Review: Fighting to Survive by Rhiannon Frater

Review: Fighting to Survive by Rhiannon Frater

PJ’s QUICKIE POV:

The zombie obsession continues with Rhiannon Frater’s second installment in her ‘As The World Dies’ series, ‘Fighting to Survive.’ One of those books that I was hopelessly anticipating, ‘Fighting to Survive’ did not disappoint. There was plenty of action, suitable psychotic moments and a smidge of romance to keep me interested, not to mention zombies galore! If you haven’t read Rhiannon Frater’s first book in the series ‘The First Days’, I highly recommend that you march your petunia to the book store and buy it now. You can read my review of ‘The First Days‘ here. Already read it…well read on my friend.

REVIEW:

The survivors have settled in to their new life, one where they live in tents in the shadow of the construction site with a huge wall separating them from the horde of hungry undead. There are things that they must accomplish but they know that doing so will put themselves at risk. For one, they need more space, so the hotel is the only option right now, but filled with undead hotel staff, it won’t be easy. Then, there are the living, the scum that killed Ralph and are antagonizing the pockets of survivors in the area, these monsters are worse than the zombies and it is only a matter of time before the survivors living in the fort come into contact with them. Yet, as these confrontations loom on the horizon, survivors, Katie, Jenni, Travis and Juan find that they have to stop and live – because you never know when this moment will be your last.

This series is the rock star of zombie novels. It had me literally on the edge of my seat and reading aloud to my husband when a particularly good scene popped up. Frater just has a way with words and crafting scenes. She crafts her sentences choppy and matter-o-fact, telling it like it is with humor and a sick sense of finality. I said it in the last review, but her book is like a zombie movie crafted into a novel, I can literally picture the book in scenes in my head as if it were a movie. Jenni and Katie are both epic characters and will have you laughing and crying and sometimes wincing.

I have to say though that I did have some hang-ups with this second one, but I actually found that it was better put together than the first one, which is something you don’t find that often in series, the second one usually being the one that just carries you to the next one. My few hang-ups revolved around Jenni, I wanted more of her and I found Frater concentrated on Katie a lot, which is understandable with Travis’ leadership role, but I really like Loca and wanted to see a bit more of her. Then there was the vigilante – I thought they would concentrate on the person for awhile then just forget about finding out who it was especially after the Shane incident. I figured it would be easy to figure out who it was after the sabotage but there was no attempt at finding who it was, everything was completely diverted to the Banditos. Which, if the vigilante is a certain person makes sense… oh well I’m rambling. The books are excellent and warrants a discussion. I’ve actually reread the first book and find that it deserves a better rating than the 4 out of 5 that I first gave it.

RECOMMENDATIONS:

Recommended for zombie fans. If you’ve enjoyed similar apocalypse books where the dead reanimate and began eating people this is the book for you. Mature content of violent, sexual and explicit nature.

Like this Like That

  1. Aftertime (Luna Books) by Sophie Littlefield
  2. For a Young Adult take – Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Young Adult Novel

‘Fighting to Survive’ by Rhiannon Frater in paperback was provided by the publisher {TOR} in exchange for an honest review.

Review: The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

Review: The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

PJ’s QUICKIE POV:

One word. Different. I was looking for something fresh and I found it in ‘The Faerie Ring’ by Kiki Hamilton. The story was instantly engrossing and kept me waiting for more throughout the entire sequence of the plot. The characters were “fall in-lovable” and the mystery behind the plot was well executed. ‘The Faerie Ring’ was a pleasure to read and a great debut for author, Kiki Hamilton, I can’t wait for more of Ms. Hamilton’s writing.

REVIEW:

The setting is Victorian London and our heroine is Tiki, a gutter rat that picks pockets to stay alive and feed the other street kids that she calls family. They live together in an abandoned business, barely staying warm and fed. In an odd series of events Tiki steals something that will change her world, a ring. The ring is the property of Queen Victoria and besides its royal ownership there is much more at stake, because the ring signifies a pact — a pact between the faeries and England. Having lost the ring, it could mean war.

Another thief, the mysterious, Rieker suspects immediately it was Tiki that took the ring. Rieker seams to know more of what the ring means and about the fae but Tiki can’t trust anyone besides her family. There is a lot more at stake for her than just a dumb ring. She has to protect her family and get them off the streets and this ring just might be the answer. Rieker, while handsome and apparently eager to help – is not family…

A must read for fans of the fae, ‘The Faerie Ring’ blends historical with paranormal and paints a very compelling young adult fantasy. You’ll fall in love with Tiki immediately and believe that you are right there with her at Charing Cross Station in London. Hamilton paints an amazing picture with her words and I’m excited about this debut author’s gift. Don’t pass this book up, you won’t be disappointed.

RECOMMENDATIONS:

Recommended for fans of young adult literature, fantasy and historical literature. This is an excellent cross over for those that like contemporary and would like to broaden your horizons. There is nothing inappropriate about the novel and I’m recommending for 12+, but still mature enough to be read and enjoyed by older teens and adults.


 

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Young Adult Novel

Review: Communion: A True Story by Whitley Strieber

Review: Communion: A True Story by Whitley Strieber

PJ’s QUICKIE REVIEW:

If you ask me today what monster lurks in my closet and scares the crap out of me, it will always be the same. Aliens. The reason for my fear: Whitley Strieber. I have never experienced such a strong reaction than when I read Streiber’s books. Streiber’s account of his true life experience involving alien abductions had me sleeping with the lights on for a month and literally coming to realize what it means to be terrified all the while engrossed and riveted by his words. Believe his account or not, but you have to read his story and judge for yourself.

Communion: A True Story by Whitley Strieber is the tale of one man’s struggle with what he terms “The Visitors”, the things they do to him and his family and how he deals with the sudden realization that he is an alien abductee. This is a story of discovery, fear and strength and you shouldn’t pass this one up. This is probably the only non-fiction book that I will ever recommend but I highly urge you to read it.
Recommended for people with open minds. Go in with your eyes open! I read this as a young adult for the first time, it’s scary and real but there is nothing lewd or over the heads of a mature teen.

Did Not Finish


 

 

Q: What is the monster lurking in your closet?

 

Young Adult Novel
Review: Wildfire by Karsten Knight

Review: Wildfire by Karsten Knight

PJ’s QUICKIE REVIEW:

I was disheartened by not enjoying this book. It had great potential. An original plot, interesting characters, a spitfire of a protagonist and a very entertaining and easy on the eyes author, not to mention a male young adult author, which are a minority. Yet, I literally had to force myself to return to this book to finish it. While the plot was original it was disjointed and jumped from plot point to plot point, which had me completely confused half the time. While the main character was a spitfire and started out strong she quickly deflated and became almost two-dimensional by the middle of the book. Then with the whole paranormal reveal – the group was suddenly thrust into a very odd circumstance which revealed them to be paranormal beings and they were all just like, “Oh okay, cool.” It was so flat by that point that I felt I was reading an outline and not a flushed out book.

My overall view is that there was a good start to this book, yet by the middle it was as if the author hurried to finish and didn’t give it the attention that that beginning had. I believe it had great potential and the author has a great talent for dialogue writing and imagery – but his characters and plot just fizzled.

This is a DNF – I held on until I made it 3/4ths through, yet just couldn’t manage to finish it.

Did Not Finish


 

Like This – You Might Like These Better:

  1. Starcrossed by Josphine Angelini
  2. Firelight by Sophie Jordan

 

Young Adult Novel
Review: The Goddess Test by Aimée Carter

Review: The Goddess Test by Aimée Carter

PJ’s QUICKIE POV:

What can I say about THE GODDESS TEST? One of the hardest books to review is the one that gets a medium rating. You like the book, but nothing stands out and says, “Yeah this was great.” And to top it off it has problems, but you feel like you are picking on the book if you go into details of why this book just didn’t add up to be a Good or Great novel. It was okay. Would I run around and suggest to people to buy it, read it or pass on as a gift? No. There are so many great books out there, it’s hard to waste time on so-so literature. Which sounds terrible, but sometimes I would rather read a really bad book than a book that just makes me go “meh.” At least with a bad book I would have something to rant about.

REVIEW:

A retelling or really a revamping of the Hades and Persephone myth, THE GODDESS TEST is the story of Kate, whose mother is dying and has to move back to her mother’s home town, Eden. When arriving in the town she finds herself the target of some mean girl behavior which has consequences that might resonate into eternity as she attracts the attention of a reclusive but attractive young man named Henry. Henry finds Kate on the banks of a river that runs through his land with a dead popular girl named Ava on the shore from a prank gone wrong. Henry can fix the situation all Kate has to do — agree to live with him. Even though Kate watches him bring the girl back to life, she doesn’t quite believe that Henry is who he says he is, so she doesn’t show up at the appointed time. She finds out later that Ava is dead, passed away in her sleep as Kate avoided “moving in” with Henry. That being said, she quickly makes a deal, not to save Ava – but to be able to extend her mother’s life in exchange for living with Henry.

The plot, while original needed to be flushed out better, things were a bit convoluted. Puzzle pieces while close, just wouldn’t fit together. And above all else, we have Henry, which is supposed to be Hades — Hades, god of the Underworld, brother of Zeus, oldest male child of Cronus and subsequent master of death, portrayed like a melancholy underling, doing as he’s told with no real power, still pining over a woman that died a long time ago and later obsessing over an eighteen year old high school student. I guess it just didn’t mesh well with my imagery of the god of the underworld. But, this book did a lot of god bending, portraying them in odd circumstances and acting oddly and out of character from what we know. Personally, I guess I wanted them to be somewhat close to their myths but I understood that the author took license in this regards, picking and choosing what traits to keep and what to change. Original, yes, but it didn’t do it justice in my mind.

Then there was the ending and I won’t give any spoilers, but if I was Kate, I WOULD BE SEETHING!! Seething. I would be in severe hate of everyone. Just saying.

Overall opinion is in the so-so range, I think the book was entertaining, but lacked a romantic flavor because of the forced nature. I feel like Kate settled and in my mind that is not romantic at all. Breaking it down, this novel was supposed to be a semi-paranormal romance, so in my mind it failed miserably in that regard. Approached as an original story-line, I’ll give the author credit there. It was an original retelling, just sometimes original isn’t what people are looking for, which is probably why there are a lot of 3 star ratings for this one.

RECOMMENDATIONS:

for young adult paranormal fans. If you don’t mind a little non-sensical fluff, this one is for you. Fans of novels like GODDESS BOOT-CAMP and those sort might enjoy.


 

Like This – You Might Like These Better:

  1. Starcrossed by Josphine Angelini
  2. Darkness Becomes Her by Kelly Keaton

 

Young Adult Novel
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