Pale Horse (Project Eden #3) by Brett Battles

Book Description:

Published: June 16, 2012

Format: Audio

And I looked, and behold a pale horse;
and his name that sat on him was Death,
and Hell followed with him.
—Revelations 6:8

A simple push of a button and the world will never be the same.

Martina Gable returns home from college to spend Christmas break with her family, but the relaxing vacation she expects is not even close to what she’ll get.

Sanjay, a young man in Mumbai who knows more than he should about Project Eden’s plan, will do whatever he can to keep Kusum, the girl he loves, alive and safe.

A boy named Brandon Ash runs for his life in the hills of Montana, wanting only to see his family again.

But first there is Daniel, the boy’s father, who watches Olivia Silva’s finger hover over the enter key that will decide the fate of humanity.

Do you think you’re safe?

Pale Horse is part of the Project Eden continuing saga, which is best read after completing volumes 1 and 2 (Sick and Exit 9)

Review –

This is the third book in the Project Eden series and since I finished Exit 9 in December 2015 I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to remember much of the story or the characters. But I needn’t have worried.

Book 3 concentrates on the devastation as the world realizes the impact of what has happened. The author’s  imagery and excellent descriptive writing puts you right there beside your favorite characters; you can smell the fires burning and feel the cold snow.
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The main characters are still just as engaging and I’m  loving the subplots and the strong supporting characters. Brett could just skim over these subplots but they are becoming as exciting as the main; with just the right amount of time spent on them.

The world is in shock as the realization sinks in as to what has happened and we watch as governments and the resistance try to contain the virus.
What I love about this series is the fact we are following the everyday person like you or me. It’s completely believable with futuristic germ warfare it could happen anytime and that makes this thriller even more horrific and frightening on a base level.
I would like to see more of Brandon and more about the evil Perez as he is sitting in the background a bit, so I hope the author has something awful planned for him.

Great series!

Chained (Caged #2) by D. H. Sidebottom

Book Description:

Published: July 15, 2016

Format: Purchased E-Book

I had once thought that when I found the light I had been searching for in that long, dark tunnel that it would finally give me the gift I had been holding on for.
I had scoured the joyless night sky for peace, a peace that only the brightness of the stars could grant.
And I had endeavoured to catch that single magic snowflake in the middle of a howling snowstorm.
I had been looking. Forever.

But little did I know that it WAS the sinister darkness in the tunnel that was the gift. It WAS the black reservoir of the deepest, darkest night that would be the very thing to give my chaotic soul peace. And it WAS the heaving rush of the bleakest blizzard that was filled with magic.

Anderson Cain WAS the darkness.
He WAS the black peace in my soul.
And within the raging pool of his wild green eyes WAS the magic.
The magic that saw me. The real me.
He made sure I saw me too. All of me. He’d told me he would make me accept who I really was.

I was Kloe Grant. And now – now I am the epitome of what he wanted me to be.

But when I finally let go, and I allowed that darkness to find me, neither of us was prepared for who I really was.

Death itself.

 

Review –

Chained picks up right where ‘Caged’ left off. Immediately, the reader is plunged back into the screwed up pasts of Anderson and Kloe. Forcing Kloe to confront the memories that haunt her, Anderson is still out for revenge and plans to use Kloe as the means to exact that revenge on his father.

The characters are all the right and wrong things in the world. These two have seen more than their fair share of evil. The ways that they decide to deal with those evils are cruel and unusual, but in the end it was so beautiful. I cried throughout the story for the lives they led, the love they never knew, and the love they found. There are so many dark elements in this story, but they are portrayed so beautifully.

Just like Caged, this book will blow your mind and play with your emotions. There were so many twists and turns that I didn’t see coming…and a few that I did. I don’t want to spoil anything. This is one that you need to experience firsthand. Prepare to be shocked and left with an uneasy, disturbed feeling. If you’re a fan of dark, erotic stories, this series is a must read!

This book contains extreme violence, strong adult language and scenes of dark sex, including M/F/M.

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Road to Nowhere (Road to Nowhere #1) by M. Robinson

Book Description:

Published: December 6, 2016

Format: E-Book

I once read that every warrior hoped an honorable death would find him. I always went looking for mine, but not even the Reaper wanted me.
I was trained to kill. I was trained to not ask why. To take orders and just march in line. Hooah motherfucker.
Life or death.
Ride or die.
And I’m not only talking about the military. I’m talking about the life that led me on the road to nowhere.
My life.
I fought for my brothers.
I fought for my family.
I fought for my country.
And I fought for her…

Never realizing I might die for them too.

Review –

This book had me feeling several emotions, anxiety, sadness, wariness, and kept me turning pages to the very end.

Creed is a member of a MC club and meets Mia, the kid sister of his best friend. He’s 19 and she’s 9 and she loves him from the minute they meet and over the years she wants him to see her as a “woman” and not a little girl. Creed becomes Vice President of the MC club and the girl he likes, Autumn is killed in the 9/11 bombing and because of that he enlists for four years. Mia grows up but still is too young but she tries to convince Creed whenever he is home on leave. Finally he knows he has to break her heart in order to get her to stay away from  him, for her sake.

Mia is not quite 16 when she goes to MC club party with a girlfriend of hers and meets “Rebel” and she gives him her virginity all the while wished it were Creed. Her first and one time to have sex and she gets pregnant and goes to tell Rebel and finds out he is Creed’s younger brother. Creed finds out and all hell breaks loose.

Everything in this book, it’s just so damn good. The overprotectiveness that Mia had to go through. Her father, a Good Ol’ Boy, not allowing her to truly grow up. The choices she made because of that – I truly felt her frustration, anger and her passion to live. I love how everyone is somehow intertwined in this book. Creed is friends with Mason who is the son another Good Ol’ Boy. It just makes the entire story even more interesting.
The ending. (I won’t say what happens but it’s bad) Holy shit. Seriously?!!? Killing me here! I know it’s with good intentions. But damn, I am dying here. I am seriously sucked into this whole story and I need the rest so badly. The second book in the series comes out later this year and I can’t wait.

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Glass Sword (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard

Book Description:

Published: February 9, 2016

If there’s one thing Mare Barrow knows, it’s that she’s different.

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they’ve always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.

Review –

This book takes up exactly where the first book left off (I love it when authors do that) and  even though it has been a year since I read the Red Queen, I had no trouble falling back into the story line.

There is so much action, heartache,heartbreak,angst and death in this installment of the series I don’t know where to start. BUT, I’ll try.

Mare has found her brother, Shade, a new blood, like herself, whom she thought was dead and he joins with her and others to find other new bloods to recruit to fight Maven before Maven can find them and kill them or worse be manipulated by the queen.

Mare spends the majority of the book being suspicious of everyone – she’s been betrayed far too many times already in her 17 years – and her suspicion carries over to the reader as well. I spent most of the book with absolutely no idea of who was trustworthy and to be honest, I still am not 100% sure, especially with the characters I want to trust most.

There was also a slew of new characters come into play in this book and some we get to  know while others  we’re merely told how they came to the group after the simple recruitment of the first Newblood, Nix. Suddenly we have around 10-12 new characters stirred into the mix, with no idea how they got there or why we should care about them. Character development for what could have been interesting side characters was instead merely highlighted 

There is sadness, loss, tragedy, and sacrifice and the ending is a definite cliffhanger, but I loved it and now have to wait until February 2017 for the third book, King’s Cage to be released. Can’t wait!!!

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I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson

Book Description:

Published: September 16,2014

A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

Review –

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

This is a beautifully written young adult coming of age novel that has so much happening so here are so highlights:

  • Noah and Jude Sweetwine are identical twins and the book follows them from ages  13, 14, and 16. Noah and Jude live on the California coast in the town of Lost Cove with their parents, Benjamin, a conservative science professor, and Dianna, a liberal art professor. 
  • Their home environment is stable and they are taught love of knowledge, art, reason and emotion.
  • Their mother insists they both apply to a private high school, the California School of the Arts. Noah and Jude get along very well together, and do everything together, until they are 13.
  • When they turn 13, differences between them become apparent. Noah positions himself as the better artist of the siblings (and as his mother’s favorite), the more rational of the siblings, and is secretly gay. To prepare for acceptance into CSA, Noah spends his summer sketching nudes through the school’s windows, where he meets an English model named Oscar. 
  • Jude, herself far more emotional and feeling, falls in with a popular crowd of girls who are more interested in makeup and skimpy clothing than anything else.
  • Things are further complicated by the appearance of a new kid, Brian, whom Noah quickly develops a crush on, though they keep their feelings for each other quiet. Brian and Noah both pretend to be straight, and later have a falling out when Noah cannot accept Brian’s charade.
  • The sky comes crashing down for both Noah and Jude when they learn their mother is having an affair, and she intends to leave their father.
  • When they are 14, their mother prepares to serve Benjamin with divorce papers, only to lose control of her car after a rainstorm, and plummet to her death off a cliff.
  • Both twins reel from the loss. Noah lies and tells his father and sister that Dianna was actually on the way to make things right with Benjamin when she died. Jude, long feeling invisible compared to Noah, only mails her application to CSA when her father requests she mail both hers, and her brother’s.
  • When they are 16, Noah is attending the local public high school while Jude attends CSA. She cannot get her sculptures right, and so is sent out to mentor with famed sculptor Guillermo Garcia. Guillermo himself is reeling from heartache. He also mentors to 19-year-old Oscar, whom is heartbroken years after the death of his own mother. Oscar and Jude take an instant liking to one another, and Jude later learns that Guillermo is the one who was having an affair with her mother, something for which she forgives him.
  • Meanwhile, Noah has been making dangerous dives from the rocky coastal cliffs near Lost Cove, believing that his mother’s ghost guides him down into the ocean to safety. While attempting one such jump while drunk, it is Oscar who saves Noah. Oscar and Jude soon after become an item. 
  • As the novel ends, both twins confess the truth to each other – about their mother and CSA – and reconnect. Noah, Jude, and their father decide to sell their house and live on a houseboat. Noah comes out as gay, and begins officially dating Brian – something acknowledged and accepted by Benjamin.

Phenomenal book!!!!!!

Five stars *****

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Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

Book Description:

Published: September 29, 2015

Sisters. Strangers. Survivors.

More than twenty years ago, Claire and Lydia’s teenaged sister Julia vanished without a trace. The two women have not spoken since, and now their lives could not be more different. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother, dates an ex-con and struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the horror and heartbreak of their shared loss—a devastating wound that’s cruelly ripped open when Claire’s husband is killed.

The disappearance of a teenage girl and the murder of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: what could connect them? Forming a wary truce, the surviving sisters look to the past to find the truth, unearthing the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago . . . and uncovering the possibility of redemption, and revenge, where they least expect it.

Powerful, poignant, and utterly gripping, packed with indelible characters and unforgettable twists, Pretty Girls is a masterful thriller from one of the finest suspense writers working today.

Review –

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

I’ve had this book set aside on a back burner for several months waiting for the perfect time to read/listen to it. I chose to listen to it, although I also had the physical soft covered book in my collection.

The narrator, Kathleen Early, did a fantastic job as the voices of the three sisters, Claire, Lydia and Julia and as a listener it is so enjoyable just to sit back and not have to worry about being able to keep all of the characters separate in your mind.

I really didn’t know what to expect when I started the book other than it was a story about three sister, one who disappears as a teen and causes the other two to become estranged.  It was sooooo  much more than that. It was DARK and I think this is a change for the author. I’ve read several of her books and I don’t remember ever describing one as DARK before.  Parts of it gave me chills and other parts made me sick to my stomach (parts are that DARK) but all those parts were necessary to understand or try to understand the character of Paul, Claire’s husband . He is truly a monster and makes Hannibal Lector look like a boy scout.  The darkness spans decades and involves some people who you would least expect. I refuse to give too much of the story away because it is so much better when you are surprised at some of the convoluted moments.

The whole story was a journey of “it can’t get worse than this” and then it would. But the weak become strong and the bad get punished and there is a semi HEA for some. 

If you enjoy murder mysteries with lots of twists and turns, this is definitely a book to add to your “to be read” list.

Five stars *****

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Until Friday Night (The Field Party #1) By Abbi Glines

Book Description:

Published: August 25, 2015

To everyone who knows him, West Ashby has always been that guy: the cocky, popular, way-too-handsome-for-his-own-good football god who led Lawton High to the state championships. But while West may be Big Man on Campus on the outside, on the inside he’s battling the grief that comes with watching his father slowly die of cancer.

Two years ago, Maggie Carleton’s life fell apart when her father murdered her mother. And after she told the police what happened, she stopped speaking and hasn’t spoken since. Even the move to Lawton, Alabama, couldn’t draw Maggie back out. So she stayed quiet, keeping her sorrow and her fractured heart hidden away.

As West’s pain becomes too much to handle, he knows he needs to talk to someone about his father—so in the dark shadows of a post-game party, he opens up to the one girl who he knows won’t tell anyone else.

West expected that talking about his dad would bring some relief, or at least a flood of emotions he couldn’t control. But he never expected the quiet new girl to reply, to reveal a pain even deeper than his own—or for them to form a connection so strong that he couldn’t ever let her go…

Review –

This was the first book I have read/listened to ( I had the audio version)  by author, Abbi Glines and I found it very realistic for a YA romance.

We are not drawn to people because they are perfect and both Maggie and West (love that name, by the way) are far from perfect,especially West.

Maggie stopped speaking after her father murdered her mother and when this story starts it has been two years and she has come to live with her aunt, uncle and cousin, after having been staying with her god-mother. She is smart,strong-willed,but also kind and compassionate.

West is putting on an act for his friends and teachers as if nothing is wrong, but inside he is full of rage. His father, who means the world to him, is dying of cancer and West survives by using girls for his own pleasure and by being as a**hole.

He sees Maggie at a field party and walks right up to her and being his hateful self,  roughly kisses her and then walks off. Little does he know that it is Maggie’s first ever kiss.

Later he finds out that she is his best friends cousin and has been put “off limits” and he doesn’t have a problem with that at all because girls line up to be with him anyway.

One day he finally breaks down and tells Maggie what is wrong and why he is eaten up inside and because he realizes  she doesn’t talk he knows she won’t be telling anyone. She surprises him by using her voice and speaking to him, but tells him she will only talk to him. From then on he uses her as a crutch to survive the illness of his father and later his death. He wants her with him all the time and while he sees her as a friend Maggie’s feeling grow deeper for him.

Maggie decides to let her aunt, uncle and cousin know that she wants to start talking again but will not answer any questions about her father.

He gets overly jealous when other boys talk to her and very possessive, so much so, that Maggie decides they need a break. This almost puts West in a tail spin, but he still is there to protect Maggie from the snipes of old girlfriends. His friends tell him he’d better change his ways and or say good-bye to her for good.

He finally tells her that he loves her and understands that he used her and was too possessive and they are together at the end of the story.

The ending was the only part of the story that I had a problem with because people usually do not change their behavior.  If a teenage boy is domineering and possessive or abusive to girls, he will most likely still be that way when he is a man. Girls shouldn’t be so quick to take a boy back just because he seems to have changed his ways because only time will tell and better safe than sorry I say.

The second book in the series won’t be out til sometimes next year but I can’t wait.

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Sail (Wake#2) by M. Mabie

Book Description:

Published: March 31, 2015

This isn’t just a two-year long one-night stand. It’s my life.

This is my life. Our life. It isn’t just some careless affair.

I’ve made the worst decisions a woman could, but I’ll earn my second chance.

She can try keeping all the guilt for herself, but I’m just as much to blame.

Loving Casey wasn’t my biggest mistake. Fighting it for so long was.

I’ll show her how fearless our love makes me. I’ll protect her torn heart.

He still has magic in his eyes. He’s the man who makes me happy.

Her voice still brings me to my knees. She says my name like it’s sacred.

I live for the day when I’m his. To take care of him. To love him the way he deserves.

I can’t wait to be all she needs. I can give her a happy life, security and so much love.

Sometimes two ships never meet in the night, but ours did.

Sometimes the water is rough. It beats you all to hell until you have no choice but get stronger.

Our love story reads more like a tragedy, but to me it’s clean and pure.

Let them point their fingers. Without a love like ours, they haven’t really lived. I pity them.

I’m a cheating wife and a villain. I am his honeybee.

I’m a snake in the grass and I sleep best when I’m lying next to his wife.

I want to be his everything.

I’m nothing without her anyway.

This isn’t even close to over.

Review –

In Sail, Blake became more assertive and more sure of herself (finally), but still the fate of their relationship was in Blake’s hands, which was pretty scary. She seems to have made a decision to end her marriage with Grant, but we’ve heard that before. The question is – will she or won’t she be strong enough to do what needs to be done for her and Casey’s sake?

There are still ups and downs in their relationship and Casey and Blake both realize their hang-ups about trust are partly to blame. Trying to over come this is not easy, especially for Blake. She thinks she has to do what needs to be done all on her own instead of excepting the support and presence of Casey. If only she had Casey go with her to have Grant sign the divorce papers…

I’m hoping for a HEA but I’ll have to read the last installment to find out. More later.

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I love this cover.

 

 

Burning Nation (Divided We Fall #2) by Trent Reedy

Book Description:

Published: January 27, 2015

In this wrenching sequel to DIVIDED WE FALL, Danny and friends fight to defend Idaho against a Federal takeover and the ravages of a BURNING NATION.

At the end of DIVIDED WE FALL, Danny Wright’s beloved Idaho had been invaded by the federal government, their electricity shut off, their rights suspended. Danny goes into hiding with his friends in order to remain free. But after the state declares itself a Republic, Idaho rises to fight in a second American Civil War, and Danny is right in the center of the action, running guerrilla missions with his fellow soldiers to break the Federal occupation. Yet what at first seems like a straightforward battle against governmental repression quickly grows more complicated, as more states secede, more people die, and Danny discovers the true nature of some of his new allies.

Chilling, powerful, and all too plausible,, BURNING NATION confirms Trent Reedy’s place as a provocative new voice in YA fiction.

Review –

Private Danny Wright, the accidental figurehead of the Idaho rebellion, becomes an insurgent in his hometown, fighting the Feds alongside his closest friends, including Becca and JoBelle.

While Danny’s moral conflict is easier now that he’s committed to the fight, the increasingly personal stakes keep him from growing complacent. While he’s glad to have his friends fighting by his side he’s worried that he could be the cause of their deaths.

Things go from bad to worse  because  open revolution has led to the beginning of a new American Civil War. Danny is captured and tortured by the Feds for two weeks along with Sparrow but are rescued by his friends and the Brotherhood.

Reedy spins an action-packed cautionary tale, allowing both state and federal viewpoints their strengths and weaknesses, stopping just short of condemning both sides while acknowledging the validity of their arguments. 

As with Divided We Fall, I had the audio version and the narration was beyond fantastic.

If you haven’t read anything by this author, be sure to add him to your “authors to try” list.

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It’s Not Summer Without You (Summer#2) by Jenny Han

Book Description:

Published: April 27, 2010

Can summer be truly summer without Cousins Beach?

It used to be that Belly counted the days until summer, until she was back at Cousins Beach with Conrad and Jeremiah. But not this year. Not after Susannah got sick again and Conrad stopped caring. Everything that was right and good has fallen apart, leaving Belly wishing summer would never come.
But when Jeremiah calls saying Conrad has disappeared, Belly knows what she must do to make things right again. And it can only happen back at the beach house, the three of them together, the way things used to be. If this summer really and truly is the last summer, it should end the way it started–at Cousins Beach.

Review –

We found out, in the beginning of the second book of the Summer Trilogy, that when Conrad came to pick up Belly in December, they drove to Cousins Beach and stayed in the summer-house overnight, but all they did was kiss (a lot)  and drink hot chocolate. The relationship seemed to slowly  fall apart after that  and then after he took her to the prom in May he broke up with her. Now it is July and Jeremiah calls to say Conrad is missing and he wants Belly to help, so of course she’s going to go and help find Conrad. She packed her bags and tells her best friend Taylor to lie to her mother if she called because she is going to be her alibi. Jeremiah picks her up and then they drive to Brown University and talk to Conrad’s roommate, which is no help so they find another friend to ask  and they find out that he mentioned the beach so they know that he’s going to Cousins Beach so that’s where they go.

Once they get there  Conrad is mad that they came and told them to go right back but of course they don’t. They fight and  argue and Conrad says he still is not coming back. The next morning Belly finds out that Conrad’s father is planning to sell the summer-house and that’s why Conrad is here, not to disappear but to save the house. Conrad’s father says that he definitely is going to sell the house and there’s a lot of yelling and arguing but finally he leaves and they decide that they need to have a party because it’s the last night  in the house on the beach, so they get liquor and beer and pizza and Belly gets drunk and at 4 o’clock in the morning calls her mother and tells her the situation and her mother gets in the car and heads for Cousins Beach.

Once Belly’s mother gets there she tries talking some sense into the boys’ father, but to no avail-BUT finally he concedes and says he will not sell it because he now understands that the boys want to keep it as a way to staying close to their dead mother.

Conrad is still acting indifferent to Belly and her feelings for him. It’s true deep inside he knows he loves her but won’t admit it. Belly is hurt and Jeremiah confesses him feelings for Belly and they kiss and Belly is a bit taken aback at how the kiss makes her feel. It’s not said, but it’s implied that form a relationship because at the end of the book two years have passed and Belly is questioning if she has chosen the right boy.

Can’t wait to read the next book.

Five stars *****

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