Source: Global Cycling Network
Friday, December 13, 2013
Thursday, December 12, 2013
A young-adult paranormal novel about selkies, tasers, kissing and secrets.To Cassandra Kelleher, trust is a dirty word.
A teenage selkie who grew up on land, all she wants is to free her family from the man who stole their sealskins long ago. With her twin brother Brennan losing hope and her window of opportunity disappearing like the beach at high tide, she’ll try anything.
Before long, however, Cassandra can’t tell whether her biggest threat is the man holding her family captive, a classmate who’s discovered her secret, or her own paranoia. Battling broken friendships and alarming romantic entanglements, Cassandra finds that trust could be the key to winning her family’s freedom … or losing her own.
Source: E-copy provided by the author for my honest review
Review:I have never read about selkies before, so that was the main reason I wanted to read Wavecrossed, as well as loving Colt’s debut contemporary YA, Torched.
The selkie aspect of the story was fascinating and my favorite part of Wavecrossed. Cassandra’s parents and older brother’s sealskins have been stolen by a man who uses that power to manipulate and control all of them. You can really feel the compelling need to leave land and go back to the ocean where they belong and how painful it is to lose their sealskin. It was a more ….animalistic…and realistic portrayal than the I’m used to in paranormal. In particular YA that would typically be yay! I’m a seal but I want to stay on land with hot boy!
For a selkie primer – check out Selkies 101 by Andrea Colt
Even human attachments can’t break the lure to the sea and their kind. That was very interesting to see how it all played out as they explore their seal nature vs. their humanity.
I felt the tone of Wavecrossed fluctuated a bit between very young YA in the beginning and then older (but not graphic) YA towards the second half. Cass is maturing but it was kind of abrupt, especially when it came to the romance aspect. (Also – NICE guy alert!)
Cass was also incredibly selfish towards others needs and feelings. Let me clarify – she’s incredibly devoted to her family and will do ANYTHING to save them. I really admired her for that but she also refused to see what might truly make THEM happy at times & could be kind of coldhearted to friends. To be fair, she does grow throughout the book and some of this can be attributed to her selkie nature but it was difficult to like her at times.
The ending was a bit unconventional and I loved it. The only thing that kept me from truly loving this book was Cass and I originally gave it 3 stars on Goodreads because of that. Then I saw there was going to be a sequel and that changes everything, especially when I read the summary. I can see now that Cass is in for some changes and I need to be mindful that she’s still learning and growing. I’m usually down on sequels these days but I’m looking forward to this one because it promises to fill in a few things that I felt were missing here.
Final thoughts: If you’re looking for something a little different in the paranormal YA world – check out Wavecrossed. After reading two books by Colt, I can see that her stories go a little left of center and aren’t predictable and I like that. I wish the overall tone was more even – either younger YA or older and that Cassandra was a tad more likable earlier on but still a fun read and I’ll be looking out for the sequel.
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Tune In Tuesday is a weekly feature in which bloggers get to showcase another one of their loves, music! The feature was originally created and hosted by Ginger over at GReads! but can now be found over at Kate’s Tales of Books and Bands.
I’m so excited that Anna Lucia is joining me again this week! (I’m hoping she sticks around (hint…hint…)– I love the songs she picks!)
Ana Lucia’s pick:
Basic Vacation: I Believe
Panic! at the Disco: This is Gospel
Goo Goo Dolls – Come to Me (love the lyrics and video – sniffles…)
Monday, December 9, 2013
As leftover turkey and stuffing give way to stockings and little black dresses, this tantalizingly sexy eBook bundle offers up holiday-themed novellas from a trio of beloved romance authors. Lisa Renee Jones gives a dedicated reporter and a powerful businessman a chance to count their Thanksgiving blessings in Play with Me; Mary Ann Rivers presents Snowfall, the story of a woman who confronts a life-changing event—hopefully with a special man by her side—just in time for Christmas; and in Serena Bell’s After Midnight, an explosive New Year’s kiss leaves two strangers wondering whether they’ll ever see each other again.
I have had such good luck with novellas this past year so when I was heating a mild reading slump earlier this week I decided to get into the holiday sprit with this sexy sounding collection of holiday tales. I guess I jinxed myself because there was only one story that really hot the spot for me.
PLAY WITH ME by Lisa Renee Jones – This was my least favorite story. I don’t know if this would have worked better as a full length novel but I was just not on board with Kali and Damion’s instant connection or the contrived reasons to keep them apart. Damion’s had security breaches that were so frequent and bad I wondered how he was able to keep his job. I still have no idea how Kali was qualified for the job as his assistant. The sex was right out of the gate and - OMG everything has been leading to this moment – after knowing each other less than one day. That’s just not my thing – if it’s yours – you may like it more.
SNOWFALL by Mary Ann Rivers – I really like River’s unique writing style and characters. She brings a sense of realism and detail to her stories that you don’t always find. I enjoyed several aspects of this story, especially Jenny and Evan’s adversarial turned supportive relationship, but ultimately I thought the writing bordered on over dramatic. There were at least four pages dedicated to how wonderful one kiss was. And more with the graphic sex talk (cybersex at that) – again that’s not my thing. Also there’s a bit of a twist that made me unsure of the heroes intentions for the heroine if things turned out differently. I don’t know….not bad…but it’s didn’t give me warm holiday fuzzes.
AFTER MIDNIGHT by Serena Bell – I was ready to give up and not even bother reading this last one but I’m so glad I didn’t’ because I loved it! It had all the steam, romance and passion that I was looking for. Wonderful couple – and the only one of the group that really felt like a holiday story.
A few Christmas novellas that I do recommend - Stranded With a Hero Christmas anthology. It’s fade to black but super sexy and definitely festive or if you want more heat - Ripped by Sarah Morgan.
NICE hero alert! Ripped has your requisite alpha hero but he loves that Hayley can stand toe to toe with him – in and out of the bedroom. Really liked that one.
Friday, December 6, 2013
It's a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.
Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.
Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?
Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.
A timeless love story, THESE BROKEN STARS sets into motion a sweeping science fiction series of companion novels. The Starbound Trilogy: Three worlds. Three love stories. One enemy.Source: Free review ARC provided by the publisher – Disney Hyperion - via BEA
Release date: December 10th, 2013
Review: I admit it. I only read These Broken Stars because Wendy from The Midnight Garden was swooning over Tarver Merendsen. I’m always on the lookout for a GOOD guy, especially in YA, and Wendy did not exaggerate…Tarver is awesome.
Honestly I’m not a fan of the big billowy dress cover, so even though I had the ARC, this book wasn’t at the top of my TBR pile. I’m so glad I moved it up due to Wendy’s rec because Tarver or not, this is one incredible tale.
It is SO hard to find a story that keeps you on your toes and guessing what will happen next. I had all sorts of theories as to what was going on or how things would be resolved and I was only partially right half the time. LOVE that!
These Broken Stars is romance, sci-fi, thriller and survivalist tale all wrapped into one.
Tarver is definitely book boyfriend material but Lilac is his match and more. Their relationship goes from forbidden to combative to passionate and heartbreaking. I thought this was going to be insta-love, and it was to an extent, but Tarver and Lilac have to work for it. The romance does not take over the whole story. I loved both of them equally – whether they were together or apart.
Minor Quibbles: I have to admit that some of the sci-fi aspects went over my head at times but I just went with it and it all fell into place. What a creepy world the authors created! I would formulate my theory of what was really going on only to throw it out the window and have to start again with each new twist.
This story is basically ALL Tarver and Lilac. I loved the intensity it brought but it also left some plot threads underdeveloped. I wish we knew a little more about Lilac’s father in particular. Their relationship and Lilac’s guilt over a previous incident didn’t really make sense to me. I can't say a whole lot more about that without spoilers but her devotion to her father left me scratching my head.
Final thoughts: Romance! Excellent – independent - characters! Creepy cool world! In space! These Broken Stars was a really fun ride full of twists and turns that had me guessing right up until the very end. By the way – that billowy dress on the cover that initially turned me off? It’s perfect and is actually part of the story!