Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A couple of Book reviews...

 Okay, so there have been a number of books that I had been really excited to get my hands on recently and unfortunately, I must admit that the majority of them I was disappointed by...

For instance, "Raised by Wolves" was slightly disappointing... I was kinda expected something similar to Rachel Hawthorne's "Dark Guardians" series and I guess it was kinda like that, only much worse (in all honesty).

15 year old (human) Bryn's parents were murdered in front of her at age 4 by a rogue werewolf (who she refers to as the "Big Bad Wolf") and just as he is about to kill her, she is rescued by Callum, alpha of the local werewolf pack, who she is told ultimately murder the "Big Bad Wolf". Callum brings the youngster home to the pack to be marked by him (and in doing so becomes pretty much a piece of his property) and be raised amongst the were wolves.

Fast forward 11 years and everything starts to fall apart for Bryn. She knows that Callum is keeping something from her, but she just can't figure out exactly what it is. Enter Chase, the secret that Callum has been hiding in his house that Bryn breaks into and discovers during a moment of pack panic, a human who has been turned by a rogue werewolf (I must add here that it is extremely difficult to turn a human into a werewolf, only 4-5 instances ever occur in about a 100 year span).  Bryn feels an instant explainable connection to Chase and after being discovered by Callum and the rest of the pack, is punished for going against the pack's wishes and digging deeper into the secret they told to leave alone.

This is where the book starts to get weird for me. Bryn all of a sudden needs to know exactly what happened on the day that her parents were murdered and the only way she thinks she can do so is by talking to Chase. She appeals to Callum to allow her to talk to Chase, but he only allows her to do so after she follows a certain set of conditions. When she is finally able to see Chase she discovers that the same wolf who turned her is the wolf who murdered her family, the wolf who she was told by her pack, that was murdered 11 years earlier for his actions. Her world is turned upside down when she discovers that everyone has been lying to her... All of a sudden the story gets weirder in my opinion/ goes downhill after this point... Bryn somehow changes her connection that she has to the pack to Chase, which means that she is no longer part of the pack with anyone else but Chase, aka they become their own 2 person pack (which a human shouldn't be able to do). She gets beat-up by Callum's pack for her actions and is sent away for her own safety, however her and Chase still have their connection to one another, a connection which includes the ability to talk to one another using only their minds. Through such connection they are able to discover that the "Big Bad Wolf" has been turning numerous children for 11 years into werewolves (remember that time I said that it was extremely difficult to change a human into a werewolf?). Well he had uncovered the secret to how it is done and Callum's pack (alongside the rest of the North American packs) really wants in on the secret since female werewolves are so hard to come by through werewolf's giving birth, so if they are able to change female humans into werewolves it will make his pack all the more stronger. All Bryn wants to see done is "The Big Bad Wolf's" death, preferably by her hands, so alongside Chase and 2 of her werewolf friends, they set out to murder "Big Bad"... And honestly, I am not going to go any further into the plot line just because I find it to be pretty ridiculous/ just not very good. As I sit here writing this review I fight myself becoming more and more frustrated with this book just because it had such great potential to be such a great book, but I think that it did not live up to such potential whatsoever.

Rating: 2/5


"I am Number Four" by Pittacus Lore

When I saw all of the great reviews that were out there for this book (and the fact that the movie rights to the book were picked up in no time at all after its release), I became very excited to read the book. However... I don't really see what the appeal is with this book, in all honesty. I was really quite disappointed with it, it wasn't the worst book I have ever read, but it by far is not one of my most favourite. I thought that the story behind it had the potential to be really great, but I just don't think that it lived up to such potential.

Lorien was a planet similar to our Earth, housed an extraordinarily powerful group of people, known as the Gard, who possessed certain abilities (ie. telekinesis, invisibility, etc. known as legacies) and whose job was to protect the people of Lorien. Meanwhile, the planet was also home to the Cepate, the keepers of knowledge in a sense, and the guardians of the Gard, looking after the Gard members and guiding them in their discovery of their legacies, the history of the people and the planet and so forth. One day out of the blue, Lorien is attacked by another planet's people, the Mogadorians. The Mogadorians have destroyed their planet through warfare and whatnot and they have set their eyes on the extremely plentiful Lorien. Lorien's people are quickly overtaken by the Mogadorians, primarily because they were so unsuspecting of such an attack. Before all of the people are killed however, 9 young Gard members and their Cepate are gathered together and shipped off to Earth before Lorien is completely overtaken and destroyed, in the hopes that one day they can restore Lorien. The Mogadorians, after destroying Lorien, then set off after the surviving Loriens in the hopes of also destroying them and Lorien's hope of ever being saved. These 9 young children are numbered from 1 to 9 and have a charm placed on them which makes it more difficult for the Mogadorians to kill them, that being that they can only be killed in the order that they come in. A Mogadorian cannot kill, for example, Number Seven before Number Three is killed, as the Mogadorian will suffer tenfold whatever attack is that they place upon Number Seven. The kids will know how many of the other Lorien children before them are killed by a scar that appears around their ankle. It should be mentioned that the charm can be broken if any of the nine children and their Cepates come together, this means that if the charm is broken, any of the children can be killed, the order of their deaths no longer applies. Because so, the Lorien children spread throughout the world in the hopes of never encountering one another and never having the Mogadorians hunt them down (they continuously have to keep moving in order to keep the Mogadorians off their trail).

Enter Number Four, also known as John. One day while he and his Cepate, Henri, are living in a small town, his ankle burns and he discovers that the third Lorien Gard has been killed by the Mogardorians. This means that as he is Number Four, he is next. Him and Henri quickly pack up their belongings and move to another unsuspecting small town, Paradise, Ohio. At this time John's legacies start appearing, some being more difficult to conceal and control (ie. lights coming out of the palms of his hands) and therefore Henri warns him that they will not be able to stay in the town for very long if John draws attention to them, as they will be much easier for the Mogardorians to find. Enter a girl, Sarah, who John falls for extremely quickly, a dorky friend, Sam, who is entirely obsessed with aliens, and Mark, the school bully who focuses in on tormenting John, and Number 6, another Lorien Gard member who breaks the charm protecting the Lorien children, when she comes to help John (Number 4). An event happens which shakes the town and draws attention to John. Henri knows that the Mogadorians will soon be on their trail and whats to leave ASAP, but John, being in love, refuses to leave. The Mogadorians come, a battle ensues, and there is great loss on either side.

The first half of this book is very slow and I found John, aka Number 4, to be extremely one dimensional. He really had no personality whatsoever, which is a shame because had he possessed one, it would have made the story all the better. However, I must admit that I did find the development of John's legacies to be extremely entertaining/ interesting and his learning of the Lorien peoples and past (as provided to him by Henri)... I did find his relationship with Sarah to be somewhat infuriating and his dismissal of Henri's warnings to be even more infuriating. Fortunately the second half of the book picks up with the introduction of Number 6 and the battle between the Gard's and the Mogardorians (so lots of action), but in my opinion it just can't pick the book up from its slump entirely. And as there are to be 6 books in this series, the book just comes to a somewhat of an abrupt end, where it will be picked up on and elaborated upon in the next books, which is kind of a bummer as we have to wait awhile to hear more of their story.

So though I didn't find that the book lived up to its hype whatsoever, it isn't the worst book I have ever read, and I am sure that if you love sci fi/adventure you will find this book to your satisfaction. If you like this book and are looking for similar books I recommend Shades Children by Garth Nix.

Rating: 3/5
This book, the sixth and final book in Rachel Vincent's "Shifter" series, obviously did not disappoint. This, alongside Cassandra Clare's "Mortal Instruments" series, is tied as my most favourite book series ever. Everything in this book was well written and great (well not entirely great, like the deaths of a couple of awesome characters, but great in the sense that it did not disappoint ;) )...

And the best part of all
                                She picked the guy I wanted her to!
                                 *Does happy dance*

85) I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore

Friday, September 17, 2010

"Beastly" by Alex Flinn

Okie dokie, so I am a huge sucker when it comes to feel good/ romancey stories. I have read countless mindless teen girl novels (though I know that they are super unrealistic) pretty much just for the endings (let's be honest, we all know that everything is going to work out perfectly and the story's couple is going to get together and live happily ever after).

So last year (?) when I saw the trailer for the movie "Beastly" I just knew that it was  going to be something I would love (it has fantasy, romance and an Olsen sister- an amazing combination if I do say so myself!)... After watching the trailer on Youtube a gazillion times I then found out in the comments below that the movie was actually based on Alex Flinn's novel entitled as the same. I knew I had to get my hands on a copy of the novel, but between now and then I kinda got distracted by other books.

A few weeks back, when I happened to stumble across the trailers once again on Youtube, I remembered to put a hold on it and then promptly forgot about the novel once again. This morning after I had just finished the book I had been reading and was moaning and groaning about what to read next, imagine my surprise when my mom comes home and brings me the library's copy of the forgotten book! So with nothing to do, save for a few crafty items (seriously, first week back at school? I feel so useless because I don't really have anything school-wise to do, except for a couple of short readings, whereas all of my friends are already bombarded by gigantic essays and whatnot), I started reading the novel.

Because it's a short read, I had it done within a couple of hours and after reading it, I must admit that I am kinda disappointed. Obviously not with the idea (SPOILER ALERT) that Kyle and Lindy get together (remember, me= sucker for romance), but that the movie made the book look so much cooler than it actually is... I think that this may be the same case as "Pride and Prejudice", I love the "Pride and Prejudice" movie so much, it is one of my all time favourites, but the book is just kinda "meh", which I find surprising considering the fact that usually movies are so much worse than the books (anyone remember the "Eragon" movie? Nope! Because it tanked/ sucked so badly, whereas the books? FANTABULOUS!).

In the book Kyle (who is turned into the beast) is an honest to goodness beast, all furry and resembling a combination of a lion/bear/dog-ish thing... In the movie? A really awesome ass looking guy with tats everywhere (oh how I dream of getting a tat sometime when I grow up). Oh and what does the movie have that the book doesn't have? Friggin' Alex Pettyfer (aka one of the most perfect boys ever- seriously, he would be hands down the perfect Jace- my favourite male character EVER, found in Cassandra Claire's "Mortal Instruments" series, the book series I just finished reading before reading "Beastly"). And I dunno, besides that... I just can't explain why I think that the movie looks soooo much cooler than the book really is (I know, kinda lame explanations and whatnot). But I just love that sometimes when I see a movie trailer I get goosebumps in anticipation of how awesome it is going to be, and I just never really felt like that when reading the book. 

But yes, I will leave you the trailer (and maybe you will feel those gosh darn goosebumps too)...

And also, if the movie ends up being crappy, I will be heartbroken... And what the fudge is with them changing the movie's release date? I was so excited to see it this past June (or July) when it was supposed to be released, but they ended up changing the release date until MARCH OF NEXT YEAR! Ugh....!!!

And speaking of Alex Pettyfer, I totally just remembered about a book called "I Am Number Four" that I was debating about whether or not to buy last week (I think that I must), apparently the book is being turned into a movie and he is playing in it!!!!!

Book count:
80) City of Ashes by Cassandra Claire
81) City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
82) Beastly by Alex Flinn

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