female character.

Ocean at the End of the Lane
Author: Neil Gaiman
Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pintrest

Lettie Hempstock was remarkable! So fun and filled with adventure, and there to sacrifice herself for her friend, the main character of the book. Intelligent and remarkable, she made this book for me. Her and her curious ocean.


Anyone and everyone can and should do this book tag. I really enjoyed it!

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

Find Me:

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Thoughts? Let’s talk about them in the comments below!

Reunions Taste Bittersweet (Sever – A Book Review)

Sever (The Chemical Garden Trilogy #3)
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Published: 2013

On Goodreads

Scarlet Reader

Goodreads

My Rating: Full boltFull bolt

Rated P for promising, but ultimately ending in disappointment.

 

I must lose myself in action. Lest I wither in despair.

Rhine is working against the clock and the virus as she works to find her brother, Rowan, and Gabriel, her friend. Though freed from Vaughn’s clutches and experiments, he’s still hot on her trail, determined to get her back so he can get closer to the cure. But like with his previous experiments, she doesn’t care about the cost or who he hurts.

Rhine is in for a shock when she finally finds Rowan. The reunion with her sibling isn’t as sweet as she hoped. Things she didn’t know about her parents and herself are revealed in this shocking conclusion.

 

Wither

Scarlet Reader - Wither

Simon & Schuster

Review: here

 

Fever

Scarlet Reader - Fever

Simon & Schuster

Review: here

 

This book started out so promising! GAH! Cue my frustrated growls. Book 1 and 2 had me hooked! Great writing that was unlike anything I’d read before. This one was the same until the beginning of the end.

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Giphy

Rhine is officially free. She reunited with her brother and even got on good terms with her ex-husband Linden and sister-wife Cecily. Even Reed, Linden’s uncle, was an incredible surprise. I really like him. Gruff, but a tinkering inventor and good man.

But so much unnecessary stuff happened! It made me so mad!

After getting so excited to meet Rowan, he turned out to be a character I couldn’t stand! I thought he was standing for something, but he was just being a petulant child. And when he and Rhine reunited he was nothing more than a follower that believed anything and everything anyone said.

horrified

Giphy

The ending is what destroyed this for me. And there’s nothing worse than a book being amazing, or a book series being amazing than for it to have a terrible ending. It was rushed and so incomplete feeling. Gabriel didn’t even come into the book until the very end. The young man she’d created such a beautiful connection with, that she even got feeling for, and it was like he got the F-U. Gabriel deserved SO much better than what he got.

It was just so disappointing.

However, one of the great things about trilogies, is that in the third and final insert (whether a book or movie or other) there are secrets that come to light about those closest to you. Secrets that some with some skeletons you never knew about. And that’s the case for Rhine. Not only were there secrets about her parents revealed, but about herself. Those secrets changed everything!

 

Overall

I hoped for so much more. I really did. There were major moments, some tragic, that felt pointless and didn’t have any real reason explained. As if they were meant to stun and shock, but just felt forced instead. This book just felt incredibly out of wack. What started out beautiful and dark turned into weird and desperate. I’ve got nothing but a frowny face for the pointless death, rushed ending, and the feeling of unsatisfaction this book left me with.

 

Quotables:

“To die trying would be better than to die without purpose.” (Rhine, p. 172)

“People need a leader. They need to feel that someone is in charge, that they’re in the hands of someone greater than they are. It’s far scarier for each of us to believe that we are the only ones in charge of our own destinies. We know our own downfalls.” (Vaughn to Rhine, p.268)

“Loss is a knowledge I’m sorry to have. Perhaps the only things worse that experiencing it is watching it replay anew in someone else—all its awful stages picking up like a chorus that has yet to be sung.” (Rhine, p. 318)

 

More to come soon…

  –K.

 

P.S. Song today? Warm Blood by Carly Rae Jepsen.

 

Find Me:

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Thoughts? Let’s talk about them in the comments!

Midnight Tease

Midnight Tease - Giphy

Hello bookworms!

It’s the midnight hour! That means it’s time for the Midnight Tease! Find out here what I’ll be reading this month as well as what I’ll be reviewing!

I hope you are doing well. It’s the beginning of march which means the snow shall be melting soon enough and the sun will be out longer.

Spring is nearly here! Who else is excited!?

spring

I’ve been going through a lot of changes in the last month, so I do want to apologize again. You’re all fantastic. Things have just been ridiculously up and down and up and down. I should be getting back some regularity now, though.

Before I go on a ramble, without further ado!! Books!

 

Coming Soon…

Ghost_atniquity - LiveJournal

 

Dorothy Must Die
Author: Danielle Paige
The Scarlet Reader

Amazon

Getting started on another series on my New Year’s Resolution list!!

 

Daughter of Egypt
Author: Constance O’Banyon
Scarlet Reader

Amazon

Found this in the mass market section. Also, I love Egypt!

 

The Wood
Author: Chelsea Bobulski
Scarlet Reader

Scarlet Reader

Plucked from my Halloween picks of last year.

 

The Vampire Diaries: The Hunters
Author: L. J. Smith
Scarlet Reader

Harper Collins

Still working on getting to these ones.

 

Currently…

Unbreakable yes

 

Five Feet Apart
Author: Rachael Lippincott
Scarlet Reader

Goodreads

Glass Sword & King’s Cage
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Scarlett Reader

Scarlet Reader

 

Half Bad
Author: Sally Green
Scarlet Reader

Goodreads

 

Up for Review…

Up for Review

 

The Drawing of Three
Author: Stephen King
Scarlet Reader

Amazon

 

Undertow
Author: Michael Buckley

Scarlet Reader

 

Red Queen
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Scarlet Reader

The Hollywood Reporter

 

Going to be a busy month!!

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

Find Me:

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Thoughts? Let’s talk about them in the comments below!

Sundown Rundown – February 2019

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Hey there, bookworms!!

Though the sun is hiding behind the grey day lately, it is setting. We’re alsoo at the end of the shortest month of the year: February.

This is the Sundown Rundown. You’ll find everything I’ve read and reviewed this month. This is a great opportunity to check out any reviews you might’ve missed while also checking out the new ratings I’ve been doing!

I hope you’ve all had a great month, and cheers to March!

 

 

Scarlet Reader

Amazon | V. C. Andrews

Secret Brother

Author: V. C. Andrews

After losing her little brother, a girl gains another, thanks to her grandfather bringing home a young boy with amnesia. She’ll do whatever it takes to get him to remember his past and get him out of her life before he replaces her brother completely down to his name.

 

Scarlet Reader

Amazon

All the Little Lights

Author: Jamie Maguire

Elliot loves Catherine and he’ll do anything for her. They met one summer, but when he leaves without a word, she swears she’ll never forgive him. When he returns, he’ll do whatever it takes to earn her forgiveness.

 

M or F - Goodreads

M or F?

Author: Lisa Papademetriou & Chris Tebbetts

Girl likes boy. Girl gets gay best friend to talk to boy online for her. Gay best starts to think boy might actually like him and not her. Trouble!

 

Scarlet Reader

The Gunslinger

Author: Stephen King

The gunslinger is on the trail of the man in black who has all of the secrets to get to the Dark Tower, the mission. What will he sacrifice to get there?

 

Game of Thrones - Scarlet Reader

S.R.

Game of Thrones

Author: George R. R. Martin

The Iron Throne is threatened when the Hand of the King is killed. Now the Seven Kingdoms is thrown into toil as grabs for the throne is made and secrets are revealed that could destroy families and kingdoms. But, what may actually bring the downfall of this land lay beyond an icy wall.

 

Scarlet Reader

Scarlet Reader

Evercrossed

Author: Elizabeth Chandler

It’s been a year since her boyfriend, Tristan died. Ivy has moved on and is doing better and hopes is afterlife is going well too. But, then she died and Tristan must protect her from whatever is after her.

 

Favorite Book: Game of Thrones was so good even after having seen the show so many times! I really enjoyed it, was completely enthralled and look forward to reading the rest of the novels!

 

Least Favorite Book: Evercrossed was a wreck; take the pun or leave it. I thought the Kissed By An Angel series would continue on with its wispy storytelling, with new material and such but it plummeted backwards and just disappointed me in the end.

 

So my goal didn’t pan out as I hoped thanks to the many issues I had this month (the explanation can be found on SP – Feb. 25th). BUT! March is coming and I’m so excited on what I have planned to read!

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

Find Me:

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Thoughts? Let’s talk in the comments!

Your Grace…(A Game of Thrones – A Book Review)

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire #1)
Author: George R. R. Martin
Published: 1997

On Goodreads

Game of Thrones - Scarlet Reader

S.R.

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

Rated G for the gory and glorious, though also unnecessary, joy with playing with swords for a massive chair.

 

“When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground.”

Winter is coming…In a land when summers and winters can last years, there are dark forces of mythical proportions at work, seeking to get past the Wall, which protects the kingdom of Westeros.

The Hand of the King has died. A few believe it to be murder more than accidental. Lord Eddard Stark of Winterfell is summoned by King Robert to serve as the new Hand. He doesn’t have much of a choice. As he takes on the responsibility, being the king voice and such while he’s off being drunk, Eddard Stark uncovers unsettling secrets that could unravel the kingdom. If he hopes to save the kingdom from what could be a devastating war for the great iron throne, he must proceed carefully with what he knows.

Across the sea, in the east, Daenerys Targaryen moves across the land with three sleeping dragon eggs, intent on taking back the iron throne as the original heir to the iron throne.

Tragedy. Betrayal. Victory. Allie. Enemies. A new deadly conflict shrouds the world in a game of thrones.

 

So, I’ve seen the TV show three times already. Who’s amped up for the final season!? I am! I’m also a weird nervous wreck, wondering how it’ll end. The show is phenomenal and so is the book. I really can’t wait to read the rest.

For me, I’m glad I watched the show before reading the book. As I began reading I realized that if I hadn’t gotten to the show first I wouldn’t have been into the book. It’s so jam-packed that it would’ve been incredibly overwhelming and I would’ve lost interest. I don’t know if anyone else has ever gotten that feeling.

Following multiple POVs the story converges around one specific thing. The iron throne which, in my opinion, equivalates to the one ring to rule them all. It grabs at the greedy part of men everywhere…and women. It’s unsettling, but at the same time, I’m feeling like Sméagol/Gollum going, “My prrecioous.”.

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Giphy

I was pulled into each of the characters’ individual stories, all of which intertwine in one way or another. My favorite characters to follow have to be Arya, Dany, and Jon. Arya is so feisty and wants nothing more than to be a fighter/warrior. Dany has a spark in her that seeks to lead. Whether she’d turn out to be a great leader or one that is feared and dreadful like her father. Jon is the great underdog right now. A bastard that gives his life to the Wall to serve as the commander’s errand boy basically. There’s greatness in him though, and it’s not because of the show that I say that. I see it in the story too.

The imagery was so vivid and breathtaking. It was so powerful that it was almost as if I was there. It is the cusp of a long, and possibly the worst yet, winter. Westeros is on the verge of crumbling into war after the death of the Hand of the King and, later on, the King himself. Tension is thicker than LA smog. While I knew what was coming, I was still shocked to the core.

The differences between the book and the TV show were obvious but didn’t take away from each other at all. They’re both pleasant. Each bit I came across in the book was a pleasant surprise.

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Mashable

I’m so excited to get to the next books. Following each character, I was left biting my nails like a crazy girl. When each chapter ended I couldn’t handle being left hanging. It drove me crazy, but in such a good way. I needed more!

Icons

Tenor

 

Overall

This is top-notch fantasy and it’s only the beginning. No longer am I feeling shaky about reading this series.  I’m officially addicted and can’t wait to read the rest of the books. Up on the favorites shelf you go GOT. And I CAN’T WAIT FOR THE FINAL SEASON!

Scarlet Reader

Gifer

 

Quotables:

“Remember this, boy. All dwarfs may be bastards, yet not all bastards are dwarfs.” (Tyrion to Jon, p. 57)

“You have a bold tongue, little man. One day someone is like to cut it out and make you eat it.” (Bronn to Tyrion, p. 454)

“Fear cuts deeper than swords.” (p. 541)

“A eunuch has no honor, and a spider does not enjoy the luxury of scruples, my lord.” (Varys to Eddard, p. 633)

“Only death can pay for life.” (p. 806)

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

P.S. Song today? Leave My Body by Florence + The Machine.

 

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Thoughts? Let’s talk! Tell me in the comments below.

Speedy Quote Sunday

Speedy Quote Sunday

Hello, bookworms!

Hope you’re having a great day.  Here are some book-ish quotes that have moved me and inspired my thoughts.

 

“There’s a limit to how much living can be done in a life without freedom.” (Sever, Lauren DeStefano)

Makes you ponder how free you truly are versus how free you truly feel.

 

“Free yourself. Have the courage.” (Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future, A. S. King)

I think I’ve posted this one before. If so, here it is again, because I love it so much. Something so little says so much. Inspires so much.

 

“Hope is a powerful thing. Some say it’s a different breed of magic altogether. Elusive, difficult to hold on to. But not much is needed.” (Caraval, Stephanie Garber)

Hope is a magic. It creates such an ineffable feeling that can give us unbelievable strength and power to strive for greatness.

 

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

Find Me:

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Thoughts? Let’s talk in the comments!