Sunday, July 24, 2011
When London starts experiencing disturbing flashbacks, or flash-forwards, as the case may be, she realizes it's time to learn about the past she keeps forgetting-before it destroys her future.
Haunting, compelling, and a bit bizarre, Cat Patrick's first novel put me very much in mind of the Wake trilogy. London is used to dealing with her strange quirk, and apparently seeing the future is enough to explain to her each day why she remembers nothing of her past. Every night she makes notes about the day and reminders for the next day, because her "memories" are all of things that haven't happened yet.
So what does it mean that she doesn't "remember" Luke from the future, even though her notes say they've met?
The timeline aspect of this novel is a mind-trip. Please see the previous paragraph - there's no easy way to explain chain-of-events when the reader knows only what has happened, and London knows only what will happen (plus whatever reminders she's left herself), and neither knows exactly what is happening! Okay, that last part isn't strictly true, but watching London unravel the mystery of her "memories" and the condition that caused them definitely takes an open mind.
And for that, I really enjoyed reading it. I began by saying it reminds me of Wake, just because of the surreality of knowing what shouldn't be known. Forgotten has that same disconnected feeling, and I couldn't put it down because I was so caught up in that world.
My only reservation has to do with London's character, and only because I can't quite imagine what knowing the future is like: London takes on faith of her notes that Luke matters to her. She can't "remember" him existing tomorrow, or next week, or next year. Which means every day she basically meets him anew...she doesn't even know what he looks like before she's seen him or a picture of him! (Fifty First Dates, anyone?) Anyway, it was just a small questioning for me, and it's really only there because of the amazing premise of the novel. So not that big a deal.
The Final Word: Prepare for a crazy ride and don't plan on putting it down.
Friday, July 22, 2011
- Song of the Lioness (4 books)
- The Immortals (4 books)
- Protector of the Small (4 books)
- The Trickster books (2)
- Beka Cooper (2+ books)
I've tried reading other books by Meg Cabot, but I like this series far more than her realistic fiction. And at 200-ish pages a book, it's easy to whip through the whole series. If you're interested, start with book 1: Shadowland.
Patrica Briggs' Mercy Thompson & Alpha and Omega series
What's the plural of "series," anyways? Patricia Briggs has created a fantastic werewolf culture that can't be confined to a single storyline. First, there's Mercy. She's a coyote among werewolves, but she'll do as she pleases - including tick her favorite wolves off - rather than submit to dominance games. All that independence gets her into trouble, though, with the wolves and the vampires and the fae. There are six books and counting; start with Moon Called.
Running parallel to Mercy's story is Anna's. She is Omega, a rare werewolf who provides peace and calm in the normally rigid pack. But she doesn't know this until Charles, son of the leader of the werewolves, rescues her from an abusive Alpha. Anna is completely different from Mercy. She is meek where Mercy is strong, quiet where Mercy is vocal... and yet, I think I may like her story even more. The two books so far have focused on her relationship with Charles; although there is some action, much more of Anna's struggles are internal. The two series reference each other, but run independently. Alpha and Omega starts with a short story by the same name, but you can also begin with the novel Cry Wolf.
That should be enough to start with, right? If you've read them, if you want to read them, of if you have a recommendation, leave a comment. My favorite part about being obsessive about a book is knowing that I'm not the only one.
Thursday, July 21, 2011
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris, and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together, they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes-fascinating, sometimes-exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret: one she’s kept hidden from everyone, because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly-perfect society, she also learns that her secret might be what helps her save those she loves . . . or it might be what destroys her.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Kate Lowry's best friend Grace died a year ago. So when she gets an email from her, Kate's more than a little confused.
Subject: (no subject)
I'm here... sort of.
Find Cameron. He knows.
I shouldn't be writing.
Don't tell. They'll hurt you.
Now Kate has no choice but to prove once and for all that Grace's death was more than just a tragic accident. She teams up with a couple of knights-in-(not-so)-shining armor-the dangerously hot bad boy, Liam, and her lovestruck neighbor, Seth. But at their elite private school, there are secrets so big people will do anything to protect them-even if it means getting rid of anyone trying to solve a murder...
The Liar Society switches between flashbacks just before Grace's death, and Kate currently trying to solve Grace's mystery and actually find Grace, who seems to be not-so dead. It took me a while to get through, maybe because Grace tends to monologue, but seeing it to the end of the mystery is certainly worthwhile. And the novel was actually much heavier than I expected (the cover reminds me of the Gallagher Girls), what with Kate dealing with her grief over Grace.
The final word: An enjoyable book, but not a rabid must-read
With the time of danger passed, the true princess will return to court, and Nalia - now known to be Sinda, a commoner with no means of her own - is sent away without a second thought. But Sinda cannot adapt to life with her frosty aunt, especially given she has no knowledge of cooking or keeping a trade, and when she discovers uncontrollable magic inside her, she returns to the capital city. There, she reunites with an old friend and discovers that there is more to the princess switch than she could have dreamed possible.
Technically that is so, but O'Neal deserves much more credit than that. Just when I got comfortable with a turn the story had taken, Sinda learned some new revelation that completely revised the rhythm of the plot. And every one of those steps was important, too - we couldn't have skipped any of them.
And poor Sinda! When she was sent away from the palace, from her life, I thought she took it pretty passively. I know I would have demanded some answers. But as soon as a character pointed this very fact out to her, she made an effort to take charge of her life. I loved it. She grows so much throughout the novel, and her relationships with the other characters, especially her friend Kiernan and the real Nalia, made her real to me.
O'Neal has written a stunning first novel and I can't wait to see what else she comes up with.
Friday, July 1, 2011
Tempest Rising is a whirlwind of magic and love and growing up. Tracy Deebs completely skips the "Guess what, you're magic!" phase of this genre; Tempest has known all her life that she's part mermaid, which allows the opening plot to be about her dread of turning seventeen, when the ocean will finally call her home.
Her story was simply sucked me in. The pull between Tempest's human boyfriend and the mysterious Kai, the betrayal of her mermaid mother's disappearance... I just couldn't put it down. And while parts of of the novel remind me of the Little Mermaid, surprise twists and reveals kept me reading right to the end.
The final word: A whirlwind read that deserves several days of undivided attention.