Review: Switched by Amanda Hocking

Switched (Trylle, #1)

Switched
(Trylle #1)
Author: Amanda Hocking
Publisher: Tor
Publication: January 5, 2012
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
My Rating:

three stars

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What if your entire world was built on a lie?

Wendy Everly knew she was different the day her mother tried to kill her and accused her of having been switched at birth. Although certain she’s not the monster her mother claims she is – she does feel that she doesn’t quite fit in…

She’s bored and frustrated by her small town life – and then there’s the secret that she can’t tell anyone. Her mysterious ability – she can influence people’s decisions, without knowing how, or why…

When the intense and darkly handsome newcomer Finn suddenly turns up at her bedroom window one night – her world is turned upside down. He holds the key to her past, the answers to her strange powers and is the doorway to a place she never imagined could exist. Förening, the home of the Trylle.

Finally everything makes sense. Among the Trylle, Wendy is not just different, but special. But what marks her out as chosen for greatness in this world also places her in grave danger. With everything around her changing, Finn is the only person she can trust. But dark forces are conspiring – not only to separate them, but to see the downfall everything that Wendy cares about.

The fate of Förening rests in Wendy’s hands, and the decisions she and Finn make could change all their lives forever…

my thoughts

Switched by Amanda Hocking

First off, Switched is really gorgeous. Just look at the cover. Isn’t it so beautiful? I personally chose this edition because the cover has some work of magic in it. It’s like, it has an ability to suck me into its world. Beautiful!

Second, the premise is really, really good. I love fae stories, andtrolls are something new to me. I wanted to know more about trolls because I really find them interesting.

And of course, the fact that the female character Wendy Everly is a troll and a changeling, I knew I will really like this book.

So, was this book a yay or nay?

I must say, a little bit of both.

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I love it because honestly, Amanda Hocking‘s writing style is so flawless and very easy to read. She uses words that are light and undemanding. She doesn’t complicate everything and she doesn’t give me trouble analyzing such things. Her character and world-building is also non-complex. What you read is what you get.

Now what made me become (a little) bit disappointed was theplot. It was neatly done, but it was weak. The progression was poorly established. I think there were scenes that weren’t really necessary but they were given emphasis (I guess to lengthen the whole book) but to be honest, the interesting things only happened at the last few chapters of the book.

Another thing that bothered me was the existence of theVittras. These are the creatures that act as antagonists. They are Trylle’s greatest enemies. In this book, their descriptions unfortunately didn’t make an exceptional appeal. Their physicality was so vague. I couldn’t really imagine how they look like. Do they look like human or something?

My expectation for this book was also different. Because this book talks about trolls, I really expected to see some unworldly mythical creatures here. Creatures that look like these:

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Because we’re talking about trolls, right?

So why did I only see humans and no trolls at all? This is fantasy so I was looking for something different. Anyway, I understand it as I’ve read further, because the author eventually explained it through her characters that trolls don’t really look mystical but instead, they look human. So yeah, I couldn’t do anything about that. BUT STILL. I want to see REAL TROLLS. :-/

Nevertheless, the thing that absolutely lifted the whole story was Finn. This character is so amazing. I like him from the beginning up to the end. Even though he’s brooding and he was quite snobby in most parts of the book, the gentleness and protectiveness in him were so tangible.

I have nothing against Wendy, on the other hand. She’s an okay character and she doesn’t annoy me, but I think she needs some development. There were parts when she doesn’t know what to do and she’s very dependent to other people despite her extraordinary abilities. Hopefully her character will get better in the next books.

As a whole, this book is good. I just think it needs more elements to make it really sensational. My friends who have already read this series told me that it’s going to get better in the next installments, so we’ll see. Good luck to me! (oh, it rhymes! ha!)

Rating: 3 Stars

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Review: Eternal Darkness by Stacy Reid

Eternal Darkness (The Amagarians, #1)

Eternal Darkness
(The Amagarians #1)
Author: Stacy Reid
Publisher: Stacy Reid
Publication: October 6, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Erotica, Paranormal, Fantasy
My Rating:

five stars

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The darkest taste of temptation…

Fleeing from a blood oath made against her will to a man known in the seven realms as the tyrant king, the last place Princess Saieke Shyokara, expected to be trapped was in the Darkage, the land of the feared shadowed demons. Even worse, she’s stuck with Archduke Drac EL Kyn, a Darkan–a creature of darkness and sensuality, who entices her with passion, intrigue, and danger. The only thing she needs from the fierce warrior is his body to further her own plot…certainly not the dangerously irresistibly desire he rouses.

As one of the deadliest shadow assassins of his realm, Drac must use his skills to unearth the factions who murdered his king. Drawn by an irresistible hunger to the princess, he struggles to maintain distance from a woman who is utterly forbidden to those of his race. Yet, as she navigates the treacherous schemes and traps laid for her by the kingdoms of the seven realms, Drac must decide if he will claim Saieke as his mate, or will he relinquish this woman, who stirs in him the darkest hunger he’s ever known, to avoid embroiling his kingdom in war…

**Heat level: Scorching**
**Mature audiences only! **
**Word count: 86000 words**

**Eternal Darkness is the first book in the Amagarians series and is a standalone**

my thoughts

Thank you to Stacy Reid for the advance reading copy in exchange for an honest review!

My experience with New Adult Fantasy is so limited that I always crave to read more of this genre. Thankfully, Eternal Darkness did not fail me, and instead, it thoroughly surprised and amazed me.

Eternal Darkness is the first installment of The Amagarians series. It’s actually my nth time to read a book written by Stacy Reid and I must say that she continues to astound me. I’ve known her for her historical romance specialty (and she’s very good at it) and I really admired her works. This time around, she ventured on a new genre and came up with this delicious fantasy tale that is totally a bomb.

The story focuses on the heroine Princess Saieke El Shyokara, the sole heir of Boreas which is also known as Kingdom of Winds and Mountains. Out of seven kingdoms of Amagarie, Boreas is the one that is most abundant when it comes to natural and essential resources– which made it become a target to most of the kingdoms. One who was destined to marry the tyrant King Ajali Haddin from the Kingdom of Nuria, Saieke has been meaning to break her engagement to him. Unfortunately, her parents fully decided her fate– which led her to flee. She eventually landed into the comfort of The Darkage— a vicious, cruel kingdom led by Gidon. There, she met the dark and mysterious Drac El Ryn who became the man she eventually fell in love with.

What I love about this book is the incredible world building. Stacy Reid was able to deliver an intense plot that is enriched with magnificent action scenes. I thought the concept was amazing, too. The use of chakra as a form of magical element and the fact that Saieke has the ability to control water and wind– it’s something spectacular and refreshing. And what I also love is how the author built a heroine that is strong and passionate at the same time.

The male character Drac was also one interesting character. He totally swooned me the first time he was introduced. He aired such mystery and masculine qualities. Not to mention the fact that he has that beast in him that gave him that bad, cruel side. The romance is also one of this book’s greatest strengths. All those details– Totaly sexy, enticing, and full of emotions!

“You are mine and only mine. There will never be another for me.

What I also notice about the book was how it turned out to be such a page-turner. I found myself fully engrossed to the story, thus making me feel like I’m actually there in Amagerie.

The only flaw I observed was the descriptions of the secondary characters. I thought they were not fully well defined. I wanted to know more about Thyon and Kamu. I thought they are remakrable characters here.

As a whole, Eternal Darkness is one captivating and exciting read. I definitely will watch out for the release of the second installment!

Rating: 5 Stars

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REVIEW: After the Bridge by Cassandra Clare

After the Bridge (The Infernal Devices #3.1)

Clockwork Angel
(The Infernal Devices #3.1)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, Margaret K. McElderry
Published: March 19, 2013
Genre: Paranormal, Historical Fiction, Young Adult
My Rating:

4 Stars

Short Story about Tessa, Jem and what happened after that meeting at Blackfriar’s Bridge at the Epilogue of Clockwork Princess.

MY THOUGHTS…

Thank you Carol and Sandy for introducing this to me! xoxoxo

I won’t be making this review long because it will spoil those who haven’t yet read the final book of The Infernal Devices.

So here’s my opinion…

This short story is somewhat a continuation to what happened during the epilogue of the Clockwork Princess. I have to say that  this one is satisfying, though it’s not at all necessary (for me) because I am quite satisfied with the Clockwork Princess’ ending. But because I was still hangover with the book, I didn’t hesitate to read this short story because I was too curious and I think I can’t sit still without finding out more about the characters.

The short story did not disappoint me as it entertained me and well, made me feel in love all over again. Still, I don’t know how to move on with this series. Ugh. It’s hard, you know.

So if you guys have already read the Clockwork Princess, you might as well proceed with this short story after reading the book, to extend the feels. 😀

(NOTE: Don’t read this short story if you haven’t completed The Infernal Devices series yet. Okay?) 😀

Rating: 4 Stars

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REVIEW: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1)

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
(Mara Dyer #1)
Author: Michelle Hodkin
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Published: October 23, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Mystery
My Rating:

five-stars

Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.

She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.

She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.
She’s wrong.

MY THOUGHTS…

I was a poison, and Noah was the drug that would make me forget it.

Holy smokes! What was that??! This book is absolutely surreal! The intrigue can really draw a reader in, as what Cassandra Clare testified in the cover. I love it! I love Noah Shaw and Mara Dyer and the mystery that this book is exuding.

I did have fun reading The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. It’s a kind of a paranormal thriller that makes you feel shaky inside. It’s absolutely creepy and suspenseful. What I really thought about this book is that it’s a certified page-turner! The way it intrigues you all throughout is outstanding. I even found myself raising a lot of questions as I read it because there are a lot of unclear things that just need to be answered.

The plot is irresistibly amazing. (Not  to mention that Noah Shaw is so damn hot. Yay!) No dull moments in this book to be honest. I love Michelle Hodkin’s writing style. She has that ability to convince you not to put the book down! Aaaah what more can I say? This book is really interesting and I highly recommend you guys to start reading this if you haven’t yet. 😀

My Rating for this Book: 5 Stars

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REVIEW: Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Half-Blood (Covenant, #1)

Half-Blood
(Covenant, #1)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Published: October 18, 2011
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
My Rating:

five-stars

The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi pure bloods have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals–well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures. Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden. Unfortunately, she’s crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn’t her biggest problem–staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.

MY THOUGHTS…

“The soul always knows… whether it’s right or wrong…”

Well… I am at a loss for words. This book is all kinds of awesomeness!

First off, I haven’t read any of the Vampire Academy books so I don’t have any idea what the fuss (Covenant vs. Vampire Academy comparison) was all about but I figure out that this one’s really, really awesome!

I’ve been a fan of JLA ever since I’ve read her Lux series, so the familiar feeling of fangirling with her characters suddenly came back to me the moment I’ve read the Covenant series.

I know I should’ve read the Daimon (Covenant prequel) book first before Half-Blood but it’s okay, I’ll be reading it immediately after this. Lol.

Anyway, I love, love, love this book! The plot is fantastic, totally striking, and mysterious. The characters are also adorable and fun to know. Our heroine here, Alexandria or Alex or Lexie, is such a freakin’ badass character and I like her! I love how independent she is and courageous no matter how her uncle and stepfather manipulate her. She’s a perfectly strong character. And no matter how stubborn and crazy she is most of the time, I don’t find it hard to like her.

Aiden St. Delphi– oh this guy is just totally swoon-worthy and HAWT, like hotness incarnate! I love his quiet, calm, but strong character.

And man, oh man, Seth! This guy.. ugh, is something. He really captivated me the moment he first entered into the scene. Such mystery he is. And man, is he not sexy. Well, both Aiden and Seth actually are, so I couldn’t ask for more. Lol.

And speaking about Aiden and Seth, I love the silent testosterone battle that goes between them whenever they’re around Alex. *squeals*! Ironic as it is, I’ve always loathed love triangles but this one is an exemption. I think it’s an interesting and entertaining love triangle and I found myself enjoying the whole scene. 🙂

“Need covers itself with love. But need… need is never love.”

I absolutely love the Grandma Piperi quotes! They are so deep and emotional they evoke feelings and just break your heart all at the same time.

And when it comes to the whole story itself, it’s hands down amazing! I’ve been saying this a lot but JLA is pure talent and she doesn’t fail me. She knows exactly how to draw her readers’ attention without inviting them to sleep. And yes, once again, she makes me admire her effortless attempts to incorporate humor in her lines. She’s really a downright fun, hilarious storyteller.

As a whole, I love this book to bits and I will really follow its sequels. 🙂

My Rating for this Book: 5 Bloody stars!

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REVIEW: City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments, #4)

City of Fallen Angels
(The Mortal Instruments, #4)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Published: April 5, 2011
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Romance, Paranormal
My Rating:

2star

The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She’s training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And—most importantly of all—she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.

But nothing comes without a price.

Someone is murdering Shadowhunters, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second, bloody war. Clary’s best friend, Simon, can’t help her—his mother just found out that he’s a vampire, and now he’s homeless. When Jace begins to pull away from her without explaining why, Clary is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: she herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.

The stakes are higher than ever in the #1 New York Times bestselling fourth installment of the Mortal Instruments series.

MY THOUGHTS…

While I did enjoy the first three books, this fourth installment seems to have gone wrong. It suddenly went downhill and I can sense it all throughout the book. It suddenly made me miss the things that happened in City of Bones, Ashes, and Glass.

I didn’t like the plot. It’s slow-paced and although it became better on the final chapters, still, there was nothing really exciting. Also, it’s very apparent how Ms. Cassandra Clare succeeded in putting the characters through emotional torture. It’s no longer fun.

Now, with the characters…

Jace, my Jace, c’mon, what happened? I love Jace but what the heck went wrong with this snarky, strong-willed character? He’s acting like a total coward guy who keeps avoiding Clary as though what he is going through is too much to handle. I don’t understand why he’s acting like he’s the one who’s the most vulnerable here. C’mon, act like a man, Jace! His situation and the way he handles things, to be honest, don’t break my heart. It annoys me to no end.

The only thing that makes this book quite interesting is Simon, my love. 🙂 I guess he’s the only character who made such a remarkable development here. Everyone were dull and a bit smudged.

Overall, the book is not a good sequel for me, however, I am still so determined to read its next book and finish the series and hoping that it will make me happy. 🙂

My Rating for this Book: 2 Stars

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Review: Opposition by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Opposition (Lux, #5)

Opposition
(Lux,#5)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Published: August 5, 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Science Fiction
My Rating:

five-stars

Katy knows the world changed the night the Luxen came.

She can’t believe Daemon welcomed his race or stood by as his kind threatened to obliterate every last human and hybrid on Earth. But the lines between good and bad have blurred, and love has become an emotion that could destroy her—could destroy them all.

Daemon will do anything to save those he loves, even if it means betrayal.

They must team with an unlikely enemy if there is any chance of surviving the invasion. But when it quickly becomes impossible to tell friend from foe, and the world is crumbling around them, they may lose everything— even what they cherish most—to ensure the survival of their friends…and mankind.

War has come to Earth. And no matter the outcome, the future will never be the same for those left standing.

MY THOUGHTS…

Everything had started with Dawson and Beth.

And everything ended with Daemon and me.

I still can’t believe it, but the Lux series has finally ended, and it ended in a seriously freaking awesome way!

The Opposition is one of the most anticipated closures in book series. It brings out epic, soul-crashing, adrenaline-rushing action scenes that are seriously what I’ve expected in the book.

Every scene in Opposition sends goosebumps on my skin. And of course, Katy and Daemon’s relationship never really gets boring, as ever! And it’s pretty impressive because given that this series is composed of five books in total, I should’ve got used to their sweet moments, but honestly, that’s not what I’ve felt the entire time they’re together. It seems like their relationship is growing more and more interesting… and comforting at the same time. They’re simply the most adorable book couple I’ve come across, I could cry!

It didn’t matter how many hours, days, months, or years we had stretched out in front of us; we’d always be together. This kind of love was the real deal, stronger than a whole planet full of psycho aliens and an entire government.

I also love how Daemon and Katy got through all these situations. Their painful experiences all the way made them become stronger. I love their character development– how Katy deals with everything and how she learns to combat the enemies with her striking, undiscovered powers.

“Damn, Kitten, you’re badass, almost scary, and yet so freaking hot.”

And Daemon– well, he’s Daemon. And you already know how hot and awesome he is!

What I also love about this book is that it keeps me going on and on right from the start. At the first chapters, there’s already enough action that seems to come straight out of a movie.

I also love the twist. The Arum! Oh my God. I seriously didn’t think that the Arum are going to make a huge part in this book. *clap clap clap*!

Everything in Opposition is phenomenal and all-consuming. It’s absolutely full of awesomeness! And Jennifer L. Armentrout’s writing? Freaking beautiful and flawless! Not to mention the humor that really makes me LOL all over. Hands down! I couldn’t say anything else but I really admire how great she is in drawing her readers to the world she is creating.

Right now, I’m in a book hangover. Literally. And it sucks. I know I can’t get over with this for a real long time. I, for sure, am going to miss Daemon and Katy. 😦

Will there be any book better than this? Right now, I guess there’s none. Yet. I seriously don’t want to let go! It’s like Daemon is breaking up with me. Alright, I think I’m getting crazy already. Lol.

My Rating for this Book: As usual, 5 Awesome Daemon stars! (It’s the best book conclusion in a series, positively 100%)