Friday, September 28, 2012

Banned Books Week Hop

Welcome to this stop of the Banned Books Week Giveaway Hop, hosted by I am a reader, not a writer and I Read Banned Books. A little bit of information about Banned Books Week:

Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.

To find out more, please visit the ALA website.

My thoughts on banned books (taken from a post I've made before):

Confession time: I read banned books.

It is inconceivable to me how, in this day and age, books are challenged and banned, removed from schools and bookshelves, simply because the material is "unpleasant" or "inappropriate." And this opinion is rarely held by the majority; it is often an individual or small group that speaks out against a book.

Last time I checked, we're not all the same.

Books do not have to appeal to everyone; but neither should they be restricted because of the opinions of a few. I just finished a book that I know many people won't read because of its subject material. But does that mean it wasn't a good book, or that others, myself included, shouldn't read it either? Of course not! To each his own, I say. If you don't like a book or its subject material, by all means don't read it; but know that that book may speak to someone else, may help and influence him or her in a positive way, may be the book that makes the difference.

Yes, there are books that might not be suited to children. Yes, there are books that may offend someone. Yes, there are books that are controversial and spark debates. But that is the beauty of books! The ideas and messages are there for the people who need them, when they need them. Books are powerful. Embrace them!

My real confession: I have not read enough banned books.


This giveaway is for a banned or challenged book of the winner's choice (up to $15) from The Book Depository. To see the a list of the top ten books challenged each year in the past decade, click here.

The contest is open internationally. Must be 13 to enter. Please see my Contest Policy for more information.

Must be a GFC follower to enter.

This contest will close on Sunday, October 7 at 12:01am CST.

Don't forget to visit the many other stops on this hop!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Review: Ten by Gretchen McNeil

By: Gretchen McNeil
Published By: Balzer + Bray
Release Date: Sept. 18, 2012
Series: None
Pages: 304
Genre: Mystery/Horror
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: Publisher
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads Summary: And their doom comes swiftly.

It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives—an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school’s most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury.

But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine.

Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no internet, and a ferry that isn’t scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?

I don't often read a lot of murder mysteries or horror stories, but this modernization of an Agatha Christie play was impossible to pass up. Ten was the perfect book to read on a dark, stormy night for full effect (or during a bright, sunny day if murder mysteries aren't your thing).

What happens when ten teens are isolated on an island during a terrible thunderstorm? Like every horror movie expert knows: Murder. What Meg thought would be a fun - or at least possibly fun - weekend with her best friend Minnie and other local teens turns deadly after they watch a DVD with a murderous message. With each minute that passes, it seems more and more likely that the killer responsible for a recent murder has made it to the island and is now after everyone inside. With no chance of outside aide, Meg knows that it's up to her to find the killer...or risk being the one who's killed next.

First things first: Ten might be a murder mystery, but there is much more to the story. Gretchen McNeil brings a fresh voice to the YA market with a bit of snark that brought the characters to life. Within the context of the mystery we get to know all of the characters, especially Meg and T.J. Meg has always been a loyal best friend to Minnie and often in her shadow, but throughout the novel Meg really comes into her own. Minnie might have a crush on T.J., but as Meg and T.J. are thrown together in trying to solve the mystery, it becomes clear that they have a connection. Yes, somehow Gretchen McNeil manages to develop a really sweet romance in the midst of a suspenseful mystery, and it makes the story all the more enjoyable.

Ten is a book that you can't put down. Even before the murders begin there is never a dull moment, and after the first body is found the suspense builds right until the end. I loved the way that everything was tied together and how there weren't holes in the plot. The book will certainly keep you guessing right along with Meg about who the murderer really is.

If you enjoy murder mysteries, you will definitely want to add Ten to your reading lists. I know that I will look forward to reading more from Gretchen McNeil!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

"Waiting on" Wednesday

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's selection is:

By: Kimberly Derting
Published By: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date: Jan. 1, 2013
Preorder the Book: Amazon

Note: The Essence is the second book in the Pledge trilogy and the summary may contain spoilers.

Goodreads Summary: “Danger, dread, mystery, and romance” (Booklist) continue in the second book of The Pledge trilogy, as Charlie’s reign is under siege from the most unusual of enemies.

At the luminous conclusion of The Pledge, Charlaina defeated the tyrant Sabara and took her place as Queen of Ludania. But Charlie knows that Sabara has not disappeared: The evil queen’s Essence is fused to Charlie’s psyche, ready to arise at the first sign of weakness.

Charlie is not weak, but she’s being pushed to the brink. In addition to suppressing the ever-present influence of Sabara, she’s busy being queen—and battling a growing resistance determined to return Ludania to its discriminatory caste system. Charlie wants to be the same girl Max loves, who Brook trusts, but she’s Your Majesty now, and she feels torn in two.

As Charlie journeys to an annual summit to meet with leaders of nearby Queendoms—an event where her ability to understand all languages will be the utmost asset—she is faced with the ultimate betrayal. And the only person she can turn to for help is the evil soul residing within.

Why it's wanted:

The Pledge was one of my favorite books last year, and I can't wait to find out what happens next! The blend of dystopian and fantasy is unique and left me wanting more.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (54)

I'm very excited to be one of the many blogs participating in Teaser Tuesdays! TT is a weekly meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. To participate:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
(Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

"Sheridan wanted to turn and look at her mother, but the light enveloped her, a brilliant electric mouth devouring her and Taylor both. I'm going to die, she realized, and didn't have time for another thought before a shock slapped through her, buckling her legs. Then everything went deeply black."

p. 11 (ARC) from ERASING TIME by C.J. Hill

Please share your teasers - post them or link to your blog!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Author Interview & Giveaway: The Gathering Storm by Robin Bridges


St. Petersburg, Russia, 1888. As she attends a whirl of glittering balls, royal debutante Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, tries to hide a dark secret: she can raise the dead. No one knows. Not her family. Not the girls at her finishing school. Not the tsar or anyone in her aristocratic circle. Katerina considers her talent a curse, not a gift. But when she uses her special skill to protect a member of the Imperial Family, she finds herself caught in a web of intrigue.

An evil presence is growing within Europe's royal bloodlines—and those aligned with the darkness threaten to topple the tsar. Suddenly Katerina's strength as a necromancer attracts attention from unwelcome sources . . . including two young men—George Alexandrovich, the tsar's standoffish middle son, who needs Katerina's help to safeguard Russia, even if he's repelled by her secret, and the dashing Prince Danilo, heir to the throne of Montenegro, to whom Katerina feels inexplicably drawn.

The time has come for Katerina to embrace her power, but which side will she choose—and to whom will she give her heart? (From Goodreads)

You can read my review here.


I'm very excited to have Robin Bridges here today. THE GATHERING STORM has been one of my favorite books so far this year and I'm looking forward to the release of THE UNFAILING LIGHT! Please take a few minutes to learn more about this amazing author!

If this were Twitter, how would you pitch The Gathering Storm in 140 characters or less?

In the midst of scheming vampires and vicious fae in 1880’s Russia, Katerina of Oldenburg hides a dangerous secret: she can raise the dead.

What drew you to Imperial Russia as the setting for your book?

This story actually started with the setting. I’ve always loved Russian history and wanted to write a fantasy based in a Slavic-type kingdom.

If Katerina were offered the choice to exchange her abilities as a necromancer for another magical gift, what would she choose?

I think she’d love to be able to read George’s mind, just as he can read hers.

You mentioned in the author's note of The Gathering Storm that you loved Russian fairy tales - do you have a favorite that you could share with us?

Ruslan and Ludmila was written by Alexander Pushkin and was based on the Russian fairy tales he’d heard as a child. Ludmila was the beautiful daughter of the Prince of Kiev and was engaged to the warrior Ruslan, but was stolen away by an evil wizard. The poem was turned into an opera by the Russian composer Glinka in the mid 1800’s, so it’s a story Katerina would have been familiar with. (It’s one of my favorites because my great-grandmother’s name was Ludmilla!)

Another favorite, the story of Koschei the Deathless, ended up being an inspiration for the lich tsar Konstantin in the Katerina trilogy!

In your journey as a debut author, from first draft to publication, what surprised you the most? What has been the most rewarding experience?

I think one of the most rewarding things for me has been the camaraderie between debut authors and all the online/ in-person friendships I’ve made with Elevensies/ Apocalypsies/ 2K12 classmates. And there’s nothing like the feeling you get when you receive fan mail from a reader! My first fan letter had me walking on clouds for days!

If you could have dinner with any member (or members) of the Russian nobility from ages past, who would you pick and why?

Miechen was notorious for her dinner parties. She and her husband Grand Duke Vladimir were thrown out of a Saint Petersburg restaurant once for getting into a fight when Miechen flirted with a stage actor. The tsar, who was not amused by their antics, sent the couple to France until the scandal died down.

Can you tell us anything about The Unfailing Light?

Here’s the jacket copy:

“Having had no choice but to use her power has a necromancer to save Russia from dark forces, Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, now wants to forget that she ever used her special powers. She's about to set off to pursue her lifelong dream of attending medical school when she discovers that Russia's arch nemesis--who she thought she'd destroyed--is still alive. So on imperial orders, Katerina remains at her old finishing school. She'll be safe there, because the empress has cast a potent spell to protect it against the vampires and revenants who are bent on toppling the tsar and using Katerina for their own gains. But to Katerina's horror, the spell unleashes a vengeful ghost within the school, a ghost more dangerous than any creature trying to get in.”

So… more monsters, more magic, and more smooching. :)

Thank you for stopping by! If you're curious about THE GATHERING STORM now (and you should be!), see below for details of how to win a copy!


Because I really enjoyed this book and think others will too, you all have the chance to win a copy of THE GATHERING STORM! To enter, please fill out the form below.

This contest is open internationally as long as The Book Depository ships to your country. Must be 13 to enter. Please see my Contest Policy for more information.

This contest will close on Monday, Oct. 1 at 12:01am CST.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Review: Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

By: Lauren Oliver
Published By: Harper Teen
Release Date: Feb. 28, 2012
Series: Delirium (#2)
Pages: 375
Genre: Dystopian
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: ALA Midwinter
Buy the Book: Amazon

Note: Pandemonium is the second book in the Delirium trilogy, and the summary below may contain spoilers.

Goodreads Summary: I'm pushing aside the memory of my nightmare,
pushing aside thoughts of Alex,
pushing aside thoughts of Hana and my old school,
like Raven taught me to do.
The old life is dead.
But the old Lena is dead too.
I buried her.
I left her beyond a fence,
behind a wall of smoke and flame.

Lauren Oliver delivers an electrifying follow-up to her acclaimed New York Times bestseller, Delirium. This riveting, brilliant novel crackles with the fire of fierce defiance, forbidden romance, and the sparks of a revolution about to ignite.

Delirium was one of my favorite books from last year, and I was very excited to read Pandemonium. I'm not sure why it took me this long to read it, but on the bright side, the wait until Requiem is much shorter now!

After the events of Delirium, Lena knows that her life now is going to be very different. However, she has no choice but to find a way to survive. Yet no matter how hard she tries, the emotional baggage she carries with her cannot go away. Once again she finds herself running, trying to put her thoughts behind her, until running becomes the only means of survival for her and the new family she has found. And when the running is over, Lena finds herself somewhere she never expected to be - part of the Resistance, charged with keeping the son of the leader of Deliria-Free America in her sight. Suddenly Lena's life seems linked to Julian's, and if they don't do something soon, they might not be alive much longer.

From the very beginning, Pandemonium has a very different tone than Delirium. Where Delirium was a time of new love and hopefulness for Lena, Pandemonium shows the gritty side of fighting for survival in a repressed society. She is only now realizing how hard life can be, but despite everything, she is determined to survive. Once again Lauren Oliver's writing style was wonderful, alternating between clear and elegant and emotionally charged and gripping. Everything in this book - the emotions, the tension, and the fear - were so palpable. I was completely caught up in the story and living everything through Lena. There were moments of sadness, moments of high adrenaline, and even a few moments of tenderness, but there was certainly never a dull moment. I also loved the alternation of "Then" and "Now" narratives; it made everything more intense than having one continuous story.

There are several new characters in Pandemonium, including Raven and Julian. I liked that Raven had a backstory and would have liked to have learned even more about the others of her group. Then there is Julian, the poster boy for the DFA that Lena is forced to rely on. Just like the others, Julian has his own emotional baggage, and some of his interactions with Lena were very touching. And finally, there is the ending...I need Requiem, and I need it now!

Pandemonium is an excellent sequel and one that will leave you hungering for Requiem. I will be counting down the days!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

"Waiting on" Wednesday

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's selection is:

By: Kim Harrington
Published By: Scholastic Point
Release Date: Jan. 1, 2013
Preorder the Book: Amazon

Goodreads Summary: A haunted house, a buried mystery, and a very angry ghost make this one unforgettable thriller.

Jade loves the house she's just moved into with her family. She doesn't even mind being the new girl at the high school: It's a fresh start, and there's that one guy with the dreamy blue eyes. . . .

But then things begin happening. Strange, otherworldly things.

Jade's little brother claims to see a glimmering girl in his room. Jade's jewelry gets moved around, as if by an invisible hand. Kids at school whisper behind her back like they know something she doesn't.

Soon, Jade must face an impossible fact: that her perfect house . . . is haunted.

Haunted by a ghost who's seeking not just vengeance, but the truth. The ghost of a girl who ruled Jade's school -- until her untimely death last year. It's up to Jade to put the pieces together before her own life is at stake. As Jade investigates the mystery, she discovers that her new friends in town have more than a few deep, dark secrets.

But is one of them a murderer?

Why it's wanted:

I loved Kim's first two YA books, Clarity and Perception. She has a knack for writing mysteries, and I'm looking forward to this one!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Review: My Life in Black and White by Natasha Friend

By: Natasha Friend
Published By: Viking Juvenile
Release Date: June 21, 2012
Series: None
Pages: 294
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: Bought
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads Summary: What if you lost the thing that made you who you are?

Lexi has always been stunning. Her butter-colored hair and perfect features have helped her attract friends, a boyfriend, and the attention of a modeling scout. But everything changes the night Lexi's face goes through a windshield. Now she's not sure what's worse: the scars she'll have to live with forever, or what she saw going on between her best friend and her boyfriend right before the accident. With the help of her trombone-playing, defiantly uncool older sister and a guy at school recovering from his own recent trauma, Lexi learns she's much more than just a pretty face.

The beginning of the summary poses a very interesting question - if you lost one thing that defined you, how would you define yourself? That premise coupled with the cover made this book one that I knew I'd have to read.

Lexi knows that she is beautiful - she has been told so all her life, even by strangers. Even her best friend Taylor approached her years ago because she was pretty. Her life seems to be fairly perfect. But in one night, that all disappears. Lexi sees the unthinkable happening between her best friend and her boyfriend. Desperate to escape the sight, she gets into a car with someone who's more interested in her than in watching the road...and before she knows it, her face has gone through a windshield. After being hospitalized and enduring several surgeries, she's faced with the task of putting her life back together. But how can she do that with no best friend, no boyfriend, and a less-than perfect face? Now that she can't rely solely on her beauty, who will Lexi be?

In Lexi's struggle to reinvent her life, this book explores a lot of relationships - those with family, those with friends, and romantic relationships. Throughout the book she spends more time than she expected with her mother and her sister, coming to know her sister especially in a way that she hadn't before. As for her friends, Lexi has to decide which is more important - her anger or her friendships. Finally, Lexi saw that sometimes love can be found in unlikely places. With all of these things, I have to say that I really liked the person Lexi grew to be. She definitely went through a process similar to the five stages of grief, but she made it through them. This book really shows how you can take control of your life and recover from setbacks if you're willing to work at it.

The one thing that I really would have liked to have seen more of is the relationship between Lexi and Theo; it felt a bit rushed and glossed over. However, I really enjoyed the time that we did see between them. I also liked the activity that Lexi picked up as she worked to rebuild her life - it's something not often seen, and that made her character stand out. Even after finishing this book, I've wondered if Lexi's life continued on the new path she set it on.

My Life in Black and White is a quick read but one with a lot packed into its pages. I look forward to reading more from Natasha Friend!

It's Monday! What are you reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? is a weekly meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books. Each week we will share the books we have just finished reading, are currently reading, and are planning to read.

Just Finished Reading:
Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey
Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally

Currently Reading:
Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

Planning To Read:
Erasing Time by C.J. Hill

What are you reading this week?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Review: Original Sin by Lisa Desrochers

By: Lisa Desrochers
Published By: Tor Teeh
Release Date: July 5, 2011
Series: Personal Demons (#2)
Pages: 398
Genre: Paranormal
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: BEA
Buy the Book: Amazon

Note: Original Sin is the second book in the Personal Demons trilogy, and this summary may contain spoilers.

Goodreads Summary: Luc Cain was born and raised in Hell, but he isn’t feeling as demonic as usual lately—thanks to Frannie Cavanaugh and the unique power she never realized she had. But you can’t desert Hell without consequences, and suddenly Frannie and Luc find themselves targeted by the same demons who used to be Luc’s allies.

Left with few options, Frannie and Luc accept the protection of Heaven and one of its most powerful angels, Gabe. Unfortunately, Luc isn’t the only one affected by Frannie, and it isn’t long before Gabe realizes that being around her is too…tempting. Rather than risk losing his wings, he leaves Frannie and Luc under the protection of her recently-acquired guardian angel.

Which would be fine, but Gabe is barely out the door before an assortment of demons appears—and they’re not leaving without dragging Luc back to Hell with them. Hell won’t give up and Heaven won’t give in. Frannie’s guardian exercises all the power he has to keep them away, but the demons are willing to hurt anyone close to Frannie in order to get what they want. It will take everything she has and then some to stay out of Hell’s grasp.

And not everyone will get out of it alive.

I really enjoyed Personal Demons, so I was eager to continue the story with Original Sin. So many of the things I loved from the first book carried over here - Frannie's voice and the romantic chemistry to name a couple - and in this installment, all of the stakes get higher.

Frannie, Luc, and Gabe went through a lot in Personal Demons, but the story is far from over. Demons will be demons, and they are none too thrilled with the turn that Luc's mission took. Therefore, they have no intention of leaving him - or Frannie - alone. Frannie might have a new guardian angel, but it isn't enough to keep the demons away permanently. On top of that, Frannie's friend Taylor has been acting strange, and Frannie is determined to find out why. With so many evil forces at work, Frannie and Luc will have to figure out a way to stay off the demons' radar or send them back to Hell empty-handed - and quickly. But can they survive everything Hell has to throw at them?

Though Personal Demons often seemed cliche, Original Sin was not quite what I was expecting. Instead of simply following Frannie, Luc, and Gabe, new characters were introduced - a new guardian angel for Frannie and a new neighbor for Luc - and these two factor heavily into the story. Frannie's new guardian angel even has chapters from his point of view, further bringing this second storyline into play. Lili, the next door neighbor, is a powerful presence and an extremely interesting (if not always likable) character. Frannie's world seems to be crumbling in this book, and she definitely had her struggles with the demons. She is still trying to come into her own, and I look forward to seeing how much she grows in the last book.

I said that Original Sin was not quite what I expected, and that extends beyond the basics. There were a few twists and surprises toward the end of the book, but I liked that they further integrated the story. There was also the matter of Gabe. Gabe was, for various reasons, absent for much of this story, and I have to say that I missed him. Although I like Luc, I like Gabe as well and hope that he will be back in the third book.

If you've read Personal Demons, you will definitely want to keep going with the series. And if you haven't started it, pick up Personal Demons and get ready to dive into an edgy paranormal story. As for me, I can't wait to find out what happens in Last Rite!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

"Waiting on" Wednesday

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's selection is:

By: Corrine Jackson
Published By: Kensington Teen
Release Date: Nov. 27, 2012
Preorder the Book: Amazon

Goodreads Summary: Remy O’Malley heals people with touch—but every injury she cures becomes her own. Living in a household with an abusive stepfather, she has healed untold numbers of broken bones, burns,and bruises. And then one night her stepfather goes too far.

Being sent to live with her estranged father offers a clean start and she is eager to take it. Enter Asher Blackwell. Once a Protector of Healers, Asher sacrificed his senses to become immortal. Only by killing a Healer can a Protector recover their human senses. Falling in love is against the rules between these two enemies. Because Remy has the power to make Protectors human again, and when they find out, they’ll becoming for her—if Asher doesn’t kill her first.

This is Book One in the Touched trilogy.

Why it's wanted:

First of all, I love this cover! But beyond that, the story sounds different and intriguing. I want to know what happens to Remy!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Teaser Tuesday (53)

I'm very excited to be one of the many blogs participating in Teaser Tuesdays! TT is a weekly meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. To participate:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
(Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

"The world around me melted into silence: the waves hitting the rocks, my breathing, the pounding of my heart...and the bells. No sound, no pain, no fear. Only Anna.""

p. 131 (Proof Pages) from ASHES ON THE WAVES by Mary Lindsey
(This teaser posted with permission from the author.)

Please share your teasers - post them or link to your blog!

Monday, September 10, 2012

It's Monday! What are you reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? is a weekly meme hosted by One Person's Journey Through a World of Books. Each week we will share the books we have just finished reading, are currently reading, and are planning to read.

Just Finished Reading:
Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Currently Reading:
Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey

Planning To Read:
Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally
Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

What are you reading this week?

Review: Hidden by Sophie Jordan

By: Sophie Jordan
Published By: Harper Teen
Release Date: Sept. 11, 2012
Series: Firelight (#3)
Pages: 272
Genre: Paranormal
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: ALA
Buy the Book: Amazon

Disclaimer: Hidden is the third book in the Firelight trilogy, and the summary below may contain spoilers for the previous books. If you are new to the books, be sure to look at my reviews of Firelight and Vanish.

Goodreads Summary: Jacinda was supposed to bond with Cassian, the "prince" of their pride. But she resisted long before she fell in love with Will—a human and, worse, a hunter. When she ran away with Will, it ended in disaster, with Cassian's sister, Miram, captured. Weighed down by guilt, Jacinda knows she must rescue her to set things right. Yet to do so she will have to venture deep into the heart of enemy territory.

The only way Jacinda can reach Miram is by posing as a prisoner herself, though once she assumes that disguise, things quickly spiral out of her control. As she learns more about her captors, she realizes that even if Will and Cassian can carry out their part of the plan, there's no guarantee they'll all make it out alive. But what Jacinda never could have foreseen is that escaping would be only the beginning....

Loyalties are tested and sacrifices made in the explosive conclusion to Sophie Jordan's Firelight trilogy.

It's no secret that I love the Firelight trilogy. These books are unique in a market flooded with so many paranormal creatures, and Sophie's writing is fantastic. I was extremely excited to get a copy of this at ALA because I was dying to know how the series ended.

If you have read Vanish, you know just how action-packed the ending was and why the year-long wait for Hidden was way, way too long. Hidden begins just after the the events of Vanish, with Jacinda determined to make everything right once and for all. Her plan - infiltrate the enkros stronghold and make it out alive - is dangerous, but she knows it must be done. Only nothing could have prepared Jacinda for what she finds within... And even if all goes according to plan, there is still one minor detail Jacinda will have to work out: Does she belong with the pride and with Cassian, or can she ever be free to be with Will?

From the beginning, Hidden had a different tone from Vanish. The setting is darker, the stakes are higher than they have ever been, and it seems as though the weight of the world is on Jacinda's shoulders. For so much of the book she is at war with herself, trying to decide between what she feels is right and what she wants, wondering if there is a way for both to coexist. Eventually she has to face the hard truth that she cannot please everyone, but by accepting that, she grows into a stronger individual. Although there are things I wish she had done differently, I could sympathize with her dilemma and liked the person that she became. With that, I was thrilled to see what happened for Tamra in this book and how she became her own person as well. There are also new draki to meet, and I appreciated what they brought to the story.

As much as I enjoyed Hidden, I also had one issue with it - there were times that seemed stagnant, when I longed for the excitement that was so pervasive in Vanish. However, the ending of the book made up for that. There were twists that I didn't see coming and, my own personal opinions and wishfully constructed endings aside, Hidden provides good closure to the trilogy.

I have loved spending time in the world of the draki, and I will be sorry to see these characters go. I'm secretly holding out hope that Sophie isn't done with this world and we will see dragon books from her again...but whatever books we see from her, I know I will be reading them!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...