Posts Tagged: YA

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

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Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1)
Tahereh Mafi
Release date: November 15th, 2011

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days. The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old-girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.


I was very excited to have gotten a hold of this ARC. I saw this book a while back and the cover first attracted me to read the blurb, which sounded fascinating. After reading it, I’m happy to say that it didn’t disappoint. It was quite the joyride: an exciting, fast paced dystopia. I’ve been a fan of dystopian novels since The Hunger Games and I’m always happy to find new gems in this exciting genre. I love the exhilaration, the emotional struggle and high speed survival that books like these are filled with.

Juliette has never been able to touch someone without inflicting pain, or worse. When her parents didn’t know what to do with her, they send her away to be locked up an institution. It’s a dystopian world, not so far in the future, where what’s called The Reestablishment is trying to take over, and they want Juliette’s power for themselves.

At first I wasn’t really fond of all the striked out thoughts Juliette was having. They were distracting and I felt like I wanted to skip over them, but worry not, they dissipate towards the middle when she starts getting more rational. I do admit that it does help make her seem frenzied. Which is to be expected from someone with her ability. Being locked up definitely did not help her sanity either. So, though it’s an annoying format, it served it’s purpose.

The writing was respectable. I saw a few minor plot holes here and there, but for a debut author – a 23 year old nonetheless – I was impressed. I found Juliette’s situation to be very well portrayed. You could see that the stress of her situation affected her mentally as well as physically. It was realistic and true. The romance was a bit fast though; your typical YA love at first sight deal. But I looked to my inner teenage lust full heart and I okayed it. 🙂

I enjoyed the fast pace of this book. Weeks go by in a flash of a few pages. This doesn’t always work in novels, but it sets the mood in this one. It does seem to go by faster than expected a time or two, but the story isn’t affected by it and we get to move along with the plot instead of dwindling on idle facts. Towards the end, the story takes on a more casual pace and the world building get more elaborate. We delve deeper in the superpowers and conspiracies of their new age. The second novel should be pretty amazing!

4/5 hot espressos


Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Posted by on 09/19/2011 • 4 Comments

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar ChildrenRansom RiggsFirst published June 7th, 2011

A mysterious island.An abandoned orphanage.A strange collection of very curious photographs.It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive. A spine-tingling fantasy…

Review: White Cat by Holly Black

Posted by on 09/19/2011 • 5 Comments

White Cat (Curse Workers, #1)Holly BlackFirst published January 1st, 2010

Cassel comes from a family of curse workers — people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they’re all mobsters, or con artists. Except for Cassel. He hasn’t got the magic touch, so he’s an outsider, the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail — he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.Ever since, Cassel has carefully built up a façade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his façade starts crumbling when he starts sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something….

Review: Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Posted by on 09/18/2011 • 2 Comments

Graceling (The Seven Kingdoms, #1)Kristin Cashore First published October 1st, 2008

Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight—she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug.When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change. She never expects to become Po’s friend. She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace—or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away . . . a secret that could destroy all seven…

Review: Thyla by Kate Gordon

Posted by on 09/15/2011 • 1 Comment

ThylaKate GordonFirst published April 1st, 2011

My name is Tessa. I am strong. I am brave. I do not cry. These are the only things I know for certain.

I was found in the bush, ragged as a wild thing. I have no memory – not even of how I got the long, striping slashes across my back. They make me frightened of what I might remember.

The policewoman, Connolly, found me a place in a boarding school and told me about her daughter, Cat, who went missing in the bush.

I think there is a connection between Cat, me, and the strange things going on at this school. If I can learn Cat’s story, I might discover my own – and stop it happening again.

After seeing…

Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Posted by on 09/14/2011 • 2 Comments

Anna and the French KissStephanie PerkinsFirst published December 2nd, 2010

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris – until she meets Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he’s taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near – misses end with the French kiss Anna – and readers – have long awaited?

Awwwww *le sigh*. What an adorably romantic…

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Posted by on 09/13/2011 • 3 Comments

Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare BlakeFirst published August 30th, 2011

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead. So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay. When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn’t expect anything outside of the ordinary: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like…

Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

Posted by on 09/12/2011 • 7 Comments

Divergent (Divergent, #1) Veronica Roth First published May 1st, 2011

Beatrice “Tris” Prior has reached the fateful age of sixteen, the stage at which teenagers in Veronica Roth’s dystopian Chicago must select which of five factions to join for life. Each faction represents a virtue: Candor, Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity, and Erudite. To the surprise of herself and her selfless Abnegation family, she chooses Dauntless, the path of courage. Her choice exposes her to the demanding, violent initiation rites of this group, but it also threatens to expose a personal secret that could place in mortal danger. Veronica Roth’s young adult Divergent trilogy launches with a captivating adventure about love and loyalty playing out under most extreme circumstances.

I don’t know where to begin with this review. It was…