23 February 2010

Dead is the New Black by Marlene Perez

Title: Dead is the New Black

Series: Does it have a name? I'll call it the Dead series
Author: Marlene Perez
Next Book: Dead is a State of Mind
Grade: B

Back cover:
Everyone in the Giordano family is psychic-except for Daisy. When her mother, who uses her power to solve crimes, enlists Daisy's older sister to investigate a teenage girl's mysterious death, Daisy feels utterly useless. But she takes matters into her own hands when she learns the victim has lots of company-teenage girls are being attacked all over town, including at Nightshade High School, where Daisy is a junior. And when she discovers a vampire may be the culprit, Daisy suspects head cheerleader Samantha Deveraux, who returned from summer break with a new "look". She looks a little... well, dead.
Is looking dead just another fashion trend for pretty, popular Samantha, or is there something more sinister afoot? Daisy will stop at nothing to find out-she even joins the cheerleading squad. And when a little sleuthing help from Ryan, an old friend (who may be turning into something more), Daisy not only reveals the identity of the vamp, she also discovers powers she never knew she had.

I liked this book and will be reading the next two books. There were some things that irked me, but we'll get to that later. Daisy is someone I can relate to. She's an average high school girl with normal high school girl problems. Boys, cheerleaders, sisters, etc. Ryan is a very lovable character, so lovable in fact I forgot he was a football player. (Not that I have anything against football players, mind you. But the ones I know aren't so lovable. Albeit, very entertaining to stare at instead of doing Geometry ;) It was a short read, only 200 pages or so, but its proof enough that size doesn't matter. It was a nice little story that I'll be re-reading soon. Now the things that irked me.
1) I didn't get the supernatural stuff. More specifically, who knew about supernatural things and who didn't. I mean there's a scene where Daisy, her sisters, and Ryan are talking about something and say something like "Hey maybe it's a supernatural being!" right in front of a "norm", as they call it, and no even blinks. So I'm like okay does everyone know about this stuff? But at the end Daisy, her family, Ryan and his dad come up with a cover story to these other people. So basically I guess what I'm saying is, I wish there had been an explanation about the supernaturals. At the end, I decided not everyone knew, but some people did.
2) Samantha. Daisy says repeatedly that she came back looking dead and maybe she's a vampire and suspects her of being one, and she brings a coffin to school, but it's never explained, which I guess makes sense if it's covered in the sequel. But still, it irked me.
3) Daisy is a little unobservant. Maybe I'm being a little mean, but come on. And I'm not giving anything away because it's in the summary. More than once things happen around her that suggest she has powers and she just explains it away. You'd think growing up in a psychic family you'd recognize powers and know that when you're family isn't around and things happen, it might be you. But no, she doesn't. She says it's a fluke or blames it on her sister or just ignores it. Which also irked me.
Like I said though, all in all, I liked the book. And I will read the other two and review them. Hopefully, we'll get an explanation for Samantha.

19 February 2010

Men of the Otherworld by Kelly Armstrong

(I just had to put both covers. Mmm-mm smexy ;)

Title: Men of the Otherworld
Series: Anthology from Women of the Otherworld, this book is about the men from the series, obviously. Includes Infusion, Savage, Ascension, and a new story.
Next book: Tales of the Otherworld
Grade: A+

As a curious child, Clayton didn't resist the bite-he asked for it. But surviving as a lone child werewolf was more than he could manage-until Jeremy came along and taught him how to straddle the human-werewolf worlds, gave him a home... and introduced him to the Pack. So begins this volume, featuring three of the most intriguing members of the American Pack-a hierarchical founding family where bloodlines mean everything, and each day presents a new, thrilling, and often deadly challenge. For as Clayton grows from a wild child to a clever teen who tests his beloved mentor at every turn, he must learn not only to control his animal instincts, but to navigate Pack politics-including showing his brutal arch nemesis, Malcolm, who the real Alpha is... (From Armstrong's website)

Infusion- Malcolm's story. In this story, we unfortunately learn more about Malcolm and Jeremy's conception. I liked this story, because of my extreme hatred of Malcolm, I didn't enjoy it very much. Although, it's awesome to finally know more about Jeremy's part.

Savage- Clayton's story. Ah, Clay. What can I say about dear old Clay? He is probably my favorite character after this story. If you've read Bitten, Stolen, Broken, and/or Frostbitten from Women of the Otherworld, then you'll know Clay is very stubborn, tough, strong, terrifying {Well, to mutts and non-werewolves anyway}. So, to read him as a child and teen destroys his previous reputation in my mind. There was this one scene, he's probably 7 or 8 and in werewolf form. And he's looking for more food so he sticks his head in a bag and it gets stuck. Now, if any of you have dogs you know what happens next. And it's soo cute! I laughed so hard when I read that part cause Obama came to mind when she gets her head stuck in a bag looking for food and her trying and failing miserably to get it off. Haha. Well, anyway, Clay's story is very long. In fact, it's most of the book. We see everything from Clay getting bit, his first day of school, that fateful day he dissected the Guinea Pig in Kindergarten, his first car, college, to those famed pictures (By the way, EW). And I loved every word of it.

Kitsunegari- Jermey's story. In this short story we learn about Jeremy's lineage and those symbols he's been drawing. He's confronted (full-frontal :) by someone like his Mother. I don't know if they were relatives or not though. He finally learns to truth about the other side of his family.

I love Kelley's writing and stories. Remember how I said in the Dark Guardian reviews how I like series to be fresh? This is what I'm talking about she does it. It's a different character with different problems or obstacles and different twists every time. Even when it's a character we've seen before we have a new story and I love that.
All in all, I love this book and can't wait for Tales from the Otherworld. Although, now I wish I had read all this shorts online for free, but hey, at least the proceeds are for charity. All the more reason for you to stop reading this and go buy a copy! If the hardcover price is too much for you, don't worry Mass Market Paperback will be released very soon. 23 February 2010

18 February 2010

Dark of the Moon by Rachel Hawthorne

Title: Dark of the Moon, book 3

Series: Dark Guardian
Author: Rachel Hawthorne
Previous book: Full Moon
Next book: Shadow of the Moon (March 23, 2010)
Grade: B+

(Warning you now, hard to review the third book in a series without spoiling something from the first two, so read at your own risk.)

Brittany has never had a guy declare her as his mate, so she faced her full moon alone. But she has always loved Connor from afar. When they are imprisoned by their enemies, they must depend on each other to survive. But Brittany harbors a dark and dangerous secret that could destroy them both.

If you've read my review for Full Moon (next post down), then you know how I feel about this series. I have the same comments about this book that I did for Full Moon. Although, Brittany is very different than Kayla or Lindsey personality wise, so I like it a little better than Full Moon. There were also different twists, problems, and obstacles for Brittany in this book to make it a little more refreshing. I don't really know what else to say about this book, so I'll wrap it up. Still looking forward to Shadow of the Moon and I'm still hoping the future books to be about one of the guys.

Sorry for the super short review and until next time,

17 February 2010

Full Moon by Rachel Hawthorne

Title: Full Moon, book 2

Series: Dark Guardian
Previous book: Moonlight
Next book: Dark of the Moon
Rating: B
(I just noticed I never posted the review for Moonlight book #1. I don't know why I didn't. There's mild spoilers, but the bigger ones will be in white so you have to hi-light them.)
Lindsey has always known that Connor was her destined mate, but this summer as her full moon approaches, she finds herself dreaming about darkly handsome and silent Rafe. When the others are captured by their enemies, she and Rafe must work together to save them. As they spend time together, Lindsey will come to realize that some dangers come from within as she is forced to face her true feelings for Connor and Rafe. One is a friend. The other is her true love. But listening to her heart could cost her everything.

Review: Webster says the plural of "series" is "same", but I, personally, don't think it makes sense to say, "I love same like this." Do you? So, I'll just pretend "series" is both singular and plural. Back to the review...
I love when series are written like this. The first book is about Joe Blow, the second book is about Little Johnny, whom we met in Joe's book, and the third book is about Archibald, whom we met in a previous book, and so on. (Like Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark- and Dream-Hunter series.) I think that writing a series like that keeps it fresh enough that the series can go on longer. Unfortunately, I don't think this applies to Dark Guardian. I do like this book and series, but here are my complaints. (Not that you're reading this, but sorry Ms. Hawthorne) First of all, the summary for this book gave a lot away. The love triangle, the twist, possibly the ending, depending on the person and how much they read into it. Second, Full Moon is a lot like Moonlight. Teenage girl is about to become a werewolf, but wait! There's a twist, the enemies from the first book are back, and kidnap you're friends (again). And oh no, you have to pick your true love before you change or you'll die! Gasp! Dun dun dun... (except in the first book Kayla wasn't aware she was a werewolf) Don't get me wrong. I like the series and I'm looking forward for the next books. I just hope after she gets through the girls we know, maybe we'll get a book or two about some of the guys who haven't mated yet. Or new werewolves from other places or something to keep it refreshing.
I hope I didn't turn you away from the series. Maybe I'm being overly critical and you'll absolutely love it.

Until next time...

16 February 2010

The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong

Title: The Awakening

Series: Darkest Powers book 2
Previous Book: The Summoning
Next Book: The Reckoning
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Grade: A+

If you had made me a few weeks ago, you probably would have describe me as an average teenage girl-someone normal. Now my life has changed forever and I'm as far away from normal as it gets. A living science experiment -not only can I see ghosts, but I was genetically altered by a sinister organization called the Edison Group. What does that mean? For starters, I'm a teenage necromancer hose powers are out o control; I raise the dead without even trying. Trust me, that is not a power you want to have. Ever
Now I'm running for my life with three of my supernatural friends-a charming sorcerer, a cynical werewolf, and a disgruntled witch-and we have to find someone who can help us before the Edison Group fins us first. Or die trying.

My review:
As always with books not first in a series, I will try not to spoil anything too big.
Ok so whoa. This book was amazing! A perfect sequel for The Summoning, The Awakening answers some of the questions we asked during Summoning, and raises some more {and some dead people} at the same time. We find out what happened to Liz, as well as some other kids from Lyle House that we've haven't met yet. We also find out which little kiddie betrayed Chloe, Simon, and Derek in the first book, and it's not who you expect. And in true Kelley Armstrong fashion, we're left with a huge "OMG WHAAAAT?!" moment, and cliffhanger. But this time the OMG moment was a little more subtle. I almost didn't catch it. (If you've read the book and know what I'm talking about leave a comment :) We find out more about Tori and her family, and Derek gets closer to his first complete Change. Also, something weird is going on with Chloe's necklace.

I finished this book without one complaint about writing or story line. Don't you just love books like that? I absolutely cannot wait for The Reckoning (April 6th is so far away!) I could praise Kelley Armstrong's writing all day, but unfortunately, I have a house to clean, bags to pack, and books to read. So go read her for yourself.