Delusions – Amy Crandall [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★★

A must-have for all the lovers of psychological thrillers and mysteries – this is a book that will show you a twisted side of a human being so well, that you will not know what happened once you reach the end! A masterpiece of a thriller – a delight for all the murder solvers out there! 

Synopsis: 

A deadly game is being played. The question is . . . who will survive?

  ***

As she waits to give her statement in one of the interrogation rooms of Arcata Police Department, Abigale recites the same line over and over inside her head.

I did not kill anyone.

I did not kill anyone.

But there’s a trail of bodies, and it leads straight to her. The events that brought her to this very moment all point to one thing . . . her guilt.

She must convince Detective Collins of her innocence, but how can she explain her ties to the victims, and the evidence that has her name written all over it?

Then there’s the mysterious Facebook profile, DarkHeart434.

Who is DarkHeart434? And why does it seem like this person has all the answers, including the identity of the real murderer?

As pieces of the puzzle start to come together, everything about Abigale’s life begins to unravel–her past, her present . . . and even her self-proclaimed innocence.

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”She remembered now. The deaths. They weren’t just delusions planted in her mind by others. They were real.”

This book starts in an interrogation room, where two detectives are questioning Abigale about the murders that happened – and she is the main suspect. As the interrogation happens in the present, we follow the story in the past from Abigale’s point of view, from the moment she moves into the new town.

The story and plot are so well set, and the past and present are so well connected that give you clues step by step, until you reach the grand ending, and nothing is as you expected. Even though I realised what is happening around the middle of the book, I still had to keep reading to find out whether it was true in the end.

This is, for certain, the best ending of a mystery book I have read so far!

The characters – some of them – are so twisted, and so psychologically unstable and scary, that it makes you wonder. Such possessiveness and anger, and twisted mind – Amy managed to perfectly such a rare condition. ( I am trying so hard here to stay away from all the spoilers.)

”Abigale wasn’t the outgoing type. She’d rather sit in her room with her nose buried in a book than socialise with anyone outside her inner circle of friends, which was small to begin with.”

I wish I could connect with Abigale’s character – but I just couldn’t. That was the only flaw I had with this book. I didn’t care enough for her, and for what was happening to her. The side characters were amazingly portrayed though – I enjoyed reading about Julia and Mike, and Damien – what an interesting character!

”There was something about him that made her feel alive and ready for anything, but there was another part that screamed danger. She wasn’t sure she liked either half.”

The ending, as I already mentioned, was the best one I have read – it was so unexpected and so amazing – I can’t explain that feeling of satisfaction when all the little pieces from the puzzle throughout the book finally come together – spectacular!

If you love mystery, psychological thrillers and good book that keeps you on your toes all the time – this is the book for you. I highly recommend it!

Thank you to the author, Amy Crandall, for sending me an e-copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Get a copy of DELUSIONS here: 

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Awakened (Vampire Awakening #1) by Brenda K. Davies [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★

Awakened is the first book from the Vampire Awakening Series and it is written by USA Today bestselling author Brenda K. Davies. This is a book where a guy meets a girl. Girl has a secret and tells it on their first date. Boy is a vampire, but we are 80% in the book until it’s mentioned (even though title clearly states it, and you keep expecting it to happen). When secret is told – boy gives girl a choice to escape. Girls chooses to stay, and boy becomes possessive because he wants her too much. Then he does something to her, kind of against her will. And then they live happily ever after.

If I was a few years younger, I would have loved this book, probably because I wouldn’t have noticed all the glitches in it. But right here, right now – I didn’t enjoy it as much I wanted too.

Strong, sexual language and sex scenes can be found throughout the book. This was a book from my sister Tea’s Wishlist Challenge – and I was embarrassed to tell her I am reading this book – because I knew what kind of scenes she has read…

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Apart from that – the characters were unrealistic. And unlikable. I liked their friends and their enemies more than I liked the main characters.  

Sera – a girl that doesn’t talk to men, and has her own opinion on things, suddenly meets this guy, and he becomes possessive of her, and her character development stops right here. She keeps nodding at him, and obeys his every command. Not much of a heroine, is she?

Liam – a guy that is actually a vampire, but doesn’t tell Sera until things get really serious. He lies to her, is possessive, wants to kill everyone that touches her, and loves her and wants her so much that he has to turn her into a vampire, otherwise he’ll kill her. Really?

Now, if we take the fact that this is a vampire book – firstly, we don’t get to read about vampires until the book is almost finished. And when we do, it is unfinished, and barely even described. I don’t know anything about the way they become vampires, how they survive in the world, how they feed, how they die, but apparently, they can have children, so I guess the author covered everything. Oh, and, also – vampires can walk into the sun, but the more they kill, the more the sun hurts them. So believable – and FAIR.

The only thing that I liked was the ending – the point about how children are possible seemed to have worked out well. Not believable, but it was nice to see that as a theory. And it was also a great layout for the next story to come – which I will be reading, just to see if this writing will improve.

What is your favorite vampire book?

 Buy AWAKENED now (ebook is currently FREE)

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Never Forgotten (Never Forgotten #1) by Kelly Risser [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★★★

All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another. – Anatole France

How can one day go so very wrong? One minute Meara Quinn is making plans for how she will spend the Summer before her senior year and the next she’s finding out that her mother’s cancer has returned and they are moving away from the only home she’s ever known.

Now she is in a new country, taking care of her mother, living with grandparents she never met, meeting new friends at school and a guy she really likes and having weird visions of a father who was absent her entire life. There is a secret of who Meara is, and everyone seems to know this except her.

Meara is determined to find out the secrets that will change her life forever.

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The beginning of this book in unbelievably good! Amazing intro and perfect character development. I loved how you could feel with Meara all the time, and go through with her while she leans about her mum’s sickness and the movement to another country. It is very realistically described, and we manage to see this all through the eyes of a troubled teenager. And the descriptions of the scenes? Ahhh, just see for yourselves:

The room was a deep purple and accented with an eclectic blend of antiques and comfortable furnishings. It was the kind of room that made a person long to grab a book and cozy into the oversized couch for a several hours.

Thought, sometimes, there would be things that didn’t make sense to me:

The guy who delivered the pizza forgot plates and napkins. So, we just opened the box and dug in.

Which delivery place on Earth, for God’s sake, delivers plates and napkins? Is this an American thing? If I order pizza, I expect to dig into it with all my fingers, get really messy, and then lick them in the end. Just saying…

There were many twists and turns, mostly little ones in this first book, but the middle of the book gets really slow paced. For a moment, I thought this might be an unpleasant read, but it turned out to just be a calm before the storm, where the biggest twist happens right before the end, and it leaves us wanting more – therefore, the second book. Nicely done, Kelly Risser, nicely done!

Meara is an amazing girl, and we follow her story. She finds out her mum’s cancer is back again, and they have to move from USA to Canada. For a teenage girl, that is a huge change. I loved the way she coped with it, even though, at the beginning she made me quite agitated – her mum is dying, and her thought are – life is unfair, why do I have to move to another country, and change schools and lose my friends? It made me incredibly angry, but as much as I don’t want to admit it, those are the exact thoughts a teen would have in such moments. We don’t really tend to think about how our parents feel until we get older and wiser, do we?

I liked Meara, apart her irritating personality at times. She is a typical teenage girl, and many girls, me included, can relate to her so well! She is a good person, and she cares about the people around her.

I loved Evan – he is just the sweetest person / boyfriend a girl can have. I honestly wish I had a boyfriend like him when I was 13-years-old. He made sandwiches, and they watched a movie in the car because it was raining, and he would come to Meara’s house with flowers, and offer to help out with the chores? He is the cutest person ever.

He was about six foot tall with wavy, black hair that curled over his ears. Tanned skin, lean muscles, and strong hands that ended in long, graceful fingers.

But then, there is Kieran… I know he is the bad boy, but I might be able to ship him and Meara together – maybe? We’ll see… It’s an unpopular opinion, but I actually want to see them together. Even though Evan is just the sweetest thing, and it would be horrible if Meara broke his heart.

I really enjoyed this book – maybe I enjoyed it the most from all the other Young-Adult paranormal books I’ve read. It was a great first beginning to a series, and I can’t wait to dig in the rest of the series.

As a finale – I had to also include this quote from the book:

 

Humans are spiteful creatures. They destroy more than they create. That is why I do not associate with them.

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I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You (Gallagher Girls #1) – Ally Carter [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★★★

If you are looking for a refreshing Young-Adult read, with college unlike any other – this is the perfect book for you. I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have To Kill You is the first book from the Gallagher Girl series, where we meet girls that go to a school for spies, and nobody except them, knows it.

The Gallagher Academy is a typical all-girls-school, except, instead of normal subjects, they learn advanced martial arts and chemical warfare studies, they have exams where they need to spy, or go unnoticed, or steal.

We meet Cammie Morgan, who happens to be the headmistress’s daughter, and when she goes on a mission and gets noticed by a boy – everything changes and her life is suddenly everything but normal. She knows how to kill a man in seven different ways, and she can speak fourteen languages, but when a cute boy comes and says hi – she is definitely not trained for that. What’s worst – he thinks she’s just an ordinary girl, and she is falling in love with him.

Sure, she can tap his phone, hack into his computer, and track him through town without his ever being the wiser – but can she have a relationship with a regular boy who can never know the truth about her? Cammie may be an elite spy-in-training, but in her sophomore year, she’s beginning her most dangerous mission – falling in love.

I'd tell you I love you, but then I'd have to kill you Gallagher girls series ally carter book review blog diary of difference

I loved the writing style, and I loved something new and refreshing – it is a plot that I haven’t read before, and I really enjoyed it. Sometimes when it felt a bit childish, I would remember I am not thirteen anymore, but even now at twenty-one, I got lost into this silly world of spy girls and the drama and love life of Cammie.

I liked Cammie – she is the type of girl that you would love to have as a friend, because she always makes you giggle with her silly comments. I also liked how brave and honest she was – not always honest though… Sometimes, she was too whiney for her own good, and making little things out of nothing, but then again, all teens kind of do that all the time, so it’s acceptable.

I loved her friends – they were such a team, and always covering their backs. I loved how, even despite all their differences, they manages to fit right in and have their own impact to the group friendship.

Overall, quite an enjoyable read and I would definitely recommend it to you guys, if you love anything YA, or fantasy, or spy girls, or college related. I enjoyed this book, and I wish I read it way sooner. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series as well.

Thank you to my friend and author, Michael Kott, that send me this book after recommending it to me, as Ally Carter is one of his favourite authors, and he enjoyed this book as well. Check out his book Piasa – it is amazing!

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Sleep, Merel, Sleep – Silke Stein [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★★

This is a story about a little girl called Merel. This is also a story about how Merel one day can’t sleep. This story also happens to be one of the most adorable middle grade stories that I have ever read. Silke Stein did an amazing job in portraying a little girl, and creating a magical world that we see through her eyes.

Merel is a little girl and since her sick baby brother was born, her parents stopped paying attention to her.

In a magical world, far, far away, a dream collector plays on a violin and makes children fall asleep. But this one day, the dream collector gives up on Merel’s sleep and leaves his tiny silver violin in her bedroom.

Merel learns that her sleep has abandoned her, and she goes onto an incredible journey to recover the sleep, or to stay awake forever. With many characters helping her along the way, she will learn what the most important things in life are, and she will learn to see things in a different way.

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While meeting a sleepy king, and a man on a train that goes nowhere, and moonfish that cry, and a little baby handed in her hands, we will see this magical world through an eight-year-old girl and how her perception changes chapter by chapter.

This is one of the books that will make you feel relaxed and deeply satisfied within after reading it. I felt lighter and was glowing all day.

Merel is such a cute character, and any parent would wish to have her as a daughter. She is the perfect example of how children react when a new baby sibling comes to the family, and they think that the parents don’t love them anymore, because they devote their attention to this little creature that cries all the time.

I loved her adventures – they were so adorable, and so many questions and discussions were raised. Even though the beginning was a bit slow for me, and it took me a while to catch the story, I am completely certain that this was because I am a grown up – and I am sure that kids will be easily able to dive into the story immediately.

Thank you to Silke Stein, for sending me a paperback copy of Sleep, Merel, Sleep, in exchange for an honest review.

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Ignite (Midnight Fire #1) – Kaitlyn Davis [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★★

Kira Dawson has the power to burn vampires to a crisp. The problem is, she doesn’t know it yet. The even bigger problem is, she’s dating one.

When Kira Dawson moves to South Carolina, she meets Luke, a blond goofball who quickly becomes her best friend, and Tristan, a mysterious bad boy who sends shivers down her spine. Kira knows they’re keeping secrets, but when she discovers Tristan’s lust for blood and her own dormant mystical powers, Kira is forced to fight for her life and make the heart-breaking decision between the familiar comfort of friendship and the fiery passion of love.

Ignite was another book from Tea’s Wishlist challenge. I did enjoy this book, even though I found it slow at first. We have a familiar setting of a girl that moves to a new place, makes friends and enemies right away, and discovers secrets. And, it turns out the boy she loves is a vampire.

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The first though I have in the first chapters, and I believe you did too, was – Twilight much? But, no. Once you get to read further into the book, you realise that Kira is nothing like Bella. And Tristan is nothing like Edward either.

This book is so different, and somewhat refreshing from all vampire books I have read so far. It isn’t even a book about vampires. It’s a book about this girl that can mirror the sun’s light and heat from her hands, and is able to hurt only vampires. With her friend, Luke, Kira will discover that she has this ability, and so much more, she will discover secrets about her past that will change her life forever, and she will have to choose between her best friend or the love of her life.

I thought that this book might have used more action, as I felt a bit bored, especially at the beginning, and sometimes during some parts of the book.

I loved Kira’s character – she is the typical girl that moves and tries her best to fit in.

I loved Tristan – he proves that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, and sometimes people aren’t what everyone thinks they are, and your environment doesn’t define you as a person.

I didn’t like Luke – I know he was there with a mission to tell Kira her secrets and protect her – but what friend would make you feel guilty about every single choice you have to make in your life. He is like, the very attached and overprotective boyfriend, that isn’t her boyfriend.

Overall, it was a great refreshing read, and I look forward to reading the rest of the series. If you love vampire  high-school stories, women that discover they have powers, a lot of forbidden love and paranormal fantasy – you will really enjoy this book. Solid 4 stars from me!

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Wonder Woman: Her Greatest Battles – George Perez [BOOK REVIEW]

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★★★

 

This is my first graphic novel, and I did enjoy the art in it! This book contains the greatest battles of Wonder Woman. It is a compilation of seven comic book scenes, all sharing a different battle of Wonder Woman, and a different kind of art.. But even though I enjoyed the art, as a first one, this didn’t make me happy.

The stories  are put in this compilation chronologically by when they were made, starting from a scene that was made in 1987, until the last one, which was made in 2013. I will give a brief comment on all of them – in order:

 

‘’Power Play’’ from Wonder Woman #6 (1987)

Plot & Pencils: George Perez, Script: Len Wein, Inks: Bruce Patterson, Colors: Tatjana Wood, Letters: John Costanza, Cover: George Perez

The first story is a scene where Diana is fighting the god of war – Ares. As a first one, it is not the best descriptive piece of information – so for a person that haven’t heard about Wonder Woman before, this one won’t be of any use. I also didn’t quite enjoy the art in this one.

‘’And for the first time in his immortal existence, the war-god weeps… for, without those alive to worship him, Ares’ power swiftly wanes…’’

 

‘’In The Forest Of The Night’’ from Wonder Woman #119 (1997)

Story & Art: John Byrne; Colors: Patricia Mulvihill; Cover: Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez

 

In this scene, Diana is on a mission to save officer Michael P. Schorr of the G.C.P.D. from the cheetah that used to be Barbara Minerva. Diana manages to convince Barbara to win the battle with herself and become human again. Even though I didn’t quite enjoy the art – I did enjoy the story itself. It was a great lesson of fighting for who you are within, and winning battles with yourself and not surrendering to anything that might be in your way. We also get to have a little sneak-peak of how Wonder Woman started existing in the first place.

‘’Yes, Mike, it is not widely known, but I was not born as mortals are, my mother sculpted a baby from the clay of Themyscira and the Gods themselves breathed life into that clay. ‘’

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‘’Stoned: Conclusion’’ from Wonder Woman #210 (2005)

Script: Greg Rucka; Pencils: Drew Johnson; Inks: Ray Snyder; Colors: Richard & Tanya Horie; Letters: Todd Klein; Cover: J.G. Jones

This one is a gladiator battle between Wonder Woman and Medusa. I really enjoyed this one, the art was amazing and we even get a few scenes with Circe-witch on it. I love how Wonder Woman is presented to be smart and the sacrifice that she made was very brave. Such a powerful story! Amazing!

‘’Sacrifice: Part four’’ from Wonder Woman #219 (2005)

Scripts: Greg Rucka; Pencils: Rags Morales, David Lopez, Tom Derenick, Georges Jeanty & Karl Kerschl; Inks: Mark Propst, BIT, Dexter Vines, Bob Petrecca & Nelson; Colors: Richard & Tanya Horie; Letters: Todd Klein; Cover: J.G. Jones

Superman has been brainwashed and wants to kill Diana. Not much happens apart from Wonder Woman and Superman fighting. I didn’t like this one, only because of one quote that says:

‘’You’ll forgive me for saying it, princess, but you look good on your knees…’’

 

‘’A Murder Of Crows: Part Two – Throwdown’’ from Wonder Woman #41 (2010)

Script: Gail Simone; Pencils: Chris Batista & Fernando Dagnino; Inks: Doug Hazlewood & Raul Fernandez; Colors: Brad Anderson; Letters: Travis Lanham; Cover: Aaron Lopresti

 

Even though the beginning features Achilles and Patroclus, after a page or two we don’t see them anymore, and I am standing like… what’s the point in mentioning them in the first place then? This piece of art contains a battle between Power Girl and Wonder Woman, and how Power Girl can never be like Wonder Woman, unless, of course, she has no other choice. I liked this one, maybe the most, even though the art was just average.

 

‘’Justice League: Part Three’’ from Justice League #3 (2011)

Script: Geoff Johns; Pencils: Jim Lee; Inks: Scott Williams; Colors: Alex Sinclair, HI-FI & Gabe Ettaeb; Letters: Pat Brosseau; Cover: Jim Lee, Scott Williams & Alex Sinclair

This piece of art was different than anything else in this book. We see a lot of famous heroes fight, like Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Aquaman, and of course, Wonder Woman. The art is really colourful, which I enjoyed, but the story was confusing. See, it started from the middle of a comic book, and then ended unfinished. It only covered the part where Wonder Woman appears, but it confused me and I didn’t enjoy the story as much. Again, I didn’t like the way how they express themselves to a woman. They see Wonder Woman and they call dibs on her. Really?

 

‘’Goddown’’ from Wonder Woman #23 (2013)

Script: Brian Azzarello; Art: Cliff Chiang; Colors: Matthew Wilson; Letters: Jared K. Fletcher; Cover: Cliff Chiang

 

A very confusing chapter, and I didn’t enjoy it at all. It was about Hera and her children, and Wonder Woman protecting them. Even though this is the newest made, it didn’t seem like it, and the art seemed old-style.

Overall, I didn’t enjoy it as much, and it wouldn’t be something I’d choose in the future. I’d rather go with a proper beginning-to-end story rather than a compilation next time.

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