Tempest Challenge – Review for Tempest (Tempest #1) by Julie Cross

This month I signed up to do the Tempest Challenge. I have to read all 3 books in the series by March 31st and so far, I’m enjoying them immensely. Below is my review of the first book in the series and check back later this month to see my dream cast for it as well!

The Tempest by Julie Cross

TITLE: Tempest
SERIES: Tempest #1
AUTHOR: Julie Cross
NARRATOR: Matthew Brown
PUBLICATION DATE: January 17, 2012 / January 23, 2012
PUBLISHER: St Martin’s Griffin / Macmillan Audio
PAGES: 352 pages / 10 hours 51 minutes
FORMAT: Hardback / Audio
SOURCE: Won from A Dream Within A Dream / Purchased
RATING: 4 bows

Jackson Meyer is just a normal 19 year old guy in 2009. Well, as normal as you can be when you can travel through time. It’s not like in the movies where you have to be super careful not to change things. Even when Jackson does change things, everything is normal when he comes back. That is until he and Holly are attacked, ending in Holly getting shot. The panic caused by that moment sends him into a jump to 2007 and no matter how hard he tries, he cannot seem to get back to Holly in 2009. After exhausting himself with attempts to get back, Jackson decides to get comfortable in 2007 and see what he can learn about his abilities. The more attention he pays to his surroundings, the more he learns about the Enemies Of Time. It seems they have one goal: recruit him. They are hellbent on achieving that goal, even if it means slaughtering everyone he cares about. Jackson must decide exactly how far he is willing to go to save Holly because her fate rests in his hands.

I’ll be honest, this book has been setting on my shelf for a very long time. I’ve been interested in it since it came out, partly because it sounds good and partly because I love the cover. I’ve also been avoiding it for quite some time because time travel to save a girl sounds like a recipe for a cliffhanger from hell. I’ve been on that whole, I want to read them, but I’m kinda scared of them kick for a while. Then I saw they were doing a read-a-thon for March for the entire series and thought it would be a perfect opportunity to read these. Plus, you know, I’m on Julie’s street team so these really must be read.

It took me a few chapters before I could really get a hold on Jackson’s character. The whole time travel thing seems to be his main focus and, naturally, he hasn’t let his girlfriend in on this ability. That irked me a little. I get that he can’t go running around telling the world about it and that he hasn’t professed his love for Holly (yet), but I felt like he should confide in her anyway. Especially considering that he already told her bestie and is doing time travel experiments with him. Then she gets shot and Jackson does his farthest time jump to two years in the past and I really started to like him. He’s determination to do whatever was necessary to save Holly won me over pretty quickly. Then we start seeing his sister and learn about her heart-breaking death due to cancer and I just wanted to hug the poor guy. What I really loved most about him, though, was how normal he was. He’s an attractive, intelligent college boy who isn’t beating us over the head with his pretty face. He’s also a book nerd and that had me (and every other bookish girl) drooling over him.

Part of what I enjoyed about this was how realistic Jackson felt. Obviously I, a twenty something woman, have never been inside the head of a teenage boy, but Cross did a great job of making Jackson feel male without making it over the top. It is usually pretty difficult for me to really believe I’m inside the mind of a male character unless there is excessive swearing or innuendos running around his mind. That’s a terrible stereotype on my part, but it doesn’t make it any less true. This is one of the few times where the character felt male without descending to that level. Not that there is anything wrong with that level! My brain is forever stuck in “excessive swearing” mode. I also loved Cross’s version of time travel. Jackson can jump without changing anything or creating a paradox or breaking the space time continuum. I generally don’t do many time travel novels because they seem like a recipe for disaster. Not only do you have to keep up with all the characters in the many timelines, but make sure the rules you set for this power stay constant. The rules mean nothing if they are constantly being broken. We don’t have that problem here. This is time travel with a very contemporary feel, for me at least. The main thing here is Holly. Saving Holly, find Holly, spend time with Holly…and I’m a sucker for that. All the while, Cross is weaving in bits of information for later reveals and setting the ground work for twists and turns, while I’m just enjoying the tension between Holly & Jackson.

The mystery was also a pretty compelling reason to continue reading even when I was supposed to be doing other things. Who are these men that shot Holly? What do they want? Why can’t Jackson get back to his own time? What’s up with his dad? Is there anyone else on planet Earth with these abilities? Can someone explain them to me? I needed to know the answers.

The only reason this gets four stars instead of five is because I wasn’t in love with the ending. I know this is the first book in a series and I’m actually pretty far into book 2 already, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t want it to end well. Which is does end well. Everyone is alive and happy, but not as happy as I’d like them to be. I think we all knew how this would end, I could certainly feel it going in this direction. I’m pretty sure it will be fixed later, but it still left me with a sad face. I’d probably give it 4.5 stars, if the majority of places I will post this review would allow for half-star ratings, but Amazon and GoodReads have yet to jump on that, so I try to always keep it at even numbers!

Audio Notes:
Matthew Brown does a decent job of bringing all the characters in this world to light. There was nothing about him I didn’t like, but he wasn’t quite as awesome as my favorite narrator ::cough cough:: MacLeod Andrews ::cough cough:: He has good pacing, voice differentiation for different characters, and a generally good presence. I definitely plan on listening to more of his work.

4 bows
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Review for The Statistical Probability Of Love At First Sight by Jennifer E Smith

The Statistical Probability Of Love At First Sight by Jennifer E Smith

TITLE: The Statistical Probability Of Love At First Sight
AUTHOR: Jeniifer E Smith
PUBLICATION DATE: January 2, 2012
PUBLISHER: Little, Brown Books For Young Readers
PAGES: 236 pages
SOURCE: Publisher via NetGalley
RATING: 5 bows

Hadley Sullivan was doomed to have a bad day when she awoke this morning. She had one goal, board a plan to England to attend her father’s wedding to a woman she’s never met. She hasn’t seen her father in over a year and she is dreading this occasion, secretly hoping she’ll miss her flight and had a valid excuse to miss the ceremony. And, as luck would have it, she does miss her flight, by four minutes. This leads to a chain of events where she meets Oliver, a British boy heading back to England. The two spend the entire flight talking and suddenly they are split, both heading in separate directions. Hadley can’t get him out of her mind, even when dealing with the heart-breaking reality that her dad’s life is moving on with or without her. Can the universe bring them back together or was the flight a fluke and they both must now move on?

Hadley was a character I instantly sympathized with. What child of divorce doesn’t understand that resentment that comes when a parent remarries? Even at the age of 17, Hadley is desperately fighting with those feelings and the pure rage at her father for leaving them, for leaving her mom. And just leaving isn’t enough, he moves to another fucking country. Add to that that this is the day that refusing to go right, with being late to the airport, missing the flight, booking a new one which leaves no margin for error, and the massive fight she had with her mom before she left and I just wanted to give the poor girl a hug.

Then we meet Oliver, who is so charming and witty that you can’t help but love him instantly. His unwavering dedication to the task of making Hadley forget about her flying fears was so sweet, I’m surprised I didn’t melt into a swoony puddle. The fact that I listened to this on audiobook and the narrator read his character in a British accent only adds to that. He’s smart and funny, with just enough sincerity that his bullshit doesn’t come off as slick or annoying. He’s constant jokes about what he’s researching had me cracking up.

I think this book is so much more than I was expecting. I picked it up because it has an adorable couple and I was expecting something light and fluffy. I wasn’t expecting to be on the brink of tears throughout Hadley’s dad’s wedding because I couldn’t stop myself from feeling her pain. I wasn’t expecting to be so addicted that I forced requested my friends wait a few minutes extra before going to a movie so that I could finish it. I wasn’t expecting to fall head over heels in love with it.

I think part of my misconception was because of the title. The Probability Of Love At First Sight promises insta-love, no? But you won’t find it here and after reading it, I’m convinced it’s the perfect title. First, the L word is nevermentioned between these two. Some people imply it or state it outright, but there is no late declarations, just a deep-seated attraction and fondness. I’m not really a believer in love at first sight, lust at first sight maybe, attraction, definitely, but not love. And these two don’t just have that “Oh, I see someone so pretty and I have to have them now” thing going on. They spend a transatlantic flight talking and connecting. Their connection felt real.

So, all you out there worried about insta-love, don’t be scared. That isn’t found here. Neither are cliffhangers (because it’s a stand-alone) or love triangles. This is simply the story of how Hadley’s life was altered by that magical four minutes that caused her to miss her flight. I can honestly say that I have added all of Jennifer E Smith’s books to be TBR list and to my Amazon wishlist. If her other novels come even close to the awesomeness of this one, I won’t be disappointed.

If you are a fan of contemporary YA such as Anna And The French Kiss or Pushing The Limits, this tiny, fast-paced novel is for you. You will get so caught up in it’s magic, that you’ll forget the rest of the world, and really isn’t that what we all seek? To disappear into another world for a bit, a world where everything may not always be better, but we are left with hope?

****Thank you to Little, Brown Books For Young Readers for providing me with an eARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review****

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Review for Under The Never Sky (Under The Never Sky #1) by Veronica Rossi

Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

TITLE: Under The Never Sky
SERIES: Under The Never Sky #1
AUTHOR: Veronica Rossi
PUBLICATION DATE: January 3, 2012
PUBLISHER: HarperTeen, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
PAGES: 376 pages
FORMAT: Hardback
SOURCE: Purchased
RATING: 4 bows

Aria’s changed forever that night in Ag6. Her closest friend died and now she finds she’s been exiled from her home because she knows too much. With little hope of surviving, Aria decides to just pick a direction and walk. She’ll either be electrocuted by an Aether storm or eaten by cannibals or simply starve to death, but that’s no reason to just lie down and just wait for it. Along her walk, she meets Perry. He’s the outsider she glimpsed that night in Ag6, but closer up she can see how savage he really is. He is her only hope of survival. Perry has fought his entire life. He’s the brother of Tides’ Blood Lord and he desperately wants the title for his own. He’d never challenge his brother because of the damage that would do to his relationship with his beloved nephew, Talon. Then Talon is stolen from him and he needs Aria to help get him back. Something unexpected sparks between them that will change all their lives forever.

Aria was initially annoying. She was doing things she knew she shouldn’t and her friend gets killed because of her actions. Her actions once outside the pod greatly improved my opinion of her. She doesn’t whine and refuses to give up, especially when Perry expects her to. She shows just the right level of anxiety and fear, but still manages to push through and keep up with Perry’s antics. By the end, I genuinely liked her and that’s not something I can say often for female YA characters. Usually they start off bad and just get worse. By the end, I’m usually not-so-secretly wishing cruel deaths upon her because I think the story’s hero deserves someone better. Aria beats the odds though.

Then we have Peregrine. I felt sympathy for him almost immediately, with his desperate need to help Talon in anyway possible. That need motivates him to do things he’d never consider otherwise. Watching how protective he gets over Aria makes me see that swoon-worthy side that I kept hearing about on the blog-o-sphere. That’s when the magic really happens, watching both him and Aria overcome their prejudice about the other. Watching them both realize that the stereotypes in their head don’t really match up with the reality in front of them. Perry isn’t as savage as Aria first assumes and Aria is much more intelligent than Perry initially gives her credit for.

Then, there is the side character that sort of stole the show: Roar. He’s Perry’s best friend and he’s so funny and charming that you can’t help but love him instantly. He’s that character that always has a snarky comeback, but will walk through hell for his best friends. The fact that he is completely in love with Liv, Perry’s sister, even though he knows their romance is doomed to fail just makes me love him more. These two better get a happy ending. You hear me Perry? Make sure you find a way for them, consequences be damned.

……what else to say? I’m awfully glad that I didn’t start reading this until I after I was approved for the E-ARC of book 3! It’s not that it ends with a major cliffhanger, just a much more minor one with the main story wrapping up, but leaving the future open. It’s more that I want more and I desperately want to see the reunion between Perry & Aria. It’s funny, because I rushed through this so I could start Crash Into You by Katie McGarry because I just got approved for it and I am DYING to read Isaiah’s story, but, now that I’m finished, I’m torn on which to read next: Crash Into You or Through The Ever Night.

But Rossi manages to leave out the insta-love and love triangles, so I’m full of praise for this. Except that I’m pretty sure we’ll see a triangle develop in the next book, I’m going to pretend I don’t feel that coming.

This is a brilliantly written dysopian. It’s filled with perfectly flawed characters and a truly interesting story. It is just a little predictable, but somehow that doesn’t make me love it less. It’s a little slow to start, but completely worth the effort.

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Review for Slammed (Slammed #1) by Colleen Hoover

Slammed by Colleen Hoover

TITLE: Slammed
SERIES: Slammed #1
AUTHOR: Colleen Hoover
PUBLICATION DATE: January 4, 2012
PUBLISHER: Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster Inc
PAGES: 311 pages
SOURCE: Borrowed
RATING: 5 stars

Nothing has been the same for Layken in the nine months since her dad’s death. Now, after her mom realizes she cannot handle all the bills by herself, they are moving to Michigan. Though understanding her mom’s motives, she is still more than a little miffed about having to leave behind the only home she has ever know to go through a senior year at a brand new school. But when they arrive, she meets her sexy neighbor boy and they go on a spectacular date. Things start looking up…until they get slammed with an unavoidable truth. ****SPOILER****He’s her teacher, her goddamn poetry teacher.****END SPOILER****

Lake was a character I loved…most of the time. There were several moments where she spirals down to childish, immature levels that make me wonder what Will sees in her, but for the most part, she’s amazing. She’s smart and loyal and still grieving her dad, but trying to stay strong for her mom and little brother. With all the shit that gets thrown at her in this book, I’m surprise she made no serious suicide attempts ****SPOILER****her dad’s death, the fact that she can’t date Will because he’s her teacher, the other thing with her mom that I won’t mention because I know my sister will read this spoiler and I won’t spoil it for her…..
****END SPOILER**** But she just keeps going out, only have the momentary lapse into depression, which is beyond understandable.

My feeling for Will are similar to those I have for Lake, I loved him most of the time. There were several moments where he is overcome by his emotions and does things he shouldn’t and leads Lake on a bit without really meaning to. The difference is that I completely sympathize with him because I probably would handle the situation exactly the same way. ****SPOILER****I mean, he can’t be with her, despite how much he wants to because of the whole teacher thing, but sometimes he just can’t help kissing her when she is so close. But he CANNOT be with her because he needs his job to take care of his brother, a brother who has to be more important than his wants and needs, right? Caulder (the brother) should be the only thing that matters and he is desperately trying to provide him with a good life, even if it throws Wills plans out the window.****END SPOILER****

Then there are my two overall favorite characters, Kel and Eddie. Kel is Lake’s little brother, who has all the enthusiasm any child that age should have and he won over my heart pretty quickly. Eddie, on the other hand, is the girl that quickly becomes Lake’s best friend. Quirky and spunky, Eddie will have you wanting to know more about her crazy past while you root for her and Gabe to live happily ever after.

The writing has that amazing quality that just sucks you in after you get about 50 or so pages in. It’s impossible to stop reading because you want to know if Lake and Will are going to work something out, how Lake takes all the things coming her way, and if this is all going to end as happily as you have been wishing for. It really does though and I couldn’t be more excited to read the sequel. I think anyone who likes contemporary YA or NA should give this a try. It’s amazing and I recommend it to everyone.

On a quick side note, this is the first book I’ve ever listened to on an audiobook….okay okay, the first one was actually Obsidian, but this is the first but I have never read before that I listened and I have to say that I’m now in love with the concept. I have always been opposed to audiobooks in general. It just felt like a lazy way to read and I still gave it a try last year, listening to part of Crossed by Ally Condie and immediately felt redeemed in my opinion because that read had the worst monotone ever. Her reading put me to sleep and I didn’t want to try again. But I did. And It. Is. The. Best. Thing. Ever. Seriously. I can “read” while doing other things that I have to do like clean or do shower or exercise. It’s like reading for lazy people and I now know that a good reader makes all the difference. The one I listened to was narrated by Heidi Baker and she was great. If you are skeptical about audiobooks, give them a try. Seriously, what do you have to lose?!?!?

Review for Beastly: Lindy’s Diary by Alex Flinn

Beastly: Lindy’s Diary by Alex Flinn

TITLE: Beastly: Lindy’s Diary
AUTHOR: Alex Flinn
PUBLICATION DATE: January 31, 2012
PUBLISHER: Harper Teen
PAGES: 144 pages
SOURCE: Borrowed
RATING: 5 stars

I have been wanting to read this for a little while now. I adored Beastly (and several of Alex’s other works) and the idea of re-reading Beastly from Lindy’s perspective was hype enough to make me want to read it. And I wasn’t disappointed. This little novella is exactly what it’s advertised as, a retake of Beastly via Lindy. If you’re read Beastly, you already know the basic plot. Kyle is an asshat and Kendra curses him to live as a beast until he finds someone to love him. Lindy turns out to be that someone.

I loved seeing her side of things. She’s sweet and caring and really has a thing for Kyle, though she tries to hide it. She struggles to make ends meet, but you don’t really hear her complaining about her situation. School, work, tutor on the side, try to keep her dad out of trouble, and she manages it all gracefully. There aren’t many people who could in that situation. Seeing “Adrian” through her eyes was also interesting to read about. I loved that she knew that he loved her without having to hear him say it or be reassured continually that she was worthy of someone like him. Basically, she is a great change of pace over the sloppy, whiny, heroines that dominate YA.

Reading this did have a downside though. It highlighted all of the ways the Beastly film disappointed me. I like it well enough on its own, but when compared to the book, it’s fucking terrible. They changed so much, most of it for reasons I don’t understand. Yeah, I get that wearing a fur suit constantly during filming is a hassle, so I can kind of understand why they did that, though I don’t agree with the change, but changing Madga’s name? Changing Lindy’s appearance? Removing the magic mirror? So many senseless changes that he beauty of the story gets lost in it.

Review for Cinder (Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

TITLE: Cinder
SERIES: Lunar Chronicles #1
AUTHOR: Marissa Meyer
PUBLICATION DATE: January 3, 2012
PUBLISHER: Fewel & Friends, an imprint of Macmillan
PAGES: 387 pages
SOURCE: Borrowed
RATING: 5 stars

I was actually planning of waiting to read this until after at least the second novel came out because I was sure it would have a cliffhanger, but when a friend won an ebook copy and sent it to me, I couldn’t say no. I was right though, it does have a cliffhanger. Don’t ask me how bad of a cliffhanger it is because I honestly don’t know. When I was about midway through, I started looking at reviews online and almost all of them said that it had one of the worst cliffhangers they had ever read. I really didn’t think it was that bad. I don’t know if it is because I was preparing for the worst or if I am just (sadly) getting more accustomed to cliffhangers, but I thought the ending could have been way worse. I guess I could see how people would think it is so bad, but I didn’t think it was nearly as bad as the ending of Nevermore or Daughter Of Smoke And Bone. This one just ends with (for a not too spoiler-y explanation) ****SPOILER***the heroine in prison trying to figure out a way to escape and the hero in shock after finally learning what Cinder is.****END SPOILER*** Then again, I didn’t think the ending of The Hunger Games was too bad and I had friends who were completely outraged. All in all, though I am really excited to read the next novel, it isn’t one that I am willing to murder my own parents to get my hands on at this very moment.

I would summarize, but I really suck at it, so if you want a summary, please refer to other reviews or the book blurb. Thank you for your cooperation. I really loved this book. I swear, the more dystopian I read, the more I find to love. The only way I can really describe this book is take the Disney film Cinderella, combine it with the 20th Century Fox film Anastasia and set it in iRobot. Except the robots are called androids and they don’t try to take over the human race. My only real complaint is that it was a bit predictable. ****SPOILER****I knew the minute they mention the missing Princess Selene that Cinder was her. In fact, you can check my reading updates and there is a prediction for it. I also knew that the moment Cinder got home after being basically dragged out of the medical center that Iko would be dismantled already. ****END SPOILER****

Things I loved:
-The fact that it was love triangle free.
-I loved the characters. Cinder, Iko, Kai, and Peony especially. Cinder was completely believable and even though her actions weren’t always the right ones, I could always see where she was coming from. Iko was probably my favorite character. Come on, how do you not love a sarcastic android?!?! Peony was a sweet girl who doesn’t deserve her fate. And then there was Kai. He just didn’t come off as the typical prince character to me. He was charming and flirty and sarcastic and incredible resentful of the position he was in. But he also loved his people deeply and spent a good deal of his time worrying about them and was willing to sacrifice everything for them. That description sounds like a typical prince, but he just doesn’t feel like one to me.
-The world. This is a book I would love to see turned into a film just to see the atmosphere it occurs in. Maybe it is just me, but I love sinking into a world completely different than my own…maybe that is why I love romance novels so much. The buildings and the hovercrafts and the androids and geez, I wanna live there!

Things I wasn’t so fond of:
-The cliffhanger. Even though I didn’t think it was too bad, I think cliffhangers in general are bad and shouldn’t be allowed in stories.
-The predictability of the story. I didn’t see everything coming, but the main plot points, I saw them coming a mile away.

This really is an amazing novel. I am truly blown away by it and I recommend it to everyone. Great story, amazing writing, good characters. It really has it all.

Review for The Forever Girl (Forever Girl #1) by Rebecca Hamilton

The Forever Girl by Rebecca Hamilton

TITLE: The Forever Girl
SERIES: Forever Girl #1
AUTHOR: Rebecca Hamilton
PUBLICATION DATE: January 26, 2012
PUBLISHER: Immortal Ink Publishing
PAGES: 262 pages
SOURCE: From author
RATING: 5 stars

So let me preface this review by saying that this ebook was sent to me by the author and I will be sending her this review, which I assume she will read (::waves:: Hi Rebecca!) so I am rather nervous. I apologize in advance if this one turns out a little more awkward than most. Here we go!

I was a little excited to start this not only because it sounded interesting, but also because it would be the very first novel I read on Luna (my kindle). Yes, I know, I am a dork, but still. It is written in first person, which is always a plus for me. Once I started reading, I couldn’t stop, staying up several hours later than I should have knowing I was going to have to get up at 7 the next morning to get to work.

This novel centers around a girl named Sophia who has some type of supernatural condition that causes a constant whispering sound to fill her head. Sometimes it is overpowering enough that she can’t hear her own thoughts. Add this to the fact that the town’s group of crazy Christian’s is harassing her and the fact that she is struggling to make ends meet and I’d say she has a rather stressful life. After finally deciding she has had enough, she casts a wiccan spell to try to remove the whispering and it only makes it worse. Then her friend Ivory drags her to a club where she meets a strange, very attractive man (named Charles) and then gets chased through woods and attacked (though not by said hot guy). She passes out during the attack and when she awakes, she is thrusted into a world where vampires, shifters, and all manner of supernatural beings exist.

Speaking of the supernatural beings, I loved the lore behind them. I loved the fact that she doesn’t use the term vampire or shifter or were-animal, instead being more creative and creating new terms for them. I won’t try to explain them because I know I’ll just fuck it up, but I really enjoyed that. I also loved that Sophia’s relationship with Charles progresses over a period of time. It’s not that instalove that is so present in writing today. You see them struggle with their attraction to each other and then start dating and then say the L word, in a completely realistic time frame. This novel also had a twist that I didn’t see coming at all. I won’t tell you what it is because I am striving to stay spoiler-free (in this review at least) but I was really shocked.

The only complaint I have is the gaps in time. There are a few times where the novel just skips a month and while I know that if I want my main characters relationship to grow over a period of time, I cannot expect to hear about every moment of it, but I felt like the missing months could have used just a bit more description.
All in all, if you love paranormal romance, this is for you. I really enjoyed it and cannot wait to read the next one!

****Thank you to Rebecca Hamilton for providing me with a digital copy in exchange for an honest review****

Review for Forbidden by Syrie James & Ryan M. James

Forbidden by Syrie James & Ryan James

TITLE: Forbidden
AUTHOR: Syrie James & Ryan James
PUBLICATION DATE: January 24, 2012
PUBLISHER: Harper Teen
PAGES: 410 pages
SOURCE: Borrowed
RATING: 5 stars

I started this novel a little skeptically because it is yet another book about angels and that subject has been ran into the ground. Actually, I think I start every novel skeptically these days because I have been disappointed by too many books to start them any other way. I was, however, pleasantly surprised and I absolutely adored it.

This is the story of Claire Brennan and Alec MacKenzie as they, naturally, fall into a forbidden love. Claire is just a normal girl who lives with a somewhat unstable mother who moves them around every few years for no apparently reason. So when Claire starts having strange visions, she makes a point to not tell mother dearest for fear of being yanked out of her beloved school and away from her friends. But, unlike other YA heroines, she doesn’t keep this revelation entirely to herself, she confesses to her best friend Erica and together they try to figure these visions out. Alec is a guardian angel who is tired of following his higher-ups rules and wants to experience real life so he goes AWOL from the guardian business to try life as a simple high school student. The gist of it is they meet, fall in love, chaos ensues, and then cue the happily ever after.

But it is how Syrie & Ryan James go about making this happen that made me love this book. First off, I loved the dual perspectives between Claire & Alec. Way too many YA novels today are told from an annoying female perspective (ie, I am tired of reading through Bella Swan’s eyes), so this was very refreshing. I also liked the lore for this particular set of angels. One of the biggest pluses of this novel was the lack of the insta-love. Instead of Claire seeing Alec and instantly thinking “OMG, he is so pretty, I am now in love with him even though he hasn’t spoken one word to me…ooo..he spoke and he has a scottish accent! This is fate!”, she was more like “Mmm, new student. He is rather handsome but seems a bit too standoffish and he is definitely not going to distract me from my crush on Neil” and I loved that. Thank you so much for letting Claire & Alec grow to like each other. I also liked that when Alec does have to leave, she handles it well. All she wants to do is fall into deep depression, but she allows her friends to draw her out of it and though she is still upset, so doesn’t let it end her life. Alec also isn’t the typical leading male. He is sweet and shy and completely tongue-tied around Claire in the beginning and I love love love love love love love love him.

It really is an amazing read and I recommend it to anyone looking for a paranormal love story that you won’t be able to put down.

Review for The Alchemy of Forever (Incarnation #1) by Avery Williams

The Alchemy Of Forever by Avery Williams

TITLE: The Alchemy Of Forever
SERIES: Incarnation #1
AUTHOR: Avery Williams
PUBLICATION DATE: January 3, 2012
PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division
PAGES: 256 pages
RATING: 1 star

***This review contains spoilers***

I hated this. If I was reading this in a physical form instead of digital, I probably would have thrown the damn thing out the window and set the damned thing on fire.

I was iffy going into it but I read a few glowing reviews and thought I would give it a shot….I wish I wouldn’t have. I wish I would have went with my gut instinct and stayed far fucking away. I thought the majority of this book was tolerable, even enjoyed bits of it. I loved Noah and Charlotte. I like the world it was in and the idea of the incarnates. But that ending ruined any chance this book had to even get a 2 star rating. It I could rate negative stars, I would.

What, you ask, can be so bad that I will refuse to read the sequel even though I have very big need to finish all the series I start even if they suck? She kills Noah. DEAD. At the very end, after Seraphina (I love her name) thinks everything is okay and she’ll get her happily ever after, she learns that Cyrus isn’t actually dead, but instead he took Noah’s body. Now in another book this may mean that Noah is just suppressed, but not in this one. Avery Williams spends a good deal of time explaining that to take over a body, you must first get the original soul out of it. Therefore Noah is fucking dead.

No…that’s all I really have to say about the sequel. I do not want waste my time reading while Ms Williams paints herself out of a corner. Hell no. FUCK NO. Just plain old N-O.

EDIT: Someone has pointed out a legitimate possible way Noah is alive to me, therefore, I *MIGHT* read the sequel if Noah isn’t dead. So, anyone who has read my ranting review who reads the sequel, please let me know if it is worthy of my efforts. Thanks!