Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Guest Reviewer: Cindy from Books Complete Me ~ Mini Reviews

Today I want to thank Cindy from Books Complete Me, for joining us! Cindy was awesome enough to bring us a few reviews of some great Young Adult books. Enjoy!

 

Clockwork Angel,Cassandra Clare,book coverClockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
The Infernal Devices, Book 1 
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Published: August 31, 2010 
Genre: YA paranormal/steampunk

hardcover-496 pages
The Infernal Devices website

Summary from Goodreads:

Magic is dangerous--but love is more dangerous still.
When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.
Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.
Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

Cindy's Review

I ran out and purchased this book the day it came out thinking I'd read it right away. But as the days passed I found myself consistently picking other books over it and after a few weeks I realized I was scared. I was scared that Clockwork Angel wouldn't live up to The Mortal Instruments and that I'd be let down. I was worried that I wouldn't like it as much as others did and so I kept putting it off. As long as I didn't read it, I didn't have to worry about being disappointed. It sat there all nice and pretty for several weeks until I finally opened it up. Let me tell you that all of my fears and worries were completely unjustified and now I'm borderline depressed that the story is over and I have to wait for what will feel like forever to know what happens next.

Clockwork Angel is an action packed Victorian story that has it all: mystery, romance and fantasy, with no shortage of the drool-worthy characters you've come to expect and love from Clare. Tessa's story sucks you into the unforgettable and dangerous Shadowhunting world from page one. I don't know if it's just me but I think that I may have even enjoyed this book more than those in The Mortal Instruments series.

While Tessa's voice is the forefront of the story, Clare gives remarkable insights into the secondary characters in this book. Will is mysterious, gorgeous and undeniably intriguing. Jem is handsome, kind and perhaps Will's complete opposite, though still his best friend.

Clare describes Victorian London is such a way that makes you feel like you're actually there and able to walk down those dark streets with Jem or along the water with Jessamine. Her writing is absolutely beautiful, leaving little if anything to be desired. Clockwork Angel is going on my top shelf where a very small number of books have gone. It's definitely going to be one I'll read again and again. Can book two come out any sooner? Please?

My Rating: 5 Stars


The Locket,Stacey Jay,book coverThe Locket by Stacey Jay 
Publisher: Razorbill
Release Date: February 3, 2011 
Genre: YA paranormal romance 
paperback-288 pages  
Author’s website

Summary from Amazon:

On her seventeenth birthday, Katie discovers a locket and decides to wear it for good luck. But when her boyfriend Isaac finds out she cheated on him- with their mutual best friend Mitch, no less- he dumps her, leaving her devastated.
And then a miracle happens. The locket burns on Katie’s chest and she feels herself going back two weeks in time, to the night she cheated with Mitch. At first, Kate is delighted to be a better girlfriend to Isaac this time around. But as other aspects of her life become inexplicably altered, she realizes that changing the past may have had a dangerous effect on her present.
Can she make things right before the locket destroys everything- and everyone- she loves?

Cindy's Review:

The Locket is a story about mistakes and what you would or wouldn't do to correct them. What if you could go back in time and pretend like your biggest mistake never happened? Would you relive all of those moments again and risk changing the lives of those around you to get a second chance?

That's exactly what happens with Katie. One minute she's at a party with her best friend and the next she's making the biggest mistake of her life. When she's given the opportunity to undo her mistake and change the past, she's thrilled to be given the second chance. It isn't until she notices all the little changes in her do-over that she becomes concerned about what her second chance is doing to everyone around her.

The Locket is a thoughtful and intriguing book that I enjoyed from start to finish. There were times when I thought I knew for sure what was going to happen next and was pleasantly surprised when the author wasn't as predictable as I'd assumed. Katie's character is as realistic as any seventeen year old girl is when it comes to love - forever willing to change themselves in the hopes of being enough for that perfect boy, believing that their first love will be their only love, and full of hope at the promise of spending the rest of their lives with their "first" for everything.

Katie's boyfriend, Isaac, and best friend, Mitch, are both enjoyable characters who add to the difficult decision that Katie has to make. Isaac may not be perfect but it's obvious he adores Katie and you can see why Katie fell for him in the first place. Mitch is the perfect best friend, making it hard to watch Katie struggle with possibly losing him from her life.

I found The Locket to be an entertaining read with some twists and turns that kept the story interesting and even a little dark at times. I caught myself tearing up and holding my breath at certain points, just trying to read fast enough to see what would happen next. The ending had me wanting to both cry and scream at the same time but I ended up really loving it. Overall, The Locket was an excellent book and I'm very much looking forward to reading more from Stacey Jay.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Adversary,Kate Kaynak,book cover

Adversary by Kate Kaynak
The Second Ganzfield Novel 
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Published: August 20, 2010 
Genre: YA 
paperback-262 pages  
Ganzfield website

Summary from Goodreads:

The second book of the Ganzfield series.

Things are more dangerous than they seem at Ganzfield, and not everyone will survive. Does Maddie have what it takes?

See what happens next in the sequel to Minder.

(Read Books Complete Me’s review of Minder HERE)

Cindy's Review:

When you read a second novel in a series you automatically expect it to be a filler novel in some way. There has to be some type of lame and frustrating story line that will finally lead into the third book, which is almost always as good or better than the first. I'm not saying that book three won't be better than book one but book two, Adversary, is anything but a filler novel.

Adversary starts out with Maddie and several others members of the Ganzfield student body being away from the school overnight. While they are away Ganzfield is attacked, leaving few survivors. This unlikely group of teenagers band together to fight back against Isaiah, the villain we met in Minder. Adversary also introduces us to a new student and G-Positive who can challenge Maddie in ways no one else can. How does this affect Maddie and what does it mean for her and Trevor? I'm not telling. You're going to have to read it to find out - and trust me, you want to read it.

Kate Kaynak's world is both incredibly original and believable at the same time. The characters are fun, passionate and completely unforgettable. I want to be friends with Maddie, experience Trevor's abilities for myself and maybe start a fire just to see Drew in action. Adversary had me on the edge of my seat for the entire ride and the wait for book three, Legacy, has been excruciatingly long. If you haven't already, pick this series up now. You won't be disappointed!

My Rating: 5 Stars

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5 comments:

Disgruntled Bear said...

Thanks for the Adversary-love, Cindy, and for hosting, Amanda! I've got Clockwork Angel and The Locket in my TBR pile now!
- Kate

Cindy said...

Well, you know I love your books already Kate so I was happy to include your book in the line-up. :-) You need to pick up Clockwork Angel right away. That was an amazing read!

Amanda Leigh said...

@Cindy- I can't wait to read Kate's books! They're sitting on my tbr shelf right now! :)

Clockwork Angel is on my to buy list and I do believe The Locket will be added to that now too. Thanks so much Cindy!

@Kate- Thanks for stopping by!

yllektra (force-oblique) said...

My bestie got me the Clockwork Angel book a few days ago and now I have to read it! XDD

I haven't heard of the Locket but omg the story sounds amazing...
And it is quite refreshing, in the sense that I haven;t read about a story like that. Going back in time to fix a mistake. Kinda sounds like "Sliding Doors" :P

Stella (Ex Libris) said...

Thanks for the reviews Cindy! I already have Clockwork Angel on my TBR shelf, but The Locket sounds exciting (and the cover looks great too), thanks for the recommendations! :-)