Demigod Family Histories (The Son of Neptune – A Book Review)

The Son of Neptune (The Heroes of Olympus #2)
Author: Rick Riordan
Published: 2011

On Goodreads

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My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

Rated F for powerful friendships and bonds that make even the gods jealous.

 

Percy is confused.

Hazel is supposed to be dead.

Frank is a klutz.

Percy Jackson has lost his memories, but somehow, he’s made it to Camp Jupiter, the camp of roman demigods where Juno sets him on a quest to save the gods and the world. Thanatos, the god of death has been captured. As a result, nobody is dying. He and his two knew demigod friends, Hazel and Frank, with detailed histories, set out on a quest to set Thanatos free and meet up with those of Camp Half-Blood.

While Percy works to recover his memories of his friends and family, Hazel is struggling with her past that could be responsible for the end of the world and Frank is trying to bring honor to his family because of past transgressions that destroyed the camp. But, the two harbor family secrets and they worry it may derail everything.

If they survive this quest, Percy then must figure out how he’s going to help unite Camp Half-Blood and Camp Jupiter without war erupting. Otherwise, everyone and everything is doomed.

 

The Heroes of Olympus series is one of the series on my New Year’s resolution and this is book 2 of 5.

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The Lost Hero review

 

The return of old characters, as well as the introduction to new ones, were blended together so beautifully and totally welcome. Riordan did something magnificent here. I truly love the way he keeps Percy Jackson and others involved with his new storyline. He doesn’t let them be forgotten. He piled on the detail and emotion. Oh man, was their emotion! Each character had so much to handle on top of this quest. Percy struggled with his memory loss. Knowing everything he’d lost was heartbreaking too! Annabeth, Grover, Tyson and so much more. Hazel having lost so much and determined to protect what she has now and Frank’s life hanging on the edge of a piece of tinder while he’s on the precipice of great power had me attaching to them so quickly. And now, seeing where Jason Grace, who was introduced in The Lost Hero, came from, my heart ached for him too!

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Vogue

While the book takes place after book one and not during, the story follows almost the same direction as it with Percy trying to regain his memories. Seeing the other side of the gods and even the other side of other creatures, such as satyrs/fauns and cyclops and harpies was really intriguing. It’s an opportunity to realize that monsters aren’t always monsters and not everybody is the same even though they’re grouped together. Even his world has expanded and evolved. All of this has kept him fresh

This book really took things to a higher level than ever before. While we know that characters die, they usually find a way back. However, there was a much closer look at death and the heroes and others its effected. It was such an important theme that provided growth for these characters. They’re not little kids anymore.

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Overall

In the exciting and invigorating way that Riordan does it, I was hooked and on the edge of my seat with this installment. He doesn’t ever go too far, but he does keep his characters realistic. I really admire that. The dialogue is fun and kept me on my toes. Riordan is a fantastic writer of the fantasy/mythos genre and I have so much appreciation for his work.

 

Quotables:

“I don’t even know where I come from…but I’ve got a feeling this isn’t the first time I’ve been an underdog.” (Percy, p. 101)

“Pluto’s cool. It’s not his fault he runs the Underworld. He just got bad luck when the gods were dividing up the world, you know? Jupiter got the sky, Neptune got the sea, and Pluto got the shaft.” (Frank, p. 111)

“Life is only precious because it ends, kid. Take it from a god. You mortals don’t know how lucky you are.” (Mars to Frank, p. 363)

“I am frequently mistaken for the god of love. Death has more in common with Love than you might imagine. But I am Death. I assure you.” (Thanatos, p. 445)

 

More to come soon…                                                                                                

  -K.

 

P.S. Song today? Bright by Echosmith

 

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It’s Not Nice to Mess With Mother Nature (The Lost Hero – A Book Review)

The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus #1)
Author: Rick Riordan
Published: 2010

On Goodreads

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My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

Rated G for parental confusion, missing memories, and sudden demigodliness that stomps angst

 

Jason has a problem.

Piper has a secret.

Leo has a way with tools.

Jason wakes up on a bus with no memories of who and where he is. His friends, Piper and Leo, as well as some other well-known heroes,  help him work to gain his memories back as they go on a quest to find Hera, the Goddess of Marriage & Birth and a missing Demigod. They must hurry

The group struggles to get to the Goddess, though each of them has been presented with many temptations and clues to betray one another. This quest sets a prophecy in motion. Two worlds will collide and they’ll either save the world together or be its destruction.

 

The Heroes of Olympus series is one of the series on my New Year’s resolution and this is book 1 of 5.

 

So, I’m coming into this series when I’ve already read the Percy Jackson novels and The Apollo Trials. I’m getting to the middle. LOL. It’s unorthodox, I know. But I am the kind of reader that can jump around like that and this universe allows you to do that too. You get the lowdown on what’s happened, but not so in-depth that the story is given away if you–like me-hadn’t read it yet. Now, I have an idea of what’s coming but I don’t know everything.

The Gods of Olympus have closed themselves off. Some have gone off the deep end (which isn’t new actually). Camp Half-Blood is still a little lost after the battle of the Titans in Manhattan, having lost some good friends. Percy Jackson is missing. Monsters are rising faster and faster after defeat as if they can’t stay in Tartarus. A new prophecy comes to light and brings up bad blood for everyone. It’s crazy, guys!

This is a new group of Demigods with much of what I know already. That means a new prophecy! Woooo! The world of mythos expands with this series. The Greek and Romans finally collide, but it doesn’t seem like it’ll be a good thing since the last time they did they had a civil war.

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Gfycat

The fresh characters bring a whole new game to this world. I’m really loving that I get to read about a few of the kids from other gods that don’t get much attention. Out of Jason, Piper, and Leo, I like Leo the best. I can’t help it! I love a great sense of humor! Plus, he built a dragon.

Their travels and the Gods and monsters they met took me to colder places. I’m not a fan of the cold, but I really liked that there were new people to meet and places to see. There’s so much homage paid and I really love it. And the way that Riordan blends the world of Gods with the way he ties them into today’s world is phenomenal!

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Overall

The Percy Jackson world is easy to get engulfed in. I love mythology. Greek and Roman are among my top favorites. Granted, I’m not perfect and don’t know them all by heart. It’s fun to hear them over and in such a fun light.

I’m pretty darn excited about this series. I really enjoyed Percy Jackson and I’m so hooked on The Apollo Trials. I’m glad to finally get to the series in between now! It’s so much fun and is definitely going with the rest of my Greek Heroes collection.

 

Quotables:

“I try very hard to be annoying. Don’t insult my ability to annoy. And how am I supposed to resent you if you go apologizing? I’m a lowly mechanic. You’re like the prince of the sky, son of the Lord of the Universe. I’m supposed to resent you.” (Leo to Jason, p. 344)

“Great victory requires great risk.” (Juno, p. 546)

 

More to come soon…                                                                                                

  -K.

 

P.S. Song today? Time Stands Still by All American Rejects.

 

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Fires Everywhere (The Outsiders – A Book Review)

The Outsiders
Author: S. E. Hinton
Published: 1997

On Goodreads

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Wiki

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

Rated

 

A heroic story of friendship and belonging.

Ponyboy has been struggling of late between understanding right and wrong in a society that automatically decides it for him, his brothers, and friends: greasers. His thoughts pull him in one direction and his brothers and friends pull him in other directions. After Johnny saves him from being drowned by a soc, the result something dreadful. Murder. The two go on the lamb. Even doing the wrong thing for the right reason can have consequences, and they’ll stay with you for a very long time.

Ponyboy’s world crumbles around him and this not only affected him but everyone around him, and he soon learns that it doesn’t matter if you’re a greaser or a soc, pain hurts all the same.

 

This is a classic I’ve wanted to read for years. I don’t care that people usually read it back in middle school. For me, The Giver and The Cure were what was read. Classics are ageless and this a classic. It’s a dark and tragic story that proves that it doesn’t matter what social class you are put into, everyone bleeds the same and hurts the same.

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Pintrest

Actually, experiencing life from such an unexpected perspective is incredible and fresh. Greasers, like everyone else at the time, worked hard, fell in love, and felt heartbreak like everyone else, but because of where they live and what they look like they still get hassled horrendously. It made me fill pity, to be honest. Nobody understands what it’s like to struggle at the bottom unless they’ve been there and to have people that don’t understand or care add on to it is heavy. This book really gives readers a chance to experience that some. You fight for all that you have. In this case, it was for family, respect, and dignity.

The family dynamic is heart-wrenching. Sure, the decisions the boys make more often than not made me frown because they were quite the troublemakers but the way they supported each other was the true spirit of family. This book also reiterates that blood isn’t all that makes a family.

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Rebloggy

The setting of the book really gives way to a time when society really was a bastard. Today, it’s still pretty bad and disturbing. What is so wrong with the human race that we beat each other because of status?

 

Overall

I’m really glad I read this. It really got me to think. No matter how old you are, a book doesn’t tell you that you can’t read it because you’re too old. They all have interesting lessons, stories, and/or emotions to give you, and for a reason. Now, I can’t wait to watch the movie to this and compare thoughts. This really is a valuable read.

 

Quotables:

“Suddenly, in the red glow and haze, I remembered wondering what it was like in a burning ember, and I thought: Now I know, it’s a red hell. Why aren’t I scared?” (Ponyboy, p. 92)

“I am a greaser. I am a JD and a hood. I blacken the name of our fair city. I beat up people. I rob gas stations. I am a menace to society. Man, do I have fun!” (Sodapop, p. 136)

“We’re greasers, but not hoods, and we don’t belong with this bunch of future convicts.” (Ponyboy, p. 141)

 

More to come soon…

  –K.

P.S. Song today? Surrender by Cheap Trick.

 

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The Comet Cometh and Taketh Away (Riverdale: The Day Before – A Book Review)

Riverdale: The Day Before (Riverdale #1)
Author: Micol Ostow
Published: 2018

On Goodreads

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My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt Half bolt

Rated S for secrets, the kind that ripples with grand cause and effect, leaving behind carnage in its wake. This is only the beginning.

 

We were separate but intertwined in ways we’d never see coming. Small, stupid butterflies, blindly flapping our wings. (p. 5)

Archie Andrews has been disappearing to who-knows-where, causing a growing distance between him and his best friend, Jughead. Jughead Jones is struggling after his mom leaves with his little sister, leaving him behind with his drunken father.

Betty Cooper is thriving at her internship at Hello, Giggles in LA. Her possible big break is an interview with the prestigious and royal Veronica Lodge, but it’ll take a lot of elbow grease to get a comment from the heiress. Veronica’s life couldn’t be more perfect, but perfection is fragile and life as she knows it is about to shatter.

 

This is a prequel novel based on the hit CW show, Riverdale. It’s a fun and quick read to feed your need for the core four: Archie, Jughead, Betty, and Veronica. Before Jason Blossom’s body was found in Sweetwater River there was already turmoil brewing in Riverdale and outside of it. Secrets had gripped the town and these four tight in its fingers.

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Resetera

I enjoyed this more than I thought, but not to the extent that I’m losing my mind over it. It was quirky and read exactly as if I was watching a mini-series of the show. The tone was just dead on and I could visualize everything perfectly. I’ve also read Betty’s story in here in one of the short comics, but the comparison of the written versus the comic is intriguing. Nearly on the dot, but subtly different. The transitions between each character were pretty cut and dry, but not in the sense of stale bread. LOL. It was just succinct and neat. Like scene cuts. Not noticeable. Very nice.

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BuzzFeed

Side Note: I still think Jason Blossom is alive. I don’t know how he would be, but I don’t for a second think he’s actually dead.

 

One of my utmost favorite things about this is that I got to get into the core four’s heads! You don’t really get that with the TV show. You get the surface tension and emotions. In the book, it’s so much deeper, and from each of their POVs no less. And yes, Archie really was that dumbstruck by Ms. Grundy. And yes, I meant dumbstruck, not love-struck. Poor ginger. Still, love him (and that fiery hair) though. It’s just one aspect that really drew me in. That and at the end of every chapter there was a snippet and/or clip previewing what’s to come on the show.

 

Overall

Not a half bad read. Really. If you love Riverdale then go ahead and read this. Sure, you’re not missing out on much, but it is fun and nifty to see what it was like the day before Riverdale was shaken to its core. Also, the cover art is phenomenal! Completely striking with Archie’s profile and creepy with the never-ending trees where one could get lost and never be found. Just chilling.

 

Quotables:

“Son, when you’re my age, dead is kind of the default. You learn to push through it. Try it.” (Mr. Andrews to Archie, p. 43)

“I’m not an idiot. I know that everything that happened to my dad, happened because of him. Because of his choices and his behavior. He wasn’t some innocent victim. No, he wasn’t innocent. But he was my father, and despite all the BS, I still loved him.” (Jughead, p. 233)

More to come soon…

  -K.

 

P.S. Song today? Airplanes Pt. 2 by B. O. B. feat Hayley Williams and Eminem.

 

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Sundown Rundown – August, 2018

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Hello, my awesome booknerds!

It is the end of August and this is the Sundown Rundown. The sun is setting a little earlier each day with Fall’s arrival. Leaves are already changing. And I’m sure you’ve hear the brake release of those big yellow buses as a sign that school has begun again.

This is also the time for everything pumpkin!

Pumpkin

So, here’s where I tell about what I’ve read and you have a chance to catch up on any reviews you might’ve missed this month. I’m a little sad that I didn’t get to everything I wanted to read this month, though there were some pretty good ones. Life hit me with a little bit of extra stress. I’m hoping to get back in gear in September.

 

House of Dark Shadows

House of Dark Shadows

Author: Robert Liparulo

The Kings move into a new house and there’s a very strong chance they aren’t getting out. Doors leading to different points in time. Creepy footprints. The house has a mind of its own. How logn will the King’s last?

 

Watcher in the Woods - Scholastic

Watcher in the Woods

Author: Robert Liparulo

Mom’s missing. An assassin tries to steal the Dreamhouse Kings’ house. The townspeople try evict them and they must hurry if they hope to solve this house and save mom.

 

Norse Mythology

Norse Mythology

Author: Neil Gaiman

The crazy and witty style with wisdom and enlightening storytelling of mythos that lead up to the end of the world. Ragnarok. From grand schemes to incredible origins, even the Norse Gods have life stories to tell.

 

Willow

Willow

Author: V. C. Andrews

Willow pretends to be a grad student as she searches for her mother and is suddenly thrown into the middle of the lifestyles of the rich and famous. And secrets, which is currency for these people. Soon enough, she is getting sucked into the glitz and glam. Can she stay on course to get close to her mother, or will she become forever enamored by wealth and gossip.

Bazaar of Bad Dreams

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams

Author: Stephen King

A collection of the strange, dark, and creepy. All the beautiful and morbid things the King is. From a story about a people-eating car to a bad kid that’s responsible for the death of people to the apocalypse to a kindle that’s somehow connected to the Dark Tower. Peruse carefully.

 

CD Secrets of Foxworth

Christopher’s Diary: Secrets of Foxworth

Author: V. C. Andrews

Decades after Flowers in the Attic, the diary of Christopher Dollanganger is discovered and becomes the obsession of a teenage girl. Soon, she finds herself relating to the eldest Dollanganger child more than she likes.

 

CD Echoes of Dollanganger

Christopher’s Diary: Echoes of Dollanganger

Author: V. C. Andrews

After divulging the diary to her boyfriend, Kristin’s dark obsession becomes their obsession. The further they read the more disturbing they becomes, breaching the same lines as the Dollanganger children did.

 

Thebes

Thebes of the Hundred GatesThebes of the Hundred Gates

Author: Robert Silverberg

Time travel back to Ancient Egypt. Edward must find two missing teammates that got lost and must do so before the allure of the grand city of Thebes—a place he’s studied and always dreamt of seeing—traps him forever.

 

Favorite Book this Month: I’d read and heard many people say that Norse Mythology wasn’t their favorite novel by Gaiman. It wasn’t his typical style, like with American Gods and The Ocean at the end of the Lane, but it was still beautiful and fantastical. The stories were all independent but led up to an explosive end where everything came to together. I really enjoyed this book.

 

Least Favorite Book This Month: This one is a double doozy. I could not get down with Christopher’s Diary. I was majorly creeped out and disturbed. More so, there were aspects of the storyline that just wasn’t believable for me.

 

Until next month!!

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

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From Another Time, Another Dimension (Watcher in the Woods – A Book Review)

Watcher in the Woods (Dreamhouse Kings #2)
Author: Robert Liparulo
Published: 2008

On Goodreads

Watcher in the Woods - Scholastic

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt Half bolt

 

It’s not just the house that’s keeping secrets.

After Xander’s mom is kidnapped and dragged through one of the dimensional doorways of the house, the rest of King family rallies together to get her back. Secrets about they really moved into this mysterious house is divulged and the Kings will never be the same.

A new school year begins and the townspeople of Pinedale are starting to suspect the King family of strange things, like abuse. With the mystery of the house, and a strange man stalking them, they have to stand together if they hope to get their mom back.

 

This book was better than the first one by a hair. There were many new elements and characters. Turns out, Dad has been in this house before. There’s an assassin that came through one of the dimensional doors that wants the house for himself. A bully harasses David.

I liked that the novel spread out some, going to school and that clearing where you can nearly fly. New settings really open up a book. However, the clearing (the anti-gravity clearing as I call it) was very strange and out of place feeling. There was so much I Don’t Know that it was just pointless. It didn’t bring very much to my imagination nor did it do anything for me but feel weird. The school was really cool because there was a glimpse of it in the first book. Now, school is in session and obviously, nobody wants to go.

The storytelling didn’t improve by much. I’m still a little confused because the characters aren’t making much sense of everything so neither am I, but I did like that the emotions were higher. Dude, mom is gone. Time to crank this up to eleven! And there’s an assassin! (The flashback of the assassin’s time before getting teleported into the Dreamhouse was out of place feeling, too.) I liked that the intensity was kicked up a notch. Everybody is freaking out.

What is happening

 

Overall

Still not a book that did much for me. My heart got pulled a little. I love my mom beyond words and I’d be going all terminator if somebody kidnapped her so, I can relate to Xander on that level. The storytelling felt like a jumbled mess and therefore didn’t really pull me in even though the imagery was great. A strong feeling of meh.

 

Quotables:

“He thought he could be a hero, and now he was about to get shot or blown up or…something that amounted to the same thing: dead.” (David, p. 4)

“It’s not kidnapping if I asked you to take me.” (Keal to Jesse, p. 280)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

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A Door to Anywhere (House of Dark Shadows – A Book Review)

House of Dark Shadows (Dreamhouse Kings #1)
Author: Robert Liparulo
Published: 2008

On Goodreads

House of Dark Shadows

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

15/25

 

Dream house…or bad dream?

When the Kings up and move from L.A. to the small town, Pinedale, Xander is more than upset. But when they happened across an old Victorian house hidden out in the woods, they think they’ve hit the jackpot. Everyone gets their own rooms. There’s woods for miles to explore.

Weird things begin to happen as they get ready to move in. There are prints of larger-than-normal feet in the dust. A special door in the linen closet. There a hallway with doors that lead to different periods in time like the Civil War. Xander begins to wonder if this is the coolest thing ever or just a dread nightmare come true.

 

This book marks 15 out of 25 authors, from my New Year’s resolution, that I’ve never read from before. I was really drawn in by the artwork and weirdness.

 

I honestly don’t know how I’m feeling about this book. It felt a little all over the place for me. I know this book is geared toward the independent reader genre, but still, I didn’t feel all that enthralled. Much of the bits were very intriguing, but I felt like they were lost in the story. Crazy things are happening in this old house, but they just didn’t work together, not in any way that made sense to me. My curiosity was piqued for sure, but unsatisfied. I did love the many TV references—Misery, Star Wars, and Supernatural to name a few. It puts the story in the real world, and lets readers relate more.

The setting of the small town and the old house was very cool. Everything was secluded, adding to the growing ominous feeling. The boys, Xander and David got a tower in their bedroom. Call me jealous, I’ve always wanted my own personal tower; a spot where I can read and have my own world. I really liked the blueprint of the house in the beginning of the book. Things like that really make me feel a little closer and involved with the story.

I struggled in following the story. There just wasn’t enough detail to make all of this click. I just couldn’t get emotionally invested either. This was written to get you on the edge of your seat with all of the wild things happening and sadly, I was just wanting it to be over.

ITBT

The closeness between Xander and his siblings was so special. At such a young age, most siblings fight and bicker and that wasn’t the case at all. They were there for each other and protecting one another. However, the parents were very odd. There wasn’t much of a difference between them and the kids. They talked and acted like them. Any real parental authority was overshadowed by them wanting to relate to the kids and be their friend. It really threw me off.

 

Overall: this book wasn’t what I imagined. I knew it wouldn’t be gory or utterly spine-tingling, but I do feel like this should’ve been more to help make the story more vivid and enthralling. Connect the dots. With tigers in the jungle and a creepy man wandering the property and other unexplainable things, I hoped for something more.

 

Quotables:

“What was embarrassing or personal, dreams and fears—it was all fair game in the King household.” (Xander, p. 107)

“We’re humans, not robots.” (Mom to Xander, p. 107)

“Loved ones die. Fact of life.” (Xander, p. 271)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

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