Saturday, March 31, 2012

Book Review: CINDER by Marissa Meyer

Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1)
Also see my review of Scarlet and Cress

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There aren't enough stars to do this story justice. 5 out of 5 stars isn't enough. 20 out of 20, closer. This book deserves all the praise and accolades it has received. I can't wait for the next in the series. Thank goodness it's a series.

Marissa Meyer really did her homework in researching the origins of the Cinderella fairytale. There are allusions to others as well. I enjoyed reading all the nods to the classic tale, but fully embraced Meyer's reimagining, too. What an amazing twist on a classic fairytale! Cinderella reimagined as a cyborg mechanic is truly amaZING!! Placing the story in New Beijing, a futuristic version of our world, with LUNARS living on the moon. So, so captivating and a quick read. I couldn't put this book down.

The romance between Prince Kai and Cinder really made this story. One of the things I'm not keen on is the boring, characterless version of the prince in so many stories. His biggest goal is to find a suitable princess, but he's tired of all the choices in his kingdom. There are undertones of this here, but thankfully, there's also a more fleshed out prince with a compelling storyline and backstory to go with it. One that puts the future of the entire world on the line.

You won't be sorry you read this, just that you have to wait for the sequels. I loved the sidekick robot, Iko, and how she and the Dr. were versions of Cinder's Fairy Godmother. The plague, sweeping across the Earth is a virus originated from the Lunars on the moon. The queen wants to marry Prince Kai and establish a peace treaty between the Earth and the Moon, which complicates matters and unwittingly draws Cinder into the conflict at the wired heartbeat of it all.

If you haven't read this, DO IT NOW!!!

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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Seven is the Game: The Lucky 7 MEME

I've been tagged by the awesome Roza Million! Below are 7 Bloggers I tagged. Insert evil laughter here. Requirements: Page 77 of your current MS or WIP, go to Line 7 then copy either the first 7 lines, sentences or paragraphs. Next tag 7 Brilliant Bloggers! On to the fun.

My current project is a YA Contemporary called, THE PACKING HOUSE, about a 16-year-old teen boy named Joel who has recurring nightmares and must find who or what is causing them to face his problems and win the heart of the girl he's in love with or lose her forever. In the excerpt below, Joel has run away from home, having learned what his mother is secretly doing with the bill money. You get the end of chapter 12 and the beginning of chapter 13:

12 | Runaway Revisited (end of chapter)

            I guess it’s good they care, but I don’t like where this is headed. I ran away to leave my problems behind, not to have them hunt me down and force me to face them. I don’t do well with that, which is probably why I’m having the nightmares again in the first place.
            Double shit.

13 | Night School

A road runs down to the left smattered with a few houses. I head in that direction, hoping it leads somewhere useful. At the very least, it gets me off the main road and out of immediate eyesight. My stomach rumbles, growling like an angry cornered cat.

I had visions of a hot meal at a local diner, but now I can’t risk it. I’ll eat again when I have a good hiding spot. I pick up the pace like I know where I’m going. A car passes me and heads down the street to a stop sign, before it makes a right turn and disappears behind more houses. I hope the SWAT team doesn’t descend from helicopters and out from behind trimmed bushes. That would suck.

Now onto tagging seven of my favorite bloggers. Please check out their blogs by clicking on the link below and see what they've got going in their WIP in sevens. Thanks for tagging me, Roza! This was fun.
Here are the seven bloggers I tagged:

Friday, March 23, 2012

Book Review: THE FUTURE OF US by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

The Future of UsThe Future of Us by Jay Asher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was not a mind-blowing, life-changing book, but it was a page turning, compelling story firmly rooted in the reality of life in the '80's, and a great read. Nostalgic and funny, this book is a lighthearted read revolving around friendship, destiny, and the choices we make.

Emma and Josh get their first AOL disc in 1996, and once they log on, they are somehow able to login to Facebook. They can see their future on their Facebook pages and change the future just by changing little things they do in their current lives.

If you've seen THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT, you might pick up on a minor theme: Can your whole world change just because you spill some water on the ground? I don't know. The jury's still out on that one.

I enjoyed this book. It took me back to 1996 through vivid description of the current events, music, movies and more. I loved the pace, and thought the characters were great. The plot was well done with lots of details interspersed throughout. Fast and fun, and apparently Warner Bros. bought the movie rights!

I'm not sure how much this book will be enjoyed by everyone, though. I personally loved it purely because it offered an opportunity to revisit my early teens, and I could totally relate to Emma and Josh. For everyone who isn't at least say 25 or 26, however, this book may not do much for you.

Recommended to everyone who grew up in the 90s as well as anyone just looking for a short, quick read with an awesome premise, that takes you back to the beginning of computer mania.

This book left me with a warm feeling afterwards. I liked that. I found this to be a great read. I hope you'll like it as well.

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Saturday, March 10, 2012

Book Review: ASPHODEL by Lauren Hammond

Asphodel (The Underworld Trilogy, #1)Asphodel by Lauren Hammond

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was the first book I read by author Lauren Hammond. Having recently read DESTINED by Jessie Harrell, and having a brief glimpse/allusion to this love story, I had high expectations for this one. Overall I enjoyed the retelling and the modernizing twist to bring these characters into the modern world and make them current/relevant.

Hammond deftly wove her story by switching between Persephone as a high school teenager on the run, and Hades, God of the Underworld. There are a few chapters with Demeter as well, Persephone's mother.

At one point I was convinced there was a purposeful allusion to Taming of the Shrew. Perhaps Hammond is going Shakespeare on us? Well done!

I was intrigued by the Greek mythology and the Asphodel, which is a flower with special properties. I also liked how pomegranates were integrated into the plot as well as other Underworld trappings. I liked how Hammond introduced various gods and goddesses, and other famous characters, such as Cerberus and Charon. I found their interactions with both Hades and Persephone well written and believable.

Leaving us with a cliffhanger ending, I'm curious to see how Hammond will continue the story, and whether more characters will be introduced, and whether more will be revealed about the Elysian Fields. I found this to be my favorite part of the whole book.

Lots of great twists and turns to leave the reader wanting more. I was distracted by the grammar, but I know Hammond has already fixed that.

Great read!

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