Monday, September 24, 2012

Review: Cursed by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Cursed by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: September 18th, 2012
Page count: 304 pages
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Format: E-book
Who I'd Recommend it To: Fans of other Jennifer L. Armentrout books & Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi.
Rating: ★★ 1/2

Dying sucks-- and high school senior Ember McWilliams knows firsthand. After a fatal car accident, her gifted little sister brought her back. Now anything Ember touches dies. And that, well, really blows.

Ember operates on a no-touch policy with all living things--including boys. When Hayden Cromwell shows up, quoting Oscar Wilde and claiming her curse is a gift, she thinks he's a crazed cutie. But when he tells her he can help control it, she's more than interested. There's just one catch: Ember has to trust Hayden's adopted father, a man she's sure has sinister reasons for collecting children whose abilities even weird her out. 

However, she's willing to do anything to hold her sister's hand again. And hell, she'd also like to be able to kiss Hayden. Who wouldn't? But when Ember learns the accident that turned her into a freak may not have been an accident at all, she's not sure who to trust. Someone wanted her dead, and the closer she gets to the truth, the closer she is to losing not only her heart, but her life. For real this time.


I bought this one as soon as I knew it was out, seeing as I'm a fan of the author's Lux series. Unfortunately, I was not as taken with this one as I was with that series. This one failed to meet my expectations, for a load of various reasons.

In the beginning of the book, we get to see a glimpse of what Ember's life is like after she's had the accident she died in -- she has to take care of her 5-year-old sister (who just happens to be able to bring things back to life), her mother thinks she's dead and she's constantly bullied and ridiculed by the kids at her school -- it's pretty damn crappy. Then, a boy called Hayden comes along (shocking, I know..) , some crazy stuff happens, and the next thing Ember knows, she's being relocated to Hayden's fathers house (unwillingly, might I add) and has to learn to control her power.

I think that the main problem I had with this one was the characters, and I found this strange because I usually adore Jennifer's characterization--it's one of the things I loved the most about Obsidian and Onyx. I liked the main character Ember well enough, but she got on my nerves constantly. I just felt like I couldn't connect with her and most of the time she just came off as the helpless victim. Hayden and all the other males in there book always seemed to saving her. Frankly, I missed the spunk that Katy has and the will to be able to defend herself.

The other characters seemed to be all undeveloped, and most of the were quite cliche, also. I couldn't seem to understand why some of the characters did what the things they did, and found it hard to comprehend their reasoning behind things. I didn't buy the Ember/Hayden romance either, to be honest. It felt forced and I particularly didn't like the dialogue between them. It was cheesy most of the time. Another thing I like about her Lux series is that it's full of witty dialogue and it never seems to take itself too seriously, which is a factor that I think Cursed seriously lacked.

With all that said, I did enjoy the book whilst reading it. I devoured it in under 24 hours, and I really did want to know what would happen next. It was interesting take on the whole kids-with-powers thing, but I felt like I had seen most of it before.

In short: Cursed failed to meet my expectations, unfortunately. Uninteresting, undeveloped characters and full of cliches. Cursed is a fast-paced easy read, although unsatisfying.

Regan's Rant of the Day: Bring Perks to Australia!

I think it was a little over a year ago when I read The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. I remember seeing loads of people on Goodreads talking about, many people quoting it on Tumblr and even YouTubers going on about it, so I thought I'd give it a try.

I only knew a little bit of what the book was about prior to reading it, and little did I know that it had made such an impact of people's lives, nor did I realise what an impact it would make on mine. If you're not familiar with Perks, the book is about a young, introverted boy called Charlie who is going through his first year of high school. Things aren't going too well for him until he meets two seniors named Sam and Patrick, who take him under their wing and welcome him to real world. Find out more here on Goodreads.

The book covers a whole load of various topics like suicide, depression, teen pregnancy, first loves -- you know, all that jazz. What I love about this book is that it doesn't sugarcoat anything; it's a very accurate portrayal of Highschool and life in general. Even though it's set in the 90's, the stuff that Charlie goes through is still extremely relevant today. Perks has shown teenagers that they're not alone, that many people all around the world are going through the same things. Perks has given people hope. Perks has literally saved people.

Not only did it introduce me to some crazy awesome music, it made me realise some very important things. When Emma Watson was asked "When people walk away from seeing this movie, is there a message you hope they take away from the experience of seeing it?" a part of her answer was "Everyone has a story. People tend to judge and interpret behaviour without going to the source of the behaviour ... People can change and people make mistakes and people are human and you kinda need to love them for that." I think that is a big part of what I learnt from this book - that people have a reason for acting the way they do, and that people are human and make mistakes and have imperfections, and you've got to love them for that, because that is what makes them human.

The amazing book has now been made into a feature film starring the fabulous Emma Watson, Logan Lerman and Ezra Miller, as well as many other great and talented actors (it's also directed and written by the guy who made the book!). Unfortunately, this movie isn't being released everywhere around the world, and one of those places it isn't coming to (so far, anyway) is Australia. When I heard about this, I was pretty upset, to say the least. I couldn't understand why it possibly wouldn't be over here, seeing as the book has a massive fan base and it has some pretty big names it. Here is the trailer:

Seeing how many people were upset about it not getting released here in Aus, I decided I wanted to do something about it, and I thought that if Roadshow Films (a movie distributor in Australia) saw how much people wanted to see the movie, they would get something done about it. I ended up starting a petition. So far, the petition has over 300 supporters, and that number is growing rapidly. So, if you're a Perks fan, Australian or not, I urge you to sign this petition, share it around to your friends and spread the word. This is a movie that needs to be seen, and it's a story that needs to be heard.

Sign the petition HERE.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

In My Mailbox #3

 In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Its basically gives us book bloggers a chance to show what books we've bought, won, recieved for review, etc.

Sadly, I haven't recieved many books lately, but here are the ones I have gotten in the past few weeks:

For Review:
  • Ever by Jessa Russo.
Thanks to Curiosity Quills Press.

Thanks to Vegan YAnerds and Walker Books! Can't wait to read this one.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Book2Movie! The Beautiful Creatures Trailer is Here!

The Beautiful Creatures trailer has arrived and it's fantastic. I especially love the opening sequence with Emma Thompson; it really sets the feel of it all, which is much like the feel of the book--small town and very gothic-like. In this teaser, we get to see pretty much all of the main characters--Ethan, Lena, Amma, Macon, Ridley.. and we even get to see a glimpse of Link. The music in the trailer is Florence + The Machine's Seven Devils, which is very fitting.

I don't know how I feel about Alden Ehrenreich as Ethan yet (All I know is that his last name is freaking hard to spell), but I'm sure he'll be fantastic. The rest of the cast will be amazing in their roles as well, I'm sure, as they're all seriously talented actors. I mean, Viola Davis, Emma Thompson and Jeremy Irons--wow. 

Beautiful Creatures is set to hit theatres on February 14th next year in Australia. 

Waiting on Wednesday #8: Let The Sky Fall

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

Let The Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger.
Release Date: March 5th, 2013

Seventeen-year-old Vane Weston has no idea how he survived the category five tornado that killed his parents. And he has no idea if the beautiful, dark-haired girl who’s swept through his dreams every night since the storm is real. But he hopes she is.

Seventeen-year-old Audra is a sylph, an air elemental. She walks on the wind, can translate its alluring songs, and can even coax it into a weapon with a simple string of commands. She’s also a guardian—Vane’s guardian—and has sworn an oath to protect Vane at all costs. Even if it means sacrificing her own life.

When a hasty mistake reveals their location to the enemy who murdered both of their families, Audra’s forced to help Vane remember who he is. He has a power to claim—the secret language of the West Wind, which only he can understand. But unlocking his heritage will also unlock the memory Audra needs him to forget. And their greatest danger is not the warriors coming to destroy them—but the forbidden romance that’s grown between them. 

OK, this cover is gorgeous and I'm a sucker for the whole forbidden romance thing + I've never read a book about a sylph before, so this should definitely be interesting!

Book2movie! Beautiful Creatures Stills + Trailer News.

Ok, I'll admit, I wasn't the biggest fan of Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl's novel Beautiful Creatures, but oh my God, am I looking forward to this movie adaption. Since about a month or so ago, a couple of stills have been released and just now more have been to. And from the look of the pictures, this movie seems like it's definitely going to stay true to the novel.

Also.. the first trailer will be released on Friday 9:30am Australian Eastern time, so make sure you check it out! Without further ado, here are the recent pictures released: 

Emmy Rossum as Ridley Duchannes, wearing a very. . interesting dress.

Amma (Viola Davis), Lena (Alice Englert), Ethan (Alden Ehrenreich).

Lena showing Ethan the number on her hand, counting down the days to her 16th birthday.

The ever-so-fabulous Macon Ravenwood played by the equally as great Jeremy Irons. 

Lena in the library!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday #5

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday, book bloggers post a top ten list in response to a predetermined prompt. To learn more about Top Ten Tuesday, or see a list of future topics , head on over the The Broke and the Bookish. 

September 11:  Top Ten Books That Make You Think (About The World, People, Life, etc.)

1.) If I Stay by Gayle Forman.
Never take anything for granted, because in a flash, it could be gone. And it also made me wonder: If I was in the same situation as the main character was in, what would I choose?

2.) Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky.
I was in my second year of highschool when I read this book, and it opened my eyes to many things, to say the least. It made me realise that everyone out there is fighting their own battles - and so much more.

3.) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.
This book, I think, made a huge effect on me. It made me realise that perhaps the world of The Hunger Games isn't too far off if we keep going to way we do. Our obsession with reality television and so many more issues.. It was a big eye opener. 

4.) Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver.
It makes you re-think some of your actions, for sure.

5.) On the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta.

6.) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.
This book makes me think about life, and love, and just so many things. Makes me feel all the things. 

7.) The Book Thief by Markus Zusack.
(Although I haven't finished it yet.) I am haunted by humans. Just.. that line. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Book2Movie: Perks premiere!

The Perks of Being a Wallflower movie adaption premiered at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) earlier today. The film stars Logan Lerman, Ezra Miller, Emma Watson, Paul Rudd, Nina Dobrev and many more talented actors. Set in the 90's, the book centres around Charlie (Lerman), an awkward, troubled teen who is having a hard time at highschool before meeting and befriending two seniors (Watson and Miller), who gladly take him under their wing and pretty much welcome him to the real world.

Fans of the book can breathe a sigh of relief, seeing as the movie has been met with mostly positive reviews so far, a lot of them praising Ezra Miller and Logan Lerman on their portrayals of Patrick and Charlie. Reviews also say that the film definitely stays true to the book! 

The cast at the premiere.

Sadly, for us Aussie fans, there isn't any release date for this movie yet, so chances are that we'll have to wait for it to come out on DVD here (which I'm super angry about, might I add.) The film hits theatres in the USA on the 21st of this month.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Review: Eon by Alison Goodman

Eon (EON #1) by Alison Goodman.
Release Date: 2008
Page count: 430 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins
Format: Paperback
Who I'd Recommend it To: People who grew up reading the Dragonkeeper series by Carole Wilkinson. Or people who just love high fantasy.
Rating: ★★★★ 

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide Like the sound of this book? Buy it off of TBD!

Also Known As: Two Pearls of Wisdom, Eon: Rise of the Dragoneye, and Eon (All the same book just published with different publishers) Eon has been studying the ancient art of Dragon Magic for four years, hoping he'll be able to apprentice to one of the twelve energy dragons of good fortune. But he also has a dark secret. He is actually Eona, a sixteen-year-old girl who has been living a dangerous lie for the chance to become a Dragon-eye, the human link to an energy dragon's power. It is forbidden for females to practice the Dragon Magic and, if discovered, Eon faces a terrible death. After a dazzling sword ceremony, Eon's affinity with the twelve dragons catapults him into the treacherous world of the Imperial court, where he makes a powerful enemy, Lord Ido. As tension builds and Eon's desperate lie comes to light, readers won't be able to stop turning the pages..


I've always loved these type of stories. When I was growing up, I read Dragonkeeper by Carole Wilkinson and absolutely adored it. Asian culture, mythology, and dragons have always interested me, so obviously I thought I would like this book. And, yes, as you can tell by the four stars I gave it, I definitely did enjoy it. 

The first half was interesting enough, sure, but it was the second half of the book that definitely took my interest and that's when I really got into it. I didn't want to put it down after I hit halfway. It was constant action and surprise, and everything kind of fell into place.

Eon, or should I say 'Eona', was a great, strong female character, though I found that it's quite hard to connect with her. I guess that was because she spent most of the book trying to hide the fact that she was a female. Despite that, she's a very well rounded character and extremely likable, although she is quite frustrating at times. What I especially liked about her character is that she's not your stereotypical strong female in literature. She's not a great fighter, she doesn't know how to handle a sword - but she's smart, and she uses that to her advantage. She also grows a lot throughout the book, which is of course fantastic.

All of the secondary characters were fantastic aswell, and extremely realistic and well developed. I'm excited to see where each character goes in Eona, especially Lady Dela, Ryko and Lord Ido.

I know that some people think the book is quite hard to get through and I can see why. It's quite heavy on the mythology and there is a bit of info dumping here and there, but I found that I could get through it quite easily. I adored the writing style and everything was written quite vividly. The world building is great, also, and I loved all the magic and the dragons. You can tell the author put a lot of research into Asian culture and mythology before writing this one.

Though I loved it, the book does have its faults and there's definitely room for improvement in the second one. And from what I've read, everyone seems to love Eona even more than they did this one, so it's safe to say I'm pretty damn excited (and I also ordered it straight after I finished this one. WOO.)

In short: It's great. If you like fantasy, intriguing characters, great plots and action sequences, this one is for you.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Book Trailer: STORMDANCER by Jay Kristoff

Just a couple of days ago, the book trailer for Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff, an Aussie author, was released and guys, it's really great. Not what I expected at all. ;)

Although I had to stop reading the book about halfway (reading ARCs of your computer = not a good idea! Hurt my poor eyes!), I really enjoyed what I read. 

Actually, I loved it. It's beautifully written, the characterization is utterly fantastic and IT'S JUST FREAKIN' AWESOME. I urge you all to buy yourself a copy, seriously! I know I will when my local bookstore finally decides to get it in. (They suck when it comes to having the books I want.)

So, without further ado, here's the Stormdancer trailer:

Griffins are supposed to be extinct. So when Yukiko and her warrior father Masaru are sent to capture one for the Shogun, they fear that their lives are over. Everyone knows what happens to those who fail him, no matter how hopeless the task.

But the mission proves far less impossible, and far more deadly, than anyone expects – and soon Yukiko finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in her country's last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled griffin for company. But trapped together in the forest, Yukiko and Buruu soon discover a friendship that neither of them expected.

Meanwhile, the country around them verges on the brink of collapse. A toxic fuel is slowly choking the land; the omnipotent, machine-powered Lotus Guild is publicly burning those they deem Impure; and the Shogun cares about nothing but his own dominion. Yukiko has always been uneasy in the shadow of power, when she learns the awful truth of what the Shogun has done, both to her country and to her own family she's determined to do something about it.

Returning to the city, Yukiko and Buruu plan to make the Shogun pay for his crimes – but what can one girl and a flightless griffin do against the might of an empire? 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday #7: Rebel Heart & Mila 2.0

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

Rebel Heart (Dust Lands #2) by Moira Young.
Release Date: October 30th, 2012

It seemed so simple: Defeat the Tonton, rescue her kidnapped brother, Lugh, and then order would be restored to Saba’s world. Simplicity, however, has proved to be elusive. Now, Saba and her family travel west, headed for a better life and a longed-for reunion with Jack. But the fight for Lugh’s freedom has unleashed a new power in the dust lands, and a formidable new enemy is on the rise.

What is the truth about Jack? And how far will Saba go to get what she wants? In this much-anticipated follow-up to the riveting Blood Red Road, a fierce heroine finds herself at the crossroads of danger and destiny, betrayal and passion.

After reading Blood Red Road and absolutely loving it (it was one of my favourites of 2011), I'm definitely super excited to read this one. And the cover. *queue fangirling*. Not too sure about the title though. Blood Red Road sounded way more bad ass.

Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza.
Release Date: March 12th, 2013

Pitched as a "Bourne Identity"-type sci-fi thriller about a teenage girl who discovers that she is a Mobile Intel Life-like Android, an experiment in artificial intelligence created by the U.S. government, and her scientist mother, who kidnapped her when she was found to have human emotions. 

Okay, I would buy this one for its cover alone. It's gorgeous. The blurb sounds interestingg as well, though, and it's sure to be action-packed if its being compared to "Bourne Identity." Also, who doesn't love sci-fi?!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday #4

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday, book bloggers post a top ten list in response to a predetermined prompt. To learn more about Top Ten Tuesday, or see a list of future topics , head on over the The Broke and the Bookish.

September 4th: Top Ten Books On Your Fall Spring TBR List!

1.) Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley.
 I've heard nothing but excellent things about this book! Like, seriously, if you look this one up on GR, you will see everyone raving about it. Plus, it's Australian. I adore Aussie fiction.

2) The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse.
Got sent this one a couple weeks back, and I've wanted to read it for a while because OMG COVER LOVE. And the synopsis sounds fantastic. I've been a little Dystopian-obsessed lately.

3.) Such a Rush by Jennifer Echols.
Although I didn't particularly like Forget You all that much, I loved Jennifer's Going Too Far, so I'm eager to start Such a Rush. Also, Elizziebooks seemed to love this one.

4.) Hunting Lila by Sarah Alderson.
I've seen a lot of bloggers talking about this one lately, so I thought I'd check it out. Also OMG COVER LOVE. 

5.) Defiance by C.J. Redwine.
I've talked about how much I was excited for this one to come out before! Defiance sounds absolutely amazing and most of the reviews I've seen so far have been positive. Seens totally bad ass.

6.) The King's Bastard by Rowena Cory Daniels.
Rowena kindly sent this to me a couple of weeks ago, and I've heard great things about her other series, so I'm sure this one will be fantastic as well! Will probably been reading at the end of Sep, hopefully!

7.) Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater
Read the first one and adored it, so when I saw this in the Second Hand bookshop, I knew I had to pick it up. (I also love Maggie Stiefvater and her fabulous, lyrical writing style.)

8.) Eona by Alison Goodman
Reading Eon now, and it's so great. Like, if you're reading this now, and haven't read Eon, I urge you to do so. You're absolutely transported into another world. IT'S JUST SO FANTASTIC OK.

9.) Unwind by Neal Shusterman
Everyone and their mother has read and loved this book, it seems. Plus, the sequel came out a few days ago, so I definitely have to give this one a go. I really like its creepy ass cover, also. 

10.) Friday Brown by Vikki Wakefield.
I really liked Vikki's first book, All I Ever Wanted, and I've heard this one is even better and grittier. Also, as I said before, I love Aussie fiction!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

In My Mailbox #2

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Its basically gives us book bloggers a chance to showcase what books we've bought, won, recieved for review, etc.



For review:
(Big thanks to Rowena for the copy! Will be reading & reviewing this hopefully late September time.)

  • Onyx (Lux #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout. (review here.)