Monday, May 19, 2014

Reviewing: Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

I read Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor and immediately wondered how they were going to find people beautiful enough to play the characters. Because I watched Catching Fire and The Book Thief before I read the book (in fact, I still haven't read them. I'm a bit terrified to read The Book Thief. I think my tears will contribute greatly to the Pacific Ocean.) I was able to judge them as movies, not how they compared to the book-- but it's awesome when you've read/watched both and can compare.

Like with The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. Comparing the characters to my mental image was pure awesome. (Jace and Clary were nothing like how I imagined them. Neither was Alec. Or Valentine. Or a lot of other people.) I watched Rubinrot (ahem. German movie of Ruby Red.) and loved it, even though there were a few changes. 

Anyways. I am going terribly off-topic. 

I figured I should review DoSaB (I'm calling it that because I'm lazy) before I forgot everything about it. The below notes are my attempts at remembering/organizing my thoughts. 

Apparently I think very little.
The beginning I liked. It was to the point, introducing the characters and the drama and the love interest. You get to know the main character fairly quickly. (She has blue hair. Naturally. Well. Not naturally, but naturally.) She's kick-butt. She's smart. She's drop-dead gorgeous. She speaks a mind-boggling amount of languages.

The love interest is fierce and intimidating in the eye of his beholders, but once I read in his POV (point of view), I felt like he was an awkward puppy. Weird I know, but very true. Instead of thinking of him as mysteriously hot, all I could think was: this guy's adorable. He gets more adorable as time goes on. Be warned. He's kind of obsessed, though. Like, seriously, dude. Stop stalking. It's weird.

(Also, they're apparently the two most attractive non-peoples to exist. One thing I didn't get is: angel girls are beautiful, right? Just as beautiful as the angel-dudes are. So why is Akiva so taken with Karou's beauty? Shouldn't he be used to it?)

The plot twist (well, the main one) was a bit hard to grasp at first. At least, it was for me. A few chapters were dedicated to explaining how it all went down, which felt a little weird. Yeah, it all made sense after I read them, but if your plot twist has to be that twisted then maybe it should be spread out more, not just all in one huge chunk that leaves you leaping between worlds. Worlds that also would need a few chapters to explain.

The characters were well-thought out, even though I felt like a couple had no purpose whatsoever. DoSaB does a good job of showing the good and bad in each side. The angels are awesome-- unlike most angel books, where they have no reason to be swooping down to earth to conquer and destroy, this one did. I was so relieved. I thought I was just going to be sitting there like... wait. Why are they leaving handprints everywhere again? (obviously, because their hands are fabulous and the world needs to admire them.)

I have one tiny complaint about the angels. Their names. I don't know if Laini Taylor was going for biblical renditions (which, actually, is the only rendition.) but angels don't get named Akiva. It sounds epic, but angel names always end in El. Raphael. Michael. Gabriel. Zaphael. (I could go on, but I won't, because I blanked.)

*After checking out angel names because of reasons I realized that some names didn't end in El. My bad.

Mid-book gets a bit... slow. Well, as slow as you can get with a potential war brewing. And then everything speeds waaay up, and I, for one, was a bit confused.

The ending leaves the possibilities open, and Karou mad as heck.

I need the second book.


Later,

Tansie G.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Reviewing: Gamer Girl by Mari Mancusi

I know this wasn't on my "to-review" list in my last post, but I had a lot of things to talk about, which usually doesn't happen. Usually, it's just "I liked it.", which becomes obvious in the vlog I did with Skylar.

Gamer Girl isn't my typical read. Usually, I'm all for futuristic, dystopian, apocalyptic... that sorta thing. But this was fun-- a nice break from all the traumatizing plot twists and villains. It was cute, light, and easy. And since I play a lot of RPG and MMORPG games I was pretty pumped to read it. (it also became clear that the author had played various games before by using words like "noob" and "tank")

After Maddy's parents divorce, she's stuck starting over at a new high school. Friendless and nicknamed Freak Girl, Manga-loving artist Maddy finds refuge in the interactive online game Fields of Fantasy. In that virtual world, she reinvents herself as Allora, a gorgeous elfin alter ego, and meets a true friend in Sir Leo. Maddy can't hide behind Allora forever, especially as a real-life crush begins edging in on her budding virtual romance. But would anyone pick the real Maddy, gamer girl and Manga freak, over the fantasy? This fresh, geeky/cool novel includes online chats and exciting gaming, and features Maddy's Mangastyle artwork.

It had a lot of clichés--the simple fact that Maddy has a secret identity immediately shows similarities to tons of books and movies.

Characters:

Some were good, some were tolerable, some were annoying. None of them were fantastic. Maddy was realistic, which is something I love to see in characters, different species or not, and she was relatable. 

The love interest was, in a word, adorable. He was shy. He was awkward. And when faced with the problem of figuring out Sir Leo's real identity-- well, I'll give you a hint of how predictable this book's "plot twists" were--I knew who he was gonna be within the first chapter. 

Things That Were Cringe-Worthy:

One thing comes to mind. THE SPEACH. Certain ways of saying things are better left in-game. Please, please leave them there. In some places, it got really corny-- to the point where I winced in actual pain.

I'd only suggest this if you weren't into deep plots and complicated characters. If clichés don't bother you and you like cutesy romances, then, yeah, go ahead. You might love it!


Later,

Tansie G.

Monday, May 5, 2014

2014 Goodreads Reading Challenge


It has been a loooong time since I did a book count thingy on the Goodreads challenge. I've read 13 books in that time.

Halflings by Heather Burch (Rated 3 stars. Reviewed here)

Marked (House of Night #1) by P.C. Cast (Rated 2 stars.)

Cloaked by Alex Finn (Rated 4 stars.)

Torn (Trylle #2) by Amanda Hocking (Rated 3 stars.)

Ascend (Trylle #3) by Amanda Hocking (Rated 4 stars.)

Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott (Rated 4 stars. Reviewed here)

The Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater (Rated 5 stars. Skylar Finn {from Life of a Random} and I did a vlog. most of it is her gushing and me being sarcastic. you have been warned.)

Legend (Legend #1) by Marie Lu (Rated 4 stars. Reviewed here)

Prodigy (Legend #2) by Marie Lu (Rated 5 stars.)

Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy #1) by Richelle Mead (Rated 2 stars. Reviewed here)

The Runaway King (The Ascendance Trilogy #2) by Jennifer A. Nielson (Rated 4 stars.)

Unravel Me (Shatter Me #2) by Tahereh Mafi (Rated 4 stars.)

Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days #1) by Susan Ee (Rated 5 stars.)


  • A review of Prodigy by Marie Lu.
  • A review of The Runaway King by Jennifer A. Nielson.
  • Possibly a review of Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi.
  • A review of Angelfall by Susan Ee.


Later,

Tansie G.