Monday, November 25, 2013

Book Blitz: The Red Sector Chronicles by Krystle Jones

The Red Sector Chronicles by Krystle Jones

The Red Sector Chronicles
 Add To GoodreadsGenre: Paranormal, Young Adult, Dystopia, Romance

The Red Sector Chronicles
The strength of Sloane’s heart is about to be put to the ultimate test.

After the Eclipse – the night vampires began openly slaughtering human victims – everything changed. Out of fear, the government salvaged what remained of the human population and enclosed them in massive, security-laden cities called White Sectors, while marking the vampire infested territory as Red Sectors.

When seventeen-year-old Sloane McAllister’s twin brother disappears, she seems to be the only one who thinks he isn’t dead, and she vows to stop at nothing to find him. Gathering her courage, she braves the Red Sector to search for clues to his whereabouts. By chance, she encounters Aden, a handsome, charismatic vampire with a hidden agenda. He turns Sloane against her will and whisks her away to his underground city. Enemies quickly become friends as Sloane struggles against her attraction to Aden, and resists her growing loyalties to the creatures that ruined her life.

But the vampires themselves are the least of her problems. A war is brewing between the humans and vampires, along with a growing web of deceit and betrayal. And before it’s all over, loyalties will be tested, hearts will be broken, and no one’s lives will ever be the same.

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About The Author:

Krystle JonesKrystle Jones was born and raised in the small, southern town of Tullahoma, Tennessee. Reading and writing have been lifelong passions of hers. In addition to being a novelist, she is also an award-winning flutist, and moonlights as a voice actress. Her voice can be heard in the popular online game, Alice is Dead 3.

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Today, Krystle Jones, author of the young adult dystopian/PNR series The Red Sector Chronicles, will be interviewing her main character, Sloane McAllister!
KRYSTLE: So, Sloane, tell the readers a little about yourself.
SLOANE: Um… *tucks hair behind ear and stares at the floor* I’m, uh, a vampire hunter who kind of became a vampire. *laughs* Yeah, EPIC fail.
KRYSTLE: *grins* How’s that working out for you?
SLOANE: Well, you know, it was a big adjustment at first. And by big adjustment, I mean I totally freaking hated it! *laughs* But you get used to it, and being a vampire isn’t all bad. *looks at handsome blond vampire off-stage*
ADEN: (shouted) Yeah, it isn’t!
SLOANE: Get out of my interview!
KRYSTLE: Aden, darling, you’ll get your turn in a minute. 
ADEN: *sad face*
SLOANE: *sighs* Why does he have to look so cute when he’s sad?
KRYSTLE: Anyway, back to the vampire thing. How did you feel when you first went into the Red Sector to look for your brother? 
SLOANE: Scared to death! Duh! I mean, the Red Sectors are crazy dangerous. All those vampires… *shudders*
KRYSTLE: And yet you went anyway.
SLOANE: *glares at author* And whose fault is that?
KRYSTLE: *grins* I think you relish being in danger, a bit of a thrill-seeker, as it were. Not to mention you’re stubborn and reckless.
SLOANE: Hey! Those are my finer qualities. And I wouldn’t have had to be in dangerous situations if you hadn’t kept putting me in them. 
KRYSTLE: You know you liked it.
SLOANE: *suppresses a smile*
KRYSTLE: Right. Well, thanks for coming today, Sloane! Good luck staying out of trouble. You’re going to need it. *last part grumbled*
SLOANE: I heard that! Vampire hearing, remember! *points to ears*

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Saturday, November 16, 2013

Allegiant by Veronica Roth

Allegiant by Veronica RothReading Level: Ages 12 and up
Hardcover: 526 Pages
Release Date: October 22, 2013
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Narration: First Person: Tris, Tobias
Genre: Dystopian
Challenge: Dystopian

The Divergent Series:
Book One: Divergent
Book Two: Insurgent
Book Three: Allegiant

Order On Amazon: Hardcover
Order On Barnes and Noble:
Hardcover and Nook

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Goodreads Synopsis:

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories. 

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love. 

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.

My Review:

"I don't need to relive my fears anymore.
All I need to do now is try to overcome them."

This is one of the main reasons why I admire Veronica Roth's Divergent series so much. She packs so much meaning into her books, meanings that we can apply to our own, everyday lives. She connects with her readers on an emotional level that other authors rarely do. Literally, there's at least one sentence on each page that can be turned into an inspirational quote fit for a Hallmark coffee mug. However, even though I do love the message behind her words, I'm not saying that I'm a particular fan of her writing style. Back when I was reading Divergent, I didn't notice it too much, because there was nothing to compare it to. However, after two years of extensive, more like obsessive, reading, I realized that Roth's writing sounded choppy and forced compared to some of my other favorite authors. The first few chapters were difficult to get into, because the sentences rolled unnaturally off my tongue. But after a bit of fumbling, I adapted to her writing style, and it became easier and easier to ignore my discomfort with it.

Another thing that I wasn't a huge fan of was the constant switching point of views between Tris and Tobias. If it was a regular, continuous switch off every other chapter, it might've worked better, but the transitions were completely random. Plus, Tobias's voice sounded exactly like Tris's, which was confusing at the least and disturbing at the most. Because of that, I had to constantly flip back and forth between pages in order to see whose perspective I was actually reading from.

Tris is definitely one of my favorite heroines of all time. She's such an intricately woven character with so much depth! Instead of the flat, two dimensional characters we see in so many YA novels, Veronica has given us a heroine who knows that she isn't perfect, knows that she's made mistakes, but nonetheless tries her best to learn from them, and ultimately, overcome them. She doesn't break from all the guilt of her past actions, instead, she does her best to amend them. Tris is no longer that insecure girl who didn't know what choice to make. Now, she's a strong, brave, confident woman who isn't afraid of what the future might bring. She knows that she's ready to face whatever situation life throws her way. 

Tobias, on the other hand, seems to be less secure than he was in previous books. Or maybe, he was always that way, but we never saw it in his perspective. After a secret is revealed about what he really is, he starts to doubt himself. He begins to think that he's less of a man than he was in the past. He has trouble coming to terms with this new information throughout the novel, which eventually leads him to do things that he originally wouldn't have done. But this is heading into spoilery area, so I'll leave you with that.

Like every other novel in the Divergent trilogy, Allegiant was impossible to put down. Even though it was much more predictable, considering the fact that I was spoiled about it beforehand, I was engaged in it nonetheless. Although I admit, I was surprised that Roth decided to place like 90% of her story outside the city.

Overall, I enjoyed reading Allegiant and didn't consider it a waste of my time, despite the heart-breaking ending. I was a bit confused on my feelings right after reading the book, because my mind couldn't decide whether I actually enjoyed it or not. However, after the whole story sank in, I finally decided that I did like it, even though it caused me permanent emotional damage. I might've had a different opinion if I wasn't spoiled about the ending before, but since that unfortunately did happen, I already expected it. Hence, taking away any surprise on my part. However, I'm not going to hold that against the book itself, because that's obviously no fault on Veronica's part. Only advice I have for anyone who is planning on actually reading the novel is that you stop reading reviews, because you definitely do NOT want to be spoiled on a novel like this one.

Tris- 6/5
Tobias- 4/5
Supporting Characters- 5/5
Action- 4.5/5
Romance- 4/5
Writing- 3.5/5
Took me a while to get used to.
Overall- 4/5
I'm happy, yet unhappy, with how this story ended.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Book Blitz: Valkyrie Series by T.G. Ayer

Valkyrie Series by T.G. Ayer

Dead Radiance
 Add To GoodreadsGenre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Series: Valkyrie #1

Dead Radiance by T.J. AyerBryn Halbrook had always seen the glow. But it is only when her best friend dies that she discovers the meaning of those beautiful golden auras — Death. Alone, lost in the foster system, she struggles to understand who she is and why she was cursed with the ability to see the soon-to-be-dead. 

The new foster kid, Aidan, isn’t helping any. Mr. Perfect seems to fit in no matter what, making her feel even more pathetic. But when his affections turn to her, Bryn finds him hard to resist. Impossible actually. A mystery himself, Aidan disappears, leaving behind a broken heart and a mysterious book that suggests Bryn might not be entirely human.

Bryn stands at the threshold of a journey of discovery. Will destiny help her find herself, find her purpose and her place in a world in which she’d never belonged?

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Dead Embers
 Add To GoodreadsGenre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Series: Valkyrie #2

Dead EmbersSince becoming employed by a supernatural protection agency, Natalie Johnson's life has been more interesting than ever. While most teens are working on their summer tans, Natalie works on slaughtering the undead lurking just outside her town's borders.

The workload takes more than just a toll on her love life, it dampens her spirit and her health, as the town is plagued by a mysterious murderer intent on stealing the residents' souls. Natalie's investigation is hampered by her declining health and the sicker she gets, the more inadequate she feels.

Guilt over her inability to act, weighs heavily on Natalie's shoulders during a time when her strength is needed more than ever. As some of those closest to her begin to lose faith, she must make the hardest stand yet to save the soul of the one person she can always count on:

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Dead Chaos
 Add To GoodreadsGenre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Series: Valkyrie #3

Dead Chaos
Valkyrie Bryn Halbrook is broken and damaged…

Struggling to accept the loss of her wings, Bryn’s not sure if she can be a real Valkyrie anymore. But when a mysterious prophecy claims she will be the reason the All-Father dies, she is determined to ensure the prediction will not come to pass.

A visit to the three fates who live beneath the great Tree of life, sends Bryn racing against time to find the missing Heimdall and his horn. As Odin’s life hangs in the balance and Ragnarok draws ever closer, Bryn has to find a way to save Heimdall and Odin before she can discover the truth about who she really is.

In this thrilling instalment in the Valkyrie series Bryn must battle not only the formidable frost giants and the hated God Loki, but she must also find a balance between what she will lose and what she will gain.

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About The Author:

I have been a writer from the time I was old enough to recognise that reading was a doorway into my imagination. Poetry was my first foray into the art of the written word. Books were my best friends, my escape, my haven. I am essentially a recluse but this part of my personality is impossible to practise given I have two teenage daughters, who are actually my friends, my tea-makers, my confidantes… I am blessed with a husband who has left me for golf. It’s a fair trade as I have left him for writing. We are both passionate supporters of each other's loves – it works wonderfully…

My heart is currently broken in two. One half resides in South Africa where my old roots still remain, and my heart still longs for the endless beaches and the smell of moist soil after a summer downpour. My love for Ma Afrika will never fade. The other half of me has been transplanted to the Land of the Long White Cloud. The land of the Taniwha, beautiful Maraes, and volcanoes. The land of green, pure beauty that truly inspires. And because I am so torn between these two lands – I shall forever remain cross-eyed.

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Excerpt From Dead Radiance:

Aside from my father and the mysterious note-maker, it was Aiden’s part in this whole fiasco which crawled deep into my heart and festered as I walked. Was his intention to come to Craven to befriend me? To find me and study me? If so, it meant he’d lied from day one with those sexy smiles and hot kisses. The hurt deepened as I recalled the startled expression in Aiden’s eyes when he’d first kissed me. Why take our relationship to a personal level when I was no more than a genetic monstrosity?

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