Five years ago Taylor Edwards made a mistake that cost her the friends she had made at her family’s summer home in Phoenix Lake. Now she is forced to return after her father receives terrible news in order for her siblings and mother to spend one more summer with him. Soon Tayler discovers that this is a summer filled with both second chances and new experiences.
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson is a fantastic novel filled with interesting and dynamic characters, and several heartbreaking scenes. Just a quick warning, this novel is a romance that involves cancer. Because of this it is clearly going to be a sad book for at least the end. The tears start very close to the start of the novel so if you tend to get emotional reading books either don’t read this one or don’t read it in public. It is very possible that this will be a very difficult novel for you to read because of its subject matter.
One thing I noticed when reading Second Chance Summer was the tendency for Taylor to go on tangents. Granted these tangents do relate to what’s going on and they also show the reader what going on in a not so subtle way, but I found that I would get lost halfway through one of these tangents and forget the main, present event in the scene.
All in all this is a vry good novel to read if you have a few hours and it doesn’t matter of your eyes are stained with tears afterwards. Second Chance Summer is a well written novel. I recommend it to anyone who likes this type of book.
Final Rating – 40/50
Grave Beginnings written by R. R. Virdi follows Vincent Graves, a body-jumping soul who is tasked with solving supernatural murders by a mysterious being he calls Church. This time he has thirteen hours to solve the murder of a museum curator, however he soon discovers that this investigation will be difficult and it seems as though he has attracted the attention of a relentless FBI agent. Will he be able to solve the case in time this time?
This is an interesting novel within the supernatural mystery genre. I liked the snarky characters, though at times they were a little bit too snarky. The imagery makes this novel that much better, though at times it was a little out of place especially as Graves is being attacked by supernatural creatures. It is clear from reading it that a lot of research has been put into this book which made it that much more enjoyable to read.
I would recommend this book to anyone who liked reading the Dresden Files. It is a great novel to read on long bus rides.
Final Rating – 41/50
It is 1891 in Boston, and Sophia Tims is beginning to learn about how to read maps from her uncle Shadrack. She comes from a family filled with explorers and cartologers who have been exploring and studying the new world that has been forever changed by the Great Disruption when all the Continents were thrust into different time periods. Her parents have been missing for 8 years after going on a trip, and now Shadrack has been kidnapped by a mysterious individual. Sophia, with the help of Theo a refugee from the west go on a journey in order to uncover secrets and to hopefully rescue Shadrack.
I find the very concept of this book to be very interesting. The world is now broken up into ages so that in Boston it is 1891 and England is in the Thirteenth century. The way this is presented throughout the novel is excellent and is a sign of good world building on the part of S. E. Grove.
The characters are all well developed. Sophia is one of the best because of her background. She isn’t a weak character at all throughout the story and that is great.
The biggest complaint I have about the Glass Sentence is that a few of the sciency parts of the narrative make little to no sense. Sure this is a world where time is quite literally broken, but that does no mean that the laws of nature should be broken.
I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys reading a good young adult book which contains little to no romance. I did enjoy reading this novel and I will be reading the second book in the series some time in the future.
Final Rating -42/50
For the past several years Corinthe the fallen fate has been forced to work as an enforcer of fate on Humanus to atone for a grave mistake she made. Now she has a chance to return to her home and become a fate once more, however to do this she needs to kill Lucas Kaller. She suddenly finds herself feeling things she never thought possible for her to feel.
Fates is your average young adult supernatural romance. There is a boy and a girl, one of them is a supernatural being, and they fall in love. What differentiates this novel from at least most other supernatural romance novels however, is the way it ends. Obviously this is because there is a sequel.
There are two ideas thrown around a lot in this novel. They are the belief that everything is fated and the belief that there is free will. Corinthe and Lucas represent the the duality of these two ideas. You will find yourself questioning which one is the better idea a few times throughout Fates.
I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys supernatural romance. This wasn’t the best novel I have ever read by a longshot, but it was still a good book to read to pass the time.
Final Rating – 39/50
For centuries, Kieba the last goddess in the world has worked to defend the world against plagues. She lives in a mountain in the small desert coastal country known as Carastind and has supported the royal family of that same country. Now invaders from a distant land come to the shores of Carastind and Kieba refuses to help because the king has offended her somehow. It is up to Gulden the crown prince and Oressa the princess to protect their country from the dangers that lie both outside and within.
This is one of the better high fantasy novels I have read that has not been recommended to me by anyone. Rachel Neumeier did a good job. This is a shame because the world is real enough that you could practically step into it and learn about Earth while still being different enough from our own reality that it acts as a source of escapism. The characters are all very interesting and the history of this world is just as interesting.
I just have to say that Oressa is the single best princess I have ever found in any story. She is brave, curious, intelligent, and best of all she actually acts as more than the damsel and distress. If you read this novel for only a single reason read it so you can get to know Oressa, or Press as autocorrect wants to call her.
I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading a good high fantasy novel. I swear you will not want to put this book down once you start reading it.
Final Rating – 49/50
The Other Einstein by Marie Benedict follows the life of Mileva “Mitza” Maric starting when she enters university to study physics and continues as she meets, falls in love with, marries, then divorces Albert Einstein. This is an interesting, well written historical fiction novel looking at a female physicist who lived when being such a person was often frowned upon and who currently has a lot of speculation surrounding her in terms of the theory of relativity.
You know when you read a book and you have difficulty talking about it afterwards. Well for me this is one of those books. After I finished I sat there thinking about it for several minutes before I was forced to move on to the next book. There were moments where I had to put it down for a second to recompose myself because I was a volunteer in a place where I often have to interact with people. This isn’t normally something that I say about a book, well it is actually something I say about a lot of books but it is something this novel does well. It didn’t change my life, but it did make me think about some really difficult topics.
The Other Einstein was well researched , and though many details are based on pure speculation and not hard facts, and a couple scenes are complete fiction I feel that it got many details right such as the discrimination against Jewish and Slavic people, and the rise of women in science. Many of the events in Mileva’s life were inferred from the letters she wrote to various individuals including Albert Einstein.
I recommend that you read this novel if you want something interesting to read, and if you like historical fiction. At times the narrative gets so emotional and it is such a good book. You will learn a lot about possible events in the past, as well as theories in physics by reading this book.
Final Rating – 46/50
After Lady Trent, a dragon researcher hears of an odd discovery made by some explorers in the mountains she goes on an expedition with some close friends and a couple other people to investigate. What she discovers there will change the way people view dragons forever. She herself will change as she finds herself in the Sanctuary of Wings.
This book, written by Marie Brennan was only published in April of this year and I am surprised that I was able to get it from the library immediately. This is the fifth and last book of The Memoirs of Lady Trent which are written from the perspective of Lady Isabella Trent. I accidently read this book before reading the first four books but I still found it incredible. I probably wouldn’t have even picked it up if it weren’t for the beautiful dragons on the cover.
Within the Sanctuary of Wings combines two of my interests, archaeology and dragons. There is also a little bit of anthropology, linguistics, and biology mixed in. The way these fields were incorporated into the story was amazing. Even though I ended up reading the last book in the series first I could understand everything. After I finished reading it my mind was filled with philosophical thoughts.
The characters are interesting but I feel like all the characters minus Lady Trent were developed more in the earlier books, which isn’t a problem but rather me reading the last book first. The reactions the characters had to what was going on was both realistic and accurate to their personalities. The dragons are also very interesting. Marie Brennan, the author has created scientific reasons for the way dragons are. The world the characters and the dragons live in is well built and also realistic.
I enjoyed reading Within the Sanctuary of Wings though it was slow at first until the main discovery was made. By reading the last book in the series first I now want to read the first four books because I want to know more about Lady Trent’s adventures. Also any books that feature both dragons and archaeology are immediately put on my to read list. I recommend that you read this book if you have an interest in both science and fantasy.
Final Rating: 48.9/50