Sunday, June 22, 2014
Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2)
Scarlet is the second novel in Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles series. Like it's predecessor, it is a fairy tale retelling, though not just of CInderella like Cinder. The novel is split between the perspectives of Cinder and Scarlet. This shift in PoV allows readers to be introduced to Scarlet, a character not in the first book, and also allows them to follow Cinder and glimpse into the head of Prince Kai. Meyer's shifts in narration are seamless and do not interrupt the flow of the story, or cause any confusion. This is such a relief because there have been a number of books I have read that have shifts such as these but the transitions are not smooth, and it's not always clear who is speaking: this was nit a problem in Scarlet.
Already being a fan of the characters introduced in the first novel, I fell in love with the new ones we meet. Scarlet is tough and bad-ass. She's a strong character, and one that is also easy to like and admire. Wolf is a difficult character at times. Being Lunar, it brings up the issue of trust: Lunars are the enemy, so how can he be trusted? Scarlet and Wolf made a good pair, I enjoyed their flirtatious dialogue and the romantic tension surrounding them. There were many plot twists involving these two that I did not see coming at all, which was a huge plus for me because I found parts of the first book predictable; Scarlet kept me on my feet.
While I did enjoy Scarlet's tale, for some reason I found myself wishing the book was more about Cinder, like the first book. I slightly preferred her story to Scarlet's, but I am not complaining; both stories were essential components of this novel. The book would not be the same if it was just told from Cinder's perspective.
Cinder is pretty kick-ass in this novel. She breaks out of prison, with some help. She's finally starting to accept who, and what, she is. She's learning how to use her Lunar powers, though she feels guilty when having to use them on people.
I have read many reviews of this book, and the majority of people tend to say this book was better than the first. I disagree however, but if you were to ask me specifically why I feel this way, I cannot really give an answer. Scarlet had more action, more characters to love and loathe, was less predictable, yet I find myself leaning towards the first book as my current favorite.
I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys fairy tale retellings, aliens, action, adventure; it has a little of everything. If you have not read Cinder yet, check out my review for it and see if it sounds like something for you. This series is easily becoming one of my favorites.
(Review for Cress, the third novel in the Lunar Chronicles series to be up shortly)
Posted by Danielle at 1:31 PM
Friday, June 20, 2014
Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
Why? Why did I wait so long to read this book? The number of times I saw this book at the library, picked it up and contemplated checking it out only to put it back on the shelf and walk away is ridiculous. It is strange too because I knew this was a fairy tale retelling, which I love, so why I brushed off this book so many times is beyond me. However, I am so glad I finally decided to read it.
Marissa Meyer took a well-known fairy tale and threw in a surprising twist: Cinder, the protagonist, is a cyborg living in a dystopian world. Cyborgs are not considered humans to the other people around them who do not have artificial limbs and technology embedded in their brains. It is easy to see how her life matches that of Cinderella, and really, Cinder...Cinderella...if that did not indicate to readers what fairy tale this story is based on, I would be concerned.
Cinder is clever and humorous, it was impossible not to like her. Her stepmother is the epitome of evil, and her one stepsister is pretty awful too, though thankfully Peony seemed to like Cinder. Cinder is also strong and determined, which is a relief since there have been way too many books like this whose main character is whiny and irritating.
Also to my relief, there was no insta-love! Woo! I had no problems with Kai, he is everything a prince should be. While the plot was somewhat predictable, I had so much fun reading the book that it did not bother me as much as predictability normally would have.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Aliens. Yep, there are aliens. They are actually called "Luna", and the Lunar Queen is a piece of work. They live on the moon, in case that was not quite obvious. I see them as aliens, others may not. But they are not from Earth, and have special abilities, so in my eyes, they are aliens. Which is a huge plus since I like aliens.
Overall, the writing of this book was fantastic, yet slightly prediactable as I mentioned before. However, the story itself is amazing and fun. Cinder is a book I would reccommend to pretty much anyone. But be warned, you might want to pick up both the first book and the second, Scarlet, if you decide to try this series. Cinder leaves readers with a cliffhanger.
(Reviews for the second book, Scarlet, and the third, Cress, coming soon)
Posted by Danielle at 2:56 PM
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
New Lives, New Loves (Nancy Drew: On Campus #1)
Three stars might be a little too generous for this book. In middle school, I stumbled across the original Nancy Drew series and fell in love. I now own so many Nancy Drew books it's ridiculous. And even at the age of 20, I still continue to read them for fun. I knew going into this series that it would be a lot different from the Nancy Drew books I was accustomed to.
In this first book of the Nancy Drew on Campus series, we are introduced once again to one of my favorite heroines, Nancy Drew, and her two best friends Bess and George. All three girls are now attending Wilder University. Nancy Drew is finally in college, sounds pretty neat right? Wrong.
College Nancy is different. She is adjusting to college life and trying to make a new life for herself, meaning, she wants to get away from her mystery solving days. Unfortunately for her, mystery and trouble tends to follow her wherever she goes.
My problem with this book was Nancy's treatment towards Ned, who goes to Emerson University. They are still together but she can't even find the time of day to call him when she says she will. And then there's the flirting and interest in other guys she meets on campus.
Overall, this book was okay. I do not expect the series to get much better but I will continue to read all the books. I love Nancy Drew and got the whole series pretty cheap online, plus, they are fun, quick reads so what's the harm?
Posted by Danielle at 3:52 PM
Friday, June 13, 2014
Dark Wine (The Two Vampires #1)
by M.D. Bowden (Goodreads Author)
This book was tolerable, to say the least, for the first half, then it just got on my nerves. I had just wanted to finish it and forget I ever laid eyes on its beautiful, deceiving cover...this is why you don't judge a book by its cover.
Basically, Sarah and Jo are a married couple who are kind of on rocky terms at the moment, Jo goes missing, Sarah meets/flirts/sleeps with Daniel who is a vampire helping Sarah find Jo.
The whole cheating on her husband thing while he was missing and possibly dead just really killed it for me. The writing was not horrible, but it felt rushed. I did not connect with any of the characters, nor did I particularly like any of them. If I had to choose, I would have to pick the bad guy, Sebastian because he was not as infuriating as Sarah. Everyone in this story was just a pretty horrible person.
I feel bad writing so negatively about a book so I will make this review end here, but this is my honest opinion. Maybe it was not as bad as I thought, maybe it is just I have finally drifted away from the world of vampires. I am not going to tell anyone not to read this book because other readers have absolutely loved it, sadly, this just was not the book for me.
Posted by Danielle at 3:11 PM