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Friday, 29 May 2015

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Book: The Eternity Cure, Julie Kagawa
Series: Blood of Eden series #2
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: May 1st, 2012

Rating: 5 stars

The Eternity Cure is just as dark, gripping and mesmerising as the first book. Allison Sekemoto has left her group of humans in the one place where they will be safe from monsters like her – in Eden. This also includes her beloved Zeke, the one human who burrowed his way into Allie’s heart and refuses to budge.

Eden is no place for a vampire, especially one with unfinished business, and Allie has a task to do. She’s been having nightmares of her sire, Kanin, who is in utter agony at the hands of a psycho vampire who wants Kanin to suffer, and suffer horribly. So Allie sets out to find her mentor, the one who saved her life and made her what she is. What she didn’t expect was to find Jackal, her blood brother, instead. If you don’t remember, Jackal was the Raider King who kidnapped the humans Allie befriended in his search for the cure to the deadly Red Lung virus. Instead of a brutal fight between two siblings, they set out on a journey together to help rescue Kanin.

Jackal totally surprised me by completely endearing me to him. He quickly became my favourite character who made me laugh aloud more than once.
“I have good news and bad news. The good news is that the jeep is still where we left it, and I got the damned thing working again."
"What's the bad news?"
"Something took my fuzzy dice.”

In a life or death situation, I screamed when it looked like we could lose Jackal and cried with joy when he emerged victorious. He reminded me so much of Sebastian Morgenstern from The Mortal Instruments series – completely screwed up and cruel, yet strangely likable. He sees humans only as bloodbags and doesn’t see Allie’s attraction to them, but he will still protect the ones that Allie cares for, as well as Allie herself. I can’t wait to see more of him in the final book.

Allie, just like in the first book, struggles to hold onto her humanity in the face of her monstrosity. She’s becoming an incredibly strong warrior and doesn’t feel immense guilt for killing when she knows it’s either them or her. She’ll do whatever it takes to save the ones she cares about, but is also not averse to being cruel when she needs to be, which I loved about her. I've seen many heroines who will be kind even to their enemies, but I can’t see Allie ever doing that. She will kill anyone who has hurt her or her friends, and her inner demon will smile viciously on.

I loved her relationship with Zeke; just like in the first book, he was Allie’s light of humanity when she was drowning in darkness, and I think they both helped each other grow. Zeke’s not as naïve as he was in the first book, and he’s become a strong leader and fighter and I will always cheer for him. However, I think I'm Team Vampire for this series. Why? Kanin.

Oh, Kanin. He broke my heart in this book. He was in so much pain and agony, and there was nothing anyone could do to stop it. He was a wise and sage as ever, but he will continue to fight against those who are trying to kill him.


Nobody is safe until Sarren, the psycho vampire, is dead, and with the way this book ended, I can’t wait to see the final standoff between our trio of vampires and one super strong, completely insane vampire. It will be epic.

Monday, 25 May 2015

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Book: The Dead List, Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: N/A
Publisher: wattpad.com
Release Date: April 15th, 2015

Rating: 5 stars

I am so grateful and happy that Jen decided to release this book as a freebie on Wattpad for fans to read as she released a few chapters every couple of days. It meant it took a while to read but it was so worth it and waiting for those updates gave me purpose. I loved seeing a new chapter released. The characters, the story, the setting, everything, was wonderful and I really enjoyed it.

Our main character is Ella. She used to have three best friends when she was still a kid: Gavin, Jensen and Penn. She grew apart from the three boys as they grew older, and she still feels guilty from when Penn decided life was just too hard and killed himself. However, Ella’s life takes a scary turn when she’s almost kidnapped one night coming home from a party, and is rescued by none other than Jensen, whom she hasn’t spoken to in years.

The rest of the story focuses on Ella and Jensen’s growing friendship and them working together to try and discover who this madman really is. It was such a great book to read! I fell in love with the characters, felt spooked by the setting, and was constantly coming up with theories as to who the killer could be. I was kept on my toes and gasped aloud more than once as Jen took me on a trip I was not expecting but thoroughly enjoyed.

I loved Ella’s character, she was so strong and despite all this crazy things happening to her, she didn’t let it change her but instead grabbed life by the wheel and drove herself. She started self-defence lessons to protect herself against the evil running rampant in her town, and she inevitably grows closer to Jensen.

Jensen was fabulous. He was so strong, both physically and he was there for Ella whenever she needed him. They were friends for years before they grew apart after a terrible tragedy, but they still cared deeply for each other and I loved seeing their relationship blossom throughout the book.


Many other characters are introduced and all of them are suspects for who the killer is, yet you’re still left guessing until the very end. I would definitely recommend this for any fans of JLA and mystery and romance novel enthusiasts. 

Thursday, 21 May 2015

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Book: The Immortal Rules, Julie Kagawa
Series: Blood of Eden series #1
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: April 24th, 2012

Rating: 5 stars

Anyone who knows me knows I love vampires. It started off with Twilight, and then eventually spread to Vampire Academy and Bloodlines. And with the reviews from this series, I had high hopes for this book. And it was just beautiful. Julie Kagawa recreates her own version of the vampire world with a unique twist that was great to read and learn more about.

We start off in a world where humans are prey to a vampire kingdom – with a vampire Prince and everything. They have made it impossible for anyone who isn’t a vampire to live normally and comfortably. Every day is a struggle for food and staying alive in a world that seems to want you dead. Allie (or Allison, I'm not sure which is the preferred as both is used often) is our protagonist, a human living in a vampire city and fights every day to have enough food for herself and other humans she resides with. When most humans have lost that spark to stay alive and hopeful, she hasn’t. I liked her immediately and felt I connected with her.  She was tough and practical and did what she needed to survive.  She was tough to those who needed to see the light but would also do whatever she could to save those she cared about. She knows the dangers of where she lives, and yet she will battle every day to survive, even braving the wall between the Fringe (her home) and the Inner City (where the vampires live.) The main rule of living in the Fringe? Never get caught. Allie knows this rule better than anybody, but then the unspeakable happens. What comes next is a blur of pain, evil rabids (kind of like zombie vampires) and a pair of dark, dark eyes, asking Allie if she wants to live or die.

Then Allie’s life changes forever. Even in the face of the evil monster she fears the most; Allie chose to live, so she became a vampire. I completely admire Allie for loving her life so damn much that she would become something she hated just so she wouldn’t die.

What follows next is a battle against light and dark, dark and darker, human and vampire. It’s full of witty remarks, near-death experiences, love, betrayal, death. Despite living a non-human life, Allie struggles to hold onto her humanity even when she’s drinking the blood of some unsuspecting victim. She meets the vampire who created her, who teaches her the way of the vampire life, as well as a human who still believes there is something better out there if you just keep believing.


I loved every character in this book and everything was described wonderfully. This book was dark, creepy, addicting and just plain awesome. I would totally recommend any vampire, dystopian or Julie Kagawa fans to pick this up because you will not be disappointed.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Nowhere But Here book trailer!

Katie McGarry, the author of one of my favourite series (Pushing The Limits) is at it again! The first book in her brand new series, Nowhere But Here, is being released MAY 26 2015

If this trailer doesn't get you excited for the book release, I don't know what will.






Nowhere But Here, released May 26th, 2015, will be available from all bookstores such as:


Don't forget to preorder your copy today!

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

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 Book: The Last Battle by C.S Lewis
Series: The Chronicles of Narnia, #7
Publisher: Harper Collins
Release Date: 1950

Rating: 3 stars

I hate that feeling when you finish a book, particularly one like Narnia, when you have to leave a world that is the complete opposite of your own and come back to reality, which is really boring in comparison. I felt like this during the last few chapters of Narnia when I knew my time was up and I'd have to get sent back to my boring world of school and work and non-talking animals.

I really enjoyed this book. There was action from the very first chapter and no waiting around like in some other books. The story was good too; the whole concept of the fake Aslan and being run by an Ape (wasn't expecting that). I didn't like Jill in The Silver Chair as she reminded me too much of Lucy who was way better than her, but she really became her own here. She stopped being afraid and knew she would fight for Narnia until the very end. 

SPOILERS SPOILER SPOILERS!!!
But - problems. Susan. Susan! Christ, when I read that she grew out of Narnia, I nearly banged my head on a wall. What the fuck? She's one of the 4 prophesied children from the first book to save Narnia! Why cut her out of the final book, the epic finale? It was moronic, stupid, idiotic... how many more adjectives should I add? (Groan)

I liked the concept of Narnia being reborn as a heaven, but the way they had the children enter this heaven? By dying in a railroad accident. But there's the one maybe not-so-obvious exception of Susan. Because Susan doesn't believe in Narnia, she wasn't on the train, and so... Yes! She lost her ENTIRE FAMILY. How cruel is that? Lewis is basically saying that if you stop believing in God, your punishment is you lose your family. Is that a good moral to be teaching your children?

OKAY DONE SPOILERS :)
But if I'm reviewing the entire series in a whole, it’s really good. The story is imaginative, the world is extremely unique, and you just fall in love with the characters, especially the minor characters like Trumpkin the Dwarf and Tumnus. I would definitely add it to a read-before-you-die list. This book will remain a classic for many years, perhaps another fifty more years.

Definitely a book that will make you think, at very random moments, what life would be like if you went to Narnia.
My Love Lies Bleeding (Drake Chronicles, #1)

Book: My Love Lies Bleeding by Alexandra Harvey
Series: Drake Chronicles, #1
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: January 1st 2010

Rating: 3 stars


While I liked this book, there was one thing that kept niggling at me - which was that the romances between Lucy and Nicholas and Solange and Kieran were kinda forced. The romance between Lucy and Nick was more believable anyway - I didn't get the Kieran-Solange matching at all. I mean, first he's the enemy, then he saves her life, then somehow he's totally in love with her at the end and is the reason she survived the bloodchange. Nuh-uh. Not believable. 

I liked the rest of the book. This idea of vampires being born instead of made and how having a human as a best friend instead of falling in love with one (cliché!) is very creative which I really enjoyed. Not the best vampire series I've read, but not the worst either. 3 stars. Completely average.
Personally I Blame My Fairy Godmother

Book: Personally, I Blame My Fairy Godmother, Claudia Carroll
Series: N/A
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: May 3rd, 2010

Rating: 3 stars

Cinderella is one of my favourite fairy tales, and the Disney version is one of my favourite movies. And I'd previously read a fantastic Cinderella retelling (Cinder by Marissa Meyer – read it if you haven’t already!) so I had high hopes for another modern take on this classic tale.

While I won’t say I'm disappointed with this book, I can’t honestly say it was a great retelling of Cinderella. It was good; don’t get me wrong, just... not great.

Our main character (or Cinderella) is Jessie Woods, a 29 year old TV presenter who seems to have it all – a fabulous career, a “Prince Charming-esque” boyfriend and a gorgeous mansion to live in. So when everything in her life simultaneously seems to crash and burn around her, Jessie finds herself stone broke at the door of the family she refuses to acknowledge to the public eye – her stepmother and two stepsisters. Without any money, Jessie is forced to earn her keep by doing all the housework for her stepfamily.

This is the part where the book and Cinderella seem to part ways in being alike. We all know that Cinderella goes to the ball, meets her true love, and lives happily ever after. This book doesn’t quite take that approach. Jessie spends the majority of the first half of the book wallowing in self-pity over the turn her life has taken. She spends weeks just hanging around the house in her pyjamas, while constantly trying to contact her Prince Charming boyfriend, Sam Hughes, who infamously dumped her once she loses everything. In fact, I'd say she turns semi-stalker-ish in her attempts to reconcile with him when it’s glaringly obvious he doesn’t want any more to do with her.

Once Jessie does realise that it’s completely over between them, she finally starts trying to get her life back on track. This is the part where the novel really picks up, and I finally begin to actually like the character of Jessie. While I didn’t like how she seemed to dig a hole for herself and stay there when things first went belly-up, I had to respect how she tried to turn her life around and earn some more money.

At the beginning of the book we have her stepfamily portray the typical “evil” stereotype that they appear in Cinderella. They’re horrible to her, force her to do all their housework and treat her like crap. But soon we begin to delve into why they’re so mean to Jessie, and it’s totally understandable and a bit relatable. Her stepmother, Joan, had her moments, but her stepsister Sharon soon became my favourite character. She and Jessie develop a lovely bond as the book progresses as Jessie helps her with her love life and Sharon helps Jessie out of the trenches by helping her find work. Maggie, her other stepsister took a bit longer to warm up to, I'll admit, but we eventually see the warmer side to her too, and they way the three of them become so close by the book’s end is just lovely.

Sam, the wicked ex-boyfriend, was a self-absorbed, egotistical ape-man who only cared what the public thought of him and only loved Jessie when it suited him. And while our true “Prince Charming” isn’t properly introduced until the second half of the book, I really enjoyed Steve’s character and loved the scenes he and Jessie had together.

While I found the writing style a bit tedious (there were many moments when Jessie told us what another character was saying, instead of actually telling us in dialogue) and I have to criticise the lack of some of the elements missing from the actual fairy tale (namely the fairy godmother! Where was she?), I still found the book enjoyable once I got into it. While not as good as other retellings I’ve read, I would still recommend it to readers.
Poison Princess (The Arcana Chronicles, #1)

Book: Poison Princess, Krelsey Cole
Series: The Arcana Chronicles, #1
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: October 2nd, 2012

Rating: 2 stars

I got this book free as a preview on my Kindle with just the first 17 chapters inside. I felt this was perfect as it gave me a good chance to decide whether this book would be worth buying and investing into.

Sadly, I feel that this book only gives off a “meh” feeling.

The beginning of the story is set in the future, after an apocalypse that wiped out the majority of humankind and all types of plant-life. Arthur lives in a house decorated to look like a kindly old lady’s, but it’s anything but. He tricks young girls into his home, drugs them with delicious hot chocolate, and then locks them up in his basement as subjects to test out his homemade drugs. We meet him as he invites another young girl into his home, called Evie. As he drugs Evie with the hot chocolate, he asks her to tell her version of what happened just before the apocalypse.

And so we get a bewitching tale of Evie’s charmed life before the world ended; where she was a popular girl with a loyal best friend, an attractive boyfriend and anything she could ever want at her fingertips. The only problem? Evie has been suffering from these visions which make her, and her mother, believe she’s crazy. After a stint in an insane asylum, Evie tries to ignore these visions and appear normal to those around her. But Evie is far from normal; no, she’s the protagonist, so of course she has to have special powers nobody else has. Only one other person suspects of Evie’s specialness, but he’s a rough kid from the wrong-side-of-the-bayou – Jack Deveaux. However, the two clash heads any time they’re remotely near each other, and when Evie has no choice but to turn to him for help, she fears if she can even trust him.

And then, my preview ended. I have no idea what happens after Evie has to turn to Jack for help, and frankly, I don’t care. This series doesn’t seem special in any particular way and I definitely don’t feel any desire to buy the full book and rest of the series to find out.


Hell, if you’re into southern rich girls with unique abilities for seeing visions of the future, go right ahead and buy it. As for me, I'm going to read what I find infinitely more interesting: vampires!! 
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book: Peter & Wendy, J.M Barrie
Publisher: Oxford Classics
Release Date:  1911

Rating: 4 stars

Some books will always remain classics. Harry Potter, the Chronicles of Narnia, Lord of the Rings. They will be remembered for years to come. So will Peter Pan. Most people know it as the 1956 Disney movie, which is what I knew it as too. Then I watched the 2003 real-life film, and Finding Neverland (the retelling of how Barrie was inspired to write Peter Pan). Watching all those movies got me a little obsessed with Peter and the wonderful and exciting world of Neverland, where mermaids, pirates, Indians and the wonderful ability to fly are made real. Obviously I had no other choice but to buy the book and experience the real thing.

This complete edition shows clearly why J.M. Barrie was considered one of the great geniuses of English literature. While the writing is a little outdated (it was written over a hundred years ago) it’s still beautifully written and will capture your heart. It’s the perfect story of childhood fantasies and adult nostalgia.

It tells the story of Peter Pan, the boy who never grew up. For “all children grow up, except one.” He visits the Darling family every night to listen to Mrs. Darling tell stories to her three children, Wendy, John, and Michael. Then he goes back to Neverland to repeat the stories to the Lost Boys, (children which were separated from their parents). One night, Nana, the dog who is the children’s nanny, sees Peter’s shadow peeking in from the window and grabs it before he can get away. This, of course, gives Peter the perfect excuse to come into the children’s nursery with his fairy best friend Tinker Bell and search for his shadow, which Mrs. Darling had hidden away. When he finds it, being a boy, he cannot stick it back on. He gets upset and starts crying, which in turn wakes Wendy. She sews his shadow back on, and being a particularly forgetful and self-absorbed child, he disregards Wendy’s input and believes it was all his doing “Oh, the cleverness of me”. The two talk for a while and Peter tells Wendy all about Neverland, trying to lure her away where she’ll always be able to tell him stories. Wendy agrees, but only if her brothers come along too.

 And so begins numerous adventures filled with pirates, Indians, and mermaids. Wendy becomes the boys’ mother, telling them stories and putting them to bed. It ironically makes her realize that she is ready to grow up. But between the adventures with Indians and mermaids, Captain James Hook, Peter’s archenemy, is planning his demise after Peter cut off his right arm and fed it to the crocodile. He captures the Lost Boys and Wendy, luring Peter into a final match to the death. Like all villains though, he doesn’t win. After taking control of his ship, Peter sails Wendy and her brothers’ home. But, after seeing what it was like to have their own mother, the Lost Boys want to grow up too.

Peter watches as all the children are reunited with their overjoyed parents, deciding that “to live will be an awfully big adventure.” However Wendy isn’t ready to say goodbye to Peter and they decide that she will go with him to Neverland for a week every spring.  But Peter was a very forgetful boy, and came for Wendy very infrequently. Many years later he’s distraught to find that she has grown up without his permission. But a new tradition begins when he sees Wendy’s daughter Jane, sleeping in her bed. He takes her to Neverland with him instead with Wendy’s blessing and the same with Jane’s daughter, “and thus it will go on, so long as children are gay and innocent and heartless.”


This book was a joy to read. It gives anybody, young or old, reasons to believe that the impossible is possible as long as you have “faith, trust and pixie dust.” I recommend Peter Pan to anybody as every now and then we need a reason to step into a land of make-believe. I know that I will always be looking out my window waiting for Peter Pan to come and take me to Neverland, as will anybody else who reads this book

Monday, 11 May 2015

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Book: Tiger Lily, Jodi Lynn Anderson,
Series: N/A
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: July 3rd, 2012

Rating: 4 stars

Peter Pan is one of my favourite pieces of fiction. I’ve read the book, seen all the different movies about him, and am planning on getting a Peter Pan tattoo at some point in my life. And in every version I’ve seen, it’s always been Peter and Wendy who end up together.  Tiger Lily has always been that Indian girl who has a crush on Peter and only stands in the way of Peter and Wendy’s happy ending. After reading this book, I will never be able to watch those films the same way again.

This book puts my whole perspective on Peter Pan and Never Land completely out of order. It’s narrated by Tinker Bell, the infamous faerie who follows Tiger Lily around and is able to pick up on her thoughts and what’s in her heart. Through her, we learn about Tiger Lily’s life and the kind of character she is; something we never really get a sense of from the movies.  In this novel, Tiger Lily is an outsider in her tribe. An adopted daughter of the Shaman, Tik Tok, Tiger Lily is a free spirit, one who loves to hunt in the woods by herself and not speak to anyone. She finds it hard to voice her emotions and freezes up whenever anyone tries to hug her or tell her how they care. Due to the way she avoids everyone in her tribe; most people avoid her as well, and whisper to one another whenever she comes by. This makes her tribal life seem horrible, especially when her adopted father announces that she is to marry an ugly brute called Giant who is awful to her. However, due to her loyalty to her father, she decides to marry him anyway. This is when she starts her nightly visits to the alluring Peter Pan. The older members of the tribe always told the younger children that he, along with the Lost Boys, was dangerous creatures and to stay far away from them. However, this was just a myth which we see when TL starts spending time with the boys. She forms a tight bond with all the boys, especially Peter. All they do is mess about and have fun, just like regular boys. While TL still appears very antisocial and has enormous trouble expressing her feelings to Peter, you can tell she cares very much for them.

She had a lot of trouble balancing her duties to her father and tribe while wanting to spend time with Peter and the boys, and broke quite a few promises to both of them because of it.

Peter reminds me a lot of the boy we know from the book and the movies. He’s a troublemaker, sweet and just wants to have fun all day, every day. However he’s a lot fiercer in this book when it comes to the pirates, and you can tell that despite him saying he’s perfectly happy, he’s in desperate need of being loved. He starts to find that in TL, who is just as brave and fierce as he is, but is a lot less vocal in how she feels and I could tell Peter was never sure whether TL loved him, especially whenever TL couldn’t abandon her promises to her tribe.

And Wendy! While I loved her in the movies and book, I felt she was the villain in this book; sent to pull Peter and Tiger Lily apart. I knew she had to appear at some stage, but was dreading it because I knew she was trouble. But it had to happen, and I believe Jodi Lynn Anderson did a good interpretation of her character.

While I never cared much for TL in the movies, I wanted her to get her happy ending in this book. And when it comes to happy endings, they have to go one way, right? And every other way is wrong. That was the case in this book. I knew, because of the movies, that this book could really only go one way, and it was the way I didn’t want. We all know how Peter’s story ends in the movies, and we all know that Tiger Lily was never a part in it. But despite the raw ending, this book was definitely worth reading and I urge everyone to give it a go. It’s interesting to read a beloved story read from a minor character’s POV, and it will definitely make me re-evaluate how I view the movies in the future.


Quotes from The Heir by Kiera Cass

There was an awful lot of hype over the release of this book, especially by Epic Reads, who did a whole Selection Week, including videos of some of the boys involved in the Selection, as well as re-imagining the first 3 books with dolls. God, that must be a great place to work. 

Here are 6 quotes from The Heir which are poignant, inspiring, and will have you falling in love all over again. 





The Heir was released on May 5th, 2015, and is now available at all bookstores such as:


Don't forget to pick up your copy today!

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Book: The Heir, Kiera Cass,
Series: The Selection Series, #4
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: May 5th, 2015

Rating: 4 stars

This series was supposed to be a trilogy. The One ended so perfectly that there was a part of me fearful to read this book. How could Kiera change it up to make it different from the first three books? Would it seem like a pointless addition to the series?

After finishing this book, I am a little conflicted. First off, I have to applaud Kiera for making Eadlyn, our heroine, so completely different from America. I was afraid I would be reading clones which would definitely make me lose respect for this series, but nope! Eadlyn is completely her own, which I loved.

She’s a princess, the first born of America and Maxon, and the first female heir to the throne. Normally they send royal daughters to be married off to a prince of another nation, but Maxon made a lot of changes during his reign as king, some of them including getting rid of the castes as well as procuring Eadlyn as the first ever queen.
Eadlyn’s always known the job that she was born to do. She’s been training with her father ever since she was 13, learning the ropes so she can be the greatest leader she can possibly be. However, this wasn’t without its problems. Due to being the first queen, all eyes are constantly on our princess, waiting for her to screw up as not many people have much faith in her. So Eadlyn keeps everyone at a distance, never showing her true feelings to any situation. And this backfires on her when she enters into the Selection, and she finds it exceedingly difficult to not only think about finding a husband, but getting close enough to one to allow into her heart.

I’ll be honest. When I first met Eadlyn, I didn’t like her. She seemed incredibly spoiled, vain, and let the power that she was future queen get to her head. But by taking part in the Selection, she opens herself up, so miniscule you don’t even notice it at first. She begins to learn more about herself and realise that just because she’s going to be queen doesn’t mean she has to be closed off from everybody.  I think we’re going to get even more growth from her in the coming books and I'm really looking forward to it.

“I was Eadlyn Schreave. No one was more powerful than me.”
“I’m smart and beautiful and strong. I don’t need to be rescued.”
"You can be brave and still be feminine. You can lead and still love flowers. Most importantly, you can be queen and still be a bride."

We meet plenty of other characters in this book, such as Eadlyn’s brothers who obviously care so much for her and they’re the only boys Eadlyn will allow enter her heart. I adored her relationship with her twin, Ahren; it reminded me so much of my relationship with my brother.  They were two halves of one soul, unable to function without the other. America and Maxon return, just as loved up as ever which was fantastic to see.

We also meet plenty of boys that enter the Selection and while I don’t think it was incredibly clear who the winner will be, I think Kiera’s going to make it different than America and Maxon’s love story, which I think is great. Eadlyn is a lot more independent than America was and she’ll need a partner that will suit her needs. I don’t have a favourite yet, but I think I will by the next book!

This addition to the series, while not really needed, is welcome and has definitely earned its place among the first three books. It’s interesting to me as in the first book; we knew that America was eventually going to end up with Maxon. However, in this book, there is really no way to tell who has earned a place in Eadlyn’s heart, or if she’ll end up sending them all home.


Kiera Cass has won again with her instalment to her beloved Selection series, and I am impatiently waiting the next addition to Eadlyn’s story.
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Book: The One, Kiera Cass,
Series: The Selection Trilogy, #3
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: May 6th, 2014

Rating: 5 stars

GAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

Sorry. That was the only way I can really put my feelings into words as to how I feel about this book. It was definitely the best out of the trilogy, and ended just PERFECTLY. Anyone who’s read my review for The Elite knows my mixed feelings toward America Singer’s character. In that book, she was very confused, and kept going back and forth between Aspen and Maxon. Thankfully in this book she is a lot more resolved and more confident in herself and how she feels, and it made me respect her a lot more. America also really matures in this book and I really enjoyed as she discovered the leader that was buried deep within in her come alive, and felt more secure and confident in her decisions and led to her acting a lot less rashly than in the previous books.

A lot happened in the book compared to the previous books. In The Elite, it focuses mainly on the love triangle (with a few rebel attacks thrown in) but in this book the rebels are looked at with a lot more detail and we finally learn the difference between the Northern and Southern rebels. We see America grow more into herself and become the princess she was always destined to be. There are still very tense moments between her and King Clarkson which make her doubt her ability to help Maxon rule, but, like I said, she had way more self-esteem and followed through on all her decisions despite the King’s disapproval, and I really admired her for following her heart.

Every time Maxon and America were together, I practically melted. They were just so cute together! They had some extremely adorable moments and it was just precious to read. You knew they were going to end up together, but they had a lot of obstacles in their way which they had to overcome together. The biggest one I think was that America still hadn’t told him that Aspen was the one she loved before arriving at the palace. I wanted to give America a whack every time she passed up an opportunity to tell him, and when Maxon did find out, it was, inevitably, in the worst way possible. 

This book had so many things happening that I was guessing until the very end. I kept thinking one thing was going to happen, but then something I wasn’t expecting would occur instead. At one point I fell on the floor and crawled into the foetus position because of the way this book made me feel. However it was brilliant and I think Cass really made up for frustrating me so much in The Elite.

This book does have its flaws, as many have pointed out. America can be an irritating character, and it is basically a book version of The Bachelor. However, I think what makes this book so fun, and (sorry I have to say it) impossible to put down is its premise.  It’s about one ordinary girl’s chance at becoming a princess. And when you think about it, isn’t that every girl’s dream? When I was small anyway, I always wanted to be a princess, to fall in love with a prince and live happily ever after. It’s what happened to Kate Middleton, why she’s the British version of Kim Kardashian. Cass delves deep into every girl’s hidden desires and writes about them in these books. She writes every girl’s hidden fantasy. And she writes them in a very fun and entertaining way that you can devour them in a single sitting. (Guilty.)

This book provides us with a very satisfying – if too perfect – conclusion, one that allows readers to close the final page with a very contented sigh.
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Book: The Elite, Kiera Cass,
Series: The Selection Trilogy, #2
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: April 23rd, 2013

Rating: 3 stars

Oh, this book. I found it so difficult to read. Why was it so hard to read? One reason, really. America Singer. I really have to place her on my list of irritating protagonists. I don’t have many of those, except Pierce Oliveria from the Abandon Trilogy. They should get along together as they’re both so annoying.

I knew going into this that it would be a love triangle. I hate love triangles, so the fact that that was a major plot in this book made it so much harder to read. It wasn’t that the boys America’s pining over are bad for her in any way – in fact, I'd say the opposite is true. I think America is bad for them. She kept changing her mind between Aspen and Maxon - which I get; it was a love triangle – but it was the most infuriating thing I'd ever read. There would be times when Maxon would portray just how much he cared for America, and she’d swoon and realise just how perfect he was, but then she’d get paranoid because there were five other girls vying for his attention. So she’d push him away, and in swoops Aspen, with his solidarity and devotedness, and she’d realise that he, not Maxon, is the one for her. But then Maxon would swoop back in and America would get all confused again.
Oh! It drove my head against the wall. It started out so perfectly, I knew something had to go wrong. Which it did, multiple times. And then America would unfairly get furious with Maxon and push him away, but she could never give herself over to Aspen because she still cared for Maxon, and got super jealous when he got close to the other girls BECAUSE AMERICA WAS PUSHING HIM AWAY. Didn’t she realise it was her own fault that he started getting close to the other girls? He gave America his heart, and she wouldn’t accept it. No matter how many times he tried to show his devotion to her, she kept pushing him away.

Of course, this was also due to the fact that if America accepted Maxon’s love, she would have to accept what came with that: the crown.  And America was an extremely insecure person, and didn’t feel she was the right person to eventually become queen. Although I felt America was an annoying character, I liked the way Cass handled this part of the book, because it was true. If you were used to being a very lower class member of society, how would you be able to handle becoming a princess, where everyone’s eyes would be on you constantly, waiting for you to screw up? Even though she had been living in the palace for a few months, America still wasn’t used to her high status and the possibility of becoming princess terrified her.

There was also the whole plot with the rebels (Cass’s sad attempt to remind readers that this book was, in fact, a dystopian novel). They aren’t really expanded in this novel, just that the attacks become more frequent and are very violent. This was mainly used as a way to make America feel that Maxon was hiding something from her, which I thought was ridiculous because Maxon isn’t perfect, and can’t tell her every single thing that goes on in his business meetings. Yet this is exactly what America expects, and gets all huffy and acts like a spoilt brat when he doesn’t, pushing him further away and toward the other girls in the Elite.

Speaking of those girls – I liked them, but they weren’t that important to me. I liked a few of them, like Marlee, because she seemed so genuine and Kriss.  Even when Maxon gets close to her, I couldn’t bring myself to hate her, because she was a genuinely nice girl.

I liked America’s personality in the first book. She was independent, sassy in a good way, and didn’t try and let the Selection change her. However, she does change in this book. She becomes extremely insecure, paranoid and indecisive. What I did like about her most in the book though, (and also kind of hated) was her intense dislike for Celeste. Celeste is not a nice character. That’s not a spoiler by any means, and neither is revealing America’s dislike to her. While I liked that Cass made America hate Celeste so much (as it’s not something we see too often in protagonists), I didn’t like how she took everything with Celeste and made it really personal, and heightened her paranoia and lack of self-confidence.

This was such a confusing book! I liked the premise, I liked Maxon and how devoted he is to America, I liked the queen, and I want to know how it turns out in the end. I just don’t like America’s character anymore, and I hate how Cass made her change in this book.  She seemed to become quite resolved at the end of this book, and I really hope that she becomes more confident in herself and in her feelings for either Maxon or Aspen, and finally makes a decision. I’m ready to finish this love triangle.
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Book: The Selection, Kiera Cass,
Series: The Selection Trilogy, #1
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: April 24th, 2012

Rating: 5 stars

This book has been described as Hunger Games meets The Bachelor.  And yes, that is a fairly avid description of the basis of this book. However, don’t let that put you off reading it. It has nothing to do with killing, death, fights to the death or anything remotely related to Hunger Games, except that they had castes numbered 1-8, 1 being the wealthiest families and 8 being the poorest, a lot like the Hunger Games had districts. The rest however, is very much the Bachelor.

It’s set in a time where US is now called Illea, and there is a royal monarch instead of a president. And traditionally, when the king’s son is eligible to marry, the Selection is held. 35 completely average, ordinary girls are chosen from the public and compete in a competition to win the prince’s heart.

America is our protagonist, a Five in the caste system. She isn’t interested in participating in the Selection as she already has a boyfriend of her own, whom she’s been in love with for two years, Aspen.  When America is chosen as part of the Selection, he inevitably breaks up with her, so she enters the palace completely heartbroken yet has to appear in love with the Prince.

This book was a lot of fun. While the writing wasn’t always up to par throughout the book, and there was a lot of showing instead of telling, the premise was still interesting and I really enjoyed the characters.

Unsurprisingly, Maxon the prince and America don’t hit it off, even though you can tell Maxon was totally attracted to her. But because America still loves Aspen, she can’t bring herself to even think about loving Maxon. However, throughout the book their relationship slowly blossoms, and it was really sweet as America realised that the Prince wasn’t as fake and shallow as he seemed.

Oh, and Maxon! He was such a great love interest. While I liked Aspen when he was first introduced, I completely fell for Maxon after his first meeting with America. He seemed completely overwhelmed with having to date 35 girls and decide which one he liked the best. I mean, how hard must that be? I knew immediately it was going to be a love triangle between him and Aspen, but I'm totally team Maxon.

America was a nice protagonist, I liked her independence and the way she didn’t treat the Prince like he was one. She wasn’t the best protagonist ever, but I still enjoyed her. I also liked some of the different girls introduced as America’s competitors, and how she became friends with them instead of treating them like enemies.

The only part that made this book dystopian was the fact that it was set in the future and there was a war going on while the Selection was on. Besides that, you wouldn’t know it was a dystopian novel.

The ending definitely gave an air that there was plenty more to happen before Maxon chooses who he wants to marry, and I can’t wait to find out.

If you’re looking to read a dystopian novel about war and fighting to the death like Legend by Marie Lu or the Hunger Games, don’t read this book. But I would recommend it for lovers of romance and competition.