Sunday, July 14, 2013

Book review of Divergent by Veronica Roth

A friend recommended this book and I was not disappointed.
Right off the bat you're pulled into Beatrice's gray world. She can't look in a mirror. She has to be asked a question before speaking at the dinner table. What has the world become? I instantly know we are in a futuristic Chicago with trains everywhere and the sears tower. The people have separated themselves into five groups. The groups are set up by their personalities and strengths. When you turn 16 you go through an aptitude test and they tell you what group you would best fit but in the end you get to choose. When they first came up with the five groups it might have been a good idea but over time people became corrupt and the groups started fighting with each other. Beatrice knew she would disappoint her family if she didn't choose her own people the Abnegation. A group that was completely focused on being selfless, which Beatrice wasn't. She had been watching the Dauntless kids and admired them for being wild and bold. She felt like she fit that better. When she took her aptitude test and found it was inconclusive, which meant she was Divergent. Beatrice was warned to keep that hidden because people were afraid of those who didn't fit into one of the groups. Divergent wouldn't conform and follow the rules so they would be eliminated to avoid trouble. When you choose a different faction you leave your families and have to go through initiation before you are officially a member. If you fail you will be factionless (homeless). When Beatrice picks Dauntless she changes her name to Tris and instantly is whipped into a dangerous and deadly world. She makes friends with Al, Will, and Christina but they make enemies really quick with Peter, Molly, and Drew. The initiation is harder than Tris ever imagined and wonders if she has made a mistake. Even though she is brave you have to be strong and Tris is small and soft. Four is their trainer and Eric is one of the Dauntless leaders over seeing the training. The two seem to have different ideas on how to train and clash with each  a lot. Eric is ruthless and gives Tris the creeps. Tris has to learn to use a gun, knife, and fist fight. Four has empathy for Tris and wants to help her. Tris's father who is a Abnegation leader is in the news because both of his children choose different groups and rumors are starting. Tris visits her brother who choose Erudite because they are more logical and intelligent. He warns her that a war is about to start against the Abnegation. Tris excels in the next round of initiation when they have to face their fears in a simulation. This makes the others jealous and even her friends turn on her. Tris doesn't know who she can trust but something is wrong and she has to help her parents and the Abnegation people.


I truly enjoyed this book. The characters are so real and you're involved in what happens to them. When they hurt you hurt. The writing is gripping and keeps you needing to know more. This is the first book in a trilogy and they are far from being out of danger. I'm going out to pick up Insurgent as soon as possible. They are also filming the movie right now and should be released in March 2014. Veronica is a wonderful writer and I just saw on her blog that the third book Allegiant will be released this October. Yipee! I think this is a book my husband would like too. It isn't to mushy and romantic but enough to keep me happy but it has plenty of action to keep the men happy. A great read!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Book Reviews for House of Night series by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast

For my birthday I received 5 books and have been on a reading rampage. I read the first 4 books in the House of Night series. I also read Divergent which I'll do a separate review for it on my next blog.

House of Nights starts out as a typical high school drama but when Zoey gets marked as a vampire things change. In this story the world knows about vampires and they mostly live in harmony. This book really makes you feel like your hanging with teenagers again.(*Because I review a lot of clean romances I'll put out a disclaimer that this book does have language and sexual content.)

Marked book #1
Zoey Redbird is 16 years old and having issues with her almost ex-boyfriend Heath. He is the high school quarterback and chooses to party more then focus on school. Zoey is marked and will start the process of becoming a vampire. She has to live and attend school at the House of Night, a school for Fledglings (A Vampire finishing school in Tulsa, OK). She is more than happy to leave her family behind since she doesn't fit in with them and especially hates her step-dad. Her mom only cares what her new husband wants and his obsession with church. Zoey's Grandma is the only one she can count on. Her Grandma is Cherokee and lives on a lavender farm. She understands Zoey's special talents with the godess Nyx. Zoey meets a groups of friends at her new school. Stevie Rae is her roommate and they become best friends. Erin and Shaunee are roommates and act like twins even though they look nothing alike. Damien is the gay "boy" friend of the group. Eric is the hottie of the school. And his ex-girlfriend Aphrodite, the perfect popular blonde warns Zoey that Eric is hers. Zoey and her friends plan to overthrow Aphrodite as the head of Dark Daughters because she is abusing her power.  

Betrayed book #2

Zoey's hot vampire boyfriend Eric is out of town at a Shakespeare competition and she's missing him. Loren Blake, Vampyre Poet Laureate is the perfect man. Loren starts flirting with Zoey and makes her feel like a women. He should be off limits because he's a teacher. A couple human football players turn up dead and detectives start asking Zoey questions. Some Fledglings died too because their bodies didn't accept the change and Zoey has seen them as ghosts. Heath is the next football player that goes missing and Zoey has to save him before he's killed. 

Chosen book #3
Zoey is juggling three boyfriends and can't decide on who she really likes. Zoey is trying to help Stevie Rae with her humanity and has to keep secrets from all her friends. Aphrodite is the only one she can turn to for help. Vampire teachers are being killed. Zoey's friends and boyfriend learn the secrets she's been hiding and no one can trust her anymore.

Untamed book #4
Life sucks for Zoey.  She lost all her boyfriends and friends. Erik is now a full fledged vampire and is teaching drama at the school. Things couldn't be more awkward. Neferet blames the humans for vampire killings and wants to start a war. Shekinah the head priestess of all the schools arrives to try to find out what's happening. Zoey knows Neferet is evil and behind everything but she'll have to prove it first.

All in all, I like the series. I do hate when Zoey makes stupid mistakes, but what teenager hasn't made their fair share of them. It has captured my interest enough that I will read on. Check out the website which has lots of fun pictures and videos.

Thank you P.C. and Kristin for putting your creative juices together to make another fun vampire story I can obsess over.

P.C. and Kristin Cast
Photo: Joerg Steinmetz

The 11th book in the series Revealed is coming out October 15th. I have a lot more reading to go but It's an easy read so no problem.