Tag: Sunday Series Review

Sunday Series Review: The Blood and Salt Series

Today Kim reviews The Blood and Salt Series by Kim Liggett . She loved the first, but the second one was not really for her.  She rated the series 4 stars.

Books in the Series:
Blood and Salt
Heart of Ash


Blood and Salt
Published:
September 22, 2015
341 pages

Romeo and Juliet meets Children of the Corn in this one-of-a-kind romantic horror.

“When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”

These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.

Ash is plagued by memories of her ancestor, Katia, which harken back to the town’s history of unrequited love and murder, alchemy and immortality. Charming traditions soon give way to a string of gruesome deaths, and Ash feels drawn to Dane, a forbidden boy with secrets of his own.

As the community prepares for a ceremony five hundred years in the making, Ash must fight not only to save her mother, but herself—and discover the truth about Quivira before it’s too late. Before she’s all in—blood and salt.

Heart of Ash
Published:
February 20, 2018
278 pages

Ash may have escaped the immortal-worshipping cult that killed her mother, but the love of her life is still under its thrall. Dane has been possessed by his diabolical ancestor Coronado, a man who’s fabulously wealthy, dripping with fame, and the leader of Europe’s most dangerous immortal network. Dane begs Ash to join him at Coronado’s castle in Spain, and swears that his blood bond with Ash is stronger than Coronado’s hold over him. Ash is desperate to help Dane vanquish Coronado without having to sacrifice herself to the darkness. But when you’re all in, blood and salt, the only way to hold on to the light might just be by setting everything on fire.


Kim’s Rating of the Series: 4 Stars

Kim’s Review of the Series:

I found Blood and Salt by mistake three years ago during my scary stage! I had been looking for another book but got the title wrong and found Blood and Salt instead. Totally worth it! I really enjoyed this first book. I love the setting, the characters, and the story. Ash and Rhys are teens, but they are far more mature than the typical teen. They’ve grown up with a very unconventional mother who raised them away from the cult she was born into. I’m just weird, y’all know this about me already. Cults are fascinating!

All my friends make fun of me because I grew up in a “cult like” environment, so the character that I identified with most is Beth. She’s quirky, sheltered, optimistic, and innocent. She’s definitely more perky than I was when I left college, but I like her a lot. She adds a humorous side to the story that helps lighten a rather dark situation. And the legend of Katia and Coronado brings some historical realism.

This is the second time I’ve read this book, but the first time was long enough ago that I didn’t remember what happened. Everything fit perfectly together and made sense. It was dark and creepy and although the ending was technically a cliffhanger, it didn’t drive me nuts. A solid 5 stars!

Unfortunately, Heart of Ash did not live up to the standard Blood and Salt set. The first book was on a smaller, more intimate scale that held the tension really well. Then Heart of Ash turned it into a global conspiracy that just took away from the original story. Where Ash used to be a mature teen who had to deal with a lot of adult stuff and did it capably, she then turned into that annoying teen who flip flopped on every little thing and spent most of the book talking herself in and out of loving Dane. OMG stop!! Y’all got way bigger fish to fry here! It felt like Blood and Salt should have had just a few extra pages that could have resolved the whole saga, but Leggitt tried to draw the story out and fell flat. Katia and Coronado’s story became petty and unrealistic (fantasy realism is different than actual realism lol). I was so excited about this sequel . . . but overall I just didn’t like it. I’ll give it 3 stars.

I think I’d recommend the first book with no hesitation to anyone, teens included. Yeah, go ahead and read the second book, but really only to resolve the story. So the whole series gets 4 stars.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US:
Blood and Salt
Heart of Ash

Amazon UK:
Blood and Salt
Heart of Ash

 

 

Sunday Series Review: The Six of Crows Duology

Today Kim reviews the Six of Crows Duology by Leigh Bardugo. She loved it and rated it 5 stars!!!!!

Books in the Duology:
Six of Crows
Crooked Kingdom


Six of Crows
Published: September 29, 2015
465 pages

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price–and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

Crooked Kingdom
Published: September 27, 2016
536 pages

When you can’t beat the odds, change the game.

Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.


Kim’s Rating of the Series: 5 stars
Kim’s Review of the Series:

The Six of Crows audiobook was on sale as one of Audible’s Daily Deals and knowing nothing about it, I bought it. I started listening to it and soon I was looking for any excuse to drive my car so I could keep listening. Then I had to wait a year for Crooked Kindgom to come out, and that was torture. Bardugo has created a world that I could just disappear in. I viewed Ketterdam the same way that I viewed Dickens’ London. I was fascinated and repulsed all at the same time.

Then I met Kaz Brekker. The perfect embodiment of tall, dark and mysterious. And Inej, the wraith. An entire cast of characters that I like. Seriously, I like all of them. How many times in my reviews do I criticize characters in books? Yeah, a lot! But not in Ketterdam! Even the villians, I hate them, but I love them at the same time. When Matthias came in, I thought, “finally! A character I’m going to hate!” Nope. I still loved him. I have nothing bad to say.

And then the story. I’m going to get really nerdy here so stay with me. For those of you Star Trek fans out there, this duology is like watching James T. Kirk facing the Kobayashi Maru. Kaz and his team are faced with the no-win situation. They are faced with an impossible task. Each thing they take on is un-doable. Can they rescue the scientist? Can they save one of their own? Can they accomplish the impossible? Read and find out! Yes, this is a Young Adult duology, but without the annoying teenage drama. This duology could actually fit on any serious fiction reader’s shelf. I absolutely recommend this duology to anyone.

Series Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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Sunday Series Review: The UnWind Series

Today Kim reviews The UnWind series by Neal Schusterman. I am sure you all know by now how much she loves him! He is becoming a favorite author of hers.

The UnWind Series by Neal Shusterman

Books in the Series:  
UnWind
UnWholly
UnSouled
UnDivided
UnBound

Series Summary Description:

After the Second Civil War, the Bill of Life states that human life may not be touched from the moment of conception until a child reaches the age of thirteen. However, a loophole allows parents to retroactively get rid of a teenager through a process called “unwinding.”

Three teens defy the system and run away from their unwinding: Connor, a rebel whose parents have ordered his unwinding; Risa, a ward of the state who is to be unwound due to cost-cutting; and Lev, his parents’ tenth child whose unwinding has been planned since birth as a religious tithing.

As their paths intersect and lives hang in the balance, Connor, Risa, and Lev must work together to survive—and they may change the fate of America in the process.


UnWind
Published: June 2, 2009
353 pages

In a society where unwanted teens are salvaged for their body parts, three runaways fight the system that would “unwind” them. Connor’s parents want to be rid of him because he’s a troublemaker. Risa has no parents and is being unwound to cut orphanage costs. Lev’s unwinding has been planned since his birth, as part of his family’s strict religion. Brought together by chance, and kept together by desperation, these three unlikely companions make a harrowing cross-country journey, knowing their lives hang in the balance. If they can survive until their eighteenth birthday, they can’t be harmed — but when every piece of them, from their hands to their hearts, are wanted by a world gone mad, eighteen seems far, far away.

UnWholly
Published: August 28, 2012
417 pages

Thanks to Connor, Lev, and Risa—and their high-profile revolt at Happy Jack Harvest Camp—people can no longer turn a blind eye to unwinding. Ridding society of troublesome teens while simultaneously providing much-needed organs for transplanting might be convenient, but its morality has finally been brought into question. However, unwinding has become big business, and there are powerful political and corporate interests that want to see it not only continue, but also expand to the unwinding of prisoners and the impoverished. Cam is made entirely out of the parts of other unwinds; he is a teen who does not technically exist. A futuristic Frankenstein, Cam struggles to find identity and meaning and wonders if a rewound being can have a soul. And when the actions of a sadistic bounty hunter cause Cam’s fate to become inextricably bound with the fates of Connor, Risa, and Lev, he’ll have to question humanity itself.

UnSouled
Published: October 15, 2013
433 pages

Connor and Lev are on the run after the destruction of the Graveyard, the last safe haven for AWOL Unwinds. But for the first time, they’re not just running away from something. This time, they’re running towards answers, in the form of a woman Proactive Citizenry has tried to erase from history itself. If they can find her, and learn why the shadowy figures behind unwinding are so afraid of her, they may discover the key to ending the unwinding process forever. Cam, the rewound boy, is plotting to take down the organization that created him. He knows that if he can bring Proactive Citizenry to its knees, it will show Risa how he truly feels about her. And without Risa, Cam is having trouble remembering what it feels like to be human. With the Juvenile Authority and vindictive parts pirates hunting them, their paths will converge explosively—and everyone will be changed.

UnDivided
Published: October 14, 2014
385 pages

Proactive Citizenry, the company that created Cam from the parts of unwound teens, has a plan: to mass produce rewound teens like Cam for military purposes. And below the surface of that horror lies another shocking level of intrigue: Proactive Citizenry has been suppressing technology that could make unwinding completely unnecessary. As Conner, Risa, and Lev uncover these startling secrets, enraged teens begin to march on Washington to demand justice and a better future. But more trouble is brewing. Starkey’s group of storked teens is growing more powerful and militant with each new recruit. And if they have their way, they’ll burn the harvest camps to the ground and put every adult in them before a firing squad—which could destroy any chance America has for a peaceful future.

UnBound
Published: December 15, 2015
321 pages

Find out what happens to Connor, Risa, and Lev now that they’ve finally destroyed the Proactive Citizenry in this collection of short stories set in the world of the New York Timesbestselling Unwind Dystology by Neal Shusterman. Connor Lassiter’s fight to bring down Proactive Citizenry and find a suitable alternative to unwinding concluded in UnDivided. Now Connor, Risa, and Lev are free to live in a peaceful future—or are they? Neal Shusterman brings back his beloved Unwind characters for his fans to see what’s left for those who were destined to be unwound.


Kim’s Rating of the Series: 4.8 stars
Kim’s Review of the Series:

This series blew me away! Neal Shusterman is easily becoming one of my all time favorite authors. He manages to bring in philosophy without being pompous and boring. He takes controversial issues, keeps to neutral ground, and shows the reasoning behind both sides. You start out knowing exactly which side of the issue that you’re on, but then find yourself agreeing with some of the reasoning behind the other side. I didn’t think anything could top the Scythe series, but this one did.

I love Connor, Risa, and Lev so much. They are teens who start out with narrow viewpoints, as regular annoying teens and then are thrown into very adult situations, and they shine! The supporting characters are believable and fit the story perfectly. There are several rabbit trails that branched off of each story, but they were simple and easy to follow and keep track of. And as I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that there’s a decimal up top in the rating. This was a difficult one to rate, mostly because I wanted so badly to give 5 stars. There were very small things that I didn’t like, a little teenage drama within the series, and some weaker short stories in UnBound that kept me from giving a perfect score. But overall, I loved this series, and I think this is the perfect series for teens. I might even be giving this series out as Christmas and birthday gifts this year! I would absolutely recommend this series to everybody!

Series Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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