Thursday, July 24, 2014

Book Review: The Selection Stories: The Prince & The Guard

Publisher: HarperTeen

Publication Date: February 4, 2014

Series: The Selection, 0.5 & 2.5

Genre: Young Adult Dystopia

Acquired From: Public Library


Two novellas set in the world of Kiera Cass's #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series are now available in print for the first time. The Prince and The Guard both offer captivating views into the hearts and minds of the two men fighting to win America Singer's love. This collection also features exclusive bonus content, including a sneak peek at The One, the eagerly anticipated third novel in the Selection series.
Before America arrived at the palace to compete in the Selection, there was another girl in Prince Maxon's life. The Prince opens the week before the Selection begins and follows Maxon through the first day of the competition.
Raised as a Six, Aspen Leger never dreamed that he would find himself living in the palace as a member of the royal guard. In The Guard, readers get an inside look at Aspen's life within the palace walls--and the truth about a guard's world that America will never know. 
--From Goodreads


I'm not much of a novella reader, but I thoroughly enjoyed both of the novellas included in The Selection Stories. The insights into both Maxon and Aspen were almost more than I could ask for, and it made it even harder for me to make a decision as to who I wanted America to end up with! For that reason alone, I give The Selection Stories a solid 4 out of 5 stars.
It was remarkable to get an inside view into how Maxon viewed the Selection. He seemed unsure about it from America's perspective, but reading it from his own was more than I could have expected. He was sad and uncertain, and always under the thumb of his father. It was eye-opening to see what he truly wanted out of life... Just someone to love him.
Aspen was more than I remembered from America's memories of him. I expected him to be cruel and unhappy, but it seemed that he was the exact opposite. It was a great thing to see the way his character developed outside of the memories that America had of him. It was a wonderful way to end the series. And I'm so glad I picked them up! 

Book Review: The One by Kiera Cass

Publisher: HarperCollins

Publication Date: June 5th, 2014

Series: The Selection #3

Genre: Young Adult Dystopia

Acquired From: Public Library


The Selection changed the lives of thirty-five girls forever. Now, only one will claim Prince Maxon's heart...
It's swoon meets the Hunger Games in the final installment of The Selection trilogy!
For the four girls who remain at the palace, the friendships they've formed, rivalries they've struggled with and dangers they've faced have bound them to each other for the rest of their lives.
Now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen.
America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown--or to Prince Maxon's heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose--and how hard she'll have to fight for the future she wants. 
The breathtaking finale to The Selection trilogy will make you swoon! 


I fell in love with this series the first time I picked up the first book. And I waited for what seemed like forever for the final book to see what would happen. It was an amazing story, and I couldn't wait to see who America ended up with. Thanks to The One, I finally know (no spoilers here!). And I give The One a solid 5 out of 5 stars. With no reservations at all!
It is one of the best novels I've ever read, and I know that I'll come back to it over and over again. Kiera Cass is a master storyteller, and I love every single word that comes out of her pen. She's wonderful. She creates beautiful characters and wonderful scenery. She's one of the best authors I've read in a very, very long time.
America is incredibly real with her struggles, her hopes, and her dreams. She approaches the things that come at her with strength and love, something that we should all aspire to. I felt her pain, her joy, and her love. I wanted what she wanted, and cried when she cried. America truly is a wonderful character that should be part of the greatest characters of modern young adult literature. 

Book Review: The Afterlife by Ksenia Anske

Publisher: Self-Published

Publication Date: August 5, 2013

Series: Siren Suicides #3

Genre: Young Adult Paranormal and Urban Fantasy

Acquired From: Personal Collection


Ailen Bright is more lost than ever. Her father has betrayed her yet again, but keeps her longing for his love alive with some almost-heartfelt confessions, though few and far between. She and Hunter can never be together without fighting the urge to strangle each other with their bare hands. And to top it off, two-faced Canosa won't leave her alone. Her resolve to do the right thing is wavering as she tries to protect the ones she loves, simultaneously searching for a reason to keep on living, and the final chapter of Siren Suicides comes to a tumultuous close, bringing death, life, and love.


It may have taken me a while to get to this one, but I can't tell you how much I loved the final installment of the Siren Suicides. Once again, Ksenia Anske has done a fantastic job dealing with life, death, and the problems of adolescence. It was a brilliant novel that I can easily give a 4 out of 5 stars to. 
One of my favorite things about this novel was how Ailen had such a hard time dealing with her own feelings and uncertainty. She was incredibly real and had struggles that were almost too big for her to handle. She was simultaneously fragile and viscous. I loved reading about her struggles and her personality. 
The one thing I didn't like about this novel was the ending. It was a little bit too "soap opera" dream sequence for me. But regardless of the ending, the rest of the novel was brilliant and wonderful. I loved it, and will definitely read it again. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Back to Blogging

It's been a long time since I've blogged here, but that doesn't mean I haven't been reading for my reviews!

I've got three books to put up reviews for and will be getting to that in the next few days. I am on my reading schedule, and will be picking up with the first one on the sidebar. I apologize to those writers who have been waiting for reviews from me as I've had some personal and job issues that have kept me from following my regular blogging schedule.

So look for new reviews and recommendations in the next few days!