Saturday, 31 January 2015

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

*ARC provided for an honest review, thank you!

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers. To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from the Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change. Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of those she hated the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control. But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?

I've only read the first book of this amazing new series, and I can already tell that I am going to be in this story right up until the very end. I don't know how to describe it really, all I know is that I read the first page and all of a sudden it was finishing and I was shouting and crying because that was such an intense ending! Everything is a blur of amazing writing, engaging characters, awesome world-building and horrifying powers. This book pulls no punches and I was cringing as much as I was excited by the detailed descriptions of abilities being put to gruesome uses, because where most books usually focus on the good uses for powers, Red Queen shows the dark side to having god-like powers, where even the main characters are not immune to its seductive pull. A thrilling new series heavy on the elitism, rebellion, betrayal, and power. Cannot wait until the next book! 

Rating: 5/5 

"Anyone can betray anyone."

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Sing for Me by Gracie Madison

*ARC provided for honest review, thank you!

Madeline Noel fled war-torn Heaven to hide within the mortal world, but the blessing that could protect her from evil is the holy realm's forbidden power. As a talented soprano for the Eden Theatre Company, Madeline hides among prima donnas and tone-deaf flutists. Her perfect voice may entertain audiences, but a careless laugh may shatter glass, and her greatest scream can kill. To control her unrestrained voice, the angels forbid Madeline from embracing the emotions that strengthens her song. Anger. Fear...Love. 
The demon-hunter Damascus vows to defend Madeline from Hell's relentless evil, but he cannot protect her from her own feelings. Though they deny their dangerous attraction, her guardian becomes her greatest temptation. Surrendering to desire may awaken the gift suppressed within Madeline's soul, and neither Heaven nor Hell will allow such absolute power to exist. 

I really enjoyed the book, though it took me a while to really become engaged in the story. I felt as though I was missing some details and had to re-read some passages to make sure that I wasn't actually missing something important. But after a few chapters of being thrown head first into the unknown, I started to really enjoy Madeline's story. I haven't read many stories where the main character is a soprano singer, but being in an orchestra myself, I could definitely relate to those damn tone deaf flutes! I loved the writing as well, it was smooth and flowing and had my attention right up until the very end. A beautiful story filled with angels, opera and love, what more could you ask for?!

Rating: 3.5/5

Incite by Erica Crouch

*ARC provided for honest review, thank you!

Earth is in ruins, and the war of Heaven and Hell has spilled over into the mortal world. In the frozen wasteland of the apocalypse, Azael and his band of cohorts search for Pen and Michael with orders to kill. Little does he know that his sister has incited a rebel army of her own. 
Angels and demons alike stand side by side, ready and willing to fight for a future they didn't realise they could have. Change doesn't come easy, though. Pen is wary of joining New Genesis' revolution, but when Azael shows his hand and Pen learns all that he holds over them, she chooses to fight back, no matter the risk. She only has to survive, one hour at a time. 

This series feels more like reading poetry than a novel, I have never read a series that has touched my soul like Ignite has. As soon as I started reading I felt as though I was completely immersed into not only Pen's, but Azael's lives. The juxtaposition between the two characters is monumental, one calling out to the light side in each of us, and the other almost howling for the part of us where chaos and madness lays in wait. But if there is one thing that this book has taught me, it's that light can be dark and dark can be light. Pen has her selfish side, whilst Azael desperately grasps at the love for his sister. I love absolutely everything about this book, but my favourite aspect is definitely the writing, even the battle scenes move like poetry, and I could almost feel the biting cold of the earth it was described so beautifully. I just can't believe it ended like that! Cliffhangers are going to be the death of me. But especially this one because the lead up to the action was breath taking and heart stopping but then ArE you KidInG mE!? But I really could go for a few more books and beg for each and every one of them without shame. Another beautiful book in a series quickly working its way into my heart, filled with love, betrayal and redemption. 

Rating: 5/5 Titans

"Surviving is so different than being alive"

Ignite by Erica Crouch

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

City in Embers by Stacey Marie Brown

*ARC received for an honest review, thank you!

Zoey Daniels has been tossed from foster home to foster home, where she grows up fast and tough. When she is placed in her "last-chance" home, she finds a reason to stay and turn her life around: her foster sister, Lexie, who is paralysed and confined to a wheelchair. Zoey will do anything to keep her safe. After high school, Zoey is hired by a special government agency, the Department of Molecular Genetics (DMG), where she meets the other reason to remain: Daniel, her co-worker. The man she loves. 
But there is something unique about Zoey. She can see fae. Because of this, the DMG hires her to work as a Collector: catching, researching, testing and using the fae to save human lives. The work never registers on her sympathy radar. She was raised to think of fae as beasts that feed on humans and want to destroy them.
When devastation hits Seattle, Zoey's whole world is turned upside down. The electric storm connects her to a ruthless fae, a Wanderer named Ryker, whose dealings expose them to even more trouble and danger. They embark on a journey, running and hiding from both the government and fae, both of which threaten their lives and those they love.

Ms Brown is very quickly becoming one of my favourite authors, having read her Darkness series just weeks before starting this one, I think I'm starting to become obsessed with her stories and definitely her characters. Whilst City in Embers takes place in the same world and time period as the Darkness series, the characters and the writing couldn't have been more different. I feel as though there was an added layer of maturity, which I feel came from Zoey and all of the hardships she was put through even before the electrical storm hits. Zoey's and Ryker's relationship was rocky at best, each hating the other's species as well as being the complete opposites of each other, but watching them grow throughout the book from blindly hating the other to accepting their differences, had to be one of my favourite aspects of the novel. Pair this with the non-stop action, secrets and betrayals the two have to traverse throughout the devastation of a flattened city, strap yourselves in for a wild ride fret with danger, magic and a narcoleptic talking monkey. 

Rating: 4.5/5 Titans

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Darkness Series by Stacey Marie Brown



Freak. Witch. Crazy. Schizo.
Ember Brycin has been called them all. She's always known she's different. No one has ever called her normal, even under the best of circumstances. Bizarre and inexplicable things continually happen to her, and having two different coloured eyes, strange hair, and an unusual tattoo only contributes to the gossip about her.
When the latest school explosion lands her in a facility for troubled teens, she meets Eli Dragen, who's hot as hell and darkly mysterious. Their connection is full of passion, danger, and secrets. Secrets that will not only change her life, but what and who she is-leading her down a path she never imagined possible. 
Between Light and Dark, Ember finds a world where truth and knowledge are power and no one can be trusted. But her survival depends on finding out the truth about herself. In her pursuit, she is forced between love and destiny and good and evil, even when the differences between them are't always clear. At worst, she will incite a war that could destroy both worlds. At best, she will not only lose her heart but her life and everyone she loves. Once the truth is out, however, there will be no going back. And she'll definitely wish she could. 

I have done absolutely nothing for four days because I was so immersed into this series that I managed to block out all of my responsibilities and holiday homework for almost a solid week. Looking back now, my brain is telling me that it was an extremely weak move, and yet my heart is telling me that it wouldn't have missed the experience for the world. I am kicking myself because I failed to pick up this series when I first heard of it a year ago, but at least I didn't have to go through the torturously long waits of the cliffhangers. I loved this series so much and can barely put it into words, it has everything you could ask for in an Urban Fantasy series. An awesomely hilarious protagonist, a sex-on-a-stick love interest who is as dangerous as he is hot, several loveable secondary characters including two alcoholic pixies and antagonists who live in grey (except for the queen, she's bat shit cray cray). But let's not forget the fantastically magical world building that gripped me tight right up until the end. With witty banter, dangerous creatures, magic, swords and unforgettable characters, I really wish I came upon more books like the Darkness series. 

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Books in the Darkness Series

Darkness of Light
Fire in the Darkness
Dwellers of Darkness
Blood Beyond Darkness