Destroy Me & Fracture Me Novellas Reviews

I just finished both of the novellas from Tahereh Mafi‘s Shatter Me trilogy, one from Warner’s point of view and the other from Adam’s, and so I’m going to put both of my reviews for them here.

destroymeTitle: Destroy Me
Series: Shatter Me #1.5
Pages: 101
Format: Purchased eBook*

In Tahereh Mafi’s Shatter Me, Juliette escaped from The Reestablishment by seducing Warner—and then putting a bullet in his shoulder. But as she’ll learn in Destroy Me, Warner is not that easy to get rid of. . .

Back at the base and recovering from his near-fatal wound, Warner must do everything in his power to keep his soldiers in check and suppress any mention of a rebellion in the sector. Still as obsessed with Juliette as ever, his first priority is to find her, bring her back, and dispose of Adam and Kenji, the two traitors who helped her escape. But when Warner’s father, The Supreme Commander of The Reestablishment, arrives to correct his son’s mistakes, it’s clear that he has much different plans for Juliette. Plans Warner simply cannot allow.

My love for Warner just increased, I think.

I loved being able to see from his perspective and the different voices all of these characters have. Tahereh Mafi has a way with words, crafting them into beautiful sentences, and it makes my heart flutter.

Warner was actually really creepy to me in the first book, less so in the second, and definitely not in the third. For this novella, he was still kind of weird and foreign to me, but as it continued I really saw his struggle to maintain control. He likes order, he likes control; it’s what makes him feel most comfortable with the world, so for the world to be in disarray after the events of Shatter Me, it’s kind of eye opening to see how he reacts in the situations that are being thrust upon him.

I think that this novella definitely improved his character arc and I wish I had read it sooner. Not only do we get a look into why he did some of the things he did, but we got to understand that he’s human just like everyone else and, though he may try to hide it, he does have emotions and weaknesses and insecurities.

The plot followed the events right after the first book and into the second book, and I like that we got to see more of Delaliu and even his father. The plot itself was simple: find Juliette and the others, and even then that was a challenge given his injury and other factors. I thought that it was engaging and interesting to see what happened from the other side where Juliette and Adam weren’t at.

I really enjoyed this novella and definitely recommend it to Shatter Me fans and if you want to get a bit more out of Warner.

4.5/5 stars

fracturemeTitle: Fracture Me
Series: Shatter Me #2.5
Pages: 67
Format: Purchased eBook*

As Omega Point prepares to launch an all-out assault on The Reestablishment soldiers stationed in Sector 45, Adam’s focus couldn’t be further from the upcoming battle. He’s reeling from his breakup with Juliette, scared for his best friend’s life, and as concerned as ever for his brother James’s safety. And just as Adam begins to wonder if this life is really for him, the alarms sound. It’s time for war.

On the battlefield, it seems like the odds are in their favor—but taking down Warner, Adam’s newly discovered half brother, won’t be that easy. The Reestablishment can’t tolerate a rebellion, and they’ll do anything to crush the resistance . . . including killing everyone Adam has ever cared about.


Though I find Adam to be a pain in the butt, I’m actually really glad to have read this story from his perspective. To be able to see such brotherly love and affection overtake any other emotion is incredible, especially given the circumstances.

I kind of already had a feel for who he was as a character, but just knowing how much he cares for his brother and how he would put him before anyone else kind of makes him a little less of a jerk and a little more over protective older brother.

I get that he felt the need to protect Juliette – I do, I get it – and that he wrestled with himself as to who was more important to him was kind of eye-opening for his character: was he ready to risk the girl he loves, or his only little brother, the only person he has left in the world from his family? But I think that he made the right decision.

The plot followed the story during Unravel Me when everything kind of went to hell, which was an interesting place to see his perspective. I think he thought he was too needed, when in reality Juliette was fine without him. I found this novella to be a good edition to the trilogy.

And as always, the writing is lovely and descriptive without giving too much away.

3.75/5 stars

*Both eBooks were purchased for my nook Simple Touch.

City of Fallen Angels Book Review

cityoffallenangels

Title: City of Fallen Angels
Author: Cassandra Clare
Series: Book #4 in The Mortal Instruments
Publisher: McElderry Books
Publication Date: April 5, 2011
Genre: Young Adult – Urban Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 424
Format: Purchased Paperback

Okay, so I was going to wait until I finished the next three books in the series before putting up this review, but I don’t want to wait that long, so here is my review for book four in the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare: “City of Fallen Angels.”

As this is the fourth book, there will most likely be spoilers. I finished this in early May, so some of this might be fuzzy.

As this book was a continuation of about two weeks or so after the third book’s ending, we got to see more of Clary, Jace, and the gang on their next set of adventures. I felt that this story was mostly proved to be filler, but it definitely laid the groundwork for what is most likely to come in the last two books. It was full of a lot of information and, as such, was probably the least exciting book of the series next to the first one, in my opinion. But let me jump into the characters.

Clary was kind of annoying in this book. She didn’t seem to know how to act around Jace and she seemed really whiny at times. I mean, she was okay at some parts, but other times I just wanted to slap her upside the head and tell her to stop acting like such a brat. I dunno, maybe it was just the way she came off, but she seemed more concerned about her relationship with Jace more than anything, but I understand that that’s a big plot of the story. She did show concern for her friends and all that, but it seemed really focused on Jace rather than the situation at hand.

Jace was also an idiot in this book. He kind of acted impulsively throughout most of it by not sleeping, by acting like the world was kind of ending because he and Clary were growing distant… He feels he’s a danger, a threat, to Clary. But I think that was mostly because he believed so much in the words of others rather than listening to his own heart and mind. I thought he did do well in the battle aspects, like usual, but he made mistakes and I thought that was good of him. He just kind of annoyed me as well, but hopefully he’ll get better in the next books.

There was so much of Simon in this book! We got to see a lot from his perspective and how his life as a vampire has really changed almost everything about him. His powers are developing more and he’s learning to control urges – but he makes a major mistake when he ends up sucking a human’s blood from their body. He’s horrified at it, but it makes him feel that much more alive. It was interesting to see so much of the story through him, and I’m not sure if that’s a good or bad thing. I felt like a good chunk, maybe around half, if not more, of the story revolved around his point of view. I enjoyed reading about it and everything, but I thought we may have missed some things because of it. I do think he’s growing as a character, though, and I’m glad to have gotten to see so much into his head.

Isabelle was starting to make more appearances in this novel, and though I’m still on the fence about her, she does seem to be developing feelings for Simon. She’s a bit more protective of him and I think she’s also learning she doesn’t need to be as cold and shut out to the world as she once was.

Alec and Magnus made very few appearances in this book and when we did see them we saw Alec being whiny and Magnus trying to deal with him. I thought the interactions could have been better and I wish Alec wasn’t so jealous of a past lover of Magnus’s.

As I mentioned, there was a lot of information dumped into this book, from who was possibly killing Shadowhunters to who could be an enemy to new enemies to what happened with Maia and her ex-boyfriend. It’s a lot to take in, and even though this book was short it still held some good qualities that I can see potential for in upcoming books.

The plot of the book itself was interesting and I wanted to know more about who was killing the Shadowhunters and why. I do think we were told who and why, but I wished that more could have happened or something… I feel like an element was missing to this book in a way. I also wonder about the upcoming wedding, about what happened Jace and Sebastian, about what’s going to happen next with the characters. I mean, it was a good book, but I definitely think there was something missing from it that the last three books held.

In a way this book follows a whole new plotline with the same characters and all of that, but I’m not sure how I feel about this continuation. I loved the wrap-up to the first three books, but this one just feels a little off to me. But at the same time I’m also intrigued to see just where this new plot with Sebastian and Camille and everyone else takes us.

Overall, I do recommend giving this book a go if you’re reading the Mortal Instruments and just to enjoy what you can.

I give this book a 3.75/5 stars.

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight Book Review

thestatisticalprobabilityofloveatfirstsight

Title: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Publisher: Poppy – an imprint of Hachette Book Group
Publication Date: January 2, 2012
Genres: Young Adult – Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 236
Format: Purchased Paperback

With the longest title award… “The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight” by Jennifer E. Smith is about: “Four minutes changes everything. Hadley Sullivan 17 misses her flight at JFK airport, is late to her father’s second wedding in London with never-met stepmother. Hadley meets the perfect boy. Oliver is British, sits in her row. A long night on the plane passes in a blink, but the two lose track in arrival chaos. Can fate bring them together again?” (from Goodreads)

When I first picked this up I just needed a quick read, an easy romance, and something to make me go “aww” at the end. Well, this book was all of these things and I’m glad I picked it up.

Hadley has a strained relationship with her father after he left her mother, and that’s a major focus throughout most of the book. Though the conversations she has with Oliver distract her from those troubles or just shows more character, they’re still simple conversations and they made me smile. Hadley, herself, is a relatable teenager, I think. A lot of issues stem around her parents, but it’s mostly her own anger and frustration that lead to her issues. I liked that she was able to work them out in the end and everything and own up to her own feelings and anger. A good cry is good once in a while, you know?

Oliver a highly sarcastic guy, but he does it with humor and kindness. He made me chuckle several times and I liked that he had his own family issues to deal with. Though he wasn’t as open as Hadley was in the beginning, we did find out more about him and why he was so adamant about not sharing things about his own family. I liked him a lot.

They were really the only major characters in the book, though there were a few like Hadley’s dad and mom and stepmom that had some significant roles, I think.

I thought this was a good romance about how fast love can strike because “love doesn’t make sense. It’s completely illogical.” (as quoted from the book) It doesn’t need to be perfect and slow building over time. Sometimes it is just a matter of first sight.

But I like that this also means that there can be more to Hadley and Oliver’s story, that this isn’t just the end and that there is a possibility to see more into their future.

It was a quick read and a cute romance that did make me go “aww” at the end. I recommend this book if you’re participating in a read-a-thon (like I am) or if you just want something light and cute.

Also, this book is being turned into a movie. I think I’ll see it when it comes out.

I rated this book 3.75/5 stars. Simple, cute, easy read.

The Mortal Instruments 1-3 Book Reviews

Titles: City of Bones; City of Ashes; City of Glass
Author: Cassandra Clare
Series: Books 1-3 in the The Mortal Instruments series
Publisher: McElderry Books – an imprint of Simon & Schuster
Publication Dates: March 27, 2007; March 25, 2008; March 24, 2009
Genres: Young Adult – Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: CoB: 485; CoA: 453; CoG: 541
Format: Purchased Paperback – all

I finished the original trilogy of The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare and now I’m ready to share my reviews with you. This series is great and I personally love the characters and the world that it’s set in. It’s easy to imagine its real world presence as well as the fantastical and paranormal bits that make it a great urban fantasy read. So, without further ado, here are my reviews of the first three book in The Mortal Instruments series:

cityofbonesCity of Bones

As the first book in the series, this was the foundation for the rest of the books to build up on. When Clary, a fifteen year old girl, enters an under 21 club in New York with her best friend, Simon, she wasn’t expecting to witness a murder – or what she thought was a murder. When her mother disappears after a fight she has with Clary and she starts being able to see things that shouldn’t be there, Clary knows that something’s wrong. Jace, a Shadowhunter, comes to her rescue, in a way, and also really helps to open her eyes to the world in which they live: the one in which both demons and humans reside side by side with one another. Clary is thrust into a world of violence, turmoil, lies, and mystery as she discovers who she is and the cost of having been lied to her whole life.

Alright, so this book was the first in the six book series. And though I loved reading of the world building and getting to know the characters, I felt that the book as a whole was really slow. It lacked a lot of action and depth, in my opinion. It laid out a foundation of the world, the main villain that they have to overcome, and some events that really lead up to those parts, but it was otherwise a slow read. By far my least favorite, but at the same time I did enjoy it. It’s a conundrum.

The characters, Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Simon, and Alec are our main heroes. They all work with one another and Clary, our main protagonist, would turn over heaven and hell to fight for those she loves, uncovering truths she never thought she could possibly find.

Jace seems disconnected or uncaring throughout a lot of this book, but as much of that was his upbringing by a man who was cruel (there’s no other word for it) it’s understandable as to why he thinks he’s some sort of invincible Shadowhunter. Though when he gets closer to Clary, he starts to really show his true self, which is more unguarded and someone who can be looked up to.

Though Isabelle and Alec are brother and sister, and grew up with Jace, they seemed definitely more so like background characters in this book and not a lot of depth was brought to them, even though they had several scenes in which they were fleshed out. In the later books, though, you do get a better sense of who they are and grow to like them.

Simon is the mundane in this book. He’s weak and fragile in comparison to the Shadowhunters, but he’s also thrust into their world because of his association with Clary. He’s got a witty, sarcastic charm about him that I like and enjoy reading about.

Magnus Bane is the High Warlock of Brooklyn and he’s very… eccentric in everything that he does, and wears. He grows more likable as the books go on, like the others.

Luke is sort of like Clary’s uncle, but not really. They aren’t blood related or anything like that, but when she finds out he’s a werewolf, he tells her the story of how he Changed and of how her mother fought to protect not only herself, but Clary as well.

Valentine is our main villain and he’s very unlikable. He’s good with words and charming in his own way, but he’s very cruel and doesn’t care who he cuts down in his path – even his daughter.

The plot of the book has a main focus point of taking out Valentine and helping Clary’s mother, Jocelyn, awake from a deep sleep. Those two are the main focuses of the book, but there are many events that happen that twist what they think needs to be done and how the characters work with one another.

Overall, I rated this book 3.75/5 stars.

cityofashesCity of Ashes

As the second book in the series, the action grew immensely in this one, making it more enjoyable and a much faster read than the first. Here, Clary and the others are still trying to find a way to help rescue Clary’s mother, but they learn a truth that unravels how Clary and Jace act around one another. And something happens to Simon that causes him to be changed forever – literally. This book is full of much more depth and I definitely felt my fondness for the characters grow in this one. Though Valentine is a sick and twisted man, the goals he’s trying to achieve ring out as truth to some, and complete lies to others.

This book is definitely much more gripping than the first with lots more action based scenes and plenty of tension to get your blood boiling. We learn more about Jocelyn’s and Valentine’s past, as well as more about the Shadowhunter world and the way the Clave (Shadowhunter government/society) works. It’s one that’s corrupt and very different from what it used to be, one that is more fueled by fear of Valentine than what their main purpose of existence is: to wipe out demons and help the world.

Clary is starting to grow more in this book as a person and she learns just how powerful she is. Though, yes, she can have her whiny moments, if you were in some of the situations she was thrust into, you’d probably do the same. Plus she’s fifteen, going on sixteen in this book, I’m not expecting complete maturity out of her. But she definitely grows a lot in this and learns many more horrible “truths” that unravel a lot in her.

Jace, as well, grows in this book. But he learns something that changes how he acts toward Clary and even his other friends. There are many times in which he risks his life for Clary in this, as well as his own, while also learning some things that could potentially destroy him.

We meet the Inquisitor in this book – Imogen Herondale – and, frankly, I hated her from beginning to end. She was just so mean toward Jace and the others because of a personal vendetta against Valentine. I don’t know. She made a good secondary villain, but she was more a victim in the end than anything.

Valentine ends up getting two of the three mortal instruments in this book (the Sword and the Cup) and plans on draining the blood of Downworlders (werewolves, vampires, fey, warlocks) to use their power, but he’s stopped by Clary, Simon, and Jace.

Oh yeah, something big happens to Simon in this book. Spoiler alert: he becomes a vampire.

Jocelyn still hasn’t been woken yet and they can’t seem to find the cure, though time seems to be running out to stop Valentine once something major happens after a battle on a ship. Someone appears at the hospital where Jocelyn is and tells Clary she knows someone who can help her mother: a warlock named Ragnor Fell.

Overall, the plot was much better in this book and I highly enjoyed it a lot more. I rated this book 4.5/5 stars.

cityofglassCity of Glass

The third installment in the series is definitely my favorite thus far. So many things happened in this book, and even though I knew a lot of things that would happen (because you know how spoilers run rampant over the Internet and in person), I still loved reading it and finding out some major twists that I didn’t figure out until the page before it happened.

In this book, Valentine has essentially grown in power and Clary and Jace have ended up in Idris, the Shadowhunter’s world, though by accident, in ways. Jace is not happy to see Clary and yells at her (pretty meanly), causing her to leave the area and head back to where she came from: Luke’s sister’s house. Though many, many things happened in this installment, the biggest things were ones in which I didn’t expect, and some I did.

We learn what happened to Jonathan, the first born of Valentine and Jocelyn, and how Clary avoided that same fate before she was born. We learn more truths about Valentine and his experiments on not only Downworlders and demons, but an angel, himself, and his unborn child. We learn the truth that had once destroyed Clary and Jace. We learn many, many things in this book. The battles that take place, the way the Clave really was corrupt, the way things progressed in this book was phenomenal and was a great closer to an original trilogy. It was wrapped up nicely and I highly enjoyed it.

Clary is super strong and brave in this book, standing up to a roomful of adults who otherwise wouldn’t have believed her had she not proven herself, how she fought for Jace, how she strived to save everyone. It was great seeing her development in this one.

Jace also grows, but throughout a lot of the book, he thinks that he’s less than worthy of life, let alone Clary or any sort of life he had in the past. But when he discovers the truth, though in some ways it was too late, in others it helped him to really overcome whatever doubts he may have had and progress through them.

Alec overcame something (a big something) that ended up being okay in the end. It’s actually really cute and made me squee with happiness.

Isabelle kicks ass. Like, wow, she’s awesome.

Jocelyn is finally woken up and helps in the final battle. She is woken by Magnus Bane, though, because of a certain spell book that Clary and Jace find.

Valentine, ever the charming bad guy, is definitely one which I still loathe and glad he got what came to him. I definitely wasn’t expecting the way he was going to die (yes, guys, he dies), and it was almost a let down, but at the same time I enjoyed the divine justice.

It was a great wrap up to the story, and I’m extremely glad the way it ended. Now I’m curious to see who the new villain will be, how the dynamics between everyone will be, and just how the next set of the story will unfold. I rated this book 5/5 stars.

Have you read TMI 1-3? Let me know your thoughts on the first three books in the comments.

Shatter Me Book Review

shatterme

Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi Series: Book #1 in the Shatter Me trilogy Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication Date: November 15, 2011
Genre: Young Adult – Dystopian, Romance
Pages: 340
Format: Purchased Paperback

“Shatter Me” by Tahereh Mafi is a story about a girl named Juliette whose touch is deadly. She grows up being hated and feared by everyone, even her parents. When she is sent to the Reestablishment to be held as an insane asylum client, her world becomes different and changes upside down. She counts the minutes and seconds until the day a boy named Adam is also put in her cell, until the day she is essentially captured, until the day she becomes free.

This is a young adult dystopian novel about survival and self discovery. It was an interesting and fast read and I was enthralled by the writing style Mafi uses throughout the book. It is unique in that it is a conscious stream of thought and many of the words and sentences are crossed out as though Juliette takes back those thoughts before they ever come into fruition. It’s definitely unique, as well as the amount of metaphors used throughout the novel. I don’t think it took away from the story, but rather enhanced it and added a bit more imagery for the situation at that current moment.

Overall, I am excited to read the rest of the series, but like many other reviews I’ve seen, I had a few problems with it:

  • There wasn’t enough world building. This had so much potential to be something greater, and really I felt that it fell flat in terms of showing us what the world really looked like until the very end of the book.
  • There was a lot of intense, passionate moments that almost felt like insta-love. Though I did enjoy a lot of the romance, some of it felt out of place and too urgent and very hormone driven.
  • I didn’t feel like some things were explained in enough detail: what was the exact reason she was there? Why did Warner treat her the way he did? What was the exact reason for Adam’s presence there (aka the romance aspect)? I wished more had been expanded upon, really.
  • Some of it felt rushed, as though the plot (which wasn’t really defined and could have been so much better) didn’t exist until the second half of the book.

Now that isn’t to say that this book didn’t have it’s benefits, too. I did enjoy a lot of this book, such as:

  • The romance parts. “But didn’t you just complain about the romance?” In some aspect, yes it felt annoying for some reason, but other times I was totally into it.
  • The writing style was unique and beautiful. I enjoyed the way we were really in Juliette’s head; it felt like we were in a troubled mind that was only getting stronger as the book progressed.
  • The cover is gorgeous (the paperback, not the old hardcover).
  • The character development on Juliette’s part was good and growing. I also enjoyed Kenji and James (they were like comic relief). Adam could have been expanded upon more. Warner is a twisted soul, very good villain.
  • I thought the concept of the powers that Juliette and others had was really cool. Kind of like mutants in a way.

So, this book had both ups and downs, but I overall enjoyed it and hope the second book gets even better and that the plot is expanded upon.

I rated this book 3.75/5 stars.