Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Review: Grave Memory by Kalayna Price

Grave Memory (Alex Craft #3) by Kalayna Price
Publication Date: July 3, 2012
Publisher: ROC
Number of Pages: 373
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

As a Grave Witch, Alex solves murders by raising the dead—an ability that comes at a cost, and after her last few cases, that cost is compounding. But her magic isn’t the only thing causing havoc in her life. While she’s always been on friendly terms with Death himself, things have recently become a whole lot more close and personal. Then there’s her sometime partner, agent Falin Andrews, who is under the glamour of the Winter Queen. To top everything off, her best friend has been forever changed by her time spent captive in Faerie.

But the personal takes a backseat to the professional when a mysterious suicide occurs in Nekros City and Alex is hired to investigate. The shade she raises has no memory of the days leading up to his brutal ending, so despite the very public apparent suicide, this is murder. But what kind of magic can overcome the human will to survive? And why does the shade lack the memory of his death? Searching for the answer might mean Alex won’t have a life to remember at all…

I really meant to spread the three books out, but I just couldn't help myself. I blame my friend who sent me some amazing quotes and I knew I had to start this ASAP.

The book picks up about a month after the second book ended. Her love life hasn't gotten any better since the last book. A relationship with Death is forbidden, plus he stopped his random visits. Falin is under the Winter Queen's control and must obey her commands, and she's commanded him not to have any personal visits with Alex. But that doesn't stop her from having the FIB raiding Alex's house, and having Falin conducting them. Not to mention Caleb is getting very frustrated with all the raids and even threatened to evict Alex from the house.

Alex is still struggling with her new found heritage, learning that the Shadow King is her grand granduncle through her mom. Which makes Alex more fae than human, not that she will admit it. I was a little disappointed that we didn't see more of the Shadow King in this book. But we do see a little bit of interaction between Alex and her father. Which I wish there was more of. Yes he acts like a jerk towards her and seems like he doesn't really care. But I feel like everything he has done is to protect Alex, he's just not good at showing how much he cares. Or a comment makes me think that Alex's siblings aren't really his kids. Speaking of siblings, I have a feeling that at some point Alex's missing brother will turn up or we will at least learn what happened to him.

Alex's new case is complicated as ever. Does this girl ever get easy cases? People are committing suicide, yet their shades has no memory of the act or even a few days before it. And each person had witness a suicide the day they started losing their memories. But when the people she cares about are close to losing their lives, Alex will give anything to save them.

What the first half was lacking in romance, the second half certainly made up for it. If you weren't sure who you want Alex with, this book will make your mind up. It seems at times Alex is torn between both men, but with Falin under the Winter Queen's control Alex can never trust him. He's not completely the bad guy though. He's just caught in her twisted game, and pretty much a slave. But has the forbidden love going on. Not to mention he's always been there for Alex, and knows are her secrets. Not to mention he will sacrifice everything to save her.

So far this book is my favorite in the series. And the's shocking and seems like the love triangle will come back in focus. I really hope in future books we see more of Alex interacting with more of the fae, more of dad, and I really want to see more of Caleb. Which maybe now that him and Holly are an item, which I saw that coming since the last book. Counting down the days till the fourth book comes out.

Rating: 5/5



Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Teaser Tuesday 24

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Want to play along?
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share 2 "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful not to include spoilers
  • Share the title and author
I still can't get over Kalayna Price's series Alex Craft. This teaser is from Grave Memory. It's a little longer than two sentences, but I think it's my favorite quote in the whole book.

"No game. I want all of you, Alex. Body." His hands moved to my waist. "Mind." He kissed my forehead. "And soul." His hand moved and my back arched as a pleasure so thick it verged on pain spread through me. 

Review: Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington

Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
Publication date: May 1st, 2013
Number of pages: 336 pgs
Format: Paperback
Purchase: Bookworld Australia

Above all else, though I try not to think about it, I know which life I prefer. And every night when I Cinderella myself from one life to the next a very small, but definite, piece of me dies. The hardest part is that nothing about my situation has ever changed. There is no loophole.

Until now, that is...

For as long as she can remember, Sabine has lived two lives. Every 24 hours she Shifts to her ′other′ life - a life where she is exactly the same, but absolutely everything else is different: different family, different friends, different social expectations. In one life she has a sister, in the other she does not. In one life she′s a straight-A student with the perfect boyfriend, in the other she′s considered a reckless delinquent. Nothing about her situation has ever changed, until the day when she discovers a glitch: the arm she breaks in one life is perfectly fine in the other.

With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments which bring her dangerously close to the life she′s always wanted... But just what - and who - is she really risking?

Jessica Shirvington has debuted her very first standalone, YA contemporary, but with a twist novel. If you loved her Violet Eden series and waiting her final book, then you are sure to love this novel.

I found the premise for this story very compelling and interesting from the very first moment Jess spoke about it. I personally don't know how I would deal if I were in this kind of situation, so Sabine is a strong female character on that merit alone.

The story brings us to Sabine, who is about to turn eighteen and looking forward to what the future brings her. But her life is  not like anyone else's. For she, you see, has two lives. She doesn't know how it came or be, or when it started, but after midnight she switches from one life to another, never missing one moment of each of her lives.
She is the same girl. Same name. Same physical appearance, but different family and friends. Different life.
When Sabine realizes that things have started to change through each Shift, she becomes to the realization that this may be the time she will have to choose ONE life, but the question is, which one?

In one life.. she has everything she could have wanted. Friends, popularity, wealth, the perfect boyfriend. But everything is not as it appears to be, because the boyfriend she can't stand, her brothers she doesn't really get along with.
In the other, her family could not have been any different. She isn't popular. She is more like a rebel. But she has a best friend. Her parents are on hard times financially, but she has a bright spot and that is her little sister who she adores and who adores her. But when it comes down to deciding.... how does one decide which life to lead?

The moment she meets Ethan, changes everything. Everything she wanted to feel in her 'perfect' life's boyfriend happens with Ethan. If only she could take him to her other life if she decides to choose that one. But who said ANY life was easy? Most of us only have one to deal with day by day, but Sabine has twice the trouble as she deals with not one, but two of them.

This book is equally as addicting, compelling and heartbreaking as Jessica's  VEC series.  It has love. It has family, and heartbreak.
There was something that involved Ethan that I should have seen coming, but  I didn't. Maybe I just didn't want to believe it. But what Sabine has to deal with is so heartbreaking and tragic, I don't envy her for a moment.
I did love that by the end Sabine got closer to her brothers than she was before. She goes through a traumatic experience that will bond them forever, and she will never have to worry about going back to the relationship she had with them before ever again. And by the end of the book... while Sabine goes through everyone one could ever imagine---  there is hope for something for the future.

There could have been more to this story, but I did like the end how it ended on a note of hope.. just enough to leave you satisfied, but also enough to make you yearn for more as well.

Jessica can write the bible and I'd read it. She has this special knack at getting you involved in the world that she creates. I'm a fan for life, for sure.

Rating: 5/5

Review: Avenger's Angel (The Lost Angel, #1) by Heather Killough-Walden

Avenger's Angel (The Lost Angel, #1) by Heather Killough-Walden
Publisher: Signet Eclipse
Publication date: November 1st, 2011
Number of pages: 392 pgs
Format: Mass-Market Paperback
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository | BookWorld Australia

The first in Heather Killough-Walden's fantastic new paranormal series, the Lost Angels, features Uriel, the Angel of Vengeance Four thousand years ago, four archangels were cast down to Earth in human form. God's favourites, they came to find their mates, the other half of their souls made only for them, without whom they will ever be complete.
  Uriel, Gabriel, Azrael and Michael, however, were not alone. They were followed by another, determined to find the archesses for himself, and whose power cannot be underestimated. But after centuries of fruitless searching, the archangels -- and their enemy -- have all but given up hope. Until one day beautiful and gifted Eleanore Granger crosses paths with Uriel, the Angel of Vengeance. And as a storm rages, outside forces conspire together, initiating an age old battle of good versus evil to win the first archess.

I've recently read a couple of Adult angel books recently, and this is the one that has stood out to me the most. Ever since I saw this book in the store I knew it sounded like something I would enjoy.  For the past while, I have been loving books with angels in it, YA and Adult...and this was no different.

Meet God's top warriors: Michael, Gabriel, Uriel and Azrael. In reward for their loyalty, God created female angels perfect for each of them. The other half of their very soul, but when something happens and the women disappear and cast down to Earth, the four warriors follow them to try to locate their chosen ones.
But they aren't alone...
They have been followed by an enemy who will do everything to stop them from achieving their soulmates.

After thousands of years and no success, the guys start to give up on ever finding the angels, but the moment that Uriel crosses paths with Eleanore Granger, he knows. But as obstacles threaten to stop them from ever finding their way to each other, the question lies between both of them.. can the love they have for one another prevail over everything else?

This was such a fantastic first book in a new series. I loved all of the archangels. Some of them are more torchured than the rest, but each of them hold their own secrets that will make you love them to bits. I look forward to reading the next installment in this series.

Ellie is a strong woman, who didn't give in to pretty boys, but I love her relationship with Uriel and how it progressed slowly throughout the book. It felt very natural and compelling to me. And I love how she also interacted with his brothers. It should be interesting to see them discover their own mates wherever they may be. And hope that Samual does not get to them first.

Samual was an interesting villian. I didn't realize he was at the beginning, but I wonder if he wanted Ellie because he wanted someone to love for himself. Maybe Heather will write him a book and give him his own love interest. Time will tell.

Rating: 5/5

Monday, May 27, 2013

Review: Grave Dance by Kalayna Price

Grave Dance (Alex Craft #2) by Kalayna Price
Publication Date: July 5, 2011
Publisher: ROC
Number of Pages: 371
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

Whoever said dead men tell no tales obviously never met Alex Craft.

After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L” word confession from Death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.

The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses, only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end—her own.

I couldn't help myself but dive right into the second book. It's been a month since the events at the end of the first book, and Alex still isn't sure about her feelings. After finding out that Falin is not only the Winter Queen's assassin but also her lover. But before Alex can confront him on those facts he disappears without even a goodbye and hasn't heard from him since. To further complicate things when Alex was dying at the end of the first book Death had told the other soul collectors that he loves Alex. Having a soul collector being in love with you isn't easy, and Alex isn't sure how to act or even what to say to him. Not to mention Alex herself has commitment issues and doesn't do relationships as a rule.

Alex does what every other woman does when they having love life issues, throw themselves into their work. But the new case the police have her working on makes no sense at all. They are no bodies, just feet; left feet at that with no indication of being cut off from the body. And to make her life even more complicated, Falin shows up in her yard injured. Partnering up with a FIB agent has it perks, but Alex could do without him trying to worm his way back in her life and bed.

Although still not enough for my taste, Death appears more often in this book than last. Not only do we get to see him flirting with Alex, but we start to see a possessive side to him. But you get the impression that the soul collectors have laws to abide by, and it's forbidden for him to have a relationship with a mortal. There were a few scenes where Death and Falin had a pissing contest. Which let's me honest, even if you hate triangles, the pissing matches are always amusing. Last book I hadn't fully decided on a "team", this book had me leaning towards one side more than the other. But the end made me doubt it a little. The way I see it, either guy has some major cons to them.

Not sure if it's because I read the books back to back, or if I just catch these things real easy, but I did find a few things I didn't like. The author uses the same descriptions over and over, especially for Death. Throughout the first book and the first half of this book, everytime Death appeared it was the exact same description. Or in the first half of this book, I lost count of times they refer to the Magical Awakening as the faeries coming out of the mushroom ring. Or the countless times we are reminded that the city is only fifty years old, so there's really no old or historical parts in the city. Once is enough thank you very much.

I love the fact that Alex is blond. You don't find too many heroines in this genre or even fantasy/paranormal that are blond. And the fact that the only supernatural creatures in this world are witches and the fae. It works for this book having a limit on the supernatural. I find the magic in this world is intriguing. Especially the fact that grave magic not only kills night vision, but messes with your eyesight after using it. For the most part Alex stays pretty much blind majority of the time.

Along with everything else on her plate, Alex must keep the fact she's feykin a secret. Which I wonder why did she awaken the fae part of her self during the Blood Moon in the last book? But when Holly is kidnapped Alex must go to the one place that scares her the most, Faery. Which beholds a few surprises for her when she realizes she may just have more fae blood in her than she would like.

Filled with mystery, action, a little romance, and humor this series is urban fantasy at it's best.

Rating: 4.5/5


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Review: Grave Witch by Kalayna Price

Grave Witch (Alex Craft #1) by Kalayna Price
Publication Date: October 5, 2010
Publisher: ROC
Number of Pages: 325
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

Grave witch Alex Craft can speak to the dead, but that doesn’t mean she likes what they have to say.

As a private investigator and consultant for the police, Alex Craft has seen a lot of dark magic. But even though she’s on good terms with Death himself—who happens to look fantastic in a pair of jeans—nothing has prepared her for her latest case. Alex is investigating a high profile murder when she’s attacked by the ‘shade’ she’s raising, which should be impossible. To top off her day, someone makes a serious attempt on her life, but Death saves her. Guess he likes having her around...

To solve this case Alex will have to team up with tough homicide detective Falin Andrews. Falin seems to be hiding something—though it’s certainly not his dislike of Alex—but Alex knows she needs his help to navigate the tangled webs of mortal and paranormal politics, and to track down a killer wielding a magic so malevolent, it may cost Alex her life...and her soul.

70 years ago the fae came out of hiding and told the world of their existence. Not long after that the witches came out too. Even though it's been years, not everyone is accepting. But it means no one has to hide their true self. Enter Alex Craft, a grave witch which means she has the ability to raise shades from dead bodies to question them. Shades differ from ghosts since a shade is just a memory, which works out great for murder mysteries.
The impossible happens when a shade attacks her and effects her with dark magic. Not to mention her good friend John, a detective,  is shot with a magic induced bullet that was meant for her. Or how her sister wants her to find out who killed the governor, who turns out isn't really dead at all.

I immediately fell in love with the book. And also slapping myself for not reading this sooner. The best way to describe it is it's a great mix between Chicagoland Vampires series by Chloe Neill and Downside Ghosts by Stacia Kane. I'm seldom disappointed with urban fantasy series, and this one is no different. Very fast paced and a page turner. You won't be able to put the book down.

And what is a book without a love interest, or two. Falin Andrews is the lead detective on the case, and it's not long before they are teaming up to solve the case. Not to mention he's good looking or he seems to be everywhere she turns around. I love how most of the time he calls her by her real name, which I'm still curious how he found out. But he's keeping quiet who he really is, and it could be enough for Alex to kick him out of her life. And then there is Death. The grim reaper should not be this hot. And he's been popping in and out of Alex's life since she was five years old. And Alex is the only person or even witch that can see him without using her grave sight. Death just happens to shock Alex at the end with a confession that most girls would love to hear, but it just confuses things even more. And of course the real dilemma is I'm not sure who I want Alex with. I guess only time will tell.

We can't forget the twists along the way. Not everyone is what they seem to be, including Alex herself, which comes a complete shock to her. I had a feeling that her best friend from witch school would show up again after being missing for the past four years. Even though she changed her name and is pretty much disowned from her family, I got the feeling that her dad still looks out for her. Might come off as an ass majority of the time, but hasn't completely turned his back on her.

If you a lover of urban fantasy, or even love the two series I mentioned above you need to read this ASAP. I promise you won't be disappointed. As for me? I can't wait to read the rest of the series.

Rating: 5/5


Review: Grasping at Eternity by Karen Amanda Hooper

Grasping at Eternity (Kindrily #1) by Karen Amanda Hooper
Publication Date: May 25, 2012
Publisher: Starry Sky Publishing
Number of Pages: 328
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

Leave it to Maryah Woodsen to break the one rule that will screw up eternity: Never erase your memories.

Before entering this life, Maryah did the unthinkable—she erased. Now, at seventeen years old, she’s clueless that her new adoptive family has known her for centuries, that they are perpetually reincarnated souls, and that they have supernatural abilities. Oh, and she's supposed to love (not despise) Nathan, the green-eyed daredevil who saved her life.

Nathan is convinced his family’s plan to spark Maryah's memory is hopeless, but his love for her is undying. After spending (and remembering) so many lifetimes together, being around an empty version of his soulmate is heart shattering. He hates acting like a stalker, but has no choice because the evil outcast who murdered Maryah in their last lifetime is still after her.

While Maryah’s hunter inches closer, she and Nathan make assumptions and hide secrets that rip them further apart. Maryah has to believe in the magic within her, Nathan must have faith in the power of their love, and both need to grasp onto the truth before they lose each other forever—and discover just how lonely eternity can be.

Maryah's life it turned upside down the day her parents and her twin brother was murder. Not to mention she barely escaped with her life and ended up in a coma for two weeks. She decides to leave her old life behind, and what little family she has left; her aunt, uncle, and cousin and best friend Krista behind and live her mom's best friend from childhood who was left her appointed guardian.

It's an adjustment, especially since it seems like certain members of the family hate her for no reason. Or why everyone seems to keep mentioning Nathan. Which when Maryah comes face to face with, is completely shock to realized he's her death angel she keeps dreaming about. Which he actually stays away from Maryah for majority of the book, which is fine by her since she can't stand him. But who could really blame him? It must be torture to be near your soul mate and for them not to remember you or your past lives together.

I've always loved the concept of reincarnated souls, especially soul mates. This book is definitely a page turner. Another book I couldn't put down and read in one day. I will say throughout the book I was confused on how some of the members of the kindrily were related to each other in this life in regards to human terms. I was hoping that her parents were reincarnated souls, but turns out not to be the case. There's another person that turns out to be part of their kindrily which I suspected from the beginning.

The book was broken down in two POVs, Maryah and Nathan's. I'm not big on multiple POVs in YA, especially when authors tries to do one as a guy. It's tricky, and most can't get it down. Comes off as juvenile and annoying. I'm happy to report that this isn't the case. I adore Nathan, and how whatever he does is for Maryah. Maryah did make friends with River, the school's most popular guy, not to mention all the girls swoon over him. I never understood the friendship. River has an ego the size of the United States, not to mention he's a douche. Or how he keeps pressuring Maryah to date him when it's obvious she just wants friendship. I did get excited one of the minor characters share the same name as me. Wasn't thrilled that I was initially River's girlfriend.  But River has ulterior motives for getting close to Maryah, and it just may put her life in danger again.

Not sure if everyone else feels the same, but I felt a Twightish vibe to this book. Now don't let that scare you off, I just noticed similarities. But this book holds it's on, and really is nothing like Twilight. There was a part where Maryah goes four wheeling, but it ends up being dirt bikes, and uses the word four wheeling one more time. It shouldn't bug me, but for a person who loves four wheeling myself, there's a difference.

I do love how in the end Maryah remembered Nathan. She didn't get all of her memories back, but it's a start. And her twin brother, Mikey, comes back in an unexpected way. Which I felt how he came back was a little weird.

I'm anxious for the next book to come out. This easily in one book made my favorites list. I'm looking forward to finding out the answers still lingering, especially why did Maryah erase in the first place.

Rating: 5/5


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Review: Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington

Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington
Publication Date: May 1, 2013
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
Number of Pages: 336
Format: Paperback
Add to Goodreads

Above all else, though I try not to think about it, I know which life I prefer. And every night when I Cinderella myself from one life to the next a very small, but definite, piece of me dies. The hardest part is that nothing about my situation has ever changed. There is no loophole.

Until now, that is...

For as long as she can remember, Sabine has lived two lives. Every 24 hours she Shifts to her ′other′ life - a life where she is exactly the same, but absolutely everything else is different: different family, different friends, different social expectations. In one life she has a sister, in the other she does not. In one life she′s a straight-A student with the perfect boyfriend, in the other she′s considered a reckless delinquent. Nothing about her situation has ever changed, until the day when she discovers a glitch: the arm she breaks in one life is perfectly fine in the other.

With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments which bring her dangerously close to the life she′s always wanted... But just what - and who - is she really risking?

I'm extremely lucky enough to have an amazing friend and co blogger who sends me Jessica's books since they are published in Australia long before they are even available in the US.  First let's take a minute to gush over the cover. Isn't it gorgeous? I could stare at it all day. And second, I want to address the genre(s) I label this book as. I struggle with what I thought this book would fall in. There's no supernatural creatures or even themes in the book. The shifting between two lives is more of a sci-fi theme, but that's the only sci-fi/fantasyish thing about this book. The rest of it is more contemporary. It's a twist, and one I love.

Meet Sabine, a typical 17 year old girl. Or maybe not so typical since she has two lives, and I don't mean she lives a double life. Every night at midnight she shifts to her other life, and relive the same day over again. Her two lives are different as day and night. In one life she has it all; money, the clothes, the right friends, and even the perfect boyfriend. Or at least that's what everyone sees. We learn quickly she just stays with him because that's what their society expects. But not everything is perfect. She has two older brothers whom she doesn't get along with one bit, and she feels like she should act and say certain things because that's what is expected of her. In the other life her family is hard on money. She has friends, but they are labeled as trouble. One bright light in it is she has a younger sister she adores. But when Sabine realizes everything has changed, and she might be able to only have one life, she must choose.

Just like all of her other works, this book is very fast paced and addicting. I couldn't put the book down and read it in one day. And of course falling in love with Ethan in the "wrong" life wasn't in Sabine's plans. But Ethan has his own secrets. And just when you think the book couldn't get any better, BAM! The heartbreaking twist. Which not really too much a twist since you could see it coming. Ethan taught Sabine to cherish life, both of her lives. Without trying to sound too cliche, after the rain there's always a rainbow. The ending was perfect. Well almost perfect. Which is what I hate about stand a lone books. There is always room for more, and it leave you wanting more.

I do love how she after her attack, she became real close to her oldest brother Ryan. And even closer to her other one. I'm always a sucker for brother sister closeness relationships. And it's the one thing I hated throughout the book.

In one word this book was AMAZING! It took the concept of suicide with a twist, instead of trying to end your life, pain, suffering; she wants to end her life so she could live.I do wish we would of learned why/how Sabine ended up with two lives. Maybe one day she will write some kind of a sequel, even if it's a short story. I would love to know if Sabine got her happy ending.

Rating: 5/5


Friday, May 24, 2013

Review: Defiance (Defiance #1) by C.J Redwine

Defiance (Defiance #1) by C.J Redwine
Publisher:  Balzar & Bray
Publication date: September 1st, 2012
Number of pages: 403 pgs
Format: Paperback
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository | Book World Australia

Rachel’s world is confined to the protective walls around her city. Beyond them are violent wanderers, extreme terrain, and a danger straight out of legend: a beast called the Cursed One that devastates everything in its path.

When Rachel’s father goes missing, she is desperate to search for him. But her attempts to flee the city bring her to the attention of its overbearing ruler. His efforts to control her make the world within the walls seem as dangerous as that outside.

Her only chance at escape is Logan. Once her father’s apprentice, and now her only protector, he feels that helping her might mean losing her completely. But if he can put his feelings aside, they might be able to save more than Rachel’s father. They might be able to break down the walls, and set their people free.

Defiance is the debut novel for break-out C.J Redwine. She successfully carves a delicious and enticing story about one girl's hopes to find her last living family. A story based on hope, despair, faith and love.
This is a book which surely you would put on your to-read list, right? *waits for nods all around.*

Rachel lives in Baalboden, one of the few places deemed livable, where everything else was cut off and called The Wasteland, where there is nothing but a monster lurking abouts devouring everything out there. Baalboden is a civilised community where Rachel's father works as a courier, not to mention being the best tracker out there, but when one day he does not return from a trip, Rachel starts to get worried.
The longer he is gone, the less people think he would have survived. Rachel is adamanent. She fully believes he still lives, even if the city now has deemed him legally dead, and her protectorship has been transferred from her father, to... the boy she wished she never could see again.

Meet Logan. The boy of Rachel's dreams and nightmares. The two share a complicated history that she doesn't want to think about for fear it will dread up all the embarassing thoughts from that time of her life, but when Logan suddenly becomes her protector aka guardian, she is forced to spend more time with him than she would have liked.
But that doesn't stop her from wanting to escape his clutches and go search for her father, but unbeknowest to Rachel, Logan also is planning on searching for him as well... when the time is right.

Rachel is really a strong and kickass character.  She is seventeen years of age, a few months from being deemed an adult and no longer need a protector if she so wishes, but until then she doesn't have much of a choice.
The fact she does not give up hope on finding her father and fully believes he is still alive out there, even though everyone else has written him off as being destroyed and killed out in the wastelands, she does not give up on hoping. I admired that about her. 
Logan is also an amazing strong character. He comes from a background he isn't proud of. He has had a hard life since his mother was taken away from him as a child, and had to live on the streets until Jared, Rachel's father took him in and gave him a job. I can imagine he felt like he was giving a second chance at life and didn't want to ruin that by doing anything that would put that in jeopardy. 

This story is written in both Rachel and Logan's POVs. It's interesting to see things from both of their perspective, as they deal with the same, and different things at the same time. You can understand where they are both coming from. They are alike and yet so different. They hope. They love and they fear, and not all in that order.

The relationship between these two was probably one of my favourite things about this book, if not the favourite thing. It was so real and honest. So hard and yet so heartbreaking. The love story these two have going on didn't just start. But it's from this point forward when it starts to progress into something that is worth fighting for.

If you are interested in a story about love, mystery, loyalty, family with kickass characters in a heartbreakingly dystopian world, then this is for you.

I look forward to August when the sequel comes out. I can't wait to see where Rachel and Logan's story goes to next.

Rating: 4.5 / 5


Review: Apollyon (Covenant #4) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Apollyon (Covenant #4) by Jennifer L.Armentrout
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Publication date: April 4th, 2013
Number of pages: 343 pgs
Format: E-format
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository

Fate isn’t something to mess with… and now, neither is Alex.

Alex has always feared two things: losing herself in the Awakening and being placed on the Elixir. But love has always been stronger than Fate, and Aiden St. Delphi is willing to make war on the gods—and Alex herself—to bring her back.

The gods have killed thousands and could destroy entire cities in their quest to stop Seth from taking Alex’s power and becoming the all-powerful God Killer. But breaking Alex’s connection to Seth isn’t the only problem. There are a few pesky little loopholes in the whole “an Apollyon can’t be killed” theory, and the only person who might know how to stop the destruction has been dead for centuries.

Finding their way past the barriers that guard the Underworld, searching for one soul among countless millions, and then somehow returning will be hard enough. Alex might be able to keep Seth from becoming the God Killer… or she might become the God Killer herself.

From the moment we were left with that agonizing cliffhanger in Deity, I have been itching to find what was coming next. The novella, Elxir did provide a little comfort and gave me hope for the future, but of course, I wanted more.
Jennifer L.Armentrout has proved time and time again the ability to deliver in her stories, characters and world-building, but in the second to last book of this heart-thumping series comes so many twists and turns you won't see coming. It will leave you hanging after each single page.

When we return with Apollyon, we have Alex who is now off the Elixir, but still connected to Seth via the bond.  It started to get annoying after a while as she called him "Her Seth" it was like.. you know, she was sired or something /crackjoke.
But as the story progressed throughout the book, Alex soon was able to break the bond and return to her former self, thank goodness. I'm not sure how much I could  take with the way she was being. And there was so many other important things she had to do.
Now that Alex is one of two Apollyon's, her concerns start to be focused on what happens when Seth gets his hands on her and possibly then turning into a God Killer. The thoughts and ideas are so unimaginable to think about. They just better hope that does not happen, because if it does... then God help them all.

While we do see Seth here and there, more than in the previous one that is for sure. In feel there is still some hope that he can be saved. Whether or not that is true remains to be seen, and I am sure will be discussed in the final book in this series coming later in the year.
But the romance between Alex and Aiden goes form strength to strength. There is nothing he wouldn't do for her, and I love how much they have gone through and come out stronger on the other side. I knew from the beginning these two would be a love like no other. It would be tested and tried, but usually those kinds of romances come out on top by the end.

I'm counting down the days until Sentinel is released. I can't wait to see how everything all ends for this story.

Rating: 4.5/5

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Review: The Forsaken by Lisa M. Strasse

The Forsaken (The Forsaken #1) by Lisa M. Strasse
Publisher: Orchard Books
Publication date: August 2nd, 2012
Number of pages: 432 pgs
Format: Paperback
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository | Book World Australia

Alenna Shawcross is a sixteen-year-old orphan growing up in a police state formed from the ashes of Canada, the US and Mexico after a global economic meltdown.

But when she unexpectedly fails ‘the test’ - a government initiative which supposedly identifies teens destined to be criminals - she wakes up alone on a remote island reserved for the criminally insane.

Terrified and confused, she soon encounters a group of other teen survivors battling to stay alive, including Liam, a boy who will become her love... and her lifeline.

Soon Alenna makes the terrifying discovery that there’s more to the island (and her past) than she could ever have guessed... But who can she trust? And can she ever escape?

Lisa Strasse has come up with a imaginative story to dig into, as we find ourselves in a government funded dystopian novel. This genre has exploded since the arrival of The Hunger Games. I know that I was very hesitant to get into this kind of thing back then, but since those books.. I have discovered a crave for this very genre moreso than any other.
There have been so many books I have read, while some more similar than others, but each have their own individual spin on this dark, haunting and devastating world.

Welcome to the United Northern Allegiance; formally known as The United States, Mexico and Canada. 
We're introduced to Alenna Shawcrossed, who after losing her parents (not by death, but by disappearance) at a young age, becomes an orphan. At age sixteen she takes the compulsory test every student takes that will determine whether or not you have rebellious tendencies toward criminal behaviour. Most people pass... and some, don't.  Aleena never thought much about not passing because she couldn't harm a fly even if she tried, so when she does fail by whatever means she can't believe her luck.
After failing, Aleena finds herself being shipped off to a prison camp alpha where the life expentancy for each 'unachored soul' is eighteen years of age.
After she and another person wake up on 'The wheel' for which the inhabitants call it, since it's split into different sections, they try to find their way out. When they are caught for being in a section they shouldn't be in, Aleena and the other newest recruit to The Wheel need to try stay alive before they end up dead.

I was very impressed with this book. I had a feeling I would enjoy it, but never imagined how much. While things do start out slow... when things start to reveal themselves, it takes on a whole new meaning.

While there is romance in this book it doesn't take up the main plot, or does it overtake it. I know some may not like the way it happens, but I found it rather cute. It's not the earth-shattering love, nor is there a love triangle (thank goodness).
I love the friendships Aleena makes during her time on the island. Not only with Liam, but with the other people in the tribe which take her in.
There is certainly one surprise that I didn't see coming and makes for some interesting story.

The end...while leave for more story-telling, but I don't think it is as bad of a cliffhanger as I have seen in other books. It's good enough though to make me want to know more. To see where things will progress.

Bring on August.

Rating:  4.5/5

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Teaser Tuesday 23

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Want to play along?
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share 2 "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • Be careful not to include spoilers
  • Share the title and author
I still can't get over Saving June Hannah Harrington. It was just full of amazing. Plus Jake was pretty much perfect.

 “He leans close and says, "It matters to me," right against my mouth, and then kisses me like he means it.
I've thought about what it'd be like to kiss Jake over the past few days, way more than I'd care to admit. But I don't even have time to register the firm press of his lips against mine, without breath, before he pulls back.

Blog Tour: Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington - Interview + Giveaway

We would love to welcome Jess Shirvington, for the very first time. We couldn't be anymore excited to be part of this blog tour.
Jessica is absolutely one of my favourite authors, Aussie no less and I was thrilled when she announced she had a new book planned. I love her Violet Eden series, but at this point, I'd read anything this woman writes.
We decided to dig a little deeper in terms of research and the technical side of things, rather than plot. So we asked her a few questions which plagued us, and here is what she had to say....

1. How difficult was it adjusting to writing a stand a lone book than one in a series? What made you want to write a stand alone book instead of starting a new series? 
Not difficult, but it takes time and consideration. The way you pace and plot is different and you need to be very aware of your end point. I really loved the challenge and that was part of the reason I wanted to write Between the Lives. Also it was between books in my series and I felt, as a writer, that it would be good to work on something else and take a break from the series so that I could go back to it with a fresh perspective.

2. With writing this book plus having the Violet Eden books, did you ever confused key plot lines or events? Or even came up with an idea for one book but decided it was better suited for the other? 
No, there was never confusion. I was worried a little at first, that I might lose touch with Violet (the protagonist in the series), but realised very quickly that it wasn't going to be a problem. The books and worlds are very different so there has never been any crossover in story or scenes so I haven't struggled with that. Actually, it all went quite smoothly this time.

3. The Violet Eden books are about angels and deals with a lot of mythology. This one doesn’t seem to have any supernatural creatures in it. Did you have to do any kind of research?
It wasn't the same kind of research, that's for sure! The Violet Eden Chapters involves a lot of digging. Sometimes I'm not sure what I am looking for until I find it so that means I spend a lot of time looking at things I never use. For Between the Lives it was different. The things I researched were in direct relation to scenes or story concepts that I had already committed to so it took less time. That said, due to some of the scenes and confronting themes that run through this book, a loot of thought went into how exactly I would handle them and how much i would put out there. I spent a lot of time talking with doctors and other medical professionals to ensure I was comfortable with the content.

 Was it easier to write a story and not having to deal with a lot of mythology?
Yes and no. Yes, in the sense that I wasn't bound by it and the research was a little more straight forward. No, in the sense that mythology leads to a lot of great story threads and it can anchor a story very well for readers. Not having that was a new experience. I like both ways!

4. What interested you about someone living two separate lives, and how you if you were in that position would tackle a situation like that? How did you come up with this idea?
I like exploring concepts that can seem enticing or fun from a surface perspective but when you then dig deeper you can discover all the problems. This was one of those situations. The more I thought of it, the more I realised how awful it would be and that intrigued me from a story point of view. The idea itself developed from many small ideas all merging together rather than one lightning bolt moment. But the bottom line is that I wanted to see if it was possible to explore the darkness of suicide but from the point of view of someone who was desperate to live.

5. What are you currently working on, and is there anything you can share with us about it?
Right now I am working on EMPOWER, the final book in The Violet Eden Chapters. I can't share too much just yet since I have been sworn to secrecy! But I can say it will be the last book in the series and a lot of questions will be answered. Apart from that I have another book that is a little different again and will be part of a duology scheduled for next year. It's about one girl's fight against a private corporation who have introduced a new technology allowing people the ability to rate anyone they come into contact with and know if they are a potential match (friendship, lust or love) or if they are a negative (to just that person or to everyone they come in contact with). :-)

Above all else, though I try not to think about it, I know which life I prefer. And every night when I Cinderella myself from one life to the next a very small, but definite, piece of me dies. The hardest part is that nothing about my situation has ever changed. There is no loophole.
Until now, that is…
For as long as she can remember, Sabine has lived two lives. Every 24 hours she Shifts to her ′other′ life – a life where she is exactly the same, but absolutely everything else is different: different family, different friends, different social expectations. In one life she has a sister, in the other she does not. In one life she′s a straight-A student with the perfect boyfriend, in the other she′s considered a reckless delinquent. Nothing about her situation has ever changed, until the day when she discovers a glitch: the arm she breaks in one life is perfectly fine in the other.
With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments which bring her dangerously close to the life she′s always wanted… But just what – and who – is she really risking?
Goodreads Book Depository | Book World


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Review: The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

The Darkest Minds (The Darkest Minds) by Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: HarperCollins Australia
Publication date: December 11th, 2012
Number of pages: 488
Format: Paperback
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository | Book World (Aus)

When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something frightening enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that got her sent to Thurmond, a government ′rehabilitation camp′. Ruby might have survived the mysterious disease that killed most of America′s children, but she and the others had emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they could not control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now on the run, she is desperate to find East River, the only safe haven left for kids like her, and she joins a group of other runaways who have escaped their own camps. Liam, their brave leader, is falling for Ruby, but she can′t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.

When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all Liam. But there are also other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government.

Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice - and one that may mean giving up her only chance at having a life worth living.
From the very first instant I heard about this book I knew I wanted to read it. The world building that Alexandra Bracken has created in this novel is simply divine. It's a class act of just how brutal a post-apocalyptic world would be.
Tragic. Horrifying. Dark and real.

The moment Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday she knew something was different. She didn't understand how different until she was then shipped off to a government 'rehabilitation' camp. After being one of the few kids who survived the epidemic illness that killed off the majority of her classmates, Ruby knew there was a reason she was left alone.
Just when she begins to think she has made a friend in such a lonely world she and these new kids have found themselves in; Ruby does the impossible: she erases her best friend's memories without even realizing it.
Thurmond is split up into different colours depending on what sort of risk they think you are or might be in the future.
The treatment of these kids are so horrible. It becomes to the stage where you are not afraid of the adults --- they are afraid of YOU.

After managing to escape from Thurmond, Ruby finds herself on the run until she stumbles upon a group of other runaways just like herself, others who have each escaped from camps just like she did with Thurmond. They are on search for East River, which is rumored to be a safe place for kids like themselves.

Not only is this an action-packed story full of surprises at every end, it's also very character-building. You begin to understand what lies beneath the heart of Ruby. Why she doesn't want anyone close to her and how she will protect those she does care about to the very end.
She doesn't start out as a strong character.... but it's something that gradually grows into something so much bigger than an outright kickass heroine.
Ruby is someone I think we can relate to. A scared girl who was taken from her family at a young age and is trying to find her way in the world. A place for someone like her can belong.
It's also with the help of Liam, the leader of the runaways can she truly see what is worth living for. Slowly, the more she is around him... she begins to open up her heart in a magnificent way.

I definitely look forward to the second book in this series... especially with we are indeed left with a cliffhanger that makes you yearn for more.
I enjoyed this book so much, and I thank goodness I found this story in my life.

Review: 4.5/5

Monday, May 20, 2013

Review: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Saving June by Hannah Harrington
Publication Date: May 1, 2011
Publisher: Harlequin Teen Australia
Number of Pages: 336
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

‘If she’d waited less than two weeks, she’d be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn’t consider that.’

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one — so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going — California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down — again.

Harper's older sister June is the perfect child. It was a complete shock when June committed suicide two weeks before her high school graduation. Harper decides to honor June's only dream by taking her ashes to California. Enter mysterious bad boy Jake Tolan who has a mysterious connection to June.  He insists he has to go with Harper and  her best friend Laney and even offers to drive them. There's instant attraction between Jake and Harper, even though they have nothing in common.

This book is filled with music and music references. Usually it bugs me when a book is filled with detail music references, but it works for this book. Harper can tell Jake is hiding something from her about June. But he refuses to talk about it.

With many detours, this book is more about Harper grieving for her sister and coming to term. Even though I understand that's what the book is about, I wished it had a little bit more romance for Harper and Jake. I just couldn't get enough of them. And when they do finally get together, it's my favorite scene in the whole book.

Beware, the book is a tear jerker, and pretty much the whole book is sad. I hate that this was a stand a lone book. Which is why I usually don't read them. I only want more. I spent days after reading this day dreaming about Harper and Jake. The end of the book, it felt like there were room for more. Everything was resolve, but there were so much more room to write a few more chapters.The only thing I didn't like about the book was the aspect of religion. Harper has decided she doesn't believe, but she has a very big religious aunt. And it's the stereotypical christian who pushes their ideals on everyone and is close minded. Not to mention the bible thumpers at a protest they attend. I feel like the author was on the verge of bashing it. Or how at the end of the story Laney is pregnant but it's convenient taken care of. The plot made no sense in the book, only to show that Harper puts those she loves and care about above her own feelings and needs.And Jake's secret? I felt disappointed. I didn't see the big deal and I thought the connection between him and June would of been something more. Seemed like the whole plot was headed towards this huge climax and then there were nothing. I do wish we learned exactly why June decided to take her own life.

In a few words this book is AMAZING! Definitely one of my favorites. I encourage everyone to give it a shot.

Rating: 4.5/5

Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits #1) by Katie McGarry
Publication Date: July 31, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Number of Pages: 392
Format: Hardback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
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"I won't tell anyone, Echo. I promise." Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. "You didn't do that-did you? It was done to you?" No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

Oh not sure why I've been on a contemporary YA kick lately. But this came highly recommended by a friend. The book was ok, not the best.

Echo used to be one of the popular crowd. But one night changed everything, only if Echo could remember. All she knows that she woke up in the hospital with scars all over her, knowing her mother tried to kill her. For the past two years she's kept a low profile, but her dad and step mom won't tell her what really happened that night. But seeing a new therapist might just change all of that. Not to mention the moment Noah walked into her life nothing will be the same again.

The book is broken into Echo and Noah's POVs. I couldn't stand reading Noah's POV. Writing in a guy's POV in YA is tricky, and very rarely can you find someone who can nail it. I'm sorry I don't want to read about a guy staring at someone's ass or telling her to shake it. Not to mention the over use of calling Echo a siren. Not only did I hate his POVs, I didn't connect with Noah, and ended up not liking Noah. Once a golden boy his life was turned upside down when a fire killed his brothers. Thrown into foster care and labeled trouble, his life was never the same. Now he uses girls and smokes pot. Now at almost 18 he's determined to win custody over his two brothers when he graduate. Since he was label trouble and unstable after his first foster home, I'm curious though. Why was he separated originally from his brothers? I know it happens but to just separate one brother from the family? Not to mention his brothers has been with the same family from the beginning. This is when I really can't stand Noah. This family is wealthy. His brothers can have a life that Noah can't provide for them. Not to mention he still smoking pot. What sense does that mean? Not to mention he claims they are abusing his brothers and there is no proof of it, nor any reason for him to accuse them of it.

The book is pretty dark and deals with some heavy stuff. I think the book would of been a lot better if it was solely in Echo's POV. I loved the ending. Overall the book was pretty good. Just didn't interest me enough to continue with the series.

Rating: 3/5


Review: Forget You by Jennifer Echols

Forget You by Jennifer Echols
Publication Date: July 20th, 2010
Publisher: MTV Books
Number of Pages: 292
Format: Paperback
Buy: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
Add to Goodreads

There’s a lot Zoey would like to forget. Like how her father has knocked up his twenty-four-year old girlfriend. Like Zoey’s fear that the whole town will find out about her mom’s nervous breakdown. Like darkly handsome bad boy Doug taunting her at school. Feeling like her life is about to become a complete mess, Zoey fights back the only way she knows how, using her famous attention to detail to make sure she’s the perfect daughter, the perfect student, and the perfect girlfriend to ultra-popular football player Brandon.  But then Zoey is in a car crash, and the next day there’s one thing she can’t remember at all--the entire night before. Did she go parking with Brandon, like she planned? And if so, why does it seem like Brandon is avoiding her? And why is Doug--of all people-- suddenly acting as if something significant happened between the two of them? Zoey dimly remembers Doug pulling her from the wreck, but he keeps referring to what happened that night as if it was more, and it terrifies Zoey to admit how much is a blank to her. Controlled, meticulous Zoey is quickly losing her grip on the all-important details of her life--a life that seems strangely empty of Brandon, and strangely full of Doug.

This book sounded so good, but it came out on the disappointing side. I should of known better since it's published by MTV. I loved the plot, it had the potential to be amazing but the actual writing sucked.  I felt like I was reading something written by a 14 year old. Not to mention the use of old phrases such as parking and petting. Or even using the word ugly to describe how a person is talking, acting, etc. Even use the phrase blank is my dearest friend. Who really talks like that?

My impression from the description that Zoey and Brandon were a serious couple. I was thrown through a loop when Brandon turns out to be a player with a new girl every week, and started out as really good friends with Zoey. But after Zoey's mom has a breakdown, she decides to sleep with Brandon. And even though knowing how he is with girls, Zoey immediately thinks this means they are dating. Even though it's pretty clear he's not boyfriend material, and he never calls/texts her or even comes to see her.

Zoey's dad is an asshole. I couldn't believe someone would wrote a character that mean and harsh towards his own daughter. The author could of tone him down a notch or two. And the whole mystery...I knew exactly what happened that night. And what is the hang up with the deer? Zoey is in a head on accident because both cars swerve to miss a deer and all she can do is keep asking if the deer was ok. Really?! Does she realize how lucky they all are?

Now Doug. Oh Doug how I love you. He's the best thing about this book. The little twist at the end, I just wanted to slap Doug. But for majority of the book I just wanted to hug him.

Overall the book wasn't that bad. I just wished the book was done better.

Rating: 3/5


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Review: The Elite (The Selection #2) by Kiera Cass

The Elite (The Selection #2) by Kiera Cass
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication date: April 23rd, 2013
Number of pages: 323pgs
Format: Paperback
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository | Book World Australia

The hotly-anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestseller The Selection.

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Iléa.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

Everything begun with The Selection. America went from not wanting anything to do with it, to a point where she decided it was where she wanted to be.
The first book in this amazing trilogy introduced you to our beloved characters, plot and the world which Kiera created. It was the book in which I fell in love with this story. Not only for America & Maxon, but also because I knew there was trouble  rumbling deep down in the rebellion. Not everyone is happy....

In The Elite, America finds herself competing, in the real sense for the affections of Maxon. But along with the competition, America finds out some interesting things about her country, how it was formed and how some change has to come into affect at some point.
Not everyone is happy about the way things are done. The fact this competition is even around. And those people start to become more of a threat than they were before.

What I loved about this book was that it got a bit more darker than the previous. More attacks. More rebellion. It also had more romantic moments, with more than one boy. But I think America had made her choice very early on... and even though some things have challenged that decision., there is no doubt it sticks and will continue to do so throughout the final book.
I know there are many people who didn't like some of the things, actions that took place... but when I actually thought about the reasons.. I understood why they did the things they did, and I forgave them. They are still... after all young people trying to understand the laws of nature and find their place in the world.

While the actions of both America and Maxon could sometimes get on your nerves, in the long run.. I don't think those problems will cause any affect.

There are some characters like Aspen and Celeste who got on my nerves. Celeste, well.. nobody likes her and she has always been on my last nerve since she was introduced...but Aspen, I felt was in the background and really didn't serve any purpose apart from being in this so-called triangle. Although, toward the end.. I did feel a bit of a hint that he might be able to move on.. with someone else *cough*.

WHY does THE ONE have to be a year away? Since Kiera just announced it won't be released until May 6th, 2014! Ahh.. well, she better give me plenty of AM stuff to tease me with until it comes out.

Review: 5/5