Thursday, 26 February 2015

Eve by Anna Carey

Sixteen years after a lethal disease killed the majority of the Earth's population, eighteen-year-old Eve is about to graduate from the heavily guarded school she has yet to step outside of. Eve thinks all will be grand when she graduates, she will get the chance to work in the trades then live in the fabulous City of Sand afterall. But Eve discovers a shocking and gruesome secret about the school that she has grown up in the day before she is to graduate. Eve decides the only hope for her will be to flee, so she does. Having never stepped into the wild before, Eve is scared. And if that isn't enough, the King's men are chasing her down. While in the wild, Eve befriends an old rival from school, Arden and a boy from the wild, Caleb. Against everything that Eve has ever been taught, she starts to fall for Caleb. Will Eve be able to avoid being caught by the King's men, let alone survive in the wild?

Rate: 4 stars

Yet another dystopian book, surprise, surprise. If you are a fan of dystopian, adventure or survival books, I would suggest picking this book up. There was a fair amount of action in this book (Yay!) and you kept wondering if Eve was going to make it. The book ended with a cliff hanger making readers wonder what was going to happen next.


The whole reason why Eve ran away is pretty sick when you think about it. I understand that they needed to repopulate the world, but raising girls then just using them for children is just wrong. They were treated like they didn't matter, that they didn't even have emotions or needs. Later on in the book we found out the boys were put into labour camps.And I think that's pretty horrible as well. We also found out that it was only orphans that were being abused like this. Why only the orphans? Because they have nowhere to go? Or because they have no one to stop people using them?

Now Eve herself was a pretty naïve character. She was the perfect student at the school, the top of her class. So of course she believed all the lies her school fed her. But when she found out that horrible secret, she handled it pretty well, she didn't have a complete mental breakdown or go crazy like some people may have. She also had zero survival skills so she was in luck when she found Arden and later Caleb. She went through character development as well, at the beginning of the book she was a goody two shoes, and din't trust men/boys. But later she became more sure of herself and learned to trust Caleb and some of the other boys. Eve was also a very caring character, she kept thinking about the friends she left behind. I wonder if she will actually be able to go back for Pip at the end of the series.

At the beginning of the book, I didn't like Arden. But as she slowly became friends with Eve, I began to like her as well. She became quite a good friend to Eve, and I loved the scenes she was in. Hopefully we'll see her in the next books. Then there was Caleb. I thought that he was a good love interest for this book. He was willing to help Eve no matter what. Even though their relationship had ups and downs, I think that made it even more realistic. I wonder what will happen to him since Eve had to leave him behind to go to Califia. Will he go back to the camp he was at? But Leif will most likely still be there, so how will that work out. Speaking of Leif, I hated him. Just when I thought he was turning around, he sold Eve out to the soldiers. That was just horrible.

Overall this book was pretty good, I enjoyed it. And I will definately be picking up the next book, thanks to that cliff hanger at the end.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

Epics have suddenly risen up all over the world. They want power, which shouldn't be too hard to obtain for them since they all have powers that a normal man or woman could ever posses. Plus, there is an unspoken rule that no normal person should try and defeat an Epic, they have all the power after all, what would be the point of trying anyways? 

An Epic by the name of Steelheart has taken over the city of Chicago and renamed it Newcago. Humans and Epics alike fear him, and nobody has ever been able to defeat him. Even though people think that Steelheart is basically invincible, David knows that every Epic has a weakness, even Steelheart. He is the only person still alive that has seen Steelheart bleed, and David has wanted him dead ever since he watched him murder his father ten years ago. Since then, David has been studying Epics, especially Steelheart, avidly to find their weaknesses in hope that one day he can eliminate Steelheart. But David knows that he can't do this alone, so he hopes to join the Reckoners, the only group of non-Epics that are willing to stand up to the Epics. 

Rate: 4 stars

One of my friends had recommended this book while we were out at a book store, so naturally, I bought it. And, I'm quite glad that she did recommend it because I really did enjoy it as you can tell from the rating above. There were also some plot twists at the end that I did not see coming, and to be honest, I wasn't expecting any sort of plot twist. These plot twist left me wanting the next book, which I hope to buy in the near future. Plus, there was lots of action. Overall,  Steelheart was a pretty good book.


I think the prologue of Steelheart was actually well done, I don't normally like prologues, especially long ones, but this one was pretty much perfect. It gave us a good sense of what happened on the day that David's father died. I think it was necessary to have this prologue in the book because what happened on that day comes up in the book often. It made David's story make more sense.

Now for the characters. David was an obsessive character, he spent most of his life trying to find information about Epics, like I mentioned above. This understandable considering his past. Wouldn't you want to get revenge on the man that murdered your father in cold blood? He was also really smart, even though he didn't consider himself intelligent. I mean he figured out a bunch of things about Epics, including Steelheart's weakness. I also liked how he had quirks as well. It was kind of funny how would always come up with the worst metaphors possible, it was kind of like coming up with bad puns.

Then we had Prof. He was the leader of the team. Let me say, I was not expecting him to be an Epic. But, it all makes sense. He was able to transfer his powers to the other team members (except Megan), making them think they were using his inventions. And it was interesting to see that whenever he was using the powers himself, he basically turned into another person, and I wonder why that is. I was very pleased that he pretty much trusted David right away, even when others didn't.

The other members of the team were Tia, Cody, Abraham and Megan. Tia was basically the brains of the operation, she stayed back on missions and would give the other members info while they were on missions. I also liked how she had this addiction to Cola. Like I've mentioned before, I love characters with quirks. Cody was the very definition of goofy, we was always making these stories up and joking around. He, Abraham and Megan seem to go out on all the missions. Abraham was the Canadian with the French accent, not quite as quirky as the others, but he was probably the nicest out of the Reckoners.

Megan is a whole other story. I didn't expect her to be an Epic, let alone Firefight! David obviously had feelings for her, but I'm not exactly sure about her, I don't really know who she is anymore. Since she was Firefight, she would have been working for Steelheart, but she saved Abraham's life while on a mission and then we saw her listen to what David said to her when he thought she was dying. So she can't be all bad, can she? I have no idea what is going on with her, but I hope she turns out to be good. It was so surprising to see her turn up again, because David watched her die, but that was all just an illusion created by her. Hopefully we'll see what she is truely like in the next book.

Another thing I was surprised about, was Conflux. I didn't expect him to turn out to be a some kind of slave. I didn't expect Steelheart to just use him to power the city. It'll be interesting to see how he will play into the next book.

The ending was my favourite part by far. The huge battle scene was great and all the pieces of the story fell into the place (like how we found out about Prof and Megan). I was quite pleased that Nightweilder and Steelheart were killed. Even though we did not see too much of Nightweilder, I could just tell he was nasty. And Steelheart was just an arrogant, sadistic jerk. From the beginning, I thought Steelheart's weakness was going to be that he could only be killed by someone who was not trying to kill him, or crossfire. But I was proven wrong when David figured out that he could only be killed by someone who was not afraid of him. Steelheart ultimately ended up killing himself, since he was the only person alive who didn't fear him. 

I loved how this book wove a bunch (but not all) of loose ends together. Somethings I would like to see in the next book would be some more history on Calamity, why the Epics are Epics and Megan's true colours. I can't to see what will happen next!

Monday, 16 February 2015

The Selection by Kiera Cass

When America Singer gets the chance to compete in the Selection, a competition wherein thirty-five girls have the chance to compete for the Prince's heart, she only agrees to apply to satisfy her family and her secret love, Aspen. America is surprised when she is selected to compete. Never wanting to compete in the first place, America is whisked of to the castle with thirty-four other girls. As she competes, she realizes that Prince Maxon is nothing like she thought he would be like. Could this new life be better than her old one?

Rate: 4 stars

This book had been recommended to me by at least three people, and I have finally managed to pick it up and read it. It was quite a quick read (I finished it in under twenty-four hours), and one of the more girly books that I have read, but it was quite good. Filled with glittering gowns, televised events, decadent food, and girls both mean (looking at you Celeste) and nice, this book is not to miss. 


I initially thought that the whole idea of the Selection was totally shallow, with thirty-five girls being shipped of to a castle and the Prince just gets to choose the one he likes best and it doesn't matter what the girl thinks (although they all wanted to compete except for America). I think I would have acted similarly to America if I got the chance to compete in the Selection, I just wouldn't want to. But maybe if my family was poor, in either caste four, five, six seven or eight, I might enter in hopes of winning money for my family, but not the Prince's heart. But when America talked to Maxon the first time outside, we saw his view on the Selection. We learn that Maxon rarely gets the chance to meet any women so this is his one opportunity to find love. Plus, Maxon didn't really seem like a shallow person. I think that if he was, I would still find the Selection totally shallow, whereas now, I find it less shallow.

While on the topic of people's character, let's talk about America herself. Although I did find some of her reactions relatable, I wasn't super attached to her. I don't really know what it was, but I just didn't care about her as much as some other main characters. But that doesn't mean I disliked her. I liked how she cared about the people in the lower castes, like her servants. I thought that it was great that she brought them with her when the castle was under attack and wouldn't let them leave. Plus, I liked that America told Maxon about what it was like to live as a lower caste. And I was really happy when Maxon actually did something about this, he made food available for castes five through eight.  I was really glad he didn't turn out to be a snob. But then we had Celeste, whom I hated. She was just so nasty, and two-faced. She ripped a sleeve off one of America's dresses and spilled punch all over another girls dress on purpose, on her birthday! Plus she makes the most rude comments. But thankfully there were some nice girls, Marlee especially. She was a good friend to America, which can be rare in dystopian novels, a lot of times the female lead doesn't have a really good friend, and I was glad to see this here. Then there was Aspen. I was beginning to think we wouldn't see him again after America left for the castle, but I was proven wrong when he showed up as a guard at the castle. How convenient is that. Of all the places that Aspen could have ended up, it had to be the castle. It'll be interesting to see how America will deal with her feelings for both Maxon and Aspen.

There were many interesting smaller details in this book. One of them would be the caste system. I thought that reflected the society that we lived in today. We had the rich in castes one, two and three and the poor in castes four through eight. Castes one through three were like people living in first world countries and castes four through eight were like those who live in third world countries. Also, everyone wanted to get to a higher caste, where in today's society, everybody wants a higher social status. I liked how America explained the castes, "If you weren't a Two or a Three, then it was just varying shades of bad."

Another interesting detail in this book would be the history. I liked how we got a mini lesson on the history of Illéa, I always like to have some sort of world building or backstory. But the American State of China, really? I also found it interesting how there were barely any history books, and when America found one she was told to keep quiet about it. What's with that? I wonder why that is. Hopefully we'll get more on it in the next book.

I also found the attacks on the castle to be interesting. Maxon thought that the rebels could be looking for something, but what could they be looking for? How will this play into the next book?

Overall, I did quite enjoy this book. I think there is lots of potential for the next book, and I can't wait to read it.