Review: Contagion

Contagion (Contagion, #1)

 

If anyone knows me, they know dystopian/sci-fi books are my JAM. This? Well… I wanted it to be my jam but sadly I had the toughest time connecting with any part of the story.

Short recap: This is the story of a mining ship crew responding to an SOS sent from what appears to be a deserted planet. The crew had no idea what kind of horrors they were heading to. They quickly discover the planet is full of lies, deceit, and very dark things that go bump in the night.

I have been struggling with this review because finding the right words to properly describe why I couldn’t connect to this story are escaping me. Maybe it was a combination of everything – less than mediocre story of space zombie mixed with an oddly placed love story. You read that correctly, everyone. There’s a love story trying to bloom while the crew of the ship is trying to fight for their lives against zombies. I mean, sure, it could happen but the timing really doesn’t work. I don’t believe I need to go into more detail.

The other thing about this story that made it difficult for me to enjoy was the amount of POVs. The story itself is told in a third-party voice but there are just far too many POVs. There are no less than six individual voices throughout the story, along with random short chapters from the POV of the zombie creatures. There are countless chapters like this so that means the number of POV chapters increase. If you want to talk to me about absolutely unnecessary and pointless, you come talk to me about those chapters. I did not care one iota about a 30 second narrative from someone that was bitten and going through The Change.

I do adore the author and she can typically write compelling characters, but I could not find them within this book. There are plenty of characters to be had here. The cast of the ship was very diverse and only somewhat interesting to read about. There was nothing that stood out nor was earth shattering. Everything about them came across as predictable at best. Their voices never truly sounded distinct so they all sounded the same after a while. That made it even harder for me to connect to anyone. I fell into my usual pattern of not caring what was happening to this cast of misfit crew members.

The overall plot was an interesting concept but the execution fell short of the intended mark. This was not a thrilling or gripping story for me. I was eye rolling more than anything because most scenes came across as campy rather than chilling. While the gore and bone-chilling terror were lacking from this sci-fi novel, the action was not. I will not and cannot fault Bowman’s ability to write a good action scene. Because I was unable to connect, the thrill that was necessary to make me feel this story never hit home with me. I wanted so much more from the story Bowman gave me. She hinted only at political intrigue and corporate conspiracies, but they felt like barely spoken words overheard while walking by someone. Only enough to make you think you heard it but no way to know for sure. I do hope Bowman expands on these in the next book because I really wanted to know the WHY behind the events that took place.

Sadly this book did not do it for me. I kept waiting for my hair to be blown back and goose flesh to happen. I’m still waiting, in fact. I am still undecided if I will continue with the series because this felt like a lack-luster series starter to me.

 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Fall TBR

TTT
Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week they have a different theme for bloggers to post their top tens about, and this week I’m listing…

Fall TBR

 

OtherEarth

OtherEarth

 

 

The Last Wish of Sasha Cade

The Last Wish of Sasha Cade

 

 

Dry

Dry

 

 

Little White Lies

Little White Lies

 

 

Pride

Pride

 

 

This Cruel Design

This Cruel Design

 

 

Ignite The Stars

Ignite the Stars (Ignite the Stars, #1)

 

 

Girls of Paper and Fire

Girls of Paper and Fire

 

 

The Disasters

The Disasters

 

 

My Whole Truth

My Whole Truth

 

 

This was a tough list for me. I have so many books to read this fall, hope I can get through most of them.

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Review: Sea Witch

Sea Witch

 

I am so sad. This book gave me a sad. Why? Because it was disappointing. This was not what I was expecting from this book. This will probably be a short review as I don’t have a lot of good things to say. I won’t speak ill of anyone or outright be mean, I’m going to state my reasons and move on.

I won’t give a recap because I don’t remember enough to tell you what it was really about. I know it was supposed to be a bit of an Ursula backstory but I’m not entirely sure. We’ll just go with that.

Here is what really made this story a tremendous struggle: The first two-thirds of the book were as slow as molasses in the winter. I was bored to tears. When I get bored with a book, I zone out and don’t pay attention. That is never a good sign. I will never understand why authors wait until the last 100 or less pages to actually do something with their story.  Because this book was slow as the day is long, I never connected with any part of this story. I didn’t connect or even remember anything about the characters. Great detail was put into large scenes that had nothing to do with anything. I didn’t need such in depth descriptions of dresses or meals, I wanted development of characters and movement of plot. Those were severely missing from this book.

I want to give the author credit for attempting an Ursula backstory but the execution missed the target by a country mile. This was nowhere close to an engaging or thrilling story. I forgot everything I read before I finished the book. Do I recommend this? Not in good faith, no. This was one of the biggest disappointments of 2018 for me.

 

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Review: Fake ID (Hunted #1)

Fake ID (Hunted, #1)

 

This is an older book but it was recently recommended to me through Audible. I’m sad to say this was a weak attempt at a mystery/suspense/thriller story. It was not very engaging or suspenseful.

Short recap: Chasity and her mother have constantly been on the move for as long as Chasity can remember. She doesn’t know why they are always moving but she does her best to adjust. On Chasity’s 16th birthday, her mom disappears. Suddenly Chasity has a very limited amount of time to locate her mother or the local police will put her into foster care.

Just writing the recap made me shake my head. There were so many things about this story that were either convenient or were just not believable. The premise itself promised mystery as a daughter tried to find her mother. What I read was completely different. Allow me to explain: the characters were poorly developed, the plot was weak and held no water, and the overall story was not believable.

First, Chasity isn’t even the daughter’s real name. Apparently she and her mother assume new identities every time they move. Chasity prefers to by “Chass” and rudely reminds everyone calls her by her her fake name. Rude. Second, I didn’t like Chasity’s character at all. She was whiny and “woe is me!” most of the story while trying to act all tough to find her mom. She swore she could find her mom better and faster than the police. Uh, you’re 16 with no formal training on anything. Calm down before you get yourself hurt. I never bought her tough girl routine and it got old really quick.

I am not a fan of things just conveniently falling into place for characters. I believe the author does it to help move the story along but it is never believable. Sadly it happened here and it was bad. Chasity seemed to have the best luck the entire story. Oh, your mom is missing but you suddenly remember a secret code you two have! That’s right! It just so happened that these two had a plan in place in case her mom went missing! Was this mentioned before it was convenient to move the story along? NOPE. Why would it be? Also, Chasity goes on the hunt for a very obscure, random, nondescript store in the middle of Nowhere America to purchase a fake ID and finds it on the first try. Get out of here with that nonsense. Do you know what made that scene worse? The random person who was at the store remembered her. Seriously stop. This girl could do no wrong and she found everything she was looking for. I could not stop rolling my eyes at the absurdity of it.

The overall story and reason behind why these two moved so much should have held merit but it was just so weak. Or perhaps it was the way things were revealed at the end that made me cringe and beg for the hours back I spent reading this book. Either way, it was just not good. This is one of the few books I have finished that makes me wish I hadn’t read it. This did nothing for me and I will not recommend to anyone.

 

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ARC Review: Light Years

Light Years

 

**I received an advance copy in exchange for my honest review as an LBYRPartner**

 

This is going to be another tough review to write as I greatly enjoyed this story. I enjoyed the setting, the characters, the plot, the twists, the turns, all of it. I am only upset about how long I have to wait to find out what happens.

Short recap: The Quatra Fleet Academy is doing something it has never done before – it is opening its doors to students from outer planets of the Quatra Federation to enroll. This means they will have the chance to be a part of their military, if their squad passes all of their courses and missions. Not everyone is keen to this idea of Settlers (what people from the outer planets are referred to as) having the same opportunity so mysterious (and bad) things start to happen. Four students from different backgrounds are assigned to the same squad will come up against unimaginable tests and challenges. Will it be enough to make their bond stronger? Can things work out for the Settlers in the Academy?

The way the story focused on four students was brilliantly done. They all had their own unique voice while blending together as a squad in a way that felt effortless. Cormack has had a very rough life. He came from a very poor settlement and had just suffered losing his brother, his only family. Desperate to get off of his planet that is full of toxic gas, he takes his brother’s place at the Academy. Vesper was the daughter of a very well known and respected high-ranking military officer. She is also a spoiled little rich girl that things higher of herself and lower of others. She only got into the Academy because her mother pulled strings, but it is up to Vesper to prove she belongs there. Arran was whip smart, brilliant to the point of being a genius, but very shy and reserved. His acceptance meant a better life for his mom. Orelia claimed to be from a well to do planet but that is not the truth. She was actually a spy for the Specters, a very well known enemy of Quatra Federation. The Specters want nothing more than to wipe the Federation out, and with Orelia hidden within the student population, they just might be able to do it.

Do you see how beautifully complex these individual stories are?! They all have their own secrets and inner tribulations they are trying desperately to hide, all while doing everything within their power to prove they are better than the station they were born into. I do have my favorite characters but I’m not giving them away here. There were twists and turns I never saw coming, though I should have. This was a fast-paced, edge of my seat thrilling adventure. I know that phrase may get thrown around a lot but it really holds true for this story. I tore through the pages and had this story devoured in two days.

One part of the story that I do hope is expanded upon in the next book is the reason for all of the ongoing wars within this universe. Nearly every planet is at war or has been attacked for some reason or another. I’d like to know more about the political thoughts behind that. That was the only underdeveloped part of the entire story but I really do believe it will be explained more in the second book.

I really do hope that this book is on your TBR because I don’t think you’ll be disappointed at all. This was so much better than I expected and I had high hopes. If you are a fan of The Illuminae Files, then I say you need to give this a chance.

 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Hidden Gem Books

TTT
Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week they have a different theme for bloggers to post their top tens about, and this week I’m listing…

Hidden Gem Books

 

Can You Keep A Secret?

Can You Keep a Secret?

 

 

The Weight of Silence

The Weight of Silence

 

 

Love, Rosie

Love, Rosie

 

 

Angelfall

Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days, #1)

 

 

I’ll Meet You There

I'll Meet You There

 

 

The Stars Never Rise

The Stars Never Rise (The Stars Never Rise, #1)

 

 

Little Peach

Little Peach

 

 

The First Time She Drowned

The First Time She Drowned

 

 

Exquisite Captive

Exquisite Captive (Dark Caravan Cycle, #1)

 

 

 

And The Trees Crept In

And the Trees Crept In

 

 

While trying to narrow my list down, I discovered that what I considered “hidden gem books” did not fall in line with what a lot of other readers think. Guess that really proves that not every book is for every reader.

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ZERO REPEAT FOREVER Website Reveal

ZERO REPEAT FOREVER WEBSITE REVEAL

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ZEROREPEATFOREVER (1)About The Book:

Title: ZERO REPEAT FOREVER

Author: Gabrielle Prendergast

Pub. Date: August 29, 2017

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Pages: 496

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

Find it: AmazonB&NAudibleiBooksTBDGoodreads

He has no voice, or name, only a rank, Eighth. He doesn’t know the details of the mission, only the directives that hum in his mind.

Dart the humans. Leave them where they fall.

His job is to protect his Offside. Let her do the shooting.

Until a human kills her…

Sixteen year-old Raven is at summer camp when the terrifying armored Nahx invade, annihilating entire cities, taking control of the Earth. Isolated in the wilderness, Raven and her friends have only a fragment of instruction from the human resistance.

Shelter in place.

Which seems like good advice at first. Stay put. Await rescue. Raven doesn’t like feeling helpless but what choice does she have?

Then a Nahx kills her boyfriend.

Thrown together in a violent, unfamiliar world, Eighth and Raven should feel only hate and fear. But when Raven is injured, and Eighth deserts his unit, their survival comes to depend on trusting each other…

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Book Trailer:

Link: https://youtu.be/cjgfYAe9HDI

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About Gabrielle

headshotgpnov16-colorGabrielle is a writer, teacher and designer living in Vancouver, Canada.  You can read about her books here. She is represented by Barbara Poelle at the Irene Goodman Literary Agency.

In 2014 she was the Writer in Residence at Vancouver Public Library. In 2015 she was nominated for the BC Book Prizes and chosen to tour the province to promote BC Books. In 2017 Gabrielle took part in the TD Canada Children’s Book Week Tour. She has also been nominated for the White Pine Awardand the CLA Award.

Gabrielle won the Westchester Award for Audacious. Audacious was included in CBC’s list of 100 YA Books That Make You Proud to be Canadian. A poem from Capricious was chosen for the 2014 Poetry in Transit Program. Pandas on the East Side was chosen as an Ontario Library Association Best Bet for Junior Fiction in 2016. It was also nominated/shortlisted for the Chocolate Lily Award, The Red Cedar Award, the Diamond Willow Award and the Myrca Award.

 

Website |  Twitter | Facebook | Intstagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

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BLOGGER WEBSITE PAGES

This is one feature that I strongly suggest you check out!

Ways to win or buy swag https://www.zerorepeatforever.com/win-swag or https://www.zerorepeatforever.com/book-merch

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Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a grand prize of a signed copy of ZERO REPEAT FOREVER, a tote bag, & a swag pack, US & Canada Only.

9 winners will receive ZERO REPEAT FOREVER Swag Packs (stickers, signed bookplate, tattoo and bookmark), US Only & Canada.

Rafflecopter Link:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba2796/?

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:

9/10/2018- Here’s to Happy EndingsQuiz

9/11/2018- A Gingerly ReviewWays to win or buy swag

9/12/2018- Trendy Simple LifeFan art

9/13/2018- Two Chicks on BooksDeleted Scenes

9/14/2018- Novel NoviceBookclub Questions

 

Week Two:

9/17/2018- Shortie SaysFan videos/reviews

9/18/2018- Simply Daniel RadcliffeA “Find Your Sci-Fi Title” Meme

9/19/2018- Always MeAn FAQ/fan forum

9/20/2018- BookHounds YACharacter descriptions

9/21/2018- The Hermit LibrarianThe pitch for book 2!

 

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