Friday, April 30, 2010

READING : Flawless by Sara Shepard

Flawless by Sara Shepard


Publication date: March 15th, 2007
Published by: HarperTeen
Source: Bought
Rating: 3/5
Spencer stole her sister's boyfriend. Aria is brokenhearted over her English teacher. Emily likes her new friend Maya . . . as much more than a friend. And Hanna's obsession with looking flawless is literally making her sick. But the most horrible secret of all is something so scandalous it could destroy their perfect little lives. 
And someone named "A" is threatening to do just that. 
At first they thought A was Alison, their friend who vanished three years ago . . . but then Alison turned up dead. So could A be Melissa, Spencer's ultracompetitive sister? Or Maya, who wants Emily all to herself? What about Toby, the mysterious guy who left town right after Alison went missing?  One thing's for certain: A's got the dirt to bury them all alive, and with every crumpled note, wicked IM, and vindictive text message A sends, the girls get a little closer to losing it all.

Book starts with an amazing first chapter, in which "the Jenna thing" is revealed.After that, there is Ali's memorial, which brings the girls closer, promising to call each other as soon as they get another text, e-mail, IM from A.That is not the case, of course, as it seems that the years they spent apart cannot be that easily forgotten.So, the girls struggle to stay sane as they receive more threats from A.,this time more evil and dangerous.But as the girls struggled, so does the book, in my opinion.

The first book(Pretty Little Liars)was such a great lead-in for Flawless, but  unfortunately wasn't taken advantage of.

*spoilers*
Aria and Ezra's relationship is non existent.After a shockingly amazing fight scene between them at the end of Pretty Little Liars, in Flawless Aria acts like nothing happened, like they had just broken up, no big deal.She was so in love with him, she was willing to break the rules and have a relationship with him and now she doesn't seem to care at all, not even to try to explain to him what happened, that it was all a misunderstanding.

It was obvious that Toby was not A.because you,pretty much, already knew what Ali knew about him and threatened to tell, if he didn't take the blame for the fireworks.Thing is, why did the girls think he was A. in the first place?How could Toby be A. when throughout PLL, he was not even in Rosewood?It doesn't make sense!

What also didn't make sense was Aria meeting Sean for the first time and telling him everything that went on with her family.She didn't want to tell her friends because it was too private but she told Sean, the second she met him?Weird.And not Aria-like.

I liked Hanna's story,which showed that she pulls all these stunts not only because she is rich and spoiled but because her family is pretty screwed up and her parents' actions have hurt her deeply.*spoilers*

All in all, I don't think Flawless is a worthy continuation of Pretty Little Liars.It  seems it lost its attitude and its edginess, and I was left expecting more.I hope Perfect(PLL#3) makes it all better.


Beautiful Blogger Award

I, amongst others, have been given the Beautiful Blogger Award!




A huge, huge thanks to Caroline (Portrait Of A Woman) for giving me this award.Thank you so much, you're amazing!


This award has a few rules:
1. Thank and link to the person who gave you the award
2. Pass the award onto 15 bloggers you've recently discovered and think are fantastic
3. Contact said blogs and let them know they've won
4. State 7 things about yourself


7 things about me (oh, I'm so not good at this!):

  • I always read books when  I commuted by bus and subway to the university, and when I ran into classmates they asked me "Why do you read, what's the point?" Kids! 
  • September 8th : name day AND birthday
  • I lived in Lund, Sweden for 3 months, where I worked, as part of my studies
  • My dad lived all over the United States for over 8 years.I have tons of relatives in NY, but I still haven't managed to go there
  • I started drinking coffee at the age of 24 for the main reason to stay awake and study,so as to go on vacation during the exam period
  • I fell asleep during the Fellowship Of The Ring premiere. Unbelievable, I know!
  • I'm crazy about 16 Horsepower and Woven Hand's music







And now the bloggers to whom I'm passing the award(these are bloggers I've recently discovered, so blogs that I'm following for at least 3 months are not gonna be in there,sorry.(You know I think you're awesome anyway, right?)


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

READING : Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard

Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard

Publication date: October 1st, 2006
Published by: HarperTeen
Source: Bought
Rating: 5/5





Everyone has something to hide-especially High School Juniors Spencer, Aria, Emily and Hanna.
Spencer covets her sister's boyfriend.Aria's fantasizing about her English teacher.Emily's crushing on the new girl at school.Hanna uses some ugly tricks to stay beautiful.But they've all kept an even bigger secret since their friend Alison vanished.
How do I know? Because I know everything about the bad girls they were,the naughty girls they are, and all the dirty secrets they've kept.And guess what? I'm telling. ~A.


Pretty Little Liars is the first book in the Pretty Little Liars series, by Sara Shepard. 

Alison, Aria, Spencer, Emily and Hanna are BFFs.But something that happens in seventh grade, will change their lives forever.Alison is missing.In fact, she's been missing for 3 years.The remaining friends drift apart, each with her own personal demons.And secrets.  

In PLL, Shepard describes the teenage angsts of the very privileged and rich.Bulimia, shop lifting, sexual ambiguity, parents incompetence, racism, is amongst the subjects this book touches on.As the characters develop, we see them struggling with every day life and their long lost friendship, which, even though they won't admit it, long to get back.To top it all, a mysterious person named A., sends them texts and e-mails, threatening to expose them, as she seems to know all of their dirty secrets.At the end, the girls come together, in the hopes of dealing with this A. once and for all. 

I loved this book!Fast paced, full of romance and secrets and interesting characters.I know that some people aren't too fond of many characters in one book, but I find it exciting.Each girl has a completely different character, so you never get bored or tired of them.Besides, all the characters are seen from one POV, the writer's, so there is no confusion,whatsoever.  
If you like this genre, this is the book to read!  

Beware : This book contains strong language and some semi-provocative images.I am not a parent so I cannot say wether you should let your children to read this or not, but I thought I'd give you a heads-up.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

READING : Lord Of Misrule by Rachel Caine

Lord Of Misrule by Rachel Caine

Publication date: January 6th, 2009
Published by: Signet
Genre: YA Fiction, Paranormal
Rating: 4,5/5

In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans coexist in (relatively) bloodless harmony. Then comes Bishop, the master vampire who threatens to abolish all order, revive the forces of the evil dead, and let chaos rule. But Bishop isn't the only threat.Violent black cyclone clouds hover, promising a storm of devastating proportions as student Claire Danvers and her friends prepare to defend Morganville against elements both natural and unnatural.

The book picks up right where Feast Of Fools left off.Vampires are choosing sides,Amelie and Bishop fight it out, while the humans try to take advantage of the situation and think they can get rid of the vamps' tyranny once and for all.Claire and the gang split up, in order to each follow Amelie' s orders.So, we get to see a lot of Claire, because even though the books are not written in first person, not a scene is described without Claire in it.

Plot was gripping and the book had so much action that the previous 4 books combined, can't top.
The only thing that felt a bit off to me, was the constant moving to dark places and portals which opened and closed at will,leading to God knows where, which seemed a bit in cohesive and tiring at some points.
Character development is,in my opinion,what kept the book together and made it stronger.Everything changes and no one remains unaffected.Michael is still trying to fully understand his new self, Eve tries to handle everything with humour and a carefree attitude,all the while trying to protect her friends and being scared all the time about what may happen to Michael, and Claire,well Claire is the link that keeps everyone together,even though she is the youngest and the weakest.She has the burden of finding a cure for the vampires,as their condition is starting to deteriorate, and also of working for Myrnin.I personally adore Myrnin and I think it was a very smart move of Caine creating him and a great addition to the books.I can't really talk about Myrnin's character development,because he changes so much, every time he's is a completely different person,which I guess is what makes him so damn interesting and exciting.Shane,I think, is the one most affected by the changes, crossing over from a boy to a man in this book.He decides to cut all ties with his father, positive now that he is nothing more than a psychopath,but you can clearly see that he struggles with it, it hurts him a lot to have to do it.Personally, I felt that the "I love you" scene was coming soon,and I was terrified!But,fortunately,it was perfect!It was completely natural and sweet and Shane-y, I guess.So, where the two of them,Claire and Shane,go from here?

In a jaw - dropping final scene get ready to be stunned, as everything you know turns upside down!
::Beware of the huge cliff hanger in the end::

DISCOVERING : Dresden Files Series, Audio Books

I was never into audio books.When I read, I tend to get distracted a lot and I often need to backtrack and read some pages again.So, audio books, not much of an option for me.
But today,a friend of mine told me that the reader of Jim Butcher's series "The Dresden Files"(which I was ultimately planning to read) is non other than James Marsters!Yes, THE James Marsters.!So,1st audio book of the series already downloaded and ready to be listened to, I guess.Excited!!


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Friday, April 23, 2010

READING : Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch came along.With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment.But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure who to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Hush Hush is about Nora, a smart and responsible girl, who, during her bio class(ring any bells?),teams up with Patch, the mysterious transfer.After that day, weird things started happening to her,like seeing things that aren't there or hearing voices inside her head.Her life is forever changed.

Character development,in my opinion,is this book's only weakness.For starters,Vee,Nora's best friend is all kinds of annoying and stupid.As for Patch, well let's just say I'm not 16 any more!Nothing bad about being 16 or liking Patch,and I like them as mysterious and dangerous as the next girl, but  I think he overdid it with the bad assness a bit.Also,he seemed a bit mean to everyone else, except Nora.That's not something I like in a guy.
Nora, on the other hand, I liked, which I still can't believe because I am not into gullible or weak characters at all.But I took a liking to Nora because she seemed very down to earth and real.Her scenes with Patch were hot, their undeniable chemistry more than apparent.But still, in the end, you know deep down, that she deserves much better.
Story development was not bad at all.Who is Patch and what has happened to him is explained in full detail,not a shadow of a doubt, no questions asked.Stories about angels never, ever fail to impress.Adding Miss Greene (Darbria) to the story was also an excellent idea.Furthermore, it doesn't have an apparent conclusion(don't worry, it doesn't end with a cliffhanger),so it' doesn't feel weird going into the second book, feeling you already know everything.Fitzpatrick could have numerous additions to the story and still not look flat. What failed to impress me though was the revelation at the end, which was both obvious and far fetched.

Overall, I liked Hush Hush a lot, because despite its flaws, it still had me hooked till 3am this morning and craving for more.When a book does that, you know you hit gold!Plus,best cover of the year,hands down!

4/5
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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

READING : The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, "The Hunger Games." The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat's sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place.

Wow!I don't even know where to begin.This book has already so much praise, that my humble review can't possibly demonstrate its greatness.
Granted, at first it reminded me of Battle Royale a lot (only less bloody), but as the story unraveled,I understood that Collins' writing is indeed unique, and despite the two of them having similar stories,Collins's way of narrating is unparalleled.And it's the narration,I think,that is this book's secret and the reason why everyone loves it so much.Having little to none dialogue parts, in my opinion, the book's success lies with the writer's ability to narrate a story of survival and,practically, of war, for over 400 pages, adding just the perfect amount of romance so as not to seem either cheap or outdated and still making it readable by younger readers and very far from boring.Well, Collins did just that.And she did it perfectly.

The Hunger Games is the epitome of un-putdownable books, that everyone must read at least once in their lives. 

6/5

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

In My Mailbox (5)





::Thanks to the Story Siren for hosting IMM::

Not much this week, unfortunately :(










Friday, April 16, 2010

Pretty Little Liars Read Along

I Heart Monster is hosting Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard  read along.For more info read here.

And remember : Pretty Little Liars premiers June 8 at 8/7c(US) on ABC Family.













Thursday, April 15, 2010

THRILLED ABOUT : The Book Of Spells(A Private Prequel) by Kate Brian



Nobody knows anything about this book, except that it tells the story of the origins of the Billings House.
Awaiting for more info-even though I don't really care about the details.If it's Kate Brian, I will read it.Period.
(Cover has nothing to do with the rest of the series, though. Hmmm...)






Tuesday, April 13, 2010

READING : The Van Alen Legacy by Melissa De La Cruz

With the stunning revelation surrounding Bliss's true identity comes the growing threat of the sinister Silver Bloods. Once left to live the glamorous life in New York City, the Blue Bloods now find themselves in an epic battle for survival. Not to worry, love is still in the air for the young vampires of the Upper East Side. Or is it? Jack and Schuyler are over. Oliver's brokenhearted. And only the cunning Mimi seems to be happily engaged.

The 4th book in the Blue Bloods series, takes place a year after Revelations.And just like Revelations, it doesn't disappoint.
Action and emotion packed, The Van Alen Legacy is a book with an immensely dense plot, which will have you hooked from the very beginning.I know that the multiple-perspectives narration may not appeal to many readers, but I personally love it!You have a chance to learn the "real" story through everyone's eyes, and not from one person's subjective opinion.It's like 3 books written in one, and although it sounds terribly confusing, I find it strangely relaxing.Also, a lot of things change in this book.You'll see people breaking up, you'll see people getting back together, people finding new love,people coming back to life and people losing the most important thing in their lives...
VAL is, in my opinion, the most crucial installment, storywise, so far.So, if you haven't read any of the previous Blue Bloods books, don't even try VAL, because you will be completely lost.Having read all the previous Blue Bloods books though, doesn't stop you from being lost anyways,at certain points!The story is so perplexed and with so many tiny details you have to remember,especially historical facts,which seem important and may be referenced in the next books, that in the end you have to write some things down and take notes, in case you forget when you're reading the next one.I know I did!It'd be great if there was a companion or a guide of some sorts, which readers can consult when they're feeling lost.
All in all,BB series may have had a rocky start,but that's no longer the case.VAL proved that,as it's the best of the bunch so far.


4/5




Monday, April 12, 2010

BIRTHDAY CONTEST @ BOOKMAC

BOOKMAC's birthday is just around the corner and she's having a contest to celebrate!Her first International contest!Thank you very much,BOOKMAC!!!You're awesome!

Winners can get : Iron King by Julie Kagawa
                         Hourglass by Claudia Gray
                         10$ iTunes GC

What are you waiting for??Sign up here, the contest ends April 30th.


Sunday, April 11, 2010

In My Mailbox (4)



::Thanks to the Story Siren for hosting IMM::





The Van Alen Legacy - Melissa De La Cruz (which I'm currently reading).


Not the YAest (uh?) books, but I enjoy almost every genre so...







CRESCENDO COVER REVEAL



Friday, April 9, 2010

TBR list

My TBR pile is getting higher and higher by the day.There are tons of others I also want to read,but I would have to post 10 pics to show you all of them!Speaking of, sorry for the terrible quality, but my digi cam is out of batteries and I couldn't bother putting in new ones(lazy,lazy!)




READING : The Fetch by Laura Whitcomb

Calder is a Fetch, a death escort, the first of his kind to step from Heaven back to Earth. 
The first to fall in love with a mortal girl.


But when he climbs backward out of that Death Scene, into the chaos of the Russian Revolution, he tears a wound in the ghost realm where the spirits begin a revolution of their own. 
A supernatural love story set in Imperial Russia.


Let me start by saying that The Fetch is not a supernatural love story.So the summary is quite misleading.It gets a bit romantic in the last 20 pages or so.So, if you're looking for a love story, you're not gonna get one.
Apart from that, not being a love story was not Fetch's only problem.I was so looking forward to read this book, especially after reading Whitcomb's first novel which I absolutely loved.Hate to say it, but I was disappointed by this one.Even though it starts out pretty strong, with intense images of Heaven,they way Fetches live and what happens to one's soul when she/he dies,all described beautifully by the author,after Calder(the lead)and the children left Russia, it all went downhill.All those pages filled with endless scenes on trains and boats,as their journey to find what it is they were looking for was way long, were unnecessary and meaningless.After a while, the lines between reality and dreams/hallucinations, were non-distinct. You couldn't tell where exactly the characters were in time and that was very confusing and tiring.Also, except for Calder, Alexis and Ana were not developed at all and were always described as shadowing Calder.
Fetch,to me,was a promising book with a very imaginative story, which lost its way very early and inevitably fell flat.

2,5/5

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Short Second Life Of Bree Tanner : An Eclipse Novella

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Stephanie Meyer has announced that she will be writing another novel, well, rather, a novella. Although the new book will not be the fifth installment to the Twilight Series, it will be related.
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner will be available in June. The book will be a nice compliment to Eclipse as it tells the story about another vampire's life. Bree Tanner is a newborn vampire, and the novella tells the short story of her life.


I am soo glad that other people were like "Who the hell is Bree Tanner??"as well, and not just me.As for the book itself...meh.I am not trying to be nonchalant about it and pretend I don't care at all that is coming out.I mean, I will read it, but it's not the most exciting thing that is happening right now bookwise,at least for me.




READING : A Certain Slant Of Light by Laura Whitcomb

In the class of the high school English teacher she has been haunting, Helen feels them: for the first time in 130 years, human eyes are looking at her. They belong to a boy, a boy who has not seemed remarkable until now. And Helenterrified, but intriguedis drawn to him. The fact that he is in a body and she is not presents this unlikely couple with their first challenge. But as the lovers struggle to find a way to be together, they begin to discover the secrets of their former lives and of the young people they come to possess.
I bought this book when I was in London 2 years ago, Christmas 2008.I wanted to read it right there and then, but it's April the 2nd 2010 and I finished it yesteraday.It always seemed to me that this book is so good, that I have to save it for a special occasion. I wasn't wrong.
Whitcomb's writing is beautiful, rich, fluid and lyrical.The intense images she describes, become alive and full of colour as you read through the lines.Her characters,Helen and James, have incredible chemistry and the reader can't get enough of them.Whitcomb also poses questions of morality(are the lead characters' actions justified, even though their intensions were nothing but pure?) and of religious hypocrisy or rather, blind faith.
However, I still can't decide if it fits in the YA category.Well, even if I was 10 years younger I would still enjoy it, but I wouldn't fully understand it.Also, if you can't stand dark fiction or are very religious(ghost,spirit possessions,sex), then you better not read this book.
Overall, Certain Slant Of Light is a haunting novel that will have you thinking about it long after you finish it.I absolutely recommend it!


6/5


Friday, April 2, 2010

New Beginning

So this is it.Finally!An all-book blog.Unfortunately, all of my old book reviews written in greek,are  gone :( So what I did, was to divide my old blog in to 2 separate ones : one for books only and one for TV shows(mostly!) If any of you want to check that out too, here's where you should go : Mostly TV.  



I hope you enjoy both :)

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