Devourer of all books fantasy
This is the first book in the Hex Hall trilogy. It was a cute YA paranormal read. There isn’t a lot special here but the book was generally well written and well done. I especially enjoyed Sophie’s quirky sense of humor.
I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was very well done. Sophie sounds exactly like I would imagine her to. The narrator did an excellent job of distinguishing between character voices.
Sophie Mercer is a witch and when a love spell she does for a friend goes horribly wrong, her dad decides her punishment will be to transfer her to Hex Hall. Hex Hall is a school of magical deliquents, those students of non-human nature who just can’t seem to control their powers. While there Sophie gets involved in a mystery where other Dark Witches are being attacked. If Sophie can’t figure out what’s going on, and quickly, then she might be the next witch attacked.
This is a cute young adult read about a school full of witches, faeries, vampires and werewolves. It was a fun quick read and the characters were engaging. There was a good mystery to be solved, although it was pretty predictable.
Sophie kind of makes the story. She has an absolutely quirky and cutting sense of humor that gets her into trouble a lot. Her roommate, a vampire addicted to hot pink, adds even more fun to the mix.
This is a pretty typical YA paranormal read. Sophie has to deal with the “mean girl” group, the only twist being that these mean girls want her to join their coven. Sophie also ends up falling for the hottest guy in school, the totally untouchable Archer Cross. Sophie and Archer had pretty good chemistry together and it was cute to watch them get to know each other.
The vamps, weres, and witches are pretty typical...there’s nothing all that special about them in this world. The world-building in general isn’t all that great. This book is driven more by the mystery behind all of the witches being attacked. Much of the book is also dedicated to Sophie getting settled in her new school and learning more about being a witch.
Overall a fun and quick paranormal YA read. While there wasn’t a ton that was super creative here, it was still and cute and fun read. This is just a light book to read quickly. The characters are engaging and well done and there is a good mystery here to be solved. I will probably check out the second book in the series, mainly because Sophie is just so much fun and so quirky. Recommended to fans of YA paranormal books.
This is the first book in the Honorverse: Stephanie Harrinton by Weber; a sub-series in his Honorverse series aimed at YA readers. The second book in this series, Fire Season, is due out October 2012.
The audiobook was very well done, with excellent narration and good distinction between character voices. It was a good book to listen to.
Stephanie has been forced to move to the relatively unpopulated planet of Sphinx when her scientist parents acquire land there. During one of her hanger flights Stephanie crashes into the forest only to be saved by another sentient species on the planet which she nicknames tree-cats. She bonds with a tree-cat she calls Lionheart and a struggle ensues to ensure the safety of this new species. The book switches between Stephanie’s and Lionheart’s/Climbs Quickly’s viewpoints. This worked well for the story and gave us an excellent glimpse into both sentient life forms (humans and treecats).
I listened to Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi earlier this year and you can’t help by think of that book when you read this one. To be honest this book is a less action-packed, less humorous Fuzzy Nation aimed at a YA audience. It is a decently done YA science fiction novel, but I felt like I was reading a watered down version of Fuzzy Nation.
This book does addresses some interesting issues like discovering and exploiting sentient species on a non-earth planet. Unfortunately the story is very simple and predictable. Things are incredibly very over-explained and reiterated again and again. The description is so repetitive and things are explained in such minute detail that the whole story felt very dumbed down.
Stephanie makes an excellent heroine. She is smart, funny, honest, and brave. The relationship she has with her parents is also really well done. You can tell that their family relationship is based on mutual respect; it’s a family anyone would be happy to be part of. Lionheart and his clan are similarly respectful and reasonable with each other.
There were things that puzzled me though; like why was language such a barrier for so long between the humans and the tree cats? Stephanie and Lionheart are friends for over a year and they still have trouble communicating. You would think if both species are so intelligent then they would eventually start using hand signals or writing to communicate. This was just a major gap in logic that bothered me throughout the story.
Things are fairly well tied up at the end of the book, and although this is clearly not a stand alone novel, it could be read as such.
Overall a decent if somewhat flawed YA science fiction novel. I enjoyed the heroine and her family dynamic, the tree cats were also interesting. The story was very simplistic though and things were re-iterated to the point where the story felt a bit dumbed down. Also if you have read Fuzzy Nation by Scalzi then you have already read a very similar story that is funnier and more action packed than this one. I would tentatively recommend to middle grade or YA sci-fi fans; I don’t think most adults will find much here to interest them. I would highly recommend reading John Scalzi’s Fuzzy Nation instead of this book to explore similar topics.
I listened to this on audiobook. The second book, Until I Die, has already released and the final book in the series, If I Should Die, is scheduled for a May 2013 release. It was a very well done paranormal book that’s Parisian setting and creative take on zombies make it something special. While I loved the beginning of the book, I wasn’t as enamoured with the ending.
Kate and her sister Georgia move to Paris to live with their grandparents after their parents are killed in a car crash. Kate is struggling with her grief and drifting around reading books in cafes when she meets Vincent. Vincent is beautiful and somehow different from everyone she knows. Her and Vincent start to spend time together, but then Vincent’s best friend is killed in front of Kate and Vincent doesn’t seem to care. When Kate sees Vincent’s friend walking around the next day she suspects that Vincent and his friends aren’t as human as they seem.
I loved the idea behind the zombies in this book, it was fascinating and super creative. Basically Vincent and his “family” are Revenants. These are humans that die when sacrificing themselves in place of someone else, because of this sacrifice they rise as Revenants. The Revenants have an urge to sacrifice themselves to save humans. They do this over and over to help save humans’ lives. The rules behind how the Revenants work are interesting and really well done.
Kate makes an excellent and down to earth heroine. She is struggling with grief but doing her best to dig her way out. There are multiple places in this book where her sadness just about broke my heart. She really loves art so there is a lot of art-talk in this book.
Vincent is your typical super sensitive, yet dark and mysterious type. He is sensitive and romantic to the extreme. There were parts of the book where I felt that he was too perfect and so syrupy sweet that it was a little sickening. Still the romance between Kate and Vincent is touching and full of mutual respect; I really enjoyed it.
The setting is awesome. The whole book takes place in Paris. I loved hearing about the beautiful sights and it made me want to travel back there to find all the beautiful little nooks and crannies that Kate and Vincent found. I wish more YA paranormal books were set in international locations; they are just so fun to read and learn about.
The story focuses mostly on Kate discovering what Vincent is and how to deal with it than anything else. This is more of a mystery type book than an action-based one. Although, the Revenants do have enemies and there is a pretty well done fight scene between the two groups at one point in the book.
The book is well written and engaging. I ended up enjoying the beginning of the book more than the end. Plum did an excellent job of building and unfolding the mystery about Vincent. The ending where they fight the enemy Revenants felt a bit forced and rushed.
As you might imagine there is a heavy theme of death throughout the book; death is very prevalent in Kate and Vincent’s life. So those sensitive to the topic of death be warned.
Overall an excellent YA paranormal. This book presents a very creative take on zombies and I enjoyed it a lot. I also enjoyed the down to earth heroine, the sweet respect based relationship between Kate and Vincent, and the exotic Parisian setting. I enjoyed the beginning of the book more than the end, the ending felt a bit rushed. I can’t wait to see what the next book holds for this truly bizarre couple. Highly recommended to those who love YA paranormal reads without cliched love triangles and insta-love.
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Pandemonium had a completely different feel than Delirium, the first book in the series. The story, all told from Lena’s perspective, alternates between different times. This was a little jarring to me in the beginning but I eventually got the hang of it. That aside, I loved it. Couldn’t put it down. Ate it up with a spoon. It Leaves you on a total cliffhanger too. The kind that makes you scream, “WHY DO I HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER YEAR FOR THE NEXT ONE?! AHH!” So. Good.
Contrary to Delirium, Lena is a little more rough around the edges in Pandemonium. After escaping from the police in Delirium, she is now on the run and fighting for her survival in the ‘wilds,’ as it’s called in the series. On top of that, she is recovering from the abrupt separation from Alex, the boy she loved so much that she ran away from everything she knew. She meets up with a resistance group living in the wilds. The story switches between Lena finding her way to the group and living with them to a future time when she is a member of the resistance.
Pandemonium is definitely grittier than Delirium. There is way more action and conflict. Alternating from Lena’s past and present kept the pace moving and made the book completely unpredictable. I really had no idea what was going to happen and this made the book difficult to put down. Out of the two books, I still think I liked Delirium more, but Pandemonium is still fantastic. It’s just different than the first.
I will leave this review short and simple because I know readers of Delirium will pick up Pandemonium at break neck speed. I know I did. If you haven’t read Delirium, you should.