Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Book Reviews in February 2013

All These Things I've Done (Birth Right #1) by Gabrielle Zevin [Spoiler Free]

And then I was up and running diagonally across the black and white linoleum floor like a bishop gone mad.

I didn't think I was going to like this book much due to the Catholic aspect of it. But actually, this book was very interesting. It took me a while to read it. There were certainly parts of the book that had me captivated. The reason why this book couldn't even be a 4 star was that I had no problem putting it down. In fact, I should have been able to read this book in one sitting, in about 5 hours or so. But I had no desire to rush through it. That's not necessarily a bad thing. It certainly was a nice leisurely read.

I appreciated that Scarlet behaved like a best friend. Even when she had her moments, she was still best friend material. You hardly see that anymore. All of the females in books are out to get the other females anymore.


I loved her. She was a well rounded character. She was strong, impressionable, imperfect, hard headed, jaded, thoughtful yet thoughtless, selfish yet sacrificial, and I especially loved that she was honest with herself during self-reflection.


His story broke my heart. And I really would have liked to have read more about him and his life, or even from his point of view. I fell in love with him and was saddened that there wasn't enough about him.


The romance here needed some work. You did not watch them come together. It was just suddenly that way. You didn't watch their relationship blossom, all of a sudden they were just in love with each other. It wasn't insta-love on Anya's part, but it certainly was for Win. I give the romance one star. 
Win as a character could have been better represented as well. He was rather empty. I got that he was attractive, and at times he was thoughtful. But I didn't get a real feel for him throughout the book. He could have gone in any direction and I wouldn't have been surprised.


The plot and subplots were good. Though the reasons behind chocolate being illegal were not satisfactory to me, the thought that the next thing would be water was good, the direction the story went was pretty good. It was easy to visualize and rationalize a lot of what transpired within this novel. I also found it easy to relate to Anya, and her circumstances, maybe more so because she read as a person, not as a piece of paper with a name.

Overall, this was a good book. I did enjoy the read once I finally finished it. The downside was, I was easily distracted while reading it. It was not a gripping read, but it was satisfying. And I did enjoy the ending.

Read from January 30 to February 04, 2013
Books I have

Altered (Altered #1) by Jennifer Rush [Spoiler Alert]

Parents are an endangered species in YA books lately. And when that is the case, the cliche right now is having the surviving parent not speak about the deceased one. I wonder where that came from, because as a mother, I can tell you right now, if my husband died, my kids would hear about him all the time.

A big problem I had with this book was Anna. I am not sure how she spent all the time she did rationalizing having four boys locked in her basement. The rest of her character set up did not match the serious amount of naivety that Anna continued to show. She really wasn't representing her age at all. If you want to blame the alterations, you can't. Because it was never implied that they would or had affected her in that manner. 
Speaking of Anna, she was incredibly petty, childish, impulsive, selfish, entitled, nosy, desperate and disrespectful.
I had a hard time finding sympathy for her. She was constantly whining about herself, but she never really did reflect on her part in the boys captivity. She also never reflected on her being a liability, which was very much why Cas was captured. He was defending her when he was shot. She spent a lot of her time being stubborn and hot headed.
I think, had she bothered questioning things, and her role in the program, and even her parentage, I might have liked her more. But she was a bit empty in the head. 
I was also not a fan of how she was set up to be a perpetual damsel in distress.
Her only redeeming quality was that she could throw down, and that wasn't enough.

Would he think of me when he woke? I lost all of the respect I had for Anna after I read that line. She momentarily earned my respect back when Connor and Riley come into play, but then she quickly desecrated it again.

There were some things that happened in the book that didn't make a lot of sense or were not explained. Like Sam knowing he had escaped before, but Anna had never let him know what she had found in his file. Nor was it mentioned that perhaps he knew this through a flashback. 

I might not have the ability to read Sam as well as he did me, but I knew enough to know there'd been a secret there, one he wasn't willing to part with yet. And I wanted to find out what it was.
This was the last straw for Anna. I held nothing but contempt for her after this. It also became apparent to me that she did not love Sam at all. She was obsessed with him. Sure, you might say she was connected to him due to OP ALPHA, but I think she was just damaged, and had become like a stalker. She felt like she had a right to the boys' feelings, thoughts, and private memories. She was really quite a bitch. She had no respect for any of them. And that was something she never did redeem about herself in the book.

"It's a semiautomatic, though, so you only have to do that once. got it?"
No. But I wasn't going to tell Sam that.

What is wrong with you, Jennifer? Of all the things to have her be stupid about, why would gun safety be on that list? What a great influence you are. This is the kind of attitude that gets people killed. And people who think like this have no business touching a gun. whether they are fictional characters or not.

I never did understand why Nick was the underdog in this book. Personally, I liked him the best. He actually had substance. And I think he would have been a better fit for Anna, not Sam. This was another area of the book that Anna pissed me off. She had absolutely no understanding for Nick until she later learns he was abused. And the sympathy respect doesn't sit well with me.

I wanted to prove that I could stand next to him when things got bad. She failed this when she made him spare Riley.

I found myself wondering what kinky brown hair looks like. I'm assuming kooky curls or something.

The romance was terrible. First of all: Ew. I just can't justify it. Yuck. That is too much like incest to me, even though it is not in any way. I was gagging. I could understand it until she knew who Sam was in love with...but after? Ick, ick, ick! Secondly, you never watched it blossom. Sam just all of a sudden appeared to be interested after any chemistry before had been explained away as using Anna. It's mainly Anna making a fool out of herself, and it certainly looks one sided. Not that Sam hates her, but just isn't interested in her. And I never got the feel from him that he ever was interested in her. Not even at the end. Nope, wasn't impressed with it. 

Over all this book was extremely predictable. Nothing that happened actually surprised me. I'm glad there were things that happened to lead up to the events and that they made sense, though. I think that as Rush perfects her writing style, she'll find ways to make them more subtle so you're not waiting for things you know are going to take place. The plot was great, it was just see-through. It did force me to read it though, I will say that. Annoyed as I was, I had to keep going. So 3 stars. I will look for the next one.

Read from February 05 to 06, 2013
Books I have.

Revealing Eden (Saving the Pearls #1) by Victoria Foyt [Spoiler Alert]

Okay, this book received some seriously horrible reviews and accusations of being racist. So I thought I'd see what the fuss was all about.

I spent most of the book coming up with excuses for how people could be offended--but it really was probably trying to be something else, or people were being overly sensitive. But as I continued to read--and I did finally finish this book 3 days later--I just couldn't come up with any more excuses.

The biggest problem was the focus on hatred. Eden was especially hateful towards black people. She was also hateful and frightened of--not for--albino people. She was incredibly racist. And I don't know how it could be seen as a counter to the hatred--it really was a promotion of it.
All of the black people, excluding Bramford and apparently Shen, in this book were racist. 
Even white people were scared of each other. And to be honest, if I were African American, I'd still be offended. So it put them on top, that's nice, but it made them monstrous people who went back to the times where their ancestors were treated horrendously, but took it a few steps further.
However, there were no consequences for behaving this way--for anyone. And Eden really should have had some issues for the way she treated people and the way she acted. But no, she's rewarded with things going her way.

The message I received from this book was that white people, even in the position of being little more than slaves, were still extremely privileged, greedy, and ungrateful people. There are bad seeds for every race, I'd hate to think that we would degrade in such a manner. And if you're prejudiced against, you should try to change. Not very good messages to send.

I don't understand why this book had to be written the way it was. It could have been about opposing races--that wasn't the issue. Like I said earlier, it was the promotion and concentration of hatred that was the issue. Eden was forever judging Bramford because of his colour. She was forever stating how she hated them. It was made known SO MANY TIMES how shitty black people were, and then how shitty white people were. And having someone like Eden represent white people? That was extremely offensive as well. Foyt tried to redeem her racist pileup by having Eden find them beautiful. But unfortunately, coming up with your own racial slurs really doesn't help your cause.


Had this not emphasized and promoted racial tension, it could have been decent. The plot was interesting. And I think it could have been done with a lot more taste. The subplots were lacking though. A lot of things that transpired throughout the book did not make sense, or contradicted earlier statements.
The book did not really give you a great deal of insight into how things became the way they were either, which, I think, had a lot to do with projecting things in a negative way.
You were just kind of slapped in the face with a bunch of racial tension and hatred. It most certainly started off on the wrong foot, and never righted itself.


I'm guessing we were supposed to hate her. I mean, there is no way anyone was supposed to support her, right? Because yeah...
She was extremely disrespectful, hypocritical, bitter, nasty, delusional, and fucking crazy. I didn't understand her line of thinking. In the beginning some of it made sense, but as things progressed she just kind of slipped away.
Later in the book she talks about how she is a new Eden...but she's exactly the same. Selfish, judgmental, nasty, and thoughtless. She was a character who was more than just too stupid to live. I don't know how this shit was published.


What the hell? I didn't see any true chemistry, nor did I sense this supposed connection between the two. In fact, I have no fucking clue what Bramford saw in Eden. There was nothing about her for him to like. 
Just because you introduce the romance with an electrifying connection, doesn't make their relationship a romance. It requires proper interaction, that builds and strengthens the connection and chemistry between the characters. This did not take place.
This was also the closest thing you could get to bestiality without it being full blown bestiality! Disgusting. 
I was also not impressed with Eden humping Bramford's head. This girl has no fucking shame. 
"You're a blind and selfish girl..." Yeah, that summed her up pretty well. Again...how did he see anything in her?

All the Emily Dickinson quotes were fucking annoying after the first two. 

I was confused why the "Indians" were speaking Spanish...

Anyway. This is awful. Even racism aside, the structure of this book is terrible. Not going to bother reading further.

Read from February 06 to 09, 2013
Books I have.

Release (The Protector #3) by M. R. Merrick [Spoiler Free]

"You want to hug, don't you?"

What an ending! Yeah, that was rude. I bawled my eyes out. I can't believe you did that, Merrick, but I have to say, it really did up the ante! 

"I'm melting!"

I love Vincent. I was very happy to see him again in this book. He is my favourite quasi villain of the series. I especially loved the scene of Vincent and the sun. I was laughing my ass off. And I couldn't help but side with chase...I would have been hard pressed not to do the same thing.

I kind of feel like a dick. Thanks Merrick! I hadn't even noticed the lack of Tiki's story because there is always so much going on in these books. Glad to feel like an ass. I certainly appreciated his back story though. I am curious about Mr. Tiki, he is certainly one of my favourite characters in the series.

"You have three..." AHAHAHAHAHAHA. Yeah...nice touch. I love the immaturity, it really speaks to my inner child.

Miss Rayna sure had some attitude issues, once again. She had lots of blows to dish out in this book. I was getting a little irked with her. But I have to say, she really does do a great job of representing women and our complicated bitchiness. You know, I can't like her because we have too much in common? Maybe that's the problem.

The battle scenes were a little repetitive at times. Chase's first attack would miss, and Rayna would follow up with a connecting shot. It got a little more creative toward the end.

There were a few grammatical errors and interesting word choices, but nothing major.

I LOVED the world buildup! I LOVED the character development! I loved the plot and sub plots. Everything from book one until now has come together beautifully. These books are captivating. There is SO much going on! I would recommend re-reading or at least skimming the books over before reading the new ones because Merrick does not do a whole lot of previous book reflection. There is some, but I found myself forgetting major events and characters.
So much happens in these books. They do not get stale, and you do not feel like the story hasn't progressed by the end of the book. Chase grows and becomes a new character--but nothing too far from his original development that you can't recognize him.

The good guys get DESTROYED! I love that about these books. Nothing is easy for Chase. He really has to work to get things done. And there are so many set backs. So many stories say it's an uphill battle, but never feel that way. This is not the case. The adventure behind the plots are fantastically written, but it most certainly feels hopeless and frustrating for all character's involved. 
And then there were the penalties that Chase endured when using his magic. So descriptive, and incredibly intriguing.

Willy and Vincent's history made me cry...and then the END! Merrick knows how to pull on the heart strings--I'll leave it at that.

The biggest issue I had was that Chase had to have everything dumbed down for him in order to understand what was going on. He couldn't put two and two together, and it is kind of insulting to me as the reader. I felt that I wasn't expected to be capable of following the story and putting together all the hints given throughout the book.

But overall: 5 stars. Loved the story. Completely engrossed. Enjoyed all the descriptions of creatures and places. The uniqueness to the adventures and all the intricacies behind the plots are put together beautifully. I am eagerly awaiting the next in the series. Thank you Merrick, for the enjoyable read.

Read from February 09 to 15, 2013
Books I have.

Teeth: Vampire Tales 
  Teeth:Vampire Tales (Anthology) by Various Authors

Things to Know When You Are Dead by Genevieve Valentine 1 Star.

This really didn't do anything for me. There was no real progression. It was an annoying meaningless list, rather than a short story.

All Smiles by Steve Berman 4 Stars.

He couldn't imagine himself anywhere in the world as if the cold rain had washed away his ability to daydream.

So far this was my favourite story. It was hilarious, and perfect for the length--or rather, lack of length. I was satisfied with the read.

Gap Year by Christopher Barzak 1 Star.

I did not care for the way this was written at all. It was all over the place and made little sense.

Bloody Sunrise by Neil Gaiman 1 Star.

This was a poem, and it was not impressive, at all. There was nothing to it. It was completely empty. It didn't stir any emotion, and really, I felt anyone could have written something to that effect. I love poetry, and I have read some heinous poems...but that made me sick. I would have appreciated more effort.

Flying by Delia Sherman 2 Stars.

I loved how the dream was written. Very poetic. Maybe Barzak could take a page from Sherman.
As for the rest of the story, it was very disjointed and at times rather confusing. I found myself rereading sections to be sure I did not miss something because things felt incomplete. I do think though, had there been a little more elaboration and time spent rounding the edges out, it would have been a nifty little story.

Vampire Weather by Garth Nix 3.5 Stars.

"That's not too much to ask, is it, after what you've done?"
An amish-like vampire short story, which was an entertaining read.

Late Bloomer by Suzy Mckee Charnas 5 Stars.

I may be a little bias because of the reference to Theatre Of Tragedy--I happen to love them to pieces.
But actually, I really liked this! I liked that Crystal acted like a 14 year old regardless of her being 75, and I liked the explanation behind it. I really loved the concept of this. The ending was also perfect.

The List of Definite Endings by Kaaron Warren 3 Stars

Not bad. It was a rather sweet story, actually.

Best Friends Forever by Cecil Castellucci 3 stars.

A very cute, yet somber story. I enjoyed it.

Sit the Dead by Jeffrey Ford 4 Stars

Great story! I was completely engrossed. I also found it to be rather unique. I really liked it. I just didn't like the end, I thought it didn't do the story justice, and it was like a black smear on an otherwise awesome story.

Sun Bleached by Nathan Ballingrud 3.5 Stars
A very dark short story with lessons in naivety. It felt a bit flat though. Just not quite enough spark.

Baby by Kathe Koja 3 Stars.
An interesting short story. I liked the structure and the overall story was unique. I couldn't help but feel sorry for the vampire.

In the Future When All is Well by Catherynne M. Valentine 4 Stars

"And, I don't know...It's, like, I want to sleep in the dirt? When I get tired, my head fills up with this idea of how nice it would be to dig up the yard and snuggle down and sleep in there."

"You didn't know it was coming. You didn't know there was another world on the other side of that bloody fucking mess between your legs just waiting to happen to you."

Fucking hilarious, but it went absolutely no where.

Transition by Melissa Marr 3.5 stars.
It was an entertaining read with a rather unique plot. This actually would have made for a decent full story. A tad bit skanky, which was surprisingly fun. Not bad at all, I just thought it fell a bit short of my expectations of Marr.

History by Ellen Kushner 2 stars.

Does she murmur in his ear all night, a roll call of dead politicos, until he starts up with a cry of "Present, my lord!"?

Well, this was pointless and mostly boring. It did have a few funny lines, but that was it.

The Perfect Dinner Party by Cassandra Clare & Holly Black 3.5 Stars

Not what I was expecting, but it was oddly cute. I did enjoy the point of view.

Slice of life by Lucius Shepard 1 Star.

I hated how the conversations were quoted with a - instead of quotations. Especially, when the conversation continued after a break but there was nothing there to let you know it was back to being a conversation. Very annoying structure, and I don't know why it is done.
The story was very "hickish" and skanky, but not fun. It spent most of the time rambling about nothing, and yeah...it sucked.

My Generation by Emma Bull 1 star.

Not sure how this was relevant. Was not impressed.

Why Light? by Tanith Lee 3 stars.

This was cute. I liked Zeev, but I didn't care for Daisha. Too prissy and obnoxious, also undeserving of the respect she was given.

Overall, this wasn't horrible. I wouldn't really recommend it to anyone. It wasn't that fantastic that I think anyone SHOULD read it. But if you're interested in it...I'd read it in between other books so you don't burn yourself out. That's what I ended up doing, and I think that's how I will read all anthologies from now on.

Read from January 16 to February 16, 2013
Books I have.

Hearts in Darkness
Hearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye [Spoiler Free]

The pounding of his heart and the tightness in his chest told him that was a fucking deal breaker.
What a perfect stranger fantasy. It was incredibly sweet, and a hot, sexy read. Not my typical read, and I thought I was going to hate it. But it was really entertaining.
It was short and cute. And the anticipation was hilarious.
The use of "sex" however, was a bucket of ice! Always is. I hate that term. It destroys any heated ambiance that was otherwise created. 

Read from February 15 to 16, 2013

Armageddon Bound (Demon Squad #1) 
 Demon Squad (Armageddon Bound #1) by Tim Marquitz [Mild Spoilers]

"You killed Santa Claus"

This was hard to finish. I really couldn't get into it.
I hated Frank. Now, I am not a crazy fem-nazi by any means, but he had absolutely no respect for women--at all. After a while it got really old.
I wasn't offended by it or anything, it was just annoying.
He also took a lot of shit considering how cocky he was. I did enjoy that he took one hell of a beating throughout the book.

I laughed at Frank continuing his shootout with his head shot open. That was something new.

I got the impression this was supposed to be packed with humour, but it was not well received by me. It was just awkward. Though, I suppose a 14 year old boy might find it entertaining and chuckle worthy.

A lot of conveniences were just thrown in along the way, for example: Lucifer not keeping his lieutenants in the loop about what Frank was in the know about.

I will say that I was disgusted and surprised to be subjected to Frank mind fucking his cousin--the WHOLE book! Ew, was that really necessary? It wasn't funny to me, it was just distasteful.

There also needed to be a bit more character development and back sorties so the story would have read smoothly. This was very disjointed and lacked details that would have made for a smooth reading experience.

Over all: I really liked the premise. It could have been a very interesting story, indeed. I even liked the explanation for magical signatures, and how it is drawn. I just wasn't impressed with the delivery of this book. There was plenty of action, and lots of fumbles on Frank's behalf, but it was lacking in the ability to keep me engrossed. I finally made myself sit down and finish it. I don't think I will be reading the others any time soon.

Read from February 16 to 21, 2013
Vain (The Seven Deadly, #1) 
Vain (The Seven Deadly #1) by Fisher Amelie  [Spoiler Free]

True Rating: 3.5 stars.

I loved the prologue. What a way to start the book.

"I'm beautiful, and it's not because I have a healthy dose of self-esteem, though I have plenty of that. It's obvious in the way I look in the mirror, yes, but even more obvious in the way everyone treats me."

"The only difference between us and our parents is that we're younger, we do coke while they drink, but we'll graduate or simmer to that, depending on how you look at it, as they did. We're not married but soon we will be and to each other, but it won't matter because we'll trade partners like we do now. We're addicted to the lifestyle. I can't see a way out of that."
I found myself really liking Spencer. I also found myself feeling sorry for him. He didn't get a break in this story, and he really deserved something.

I was also a little shocked with where this story went. It was very intriguing. I enjoyed it! It was heart wrenching and moving. I really liked the turn around Sophie underwent.

Who was Jerrick? He was brought up a few times but nothing was actually said about what happened to him and who he was. That annoyed me. There was also the fact that she went off to South Africa not thinking about the freaking media? Wtf? I was a little annoyed with it being thrown in as an annoyance she had already suffered or dealt with when she never actually had to deal with them at all throughout the book.

Being shown how to shoot a gun once does not equate to knowing your way around a gun, or equate to now having an instinctual reaction with one.

There were also a few grammatical errors.
I also didn't care for the insta-love.
The other thing that really grated on my nerves was how Sophie allowed Ian to treat her like shit, yet still followed him around like a lovesick puppy. How is that showing her improving on her self-respect? It isn't. I would have expected her to be a little hesitant to befriend him after the way he was treating her.
The subplots also needed a lot of work. They were not well thought out or executed.

The bare bones of this book were really good. I liked the plot. I liked the transformation. And I liked the overall message. But there were too many issues for this to be a 4 or 5 star book

Read from February 21 to 23, 2013
Carrier of the Mark (Carrier, #1) 
Carrier of the Mark (Carrier #1) by Leigh Fallon  [Spolier Alert]

Cliché, cliché, cliché!

There was not one thing in this book that was actually original. Well, unless you count the electric shock syndrome happening between two girls, instead of lovers.
It was extremely cheesy, but since I started reading this with low expectations, I wasn't exactly disappointed.


Guy so hot no girl can have. Check!
Plain Jane who no one wants. Check!
Dead parents. Check!
Slut shaming in some way. Check!
Hot and cold male interest. Check!
Disgruntled and indifferent siblings. Check!
Some crazy awareness between main characters. Check!
Insecure, compliment fishing protagonist. Check!
"Was what we had even real?" Check!
Lying to everybody. Check!
Some crazy overbearing Order. Check!
A council. Check!
Some crazy evil Order. Check!
Some ridiculous plot that makes no sense. Check!
No attempt to make the plot make sense. Check!

Miss Megan--

Liar! Useless. Brainless. Pathetic. Terrible role model. Lame.

I like how she told Adam that she wouldn't tell anyone about what happened with him and the water--and then tells Caitlyn about it the very next day!


"But I'm not strong enough to stay away."
Please. Megan hadn't been there long enough for him to have given a serious attempt.
There was no build up to any relationship between Megan and Adam. It was not believable. They had no chemistry. And their reactions to one another were extremely advanced considering they were acquaintances and had been together for all of two seconds. There was no actual declaration of a relationship between the two.

"With you here, I'm ready for anything."
This is so not second date material. This was just yuck.

"I never wanted to date just for the sake of dating. I thought that when I met the right guy, I would know, so there was no point in wasting my time until then."
What the fuck is this? This is coming across kind of like slut shaming--however it is lost on me. How is dating wasting time? The point to dating is to learn. Mainly about yourself. What you expect in a partner, and so forth. How ridiculous. As for the slut shaming aspect of it all, that can't be right anyway, you have Megan all over Adam when she knows absolutely nothing about him. I really didn't care for the message this statement is screaming to young female readers.

"And what about you? Any gorgeous exes I should know about?"
...So what if there were? She can't honestly expect anyone else to have their heads as far up their ass as she does.

"You're kidding"..."Fionn? Sandwiches?"
This annoyed the holy shit out of me. She doesn't know Fionn just because she met him once. *Rolls eyes* A major issue I have with Fallon's writing is that she doesn't know how to convey relationships between people at all. None of the relationships in this book feel real. Reading this was like watching a horrible film with terrible acting. Only worse.
The explanations for everything were horrible. Bloodlines. Uh...yeah. Perhaps you could have spent some more time on this whole mess making sure it made sense. How the magic works, that was so incredibly rushed, it ruined your book. This is important information. It is the spine for your plot. And you just kind of brushed it off to the side. I was not impressed. The Goddess legend itself was interesting but lacked any kind of wow factor. It was hastily dropped, rather than used to bolster the plot.
The subplots were terrible. They were nothing but cringe worthy. We were witness to one training session? Really? You couldn't come up with anything creative enough to keep us interested in what, exactly, Megan was capable of? I ended up not being able to finish this book after the first meeting with the Order. What happened with that was just absolutely ridiculous, and the explanations behind the motives were not adequate.
I'm no longer interested in finishing the book or the series.


This is a rough draft. It has to be. There is all the points to get from A to Z, but there is no real detail or excitement in between. It is incredible cheesy, and honestly, it's boring. I just couldn't do it.
I most certainly will not be recommending it.

Read from February 23 to 26, 2013  
Beckoning Light (The Afterglow Trilogy, #1)
Beckoning Light (The Afterglow Trilogy #1) by Alyssa Rose Ivy [Spoiler Alert]

Where do I start?

Well, how about with, I didn't hate this exactly, but...I didn't like it either.

Okay, now that that is out of the way!


What was going on with her? She was a lousy character. There was no real relationship between you and her--or any of the others for that matter. There was no real character build up. She was all over the place.

I was wary of him but at the same time, I found him comfortable to be around.
I didn't get this vibe from her at all. All I got was disdain.

Her attitude was just shameful.
It came as no surprise to me that he didn't bother to answer me.
Where is she getting these assumptions from? She doesn't know James. Good lord. The relationships and interactions between these characters were terrible. There was nothing to show any real connection to them other than the writing on the page. Nothing felt fluid,or as anything that could be expected from them.

She was boring, boring, boring! There was nothing about her that was exciting. She hardly reacted to anything! No real emotion was exuded where it was needed, and then it was overly abundant in other areas where it was not necessary.

She was not the slightest bit put out with how quickly Calvin agreed to her being put in the dungeon...a fucking dungeon...I don't care if it was some sort of plan she half assedly concocted. With how overly sensitive this girl supposedly was, it just didn't feel right at all.

I had already felt the change within me, the desire to quell any conflict and keep everything tranquil. There was no evidence of this...so, come again?


I was irritated with the unprovoked hatred of James. I think the way Ivy tried to make him unlikable was poorly done. It actually backfired for me, I ended up liking him despite Charlotte. And it pushed me toward disliking Charlotte and her overall judgment.

His sarcasm could be very annoying. See, I found a lot of what he said to be joking versus full of disdainful attitude. And the way she reacted to him, I found to be nit picking and searching for reasons not to like him without due cause.
The good thing about James was that he stuck to his overall buildup. He was not all over the place.
I was not sorry for the way he ended up treating Charlotte, she actually deserved worse.


I don't even remember what he looks like! I know he had dark hair and that's it. What kind of charming prince was he supposed to be? He was deplorable. He sure wasn't acting like someone in love. He wasn't acting like anyone I would want to waste my time with. How was he supposed to be swoon worthy exactly?

The Romance

Uh....this was disgusting. What is this bullshit of never dating and then falling instantly in love with a stranger who never becomes truly known to the character or the reader? The non-existent relationship, then somehow progressed in a matter of days into something completely unbelievable and cheesy.
Oh, a stronger love, you think? It didn't even feel like infatuation, or a crush, let alone love! It felt like...nothing. There was no chemistry. 

Since a lot of Charlotte's focus was spent on this unrealistic love, I think there should have been some time spent on making it feel authentic. There was nothing to bind them together. There were no building blocks to a relationship, or even a friendship! Seeing someone a total of 3 times does not, a relationship, make.

Careful, girls! Telling your new lovie that your love is fake (which is the only accurate thing said in this book) will earn you a ticket to the dungeon! 
What were you thinking when you wrote this? Wait...did you even read your book? What kind of example are you trying to send your young readers? That you should be fine with being treated as a prisoner by your one true love, and immediately be happy to see him again when he comes to get you, now that you are proving to fall into what ever line he wants you in? This was just all kinds of yuck! And it really could have been done with a lot more finesse, while leaving the whole love shit out of it. It wasn't helping this book any, it really derailed it further.


What was going on in this story, really? Nothing made sense. Nothing was adequately explained. I think the otherworldly stuff came in too late to be as effective. The beginning of the book was wasted telling you absolutely nothing about the characters that really pertained to the juicy stuff. And once in the juicy stuff, it was incredibly rushed and fulfilled nothing of the anticipation from starting the read.
The subplots were awful. This book needed a lot, and I mean A Lot, of work. The general idea was fine. The delivery was just...well, horrid.
You never did find out how, exactly, Ruth ended up in the dungeon in the first place!
What the fuck was Calvin even doing? He loved Charlotte so much that he chose some crazy ass guy over her, rather than doing his duty of 'protecting' her by going with her to ensure her safety? Please!

Okay..so, simply put: This was horrible. Plot holes...and not just ones that were minor...I mean...holes that made the entire book crumble. Seriously lacking in the character buildup department. Nothing about anything in this book made sense, including every single character relationship. Even her brother felt like a stranger. You learn zilch about what is actually going on in this book. The information dumps told you nothing. Nothing lines up...The romance is nonexistent, even though an attempt was clearly made.

No, I won't be reading further. I do, however, recommend this book to the author! Please read this. Then read something like Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series, which by no means is perfect, but is a great start for how a story should flow in this type of novel. It might help you get your fairly good ideas put in the way you want them delivered. So that they flow, and the characters...feel like..well, characters. 

Read from February 26 to 28, 2013 

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