Monday, June 11, 2018

Book Review: The Chemist - Stephanie Meyer

She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that.  An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn't even have a name.  And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.

Now she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long.  They've killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat.  They want her dead, and soon. 

When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it's her only chance to erase the giant target on her back.  But it means one last job for her ex-employers.  To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous.

Resolving to meet the threat head-on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival.  As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of.

3/5 stars (liked it)
This book took me a very long time to ge into.  The beginning of the book was very slow and I think gave too much information on the main character, Alex.  It isn't until she meets Daniel that things really got interesting and then we meet Kevin and things really pick up.  I loved getting to know Daniel and Kevin.  Also loved the dogs in the story.  Overall it had a pretty predictable ending but I like the book.

Book Review: Elantris - Brandon Sanderson

Elantris was the capital of Arelon: gigantic, beautiful, literally radiant, filled with benevolent beings who used their powerful magical abilities for the benefit of all.  Yet each of these demigods was once an ordinary person until touched by the mysterious transforming power of the Shaod.  Ten years ago, without warning, the magic failed.  Elantrians became wizened, leper-like, powerless creatures, and Elantris itself dark, filthy, and crumbling.

Arelon's new capital, Kae, crouches in the shadow of Elantris.  Princess Sarene of Teod arrives for a marriage of state with Crown Prince Raoden, hoping--base on their correspondence--to also find love.  She finds instead that Raoden has died and she is considered his widow.  Both Teod and Arelon are under threat as the last remaining holdouts against the imperial ambitions of the ruthless religious fanatics of Fjordell.  So Sarene decides to use her new status to counter the machinations of Hrathen, a Fjordell high priest who has come to Kae to convert Arelon and claim it for his emperor and his god.

But neither Sarene nor Hrathen suspect the truth about Prince Raoden.  Stricken by the same curse that ruined Elantris, Raorden was secretly exiled by his father to the dark city.  His struggle to help the wretches trapped there begins a series of events that will bring hope to Arelon, and perhaps reveal the secret of Elantris itself.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
The book is from the three main character's point of views, Sarene, Raoden and Hrathen.  We meed Raoden as he becomes cursed by the Shaod and thrown into Elantris.  There he makes a friend, Galladon who has been in Elantris for a few months.  He helps Raoden and shows him around.  Raoden tries to learn all he can so that he can heal Elantris.  Sarene is a princess and has just moved to Kae and learns her betrothed is dead.  By the laws of the land she is considered married and a widow.  So she decides to learn as much as she can and help the people.  Hrathen is a high priest who is in charge of converting the people to his religion.  All is not what is looks like and all three characters learn things and in the end I really ended up liking this book.  The ending gave it an ending but also left it open.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Book Review: Honor Among Thieves - Rachel Caine & Ann Aguirre

Petty criminal Zara Cole has a painful past that's made her stronger than most, which is why she chose life in New Detroit instead of moving with her family to Mars.  In her eyes, living inside a dome isn't much better than a prison cell.

Still, when Zara commits a crime that has her running scared, jail might be exactly where she's headed.  Instead Zara is recruited into the Honors, an elite team of humans selected by the Leviathan--a race of sentient alien ships--to explore the outer reaches of the universe as their passengers.

Zara seizes the chance to flee Earth's dangers, but when she meets Nadim, the alien ship she's assigned, Zara starts to feel at home for the first time.  But nothing could have prepared her for the dark, ominous truths that lurk behind the alluring glitter of starlight.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
Started off a little slow and then I couldn't put it down.  The relationship between Zara and Nadim was great and I love how they are so alike even though Zara is human and Nadim is leviathan.  Also love the relationship between Beatriz (the other Honor) and Zara.  It was great to see Zara open herself up and start trusting.  Also I like how we really learn why there are Honors and what the Leviathan need from them in the first book.  I can't wait to see the adventures that Nadim, Zara and Beatriz have together in the next book.

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Book Review: Blood Fury - JR Ward

A vampire aristocrat, Peyton is well aware of his duty to his bloodline: mate with an appropriate female of his class and carry on his family's traditions.  And he thought he'd found his perfect match--until she fell in love with someone else.  Yet when his split-second decision in a battle with the enemy endangers the life of another trainee, Peyton has to face the idea that his future, and his heart, actually lie with another.

Novo, as a female in the Black Dagger Brotherhood's training program, feels like she has to prove herself to everybody--and she has no interest in being distracted by falling in love.  But when Peyton proves to be so much more than a rich playboy, she is forced to confront the tragedy that has broken her soul and closed her off from love.

As the two grapple with Novo's past and Peyton's present, another couple must contend with an erotic connection that is unparalleled--and potentially scandalous.

Saxton, who has had his heart broken, discovers in himself a deep-seated attraction to Ruhn, a new member of the household.  But will the other male explore the connection?  Or will he close his mind and his heart to what could be true love...and cost Saxton everything?

3/5 stars (liked it)
This book is what I always come to expect from a JR Ward book.  Two people fall in love but can't quite get there and they go through a rough patch but everything works out in the end.  I enjoyed the Saxton/Ruhn love story much more than the Peyton/Novo love story.  I enjoyed learning more about Saxton and especially Ruhn.  He was a background character since Bitty was first introduced but now we learn so much more about him.

Monday, April 09, 2018

Book Review: One Breath Away - Heather Gudenkauf

In the midst of a sudden spring snowstorm, an unknown man armed with a gun walks into an elementary school classroom.  Outside the school, the town of Broken Branch watches and waits.

Officer Meg Barrett holds the responsibility for the town's children in her hands.  Will Thwaite, reluctantly entrusted with the care of his two grandchildren by the daughter who left home years earlier, stands by helplessly and wonders if he has failed his child again.  Trapped in her classroom, Evelyn Oliver watches for an opportunity to rescue the children in her care.  And thirteen-year-old Augie Baker, already struggling with the aftermath of a terrible accident that has brought her to Broken Branch, will risk her own safety to protect her little brother.

As tension mounts with each passing minute, the hidden fears and grudges of the small town are revealed as the people of Broken Branch race to uncover the identity of the stranger who holds their children hostage.

3/5 stars (liked it)
I didn't like the characters in the story at the beginning or the book really but as I read more of it and got to know them I like it.  The story unfold from several perspectives, Officer Meg, Will a farmer and grandfather, Augie a middle schooler at the school, Everlyn a teacher close to retirement and Holly, a mother recovering from an accident in AZ.  Holly is the mother of Augie and PJ, both at the school and daughter to Will.  I was very surprised when it was revealed who the man was but once revealed it seemed like everything made sense as to why he was there.  There was also some side stories to other characters that were possible suspects.  Overall a great story.

Monday, April 02, 2018

Book Review: This Heart of Mine - C.C. Hunter

A new heart saved her life--but will it help her find out what really happened to its donor?

Seventeen-year-old Leah MacKenzie is heartless.  An artificial heart in a backpack is keeping her alive.  However, this route only offers her a few years.  And with her rare blood type, a transplant isn't likely.  Living like you are dying isn't all it's cracked up to be.  But when a heart becomes available, she's given a second chance at life.  Except Leah discovers who the donor was--a boy from her school--and they're saying he killed himself.  Plagued with dreams since the transplant, she realized she may hold the clues to what really happened.

Matt refuses to believe his twin killed himself.  When Leah seeks him out, he learns they are both having similar dreams and he's certain it means something.  While unraveling the secrets of his brother's final moments, Leah and Matt find each other, and a love they are terrified to lose.  But life and even new hearts don't come with guarantees.  Who knew living took more courage than dying?

3/5 stars (liked it)
I saw a lot of Kylie in Leah and a lot of Lucas in Matt, characters from C.C. Hunter's Shadowfalls Series.  I liked the characters, even the secondary ones.  I thought it was a good mystery as to what really happened to Matt's twin and how he really died.  Also at the same time seeing Matt and Leah's relationship evolve.  It was a sad story but at the same time a romance and mystery all in one.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Book Review: Nanny Returns - Emma McLaughlin

Ten years after the fateful night when Nan was fired, she returns to New York with her husband, HH.  Finally settling in to build a permanent home and get her consulting business off the ground, Nan's plans are derailed by HH's sudden desire to start a family-and her surprisingly strong resistance to the idea.

2/5 stars (it was OK)
So I didn't really feel like a sequel was necessary.  I felt like the first book had a happy ending and gave us hope for Nan.  This book totally ruined that hope.  Nan doesn't seem like she grew up at all.  She gets sucked into the family that fired her.  I think I would have rather read a book through Grayer's perspective and what his life has been like since Nan was fired.

Book Review: The Chemist - Stephanie Meyer

The Chemist - Stephanie Meyer She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that.  An expert in her field, sh...