Thursday, October 9, 2014

Blog Tour: Burying Water by K.A. Tucker | Review + Excerpt + Giveaway

Blog Tour: Burying Water by K.A. Tucker | Review + Excerpt + Giveaway

Blog Tour: Burying Water by K.A. Tucker | Review + Excerpt + GiveawayBurying Water by K.A. Tucker
Series: Burying Water #1
Published by Atria on October 7, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 368
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
4 Stars

Left for dead in the fields of rural Oregon, a young woman defies all odds and survives—but she awakens with no idea who she is, or what happened to her. Refusing to answer to “Jane Doe” for another day, the woman renames herself “Water” for the tiny, hidden marking on her body—the only clue to her past. Taken in by old Ginny Fitzgerald, a crotchety but kind lady living on a nearby horse farm, Water slowly begins building a new life. But as she attempts to piece together the fleeting slivers of her memory, more questions emerge: Who is the next-door neighbor, quietly toiling under the hood of his Barracuda? Why won’t Ginny let him step foot on her property? And why does Water feel she recognizes him?

Twenty-four-year-old Jesse Welles doesn’t know how long it will be before Water gets her memory back. For her sake, Jesse hopes the answer is never. He knows that she’ll stay so much safer—and happier—that way. And that’s why, as hard as it is, he needs to keep his distance. Because getting too close could flood her with realities better left buried.

The trouble is, water always seems to find its way to the surface.

picadillyblueK.A. Tucker’s newest novel is full of mystery, suspense, drama, romance, and betrayal.  Readers will have an impossible time putting this one down once they get started.  It has some similarities to the style of her previous series, Ten Tiny Breaths, but it really does stand out.

Alex (Water) has no memory of her life.  She doesn’t even know her own name.  And don’t worry, it’s not a spoiler for readers to know who she really is.  You find that out within the first chapter or two.  However, readers don’t find out what happened to Alex or why for quite some time.  The story is told in chapters that alternate between the past and present as well as between the points-of-view of Alex and Jesse.  It’s the perfect way to tell this story although sometimes I felt like I would have learned more if Alex had been telling parts of the story rather than Jesse.  You definitely only get one perspective of every situation which makes things very interesting but also very one-sided.

Alex (Water) is not hard to like and sympathize with, even once you find out some of the things she’s done in the past.  Let me go ahead and say this: I don’t condone cheating but I had no issues with it in this book.  You’ll see why pretty quickly.  Alex is lost and confused for so long.  She knows absolutely nothing about her life and it’s hard to even imagine what that is like.  No one is looking for her and without the Welles family, she’d have no one and no place to go.  However, some good people do come into her life and they help her through her problems.  One of them is crotchety old lady Ginny Fitzgerald.  Ginny’s story broke my heart but I loved her.  She was grouchy and mean but she’s one of those people you just can’t help but come to like.  Another person that helped Alex was Jesse.  Jesse was a good guy, through and through.  He always had Alex’s best interests at heart, no matter what he did.  It also didn’t hurt that he was described as being extremely sexy and a gear head.  Nothing wrong with that!

The story is fast-paced and heart-pounding.  Even though you know what’s going to happen, it’s hard to read the events leading up to it without getting terrified for Alex and Jesse.  There are some high stakes in their relationship and those high stakes only made their relationship that much more interesting to me.  While the story does seem a bit unbelievable at times, it really comes together perfectly at the end and left me with a smile on my face.

Overall, Burying Water is another fabulous new adult novel from K.A. Tucker.  It’s by far one of the best new adult books I’ve read and I look forward to reading the next book in this series.

P.S. I’m not a fan of the name Water.  I just could not get used to it.  It seemed a bit hippy like to me.

What others are saying about Burying Water:

Itching For Books’ review: “Burying Water has an intriguing plot, great writing, and interesting characters (even the side ones offered something significant), but I feel like there was something missing for me.”

Love Between The Sheets’ review: “Between the storyline and the characters, Ms. Tucker painted a vivid picture that resulted in an intimate, intense, and intriguing tale of what one might do if given the chance to do it all over again, and ultimately what might be lost along the way.”

Four Brits and a Book’s review: “Page after page, chapter after chapter, I was lapping up the words.”

Excerpt

Burying Water – by K.A. Tucker

Jane Doe

Now

 

Kind fingers probe something unseen on my scalp and then, with the sound of the door clicking shut, the doctor asks, “How about we start with the basic questions. Can you please give me your name?”

I open my mouth to answer. It’s such a simple question. Everyone has a name. I have a name. And yet . . . “I don’t . . . I don’t know,” I stammer. How do I not know what my name is? I’m sure it’s the same name I’ve had all my life.

My life.

What do I remember about my life? Shouldn’t something about it be registering?

A wave of panic surges through me and the EKG’s telltale beep increases its cadence. Why can’t I seem to recall a single scrap of my life?

Not a face, not a name, not a childhood pet.

Nothing.

Dr. Alwood stops what she’s doing to meet my gaze. “You’ve had a significant head injury. Just try to relax.” Her words come slow and steady. “I’ll tell you what I know. Maybe that will jog your memory. Okay? Just take a few breaths first.” She’s quick to add, “Not too deep.”

I do as instructed, watching my chest lift and fall beneath my blue-and-white checkered gown, cringing with a sharp twinge of pain on my right side with each inhale. Finally, that incessant beeping begins to slow.

I turn my attention back to her. Waiting.

“You were found in the parking lot of an abandoned building nine days ago,” Dr. Alwood begins.

I’ve been here for nine days?

“You were brought into the emergency room by ambulance with extensive, life-threatening trauma to your body. Your injuries were consistent with a physical assault. You had several fractures—to your ribs, your left leg, your right arm, your skull. Your right lung collapsed. You required surgery for a hematoma, a ruptured spleen, and lacerations to . . .” Her calm voice drifts off into obscurity as she recites a laundry list of brutality that can’t possibly have my name at the top of it. “It will take some time to recover from all of these injuries. Do you feel any tightness in your chest now, when you inhale?”

I swallow the rising lump in my throat, not sure how to answer. I’m certainly having difficulty breathing, but I think it has more to do with panic than anything else.

“No,” I finally offer. “I think I’m okay.”

“Good.” She gingerly peels back pieces of gauze from my face—some over the bridge of my nose and another piece running along the right side of my face, from my temple all the way down to my chin. By the slight nod of approval, I’m guessing she’s happy with whatever is beneath. “And how is the air flow through your nose? Any stuffiness?”

I test my nostrils out. “A little.”

She stops her inspection to scribble something on the chart that’s sitting on the side table. “You were very fortunate that Dr. Gonzalez was in Bend on a ski trip. He’s one of the leading plastic surgeons in the country and a very good friend of mine. When I saw you come in, I called him right away. He offered us his skill, pro bono.”

A part of me knows that I should be concerned that I needed a plastic surgeon for my face, and yet I’m more concerned with the fact that I can’t even imagine what that face looks like.

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About the author:

Born in small-town Ontario, K.A. Tucker published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She is a voracious reader, and currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.

 

Website ** Twitter ** Facebook ** Novel Goodreads ** Author Goodreads ** YouTube ** Pinterest ** Instagram

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Dearest Clementine (Dearest #1) by Lex Martin | Review

Dearest Clementine (Dearest #1) by Lex Martin | ReviewDearest Clementine by Lex Martin
Series: Dearest #1
on May 25, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 232
Format: ebook
Source: Bought
Buy on Amazon
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2 Stars

Twenty-year-old Clementine Avery doesn't mind being called bitchy and closed off. It's safe, and after being burned by her high school sweetheart and stalked by a professor her freshman year of college, safe sounds pretty damn good.

Her number one rule for survival? No dating. That is until she accidentally signs up for a romance writing class and needs material for her latest assignment. Sexy RA Gavin Murphy is more than happy to play the part of book boyfriend to help Clem find some inspiration, even if that means making out...in the name of research, of course.

As Gavin and Clem grow closer, they get entangled in the mystery surrounding a missing Boston University student, and Clem unwittingly becomes a possible target. Gavin tries to show Clem she can handle falling in love again, but she knows she has to be careful because her heart’s at stake…and maybe even her life.

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When I saw Dearest Clementine on sale on Amazon, I decided to give it a shot.  It was free, what could it hurt?  Well, I realized there was a good reason it was free: it’d be a complete waste of money to actually pay for it.

Clementine was a grade A bitch.  She was only nice to a handful of people and those people were her close friends.  Hell, one of her roommates was even scared of her.  When she first meets Gavin she’s not even willing to tell him her name and he’s nothing but nice.  Clementine really didn’t have much personality either.  It seemed all she had going for her was her looks.

Speaking of looks, the author spends way too much time talking about Clementine’s.  It’s all about how gorgeous Clem is, how skinny, how lightweight, etc.  We get it, she’s pretty!  No need to mention it on every page.

There was also way too much going on, plotwise.  There was this whole storyline with Clementine’s professor, another storyline about a missing girl, another storyline about Clementine being a YA writer but nobody knows it, another storyline involving Clementine’s cheating ex, etc.  Holy crap!  The sad part was that the book still wasn’t very gripping even with all that going on.

As for the love interest (or three) I didn’t mind him but I didn’t particularly like him either.  He was very secretive and his secrets ended up being really stupid.  If he had just talked to Clementine they would have had no drama in their relationship.  Of course he couldn’t do that and Clementine freaked out because she had trust issues.  Those trust issues revolved around her ex, Daren, who I actually maybe liked more than Gavin.  And that is saying something.  Sure he messed up but he apologized and seemed like a really sweet guy.

Overall, Dearest Clementine is one new adult novel that I cannot recommend.  This is one series that I will not be continuing.

What others are saying about Dearest Clementine:

Aesta’s Book Blog’s review: “Overall, this was a really sweet read with a little bit of humor, fun, drama, and mystery.”

Insightful Minds Reviews’ review: “All in all, Dearest Clementine earns 4 stars from me.”

Lite-Rate-Ture’s review: “You have to read Lex Martin’s Dearest Clementine, she has a beautiful writing style and DEAREST CLEMENTINE is one of a kind.”

Monday, June 16, 2014

Vivian Divine Is Dead by Lauren Sabel | Review

Vivian Divine Is Dead by Lauren Sabel | ReviewVivian Divine Is Dead by Lauren Sabel
Published by Harper Teen on June 3, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 288
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
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4 Stars

When a death threat arrives with teen celebrity Vivian Divine's fan mail, Vivian has no choice but to go on the run to Mexico. She soon discovers, though, that her Oscar-nominated performance killing villains on-screen did nothing to prepare her for escaping a madman in real life. Some people say he's a hero, others tremble in his presence, but one thing is clear: he won't stop until Vivian is in his grasp. Why didn't she pay more attention during those judo lessons for her role in Zombie Killer?

Vivian finds an ally in the mysterious and charming Nick. He is everything Hollywood boys are not-genuine, kind, and determined to see Vivian for who she really is. But even he seems like he can't be trusted-what could he be hiding?

Beat up, hungry, and more confused than ever about who she's running from, Vivian is living in a real-life blockbuster horror flick. But there's no option to yell "cut" like there is on set....

picadillyblueVivian Divine is Dead is a unique addition to the young adult contemporary suspense genre. Lauren Sabel crafted a very twisted mystery that left me guessing until the very end. It’s not often that I’m unable to figure things out but that was definitely the case with this one.

Vivian Divine is a spoiled rotten movie star. She was really hard to like at first. Her mom was murdered and her dad pretty much gave up on life after that but that didn’t give her the right to be the bitch that she was. She expected people to wait on her and she couldn’t fend for herself to save her life. She talked down to people and she thought very highly of herself. She was like that for most of the book and I thought that might be the one thing that would make me hate Vivian Divine is Dead but that actually wasn’t the case. She did develop as a character and I was already hooked on the story so I never once thought about giving up on this one.

Nicholas, Marcos, Scars, Isabel, and pretty much all the rest of the secondary characters were a little flat. Nicholas was this handsome stranger who Vivian met on the bus to Mexico. Since he spoke English, Vivian decided to rely on him to help keep her safe. He honestly didn’t have much going on other than being handsome. There was a little back-story to him but not enough to really get me interested in knowing more about him. He wasn’t well-developed and while I liked him well enough, I wasn’t invested in his relationship with Vivian. Marcos and Scars were worse than Nicholas. I had no interest in them and found them to be more of an annoyance than anything else. Scars had no personality and was really just known for being a big bad ass with scars. He was not really all that creepy if you ask me. Marcos was a little better developed but still lacking. As for Isabel, she was the only one I really cared for. She had more back-story than any of them and was the most developed of them all.

The story was the truly interesting part of the book. Vivian Divine goes on the run after receiving a death threat. Seems like a simple plot but there was a lot more going on than I ever expected. Not once was I able to guess who was behind the death threat or why. There was also a mystery surrounding Vivian’s mom and what exactly happened to her. I had no clue how Lauren Sabel was going to tie everything together in the end but she managed it wonderfully. Admittedly, the story was a little all over the place at times but it was still entertaining.

Overall, Vivian Divine is Dead is a great debut from Lauren Sabel and I will plan to check out more from her in the future. Hopefully that includes a sequel to Vivian Divine is Dead since I could use a little more from these characters!

What others are saying about Vivian Divine is Dead:

Book.Blog.Bake’s review: “In the end, I think, what happened in Vivian Divine is Dead is a lack of development both of the plot and the characters.”

The Social Potato’s review: “Vivian Divine is Dead is so bad that it’s almost comical.”

Turning Pages’ review: “Vivian Divine is Dead is unlike any book that I’ve read this year.”

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout | Review

Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout | ReviewDon't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Published by Disney Hyperion on April 15, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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4 Stars

Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. 

Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash.

But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

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I continue to be impressed with Jennifer L. Armentrout’s books.  Whether she’s writing young adult or new adult, paranormal or contemporary, it’s always fabulous.  Don’t Look Back is no exception.

Contemporary suspense is one of my favorite genres.  However, it’s sometimes hard to impress me when it comes to these types of stories because I can be overly critical.  Don’t Look Back is a good addition to the genre but not one of the best out there.  Sure parts of the mystery surprised me but I’d guessed the killer by the end of the first few chapters.  The motive, on the other hand, kept me guessing for a while.  I guessed parts of the motive but not all of them and I couldn’t quite figure out how everything was going to tie together in the end.  That definitely kept me reading although I would have preferred if the mystery was a bit less obvious.

The characters are what got me truly invested in the story.  Samantha is basically a blank slate after she disappeared.  She gets a second chance at life pretty much.  She quickly finds out that she was a giant bitch before the night she disappeared but this is a chance for her to change that about herself.  She takes that to heart.  She doesn’t know much about who she used to be but she knows she doesn’t want to go back to being that girl.  It’s hard for her to change though when everyone seems to be pushing her right back in the direction she started.  Her boyfriend is a complete and utter prick.  Her brother is an awesome guy but for some reason they never got along.  Carson, her kind of neighbor, is there for her no matter what, even when it’s made clear that she might have been the biggest bitch to him.  However, it seems like every last person is keeping some kind of secret from Sam and it’s up to her and her alone to figure out what’s true and what exactly happened with Cassie the night they both disappeared.

Jennifer L. Armentrout has a way with relationships.  However, with Don’t Look Back she proved that she doesn’t just have a way with romantic relationships but also with familial relationships.  Samantha and Scott had a lot to work through after she disappeared but they had a really strong relationship.  Scott was always there for his sister and as Sam figured out who she wanted to be, she started to be there for Scott as well.  That’s not to say that there wasn’t a fabulous romantic relationship in Don’t Look Back.  Carson and Sam have this instant chemistry and I was rooting for them from the start.  They had a lot of stuff to work out and a lot of history to work through but they never gave up.  They worked through things together, no matter how tough.

Overall, Don’t Look Back is a wonderful addition to Jennifer L. Armentrout’s books.  While I’m pleased that it’s a standalone, I definitely wouldn’t mind more of these characters or more of this style from her in the future.

What others are saying about Don’t Look Back:

Just A Booklover’s review: “Overall, Jennifer L. Armentrout has written the most perfectly nerve-racking suspense that had me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end.”

Cuddlebuggery’s review: “Is there anything Jennifer L. Armentrout can’t do?”

Mel, Erin, and Regina Read-a-lot’s review: “Yeah, this book will keep you on the edge of your seat til the very end.”

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Sleep No More by Aprilynne Pike | Review

Sleep No More by Aprilynne Pike | ReviewSleep No More by Aprilynne Pike
Published by Harper Teen on April 29, 2014
Pages: 352
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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2 Stars

Lisa McMann's Wake trilogy meets the blockbuster Inception in this dark page-turner from #1 New York Times bestselling author Aprilynne Pike.

Oracles see the future but are never supposed to interfere. Charlotte learned that the hard way. If she hadn't tried to change one of her childhood visions, her father would still be alive. Since the accident, Charlotte has suppressed her visions to avoid making the same mistake. But when she receives a premonition of a classmate's murder, she can no longer ignore her powerful gift.

Then Charlotte meets someone who not only knows her secret but who also has a way for her to stop the killer. He offers to teach her how to manipulate her visions to change the future. But doing so will put Charlotte in the path of the murderer.…

picadillyblueSleep No More is only the second book by Aprilynne Pike that I’ve read but it’s definitely the most disappointing.  There were very few things I could find to like about Sleep No More and I only finished the book because I wanted to know who was murdering people and why.  There were so many times I just wanted to DNF it and I’m kind of disappointed that I wasted so much time on this one.

The blurb is what really grabbed my attention with Sleep No More.  One part Wake trilogy and one part Inception?  You’ve definitely got my attention there.  However, while there were a few similarities to that series and that movie, I couldn’t really see Sleep No More as a blend of the two.

So I already mentioned that the mystery was really the only thing that kept me reading until the end.  I’m not saying I was completely clueless about who the killer was but I was at least a little confused as to the motive behind the killings.  That really was the only good thing about Sleep No More.  Aprilynne Pike managed to tie everything together in a way that I didn’t originally suspect at all.

The relationships in Sleep No More were some of the worst I’ve ever read.  Charlotte and her family have so many secrets they keep from each other when really if they were just honest, none of the murders and stuff would have even happened.  I guess there would be no book though if they were honest.  As for the romance, it was horrible.  Charlotte and Linden had absolutely no chemistry.  I’m a total sucker for romance and I’m one of those people that likes at least a little romance in every book but Sleep No More might have been better without any romance at all.

Overall, Sleep No More was just a giant disappointment.  I would highly recommend passing on this one.

What others are saying about Sleep No More:

Snuggly Oranges’ review: “The suspense and creepiness was good… until that last fateful quarter.”

There Were Books Involved’s review: “I wouldn’t go into this book expecting the mind-bending, multi-layered awesomeness of the dream-worlds of Inception.”

Fiction Fare’s review: “I though Pike did a great job of tying the story together and linking the stories of these characters together.”

Friday, May 9, 2014

Killer Instinct by S.E. Green | Review

Killer Instinct by S.E. Green | ReviewKiller Instinct by S.E. Green
Published by Simon & Schuster on May 6, 2014
Genres: Psychological Thriller
Pages: 272
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss, Publisher
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1 Stars

She’s not evil, but she has certain... urges.

Lane is a typical teenager. Loving family. Good grades. Afterschool job at the local animal hospital. Martial arts enthusiast. But her secret obsession is studying serial killers. She understands them, knows what makes them tick.

Why?

Because she might be one herself.

Lane channels her dark impulses by hunting criminals—delivering justice when the law fails. The vigilantism stops shy of murder. But with each visceral rush the line of self-control blurs.
And then a young preschool teacher goes missing. Only to return... in parts.
When Lane excitedly gets involved in the hunt for “the Decapitator,” the vicious serial murderer that has come to her hometown, she gets dangerously caught up in a web of lies about her birth dad and her own dark past. And once the Decapitator contacts Lane directly, Lane knows she is no longer invisible or safe. Now she needs to use her unique talents to find the true killer’s identity before she—or someone she loves—becomes the next victim...

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Killer Instinct is one of those books that makes me wonder why I actually wasted my time finishing it.  Sure it’s short at only 272 pages but even 272 pages is too much for this book.  It started off promising but it all went downhill from there.

First off, Killer Instinct is the biggest rip off of Dexter.  Never in my life have I read something so blatantly copying from something else.  As I read Killer Instinct, scenes from season one of Dexter just kept popping into my head.  And I haven’t seen season one of Dexter in a while so that’s saying something about how blatant these comparisons were.  I don’t want to spoil Dexter for anyone who maybe hasn’t seen it and plans to watch it but I’ll just say that there were at least 8 things that were almost identical between Killer Instinct and season one of the show.  If you’ve seen the show, I’m sure you’ll catch what I’m talking about.

Second, Lane is one of the worst characters I’ve ever read about.   Sure she’s compared to a teenage version of Dexter but at least with Dexter, people can kind of relate to him and even root for him to come out ahead.  With Lane, I wanted her caught and done with.  She was so stupid!  The whole her being the “masked savior” was ridiculous and completely implausible.  She’s so skinny she’s nicknamed Slim but she can take down grown men at least twice her size.  Yeah, right.  Sure the author throws in multiple mentions that Lane does aikido but that still does not match up against someone with a gun.  Also, she mentioned multiple times how mature she was yet she acted like an immature whiny brat most of the time.

Then there were all the relationships in the book.  First there was Reggie, Lane’s supposed best friend.  What they had was not a friendship it was just something the author had to include so Lane had someone to help her hack into anything she might need.  Lane would call Reggie when she needed something and Reggie would drop everything to help Lane.  They had no real meaningful conversations, just phone calls and texts about whatever Reggie was looking up for Lane.  Then there was the relationship with Lane, Zach, and Belinda.  That was a convoluted mess.  Lane didn’t want anything to do with Zach until Belinda entered the picture and then she really liked him and wanted to be his friend and help him out of horrible situations.  Yeah, sure.  There was also Zach’s older brother, Dr.Issa, who had some shady scenes throughout the book that I thought might eventually mean something but really had nothing to do with anything.  Last but not least were the relationships of everyone in Lane’s family.  Lane and her mom started off with a seemingly strong relationship but it quickly deteriorated.  Her mom cared way more about her case than her family.  And don’t even get me started with Lane and her sister, Daisy.  That’s a whole other thing that set me off.  Daisy was 15 and her most characterizing trait in the book was that she was a slut. Those were  Lane’s exact words.  She called her sister a slut multiple times throughout the book.

Another thing that greatly annoyed me about the whole sex thing was that there was way too much mention of sexual situations that played no role in the story.  Lane went into great detail about her sex life, her parents’ sex life, and her little sister’s sex life.  It really did nothing for the story except make me feel rather uncomfortable and I’m not usually uncomfortable with that kind of stuff.  Also, can you say hypocrite?  Lane calls her little sister a slut but then she goes and gets some serious action with a boy she barely knows in between some shelves of her school library.  Not calling her a slut but I’m just saying that that’s a bit like the pot calling the kettle black.

The only thing about this book that even remotely impressed me was that I didn’t predict who the killer was, at all.  Yes I suspected it was somebody closely tied to Lane but I wasn’t sure how S.E. Green was going to work it.  I was pretty dang shocked by the time I got to the big reveal.  I did feel like it was a little rushed though.

Also, the killer is nicknamed the Decapitator and Lane is nicknamed the Masked Savior.  S.E. Green couldn’t come up with anything more clever than those nicknames?  They were so lame!

Oh and also, what was the point of Lane being the Masked Savior?  It really had nothing to do with the story and kind of dropped out of the story about halfway through.  I guess being a master investigator and the Masked Savior got to be too much for Lane.  Maybe she should have just left the Decapitator investigation to the FBI like a normal person.  But then again, she was way smarter than the FBI so they never would have been able to solve it without her.  Like I said, rather implausible story.

Overall, I was seriously disappointed with Killer Instinct.  I feel like I wasted my time reading when I could have just rewatched season one of Dexter and gotten the exact same story.  I would not recommend this one to anyone.

What others are saying about Killer Instinct:

Bookish’s review: “Killer Instinct is not a bad book.”

Good Books and Good Wine’s review: “Man, I have not been this disappointed with a book in a really long time.”

Conversations of a Reading Addict’s review: “I felt angry at the end, i felt myself rolling my eyes and saying “really?” over and over again because the killer did not seem believable to me. AT ALL.”

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell | Review

Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell | ReviewDear Killer by Katherine Ewell
Published by Harper Teen on April 1, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 368
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
3 Stars

Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.

Rule Two—Be careful.

Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.

Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.

Rule Five—The letters are the law.

Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect KillerTh” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.

But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.

Dear Killer is really hard for me to review. On one hand, I enjoyed it. On the other, there were things about it that really let me down. Dear Killer really is one book that is perfectly in the middle for me.

The concept for Dear Killer is what really caught my attention and it’s the one thing I really enjoyed about it. Reading about a teenage serial killer is something I can honestly say I’ve never done. It was fascinating to be inside Kit’s head. She didn’t see anything right or wrong about what she was doing. The concept of moral nihilism was something I hadn’t heard of before reading Dear Killer. Katherine Ewell went in depth with the concept and it really did leave me thinking.

However, I had some problems with Dear Killer. I’ll start with my main problem which was Kit herself. I did not like her at all. She was cocky and full of herself. Her nickname with the media was The Perfect Killer and that’s exactly how she saw herself. She considered herself untouchable and she let it go to her head. I wanted to slap some sense into her.

Another issue I had was with the whole killings. Maybe I’ve read too many adult murder mysteries and maybe it’s partly because I have two former police officers for parents but I really didn’t see how any of this could work. First off, Kit describes herself as a skinny, relatively average height teenage girl. How in the world would it be possible for her to overtake men much larger than her and much stronger? I don’t care how much training you’ve had, it just doesn’t work that way. Also, she was way too cocky with her killings. She would kill people right out in the open. As if that wasn’t bad enough, she was killing 3 to 4 people a month. That just does not work. With the police looking as hard as they were, someone would have caught her.

One good thing about Dear Killer was the relationship Kit had with her mom. Admittedly, it was based on murder but still, it was good. Kit and her mom had a close relationship. They told each other everything. Kit learned everything she knew about murder from her mom. She knew that she could always go to her with any problems or complications. It’s definitely not your typical mother/daughter relationship but it worked for them.

There was also one other thing about Dear Killer that I both liked and didn’t like; the writing. Katherine Ewell’s writing style is very distinct and I enjoyed it. It’s detailed and thorough and I really felt like I could picture everything as Kit was seeing it. The only problem was that it really slowed down the story. What I felt should have been a fast-paced book ended up taking me much longer to get through.Overall, Dear Killer will greatly appeal to some, just not to me. I enjoyed it and I would recommend it but it won’t be on my favorites list.

What others are saying about Dear Killer:

The (YA) Bookcase’s review: “The story of a teenage serial assassin is violent and contains some slightly graphic material; however, it does a good job of engaging the reader to ask what is moral or ethical.”

The Phantom Paragrapher’s review: “I leave with these parting words that if you are a fan of serial killers – the people themselves, the person behind the mask and wanting a book told from the killer’s POV then Katherine Ewell’s book “Dear Killer” is the story for you.”

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Find Me (Find Me #1) by Romily Bernard | Review

Find Me (Find Me #1) by Romily Bernard | ReviewFind Me by Romily Bernard
Series: Find Me #1
Published by Harper Teen on September 24, 2013
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 307
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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Goodreads
3 Stars

“Find Me.”

These are the words written on Tessa Waye’s diary. The diary that ends up with Wick Tate. But Tessa’s just been found . . . dead.

Wick has the right computer-hacking skills for the job, but little interest in this perverse game of hide-and-seek. Until her sister Lily is the next target.

Then Griff, trailer-park boy next door and fellow hacker, shows up, intent on helping Wick. Is a happy ending possible with the threat of Wick’s deadbeat dad returning, the detective hunting him sniffing around Wick instead, and a killer taunting her at every step?

Foster child. Daughter of a felon. Loner hacker girl. Wick has a bad attitude and sarcasm to spare.

But she’s going to find this killer no matter what.

Because it just got personal.

Find Me, Romily Bernard’s debut novel, has been garnering some high praise from reviewers lately. I went in with very high expectations and I think my expectations were maybe a little too high. While I enjoyed the story, I didn’t love it like I had hoped. It’s a good addition to the YA suspense genre but nothing too spectacular.

I wasn’t drawn into Wick’s story like I had hoped to be. For a suspense novel, it wasn’t all that suspenseful. I kept reading hoping for the pace to pick up but it took way longer than I felt it should have. I wasn’t all that interested in the story until the very end. I didn’t feel invested in any of the outcomes and I only really kept reading to see how things would turn out and if I could guess who the killer was.

As for that, I’ll give Romily Bernard points for keeping me guessing until the very end. I never actually figured out who the killer was. Romily Bernard does a great job and throwing in some red herrings and keeping readers on their toes. There’s more to the story than first meets the eye and I did really like that about Find Me.

The characters were mediocre, at best. Wick was cool. Her talent for hacking was really awesome and something you don’t read about a lot. However, I felt that she could have been doing a lot more with her hacking skills than just helping people find out if their spouses were cheating. I was a little let down by that. Her sister, Lily, seemed very immature and naïve. Wick did everything to protect Lily but I felt that Lily was old enough to know at least a little about protecting herself. She blindly trusted people. With her past, you would think she would know better than to do that. As for the romance between Wick and fellow hacker, Griff, it was cute but nothing that really caught my interest. They didn’t really have much chemistry.

Overall, Find Me is good for a rainy day read but nothing super awesome. I’ll look out for Romily Bernard’s future books (including the sequel to this one) but I feel that this is one that could be skipped over.

What others are saying about Find Me:
Good Books and Good Wine’s review: “Y’all, I zipped through this hacker thriller in a single day.” 
Nick’s Book Blog’s review: “Find Me was a promising debut from Romily Bernard.” 
Realm of Fiction’s review: “Sadly, Find Me lacks too many things for it to be a title that I can easily recommend.” 
Thursday, March 6, 2014

Elect (Eagle Elite #2) by Rachel Van Dyken | Review

Elect (Eagle Elite #2) by Rachel Van Dyken | ReviewElect by Rachel Van Dyken
Series: Eagle Elite #2
Published by Forever on December 10, 2013
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 267
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
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Goodreads
3 Stars

Would you die for the one you love?

Nixon Abandonato made his choice. And now he has to pay the price. Tracey is the love of his life, but being with him has made her a target of his family's enemies. The only way to keep Trace alive is convince the world she means nothing to him.

Trace Rooks has fallen irrevocably in love with the son of her family's sworn rival, and she knows in her bones nothing can tear them apart. Until Nix suddenly pushes her away and into the arms of his best friend... But Trace isn't ready to give up on a future with Nix--and if he won't fight for them, she will.

In the end, a sacrifice must be made. A life for a life. For what better way to cover a multitude of sins than with the blood of a sinner . . .

A while back I kind of tore apart the first book in this series, Elite. I really did not have very many good things to say about it. For some reason I decided to give the second book a shot and I’m actually glad I did. While I didn’t love it, it was a definitely improvement over the first book and I enjoyed it.

Trace and Nixon have matured a bit since the end of Elite. I wasn’t impressed with how their relationship was so hot and cold in the first book and that definitely improved with this book. Sure they were still really obsessed with each other but they seemed to know more about being in a relationship this time around. They talked to each other more and they tried to work things out together this time. They didn’t manage to work things out together but at least they tried this time around.

The story was a lot more intense than the first book and I wasn’t sure that was possible. This time things were officially life or death. Nixon and Trace love each other but their relationship is forbidden. How do you fix this? You have your best friend (who just happens to be in love with your girlfriend) pretend to date your girlfriend so that nobody suspects you. Yeah, that seems like a good plan. That’s not the real drama though. The real drama starts when the Sicilians come to town and threaten to take matters into their own hands if the killers of Trace’s parents aren’t found and brought to justice. Seems simple, right? Not so much. It’s up to Trace, Nixon, Chase, and the rest of the ragtag group of teenage mobsters to find out who did it and bring them to justice. Things are definitely intense.

Overall, I still had flaws with Elect but I ended up enjoying it much more than the first book. If you’ve already started this series, definitely continue it.

What others are saying about Elect:
 
The Book Bellas’ review: “This is an action-packed, mafia-themed book with some romance that includes a hint of a classic love triangle.” 
 
The Lusty Literate’s review: “I really enjoyed ELITE and was pleased to find that ELECT successfully continued the Eagle Elite thrill ride with drama and passion to spare.”
 
Dark Faerie Tales’ review: “Elect was very different from its predecessor.”
Friday, February 14, 2014

A Little Too Hot (A Little Too Far #3) by Lisa Desrochers | Review

A Little Too Hot (A Little Too Far #3) by Lisa Desrochers | ReviewA Little Too Hot by Lisa Desrochers
Series: A Little Too Far #3
Published by William Morrow on January 21, 2014
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 284
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss, Publisher
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Goodreads
5 Stars

If you play with fire…

Tossed out of college and cut off by her parents, Samantha West is in pretty dire straits. So when her rocker best friend hooks her up with a job dancing at a gentlemen’s club, who is she to turn it down? Plus, there are rules to dancing at Benny’s: No touching, keep your clothes on at all times, and never get closer than three feet. Unfortunately for Sam, her first private client makes her want to break every single one of them.

Harrison Yates is scorching hot, but he’s got a past that involves being left at the altar not too long ago. Sam is determined to make him forget about his ex, but when she makes her move, it flings her life into a spiral of chaos she never saw coming.

Because Harrison Yates isn’t who he seems to be. And his secret will probably get her killed.

I wasn’t sure it was possible but A Little Too Hot is my new favorite book in the A Little Too Far series. Sam and Harrison’s story is by far the steamiest yet and I was hooked from the first page.

Sam was not even close to my favorite character in A Little Too Far. I really didn’t feel much of anything for her. Sure, I felt bad when things went down with Trent and Lexie but I didn’t care enough about her to really want to know more about what happened to her after all of that. That all changed once I started reading A Little Too Hot. She seemed a little whiny at first but she quickly grew on me. She was very easy to relate to and I couldn’t help but like her. Things got even better when Harrison entered the picture. He and Sam had some serious chemistry and I was rooting for them from the very first time they met.

The story in A Little Too Hot was the most fast-paced and intense of the series. I had no clue what the book was about when I started it but I was pleasantly surprised. I don’t want to give anything away but the story is really suspenseful and there are some seriously high stakes this time around. Sam and Harrison don’t just have to deal with the complications of their relationship; they also have to deal with some life and death situations. It was intense and by the end of the book I had bitten my nails down to the cuticles.

The romance was scorching, just like I’ve come to expect from Lisa Desrochers. Sam and Harrison had a sort of forbidden romance but that didn’t really slow things down for them. Really it just made things even hotter. The best thing about Sam and Harrison’s relationship though was that they could keep things going even when they weren’t hooking up. They were able to carry a conversation and do things that didn’t involve sex. Their relationship developed almost naturally even in their difficult situation.

Overall, A Little Too Hot was a fabulous ending to the A Little Too Far trilogy and I loved the cameos from the previous two books. If you haven’t started this trilogy yet, get on it!

What others are saying about A Little Too Hot:

Waves of Fiction’s review: “Lisa Desrochers’ A Little Too Hot was a captivating and steamy read, but also one of character growth and positive change.”

My Parahangover’s review: “The third book in the A Little Too Far series by Lisa Desrochers completely held me in it’s grip for it’s entire 284 pages.”

Michelle & Leslie’s Book Picks’ review: “While A Little Too Hot wasn’t my favorite in the series, it was still very, very good.”