Saturday, December 3, 2016

Until I Die

For some reason I thought I'd already reviewed this book, but I guess I read After the End before trying my hand at the second book in the Revenants series. Disclaimer: Paranormal has never been a genre I've lived and breathed. I generally prefer my high fantasy novels or an engaging sci-fi. So you should take my reviews of paranormal books with a grain of salt.

Retrieved from Goodreads
Kate and Vincent are together and the city of Paris is safe. But now that they have conquered the bad guys, there are questions that need to be answered. How will Kate and Vincent be together if he can't control his compulsion to die to save other? Would it be better for them to stay apart since Vincent will not die? But Paris might not be so safe after all, and the threat may be closer to the revenants than they expect.

Meh. I just can't get behind Kate and Vincent's relationship. It's insta-love-y and much to sappy for my tastes. But then again, I'm not a particularly sappy version. I despise being called things like "dear" or "honey" *shudder* so gazing longingly into someone's eyes every couple chapters wears on my nerves quickly. Also, this book didn't really feel like it had a cohesive plot, but rather episodes of things happening that were stitched together. There were, however, elements that I enjoyed. I liked coded messages through the meanings of flowers (I'm going to have to try that) and the details of Paris made me long to return. It's been far too long. And I will admit, Plum was very brave to end the book the way she did. If there hadn't been that awesome twist (which I honestly didn't believe was real until I read the novella that comes after it) I might not have put the third book in my to-read pile. But as it stands, I will be finishing this series so I can see how Kate deals with the fallout from Until I Die.

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
Up Next: Everneath by Brodi Ashton


Round two of catching up with my blog posts commences! After the faux dystopia of After the End by Amy Plum, I dove into a true dystopian novel about walking-dead child soldiers. Because I like cheery topics, you know!

Retrieved from Goodreads
Sometimes when people die, they don't stay dead. Sometimes they wake up. Wren was dead for 178 minutes, and that makes her the deadliest, least human Reboot in the Republic of Texas. It is her job to train new Reboots, and she usually picks the highest numbers as they're most likely to survive the job of policing the towns for vagrants. But when she's goaded into picking a 22, things start to change. Callum is almost completely human, and he questions all the traditions and rules of being a Reboot. At the same time, the middle numbers are starting to show disturbing symptoms after being experimented on. Wren has spent her entire second life ruthlessly following the rules. Now she can't help but question them.

Hm. An intruiging concept, I must admit. It was interesting to see all the surveillance the Reboots were under from the government and people because if they wanted to they could wipe out hundreds so easily. it fair? Yes and no. And I like that ambiguity in my books. Because some of the Reboots are psychotic and really don't care about killing. And some are just kids who are terrified and have been ripped from their parents at a young age. So kudos to Tintera for examining that dynamic. But on the other side, I got bored during the fight scenes and the romance just didn't grab me like I think it was supposed to. 22 was a nice softening personality for cold Wren, but their romance also developed quite quickly. I'm not completely invested in the rebel movement that's trying to save Reboots. But if it explores more of the dynamic I mentioned above I think I will enjoy the second book a lot!

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
Up Next: Until I Die by Amy Plum

After the End

I sort of accidentally started reading two of Amy Plum's series. If you've visited here before, you might know of my opinion on the Revenants series. And before I get into how I feel about this semi-dystopian series, I'll apologize for falling off the grid again. What with work which took me out of town, NaNoWriMo, and trying to maintain some semblence of the social life, I just didn't have any time to work on my reviews. Or read, really, which is a shame because there are so many pretty books waiting on my shelf at the moment. But anyways...

Retrieved from Goodreads
Juneau is one of the last surviving members of the human race after it was ravaged by World War III. She has been trained from a young age to connect with the Yara, the earth's energy. But when tragedy strikes her village, and she ventures out to find them, she discovers that the world has gone out without her. A world she thought had been destroyed long ago.

So the first couple chapters of this book read like a really confusing dystopian fantasy novel. There's lots of capitalized general terms for things, characters who remind the MC of their childhood, and an MC who is being trained for a leadership role in a weird little village in the middle of nowhere that apparently gets threatened by bandits. If the book had continued that way, I would have put it down. But no! Actually Juneau was unknowingly part of a cult that isolated themselves in the Alaskan wilderness and the world was never destroyed! So this girl with amazing wilderness skills and an intense sense of practicality has to navigate a modern world with stuff like...the internet. There's a romance and people chasing after her because she has magic and stuff, but that's not what made me like this book more than I expected. It was the fact that Juneau is so incredibly capable. I nearly teared up when she had to give up her dogs. And the way she cuts down a scummy pawn broker was excellent. And she manages to elude modern people using her skills, and she adapts to the modern world in her own way. It was awesome. On the downside the magic is weird and the romance, while eventually making sense to me, mostly shoehorned in a plot point that I felt wasn't totally necessary (thought it was fun to watch him freak out when she starts using magic). And those first few chapters are an awkward read. So I have to take the rating down a bit. Overall though, I engaged with this story more than Plum's Revenants series!

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars (more like 3.5)
Up Next: Reboot by Amy Tintera