Tiger’s Curse – A Spoiler Free Review

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Tiger’s Curse Piece by Fallen My Passion on Tumblr

Book: Tiger’s Curse (Number One of the Tiger’s Curse series)

Author: Colleen Houck

Age Group: Young Adult

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Fantasy, Myths

Rating: 3.5/5

I’m back! As mentioned earlier it’s time to start my summer reading and reviews again. It took me a little under a week to read through this novel. A fun read and a great and easy way to launch me into my summer reading schedule.

How did I end up in the middle of the Indian jungle with a tiger? I win the prize for world’s worst decisions. #Kelsey
– Colleen Houck, Reading between the lines in Tiger’s Curse (via thatdayinthecircus)

Tiger’s Curse starts out in Oregon, my own home state, and ends with the idea that she’ll be heading back soon. A nice bookended way to format the novel. I had fun knowing exactly what Colleen Houck was talking about or referring to as the main character Kelsey would refer or compare to something from Oregon. Kelsey just graduated from high school and is looking for a summer job to make some money before she heads off to college in the Fall. She ends up taking on a temporary job at the circus where she is trained to help take care of the animals. She works her way up to the larger animals, a tiger to be exact, and ends up falling in love with his beauty, stubbornness, mannerisms, and much more. Without talking too much about it, she ends up traveling to India with the tiger from the circus and thus begins the real adventure and story of Tiger’s Curse a great combination of Indian mythology, adventure and romance.

Touching on the Indian mythology Tiger’s Curse is full of it! It’s fascinating and I’m sure that more mythology is the follow in the next several books. It talks about Durga, Fanindra, Kappa, The Golden Fruit, and much more to just name a few. It also talks about Indian’s past, present, and ideas for the future. About fashion, food, people, and the language. Multiple times small phrases are dropped within the novel in Hindu, such as “sundari” which means ‘most beautiful’.

Continuing on to discuss the romance in the novel it’s pretty typical for a Young Adult novel. Not too many in depth details, but obviously present to keep the interest of the readers. I found it was almost talked about too much, that Kelsey was a bit of a worry wort and often an over thinker about the situation. Although this seems very characteristic of her character, but I often found myself throwing up my hands or having to set the book down because it was too much. There are ways to discuss how much is going through one’s head then using two pages to talk about the same situation for the up-tenth time.

Things I liked: The mythology, dialogue, characters, locations, and intertwining of the Hindu language.

Things I didn’t like: The constant discussion of the same situation romantically, the perfection of the male characters and how everything seems to always go correctly, the constant need of Kelsey to create drama where there is none, and finally the slow start of Colleen’s writing at the beginning of the novel.

To mention quickly about this last point about Colleen’s writing the start of the novel is a bit rough, but as the novel progresses so does her writing. By the end her sentences are easy to read, understand and derive meaning from.  Don’t let the beginning of the novel’s language scare you away as Colleen takes you on a wild ride throughout India.

With that I leave you with some of my favorite quotes from tumblr:

I warn you, Kelsey, that I’m an extremely patient man. I’ve had extensive practice in waiting out the enemy. My life as a tiger has taught me that attentive persistence and focused diligence always pay off. Consider yourself forewarned, priyatama. I’m on the hunt. I’ve caught your scent, and I won’t be thwarted in my course.
– Ren, Tiger’s Curse (via bilautaa)
We looked at each other for a minute, not saying anything, but I could feel the air between us shift. It became thick, sultry, and tangible—like when the air changes right before a storm. I could feel its power envelop me as it brushed across my skin. Even though I couldn’t see it, I knew a storm was coming.
– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse (via quotes-shape-us)
You know you are in love when you see the world in her eyes, and her eyes everywhere in the world.
– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Quest (via kittymudface)
I don’t mind being alone either. The only problem is that if you’re always alone, you get lonely.

– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse (via kittymudface)

 

“No matter what happens, please remember that I love you”

 

– Colleen Houck, Tiger’s Curse

 

As always all opinions and views noted above are my own. If you’re thinking about buying the book then check out other reviews.

Thank you for taking the time to read this,

~ Yoku

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The Rising – A Spoiler Free Review

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Image by LissethKay on dA.

First off let me take a moment of this review to explain my disappearance. Life has been biting me in the butt and stealing my inspiration to do anything creative, including writing book reviews. But, that has not stopped me from reading, as much as you guys as my followers may question otherwise. This is the first of three posts that will be coming in the next three days to try and make up for my lapse. First a book review on The Rising by Kelley Armstrong, followed by my favorite cake recipe, and finally my review on Soulless by Gail Carriger so keep your eyes out for these. Now onto the review!

Book: the Rising

Author: Kelley Armstrong

Age Group: Teen

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Fantasy

Rating: 2.5/5

First off go ahead and gasp at the low rating, only rivaled by Fallen in my review spectrum. Especially, if you read my review on the previous book in this series, the Calling. It is pretty hard for me to reason with myself to give a book a low rating like this, but sometimes books just fall below my expectations, and in this case it was quite far below.

I love the Calling and the Gathering, the two previous novels in this series, and was stoked for the Rising. I even got my hands on an uncorrected proof of the novel, the version right before the published one. I began reading it, enjoying the action and picking up easily where the last book had left off, and then it all began to slow down. Mountains of dialogue, political schemes, characters not acting as they had in previous novels, and the slowed down pace of this book quickly began to wear on me. Maya Delaney, previously such a strong character, had suddenly become very weak in my eyes and for some reason. A previously action ridden book had slowed down to allow large amounts of dialogue to take the place of action, and even when action was introduced in the novel, it was at a much slower drawn out pace. I didn’t feel like I was running, I felt like I was doing a fast walk. It felt like I was reading a book written by a completely different author. I also felt, at times, that important sections were just skimmed over. Maybe the deadline that the author was put to was too short to get in all that needed to be said. Or maybe there was just not enough time to sit and wonder if a particular scene had been thoroughly divulged given the situation.

The saving grace of this novel, for me, was the crossover with Armstrong’s first series, the Darkest Power’s trilogy, and the characters there being thrown in. I’d always felt that there were more “diverse” characters in her first series, but that Armstrong hadn’t been able to take full advantage of them yet as that was her first published series. The Darkness Rising series had, until this point, been written better than her first series, although the characters didn’t have nearly the number of dimensions.

Armstrong continued with interesting themes of history and the supernatural. At times, I felt that she was going out on a little bit of a limb as I tried to do research on some of the supernatural types she introduced and often got very conflicting opinions, but interesting none-the-less.

Another saving grace of the book was helping solidify the romantic interests introduced throughout. I know I’m a sucker for these sorts of things, but honestly it helps me feel complete on at least one level, even if all the other levels of the book don’t pan out. Paired with this was the answers to many mysteries that the series introduces earlier, including Serena’s death paired with confrontations of the characters. In this way, the book felt real.

Overall I’m still feeling disappointed about the book, after two weeks, and am on a limb about recommending the series to others for fear of their eminent disappointment.

As always I have just one opinion and there are many more out there for you to check out before deciding whether or not to purchase the book.

Thank you for taking the time to check out this review,

~ Yoku

City of Lost Souls – A Spoiler Free Review

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Sebastion made by I’m a Mad on tumblr.

Book: City of Lost Souls

Author: Cassandra Clare

Age Group: Teen

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Supernatural

Rating: 4/5

As we enter the second book of the second arc of the Mortal Instruments series I’ve bumped the rating up by .5 points. I’m still not entirely convinced that this second arc is needed for the series, but I’m beginning to treat it as a side series in my mind and that seems to be working. Clare successfully made me feel uncomfortable at various points in this novel, which is the mood I should have felt, as well as becoming closer to the characters. I’m not 100 % sure I agree with all the decisions that Clare decided to put Clary in, it felt almost “Mary Sue” at some points, continuing the feel of this book as being more of an author “fan fic”. But, characters like Magnus, Camille, Isabelle, and Brother Zachariah are right in line on exactly what they’re doing and how they’re going about it. I also enjoyed how Clare portrayed Sebastian. At one point while reading I posted on tumblr: “Is it sad that I’m beginning to understand Sebastian and feel for him?” I also, once again, found myself relating extremely well with Simon, especially with such lines as this:

Simon: “Oh no. I am a hipster. I am too cool for themed weddings.”

Clary: “You play D and D. You’re a geek.”

Simon: “Geek is chic. Ladies love nerds.”

Clare is continuing the quotability of this series, here are a couple others I feel in love with:

Simon: “You know me. We have delicate egos.”

Clary: “I wouldn’t describe Jace’s ego as delicate.”

Simon: “No, Jace’s is sort of the antiaircraft artillery tank of male egos.”

“There are memories that time does not erase, Clarissa. Ask your friend Magnus Bane, if you do not believe me. Forever does not make loss forgettable, only bearable.”
– Brother Zachariah
Short review this time. Much of the same things to say as last time. I’m quite stoked for the movie on August 22nd, the final conclusion to this arc, next Spring, and for her next series to come out, the Dark Artifices. I’m also planning to pick up Bane Chronicles, audio books, at some point.
I thus leave you with a final quote and two other amazing images that didn’t quite make the cut for my main header image.
“My heart is your heart, my hands are your hands.”

– Jace

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Image on the left by weliveandbreathewords and right by nerdalter.

As always, I only have one set of opinions. Check out other reviews if you’re thinking about purchasing the book yourself.

Thanks for taking the time to read this,

~ Yoku

City of Glass – A Spoiler Free Review

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Banner of Clarrissa Fray (Fairchild, Morgenstein, etc.) by Chibilina on dA

Book: City of Glass

Author: Cassandra Clare

Age Group: Teen

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance, Supernatural

Rating: 5/5

WARNING: If you intend to read this book make sure you have all your “feels” ready because it’s a roller coaster!

This was by far Clare’s best installment in the Mortal Instruments series so far. Her writing is incredible, the attachment to the characters and their lives is powerful, and the scenes and plot twists are heart-stopping. I had a problem putting this book down, my fingers itching to pick it back up again and read more. Her writing was extremely witty in this installment and I believe that Clare really speaks for her characters. Their lives are intricately connected with  conversation between the characters like this:

Simon: ‘Good. If you want to know why, it’s because you smell like blood.’

Jace: ‘It’s my cologne. Eau de Recent Injury.'”

My biggest complaint, if you could call it that, was that I felt like Clare completely finished the series with the ending of this book. It felt resolved and I could imagine exactly what was coming next. This makes me intrigued, while at the same time skeptical of City of Fallen Angels. I’m finding myself worrying that Clare is going to write every last detail out of us so that our imaginations are left with nothing, or it could be the exact opposite and there could be an amazing plot twist coming. Only time and more reading will reveal this to me.

Regarding some of my previous review complaints, mostly pertaining to Clary’s and Jace’s relationship, don’t worry it is all revealed in this book! Although it took a while to get here, it is well worth it and your understanding will become clear.

Some more great quotes to come from this book:

“It’s like an injury you get from a demon poison—-you have to leave it alone and let it heal. Every time you rip the bandages off, you just open the wound up again. Every time he sees you, it’s like tearing off the bandages.”

– Isabelle to Clary (City of Glass, The Mortal Instruments Book Three)

“Perfection. Want to know what is perfect? This is… “I love you, and I will love you until I die, and if there’s a life after that, I’ll love you then.”

– Clary (City of Glass)

Check out more quotes and amazing things like this by just typing “City of Glass” into Tumblr search. Now I’m off to go draw some Isabelle fan art because I haven’t been able to get her image out of my mind for the last three days.

Sorry for the relatively short review this time, but honestly I feel like the book and the quotes chosen will tell you yourself, especially if you’ve made it this far in the series, whether you want to read it or not. My singular review will not twist your arm one way nor another.

As always, I only have one set of opinions. Check out other reviews if you’re thinking about purchasing the book yourself.

Thanks for taking the time to read this,

~ Yoku