Friday, 25 October 2013

Untold (The Lynburn Legacy #2) by Sarah Rees Brennan

Goodreads Summary : Free from bonds, but not each other

It’s time to choose sides… On the surface, Sorry-in-the-Vale is a sleepy English town. But Kami Glass knows the truth. Sorry-in-the-Vale is full of magic. In the old days, the Lynburn family ruled with fear, terrifying the people into submission in order to kill for blood and power. Now the Lynburns are back, and Rob Lynburn is gathering sorcerers so that the town can return to the old ways.

But Rob and his followers aren’t the only sorcerers in town. A decision must be made: pay the blood sacrifice, or fight. For Kami, this means more than just choosing between good and evil. With her link to Jared Lynburn severed, she’s now free to love anyone she chooses. But who should that be?’

My Rating : 3.5 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : Untold, unfortunately, was a mediocre in comparison to its predecessor (which I gave 5 stars and listed as one of my favorites). After Sarah Rees Brennan tore my heart in the end of Unspoken, I expected the torture to continue, which, however, in this sequel turned into some emo-drama, failed to exceed my expectation.

Maybe, it was my fault, maybe I shouldn't have expected so much.

I wanted a tear-jacker sequel. I wanted something to rip my heart off and trampled it beneath the angst I wanted to feel in the same line with Kami and Jared.

The plot was simple, loosely bound and without much excitement. Without the mental connection between Kami and Jared, the originality had lost its charm. It wasn't as convoluted as Unspoken and kind of derailed from the track. I really don’t have much to say about it.

My likeness for Kami remained same. She is kind of heroine I've always adore—a complete deviation from the nitwits we are recently being presented with. She is witty, funny, and focused. Despite being an ordinary human, and without her dependency on Jared, she learned to fight back against Rob Lynburn and his band of magical peers. She was forced to face things alone, her family was verge of a huge breakdown, her best friends suddenly started avoiding each other and not to mention the awkwardness that followed between her and Jared and Ash after everything that happened in last book.

And same as Kami, my deep and irrecoverable love for Jared has not changed. He was the same tormented poor soul I met in Unspoken, and do believe when I say, I literally wanted to stroke his hair and pull him in my arms. He made my heart ache. Sigh.

Now I’m telling you why, despite my likeness for MCs, I was disappointed. I loved them both, but individually. Together, their chemistry didn't work out for me. There was so much miscommunication and misunderstanding that I wanted to pat my head against the wall. Both the character was filled with sentiment, and ego. Most of the time they turned away from each other, scared to face their true feelings. I kind of wanted to drag them and lock them in a room so they could sort out their problems.

I liked how the relationship evaluated and improved between Jared and Ash. Leaving behind all the inferiority complex, siblings rivalry and common feelings for Kami, the emerged as true brothers.
The secondary characters were well crafted as the MCs. They peeled off their shells and bloomed. Ash, whom I’m not sure is an MC or a SC, was great in the book. His feelings for Kami and guilt for what he did, or rather was forced to do, touched me. He was one character who bloomed exponentially throughout the story. And so did, Angie and Holly and Rusty. The escalating tension between Angie and Holly, Rusty’s humor, added interesting development to the story.

Even, I’m bit disappointed with Untold, I’ll still (even if the world ends) read the next installment.

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Monday, 21 October 2013

Let's get mad : Unhinged Blog Tour

Welcome to the official UNHINGED virtual tour!

There will be twelve posts over the next two weeks. We’ll have BIG giveaways, and small ones, too, with prizes ranging from ARCs to temporary tattoos (and lots of Wonderlandian goodies and games in-between). You won’t want to miss a moment!

In SPLINTERED, book one of A.G. Howard’s eerie and twisted Alice in Wonderland spinoff, Alyssa plunged headfirst into the rabbit hole and faced the macabre side of Wonderland’s whimsy.

In book 2, UNHINGED, the eerie inner workings of Wonderland start seeping into Alyssa's human world at the worst possible time for any senior girl: prom week.

Inside book two’s pages, these questions will be answered:

• What is tulgey wood?

• What are the looking glass insects, really?

• What life-altering Wonderland secret is Alyssa’s mom hiding?

• What motivates the mysterious Morpheus?

And get ready to feel the heat when the meaning behind these two lines of the Jabberwocky poem is revealed:

• All mimsy were the borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe (odds are it's creepier than you think).

To kick off the first stop of the tour, we’ll look to autumn and its traditions. Fall is about taking stock of the things we have, and turning our eyes to new beginnings with the end of the year in sight.

With that in mind, we’re offering a glimpse into the new SPLINTERED e-novella written from the points of view of Morpheus and Jebediah.

In the following excerpt, Morpheus wants to know more about his rival for Alyssa's affections, so he’s going to dig into Jeb's Wonderland memories. A fellow netherling creature—the keeper of lost moments—warns Morpheus that he should beware, because he might be biting off more than he can chew...


Morpheus’s attention locked on the small stage across the compartment. His heartbeat thudded with anticipation, a deep and steady rhythm. Red velvet curtains waited to part at any moment, to play Jebediah’s memories on a silver screen.

“Since you’ll be riding in the boy’s head to visit his lost memories,” the furry beetle said, “I’m bound by policy to warn you . . . Human emotions can be a powerful thing. They can make you see things in an entirely different light.”

“I’m counting on that.” Morpheus smirked. “Ever hear the saying about friends and enemies?”

The beetle scratched his shaggy hide. “Um . . . keep your friends close and your enemies closer?”

Morpheus settled onto the cushioned lounge chair, smoothing his pin-striped pant legs as he crossed his ankles. “Even better to take a walk in your enemy’s shoes. ’Tis the best way to control their footsteps. Or erase them altogether, should the opportunity arise.”

The beetle, trembling again, punched a button on the wall with one spindly arm. The stage curtains opened, revealing a movie screen. “Picture the boy’s face in your mind whilst staring at the empty screen, and you will experience his past as if it were today.”

His spiel was rehearsed—mechanical, even—but Morpheus’s pulse raced. He waited for the beetle to shut off the lamp. As soon as the insect had left the room and closed the door, Morpheus’s body came apart at the seams—floating through the darkness as if he were made of dust motes. All the pieces reassembled themselves on the silver screen in vivid, cinematic colors, until he was inside Jebediah Holt’s head, wearing his body, feeling his emotions.

In that moment, Morpheus gave himself over to the experience, seeing things as a human for the first time in his life...

(Picture attribution: William Frankhouser


Want to know what happens once Morpheus steps inside Jeb’s memories, and what Jeb was doing in Wonderland when he and Alyssa were separated? Click here for ordering information.

Also, before you leave, be sure to enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win one of 12 UNHINGED ARCs.

And don't forget to join us for the second stop tomorrow, when Alyssa and Morpheus have a twitter chat about one of fall’s traditions: Thanksgiving. Maybe Alyssa can get him to admit what he’s thankful for.
Hope to see you there!

About Unhinged: Alyssa Gardner has been down the rabbit hole and faced the bandersnatch. She saved the life of Jeb, the guy she loves, and escaped the machinations of the disturbingly seductive Morpheus and the vindictive Queen Red. Now all she has to do is graduate high school and make it through prom so she can attend the prestigious art school in London she's always dreamed of.

That would be easier without her mother, freshly released from an asylum, acting overly protective and suspicious. And it would be much simpler if the mysterious Morpheus didn’t show up for school one day to tempt her with another dangerous quest in the dark, challenging Wonderland—where she (partly) belongs.

As prom and graduation creep closer, Alyssa juggles Morpheus’s unsettling presence in her real world with trying to tell Jeb the truth about a past he’s forgotten. Glimpses of Wonderland start to bleed through her art and into her world in very disturbing ways, and Morpheus warns that Queen Red won’t be far behind.

If Alyssa stays in the human realm, she could endanger Jeb, her parents, and everyone she loves. But if she steps through the rabbit hole again, she'll face a deadly battle that could cost more than just her head.

Links: Goodreads/Amazon/Barnes & Noble

About A.G. Howard : A.G. Howard was inspired to write SPLINTERED while working at a school library. She always wondered what would've happened had the subtle creepiness of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland taken center stage, and she hopes her darker and funkier tribute to Carroll will inspire readers to seek out the stories that won her heart as a child.

When she's not writing, A.G.'s pastimes are reading, rollerblading, gardening, and family vacations which often include impromptu side trips to 18th century graveyards or condemned schoolhouses to appease her overactive muse.


Watch Unhinged Trailer

Now the awaited giveaway. 12 ARC’s of UNHINGED Domestic Only. Sorry international folks.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Stop by the following blog to continue the madness.

10/22/2013 Fiction Freak
10/23/2013 The White Unicorn
10/24/2013 Icey Books
10/25/2013 The Cover Contessa
10/26/2013 Book Hounds
10/28/2013 Reading Teen
10/29/2013 Book Haven Extraordaire
10/30/2013 The Lifelong Bookworm
10/31/2013 Two Chicks on Books
11/1/2013 Fiktshun
11/2/2013 I am a Reader

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Cracked (Soul Eater #1) by Eliza Crewe

Goodreads Summary : Ever since my mom was murdered, I’ve been completely alone. I live in the shadows, because there’s no one like me. I have no choice because I have to fight the Hunger, the Hunger that drives me to hunt people and eat their souls. And I have to fight it if I want to stay out of the darkness.

Who am I?
I’m Meda Melange.
What am I?
I don’t know—but I’m not human.
And now, I finally have the chance to find out.

In this first book of the gripping Soul Eater trilogy, find out who Meda is and which side she will come down on in a thrilling tale of the war between good and evil.

My Rating : 3.5 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : This is not a story for children or for fainthearted folks. This is a story about a girl who is YA version of Dexter, who enjoys ripping bad guys limb to limb (pretty gruesomely) and then writes message on wall with blood of her victims. Our half-demon heroine is embodiment of evil, epitome of ultimate killing machine.

Normal people have a hard enough time staying good. How could someone who's already half-evil pull it off?

The story follows the journey of a unrepentant, manipulative soul though a dark tunnel towards the light. Cracked wasn't your so-call mainstream book based on the old theme of good versus evil, rather about the fine line between good and evil dwelling within us, about how every second of every day we are battling our own demons. The book has successfully delivered that one simple message.

The book is narrated by Meda in first person and liking the book entirely depends on whether you like her or not. Meda was ungovernably violent without qualm of conscience. Her voice of narration was witty and dark, and what underlay her snarky humor, was moral questions that made me go all philosophical.

Craked, I think, has a pretty cool concept. From soul eating demons to crusaders to Templers. Though I liked it to an extent, it just didn't had the right materials to be for me. Meda's aggressiveness and constant sarcasm was bit too rough of my taste, but I’m sure there are many readers who will enjoyed it much more than I did. Not that I don’t like bad ass killing machines, I truly do. I’m fan of anti-heroines and one of my favorites is Anna. But here, Meda pushed beyond the line of extremity at points.

Nonetheless Cracked surprised me to a greater degree. Full of nonstop cinematic actions, the book was entertaining no doubt, but bored me at times. The story was inconsistent at first, just some motley assortment of scenes that had been glued together and you’re left wondering what driving force instigated them. Around the halfway, the story hauled itself up to maturity, romance was included and so was tragedy. From here Meda's story got interesting enough to make me flipping though the pages.

Crewe is, no doubt, an excellent author. She damn well knows how to stay within one‘s view point, and explores others. Meda was exactly what the author wanted her to be and like her, the other characters in the book (Jo, Chi and Uri) were also well constructed, adding more color and dimension to the story. Different from each other in personality but as a team, those four characters were indomitable.

If the small holes can be ignored, the whole package is fantastic. Recommended for the fans of Anna Dressed in Blood and for those to whom blood is quite fascinating.

A review copy was provided to me by Penguin India in exchange for a honest review.

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