City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments #2) by Cassandra Clare

The Mortal Instraments, City of AshesPublished: March 25th 2008 by Margaret K. McElderry Books (first published 2007)

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

Pages: Hardcover, First Edition, 453

Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what’s normal when you’re a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who’s becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn’t ready to let her go — especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary’s only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil — and also her father.

To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings — and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City’s Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation.


My review:

As I write this, it has been two weeks since I have listened to this book and all the specific thoughts that were in my head as I listened are gone, but I will do my best to remember some of the good feelings I had, because the feelings that I remember are mostly bad. I really had to suffer through this book to get to the end of it, and even then I found that I was disappointed with everything that seemed to go on.

Lets’ start with Clary, who I said in my review of the first book, was very likable and relatable. There wasn’t a change in personality from her, but she started dating Simon for no reason other than to feel some sort of attention since she isn’t getting it from the person she really wants it from (this portion of the plot I will get to in the rant I will post at the bottom because of spoilers). I think, while this is probably something that would happen in real life, it was a silly, stupid, ridiculous way to bring some drama into the book. There are other, more enjoyable ways to bring drama in without taking advantage of a character that offers the best that humanity has to offer, more so than any other character in this entire series. It’s a great way to ruing the vibe of the book and characters.

Poor Simon, the girl he has loved for years agrees to be his girlfriend even though she is in love with her brother. He treats this girl he had known her whole life, with full knowledge that she didn’t love him back, like she was the most valuable thing that the universe could have ever given him. If I had to pick a boy, within the realm of any real possibility, (high lords or fea boyfriends are sadly not able to be included) Simon would be exactly the boy I would pick for myself. I know you can’t often love who you chose, but I’m sad because Simon felt like he had to try to be with Clary just because he loved her and he didn’t get what he deserved back. Yes, I am really bitter about this because there are girls who would love Simon with everything they have!

And then there’s Jace. When I read this book the first time, I really did like Jace. But several years of life experience and many great books series later, I have completely changed my decision. I think Jace is one of the least intelligent and unoriginal characters I have ever read about. He whines all the time, about how terrible his life is, how much he wants his father to love him even though he is a very evil man who has killed some good people. Now don’t get me wrong, I love my dad, but if the man who had raised me so terribly turned out to be the evil man that tried to end peace between most species that vie for power, I wouldn’t care how related we were, I would hate him for everything he had done. So when I call Jace annoying, I mean that he is one of the most annoying characters I have ever had the misfortune of reading about.

I could continue on ranting like this about almost every character in the book, don’t even get me started on the Inquisitor and her tragic backstory which is completely bogus, but I just simply don’t have the time or energy to go into it any more than I have.

However, I would be lying if I said that this book was boring and unentertaining. There were many things, other than the drama, that kept me listening to it, though I will not say here because that would spoil some of the best parts of the book.

The ending, while not as big of a climax as I think there should have been, was still creative and interesting, if a bit long.

So, even though I have written almost all terrible and bad things about this book, I’m still going to give it three stars because there were good parts, and I guess this is the second time I have found myself reading this book.

★★★

Beware, below are spoilers! Read at your own risk!

 

 

As you might have read in my review of City of Bones, I really hated the whole Clary and Jace are siblings plot line. Of course, as one would expect, it continued to develop in this book. I still believe that this plot was thought up to add some major, unnecessary drama to the story. The whining that Jace refuses to stop, and the fact that Clary won’t accept that yes, this is true, it is really happening, is so annoying I actually started to drown out the book as I was listening to it while driving back and forth to work. I guess all that I can hope for is that the teenage drama will stop, but I know better than that.

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Alanna: The First Adventrue (The Song of the Lioness #1) by Tamora Pierce

Song of the Lioness, The First Adventure.jpgPublished: January 1st 2005 by Simon Pulse (first published 1983)

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Adventure, Magic

Pages: Paperback, 274

From now on I’m Alan of Trebond, the younger twin. I’ll be a knight.

And so young Alanna of Trebond begins the journey to knighthood. Though a girl, Alanna has always craved the adventure and daring allowed only for boys; her twin brother, Thom, yearns to learn the art of magic. So one day they decide to switch places: Thom heads for the convent to learn magic; Alanna, pretending to be a boy, is on her way to the castle of King Roald to begin her training as a page.

But the road to knighthood is not an easy one. As Alanna masters the skills necessary for battle, she must also learn to control her heart and to discern her enemies from her allies.

Filled with swords and sorcery, adventure and intrigue, good and evil, Alanna’s first adventure begins – one that will lead to the fulfillment of her dreams and the magical destiny that will make her a legend in her land.


My review:

I didn’t intentionally put off reading this book, but yet it happened. Like so many other books on my to-be-read shelf, it has been neglected, and now I am questioning myself and everything that I have ever done in my life. Needless to say that I loved this book and everything about it.

I love books that have girls disguise themselves as boys for one reason or another, and I can never get enough of it. So when this book started out with Alanna and Tom switching places, which meant that Alanna would have to act like a boy, I was immediately hooked.

Usually when I listen to books I only listen while I’m driving, not while doing anything else. But, after only listening to the first few chapters I decided that I was going to listen to the whole thing as quickly as I could. Que me sitting around listening to over five hours of audio book while working on my latest crochet project. I didn’t finish it that night, but I did finish it the next day and I was so happy that I did.

I loved how practical everything was written. Alanna, as a girl acting like a boy, had to hide a few aspects about her that would give her away as being a girl. In many books I read, most of them, now that I think about it, the real struggles that girls and women go through are mentioned briefly, or not at all. To have an author, finally, add these struggles in their books was nice to experience.

I also like the vague details that are infused into the story. I know what Alanna does with her days, yet details are not explained, which in this book, worked out really well. The time was paced very well, though sometimes I was a bit overwhelmed with the large time jumps, but eventually I got used to it.

I really don’t know what else to say than to read this book. It’s not light hearted, but it is also something less serious than the books I have been reading recently. So go now, read this book and enjoy the Tortall world that Tamora Pierce continues to create.

★★★★★

A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3.1) by Sarah J. Maas

ACOFASPublished: May 1st 2018 by Bloomsbury YA

Genre: Young Adult, New Adult, Fantasy, Magic, Romance

Pages: Hardcover, 229

Hope warms the coldest night.

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve.

Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated–scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.


My review:

This book was released at a time most inconvenient for my reading it. It was the week before finals, in which I had 8 exams, and two weeks before I had to take my national certification exams. Ten exams in two weeks, something I hope I will never have to repeat. So this book got pushed back until those were over, then back again because I started my internship two weeks early, then back some more because I was struggling to get motivated to write reviews on books I had been listening too, let alone sit down and read a book. So when I finally finished rereading ACOMAF, I picked this book up and finished it in an evening.

How glad I am to have finally read it. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book other than I knew it was going to be about Feyre, Rhys, and their court, and that it would be in different perspectives. I knew it would we centered around the solstice, but I wasn’t sure what else would be in it.

It had the awesome Feyre/Rhysand romance, my OTP in this series, and even glances and long looks into the other characters mind’s, something that I was happy to see.

But everything wasn’t as happy as I would have wanted it, something that took me about one hundred pages to adjust to, but after what happened in the past book I should have expected it. I was hoping for some sort of great revelation for a few of the characters, but I wasn’t too expectant since this was only a novella (234 pages would be considered a book in some other series, so is it really a novella?).

I was happy to see the group after the war, what they all had to do to cope with it, how the aftermath affected all the characters. I rarely get to see the aftermath after such a terrible and devastating war because books usually end with a “all is well” epilogue. And yes, I stole that line from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and yes, I am glaring in the direction of J.K. Rowling from several thousand miles away. So seeing the happiness, and also the recovery of these people was a refreshing way to get me out of my book slump.

Now, I have noticed on the ACOTAR Facebook group I am now part of, and in reviews on Goodreads, that a lot of people didn’t like this book, thought it was a waste of money and time because the only real plot was preparing for Solstice. People have said this is just published fanfiction, that Sarah J. Maas just thought of something and wrote it down, that there was no reason for her to go through and publish it in book form.

I’m sorry if you feel the same way, and I don’t want to insult you, but this is exactly what she did. This is her book series, she can do with it as she likes, and you can’t tell me you would have rather had nothing. So what that she didn’t want a big plot? It’s a short book, why should she make any other plot than the group getting together to celebrate? It’s supposed to be happy. This book was also written at a hard time in her life, she wanted to write something to take her mind off of those events, and what better way to do it than making her characters, who she has years getting to know and devolving, have a happy time? Why should anyone blame her?

I would also like to address Nesta, and what I have started calling her “issue.” There have been a lot of readers who have complained about her too, and while I have to agree that what Nesta does is a bit out of character from the last book, it is also something Nest would do. It’s very hard to explain, especially without giving spoilers. No, I don’t like Nesta in this book, and I didn’t really like her in any of the others either because of the way she treats Feyre, and even Elain. But I understand why Sarah J. Maas decided to make Nesta that way. I know there is a plan for her, that is obvious from the sneak peek into the next book, and I know Nesta’s issues are going to be a big part of it.

I honestly can’t wait to see what will happen next.

★★★★★

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

The Mortal Instraments, City of Bones.jpgPublished: March 27th 2007 by Margaret K. McElderry Books

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance

Pages: Hardcover, 485

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder― much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing―not even a smear of blood―to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know…

Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.


My review:

Well, here we are. This is the second time (that I remember anyway) that I have read this book. I have to say, the second read through was less confusing than the first, but the second was still just as annoying as the first…. Yes, I just called this book, that is so popular it got a televison show, annoying. And no, I’m not going to change my mind no matter what anyone tries to tell me. Why? Because of the ending and all the things connected to it.

But I won’t spoil that here. I’ll leave that to the very bottom for those of you who are interested.

I’ll start with the beginning, which I probably should since it’s where all my problems start. I didn’t like the “introduction” that Clary had to the Shadowhunter world. She was just going to your everyday under 21 club, where the weird people go to party, when suddenly, she saw a weirder than usual group of people, one with a knife, and decided to follow them into a back room with only the one door. Because every sane girl would follow an armed person into a room that only had one way out. It was just a rushed introduction with a terrible thought up plot as a way for Clary to “accidently” see all of this going on.

Despite Clary’s brief moment of insanity at the beginning (and just complete stupidity at the end, I’ll get to that) I actually liked Clary. She didn’t take crap that was given to her by Jace, Alec, or Isabelle. She reacted in a normal way, if her situation could be normal anyhow. She refused to believe her mom was dead, reacted badly when she found out that she had been unconscious for three days, and even when she was forced to wear someone else’s clothes, she wasn’t afraid to change out of them the second she got a chance, no matter how pretty they were. I liked how Clary didn’t just accept everything that was going on around her, she resisted it until she was completely proven wrong.

But, Clary also thought way to much about how skinny, boyish, and artistic she was. I didn’t mention her height in that one, because being someone who is several inches shorter than the national average, I know how much being short affects to the way people treat you sometimes. Mentioning it once or twice is fine, it’s all part of character description, but everything was always about how pretty other girls were and how much she wanted to look like them. I was over this teenage drama fest not long after it started.

Simon, while obviously the poor dude that loves his best friend and his best friend doesn’t have those same feelings for him, acted stupidly human. I mean this in a good, yet oddly annoying way. He reacted how any other human would react to something they couldn’t see to believe. Until he became a rat after doing something he was told not to. Yes a rat, but he was warned and still he acted basic human curiosity, even though the other characters looked down on him for it.

Alec and Isabelle I’m grouping together because I had the same feelings for the both of them. They were snooty and completely unaccepting of anything Clary had to say. The acted like they were to good to even consider being anything but unfriendly towards anyone who wasn’t a Shadowhunter. Their characters were not rounded and lacked that depth and character development that would made them interesting. They were just Shadowhunters, there wasn’t anything special about them.

And Jace. Jace and I have a lot of mixed feelings. He’s cocky, confidant, but vulnerable, which I like. The more vulnerable side of him gave his character more depth and made me want to learn more about him. But his secrets were revealed to soon. About halfway through the book, I lost interest in learning about him. I started to get annoyed. While I personally wanted Clary and Jace to get together the first time I read this, and also for the most part in this book, he was kind of boring and I started to dislike him at the end.

The overall plot was weak. Yes, Clary wants to save her mom, and find more out about Valentine, but I feel that this was the only story arc (other than the minor character development). In many of the books I read, especially the ones I come to love, there are multiple story arc, the main one, at least one large one to keep things moving while the main story arch develops, with a few shorter ones thrown in to keep things interesting. But this, I got really board because it was just Clary and Jace, or Jace and Alec, or whoever running around getting almost nothing accomplished until the end when it was ‘important.’

The end was structured in a strange and confusing way. There were two big fight scenes, and while listening to the book I thought the first one was the end. I was surprised to see there was still a hour and a half left of the book. I was confused because I didn’t remember that from reading it the first time. But, the double climax took away from the overall ending. There was the big bad evil fight scene, then the emotional part that was supposed to rip my heart out, but didn’t. Mostly because I knew it was going to happen, and also because I didn’t believe it to be true, not even the first time I read the book.

That concludes the spoiler free part of this review. I gave this book and extra half star because I did like Clary for the most part.

★★★.5

Spoilers ahead, read at your own risk!

Spoilers for only this book, no other books in the series are spoiled.

 

 

Now the parts I really had a problem with were at the end. A lot of it was the writing. First off, there was never any mention that Clary, or Jace at that, looks anything like Valentine. In fact, when Clary first went to the Institute no one even noticed how much she was apparently supposed to resemble Jocelyn (which was mentioned in the beginning of the book). Yes, I know it had been years since anyone had seen Jocelyn, but someone would have seen the resemblance from Clary and a women they had grown up with, or from Valentine to Jace. It makes no since, and I’m not convinced it wasn’t a last minute plot twist that wasn’t thought out before it was written. I think this was purely for an emotional shock.

I was also very, and I mean very, annoyed by the writing at the end where Clary and Jace are told they are siblings. Valentine is referred to as “my father” from Clary’s perspective, or “his/Jace’s father” at different times. At this point they know the are brother and sister, and the lack of the use of the phrase “our father” was very noticeable and bad writing. If I’m talking to someone about my dad, and my brother is standing right there, I would use a nice mix of “my dad,” and “our dad” based on the topic and what fits better. I would never use one term exclusively if my sibling was standing right there. I think this also leads in to the “last minute plot twist” at the end and the distinct lack of proper editing of awkward phrases.

Well, that’s my spoiler rant for this book. Trust me when I saw there will probably be something like this for ever single one of these books because of the way I feel about them.

The Maze Runner (The Maze Runner #1) by James Dashner

The Maze Runner.jpg
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8044584-the-maze-runner

Published: October 6th 2009 by Delacorte Press

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Science Fiction

Pages: Hardcover, First Edition, 384

If you ain’t scared, you ain’t human.

When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his name. He’s surrounded by strangers—boys whose memories are also gone.

Nice to meet ya, shank. Welcome to the Glade.

Outside the towering stone walls that surround the Glade is a limitless, ever-changing maze. It’s the only way out—and no one’s ever made it through alive.

Everything is going to change.

Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying.

Remember. Survive. Run.


My review:

This book, and the second in the series, has been sitting on my bookshelf for probably two years without being read. It was recommended to me by two friends at the same time so I bought the book, put it on my shelf, and only picked it up again to rearrange the bookshelf. This book, like many others, have been neglected, and I feel bad. But hey, they are just books. Right? They may only be books, but I get so much enjoyment out of them.

Well, I do regret not picking up and reading this book sooner because it was very good. The beginning was very well written, using descriptions that made me feel something, not just listen to it as it happened. I got to experience everything with Thomas. The writing made me feel connected to the events, like I was there in that metal box with him, confused about everything in the world.

The narration did take a few chapters to get used to because it was different than I was expecting. I liked that it stayed focused on Thomas while making me feel just as clueless as he was, but still giving enough information to keep interested in the book and curious enough to wait and find out what was going to happen next.

I liked Newt, but really hated Alby for some reason. I don’t think that I was really supposed to like him, but I felt more than a general dislike. I really didn’t have a lot of feelings for Chuck either. I didn’t like him but I didn’t have any dislike for him. I felt the same way about Teresa, but I did start to like her towards the end a bit more. Granted, Teresa didn’t play a big part until later in the book anyway.

The plot, and the other problems involved with it, were interesting and kept me completely entertained. There were real aspects as well as fictional monsters and events. I liked the balance of real and not real, the line that Dashner played with but didn’t cross into one or the other. It’s dystopian, something that could and may actually happen in the planet’s future, but it is also bit of fantasy thrown it. The combination of it is different and refreshing. Usually dystopian books are passed on very real life or almost complete fantasy and I was glad to see a mix of both here.

One spoiler free thing about the ending, it was almost anticlimactic. There was a climax, but there was a lot of after-the-fact information and events too. There was a place I would have ended this book to start the next one, and when it reached the end of the chapter I almost thought it did end there. The last few pages were extra information setting up the next book, but it wasn’t at all necessary and felt out of place. That information could have been the beginning of the next book and not have felt thrown in.

So that’s that. As usual, I have said more bad things than I have good, but it was a good book and you should read it for the plot and for Thomas, who I really like. In this case I am giving this book 4.5 stars.

★★★★.5

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Cycle, The Raven BoysPublished: September 18th 2012 by Scholastic Press

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Pages: Hardcover, 409

“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.


My review:

(“But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain.” Umm, this defiantly isn’t true, they totally hated each other at first, and only started to get along towards the middle. Blue was immediately drawn to Adam, not to Gansey. Who wrote this overview?!)

This book was recommended to me by a friend. She thought that this book, and the series thereafter, would be right up my ally based off of the usual things I read. And she was right, or would have been if she suggested it to me three years ago. Since then though, my tastes in books have changed a little. That doesn’t mean that I still can’t appreciate certain aspects about the plot.

The beginning, and the very end, were both rough. I was over three hours into listening before I felt like I would be able to make it to the end at all. It didn’t seem as if the ending that was promised to us would happen at the end of the book. The plot just wasn’t moving fast enough and I was worried that those time jumps that I always complain about would happen.

And as I predicted, those time jumps did happen. Many of these occurred in the same day or week, but the transition wasn’t smooth, not even close. Have you ever started driving or walking somewhere, not really thinking about each step you’re taking and have your mind on other things and then, suddenly, you’re at your destination with no clue how you got there? That’s how these jumps felt like and I was missing an important piece of information. I felt left out of the story. It is part of an authors job to make sure that the reader feels included, and this caused the opposite effect.

The characters were almost as messy as the time transitions. The most clear characters were Blue, Maura, Neeve, Calla, and Persephone. They still lacked in a three dimensional realness despite their more dynamic personalities. And my two favorite characters weren’t even the main ones. They were Calla, for her stern but awesome personality, and Persephone for her sweet yet rebellious attitude.

Gansey, Ronan, and Adam were not as clear, but were easy to tell apart from a lot of the others. The author spends a lot of time in Gansey’s thoughts and past. Yes, there was much of it that was interesting, but in the end it bored me to the point that I almost stopped listening several times. They had a bit more dimension than Maura, Neeve, Calla, and Persephone, but their background and motivation didn’t make since or didn’t really exist.

There was a lot of rambling of thoughts in this book. Usually you would never hear (or read, as it is now written) me complain about all of this extra information. I love world building, it is one of the things I always beg for more of. Except this type of rambling wasn’t world building, it was character building. Or rather, long winded sentences full of pointless information that I’m not going to need to know after the paragraph ends. This really took away from my experience of listening to the book.

The rest of the characters who made brief appearances all got smooshed together in my brain. I can’t even remember their names, what they said, if they actually ever had in lines in the book. They all seemed the same and I just couldn’t get a grasp on individual traits.

Also, not a spoiler because you would be able to foresee this for yourself before getting to far into the book, I know there is going to be a love triangle, some broken hearts, guilty feelings, and self-pity on all three sides. I avoid these emotions with a passion after the ending of The Hunger Games, The Selection, and Shatter Me. Love triangles are so predictable. The girl always picks one of the guys. I have yet to read where the girl picks herself and leaves both the boys out to dry. Now don’t get me wrong, I like romance, but love triangles are overdone, frustrating, and boring.

Now, even though I have written many, many paragraphs of bad things about this book, there are a few things that I did like. Blue, for example, was a good character. She wasn’t naive, but she didn’t know everything and the information wasn’t just handed to her. The whole Noah plot was good too, something I didn’t seem coming and the author portrayed him perfectly for his role. His part was the best of the entire book.

The main plot line, while not particularly interesting, was something I had never read about before. It was unique but there wasn’t enough time spend on explore every aspect of this plot. Please, please, there needs to be more world building for me to really like this series.

So I have decided to give The Raven Boys three stars because the middle did keep me interested enough to listen through to the end, and the lack of two stars because of all the reasons I have listed above.

★★★

The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #5) by Rick Riordan

PJ The Last Olympian.jpgPublished: May 5th 2009 by Disney-Hyperion Book

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology

Pages: Hardcover, 381

All year the half-bloods have been preparing for battle against the Titans, knowing the odds of victory are grim. Kronos’s army is stronger than ever, and with every god and half-blood he recruits, the evil Titan’s power only grows. While the Olympians struggle to contain the rampaging monster Typhon, Kronos begins his advance on New York City, where Mount Olympus stands virtually unguarded. Now it’s up to Percy Jackson and an army of young demigods to stop the Lord of Time.

In this momentous final book in the New York Times best-selling Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, the long-awaited prophecy surrounding Percy’s sixteenth birthday unfolds. And as the battle for Western civilization rages on the streets of Manhattan, Percy faces a terrifying suspicion that he may be fighting against his own fate.


My review:

And here it is, the last book the last four have been leading up to. There is action! There are hard decisions! There are deathly consequences! There is at least two major plot twists! There are gods and titans fight against other gods and titans! What more could you ask for than snarky sarcastic Percy Jackson!

Percy does something dangerous (what’s new?), in secret (seriously, this is nothing new), and something that only one, or maybe two people have ever done (is there anything this kid won’t do?). All of these things together make him awesome! I especially love his own little storm he conjures around himself without even knowing about it and scaring his friends with his awesome power. What can be better than that?

On a more serious note, there are deaths, there is a plot twist that will kind of leave you kind of feeling all sad and feelings and emotions. And stuff.

A lot happens in this book, and it defiantly takes the stakes from the last few books and multiplies it by 5000. The whole world is in jeopardy, there are half-bloods fighting for their life and they won’t all live. But there is a happy ending right? Right? No, not everyone gets a happy ending. Sometimes it just can’t be helped, especially when there is a prophecy predicting the choice that will kill the world as you know it. But who will live and who will die? What choice has to be made? No spoilers here, just read it to find out.

★★★★★

The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #4) by Rick Riordan

PJ The Battle of the Lybyrinth.jpgPublished: March 6th 2008 by Hyperion Books for Children

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology

Pages: Hardcover 361

Percy Jackson isn’t expecting freshman orientation to be any fun. But when a mysterious mortal acquaintance appears at his potential new school, followed by demon cheerleaders, things quickly move from bad to worse.

In this fourth installment of the blockbuster series, time is running out as war between the Olympians and the evil Titan lord Kronos draws near. Even the safe haven of Camp Half-Blood grows more vulnerable by the minute as Kronos’s army prepares to invade its once impenetrable borders. To stop the invasion, Percy and his demigod friends must set out on a quest through the Labyrinth – a sprawling underground world with stunning surprises at every turn.


My review:

This is the book where the party really gets started. If not for the amazing fifth book, this would be my favorite. There are so many aspects to this and the Labyrinth that just make my mind so happy, but also so sad at the same time.

So, the Labyrinth itself and all the amazing dangerous things it can offer is, surprisingly, something I haven’t seen written about before. All of the adventures our heroes encounter are different in their now way, and it was interesting to see different sides of different people. It should be something people should write about more often.

If my Percy and Annabeth ship would ever be interrupted it would be because of someone in this book, but probably not the person you would think it was. Now I hate love triangles, but this isn’t one, just in case you hate them as much as I do. No love triangle here, just a brief ‘what-if’ but I still liked the pairing. But I like Percy and Annabeth more.

The looming threat of The Battle is there, defiantly getting closer than it did in any of the other books. There was a lot that had to lead up to it, to set the stage, and this book did a very good job of showing some of the things that could happen and how bad everything could go.

Just like the others, there isn’t much to say about this book without using spoilers. There are so many good chapters and the sarcasm and snarkiness of the characters are amazing. You really should read this, or suggest it to a 10-12 year old who is wanting to read but doesn’t know what to read next!

★★★★★

The Titan’s Curse (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #3) by Rick Riordan

PJ The Titan's CursePublished: May 5th 2007 by Miramax Books

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology

Pages: 312 Pages

When the goddess Artemis goes missing, she is believed to have been kidnapped.And now it’s up to Percy and his friends to find out what happened. Who is powerful enough to kidnap a goddess? They must find Artemis before the winter solstice, when her influence on the Olympian Council could swing an important vote on the war with the titans. Not only that, but first Percy will have to solve the mystery of a rare monster that Artemis was hunting when she disappeared — a monster rumored to be so powerful it could destroy Olympus forever.


My review:

The Titan’s Curse is where things start to pick up in this series, not that the other two were boring. Things become a little more serious because Annabeth is kidnapped and Percy, of course, has to find her. He will do anything to find her in fact, traveling across the entire country just to save her.

He has his typical dreams that help him along his task in a weirdly vague way. But it works out, at least in the end when Percy can finally put all the pieces together and saves the day. Well, at least for this year.

There are also two characters introduced, Bianca and Nico, parentage undecided. Thalia, who wasn’t introduced in this book but the one before this one, finally has a part. On that note though, I feel as if Bianca, Nico, and Thalia are all a little undeveloped. They have personality, yes, but the three seems to lack a little meat that makes them more real. They needed more time for their characters to develop and I feel they didn’t get the attention they needed.

I love Percy, as always. He is still his sneaky little self, not taking no for an answer no matter what he’s threatened with. Kicked out of school? No problem. Kicked out of camp? Totally worth the risk if he saves Annabeth (as it should be!).

The end was powerful in a way I wasn’t expecting, and how everything worked out was well done. This is a great middle book where important things happen and it leads into the final two books of the series.

★★★★★

The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2) by Rick Riordan

PJ The Sea of MonstersPublished: April 1st 2006 by Hyperion Books

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology

Pages: Hardcover, 279

The heroic son of Poseidon makes an action-packed comeback in the second must-read installment of Rick Riordan’s amazing young readers series. Starring Percy Jackson, a “half blood” whose mother is human and whose father is the God of the Sea, Riordan’s series combines cliffhanger adventure and Greek mythology lessons that results in true page-turners that get better with each installment.

In this episode, The Sea of Monsters, Percy sets out to retrieve the Golden Fleece before his summer camp is destroyed, surpassing the first book’s drama and setting the stage for more thrills to come.


My review:

This review is similar to the first book of the series.

I liked seeing the development of the characters through another year, and the introduction to a new character.

Percy is, as ever, a great main character. He isn’t perfect, talking about someone in a way that would have been hurtful if they had heard it, but not afraid to admit that he changed his mind. He is brave, full of himself but not so much that he doesn’t realize it, and smart in battle.

Annabeth is also amazing. She is brave, smarter than Percy, but has a hard time admitting she is wrong or trying to look farther than the past. She has a hard time letting go of some things, though I would have had trouble letting go some of those things too. She and Percy are my two favorite characters in the whole series.

I’m also happy that Clarisse plays a bigger role in this book, though the reason she is so mean (because I refuse to believe that it is just because she is Ares’ daughter) and the fact that Ares doesn’t seem to like her very much (right? He’s just searching for his children’s glory and being an evil no for good father) is revealed a little bit. Ah, well, I guess I’ll have to wait for the next book to see how it turns out.

Now, I didn’t like this book as much as the first one, though I do think it was because of the main big bad that had to be fought. It was all clever, but it just didn’t feel right to me. I wouldn’t have done it any other way though. This still sits among one of my favorite book series and I still give it five stars!

★★★★★