Girl Writing

Girl Writing

I'm an avid reader of reviews, and will read most any genre. I enjoy chatting with other readers about their reviews and often find my next read from them.

Beware the Ides of March

 

The Ides, as marked by the Romans, was associated with the 15th of the month on their Kalends, which became our Calendar.

Julius Caesar was assassinated on the Ides of March in 44 BC

Amazingly Original

 

 

Where the Futures End is five interconnected stories with different characters that are bound by the same choices, though their worlds keep changing  as each story moves bit by bit into future. A future where technology turns everyone's life into a reality show.

 

First, the writing, oh the writing!  The words on each page just carried me away. Now, the story. It's like peaking behind a curtain as each scene moves into another and keeps the reader questioning, what next? Is what Dylan seeing real or imaginary? Is it the product of a troubled teen mind,  or a crushing desire to go back to a place where he felt loved, normal and accepted that causes him to see the things he sees and feels.

 

Or Brixney, a young woman who is living under dire circumstances and under the deceptive view of cameras where everyone is part of a global feed and where many jostle for attention by providing the masses with exhilarating or shocking feed in order to gain lucrative advertising contracts. That's when something incredible happens, something that changes everything and gives the reader a clue about the reality of Dylan's fantasies and what it means for the future. (No Spoilers here, but it is jaw dropping)

But the best part for me was the writing. It is off the chart original, and the story is one to think about as you read and reread just to make sure you didn't miss anything.

HAPPY WORLD BOOK DAY!

Happy World Book Day, Ya'll  :o)

 

A Stunning and Intelligent Tour de Force
Red Rising - Pierce Brown

 

 

 Stunning and Intelligent, Red Rising is certainly the Best Science Fiction Novel in Years.

 

This novel takes place in the far distant future. Space has been conquered. And humans have devised a way to alter DNA, to change humans into hybrids. Humans are caste in different roles and functions; they are designated by their colors and distinguishing characteristics. Colors cannot change or ascend the hierarchy.

 

Darrow is a Red, the lowest of castes, a mining Hell Diver who digs dangerously deep for the Helium-3 needed for terra forming Mars. He lives beneath the surface of Mars, as he and the Reds have done for seven hundred years. They are nothing more than slaves to the ruling class, the Golds, who live in luxury on the Terra formed surface of Mars.

 

The World building in this novel is spectacular, utterly believable.

 

The arrogance of the Ruling Class is underpinned with all things Roman, from their mythology to their military philosophy and strategies. Peirce Brown’s weaving and interlacing of the ancient Romanesque world is astounding.

 

It is a brutal world where justice is swift and merciless, and politics is rife with treachery.

This is the world Darrow is thrust into after the murderous and merciless whipping and hanging of his lovely and brave young wife, Eco, all because she longed to see the stars, because she sang a song of freedom.

 

Darrow is remade into a Peerless Gold. His mission for the Sons of Ares, the revolutionaries, is to win at the Institute, to become a Fleet Officer and take down the Society of the Gold’s.

 

Red Rising is a tour de force which combines the philosophy of the ancient Roman world and which resonates uncannily with the political forces at work in the modern world.

Red Rising is a stunning novel, intelligent and brutal in its telling. Peirce Brown is a writer to watch and to love.

What We Do for Love
The Love That Split the World - Emily Henry

 

 The Love That Split the World, by Emily Henry

 

Five stars for the language, which is stunningly beautiful at times,

and only two Stars for the Story which I had some issues with :o-(

 

Natalie Cleary, an adopted Native American, has been visited by the spectral vision of  a woman she calls Grandmother for most of her life. This grandmother tells her stories, allegories perhaps, or heritage retellings. Natalie is different than other girls, she has a gift of sorts, an ability to see and be in different dimensions. She is one of the Others, those who can see  and be in the beyond the here and now. But she never knows when this will happened and that, I feel, is quite unfair. The unseen, the one of greatest Love doesn’t seem to realize just how unfair it is to send a young girl on mind trips.

 

Somehow, Natalie copes, until the day Grandmother tells her she has 3 months to save him. And who him is, is the mystery. Though Natalie assumes it’s Matt at first, her ex boy friend who loves her to the point of instability. Then there’s Beau, one of the Others with the same skill who she loves intensely though she barely comes to know him, though he’s there every time she tries to figure things out.

 

Ultimately, through much goings on and confusion between the two as to what to do, Natalie comes to realize that in order to save the boy, no spoilers here, she must offer herself as sacrifice so that the world will not be split, or something  like that which I feel is never made quite clear enough.  Here is where I have a problem. Love is not about sacrifice, it is never about sacrifice. It is about giving love and receiving love. Period. My opinion.

This is where a biblical sort of allegory takes place. God is the perfect love, Natalie comes to understand and gives of herself freely. Of her life. Though her sacrifice is met with Love and her life is redeemed. End of Story.  I feel there was some confusion in the story, though growing up and finding out about life, and loss and where we fit into this confusing place we call life, is difficult I grant. Haven’t we all been through it? Most of us come out unscathed, or mostly so.

 

In summary, The Love That Split the World, has many merits. Language and its beauty is one of them. A story about growing up and facing life is another. But love, the kind that grows between two people, is not achieved in an instant.  And self sacrifice for love, to offer oneself as a lamb is something I’d rather not impose on those who are coming of age. They have enough to deal with as it is. So I don’t recommend this for teens.

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Heart Strings and Beautiful Music
Maybe Someday - Colleen Hoover

Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover is one of her best. Beautiful lyrics and heartwarming story.

 

The story of Ridge and Sydney just grabs you and doesn't let go. Poignant with song lyrics, poetry in motion (they are real songs: music& lyrics composed by Griffin Peterson and can be heard on You Tube) No spoilers here, but I love the concept of the story as the two major characters become more than friends as they write music together.

The problem: Ridge has a longtime girl friend he will never leave though he's falling hard for Sydney and she knows, but can't help falling for him. They seem to be star crossed, but love, of course, finds a way.

I really loved this novel, the language and the artful way Colleen Hoover handles their lationship is so moving. 5 Stars all the way.

A Mad Cap Crazy Ride
Shizzle, Inc (Isa Maxwell escapades Book 1) - Ana Spoke

 MAD CAP, CRAZY, TONGUE IN CHEEK AND THEN SOME

 

Ana Spoke’s Shizzle, Inc. is all that and more. Isa Maxwell. the protagonist,  is not just any girl. She’s special, special in a way that must have the God’s looking out for her because of all the bewildering, harrowing incidents that befall her. What’s so funny is that she doesn’t even have the slightest idea what she’s getting into. But she is definitely the girl with the heart of gold, even though she doesn’t know it. After the first few paragraphs, I realized I wasn’t in Kansas anymore, and that was okay because the story swept me in up in a whirlwind of activity, a tornado of events! No problem though, because the cast of characters were just a madcap as Isa. They are all off the grid which makes this novel a singular work of hilarity.

 

What I love the most was how Isa makes every crazy thing seem just so normal, as if, hey, this is life and I’m living it, even if life itself is nonsensical. Basically, Isa wants Brad, her high school sweet heart who callously dumps her. Will this get Isa down? Nope, not by a long shot. She’s determined to have it all, if only she can get rich and famous. Just because she hasn’t the tiniest be of talent, absolutely no skills, a junky VW that is coughing up it’s last bilge of oil, and living, well squatting in a dump of a house with a roommate who is doped up and certifiably weird, and that’s putting it mildly, Isa remains undaunted. Her friend, Harden, a wannabe DJ who changes his name daily, is the most sane character and who is sweet and lovable.

 

Isa gets a job a Shizzle, Inc, owned by a billionaire who is totally certifiable, but he sees something in Isa and she gets the job, and boy, whoa, it’s a crazy undertaking, seriously.

Ana has delivered a fresh and completely novel, pun intended, novel. If you are up for a joy ride with all the bumps, crashes and with the characters running around like something right out of the Keystone Cops, this novel is for you.  I highly recommend this novel for anyone who wants a slew of belly laughs!  5 Stars all the way!

It's all About the Love
A Court of Thorns and Roses - Sarah J. Maas

 

"Love,” I breathed, the world crumbling into a blackness with no end,  “The answer to the riddle,” I got out, choking on my own blood, “is . . .love.”

 

The deeper you get into A Court of Thorns and Roses, the better it gets. The reader doesn’t get a complete understanding of the curse, ‘The Blight’, until after Feyre is sent back to the ‘human’ world. When Feyre understands how she unwittingly failed to grasp the devastating effects of the curse, she returns on her own to the world of Fae, and this is when it gets really exciting and terrifying.
No spoilers here, but the ending is completely satisfying and leads to the next in the series, which, unfortunately, won’t be released until May.  Knuckle biting here….

Needless to say, I’m happily waiting for the sequel!

Cress of the Lunar Chronicles
Cress - Marissa Meyer

I have to admit I got really caught up in The Lunar Chronicles series. It's the kind you just can't stop reading! Days and hours of reading...well, I guess that's the point of a good series, one book leads to another.
Cress is a character you can really fall in love with. She is sweet, self effacing, but super smart and a born romantic. She sees something in Thorne he doesn't see in himself. (Isn't that the case with most guys? That girls can bring out the best, maybe?)
Marissa has really outdone herself with The Lunar Chronicles. Yup, giving Cress 5 stars!

 

 

Cinder is a little bit like Cinderella, except for the hardware, science fiction and mind control
Cinder - Marissa Meyer

Cinder, of the Lunar chronicle series is an amazing read. So creative and imaginative. I fell in love quickly with Cinder, Iko, Kai and Thorne. 

Fast paced with humor and pathos. I'm looking forward to the next in the series.

Review Reblogged
3.5 Stars
Review: The Girl with All the Gifts
The Girl with All the Gifts - M.R. Carey

The Girl with All the Gifts is a zombie story in which not all of the zombies are mindless, brain-sucking creatures. Some of them are young children who are surprisingly intelligent. One of our main characters, ten-year-old Melanie, is one of these children.

 

I had mixed feelings. In the beginning, I really enjoyed the story and thought it seemed really unique. I enjoyed learning about Melanie and her environment, and I was curious to see how she’d deal with the experiences she was having. Before long though, it turned into a typical survival-horror story with your main characters on the run, trying to stay alive. That was when my interest slowly began to fade. I’m starting to think maybe I just don’t like those kinds of stories very much. I like to read horror now and then but I like it when they have more mystery and suspense to them. I want more to a story than characters endlessly running away from something, finding a safe haven, then having to run again, searching for the supplies they never have enough of, and so forth.

 

I never completely lost interest in the story, and there were still interesting things going on, but it became less consistently interesting and I was pretty happy to be finished with it by the end. I did kind of like the ending. I’ve read a lot of horror books where the ending is kind of up in the air, and I don’t care for that. This book had a pretty definite ending, and it seemed like a pretty appropriate ending. It wasn’t where I would have predicted ending up, but it seemed right.

 

This book is short, at least compared to the last few books I’ve read, so it was a fast-paced read despite feeling a little tedious. The chapters are extremely short – there are 72 chapters over the course of 405 pages. (My edition of the book has 460 pages in it, but the rest of the pages are interview questions and such.) I guess short chapters are a common tactic in this genre. In any case, I enjoyed it enough that I don’t regret reading it. I just wish it had remained as interesting as it had been when it first started out.

Reblogged from YouKneeK
An out-of-this world, magical, and thrilling epic fantasy

Delphi_Altair_Second_Edition_10-2014__4_Sample

 M.L. LeGette, author of The Orphan and the Thief writes, K.D Dowdall's  fantasy novel is reminiscent of The Neverending Story and The Princess Bride.

 

Kirstin Lenane, author of The Scare: A Halloween Story, writes, K.D. Dowdall's novel is beautifully done and should be picked up by any fan of epic fantasy stories.

 

“This YA mysterious, magical, and thrilling first novel by K.D. Dowdall, is an epic fantasy adventure that will whisk you away by land, by sea, and to a far away realm that we sometimes conjure up in our dreams and nightmares. Dowdall’s vivid imagination and beautifully drawn scenarios are evocative of Tolkien’s, Lord of the Rings and Paolini’s, Eragon. I highly recommend this beautifully written epic fantasy and science fiction trilogy.”

K.L Miller, author of The Starling Trilogy

Mystery, Suspense and Twists

 

The mystery hangs on the statement: Don't Order Dog

 

The Ice Man Cometh is a well crafted mystery and suspense novel about corporate terrorists with a twist. Witty and horrifying at times, C.T. Wente keeps the reader engaged and guessing until the end.  From India to Amsterdam and China to a weathered old saloon in Flagstaff, AZ named, Joe's Last Stand Saloon, the reader is catapulted across continents and back to the USA. Things get really interesting when the CIA, NSA and Homeland Security agencies spring into action as a result of misinformation and their missions collide causing a full scale investigation that brings down more than one agency. Both exciting and thought provoking, The Iceman Cometh is a great read and what's more, a sequel is sure to cometh!

A Story within a Story
Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell

  I particularly related to Fangirl because like Cather and Wren, I have an identical twin sister, and boy did Rainbow nail their relationship. Especially telling is the construct of their split names, Catherine, as in they were different sides of the same coin. I loved the aspect of a story within a story where Simon and Bas deal with each other in their fantasy world just as Cather and Wren do in their real world. Rainbow's telling is rich with humor, pathos, love and heartbreak, and as in all great reads, the power of love, in all its forms, heals even the most broken of hearts.

A Warm Heart

If you saw the movie but have not read the novel, then you have missed a totally engrossing experience. Warm Bodies is so much more than a star-crossed zombie-human love story. Funny, frightening and tragic by turns, Warm Bodies slyly introduces themes about us,  about our human condition, and about our lives in the here and now. The narrator, R, may have forgotten his name and his life before becoming one of the living dead, but his take on humanity is spot on.

The author, Isaac Marion, has a gift, not only for words, but for clarity and insight. His newest offering, due out in October, is a prequel to Warm Bodies: The New Hunger. You may want to read the prequel prior to Warm Bodies, but I warmly suggest you read Warm Bodies  first.

It's Not in the Stars
The 5th Wave - Rick Yancey

The 5th Wave - Rick Yancey   “It’s not in the stars to hold our destiny, but in ourselves”  ~ William Shakespeare ~

What does it mean to be human? That is the question Rick Yancey poses in this novel. It is a story about an alien invasion, about beings who are determined to wipe out all of humanity. They hide in our bodies turning the true humans against each other. Scary science fiction aside, this novel is about so much more. It delves into the human psyche. What do we sacrifice to be truly human? Is it in our DNA to sacrifice self for the life of another whether or not we care for that person? Time and again we’ve seen it in the headlines, how someone dove into a raging river to save someone, or rushed into a burning building to save an unknown person. Why do we do it? What causes us to self-sacrifice? Is it the ability to sacrifice our selves for another that makes us truly human? Is that the litmus test?