Blog-Archive

[Snapshot] Notes from Ghost Town (engl)

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‚Notes from Ghost Town‘
by
Kate Ellison

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(© goodreads)

Synopsis:
They say first love never dies…
From critically acclaimed author Kate Ellison comes a heartbreaking mystery of mental illness, unspoken love, and murder. When sixteen-year-old artist Olivia Tithe is visited by the ghost of her first love, Lucas Stern, it’s only through scattered images and notes left behind that she can unravel the mystery of his death. There’s a catch: Olivia has gone colorblind, and there’s a good chance she’s losing her mind completely—just like her mother did. How else to explain seeing (and falling in love all over again with) someone who isn’t really there? With the murder trial looming just nine days away, Olivia must follow her heart to the truth, no matter how painful. It’s the only way she can save herself.
(Source: Goodreads.com)

My opinion:
I don’t know where I should start. In this book there were shed many tears, not only by the protagonist, but also by me while reading it. It begins immediately there – as it is described in the synopsis – with the death of Stern, who I immediately took to my heart at the first encounter, and with every other appearance of him, I fall more and more in love with him, but always with the knowledge that he’s damn dead and just a ghost…

Of course the book wasn’t only about the processing of the grief or about the releasing of Stern, to let him go – the BFF of Liv and almost boyfriend. No, because Liv’s schizophrenic mother is accused of the murder and the negotiations stand in a queue within the next seven days.
Seven days, in which together with Stern, Liv tries to find the true murderer of Stern also the reason for it. Hence, it is really very exciting and criminological and what I’ve liked was that I also could guess who the murderer was or not. And I must admit that up to three quarters of the book I had no clue. Hence, this guessing game and dissolving of the mysterious occurrences was made really well and has tied me up throughout the whole book.

And adding to this whole criminological background, there are of course the whole big feelings and emotions, which Liv has to go through. Not only the heartbreaking ‘letting go’ of Stern, but also the strength to stand to her mother, to fight for her, even if others put themselves in Liv’s way and make it harder for her and, also at the same time, to find the courage to let herself fall into a new love.

I’ve liked Liv really very much and she was a tough character and she was very likeable to me right from the beginning, during the prologue and before destiny let her life fall apart. Though she was almost already too strong for her sixteen years, but I prefer this much more than these irritating, naive girlies. Moreover Liv was also emotionally cold, especially at the beginning and reserved to the others, except towards her stepsisters, but after what has happened to her, it’s just logical and understandable.

And now to Stern … Man, how can an author create such a great, charming, amusing, gifted and hot guy, just to let him die in the beginning – to let him be a ghost? Still, when I think back to the book, tears fill my eyes always when I think of him, of Liv’s longing for him and also of mine. That was really painful!
But I also found Austin quite okay, even if for a long time it wasn’t clear, which role/ game he played. Nevertheless, he had a mistake … namely -> he just wasn’t Stern. 😦

Though I haven’t liked the writing manner of the author by hundred percent and here and there I also had difficulties with her English, but nevertheless she could conjure a great atmosphere here and therefore I’m sure, that I’ll read a book of her again sometime.

Even if some other readers think that the end was too corny in a way or too rose-colored, for me it was great and I was totally happy with it and have no problem with how it has ended. But I’m a happy-end-fan, as you know, and therefore it was exactly my taste and I hope, if some of you decide to the read this book too, that you all will feel like that as well. Therefore I like to recommend it and I wish you all a lot of fun with the book! But before you start reading, procure a big pack of handkerchiefs for it! 🙂

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Quotes:

Liv: ‚When her fingers glide across the keys and what results is the kind of music that makes you stop where you are and notice every beautiful thing around you. His fingers can do this, too.‘

Liv: ‚… Before we knew that we were not permanent, and that a good, easy life is not something the universe is contractually obligated to grand you.‘

Liv: ‚… And I ace, as much as I have since the day Stern and I kissed, for a person beside me who understands exactly what I need without me ever having to say it.  Even if the world stays gray forever, I just don’t think it would be so bad if I knew I could have Stern, permanent, solid, for real.‘

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A huge Thanks for the reviewer’s copy to:

© netgalley.com

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[Review] The Sea of Tranquility

( ©Atria Books)

(© Antisocialite Press LLC)

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‚The Sea of Tranquility‘
by Katja Millay...

Synopsis:
Former piano prodigy Nastya Kashnikov wants two things: to get through high school without anyone learning about her past and to make the boy who took everything from her—her identity, her spirit, her will to live—pay.
Josh Bennett’s story is no secret: every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. Now all he wants is be left alone and people allow it because when your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space.
Everyone except Nastya, the mysterious new girl at school who starts showing up and won’t go away until she’s insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But the more he gets to know her, the more of an enigma she becomes. As their relationship intensifies and the unanswered questions begin to pile up, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she’s been hiding—or if he even wants to. (Source: Goodreads.com)

My thoughts about the book:
Holly crap-that, book brought me to heaven, then hell and back again.
But let us start slowly and from the beginning. The story was written in the present – what I like much in English books – and it switches the POV between the two central characters Nastya and Josh. I liked that and it has also fitted very well to the story and gave me the feeling that I’m in the heads of the characters and that I really could get to know them. Furthermore I also find Millay’s writing manner very suitable and pleasant, although she also let her characters curse out loudly if it fits – and it does. These are teenagers anyway and therefore it feels real and it’s great to read and it was fantastic. Oh, I repeat myself, but yes, it was really good 😉

This book is at the beginning very similar to the book ‘Speak’ by Anderson, but it was written much better – in my opinion. And the most amusing part was for me that Millay has made it possible that I’ve not noticed at all in the first chapters, that Nastya isn’t speaking; not a single word. But she communicates with the reader in a manner that this goes by completely unnoticed. Only when it was explicitly pointed out that she isn’t speaking, I’ve noted it and had to turn back and read parts of it once again to convince myself that she really has spoken no word so far. Really awesome and it shows the great writing manner of Millay. *brillant*

Now to the story: Both characters, Nastya and Josh, have massive problems with themselves and the world in general, which results from painful strokes of fate, which I wouldn’t even wish my biggest enemy. But both don‘t surrender, but fight further in their life and at some point and somehow these two ‘damaged’ characters meet each other. And both know that the other one is just as broken as they are. Cut a long story short– they become friends, become more familiar and it happens even more between them, what I don’t want to tell you right now. Only thus much – that the whole time I was with my heart with them and every page I worried so much about them. They both put me under their spell, especially Josh and now he is also my ‘book boyfriend’ of the month!

You can see now that not only the story could convince me and their way and their fights from their personal hells, no – also the characters themselves. Nastya wasn’t likeable to me immediately; I had to get to know her to get a better picture of her. However, also had my problems with it because she tells a lot and thinks about much, but she reveals only fragments of herself and together with Josh, I tried to solve her jigsaw puzzle and to discover her secret. And Josh – oh ♥ Josh ♥ – he is just amazing and I can’t catch it in words, how much I have suffered with him. Not only because of his past but also in between the story because of his problems with Nastya. Beside my darling Josh, I was also a fan of Clay and Drew. Drew is the sunny-boy of the story who makes everything a little lighter, and who you have to get to know a little better to look behind his narcissistic facade. And sometimes for me he was like a Golden Retriever – I just had to love him. 😉
And his parents, particularly the mother of Drew, are also absolutely great and here it has amused me to read also about other characters.

Now to the points which I haven’t liked so much and which are the reason, why I can’t rate the book with 5 points. The first reason is Nastya. Of course I could understand why Nastya doesn’t speak so long and it was okay for me, but after three quarters of the book, it was more and more illogical for me, why she is speaking with others, but not yet with her parents – or also why she didn’t tell Josh everything. I know, everybody processes traumas differently, longer or shorter. But personally I found Josh’s strokes of fate worse and emotional more difficult to endure, but still he has opened himself for her, has trusted her, but Nastya kept him in suspense, and there were times, where I just wanted to strangle her. Then I wanted to hug her and take her pain way and there were even parts, where I wanted both of it at the same time.
Beside my problems with Nastya’s behavior, I also have to admit that sometimes it dragged a little. Everything was described very long and precisely and the story developed very slowly. Which wouldn’t have disturbed me – because I like it when relationships grow slowly– BUT the romantic scenes were also totally short and were written only like ‘by the way’ alongside the story, without getting into details or taking some time for it, for what I’ve wished for after all the struggle.
Moreover to that I didn’t liked it that sometimes in the middle of a scene, in which they have discussed something important, the chapter just ended and the scene was over, and then it was a jump to the next chapter, several hours or days later – without going in more detail on what has happened exactly in the previous scene. Gosh, I think this was the point which has frustrated me the most! And this point is probably also responsible for the rating. 😉

Cover (Atria Books):
Extremely nice cover and I must admit that I wanted the book in the first place because of the beautiful cover. 🙂

All in all:
I have no words for all feelings which this book has triggered in me and I don’t know whether I should be pleased with the sad, depressive parts or saddened. But they have moved me all together, as well as everything else in this story broke my heart and joined together again.
After the end of the book I feel like after a long run in which were are strenuous and lighter phases and now I’m just exhausted, but in good way. It is even in such a way that I won’t read another book in the next two days … because I just can’t. I simply need a break to come to terms with it. Weird – that’s a first.

Rating:
4,5 of 5 points – (so awesome)

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Thanks to netgalley.com for the reviewer’s copy!

© netgalley.com

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Quotes:

Nastya: ‚People like to say love is unconditional, but it’s not, and even if it was unconditional, it’s still never free. There’s always an expectation attached. They always want something in return. Like they want you to be happy or whatever and that makes you automatically responsible for their happiness because they won’t be happy unless you are … I just don’t want that responsibility.‘

Josh: ‚First you count it in minutes, then in hours. You count in days, then in weeks, then months. Then one day you realize that you aren’t counting anymore, and you don’t even know when you’ve stopped. That’s the moment they’re gone.‘

Josh: „I wished my mother was here tonight, which is stupid, because it’s an impossible wish.“ He shrugs and turns to me, drowning the smile that cracks me every time.
It’s not stupid to want to see her again.
It wasn’t so much that I wanted to see her again,” he says, looking at me with the depth of more than seventeen years in his eyes. “I wanted her to see you.
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About the author – Katja Millay:
She grew up in Florida where she spent her time hiding from the sun. Then she moved to NYC where she attended film school at NYU and spent her time hiding from the rats. She was a high school film production/screenwriting teacher in a former life and now she sits at her kitchen table writing stories and ignoring the frightening mountain of laundry threatening to overtake her home. The Sea of Tranquility is her first novel. (Source: goodreads.com)

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[Review] White Horse

English Cover

German Cover

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‚White Horse‘ by Alex Adams

White Horse #1
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Synopsis:
Thirty-year-old Zoe leads an ordinary life until the end of the world arrives. She is cleaning cages and floors at Pope Pharmaceuticals when the President of the United States announces that human beings are no longer a viable species. When Zoe realizes that everyone she loves is disappearing, she starts running. Scared and alone in a shockingly changed world, she embarks on a remarkable journey of survival and redemption. Along the way, Zoe comes to see that humans are not defined by their genetic code, but rather by their actions and choices. White Horse offers hope for a broken world, where love can lead to the most unexpected places.
(Source: Goodreads.com)

My thoughts about the book:
The world is at the end and the people who are still alive, have either changed into monstrous beasts, or have lost all morality to save their own skin and to put off the fight against the omnipresent death. In the middle of this scenario the book begins and we follow the course of the tragic story with the help of the central character Zoey, who doesn’t only describe in the present how the world is destroyed, but also looks back to the time before the epidemic, before the war and before the downfall of humanity.
This happens mostly within the different chapters and thus is marked with a small heading (Then/ Now), so that the read don’t lose the orientation between the varying times, although the flashbacks into the past are also not written in a chronologically order and this got me confused sometimes. I don‘t know, whether others had also this problem or not, but at the beginning I had a hard time to follow the plot and I would have found it better, if at least a date would have been written at the flashbacks, to get a better overview of the events.

At the beginning of the book is an absolute chaos, not only in the destroyed world, but also for me as a reader and a big question mark stood here first of all. To be honest, I needed some time and chapters to understand the first relations, to form connection and to recognize a red thread. Although this is the case, nevertheless it was a great reading, full of tensions and ‘guessing game’ and I couldn’t stay away from book, because I just had to know how it goes on what happens next to Zoey on her way.

As you can see, Zoey is a character with whom I felt and for whom I worried throughout the book, because though Zoey is strong, grimly and aim-oriented to protect herself and the people in her surroundings and to get her to her goal, BUT still she tries to remain human, not to kill other if it can be avoided, and in spite of all cruel circumstances, tries to offer friendliness and helpfulness.
Which was amazing for me, because often I would have already giving up or have crept away in a cave, only by reading about the scenery and cruelty of some other people, because everything is simply so hopeless, desperate and somber. Moreover there are some scenes, which are really creepy and depressing and sad, so that sometimes I’ve just waited for some positive things, some small glimmers of hope.

Beside the plot and the great central figure, the writing manner of Adam was just wonderful and for me also like an own poetry. She has described everything very visually, put imagines in the reader’s head to grab Zoe’s feelings and to empathize, to feel and to see everything, as if the reader is a part of the story.
In my opinion this is partly good, but on the other side the book got too thick and the action thereby becomes also a little too slow, because of the detailed descriptions surroundings or the graphic representation and poetry of the sentences.
I think that is a personal preference and some will find it great and others won’t like it at all. I can’t choice between one of these two fractions, because I’m right in the middle, because I’ve loved her writing but also would have liked a little bit more actions and events and less descriptions.

Luckily for me, after all the sad things and strain, the end could again completely satisfy me and I was able to finish the book also with a good feeling. Otherwise I would have been – to tell the truth – a little bit mad. Because for what else we do everything in life and risk all, endure all adversities and hang on – just for love – and I think that is one of the basic messages of this book. And that in spite of everything, each of us is still able to decide how we care about others and whether we show humanity and cooperativeness, even if we receive none anymore ourselves.

German Cover:
For me the cover is succeeded brilliantly and it’s also one of the reasons, why the book has struck me. It tragically catches the plot and reflects perfectly the somber atmosphere.

All in all:
A book that leaves nobody cold and which pulls you into it from the first pages on, without a chance to escape. For me this one book would have been enough and hence, I’m really curious what the author has planned for the next installment. We’ll see what the future brings – I’m looking forward to it! 🙂

Rating:
4 of 5 points – (Great, Great, Great)
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Quotes:

Zoe: „When I awake, the world is still gone.“
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Zoe: „He reels me in, cups my face with both hands, and becomes my whole world. This is a kiss–maybe the last one we’ll ever know, so we stay there forever, warm and safe. When he pulls away, something is lost. I think it’s my heart.“
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Succession:

#  1:    Alex Adams – White Horse »»
#  2:    Alex Adams – Red Horse
#  3:    Alex Adams  – Untitled
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Success.

(© goodreads)

About the author – Alex Adams:
Alex Adams was born in New Zealand, raised in Greece and Australia, and currently lives in Oregon–which is a whole lot like New Zealand, minus those freaky-looking wetas. Her debut novel, White Horse (Emily Bestler Books/Atria) hits shelves April 17, 2012. Her fingers are crossed that the world won’t end before then. (Source: goodreads.com)

Visit her Website »»
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.A huge Thanks for the reviewer’s copy to:

© Piper

Review: One Moment

English Cover

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‚One Moment‘
by
Kristina McBride

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Synopsis:
„This was supposed to be the best summer of Maggie’s life. Now it’s the one she’d do anything to forget.“
Maggie remembers hanging out at the gorge with her closest friends after a blowout party. She remembers climbing the trail with her perfect boyfriend, Joey. She remembers that last kiss, soft, lingering, and meant to reassure her. So why can’t she remember what happened in the moment before they were supposed to dive? Why was she left cowering at the top of the cliff, while Joey floated in the water below-dead?
As Maggie’s memories return in snatches, nothing seems to make sense. Why was Joey acting so strangely at the party? Where did he go after taking her home? And if Joey was keeping these secrets, what else was he hiding?  (Source: Goodreads.com)

My thoughts about the book:
Sometimes the insignificant books surprise you more than the books for which you’ve waited for months and you’ve started to read cheerfully. This book here I’ve found by chance on netgalley and I started to read it only because I wanted to read a not addicted-making book and I thought this book won’t carry me away so much or occupy me. There I’ve been so completely wrong! Because the book didn’t let me go anymore and now that I’ve finished it already a few days ago, I still think or sympathize about it.

Right at the beginning of the story happens the tragedy, which is also described in the synopsis, and where Maggie’s boyfriend Joey dies in an unnecessary accident. Nevertheless the police intervene and some inconsistencies are being thrown up in connection with Joey’s death and bring some secrets to light, which some would have rather liked to be buried with him.

But who thinks now, this book is about a thriller or a crime novel, than that is wrong, because in the focus stands unmistakably the grief processing and above all the emotional life of the main protagonist Maggie, from whose view the events are told, full of flashbacks from her time together with Joey.
In so doing the author has made it possible that the readers could also get to know Joey, although the reader knows the whole time that Joey is already death. Although I also know that all along I nevertheless felt with Maggie as she remembered her first date with him, their first kiss and everything and I could only cry all the time, because it’s so sweet and sad at the same time – and I have also grouted some tears during this book!

Beside Maggie, it also tells much about the other characters and friends of Joey and how they deal with his sudden death. The narrow clique existed of 3 girls and 3 boys in whom now an important part is missing and instead that Joey’s death bond them together even more, they and also their friendship threatens to break.
I could also like most of these other central figures, but right from the beginning I had problems with Shannon and I also didn’t get along with Tanna from the start but it got better during the book. In return Adam was at the same time my chosen hero and favorite and he could convince me more and more during the plot, although he has also twisted himself in the story and has turned in different directions.

The end remains, let us say‚ half-open‘. I liked that, because I could play a little with my own imagination, but at the same time not too much and without an end. I’m very glad how the story has developed throughout the book and I could feel and hope with the protagonists, also despair, though. Hence, the end after all this strain was that what I’ve wished for and I’m really happy about it. 🙂

Cover:
The cover was what got my attention first. So for me the cover shows very felicitous the feelings in the book, the melancholy and naivety, and it also gets the reader into the right mood for the story.

All in all:
A heartbreaking book, which has gripped and hasn’t let me go anymore up to the last pages. The author has made it greatly to bring the emotional life of Maggie by her words on paper and let them share with the reader. I wasn’t caught for a long time into such an emotionally story. *great*

Rating:
3,5 of 5 points – (I really liked it)
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Thanks to netgalley.com for the reviewer’s copy!

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Quotes:

„Running.
We were running.
Almost there.
But the thunder of my feet crashed through something in my consciousness.
And I knew.
It was like I hit an invisible wall.
One that did not exist for Joey.
I had been so close to flying.
Then, suddenlyI stopped.“

Maggie: „What if it’s as simple as one moment? One tiny thing, like that kiss on the rocks? What if I’d kissed him a little longer? Would he be alive right now? Or what if I’d stayed with him Friday night, what if I’d been with him… wherever he was?“.

Maggie: Above, leaves fluttered in the moonlight, and I wondered if their whispers were meant for me, if they were imprinted with a code that I needed to decipher. Some kind of important message that would help me get this right.

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(© goodreads)

About the author – Kristina McBride:

Kristina McBride, a former English teacher and yearbook advisor, dreamed of being a published author since she was a child and lived across the street from a library. Kristina has published two novels for young adults – The Tension of Opposites (May 2010) and One Moment (June 2012). She lives in Ohio with her husband and two young children.
(Source: goodreads.com)

Visit her Website »».

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Review: My Soul to Take

English Cover

German Cover

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‚My Soul To Take
by Rachel Vincent

Soul Screamers # 1
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Synopsis:
She doesn’t see dead people. She senses when someone near her is about to die. And when that happens, a force beyond her control compels her to scream bloody murder. Literally.
Kaylee just wants to enjoy having caught the attention of the hottest guy in school. But a normal date is hard to come by when Nash seems to know more about her need to scream than she does. And when classmates start dropping dead for no apparent reason, only Kaylee knows who’ll be next. (Source: Goodreads.com).

My thoughts about the book:
The book delivers a direct entrance in the story of Kaylee who has the morbid ability to feel the coming death of other people. She doesn’t know it with certainty though, but always when she sees somebody wrapped in shades, the menacing death is omnipresent and she must struggle with all her strength against an ear-deafening scream from her own throat. Up to now she was never sure if the people really died or if she was just crazy. Up to that evening in a disco when she gets this frightening feeling again and can just barely disappear, before the scream leaves her throat. The next day she finds out in the news that her foreboding has become true and the girl has really passed away; without evident reason. Kaylee is despaired and turns to her best friend Emma, and also to the attractive Nash, because of several different circumstances. Both of them stand aside Kaylee to solve her mystery.
From the story and the plot this book was really exciting and a real page-turner but parts of it didn’t work for me, nevertheless. In fact the writing style of the author is okay, but then she writes single words in her sentences over and over again, like Kaylee is thinking them. For example: ‘damned!’ or ‘Oh no!’ which is too sloppy for me and doesn’t fit to the rest of her writing.
Here, moreover, I have AGAIN the same problem, like with many other YA books, that especially the best friend is constantly lifted up and in the foreground, above all because of her extraordinary attractiveness. Emma is blond, brown-eyed, incredibly pretty, has a great body with the right curves and every guy at school would do everything to be together with her. In contrast Kaylee looks with her blue eyes, her slight build and brunette hair totally average and these facts are mentioned in the book every few pages.

If this wasn’t already enough, that it sounded very similar to other books, then there are also some other facts which seemed to me very copied. Namely one of the hottest guys of the whole school falls in love with Kaylee and although he is, actually, a womanizer, he means it serious with the average Kaylee… Okay? To whom this seems familiar and who can’t read it anymore – please, just raise your hand! Thanks – you can take your hand down again. 🙂
What I liked in this book was, that it was written thrilling and was an absolutely a fast read, although I could foresee some things in it and they particularly didn’t surprised me. But well, it is just a YA book and hence, I probably must throttle my expectations a little. Unfortunately, the anticipation for the book was once again higher than the actual reading pleasure and in the future I’ll have to pay less attention and better not to listen too much to other opinions and reviews.

Cover:
A great cover which has immediately made me to buy it. Nice and interesting at the same time, and above all once also something different. I really like it very much.

All in all:
An interesting book with an exciting plot but which also possesses a few weaknesses.

Rating:
3 of 5 points

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Succession:

#0,5: Rachel Vincent – My Soul to Lose
# 1:     Rachel Vincent – My Soul to Take »
# 2:     Rachel Vincent – My Soul to Save
# 3:     Rachel Vincent – My Soul to Keep
# 3,5: Rachel Vincent – Reaper
# 4:     Rachel Vincent – My Soul to Steal
# 5:     Rachel Vincent – If I Die
# 5,5: Rachel Vincent – Never to Sleep
# 6:     Rachel Vincent – Before I Wake

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(© goodreads)

About the author – Rachel Vincent:

A resident of San Antonio, Rachel Vincent has a BA in English and an overactive imagination, and consistently finds the latter to be more practical. She shares her workspace with two black cats (Kaci and Nyx) and her # 1 fan. Rachel is older than she looks-seriously-and younger than she feels, but remains convinced that for every day she spends writing, one more day will be added to her lifespan.
(Source: goodreads.com)

Visit her Website »»

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Review: The New Death and others

(© goodreads)

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‚The New Death
and others

by
James Hutchings
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First Sentence:
„In the beginning of the world the gods considered all those things which did not have their own gods, to decide who would have responsibility and rulership“

Last Sentence:
„… Yet he grinned as wide as Death
then he sobbed till out of breath
when the pallid phantom said „I was the last.“

Synopsis:
Death gets a roommate…

An electronic Pope faces a difficult theological question…

A wicked vizier makes a terrible bargain…

44 stories. 19 poems. No whiny vampires. There’s a thin line between genius and insanity, and James Hutchings has just crossed it – but from which direction? (Source: goodreads.com)

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My thoughts about the book:
It’s hard for me to review this book, because for the first time this isn’t an independent book, with a concluded story. But there are inserted 44 short stories and also a few poems which are sometimes written between the short stories. Some of them have made me smile and others were full of irony. And I was surprised by myself of how much I’ve liked most of them. But to be honest I also must say that I didn’t like all of them, but though that also would have been impossible.

It was the same with the short stories. Some of them couldn’t persuade me however but others aroused my enthusiasm because they were sarcastically, funny or partially also with a deeper sense. Out of all I would like to lift the story ‚The God of the Poor‘ which stimulates to think, even if it is described humorously, but it leaves behind a bitter aftertaste.

Besides that also ‘A Date with of Destiny’ which is completely full of irony and it was a fun to read, like as ‘Compatibility’ or ’The Perfect Woman’. Moreover, I also found the story ‘The End’ very amusing, because I’m a vampire fan and therefore for me it was just hilarious! *haha*. And I also liked ‘Everlasting Fire’ with the demon called Lilly the story ‘The New Death’ with the different deaths in it.
Just like it was with the poems, there were stories which I didn’t like that much, for example the first story in the beginning with the cats. The story was long-winded a little bit too weird for my taste. But on the whole I’ve really liked most of the stories in it.

Also the writing style of James Hutchings was great. From the formulation it kind of reminded me sometimes a little of Tolkien, although it wasn’t so excessive nor difficult here in this book, but more catchy and easier to read. What I liked the least in the book was the fact that the stories were all very short and I were introduced constantly to new characters, worlds or situations and stories, which also had partially different structures or narrative forms, so that I was torn out from my reading river over and over again.

This is also the reason why I give only 3 points and not more, although I have liked Hutchings writing style and his imagination. But it was too varied and therefore I would wish that he’ll write a whole book with just one, complete story and with the same characters in it.

Cover:
I think the cover looks interesting and it is absolutely an ‘eye-catcher’. Moreover, it immediately and clearly shows what the book is about.

All in all:
A good book for the fun read in-between. The book is full of interesting and varied stories which are partly humorous or which can also be ‘as cross as two sticks’ 🙂

Rating:
3 of 5 points

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You can buy the book on:

*Amazon:   ‚click here‘

*Smashwords:  ‚click here‘

*Barnes & Noble:  ‚click here‘

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(© goodreads)

About the author – James Hutchings:

I’m currently in the process of enrolling in a graduate writing course. Other than writing, my main hobby is coding online games. I spent several years writing an online game called Age of Fable (www.ageoffable.net). I don’t have any plans to do more on it, but it’s still online, and you can play it for free. I’ve also done a few smaller projects. For example I did an online version of the computer game Oregon Trail… (Source: James Hutchings)

Visit his Website »»

Go to the author interview »»

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Rezension: The New Death and others

(© goodreads)

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‚The New Death
and others

by
James Hutchings
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First Sentence:
„In the beginning of the world the gods considered all those things which did not have their own gods, to decide who would have responsibility and rulership“

Last Sentence:
„… Yet he grinned as wide as Death
then he sobbed till out of breath
when the pallid phantom said „I was the last.“

Inhaltsangabe:
Death gets a roommate…

An electronic Pope faces a difficult theological question…

A wicked vizier makes a terrible bargain…

44 stories. 19 poems. No whiny vampires. There’s a thin line between genius and insanity, and James Hutchings has just crossed it – but from which direction? (Source: goodreads.com)

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Meine Gedanken zum Buch:
Es ist schwer für mich dieses Buch zu bewerten, da es zum ersten Mal kein eigenständiges Buch ist, mit einer abgeschlossenen Geschichte. Sondern es befinden sich darin 44 Short Stories und auch ein paar Gedichte, welche immer wieder zwischen den Geschichten eingebaut sind. Einige davon haben mich wirklich zum Schmunzeln gebracht oder einige waren voll von Ironie. Und ich war selber davon überrascht, wie gut mir die meisten davon gefallen haben. Aber ich muss auch ehrlich sagen, dass es  nicht bei allen so war, was aber auch unmöglich gewesen wäre.

Bei den Kurzgeschichten war es genauso. Ein paar konnten mich nicht überzeugen, dafür aber einige andere begeistern, weil sie sarkastisch, lustig oder teilweise auch mit einem tieferen Sinn waren. Hervor heben möchte ich ‚The God of the Poor‘, was zum nachdenken anregt, auch wenn es lustig beschrieben ist, und es hinter lässt einen bitteren Nachgeschmack.
Außerdem noch ‚A Date with Destiny‘ welches voll von Ironie und Spaß war, genauso wie ‚Compatibility‘ oder ‚The Perfect Woman‘. Witzig fand ich außerdem noch ‚The End‘, bin nämlich ein Vampire- Fan und fand es köstlich *haha*. Und mir hat außerdem die Geschichte ‚Everlasting Fire‘ mit der Dämonin namens Lilly gefallen oder ‚The New Death‘ mit den verschiedenen Toden.
Genauso wie bei den Gedichten, gab es auch hier Geschichten, dir mir nicht so gefallen haben, wie zb. gleich zu Beginn die Geschichte mit den Katzen. Sie war etwas langatmig und zu bizarr für meinen Geschmack. Aber im großen Ganzen haben mir die meisten Geschichten mittelmäßig bis gut gefallen.

Auch der Schreibstil von James Hutchings war toll. Es erinnerte mich von den Formulierungen her oftmals ein wenig an Tolkien, obwohl es hier nicht so ausschweifend und schwierig war, sondern eingängiger und müheloser zum lesen. Mich hat aber im ganzen Buch gestört, dass die Geschichten allesamt sehr kurz waren und man ständig neue Charaktere, Welten oder Situationen vorgestellt bekommen hat, die auch teilweise eine andere Struktur oder Erzählform hatten, sodass man immer wieder heraus gerissen wurde aus dem Lesefluss. Das ist auch der Grund warum ich nur 3 Punkte vergebe und nicht mehr, obwohl mir Hutchings Schreibweise und Vorstellungskraft gefallen hat. Aber es war zu viel Verschiedenes und deshalb würde ich mir wünschen, dass er ein ganzes Buch mit einer einzigen, kompletten Geschichte schreibt.

Cover:
Das Cover finde ich interessant und ist sicherlich ein ‘Hingucker. Außerdem zeigt es gleich von Beginn an deutlich, um was es in dem Buch geht.

All in all:
Interessante, abwechslungsreiche Geschichten, die teilweise witzig oder auch bitterböse sind. Ein gutes Buch für den Spaß für Zwischendurch..

Rating:
3 of 5 points

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You can buy the book on:

*Amazon:   ‚click here‘

*Smashwords:  ‚click here‘

*Barnes & Noble:  ‚click here‘

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(© goodreads)

About the author – James Hutchings:

I’m currently in the process of enrolling in a graduate writing course. Other than writing, my main hobby is coding online games. I spent several years writing an online game called Age of Fable (www.ageoffable.net). I don’t have any plans to do more on it, but it’s still online, and you can play it for free. I’ve also done a few smaller projects. For example I did an online version of the computer game Oregon Trail… (Source: James Hutchings)

Visit his Website »»

Go to the author interview »»

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Review: Wither

(© goodreads)

(© goodreads)

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‚Wither
by Lauren DeStefano

The Chemical Garden # 1

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First Sentence:
„I wait. They keep us in the dark for so long that we lose sense of our eyelids.“

Last sentence:
„This time, I don’t know where the light will guide us.“

Synopsis:
In the further future our world has changed dramatically. After the third world war there only still existing continent is North America and the rest of our planet was destroyed. But not only the earth was damages, but also the humans: After scientists have found a way to generate ‘super’ babies which are stronger, healthier and life longer, they haven’t thought about the consequences. Because the children of this first generation carry a deathly virus, which kills the females at the age of 20 and the men at 25, no matter how healthy they are before their deadly birthday. In this horrific and unreal world lives the 16-year old Rhine with her twin brother Rowan. One day on her way to work Rhine gets kidnapped and together with 2 other girls she gets married to a rich landlord called Linden, to live with him and her sister’s bride a shared life in his home. But Rhine doesn’t give up without struggle and therefore the tries with deceitfulness to escape her prison one day, which exists of luxury, beautiful dresses and parties. But all she wants is her freedom back…

My thoughts about the book:
At first I had to struggle with the writing style of DeStefano which made it hard for me to get into the story, because partly it was choppy and on the other side some parts of it were too poetic. But after my first troubles it started to really enjoy it. I liked the idea of this book and how everything turned out with this third world war and the virus which affected every human on earth, because I can imagine that such things are likeable to happen in the future (hopefully not the part with the war!). But the part with the scientists isn’t hard to imagine because we are almost so far to decide which eye color or which sex our babies should have. And so it isn’t far to give such babies also other ‘credits’ and benefits to make them better, healthier and maybe less human. I don’t know. But there are some lines in our world and I have the feeling are almost going across that line and that we’ll harm ourselves with that in the future. Some things shouldn’t be interrupted by us, because we are just humans and we are not allowed to play gods. And therefore I like this book because it makes the people think about it and what could become of it.
But now back to the book which I really like except of a few things. The good side of this book was that the story appears authentic and kind of real, though it’s a dystopia. But the feelings which were described in it and how the people would act in a world like this, which such despair, is more than comprehensible. Furthermore I liked how the main characters have acted and how the different characters were described, so good that it was easy to understand their suffering, and misery and all of it their hope for a better future. It was also interesting to see how the relationship between Rhine and her supposedly kidnapper Linden changed throughout the book. It was hard there to just see black and white like in other books, because here were many different shades of gray, which let us see different motives and sides of a story and inspire us to think about it.
And I also got the end I wished for from the beginning of the book, which made me even happier to finish this book, although I’ve feared a completely different ending. What I didn’t like were the facts that there were not much thrilling or exciting moments, and that there wasn’t much happening in the book, although it plays through a time of about 10 months. I guess the reason for it is that all happens mostly in just one place and that Rhine is often just thinking or describing her childhood or her further life with her brother. But I’m sure that will change in the next books and that there will actually happen more in the present and that we’ll get our anticipated moments.

Cover:
Although the covers are very similar I prefer the English Cover and I like the lines and the different appearance because it gives the feeling for labs and formulas.

All in all:
Good story and good idea but the suspense was missing a little bit. Besides it’s a great book which I really like to recommend further and which makes me longing for the upcoming books.

Rating:
4 of 5 points

Quotes:
Rhine: “ Eventually I realize that I am holding on to him just as tightly as he holds on to me. And here we are: two small dying things, as the world ends around us like falling autumn leaves. „

Rhine: „I’ll tell you something about true love. There’s no science to it. It’s as natural as the sky.“

Jenna: „Did you tell freedom hello for me?“

Succession:

# 1: Lauren DeStefano – Wither
# 2: Lauren DeStefano – Fever
# 3: Lauren Destefano – ?..

(© goodreads)

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About the author – Lauren DeStefano:

Lauren DeStefano (pronounced: de STEFF ano) graduated Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT in 2007. Her debut novel, WITHER, the first in The Chemical Garden Trilogy, published by Simon & Schuster BFYR, is out now. (Source: http://www.goodreads.com)

Visit her Website »»

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