Book of the Week-Landry Park

I am so very excited to share this week’s Book of the Week. It was incredibly enjoyable book and I love sharing an author’s debut novel! Check it out!

Landry Park by Bethany Hagen

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, about it Dystopian, Romance

Part of a Series?:

I believe its the first book of a series :)

You May Like if You Liked:

The Selection by Kiera Cass, Legend by Marie Lu

Age Recommendation:

13+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

In a fragmented future United States ruled by the lavish gentry, seventeen-year-old Madeline Landry dreams of going to the university. Unfortunately, gentry decorum and her domineering father won’t allow that. Madeline must marry, like a good Landry woman, and run the family estate. But her world is turned upside down when she discovers the devastating consequences her lifestyle is having on those less fortunate. As Madeline begins to question everything she has ever learned, she finds herself increasingly drawn to handsome, beguiling David Dana. Soon, rumors of war and rebellion start to spread, and Madeline finds herself and David at the center of it all. Ultimately, she must make a choice between duty – her family and the estate she loves dearly – and desire.

My Review: 

This book immediately caught my eye when I saw it in the bookstore. One, I had no idea who the author was, nor was her name even the slightest bit familiar. Two, her cover is so noticeable! Its absolutely gorgeous and so dark and mysterious looking. I kept seeing it all over the place and so finally, I decided to buy it.

And I am so glad that I did.

The thing about dystopian novels is that they start to kind of run together. They have the same sort of basis and so it can be difficult to make yours stand out amongst the rest. The thing about Bethany’s novel that really caught me that instead of being told from the point of view from someone at the bottom of the food chain, knowing something needs to change, she told the story from someone at the top, and someone at the very top.

Madeline is the heiress to Landry Park, the center of this new United States. Her ancestor invented a sort of power source that kept them afloat before the Eastern enemies could completely take them over. This has left the Landry family with incredible power, incredible wealth and incredible estate, and Madeline is set to inherit it all. She is comfortable. She has servants, and food and pretty clothes at every corner. Her primary objective in life would be to find a husband and produce an heir. Like a princess. But her actual objective is to go to university and be educated.

And I think this is what really makes Bethany’s novel so strong, in my opinion. She has a very wealthy character, one who really has no reason to want things to change and yet she puts her on the path to believing that the world she lives in is wrong and that it does need to be change. And while I love the physical strength of a female character (Katniss, Tris, June, etc), I love that Madeline is strong in her own right, using her intelligence. Instead of heading down to a punching bag every day or shooting arrows with her bow, she wants to learn and learn and use that intelligence for better. I think that’s a very powerful thing. Sometimes I think people forget that a character doesn’t have to be an actual fighter to be an incredibly strong character, and Madeline is a prime example of that.

But I also just love the world that Bethany has created. I really admire the authors that include the rest of the world. I know sometimes its hard to do that, because the society is so controlled, they really have no access to outside information, like in THG or Divergent, but I love when its addressed. It’s one thing to make one country of many fall apart but to address that the same sort of things happened all over the world is awesome, and I love that. I love that she gave the U.S. that vulnerability and that they lost part of their states (though my beloved state is part of that…). I think if something were to truly happen that would send us into a sort of dystopian state, I think the world would be chomping at the bit to get a part of this huge country so I appreciated that she sort of…wrote the history the way I think it would happen.

And it was just beautiful. The houses, the dresses, the parties, the scandal. All of that sort of thing. This is supposed to be future us, but as you read it, you feel sort of regressed. The idea of the debut, and choosing a husband that could secure your future, or the future of your family and their finances. Women being used a financial tool. It seemed familiar and it was almost sort of scary, like we could regress in the future. But as much as it was so hard to watch, it was also like a car accident, you couldn’t look away. While people are starving, getting sick from the radiation, not even citizens in this new world, you are watching Landry at this incredibly lavish parties with these carefree, selfish people and it makes you turn the page to see what she’s going to do about it.

Also, I truly love the secondary characters that Bethany creates. I won’t say too much because their natures are revealed throughout the story, even to Madeline, so I don’t want to ruin that. But I enjoy mostly getting to know David and Cara and their roles in all of this. You think you know both of them when you meet them, and they keep you guessing the whole novel and I still feel like there is so much more to know about them.

The Last Word

This is one of the longest reviews I’ve written and there’s a reason for that. This book makes me want to talk. It makes me want to get into discussion and talk about it and I love that. I love a book that can make me laugh or cry or curse the world but I do truly love a book that can make me think, and set the wheels in my brain in motion, and I think this book can do all of those things. It has the mystery, it has the hints of rebellion, it has aching romance (seriously, my heart literally ACHES for Madeline at times), it has the intrigue, it has it all, and it really makes me want to burst into discussion right after. It would make a seriously amazing book club pick.

So pick up a copy of Bethany’s debut novel and watch out for an interview with her VERY soon!

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Blog Tour: Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith Review and Giveaway

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Welcome to the special edition of the Book of the Week today, order as part of the Grasshopper Jungle Blog Tour! Below you’ll get a synopsis, cost a trailer, visit this site a review, and a giveaway! So keep on reading and enjoy!

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith 

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This title will be released on February 11th 2013. This review is based on an advanced reader’s copy provided to me for an honest review. This in no way, shape or form had any influence on my review or opinion. 

GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Contemporary, Science Fiction

Part of a Series?:

No

You May Like if You Liked:

I can’t even do this. This book stands on its own. Do you like to read? Then read this book.

Age Recommendation:

16+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

Sixteen-year-old Austin Szerba interweaves the story of his Polish legacy with the storyof how he and his best friend , Robby, brought about the end of humanity and the rise of an army of unstoppable, six-foot tall praying mantises in small-town Iowa.

To make matters worse, Austin’s hormones are totally oblivious; they don’t care that the world is in utter chaos: Austin is in love with his girlfriend, Shann, but remains confused about his sexual orientation. He’s stewing in a self-professed constant state of maximum horniness, directed at both Robby and Shann. Ultimately, it’s up to Austin to save the world and propagate the species in this sci-fright journey of survival, sex, and the complex realities of the human condition.

You can also view the trailer here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=cMBWd_6FwyI

My Review: 

I can’t even begin to describe what this book is. Its hard to even know where to begin because this book is unlike anything that I have ever read before. This book is absolutely incredible and if you don’t pick it up on February 11th, you’re going to miss out on it.

I was gifted an advanced reader’s copy of this book, thanks to Amy Del Rosso, who is the host of this blog tour, and I am so incredibly appreciative for that. I’ve been trying to get my hands on that book ever since I first heard of, after I become so obsessed with Andrew Smith. I was determined to get one and I did. When I read the publisher’s letter in the beginning, my excitement increased. She said her immediately response was “holy shit.” She also says if her language bothers you, you definitely should not continue with reading the book. And she was right.

This book is NOT for the faint of heart. There is foul language, and a lot of mention of sex and masturbation and all of that sort of thing. But every bit of this novel, this random smorgasbord of contemporary and science fiction and coming-of-age story, is so real and genuine. There is so much going on in this book, that sometimes it seems hard to keep track.

You are following the narrative of the main character, Austin. Now Austin seems to be a normal teenage boy, dealing with the issues of girls, sex, school, friends and all of that. He has sex on the brain all the time but that sounds about right for a teenage boy. But in between his struggles with sex, and his feelings for his girlfriend and his best friend, he also tells you the history of his Polish roots, and the history of his family. It seems to be sort of nonsensical, kind of random, but the slow build up of his family history plays such a large part later.

There is also the creeping story of science fiction laid down in it as well. Its so subtle, so slow, but perfect. I spent so much of the novel feeling so confused but in such a great way. I couldn’t fathom how all of the different elements would fit together but it did. Every scene of the novel felt like a red herring. Everything felt like a distraction from something else to keep you confused and guessing until the very end. When all the different stories like Austin’s sexual confusion and his family history and the large bugs all start coming together…I just couldn’t put it down. The story was breathtaking and exciting and so mind blowing.

This book is not for the faint of heart. There is foul language, no holding back on talk of sex and masturbation, and the boys are constantly getting in trouble. This is definitely for those mature enough to handle this. If you aren’t looking for that type of book, I am sorry, but please pass on it. If you’re looking for something so utterly unique and brilliantly written, then please pick up a copy of this book and dive in. You won’t regret it. Where else can you read a book that has a family history, a twisted and turbulent romance, a coming-of-age story, and a bunch of abnormally large, murderous praying mantis on the loose? You won’t find it anywhere else. It sounds absolutely nuts, I know, but trust me! This book is brilliant. Its one of a kind. I have a hard time describing it to others because its just so utterly unique. Sometimes all I can manage to get out of my mouth is “But…but…but its just so amazing!”

There’s nothing like this book. Read it.

Rating:

5 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

READ THIS. That’s all I’m going to say!

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Now for the fun stuff!

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the reviews and fun all over the blog tour, at all of these seriously amazing blogs!

February 3rd – The Midnight Garden | The Story Siren
February 4th – Good Choice Reading | Bookish
February 7th – Scott Reads It | Live to Read
February 10th – Alice Marvels | The Society
February 11th – Lexi Swoons | A Reader of Fictions
February 12th – Roof Beam Reader | Forever Young Adult
February 13th – The Compulsive Reader | Books and Bling
February 14th – Book Chic Club | The QQQE
February 17th – JeanBookNerd | Ticket to Anywhere
February 19th – Anna Reads | Word Spelunking
February 20th – Books With Bite | What A Nerd Girl Says
February 21st – Wastepaper Prose | LRB – Guest
February 24th – We Are Word Nerds | Cabin Goddess
February 25th – Ex Libris | Cari’s Book Blog | A Good Addiction
February 26th – YA Reads | The Young Folks
February 27th – Novel Thoughts | Fangirlish

And a giveaway too. Don’t miss out on this. If you can get your hands on a copy of this book, you are a lucky gal or guy. It is absolutely fantastic and you’d be a fool not to read it!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Much thanks to the host of this blog tour!

amy Tour Banner

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Book of the Week-Between the Lines

Yay for the book of the week! This week’s book is chosen because…its the only book that I’ve finished in weeks since finishing These Broken Stars.

I know, diagnosis I know, information pills I’m going to get back in the groove of reading soon, I promise :)

Until then, enjoy this review!

Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Part of a Series?:

No, standalone novel

You May Like if You Liked:

Fairy tale Re-tellings

Age Recommendation:

10+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

Delilah, a loner hates school as much as she loves books— one book in particular. In fact if anyone knew how many times she has read and reread the sweet little fairy tale she found in the library, especially her cooler than cool classmates, she’d be sent to social Siberia forever.To Delilah, though, this fairy tale is more than just words on the page. Sure, there’s a handsome (well, okay, incredibly handsome) prince, and a castle, and an evil villain, but it feels as if there’s something deeper going on. And one day, Delilah finds out there is. Turns out, this Prince Charming is not just a one-dimensional character in a book. He’s real, and a certain fifteen-year-old loner has caught his eye. But they’re from two different worlds, and how can it ever possibly work?

My Review: 

I’m going to start off by saying this: this book is definitely not YA. Well, at least in my opinion. I think this book is more rooted in a middle grade sort of style, and the story is much on the level of a middle grade book. That being said, I want you to keep that in mind as I review the book.

The book was extremely sweet. The story was simple, with little to no complicated conflict. Delilah is obsessed with a fairy tale book, and like most readers (you know what I mean), she has fallen head over heels for the main character, Oliver. So she’s surprised as hell when she opens the book one day and Oliver says hello, from the pages. They embark on an adventure to try and get Oliver out of the book and into the real world, where hopefully they can be together.

The plot is basic, simple and sweet. There isn’t a lot of depth, and the conflict is very minimal: basically, find a way to get Oliver out of the book. I felt like I saw a lot of negative reviews for this book on GoodReads and I attribute it to the fact that I think people are expecting the depth of a YA novel, but its definitely a smaller, lighter story more suited to a middle grade novel. It also has a sort of easy narrative, not a lot of struggles and not a lot of…not a lot of depth. Really, both Delilah and Oliver were sort of flat characters, and the minor characters lacked real depth as well. I busted through the book because it was SUCH an easy read. I felt like I didn’t have to think *too* much while reading it.

That being said, I did like the book. If you look at it for what it is, it is really good. Its a sweet story, honestly, and its basically every fangirl’s dream, that her fictional crush would magically come to life off the pages and fall madly in love with her for exactly who she is, when everyone else thinks she’s just plain weird. I wanted Oliver to get out of the book as much as Delilah did, and I enjoyed the back and forth narrative. You were able to get into both of the main characters’ heads and see what was motivating them. You could say why Delilah wanted to escape the real world for the kingdom in the fairy tale and you saw why Oliver wanted out of the book and into the real world.

I also really enjoyed the fairy tale that the authors wove in between the stories. While Oliver and Delilah have their story, we get to see the actual fairy tale, the one that causes Delilah to become so attached. I like when boos include that kind of thing. It takes a little more effort. Its like when Rainbow Rowell includes the selections from the fictional Simon Snow series; it just shows that much more effort, and it really adds to the story. You can see why Delilah is drawn to the story, and I really enjoyed that.

Rating:

3.5 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

Depends. If you’re looking for a light read, more geared toward younger teens, maybe tweens, then this is the book for you. If you’re expecting a deeper story, a more complicated plot line, or a bigger romance, you’re barking up the wrong tree.

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I hope you enjoyed this week’s review :) Check back soon for more posts!

Book of the Week-Unbreakable

Unbreakable by Kami Garcia 

Kami Garcia/Unbreakable

GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, about it Paranormal, viagra buy Romance

Part of a Series?:

Yes, viagra the first novel of The Legion Series

You May Like if You Liked:

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, The Mediator Stories by Meg Cabot

Age Recommendation:

14+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

I never believed in ghosts. Until one tried to kill me.

When Kennedy Waters finds her mother dead, her world begins to unravel. She doesn’t know that paranormal forces in a much darker world are the ones pulling the strings. Not until identical twins Jared and Lukas Lockhart break into Kennedy’s room and destroy a dangerous spirit sent to kill her. The brothers reveal that her mother was part of an ancient secret society responsible for protecting the world from a vengeful demon — a society whose five members were all murdered on the same night.

Now Kennedy has to take her mother’s place in the Legion if she wants to uncover the truth and stay alive. Along with new Legion members Priest and Alara, the teens race to find the only weapon that might be able to destroy the demon — battling the deadly spirits he controls every step of the way.

Suspense, romance, and the paranormal meet in this chilling urban fantasy, the first book in a new series from Kami Garcia, bestselling coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures novels.

My Review: 

When people told me that it was the book version of Supernatural, I thought they were joking. Turns out, they weren’t. This literally is Supernatural in book form. But that’s a good thing.

First off, the characters. I really liked Kennedy right off the bat, and I think thats partly because I’ve always loved the name Kennedy both as a first name and as a last name. Its just an awesome name. But I also like that she seems to one of very few characters that are thrust into this brand new world and don’t just conform to it naturally. I actually really liked that about Kennedy. She’s very unsure and she messes up a lot and its clear that they think she’s a liability, even if they do care about her as well. I like that Kami was able to create a character that is going to have to work to fit into this world. She just doesn’t step over the threshold and take hold of it firmly. Its going to take some time for Kennedy to get used to this.

The other characters are great as well. We have twin brothers, Jared and Lukas, both love interests of Kennedy but not in a love triangle, thank god. Lukas is the sweeter, more open brother but that isn’t the sort of book boyfriend that I go for. I liked Jared a lot, a lot but its hard to get past his name. Jared is just used WAY too much in YA lit. So as much as I liked him, I couldn’t get past his name. The other two main characters, Priest and Alara were great, especially Priest. He’s a great character, full of humor and I would definitely want him on my supernatural busting team.

The story itself was really great at building up for what is going to happen in the future. It started off kind of weird to me and I wasn’t quite sure where it was going. I liked the characters well enough though that I kept reading. The supernatural stuff also appealed to my middle school self when I was obsessed with that kind of stuff, and wanted to be a practicing Wiccan. No lie. Anyway, the story builds up the world a lot and leaves off with a major cliffhanger, which is really what made the book for me. They really were working at something, with the impression of one thing and their impressions change a lot and it really creates a lot of mayhem. I couldn’t figure out the problem until I realized how much trouble they were in, and it made for an exciting story.

I think my favorite part of it was how  historical and accurate it got with the myths and legends and the ways to get rid of certain spirits and such. Kami obviously did her homework to make sure she got all of it right and you can tell. That’s why it felt so much like an episode of Supernatural. She made it feel real and legit, and there were times where I was like, “yeah! I remember that from SPN!” I think a lot of authors deserve credit for doing all that research work because I notice that, and it makes the story that much better.

Rating:

4 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

Yes! I loved this book. It was a little slow to start, and it hints at a love triangle for a bit (you know how I feel about those) but it takes off in a race to stop an evil demon and its exciting and sexy and dark and awesome. I definitely can’t wait for book two!

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I hope you all enjoyed this week’s Book of the Week. Stay tuned for more next week!

Book of the Week-Blood Promise

It took me forever to get back into the Vampire Academy series. I read the first three super quickly and Shadow Kiss broke my heart. Then all my friends told me, unhealthy “oh the last three are even worse.”

And my reaction was like, “RUN AWAY!”

And since I have such a long “to-be-read” list, I just moved on to other books.

Well, I’ve had SUCH an issue getting into books lately that I thought it would be good to get back to Rose Hathaway and her journey as a dhampir in the Vampire Academy world. And I’m so glad I did. I busted through Blood Promise, and am currently reading the 5th book, Spirit Bound. These books. Oh man. Addicted.

Blood Promise by Richelle Mead

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Urban Fantasy

Part of a Series?:

The 4th novel of the Vampire Academy series

Please note that while there will be NO spoilers for Blood Promise, there will be spoilers for Vampire Academy, Frostbite and Shadow Kiss. You can read those reviews by clicking the titles. 

You May Like if You Liked:

Rachel Caine’s The Morganville Vampires, Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Covenant Series

Age Recommendation:

14+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

Rose Hathaway’s life will never be the same. 

The recent attack on St. Vladimir’s Academy devastated the entire Moroi world. Many are dead. And, for the few victims carried off by Strigoi, their fates are even worse. A rare tattoo now adorns Rose’s neck, a mark that says she’s killed far too many Strigoi to count. But only one victim matters . . . Dimitri Belikov. Rose must now choose one of two very different paths: honoring her life’s vow to protect Lissa—her best friend and the last surviving Dragomir princess—or, dropping out of the Academy to strike out on her own and hunt down the man she loves. She’ll have to go to the ends of the earth to find Dimitri and keep the promise he begged her to make. But the question is, when the time comes, will he want to be saved? 

Now, with everything at stake—and worlds away from St. Vladimir’s and her unguarded, vulnerable, and newly rebellious best friend—can Rose find the strength to destroy Dimitri? Or, will she sacrifice herself for a chance at eternal love?

My Review: 

 I’m not sure what I was expecting from this book, but what I received was completely surprising.

It was really slow to start, which is a big reason why it doesn’t get a full five out of five stars. The first third of the book dragged on for a long time. I love Rose but a lot of that part was internal and I missed her fighting and her humor, and while I enjoyed the path she was taking, and what she was doing, it was just really slow. Nothing about it was grabbing, not after the epic, action-filled ending of Shadow Kiss.

However, when Rose finds Dimitri and the novel begins to pick up, I busted my way through. I couldn’t stop reading. I was surprised at what happened when they finally met again and I couldn’t handle it. My emotions were on an up-and-down dizzy roller coaster and I honestly couldn’t even guess what would happen next. Because this series has concluded and the spin-off, Bloodlines, is so far in as well, its not hard to run into spoilers. I’ve tried as best as I could to avoid them, but I do know some things. But I just didn’t see this, and it really has me guessing so much at what happens in the last two books. I honestly have no idea what direction this is taking.

And that’s what makes this book so good. Richelle both gives you, the reader, what you want and takes it away as well. She has you guessing at every turn. Rose is conflicted about so many things and she’s such a great writer, that you’re conflicted too! You can’t decide either, and your emotions…they just can’t handle it.

I seriously don’t know how Richelle did this to her fans. Its so cruel haha. The cliffhanger was incredible too. How could someone to do that! Luckily I already had Spirit Bound on my Nook, so I didn’t have to wait more than 2 seconds to start in on the next book, but sheesh. What a cliffhanger. She’s damn good at that.

Now I’d write more, but I’m not going to. One, so you can get off this computer and read the book (or the series, if you haven’t. Which, in that case, you need to be reading the review for Vampire Academy, not the 4th book. I’m just saying). Two, I need to get off this computer so I can go finish the 5th book!

Good Day!

Rating:

4.5 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

I recommend this entire series. The books just keep getting better and better. If you’re stuck on book one or two or three, keep going! Don’t stop. They are great books. I am NOT a fan of vampire books but these books. My god.

And I just picture the beautiful and crush-worthy Zoey Deutch as Rose, and I’m good to go!

Oh, and Danila Kozlovsky too ;)

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I hope you enjoyed this week’s Book of the Week. I hope you enjoy the addition of GIFs in my posts too. I’m becoming addicted to them. They’re amazing. Get used to it! ;)

Happy Reading everyone!

Book of the Week-Scarlet

Hello, prostate all my friends! How are you on this glorious Friday? I’m doing well! I had a GREAT Thanksgiving.

My boyfriend and I decided this year that we would do our own Thanksgiving, sickness forgoing the stress of trying to attend all four possible Thanksgivings with our various family members. I’m house sitting right now, so I even have a house available to do so. Jon’s brother, Chris, decided he was into the idea as well, and so the three of us planned it all out. Chris is a full vegan, I’m a pescatarian and Jon eats anything and everything so we were able to get specialized too! I made my very first tofurkey ever and it was SO good. I rocked it. We had a ton of food, and I’m stuffed and happy.

Now its time for a nice relaxing weekend! I hope all of you are safe and all that this weekend. Its a crazy shopping weekend and I’m not going anywhere near it haha. I stay in bed, in my nice cozy house, with my trusty laptop during this weekend. I’m a fan of Amazon Black Friday sales and Cyber Monday deals across the board. They’re awesome, and you don’t even have to leave your house! Brilliant!

Speaking of Amazon Black Friday deals, there are a TON of them in movies! I saw movies like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games, Twilight and X-Men First Class, and all kinds of nerd movies for really cheap! And Blu-Ray too! Definitely go check it out :)

Now, moving on! It’s a day late, but here it is: this week’s Book of the Week review. If you haven’t had a chance to read my review of Marissa Meyer’s first book, Cinder, you can read it here!

Now for Scarlet!

Scarlet  by Marissa Meyer

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Science Fiction, Fairy Tale Re-telling

Part of a Series?:

The second novel of The Lunar Chronicles

Please note, while there will be NO spoilers for Scarlet in this review, there will be spoilers for the first novel, Cinder. You may read the review for that book here

You May Like if You Liked:

Honestly I’m not sure. But if you’re a YA fan, and a science fiction fan, you should read it. Even if you’ren not partial to science fiction, you should read it.

Age Recommendation:

12+

Plot Summary:

From Good Reads:

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison–even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive. 

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

The Review:

I am blown away by the amazingness that is this book. I was recommended Cinder by my friend Erin, who runs That One Geek Girl, and it took me a long time to read it. Not because it was awful or hard to get into BUT because I was busy with school and the upcoming holiday and finding a new job and all that fun stuff. But I did finish it, eventually, and I absolutely loved it. I got my hands on Scarlet ASAP and I just finished it on Thanksgiving, while making my delicious tofurkey.

Marissa Meyer takes the story that she has created in Cinder and just multiples it, makes it broader, and takes her world and makes it more widespread, and its incredible. She introduces two very important new characters in Scarlet and Wolf (and also Captain Thorne), but instead of detracting from the story, it just adds to it, builds it, and makes it more intricate and more complex and even more exciting than it already was. Seriously. She takes the story that she’s created and doubles it. Just when you kind of think you know what direction things are going in, she steps in, shakes her head (and probably laughs at your crestfallen face) and switches courses so fast that its a wonder that you don’t have whiplash.

I absolutely love that she continued with the fairy tale angle. I’ve always known these fairy tales, because, well, I’m a girl and I grew up with Disney movies like most kids do. But I also just recently took a Children’s Lit class in school, and we did a TON of work on the old school fairy tales. When reading Cinder, I loved the comparisons between the familiar Charles Perrault tale and the novel. I loved that she took the basics of the story, and built them into her own, and twisted them. It was done beautifully.

Then she introduced Scarlet, the wolf, and Scarlet’s grandmother, Michelle. The tale of Red Riding Hood is SO apparent int his book, which I absolutely, totally love but its done so flawlessly. Its weaved in so naturally that it doesn’t feel like its forced. The transition between Cinder’s Cinderella story and Scarlet’s Red Riding Hood story and the combination of the two just fits so well. You hardly notice that they’re colliding until the impact and its amazing. It really is. I love seeing the themes of the old story, like the sexual themes and the innocence and all of that, but translated into a much stronger character like Scarlet. Because let’s face it, women were always weak and needed to be saved by a big strong man in these old folk tales.

Plus, I think Marissa really knows her story. She really takes this story and builds it from page one of the very first book. Sometimes I feel like people write their series as it goes, without really thinking of the past, present and future. You have to be aware of the entire scope of the series in order to write it. She definitely does that. The interweaving of the first two books, and presumably the third, is just beautiful. Things that didn’t seem important or felt unanswered came up in the second book, perfectly, and often times, through Scarlet’s point of view. She connects these two girls and their stories as if this is just the way it is, its always been like this. I love that they are brought together, two very different girls, but both strong and determined, both fighters. Its awesome. She creates great characters. She takes Cinderella and Red and makes them SO much better, and stronger and smarter. Its fantastic.

I could go on and on and on about this book but then I’d be wasting your time. If you haven’t gotten involved in this series yet, definitely do it. If you’ve read Cinder and haven’t read Scarlet, what on earth are you waiting for? You’re going to SPEED through this book and then lament that Cress is still 66 days away. Sigh. But we’re a patient bunch, aren’t we? So get out there and read! The links to buy it are above, and you know you want to! Its a beautiful science fiction novel with mystery and action and romance and twists and turns, moments that make you laugh and cry, and they are stories that remind you of the classic stories you loved as a kid, with a little bit of a kickass twist.

Rating:

5 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

Definitely! This book blew me away. If you thought the first book was good, you’re going to think this one is even better. I guarantee it. I canNOT wait until Cress comes out, and to find out what happens next!

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I hope you enjoyed this week’s Book of the Week! Don’t forget that you can check out old posts here!

Happy Reading!