Wicked Games

Wicked Games

Title: Wicked Games

Author: Jessica Clare

Pages: 231

Publication Date: March 4, 2011

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Synopsis: Abby Lewis never pictured herself on the survival game show, Endurance Island. She’s just not the ‘survival’ type. But when her boss offers her a spot on the show and the opportunity of a lifetime, she packs her bags and heads to the tropics to be a contestant. Once in the game, though, it’s clear that Abby’s in over her head.

No one’s more competitive than sexy, delicious – and arrogant – Dean Woodall. Sure, he’s clever, strong, good at challenges, and has a body that makes her mouth water. He also hates Abby just as much as she hates him. That’s fine with her; she’ll just ignore the jerk.

But the rules of Endurance Island are working against them. Abby and Dean are teamed up – alone – on the beach. It’s either work together, or go home. Stuck with no one’s company but their own, they learn they might just make a good team after all.

And Abby learns that with just a little bit of kindling, the flames of hate can quickly turn to flames of passion…

This book features enemies, lovers, enemies who become lovers, and lots and lots of tropical heat…

Review: It is official, I am hooked on New Adult. This has never happened before. I have never even wanted to pick up a new adult novel before and now I can’t put them down. They are fast paced and quick, I can usually read them in an afternoon.

Anyway, I read Wicked Games on the way a bus to a basketball game, and though it kept me entertained and occupied for the long ride, I didn’t think it had the same depth as the other new adult books I have read. The main characters did not seem to be completely real. I don’t really know how to explain it. I just felt like they were kind of flat.

The plot however was good. It was a lot like the show Survivor. Contestants are sent out to an island to brave the elements and then voted off. The whole competition was pretty cool and I enjoyed reading about it.

Overall, the book was an enjoyable read, but it definitely wasn’t the best I have ever read.

Broken

BrokenTitle: Broken

Author: Lauren Layne

Pages: 252

Publication Date: September 2, 2014

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Synopsis: Lauren Layne’s New Adult novel tells the story of a girl with secrets, a guy with scars, and a love that could save them both… or destroy them.

When Olivia Middleton abandons the glamour of Park Avenue for a remote, coastal town in Maine, everyone assumes she’s being the kind do-gooder she’s always been. But Olivia has a secret: helping an injured war veteran reenter society isn’t about charity—it’s about penance. Only, Olivia’s client isn’t the grateful elderly man she’s expecting. Instead, he’s a brooding twenty-four-year-old who has no intention of being Olivia’s path to redemption . . . and whose smoldering gaze and forbidden touch might be her undoing.

Paul Langdon doesn’t need a mirror to show him he’s no longer the hotshot quarterback he was before the war. He knows he’s ugly—inside and out. He’ll do anything to stay in self-imposed exile, even accept his father’s ultimatum that Paul tolerate the newest caretaker for three months or lose his inheritance. But Paul doesn’t count on the beautiful twenty-two-year-old who makes him long for things that he can never have. And the more she slips past his defenses, the more keeping his distance is impossible.

Now Paul and Olivia have to decide: Will they help each other heal? Or are they forever broken?

Review: Okay, I will admit this was my first New Adult book and I was definitely surprised, no not because of the mature content, but because of the story. I was totally expecting the book to be totally sappy and gooey, don’t get me wrong but there was plenty of sappiness, but there was also a good story development behind it.

I liked the characters, yes, at some points I wanted to yell at both of them and at other points they did things most people would probably never do, but anyway they were enjoyable to read about and pretty realistic. Olivia was kick butt and didn’t put up with any of Paul’s BS. And Paul was super interesting once the brooding stopped. He went through some pretty horrific stuff as a marine in Afghanistan. Olivia and Paul definitely balanced each other out.

Overall, Broken was definitely what I was looking for on a snowy afternoon.

February TBR

As February roles around, and with it Valentine’s Day, I am in a hardcore romance mood that has never happened to me before. So this month my theme is LOVE.

1. The Kiss of DeceptionThe Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

2.   DivaDiva by Jillian Larkin

3. The Last SongThe Last Song by Nicholas Sparks

4. Pushing the LimitsPushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

5. ObsidianObsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

6. Love LiesLove Lies by Adele Parks

Tell me what you are planning on reading in the month of February. Have you read any of the books I am planning on reading? What did you think?

A Walk to Remember

A Walk to RememberAuthor: A Walk to Remember

Pages: 240

Rating; **** (4 stars)

Synopsis: Every April, when the wind blows from the sea and mingles with the scent of lilacs, Landon Carter remembers his last year at Beaufort High. It was 1958, and Landon had already dated a girl or two. He even swore that he had once been in love. Certainly the last person in town he thought he’d fall for was Jamie Sullivan, the daughter of the town’s Baptist minister.

A quiet girl who always carried a Bible with her schoolbooks, Jamie seemed content living in a world apart from the other teens. She took care of her widowed father, rescued hurt animals, and helped out at the local orphanage. No boy had ever asked her out. Landon would never have dreamed of it.

Then a twist of fate made Jamie his partner for the homecoming dance, and Landon Carter’s life would never be the same. Being with Jamie would show him the depths of the human heart and lead him to a decision so stunning it would send him irrevocably on the road to manhood…

Review: A Walk to Remember is a beautiful novel, the story is heartbreaking, but hopeful. Before reading this book I had seen the movie numerous times and really enjoyed it, I just never was in the mood to pick up the book even though 99% of the time the book is better than the movie, but all of a sudden February comes along and I am in the mood for a romantic novel and the first thing I think to pick up is a Nicholas Sparks novel. I was not disappointed. The love story of Landon and Jamie is devastatingly beautiful. I enjoyed reading it and it kept me hooked for an entire afternoon. I loved the message of hope and love. I definitely intend to read more of Nicholas Sparks’ works.

Quote #27

I believe there is one story in the world, and only one, that has frightened and inspired us, so that we live in a pearl white serial of continuing thought and wonder. Humans are caught — in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their advice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too- in a net of good and evil. I think this is the only story we have and that it occurs on all levels of feeling and intelligence, virtue and vice were warp and woof of our first consciousness, and they will be the fabric of our last, and this despite any changes we may impose on field and river and mountain, one economy and manners. There is not other story. A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: was it good or was it evil? Have I done it well – or ill?” -John Steinbeck (East of Eden)

January Wrap-Up

I finished three books and two novellas in January. It definitely was not one of the best reading months I have ever had, but it also wasn’t the worst.

The first book I read this month was Red Moon at Sharpsburg by Rosemary Wells,

Red Moon at Sharpsburg

Title: Red Moon at Sharpsburg

Author: Rosemary Wells

Pages: 236

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Synopsis: Award-winning author Rosemary Wells lays bare the senseless devastation of war in this stunning novel. As the Civil War breaks out, India, a young Southern girl, summons her sharp intelligence and the courage she didn’t know she had to survive the war that threatens to destroy her family, her Virginia home, and the only life she has ever known. A timeless heroine of inspiring drive and bravery, India holds on to her dream of forging a career in science, unheard-of for a woman, in the face of battle, starvation, and tragic loss. Rarely has the Southern perspective on the war been told so even-handedly for young adults as in this meticulously researched, poignant, and riveting novel.

Review: I read Red Moon at Sharpsburg for my AP U.S. History class at school for the Civil War unit. The story was fine, the writing wasn’t great, and I didn’t learn much about the Civil War. It was a fast but mediocre read. I wouldn’t recommend it to somebody hoping to learn about the war, but it was enjoyable enough.

After Red Moon at Sharpsburg, I read the novella Ignite by Jamie Campbell.

IgniteTitle: Ignite

Author: Jamie Campbell

Pages: 47

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Synopsis: The Spark That Ignites The Flame.

Seventeen years ago an entire generation of aliens were sent to Earth in order to save their home planet and integrate into the human population. Now, those aliens are being hunted.

Amery Jones is finally allowed to go to camp for the summer. With her best friend Lola by her side, she is expecting awesome times ahead.

Unfortunately, Lochie, her charming mortal enemy and the only guy who can get under her skin, seems to have made it his mission to annoy her for the entire summer.

When one of the campers goes missing, Amery finds herself teamed up with Lochie in the search mission. Now, more than ever, her alien status has to remain a secret.

Review: I downloaded Ignite onto my Kindle thinking it was just a free short story, but it turns out it is a prequel to a whole series. I really enjoyed reading Ignite and I hope to someday read the rest of the series, although it is not on the top of my list of things I want to read.

I picked up another free short novel on my Kindle called The Flirting Games by Stella Wilkinson.

The Flirting Games

Title: The Flirting Games

Author: Stella Wilkinson

Pages: 67

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Synopsis: Eleanor Parkhurst is determined to get in the way of Nathaniel Naverly seducing her sweet cousin Rose. Nate has a history of treating girls badly and Ellie suspects his intentions are far from honorable. Getting Nate to switch his attention to her seemed like a good plan, but Ellie didn’t foresee that she might have to protect her own heart from his schemes as well. The game is proving a challenge. Midnight meetings, fighting or kissing, it’s all part of the fun of flirting. Set in an English boarding school, Ellie and her American new best friend, Flora, discover that boys are more complicated than classes, and you have to play the game well or you might just get played

Review: I picked up The Flirting Games looking for a quick, fun read and I wasn’t disappointed. I liked just taking an hour out of my day and reading a cute novel. I recommend it to anyone who has just a short time to read, it is free on amazon for Kindles.

Then for school I had to read The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

The Secret Life of Bees

Title: The Secret Life of Bees

Author: Sue Monk Kidd

Pages: 302

Rating: ***** (5 Stars)

Synopsis: Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed. When Lily’s fierce-hearted black “stand-in mother,” Rosaleen, insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily decides to spring them both free. They escape to Tiburon, South Carolina–a town that holds the secret to her mother’s past. Taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters, Lily is introduced to their mesmerizing world of bees and honey, and the Black Madonna. This is a remarkable novel about divine female power, a story women will share and pass on to their daughters for years to come.

Review: I LOVED this book. I had to read The Secret Life of Bees for my American Literature class and I am so happy I read it. The characters were wonderful, the story was beautiful, and it was about strong, independent women. I think everybody should read this book at least once and watch the movie, which is also fantastic. I definitely intend to reread it.

At the end of the month I finally got around to reading and finishing Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Heir of FireTitle: Heir of Fire

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Pages: 562

Rating: ***** (5 stars)

Synopsis: Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

Review: This book is the third in the Throne of Glass Series and in my opinion it was the best. The new characters were all great (i.e. Rowan and Manon), as was the character development of older characters. I love Sarah J. Maas’ writing style and I am so happy there are going to be three more books.

Overall Reading Month: **** (4 stars)

Books added to Favorites: 2 (Heir of Fire, The Secret Life of Bees)

Rereads: 0

Pages read this month: 1,214

Favorite Book:

Heir of FireHeir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Top 14 of 2014

This year was a great year of book reading. I read a total of 85 books, according to Goodreads. Of those 85 books, it was hard to find the top 14 but I was eventually able to come up with this list.

I will start with two honorable mentions that did not end up on my top 14 list.

1. Of Mice and Men

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

For Review click -> Here

2. The Selection SeriesThe Selection Sereis by Kiera Cass

My top 14 of 2014:

14. Princesses Behaving BadlyPrincesses Behaving Badly by Linda Rodriguez McRobbie

For a review click -> here

13. MoreThanThis-FrontMore Than This by Patrick Ness

For a review click -> here

12. Divergent-Front CoverDivergent by Veronica Roth

11. The Great GatsbyThe Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

10. East of EdenEast of Eden by John Steinbeck

9. The Grapes of WrathThe Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

8. The Winner's CurseThe Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski

For a Review Click ->here

7. The Heretic QueenThe Heretic Queen by Michelle Moran

For a Review Click -> here

6. Anna and the French Kiss SeriesAnna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, and Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

For a review of Anna and the French Kiss click -> here

For a review of Lola and the Boy Next Door click -> here

5. The Catcher in the RyeThe Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

4. Prisoner of Night and FogPrisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman

For a review click -> here

3. To Kill a MockingbirdTo Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

For a Review click ->here

2. Shatter Me SeriesThe Shatter Me Series by Tahereh Mafi

For a review of Shatter Me click -> here

For a review of Unravel Me click ->here

1. Throne of Glass seriesThrone of Glass and Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

For a review of Throne of Glass click -> here

For a review of Crown of Midnight click  -> here