robinellen (robinellen) wrote,

Book Reports (121-126)...

For those of you who happened to Google your title and ended up here, please know that one star is not a bad thing in Robin's world -- just the fact that I picked up your book and started it means that somewhere it's getting good buzz (or that your blurb was really cool).

* I didn't make it beyond the first 20 pages.
** I made it to the end, but I either skimmed or skipped large sections.
*** I might have skipped/skimmed, but I liked it and might read it again.
**** I read at least 95% of the book and it was good -- probably will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite and definite reread.

This year, I'm only going to list the stars and a brief recommendation for the type of readers I think will enjoy the book [(R) means it's a re-read; [] means it's an ARC].

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[Three Truths and a Lie, by Brent Hartinger -- highly recommended for those who like suspense (especially psychological suspense), those who like *misdirection, those who like twists at the ending, and those who like a fast-paced narrative style -- Simon Pulse, 8/16]

* This also has YA male/male sex (not graphic) included...and the misdirection is so well done. I can almost always guess the ending accurately, and this time, I truly had no idea. I was stunned -- and it really made some of the narrative tricks (that had been bugging me a little bit) fall into place. Very intriguing read!

The Darkest Corners, by Kara Thomas -- recommended for those who like *mind-bendery mysteries, those who like spunky yet vulnerable heroines, and those who like a 'real-crime' feel to their tales -- Delacorte Press, 4/16

* I can like these types of tales, and I did find this one interesting (especially when all was revealed), although I didn't love any of the characters that much. The MC was sympathetic, to be sure, but I didn't find myself involved enough in her plight to really feel with her throughout the tale. Still, an interesting idea here.

Seven Black Diamonds, by Melissa Marr -- recommended for those who like tales of Fae folk, those who like *intricate relationships between the characters, those who like sweet romance, and those who like Marr's lush writing style -- HarperCollins, 3/16

* I'm not a huge fan of urban fantasy (fae, werewolves, vampires, etc), but I picked this up because I always like how Marr builds the relationships in her books with such depth and complexity. This didn't disappoint, and that aspect alone kept me engaged.

Trance, by Linda Gerber -- recommended for those who like YA paranormal tales, those who like sweet romance, those who like grief recovery, and those who don't mind some *too-easily-tied-up-loose-ends -- Speak, 10/10

* I really liked the premise here, but I just couldn't buy the execution. I did read it all the way through, but it kind of fell flat for me, personally. Although the MC did deal with some of the issues surrounding the loss of her mom (and sis), so much was glossed over -- and the fact that she was allowed to drive at all when she went into 'trances' made it very difficult for me to take other parts seriously. Still, the romance was very sweet (and had an intriguing twist).

With Malice, Eileen Cook -- highly recommended for those who like *ripped-from-the-headlines' thrillers, those who like amnesia tales, those who like sympathetic heroines, and those who like realistic endings -- HMH BFYR, 6/16

* This was hard to put down, and I read it very quickly because of that. I like the narrative style that allows the reader to understand the past only as the MC remembers it, and I like the tension that builds throughout the story, as well.

The Countdown, by Kimberly Derting -- recommended for those who've enjoyed the rest of the trilogy (The Taking), those who like alien tales, those who like *sweet teen romance, and those who don't mind brief sections of graphic violence -- HarperTeen, 5/16

* The romance here is sweet, but it's also a little hard to believe. I thought that in the first one too, when Kyra fell for Tyler (the younger brother of the boyfriend she'd had before she was taken) in just a week. Not that much more time has passed here, and...well, it just didn't work as well for me as other aspects of the book. I also had a hard time with how quickly everything pulled together at the end (in other words, the pacing seemed a little off). That said, overall I found the trilogy intriguing and well worth my time and enjoyment in reading it.
Tags: book reports, glbt, ya
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