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Perfect Scoundrels
Perfect Scoundrels
by Ally Carter
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $13.62
66 used & new from $0.01

7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Count Me In For The Next Heist, February 5, 2013
This review is from: Perfect Scoundrels (Hardcover)
When you do a great many things for strangers, how far will you go for your friends?

Katerina Bishop has stolen emeralds and paintings, broken into some of the most secure museums, cracked uncrackable safes, she even stole a whole other life and maybe an elephant or two along the way, but by far her best lift had to be when she went in for a Monet and walked out with a Hale.

When tragedy strikes the moonlighting billionaire heir's other life, Kat senses there's more at play than the death of a great woman and the standard feeding frenzy of family over Inheritance. The loss has hit Hale hard, and Kat can't decide what's worse, feeling him slip away or knowing he's the perfect mark.

In a world where one should always be prepared to walk away, possessions are a luxury not to indulge in, but Kat has found something she doesn't want to lose.

Not to long ago Hale saved her from a life most ordinary but gave her a way back in. Can Kat return the favor?

It's a mark of great author who can build a world beyond their words. Whenever I pick up one of Carter's books I'm enveloped by the heart and wit written between the lines. She has a way of infusing fun and lightness into her books even through the darkest parts. Perfect Scoundrels doesn't disappoint. It has all of Carter's signatures smart, funny writing, fast paced story lines, and loads of likable characters.

For the first two books Carter established her world and characters, especially Kat. In Perfect Scoundrels she delves a bit further into Hale's character and background which was a nice change of pace. My only gripe was that there wasn't enough Nick. I was really hoping he would show up in the second half of the book. I think his character is one of the most compelling in the series and hope he's featured more in the next book.

Perfect Scoundrels is the perfect fun, fast paced, feel good read sure to steal your heart and leave you longing for the next great heist.


Prodigy: A Legend Novel, Book 2
Prodigy: A Legend Novel, Book 2
Offered by Audible, Inc. (US)

30 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Prodigy Lives Up To The Legend, January 14, 2013
Day and June are the resistance's new Bonny and Clyde taking on the republic and inspiring a nation. But when the Elector Primo dies the fledgling couple finds themselves entangled in an assassination conspiracy that will test their loyalties and love.

Marie Lu delivers an engrossing followup to her debut novel. Prodigy takes all the intrigue and heartbreaking developments of it's predecessor to the next level. Day and June's past exploits and diverse backgrounds add complexities and questions to their relationship that exposes new layers to their characters and how they evolve throughout the story. Lu intertwines the plot and emotional development beautifully. The unlikely love in Lu's hands not only drives her characters but manages to create a lot of complications for them to overcome. The author's world gets a boast with a glimpse into the colonies and a surprising setting for the resistance. The story is mostly built on semitransparent threads. Yet a couple of huge twists I didn't see coming, and another heart wrenching ending will leave readers ready and wanting the third installment now.

The narration by Stephen Kaplan and Mariel Stern was a little stiff and formal but it grows on you and somehow manages to fit the world and personalities of the characters well. Kaplan and Stern have get voices for YA. I'm glad they returned to voice this installment and hope they continue to do so.

It's hard to live up to a Legend but Prodigy manages to entertain. The evil genius of Marie Lu will captivate readers and listeners alike while planting enough yummy possibilities to make fans groan over the long wait ahead.


Trapped: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 5
Trapped: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 5
Offered by Audible, Inc. (US)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chic Geek Goodness, December 2, 2012
For twelve years Atticus has enjoyed the relaxed less life threatening existence a presumed death inclines. The long process of training an apprentice has finally come and at the cusp of binding Granuaile to the earth, he's rudely interrupted by a few ghost from the not so distant past.

Someone's orchestrating a symphony of a set up, sending one supernatural after another trying to collect the bounty on the druids. Atticus will have to use all his two thousand plus years of experience to find a way to bind Granuaile and stay alive.

There is an upside to being turned down by publishers when you take the rejection and use the time to revise and rework the writing. I have to say that Tricked wasn't my favorite book in the series, it didn't have the same ease and edited air about it that Hounded, Hexed and Hammered had, so I was a bit hesitant about Trapped.

Fortunately I enjoyed this installment. I love Hearne's chic geek dialogue seamlessly blending fact, fiction, and pop culture to tell his stories. Coupled with his uncanny ability to commune with the canine mind, one can't help but laugh out loud. Hearne doesn't slack on the world building. I never feel anything but fully immersed in both the modern and imaginary. The author also manages to meld all the various mythologies and their worlds into a cohesive believable setting for his hero.

My only dislike is with the story line. I didn't feel the plot was challenging enough. There weren't very many alternate threads and the main story line didn't resolve for me. Trapped felt more like the first half of a book. But it was an entertaining beginning filled with lots of action, humor, and depth.

Luke Daniels never disappoints. He reads well, has an extensive stable of voices, you can tell he does his research, and really take the challenge Hearne provides with all the different cultures and languages and puts out a performance you want to listen to over and over again.

Overall I think Hearne is getting back into his stride and I can't wait for the next installment!


Undeadly (Reaper Diaries)
Undeadly (Reaper Diaries)
by Michele Vail
Edition: Paperback
Price: $8.89
87 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Fast Paced, November 30, 2012
Molly's just trying to be a normal teenager. Crushing on the cute popular guy, planning a killer party, and trying not to become zombie food. But normal only goes so far when you're a necromancer in training and work in a zombie emporium. Molly's life changes drastically when she tries to save the life of a friend and inadvertently changes her own instead.

Undeadly is a quick quirky read filled with a lot of interesting ideas and world building. I loved the use of egyptian mythology mixed in with necromancers, reapers, and zombies. The unfolding of Molly's future and her family's past was another positive for me. But I did find some of the story lines were transparent and the dialogue could have been better. Molly seemed a little too naive and trusting in parts. I was really into the ideas of a semi magical reality with zombies as companions and a magical boarding school and wished there was more of it. I actually wished Vail had used this first book to really develop and immerse the reader in her world and mythology, establishing stronger relationships and making the main plot point more complex instead of working in the competing threads.

I think the possibilities for this series are plenty and look forward to reading more about Molly and Vail's world.


Nerve
Nerve
by Jeanne Ryan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.90
98 used & new from $0.01

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thought Provoking Nonstop Thrill Ride, September 13, 2012
This review is from: Nerve (Hardcover)
Vee isn't exactly the daring type. Her life is a mixture of teenage parolee/PA as the object of overly protective parental restrain and demure second fiddle to her exuberant best friend. So for Vee the shoes are a little something extra compared to rebelling against her usual norm and trying out for Nerve.

The hook is simple, do a dare win a prize. Having a bit of a thrill and some new trinkets are an enticing combination but as Vee is finding the increasingly better incentives come with higher risks and when the stakes are at their most seductive, it isn't a question of how far Vee is willing to go, but what won't her competitors do to win.

Jeanne Ryan questions the limits of humanity in her debut novel Nerve. The premiss is simple but the execution makes the story work. My favorite part was the characters, Vee and Ian are interesting and more complex than at first glance. The wildcard element that sets Nerve apart from other reality tv inspired books are the watchers. They take the whole overused concept and freshens everything up while taking things to the next level. What Ryan truly excelled at was creating a world where our virtual garbage and seemingly private information is used against players in tantalizing and brutal ways. The ideas and concerns posed are sure to strike a cord with an audience with an ever growing technological lifestyle.

Nerve is a nonstop thrill ride sure to get readers thinking.


Hidden: A Firelight Novel
Hidden: A Firelight Novel
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers
Price: $9.49

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Intense Emotional Conclusion, September 11, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Nothing worth having is ever easy. Fighting for what's right has it's rewards and as Jacinda's learned it also has a price. As she sets off to make amends, Jace can't imagine the biggest threat isn't the enemy hunting her but the one she never saw coming.

A daring rescue. Secrets revealed. Choices made. Blood betrayed. A story beyond stunning.

Hidden, is a carefully curated story written in simple yet impactful prose, Sophie Jordan delivers an intense emotional conclusion to her Firelight series. The elegantly crafted voice of Jacinda is so stark, simply stated and unabashedly honest that it can't help but resonate with readers. Fans of the first two installments will find the same quality of characters and story lines, the same all consuming need to devour every word and mourn the absence of paper after the 272nd page. But as Jacinda's story ends, the possibilities don't. Jordan leaves a lot of room for more. Several characters are left with an open thread prime for a continuation or spinoff. Hopefully we won't have to leave the world of Firelight so soon.

Hidden is a fitting finale full of wow worthy writing, striking story lines, and complex characters, Sophie Jordan has written another book to fall in love with.


Hanging by a Thread
Hanging by a Thread
by Sophie Littlefield
Edition: Hardcover
60 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Nice Romantic Murder Mystery, September 11, 2012
This review is from: Hanging by a Thread (Hardcover)
Being the new girl in your old town comes with a special kind of awkward. It's an even more torturous experience when you have a wealth of family oddities and live in a cursed house. Clare couldn't blend in if she tried. Her quirky style and love of fashion sets her apart in the beachy town of Winston, California.

But when her strange talent of seeing the past through people's clothes takes her down a dark path toward the town's most infamous murder mystery, will she deny the gift she was given or embrace everything she is.

Hanging By A Thread was a thoroughly enjoyable book. I liked the characters the most, and Littlefield's undertones about fitting in and excepting who you are even when others can't see past what they want you to be. I found these underlying personal struggles more compelling than the plot. The story line wasn't bad, but it wasn't as original as I had hoped it would be.

Overall though, Hanging By A Thread was nice romantic murder mystery with great characters and themes sure to strike a cord with young adults.


Sweet Shadows (Sweet Venom)
Sweet Shadows (Sweet Venom)
by Tera Lynn Childs
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.06
91 used & new from $0.01

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Modern Mythological Must-Read, September 7, 2012
Finding out you're one of a trio is shocking enough, learning that you're a monster hunting descendant of Medusa, is just insane. Needless to say the recently reunited triplets Greer, Grace, and Gretchen have a tough road ahead of them. With clashing personalities and the task of getting Grace and Greer up to speed, training wise, the last thing they need is a difficult rescue. Unfortunately with their mentor pool dwindling quickly the sisters are going to have to trust and rely on each other just as fast, because a war is brewing and both sides want the Key Generation dead.

I love this book. Seriously the only thing I hated was that it had to end and I have to wait another year to find out what happens next. Most of the first book focused on Grace and Gretchen with Greer being introduced toward the end, so having that third voice prominently featured rounded out the story and everything came together beautifully. I think Greer was my favorite sister. I like how Childs has these seemingly same sisters with drastically diverse personalities. I think it's really smart of the author to showcase the differences in each heroine's life and how their families helped to shape the girls. Childs put just as much care into her male character's as well. Milo's cute, Nick is interesting, yet Thane steals the spotlight for the guys. His character is intriguing and a big reason I want that next book now.

The plot was great, readers will get a better understanding of the girls' destiny, get a taste of what they're really up against, and learn that things aren't so black and white when it comes to the fate of the abyss. I love where the series is going. The world building was fantastic. Childs lets us into her abyss as well with her descriptive landscape and creatures. Her imaginary places don't compare to her knowledge of the cityscape though. You not only get the feeling that the author knows the San Francisco area but also the high society world Greer is trying so hard to hang on to.

Childs has yet again successfully merge modern with mythology, creating something that's not only smart and entertaining but accessible to a wide range of readers. Sweet Shadows is fun and exciting full of action and engaging characters making it a modern mythological must-read.


Dead Is a Killer Tune (Dead Is series Book 7)
Dead Is a Killer Tune (Dead Is series Book 7)
Price: $6.15

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dead Is A Killer Read, September 7, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Jessica Walsh is trying to juggle her busy life as a high school freshman, responsible big sister, and the newest member of warrior women known as Virago. So Nightshade's first annual Battle of the Bands should be a welcome distraction, as the competition heats up, band members are going down. Jessica and her friends are going to have figure out what's going on before the threat consumes the city.

Marlene Perez has written another fun read. While I was disappointed at first when Daisy's leading lady status ended, I actually like Jessica's character more. A lot of books skim over a lead's role in their family but Perez makes her character's home life and family an important feature in every book of this series. The romance takes an interesting turn as well, throwing a few challenges in Jess's way for a happy heart. I can't say I didn't see the bad guy from a hundred pages away, but Dead Is never an unexpected whodunit. Regardless I still really enjoyed the mystery that was tailor made to fit Jessica.

Dead Is A Killer Tune is a killer read, great for a fun quick escape.


Monstrous Beauty
Monstrous Beauty
by Elizabeth Fama
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $14.46
85 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Dark Fairytale, September 4, 2012
This review is from: Monstrous Beauty (Hardcover)
Hester has forsaken love for life. The women in her family have a strange habit of dying after child birth. The possibility of a genetic defect can't compare to the mythical reality she faces. With the help of a few mysterious locals Hester must unravel her ancestry and the curse that binds her life to the past in ordeal to have a future.

Monstrous Beauty is a dark fairytale that shifts between the threads of time to show the actions of one and the repercussions faced generations later. I really liked how the story folded and unfolded on to itself. I did find that it was predictable and the world was a bit dreary. But I found the characters to be interesting and loved how everything came together.

Beautiful and deadly the author has written a story that's mostly traditional yet a little bit edgy. Elizabeth Fama creates a rich dark world and complicated curse sure to please faithful mermaid readers looking for a more traditional version of the mythical creatures.


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