Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder

There is never a dull moment with Yelena the poisoned food taster. The main character of the story, Yelena hasn't had the best life. Orphaned as a child and brought to Brazell's manor only to become a lab experiment. When she kills Brazell's son she is sent away to be sentenced to hang. That is when Yelena's life changes. She becomes the food taster in exchange for her life. Yelena must face many obstacles as a food taster. At any moment she could be poisoned by the food she tastes, Brazell is after her for killing her son, and her food taster instructed Valek could kill her any time with one of his tests.

Always finding herself back up against the wall she tries to fight for her life. Yelena may have made some enemies but she has made some friends as well that try to help her fight through.

It was a great book, I didn't want to stop reading. Never a dull moment, always something new about to happen. Some great small twists that kept the novel interesting. I can't wait to read the next in the series Magic Study. I hope to see some of the old characters in this novel as well.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Ella Enchanted

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine has been out for many years and even a movie has been made which I have watched as well. But, I haven't read this book until now. It was a delightful book, cute and funny. I haven't watched the movie in quite some time, but from memory, there are lots of differences. Ella Enchanted is a re-telling of Cinderella (Cinder ella get it? took me almost the end of the book to see that.) The story of Cinderella never tells why Cinderella does everything her step sisters and step mother tells her too, I mean why didn't she just run away from it all? But, Ella Enchanted gives a reason to why Ella stays and does all of their bidding. Ella Enchanted even has the glass slippers and pumpkin stagecoach which I don't think the movie had. I think the movie strayed more from the Cinderella aspect of it and went more toward Ella's obedience.

When Ella was a baby, she was gifted obedience and must do whatever anyone has order of her. Ella didn't let this gift bring her down. She was defiant to her gift, if her cook told her to bring her almonds Ella would bring her two. She would find ways to defy the gift. When Ella's mother dies things go down hill for her but she meets Prince Char and starts a relationship with him. It is a cute story between her and Char. But, after a while, Ella's father must remarry and Ella moves in with her Stepmother and stepsisters who make things awful for her when her father leaves.

I am glad that I finally read this book. It is a really cute retelling.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Princess of the Midnight Ball

Princess of the Midnight Ball is a great story. Based off the Brother Grimm tale The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I really like how she retold the tale. In the Brother Grimm's tale the girls seem more arrogant. But, in the Princess of the Midnight Ball the girls seem to have more compassion and I like reading the way Jessica Day George wrote them.

The story is about twelve princesses. Ever morning when they wake their dancing shoes are found worn out. No one can figure out why this is happening. And the twelve princesses will not tell anyone. So, the king makes a reward: The prince who figures out the secret can marry the daughter of their choosing. But, all the princes fail. Then, the solider turned under gardener tries. And, he has some tricks under his sleeves.

The story follows Galen the solider/under gardener and Rose the eldest princess most of the time. Rose has eleven other sisters all named after a flower that grows in the late Queen's garden. One of the sisters who stand out the most besides Rose is Poppy, which the next book in the series Princess of Glass is about. I haven't read it yet, but I really enjoyed this books so I am going to read that one next!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Shiver - Maggie Stiefvater

Grace and Sam have been watching each other for years. Ever since Sam saved Grace. Grace watched Sam in the winter and fell in love with his yellow eyes. But Grace was human and in her eyes, Sam was just a wolf. But, Sam is more than just a wolf, he is a werewolf but Grace doesn't find out until it is almost too late. Sam was running out of summers. And, now that Grace knows Sam as a human, it might be too late for the two of them.

Shiver is a great love story, a bit reminiscent of Twilight in some ways. So, if you like Twilight you will like this book. But, unlike Bella, I feel Grace is more relatable and not as crazy love stricken as Bella in Twilight. Grace knows she only has a little bit of time to spend with Sam so she absorbs everything she can but is still smart about it.

This book, I believe, is a great page turner. I wanted to know what would happen with Grace and Sam. What would happen to Jake and what would happen to all the other wolves. The story does get sad at the end and I almost had some tears. I don't want to give to much away but this is a really good book. Bunch of people recommended this book to me and I would recommend this book as well.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Burned, House of Night

The book starts out with Zoey in the otherworld not sure if she wants to put her soul back together and return to her body or stay in the other world forever with Heath. At the same time, Aphrodite and Stark are in Venice with the High Council trying to figure out away to get Zoey back in her body. Stark will do anything to save Zoey, but he must confront the demons inside of himself in order to find a way to Zoey. Also, back in Tulsa, Stevie Rae is fighting her own problems along with trying to find away to get Zoey back as well. Stevie Rae tries to fight Darkness in many different forms and also at the same time trying to figure out her 'boy' problems.

After this book, I am starting to not like Stevie Rae as much as I use to. She seems to be turning into a second Zoey with always using her gift to save her, lying to everyone, and having all her boy problems get in her way. But, like Zoey, Stevie Rae is now a High Priestess. I am starting to think one of the requirements of being a high priestess is to become a whore, as Dallas puts it. Plus, the amount of times Stevie Rae uses the Earth energy she is soon going to kill it, it is ridiculous.

This book seems much more vulgar than the previous books. Aphrodite and Stark seem more vulgar in there attitudes. I thought this was a book for young adults? Seem to be way too raunchy and vulgar. There are no really lessons in this book unless you want to teach someone how to go from one guy to another in a blink of the eye. Like Stevie Rae pretty much did in this book, and Zoey has done in the past.

It seems like the authors try so hard to give each character their own voice in which it borders on the point of being really annoying. For example, Dallas saying 'girl' a million times, I started to wince whenever I read him saying girl. And the Scottish guy Seoras, I couldn't understand anything he was saying.

It was typical that Dallas changed and how he all of a sudden has an affinity right before he changes, even though affinities are supposed to be really rare. What is rare, is fledglings with out an affinity in this series. And of course he has to become the new villain because only a day or two has gone by since a new villain came into play.

Some other stuff that bothered me was the quotes that some of these characters said. Stevie Rae comments at one point: "I have to deal with the shitstorm Dallas is brewin' up" These girls can never take blame on themselves. If she was only honest in the beginning none of that would have happened. But then there wouldn't have really been much of a book. Another quote is when Stark comes to the realization that "Zoey loved Heath, maybe even more than she loved him" you think? Zoey has know Heath for years. And, what...she has known Stark for like five days? But yet they are pretty inseparable at the end of the book.

And, what was with the ghost kid talking to Rephaim? Was it just way to use up more page space to fill even more of the book with nonsense. Hopefully more will be in the next book about that. I just can't stop reading, hoping the authors will redeem themselves and actually put in lessons for there young adults that are good instead is okay to sleep with your teacher, it is okay to sleep with a guy you have only known for a matter of days, it is okay to do whatever you like because you think you are better than everyone else, and it is okay to treat people like crap..etc.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella

Bree's point of view was way different than Bellas. In a way I felt like the narrative was closer to how Stephanie Meyers narrated Host instead of the Twilight Saga, but I liked it regardless. It was a new take on young vampires, I like how the author played off of how we the audience portrayed vampires before we even started to read the Twilight Saga.

Even though, I knew the outcome of Bree's story before I even read it because of Eclipse I was hoping it would be different. I became so attached to Bree and her short story. Stephanie did a great job of giving a story to the character Bree who only had a small roll in Eclipse. You feel for Bree in this story. It was very well done. The only thing I wished was that Stephanie started from the very beginning of Bree's second life and not 3 months in. But she does in away take you back to see how Bree was changed at the beginning, but I would of liked to see more.

This book made me see Riley in a different light as well. And I liked the other characters that never were in the Twilight Saga but made into this book like Freaky Fred and Diego.

I look forward to Stephanie Meyer portraying other characters that we barely know, she does a great job at it.

The Red Pyramid

I have been waiting for this book since I saw Rick Riordan was doing another series. Sadie and Carter are a brother and sister who barely know each but must come together when their father blows up the British museum. The story is narrated in a way like you are listening to a recording from Carter and Sadie. Even though, at each chapter it tells you who is narrating, as I got into the reading I began to get confused of who was actually narrating Sadie or Carter. That is the only thing that bother me in the book.

The book in general was a great adventure. Sadie and Carter trying to find their father and beat the evil Set. They come in contact with a bunch of Egyptian gods: Anubis, Horus, Isis, Serket, Thoth, Sekhmet, Bast and many more. Not only was it a great adventure novel but I got to learn about Egyptian mythology that I didn't know about to begin with. It was fun to learn along with Sadie and Carter as they learned about there heritage.

There were a couple loose ends at the end of the novel which makes me wanting more. Not to give anything away but Sadie and Carter are still missing someone that they must find and they still have alot to accomplish. So I can't wait for the next one!