My Wishful Thinking by Shel Delisle
Publisher: Something Else Publishing
Published Date: October 20th 2012
Format: ARC, 245 pages
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My rating: 5 of 5 stars
WHAT WOULD YOU WISH FOR?
Birthday candles, dandelions, turkey bones or shooting stars— seventeen-year-old Logan Carter never passes up a chance to make a wish. But there’s nothing magical about her life until the day a genie goes poof and promises to grant her every desire.
Can she finally bring her father home? Help her mother? Find true love?
It all seems possible—if she can figure out one little complication. She has to share the genie with her best friend Emily, and their desires only come true if they wish for and receive the exact same thing. It’s time for Logan to compromise, because no two people—no matter how close—can agree on everything.
My Wishful Thinking is an interesting take on the genie tale involving two best friends Logan and Emily, and one adorably cute genie, Eugene, plus a couple of others that play big roles.
The main character, also our narrator, is Logan Carter, a girl who works for her Aunt Marcia at her shop Rags to Ritzy. She’s the laid back kind of girl who is thoughtful, talks to her mannequin friends and makes wishes, genie or no genie. It was fun seeing her and Em together, being best friends in general. It wasn’t hard to tell how deep their friendship is. The characters, all of them including evil Richard, feels so real. Their actions - and thoughts in Logan’s case - are realistic. I can relate with them, especially with Logan’s life. Compared to her, Em is living a perfect life. Logan has her own problems, which she masked with her attitude. I love seeing the trio interact; how Logan sometimes mock Eugene without meaning to, how Em is so calm while Logan is short-tempered, how Eugene can be innocent and flirty simultaneously. Another thing - or person - to love is our Eu-genie. Sigh. He’s just so perfect. How can you not love him?
The moments spent together - wishing and granting - made our main characters grow fond of each other, in more ways than one. The relationship just grows. Sure sometimes things does not go according to the plan, but that’s how life is. Logan learned from that and became better, more mature. Em for example did pass off as a beyotch sometimes, but there’s a reasonable explanation for that. In the end, she’s still Logan’s best friend, now better than ever. Eugene, too, changed. As time passes he’s more open, he’s adapting well with the surrounding, and he’s more flirty. This book is not lacking in the romance department. In those times spent wishing, the romantic feelings between Lo and Eugene blossomed.
The plot is what caught my eye in the first place. I haven’t read much genie books but I’m sure that this a fresh take on the genie stuff. There’s no genie lamp needed; Eugene lives in a bag. He’s not bound to the bag and can freely move about. Oh, and instead of just three you get an infinite numbers of wishes. How fun! Even Em and Lo agrees. I also love the actions and suspense. Plus the plot twists really got me by surprise. More things are unveiled at the end as we found out more about Eugene. I’m a sucker for happy endings, and I loved this one. Sure it may seem unrealistic, but anything’s possible with a genie around. I’m so glad everything works out well for our hero and heroines. They deserved that much after the whole ordeal.
A story full of poofs of granted wishes, growing friendship and blossoming love, My Wishful Thinking by Shel Delisle is a light read with a cute, unique story line. If you like a story with romance, unlimited wishes, a cute genie, then this one here is for you. 5 stars.
Copy won via Librarything in exchange for an honest review. And honestly? I love it.
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Connection by Emily Ann Ward
Series: Le Garde #1
Publisher: Emily Ward
Published Date: December 2012
Format: ARC, 403 pages
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My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Aaron and Anna haven’t been friends for almost a year, not after he deserted her when she needed a friend the most. When Aaron approaches Anna for help with his homework, she can’t deny her former best friend or the way he makes her feel. Despite her reluctance to trust him again—not to mention how much their strange telepathic connection freaks her out—she gives in. English homework. How hard could that be?
Soon Anna finds out that nothing with Aaron is easy. Not the way their touch suddenly triggers power outages and lightning storms. Not the feelings he has for her despite her already having a boyfriend—or how she’s falling for him in return. And certainly not the mysterious secret society called Le Garde that wants to recruit them. The new knowledge that they’re not alone in their powers or connection forces them to choose between continuing to live their normal lives or falling deep into the world of Le Garde together—and maybe even in love.
The first halve of this was very confusing and too abrupt. I kept on wondering what happened between Aaron and Anna. Why their relationship just went down the drain. What happened between Anna and her ex Jordan. It doesn’t really tell you much about their history, which kinda made it a bit shallow.
Then there’s Anna and Aaron, the protagonists. While I do love them, I just couldn’t ‘feel’ it. I couldn’t relate with them. It feels unnatural. They seem fake, their reactions and personality a bit too unrealistic. Same goes with their relationship. One second Anna was pushing Aaron away, the next she was shamelessly checking him out. Don’t get me started about Aaron’s love life.
The pace was too fast. Just when you find out one thing, almost immediately another would pop out. There are always new things to discover in each chapter, not giving time for us too absorb the news and be familiar with. It’s too rushed as if the author just need to get the details out there. Every single thing. Other times the timing was a bit off. It was about halfway into the book when the words Le Garde finally made sense to me. Even then, we still don’t know much about it except that it was an organization for pairs with abilities like Aaron and Anna’s. I think.
Also the story itself wasn’t laid out that well. I found it messy, which was pretty disappointing. They don’t focus much about the powers except the times when they, Aaron and Anna, practiced to control it. Most of the time it focuses mostly on their feelings for each other, how they kept on denying their connection. There are times when the characters seemed …horny. Yes, you read it right. Sure they are teenagers, but really now. They just couldn’t keep their hands of each other. And that doesn’t narrow down to just Aaron-Anna moments.
I felt that the minor characters, like Sam, Kaylie, Chandler, Jordan Vickie and Wendy weren’t fully developed. There’s a couple of times when there are even smaller characters that randomly butt in, and disappear afterwards. They only names, no personality or role. As if they’re just there to fill up the empty spots in case the protagonists are in need of wise advice or a couple of insulting remarks or two. It would be nice to see more of them, just not when they are being ridiculously flirty - or horny, depends on how you see it - or just being the angry teen who lashed out on everything. I personally would love to know more about them, especially Kristina and Drew. It would be such a waste to just leave them be.
Instead of the powers that has the potential to rule the world, this book focused mainly on the relationship as I said. It leans more on the romance rather than the supernatural abilities. I do like the romance, however. The sweet ending really got me. I just hoped the author could tone it down a little. Give those awesomesauce powers more spotlight. I would love to see more of them.
Despite it all, I love the plot. I think it’s a very good concept. The book has its potentials. The plot could be developed even more, the characters more believable. I believe it could be better and I’m willing to give it another chance. 3 and a half stars.
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City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
Series: The Mortal Instruments #2
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Published Date: March 25th 2008
Format: Hardcover, 464 pages
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what’s normal when you’re a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who’s becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn’t ready to let her go — especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary’s only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil — and also her father.
To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings — and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?
In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City’s Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation.
City of Ashes is the 2nd book in the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. Just like the City of Bones, I loved this one as well! In fact, I think this one is even better than the first book; which is saying a lot since I loved City of Bones!
This book immediately hooks you. I personally love the diversity of foreign culture and religions. It shows how much the author had researched for this book. I like that. It’s also suspenseful and keeps you on the edge of your seat. There are some scene that just want to make me want to rip up my hair in sheer frustration, while others made me laugh out loud in public like a silly person I am (lol). It was that good! There are, however, some confusing parts, like the flashbacks or when characters are recalling dreams. But the awesomeness drowned it out, no worries.
In City of Ashes, we got to know more about the minor characters whom we saw briefly in City of Bones. I think the pace is suitable and the plot is very unique, one of a kind, unlike any others. Cassandra Clare really know to be different, she’s brave to take on this rather challenging and forbidden topic: incest.
I also love the progress in the traits of the characters: they are well developed. I like getting to know the characters as their story progressed by. This book is also laugh-inducing, with random humor inserted every now and then. It made the book more enjoyable.
Clary can get too stubborn at times, yet her determination to make things right and her concern for everyone else was admirable. She may also seem like a fragile and weak teen, but hidden in her was the powerful gift of the runes. In this book, we get to know why Jace has his almost-supernatural skills as a Shadowhunter. The plot twist was really unexpected. And then there’s the clumsy boy Simon, who had transformed into a graceful vampire. Do I sense a possible love-triangle?
Then we have the most important thing: Jace’s and Clary’s relationship. I must say it is very enjoyable yet irritating all the same, every time Jace and Clary’s relationship changes from hot to cold and back again. I actually like the concept of forbidden love [incest]. No, I don’t exactly find it that weird / repulsive. After all, it’s a fiction. Besides, the book had already included mythical beings; what’s incest compared to that? There’s no need to hate, this is just the authors imagination; she’s that creative!
Overall, loved it! Possibly better than book 1, City of Bones. Very fun to read, catchy and surely addictive, Mortal Instruments is now officially one of my favorite series!
[written on 02 02 12]
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Confessions of an Angry Girl by Louise Rozett
Series: Confessions #1
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Published Date: August 28th 2012
Format: ARC, 272 pages
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Rose Zarelli, self-proclaimed word geek and angry girl, has some confessions to make
1. I’m livid all the time. Why? My dad died. My mom barely talks. My brother abandoned us. I think I’m allowed to be irate, don’t you?
2. I make people furious regularly. Want an example? I kissed Jamie Forta, a badass guy who might be dating a cheerleader. She is nowenraged and out for blood. Mine.
3. High school might as well be Mars. My best friend has been replaced by an alien, and I see red all the time. (Mars is red and “seeing red” means being angry—get it?)
Here are some other vocab words that describe my life: Inadequate. Insufferable. Intolerable.
(Don’t know what they mean? Look them up yourself.)
(Sorry. That was rude.)
Confessions of an Angry Girl is one of those “long but short read”; it took me quite some time to finish it yet when I actually do, I felt that it ended too soon. It’s so unique that I had mixed feelings while reading this book. Makes no sense, huh?
At first glance Rose seemed like the typical teen: all whiny and spoiled. And I admit at times she was a bit of an annoying 14 years old. But then again, Rose is young and for someone her age, what she went through seemed a bit too much. Which was exactly why I admire her strong personality. You see, Rose isn’t just a rebel / angry teen trying to fit in; she’s a teen who’s going through so many hardships in just a short amount of time, and it got to the point she just explodes.
As much as Rose’s having a hard time coping with the new reality, I loved knowing her as she grew up facing the hardships that is life. And the mature Rose is much better. It just shows us that no matter what, people and everything change, whether we like it or not, for the better or worse. I honestly, and totally, can relate with Rose, especially in terms of friendship as I have went through that phase before. It just seem too realistic; I can just imagine her frustrations, grief, anger, and sometimes, love and happiness.
In addition to being an emotional book, Confessions of an Angry Girl also have that feeling of mystery as there are surely more things that are yet to be unveiled. And then there’s the occasional romance. Jamie is the ‘delinquent’ kind of guy, surrounded with a deadly force that is his supposed-girlfriend. He’s yet another puzzle that raised my curiosity. All I know is that there’s more to than meets the eye for his badass, mysterious attitude. Although that didn’t stop me from making wild guesses.
I had thought Confessions of an Angry Girl is a standalone, so the ending came as quite a shock. It’s quite unexpected, though I thought it might be even better if the author added some more hints regarding the next book. I honestly can’t wait for the sequel!
To those about to start reading this; brace yourselves. This book will take you to an emotional ride through the eyes of a grieving 14 years old and it might be too much for your emotional stability. 5 solid stars. Such a lovely read, recommended to all.
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Alien Velocity by Robert Appleton
Original Title: Charlie Runs Rings Around the Earth
Series: Cosmic Sparks #1
Publisher: Carina Press
Published Date: March 26th 2012
Format: ebook, 162 pages
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Charlie Thorpe-Campbell is the greatest RAM-runner the world has ever seen—and he knows it. On the verge of retirement from the sport, he is defending his title as champion of the annual orbital race one final time when he’s suddenly hurtling away into deep space.
Charlie’s unscheduled voyage through a wormhole ends with a crash-landing on a most unusual planet, with scores of spacecraft from all corners of the universe in orbit. Seeking help, he heads toward what appears to be civilization, unaware of the horrors waiting for him there…
Once inside the great, orb-covered city, Charlie is thrust into intergalactic competition by a bloodthirsty alien race. When he discovers he can use his unique abilities to save not only himself, but the entire galaxy, will he face up to the challenge—or run from it?
I have never read the original version of Alien Velocity so I did not know what changed in this book.
I think the story was slow-paced at first, then, as it reaches the climax, the pace increases. The story became more interesting and catchy, that I flipped through the pages in one sitting. The adventures were absolutely thrilling.
Negatives? There was too much profanities and that really ticks me off. Charlie sounded very immature despite his age. Since everything was told from his perspective, at some points I get really annoyed and listening to his thoughts was very frustrating.
I also didn’t understand the plot, the setting of the story and what Charlie’s career actually is. At first, I thought Charlie was a pro and alien runner from one alien planet that runs laps around another planet. Other time, I thought he was a racer that runs laps around the planets in the galaxy in his spaceship. I didn’t know where ‘running’ comes in then.
Another thing was the use of big words. I mean, I know Alien Velocity is a sci-fi and focused mainly on the galaxy, spaceships and suchlike, but honestly, all those flowery stuffs confused me. Details were also not properly explained. Only later in the book did I finally understand the author’s writing style.
On the plus side, however, I really loved the plot. It was original, unique and addicting. The excitement builds up (dramatically, i might add) as the story went on. In contrast to the statement above, the setting was also very fascinating and intriguing in its some way. I admit, the beginning was a bit too slow and there wasn’t much happening other than Charlie being mighty annoying. Yet somehow it worked perfectly: that fact made Charlie’s change later in the book even more obvious.
Personally, I love Sorcha’s part in the story. Even though her appearances were brief, I could tell how much she cared for Charlie and vice versa. It was also mentioned that she stayed by Charlie’s side for a long time, which proved how strong she is.
Alien Velocity is addicting in a way. It’s not exactly the kind of book that I normally would pick up. However, it is the adventure and obstacles that Charlie faced that made it very hard to put down. Overall, Alien Velocity is a fascinating read which I would recommend to (hardcore) sci-fi lovers. Great read!
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