Thursday, November 20, 2014

Forever Wild

Forever Wild By Magan Vernon - 3 STARS

SynopsisAfter ONE WILD NIGHT in Vegas, publicist Valerie Wilder woke up next to a male stripper named Wild Wes. A trip to the court house should have solved the problem, but legalities forced them to go back to Chicago together to start the process. But the more Valerie and Wes get to know each other the more they realize their WILD HEARTS can't be tamed and they may be falling for each other. Even though Wes is THE WILD ONE Valerie can't resist taking some time on THE WILD SIDE, but when she finally realizes that she's WILD FOR YOU, things get even more complicated in the form of her former fling and a deal he made with Wes. Now the two have to figure out if they can stay forever WILD or if their Vegas nuptials are going to come to an end.

* A copy was provided by net galley in exchange for an honest review 

I enjoyed this serial book. Which is exactly up my alley and by an author I adore. There were a number of things I didnt care for. Specifically, I didnt understand their "insta" love moment. I also don't truly understand what Valerie looks like, other than she's big.  It REALLY bothers me that he weight (Thick, chancy, chubby, heavy) are repeated mentioned. I don't think its necessary to remind the reader that the girl is curvy. Not to mention, Im not even sure what you mean by curvy or thick (do you mean fat? do you mean voluptuous? Curvy implies not being stick thin, but lots of curvy girls are beautiful think Christina Hendicks or Beyonce, Anne Hathaway all of whom are considered curvy .) I also don't like being reminded, I like getting a picture myself and then sticking with it, in my mind Valerie is curvy and beautiful but not overweight, a girl who is beautiful but not in the typical way. 

I really love Valerie's personality. She is witty and sarcastic but honest and sincere. She seems so sure of herself (personality wise) and yet so unsure of her body and why men would want to be her (given her weight and prior experience with men). It fits in perfectly with today's society, where women frequently feel at odds with themselves, their life vs their body. 

I adored Wes, aside from some of his ridiculous yes ma'am and darlin moments I found him to be sweet and charming and very loving of Valerie. I did wonder a bit more as to what he saw in her that first night, which I got a glimpse of, but Im not sure that I understood his point of view. And thats more personal than anything else. In the end I found his behavior to be sweet and caring. 

I definitely got the sleaze impression from Max, and I think the way that Valerie and Wes deal with Max is really interesting and realistic. While Max was one wrench thrown into the mix, there were other issues Valerie and Wes dealt with, and each one seemed to fit in with the plot point. My only issue was the very last book, it felt like the party was out of place and awkward without a formal ending point and resolution. 

This reminds me though of some of the movies out there right now, where the couple ends up falling for one another and the ex is now interested because she is with someone else

In the end, this wasn't the best romantic comedy that I've read, but it kept me entertained. 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Body Electric

The Body Electric - Beth Revis 4 STARS

Synopsis- The future world is at peace.Ella Shepherd has dedicated her life to using her unique gift--the ability to enter people's dreams and memories using technology developed by her mother--to help others relive their happy memories.
But not all is at it seems.
Ella starts seeing impossible things--images of her dead father, warnings of who she cannot trust. Her government recruits her to spy on a rebel group, using her ability to experience--and influence--the memories of traitors. But the leader of the rebels claims they used to be in love--even though Ella's never met him before in her life. Which can only mean one thing...
Someone's altered her memory.
Ella's gift is enough to overthrow a corrupt government or crush a growing rebel group. She is the key to stopping a war she didn't even know was happening. But if someone else has been inside Ella's head, she cannot trust her own memories, thoughts, or feelings.
So who can she trust?

*Received a copy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review

I really liked this book (up until the end), which is why I docked a star (or a half). It was different, it was entertaining, and gripping. There was action, mystery, a little romance. What I love about this book the most though, is that its one book. Not a trilogy or duology. Could another book be made? Sure. But it's not needed. This book is complex with the twists and characters and Revis once again builds an amazing back drop that is so easy to follow, believe and see. Even though the book is set in the future, its set on Earth. Its also set in the Malta region. A region I know absolutely nothing about. (Okay Im exaggerating but I know very little). I will say, that the one thing that nagged me through out this book was that some things seemed REALLY out of place or obvious to me, and considering Ella was pretty keen, by the end I was annoyed that she didnt figure certain pieces out sooner. Now to be fair, this book threw even me off! I was surprised by some of the twists and facts that presented themselves throughout the book. Of course some things I saw coming, but others? No way. BUT, I know there is always a BUT, a few of these "twists" were not twists that I was happy with. Especially the one about Jack. Without giving anything away, I was REALLY disappointed with this. And at times I felt there was a slight (I said SLIGHT) similariy to Keary Taylor's Eden Trilogy.

I must say though, I am more than impressed with Revis' world building ability and her ability to really draw me into the characters, falling completly in love with Ella and Jack, as individual characters (as compared to a romantic couple). Even though I in no way can relate to Ella and Jack, I felt connected to them. I wanted to know their story, I wanted to know them personally, I wanted to know their history and their love. I was intrigued and invested.

This story line was fresh and new to me! While I had similar points of interest as other books out there (its hard not to these days), I found that Revis really gave a fresh new take on the idea. We follow Ella as she tries to figure out whether the government or a rebel group are the ones out to exploit her late fathers and dying mothers work and research. set in a futuristic dystopian world, where it seems Big Brother exists and people are content to be submissive to the governments whim, Ella finds herself in a peculiar situation. She must decide whether helping the government is the "right" thing to do, or whether the government is the one on the wrong side of things.

There are a lot of scientific/technology pieces to this book, that can at times be hard to follow, but as usual Revis set the back drop up perfectly, weaving a story that we must continue to follow in order to find our way out. I was struck by the story telling, which is the primary focus of the book. While there is a love interest, it is a minor role in this book. Instead the primary focus is figuring out the governments plan and whether Ella is willing to help them. Or if their plan is everything she has been working against since the beginning. Where does the line begin and end? This is a constant battle of who is right and wrong? who can you trust when you arent sure you can trust yourself? Following this story was so much fun. I was happy though with the way things unfolded and the ending was perfect.

I love that Ella struggles internally with every decision and every fact she learns. Ella is really a remarkable character. She is both vulnerable and naive but also so willing to recognize her weaknesses and attempt to better herself. She is strong in her own right, and gets stronger throughout the book. Ella struggles in so many ways, she struggles with who to trust, with own mind and memories, she struggles with family, love and freedom. I love that Ella is her own person. She never bends to the whim of others, she always thought for herself. She took in whatever anyone else provided but tried to make sure that she understand all the facts before making a decision, or moving forward. She was thoughtful. As she really gained momentum she started putting together all the pieces. She accepted things gracefully even when they were difficult or torturous in some instances.

Jack, he was a fighter. He fought for freedom, for love, for his future, his life and so much more. Jack was  a great character overall and I enjoyed his personality and the aspects that he brought to the book. He forced Ella to wake up in more than one way. His passion brought out the best in Ella, showing her that she needed to critically think about the way she was living her life. Causing Ella to open her eyes to the way the world works was Jack's greatest accomplishment. And while their "love" story was quite sparse it was sweet. This story though really focuses on the young couple, who try to figure out whether the country and government they know is the right government for the future.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Earth and Sky

Earth and Sky by Megan Crewe- 4 STARS

Seventeen-year-old Skylar has been haunted for as long as she can remember by fleeting yet powerful sensations that something is horribly wrong. But despite the visions of disaster that torment her, nothing ever happens, and Sky’s beginning to think she’s crazy. Then she meets a mysterious, otherworldly boy named Win and discovers the shocking truth her premonitions have tapped into: that our world no longer belongs to us. For thousands of years, life on Earth has been at the mercy of alien scientists who care nothing for humans and are using us as the unwitting subjects of their time-manipulating experiments. Win belongs to a rebel faction seeking to put a stop to it, and he needs Skylar’s help to save the world and keep the very fabric of reality together. Megan Crewe’s latest tale takes readers on a mind-bending journey through time with a cast of unforgettable characters.

*received a copy from net galley in exchange for honest review. 

I really enjoyed this book! It was everything I hoped it would be! It is a true sci-fi young adult novel, mixing aliens and time travel, along with a side dystopian plot (for the aliens, which affects Earth). This book is FULL of action and adventure. There is never a dull moment!  We are introduced to the action pretty early on and from there its a roller coaster  Theres minor romance but I have high expectations for the next installment! Cant wait!  

World- Building--The world building in this book is excellent. One of the better books I've read recently where the author had me visualizing the world that Skylar and Win were traipsing through. I loved the different time periods and the technology that was used, because it really added a layer of depth and perception to this sometimes confusing book. I loved the way all the different aspects would merge and collide in different ways. And the author did such a good job of explaining things without dumbing it down too much, making it too simple or over detailing (which can happen!)

Plot--  The plot here really built over the course of the book. Even when the reader knew the general idea of the overall purpose of Win and Skylar the book continued through with momentum, constantly building the difficult plot point with ease. There were great twists, that were throughout the book. There was a slight romance that was built in, but it was very slight. And while the friendship between Win and Skylar grew, it didnt develop into a romance, which was slightly disappointing. However I have high hopes for the next book. 

The interesting thing about this particular book is the way the time travel and aliens collide.  This is an intense time travel story, so in some instances I found myself confused. Okay a lot of times. But if you just go with it and don't spend too much time on details it seems to work itself out. The biggest struggle for me was figuring out how changing the past changed the future...I get it, but I don't. Especially in some instances. But generally, I got the point and was able to follow. 

Characters--I really liked Skylar and Win Skylar, the protagonist and POV of the book was really interesting. I loved her instant state of paranoia. I felt like this gave the book more of a realistic vibe, because Skylar didnt just "go along" with everything Win said. She questioned him, and his story. She questioned everything from the start too so it didnt feel misplaced. And even though she was a little over the top at times, it was really very refreshing. I loved finding out more about Skylar's past. That was super interesting and added a level of depth and mystery. 

I liked Win from the start. Not because he was swoon worthy but because he seemed to care so much about Skylar and saving the planet. His appeal came from a deep sense of empathy that he clearly felt for the people on Earth., his sincerity was genuine and beautiful. And even though he wasn't always up front with these it seemed like her was trying to protect Skylar and continue with his mission to save the world. Which I respected. 

I did feel that some of the secondary characters were not developed enough, as I don't feel like I got the know them very well. 

From the Author-
the inspiration behind the story here:

major characters here: