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Review: Everbound by Brodi Ashton (Everneath, #2)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Summary from Goodreads:
Nikki Beckett could only watch as her boyfriend, Jack, sacrificed himself to save her, taking her place in the Tunnels of the Everneath for eternity — a debt that should’ve been hers. She’s living a borrowed life, and she doesn’t know what to do with the guilt. And every night Jack appears in her dreams, lost and confused and wasting away.

Desperate for answers, Nikki turns to Cole, the immortal bad boy who wants to make her his queen — and the one person least likely to help. But his heart has been touched by everything about Nikki, and he agrees to assist her in the only way he can: by taking her to the Everneath himself.

Nikki and Cole descend into the Everneath, only to discover that their journey will be more difficult than they’d anticipated — and more deadly. But Nikki vows to stop at nothing to save Jack — even if it means making an incredible sacrifice of her own.
Finishing this book was really frustrating because of the main character Nikki! The book is written in first person and so we were forced into Nikki's point of view and she was whiny and depressed it was beyond suffocating. The first fifth of the book was basically about Nikki moping around and waiting for Cole to appear. The story picks up when she crosses path with Cole. Her ultimatum to Cole is: Come with me to the Everneath to save Jack or I'll go alone and die in there trying (since you value my life so much I'm guessing you'll come with).

Nikki puts herself in so many reckless situations she might as well have walked across the road without looking both sides. I don't have enough fingers on my hands to count the amount of times she screams in pain as a result of her recklessness. These scenes gave my eyes a workout from rolling so much.

What I did like was the Everneath's layout and the trials and tribulations faced. These were well thought out and fascinating. I liked the way the book was written with intermittent flashbacks; When Nikki loses a tether which points her to the direction of where Jack is in the Everneath, Cole prompts her to tell him a memory. These memories were sweet and gave insight into why Nikki was so desperate to get Jack back. These flashbacks were also a good reprieve from the 'present' story line.

I didn't think the story contained much in terms of character development. At the beginning Nikki needed to patch up her relationship with her father and brother. At the end, her father goes "If you're going to lie to me, there's no need to make up fanciful stories about alternate realities. I'd rather you just didn't tell me anything". That's his way of saying 'I trust you' and 'you being away from home without a reason is fine and dandy'?! I found it annoying when Nikki was in dire circumstances, she would think about her family and how she wouldn't have time to work on her relationships at home. She doesn't even take the effort when she finally does return home.

Everbound was a disappointing read since I liked Everneath. Had Nikki's character been less annoying I would have enjoyed the book a lot more.

Review: Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Sunday, January 19, 2014
Summary from Goodreads:
Evie’s always thought of herself as a normal teenager, even though she works for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she’s falling for a shape-shifter, and she’s the only person who can see through paranormals’ glamours.

But Evie’s about to realize that she may very well be at the center of a dark faerie prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures.

So much for normal.
To be honest, going into this book I had a feeling this would be a laid-back read. It was more than that! The author writes lighthearted and serious equally well. A particular scene was utterly spine-chilling which I wasn't expecting!

I loved the charming narrator Evie, who was kick-ass and amusing. Being inside her head was fun and entertaining. Lend, the shape-shifter who Evie caught sneaking in the IPCA centre with the director's appearance, was an awesome character. He showed that you don't need to be a bleeping-mysterious-hot-and-cold-dangerous-bad-boy to win a girl's heart. I had bad feelings towards Reth (who Evie had a thing for when she was younger), a dangerous faerie described as possessing unfathomable beauty. I applauded that the author did not go down the route of making this bad boy figure desirable.

It was understandable that Evie lost some of her upbeatness after some events. The absence of her upbeat self was quite tangible, at times making it feel like I was trudging through the book having not as much enjoyment as I had in the beginning.

There was no shocking cliffhanger at the end but the characters alone are enough to make me want to read the next installment.

Review: Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sixteen-year-old Gwen lives with her extended - and rather eccentric - family in an exclusive London neighborhood. In spite of her ancestors' peculiar history, she's had a relatively normal life so far. The time-traveling gene that runs like a secret thread through the female half of the family is supposed to have skipped over Gwen, so she hasn't been introduced to "the mysteries," and can spend her time hanging out with her best friend, Lesly. It comes as an unwelcome surprise when she starts taking sudden, uncontrolled leaps into the past.

She's totally unprepared for time travel, not to mention all that comes with it: fancy clothes, archaic manners, a mysterious secret society, and Gideon, her time-traveling counterpart. He's obnoxious, a know-it-all, and possibly the best-looking guy she's seen in any centrury...
Ruby Red was very different from what I imagined it would be like, in a negative way. Gwen is supposedly 16/17 years old but she had a very childish voice. Turns out Gwen has the time-travelling gene when her extended family is expecting her cousin Charlotte to leap into the past at any moment and reveal her ability. I felt the whole book lacked a serious tone. The adults in the book acted very immaturely especially Charlotte's Mother (Aunt Glenda) who had numerous hissy fits when Gwen's Mother claimed Gwen had inherited the gene.

The development between Gwen and her time-travelling partner Gideon left so much to be desired. Apparently first impression and the way Gideon upheld the image of being arrogant and condescending meant nothing to Gwen. She can't get past his good looks and even considers him her type(= one who calls her a child who knows nothing)! Yeah right! So unrealistic.

The plot was mildly interesting with the mystery of the original chronograph being stolen and a second chronograph being created. Gwen and Gideon's task involves travelling back in time and collecting blood samples of the previous time travellers in order to work the second chronograph.

I don't think I can handle more of Gwen's narration so it looks like I'll pass on continuing the series.