Journey to the Jade Girl (Idols – A Book Review)

Idols
Author: Margaret Stohl
Published: 2014

idols

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

So I watch while my world spins out of control.

After destroying the Icon in The Hole (Los Angeles), Dol and her friends search out the other Icons so that they can destroy them and save the world from the Lords who have taken over and thrust humanity into slavery. But when Dol’s dreams about a little jade girl grow increasingly alarming, the group journeys all the way to the SEA colonies (Asia) to help her figure them out. This little girl could hold the key to freeing the world.

Along the way, relationships are tested, revelations about what the Icon children truly are is discovered, and a betrayal leaves everyone stunned and hurt.  Can they really save the world or is it too late? More importantly, are they even meant to?

As I trekked through this book, I found it to be just like Icons, (you can read the review here). It didn’t much grab my attention. That’s not to say that it didn’t have nice moments. It did. The usual grab that a story needs to keep me attached just wasn’t there unfortunately. I just felt like I was being dragged along.

I became increasingly disappointed in Dol as I got farther and farther in the book. Here she’s got a great, massive destiny and all she keeps doing is saying no as if she has a choice. She comes across as a very weak character that refuses to do anything to help her friends. It’s understandable to be afraid of dying or of your loved ones getting hurt.  The word no comes out too often, and yet she’s the one who’s rioting for rebellion against the Lords and everybody looks to for leadership and hope like she straight out of Star Wars. It really grated me. Backing out of the Save The World Plan halfway through is uncool and really ridiculous. You don’t get to exit like it’s a video game. Find your courage, swallow it down, and do the damn thing.

Idols

I felt like I was getting bounced from moment to the next without fulfillment. I just don’t feel like I got enough because the moments that I wanted more from were the ones cut way too short. I don’t mean that they were cut off by something else interrupting the moment in the book. There wasn’t enough detail to give me enough of a visual and get me to latch on that it was important.

I really enjoyed that I got to see more of what the world was like. There was an underground community, a temple and elephants. The new imagery really moved this adventure further and since I’ve never been to Asia, I really liked it.

The reveals that really surprised happened toward the end of the book, which was a shame. It left the book hanging like a monkey off a branch. It wasn’t a very pleasant feeling. Just ick that it happened at the end.

Overall, the book wasn’t extremely memorable for me. I didn’t get very attached to the characters. I couldn’t get an emotional grip to be able to. The journey to rid the world of Icons did end on a cliffhanger that left Dol damaged and angry. I don’t know if there’s another book to follow in the series. I haven’t seen or heard about it. I don’t think I’ll read it if is out there. It just wasn’t for me.

Quotabes:

“Out of range, that was us. One sunset, one kiss may have saved our lives.” (Dol, p. 50”

“You are a thing of quick and endless and always-changing beauty. Humanity.” (Bird to Dol, p. 115)

“What’s so passionate about a fruit? It’s essentially just an ovary for a seed.” (Tima, p. 225)

“Jade girls and jade dreams.” (Dol, p. 316)

“Not everything that comes from the sky is an angel.” (Dol, p. 413)

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Alien by Thriving Ivory.

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Hooked On Too Many Feelings (Icons – A Book Review)

Icons
Author: Margaret Stohl
Published: 2013

icons

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

 

They’re different. They survived. Why?

The entire world changed on The Day. The power went out. Cities were destroyed. People dropped dead. Dol’s family was some of those people. She and her best friend, Ro grew up at The Mission out in grasslands, living the simple life out of the range of the Icon and its deadly power, and relying on only each other.

When the government destroys their home and kidnaps them, they’re forced to join up with two other teenagers, Tima and Lucas. Together they are the Icon Children, the only people immune to Icons that The Lords left across major cities. And together, the Icon Children plan to take each and every one of them out, though their escalating emotions may make that difficult. Dol finds her heart is torn between hothead Ro and kind Lucas, but can she get past her own sorrow to figure out her heart. To help the world? Lucas’s desperation to please his mother, The Ambassador may threaten their mission. Ro’s intense feelings for Dol could put him in an early grave. And Tima, with her own secrets trust nobody but Lucas.

 

This was a very interesting book. Aliens, for lack of a better terminology, have come to earth and instead of co-existing, they rule over everybody and everything. From Dol’s POV, we see a world without one of the most basic luxuries that we have. Electricity. While for some, it’s no different since they’ve lived decently without relying on it too heavily, for others, like those who live in The Hole (what used to be Los Angeles), it’s harder and more life threatening.

Icons

Dol is completely driven by her emotions and that’s precisely how Margaret wrote her. I found that to be quite unique. But it was also a bit problematic in many places. Solely reading from her emotions didn’t allow me to get a strong handle on the characters. They were all over the place. There also wasn’t enough information on the characters. The small details you learn about a character as you read just seemed to be missing here. Also, Dol was very assuming, as if me, the reader, was supposed to know what she was telling me already and, uh, I didn’t. For example, she often says—“that’s how Ro is” or “because that’s what Ro does”. And this comes after Ro already doing this ‘something’ that she feels the need to point out, or for some reason, emphasize.

There’s a chance that it’s just me feeling oddly tweeked about how off kilter this part makes me feel. LOL.

It just came off very weird, to me. It was interesting that it breached that dimension, though, much like an actor on stage of a play talking straight to the audience.

 

A delightful addition was the snippets at the end of each chapter. Each one was different and really gave me a visual for what this broken down world looked like apart from what Dol was trying to show me. I really struggled seeing through Dol’s eyes because details were so limited, so these bits really gave me an outside look.

Icons

I have the sequel and have already started it. I am hopeful that it’ll be a little better, more open and revealing I guess is what I’m trying to say because while there is great potential, I’m just feeling lost. There’s not enough to keep me tethered.

 

Quotables:

“Their hearts stopped beating. They died where they stood. Quietly. Instantly. Every person, every age. Everyone close enough to the Icons.” (Lucas, p. 111)

“Fear is a dangerous thing.” (Dol, p. 151)

“The Grassboy who loves the Grassgirl goes out with the tides. The Grass Revolutionary comes in them.” (Dol, p. 322)

“Be brave. Be alive. Be free.” (Dol, p. 406)

“Feelings are memories. Memories are also feelings.” (Dol, p. 426)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? Walkin’ on the Sun by Smash Mouth

Can You Handle That? (Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future – A Book Review)

Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future
Author: A.S. King
Published: 2014

History of the Future-Goodreads

 

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

Max Black. Oven. Jupiterians. Why People Take Pictures. The train. Photography. Zones.

Glory O’Brien just graduated high school. She still struggles with her mother’s suicide. Her best friend is in a hippie cult. And she can see the future. A civil war will break out in fifty years and women will have all of their right revoked. But there’s more and Glory can barely handle it.

Glory’s not sure if what she sees is real or if she’s just going bat-shit crazy. But in any case, she writes it all down because what if it is real? While she’s unsure that she can do anything about the war and death she sees whenever she looks at a person, she’s hoping that the history of the future she’s writing will help someone.

“I am no one special. You are no one special. Can you handle that? Most people can’t handle it.” (Darla, p.99)

Glory

This book shook me to the core and surprised me with how deep and twisted it was. Glory is a character that I think we all secretly look up to. She is witty and intelligent. She explores the world around her with incredible thought and feeling. She uses photography to waver between life and death. She tries to find meaning in life with the photos she takes while also trying to find a connection with her dead mother who’d also been a photographer.

 

WARNING:

Your inner activist has a chance of getting revved up which really adds to the uniqueness of this book. I’ve never read anything that’s affected that part of me like this. It made it more realistic for me because I can relate to it.

Glory

I found the build-up of the story-line to be slow, but the plot is magnificently multi-layered. This story isn’t about one singular event, but about the world and discovering how people fit in it according to Glory and more importantly, how she fits in it. She gives great thought to this.

All of the unnatural flip-flopping from one subject to another would usually be looked at as annoying, but I found it to be just the opposite. This is the front seat of Glory’s mind and she doesn’t leave out a lick. You get to understand human ability of weighing pros and cons as well as the reasoning behind giving second chances even though it’s not worth it. The in-depth understanding of her feelings or even the lack thereof made me think about how I view myself.

The style and tone were fantastic as well. The vocabulary of the characters really separated them from other fictional book characters and made them more real and independent.

I found my anticipation growing to read her excerpts on the future, allowing me to see what she saw. Each chapter stood alone and solid with no serious transition from one to the next. It just kept moving forward, allowing for a fast pace. When I made it to the last page I was in a stupor and didn’t want it to be over.

mind blown

I know one thing. Well, maybe two. One, this is a phenomenal book and I didn’t think it would be at first. Two, this book NEEDS to be picked for a TV show. Hello, Netflix?

 

Quotables:

“We could see the future. We could see the past. We could see everything.” (Glory, p. 1)

“Humans are weird, right? We’re walking contradictions. We are zone 10 and zone 0 at the same time.” (Glory, 23)

“Your mom killed God, dude.” (Glory to Ellie, p. 48)

“Free yourself. Have the courage.” (Ellie, p. 55)

“You are not your virginity. You are a human being. The state of your hymen has nothing to do with your worth…” (Glory, p. 79)

“Fact: Past, present and future have one thing in common. Me.” (Glory, p. 197)

“You were like a lighthouse in a storm. That’s all. I didn’t want to freak you out. I was just happy to find you.” (Peter, p. 202)

 

More to come soon…

K.

P.S. Song today? Radioactive by Imagine Dragons.

Trapped in the Underground (Survive the Night – A Book Review)

Survive the Night
Author: Danielle Vega
Published: 2015

Survive the Night

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

“We’re all going to die down here.”

Casey’s first night out of rehab, she’s taken to a party by her friends where her ex’s band is playing. After hearing about the wild rave, Survive the Night, she and her friends go on the hunt. Finding the rave down in an abandoned subway, Casey is overwhelmed by the enclosed space and drugs and alcohol; everything she worked hard to get free of. She puts on a brave face and tries to have fun anyway…until she finds the body of her friend, Julie, completely mutilated. Her friends think she was just seeing things due to withdrawal, but Casey knows what she saw.

The rave is broken up by the police, and Casey and her friends search for a way out of the tunnels only to discover that they’re trapped…and they’re not alone in the darkness. By who or what, they’re not sure. All they know is that it has claws and teeth, and it’s hunting them and there doesn’t seem to be a way out.

Creepy - Rebloggy

First things first. I’m a horror junkie. I live for the blood and guts when I’m not being a hapless romantic or thriving on paranormal adventures. If you’re searching for somebody to watch scary movies with then I’m your guy…girl. However, if there are clowns then I’m out. They eat people and are scary as hell. *shivers* Just no thank you.

 

This book was a lot of fun. It really made me think about the 90’s movies: I Know What You Did Last Summer and Scream and The Faculty. Not so much because of plot, but because of the theme and style. I grew up with these movies and so many others, but this is the era that I flashed back to while reading. It made me giddy.

giphy

There was the group of friends, but not really friends, and there was the drama between exes and of course, the big bad. I finished this book all in one day and then discovered that my mom took and read it. Now, she listens to audio books (big fan of Stephen King and Dean Koontz), so I was surprised she picked up this book, since it’s the first time she’s picked up a physical—pages and all—book in years. She enjoyed it as well.

While the plot was predictable, the story was still a lot of fun. I loved the exciting feeling of wondering what was to come and most importantly, when. With a perfect amount of gore, I couldn’t get enough. My heart ached with sadness and burned with anger on this trek (in a good way, of course). Now, I can’t say it terrified me and kept me awake at night. It takes a little work to do that, and I don’t just mean the occasional jump-scare. But it did give my blood a bit of an adrenaline rush here and there as well as making my breath catch in anticipation.

A fun read. Certainly no holds back on the gory details and to make it better, you’re stuck in complete darkness. It’s got my approval.

oh yeah - giphy

Quotables:

“I inhale, trying to calm myself down, but the air tastes like fish and rot and something else, something sweet and familiar that makes me gag. I need to get out of here, The air’s too thick. I can’t breathe.” (Casey, p. 92)

“Then we’re running. Our shoes slap against the damp, trash-strewn ground and our breathing comes in gasps. My heart pounds in my ears, like a drum. We’re so loud. Everyone in the tunnels must hear us. I glance behind me, but the darkness is perfect. It presses against our backs like a solid thing.” (Casey, p. 134)

“I clench and unclench my hand, ignoring the sweat gathering on the back of my neck. I turn and stare in to the darkness. The sound cuts off abruptly. Like someone holding their breath.” (Casey, p. 189)

“This is it. I’m going to die.” (Casey, p. 249)

 

More to come soon…

K.

P.S. Song today? Trip Switch by Nothing But Thieves.

The Human Next Door (LUX: Oblivion – A Book Review)

Oblivion: A LUX novel
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Published: 2015

Oblivion - amazon

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

In Obsidian, Katy moves to Petersburg, West Virginia, and her life is never the same after meeting the Blacks, her next door neighbors. She never imagined aliens being real and she especially never expected to fall in love with one.

Now, in Oblivion, Daemon and Dee Black are still coming to terms with the loss of their brother and triplet, Dawson. And then, Katy Swartz moves into the house next door and all kinds of alarms go off in Daemon Black’s head. As a Luxen, the worst thing that can happen is for a human to get too close, and one living just next door is too close. Determined to keep her at arm’s length, his sister has other plans. She wants to be friends with their new neighbor and doesn’t care what her brother thinks.

That doesn’t mean he won’t find ways to make it impossible for Dee. It’s hard enough trying not give away that they’re aliens. His attempts to keep the two girls from being friends don’t end well, especially for him. Going back on what he swore (read Shadows), he begins to fall for her, though hiding it under a massive heap of denial. With dangers lurking in the shadows, he has to keep denying his feelings, if not for Katy’s safety than for his sister’s. If only he could stay away from Katy.

Inconceivable - Giphy

I read this after finishing the entire series. It felt more special that way, like coming full circle.

I was quite surprised when I read this book. I knew that Daemon would have some dislike for Katy, but it caught me off guard that it was more than I expected. He wanted to burn her house to the ground and hadn’t met her yet! Dang!

burn - Giphy

The heat that was in Obsidian was amplified threefold in this book. Capturing the essence of Daemon was something to behold. Witnessing the change in him from beginning to end was phenomenal. I loved seeing the person(…alien?) he became while around Katy. There was only glimpses at Daemon’s thoughts and feelings, guarded and unknown, when reading from her POV. It was like a dam breaking. The final pieces completing a puzzle. Everything we ever wanted to know and even more. This is a perfect example of writing the same story from two different perspectives. Neither story is the same in any way. Well, not true. The love and electricity that carries between the two characters is one.

The only thing that bothered me was Daemon’s tone. Every once in a while it didn’t sound like him at all from what I gathered in the Shadows and Origin and Opposition. I just found myself shaking my head here and there with befuddlement. More often than not though, I shook my head when the Daemon I discovered during the journey through LUX reared his head high and proud for being a sarcastic, narcissistic, caring young man.

This book astounded me. At first it was a bumpy ride, but when I finally got into it, I was a giggling puddle yet again. As I’m sure I’ve said before, I’m not into sci-fi. Not very much. Yet I fell into LUX so easily. Granted, there were other reason too, but that’s beside the point. Maybe I’ll tell you about it one day. All in all, this series is high up on my list.

I’ll be returning to this series one day. Until then….see you later, LUX.

P.S. Still picturing Daemon Black as this one….

Daemon - wattpad

It’s not my fault. It just happened! It was the smirk, I’m telling you.

 

Quotables:

“The stars I stared at held no answers, and as I slowly lowered my gaze, I found my staring at the bedroom window of the house next door, my new problem. There was a part of me that had accepted there was nothing I was going to be able to do to stop Dee and her from getting closer, but I couldn’t just let it go.” (Daemon, p. 43)

“Closing my eyes, I swore under my breath. This thing with Kat…it was getting ridiculous, and it was unacceptable. Completely unacceptable.” (Daemon, p. 141)

“Something unexpected happened to my chest. It felt like someone had walked right up to me and socked me in it. I might’ve stopped breathing.” (Daemon, p. 261)

“My people believe that when we pass on, our essence is what lights the stars in the universe.” (Daemon, p. 312)

 

More to come soon…

K.

P.S. Song today? Always Be Together by Little Mix.

Meeting My Alien Boyfriend’s Family (LUX: Opposition – A Book Review)

LUX: Opposition
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Published: 2014

LUX - Opposition - amazon

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

The final installment to the LUX series.

Like stars falling from the sky, the Luxen have landed after the colossal and public havoc caused by Daemon and company in Las Vegas that revealed them as aliens to the world, and nobody is safe. Major cities are wiped out and loved ones are lost. Katy is just trying to get the love of her life, Daemon Black, back after he gets brain-sucked by his own kind. From there, she and her friends are determined to save what’s left of the world. In order to do so they make allies with those they least expected, those who already ruined their lives before the major alien arrival.

After all is said and done, nothing will ever be the same for Katy Swartz ever again. Hell, it all changed the moment she knocked on Daemon Black’s door. Does she regret it?

And as a perk, Opposition came with a bonus—the prequel story to this entire series. Where it all began. Shadows, the tale of Dawson, Daemon Black’s other sibling, and Bethany. Discover how they fell in love and how it led up to Daemon’s dislike for humans in LUX: Obsidian.

YES - giphy

This book reaches up to its peak. However, I fell a little flat with this book. Not completely, but a little compared to the previous books of the series. There was plenty of action and everything led up to this moment because I always wondered what would happen when the other Luxen landed.  And it’s a bloodbath. But there were also moments that felt a little repetitive, or that needed a little extra added on to them for me. I struggled to keep a grasp on such tidbits.

The emotional tidal wave was a great ride though. Twisting and turning and wondering left my heading spinning pleasantly like the sky is spinning from going in circles to fast. This story certainly doesn’t lack there. I couldn’t stop or pull away from it because I was desperate to find out if these characters would be okay. That kind of attachment is strong and fantastic. You get a very good visual of an apocalyptic world.

The story, just like the previous ones it followed, is fast pace and filled with a lot of unexpected surprises and delicious thrills. The wit and sarcasm is on point and I couldn’t ask for more. Actually, I could and I’m sure I’d get it. (See Quotables for a couple examples.) Even coming this far, I didn’t know aliens knew sarcasm and badassery. Not like this. Thank you for proving me wrong, *wink*. And the romance? *fans self* Oh Lordy.

However, when I got to the ending, I felt as if it was a plop of a stone in a pond. Very lacking, I felt. Compared to the rest of the book beforehand, it was so small. I didn’t expect a major charade, but I didn’t expect it to seem so simple. That’s human life for you. We like the quiet life.

I definitely recommend this book. It still holds on to the relationship of Daemon and Katy, but with more hunger like the average teenager. Every day might have been their last and they didn’t waste it. I give them kudos on that. As the final installment, don’t miss what happens when they pull out all the stops  to save each other and those they care about.

 

Quotables:

“It was hard looking back and thinking about all the time we’d wasted fighting what was between us, fighting each other, especially when the future looked appallingly short, but I couldn’t focus on that now, because we were together. It didn’t matter how many hours, days, month, or years we had stretched out in front of us; we’d always be together.” (Katy, p. 147)

“Seriously? Kissing her right now is what we need to be doing when we have pissed-off alien on us?”

“Kissing her is always the right thing to do.” (Archer to Daemon, p. 201)

 

“Well, shit balls for dinner on Sunday.” (Daemon, p. 223)

WHAT - codigonuevo

Seriously, the look on my face when I read that single sentence for the fourth time, wondering if that’s really what fell out of his mouth. It may be one of my new sayings.

“Did you ever think this is where you’d end up when you knocked on my door asking for direction?” (Daemon to Katy, p. 238)

“Dammit. All I wanted to do is shower and take a nap and eat bacon!” (Katy, p. 254)

bacon - Tenor GIF Keyboard

I feel you Katy.

I plan of starting Oblivion pretty soon, which is LUX: Obsidian, but from Daemon Black’s POV. I’m quite curious to see what he is thinking after meeting Katy for the first because the inkling from Shadows-

“Next thing we know, you’ll be dating a human…” -Ash

“Yeah, not going to happen.” -Daemon

 

 

More to come soon…

K.

P.S.Song today? Forever and Always by Parachute.

Don’t Tell Mom I’m Dating an Alien – (LUX: Consequences – A Book Review)

Lux: Consequences
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Published: 2014

Lux-Consequences - entangled in romanc

This is the second installment to the special collector’s edition of the YA series, LUX.

Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

 

After finally succumbing to her feelings for Daemon Black, discovering and getting a handle on the intense powers as a result of being healed by him, and dealing with the heavy loss of friends, Katy Swartz was not prepared for the return of Daemon’s brother, Dawson, who’d been missing for over a year. Nobody was prepared. He doesn’t waste any time in wanting to find his still missing girlfriend, Beth, and he’ll do anything to get her back, even put everybody else in danger.

“You really shouldn’t trust a soul in this game. Not when everyone has something to gain or lose.” (Luc to Katy, p. 284)”

Then suddenly, Blake, friend turned enemy, returns to town, demanding that Katy and Daemon help free the Luxen that turned him into a hybrid from Daedalus, a facility experimenting on Luxen and hybrids like him and Katy. Tensions run high as the group tries to figure out a way into Deadalus and it tests the strength of Daemon and Katy’s new relationship.

And then Katy becomes the newest captor of Daedalus. What does Daemon do? What he does best. He goes after her, and after finally finding her, the two realize that Daedalus has a lot more in store for Luxen and the hybrids besides the horrifying experiments they’ve heard about.

It’s soon discovered that their enemies aren’t just wearing lab coats and camouflage, but are a lot closer to home than expected and it shocks everybody. And, their allies are the last people they expected. They’ll need all the help they can get when their problems escalate beyond earth.

“Oh shit. ET so phoned home, kids.” (Luc, p. 772)

UFO - giphy

Where do I start!? I’m still in that lush state from reading this series and there’s still one book to go. As I told you in my very first post on here about LUX: Beginnings, I am not one for Sci-Fi, but Jennifer L. Armentrout has reeled me into it with the perfect balance of thrilling action and lip-biting romance. Daemon Black joins the ranks of book boyfriends with his ego, vibrant green eyes (my favorite), and the sneaky ways he makes the reader blush with his words that if you try hard enough, you can hear him whisper in your ear. Then again, maybe that’s just me. We all have book boyfriends or girlfriends like that.

And let’s not forget that smirk. *insert crimson blush here*

Daemon - wattpad

(Yep, I’m still imagining that it’s Cody Christian. I’ve tried denying it. It didn’t work.)

The quick pace of this story is flawless. It doesn’t feel too rushed, which is a beautiful thing. Every detail is delightfully written, very much like a movie in my head, and that’s how I love my books. The twists and turns in this next edition were kicked up a notch compared to the first one. I know that there were moments that made me think that this couldn’t escalate any higher and I kept getting blown away. I’ve got nothing but praise for this series.

This is one of those reads you can’t put down and I recommend it to everyone who’s looking to try something new. This special edition contains both the third and fourth book as well as some delectable bonus content (I won’t gush about it, but it’s great). I will hopefully be getting to the fifth one soon. Just like my craving for chocolate, my fingers are twitching for it.

Have you read it? What did you think? Tell me in the comment section below.

 

Quotables:

“If we’re not together on everything, then how can we really be together?” (Katy to Daemon, p. 60)”

“Elation swelled in my chest, and as we lay in each other’s arms, our breaths coming in and out ragged, our bodies tangled together, we still couldn’t get enough of each other. We kissed. We talked. We lived.” (Katy, p. 346)

“Several moments passed before she spoke. “I’ve always wanted a Mogwai.” (Katy to Daemon, p.521)”

gizmo - tumblr

(I’ve always wanted a Mogwai too. Just ask my mom. I ask for one every Christmas.)

More to come soon…

K.

P.S. Song today? Sign of the Times by Harry Styles.

 

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