Monthly Archives: January 2014

Book Review #48: Specials by Scott Westerfeld

I rate this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 29/01/14
My 7th book this year.)

Tally has become a Special. Shay is now her boss, their clique are known as Cutters. Cutting themselves to stay Icy. The new and improved version of being bubbly except that their vision is sharper, hearing more acute, reflexes refined, all senses heightened.

Cutters have one sole mission. To destroy the New Smoke in any way they want.

Zane is now different in a whole new way. David is still just as focused on rescuing the pretties. When Tally and Shay catch up with the New Smoke more trouble stirs. With every passing day, the New Smoke grow in population becoming a stronger force with opinionated minds.

I can’t really write a review without spoiling the story. I was definitely disappointed in this 3rd book of the series. Everything was too cruel. Shay was erratic and Tally kept losing herself. I think reading the 3 books one after another has taken its toll. All in all, it was probably only worth reading book 1.

Written by Ling Lee (30/01/14).

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Book Review #47: Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

I rate this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 26/01/14
My 6th book this year.)

Tally has volunteered to become a mindless pretty who spends all day just being happy and carefree. The Uglies have an untested cure that Tally has given consent to take, before she risked her memories, her personality and her whole way of living.

Being a Pretty is a whole new life. She meets Zane, the leader of the most popular Pretties group. Zane is different. Tally is drawn to Zane and together they experience Pretty life. Tricks are supposed to be for Uglies yet somehow Tally has always been a rule breaker, becoming Pretty doesn’t seem to have changed her that much after all.

The longer she stays Pretty, the more she becomes Pretty minded and empty headed.

Can the Uglies infiltrate and rescue Tally from losing all of herself and her past in time?

I’m really disappointed that I couldn’t enjoy this book as much as the first. I say couldn’t because ‘pretty’ language is off putting. The words ‘bogus’ and ‘totally’ must be in every sentence for almost the whole book. I understand why, but it still made the book difficult to read.

Once we venture outside of city walls, I felt the relief of being able to read normal words and I very much loved the last third of the book. I wish there was more to read about Tally being with Zane and spending time with David at the same time.

It was really obvious what would happen to Tally at the end due to the title of the 3rd book. But I still enjoyed fusing out how she ended up that way.

I still recommend this series and I highly recommend you force your way through the first chunk of the book because the latter half is really worth it.

Written by Ling Lee (27/01/14)

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Book Review #46: Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 21/01/14
My 5th book this year.)

This book is about Tally, an Ugly awaiting her 16th birthday to undergo surgery and become a Pretty.

Society is very much different to the way we are living now. Everyone is pretty after they turn 16. All the people who haven’t had the operation are called Uglies. They live outside of Pretty Town and live life happy and carefree.

Tally is the youngest in her year, meaning she is the last of her friends on the Ugly side of town. She can’t wait to be reunited with her family, friends and most of all her best friend Peris.

Playing tricks is the only thing that gets Tally through the last of her Ugly days. But tricks are no fun without friends to laugh with. Then Tally runs into Shay who is also the last of her friendship group to turn 16. Becoming friends was quick and easy as the two teach one another secrets of the town.

But the biggest secret of all is David and the ‘Smoke’. A whole new society, where people live, grow old and never turn pretty. Where they live life as they want without undergoing the operation to pretty much look like the other generic Pretties.

The Smoke are the ones who have rebelled and have run away before turning 16. They believe there is more to life than being just pretty and partying every day of their lives. They want to choose their own jobs and just be themselves.

Tally and Shay venture out of their town. Shay believes in David. She believes in a better life and she wants Tally to run with her.

I didn’t immediately get drawn into this book. I liked the idea of a whole society being pretty and living every day as though there wasn’t a worry in the world. Everything is provided for you. But as I got deeper into the story, I fell for the people from the Smoke. They hold a massive secret about Pretty Town and are trying hard to let the other Uglies know before they turn Pretty and never think another bad thought again.

I loved the idea of this book. But there was a part when I felt like I’d chosen to read something that was a waste of time. Otherwise this had the potential to be one of my rarely rated 5 star books. I’m glad I read this, but only open minded people with great imaginations will enjoy this book.

Written by Ling Lee (21/01/14).

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Book Review #45: Breathing Underwater by Alex Flinn

I rate this book 4.5 out of 5 stars

(Finished Reading: 16/01/14
My 4th book this year.)

Nick, a rich and handsome 16yr old. He is in with the popular kids and has finally really seen a girl that he likes.

Caitlin, a former fat girl who has suddenly lost a lot of weight, now people notice her and want to get to know her.

Nick and Caitlin form a beautiful relationship that gradually changes as each of them try to deal with their dark pasts.

I enjoyed this book almost from cover to cover. I love how the book switches between journal entries of how things happened, and the classes that Nick has to attend to help deal with his anger and behaviour.

A very powerful book, with subtle changes in the teenagers’ relationship. I felt like I knew them both in real life and saw the story unfold before my very eyes.

I felt the sadness, I felt the tension. I loved every part of this book, except the very last chapter. But well done once again Alex Flinn for another amazing story. Very highly recommended. But be prepared to journey through the darkest moments of Nick’s life.

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Book Review #44: Spellbound by Rachel Hawkins

I rate this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 14/01/14
My 3rd book this year.)

Sophie finds herself in enemy territories at the Brannick’s witch home. All she knows is that her mother is in this location and she has no idea why. She has no other choice but to be here considering the Prodigium Council want her as a weapon of destruction and she has no one else to turn to.

All the people who matter in her life have no idea she is alive, nor does Sophie know what has become of her father, her love interest Archer, her fiancé Cal or her best friend Jenny the vampire.

Sophie has the most complicated life, she not only has to find a way to survive enemy attacks, but she has to save the innocent Prodigiums from total destruction. Fighting demons, witches and teaming up with many people she thought would rather see her dead, she fights the biggest battle in centuries.

I absolutely wanted to love this book more than the others. But like many series, the ending was another let down. I still enjoyed the book. But it was mediocre. It felt rushed and skipped around between places and events too quickly. It definitely felt like a book that tried to sum everything up in between the biggest battle of all time. But then the battle was disappointing.

I did shed a tear or two. I didn’t know if I should root for Archer or wish he would step away. I very much loved Cal, such an understanding, loving and caring man. I just wish there was more depth to the book. Maybe it needed to be spread out more so that the 3rd book was preparing for battle, then the 4th could have been an epic battle.

I would definitely recommend this series because it is still worth reading for Sophie’s sarcasm and motor mouth. The drama between this demon girl and Archer and Cal are worthwhile. I love that she has so many family problems just like any other real family. Most of all I love all the different types of supernaturals and how they can put up with each other.

Written by Ling Lee (15/01/14).

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Book Review #43: Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins

I rate this book 4.5 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 10/01/14
My 2nd book this year.)

Sophie is a demon who hasn’t yet learnt how to control her powers. She spends a school holiday with her best friend Jenny, who is a vampire. They stay with Sophie’s father who has rarely been around in Sophie’s childhood years.

The stay at a temporary headquarter, where they have the power to decide what happens to those who use their powers amongst humans which in turn expose their race and other supernatural beings to danger.

Archer Cross was once a member of the reform school that the girls attended. He’s now been named a traitor and is wanted and trailed to death for endangering the supernaturals and is believed to have joined the enemies, “The Eye”.

Sophie has feelings for the “wrong” boy whilst being betrothed to another man. She knows what she “should” do but her heart tells her otherwise.

I really enjoyed this 2nd book, surprisingly more than the first of the series. More relationship drama, more protectiveness and bad behaviour on Sophie’s account.

I love magic. With every good book I read, I fall deeper into the magical realm. Being pulled into the world where vampires, werewolves, fairies, witches and demons exist amongst humans.

Well done Rachel Hawkins, a highly recommended book. One of the reasons I gave 4.5 stars was because the 2nd book hasn’t essentially ended. It is unfair to leave a book the way this one has ended as you are forced to read the next book. I’d much prefer if book 2 was just super long.

Written by Ling Lee (11/01/14).

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2014

May this year be the start of something bigger and better in my life. To get a step closer to my dream of becoming a published author.
To complete my reading challenge goal of 52 books this year.
To be a better mother, a better daughter and a better person.

May I and all my loved ones find happiness throughout 2014. To keep on track of our goals and dreams. Most important of all, we must never give up hope for what we most want and believe in.

2013’s demons got the better of me. But I start this year with more determination. A stronger heart, with my mind still set on the same goals and dreams. May I succeed at least in getting another step closer to my dreams and goals for the year.

Happy belated New Year to all who have supported me on my journey in finding my story to tell. With too many ideas and too little time, I will try harder to at least write down my ideas as I piece together the words that were made to fit together. Thank You for reading and thank you for joining me on my journey as the Lost Girl.

Written by Ling Lee (08/01/14)

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Book Review #42: Beauty from Surrender by Georgia Cates

I rate this book 3 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 07/01/14
My 1st book this year.)

Laurelyn, a young and talented musician who is getting famous and fast. Her career is all she has after meeting the love of her life but letting him go without explaining why or where she was going.

Jack, a super wealthy businessman. Successful and handsome, but single and pining for the woman who ran off on him without even knowing her name.

This book focuses on Jack’s pain of losing love, his desperation in finding her again and his need to bring her back to his side for good.

Laurelyn is eventually faced with the decision of career or love. With deceit and drama in her life, this book should have been a better read.

I wish I had stopped after book 1. I absolutely loved their inseparable need for one another. There was too much misunderstanding in this second book. Jack wasn’t as sexy with this new insight towards love and I hated the man he has become for the first half of the book.

The end is rushed but still made it a worthy read. There were a few unexpected moments but nothing wow enough to get me wanting to read from cover to cover.

Written by Ling Lee (08/01/13)

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