Sunday, November 23, 2014

Rabbit Run by John Updike

Originally Released: 1960
Series: Rabbit Angstrom, Book One
Published by: Random House
Page Amount: 325 pages, US Paperback
Rabbit, Run is the book that established John Updike as one of the major American novelists of his—or any other—generation. Its hero is Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, a onetime high-school basketball star who on an impulse deserts his wife and son. He is twenty-six years old, a man-child caught in a struggle between instinct and thought, self and society, sexual gratification and family duty—even, in a sense, human hard-heartedness and divine Grace. Though his flight from home traces a zigzag of evasion, he holds to the faith that he is on the right path, an invisible line toward his own salvation as straight as a ruler’s edge.
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I am not entirely sure how I feel about this book. It was suggested to me by my Lit/Creative Writing teacher. It's definitely not something I would normally read, but as a writer I need to read a multitude of styles and this book has been eye-opening for me. It isn't YA, it isn't paranormal, it isn't anything but just plain old fiction. There is hardly any dialogue, you aren't weighed down by serious plot development every ten pages or weighty sentences, it is just raw and real and there is something beautiful about it.

I do not recommend this for people who strictly only want to read YA style or paranormal. But to everyone else... everyone who wants to read as much as they can or learn a great way to write. This book is for you. It teaches you to slow down and take a few minutes. I have learned so much from this book writing-wise. The content is intense, and it is definitely not for the younger ones reading this, but I think this is a book that every reader should at least pick up. It has some incredibly slow moments, but that is life and life is what this book is trying to capture. The raw beautiful pain of life.

First Line:
"Boys are playing basketball around a telephone pole with a backboard bolted to it."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Originally Released: June 14th, 2011
Series: Fallen, Book Three
Published by: Delacorte Press
Page Amount: 420 pages, US Hardback
Author's Website.
‘Every single lifetime, I'll choose you. Just as you have chosen me. Forever.’

Luce would die for Daniel. And she has. Over and over again. Throughout time, Luce and Daniel have found each other, only to be painfully torn apart: Luce dead, Daniel left broken and alone. But perhaps it doesn’t need to be that way . . . Luce is certain that something – or someone – in a past life can help her in her present one. So she begins the most important journey of this lifetime . . . going back eternities to witness firsthand her romances with Daniel . . . and finally unlock the key to making their love last.
Cam and the legions of angels and Outcasts are desperate to catch Luce, but none are as frantic as Daniel. He chases Luce through their shared pasts, terrified of what might happen if she rewrites history. Because their romance for the ages could go up in flames . . . forever.
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Finally, I have tackled another book in the Fallen series! I feel like this review is going to be really unfair in a lot of ways. One: I was expecting to dread it. I had heard this was one of the worst ones in the series, and therefore I went in with really horrible expectations. Like real bad. Which made this book, real good. It completely surprised me and surpassed what I was expecting in a big way, but I wasn't expecting much to begin with. Two: It has been a huge time span from when I've read this book, to when I've read the second and even bigger from when I read the third. Too much time has passed for me to compare it to its brothers and sisters in series. Three: I haven't read anything like this series lately, so it was right up my alley. Meaning, cheesy original YA love and paranormal romance, before it become cliche so people started putting twists on it. It is easy to remember why I love YA so much when I read books like this one.

That being said, this book did have a serious downfall for me. I can't say much because it is pretty much a gigantic spoiler, but what you see is what you get with this book. It is pretty repetitive, and while it is always sort of interesting, it gets to be a little much.

All in all, there is just something about this series I can't keep myself away from. But to me, it should definitely be under every book blogger and booktuber's belt.

First Line:
"A shot rang out."

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Angelfall by Susan Ee

Originally Released: August 28th, 2012
Series: Penryn & the End of Days, Book One
Published by: Amazon
Page Amount: 283 pages, US paperback
Author's Website.
It's been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back.

Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.

Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.

Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels' stronghold in San Francisco where she'll risk everything to rescue her sister and he'll put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again.
Information from

I have heard a lot of good things about this book. And I will admit, it is by far my favorite angel book that I have ever read. Ever. Seriously, thank goodness for no more of that 'I've fallen for no real reason other than I knew I loved this girl on first sight' garbage. This book had serious angel substance to it, though I wish it would have got a lot more detailed in the angel stuff. But, it definitely left a lot of room for some world-building and angel building in the rest of the series.

My biggest problem with this book was Penryn's (our protagonist) age. She is supposed to be seventeen, but whether it was poor writing/description or just some crazy thing in my head, I kept picturing her as a 12-13 year-old girl. Her train of thought and perspective was just not mature enough to make me believe it was a 17-year-old until I started forcing myself to in the end. That being said, a lot of what happens is a little more disturbing if you read it from the perspective of a kid rather than an older teenager. Once I started forcing myself to remember that she was older it picked up a bit and was a little less uncomfortable.

This book definitely faltered in some ways, but it always redeemed itself in others. Where there was a bit of poor plot development, the plot was still too interesting to turn away from. Where the writing was a little off, the character's made you fall for them in such a confusing way you had to ignore it.

All in all, this feels like someone's first book (it is unknown to me if it is or isn't), but it feels like a really favorable book series and like Ee might be meant to write some really wonderful stuff.

First Line:
"Ironically, since the attacks, the sunsets have been glorious."

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Originally Released: May 24th, 2012
Published by: Weidenfield & Nicolson
Page Amount: 422 pages, US Paperback
Author's Website.
On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?
Information from

This book was definitely another doozy. Seriously, it has a ton of pages and the font is miniscule. But I would not have had it any other way. If any chapter was taken out of this book, I would have felt cheated. It was so good, and I haven't felt this confused in such a long time. I had no idea what was coming... any of the time.

The book switched perspectives from what is going on with possible killer husband Nick, and the diary of the suddenly missing wife Amy. Every time one of their perspectives would end, I would be so disappointed and then immediately immersed into the new perspective. One time, I'll admit I skipped one chapter just to read the first line of the next. Big mistake. Every chapter almost was left on a HUGE cliffhanger and every chapter revealed something insane. The creativity and planning this book must have taken rivals only the character's wit and lies. I seriously could not put this down once I started. Normally when I read a book I will try to fit it in any time. But I didn't pick this book up until the end of the day every day, because I knew I would need at least an hour to convince myself to put it down.

I've been trying to branch out into more adult books, and this was the segue I needed to build enough confidence in adult to bounce between it and my love for YA.

I don't want to say much more about this book, because I think the more blind you are when you go in the better. Just seriously, pick it up. There's a reason it is so popular right now.

First Line:

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Through the Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter

Originally Released: September 24th, 2013
Series: White Rabbit Chronicles, Book Two
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Page Amount: 480 pages, US Hardback
Author's Website.
Zombies stalk the night. Forget blood and brains. These monsters hunger for human souls. Sadly, they've got mine...
Alice Bell has lost so much. Family. Friends. A home. She thought she had nothing else to give. She was wrong.
After a new zombie attack, strange things begin to happen to her. Mirrors come to life, and the whispers of the dead assault her ears. But the worst? A terrible darkness blooms inside her, urging her to do very wicked things.
She's never needed her team of zombie slayers more, but ultra bad-boy Cole Holland, the leader and her boyfriend, suddenly withdraws from her...from everyone. Now, with her best friend Kat at her side, Ali must kill the zombies, uncover Cole's secret and learn to fight the darkness.
But the clock is ticking...and if she fails at a single task, they're all doomed.
Information from

Guys, I really love this series. This installment started at the great level the first one left off on, and just kept getting better. Showalter is going to have to pull out some seriously amazing tricks to make the third and final book as good as the first two.

Ali has got to be one of my favorite female characters of the year. She doesn't take crap, she kicks some serious butt, and lets face it, that vulnerable side even makes me love her (Cole doesn't stand a chance!). But am I the only one who notices how they always talk about how awesome she is at zombie fighting, but she usually ends up getting saved by one of her friends at least once EVERY battle? Is this going to have one of those HP 'can't do it without your friends' morals? I hope so! Because every character in this book kicks butt. Kat is amazing, Cole is swoon-worthy and I'm in love with Gavin. And every character in this book for that matter.

I also love this take on zombies. The plot is so fantastic and creative, I never would have thought of something this amazing. They aren't your run of the mill zombies, and it makes for such an dynamic story. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE pick up this book series if you haven't already. It's one of my favorites.

First Line:
"Where should I begin?"

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Deadly Class by Rick Remender

Originally Released: January 22nd, 2014
Series: Deadly Class, Volume One
Published by: Image Comics
Page Amount: 32 pages, Graphic Novel
Author's Website.
It’s 1987. Marcus Lopez hates school. His grades suck. He has no money. The jocks are hassling his friends. He can’t focus in class, thanks to his mind constantly drifting to the stunning girl in the front row and the Dag Nasty show he has tickets to. But the jocks are the children of Joseph Stalin’s top assassin, the teachers are members of an ancient league of assassins, the class he’s failing is “Dismemberment 101,” and his crush, a member of the most notorious crime syndicate in Japan, has a double-digit body count.

Welcome to the most brutal high school on Earth, where the world’s top crime families send the next generation of assassins to be trained. Murder is an art. Killing is a craft. At King’s Dominion High School for the Deadly Arts, the dagger in your back isn’t always metaphorical, nor is your fellow classmates’ poison.
Information from

WARNING: This graphic novel contains some SERIOUS violence, sexual situations, drugs and foul language. NOT a young adult read.

I've really been looking forward to reading this graphic novel since I ordered it on Amazon a few weeks ago. The cover is absolutely fantastic, and I have not read many graphic novels before, so I wanted something with kind of an easy concept to get me into the genre again.

This didn't disappoint. I found it eerie, well written for its genre, and pretty jaw-dropping. The language was a bit much for me (did it REALLY need so many f-bombs?) but I could look past it because the characters were from some seriously troubled pasts and in some messed up situations. I felt like it was lacking a little bit of plot development. I wanted to see some back story, and also more of the assassin school. I would not have minded a longer volume for more quality plot. But, I'm kind of amateur in this stuff.

The artwork was stunning. The cover is still my favorite, but I gotta say inside does not disappoint. I didn't struggle finding my way into the art and the words which was refreshing. I usually find myself stumbling into a rhythm, but this read/artwork was a smooth transition from novels.

All in all, this was a great graphic novel for me to read. I plan on continuing on in the adventure as soon as I am able.

First Line:
"A positive attitude is essential to surviving out here."

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan

Originally Released: October 12th, 2010
Series: Heroes of Olympus, Book One
Published by: Disney Hyperion
Page Amount: 553 pages, US Hardback
Author's Website.
Jason has a problem. He doesn’t remember anything before waking up in a bus full of kids on a field trip. Apparently he has a girlfriend named Piper and a best friend named Leo. They’re all students at a boarding school for “bad kids.” What did Jason do to end up here? And where is here, exactly?

Piper has a secret. Her father has been missing for three days, ever since she had that terrifying nightmare. Piper doesn’t understand her dream, or why her boyfriend suddenly doesn’t recognize her. When a freak storm hits, unleashing strange creatures and whisking her, Jason, and Leo away to someplace called Camp Half-Blood, she has a feeling she’s going to find out.

Leo has a way with tools. When he sees his cabin at Camp Half-Blood, filled with power tools and machine parts, he feels right at home. But there’s weird stuff, too—like the curse everyone keeps talking about. Weirdest of all, his bunkmates insist that each of them—including Leo—is related to a god.
Information from

Okay, I've gotta admit, I wasn't pumped about reading this book. I was terrified it would be a bad Percy Jackson remake, and was only out to get fans coins instead of provide them with more wonderful story. In some ways, I was right, it has so many parallels to Percy Jackson (not including the fact that this begins a few months after the Titan War ends) that even though I sped read through the whole Percy series and don't recall a lot of it, I could see them. But it was actually really great either way, and it felt almost like it was done on purpose.

I loved all the characters in this book and keeping in mind that this is actually for younger YA and middle grades, this book is absolutely perfect. It has action, adventure, young first love, prophecies and everything you could ask for! It even teaches a lot about mythology, which happens to be one of my favorite subjects.

Yep, I already have the next four in my Amazon wishlist. I can't see me not devouring the rest of the series soon, I have to figure out how it ends. And btw, this book ends on such a cliffhanger, so have the second book handy!

First Line:
"Even before he got electrocuted, Jason was having a rotten day."
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