Dante’s Girl

I AM BACK WITH A VENGEANCE. Just kidding, but I will be posting a review tonight for a book that I read recently. I received an advanced reader copy a couple of weeks ago and I am happy to report that the book was entertaining and cute. Dante’s Girl was a very quick read (I think I finished in 4 hours) but the whole way through it was enjoyable and just plain fun. One thing that I adored about this book was that it brought fantasies that so many young girls (myself included) imagine, to life.

The book begins as Reece, our protagonist, is traveling to London to visit her father for the summer, as she has been doing ever since her parents divorced. In a scene right out of a movie, Reece meets Dante, a charming handsome guy with an accent. An accent guys – swoon! After bumping into Dante (quite literally) Reece goes on her merry way to catch her flight. After she gets on the plane, something (I won’t spoil) happens and she and Dante (who was also on her flight) are forced to get off the plane. Dante takes her along with some guys in suits (huh?) and they board a private plane headed for Caberra. A country in which Dante happens to be a “prince” (AKA Prime Minister’s son). And thus, Reece’s summer kicks off with a bang.

Reece was a great protagonist, I absolutely adored her. Her voice was so appropriate for a teenage girl and it never felt whiny or annoying. She was hilarious – I loved reading the story from her point of view because she was so funny and positive. Although at times her confidence wavered and she said stupid things, she was no Bella Swan (AKA she didn’t annoy me and wasn’t self deprecating). Dante was a pretty good love interest (nowhere near as interesting/funny as Reece was). I liked that he was chivalrous without being annoying and “manly” about the whole thing. Some of the decisions he made were really dumb but hey that’s teenage guys for ya! The supporting characters weren’t fantastic but they did what they were there to do – add juiciness to the story. Mia was the fun, archetypal “best friend” character and I enjoyed her, but she wasn’t anything to write home about.

The plot of the story was very predictable. However, I didn’t really mind because that’s how books of this type/genre are supposed to be. This book wasn’t meant to be a shocking build up kinda thing, but rather just a love story with some kind of plot twist and climax. If you are looking for something that will really get your mind going and make you think, this book really isn’t something I’d recommend. If you are looking for a fast, fun read, however, this book would be totally appropriate. The ending of the book felt a little rushed and was definitely a very “fairy tale” ending, but I didn’t really mind it too much. The fairy-tale ending didn’t bother me mostly because for a story like this, you can’t expect some bleak, dark ending. It’s pretty predictable that the ending wouldn’t be too dreary.

Overall, this novel was just a fun and fast read. Although it really wasn’t a book to write home about, I liked it and didn’t regret reading it at all. This book is definitely one for younger girls but it works for older ones as well. This is a really big fluff read but if you are looking for a book to get your spirits up – this will definitely work.

 

Shadeland

The cover is pretty interesting!

For my third review of five, I have decided to review an indie book that I got for free on Smashwords. Now if any of you have been on Smashwords looking for a good free book, you know that it’s pretty much a gamble. I really wasn’t expecting much from this book and I was actually pretty surprised to find myself getting interested in this book. Although there were a couple of parts that were a bit slow, the book was a surprisingly refreshing and interesting read.

The book starts one years after the massive “coming out” of the Eidolon (there are many different species) as we are introduced to our protagonist Liv and her best friend Luke. Liv has known about the eidolon for a while because Luke told her his secret a while back. After the “coming out” there were waves of protests and riots, but things are relatively calm present day. The biggest challenge that the Eidolon face is the discrimination and disgust that come from certain humans. After a girl that Luke dropped off the previous night is murdered, Luke is deemed a suspect in her murder and imprisoned (mostly because he is not human). As Liv tries to solve the mystery and help prove Luke’s innocence, she meets a hunky bounty hunter named Jared and finds herself on a surprising adventure.

The characters of this book were a little more than decent. I liked Liv just fine, but I wasn’t totally enamored with her like I would have been with an awesome protagonist. I like the fact that she stood up against Jared, Luke, and anyone else who tried to tell her what to do. I liked the fact that she really didn’t talk unless she had something important to add, and I also enjoyed the fact that when she voiced an opinion/thought/comment, she expected everyone to listen and not to brush her off. Liv and Luke’s relationship was a little weird, but cute! They really understood each other well and I liked the way they interacted. Jared was not totally sah-woon worthy, but he was a pretty good love interest. Although at times he was a little sexist, it wasn’t overbearing or pig-like. There is potential for a love triangle but as of right now it seems pretty straightforward.

I really liked the idea of this book. I liked the fact that the “coming out” was still pretty recent and that we got to see the world as it was going through this adjustment period. One thing that I didn’t really like was that this book occurred over such a short period of time so we didn’t really see as much growth and development with the characters. Another thing that bothered me was the scope of the book, as they pretty much just stayed in one area and didn’t travel beyond – I would’ve liked to see how another area interacted with the Eidolon. Although I liked the premise of this book, I believe there were some parts of it that could’ve been improved upon.

I don’t know if this book is available for free on Smashwords still, but if it is, I do think that it is worth the time. If this book had cost money, I think that it would be a different story. While it is not a bad book by any means, I don’t know if I would spend more than maybe $3 on it. If you like paranormals and are looking for a quick read, this might be a good book for you. If you are looking for something with a little more substance, I would check out another book. Now on another topic: THIS IS DAY THREE AND THE FIVE DAYS ARE ALMOST UP!!!! *does happy dance*. I hope that you all have been checking out my reviews because let me tell ya, these things are stressing me out. Until tomorrow guys!

Shatter Me

This book definitely surprised me a lot. I mean the premise was pretty original, and the main character seemed pretty likable but being my cautious self, I thought “There has to be something that ruins it!” (See what Twi-copies have done to me??) But as I read on, I can say I was pleasantly surprised.

The book focuses on a 17 year old girl named Juliette. Juliette has been locked in an asylum for almost a year, and yet she seems totally sane to us readers. One gets the impression that she is dangerous, and yet we have no idea what she can do. Mysteriously and randomly, Juliette is given a cellmate. A male cellmate named Adam. So of course we expect some type of insta-love to strike, but Juliette ain’t that kinda’ gal. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that he can’t touch her. Hmmmmm.

The characters in this book were intriguing and fun to read about. Juliette kind of got on my nerves sometimes with her low self worth and all, but I understood because the author slowly feeds us bits of her past that help us make sense of why she is the way she is. Adam was cool, not the male lead that made me SAH-WOON or anything, but he was a good lead for the situation. Warner was very intriguing and I’d be interested to learn more about him in future books. As for the secondary characters, they were all pretty well-rounded and seemed pretty supplemented.

An interesting thing about this book was the format in which it was written. At times it felt almost like a diary and yet Juliette kept a diary and talked about it as if it wasn’t the book we were already reading. It also had words or sentences that were crossed out like this  so it gave a feel of forbidden-ness. I felt as if it gave a deeper insight into who Juliette was because we saw the thoughts she didn’t want to have, the opinions she didn’t voice, and the feelings she tried to hide. It definitely made Juliette a more three dimensional character.

The plot was original, fast paced, and dangerous but always enticing. I liked the fact that it never stood still- there really weren’t any parts of the book that I felt were too excessive or overbearing. The romance was definitely there and happening, and although there wasn’t outright sex, there were many hot and heavy scenes. I felt that the best part of the book was the end. The ending left room for a sequel but didn’t feel incomplete or dependent on another book. It definitely added a twist to the book and really surprised me.

While I came in with low expectations for this book, it really reached/exceeded my expectations and surprised me. It was well written, romantic, adventurous, and exciting and I didn’t want to put it down. If you are looking for a book that never stops moving and gets your blood pumping, this is definitely a book for you!