Quick review for a quick read. I read “Rebel Heart” in full quite a few years after reading “Blood Red Road”, so I had to refresh my memory on a few things that happened in the first book before tackling this one. My final reaction upon finishing it (and meditating over all of its events) was “Oh Saba.”
Initial reaction: It was decent, probably around my same reaction to the first book (which admittedly I read a while back ago.) The intrigue is strong but the execution felt a bit shaky through the novel.
Don’t let my rating of this book fool you – I thought “Once We Were” was a very good book, and a worthy second book in the Hybrid Chronicles series (following up the first book “What’s Left of Me.”) Following Eva and Addie in this book shows them in quite a few harrowing situations – a struggle between claiming the right to exist as Hybrid souls and changing the status quo from the oppressive network that’s quickly expanding its reach and aim. It’s an apt theme as far as a dystopian novel is concerned. It also shows Eva and Addie not just as one entity, but struggling to come to terms with their own identities in the mix of some harrowing events.
Quick review for a semi-quick read. I had been on the fence about reading Kass Mogan’s “The 100” series. I think the tipping point was me finally taking the plunge and watching the CW series of the same name. The first season interested me enough to see what the book series had to offer, only to realize that the book is a horse of a different color entirely (seriously, do not go into the book series thinking that it mirrors the TV series of the same name. Certain characters who die early on in the TV show survive in the book, though some plot parallels and backstories exist).
Initial reaction: 2.5 stars overall, I liked the setup and really liked the beginning, but it dragged its heels far too many times and force fed the relationships far too much for me to really like it more than what I did. I want to follow the series, though.
This is another YA sci-fi/dystopian series I’ve picked up in the past year where the premise had a ton of potential for the set-up, but the way it executed left me feeling exhausted and uber annoyed by the time I finished it. Pretty much the way I felt about Victoria Aveyard’s “Red Queen” I could say I felt about Megan Shepard’s “The Cage”. Yet, I still want to see where this series goes.
Initial reaction: My thoughts are – if you go into this novel with any kind of expectations, you might end up disappointed. For me, it was an okay read and held my attention through the novel, but far more often than I wanted to be – I felt annoyed with certain aspects of the novel – from the focal points of the plot (frustrating and overfocused love triangle, Mare making really stupid decisions, etc.) to other aspects.
I honestly think “Red Queen” had potential to work with as far as being able to mold a distinct narrative that could hold its own. Problem is that this book is so painfully derivative that it took away any kind of potential distinction in its delivery. I’m mentally facepalming in the aftermath of reading this and asking “Why?” It’s not that hard to be creative with this kind of plot and make it more immersive as well as distinct. It’s far too easy to align yourself to a template and stick to that template so fast that you suck all the fun out of what your work could potentially become. Unfortunately, that’s precisely what Victoria Aveyard ended up doing.