Thursday, June 27, 2013

Book Club: Night – Elie Wiesel

Night  (The Night Trilogy, #1)
Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania.  Elie Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were taken from their home in 1944 to the Auschwitz concentration camp, and then to Buchenwald.  Night is the terrifying record of Elie Wiesel’s memories of the death of his family, the death of his own innocence, and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of man.  This new translation by his wife and most frequent translator, Marion Wiesel, corrects important details and presents the most accurate rendering in English of Elie Wiesel’s testimony to what happened in the camps of his unforgettable message that this horror must never be allowed to happen again.

3/5 stars (liked it)
This was a very sad book as well as should be expected when writing about a concentration camp.  It still shocks me to think of how people were treated and what they had to endure.  Anyone that has survived that kind of brutality deserves to be heard and live out the rest of his or her lives in comfort.  The only thing I would have liked about this book was an epilogue of sorts to see what happened to Elie after the concentration camps.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Book Review: The Sookie Stackhouse Companion – Charlaine Harris

The Sookie Stackhouse Companion
Charlaine Harris has topped the bestseller charts and become a nationwide phenomenon, thanks to the unconventional, and otherworldly life of Sookie Stackhouse.  Now take a closer look at Sookie and her family, friends, enemies, adventures, and-of course-the lovers who set her world on fire…

Visit Bon Temps, the small Louisiana town that Sookie calls home, with a detailed map created by Charlaine herself, and learn the characteristics of the supernaturals who live there: vampires, two-natured, and fae.  Examine all the branches of Sookie’s family tree.  And eavesdrop on the private conversations between rival vampires Eric and Bill.

Also, enjoy the compelling, never-before-published novella “Small-Town Wedding,” in which Sookie accompanies her shape-shifting boss, Sam, to his brother’s wedding in Texas, where happily-ever-after seems very far away…

Exclusive interviews with True Blood creator Alan Ball and author Charlaine Harris- complied from fan questions-will satisfy your craving for all things Sookie, as will trivia questions, recipes (including Caroline Bellefleur’s famous chocolate cake!”, and a concordance to the Sookie Stackhouse novels.

3/5 stars (liked it)

I liked the map of Bon Temps that was included in this book.  It was fun to see the places that have been mentioned in the book and where they are in relation to one another.  The short story “Small-Town Wedding” gave us a peek into Sam’s family life and more of his background.  Sookie and Sam go to Texas to attend Sam’s brother’s wedding but of course things in the supernatural world do not ever go according to plan.  The rest of the book includes a summary of all the books, which I skimmed.  But at the end of each summary it has private conversations between Eric and Bill which I found interesting.  The rest of the book is interviews with Alan Ball and Charlaine Harris and other interesting tidbits.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Book Review: Gameboard of the Gods – Richelle Mead

Gameboard of the Gods (Age of X, #1)
In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims.  But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA).  Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.

When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger.  As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
I LOVE Richelle Mead and have read almost everything she has written.  So when I heard there was a new series I had to read it.  This book took a little while to get into because of the fact that it’s a whole new world.  New characters, new society (and classes of people), regions and it’s futuristic.  It’s a society that I can picture coming true.  I think Mead did a great job in the description of what kind of society this was.  This book features three main characters.  First is Justin March, he was exiled to Panama basically because of religion, which is unaccepted in RUNA.  Then you have Mae Koskinen, a beautiful but lethal soldier that gets sent to Panama to get March.  Also you have 16 year old Tessa Cruz, who is from Panama but gets the chance to go to RUNA and study.  Her background gives her a different perspective on the RUNA society.  I would have loved to have more chapters from Tessa’s point of view and it seems like she will become more important as the series progresses.  Also I love the supernatural element in that there are Gods out there looking for followers and choosing people.  Justin reminded me a little bit of Adrian from Vampire Academy & Bloodlines.  He loves to drink, he loves women and he knows he’s hot.  I can’t wait to see where Mead takes this series.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Book Review: If I Should Die – Amy Plum

If I Should Die (Revenants, #3)
I will not lose another person I love.  I will not let history repeat itself.

Vincent waited lifetimes to find me, but in an instant our future together was shattered.  He was betrayed by someone we both called a friend, and I lost him.  Now our enemy is determined to rule over France’s immortals, and willing to wage war to get what they want.

It shouldn’t be possible, none of it should be, but this is my reality.  I now Vincent is somewhere out there, I know he’s not completely gone, and I will do anything to save him.

After we’ve already fought to achieve, a life without Vincent is unimaginable.  He once swore to avoid dying—to go against his nature and forsake sacrificing himself for others—so that we could be together.  How can I not risk everything to bring my love back to me?

3/5 stars (liked it)
The conclusion to the series was good and really gave it an ending.  After loosing Vincent to Violette and having his body destroyed, Katie is desperate to find a way to get him back.  Katie travels to New York and confronts her past.  We also get to see more of Bran, the guerisseur, who learns more from him family through books that will help the bardia.  Also the Champion rises up.  Overall the book was good but I found it somewhat predictable.  


Monday, June 10, 2013

Book Review: Saved At Sunrise – C.C. Hunter

Saved at Sunrise (Shadow Falls, #4.5)
Nestled deep in the woods, Shadow Falls is a secret camp where teens with supernatural powers learn to harness their abilities and live in the normal world.  But Shadow Falls is facing a problem that could finally expose them to the rest of the world.  Humans are showing up dead, and rogue vampires may be to blame.

Camp resident Della Tsang, who’s still coming into her own vampire powers, is assigned to help find those responsible.  If she succeeds, maybe she’ll even land her dream job: working for the F.R.U., the enforcers of the supernatural world.  But when she sees her new partner is a hunky shapeshifter, things get complicated.  Steve, too gorgeous to be trusted and capable of seeing through her tough-as-nails exterior, knows just how to get under her skin.  And only hours into the mission, Della realizes rogue vampires aren’t the only threat she’s facing.  If she’s ever going to complete her assignment, she’ll need his help…but learning to trust him will be her hardest challenge yet.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
First of all, I love Della and I love that this is the second Novella featuring Della.  I love the sexual tension with Della and the shapeshifter Steve.  They are both on a missing for F.R.U., which is Della’s dream job and she does not want to screw it up.  The story was short but I love that we got to know Della a little more and her tough shell was a cracked a little bit.  I hope that we can follow Della and Steve’s story a little more in the next Shadowfalls novel.

Friday, June 07, 2013

Book Review: Dead Ever After - Charlaine Harris

Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse, #13)
Sookie Stackhouse finds it easy to turn down the request of former barmaid Arlene when she wants her job back at Merlotte’s.  After all, Arlene tried to have Sookie killed.  But her relationship with Eric Northman is not so clearcut.  He and his vampires are keeping their distance…and a cold silence.  And when Sookie learns the reason why, she is devastated.

Then a shocking murder rocks Bon Temps, and Sookie is arrested for the crime.

But the evidence against Sookie is weak, and she makes bail.  Investigating the killing, she’ll learn that what passes for truth in Bon Temps is only a convenient lie.  What passes for justice is more spilled blood.  And what passes for love is never enough…

3/5 stars (liked it)
I have not been too happy with the last couple of books, I feel like the stories have gotten dragged out.  So in a way I was glad that this book concluded Sookie’s story.  Although I thought Charlaine Harris tried too hard to bring back old characters and push away certain characters.  I think maybe Sookie’s story should have ended a couple of books ago.  Overall I think Sookie made the right decision in who she ended up with, although why it took her so long to realize is crazy.  Arlene’s killer is found and I really wasn’t too surprised who was behind it, although seems rather elaborate and eve Sookie points it out.  And as always I love the art on the cover.

Monday, June 03, 2013

Book Review: High Five – Janet Evanovich

High Five (Stephanie Plum, #5)
In her fifth high-octane thriller, bounty hunter Stephanie Plum sets out to find her missing uncle—and along the way smacks slam-bang into: a dead body, a nasty bookie, a stun-gun-toting grandmother, two very sexy men, an angry little man who won’t leave her apartment, and a Mafia wedding…

Jersey’s favorite bounty hunter has never been better!  With high hair, street smarts and plenty of attitude, Steph’s sure to nail this case—or risk life and Spandex-clad limb trying…

4/5 stars (really liked it)
I love to just pick up one of these books and read them, they are so fun and not very long.  Stephanie made me laugh so many times in this book.  Be it her car troubles or her trouble with men.  Also still laugh at the fact that she stores her gun in her cookie jar.  Her relationship with Morelli is so real and the way he is always after her and she pushes him away and then comes back.  I love how new fun characters are also introduced in each book.  This book was great!

Book Review: Messenger - Lois Lowry

Messenger - Lois Lowry Matty has lived in Village and flourished under the guidance of Seer, a blind man known for his special sight.  ...