Tuesday, August 19, 2014

With Zombies by Michael F. Stewart

With Zombies (Assured Destruction #3)
by Michael F. Stewart
Publication Date: March 31st 2014
Publisher: Non Sequitur Press
Source: Kickstarter
Find This Book: With Zombies
Rating: 5/5

Being a read-to-review blogger for Stewart in the past, I naturally helped fund his Kickstarter campaign for book three back in March. This landed me with a nice paperback collection of the trilogy in April that I was dying to start! The wait until now fed my excitement and I was not disappointed.

            Michael F. Stewart has a knack for entrapping readers in his high tech-storytelling. I picked it up this morning around 10 and did not set it down until I finished at 2 (which says a lot considering it took me an hour to concentrate and read 20 pages of my psych book yesterday). I love getting immersed in Janus’s world of hacking and Shadownet. All of the funny pop culture references don’t hurt either (Star Wars is my favorite). It just really feels like he’s writing about and for the young adults of this new generation. The problems that Janus faces are a little extreme, but really they’re not so far off. They are problems that anyone could be going through and that’s part of what makes Stewart’s novels so interesting and relatable.
            In this book everything really pieces together, plot-wise. Questions that were raised in Assured Destruction and Script Kiddie are finally answered, but in an exciting and dramatic way. Everything finally comes together! Some writers can drag out their books and get caught up in telling emotions that make their stories boring. This was NOT the case. The stakes were raised, the plots were twisted, and I was super excited! Sure, Janus has been through a lot, she needed to sort herself out and show her more emotional human side, but made her even more relatable. I was rooting for her the entire 225 pages no matter what she was up to, Michael wrote so much heart and spirit into this young woman that it would be hard not to love her.
            One thing I especially liked about this book is that she relied on the people around her. With her family business still on the line, her mom being hospitalized, community service, not being able to miss school, and having to deal with a virus that has infected Ottawa, Janus has quite a lot on her plate. The first two books she tried to do things her own way, risking her life and getting severely injured each time. For this adventure Jonny is Janus’ rock, always being there for her and helping her to the best of his abilities. Honestly he’s a keeper and I really hope after everything they’ve been through that they stay together forever. On top of that, Jan calls in all of her friends to help her and their friendship was just the greatest thing to read. She never would have made it through without them! She can finally trust people and isn’t alone anymore.

            This book, as well as it’s counterparts are perfect YA contemporary fiction novels. The technological geek side of me was eager to eat up the words as quickly as possible. This is a also a book I would recommend to people who seek diversity when they read. Jan’s mom as MS (Multiple Sclerosis) and I think this was represented well. The author deals with each character’s disabilities flawlessly with out making them seem like they’re not a whole person.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Witchling by Yasmine Galenorn

Witchling (Otherworld #1)
by Yasmine Galenorn
Publication Date: October 3rd 2006
Publisher: Berkley
Source: Library
Find This Book: Witchling
Rating: 5/5

Witchling, is about three sisters from the Otherworld living Earthside. Basically, the Otherworld is another dimension, and the people are Fae, Cryptos, and Demons. Thousands of years ago the 2 dimensions lived in the same plane as each other, but then the Fae went to war with the humans, so the gods (the Greek ones to be exact) asked the Elementals to do something about it. They made a pact that sealed off the dimensions with limited access through portals regulated by the Fae. This pact was split into 9 seals and given to each of the elementals involved to guard. Over the course of time, they had gotten lazy and all of the seals eventually fell into a mortal's hands. Now modern day, the OW had become nothing but legends until the OW revealed itself once again. Humans are now aware of the OW's existence and have treated OW creatures as celebrities on Earth.
The Three sister's are half-Fae, half-human. Their mother was a human who moved to the Otherworld to be with her husband, a fae. The story is told by the Point of View of Camille, the eldest daughter, and an incompetent witch. Being half human has pretty much made their powers harder for them to control all the time and Camille's magic doesn't always go as planned. Her younger sisters are Dililah, a werecat who not only turns on the full moon but also turns when she's gets stressed out during PMS (pre-moon-syndrome), and Menolly, who had amazing climbing skills until she was unwillingly turned into a Vampire on one of her assignments. Since they lived in the Otherworld while growing up, they were constantly ridiculed by the Full Blood Sidhe, especially Delilah ("Pretty Kitty") because she only turns into a small tabby cat while, typically, were-cats turn into big cats.
So living Earthside as OIA agents (Otherworld Intelligence Agency) has made them minor celebrities in Seattle, and they have come to love quite a few Earthside luxuries. Then Jocko, a stunted Giant OIA agent who runs the Wayfinder bar, was garroted. Even while stunted he's taller and stronger than any human, basically impossible for a human to kill. Additionally the rope gives off a strong Demon aura. dun-Dun-DUNNN!! Demons live in the Subterranean Realms of the Otherworld. They supposedly are to never allowed to reach Earth to cause their chaos, and THESE Demon scouts are looking for seals to give to their King. Of course the King is up to no good, planing to destroy the pact, destroying the separation of worlds, and allow him to bring an army to Earthside! With new dangers, new friends (such as a dragon that can morph into human form, an adorable gargoyle cub, and a foxy Japanese guy), and some intense passions between the characters, can the girls defeat top-notch demons and get the first seal from a mysterious 'Tom Lane'?

I absolutely loved this book, it incorporated many known mystical devices while also incorporating new which explained a couple of questionable things. It was very entertaining, and pretty hard to set down once I had started! The characters all have their problems, which made it more relatable, even with all of the fantastical elements. It was really quite loveable. I also loved the authors writing style and I can't wait to read the next book :D