Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: The Wood 

Waiting On Wednesday was created by Jill over at Breaking The Spine. It's a weekly post for you to share what upcoming books you can't wait for!

Title: The Wood 

Author: Chelsea Bobulski 
Release Date: August 1, 2017


After her father goes missing in the woods that they protect, Winter tries to seek the truth in what happened, why the wood is changing, and what it all has to do with the arrival of a mysterious stranger in this thrilling YA debut.

When Winter’s dad goes missing during his nightly patrol of the wood, it falls to her to patrol the time portals and protect the travelers who slip through them. Winter can't help but think there's more to her dad's disappearance than she's being told.

She soon finds a young man traveling in the wood named Henry who knows more than he should. He believes if they can work together to find his missing parents, they could discover the truth about Winter’s dad.

The wood is poisoned, changing into something sinister—torturing travelers lost it. Winter must put her trust in Henry in order to find the truth and those they’ve lost.

Bobulski’s eerie debut is filled with friendship, family, and the responsibilities we choose and those we do not. (taken from goodreads.com)

Why I Need It: 

A bloody leaf? Quite ominous. I'm always willing to give a debut author with an interesting idea a chance, and The Wood sounds like it might be one of the most exciting debuts of the year. What do you guys think? 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Upcoming Releases I'm Dying to Get My Greedy Hands On

Currently, the Top Ten Tuesday feature at The Broke and Bookish is on hold, so I decided to just do a quick round-up of all the books I'm currently lusting after.

I've seen so many lucky reviewers obtain ARCs of these, and I'm quivering with jealousy. At least I won't have to wait too much longer for most of these to hit shelves. Hopefully I'll be able to keep my excitement at bay for a little longer...

  
   

Agh, just look at them all! Such beauty, such potential. I'm ready to shell out whatever money is necessary to read these new releases ASAP. Which ones are you guys most excited about?

Books Listed:

One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake (9/19)
Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao (9/10)
Warcross by Marie Lu (9/12)
Even the Darkest Stars by Heather Fawcett (9/5)
Nyxia by Scott Reintgen (9/12)
An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson (9/26)

Monday, July 24, 2017

Review: The One by Kiera Cass


Title: The One
Series: The Selection #3
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: May 6, 2014
Format: E-Book

Page Count: 323

Rating: 

The time has come for one winner to be crowned.

When she was chosen to compete in the Selection, America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon's heart. But as the end of the competition approaches, and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she'll have to fight for the future she wants. (taken from goodreads.com)


“Bravery hides in amazing places."

Somebody should give this cover designer an award. Somehow, despite my extreme dislike for this series, I've continued to read these books. I blame the gorgeous dresses.

So, I started this third and final installment in the series against my better judgment. I had already given the first two book poor reviews and therefore had pretty low expectations. However, I just couldn't give up hope that the series would somehow turn itself around and become less terrible. I suddenly understood why people continue to read the last books in series they don't even like: you have this compulsion to see the story through to the end, even if you hate the main character and roll your eyes every two seconds. 

If you guys have ever watched the show The Bachelor, then you know exactly what it's like to read this series. You're constantly plagued by a sense of embarrassment as you trudge through a story that is clearly a guilty pleasure without much actual merit... and yet you keep watching. You ask yourself why, and you merely shrug as you go back to complaining about the sexism of the whole thing and the absolute absurdity of dating multiple girls at the same time while "falling in love" with several of them. Maxon and America's relationship is weak at best, and I scoffed at the forced competition between several girls for the hand of one guy. I mean, it's been going on for three books... Can we be done already?

If the second book was all LOVE TRIANGLE 24/7, then this second book is the complete opposite. Aspen? Aspen who? Oh, the guy America was going to marry and claimed to have loved passionately for two full years? Right, well, now there's a prince in the picture, and America has all but forgotten about her first love. I was stunned by how over Aspen she seemed to be after six hundred previous pages of "Woe is me, how shall I choose between these two strapping young men?" It's as though Cass made her choice between the two love interests and simply decided to turn up the romance between America and Maxon while quietly shoving Aspen into the background. It was very poorly done, if you ask me.

America isn't the only character to randomly change her opinions. Celeste, who is painted as the cruel Regina George of this series, suddenly does a personality 180 and becomes relatable. I came this close to setting the book down after America somehow befriends her and earns her admiration. It didn't help that I already didn't care about what was happening with the whole rebel danger thing.

I did like how the relationships between the four remaining girls evolved, but it felt a little too late. I wanted strong relationships like these in book one, and it just took Cass too long to get these girls where they needed to be if you ask me. And I will admit, the romance between America and Maxon is much better in this one. A little over the top at points, but much better.

Despite all of my critiques, The One probably impressed me more than The Selection or The Elite. You could say that I didn't hate this one. At least Cass throws in a bit more political drama, and America didn't make me quite as miserable. I think maybe the fact that Cass did away with the love triangle really helped, even if she did it badly. America actually started to focus on the big picture instead of wondering which boy she wanted to kiss.

Still, this series was an overall flop for me. I've heard that it will be made into a movie in the near future, and part of me wonders if I'll enjoy that more. I won't have to hear America's stupid inner monologues as much, and I'll probably fall in love with the costumes.
 



Friday, July 21, 2017

Review: The Elite by Kiera Cass


Title: The Elite
Series: The Selection #2
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: April 23, 2013
Format: E-Book

Page Count: 336

Rating: 

The Selection began with thirty-five girls.
Now with the group narrowed down to the six Elite, the competition to win Prince Maxon's heart is fiercer than ever—and America is still struggling to decide where her heart truly lies. Is it with Maxon, who could make her life a fairy tale? Or with her first love, Aspen?

America is desperate for more time. But the rest of the Elite know exactly what they want—and America's chance to choose is about to slip away. (taken from goodreads.com)


“Sometimes I feel like we're a knot, too tangled to be taken apart."

Do I keep reading this series because the covers are so pretty? Probably.

So, I didn't really enjoy The Selection. America's character, the cliché plot, and poorly developed romance left me less than impressed. However, I held out hope for this second novel. Why? I'm not sure, but some part of me was crossing my fingers that I'd like The Elite a bit more.

As soon as I cracked the spine, the love triangle was thrown right in my face. Aspen or Maxon, Maxon or Aspen? On and on and on. Dear Lord, this entire novel was one drawn out angst-fest. I had so many problems with the troublesome romance. First of all, America has absolutely no sense of loyalty. None! Sure, she isn't betrothed to either of the men, but she throws herself into her relationship with both of them and doesn't even stop to consider their feelings or hers. Secondly, the relationships are just so flat. Seriously, I'm not even sure why she loves either of them, and I'm even less sure as to why they're obsessed with her.

Which brings me to my next point: America. Get. Your. Crap. Together. She's such a ridiculous character. One second she wants to revolutionize the country, and the next she's sobbing because one of her boy toys said something hurtful. She's a complete train wreck, and I literally wanted to shake her the entire book.

As for the story... well, there isn't much of one. The first few chapters are mostly recap, and then very few big events spur the story onward. There is progress, but America is so infuriating and the romance is so bleh that I couldn't even be bothered to care about the rest.

And yet, I still might read the next book. Why? I have no idea. I guess some naïve part of me really wants to see America grow. She's immature, reckless, and utterly irritating, and yet I have hope for her. Plus, I do want to see how this STUPID love triangle ends, because I'll be damned if I've forced myself through 700 pages of angst only to never find out how it ends.

So, I'll probably hate the third book, too, but I'm still going to give it a chance. If you haven't started The Selection series, then here's my advice: don't. There are so many other books out there that have some of the same elements but are better.