Beautiful Creatures {Book Review}

This book in 6 words : Haunting Southern mystery with impossible love.

I’d like to start with saying how I’m going to slam my head into a wall if I finish one more book only to discover that it is the first in a series. PLEASE put “Book 1” or “X Series” on the books!!!!

I received Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl from Kelly at Stacked Books for the Book Blogger Holiday Swap! I really did like it and I will be reading the next in the series.

Ethan Wate is struggling to hide his apathy for his high school “in” crowd in small town Gatlin, South Carolina, until he meets the determinedly “out” Lena Duchannes, the girl of his dreams (literally–she has been in his nightmares for months). What follows is a smart, modern fantasy–a tale of star-crossed lovers and a dark, dangerous secret. Beautiful Creatures is a delicious southern Gothic that charms you from the first page, drawing you into a dark world of magic and mystery until you emerge gasping and blinking, wondering what happened to the last few hours (and how many more you’re willing to give up). To tell too much of the plot would spoil the thrill of discovery, and believe me, you will want to uncover the secrets of this richly imagined dark fantasy on your own. —Daphne Durham (via Amazon)

I’m not one to shy away from big books. I was, however, surprised to find out that this 600 page turning mystery is only the first in a series. I didn’t feel like the book was too long, however, I did catch myself skimming near the end when I was dying to find out how it ended. To be honest, I almost put the book down after the first chapter because I wasn’t really getting into it, but I kept going and after a few more chapters I was hooked. The suspense is so intense that I finished this within two days.

Ethan and Lena are beautifully written. I found myself laughing and crying with them. The story is complex without being confusing. You will find yourself thinking about it long after you put the book down. I will be passing this along to my friends and recommending it to anyone who loves YA fiction/fantasies.

* This goes towards my 101 Books Challenge and my A-Z Book Challenge

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101 Fantasy Reading Challenge

Hosted By : A Bibliophile’s Bookshelf

So here are the rules:

1. Pick the number of books you want to read. It can be a mixture of the top 101, and/or the whole list. For example, you might want to aim to read 5 from the top 101 and 5 from the rest of the list.
2. Create a list of the books you want to tackle. You can create a list now, or add them as you go. Completely up to you.
3. The challenge runs from 10/10/09 to 10/10/10.

Sign-Up Here!!

I’m aiming to read at least 5 from the top 101 and 15 overall! Here is my tentative list, but I’m going to be open to changing these.

  1. CLARE, Cassandra – City of Bones
  2. RICE, Anne – Interview with the Vampire
  3. PULLMAN, Philip – Northern Lights
  4. WARD, JR – Lover Eternal
  5. GAIMAN, Neil & PRATCHETT, Terry – Good Omens
  6. MONING, Karen Marie – Faefever
  7. GAIMAN, Neil – Neverwhere
  8. VINCENT, Rachel – My Soul to Take
  9. PRATCHETT, Terry – Night Watch
  10. KING, Stephen – The Gunslinger
  11. COELHO, Paul – The Alchemist
  12. ANTHONY, Piers – A Spell for Chameleon
  13. RAND, Ayn – Atlas Shrugged
  14. BRIGGS, Patricia – Moon Called
  15. ARMSTRONG, Kelly – Bitten

Women Unbound – Start of Challenge Meme

Women Unbound Challenge website

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1. What does feminism mean to you? Does it have to do with the work sphere? The social sphere? How you dress? How you act?

I’m honestly unsure on how to answer this. I don’t know that I think about feminism often. I believe women are equal to men. I have a partnership with my husband. I do not ask for his permission to wear what I want or do what I want with my body (tattoos, hair ect)… HOWEVER, I do ask his opinion because I care what he thinks.

2. Do you consider yourself a feminist? Why or why not?

I guess that depends on how you define “feminist”. Do I believe in the power of women? YES Do I believe women and men are equals? YES Do I think we deserve to be treated with respect? YES

3. What do you consider the biggest obstacle women face in the world today? Has that obstacle changed over time, or does it basically remain the same?

Ourselves!! I feel that women are very judgmental of themselves and other women. We are usually our own worst enemy. I honestly, don’t know if this has change over time. It may be worse than it once was.

Dark Lover – JR Ward {Review)

dark lover tabledarkloverI am finally getting this review up!! I love vampires. That’s no secret. I had been meaning to start JR Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series for a while, but it seemed like my local B&N was always out of the first in the series. With Halloween approaching and vampire books everywhere (I love this time of year!) I was finally able to get the first two books in the series. I’m glad I did!!

Dark Lover introduces us to the BDB, a group of warrior vampires whose job is to protect the remaining members of their society from the Lessers, soulless human vampire hunters. If you like a tortured hero, you’ll love this! The first in the series tells the story of Beth, a half-human/half-vampire that doesn’t know she’s about to transition and gets pulled into a battle she didn’t know existed. She is a strong female lead without being overpowering or annoying.

The main brother in the story is Wrath, the only remaining purebred vampire and leader of the BDB. He reluctantly agrees to help Beth with her transition after her father and his close friend is killed.

The book is full of romance, heat, tension, mystery and thrills. The author does a fabulous job at bringing you into this dark world without it being confusing. I would recommend this do those who love a hot paranormal read. I’m hoping to start the second in the series, Lover Eternal later this month.

* This was read during the 24hr Dewey Read-a-Thon and counts towards my 101 Books Challenge.

Women Unbound Reading Challenge

Hosted by: Aarti, Care, & Eva

Women Unbound Website

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This challenge is to encourage the reading of books related to “women’s studies”. This can be non-fiction or fiction. Not sure what counts? Head over the site to get some ideas.

There are three levels you can choose as a reader:

  • Philogynist: read at least two books, including at least one nonfiction one.
  • Bluestocking: read at least five books, including at least two nonfiction ones.
  • Suffragette: read at least eight books, including at least three nonfiction ones.

I’ll be going for Bluestocking! Be sure to head over and join here!!

L.J. Smith Reading Challenge

Hosted by: My Friend Amy

Sep 1, 2009 – Aug 31, 2010

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(Click here to continue reading “LJ Smith Reading Challenge”)

{Book Review} Intertwined by Gena Showalter

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intertwined I told myself no more starting series that haven’t been finished. I HATE not knowing how a story ends… I didn’t realize that Intertwined by Gena Showalter was the beginning of a series. That’s what I get for not doing my research prior to picking up a book…

Aden Stone may seem like your normal schizophrenic trouble maker, however, the voices in his head are much more than figments of his imagination. Aden shares his body with four spirits that each bring something strange to the table. One sees the future – often the death of those around him. One raises the dead. One allows Aden to posses others. One can take Aden to past versions of himself often altering the future as he knows it. As terrible as sharing your head may sound, Aden has come to love these spirits and wants to help them find their own lives. He hasn’t known anything different. That is until he meets Mary Anne. She somehow quiets the voices, allowing him the peace he only dreamed of. That peace doesn’t last long, however, somehow him meeting Mary Anne is bringing the paranormal world out of hiding to find him.

I started this book at 7am the morning of the Read-a-Thon. I am not by any means a morning person so that may very well account for why it was so hard for me to get into the story. I felt like it was slow to start, but once it got going I couldn’t put it down. The added paranormal world definitely grabbed my attention. The characters became more well rounded and the more I learned about them the more I wanted to know. The only thing I didn’t like about the book was how rushed the end felt.  Overall, I liked the book and I will be reading the next one when it comes out. I’d recommend borrowing or checking this book out… I’m not sure if I can say “go out and buy it!”… maybe after the next one…

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I heard about this book from Blogs with Bite. So here are my answers to their discussion questions: May contain minor spoilers!!

#1  Do you feel the ending was cut short and needed more to be resolved before the book ended? I felt that it was rushed, but not necessarily that there needed to be more resolved. I felt almost like too much was resolved too quickly… if that makes sense…

#2 Regarding Question #1, what are your thoughts on series books? I love series books! I hate waiting to find out what happens next… but with series you get to know the characters and their world much better.

#3 Which “trapped” soul was your favorite and do you see potential in the future story lines with the remaining three? My favorite was probably Elijah. Although all the souls cared about Aden, he seemed the closest to him. I think Caleb will have the most interesting back story… but you never know 🙂 I’m really looking forward to seeing how they find out who the souls are and how they grant their dying wishes.

#4  When a larger-than-life character such as Vlad Tepes aka Dracula is used as a side-plot character do you believe it gives the story a more factual base, or makes it less real? I think it makes it more “real” or connects it with stories you may have read in the past. A character like Dracula in particular, that was based on a real man, helps bring the story into our world.

#5 What did you think of the side plot involving Tucker and Penny?  Do you think the issues from that plot were adequately resolved? I think it helped build Mary Anne’s character. We get to see how she deals with betrayal and she loses those that were close to her. I’m interested to see what happens with Penny and the child. Will it be a demon? Will Mary Anne tell her?

#6 What is your best guess as to what Aden Stone’s superpower is – the power he possess without his souls? I honestly have no idea. He seems to draw magical energy to him. I’m sure the fact that him and Mary Anne were born in the same place at the same time will play a big role in finding out what their powers are.

* read during 24 Hour Read-a-Thon

* counted towards 101 Books Challenge

* “I” book for A-Z Books Challenge