Saturday, October 25, 2014

Quick Thought Reviews

Sometimes I read a book where I just don't have a lot to say about it. Hence the name quick thought reviews. These will be short and sweet.

The Aftermath
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Aftermath Book #1
ISBN:   0373211325
ISBN13: 9780373211326
Genre: Dystopian
Review Copy Source: NetGalley
Sometimes, I dream that I'm someone else.

A girl with dark hair who doesn't worry about hunger

or thirst or running from flesh-eaters.

In her world, those sorts of things don't exist.

Since the spring of 2036, when the world changed forever, Claudia and a small clan of survivors have roamed the streets of a very altered Nashville: polluted and desolate, except for the ever-present threat of cannibal Hoarders. Together they must undergo punishing tests of endurance and psychological challenge sometimes with devastating consequences all just to live another day.

With food and water in dwindling supply, and with danger lurking around every corner, no one can be trusted. And as her world starts to make less and less sense, Claudia begins to realize something terrifying: she is just a pawn in some sort of game, and all of her actions are being controlled from afar by a mysterious gamer. So when she meets a maddening and fascinating outsider named Declan, who claims to be a game moderator, she must decide whether to join him in exchange for protection and access to the border.

If they play the game right, they are each other's best hope for survival and a life beyond the only world Claudia's ever known: the terrifying live-action game known as The Aftermath.

The world in THE AFTERMATH is pretty insane. The characters are real and have NO clue that they have someone in their mind playing them like puppets while they starve, run for their lives and kill the bad guys. Even worse is that these players are doing it for fun. Claudia remembers nothing of her life before but starts to have flashbacks and starts having lucid moments while she is being 'played'. The more she learns of The Aftermath, the more she wants to escape it and bring her team members with her.

I found this book to be very fast paced. The characters were interesting and the world building was well done. I enjoyed the slow information reveal, but wanted more from the romance that was introduced. The ending kinda blew my mind and left me with way more questions than I have answers to, so I will be continuing the series with book 2.

I gave it 3.5/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Saving the Hero
Release Date: August 8, 2014
Publisher: Sanguine Publishing
Saving the Hero Book #1
ISBN:    1500569690
ISBN13 9781500569693
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Review Copy Source: Author
Two and a half weeks. That’s all the time he has left.

When loner vampire hunter Kassy is interrupted by nosy veteran, Mike, he ends up bitten, and infected with the vampire parasite. The warrior becomes her prey as she fights to find him before powerful vamps. A couple kidnappings later, she’s hiding in a cabin with him chained to the floor, and an eight-year-old girl in her care.

Death? Inevitable. When the parasite takes control, he’ll do or say anything to get non-infected blood—including seducing her. But, as they spend time together, she finds her resolve weakening. A kiss won’t fix him, but it might mend a deep hole in her heart.

Kassy is too practical to believe in miracles, but if he survives eighteen days without ingesting human blood, there is a chance he could be the hero she's been looking for.

Odds are, he’s a dead man.

I didn't LOVE SAVING THE HERO, but I didn't hate it either. The book started off at a nice pace, but then slowed down. A lot of the book takes place with just 3 characters holed up in a cabin waiting for 2 of the characters to turn into vampires, which in this series is a REALLY bad thing. There is a lot of secrets surrounding Kassy and she isn't used to being around people so things are a bit awkward at times. Mike, the 'hero', doesn't believe anything that Kassy says about vampires or him turning into one so he is a bit hard to handle (of course I would be too if I found myself kidnapped and chained).

There are a few nice action scenes thrown into SAVING THE HERO and the reveals that happen are pretty shocking. However, I didn't really find myself invested in the characters enough to want to continue the series.

I gave it 3/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review. 

Author: Lish McBride
Release Date: September 23, 2014
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Firebug Book #1
Genre: YA
Review Copy Source: Publisher
Ava can start fires with her mind . . . but is it a blessing or a curse?

Ava is a firebug—she can start fires with her mind. Which would all be well and good if she weren't caught in a deadly contract with the Coterie, a magical mafia. She's one of their main hit men . . . and she doesn't like it one bit. Not least because her mother's death was ordered by Venus—who is now her boss.

When Venus asks Ava to kill a family friend, Ava rebels. She knows very well that you can't say no to the Coterie and expect to get away with it, though, so she and her friends hit the road, trying desperately to think of a way out of the mess they find themselves in. Preferably keeping the murder to a minimum.

FIREBUG was one of those books that I wasn't really excited about reading but really enjoyed once I finally started. Ava was a character after my own heart. Snarky, down to earth, and extremely loyal to the people she loves. The secondary characters were just as great as Ava, but  I was a little disappointed in the missed romance part of FIREBUG.

This was the first book I've read from Lish McBride, but I have seen mention that it's part of the same world her Necromancer series is set in? Either way I had no problem getting into FIREBUG and I'm really excited to continue Ava's story with book 2.

I gave it 4/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

Gray Bishop
Author: Kelly Meade
Release Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: InterMix
Cornerstone Run Book #2
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Review Copy Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Some people need something to fight for…

With the attacks on their homes escalating and human half-breeds seeking sanctuary among them, the loup garou are reaching their breaking point. Two, in particular.

After failing to stop his little brother’s kidnapping years ago, Bishop McQueen angrily broods on his shame, though no one else blames him.

Jillian Reynolds is still dealing with a tragic accident that took everything she ever wanted from life. And her attraction to Bishop is only making things more difficult.

When word reaches them that Jillian's hometown is under attack, the Alpha takes Bishop, Jillian, and a group of enforcers to assist in the battle. And it is in this chaos that both Bishop and Jillian will have to face their pasts—and the true feelings they have for each other—if they are going to survive…
I always enjoy when series with revolving main characters keep the past main characters as a decent part of the book. GRAY BISHOP follows Bishop and Jillian as they fall in love, but Brynn and Rook are very much still a big part of the story. I really enjoy the family dynamic that comes with the McQueen family and was really heartbroken towards the end of book 2. The run and the McQueen's have been through so much, but GRAY BISHOP definitely feels like the biggest blow was thrown into the mix.

Jillian and Bishop's love story wasn't as easy as Brynn and Rooks, but felt just as real and I enjoyed following it. With all the other events happening I don't feel that their story got the attention it deserved. This series is a trilogy so WHITE KNIGHT should bring us full circle and hopefully give the run and the McQueen's some piece and happiness, but I know it won't be smooth sailing.

I gave it 4/5 stars 

* This book was provided free of charge from the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

Dying for a Living
Author: Kory M. Shrum
Release Date: March 4, 2014
Publisher: Timberlane Press
ISBN:   099121580X
ISBN13: 9780991215805
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Review Copy Source: Author

On the morning before her 67th death, it is business as usual for Jesse Sullivan: meet with the mortician, counsel soon-to-be-dead clients, and have coffee while reading the latest regeneration theory. Jesse dies for a living, literally. As a Necronite, she is one of the population’s rare 2% who can serve as a death replacement agent, dying so others don’t have to. Although each death is different, the result is the same: a life is saved, and Jesse resurrects days later with sore muscles, new scars, and another hole in her memory.

But when Jesse is murdered and becomes the sole suspect in a federal investigation, more than her freedom and sanity are at stake. She must catch the killer herself—or die trying.

I can't even begin to imagine what it would really be like to live in a world where you can hire people to die for you. Jesse makes a living by dying in other people's place because she's a Necronite and comes back to life. The whole Necronite condition was both interesting and creepy. The author did a great job of explaining it and making it real for the reader.

I had a hard time connecting to a few of the characters in DYING FOR A LIVING. I didn't care for Lane in the least and the love triangle just annoyed me, but thankfully I did really like Jesse so it was easy to look past that. There is a lot going on in the book and lots of strings left at the end so I'm interested in reading more.

I gave it 3.5/5 stars

* This book was provided free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review.