Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima


Before he knows about the roses, sixteen-year-old jack lived an unremarkable like in the small Ohio town of Trinity. Only the medicine he has to take daily and the thick scar above his heart set him apart from the other high schoolers. Then one day Jack skips his medicine. Suddenly, he is stronger, fiercer, and more confident than ever before, and it feels great until he loses control of his own strength and nearly kills another player during soccer team tryouts.

Soon, jack learns the startling truth about himself: he is Weirlind, part of an underground society of magical people who live among us. At their helm sits the feuding houses of the Red Rose and the Whir Rose, whose power is determined by playing the Game—a magical tournament in which each house sponsors a warrior to fight to the death, the winning house rules the Weir.

As if his bizarre heritage isn’t enough, Jack finds out that he’s not just another member of Weirlind---he’s one of the last of the warriors---at a time when both houses are scouting for a player.

  • Number of pages: 426


I chose to read this book because I felt like I was reading too many girly books with female leads. I needed a good guy character to change things up a bit! This book was just the story to read for guys mainly. The whole concepts of magical people and such have become popular of late, but The Warrior Heir is completely different and original from all others. Granted, it was difficult to wrap my mind around all the terms and follow along without confusing a "Weir" with "guilds" and such. It slowed considerably in the middle of the story, but the ending was satisfactory enough. The Game and what it stands for is quite unsettling and gruesome. This book was interesting for the most part has bursts of good fast-paced action and from 1 to 10? I have to give this a 6.

Guardian of the Gate by Michelle Zink


As sixteen-rear-old Lia Milthorpe searches for a way to end the prophecy that has divided her family for generations, her twin sister, Alice, works to hone the skills shell need to defeat Lia. Alice will stop at nothing to reclaim her sister’s role in the prophecy, and that’s not the only thing she wants. There’s also Lia’s beloved, James.

The sisters always knew that the prophecy would turn those closest to them against them. But they didn’t know what betrayal could lead them to do.

In the end, only one sister will be standing.

Number of pages: 340


Lia’s story is intense. Guardian of the Gate is the 2nd book in the Prophecy of the Sisters trilogy. In this book Lia is on a journey to find the last two keys and the missing pages of the prophecy. This is a story filled with mystery, passion, determination, and betrayal. I just wanted to cry some parts while at other times I was so frustrated at how hopeless it all seemed. I really enjoyed this book. This is better than the first book, Prophecy of the Sisters, and I didn’t think that was even possible. This is not a mystery with clues, but with suspense, which I found thrilling. You never know whom you can trust in this story and that keeps you on the edge of your seat. I had to reread this book again once I finished it, like watching a movie mystery and keeping an eye out for any little tidbits of clues you might have missed and finding yourself at the ending just as shocked and thrilled from the last time you read it. From 1 to the desirable 10? I give this book a . . . 8.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink


Twin sisters Lia and Alice Milthorope have just become orphans. They have also become enemies. As they discover their roles in a prophecy that has turned generations of sisters against each other, they find themselves entangles in a mystery that involves a tattoo-like mark, their parents’ deaths, a boy a book, and a lifetime of secrets.

Lia and Alice don’t know whom they can trust. They just know they cat trust each other.

Number of pages: 343


This story was awesome. I just finished this book and continued to the next in a matter of 5 minutes. I guess that it ends at a point where it's too difficult not to want to see what happens next. So these twin sisters have some family issues that you wouldn’t even imagine. It's told by Lia, who is obviously the good twin-while she starts to uncover an ancient prophecy-that involves her and her sister. She is the quieter one of the two, and the eldest (though by mere minutes I believe). Her story though kinda scary at times is complicated and I couldn’t put it down. Zink created the mystery so that it doesn't give away enough to guess the outcome, but won't tire you and leave you just waiting for an end to come. Now her sister Alice? She was just evil! Ugh! I just wanted to slap her at times, no joke. I really, really hope Lia kicks her butt in the end. This book had just the right amount of mystery and emotion that completely had me engrossed until the end. There were times that the story slowed, but it wasn’t to bad and the parts that were good were good. So from 1-10? I do believe I shall give it an . . . 8.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Fool's Girl by Celia Rees


Young and beautiful Violetta is of noble blood, but her country is in shambles. She and her comic companion, Feste, have just arrived in London on a mysterious quest. Their journey has been long and their misfortunes many, but it is not until they encounter the playwright William Shakespeare that the whole story is reveled. Violetta and Feste are in search of an ancient holy relic-her country’s greatest treasure-that the evil Malvolio has stolen. Malvolio’s plot seems complex and wide reaching, but it’s not clear who else is involved . . . until Violetta’s childhood love, Stephan, enters the scene. Is this remarkable story a comedy or a tragedy? Spun from Shakespeare’s unproarious, Twelfth Night, Celia Rees has crafted a wholly original adventure that stretches from the shores of Illyria to the Forest of Arden, where romance and danger go hand in hand.

Number of pages: 287


Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night is not a play I am actually familiar with, but this book kind of makes me want to know more about it. This book is like a “what-happened-after” story with Viola’s noble and beautiful daughter, Violetta. When her country’s most holy relic is stolen as well as her country, and she goes and tries to get it back. Because obviously the female lead needs some spunk and this one has it. Now add the really handsome boyfriend and a mischievous Fool and this story gets interesting. The plot was good, but I got confused at times. Rees wanted to make it seem like you never know who you can trust, but it got to the point where I was like “whaaaat???” I did really like all the characters. Especially how Rees incorporated Shakespeare (“Will”) in the whole book that helped to save the day. I never really thought to give Shakespeare a personality before, but I loved how he turned out here knowing how this loyal and, to be honest, stressed out guy really becomes extremely famous. The ending came suddenly. I was reading and was surprised to see the pages thinning when at the time it seemed like the story was going nowhere. It was a good ending, though a bit predictable. From 1- 10? All around I would have to give this a 6.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale


She was born with her eyes closed and a word on her tongue, a word she could not taste. Her name was Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree, and she spent the first years of her life listening to her aunt’s stories and learning the language of the birds, especially the swans. And when she was older, she watched as a colt was born, and she heard the first word on his tongue, his name, Falada.

From the Grimm’s fairy tale of the princess who became a goose girl before she could become queen, Shannon Hale has woven an incredible, original, and magical tale of a girl who must find her own unusual talents before she can lead the people she has made her own.

Number of pages: 383


Fairy tales are great, aren’t they? Stories told to little children at night, those that are famous for there magic and such. Well, this is one of those but changed and created to be enjoyed by everyone. Well, at least I enjoyed it. Shannon Hale’s rendition of Grimm’s story of Goose Girl is unique from the original, but just as enjoyable. So this princess, Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee (very pretty name by the way) has theses gifts that give her the language of animals, preferably birds, as well as the ability to speak to and control the wind. This whole concept Shannon Hale created with communicating with nature is incredible. Can you imagine it? Understanding the wind and its knowledge of what it’s seen, controlling of fire, knowing the first word of a foal and the squawk of a bird. I don’t know about you, but I think that would be awesome. And these abilities are formed so that is seems that it could be possible for all of it to happen. Actually, now that I think about it, these books are also considered fantasy. During the entire book the characters tell stories to each other, nursery stories and legends. Those tales are beautifully created. There was excitement throughout the story, but sometimes it was too stretched out for my taste. From 1-10? All in all I give this book a 7.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Red Necklace by Sally Gardner


The winds of change are blowing through Paris in 1789, both for France and a mysterious Gypsy boy named Yann Margoza. He was born with a gift for knowing what people are thinking and an uncanny ability to throw his voice, skills he uses while working for a foolish magician. On the night of a special performance, he meets shy Sido, a lonely heiress with a cold-hearted father. Though they have the shortest of conversations, an attachment is born that will influence both their paths. While revolution is afoot in France Sido is being used as the pawn of the fearful villain Count Kalliovsky. Some have instead called him the devil; and only Yann, for Sido’s sake, will dare to oppose him.
Number of pages: 378


Sally Gardner has done the amazing task of creating a historical fiction that I am sure will captivate anyone who is up for it. I, personally, love historical fiction books, but I am confident in saying that those of you who don’t like those types of books will love this French Revolution story. There’s action, magic, romance, mystery. What could be better? Some times it did get a little creepy and disturbing, what with beheading and such things. The people of France were quite gruesome at this stage of the Revolution. The characters were wonderfully created. You really got a sense of each essence of the characters. It gives you a look at those dark times in France from both an aristocratic point of view (Sido) and the point of view of Yann the Gypsy fellow with charming looks and amazing abilities. basically, this story was intriguing from start to finish. I can’t wait to read the sequel, The Silver Blade! From 1-10? I give this book a 8.