Saturday, May 31, 2014

In My Mailbox 5-31-2014

I recently ordered these books on B&

I also bought these books at various places: Walmart, Meijer, Goodwill, Half-Price Books and a library book sale. 

I checked out these from the library.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Arclight by Josin L. McQuein

Series: Arclight (bk. 1)

Genera(s): Dystopian Sci-fi

Subjects: survival, mystery, post-apocalyptic, nanotechnology

Setting: Somewhere in the eastern USA.

POV/Tense: 1st person POV, present tense: Marina

Age/Grade Level: Teen

Length: 403vpgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover and now in Paperback

List Price: $17.99/$9.99

Publisher: HarperTeen: Greenwillow

Summary/ product description: “No one crosses the wall of light . . . except for one girl who doesn’t remember who she is, where she came from, or how she survived. A harrowing, powerful debut thriller about finding yourself and protecting your future—no matter how short and uncertain it may be.

The Arclight is the last defense. The Fade can’t get in. Outside the Arclight’s border of high-powered beams is the Dark. And between the Light and the Dark is the Grey, a narrow, barren no-man’s-land. That’s where the rescue team finds Marina, a lone teenage girl with no memory of the horrors she faced or the family she lost. Marina is the only person who has ever survived an encounter with the Fade. She’s the first hope humanity has had in generations, but she could also be the catalyst for their final destruction. Because the Fade will stop at nothing to get her back. Marina knows it. Tobin, who’s determined to take his revenge on the Fade, knows it. Anne-Marie, who just wishes it were all over, knows it.

When one of the Fade infiltrates the Arclight and Marina recognizes it, she will begin to unlock secrets she didn’t even know she had. Who will Marina become? Who can she never be again?”

My Review:  I didn’t know what to expect going into Arclight. I was guessing aliens and a domed society or something like that. It was so different. I love how different and unexpected it was. The idea behind it is very unique. The story did start of kind of confusing and slow, but about a 3rd of the way through the book we get to see what Fades are and the plot really picks up and doesn’t stop.

The main character could not remember her past before the Arclight. Her memories were gone, possibly from entering the Dark. Marina is pale skinned with whitish hair and pale blue eyes. She looks unusual. Everyone thinks she’s Fade-proof because she survived the Dark. They think she’s responsible for the deaths of the people who brought her to the Arclight. Tobin used to blame her for the loss of his father, but now wants to make up for the problems he’s caused her. Marina and Tobin start developing a relationship. There’s some really romantic scenes, and kissing.

When a Fade is captured, they discover Fades look like people, even though they can blend into things and don’t talk so much a show thing telepathically. The world building is really unique and takes technology to whole new level. It’s actually kind of scary and strange. I don’t want to give too much away, but some of it really did surprise me. Later on, I totally guessed correctly who Marine actually was. Authors tend to foreshadow things. It was pretty obvious, but if you were surprised about that “twist,” the awesome.

I enjoyed this book and don’t know what to compare it to. It’s kind of like some zombie books, but also like paranormal books. I’d say it’s similar to In The After by Demitria Lunetta (another book that I though was about aliens at first, but was wrong). Maybe the 5th Wave, which I still need to read. Arclight is a dystopian book, so if you like dystopian fiction, and want something different that the run-of-mill zombie apocalypse or oppressive government, then you should try this.

Cover Art Review: I love the rainbow effect on the hard cover jacket. It’s beautiful and prismatic.

Monday, May 26, 2014

The Hunt by Stacey Kade

Series: Project Paper Doll (bk. 2, sequel to The Rules)

Genera(s): Sci-fi/Romance

Subjects: aliens, extraterrestrials, genetic engineering, paranormal, psychic ability

Setting: Wisconsin and Illinois (Chicagoland suburbs)

POV/Tense: Rotating 1st person POV, past tense: Ariane Tucker and Zane Bradshaw

Age/Grade Level: Teen

Length: 359 pgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover

List Price: $17.99

Publisher: Hyperion

Summary/ product description: “Ariane Tucker has finally escaped GTX, the research facility that created her. While on the run, Zane Bradshaw is the only person she can trust. He knows who-and what-she is and still wants to be part of her life.

But accepting Zane's help means putting him in danger.

Dr. Jacobs, head of GTX, is not the only one hunting for Ariane. Two rival corporations have their sights set on taking down their competition. Permanently. To protect Zane and herself, Ariane needs allies. She needs the other hybrids. The hybrids who are way more alien and a lot less human. Can Ariane win them over before they turn on her? Or will she be forced to choose sides, to decide who lives and who dies?”

My Review:  This has been an awesome sequel. I seriously love this series. The narration is done in a way that it differentiates both characters’ voices. Ariane is both serious and sarcastic and uses a lot of parentheses. She thinks logically, but sometimes emotions show through. Zane definitely sounds like a guy. He’s also not very sure of himself and was not well treated by his dad. I really like Zane, and I’d definitely add him to the list of awesome book boyfriends. He cares so much about Ariane and loves her no matter how alien she might be.  

I love that this book is set in Wisconsin and Illinois. A lot of the places mentioned are places I’ve been to or passed. Some of the places are made up. The Mars Cheese Castle mentioned is something we’d always pass on our way up to Milwaukee. We’d also pass Gurnee Mills and Six Flags. The author lives in the area, and I met her at RT a few years ago when it was in Chicago.

We got to meet new character, the other hybrids: Ford, Nixon and Carter. Ford is like a clone of Ariane, and Nixon and Carter are male. They attend a private school in Lake Forest, IL. They don’t act as human as Ariane because they didn’t have exposure to pop culture and care takers like she did. All three hybrids are connected to each other telepathy, and act like one entity. They act much more alien. But once Ariane learns more about them, she sympathizes with them and wants to help them. Zane believe they’re setting a trap to help eliminate her. Can she trust them?

The book is fast and slow, but the pacing is good overall. There’s these bursts of genius that makes this book a 5 stars YA sci-fi book.

I recommend this book series to fans of Maximum Ride by James Patterson, Altered by Jennifer Rush, Unremembered by Jessica Brody, False Memory by Dan Krokos, Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi, or any other sci-fi series that may involve genetic engineering, psychic super powers or aliens.  Or movies like that too. GTX is kind of like Itex, and Ariane is like Max and Angel.

I just want to say I totally saw that ending coming and predicted what would happen in the next book. Zane gets more than he can hope for, I bet. I knew it was going to happen. Am I psychic when it comes to plot twists or what?

Cover Art Review: I like this cover better than the previous book’s hardcover. The white mannequins and the girls in purple dress. The typography is good too.

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Treatment by Suzanne Young

Series: The Program Duology (bk. 2)

Genera(s): Near-future Dystopian Sci-fi/Romance/Thriller

Subjects: brainwashing, death, love, memory, mental disorders, suicide, memory

Setting: The Western US: Oregon, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, California

POV/Tense: 1st person POV, present tense: Sloane

Age/Grade Level: Teen

Length: 344 pgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover

List Price: $17.99

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Summary/ product description: “Can Sloane and James survive the lies and secrets surrounding them, or will The Program claim them in the end? Find out in this sequel to The Program, which Publishers Weekly called “chilling and suspenseful.”

How do you stop an epidemic?

Sloane and James are on the run after barely surviving the suicide epidemic and The Program. But they’re not out of danger. Huge pieces of their memories are still missing, and although Sloane and James have found their way back to each other, The Program isn’t ready to let them go.

Escaping with a group of troubled rebels, Sloane and James will have to figure out who they can trust, and how to take down The Program. But for as far as they’ve come, there’s still a lot Sloane and James can’t remember. The key to unlocking their past lies with the Treatment—a pill that can bring back forgotten memories, but at a high cost. And there’s only one dose.

Ultimately when the stakes are at their highest, can Sloane and James survive the many lies and secrets surrounding them, or will The Program claim them in the end?”

My Review:  When I first started reading The Treatment, I didn’t realize that is was the final book in a duology (2 book series) rather than a trilogy. I really enjoyed The Program. I found is thrilling and realistically scary. The story is set in the near-future in which suicide has become and epidemic. Sloane and James went through The Program that took away the memories of their pasts, and are on the run from it now.

I really love Sloane and James’s relationship. James is really sweet and funny. There are so many moments where I can perfectly picture a guy with a cute smirk saying these things. My favorite was when he said their was a billboard with his face on it that caused a traffic jam because his good looks, and that he wandered lost for days and found out his spirit animal was a rooster. I cracked up at that. He acts cocky, but it’s all playful teasing and keeps things light. Sloane and him banter and act romantic together. Then there’s Michael Realm, the other love interest that completes this love triangle. His was pretty good in The Programs, helping Sloane out, but he starts to seems like a broody jerk at times in The Treatment

The world building was based off the modern world, but with the added hype to a suicide epidemic. The Program is the reason why suicides are happening all the time. People rather kill themselves that lose their memories or be tortured. I enjoyed the part on the story that took place in The Program hospital/facility. The story becomes very fast paced and scary. Sloane may seem like she in a hopeless situation, but she able to fight. Handlers, nurses and pills. They say that she’s sick, but she’s not. If mental illness is ever treated this way, it would be horrifying.

The story was able to wrap up the story tightly. So, no third book. I am hoping for a short story or novella. I do not want to spoil what happens in the book, but it there’s a lot of travel, being on the run. James being jealous of Realms time with Sloane in The Program. There’s The Treatment, which is an orange pill that can give you back your memories. Sloane ends up back in the program. A lot of exciting stuff happens, and I happy that I wasn’t bored with it. Usually you get a sequel slump, but since this is only a duology, that wasn’t the case. I recommend this to fans of Delirium by Lauren Oliver.

Cover Art Review: The outside cover isn’t that interesting, but under the jacket there’s a photos of an orange pill in a silver tray and reflection of Sloane and James. I find that more interesting.