Friday, December 20, 2013

Teardrop by Lauren Kate - 2.5 stars

Teardrop by Lauren Kate
2.5 stars

First off, the cover for this book is absolutely gorgeous. I mean seriously, look at that cover. That's what drew my attention. Because of this I picked it up and read the description. It sounded interesting so I bought it. I did like it but I wish I had just borrowed it from the library. Oh well. It will make my bookshelf look pretty.

The first half of this book confused me. Almost nothing happened. It was interesting but I was just waiting for something to happen. Honestly, I was sitting there reading and for the life of me I could not explain what this book was about. It finally starts moving along after Eureka gets her inheritance from Diana's will. Diana is her mother and she ended up dying in the "freak" accident that took out the bridge they were driving on. From the beginning we know that the Seedbearers took the bridge out. Of course we don't know what Seedbearers are and why Eureka had to die.

We have a mysterious boy, Ander. We have Eureka's depression over her mother's death. We have two best friends, Cat and Brooks. Cat is that stereotypical girl who likes a bunch of guys and seems a little shallow. At some points I was thinking, what is the point of her character other than filling in the place of the girl friend.

It wasn't emphasized until later on that Eureka never cried. Her mother told her to never cry after she sobbed when she overheard her parents fighting. After her mother told her that, she never did. And of course there is obvious foreshadowing there (spoiler)*.

Once you start getting about 2/3 of the way through, things start to happen. Brooks acts weird. The fortune teller starts translating the book Eureka got from her mother. We learn who Ander is and what Seedbearers are. We find out why Eureka can't cry (spoiler)**. Then there is the obvious climatic ending.

The mythology for this book is the lost city of Atlantis. I like the idea of Atlantis. I like the mythology. However there are very few books that capture my attention long enough to even finish the book. I was able to finish Teardrop but I almost didn't because it was so empty in the beginning.

I don't seem to be a big Lauren Kate fan. I really liked Fallen. I barely finished Torment. I couldn't even get through Passion. I didn't even bother with Rapture. Maybe the second book in the Teardrop series will be better. I hope that it gets better. I like the idea but the execution wasn't very good.

Last Day of Love: A Teardrop Story

This was a little short story from Ander's point of view. This was prior to the wave that the Seedbearers brought down on Eureka and Diana. Apparently Seedbearers give up love when they turn 18 but it's obvious that he isn't going to. I think the saddest part for me was the expectation to kill his dog. Thankfully that was solved without bloodshed.

I bought this right after I bought Teardrop and before I actually read the book. I'm a little annoyed that I spent money on it. It was interesting to learn more about what the Seedbearers are and what they do but that was about it.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Circle of Fire by Keri Arthur - 3.5 stars

Circle of Fire by Keri Arthur
3.5 stars

I was a little hesitant to pick this book up at first even though it sounded interesting. I'm glad I did. It was a good book and I enjoyed it. Despite my enjoyment, I had a hard time rating this. I went back and forth between 3.5 and 4 stars. The concept is great but some of the things in the story bothered me enough to knock it down to 3.5. I would still recommend it though. Overall it's a good story with a good plot line despite some of the things I did not particularly like.

It's quite obvious from the first time Jon and Maddie meet that there is going to be a love story between them. Jon appears in an astral form in Maddie's bedroom. Maddie has been living alone ever since her husband died in a fire. She is afraid of hurting anyone with her power because she has no control. Jon is dying and something is forcing him to appear before her. Maddie thinks she's going crazy until Jon warns her about missing teenagers from the area her sister and her nephew, Ethan, visited two weeks prior. Jon begs her to find him and save him. When Ethan disappears like the other teenagers who visited AREA, Maddie decides to set out to save Jon and then find Ethan.

Along with Maddie's pyrokinesis, she is also clairvoyant. Ethan has inherited that power as well. Maddie's power helps her with trying to locate Ethan but since she doesn't have much control, the visions are confusing and unclear. Jon can't help her focus her powers because he is a shapeshifter, a hawk to be exact, and he doesn't know the finer arts of the craft. He does help her calm down when she sets the inn on fire by accident.

Maddie stays at an inn where there is a creepy owner named Hank. This guy is so well written that when you are reading it, you get that creepy vibe. He's nasty and you know that he is evil. He has a fascination with Maddie and it scares her. I would be scared too. We find out pretty early who is behind the kidnappings and murders. It was quite obvious from the beginning so I was a little annoyed by that. There really wasn't a sense of mystery. I'm not sure is this is what Arthur was aiming for but it was extremely predictable.

I was also a little annoyed by the hot and cold vibes Jon sent towards Maddie. I understand the reasoning behind it but it was a constant thing so I found it tiring.

I was a little surprised by the ending. I wasn't expecting the time difference, something you will understand when you read the last chapter. It did have a HEA which I am grateful for. Overall it was a good book. The next book in the Damask Circle series focuses on two different characters. It's one of those series that have different main characters for each book. I will be reading the next book in the series.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Othersphere by Nina Berry - 4.5 stars

Othersphere (#3) by Nina Berry
4.5 stars
Previous Otherkin Series Reviews
Otherkin (#1) | Othermoon (#2)

Othersphere is the final book in the Otherkin trilogy and I really enjoyed it. It wrapped up the loose ends from Othermoon and filled in any missing information. We finally learn everything about Dez and her connection to the Othersphere, who her biological parents are, and who she ends up with. 

At the end of Othermoon, Caleb left because he couldn't trust Dez after she met up with Lazar twice without telling anyone. She was doing it for the right reasons because everyone wanted to kill Lazar but in the end, Caleb broke up with her and then left. In Othersphere, Dez and Lazar are together despite Dez still having feelings for Caleb. I found it a bit weird honestly. I still don't know who I was rooting for in the end (spoiler)*. 

At the beginning of the book, Amaris sneaks off to meet up with Caleb. Dez follows her, knowing that she is going to meet her brother and Dez just wants to see Caleb. Things go to hell from there. Suddenly they are surrounded by the Tribunal and Ximon throws Amaris into the Othersphere, using Dez to open the veil. Caleb and Dez escape and return to the school. Everyone agrees that they have to go rescue Amaris from the Othersphere (spoiler)**. When they get a call from Ximon claiming that he has been possessed by a "demon", the group decides to check out if what he claims is true. Caleb believes Ximon is telling the truth but Dez doesn't. As she is the unofficial leader, the group backs her up. They find Ximon's location and break into his house. It turns out he was telling the truth. Ximon is being possessed by the same creature that possessed Caleb in Otherkin. At first Ximon is himself but then Orgoli, the creature from the Othersphere, takes control of Ximon again and basically destroys the house. November almost dies and Dez freezes up for the first time. We also find out some pretty interesting information (spoiler)***.

This book has more action and more tension between the friends. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that a group of teenagers are the ones who go into these extremely dangerous situations with the approval of their teacher Morfael. It just seems a little too unbelievable at times. I did like finding out about Dez and her origins. It's an interesting world. The Othersphere is dangerous but also really cool. I liked learning more about it and the Amba. Berry created a very interesting world and I enjoyed the series. It ended well and I felt no need for the story to go on. She managed to wrap everything up without leaving any plot holes. 

This is another 4.5 star book. I would like to thank NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this title prior to it's release. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Othermoon by Nina Berry - 4.5 stars

Othermoon (#2)  by Nina Berry
4.5 stars
Previous Otherkin Series Review
Otherkin (#1)

Othermoon begins not long after the events of Otherkin. Dez is listening to music in the middle of the night when she hears something. It turns out Lazar has broken into her house but nothing seems to be disturbed. She chases him out into the rain and to the lightning tree. Lazar manages to escape and Dez's mom and Richard catch up with her at the tree. Something strange begins to happen to her mother and she suddenly becomes possessed by another being from the Othersphere. She tells Dez that she is her daughter but is unable to last very long in her mother's body. She calls Dez an Amba, the same name Ximon called her when he saw her. 

It turns out Lazar stole a hairbrush from Dez. She gets in touch with all of her friends except Arnaldo and discover that things with their DNA have been stolen as well. Lazar left a note apologizing and asking for forgiveness. This is odd but Dez has to worry about other things, not Lazar's peculiar behavior. 

The gang meets up in Las Vegas where they are eventually found by the Tribunal. While they are escaping, Dez runs into Lazar again. He gets attacked by Caleb who hates him for killing his mother. Lazar tells Dez that he hasn't told anyone about where they are and warns them about the exits. Dez's compassion at the end of Otherkin planted a seed and Lazar wants out from under his father's abuse. 

The group heads to Arnaldo's to bring him to the school. They find out that his house wasn't attacked because his father gave the Tribunal some of his DNA. When Arnaldo leaves to go to school, his father disowns him. He is a drunk and hits his children which makes Dez eventually call child services. 

Once they make it to the school, Caleb and Dez stay behind and things start to get hot and heavy before they are interrupted by Amaris and Lazar climbing into the van. Lazar has information. The Tribunal is building a particle accelerator and for some reason they needed the DNA from each of the remaining tribes of shifters. Lazar agrees to get the plans and layout of the Tribunal's compound in exchange for help to escape the Tribunal. 

No one trusts Lazar except Dez and Amaris. Dez sneaks around Caleb and the others to get information from Lazar, eventually leading to the break up of Caleb and Dez. Caleb says he can't trust her and he sees the way Lazar looks at her and holds her. 

The group eventually attacks the Tribunal compound using Lazar's information but it's a trap. They escape and Dez does some awesome things with her power. Their escape comes with a cost. One of their number dies at the hands of Ximon (spoiler)*. Lots of things go down during that attack and escape and most of it is pretty interesting and helps develop the world of the shifters.

In the end, Caleb leaves while everyone else, including Lazar returns to the school. There is a budding relationship between Lazar and Dez, one that Caleb can't ignore.

I liked this book more than Otherkin. We learn more about the world of the otherkin and the shifters. We learn about the power of the othersphere and a little bit more about Dez's origins. It's very interesting. It deserves a solid 4.5 stars.