Book, Reviews, Short-Story

One Major Confession

10 Confessions & a Kiss - Chapter 110 Confessions & a Kiss – Chapter 1 by Katrina Joyner

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free. This book was sent to my email address by the author with no strings attached. She noticed that I had read the first draft of her other graphic novel Heavenly Bride and sent it to me, thinking that I would enjoy this one as well. I do know this author by her work, but not personally. Therefore, I am not affiliated with this author or her publisher. I have no stake in the author’s endeavors and stand to gain nothing from giving a glowing review. So, without further ado, my review of the first chapter of 10 Confessions & A Kiss: Chapter One: The Bracelet.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Zoe is a strong and defiant character, but she is also self-centered. She is the “why me?” character that can get a bit annoying, so the reader is sort of happy, when she is cursed. Hopefully, it will knock some sense in her and make her look for love that is real, not superficial. 4 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Zoe’s best friend….I do not remember, if the story ever mentions his name….I cannot see it anywhere. Anyways, I found him quite entertaining and gave the story a down-to-earth feel. 4 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: The Bracelet, which does not make it much of a character. N/A

4. Strong Minor Characters: The only real minor characters is the gypsy lady and her son that works in a fortune tellers shop. There is not too much depth that goes into them, but this is only chapter one. 3 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: The plot was interesting, but a bit predictable due to the title; however, the details that went into the plot were fresh and new to me. However, a girl gets cursed and must find true love and cannot see that her best friend loves her has been done before. 3 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: Not much of a setting. It could be anywhere. I wish there were more scenery like in other graphic novels that I have read or at least a brief description of where this novel occurs. 3 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: The character dialect is so much better in this story than in the Heavenly Bride, which is a very good thing. It is one of the story’s redeeming qualities. The witty, humorous banter between the two best friends kept me reading this short chapter. I want to read the next just to see what they will say next. 5 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: No real surprises here, just funny details. I wish there were some surprising elements to this story. If the title were less telling, than it would have held a few surprises. 1 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: Really not much of a climax. By the title, one can pretty much tell that Zoe will be cursed, probably by a bracelet. Not a real surprise. I really wish that it was more of a surprise, because there would have been that climatic moment. It fell flat here. 1 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: This story is not much of an emotional thing. It made me laugh, but that was about it. And smiles, never forget the smiles. The story is too short to really make you invested in the story and the characters, but it provided comical relief. 3 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: I feel like I want to read the second chapter to see how the story progresses. The ending leaves me wanting more, but not completely off my rocker need to read it. It is not overly compelling, but definitely something I would like to read in the future. I want to know, if the main character ever figures everything out. The ending is kind of funny and made for a pleasurable read that was relaxing instead of thought provoking. It was exactly what I needed at the time. 3 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: The grammar in this story is so much better than in Heavenly Bride, which makes me think that she might have taken more time with this story than with the other one? I am not sure, but the writing is so much better. I actually think that she might be developing her own unique voice. She is definitely getting herself to stand out with her artwork. I get that writing may not be her thing, but I see a big improvement. If she paired herself with a different author to tell a story, we could see the new “Gossip Girl” artist. As is, the writing style needs work. Maybe, it needs more of a story with graphics rather than a comic book like story or more square boxes of plot progression? I do not know, but vastly improved. 3 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: The creative artwork in this story is breathtaking, but I would have liked to see more backdrops rather than plain backgrounds. I cannot draw to save my life, so I am really impressed with how the characters are created in this one. Plus, this is freehand with no digital manipulations, so it is original artwork, not the stuff you see in stores that are digitally redone. 4 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: This book is easily a graphic novel mixed with some fantasy and romance. It is a nice story to sit down with and only took me ten minutes to read through. This story id definitely for people who do not have much time on their hands to read, but still want to enjoy something and feel like they complete something as well. This is quick and allows one to feel accomplished that they have finished it. It is part of a series, so you can cram a chapter waiting at the doctor’s office or wherever one goes. I believe it deserves stars, because it is so broken up that a busy person can always finish and start the next chapter whenever, rather than only finishing part of a book. I get the satisfaction to have one book “read” on www.goodreads.com rather than only a percentage of it completed. 5 out of 5 stars

15. Title: I have a very legit question about the title. I noticed that it mentions that chapter one is entitled “The Bracelet” many times, but on the actual entrance into the book with graphics, it names that same chapter “The Curse”. So, I am confused. Is it “The Bracelet” or “The Curse”? This is a prime reason why Indie authors need an editor. An editor would easily catch this type of flaws, before they go into print or digital download. Otherwise than that, I believe that the title is suiting, although I am not into the series far enough to know what the “Ten Confessions” part of the title means. 2 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this chapter 3 stars. It is very average, but it is only a chapter into the work itself. It has the potential to do better and add some much needed enrichment into the story. I kind of wish that there was an option to buy the story as a whole to give it a much more honest review rather than reading it in sections like this and reviewing each section. I think I am blowing it up a little, just because there is not much to go on. So, do not expect this to be long, but short and sweet. Any review after this one, will combine both chapters to give readers a more honest read on this series.

NOTE: THE FOLLOWING CATEGORIES HAVE BEEN CHANGED AS OF MARCH 28, 2013

15. Title: This issue has been resolved with the author. The titles are consistently Chapter One: The Bracelet. Due to this change, the stars have been changed. The title know holds a hint of mystery that is enough to entice the reader to wonder what is so special about a simple bracelet. 5 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: The story is now not very predictable. The only predictable element is that the main character cannot see that her best friend loves her, which occurs in many stories. 4 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: Since the title no longer reveals all, I believe that there are a couple of mystery surprises to add. 3 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: Now that the story is not revealed as much with the title, there is a bit of a climax, but not much since there still is not really enough story to really get invested into it. I think that as the chapters progress, this area will improve, because each chapter builds up onto itself. 2 out of 5 stars

I know all of these categories are out of order, but it makes sense to put number fifteen first due to the importance of the correction to this graphic novel. Now, with the new edits, I give this book 3.43 out of 5 stars. I would round it to 3.5 stars. It is an enjoyable read.

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Book, Reviews

Cultural Health Care

Caring for Patients from Different CulturesCaring for Patients from Different Cultures by Geri-Ann Galanti

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free. I purchased this book for my college Culture, Health, and Healing class and I am in no way affiliated with the author or the publishers.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: N/A

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: N/A

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: N/A

4. Strong Minor Characters: N/A

5. The Plot: The purpose of this book is to inform the medical staff or the general population that chooses to read this book is to practice cultural acceptance. This does not mean that one has to agree with everything about another’s culture, but one should be open minded about others’ cultures and how they practice it, especially when it comes to the medical field. I would not have picked this book up on my own, which is why I give the plot three stars. It is a very informative read, but I never would have heard of this normally. 3 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: The events in the book took place in hospitals and homes around the globe. Not much describing, since it is a teaching book, not a novel. 2 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: The words that all of the people from the case studies in the book spoke like real people, because they were real people. These are all true classes which makes the dialogue truly believable. 5 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: N/A

9. Climax: N/A

10. Emotional Response: I really enjoyed reading the case studies. I thought that they were very interesting and entertaining. At times, I could not believe that people could be so cruel, but it was not intended. Ignorance is the true evil here. We all need to educate ourselves about someone else’s culture, before we decide that person’s merit. Something acceptable in your own culture might not be acceptable in others and vice versa. 3 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: N/A

12. The Writing: I really enjoyed the narrative writing style. The fact that the author is knowledgeable in the area that she is writing about is definitely a plus! Not a lot of authors actually experience what they are writing about. It makes everything more realistic, because authors who have experienced what they are writing about; deliver the message in a more believable way. The author has an enlightening point of view that could be useful to just about anyone who reads this book. Some points are a bit repetitive, but usually, the author was just trying to make a point of importance about something and wanted to make sure that she got her point across. 4 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: The cover is nothing spectacular, but I would never expect it to be so. It would be misleading to have any other cover than what this book has. That being said, it is a very suiting book cover and not much could improve it. 4 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: This book is a medical book and it does not pretend to be anything other than what it is. It is quite refreshing for a change. This is a book that was a joy to read after reading so many paranormal novels. 5 out of 5 stars

15. Title: The title is long, but direct. It tells you exactly what the book is going to be about and where the book is going. 4 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this book 3.75, which I will round up to a 4. It was a refreshing read about medical information and culture, but it was also very informative but at the same time did not read like a textbook.

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Book, Reviews

‘Dig’ Down Deep

My soul to keepMy soul to keep by Melissa Solis

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free. I downloaded this book for free on Amazon.com. This book was not suggested nor “gifted” to me by the author. I have no affiliation with the author or his/her publisher.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Brennen has lost everything she has ever cared about. Everyone is gone from her life that was ever important in it, except her grandmother, but her memory is going and it is only a matter of time before she is gone as well. Brennen decides to stop being invisible and embrace her youth. I can relate to her in this way, because I used to be so afraid of what others thought of me. I used to take their jealousy and hate to heart, but like Brennen, I have learned to let it go by me. It is hard to stay unaffected, but I learned that haters quickly move on, when their prey pretend like they do not care. If words were stones, I would have been dead long ago, but I have the strength like Brennen has to move on. She is an inspiring heroine, even though she falls too quickly in love with the characters in this book. Although to give her credit, Elijah is really something and I believe that I would fall for him in two seconds as well, but Sam? It was unexpected and a little forced. It was too unbelievable for me and the way she kept going back and forth. It seemed out of character to me. I never imagined that Brennen would be that way and it is a little disappointing, because it takes away from her inner strength. A girl with real inner strength would never need a man to make her feel complete. She is complete with or without one, because it depends upon her, not the guy. 3 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Sam was very charming at first, but I slowly began to dislike him. I think that the author was trying to go for a love/hate relationship for the reader to experience, but it was poorly executed. I just found myself really hating him for not being understanding by the end of the book. I do not know if I will ever like him again as the series progresses. Elijah is the most perfect guy in the world, and then add angel wings. No mortal guy could ever compete with him, so it comes as no surprise that Sam feels insecure around Brennan. Elijah knows her like no other person in the world. At first, I thought that he was very creepy, but once I realized what he was, I could understand him on a whole new level. AS Brennen’s eyes are opened to the truth, so does the readers’. It is a unique experience and not all books are as suspenseful as this one. Many times in books, readers know more than the main character, but I did not feel that way with this one. The complexity of the characters keeps you guessing, even after the book is over. 3 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: President of Hell is really an absent threat sending demons after Brennen. As far as evil villains go, this one is as absent as one can get, while still affecting the intended target. The evil yellow eyed demons have been ricking havoc on Brennen’s life for a long time, longer than she has ever known before…and the angels above are to blame. Even though, the evil guy is not present, his presence is felt throughout the entire book. 3 out of 5 stars

4. Strong Minor Characters: Will does not enter into the picture until halfway into the book or a bit more than half. He is an influential character without really trying to be. He becomes a gateway to Brennen’s birthright. He is unreliable, but the reader forgives him later, understanding the circumstances after the fact. Although I was not fond of Will at first, he began to win me over with his charm and good humor. He really cares about what happens to Brennen without giving that caring a sexual undertone. It was a refreshing change, when Will did not join the love triangle and turn it into a love square. Actually since Emily and Chris are also caught in the web of love, let’s make that a pentagon that Will prevented from becoming a hexagon. I clearly dislike unbelievable love triangles or whatever shape they come in besides two…a line. Emily is a great friend for Brennen, until the end of the story, when the reader learns that Emily is not too happy with Brennen due to jealousy. It is a wonder how she was able to keep them together, when all she really wanted was for them to fall apart. Do not get me wrong. She was not a backstabbing bitch, but she did want Sam. She was too good of a person to ever forcibly break them up though. Chris was just an awkward third wheel most of the time and I feel like he did not provide anything for the story. It was almost like he was not really there at all, except at the end, so that Sam could punch him in the face for crushing on Brennen. Really? Really?! Pathetic. 3 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: Brennen learns the truth about her troubled past, discovers her birthright, and finds out who the people around her really are. The storyline is perfect in and of itself. There were a few nips and tugs at the fabric of it, but the plot survived. It is not a unique story, because I have heard different versions of the same plot line; however, this is a new take because of a few factors: how “angelic” Brennen is and the darkness to something that you never thought you had to fear before. All in all, I really enjoyed what the whole story was about. 4 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: I believe that I have hit the jackpot for the most descriptive settings in a book. The places described are breathtaking and the visions of a black sky are awe-inspiring. I felt like I was actually in the story and seeing everything with my own two eyes, instead of experiencing it through my mind’s eye. Although this story did not take place at a whole bunch of places, the places that were described were beautifully written and not just vague and meaningless blurs of generic design. 4 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: I enjoyed the witty banter and how the characters spoke. The dialogue was good, but nothing lyrical or rhythmic. It did not have a unique quality to it, but it was not stilted or unbelievable in anyway. It was just average and average is great in its own way. Nothing wrong with average, unless you do not want to be…average that is. 3 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: There were plenty of surprises in this book that made me completely absorbed into the novel. There was a surprise lurking around every turn and when the reader least expects it, something jumps out to scare the living daylights out of you. This was a very thrilling read that kept at its fast pace and never once slowed down. I enjoy it when a novel is pace consistent, because it gives the reader the feeling that the novel is moving forward and not lagging behind or worse…dragging a lifeless body forcibly by the ankles attached to the back bumper of a car. Vivid imagery, huh? 5 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: I feel like the author could have had a really intense moment that would have put everything into perspective for Brennen, but the author missed the opportunity to do so. It was a slight high and not nearly high enough for me to really realize that it was the climax of the story. There was a slight high that evened out really quick. There was not much of a climax for me, never mind of epic proportions. 2 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: I did not find myself crying for these characters, but I felt sympathy for them. Nothing really pulled hard on my heart strings and that is okay for me. I know that this novel was not written for that purpose. The reader is supposed to relate to the characters, but feel separated from them in order to see the bigger picture that the author is creating. But since I am judging emotional response in this one, I am going to have to score it low. 2 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: I really liked the ending. I feel like the book could be a stand alone in a series. The novel completes itself, but leaves enough room for another adventure can begin in the next one. There is no big cliff hanger, but it makes me curious how Brennen will move on with her life as she now knows it. I want to learn more about her, but I still think that the ending could have packed a bigger punch. 4 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: The author has a creative flair for storytelling and I found myself enjoying the story deeply, because I did not need to agitate myself over grammar failures. Any book that does not have me nick picking over my pet peeves is a properly edited piece of work; however, I did not find her writing overly original. This author has yet to find her own voice. 3 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: Very magnificent! The cover of this book suits the story beautifully! The girl on the cover fits Brennen and her love of the ocean in all of its wonder. The birds are a morbid touch to say the least, but very creative. 5 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: A Paranormal romance fits the book, but I would also say that it is a thriller or suspenseful. It contains those elements as well. It is also a troubled romance with the topic of angels in it. It is also a self-discovery novel, because the main character learns something about herself that she never knew before. Basically, this novel does not fit in a nice little box. It has a mix of everything for everyone to enjoy. 5 out of 5 stars

15. Title: My Soul To Keep is an attention catching title, because I know that the more famous series Soul Screamers has the same title for one of those books in the series. To tell you all the truth, at first, I thought that I was reading a Soul Screamers book, but when I found out that I was not, I was not disappointed at all. This author took a title already out there and made it her own. 4 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this novel a 3.5 out of 5 stars, because it is better than your average angel book. It has unique elements and characters that you will love to hate and hate to love. I will be reading the next book in the series.

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Book, Reviews

Hunger For Thirst

Thirst (Ava Delaney, #1)Thirst by Claire Farrell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free. I downloaded this book for free on Amazon.com. This book was not suggested nor “gifted” to me by the author. I have no affiliation with the author or his/her publisher.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Ava is sarcastic and quick witted. A bit of a recluse, she is thrown into people contact, not exactly human if you know what I mean, and has to deal with the trials of being something different from the norm. In this case, she is a different type of vampire that was created quite by accident. I wonder who her father was, since her mother is decidedly human. I could definitely relate to Ava’s dislike of people and social contact. I am not exactly a people person myself. She wants to do everything on her own and hates to admit that she needs help with anything. She was a very strong character and I enjoyed her witty banter, especially the dilemmas in her head. She is no Melissa from Dark Creations: Gabriel Rising. Ava can defend herself and she has a wicked cool blade to do it with. I love how much of a mystery her origin is and I cannot help but think that in the books to come, her parentage will come into play. Maybe, she will even discover who her father is. I look forward to discovering more about Ava in the next book. The only thing that I have to say about her that is somewhat negative is that she never voices her thoughts and feelings to Peter. You can tell that he wants to say things as well, but I believe that if she would start sharing first, he would soon follow suit. I also really feel for Ava’s tragic childhood and it makes me reflect and feel grateful that my own was not the same as hers. Then again, I was never considered a demon or possessed. Still, I felt for her, because I know that plenty of children go through abuse by parent and guardians. 5 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Peter is the hero in this story. He knows the life of the creatures that he hunts and is able to help Ava confront them. At first, he seems really arrogant and angry all of the time. I really did not like him in the beginning, but then, I found out about what happened to his family and it broke my heart. Peter and Ava could relate to each other, if they would only open up their hearts. He is brave and protective of Ava, so you can really tell that he has feelings for her. He says that he promised her grandmother that he would help Ava no matter what to keep her safe, but I highly doubt that. He does it, because he likes her. Fair and square. He does not always save her, which is understandable seeing how he is only human and she is…well not. I find him to be the male version of Ava. Maybe that is why I feel that they would be great together. They are both stubborn and iron willed. If they ever got together, they would be unstoppable. 4 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: Maximus is a very evil vampire, who has basically lost his mind due to the raging virus that is dramatics and vampirism. He is a very shady character cast in a dark light, but at one point, did not seem that bad of a choice compared to being captured by Daimhin and her coven. But then again, she was cast in a bad light as well. Whether she is deserving of it or not, well, we shall wait and see. In conclusion, Maximus was a psychotic character that the reader did not experience the pleasure of knowing until the near end. Eddie is a man of many mysteries…mainly, if he actually human or something…other…other than vampire of course! He is helpful…a little too helpful, if you catch my drift. He goes out of his way to understand Ava and then, only gives her cryptic messages about how “instrumental” she will be in the future. In the end, he played her and he played her well; however, I believe that with Eddie there is more than meets the eye. Nancy is Ava’s grandmother and let me tell you, I thoroughly hate the woman. She gave Ava a very rough childhood and rough does not even begin to describe it. She deserves to die and the sad part is, she does not see the harm in what she did in the past. Now here comes the funny part, she wants to do it all over again. Nice grandmother, huh? She deserves to be labeled as an evil antagonist, although she was more of a minor character. 4 out of 5 stars

4. Strong Minor Characters: There is a bizarre presence that follows Ava around after she meets with Eddie for the first time. I cannot help, but speculate who or rather, what it is. Is it a ghost perhaps? If so, then maybe, her mother is the ghostly spirit? Whoever or whatever it is, it leaves a mysterious taste lingering in my mouth and I crave to know more about it. Carl, I found to be a really annoying aspect to the story. He follows Ava around with no mind that is his own and even after he gets it back, he refuses to go back to his old life. It is frustrating and I wish that he would just go away, because I do not see any value in him that makes the story a better read. In fact, it just distracts the reader from the whole plot. I wish he was more of a background character or extra rather than a minor character. Daimhin is a puzzling case for me, because on one hand, she is an evil woman who wants Ava dead. On the other hand, she is being really nice to her and finds her very amusing. I believe that Ava’s father must be with Daimhin’s coven. That is the only reason that I can think of that she would keep Ava around for or maybe, she is just not a vampire killer when she does not have to be. Arthur was the only vampire character that I actually liked. He was a father like figure and protected Ava like one. He could have been her father and I am kind of debating that right now in my head. I really do not want him to be, though, because he is not in the rest of the books. I know this for a fact and if you have read this, you know why too. So, I am hoping that it was someone else, but Arthur was very sweet for a vampire. 3 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: The storyline is not exactly unique. It is about a girl who is a vampire, but can walk during the day and still has a beating heart. She is like no vampire out there. Now, the rest of the plot is very unique and the writing spun this book in a more humorous direction. Although, the book was still quite serious, it had a humorous quality to it that made the darker elements much more bearable to read. I would have liked to see the storyline a little longer, because the whole book takes place in a matter of days, then weeks at the end of the book. The action part of the book takes place in only days, while the ending was weeks. I feel that if the action extended to weeks then it would have made for a heated story that could have been filled with more action, until reaching a resolution. Otherwise, I found the plot to be very satisfying. 3 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: Since this whole story takes place in a matter of days, there is not a whole lot of places that Ava can go…or so one would think. It is quite contrary, though. There are many details about Ava’s apartment, Eddie’s place, Peter’s, the club’s, Maximum’s, and another place or two that eludes my mind at the moment. If the book was longer, there would have been more space for better, more detailed descriptions or maybe even a couple of more places to visit. I feel a coffee shop may have been nice and would have fit into the plot somewhere. As is, the setting could have been improved, if the story was longer. 4 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: Depending upon the character, the dialogue was witty, sarcastic, but sometimes it fell flat. Carl’s dialogue was nothing short of disastrous. I get that he does not control his mind, but he still has brain function and should be capable of forming coherent sentences that engage the reader. If it was only going to annoy, I wish the author would have given him zero lines. The dialogue was clever at times, but I saw it lacking here and there. I wish that more questions were answered and that somethings would be less of a mystery. 3 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: This book did have plenty of surprises, I will tell you. Every chapter held something surprising that the reader did not know before and kept my interest throughout the entire book. The surprises were mostly small ones that led the reader on a breadcrumb trail, but sometimes, smaller surprises lead to even bigger ones in the future. I think this book might have had one big surprise, but I really do not consider any of the surprises bigger than the others. I found that they all were about equal in size as well as magnitude. 3 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: The climax was monumental for the story, although it is hard to pick exactly what spot was the actual climax where things went downhill before being resolved. If I had to guess, it would probably have been the time in the taxi cab. Anyone who has read this before will know what I mean. I know this moment was important to the plot of the entire story, but it was not made a big deal in the story. I was expecting something elaborate, but what I got, was a little disappointing. It could have been a boom, but it was more of a rushed add-on. 2 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: There was not a lot of emotional moments in this book that made me want to cry. There were a couple that I shed real tears over, but most of the emotional moments were spent rolling my eyes or in tears of laughter. I do not know if the author really intended this to be a humorous book, but I found many of the dark situations very funny. I thought it was suitable for the scene, but I could be sadly mistaken. If my readers are anything like me, than you will be laughing, while reading most of this book. This book was a happy relief after reading a book that was oh-so-not-good. 4 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: The climax fell a bit flat and I think that the ending did as well. I have to say that the last page of the book was the worst for me. I really hated it, but it had to do with a character that I sorely disliked. However, leading up to that last page, I really do like the satisfying slaying of that particular vampire; however, I hate how easy it was done. Are vampires weakened during the day? How come she is not weakened at night, when they are during the day? I wished there were more explanations about the vampires and their way of life. It would make understanding this book so much easier. 2 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: A book that has got me speculating what will happen in the next book, before that one is done, is definitely a series that I will have no choice, but to continue to satisfy my curiosity. But with a book written this good, it comes as no surprise. The only real drawback for her character is the sappy love triangle going on, because love triangles never happen in real life. By reading the first two chapters of the next book, I can say with confidence that the love triangle has reverted to Ava loving him and him being a jerk and ignoring her. So, there you go! No more sappy love triangle, until maybe later in the book. Still, I would have liked to have seen it end I the first book. To counteract that con, it is a pro that she does not have a boyfriend by the end of the book. This is no story about instant romance, which I quite enjoyed besides the love triangle. Now that I think about it though, it was never quite a triangle with someone’s brain not really working on their own at all. Still, this novel needed some explanations that were never given. It made the book hard to understand at times, which is not a good thing. It is a good thing however, that for much of the book that was not the case. 3 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: A beautiful cover that captures Ava and her cross quite well. It fit in with the entire book and I love the fact that we never actually see her eyes. It makes it a mystery about what color they are and if you can see any red in them. I believe this was the author’s intention, but if not, a great piece of cover art. It is the best fitting cover that I have ever seen for a book, especially a series. Let us hope it stays consistent. 5 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: The genre of this story is paranormal romance. It is also a self-discovery book as well, because Ava learns things about herself along the way. Paranormal is obvious, because this book is about vampires. I sincerely think that vampire books should have their own genre, since there is so many of them. Romance is a tough one though. The story has elements of romance, but nothing substantial happens between any of the characters, which maybe a reason why I enjoyed this book so much. I am always happen, when a girl stays single in the end. She does not need a man to complete herself and that makes me happy. I believe that no woman can complete herself with a man. She needs to complete herself, otherwise relationships usually suffer because you are looking for someone to help you fill that hole but no one can help you do that but yourself. A run on sentence I know, but I needed to get that out in one breath. 5 out of 5 stars

15. Title: Thirst is a great title for the book, because the whole novel revolves around Ava’s thirst for blood and other people’s thirst as well, whether for blood, sex, or power. The title was thought about and you can tell that the author took painstaking efforts to ensure that everything physical about the book would market to the right audience. Well done. 5 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this story a 3.6, which I would round up to a 4. The author could improve by making the next novel longer and adding more descriptions. Developing characters more and writing explanations that make sense would also vastly improve the series as well. I will be looking forward to the next book.

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Stark Exaggeration

Dark Creations: Gabriel RisingDark Creations: Gabriel Rising by Jennifer Martucci

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free. I downloaded this book for free on Amazon.com. This book was not suggested nor “gifted” to me by the author. I have no affiliation with the author or his/her publisher.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Melissa may as well have been a minor character for all the knight in shining armor stunts that Gabriel had to do to get her out of uncomfortable situations with that sleaze ball of a guy that she likes. She is not at all a strong heroine or even a heroine for that matter. She cannot even save herself. She put herself in a position to be raped and when it is attempted, she throws a weak attempt at getting away. The jerk should not have tried, but there should not have been an opportunity for him. I am not against rape victims. I believe that rape is wrong and should never happen to anyone. The way the author wrote this scene is what I am against and how she portrayed her main character. She created Melissa to be weak and have to be saved. She makes her drink, because Gabriel did not show up. Her friends let her go off with the guy and she lets herself be dragged off by a guy who tried to rape her a different time. To me, going off with a guy who tried to rape you before to “talk” is an a-hole and you are way stupid to go with him. IO do not believe that if a real woman or girl was almost raped in a car would not report it and then, go off with that guy in the woods away from people in the middle of the night. Do not blame the booze. She still seemed to be thinking straight. Melissa is an unrealistic character and Bella Swan would whoop her butt in a fight. Bella is supposed to be the image that comes to everyone’s mind of a weak female heroine, but Melissa now, overshadows her. I am glad to be one of the few, who know that. Now, all my future allusions will be towards Melissa, not Bella…Sorry, Bella. 1 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Gabriel is probably the only character that I did somewhat like. He was strong and heroic, but he was weak when it came to his creator. He was so afraid to speak out, but I know why so it makes that a bit understanding. However, I still wished that he was a bit stronger to stand up for himself. I did not like how perfect he looked. It seemed more arrogant and I was surprised when he was not. I do not believe that Melissa and Gabriel really go together as a couple. He would go better with Daniela than with Melissa, but I guess he is attracted to the damsel in distress. He is super powerful, but do not be mistaken. He is no superhero. He cannot even stand up for himself, so how he can he save the world from Eugene? He is scared of Eugene, but a great hero would stand up to that fear at any cost. Gabriel just backed down to it, and then did whatever he wanted. It is a start, but more backstabbing and underhanded than heroic. 2 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: Eugene is a terrifying character, but much thought and development went into his character creation by the author. His chapters were maddening, but so well-crafted that I loved reading them. He was a joy to read, because the story was so smooth and he was very unpredictable like a jungle cat. Terzini is the evil mastermind, while Eugene is his minion creation. Terzini is a pure mad scientist, who believes that he can make the perfect human race, quite like Hitler during World War II. While Hitler wanted blue eyed, blonde haired, identical twins, Terzini wants a perfect human race with no emotions and perfect genes free of disease and cancer. He also wants them to be intelligent and quick witted. He is the perfect example of a scientist gone rogue. Although these two characters were more enjoyable to read about, I still could not relate to them. 4 out of 5 stars

4. Strong Minor Characters: Alexandra is a goddess of a girl, who likes burb and fart contests. She also likes to swear…a lot. I guess the author was trying her spin on the new and improved tomboy, but I can honestly say that every time that girl spoke I forgot that she was supposed to be beautiful and goddess like. I saw her as ugly as the words she spoke and kind of on the plump side as well. I pictured Daniella very beautiful though. She seemed to outshine them all with her impeccable taste and choice words. She is the ideal image of the perfect woman and likes to flaunt it as well. I found her charming, but overly concerned for Melissa’s welfare. Well, actually, not enough, because she let her go off with that jerk knowing full well what he tried to do to her. 2 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: The events that occurred throughout the book was a bit of a letdown and I was not intrigued by the plot. Some of the narrative was enjoyable, but for the most part, I did not believe it to be all that interesting. I am glad that I did not spend any money on this book, but now I know why it was free in the first place. What I do not understand was why it was on the top 100 free downloads on Amazon.com. I cannot believe how many people downloaded this book, but then again, I was duped too into believing that this book was going to be something very interesting. I give the authors points for creating something so unique, but I did not really enjoy it. It was too short. Too forced and too unbelievable to even consider it to be true. I could not loose myself in this book. 2 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: The environments could have been interesting, if details and descriptions were put to creative work. The settings fall flat however, because the authors glazed over important details that would have created a world that the reader could immerse themselves in. The sad part is that these places are so generic, it could have been anywhere. I do not know why the authors bothered much with any specifics on the characters’ locations. When they arrived in New York, I was expected the school to be high end and the students to be rich and up to all the latest trends like most New Yorkers are. I got none of that and everything of a cold day up in Maine. Maine would have been a better place to set this story in, but don’t ask me why. It is just something I feel would just click about the place and the students, if it had been set there. 1 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: There was nothing special about the dialogue and I feel that Melissa shared a lot too soon with Gabriel. Her history could have been dragged out more than it was. Actually, the whole story needed to be longer to have been developed more than it was. Anyways, the dialogue was nothing special. It was typical teenager speak for the most part. No complaints there, but I found it lacking in maturity and emotional appeal. There was nothing gripping about anyone’s exchanges. They just talked and that was it. There was no suspense or real appeal. 2 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: The only engaging surprises was when the reader was inside Eugene’s mind and reading his part of the story. I think it has to do with his animalistic properties and the fact that the author took the time to develop his character somewhat to make him more interesting to the reader, even though, the character is way evil and creepy. Otherwise, there were no surprises AT ALL. 1 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: This author calls alluding to Eugene getting closer to New York a climax? There was nothing resolved and nothing that left the reader wanting to know what happened next. It made me feel: That’s it? I was expecting a BOOM, when I got a: to be continued. It was a major let down, not to mention a literary/series turnoff. There was no climax, which does not make it a surprise to me that there really was no story. No climax = no story. Period. 1 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: What response? The only response I had was when I finished the book. I was glad to be done with it. Maybe, I had tears of frustration throughout the book, but I do not think that that was the type of emotional response that the authors were going for, at least I hope not. No reader I know what to be eternally frustrated enough to whack their head against a wall during the whole book. 1 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: Meh. It was not much of an ending, but I was happy when it did end, except not for the reasons the authors would want. It did not leave me wanting more. It left a bad taste in my mouth that does not want to disappear. I do not think that I will be reading this series. 1 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: All of the characters keep the reader at a distance. The writing does not allow the reader to get close or really understand the characters at all. You can totally tell that the story was written by two different people. The writing did not flow smoothly at all. There were many noticeable bumps in the metaphorical road. The splitting off into four different characters POVs was frustrating and confusing. That is too many characters to be going from one to another. I would say that there is a three character maximum or maybe I would not mind so much if the story had been well written. That could always be a possibility. 2 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: The design of the cover gives off a way creepier vibe than the book itself. The only real creepy parts are with Eugene from his POV; otherwise it is your average pathetic teenage romance with a scientific spin. The cover is misleading. The thought I was going into a dark story, but it was not dark enough for me. The cover gave me a different expectation of the book, which did not match up with the story itself. 2 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: This a scientific romance. It has some sci-fi elements to the book, but what it boils down to is essentially a romance and a sappy one at that. The genre it is listed under can be deceiving, because a reader will assume a heavy sci-fi plot, but it is not that heavy handed. It could have been delivered with much more oomph than it had. 2 out of 5 stars

15. Title: Dark Creations is a suiting title, but it does not give an inkling to the sappy romance that it will lead into a few chapters into the story. I have to say that the title is also half misleading, because the book is not as dark as the title suggests. 3 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this book 1.8 stars, so I will round it up to 2 stars. It was not that great of a book, but it had a couple of qualities that saved it from being a complete waste of my time. I will not be reading the rest of the series. I cannot even believe that I read this book.

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Wing-Crossed Lovers

Angelic (Angelic, #1)Angelic by L.P. Swalheim

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Ariel is a bit needy and clingy. She does not try to be strong and live life on her own in the beginning. As time progressed, she got stronger and gained a stubborn streak in her. In the beginning she really annoyed me, but by the end, she had me charmed by her loss and her strength to move on with her life. Although I did read the excerpt to the second book, which I have a different issue with, but I will not include it in this evaluation of the book. She is a little self-centered and love-centered. Even I could see who the bad guy was, but I did not know who he actually really was. You would understand what I mean, if you have read the book. All in all, I liked Ariel and tolerated her. 3 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Liam has some chapters of the book from his own point of view, which I very much enjoyed. It was a nice reprieve from Ariel and I learned more about what was actually going on. It is nice to know what other characters are doing in the story and where they fit into it. Liam is a strong loyal character and boyfriend that I was disappointed with the ending. If the author wanted to keep things interesting, they should not do what this one did in the first book. Then, you are basically running off of a different plot that is only thinly connected to the first book. You thought that I would spill a juicy detail, didn’t you? Well, I am happy to disappoint. I hate reading reviews that spoil the book and I try real hard not to spoil it for you, if my review makes you interested enough to actually go read the book yourself. If I do do that, then my work has been worth it. But yes, Liam was a great aspect to the book and my attention was riveted on him and what he would do next. 4 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: Vincent, Vincent, Vincent. His evil character was SO promising, but he very much disappeared from the beginning of the book, before magically reappearing at the end. He was not such a great evil antagonist. He was gone. Someone was killing a lot of people. Then, he reappeared with his parents. It was all very muted down and all the focus was on the cute couple. 1 out of 5 stars

4. Strong Minor Characters: Lane is a really interesting character, who definitely provides comedic relief for the story. He is the class clown of the little group and enjoys a good time; however, he also knows about the danger that threatens his very existence. Blake is Ariel’s best friend, but she is not really a big part of the story. Lane has a bigger role in the story than she does. Blake pushes Ariel to do things that she never would have done without being pushed, which is a good thing. Blake is not really believable to me. She is just a generic best friend, nothing special about her. There were so many other minor characters that I cannot keep all of their names straight, but I do know that there is a vampire, werewolf, and guardian angel family that decided to live in the town. I do believe that the town is remote and that is why they all moved there, but it seemed a bit extreme that they ALL knew AND liked each other. 3 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: There was an underlying story to all of the romance, but the sad part is that nothing really picked up until the last quarter of the book when everything came to a head. I personally believe that the book is too long and some parts should be taken out to give this book a faster pace. The romance was an integral part of the story and it took very long to develop and I believe that the author still could have shown that the relationship developed over almost a year without being so long. The plot is not really unique. I have read a lot of stories like this, but if it turns out that Ariel is half angel and half human, a Nephi. Then, I would say that this story would be more unique. 3 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: One of my most favorite aspects about the book is how descriptive all of the scenes are. You can really imagine anything and everything in this book. The picture is so clear and crisp in my mind. The scenery is really very beautiful and I can tell that the author spent a lot of time absorbing Mother Nature before writing the book. Lord knows that I have spent a lot of time doing this myself for my debut novel. It really makes the descriptions more beautiful, when the scenes are described accurately with natural flora found in the named area. 5 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: The dialogue is a little mature coming from Ariel, at times and I would expect that to come from the angels and vampires than from her. It gets a little stilted and stale at times, but not everyone can write the way teenagers talk, especially when the spelling app keeps trying to correct you. You know you are doing something right when the spelling and grammar app wants to correct you, unless you are really bad at grammar. Then, it would want to correct you as well. 3 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: There was only one surprise that happened at the end of the book, which I am very upset about, because it was not a good surprise. It was a sad surprise that causes an emotional response, which I will talk about in #10. There was a lot of predictability in this book that sucked some of the fun out of reading it, but with creating a new world there is a lot of history to cover. I just wish it was done in a lot more surprising way. 2 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: I believe that the epic fight scene near the end of the book would be the climax and it is very exciting and makes the whole book really worth reading. Everything slows down in slow motion and all of the horror hits you in the face about what is happening all around Ariel. It is heart pounding and adrenaline producing just to read about it. I wish that same amount of effort was put into the rest of the book. It would have been an epic book. 4 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: I literally cried after the end of the fight scene an all throughout the rest of the book from thereon out. Tears kept on slipping from my eyes down my cheeks. The ending is very emotional and gripping. I wish the rest of the book was just like it. It caught my attention and I finished the ending all in one sitting. I love it when a book makes me cry. It reflects well on the author that they can actually manipulate other people’s emotions so severely. I wish more scenes in the book gave me an emotional response whether happy, angry, or sad. 4 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: Like I said earlier, I read the ending all in one sitting. It was a bit disappointing for me though. I never expected that to happen to Liam and I bet other readers are just as angry about it as I am. It seems like a crime to do what that author did. It disappointed me and I thought to myself why would I finish the rest of the series? Liam is my favorite character and not having him there would lessen the enjoy ability for me. Ariel seemed to have matured and I hope for my sake that she has. 3 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: I have to say that the prologue was very uniquely phrased and written. It was a shame that the rest of the book was not written in the same style, but I did enjoy the narrative from the POV of Ariel and Liam. That was a very nice twist to the book. I just wish that I had a little bit more of Liam’s story. Another issue that I had with it was that there were a lot of grammatical mistakes that kept me distanced from the book and the writing made the story a little unbelievable at times. There was too much nonfiction and not a lot of facts that made me distance myself from the story at times, instead of immersing myself in it. The writing was not horrible, but it was only okay and I liked it a little. I just wish it was better edited and looked over before being published as a kindle book. 3 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: I am not too crazy about the cover. It seems a little too dark, when the story does not ring that dark to me. I mean, it is dark, but not to the extreme that the cover suggests. 2 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: The novel truly is a paranormal romance through and through. There was great marketing done on this one. The genre rings true and I believe that it will attract a lot of readers, if it was not for the cover.. 4 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this book 3 stars. It was enjoyable, but it was not the best thing that I have ever read. I would read the second book in the series if it was free, gifted to me, or I won it. I would not really seek it out though. There are other series that I would seek out books to before this one.

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Zero Gravity

Gravity (Gravity, #1)Gravity by Abigail Boyd

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen. My review may contain spoilers, but I really strive to be spoiler-free.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Ariel was a dedicated best friend that did not understand what was going on with her best friend. She did not understand why she was being pushed away. She is very loyal and a caring person. She is a bit of a recluse; however, and has a hard time making friends. She is sort of antisocial, but she is not afraid to defend the ones that she loves. She loves a good mystery and when weird things start happening to her, she looks for answers. She is a self-empowered girl detective that will stop at nothing, until she finds the answers to all of her questions. She is really relatable and down-to-earth. She has a sense of humor and a bit of a morbid obsession with horror films, stories, and the works. She is a perfect specimen for paranormal manipulation. 5 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: This book is not split into two perspectives, but I believe that there really is a hero to this story that the readers find in Henry Rhodes. He is a mysterious guy with a mysterious origin. I cannot help, but think that his family is into some really dark stuff. Maybe, they are witches, demons, or fallen angels. Whatever they are, Henry really intrigues me as the reader and fascinates me as a fellow writer. I enjoy how the romance with Henry is hot then cold, yes, then no like the Katy Perry song. It makes the relationship a lot more interesting and dynamic. I hope in the second book that the reader learns more about Henry and his family and how they fit into this realistic paranormal world. 5 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Main Character / Evil Antagonist: I do not want to say who the evil antagonist is but let me tell you that you will never see this one coming. It is that unexpected. I loved the aspects of this character. The person is so nice and caring, but there are little hints throughout the entire novel that leads to the reveal. As a fellow reader, I brushed it aside as much as the character did and forgot about it. After the big reveal, as a writer, I remembered all the little breadcrumbs of hints that lead up to it and smacked my own forehead. The reader will, too once they realize it. The character is so unassuming that I do not want to ruin it with saying more. 5 out of 5 stars

4. Strong Minor Characters: Theo is the greatest best friend that Ariel could have, although she knows that Theo is keeping something secret from her and I desperately want to know what it is. She is such a compelling, artistic, quirky character that it grounds the novel and adds a nice dose of reality to the sometimes unbelievable story. She is nerdy, but a very fierce friend. She is at Ariel’s side most of the time being Robin to Ariel’s Batman. I just wish that the author would let Theo out of Ariel’s shadow and make her really shine. Hopefully, this will occur in the next book. Then, my perfect image of Theo would be complete. There are other background characters, but nobody that is as major minor as Theo. I do not want to say anything else that could lead to the identity of the evil antagonist; the snobby, bitchy popular girls do not count as well as the boys that hang out with them. 4 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: An excellent storyline with beautifully crafted characters. When I truly love a book, I tend to write so much about it and this book is no exception to the rule. It is an unassuming plot that the reader believes that it will be all about finding out what happened to the missing friend, but the reader gets so much more than that. They get this whole different plot that they never saw coming weaved into the original plot and it is done so smoothly, naturally, and flawlessly that the reader thinks nothing of it. This is pure magic and I hope the rest of the series are as riveting as the first book. I hope the sequel can keep up the expectations that readers who have read this book now have. I know my opinions are high up there. The only drawback I have for the plot is that I wish the reader would know a little bit more about what happened to Ariel’s friend, not a lot more but a little. It would make for a more epic ending. 4 out of 5 stars

6. The Setting: There is one word that I could use to describe the setting of Hell: haunting. I can also list a whole bunch more, but that is the key adjective. Everything is beautiful in a hauntingly crude and ugly way. Yes, there is a way where ugly can be beautiful like the girls in horror movies. There is so much description that I believe like I am actually in the town of Hell, such a suiting name for this town once you add the paranormal aspect to it. I have a funny feeling that it will have an angels and demons theme, but if it does not, then this author really does know how to keep an audience entranced. The only thing that could improve the setting is maybe a cemetery visit. It would have added a little something to it, I think. 4 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: Classic teenager language. I loved every second of it. The dialogue had the perfect amount of excitement, humor, sarcasm, and boredom. The four main ingredients that most teenagers are made out of. The perfect blend of normal into the paranormal. It made the whole novel more realistic or plausible that something like this could happen, if the reader can relate to this book personally or point out a few characteristics of their friends in the characters. The characters are not generic, but they are relatable. 5 out of 5 stars

8. Engaging Surprises: There seemed to be a surprise in every chapter whether big or small. I love it when a new bend comes in the story and something jumps out that you never expected. This book is filled with those high thrilling moments. The surprises were very enjoyable and urged me to keep reading to see what else was going to happen. It spurred me to the read the book more than I usually would. I read this book in one day, because it was so good. I sacrificed a Revenge marathon to read this book. Yes, it was that good. 5 out of 5 stars

9. Climax: Let’s just say that I was biting my knuckles in an anticipation as the climax rises and tittered on the edge. I was so engrossed in the book, talking out loud to myself to NOT GET OUT OF YOUR HIDING SPACE! Oh, it was very intense and I gasped on a big breath of air when the boogie monster jumped out. This was a very thrilling read and the climax was the best part of the book in my opinion. It was even better than the ending of the book and that really creeped me out, the ending that is. 5 out of 5 stars

10. Emotional Response: I was with the main character Ariel all the way. I was laughing when she was and crying when she was. When she was scared (and she is hardly ever scared at all), I was definitely frightened. I read this book into the night and let me just tell you that I had to sleep with a lamp on in my room. If you read Goosebumps at night, this would be a book for you. Maybe, a little less scary all of the time, but still just as good. I enjoy being scared, but not horror scared. I love thrillers and that is exactly what this series is. 4 out of 5 stars

11. Ending: The ending is really unexpected and as a reader, you almost forget the core point of the book, but the ending shocks you back into reality, while making chills creep down your spine at the same time. It was indeed bone chillingly good. I would have liked a little more closure at the end, but this is a great lead in to the second installment. 4 out of 5 stars

12. The Writing: Hauntingly beautiful prose that will keep you guessing until the very end. That is how I felt about the writing in this novel. It was so well edited and cared for. You could tell that the author cared enough to put the proper amount of time into editing the entire book and this is reflected in all the positive reviews and ratings that this book is getting from readers everywhere. This is an author to keep an eye on and not a lazy eye on but a good one preferably with 20/20 vision. 5 out of 5 stars

13. The Artwork: The cover is pretty, but I would have liked to see something a bit darker and edgier, since that is the feeling and impression I get from the story. The girl in the white dress is a little too delicate for a book like this. 3 out of 5 stars

14. Genre: Labeling this book as paranormal is the right choice, but I would also add the tag of thriller onto it, too. It really has that aspect to it. It is a dark paranormal and people should know that before they buy it and you do not really get that feeling from the cover. It is a new type of genre that I have not really seen before, because not many paranormal novels are also thrillers. They are usually romance, so this is interesting to me. 4 out of 5 stars

The overall rating I give this book is a 4 ½ stars. This is as close to perfect as most books get from me. Occasionally, I do give out fives to the best series known to man, but this one might very well earn a five in the next book, if minor improvements are made. To be honest, there are not a lot of improvements to do to make the next book a perfect 5.

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An Angelic Dilemma

The Girl (Guardians #1)The Girl by Lola St.Vil

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen.

1. Strong Main Character / Female Heroine: Emmy is a spunky girl with a lot of fire in her like everyone keeps telling her. Although she is caring and courageous, I also agree with the minor characters that she is selfish and singular minded. All she wants are what she wants. She does not think about the rest of humanity or even the rest of the team. Everyone else’s emotions are on the back burner, because she has to be totally focused on only her own. On the other hand, she does do selfless acts to spare the lives of others. Her humanity shines through when she grieves and does the stupid things that teenagers sometimes do. She is only human after all and that is her downfall. If she was something else, maybe things would work out, not necessarily between Marcus and her, but her whole life might open up the way it never has before. I do believe that Emmy is something more than human, especially considering who her father is. There may be hope for her yet and hope is all anyone ever really has. 3 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Main Character / Male Hero: Marcus may not be the knight in shining armor in this faery tale, but he is a guardian angel…literally. He is caring and loving, but he puts his mission ahead of even the love of his life. I never could understand his thought process, even when I was inside of his head as the reader. He loves one girl, but loves another as well. He loves the other enough to have given her his heart. How can a mortal girl change that? She cannot, which makes me believe that Emmy is not what she appears at first. I found it hard to sympathize with Marcus, because his emotions were all other the place without really any explanation. He was happy, then mad, resentful. I found it extremely hard to keep up and it was a relief to escape the mind of Marcus for the remainder of the book. I find Emmy’s side of the tale better crafted and entertaining instead of confusing. 2 out of 5 stars

3. Strong Minor Characters: The lesser characters made the book in my opinion. I love the twins! They take care of each other and really look out for one another. Being able to witness, even a fictional love, that strong was priceless to me and I will always cherish it, until I find a love its equal. I do not think any love could top it or ever be greater. I believe that they are at the peak of sibling love. Mimi is an interesting character to say the least. She is fierce and loyal, but is able to put trespasses behind her and move forward in the mission. Although she is very emotional at times, I find her oddly more interesting than Emmy. This girl seems to have many secrets. Secrets that could destroy her, while Emmy only has that one secret, plus the one she does not know about. I am really sad about what happened to Reese. He is such a fun loving guy, who is always competing with Jayden. Reese and Jayden are both super cute and they know it. They are always fooling around and having a good time. Although it appears that they always are fighting, it is good natured, not born of ill intent. I did not feel a real connection to Sara. She was just there, then not. Nothing really special about her. Julian turns out to be a really important character in the book, but I do not want to give too much away. Emmy’s mom plays a big role as well. Usually, parents are background players or extras, but it was refreshing to see a parent in the middle ground as a minor character. The Akons are lesser than minor characters, so I prefer not to get into it with them. They are also very evil and have no redeeming qualities. 4 out of 5 stars

4. The Setting: My favorite aspect about the book is the setting and how the reader travels all over New York, as well as visiting other places. Although the details about these other places are virtually nonexistent, I still like to think of it as an actual real destination that the characters went to. I would have liked more descriptions and details about the exotic places that the characters went to, but I know that that was not the main focus of the book. The book would have been more interesting. I enjoy interesting settings and this book had real potential and I was let down a bit. 3 out of 5 stars

5. The Plot: All I have to say about the story line is wow…The author does a great job of introducing vast amounts of history and lore in an interesting, unboring way. Most authors stack on the history making their readers beg for air or some type of relief from information overload, but this other has learned to nix that in the bud. The information is delivered in a way that makes the plot interesting and engaging, not stifling. I have never read a plot quite like this. Yes, I have read books about saving the world a hundred times over, but nothing quite like this with Creation stories and myths that have root in several religions, but somehow seem to be set apart into its own unique category. I quite like the fact that humans can become angels, thank you very much. 4 out of 5 stars

6. The Artwork: I love, love, love the cover; however, I believe that the character Emmy is not portrayed correctly on the cover. I find her less bosomy in the book…Maybe that is just me, but I believe that Jayden or Reese would have picked up on that and teased her about it. Also, Marcus’ wings look dark and he has not Fallen yet so that is very misleading. 4 out of 5 stars

7. The Writing: The writing is mediocre at best. If the author would find a good editor to edit out certain scenes, spelling errors, incorrect words in the place of the word that would actually make sense aka expect instead of except (Sorry, but these are two TOTALLY DIFFERENT meanings). These mistakes are annoying and distracting. These errors are a letdown to an immensely interesting plot. For this writing to ever get five stars, it needs an editor pronto. It took away from the amazing story and that is a real shame. 2 out of 5 stars

8. The Dialogue: The dialogue is very interesting and well-crafted with the exception of a few grammatical errors. I found the dialogue witty and typical dialogue for teenagers to have. The grown up speech of the angels is to be expected due to their age and angel status. The reader does expect them to have more elegant speech patterns and knowledge. 4 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this novel 3 ¼ stars, mostly for the great plot alone. The minor characters also held great sway over the rating as well as the beautiful cover. I look forward to reading the second book in the series as soon as I have some time to read it. I am not totally excited to read the next one, but I am interested in reading it.

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Book, Reviews

The Societal Norm

The Age of Innocence The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Newland Archer is an aggravating male protagonist. He is a man that talks the talk, but will not walk the walk. He is a hypocrite. He loves to talk about society and how messed up it is, but he never does anything to change it. He never challenges society. He lets it control him, even as his mind is saying that he is overcoming it. He is not. He is just accepting that society rules his life, because he lets it. He is a coward and a romantic. He loves the idea of challenging the societal norms, but he does absolutely nothing to that effect. He loves the idea of things, but not the actual doing or outcome of it. In the beginning of the novel, the narrator calls him a dilettante. It really describes Newland very well, because he is never going to be a man and stand up for himself and the ones that he loves. If I lived back when this novel first came out, I might have enjoyed it more, but as is, I like really strong character, who overcome authority, not characters that let other people walk all over them. 3 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Minor Characters: May is a devious little thing that the reader does not see working her magic, until the book is half over. Then, the reader sees all the little things that May does to trap Newland into marriage. She is not the innocent little sweet May that everyone talks about, who is so pretty and naive. She is none of these things. She may be beautiful, but she is as ugly as fat old Mrs. Mingott. She likes to control Newland without seeming to and she guilt trips him into doing everything that she wants. She is able to switch around his words into something else. Into something that he did not mean or say. Ellen is the wild, feisty married woman that he wishes he could marry; however, he makes hundreds of mistakes making it impossible for them to be together. Ellen is not as wild as he thinks her to be. She is actually very normal and the only thing that makes her wild is living in Europe, marrying a Count, and wanting a divorce. These are the only things that make her wild in New York society. Newland romanticizes her wildness in his mind, so that he cannot separate the Ellen of his fantasies with the real Ellen. 4 out of 5 stars

3. The Setting: Old New York society is a very interesting place, especially with the mix of old money with the new. It reminds me of the roaring twenties, even though this is the middles 1800s and not 1920. I love discovering all the different places all over the east coast of the United States and even parts of Europe. I got to travel without ever leaving my bedroom. Only a true novelist could ever achieve that. 5 out of 5 stars

4. The Plot: The underlying plot will come to readers after finishing the whole entire book and discussing it in a college course will definitely help you figure it out, but I had it figured out before class, you any dedicated reader can, too. I do not want to give anything more else away, but there are many layers of plot to this book that there is not just one answer. There are many answers based off of experience and level of education. Everyone reads a novel differently and everyone gets something different out of the same book. This is why I write reviews. 4 out of 5 stars

5. The Artwork: The cover is sweet and has an old timey feel. It perfectly matches the plot of the book. The only improvement that I would suggest is adding Newland of the cover, because it is really his age of innocence that Wharton speaks of. 4 out of 5 stars

6. The Writing: The writing is beautiful and exquisite. I have always loved the style of Wharton. She reminds me so much of Jane Austen, except Wharton’s characters have a more realistic demise that does not end with a happy ending for all of her characters. I was not at all intimidated by all of the big words. Since I am an English major, I knew a lot of the words already and the ones that I did not know, I looked up. You really boost your vocabulary and I know that I will be using some of these newly discovered words on my assessment paper. I think I learned about 500 new words are so…maybe less, but there abouts. Any English major or enjoyer of old English will enjoy this novel by Wharton, although her best was The House of Mirth. 4 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: I love the dialogue. No one says what they really mean and you have to try to discover what they really mean. It is a detective game that will have you guessing throughout the entire novel. I enjoy having to figure characters out and the dialogue helps to show how complicated and three dimensional all of the characters truly are. 5 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this novel 4 stars. I would read another book by Wharton, because so far, I have really enjoyed her books. She is a nice change from Jane Austen, when I have feeling depressed and want my characters to suffer. In Wharton’s books, they always seem to.

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Book, Reviews

Harvard: Party Central

The Ivy (The Ivy, #1)The Ivy by Lauren Kunze

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I promise to be brutally honest with my opinion, but it should not be taken as fact. Any reader should read it for themselves, before they decide if this book has any merit or not. Do not judge this book biased solely on my opinion. If you do, you might miss out on a great read. You never know. It could happen.

1. Strong Main Character/ Female Heroine: Callie from Cali is a girl on a mission or at least, at first. She wants to meet people and do well at Harvard, but those things take a back burner to making it into the greatest parties, the most elite societies, and extra-curricular activities. I found that I could not relate to Callie whatsoever. She is a character too farfetched to me. She drinks too much, parties too much, and is magically still doing great in all of her classes? Sorry, I am not buying that crap. Not even a genius would be able to keep up their grades with the little studying and homework that Callie does. For most of the book, she parties, parties, parties, does a little school, and parties some more. Maybe, a true partier would be able to relate to her, but if they partied like she does, they would not have time to read this book and go to college. Not only is Callie a real partier (even though apparently that is not who she really is, but come on, that is ALL she is portrayed as), the reader is expected to believe that she is not a slut, after making a sex tape(okay, she can be innocent in that, but really? At school? In the locker room?), stealing someone else’s boyfriend, leading another guy on, and sleeping with her best friend’s crush? Yeah, not a major slut or suberbadarse friend. *Sarcasm* Seriously, though, I cannot relate to this character, because of all of these things and the person that she allows herself to become at Harvard, but really, that was her true self all along. 1 out of 5 stars

2. Strong Minor Characters: The guys in this book were great, but the only ones I found ial depth…okay sort of depth is the roommates from across the hall. Clint is too damn perfect and seems really fake to me. Maybe he’s playing her? I don’t know. All I know is that something is off about the guy. So much perfect screams dull and boring to me. Maybe a budding psychopath. Matt is sweet and charming, but that is all. He is not in much of the book to really tell what type of person he is. All I know about him is that if I trample over his heart and rip it to shreds, I can give him a coffee and a huge cookie and he will be my friend again…makes him not so interesting now that I really think about it. I forget the roommates name that is with Diana….maybe Jason?….No, it is Adam. Not much to tell on that front, except he is as geeky and awkward as Diana. They are perfect for each other. Ok is really funny and hilarious, so is Mimi, one of Callie’s roommates. They really make the novel an enjoyable read. I could not put the book down, because of their antics and budding dysfunctional romance. At first, I thought Vanessa was just shallow and self-centered, but as the novel progressed, I saw her change and Callie slowly took on those adjectives. By the end of the novel, I was totally feeling it for Vanessa. Callie hurt her a lot and Vanessa is just trying to deal with the pain. I also know that no matter what, Vanessa would never betray Callie, not even after the horrible thing she did to her. Alexis was just a vindictive, little bytch the whole time, over a boy no less! She is realistic to me, though, because I knew a girl just like her once and I know that those kinds of people will stop at nothing until they destroy you. I learned, though, that no matter how far they go to try to destroy you, they cannot. You destroy yourself by reacting to them. You save yourself by ignoring them and the people who choose to listen. The hottest guy by far in this book is Gregory. I love a smoking hot guy, who is also a jerk and has a really sweet side. James Bond type of guys. James Dean type of guys. They intrigue me and I love them. In books anyway. In real life, I love my sweet British boyfriend. NOTE: Also love guys with an accent. It’s adorable! Back to Gregory, I feel like there is so much budding potential for him. Maybe in the next installment, he will either take on a greater role or have even more depth that readers will actually love him from beginning to end, instead of just at the very end. 4 out of 5 stars

3. The Setting: Harvard is an interesting place to put as your backdrop, although I do not know how accurate it really is seeing as I have declined their summer program offer ever time. It’s not really my scene…not even my educational one. Anyways, I enjoy the fact that the reader gets taken all over campus and off of it as well. The book gives you a great descriptive view of everything that is going on and I can actually visualize the places that Callie goes to. 4 out of 5 stars

4. The Plot: The only thing not really realistic about this book is how much time they spend out of class. Sorry, but taking sixteen credits in a real college takes up more time than what this book portrays and a psych class usually has a lab component with it. College is time consuming and this book does not reflect that. Also, there is not much of a plot with this book. I mean, I did not see one as I was reading it. It is just about a girl, who has made some mistakes and makes more in college and also finds herself in an unrealistic love square. Sorry, but her having three love interests is so not realistic. I get that she is supposed to be good looking and everything, but come on, that is so superficial! Her interests and she never look past looks and attitudes. They never look at the deeper person, who they truly are. It is frustrating! And don’t say that most college freshman only look at the superficial. I was once a college freshman. You cannot fool me. 1 out of 5 stars

5. The Artwork: Nothing really interesting about it. It is bright red, so I knew it would be about love. The only thing that got me to buy this book was the fact that it was free. 1 out of 5 stars

6. The Writing: There are so many pop culture references in this book that if you do not know teen or college lingo, you would be lost, because you cannot look these things up in your average dictionary. You would have to look it up in the urban online dictionary, but even that is very strained, because it gets it wrong more than half of the time. I love the references, though. They were funny and witty and so were the fifteen minute articles in the beginning of every chapter. They were humorous and entertaining. There were no mistakes in this book, grammatical anyways. So, I was able to concentrate and notice the lack of a plot. It is just nonsense and not GG nonsense. I mean real nonsense. At least, GG had a general storyline, while this one did not. Also, I could never quite get what kind of narrator this novel had. I was confused if it was third person omnipresent or third person limited. For the most part, it was third person limited, but then you got snatches of other people’s thought, feelings, and ideas. IT made the novel very confusing, when the narrator keeps switching all over the place. That is the sign of an amateur or a really horrid editor. 2 out of 5 stars

7. The Dialogue: Although it was strained at times, the dialogue generally ran smoothly without a hitch. It was believable, because I talk this way myself being only twenty years old. I might not act like the collegians in this book, but the dialogue was spot on. The only thing that I did not like about the dialogue was how awkward it sometimes was between the girls, especially with Diana. It was like the author did not know all the time how to make them talk like young adults and some older people phrases ran out of their mouths at the most impromptu times. 4 out of 5 stars

Overall, I give this novel 2 ½ stars. This is a nice beach or summer read, but it lacks real substance that you can sink your teeth into. It is a nice light read, especially after reading something that was a bit heavier and dark. Do not expect much of anything with this book. Think of it as an escape from reality and something fun. It will not give you anything else. I would read the next one in the series to follow my favorite characters and to not have to think very much about anything.

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