Thursday, July 29, 2010

Rainbow Boys

Jason Carrillo is a jock with a steady girlfriend, but he can't stop dreaming about sex...with other guys.

Kyle Meeks doesn't look gay, but he is. And he hopes he never has to tell anyone -- especially his parents.

Nelson Glassman is "out" to the entire world, but he can't tell the boy he loves that he wants to be more than just friends.

Three teenage boys, coming of age and out of the closet. In a revealing debut novel that percolates with passion and wit, Alex Sanchez follows these very different high-school seniors as their struggles with sexuality and intolerance draw them into a triangle of love, betrayal, and ultimately, friendship.

This was a cute book. It wasn't one of the best gay themed books I've ever read, but it was okay. It didn't have the greatest plot, or characters, or anything, and it wasn't the most original book, but it left me with a warm feeling and I stayed up until 3 in the morning to finish it, so I guess it can't be that bad.

This is probably one of the first romance books I managed to sit through and like, too.

The characters were highly attachable, and absolutely lovable. I was sometimes annoyed by Jason, but the other two boys, Nelson and Kyle, were great. I especially loved Nelson and his over-the-top stereotypically gay behavior. They were well constructed and believable, and even the minor characters were well looked into and thought out. Their individual concerns were different and the same, and probably would be similar to mine if I were them.

The story-line, though not incredibly original, was cute and sad and funny. The love triangle thing has been done a thousand times over, but somehow, Alex Sanchez managed to make his book feel new and refreshing. The voice used by the author was also very appropriate, it wasn't too basic or too complex.

The plot had many twists and turns, making it relatively unpredictable, even though the basic story-line was quite simple, like I said previously. There are many cliffhangers left to be resolved, even now, after I finished the book. I MUST go back to the bookstore when I get some money and buy the second and third novels. I have to see how the little couples work out, and what is up with Nelson's health, and many other things. I simply cannot wait to read the next book.

Finally, the cover was perfectly appropriate, and gave me a clear image of all three of the protagonists. This was a nice addition to the descriptions provided in the book, because I often forget how the characters are supposed to look and decide on my own what they look like.

Overall, though this book wasn't the best, most original, number one book of the century, it is a very nice one, and I suggest it to everyone who hasn't read it. This book about the coming of age of three gay teens and how they see themselves is one of the best I've ever had the chance to read. Of course, keep your mind open while reading Rainbow boys!


Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez
Rating: 8,1/10

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

My Heartbeat

As she tries to understand the closeness between her older brother and his best friend, fourteen-year-old Ellen finds her relationship with each of them changing.

If I had to describe this book in one word, it would be : stupid. And in two : very stupid.

First of all, it was completely pointless. And I mean it. It started out alright, I guess, but as the book went on, the plot didn't evolve. It stayed where it was, and maybe even backed up. Nothing was going better for anyone at the end, there were broken hearts, frustrated people, broken friendships, nothing was going well at all. There wasn't even any good drama of any sorts, it was just a maddeningly pointless and plot-less book.

Secondly, it left me depressed, which is very hard since my usual state of mind is super-hyper-happy. This is one of the only books that ever made me curl up on the couch and listen to happy music on repeat. No, I wasn't was because the story was sad. That kind of sad is one I actually like. But in this case... The book itself frustrated me from its complete lack of anything good at all.

Next, I was unable to feel attached to the characters AT ALL. I hated the protagonist, wait a second, I already forgot her name... Ellen. Her voice was nothing like a fourteen-year-old's. Her brother was downright frustrating and useless. And of course, James was equally frustrating, though he was probably the character I preferred.

I don't like ranting very much, but this one time I had to vent off steam. I honestly suggest you stay very far away from it.

I only have one last comment. Because this is a book with gay themes, it seems everyone praises it very highly, yada yada yada. But if we take that factor away, if I compare it to other books that do not have gay themes, it sucked. It seems that everyone is biased by the fact there are possibly gay characters. This makes me so mad, you have no idea. I might review a few really, really good gay books because this, honestly, is a book a absolutely hated.

Sorry if I offended anyone, I needed to get that off my heart.

My Heartbeat by Garret Freymann-Weyr Rating: 4/10

Let's blah blah :: Issue I

Yeah well, we wanted to have a sort of event going on, so we thought of these kind of debates and discussions we could have. We need to reach out mooore to you fellow readers and bloggers if you even read our tremendously long reviews in the first place.

So Beryl will be starting with the first issue. We'll discuss things.




YOU KNOW, these days we've got all these awesomeee sites such as Goodreads and what not to provide us with books summaries and some other what not, but because the world is filled with people with such bad taste (disclaimer: that's my opinion) bad books are rated as good. Well I want to read more young adults romance books, but as I said, not any kind. I want fantasy and action and bam kaboum shabam added to it. Get it?

I pick some random books on Goodreads, and they are all the same damn thing: HOT NEW BOY IN SCHOOL AND GIRL IS MYSTERIOUSLY ATTRACTED TO HIM GUESS WHAT THEY FALL IN LOVE.

Gosh, aren't there enough books of this type? I'm still surprised when I read comments such as 'omg you'll love this best book evar!!!'. Really? Do people really enjoy it when the matter is love-at-first sight, instead of a progressively developing relationship between a girl and a boy that isn't a vampire or anything possibly worse than that? Is love at first sight even possible? I mean, you can find someone attractive by the first glance, suppose him nice after the first conversation, but understand and known him deep from the inside at first-sight? No, intuition/feelings/instincts don't count. But you get my point.

I'm not going to start one how cliche and lame such plots are, so I'm reaching to you readers to help me find some books where the romance is actually good! Strong characters! Developed romance through out the book! Drama! Don't tell me the Hunger Games, 'cause I'm already aware of that one.

But really, I want to get some good suggestions so I can actually put my money to good use.

And while you're at it, tell me what you think makes a relationship between two characters strong and realistic, and what you love best in those relationships. :)


Sunday, July 25, 2010

If I Stay

A gorgeous boyfriend who was madly in love with you?
Quirky hip parents who totally got you?
A musical talent that could take you anywhere?
What if your biggest problem in life was choosing which path to take?
Follow your first love--music-- to New York City?
Or stay with your boyfriend, friends, and family?

What if one day, you went out for a drive...

And in an instant everything changed?

What if suddenly all the other choices were gone?

Except for one--the only one that truly mattered?

What would you do?

In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen-year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck...

This was a good book, technically. Well written, with a good, realistic love relationship between two characters and a dramatic subject to break everything apart. It was a quick, enjoyable and easy read, but this book lacked one thing. It didn't stir enough emotions in me.

I can't say it was... badly written or something, but it didn't have the WOW factor. Usually, when a book is amazing and has swept me off my feet, I hug it and let out a long sigh. Then I rethink of all the great passages and my mind is in a state of awe for the next 12 hours. Here, I acknowledged the fact it was sad, true, hard, yada and yada, and then I put it back onto my shelf.

Don't get me wrong. It's a great book, with great, strong characters. The story is divided with Mia's memories of happy, sad, decisive moments in her life and the next 48 hours after her accident where she watches everything happen in a ghost-like state.

I just can't say it blew me away.

Now I'd like to analyze a part of the book. This is what most of my reviews consist of; it's a lot of opinions and thinking mainly.

Mia has lost all her family. Her brother, her mother, her father. When she recalls her memories, we see how much of a happy family they were, how supportive, understanding and awesome her parents were (It might sound cliche to say that her family was almost perfect, but I think the author did that just to underline how much Mia lost after the accident, so I won't get into that). I agree that loosing her entire family is no little deal, and that perhaps one wouldn't want to stay alive because of that, but I felt as if the big question of the book; "Would you stay if you lost everything?" isn't much of a challenge.

Personally, I think that if Mia would have come out from all this paralyzed, somehow handicapped, if there would have been something hindering her life except the loss of her family the question could have had more pressure. I'd say that even if her family survived, but she woke up to not be able to play cello anymore, or walk, there would have been more of an issue. "Should I keep on living even if I can't walk/play/whatever anymore?" I mean, for me, becoming blind due to an accident would be a huge deal, and I would really have to think about staying or not, and so there would be a dilemma. I didn't feel any dilemma in If I Stay.

I think that the theme of "all the reasons you have to live for" weren't really explored too deeply. Sure, friends, boyfriend, other family, celo, but I still feel as if something was missing. So, really, I would have liked there to be more to the big question. Of course, there is no indication of Mia getting out 100% fine afterward, but neither any indication of something else coming her way.

One, last thing. This is the major rant part, but not about the book. On the cover it said 'Will appeal to fans of Stephenie Meyer's TWILIGHT".

I am OUTRAGED and sincerely DISGUSTED that there had to be this label. Because this is a love story that will appeal to teenagers DOESN'T mean it is IN ANY WAY similar to Twilight. If publishers need to label their products "REMINISCENT OF TWILIGHT" just to sell, then I tell them to go to hell and see if they have Twicrap there. If I Stay has nothing to do with Twilight, and I will rephrase that label. It will appeal to fans of "The Lovely Bones", seeing as it is similar in concept of a girl watching people deal with her loss and shares the theme of death and such. Gosh, the world can be so idiotic sometimes.

That is all. Go search for If I Stay, it's a fun and good book to read. (But The Lovely Bones is better, ha ha. It has the WOW factor)


If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Rating: 8,3/10


Incarceron -- a futuristic prison, sealed from view, where the descendants of the original prisoners live in a dark world torn by rivalry and savagery. It is a terrifying mix of high technology -- a living building which pervades the novel as an ever-watchful, ever-vengeful character, and a typical medieval torture chamber -- chains, great halls, dungeons.

A young prisoner, Finn, has haunting visions of an earlier life, and cannot believe he was born here and has always been here. In the outer world, Claudia, daughter of the Warden of Incarceron, is trapped in her own form of prison -- a futuristic world constructed beautifully to look like a past era, an imminent marriage she dreads. She knows nothing of Incarceron, except that it exists.

But there comes a moment when Finn, inside Incarceron, and Claudia, outside, simultaneously find a device -- a crystal key, through which they can talk to each other. And so the plan for Finn's escape is born ...

Aithen's Review

Aithen's back from camp! I read Incarceron and The Hunger Games while I was away, though I won't review the Hunger Games, since Beryl already did a great job at it. I'll just say I loved it. Now for our main presentation...

First of all, I really liked Incarceron, though it isn't one of my favorite books. It had a few flaws, though they were very minor compared to all its good points. Overall, it was a very interesting and good read.

Now Incarceron isn't one of your typical science-fiction or fantasy books. It is, somehow, both. I found it very impressive how both styles could blend so perfectly in only one book. The concept of Protocol was very interesting, though rather frightening, I must admit. Protocol is a law that forces the society to act like it was in medieval ages, even though technology has evolved very much. The society in Incarceron is well described and elaborated, and the way every single information was given about it was perfectly blended into the story.

I found the plot rather complicated, and that's probably why I love this book so much. Complicated books are the best ones. There is only one thing I didn't like too much : I had guessed Finn was probably Giles around page 50. It was really too frustrating, but I like how it is still possible Finn and Giles aren't the same person.

Speaking of the characters, I really loved Keiro, but that's about it. He seems so perfect, but is really so complexed. Keiro is probably one of the deepest characters in this book, and that is kind of sad, since he isn't one of the main characters. Finn is frustrating because he can only remember fragments of his past and is amnesic. There is such an abuse of amnesia these days... Attia was frustrating too, she is a tomboy-survivor type of girl, and she got on my nerves quite often. Gildas was so annoying, too! Finally, Claudia, our protagonist. She was a flat character that I never got attached to. Jared was interesting, though he was described very little, and I'm still unsure whether he was 20, 40 or 60. All characters lacked description (except Keiro, which is probably why I didn't dislike him as much as I disliked the others) and depth. This is probably one of the weakest points in this book.

The plot greatly compensated for this, luckily, though some streaks of luck made me frown and mutter "Ya right." I loved it. The whole concept of Incarceron was incredible, I never saw anything like it before. If Incarceron was a character, it would be my favorite one by far. I loved its evil overlord personality, it wasn't anything like a cliche overlord who was too fond of its abilities.

All in all, a highly entertaining book, well written and well thought-out with a beautiful cover. I recommend it for anyone who liked the Maze Runner, the Hunger Games, or any other book where people are confined together. I can hardly wait for the second one to come out in America!

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher
Rating: 8,3/10

Beryl's Review

This was an amazing and very innovative book. It's one of the best fantasy/science fiction novels I've ever read, and one of the best I've read in a long time. I'm really impressed by the plot, how structured it was, and I can't wait for the sequel. Of course, this book could have been even better without all the flaws, and it's really a pity they had to get into the way of our complete appreciation.

The characters, just like Aithen said, were very poorly described. I've got no idea of how Claudia looks, and I think the only indication of her physique was at page 375. This kind of situations always make me twitch. I sometimes wonder if authors even think about how their characters look, or if they simply forget to mention it. Anyway, it's strange how much descriptions were put into the surroundings and the prison, while Keiro seems to be the only character with a defined image.

Speaking of the characters, I actually liked most of them. I found Claudia strong-headed, determined, and somehow badass in her own way. I can't really agree with Aithen that she was flat. I think there was much to her. Finn didn't really impress me in much way. He was common. Keiro was my favorite, because he was, indeed, so complex while seeming so perfect. But I do think that one of this book's high point is the diversity of the personalities. Their reactions and their characters are very well outlined, even if they lack physical descriptions.

In any case, the good plot made up for the lacks. Most of the things were, though, easy to guess, such as that Finn was Giles, but some others actually surprised me. There were a lot of twists. A recommended book.

Rating: 9,2/10

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Books gone Movies: Pretty Little Liars

Okkk so technically not really a 'Book gone Movie', and more like a 'Book gone Tv Show' BUT it's so good and I just can't get over it I need to babble about it and omigod Toby Cavanaugh win.


I never read the books of PLL. I remember seeing the cover somewhere, but being me I told myself 'pff some girly story' without really reading the resume and only basing myself on the covers. BUT, as usually, my cousin got the better of me and she hooked me up to this suspense-filled-dramatic-yet-creepy-mystery show that is Pretty Little Liars. Ladies and Gentleman, the second T.V. show I watch in my life! The first one was Gossip Girl which I also before highly doubted I would ever read/watch/have anything to do with it.

I don't intend to read the books, now. I prefer the T.V. show and Toby Cavanaugh. Here's the blurb:

Aria, Emily, Spencer, Hanna and Alison have been best friends since the third grade. They go everywhere together, and think no one can come between them. If anyone is the ringleader of their group it is Alison, and the other girls cannot help but confide all their secrets to her. One night, during a sleepover, Alison goes missing. Her body is never found. The girls mourn her death, but move apart after time, assuming their secrets have disappeared with Alison too. One year later and Aria is having an affair with her teacher; Emily is questioning her sexuality; Hanna is a thief; and Spencer is flirting with her sister's fiance. They all think their secrets are safe, until they start receiving messages from a mysterious A - - who knows exactly what they are all up to, and is threatening to spill the beans....

I really love this series. Its got suspense, mystery, and very entertaining characters and it really makes you want to know who is A and all. I recommend it to Gossip Girl lovers, since the concept is quite similar, but PLL has a scarier touch to it. It's very dramatic.

I just can't wait for episode 7. What happens to Emily omigod?? D8

Go watch on Much Music, 8pm ET each Tuesday. 8D


Monday, July 12, 2010

Perchance to Dreams

When Nate is kidnapped and taken prisoner by the Sea Goddess, only Bertie can free him. She and her fairy sidekicks embark on a journey aboard the Thèâtre’s caravan, using Bertie’s word magic to guide them. Along the way, they collect a sneak-thief, who has in his possession something most valuable, and meet The Mysterious Stranger, Bertie’s father—and the creator of the scrimshaw medallion. Bertie’s dreams are haunted by Nate, whose love for Bertie is keeping him alive, but in the daytime, it’s Ariel who is tantalizingly close, and the one she is falling for. Who does Bertie love the most? And will her magic be powerful enough to save her once she enters the Sea Goddess’s lair?

First of first, the bad points.

When I started the book, though, most of the events were a big jumble. Characters were thrown in harshly and events succeeded themselves too quickly for me to understand. I think that this is the main problem in this book; The author tried too hard to turn the story fantastical and incorporate magical elements and finished only by making me confused. I agree that it was all nice and sparkly, highly original and entertaining, but not laid out well enough for me. There were things I didn't understand. I didn't understand why they were hapenning, how they were happening, and sometimes I thought they didn't make much sens. I don't think I'm enough of a dimwit to not understand something after many rereads.

So as I said, too much effort into making the story magical and all. Another thing that irked me was that as the story started, I had no idea where the story was happening. In what country, what city? I only found out they were crossing a meadow 50 pages later. It really annoyed me, because I always need to know where everything is happening. I need to feel that I'm part of the story, and that I'm beside the characters throughout the entire book.

I was never really sure if the book took place in a magical world or in the real one, but I'm guessing it takes place around the Victorian Era with all the bodices Bertie has to wear but then again it was so faintly outlined I'm not sure.

The lack of reality as a base dimmed the effect the fantastical elements of the story should have had on the reader.

You know, when you read books such as Harry Potter and the Golden Compass, the reader isn't yet thrown into all the magic. Both worlds from those different stories have similarities to/are the real world, and when you're well anchored in the realism of the plot, you're more amazed and hooked by the magic and sparkles that comes afterward. In Perchance to Dreams, it's more like you're thrown in rainbow water and you're spinning around before reaching the shore and being like 'wait, what?'

I also didn't get any further explanations on Bertie's magic; where it came from/how it happened/why it happened and because the world is so badly defined most of the magic makes no sense.

Really, the major bad point of this book was the outline, the setting, the organization. The cover is beautiful, the characters entertaining, the writing fluid and rich. I loved the love triangle between Ariel and Nate, Berti was still a strong protagonist. I enjoyed all the theatrical elements that surely people interested in theater could have related to more than I did. There were nice metaphors, and beautiful imagery, even if the plot was a bit shallow (common rescue quest).

It's a fun read, overall, thought a bit confusing at times. I recommend it for those who love magic and crazy adventures in crazy-land. It's a light reading, good for summer, with moral squeezed in here and there. I was disappointed, though, that the story was so jumbled, similarly to the first volume.
Perchance to Dreams by Lisa Mantchev
Rating: 7,8/10

Monday, July 5, 2010


Read the review of The Luxe, the first installment in this serie, here.

A spring turns into summer, Elizabeth relishes her new role as a young wife, while her sister, Diana, searches for adventure abroad. But when a surprising clue about their father's death comes to light, the Holland girls wonder at what cost a life of splendor comes.

Carolina Broad, society's newest darling, fans a flame from her past, oblivious to how it might burn her future. Penelope Schoonmaker is finally Manhattan royalty—but when a real prince visits the city, she covets a title that comes with a crown. Her husband, Henry, bravely went to war, only to discover that his father's rule extends well beyond New York's shores and that fighting for love may prove a losing battle.

In the dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, New York's most dazzling socialites chase dreams, cling to promises, and tempt fate. As society watches what will become of the city's oldest families and newest fortunes, one question remains: Will its stars fade away or will they shine ever brighter?

It was a great serie. This book started out to be the best of the entire serie, but the horrendous ending is just horrendous.

If you've read the previous books, and read my review of Luxe, you'll understand I don't need to go on blabbering about the characters and all the bases of the books. Splendor was the ending of all the drama between the characters, and it was honestly very good. It pulled me in instantly. It was an easy ready, elegantly written, fluid, with entertaining characters. If you've liked the Luxe, and read further on, we understand each other.

Yet, I was so disappointed by the endings that each character meet! Elizabeth and Teddy are perhaps the only ones who actually finish well!

If you do not want spoilers, avert your eyes from the following.

I simply don't understand why Diana and Henry had to finish apart. I feel like ALL they've been through, the love they fought for during all this time was for nothing! I understand the morals behind the actions; the passage from boy to man and the take-on of responsibilities, the notion that love shouldn't be all and that living your life independently and taking care of yourself is important too, but it just seemed ridiculous in Diana's and Henry's situation. It isn't the kind of reasoning that I can accept. It's just a shift of luck, that suddenly Henry has to take care of his family's business and can't go to Paris with Diana. As if the author had said, "Well, that's just too bad, isn't it?" And then, for him, to have to end up with Penelope for the rest of his life. Come on... Talk about torture.

Well, we agree, I'm sure, that Penelope deserved what she got. Over-confidence blinded her, and that IS just too bad for her. I was really sad for Carolina, though. I mean, of course she did bad things and lied a lot, but who else in her situation could have done differently? What other girl holding a not so prestigious past that suddenly has the chance to live among the wealthy people and also be treated like one of them would have gone out and spilled all her ungraceful secrets to the first person? It's perfectly understandable, and to take away her love for natural fear and shame? I didn't like it, especially when she had the chance to atone for all her mistakes.

Elizabeth and Teddy ended well, and the Snowden drama took me really by surprise. I really hadn't expected it, and so it was a good twist. I never really liked Elizabeth that much, but I'm glad she ended well after all the tragedies she went through. I would have liked Diana to end well too, though.

You can go on reading now~

Well, it was a good serie. Didn't end too well, but I learned a lot about New York in the end of the 19th century, and I liked all the little pieces of anecdotes from journals and gazettes at the beginning of each chapter.


Splendor by Anna Godbersen

Rating: 9,5/10

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Books gone Movies: Eclipse

As I ain't a fan of Twilight, and frankly think this is one of the most ridiculous and stupidityfying series ever, I don't kow what I am doing even talking about this ha ha. Yet I did go to see this movie. 'For the lolz', as everyone says.

For the sake of everyone's sanity, I won't be posting any pictures here. Really, no one needs them, and I certainly don't want them on this blog. Anyway, back to the movie.

Nothing special, considering this is Twilight we're talking about. Kristen acted a bit more competently in this adaption, Patterson was as blank as he always has been, Jacob & co were without shirts as usual. Plot wise, there wasn't anything that advanced the story. Evil vampires comes, evil vampires fight, drama in between. At the end of New Moon, Edward asked Bella to marry him. At the end of Eclipse, Bella finally says yes. As you can see, nothing happened in between that thrust the story forward. The plot basically stayed at the same place, with some fighting and drama to mask the thing. But hey, Meyer did an awful job with the books, and even the movies cannot make better out of it.

There were, though, some funny replicas. The audience laughed multiple times, there were some face palms. There were more giggles than in the two previous movies. The only entertaining thing was probably the battles, yet there isn't lots of those. All the drama and talk between Edward/Jacob that fill the rest of the movie was boring, and so for few minutes I disconnected and stared at the ceiling of the theater room.

Meh, really, don't go see it if you hate Twilight to the core. Fangirls will fangirl, and if you want to see it for the laughs, go for it. Stephenie Meyer's books aren't meant for anything better anyway.