Posted in Book Reviews

Book Review: Before She Ignites

Before She Ignites is an extended prisonbreak story, with dragons. On the surface it doesn’t sound exciting, but I ended up adoring the book.

The Summary

Mira is a political figure by birth, and lives a soft, seemingly untouchable, life. Then she uncovers a horrifying political scandal and finds herself in jail. Why was she put in jail? Will she be in jail forever, or will she find a way to escape? What do dragons have to do with this story? There aren’t many questions to answer, but the story still ends being compelling.
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Book Review: Renegades

If any other author wrote this, I would have loved it more. With Marissa Meyer, however, I expect nothing less than perfection. So when she puts out a book that is good, but isn’t perfect…it’s more disappointing than reading a book that is actually bad.

The Summary

Renegades is yet another story following the superhero trend. This one provides two points of view: that of hero and Renegade, Adrian, and the villain and Anarchist, Nova. After a botched assassination attempt, Nova goes undercover as a new Renegade on Adrian’s team.
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Book Review: The Glass Spare

Before kicking off this review, I apologize for being MIA. Life gets busy, especially during the holidays. I’m back full force, however, and have several great books to review this month!

I recently joined the Owlcrate subscription service. I love it! If you have ever considered a book subscription service, and enjoy YA, I recommend Owlcrate. My first month as a member brought me the November box that, amongst other things, had a copy of Lauren Destefano’s new book The Glass Spare. I have a rocky relationship with Destefano’s books. When her debutĀ Wither was published, I loved it. The sequels? Not so much. (I didn’t even finish the series.) It started well but quickly fizzled out. To approach any Destefano book for me is a tricky process indeed. Continue reading “Book Review: The Glass Spare”

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Book Review: Sammy Keyes and the Kiss Goodbye

For the final book in the series, Wendelin assumes the role of narrator. At first this change is jarring, but by the end of the book it makes sense. The titular kiss goodbye is meant for the author, and for the reader. Though Sammy’s spunky narration is missed, the series still pulls off a touching, sentimental end.

The Summary

When Sammy visits her former residence, the Senior Highrise, someone pushes her off the fire escape (and into a coma). Sammy’s friends, family, and the many wacky citizens of Santa Martina join together to catch Sammy’s attacker.
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Book Review: Forest of a Thousand Lanterns

I read a lot of mixed reviews for this book, and most focused on one aspect: the main character. Do note that I did not call her the protagonist. There’s a reason for it. I get why Xifeng is such a polarizing character to discuss, but for once, I didn’t hate the antiheroine for putting the “anti-” in antiheroine. Xifeng does questionable things, and that made this is very interesting book to read…

The Summary

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is an East Asain imagining of the Evil Queen legend. Xifeng is our dark Evil Queen on the rise. She begins the book with humble–and dark magic-filled–beginnings. She runs away from her abusive aunt with the love of her life, Wei, to pursue the destiny her aunt foretold of Xifeng for years: becoming the Empress of Feng Lu.

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Book Review: Sammy Keyes and the Killer Cruise

Killer Cruise is a book Sammy deserves. At the background of this series, we always had Sammy’s tumultous relationship with her mother. Without her diva Hollywood mother, none of this series would have happened. If Lana had brought Sammy to Hollywood with her, Sammy never would have lived in the Senior Highrise, met any of her fantastic friends (aside from lifelong friend Marissa) or encountered any of these mysteries. Though the series started with something difficult–Sammy abandoned by her mother–Sammy’s life evolved into something amazing.

Darren, her father, echoes this sentimate at the end of the book. Though Sammy and Darren didn’t know about each other until Showdown in Sin City, if they had known each other all along, Sammy would be a different person. And since Sammy as she is now is the perfect match for her rockstar father, it worked out in the end. Watching Sammy develop a loving, understanding relationship with one of her parents is incredible. Sammy deserves this happy resolution to a lifelong mystery. In a different series, this resolution might seem more contrived than natural, but in this series…it is perfect. Killer Cruise is the perfect, emotional Sammy Keyes book.

The Summary

A cruise is headlining Darren Cole and the Troublemakers as the talent for one of the nights of the trip. Sammy, with Marissa in tow, joins her father on the trip for some father-daughter bonding time. Though most of the book is about Sammy and Darren, Sammy, Marissa, Darren and Marko (the drummer in Darren’s group) encounter a missing person mystery involving the Kensington perfume tycoons.
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Book Review: Warcross

Years ago I went through a YA dystopian phase. (Didn’t we all?) This, of course, means I read Legend back in the day. (Believe it or not, that was six years ago.) I then swiftly forgot about the series, though it came to mind recently when my younger sister told me she was reading it. Then I read Warcross, a surprising new edition to my favorites list. What an action-packed stunner! I forgot Legend long ago, but I have to reread it, as well as Lu’s other series, now.

The Summary

When Emika Chen attempts to steal a valuable power-up to help pay her rent, she accidentally glitches into the international Warcross opening game. Instead of facing jail, this accident brings Emika to Tokyo as an undercover player in the Warcross competitions, tasked with competing while she looks for the source of an advanced cybersecurity threat.

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Book Review: Sammy Keyes and the Showdown in Sin City

From the moment the series revealed Lana and Warren were communicating on the down low, I knew this would happen. Sammy would have to race against time to stop Lana and Warren from walking down the aisle. I also expected that her efforts would be successful. After all, why would Wendelin make Sammy and Casey a couple if they were to become stepsister and brother? What I did not expect the details of the end of the Lana and Warren relationship. Despite the continuous references to Sammy’s unknown father, I never thought we would meet him. But in this book, we did meet him. And it was a better reveal than I ever would have guessed on my own.

The Summary

Casey reveals that Lana and Warren are headed to Vegas…and Warren bought a ring. Sammy, using well-earned reward money from the previous book, books a last minute airline trip to Las Vegas at the same time as Marissa and her mother, as they travel to Vegas to bail Marissa’s gambling father out of trouble. While using the help of an Elvis impersonator and after declaring a temporary truce with Heather and Candi Acosta, Sammy roams Vegas in search of the bride and groom to be.
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Book Review: The Retribution of Mara Dyer

When I began college, many series I loved went forgotten. My reading tastes also changed. Not only was the Mara Dyer series a forgotten one, but when I thought about it again, I doubted I would love it as much as I did as a teen. Mara Dyer was always too strong on romance and not strong enough on the spooky elements that originally caught my interest. With new Shaw Confessions series out, I thought it appropriate to finish reading one my many long forgotten series, even if I didn’t think I would like it as much.

The Summary

The Mara Dyer series is difficult to describe in words. It capitalizes on being mysterious, and that makes it hard to summarize without spoilers. Have you ever read on of the book jacket summaries for these books? They never tell you anything. I still don’t know if the Noah Shaw books are sequels or the original series as told by Noah because of this summary nonsense. Describing this book is even harder now because I remember little from the first two books. This is not a good series to pick up after several years of not reading it. It is too confusing for that kind of gap.

Even so, here is my attempt at a summary: Mara is trapped in a scientific research facility for people like her with unexplained powers. Since this facility is more a dangerous jail than a safe hospital, Mara busts out.
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Book Review: Beauty Queens

I don’t usually mesh well with parody books. I love them onscreen, but not so much on the page. I enjoy books that turn tropes around, but not many full-on parodies. Beauty Queens is a parody. Though I appreciated it, it wasn’t the book for me.

The Summary

On their way to the Teen Dream Pageant, the plane transporting the contestants crashes, stranding several beauty queens on an island in the middle of nowhere. 

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