Review: Firstlife

25785357 (1)Title: Firstlife

Author: Gena Showalter

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, 

Number of pages:

Time it took me to read: 10 Days

Synopsis:

ONE CHOICE.
TWO REALMS.
NO SECOND CHANCE.

Tenley “Ten” Lockwood is an average seventeen-year-old girl…who has spent the past thirteen months locked inside the Prynne Asylum. The reason? Not her obsession with numbers, but her refusal to let her parents choose where she’ll live—after she dies.

There is an eternal truth most of the world has come to accept: Firstlife is merely a dress rehearsal, and real life begins after death.

In the Everlife, two realms are in power: Troika and Myriad, longtime enemies and deadly rivals. Both will do anything to recruit Ten, including sending their top Laborers to lure her to their side. Soon, Ten finds herself on the run, caught in a wild tug-of-war between the two realms who will do anything to win the right to her soul. Who can she trust? And what if the realm she’s drawn to isn’t home to the boy she’s falling for? She just has to stay alive long enough to make a decision…

Novel Review:

Firstlife is an interesting read once you get past the first few chapters, however, it is clear by the Goodreads reviews that it is not a book for everyone. I will explain that a bit more later. Before I get into that, I am going to explain why I liked it and why I gave it 3.5 stars.

Why I liked it: 

Firstlife is a little tricky to understand. It’s the life before your eternal life, so basically a staging area that you grow up in until you decide what side you want to be on in your afterlife. Confusing? Yes, it was a bit confusing until they got into the action and why Ten is so damn important. For me it was when the action started that made everything a bit more clear.

Why I gave it 3.5 stars:

  • There is a lot of information dump. It’s a first book and the world is a bit confusing so I can see why the author felt the need to do so. However, I realized that I needed all that information dump towards the end and it came in handy while deciding what side I really wanted her to choose.
  • It is a first book in a new series and the world building and characters are set up mostly in this book. This setup is either a hit or miss with me because I have to decide if I want to put so much time into a series. So far I am seeing it as worth my time and enjoyed the ending of this book. I am eager to pick up the next book so the author did a great job in my eyes.
  • It still is not as clear to me why Ten had such a hard time picking sides. I think I came up with my own idea from the author’s writing but still not too sure if that is what is meant. Again, this being a setup novel for the series that could be something that will be explained later.

So why do I think this is not a novel for everyone?

  • Work. Work. Work. Some readers do not like to work as hard at starting a new novel. Like I said it can be a hit or miss for me.
  • There is a love triangle. This troupe has been done to death and some people are just sick of it or the romance all together. However, let me just say something about that. If you read a book synopsis that says there is going to be romance and you then complain about said romance…. what were you expecting? Dumping on an author simply because YOU didn’t like the romance is not fair in my opinion.
  •  Ten, the MC, is “special”. Some readers have a problem with this troupe. Again, it’s overdone and the author has to really work hard to get it right. Bet let’s be honest here folks, if she wasn’t special then there would be no plot. If Harry Potter wasn’t special then he wouldn’t have been “the boy who lived”. Here I think some people just need to move on if they don’t like this. I mean, you can gleam that this is the case with this read by the synopsis.

Overall, I liked Firstlife and will be picking up the second and hopefully the third book in this series. I do recommend this to anyone who doesn’t have problems with the things I mentioned above and to those who are interested in a new world with romance and a “special” main character.

My rating:

3.5

Find out more about the book and Gena Showalter here

Follow Gena Showalter on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

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Review: Children of Eden

edenTitle: Children of Eden

Author: Joey Graceffa 

Audio Narrator: Sarah Grayson

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian

Number of pages: 278 pages

Time it took me to read: 5 Days

Book Trailer

Synopsis:

Rowan is a Second Child in a world where population control measures make her an outlaw marked for death. She can never go to school, make friends, or get the eye implants that will mark her as a true member of Eden. Her kaleidoscope eyes will give her away to the ruthless Center government.

Outside of Eden, Earth is poisoned and dead. All animals and most plants have been destroyed by a man-made catastrophe. Long ago the brilliant scientist Aaron al Baz saved a pocket of civilization by designing the EcoPanopticon, a massive computer program that hijacked all global technology and put it to use preserving the last vestiges of mankind. Humans will wait for thousands of years in Eden until the EcoPan heals the world.

As an illegal Second Child, Rowan has been hidden away in her family’s compound for 16 years. Now, restless and desperate to see the world, she recklessly escapes for what she swears will be only one night of adventure. Though she finds an exotic world and even a friend, the night leads to tragedy. Soon Rowan becomes a renegade on the run – unleashing a chain of events that could change the world of Eden forever.

 Novel Review:

I loved this read! The female protagonist is smart, athletic, and finally takes her life into her own hands which creates the conflict of this story. Rowan is a second child and is hidden away because her existence is forbidden. Imagine being forced into hidden panels in the walls of your home whenever there is a knock at the door. Crazy, I know!

I have had this book on my TBR for probably over a year now. I watched a few of Joey’s YouTube Videos and was interesting in his autobiography seeing as he is a very popular and successful gay YouTuber. Also, his pretty awesome book trailer may have had a little sway in my need to read this. But why did I take so long to pick it up? Not too sure but I am kicking myself in the butt now.

There is a lot of world building in this first book which, to me, makes a hell lot of sense seeing as it is dystopian and *duh* a first book. Some people have a problem with this but I didn’t see those issues in this one. There are also a lot of social commentary that can be applied to our current world events and I love that dystopian novels do this so well. I mean one child rule, environmental destruction, political corruption and possible more with a closer read.

I will also mention that there is a love triangle but it’s one that has not been done or at the very least definitely not overdone. Now trust me I do get sick of the overly done love triangles that seem to plague young adult fiction but I do love them when they are done well or bring in a new element. I was cheering for this love triangle after I figured it out and I still don’t know what team I am rooting for because it is so well done.

I recommend this book to those who like a lighter dystopia and an interesting read.

My rating:

4

Find out more about the book and Joey Graceffa here

Follow Joey Graceffa on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

Anticipated Releases: September 2017

Guys, I am so excited to share that this is the month that Nyxia by Scott Reintgen is released. There are some big releases this month and I am equally excited and frustrated at the same time because I will officially be completing my teaching credential program. I am afraid that means I won’t have as much time to read. Cross your fingers for me that it’s not the case.

nyxia-coverNyxia by Scott Reintgen
Release Date: September 12th

Isn’t this cover just gorgeous? After reading this novel I can say it fits the book perfectly. If you are into space, space operas, or anything space this 384 page book is for you. Scott takes his reader on one hell of a ride with the mystery of the Babel corporation and the nature of the nyxia substance.  See my full review here. Honestly, I know it will be worth your time to pick up this great book if it is within a genre you read.

 
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Warcross by Marie Lu
Release Date: September 12th

Ever since I discovered Marie Lu’s Legend and then Young Elites series I have been dying for some more. When this beauty began popping up I was foaming at the mouth to get my hands on a copy of the ARC. Well, as the saying goes good things come to those who wait. I was able to not only grab an ARC at Comic-Con San Diego but I was able to meet Marie and get her to sign it. My daughter made fun of me being all star struck. #authorsaremycelebrities This 416 page novel sounds like one hell of a ride. Look out for a future review.

 

9780803741492_JaneUnlimited_BOM.inddJane Unlimited by Kristin Cashore
Release Date: September 19th

This is another ARC that I picked up during Comic-Con and to be honest I knew very little about it and have never heard of Kristin Cashore before. However, it has been popping up here and there on social media so my interest has been peaked. So far, what I have gleaned from the synopsis and reviews on Goodreads this novel deals with loss, LGBT issues, and interesting enough, umbrellas.  It is a stand alone and that can explain why it’s a bit on the longer side with 464 pages. This has officially been added to my TBR list.

 

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They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
Release Date: September 5th

Imagine you live in a world where you get a notification as to when you are going to die. Now imagine spending that last day with a stranger who is also going to die. What would you do? That is what this book explores and it sounds like a book that will wreak havoc on my emotions. I can’t wait to get my hands on it! This 384 page novel is sure to be one I love and it also includes both a gay and bisexual main character. This is what the world needs, representation!

 

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Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King
Release Date: September 26th

The legendary Stephen King got together with his son and collaboratively wrote a 720 page novel called Sleeping Beauties. How freaking awesome in that? Imagine that you are the only women left awake after a mysterious sleeping disease puts the rest of the female population into hibernation. How do you think the men around you would react? This strange novel has me intrigued and I am interested in seeing if two full grown men can pull this off without it coming off as sexist. Its king, I know he can!

 

Wishtree by Katherine Applegate33158525
Release Date: September 26th

I literally cried while reading the Goodreads reviews on this 224 page book. I love stories that address social issues and get to the heart of what humanity should be about. While this story is marketed towards 10 – 14 year olds there are always stories out there that extend beyond age in both directions. So far, there are several reviewers claiming this is one of those stories and I cannot wait to check this one out for myself and potentially hand it to my daughter for an independent reading project for class.

 

33640498Release by Patrick Ness
Release Date: September 19th

I tore through Patrick Ness’ Chaos Walking Trilogy in a weekend and was jumping for joy when this novel ended up in my radar.  The gay son of a preacher, Adam has some clear struggles in his life. Dealing with issues of friendship, heartbreak, sexuality and searching for the meaning of family this book is calling to my soul. I know that Ness’ writing is powerful and heart wrenching and need this 288 page contemporary in my hands.

 

 

Those are my anticipated reads.

What about you? What are your anticipated reads for September?

Feel free to share them with me on the comment page below.