Publisher: Simon Pulse

Monday, April 28, 2014

Review: Killer Instinct by S.E. Green

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I received this book for free from Simon & Schuster in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Killer Instinct by S.E. GreenKiller Instinct by S.E. Green
Published by Simon Pulse on May 6th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Thriller, YA
Source: Simon & Schuster
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She’s not evil, but she has certain... urges.

Lane is a typical teenager. Loving family. Good grades. Afterschool job at the local animal hospital. Martial arts enthusiast. But her secret obsession is studying serial killers. She understands them, knows what makes them tick.


Because she might be one herself.

Lane channels her dark impulses by hunting criminals—delivering justice when the law fails. The vigilantism stops shy of murder. But with each visceral rush the line of self-control blurs.
And then a young preschool teacher goes missing. Only to return... in parts.
When Lane excitedly gets involved in the hunt for “the Decapitator,” the vicious serial murderer that has come to her hometown, she gets dangerously caught up in a web of lies about her birth dad and her own dark past. And once the Decapitator contacts Lane directly, Lane knows she is no longer invisible or safe. Now she needs to use her unique talents to find the true killer’s identity before she—or someone she loves—becomes the next victim...

Well poo! Where do I even start?

I guess at Lane. Her characterization felt as if it was based on a bullet point list. Let’s build a serial killer, shall we?
-She has to be quiet. Check.
-She should show a lack of emotion, especially uncaring of romance and sex. Check.
-She should have a dark passenger an internal “kill” itch. Check.
-She should be awkward, blunt, and kind of an outsider. Check.
-She should have a hidden dark past. Check.

So ok, that’s all things we “know” about her, but only because she tells us. Several times. In reality, she comes off as a flat, one dimensional character with a lot of inconsistencies in her personality. For instance she keeps saying how much she dislikes her sister and is indifferent towards Zach but when she’s threatened with their well being she’s heartbroken to the point of it clouding her judgment. She’s also so skinny her nickname is Slim, yet she takes down gunned men, rapists, and animal torturers by herself. Yeah yeah, she takes aikido classes or whatnot, but that was nothing but a weak attempt of added detail to try and make this realistic.

The plot itself is full of conveniences, randomness, and more unrealism. It felt as if Lane was living through episodes of a generic crime TV series where new cases land in their lap each week, then filed away when credits roll. Except… Lane is a teenage girl, not in the CSI. Let’s see: A quarter through the book this housekeeper we’d never heard of arrives at Lane’s house with a missing brother who was being brought over from El Salvado. Next thing you know Lane is a savior for sex trade victims, then we never hear of this woman again. Afterwards (or maybe it was before) we have a sudden mention of a fundraiser for a family who lost their house due to arson and… wait for it…

*Spider man.. Spider-Man does whatever a spider can*

We go through several of these randomly occurring crime-solving adventures throughout the story. Also, her nickname for her superhero persona is the Masked Savior. *Snort*

What else…
-A best friend who’s a hacker to such epic degree she even hacks into the FBI database. *High five*
-A mother and step-father both in the FBI. (How else would she be made privy to such confidential information. Aside from the best friend who finds all of the missing info needed, of course.)
-A genetic explanation for her killer urges. Because that’s how it works.
-An ex who comes into the story (again with the random) just to be annoying.
-A serial killer of 14 years sending texts to Lane which include txtspeak and things like “I GET IT. I’M ANNOYING U. GOOD.” when she doesn’t respond.

And drum roll for this next one….

“I whip around and take [their] head off with one slice.”


Nothing that this story introduces is even interconnected: Her job at the vet, her weird relationship with the doctor, the fling – or whatever this is – with Zach, his psychotic ex, her sister’s sexual endeavors… It all feels so out of place. Then the big reveal at the end, while I didn’t expect that person to be the guilty one (small props for that) it still left me bored. It was a good attempt at an exciting plot and the writing itself isn’t bad, but, aside from its poor execution, it lacked the psychological depth this kind of story needs. Overall, it was a huge disappointment.

I recommend you stick to Dexter.


2 Hot Espressos

Review: The Treatment by Suzanne Young

Review: The Treatment by Suzanne Young

Posted by on 04/21/2014 • 20 Comments

There’s always something nerve wracking about going into the sequel to a book that you loved. I was a huge fan of The Program so my hopes were high that The Treatment would follow in it’s awesome footsteps. I am saddened to report that it really didn’t. This novel fell so flat with me that I almost DNFed it about 3 times. But then I would think about how much I loved The Program and how since this is a duology this was the last book in the series and I just had to see how everything played out.

I’ll start this out by talking about what didn’t work for me because the beginning was just a train wreck in my eyes and then the novel started to get better…

Review: The Last Forever by Deb Caletti

Review: The Last Forever by Deb Caletti

Posted by on 04/01/2014 • 16 Comments

I really don’t even feel like I can effectively review this book because all I want to do is flail all over the place and shove it in people’s faces so they read it too.  This book was absolutely perfect for me, I picked it up on a Saturday morning and before I knew it I was halfway through and dreading the book ending.  This book is emotional, this book is funny and this book is engrossing.

We meet our MC Tess as she is grieving the recent loss of her mother to cancer.  She is living with her father and just going through the motions of day to day life.  One afternoon the two of them pack up her father’s truck and head out to finally see the Grand…

Review: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

Review: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

Posted by on 03/14/2014 • 32 Comments

Stories about Alzheimer’s disease are so heartbreaking. It’s such an evil, merciless disease that you can rarely see coming or do anything to stop it. When it hits so young like Jude’s father, it’s even more of a shock. Yes this is an emotional read, but it’s also full of happy moments, romance, and hope.

The Book of Broken Hearts is both an emotional foray into the effects of Alzheimer’s on a family, as well as a sweet love story. After her father is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s, all Jude wants to do is help him remember his happiest days. She’s hoping against all hope that fixing up his Harley will fix everything and bring him back. Finding someone to fix it on time and affordably is a…

Waiting on Wednesday (102)

Waiting on Wednesday (102)

Posted by on 12/04/2013 • 35 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.


My pick this week:

At first this blurb sounds like an eye rolling romance story, and then you read the last sentence. Whoa! It’s these kinds of gritty contemporaries that I love!

What are you waiting on, this week?


Review: Darkest Fear by Cate Tiernan

Review: Darkest Fear by Cate Tiernan

Posted by on 11/19/2013 • 23 Comments

From lack of excitement to a protagonist I despised to a very bizarre romantic arc, I was happy to be done with this one. To paint a quick picture: the only interesting part of this book is in the blurb.

Darkest Fear starts with an intriguing Jaguar Shape-shifting lore that, for the most part, is well crafted. The narrative when in Jaguar form is particularly clever. I was certain it was the promising start of an impressive series, especially when only a few chapters in, something monumental happens. Something ominous that proposes an epic mystery to come. However, once this scene passes we get a whole lot of mundane happenings, from Vivi finding a job, to her day to day life, to detailed scenes of her baking various things. How…

Waiting on Wednesday (90)

Waiting on Wednesday (90)

Posted by on 08/21/2013 • 42 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

My pick this week:

Whoa how creepy is this cover? Let’s hope it lives up to it! The blurb sounds promising, anyways! 😀

What are you waiting on?

Review: Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick and Suzanne Young

Review: Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick and Suzanne Young

Posted by on 08/05/2013 • 28 Comments

Do you ever wonder where you would have ended up if you’d chosen differently that one time? “What if?” is a question we’ve all wondered once or twice. How different would our lives be today? This is why I enjoyed Just Like Fate so much; it explores consequences of two sides of a coin, while showing that no matter the road that leads, we end up where we’re meant to be. For Caroline, both roads are linked to her decision to go to a party, not knowing it will be during the last of her grandmother’s moments. A quick decision, really, and things end up so incredibly different for her. Told via alternating chapters, we see how neither of these roads are easy, each coming with their own set of…