Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Book Review: Divergent

Divergent by Veronica Roth
One choice can transform you.

Amazon Page
GoodReads Page
Author Website

Amazon Summary:
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. 
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
My Thoughts:

I didn't join the Divergent bandwagon until after seeing the movie trailer. Of course I wanted to see the movie, and of course I can't see a movie based on a book without reading the book first. So I snatched the ebook up during a free ebook promotion and eventually got around to reading it. I read all three books. Totally worth it, and yes, I recommend them all. Because I have a thing about posting spoilers online, though, I'm only going to review this one.

Honestly, until I read the last book, I didn't really get all the hype about Divergent. Most readers don't, I think. Yes, it's a good book. Strong characters, brilliant world-building, subtle foreshadowing, relationship depth, varied vocabulary choices. It's very well-written and deserves the acclaim (and the movie -- I saw it, it's great) it's receiving. But it's not really on the same level as its biggest-name sibling, The Hunger Games. Not until the end of the second book/beginning of the third, when things really get crazy.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Book Review: Firstborn

All right, so that series I was thinking/talking about doing? Decided against it. Instead, here's a book review that I think is over a month late. Sorry, BookSneeze! I really do like reviewing! Just not so much this book. I don't like writing negative reviews.

Firstborn by Lorie Ann Grover
Where does a firstborn girl fit in a world dominated by men?

Amazon Page
GoodReads Page
Author Website

Amazon Summary:
When Tiadone was born, her parents had two choices: leave their daughter outside the community to die in the wilds, or raise her as male and force her to suppress all feminine traits. Now, as the first female living as male in her village, Tiadone must prove her father didn’t make a mistake by letting her live.
As her male initiation approaches, Tiadone knows every eye on the community is on her, and desperately wishes to belong and finally be accepted. But at every step, traditional feminine gifts and traits emerge, and the bird she's been twined with is seen as a sign of the devil.
Worse, as Tiadone completes her rites, she finds she is drawn to her male best friend in ways that are very much in line with the female gender.
Confused and desperate, Tiadone tries to become what she must be while dealing with what she indeed has become: a young woman who may be able to stand up to her despotic rulers and uncover her real purpose in life.
My Thoughts:

As soon as I saw this book in my BookSneeze email featuring reviewers' latest choices, I knew I wanted it. I was the first to request it -- the first day it was available. I mean, dystopian genre, made-up world, firstborn girl, story of girl power in male society... just seemed like my thing. Plus the whole bird thing looked intriguing.

And the story was that -- intriguing -- but it was also very, very confusing.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

I'm Not Dead

Hello, my lovely readers.

It's been a while, hasn't it?

I took an undecided, unannounced blogging break. I could explain about my real-world health problems, college crisis, schedule craziness, or high school senioritis. But I don't feel like making a laundry list of the issues driving me in circles this past month. Instead, I'll just say I fell off the blogging bandwagon and didn't really care about getting back on. I'm back now, so let's focus on the happy stuff.

Like my best friend's birthday on March 29. The best friend I based characters in my book Sixteen about. Speaking of Sixteen, something else very important occurred on March 29...

So, yeah, go buy it if you want. I'd love a review once you've read it, if you're feeling particularly generous.

Oh, and a bit of other news: since I've been finding it so hard to stick to blogging, I've decided to scale back the blogging schedule once again. This will probably only last until after graduation in late May, since I always feel like blogging more often in the summer. For now, though, I'll be popping in on Wednesdays and only on Wednesdays. I may or may not have a new series coming up next week... haven't decided yet. Just keep your eyes peeled ;) If I do go ahead with it, it's going to be huge. Life-changing. Trust me.