Review: Scarlet

scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles, #2)

Publication date:  January 1st 2013

Publisher: Feiwel and Friends

Number of pages: 452

Series: The Lunar Chronicles (2#)

Genre: YA Science Fiction/Dystopia/Retelling

Source: Received as a gift! This has not influenced my review.

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Goodreads synopsis:

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison–even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

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Review:

You’ve never seen Little Red Riding Hood told this way before. And you certainly aren’t supposed to fall in love with the wolf.

But here we are.

Marissa Meyer is a storytelling mastermind – she has done some amazing setting up for the rest of the series. The lives of all the major characters from four very different fairytales are all cleverly tangled together, despite how different the storylines are. And I love every single character.

Especially Thorne. He’s so funny and I can’t wait to see him more in Cress. Scarlet and Wolf were so cute as well. Or at least Wolf is. He seems really awkward.

Unfortunately I didn’t enjoy Scarlet as much as Cinder. I thought that in comparison the story moved very slowly and wasn’t as interesting. Scarlet was mostly about Scarlet looking for her grandmother were as I felt Cinder went through a lot more. It took me a lot longer to read Scarlet than I did Cinder.

I absolutely loved the setting. France is one of my favourite places on Earth and I would love to read more stories that are set there. Although perhaps I would have enjoyed it more if a couple of more details specifically about France had been mentioned, without being told it was France, you wouldn’t really know where it was set. You could probably guess that it was set in Europe though. And to be honest, Futuristic France would almost definitely have very little in common with Current France, particularly with all it had gone through to get to Futuristic France.

One thing that I particularly love about the Lunar Chronicles is that the characters from previous books return, even though it is kind of a companion series in the way that each book is predominantly about someone new. But at the same time it’s really not a companion series either.

I’m so excited to continue on with the series. I loved Cinder when I first read it (constantly addressing it as a favourite) and now I love Scarlet. As I’m writing this review I’m almost half way through Cress and adoring it. I am completely gutted that I have to wait ages for Winter.

4/5 comets
Meteor shower. A great show!

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Goodreads author bio:

Marissa MeyerI live in Tacoma, Washington, with my fiancé and our two cats. In addition to my slight obsession with books and writing, I’m big on road-tripping, wine-tasting, and hunting for antiques. I’m represented by Jill Grinberg.

CINDER, my debut novel, is a futuristic re-envisioning of Cinderella in which Cinder is a cyborg mechanic. Release date: 3 Jan 2012.

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Review: Camp Payback

Camp Payback by J. K. Rock

Camp Payback (Camp Boyfriend, #2)

 

Publication date: April 29th 2014

Publisher: Spencer Hill Press

Number of pages: 304

Series: Camp Boyfriend (2# – companion series)

Genre: YA Contemporary

Source: Received in exchange for review. This is my honest opinion.

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Goodreads synopsis:

Alex has big plans for camp this year, starting with making it the best summer ever. Having fun and breaking some rules will get her the payback she wants against her parents and her ex-boyfriend. Because of his disgusting texts, she’s headed to a super strict all-girls school in the fall.

Then she meets Javier and revenge doesn’t seem nearly as important as getting to know the troubled loner determined to keep a low profile at camp. But Alex’s trouble-magnet personality and Javier’s need to stay in the background don’t mix nearly as well as their irresistible chemistry.

With her home life eroding under her feet and her last year of summer camp speeding to a close, Alex wants to make her mark on the world and squeeze every bit of fun out of her time with Javier. Too bad her old plans for revenge turn back on her just in time to ruin everything. Will she lose Javier too?

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Review:

These books totally make my summer.

Actually, that’s not true, since it’s not summer for me. But it apparently makes me feel like it’s summer.

Past Me who finished Camp Boyfriend probably would scoff at Present Me if I was to tell her that I would enjoy Camp Payback more. But whether she believes it or not, I defintiely enjoyed Camp Payback more. Why, you ask?

Because with Alex as a main character came her amazing story. I have always had this strange addiction to reading about reality TV shows and famous people. It’s quite strange really, since I’m not really into that stuff in real life, but I am totally addicted to book versions. The story definitely didn’t let me down. In fact I love how much it was incorporated into the story, pretty much the perfect amount.

But it isn’t all about Alex’s story. We have to talk about her as well. I actually liked her better than Lauren of Camp Boyfriend, which really surprised me because I wasn’t Alex’s number 1# fan in the first book. I probably am now though. She had this great, fun personality that really made the book. Of course we can’t talk about Alex without talking about Javier. Come to think of it, I will not be talking about Javier because I don’t know if I’d ever stop.

I’m actually a little concerned about how much I remember about these characters. It sounds like a good thing but this is totally out of character for me. I have this tendency to forget everything between books. I adore the little “Voted most likely to…” sections at the begginnings of these books. They make me laugh.

My favourite character of all time in this series has got to be Emily. Her happiness is catching, even through electronic pages. She’s just really quirky and fun.

My only issue was that I thought it was a little predictable. Sure, I didn’t predict a certain incident to do with Vijay towards the end but I pretty much predicted everything else. It’s not a major criticsm, however.

If you’re looking for a really fun, cute, Summer read, then look no further. Even though you don’t have to read these books in order, I probably would recommend it. I can definitely see this being a good book to take on your own Summer camp. I can’t wait for the third book!

4.5/5 comets
KABOOM! That only leaves one continent. One little flaw…

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Author bio:

J.K. RockJ. K. Rock is the pseudonym for YA writing partners – and sisters-in-law – Joanne & Karen Rock. After years of comparing notes on their favorites books and films, often dreaming up new endings to suit them, they decided to write their own stories. Their first Young Adult book, CAMP BOYFRIEND, is part of a three-book series. CAMP PAYBACK will be an April 2014 release, and CAMP FORGET-ME-NOT arrives in Fall 2014. Visit the Camp Boyfriend website at http://campboyfriend.net to learn more about the free novellas they are offering readers prior to each full length book. Individually, Joanne Rock is an award winning Harlequin author published in 26 countries and translated into 20 languages. Karen Rock writes critically acclaimed stories for Harlequin Heartwarming including her latest, HIS HOMETOWN GIRL.

 

Review: Mine to Spell

Mine to Spell by Janeal Falor

Mine to Spell (Mine, #2)

Publication date: May 5th 2014

Publisher: Chardonian Press

Number of pages: 291

Series: Mine (2#)

Genre: YA Fantasy

Source: Received in exchange for review. This is my honest opinion.

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 Goodreads synopsis:

Cynthia has always hidden from her father’s hexes behind her older sister. When her family gains independence unheard of for women, she’s relieved that her days of harsh punishments are over. But as her seventeenth birthday approaches—the typical age to be sold to a new master—death threats endanger her sisters. She now faces two options: run or meet society’s expectations.

For once, Cynthia isn’t going to let her older sister shield her from the problem. She’s going to prove to herself, her sisters, and society that her family isn’t a threat to their traditions. She willingly chooses to be purchased by a new master. A bold step that takes her somewhere she never thought she would go and to a man she might possibly fall in love with. With his help, she may just find a way to save her sisters while discovering how to stand up for herself. If she lives long enough.

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 Review:

Mine to Spell was a spellbinding read, both in the literal and the literary sense.

The best thing about the books in this series is the way that they capture the reader and are becoming notorious for not letting them escape until the book is over. Mine to Spell is set in a warlock world where women are possessions, their worth depending on the magic in their blood.

I’d say perhaps the main focus in this book, is Cynthia’s struggle as a woman with a lot of magic who wants to change things. She spends a lot of the book trying to change the mindset of both men and women and she does it in a risky and courageous way.

This review may be shorter than they typically are because I was geniunely too absorbed in the story to make the notes that I usually do when reading.

The other thing is, I swear the warlock who buys the girl gets worse and worse each time. Edward was awful and even worse than I thought he would be.

The reason why I am not rating Mine to Spell as high as I rated You Are Mine and Mine to Tarnish, is probably due to the fact that I was not as keen on Cynthia nor her story as much as I was the other characters. This is mostly just a oersonal preference thing, however. I definitely enjoyed the second half less than the first half, but all the same, I still adore this series.

I would recommend this series to anyone looking for a unique, out of the ordinary warlock book. I wish more people would read it because it really is fantastic.

 4/5 comets
A meteor shower. A great show.

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 Goodreads author bio:

Janeal FalorAmazon bestselling author Janeal Falor lives in Utah with her husband and three children. In her non-writing time she teaches her kids to make silly faces, cooks whatever strikes her fancy, and attempts to cultivate a garden even when half the things she plants die. When it’s time for a break she can be found taking a scenic drive with her family or drinking hot chocolate.