Thursday, 30 January 2014

Rebel Heart - Moria Young

Haven't read 'Blood Red Road' yet?  What're you waiting for?  It's awesome!  Watch out, this review may contain 'Blood Red Rad' spoiler.

A Spoiler Free Bit About The Book

After defeating Vicar Pinch, Saba, Lugh, Emmi and Tommo are heading to the Big Water.  And that's where they'll meet Jack.

But it's not that simple.  Traumatised after Epona's death, Saba's not her normal self.  And to top it all off, the Angel of Death has a price on her head.

My Review

'Blood Red Road' was one of my favourite books of 2013, only really being beaten by 'Divergent'.  So I was really excited about reading the second in the 'Dustlands Trilogy' and I wasn't disappointed.  I know many people were but I wasn't one of them.

Although the first part of the book written in third person following Jack did throw me off a bit and took me a while to get into.  But I'm the kind of reader who can't get enough of Jack so I was quite happy learning more about him and seeing what he was up to.  It was a strange kind of way of throwing me back into the series but I think it was clever.  It just made me hungrier for the rest of the novel.

Once back in Saba's first person point of view I was home.  I fell back into I as thought I'd finished 'Blood Red Road' and picked up 'Rebel Heart' straight away.  Saba was a little different this time around but I found that to be realistic.  The things she went through in 'Blood Red Road' would change a person.

My only criticism is that it took a while to get going.  It didn't take forever like far too many books I've read, but compared to the pace of 'Blood Red Road' it was a little slower.  But never fear, once it got going it got going!

There were a few new characters I liked as well as a few of the ones cropping up again.  Young did a good job of reminding me who all the characters were without me consciously being aware that I was being reminded.  And fans of DeMalo (like me) won't be disappointed!  You just wait.

I must dedicate a paragraph to Molly.  I loved her.  She did my name proud just as Molly Weasley in 'Harry Potter' and Molly Hooper in 'Sherlock' have.  The addition of Molly in 'Rebel Heart' made it all the more enjoyable.  She was a no-nonsense, excellent character and I enjoyed every part she was in.  Other than my obvious main character favourites, Molly was the best.

'Rebel Heart' surprised me in places and a little shock is always good.  I'm not surprised nearly enough by YAs anymore so it was awesome.  If you've read 'Rebel Heart' you'll probably know which bit I'm referring to and my question to you is did you expect that?


Plot - 9/10 - heading to the Big Water, another long journey story

Way Plot Was Pursued - 10/10 - liked all the steps on the journey

Characters - 10/10 - go Molly!

Style - 10/10 - love the narration and that it's written in Saba's dialect

Pace - 9/10 - Slower than 'Blood Red Road'

Would I recommend it? - Yes, I'm loving this trilogy

Would I look up the author? - Yes.  I definitely would.

Everything I loved about 'Blood Red Road' I loved about'Rebel Heart'.  Bring on 'Raging Star'!

Molly Looby

Author / Reviewer / Blogger / Editor / Movellian / ZA Ready

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Requiem - Lauren Oliver

This review contains spoilers from 'Delirium' and 'Pandemonium'.  If you're interested in reading the trilogy I would avoid this review.

A Spoiler Free Bit About the Book

Alex is alive.  Just when Lena was trying to move on with Julian.  But there are more important things happening in Lena's world.
A rebellion.

My Review

I enjoyed 'Requiem' more than 'Pandemonium' but again it was no where near meeting the brilliance of 'Delirium'.

Like 'Pandemonium', I felt 'Requiem' had a very slow start.  but not only that, I couldn't understand why it took so long to get going.  I felt that some of the build up was unnecessary.  I just wanted to get to it.  Fast.  Much faster than 'Requiem' allowed.

The dual perspective didn't shock me as a lot of YA novels (including some of mine) use this.  But it did shock me who had the second perspective.  It was a twist on the norm and it was fantastic.

I loved getting some of the old characters back as I missed them so much in 'Pandemonium'.  But I found I  cared less and less for Julian who I never particularly liked in the first place, which probably didn't help.

Again, as always, there were beautiful turns of phrase and description, something I expect with Oliver now.

The ending, once I got there at long last, was excellent.  I felt the sting of betrayal as though it was my own.  I got to the point where I had my hand permanently over my mouth, heart pounding, terrified with every chapter I was going to let characters die by reading but I couldn't put it down.

The final paragraph was one of the most beautiful pieces of writing I've ever come across.  I read it over and over and had to share it with my best friend.  It took my breath away, cleansed my soul and altogether tore me apart.

Unfortunately there was a particularly huge loose end left over that was never resolved.  I was disappointed it wasn't fully solved and felt a little cheated.


Plot - 6/10 - YA fiction's full of rebellions, nothing new here.

Way Plot Was Pursued - 7/10 - The two perspectives were a great new way to look at the world.

Characters - 8/10 - I couldn't have been happier to see the old ones again.

Style -7/10 - Usual Oliver style, no disappointments there.

Pace - 6/10 - too slow, far too slow.

Would I recommend it? - No.  I'm still of the opinion that you should just read 'Delirium' and leave it there.

Would I look up the author? - Yes.  I'm intrigued about the excerpt in the back for Oliver's new book which I will look up.

'Requiem' was okay.  But again, it wasn't 'Delirium'.

Molly Looby
Author / Reviewer / Editor / Movellain / Wrimo / ZA Ready

Contact me about all things book here:

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Pandemonium - Lauren Oliver

This is the sequel to 'Delirium' so if you haven't read 'Delirium' and you plan to I wouldn't read on past here.  This review doesn't have spoilers from 'Pandemonium' though.

A Spoiler Free Bit About the Book

After escaping Portland, Lena must live in the Wilds and learn fast how to make a life there.  But how can she do that without the reason she escaped in the first place?  How can she do that without Alex?

My Review

If you've read my review of 'Delirium' you'll know just how much I adored it, the whole idea that love was a disease was fascinating.  But 'Pandemonium' wasn't about that.  It was about a group who didn't believe in the disease or the cure and who wanted to fight for love.

'Pandemonium' was such a disappointment as I loved 'Delirium' so much.

In comparison, 'Pandemonium' felt very slow.  I didn't know where it was going but I wasn't hooked so I had to make myself read it, which is never a good thing.  Also, as it went on I found that I didn't like where it was going anyway.

But it wasn't all bad.  I liked the separation between 'Now' and 'Then' and the way that shaped the story with the back and forth between them.  I liked learning about how they lived in the Wilds and how different it was there.  Also, little things surprised me and as in 'Delirium', Oliver included some beautiful phrases.

The new characters were great.  I connected with them and wanted to know more about them but that didn't mean they could compare to the characters we left behind in 'Delirium'.  I spent a lot of 'Pandemonium' pining for the old characters as much as Lena was.  Or perhaps that was the point.

The twist at the end in my opinion, was so predictable.  I knew  it was coming through most of the book.  I don't think that's a negative on Oliver's part as it wasn't hinted at too much or anything.  It was just one of those things that had to happen and I was very aware of that.


Plot - 6/10 - The plot wasn't really gripping enough for my liking.

Way Plot Was Pursued - 7/10 - I liked the 'Then' and 'Now'.

Characters - 7/10 - Not as loveable as the characters in 'Delirium'.

Style - 7/10 - Oliver's style is beautiful but I wanted more action.

Plot - 6/10 - It started slow and seemed slow most of the way through.  I expected something to speed it up and it didn't.

Would I recommend it? - No.  To feel the real power behind 'Delirium' it's probably best not to read 'Pandemonium' if like me you need a faster pace and more urgency in a novel.

Would I look up the author? - Yes.  I'm still interested in Oliver's 'Before I Fall' and look forward to reading it at some point.

'Pandemonium' was okay.  I doubted anything could top 'Delirium' anyway.

Molly Looby
Author / Reviewer / Blogger / Editor / Movellian / Wrimo / ZA Ready

Contact me about reading, writing, books and anything here:

Monday, 6 January 2014

Allegiant - Veronica Roth

'Divergent' and 'Insurgent' spoilers ahead.  Tread carefully.

A Spoiler Free Bit About the Book

The Edith Prior video only exacerbates the factionless/faction conflict.  But now they know that the Divergent have a mission.

Tris and Tobias have to search for their destiny beyond the city walls.

My Review

'Allegiant' for all its hype and buzz, started way too slowly.  I wanted to dive right in and search for the people outside the fence but no, there was a bit of stuff I had to get through first.  Stuff if I'm honest, I didn't quite see the point of.

Tobias's point of view threw me a bit.  At first I didn't like it at all.  It was really difficult to get used to.  I liked the way Tris saw him much more than the way he saw himself.  But of course I did love learning more about him.  Seeing Tris through his eyes was interesting too, it gave her a different edge.

The information flow was just right and I applaud Roth for this as there was so much for me to understand and wrap my head abound.  The pacing of the chapters was perfect as was the development of old and new character as usual.

If you've read 'Divergent' and 'Insurgent' you know how fond Roth is of killing off characters once they've served their purpose.  Well . . . prepare yourself.  I had many broken heart moments during 'Allegiant' where I went "No.  Well that can't happen."  But sometimes these are the best bits.

I cried multiple times during 'Allegiant' and again when I shut the book.  The trilogy only occupied a few months of my life which is such a small amount for a trilogy.  I'm sad I caught it right at the end but then again glad because I know the hype is just beginning.  I sped through all three, wishing I'd savoured the pages.


Plot - 9/10 - Still couldn't top 'Divergent' but I don't think anything can.

Way Plot Was Pursued - 9/10 - Liked where we ended up and how it all went.

Characters - 10/10 - I loved them all.

Style - 9/10 - Unsure about Tobias's point of view.

Pace - 8/10 - It started way too slow for a huge finale of a trilogy.

Would I recommend it? - Yes.  If you've got this far you don't have a choice but to finish the trilogy.

Would I look up the author? - Yes.  I can't wait till Roth writes more.  I'm even going to look into the little stories from Tobias's point of view from earlier in the trilogy.

Well, the 'Divergent' trilogy is over.  What a ride it was.

Molly Looby
Author / Reviewer / Blogger / Editor / Movellain / Wrimo / ZA Ready

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