Saturday, June 29, 2013

[Short Reviews]: The Waiting Sky by Lara Zielin, Destiny's Fire by Trisha Wolfe, I Kissed the Boy Next Door by Suzanne D. Williams,


The Waiting Sky by Lara Zielin
Published on August 2, 2012 by Putnam Juvenile

One summer chasing tornadoes could finally change Jane's life for the better. Seventeen-year-old Jane McAllister can't quite admit her mother's alcoholism is spiraling dangerously out of control until she drives drunk, nearly killing them and Jane's best friend. Jane has only one place to turn: her older brother Ethan, who left the problems at home years ago for college. A summer with him and his tornado-chasing buddies may just provide the time and space Jane needs to figure out her life and whether it still includes her mother. But she struggles with her anger at Ethan for leaving home and feels guilty--is she also abandoning her mom just when she needs Jane most? The carefree trip turned journey of self-discovery quickly becomes more than Jane bargained for, especially when the devilishly handsome Max steps into the picture.
Everyone has that one "filler-book", they chose because the cover was gorgeous, the summary was not hideous-sounding, and they just can't seem to find anything else to read at the moment. 
For me, that was The Waiting Sky by Lara Zielin.   

I enjoyed the novel's premise; how Zielin manages to craft sufficient back stories for each character, and intertwine them through their scavenge for tornadoes. I mean, right off the bat, I knew these kids had to have some serious baggage if they were chasing tornadoes for fun. (A topic for another day.)

I found that I wasn't able to connect with the protagonist, Jane, in a way that made we want to vouch for her. Rather, I found myself, asking on several occasions "What the hell is your problem, man?" She was extremely melodramatic, whiny and self-centered. I really liked the love-interest, Max. Zielin was able to appropriately pace he and Jane's relationship in accordance with Jane's hurt, confused, and guilty feelings about leaving her troubled and ever-dependent alcoholic mother alone for the summer. 

The pace of the novel was also kind of slow, so if you're in search of a contemporary novel that flows right into its plot, then The Waiting Sky is not the book for you.

Destiny's Fire by Trisha Wolfe
Published on January 10, 2012 by Omnific Publishing
It's the year 2040, and sixteen-year-old Dez Harkly is one of the last of her kind—part of a nearly extinct race of shape-shifters descended from guardians to the Egyptian pharaohs. Her home and her secret are threatened when the Council lowers the barrier, allowing the enemy race to enter the Shythe haven. As the Narcolym airships approach, Dez and her friends rebel against their Council and secretly train for battle. Not only is Dez wary of war and her growing affection for her best friend Jace, she fears the change her birthday will bring.  When Dez's newfound power rockets out of control, it's a Narcolym who could change her fate...if she can trust him. Dez's guarded world crumbles when she discovers why the Narcos have really come to Haven Falls, and she's forced to choose between the race who raised her and the enemy she's feared her whole life.
Destiny's Fire  is a  jaw-dropping, drama leaking, insomnia-inducing read that I'm going to accredit for my new-found love for paranormal thrillers, and the not-so-pleasant mark I recently received for my latest history assignment. Trisha Wolfe does an amazing job in developing the setting for this almost post-apocalyptic time frame, where Destiny's new race is given to a second-class hybrid stature. (Not that this stops her from befriending first-class "purebreds.")


The action scenes described by Wolfe, were crazy vivid. I fell in love with Destiny, and her struggle against the powers-at-be. Each and every combat scene crafted by Wolfe, can only be described by two words: 
WHOOP.    ASS.
I flipped through the pages like a maniac, and finished reading Destiny's Fire in an hour and a half. One thing I really loved about Wolfe's writing was the pace -- it was perfect.  The book did look a bit short, so I went into the novel expecting the pace to be fairly fast.


I Kissed The Boy Next Door by Suzanne D. Williams
Published on April 6, 2013 by Barnes and Noble
There’s a new boy next door. Then again, not so new. Because to Lucy McKinsey, he’s a face from her past and a childhood memory of summer camp and a dare. Kiss Jackson Phillips. But what a fourteen-year-old would do to impress her friends, changes in three years. Right? Maybe not. Yet this time Jackson isn’t the same as he was. He’s taller, more handsome, and far wiser. What is the pain that he carries inside? And can something as simple as a well-meant kiss cure the boy next door?
A cute, refreshing, short contemporary story about two neighbors, Jackson and Lucy. They've always had chemistry, especially after Lucy kissed him when they were fourteen as a dare. An okay read for a short story, things did develop pretty fast between them which was a little surprising for me. The conflict in the story, though realistic was a little too played out. I didn't like the ending. It was too happily-ever-after, and not the slightest bit practical.

11 comments:

  1. Kay @ It's a Book LifeJune 29, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Great short reviews! I enjoyed The Waiting Sky a lot, but like you I believe that it wasn't quite as good as it could have been.

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  2. Rebekah@ReflectionsofaBookwormJuly 1, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    Shame you didn't like The Waiting Sky, been eyeing up that bad boy for a while :( Sucks when you can't connect to the MC! Great reviews!

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  3. Yeah, I've wanted "The Waiting Sky" since Summer of 2012. It sounded and looked like an amazing read. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't what I'd expected it to be.

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  4. Yeah, that was definitely how I felt about "The Waiting Sky." Thanks! :)

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  5. I totally forgot about The Waiting Sky, I was dying to read it last year when it first came out. Too bad it was a letdown. I can understand why you didn't like the main character; whiny, melodramatic, and selfish don't add up to a very likable character!

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  6. Same, but then I saw it at the Library and remembered the tornado jar to-read I added a while back on Goodreads. Gotta hate the let downs. It wasn't a completely terrible read though. :) Oh, totally. I found myself wanting to tell her to shove a sock in it!

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  7. I've been on the fence for Destiny's Fire. Thanks for the convincing review to push me off that fence :)

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  8. I can't wait to read Destiny's Fire! I have heard so many amazing things about it. I'm really disappointed about The Waiting Sky. I've been meaning to read that, but I think I'll hold of on it!

    Great reviews, Demitra & Anatasia! :D

    ~ Maida
    Literary Love Affair

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  9. I am sorry you didn't enjoy this book more. Looking at the tornado in a jar makes the cover very enticing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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  10. Yeah, I've wanted "The Waiting Sky" since Summer of 2012. It sounded and looked like an amazing read. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't what I'd expected it to be.

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  11. Same, but then I saw it at the Library and remembered the tornado jar to-read I added a while back on Goodreads. Gotta hate the let downs. It wasn't a completely terrible read though. :) Oh, totally. I found myself wanting to tell her to shove a sock in it!

    ReplyDelete