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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Movie News: Mockingjay,Captain America 3, JK Rowling & more.


So if you like my facebook page, you must have seen that I've been sharing Mockingjay part 1 stills and trailers.(It's so easy to share there) I decided it's time to post it on the blog as well. There was new teaser posted yesterday as well. So without further ado here's the new teaser:


The best part of this teaser is that it features the Lorde song that I am ADDICTED to .


In case you missed the first full trailer. Here it is:


My Take:
Catching Fire was amazing and I've been dying to see the next one. But so far not too impressed by the trailers apart from Jennifer (God, she can act!) . I kind of hated Mockingjay the book so I guess I should adjust my expectations. I'm in love with the soundtrack (well more like the song) they've released. Cannot wait to hear more. If you haven't check out the Catching Fire soundtrack, it's amazing!

Now onto the J.K. Rowling film front. The internet has exploded with the news that there's going to be a Harry Potter spin-off trilogy. I think the whole Harry Potter spin-off angle is a LITTLE misleading. It's set in the same universe but it's based on Rowling's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. I went from 


because I thought it was a HARRY potter spin off, to 
when I saw it was a IN THE SAME universe story. 

I'm sorry but the Harry Potter spin-off tag is a little misleading.

"The trilogy of films will be based on author J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Harry Potter film director David Yates will likewise helm these new pictures. Rowling will pen the scripts for the films, based on her own stories. No word on casting or whether we can expect appearances by any Potter alums. The films will release in 2016, 2018, and 2020."-Forbes.com

I got a little bit more into the idea after I read this article which points out that this story takes place much before the Harry Potter series and that means DUMBLEDORE IS ALIVE!! If you put Dumbledore in the movie Rowling and you can just take my money!


I also have ridiculously exciting Captain America 3 news. 


At first I thought it was just fanfiction but further investigation shows that there's a HUGE possibility that Robert Downey Jr. is going to be in A CAPTAIN AMERICA movie as the antagonist. 
"Robert Downey Jr. is on the verge of signing on to “Captain America 3,” with Tony Stark’s Iron Man set to play a key role in bringing the Civil War storyline from Marvel’s comicbooks to the bigscreen and trigger the start of a new phase of movies from Marvel Studios.
The actor is in final negotiations to play the billionaire in the yet-to-be-titled third installment, that is slated to begin production in the Spring for a May 6, 2016, release, according to sources close to the discussions. Downey suits up as the superhero in next summer’s “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” as part of a previous deal that also calls for him to reprise the role in “The Avengers 3.”- Variety.com
I NEED THIS TO HAPPEN!! I'm a huge RDJ fan and him and Steve were awesome in the Avengers!
Mortal Instruments news: Mortal Instruments is being made into a TV series. 
"“It actually makes sense to do (the novels) as a TV series,” Constantin film and TV head Martin Moszkowicz told THR. “There was so much from the book that we had to leave out of the Mortal Instruments film. In the series we'll be able to go deeper and explore this world in greater detail and depth.” The Mortal Instruments series is part of a broader strategic shift at Constantin that will see the German-based company move into English-language television series. Moszkowicz said Constantin is looking at possible television adaptations of several of its English-language movie properties, including period serial killer drama Perfume: The Story of a Murderer and the Resident Evil sci-fi horror franchise."-Hollywoodreporter.com
Also I'm so excited for the Gone Girl Movie! I want to watch it so BADLY!!! 
If you've seen it already.. WHAT DID YOU THINK?? 
THOUGHTS? COMMENTS? SPECULATIONS? All are welcome! 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Review: Death Sworn

Death Sworn (Death Sworn #1)

 When Ileni lost her magic, she lost everything: her place in society, her purpose in life, and the man she had expected to spend her life with. So when the Elders sent her to be magic tutor to a secret sect of assassins, she went willingly, even though the last two tutors had died under mysterious circumstances.

But beneath the assassins’ caves, Ileni will discover a new place and a new purpose… and a new and dangerous love. She will struggle to keep her lost magic a secret while teaching it to her deadly students, and to find out what happened to the two tutors who preceded her. But what she discovers will change not only her future, but the future of her people, the assassins… and possibly the entire world.



Source: Edelweiss( Thanks HarperCollins!)

My Thoughts:
This review has been sitting there in my draft pile for a very long time. I have a hard time writing reviews for books that I find unremarkable for no good reason,and this is one of those books.

The premise of this book really drew me in. A cave in which only assassin's live in which a magician who has lost her magic is forced to go.Sounds pretty interesting and full of win,right? Unfortunately I wasn't impressed.There's nothing particularly wrong with this book but it was hard for me to finish it.

I think my main problem with this book was that most of it was cliched and I wasn't able to connect with any of the characters.I liked the main character Ileni because she was so strong and smart but I didn't care about her enough to want to read about how her life was sad and full of so many problems.I wasn't impressed with the male 'hero' of the story as well. Sorin seemed to like Ileni for some reasons that are still not very clear to me.(It might have something to do with the fact that I'm not a huge fan of hers)

The saving grace of the novel is the assassins and their world.I really enjoyed the boss of the assassin world(my words not the authors) and the whole world building and society structure.The murder mystery made me a little curious but I wasn't dying to figure it out.This story had so much potential. I think my expectations were too high.

Overall, If you're really interested in reading about assassins I guess you could give this book a shot but I think I would just enjoy reading Poison Study again instead.At first, I was thinking of giving it a higher rating but I didn't love it and I'm not even that interested in reading the sequel, so ...

My Rating:
2.5/5 

Unremarkable

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Review: The Swap

The Swap

“YOU BE ME...AND I'LL BE YOU.”

ELLIE spent the summer before seventh grade getting dropped by her best friend since forever. JACK spent it training in “The Cage” with his tough-as-nails brothers and hard-to-please dad. By the time middle school starts, they’re both ready for a change. And just as Jack’s thinking girls have it so easy, Ellie’s wishing she could be anyone but herself.

Then, BAM! They swap lives—and bodies!

Now Jack’s fending off mean girls at sleepover parties while Ellie’s reigning as the Prince of Thatcher Middle School. As their crazy weekend races on—and their feelings for each other grow—Ellie and Jack begin to realize that maybe the best way to learn how to be yourself is to spend a little time being someone else.
Source: Edelweiss (Thanks HarperCollins!)
My Thoughts:
It's been a long time since I've read middle school fiction. I was afraid that I had outgrown it and it wouldn't hold my attention.This book proved me wrong. This is such a nice and sweet novel that I wouldn't mind re-reading it.

When I first read the synopsis it reminded me of the movie Freaky Friday . I really enjoyed that movie and if you did as well, I think you might like this book. Ellie and Jack are different, not just their gender but their personalities as well. It was such fun reading about how each of them dealt with the other's life. The issues of the characters might seem petty at times but I was having too much fun reading about the circumstances each managed to land themselves in.

I loved the fact that family doesn't suddenly disappear in the novel. Family is very important in this novel and it was nice to finally read a novel in which the parents didn't conveniently disappear.

The ending was unexpected but I liked it. I liked it a lot. 

Overall, this was a feel good novel that was really funny in parts and I love these kinds of novels.

My Rating:


Toss up between 3.5 and 4!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Review: Cracked

Meet Meda. She eats people.

Well, technically, she eats their soul. But she totally promises to only go for people who deserve it. She’s special. It’s not her fault she enjoys it. She can’t help being a bad guy. Besides, what else can she do? Her mother was killed and it’s not like there are any other “soul-eaters” around to show her how to be different. That is, until the three men in suits show up.

They can do what she can do. They’re like her. Meda might finally have a chance to figure out what she is. The problem? They kind of want to kill her. Before they get the chance Meda is rescued by crusaders, members of an elite group dedicated to wiping out Meda’s kind. This is her chance! Play along with the “good guys” and she’ll finally figure out what, exactly, her ‘kind’ is.

Be careful what you wish for. Playing capture the flag with her mortal enemies, babysitting a teenage boy with a hero complex, and trying to keep one step ahead of a too-clever girl are bad enough. But the Hunger is gaining on her.

The more she learns, the worse it gets. And when Meda uncovers a shocking secret about her mother, her past, and her destiny… she may finally give into it.

Source: Borrowed 

My Thoughts:

I've been meaning to write this review for a long time, my only excuse is I was busy but I hear the sequel is already out so I thought I might as well write it now.

I would like to start off with the fact that the cover is a LITTLE misleading. It gives off depressing vibes and is dark but the book is actually quite funny (the main character is very sarcastic).So don't judge the book by it's cover , this is not a creepy and scary book.

I loved the main character,Meda . She's so snarky and sarcastic that I wish she was a real person and I could be friends with her.She keeps making such amazing pop culture references and I would read the sequel just to get inside her mind again.

The secondary characters are fleshed out very well. Chi,Uri and Jo are characters that balance out Meda in a very nice way. Chi is like an adorable idiot that grows on you and the dynamic between Jo and Meda is something I loved.

One of the things I loved about this novel is that there is no love triangle or even an annoying forced love angle. The focus is on Meda's inner turmoil and the story is not cluttered with romantic cliches.

The story is interesting but nothing too out of the ordinary.The thing that makes this story stand out from other paranormal YA is the interesting and different main character. I think the hero of the story is the heroine and I would reread this book just for her. If the main character doesn't fascinate you, you might find the story to be a bit slow.

My Rating:

4/5


Read it for the Meda!



Monday, June 23, 2014

Review: The Falconer by Elizabeth May

The Falconer (The Falconer #1)


 Heiress. Debutant. Murderer. A new generation of heroines has arrived.

Edinburgh, Scotland, 1844

Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, was destined for a life carefully planned around Edinburgh’s social events – right up until a faery killed her mother.

Now it’s the 1844 winter season and Aileana slaughters faeries in secret, in between the endless round of parties, tea and balls. Armed with modified percussion pistols and explosives, she sheds her aristocratic facade every night to go hunting. She’s determined to track down the faery who murdered her mother, and to destroy any who prey on humans in the city’s many dark alleyways.

But the balance between high society and her private war is a delicate one, and as the fae infiltrate the ballroom and Aileana’s father returns home, she has decisions to make. How much is she willing to lose – and just how far will Aileana go for revenge?

Source: Edelweiss ( Thanks Chronicle Books!)

My Thoughts:

I've been dying to read this book since I read the author's hilarious "review" on Goodreads. I screamed for joy when my request was accepted in February but I stopped myself from reading because I knew it was out in May. So sorry for the delay because I nicely forgot what month it was out in. (In my defense, there is one edition which comes out in July)

The Falconer is a book I'm not sure how to rate because I enjoyed it but I wasn't addicted to it for some reason and I kept having a hard time getting back to it. 

I'm going to do a slightly different review for this.

The Positives

World building:
I love the whole world that Elizabeth May introduces us to in this novel. It's a hybrid world that has elements of the Victorian era and is full of futuristic technology. It's a mix of fantasy, steampunk and still comes under the genre of young adult. Before starting this novel I wasn't too sure about the world it would be set in but the author combines things we know with futuristic ideas quite well. It's a creative world that is known as well as unknown at the same time.

Action:
This book is action packed. I loved the fact that there was a heroine that could really kick @$$ in the novel. There's lot of fighting and action in this book. Some of the negatives are nicely glossed over because you're too busy enjoying the action. 

The weapons and the terminology :
Some of you might think this comes under world building but I love some of the innovative weapons that the protagonist invents in this. I also loved the terms that are used . Especially the one for fairies. 

Unpredictable
The whole plot is pretty unpredictable especially the ending. The ending REALLY surprised me. It's a cliffhanger( which is little annoying) but in my opinion it was completely unexpected. The action was also unpredictable. Anything could happen at any time and I loved that! 


Negatives

Relationships
- Relationship between Aileana and Kiaran
I just didn't buy it. He doesn't exactly treat her well. It's a really messed up relationship. It's hard to even comprehend why she tolerates him anymore let alone likes him. I just didn't understand it. I'm not saying that I didn't like Kiaran as an individual. He really fascinated me but I guess I didn't feel the spark between Aileana and Kiaran

- Relationship between Aileana and Gavin
I actually liked their friendship but then things escalate VERY quickly (trying to avoid spoilers) and it gets too weird. I was confused whether Gavin even likes her as a friend in the middle because their relationship is not defined well and just keeps changing. I felt sorry for Gavin and I really didn't like how his character is barely developed but still keeps turning up in important moments. I also didn't like Aileana's hot and cold whatever it is with him. One second she's all "He's my best friend."


Next moment she's almost forgotten about him.

It was also really weird how even though they meet each other after years and have NEVER fought together. The first time they team up they're like the Avenger's Black Widow and Hawkeye. (Atleast they had a lot of implied history together)



Instant Perfect TEAM synchronization 

Holding my Interest/Originality
While I was reading the book I was thoroghly invested in it but for some reason once I stopped I didn't feel like going back to it.I think the reason for that could be that even though the concept of the book is different it is a hybrid of things I have read before.Like the world of faeries reminded me of the world introduced in the Fever series. 




On the fence / Mixed feelings 

Heroine
The protagonist is someone I really liked in the beginning because she wasn't helpless and was working towards a goal. As the story progressed I started liking her less and less. I love the complexity of the emotions that the character goes through. I even liked the fact that she is a grey character but for some reason I liked her more before I found out her complex backstory. The more we get to know about her past the more complex her character becomes and it does add more depth to her character but I guess I just liked her more when she was a killing machine.(I'm weird I guess) I also didn't like some of the decisions she made and how she treated some characters especially the male interests. So that is also one of the reasons why I didn't like her as much as the story progressed. 

My Rating:

I have no idea how to rate this . I just don't know how to rate it. I guess on Amazon I will rate it as 4 but I just don't know . It's a good book but it didn't blow me away. If I had to I would give it a range of 3.5-4 stars. 


Monday, June 16, 2014

Review: White Hot Kiss by Jennifer Armentrout

White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements #1)

One kiss could be the last. 

Seventeen-year-old Layla just wants to be normal. But with a kiss that kills anything with a soul, she's anything but normal. Half demon, half gargoyle, Layla has abilities no one else possesses. 

Raised among the Wardens—a race of gargoyles tasked with hunting demons and keeping humanity safe—Layla tries to fit in, but that means hiding her own dark side from those she loves the most. Especially Zayne, the swoon-worthy, incredibly gorgeous and completely off-limits Warden she's crushed on since forever. 

Then she meets Roth—a tattooed, sinfully hot demon who claims to know all her secrets. Layla knows she should stay away, but she's not sure she wants to—especially when that whole no-kissing thing isn't an issue, considering Roth has no soul. 

But when Layla discovers she's the reason for the violent demon uprising, trusting Roth could not only ruin her chances with Zayne…it could brand her a traitor to her family. Worse yet, it could become a one-way ticket to the end of the world.
Source: Publisher (Thanks HarlequinTEEN!)
My Thoughts:
I was really looking forward to this book as I'm a Jennifer Armentrout fan. I've read a lot of her books and I follow her releases so I was DYING to get my hands on this. Unfortunately this book did not live upto my expectations and left me disappointed. 
As stated above this is not the first Jennifer Armentrout book I've read. I've read both the Lux series and Half Blood series, and this book's situations and characters reminded me of both. I understand that this book was written before both series but published later. It was almost like I was reading a hybrid of both the Lux series and the Half Blood series and not in a good way. It was very hard for me to form a connection with characters that were shadows of characters that I already loved.I was very close to not finishing this one because I just didn't feel like reading a book that wasn't even a patch on her other series. 
The gargoyles angle was interesting but there wasn't a lot of focus on it.This is also not the first gargoyle novel I've read so the idea of gargoyles wasn't as novel to me as it might be for others. Maybe they will focus on the gargoyles more in the sequel but the focus wasn't on gargoyles on  this one.
This book focuses on Layla , a teenage girl adopted by the gargoyles who is restless and wants to be "helpful" by kicking ass and putting herself in danger.Instead of focusing on the gargoyles and their history the author chooses to focus on Layla's adventures with demons and her romantic feelings. Which may sound good but I think it would have been better if there would have been more focus on gargoyles. There are already so many books that are on demons that there's nothing that really interests you about them in this book. Layla is also a character that is not easy to like .
Zayne, Layla's crush is also someone that I for one did not like. He's CLEARLY either REALLY dumb or he's leading her on.Both of which are not traits that make you as a reader like or swoon over him. 
Roth is the only saving grace of the novel and he is a LOT like Daemon in ways. I like how he riles up everyone and is pretty clear about what he wants, though he is a demon. I also like how he's unpredictable.I really wanted to know more about his back story. Armentrout gives us a nice glimpse into this character. 
The plot could have been much better. It had so much potential but the story drags in some places and doesn't manage to hold my attention. Good thing is that once you really get into the story , you hang in there till the end. The problem is getting into the story.The ending was unpredictable and in a way shocking. 
The problem is that even when I reached the end I didn't really care much for the characters.
Overall, you might enjoy this novel a lot if this is your first Armentrout novel but if it isn't you might feel a sense of deja-vu while reading the novel.The plot is interesting and the ending shocking. The pacing could do with some work. I might check out the sequel but right now I'm not too sure. I might just snuggle with the last Lux book instead. 

My Rating:
2.5 stars 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Review: Across The Universe

Across the Universe (Across the Universe #1)
by Beth Revis
A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder. 

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone - one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship - tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn't do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed's hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there's only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

Links: Amazon.COM, Goodreads ,Amazon India
 (The cheaper version is currently out of stock in Indian online sites but you can try the notify me option on this site  )

Source: Borrowed 

My Thoughts:

So I've been having a bit of a hard time finishing a novel for some time. This is the first novel that I have finished since Mid-May (I think) so I think it deserves props for keeping me engaged. 

The best thing about this novel is the world building. I loved it. I love the world building and how everything is set in space and the condition that these people live in. I am loving the YA science fiction genre (*cough* These Broken Stars love *cough*) . The high point of the entire story in my opinion was the world that is introduced to the reader. I enjoyed learning more and more about the world.

This book is told from dual point of view of Amy and Elder, the main protagonists. I was never confused between their voices. They both have distinct voices and perspectives. Which fits together in this book pretty well. You get to see the same thing in two perspectives and it's not repetitive. 

The writing in some places is beautiful. Some of the dialogues and feelings that are portrayed through the words really kept me hooked . The problem is that the author is not very good at building up the mystery and keeping it unpredictable at the same time. I knew almost everything that happened in the climax pretty soon. There were some surprises of course but most of the twists, I had already predicted.I think by the time the climax came along I was just happy that there were atleast SOME things I had not managed to predict.

Another issue I had with this book is how some serious issues and problems were handled or should I say NOT handled at all.The issues just seem to be brushed aside.The world they live in is different and I like how they show how different it is but how some issues were portrayed and handled, I was disappointed with. As I want to avoid spoilers, I'll just hint towards it. There's a pretty heartbreaking discovery that happens near the end and it's not really addressed or it seems it's just swept under the rug. Maybe the author plans to address it in the sequel but this is just one of the examples. The characters just seem to handle these issues in a robotic manner and not even have any emotional dialogue on them, which just didn't sit right with me.

Overall,I did enjoy the novel and am interested to read what happens next. I want to learn even more about this world and the space they live in. I also really enjoyed some of the dialogues and parts of the writing immensely.I just thought I would point out the reasons why I'm not giving this a higher rating even though it managed to keep me entertained and hooked till the end. 

My Rating:

3/5

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