Book Review: Counted Worthy

image.jpegRating: 5/5 stars.

Well, this was certainly not what I was expecting, but it was very very good. Then it made my eyes watery. Let me tell you, ninety-nine percent of the time, I do not cry.

Police trace a illegal Bible to Heather Stone’s house, and her world begins to crumble. Her father is arrested and it’s only a matter of time before he’s killed. Heather has already lost her mother, can she handle losing him too? She doesn’t want to repeat past mistakes. Though if she tries to save him, it could lead her friends into danger and brings about their deaths. Can she evade the police on the lookout for her and win the public’s sympathy to save her dad?

So I wasn’t expecting it to be this way, but I was pleasantly surprised that it was kind of dystopian. The world building was fantastic. It steadily added tidbits of information about the world and the history behind it without dumping a whole load of information at one point.

The characters were great. Heather was really real and I loved everything about her. Then there’s Bryce. I just wanted to give him a hug. He was so sweet and kind and worried so much for Heather. He was like a brother to her, but I think it is going to grow into something more. There were many more characters and I liked how they were introduced. It didn’t feel rushed and you felt like you’ve always known them even if they were only there for a little bit. I do wish that there had been a bit more character development, but it fitted with the pace of the book.

There was a lot of action and suspense with a amazing, and a bit shocking, conclusion. It had such a great message attached to it. I would have liked it at a bit slower pace, but it didn’t feel forced and went smoothly. That ending was just fantastic, I wasn’t expecting it at all. It was realistic, but I didn’t expect it for a fictional book. It made it more enjoyable, if that is the right word for it. Probably not.

I’m recommending this to everyone out there. It was great! Prefect for people who want an easy and fast paced read with a great message. I hope to read more by this author soon!

-G. Paige

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Book Review: The Exiled Queen (The Seven Realm Series: Book 2)

imageRating: 2/5 stars.

So…this book wasn’t better than the one before it, but was worse. I had high hopes for it, and it totally did not live up to them.

Han Alister has made a bargain with the clans and is now headed to the Mystwerk House at Oden’s Ford with his friend Fire Dancer. There, they will train to be wizards. In exchange for the clans sponsoring his schooling, he will help them fight the Wizard Council. But can Han make it through a war-torn country on the way to Oden’s Ford without being recognized and captured? Princess Raisa ana’Marianna along with her friend Amon Bryne and his triple of cadets are headed to the Wein House at Oden’s Ford. She hopes to be safe from her mother and the High Wizard, while training as a cadet under the alias Rebecca Morley, but she struggles with her feelings for Amon Bryne.

I started this book with much anticipation and a little nervousness. I knew that there was some love situations in the last book and I hoped that it wouldn’t get more into that in the second book. I was more assured by the fact that the situation was very different from the previous book. It failed in that aspect. In the last quarter or so of the book there was a love scene that went beyond kissing. It made me uncomfortable and I was happy when it was abruptly stopped. Another thing was the mention once or twice of a girl and her “girlfriend”. I don’t think that is right. So these are the main reasons I’m not going to read anymore of the series.

Han seemed to repeat the same old decisions again and again. It didn’t feel too repetitive, but it went just over the top. He did something wrong, got found out, and then got in trouble. Han makes a lot of bad decisions, but I still like his streetlord personality. Though because of some decisions he makes later in the book, I’m starting to really not like him. Raisa learned new things and became more of a warrior princess. She got wiser about the world around her. Overall, there wasn’t much character development, unless you count the fact that they got more knowledgeable. But that doesn’t mean wisdom, especially in Han’s case.

Other than the one inappropriate romance scene, the book was pretty good. There wasn’t a lot of action or dangerous situations throughout the book except at the beginning. But there were plenty of interesting facts that kept up my interest and some new intriguing characters that are still left in mystery. Then that ending was a really good mild cliffhanger, but not too terribly exciting.

I’m not recommending this book to anyone. This wasn’t very enjoyable, most of all that last part. I think that it would be better to spend your time on better books than this.

-G. Paige 

Book Review: Half a King (Shattered Sea: Book 1)

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Rating: 4/5 stars.

It took a bit of a push to start this book, but I ended up really enjoying it. Half A King was such a unique and interesting story.

Prince Yarvi, second son of King Uthrik of Gettland, is forced to bear the crown, a crown he never wanted. Born with a crippled hand, he is despised by his people. He swears an oath to avenge the death of his father and brother even though he may be half a man. But then he is betrayed and loses it all. Now he must persevere through pain and hardship if he is to survive and reclaim his throne. He and a band of outcasts may be more help than he knows, but will this path he has set himself on end in tragedy just as it had begun? Can he, will he, reclaim his thrown?

This was a very different tale from other things I have read. I really liked it. Yarvi was a interesting character. It took me a bit to warm up to him and start to like him. There was plenty of excitement and adventure to keep me on the edge of my seat after the first few chapters. It was a neat story, while I felt it had a stark reality feel to it.

It was a different land and and culture that was interesting but felt very pagan at times. I wasn’t bothered by it, but there was a talk of talk and thought put to Yarvi’s gods and what they stood for. Yarvi prayed to them ¬† a lot. There also was some language a good lot of violence describe very blatantly and, can I say, darkly.

In the long run, I really really enjoyed this book. It had excitement, danger, and shocking revelations and betrayals; everything that kept me entertained. I’d recommend this to those who love fantasy and fiction, to people who want something unique that they won’t soon forget.

-G. Paige

Book Review: Divergent (Divergent Series: Book 1)

imageRating: 3/5 stars.

I watched the movie Divergent about a year ago. After recently watching Insurgent, I finally decided to try out the books. Now I can totally see why my mom didn’t want me to read these books until I was older (like I am now).

Beatrice Prior world is what used to be called Chicago. Her society is divided into five factions: Abnegation (those who value selflessness), Erudite (the intelligent), Dauntless (courage is what they value), Candor (they value honesty), and Amity (those who value peace above all else). Beatrice lives in Abnegation. Now sixteen, on the next Choosing Ceremony she will choose which faction she will stay in for the rest of her life. Will she transfer to a new faction? It would change her life forever. But she also has a secret, a secret that could get her killed: what makes her different is what makes her dangerous.

I really liked the world building in this book. It was such an interesting society with all the factions and such. Most of the characters were great. I love Four. He was pretty awesome, though a bit of a harder character than how he was portrayed in the movie. This book had plenty of action and mystery. It did get quite violent and there was a suicide, so this definitely isn’t for kids.

I still have this nagging feeling that there was something about Divergent that I didn’t like. I think it was a problem with Beatrice, the main character. I just couldn’t connect with her as well as I would’ve liked. She seemed so heartless and cruel at times (she admitted it herself in the book). That, I think, was the main downfall of the book, for me. Also, the two love scenes (well, it is kind of only one; the other started to get inappropriate then stopped pretty quickly) in the book that went a bit out of control, was a bit disappointing too. I mean, why do they have to add stuff like that???

Those who read this need to be older teens or adults. You got to love dystopian to like this book and I would recommend skimming over a scene or two.

-G. Paige

Book Review: Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass: Book 1)

imageI decided to take a leap of faith with this book and try it out. I really did enjoy it. It was quite good, but had a few questionable things.

Adarlan’s greatest assassin, Celaena Sardothien, has spent a year in the salt mines of Endovier for crimes she has committed, when the Crown Prince offers her freedom on one condition: she must compete as his champion in a competition that the winner will work as the King’s Champion. If she wins, she’ll work for the King of Adarlan for four years then she’ll be free. Her opponents will be thieves, assassins, and murderers from across the land. She trains with the Captain of the Guard, Choal Westfall to get back in shape. Then Prince Dorian starts to find interest in her. But soon a competitor is murdered and more murders follow. Will she be next???

I had a lot of apprehension in starting this book. I was worried that there might be inappropriate love scenes or something like that. There were one or two kissing scenes that was a just a touch too much. I also had a love/hate relationship with Prince Dorian. Mainly I disliked him because of the stuff people said about him being with other women. There was one other thing mentioned that made me very uncomfortable. Last of all, what bothered me just a bit was that the book was very dark. It had not a ton, but some, to do with magic and spirits and such. I have a feeling it will get more into that in later books. So people who use caution with those types of things, might not want to read this.

Apart from that, the book was very good. It was very fast paced and had a lot of action. I will warn you that there were a couple grotesque descriptions about some murders. But being full of mystery and intrigue, the book certainly captivated me. It was great in that sense.

On the whole, I probably will decide not to read the other books. It wasn’t terrible, so you might read it and enjoy it a lot. I just don’t think I will.

-G. Paige

Book Review: The Impossible Knife of Memory

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Rating: 1/5 stars.

I only read 65 pages of this book. Why? Well, what I read and where I saw the book was going towards was inappropriate and was unacceptable, to me.

Hayley and her father, Andy Kincain have been on the road for five long years. They never stayed long in one place for they were running from the demons that have haunted and tortured Hayley’s father (mentally) ever since he got back from Iraq. This book starts as Hayley and her dad are finally settling in her grandmother’s house in the town where her dad grew up so Hayley can attend school. When she starts hanging out with this boy she starts thinking about her own life and where it’s heading. Maybe now Hayley can live a normal life and leave painful memories behind. But will her father’s memories drag him under?

I was recommended this book by a wonderful librarian. I have never read anything by this particular author so I was not sure how this was going to turn out. Also, I can’t remember if the librarian had read this book or read other books by her. Either way, it did not turn out to be an enjoyable experience. The main idea of the book (Hayley helping her dad get through/over the drugs and memories) sounded great, but in what I read, that wasn’t the main focus point (it was more to the side thing). The spotlight was on Hayley and her school life. That led to just a lot of cultural stuff that was mentioned between Hayley and her “friends” (like pornography and homosexual stuff). Then there was a ton of bad language that got really too much for me. So that, combined with the idea of a boyfriend and girlfriend relationship ahead got me to put the book down.

I won’t recommend anyone to read to this. But maybe I’ll try one of the other books by this author.

-G. Paige