Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

Genre:  Adult Detective

Description (taken from Stephenie Meyer's website):
She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.

Now she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon.

When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it’s her only chance to erase the giant target on her back. But it means taking one last job for her ex-employers. To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous.

Resolving to meet the threat head-on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival. As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of.

I feel like I need to admit that I was a Twilight fan.  Nevermind the fact that there may have been flaws.  In my teenage mind, those books were golden.  So of course when I found out there was another Stephenie Meyer book out there, I had to pick it up and see if I still held onto some pieces of my teenage mind.

Alex is on the run from a super-secret agency that helped get rid of terrorists and other threats.  She was a specialist who helped break people in interrogations using chemical warfare instead of physical warfare.  But the agency that employed her decided to permanently cut her loose and messed up.  So she's spent years on the run trying to figure out what happened.  Then a peace offering comes up:  one more interrogation in exchange for her life.  But when she meets the man to interrogate, not everything adds up correctly.  Sometimes, things sound too good to be real.

Let me just point out one glaring flaw in this whole novel.  I'm warning you now that I'm giving a spoiler.  Change the page if you don't want this...  Who on earth decides to fall in love with their torturer?  It's worse than Stockholm syndrome...  Now that I've got that off my chest, this book was easy to fall into.  Sure, it was a really big book, but it flowed well.  And the characters caught my attention.  Minus the initial flaw, I was sold.  But it did kind of feel like a cheap romance novel thrown into an intense detective situation.  But I guess, who cares?

Meh...  Some people are going to love it.  And some people are going to hate it.  Onto the next one.

Monday, February 20, 2017

A Million Worlds with You by Claudia Gray

Genre:  YA Sci-Fi Romance
Firebird Series, Book 3

Note:  This is the third book in a series.  You have officially been warned.

Description (taken from Claudia Gray's website):
A million universes. A million dangers. One destiny.

The fate of the multiverse rests in Marguerite Caine’s hands. Marguerite has been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud since she first traveled to another universe using her parents’ invention, the Firebird. Only now has she learned the true plans of the evil Triad Corporation—and that those plans could spell doom for dozens or hundreds of universes, each facing total annihilation.

Paul Markov has always been at Marguerite’s side, but Triad’s last attack has left him a changed man—angry and shadowed by tragedy. He struggles to overcome the damage done to him, but despite Marguerite’s efforts to help, Paul may never be the same again.

So it’s up to Marguerite alone to stop the destruction of the multiverse. Billions of lives are at stake. The risks have never been higher. And Triad has unleashed its ultimate weapon: another dimension’s Marguerite—wicked, psychologically twisted, and always one step ahead.

In the epic conclusion to Claudia Gray’s Firebird trilogy, fate and family will be questioned, loves will be won and lost, and the multiverse will be forever changed. It’s a battle of the Marguerites . . . and only one can win.

I love the whole concept of having alternate realities with the same people but different circumstances.  And it's how we react to these circumstances that ultimately shape who we are.  Just as the main Marguerite in this book is good, there's also an evil Marguerite that is willing to destroy the multiverse.  It kind of points out that there is good and bad in each of us.

Anyways, Marguerite is ready to stop the Triad's plan of destroying universes in order to save somone dear to their hearts.  But what she doesn't realize is that their biggest weapon also happens to be an alternate copy of herself.  So how does she fight herself or make her see reason?  And manage to keep Paul by her side?  The man that once made her believe in true love and destiny only to watch it all crumple up in her face in one of the different realities.  Can she stop herself and this other world from annihilating all of the other worlds?

The concept is cool.  And the whole premise of trying to determine true love across universes is awesome.  Or well complicated...  But this has turned out to be one of my favorite series.  Seeing all of the different worlds and experiencing old ones.  It's as if you could see your life from a different outcome.  A series well-loved and worth it in my opinion.

If you're into the whole multi-universe thing, give this one a try.  If it peaks your interest, then pick it up...

Friday, February 3, 2017

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

Genre:  YA Dystopian
The Maze Runner Series, Book 2

Note:  This is the second book in a series.  You've been warned...

Description (taken from James Dashner's website):
Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end.

Thomas was sure that escape from the Maze would mean freedom for him and the Gladers. But WICKED isn’t done yet. Phase Two has just begun. The Scorch.

There are no rules. There is no help. You either make it or you die.

The Gladers have two weeks to cross through the Scorch—the most burned-out section of the world. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them.

Friendships will be tested. Loyalties will be broken. All bets are off.

There are others now. Their survival depends on the Gladers’ destruction—and they’re determined to survive.

This one was definitely not exactly like the movie, unlike the first book.  I was kind of excited to see that movie led me down an entirely different direction than the book was starting out.  The Gladers have gotten out of the Maze and found shelter.  But in reality, they haven't.  Instead, they will undergo another test where you either pass or you die.  All bets are off in this high risk dystopian world.  But WICKED is trying to save the world by putting these boys through hell.

Honestly, I was happy to start this story with a new setting to see what happened.  And while the story did evolve more, it still felt exactly like the first book.  We're in a maze completing a mission.  Only it's a desert town instead of a maze.  And there are psychos on the loose.  I guess I have mixed feelings about this.  Yes, the story was easy to follow.  But no, I don't really like Thomas.  I just don't.  But I'm still going to finish the series.

Maybe with the next book, I'll be able to say I read it before the movie came out.  Although I'm worried it's going to follow closer to the movie since the second book obviously didn't.  Meh, it's a dystopian series...

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