Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz Book Review

Blue Bloods (Blue Bloods #1)
by Melissa De La Cruz
Published March 27, 2007 by Hyperion
302 pages

When the Mayflower set sail in 1620, it carried on board the men and women who would shape America: MIles Standish; John Alden; Constance Hopkins. But some among the Pilgrims were not pure of heart; they were not escaping religious persecution. Indeed, they were not even human. They were vampires. The vampires assimilated quickly into the New World. Rising to levels of enormous power, wealth, and influence, they were the celebrated blue bloods of American society.

The Blue Bloods vowed that their immortal status would remain a closely guarded secret. And they kept that secret for centuries. But now, in New York City, the secret is seeping out. Schuyler Van Alen is a sophomore at a prestigious private school. She prefers baggy, vintage clothes instead of the Prada and pearls worn by her classmates, and she lives with her reclusive grandmother in a dilapidated mansion. Schuyler is a loner...and happy that way. Suddenly, when she turns fifteen, there is a visible mosaic of blue veins on her arm. She starts to crave raw food and she is having flashbacks to ancient times. Then a popular girl from her school is found dead.... drained of all her blood. Schuyler doesn't know what to think, but she wants to find out the secrets the Blue Bloods are keeping. But is she herself in danger?

Blue Bloods is about a society of the richest, and most popular people in New York City. They also happen to be Blue Bloods -- or vampires. Schuyler has just found out she's one of them -- whatever that means. She's basically alone in this except for her best friend Oliver. When al these things start happening and suddenly Jack Force -- the most popular guy at her private school -- has shown a sudden interest in her. But when fellow classmate Aggie is dies, the whole society is on edge.

I didn't like this book too much. It was okay. I really didn't connect with any of the characters and I didn't seem to really know any of them too intimately. I like connecting and knowing my characters that way I can understand their point of view and feel what they feel but I didn't get any of this from this book. The character development really lacked and it put me off a lot.

Also, for about the first half the book I was completely confused out of my mindI get mystery around the main point of a book but these hints weren't clear. It was like I should have already known about everything to understand what the characters were thinking and what was going on. It wasn't a pleasant mystery. I just didn't like it and with no character connection it was all confusing and all over the place. However, it was a quick vampire read but it was not my thing.

My rating: 2/5
Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Update 1/27

Hey everyone! I'm really sorry for being M.I.A..... Seriously. I'm really sorry. I don't want to be. But I've been so busy and stressed. Second semester started and I'm in two English classes, plus the fact that I just moved dorms with my roommate with a clown car across campus. It's literally insane how much has been going on. I'm so sorry. Please know I intend to be back ASAP but it might take me a bit. Keep up with what I'm reading on my shelfari and goodreads. I'm not posting reviews but I'm rating books as I read them there. If you've followed me there before you know that it takes me a while to post reviews -- slower than me actually reading them so I'm very far ahead on the reading track.

On the upside for my classes I'm reading interesting books for them so I'm super excited! I'm in a bit of a classics rut for this first part of 2013 and I couldn't be more excited. On how much I love them... you'll just have to wait and see.

Please let me know how you are doing and what you all have been up to! I'll promise to check out blogs soon I'm so behind on everything ahh it's so overwhelming!

Happy Reading!!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys by Kate Brian Book Review

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys 
by Kate Brian
Published October 2006 by Simon & Schuster
268 pages

When she was nine, Megan Meade met a group of terrible, mean, Popsicle-goo-covered boys ,the sons of her father's friend -- the McGowan boys. Now, seven years later, Megan's army doctor parents are shipping off to Korea and Megan is being sent to live with the little monsters, who are older now and quite different than she remembered them.

Living in a house with seven boys will give Megan, who has never even been kissed, the perfect opportunity to learn everything there is to know about boys. And she'll send all her notes to her best friend Tracy, in....

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys
Observation #1: Being an army brat sucks. Except that this is definitely a better alternative to moving to Korea.
Observation #2: Forget evil, laughing, little monsters. These guys have been touched by the Abercrombie gods. They are a blur of tones, suntanned perfection.
Observation #3: I need a lock on my door. STAT.
Observation #4: Three words: six-packed abs.
Observation #5: Do not even get me started on the state of the bathroom. I'm thinking of calling in a hazmat team. Seriously.
Observation #6: These boys know how to make enemies. Big time.
Megan Meade will have to juggle a new school, a new family, a new crush -- on the boy next door, as in the next bedroom door -- and a new life. Will she survive the McGowan boys?

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys is about army brat Megan who is sick and tired of moving around all the time for her parents. When they tell her again after she finally gets settled somewhere that they're moving to South Korea -- she puts up a fight for the first time in her life. To keep her in the states, they send her off to her dad's friend's house to live with the McGowan's -- and their seven sons. She doesn't know what she's getting herself into...

I thought it was a good book! I liked Megan; she's fiery and she tries so hard with such a big heart. I really liked her character except for some aspects in the book where it made her seem a little overly girly for such a tom boy in the way that she acted about boys at first. The writing style was I think a bit young for me. I think I would have enjoyed it more if I was a bit younger, but I liked it anyway. It was a really cute story and such a light fun read.

I read this within a couple of hours and I liked the break it gave me from heavy serious books that I had been reading. It was something stupid and teenager-y that I really enjoy sometimes. It wasn't plagued with major drama, because sometimes high school and being a teenager is just enough. I recommend it as a light read -- maybe better fit for a summer read. But it's definitely geared toward some of the younger readers in the way that it's written even if it's not supposed to be -- that's what I got out of it.

My rating: 3/5
Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2) by Cassandra Clare Book Review

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2)
by Cassandra Clare
Published December 6, 2011 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
502 pages

In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at least found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street -- and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.

With help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from the mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move -- and that one of their own has betrayed them.

Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will -- the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?

As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

Clockwork Prince is the second book in the Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare. The prequel series to the Mortal Instruments. In this book, Tessa and the rest of the London Institute crew are back and trying to figure out where the Magister has gone and how to stop him along with his clockwork army. Will is hiding a big secret -- and no one knows what it is -- as he struggles to fix something long ago set upon him, the mystery darkens around the Magister as well as Tessa and her origins.

This book was even better than the first. I'm absolutely in love with all these characters and the interesting story line. I'm starving for the third book. I couldn't put it down. I wanted to know what happened next and who was deceiving who. I've also fallen in love with the love triangle. It is heartbreaking but it's incredibly captivating. I like Tessa even though some of her actions bother me to no end, but I really do like her.

This world of Shadowhunters is so different and original. It's a world I can't get enough of so I'm forever grateful to Cassandra Clare for expanding on this world with different stories and different characters. It's so entertaining and the books are some of my favorites.

There were also some great quotes in this book as well. One of my favorites happens to be:
"And doing nothing, I find, rarely accomplishes anything."
This sequel to Clockwork Angel is even better than I could imagine and continues the story beautifully. Even if you weren't fully convinced on the first one, give this one a try because I believe it to be even better!

My rating: 5/5
 Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare Book Review

Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices #1)
by Cassandra Clare
Published August 31, 2010 by Margaret McElderry Books
479 pages

Magic is dangerous -- but love is more dangerous still.

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the times is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated -- and torn between -- two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length... everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world... and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all. 

Clockwork Angel is the first in the Infernal Devices series -- the prequel series to Clare's first written, The Mortal Instruments series -- is set years and years beforehand in the 1800s. England is the setting this time with a whole new cast of characters -- the ancestors of the characters we have grown to love in the Mortal Instruments Series. It's set in the same shadowhunting world and some characters might surprise you or seem familiar!

I absolutely loved this book! I've been hearing for ages that this series was just as good or maybe even better than the original series and I was gladly happy to find out that I thought much the same. It's so awesome to have different characters but still enjoy the same world. It's just as much the same as it is different and it's not predictable at all. The story line is different and still just as intriguing  I can draw some parallels between characters and who they remind me of in the Mortal Instrument series but it's not really the ones that are related.

I really enjoyed this fresh setting as well. Being in England and in a different time period really caught my attention again. This world is something that Clare has brilliantly adapted to different places and different people. It's timeless. I still fall in love with the stories. Also, Tessa is a wonderful new character and I love her. I immediately will start reading the next one in the series and impatiently await the third coming out in February 2013. The next one in the series is Clockwork Prince.

There were so many wonderful quotes in this book as well. I forgot to get most of them for this post but here is one that particularly caught my eye and I wanted to share with you.
"Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry."
If you have not picked up either the Mortal Instrument series or the Infernal Devices I advise you to go out right now, stop what you're doing, and go read them because they're simply amazing.

My rating: 5/5
 Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Unwind by Neal Shusterman Book Review

Unwind (Unwind Trilogy #1)
by Neal Shusterman
Published November 6, 2007 by Simon & Schuster
335 pages

Connor, Risa, and Lev are running for their lives.

The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: LIfe is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child "unwound," whereby all of the child's organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn't technically end.

Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state, is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to espace and to survive.

Unwind is a story about this dystopian world where an agreement has been reached between the Pro-Life and the Pro-Choice -- and the solution is called Unwinding. You cannot end someone's life, but after a certain age, you can elect to have your child unwound -- where their body parts will be taken and given to those in need. It's not necessarily terminating life -- or at least that's what the government say. In this story you meet three distinct characters -- all have been marked for unwinding and all on the run.

I had been hearing great things about this book and I've been dying to read it and it was phenomenal! It definitely lived up to the expectations that I had set for it. It was one of the most thought provoking, intriguing and powerful books that I've read in a long time. There were points at which I had to stop reading and literally contemplate what was going on and the discussions they were having in the book. It was so deep and incredibly controversial. I think everyone should read it whether or not you have a clear standing on this issue. I think that it's a work of brilliance.

It was fast paced and I loved seeing the story not just switching between the main character's lives but through other smaller characters as well. Ones you only knew for a scene or for the time they were narrating. It gave you a full immersion and view of this dystopia. The book was so good I flew through it in one day -- a couple of hours really.

The characters were so intense and I love Neal Shusterman's writing. The way he builds everything up with so many small details you didn't think were important, and then connecting everything in the end for a mind blowing ending is simply amazing. I was stunned and taken by surprise. It was so enthralling. It definitely makes me want to read not only the next one in this series but his other books as well.

Highly recommend this book.

My rating: 5/5
Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Storm (The Elementals Series #1) by Brigid Kemmerer Book Review

Storm (The Elementals Series #1)
by Brigid Kemmerer
Published April 24, 2012 by Kensington
353 pages

Becca Chandler is suddenly getting all the guys -- all the ones she doesn't want. Ever since her ex-boyfriend spread those lies about her.

Then she saves Chris Merrick from a beating in the school parking lot. Chris is different. Way different: he can control water just like his brothers can control fire, wind, and earth. They're powerful. Dangerous. Marked for death.

And now that she knows the truth, so is Becca.

Secrets are hard to keep when your life's at stake. When Hunter, the mysterious new kid around school, turns up with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time, Becca thinks she can trust him. But then Hunter goes head-to-head with Chris, and Becca wonders who's hiding the most dangerous truth of all.

The storm is coming.

Storm is about this girl Becca who has a reputation -- thanks to her nasty ex-boyfriend who spread lies about her. Now with more guys entering her life, it seems like a problem. When she says Chris Merrick from getting beat up she doesn't understand what she's getting into. He and his brothers can control different elements and they're in trouble. Now she's mixed up in it and these people weren't who they thought they'd be. She tries to find some normalcy in the new guy, Hunter, but even he has his secrets.

This was phenomenal. I really loved this book. It was action packed -- and had a love triangle that made me swoon. Chris sounded so freaking hot that I think I have a major crush on him. I have been wanting a book like this forever -- I even started writing one completely different but dealing with sort of the same things like the element control and it was really cool to see someone's take on it. I really loved the story line and I really had no clue what was going to happen. I love when books keep you guessing and this was one of them!

The characters were well rounded and I really felt like I knew them even if it was in third person the whole time. But we got to see it from both Becca and Chris's perspectives through the third person which was really cool. This book has been talked about for a while on the book blogs and I finally got around to ordering it and finally got around to reading it and I couldn't put it down. I finished it in one day and I can't wait to get both Spark (#2) and Spirit (#3) in the series!! This is a story line I think they could do a lot with, but I couldn't even guess the story line so I'm really excited and I really need to get around to buying those as well.

I highly recommend this book to others! Have any of you read it? And if you have let me know what you thought, and if you've read the next one tell me if it follows in Storm's footsteps or not!!

My rating: 5/5
Buy it:  Barnes & Noble  or  Amazon

Happy Reading!!