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Adventure

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Well, it’s been a very long time since I have blogged. I have a very good explanation for that. It’s called A-Levels, that stage in the British Education system before university. It’s really stressful. I apologise for neglected this blog and it’s followers.

Anyway, quite some time ago, Riordan’s sequel to The Son of Neptune was published. As busy as I’d been, I completely forgot about it (shame on me!). Then I realised I was broke anyway :'(
But then I got some money from the BOD (Bank of Dad) for a school trip to Canterbury. It was not my decision. To go there and buy the book but there was a beautiful Waterstones store & the MoA was being displayed by the window.

All the books beckoned to me and I finally gave into my weakness.

But you don’t care about that! You want a review. Well here we go:

“Seven half-bloods must answer the call”

The very first thing that astounded me at the end of The Son of Neptune was the possibility that the Romans and the Greeks could actually work together. Both Percy & Jason had integrated themselves in the worlds of their opposing camps, and that gave the readers hope. The Mark of Athena see Percy and Annabeth finally reuniting. It’s so romantic and it just made me so happy.

But in classic Riordan style, something goes horribly wrong and the Romans and the small cohort of Greeks have a fall out and everything goes nuclear.

The prophecy (or two):
So obviously you can’t go through a Heroes of Olympus book without referring to the Greay Prophecy, and so our Seven demigods (one can only assume at this stage that the are the Chosen Seven) seek to close the Doors if Death. There also happens to be another prophecy directly referring to The Mark of Athena, and it’s no spoiler that it has something to do with Annabeth. But what is The Mark of Athena? Well, I can’t spoil that one for you. Riordan is cryptic about his prophecies (as usual- but then, all prophecies should be!) and neither one seems to have a definitive ending. The cliffhanger at the end will attest to that. It’s so amazing many fans have dubbed it the ‘Rickhanger’. You’ll have to read the book to find out why.

The Characters:

One of the the things that strike me most about this book I’m afraid is the cover. This isn’t just me being superficial. Like many fans I waited a year for this book with not much more to go on but the book cover for quite some time. So when I saw Percy and Jason going head to head like that I felt like I was being torn apart. Is Riordan going to make us choose between them? It turned out that the reason for that fight was different to what I had imagined. Having said that, it was pretty clear throughout the book that the two demigods had a sort of alpha male rivalry going on. Both were used to being leaders and so when they end up on the same quest, it’s hard for them to adjust. You should see the tension emanating between them when they both try to sit at the head table! No wonder Zeus and Poseidon don’t get along. Both were born to lead.

What can I say about Annabeth in this book? Brave would be an understatement. She knew the risks that she would face; knew of the enemy that awaited her but still she had enough courage to do what needed to be done. Separating herself from Percy when they had just gotten together must have been heartbreaking. And when two certain children of the Big Three had their Alpha Mall stand-offs, she was there to do the leading. Gotta give her a lot of respect in this novel.

Leo, Leo, Leo. He had to put up with a lot of stick in this one. From the word go he’s being blamed for something that wasn’t his fault. He feels like the seventh wheel… I mean, you’ve heard of the 3rd wheel so being the 7th must REALLY suck! Then of course there’s the weirdness between him and Hazel. Sorry, I can’t elaborate on that one.

There are some interesting characters that appear of the godly variety, such as none other than Nemesis herself. You know, the one that took her kid’s eye out as payment. You remember Ethan Nakamura, right?
Then there’s the matter of finding out about what really happened to Sammy and how a certain demigod fits into this link.

The Plot: Unfortunalty I can’t say I remember much about this book now, having read it in October or November or something. Seems so long ago! I can however tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed it and I know you will too! (Well, I hope so anyway). One of favorite parts (spoiler alert!) is when they meet Dionysus’ Roman version, Bacchus. Totally awesome 🙂

And now I will leave you with these nice pictures I found online about how much I want the sequel, The House of Hades: 

Fia was born with flawless instincts. Her first impulse, her gut feeling, is always exactly right. Her sister, Annie, is blind to the world around her—except when her mind is gripped by strange visions of the future.

Trapped in a school that uses girls with extraordinary powers as tools for corporate espionage, Annie and Fia are forced to choose over and over between using their abilities in twisted, unthinkable ways… or risking each other’s lives by refusing to obey.

In a stunning departure from her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy, Kiersten White delivers a slick, edgy, heartstoppingly intense psychological thriller about two sisters determined to protect each other—no matter the cost.
– Goodreads Synopsis

Well, what can I say? This is very different from White’s Paranormalcy series. Evie was light-hearted and funny, even through all the crazy faery bonanza, death, death and no release stuff. And I’m really looking forward to it 🙂 I love how eerie the cover is, with the smoke and all the small images that seem to be superimposed on the girl’s face. I’m interested in how the sister bond will come across. A lot the heroines I’ve been reading about lately seem to be quite solo, and perhaps for good reason. This book is certainly going to be heart wrenching. 

       

It has been quite some time since I’ve read the previous book, Lament! Knowing that this book would be from James’ Point Of View, however, I didn’t let that worry me. So is Ballad worth the bother? I mean, let’s face it, you could quite as easily treat Lament as. a standalone. My answer? It’s worth it, yet it’s not…

UK Cover

Narrating

Well, this is sequel is quite different as it does not have the same narrator as its predecessor. This is a trait that I became accustomed to with Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series, and even Julie Kagawa had a go at an alternative POV with her last Iron Fey book, The Iron Knight. Many authors have tried using alternate point of views in their novels, but not all have succeeded.

Characters


The MC: James. What can I say about James? He was… interesting. If I’m honest, I think I enjoyed reading about him from Dee’s perspective. There is something just a little bit odd about reading a funny character from their own point of view. It’s not always bad, mind you. Riordan’s Leo Valdez (Heroes of Olympus series) and Kagawa’s Puck (Iron Fey series) were both very amusing even when they narrated. At about page 90, I remember getting sick of James’ humour. I remember because I took a note of it using my Goodreads App. Here’s my update statement:

“I loved how funny James was in Lament but now that half the novel is from his POV, I just don’t understand why he’s still trying so hard to be funny, even internally. I wish he’d be a bit more serious. I know he’s not that immature.”

After some time, I got used to it and began to appreciate his rather wry sense of humour. I’d like to think that if I ever met him in real life, we’d get along. So long as he didn’t play his bagpipes, that is. Oh well, maybe he’s as good as they say he is.

James is arrogant, loud spoken and outgoing. He’s somehow cool and geeky. I can’t help thinking what someone like him sees in someone like Dee. I get the whole BFF thing, but she’s not interested! She’s pining after some ex-assassin faery. Move on! Am I being unreasonable? Maybe. You can’t help who you fall for, after all.

The Other MC: Nuala, the leanansidhe. Now it struck me that she was a leananshide. I couldn’t help but compare her to Kagawa’s leananside, the Exile Queen. It quickly became apparent that they were nothing alike however. It’s sad to say, but Kagawa’s lenansidhe would eat Nuala for breakfast. Nuala isn’t as badass as she appears to be, but that’s what I like about her. She has a vulnerability that makes her relatable. So, okay, I don’t have to burn myself alive every sixteen years in order to survive, and go all Phoenix, and rise from the ashes. But like many teenagers, I understand what it is like to feel isolated and alone.

Nuala first appears to be an antagonist, but it becomes apparent that she is so much more. I felt detached from her to begin with, and could not understand why I would want to see things from her point of view. A little while passed and I realised that despite how the novel had started, this was her story too. She is a faery, yet she is not. Too human to be respected by those of her species, and too feared to be considered human, she is forced to live her life solitary. With dreams and aspirations of her own, I began to believe that she was a well thought out character. I love her sense of humour, which compliments James’ very well, without upstaging him.

US Cover

Supportive Characters: Paul. Sullivan. Dee. The Antler King (who’s name I just can’t spell). These are some of the more prominent supportive characters. I don’t want to ruin it by detailing who they are or what their roles are, but I can say that I liked having most of them around. A certain alcohol scene comes to mind with Paul, who Nuala has dubbed ‘Roundface’. Don’t worry, it’s nothing irresponsible, after all this is one of James’ mischievous acts. No, I am not being sarcastic here. Sullivan was loveable, and really did seem a lot like James.

Dee was boring, as far as I’m concerned. She didn’t do a lot in this book. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, mind you, considering that she and James have become more distant since the events of Lament. Somehow, she still seems to have a voice, however, as we are shown a number of text messages that she had intended for James, but purposely did not send. You might wonder what the point of that is. Really, it’s like writing out an angry letter to vent out your feelings, but never mailing it. I found it quite effective, yet infuriating, as we did not get to follow up on what she wrote.

My biggest complaint about this book, however, is the lack of one of my favourite characters, Luke Dillon. I mean, why?! I miss him!

Plot

In this mesmerizing sequel to “Lament”, music prodigy James Morgan has joined his best friend, Deirdre, at a private conservatory for musicians. James’ almost unearthly gift for music has attracted the dangerous attentions of Nuala, a soul-snatching faerie muse who fosters and feeds on the creative energies of exceptional humans until they die. Composing beautiful music together leads James and Nuala down an unexpected road of mutual admiration …and love. Haunted by a vision of raging fire and death, James realizes that Deirdre and Nuala are being hunted by the Fey and plunges into a soulscorching battle with the Queen of the Fey to save their lives.
– Goodreads Synopsis

Like lament, this is a tale of unexpected (expected) romance. How is it expected and yet unexpected?, you may ask. Well, because Nuala and James seem like a rather unlikely couple, and yet you can sort of see it coming because it’s a YA book, and that’s what happens in YA.

The stuff that goes on with the Antlered King was creepy and amazing. In the end, I was strangely satisfied with what happened. I mean, sure, one of my favourite characters becomes… oh I can’t tell you. All I can say is that Their plans are foiled, for the most part.

Man, I cannot wait for the third book, Requim. It’s coming out in 2013. 
In the end, I think this novel deserved 4 stars

* I did indeed find these GIFs on Tumblr

Alright, so Summer is here and new books are evermore approaching. Now I was a little disappointed with the pacing of ‘The Power of Six’ but it really picked up towards the middle and end. Now that the main writer behind the pseudonym, Jobie Hughes, has left the project, I’m interested to see how this will affect he writing of the third novel. I’ll guess we’ll have to wait and see…

To be published: 21st of August 2012
(So close to my birthday!)
Alright, so each cover shows Nine’s emblem/ logo. It reminds me very much of a shuriken starts. Maybe he’s some sort of ninja, haha.  I very much like the earthy feeling of the US cover. It looks very mysterious and it gives a sort of ancient feel to it. Unfortunatley, it is ruined by the title which I think is far too bright, and badly placed. It takes away the attention on the image. Tsk- tsk. 

Now, the UK adult cover is similar to the US one but the tone is very different. I’m very interested to find out why the symbol is made up of birds this time. It became evident that The Power of Six was made up of bubbles and water droplets because of Eight’s connection to water.

Now the Adult cover does not have much of a connection to the previous books in terms of the style. The title is far too big, for one, and the white background is not expected, but not necessarily a bad thing. I read a blog where they had criticised that the words ‘Rise’ and ‘Nine’ were much bigger than ‘The’ and ‘Of’, but I don’t think that’s a problem really as they are more important. However, as mentioned before, this does not match the style of the previous books. Still, rules are made to be broken!

I am very happy with this cover as a whole, and I will definitely be buying this edition, as usual 😀

Call me shallow if you wish. It’s my money.

So, here is the UK Young Adult cover. I’m not sure what is with the packman thing. It somehow much more evident in this versions as the design is much more blocked out. All I can think about is how playful Nine seemed when Four saved him.

This is probably my least favourite cover. Perhaps it’s just the lack of originality in comparison to the others. It is by no means a bad cover, it just lacks that one ingredient to make it brilliant, if you know what I mean. I very much like the placing and the size of the title on this cover, though. That is somewhat of an achievement. The white is striking in contrast to the dark colours.

Unfortunately, I don’t really like all that writing in the middle. If I want to know that it’s the third in a series, I’d prefer to see ‘3’ on the spine or something. Just saying. On a good note, I’m glad that this matches the style of the previous novel, what with the lightning and stuff.

Not bad, not bad.

And I managed to find the Australian cover:

What do you think?


To Be Published: 7th of August 2012

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men—thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the kings council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.
-Goodreads Synopsis



For once, I’m actually partial to the UK cover, on the right. I mean, the US cover makes her look like a supermodel. A supermodel with a dagger strapped to her arm for no apparent reason. She looks too delicate, too sweet. Now the illustration on the right is LUSH! It’s intense, it’s believable, it’s got a catchy tag-line. Heck, even the design of the title is better! Well done, unknown illustrator. I will find you! What do you guys think?



It’s been seven years since The Lightning Thief was published and now much loved author Rick Riodarn is about to have The Mark of Athena published. This will be the third in his follow up series, Heroes of Olympus. 

I stumbled upon this clip on YouTube and thought that it would be perfect to post. Sometimes we need to be pushed by the ones that care about us most, and that’s exactly how Riordan started off writing The Percy Jackson series:

Rick Riordan has seen his novel The Lightning Thief go from print to movie screen, with Logan Lerman portraying the troubled demigod. It is believed that there will be a sequel, which should be out in 2013. I am in equal parts fear and equal parts awe.

Say what you will about this movie. Not all authors get to see their ideas on screen. Riordan had nothing to do with the poor execution of this movie, which I believed had so much potential.

And of course, he didn’t stop there, as Riordan proved that he had more than just Greeks up his sleeves by getting the Egyptian Myth series inspired, Kane Chronices trilogy. 

Official artwork of the main characters
For me, Riordan’s best trait is his humour. Here are a couple of much-loved quotes from The Kane Chronicles:
Source: kanechroniclesmoments.tumblr.com 

Source: kanechroniclesmoments.tumblr.com
Then there is the way he seamlessly weaves myth with modern. I have tried reading other books based on mythology before and I will continue with my pursuit, but I must say that no one does it like Rick Riordan! I commend you, fine sir! Having finessed The Serpent’s Shadow, I see that he is hinting that the magicians and demigods may cross paths. I don’t really know what you’re up to, Riordan, but I’m on board! Carry on the good work. I’ll be reading your books until my hair starts greying. Whoops, too late. I started when I was 10. 
And now I shall leave you with this YouTube clip of Riordan reading the first chapter of his upcoming novel, The Mark of Athena.


I apologise if the quality is not try high. I suggest that if you wish to read it for yourself that you go to the website: http://disney.go.com/disneybooks/heroes-of-olympus/the-mark-of-athena/ 

Rick Riordan, I salute you! 

So,  finished this novel about last month and so this is the review I promised. It seems that the Dystopia Genre is here to stay with the bit of The Hunger Games which allegedly kick-started it off. So the big question: ‘Is Divergent original or just another Dystopia hit wannabe?’ 


In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself. 

– Goodreads Synopsis
Submitted by fatoshleo on Fanpop

Characters

Well, Beatrice “Tris” is one hell of an action girl. Despite all of her weaknesses, she is a kick-ass heroine. Her physical and emotional weaknesses only serve to humanise her and add to our sympathy. But let’s face it, she is certainly strong-willed. It’s clear that Beatrice has never been cut out for the life on Abnegation, but to choose another faction would be to walk away from her family. She is not the kind of girl you can walk all over, and despite the way that her fellow initiates looked at her- as if she were fresh meat- she definitely showed them up.

Four is very interesting. I can’t tell you much about him as it’ll ruin the surprise. It is important to not that this is not intended to be a very romantic book, but I feel that it is indeed more romantic than The Hunger Games. I hadn’t thought Four as a particularly obvious romantic interest but I had viewed it as a possibility, what with the air of mystery around him. I mean, what is with the name ‘Four’? I mean, I know about it NOW, but at the time it was very weird. All I could think of was Pittacus Lore’s ‘I Am Number Four’. I don’t think Roth’s Four and Lore’s Four are alike.

Additional Friends: I very much liked Christina. I have a friend called Christina. But she’s the white one and I’m the black one, lols. Having been Candor born, Christina always speaks honestly. Which she later learns is not a good idea. She adds a bit of humour and her interaction with Tris is significant as they help each other out during the initiation. Al is another character who was important. He’s a really big guy and he seems nice at first, but not all is as it seems.

Needless to say, Tris makes a number of enemies as she goes along. Some are fellow initiates, whilst others have the power and authority to terminate her. I shan’t give anything away 🙂

Society

Roth has created a unique society in which people are divided by what they believe in. I have concluded that I would be Candor as it basically just gives me a licence to speak my mind all of the time, which is good because I’m a complete chatter box! I liked the idea that the town or city or whatever is ruled by Abnegation, as they are the selfless ones. I genuinely feared that they might have gone out of control, considering the amount of power that they wielded. But it was another faction that was to bring about the downfall of this society.

My only real criticism is that I don’t understand how their society got to this. What kind of catastrophic event could have led a society to this?

So which faction would you choose if you had to?



Plot

Well, without giving away too much, it is a novel of self-discovery. This is pretty good start for a YA book because of the audience. Tris got out of her comfort zone a lot. Now one might wonder why she is trying to be something that she is not. Perhaps she is trying to be the girl that she’s always been. By the end of the novel, she realises that she doesn’t truly belong anywhere. Sorry if that spoiled everything for you. Still, this is a Dysptopian book. It’s hardly going to have a Happily Ever After. 
The idea is that the initiates can only become fully pledged members of their new factions if they pass the tests. It’s hard to explain this without giving away which faction Tris chooses, but the point is that hers is a test of endurance. The problem with their initiation is that there are not enough spaces for all of the initiates, and those that fail will become factionless. This is a fate that Tris has described as worse than death on a number of occasions. I actually don’t think that she’s being overdramatic either. 
So essentially, Tris must survive or die trying. 

Comparison

Okay, first up: Katniss vs Beatrice. 
Katniss is the family provider. Beatrice is the selfish one in a selfless family. Katniss has a bow and arrow. Tris learns hand-to-hand combat quite well. Katniss has a Mockingjay pin. Tris has a few tattoos. Now this doesn’t really equate. Tris’ tattoos aren’t a sign of rebellion, and so far they have not been perceived as such. Both girls are strong-willed, very driven and in some ways inherently selfish. But in actual fact, Tris’ bravery comes down to her skill to be selfless thanks to her Abnegation upbringing, whilst Katniss has at this stage done more things that she is not proud of. Bearing in mind, I’ve only read the first in Roth’s series. 
The society is a bit like The Hunger Games in the sense that they are all divided, but this is where the resemblance stops. For a start, the children do mix whilst they are at school. As for the adults, well, not too often. The way that everything is so heavily monitored, particularly in Abnegation reminds me a bit of Ally Condie’s ‘Matched’. The closest to the match-pairing they get though is the fact that you can only marry someone within your own faction. Thankfully, the society doesn’t choose for you. 
Overall, this is at least a FOUR STARS
After their beautiful yet brief bonding ceremony in Italy, Schuyler Van Alen and Jack Force are forced to separate. To fulfill the Van Alen Legacy, Schuyler travels to Alexandria to search for Catherine of Siena and the Gate of Promise. But Schuyler quickly discovers that everything she believed about the Gate to be wrong. Meanwhile, Jack makes the difficult decision to return to New York to face his twin and former bondmate, Mimi. But instead of a bitter reunion, he is faced with a choice for which there is no good option.

Mimi, with a most unexpected travel companion in Oliver Hazard-Perry, jets off to Egypt, too, to search for Kingsley Martin, her long lost love. With all roads leading to Hell, Mimi learns that not all love stories have happy endings. But she’ll have to put her own feelings aside if she’s going to save her crumbling Coven.

Packed with heartache, twists, and vampiric folklore, Lost in Time is sure to satisfy hungry fans’ cravings for more Blue Bloods adventure.

– Synopsis from Goodreads 

This novel was once again filled with mystery, romance and adventure.
I give it four stars and this is why:
Relationships

The Force Twins
By now you should know how screwed up this book can seem what with Mimi/ Azrael and Jack/ Abaddon, the Force twins pretty much in love with each other. Yes, I said twins. Cruz had them born twins, but in their world they have been bond mates for centuries. But Jack did the unthinkable and left Mimi during the bonding ceremony to be with Schuyler. Ouch. It’s one thing being stood up for a wedding, but stood up by the person you should be bonded with for all eternity pretty much sucks. So Jack has a bounty on his head. She wants revenge, go figure. I was absolutely terrified for Jack. I love Sky so I’m totally taking his side on this. Besides, what Jack and Mimi have just doesn’t seem real to me. I don’t think it’s pure is all. But then, they are the Twins of the Apocalypse. What happens between them will astound you and although I had to wait till the very end, my jaw just dropped. What I don’t understand is that Mimi obviously really cares about the Coven, so why would she just drop everything to deal with her traitorous brother? Hell hath no fury like Azrael scorned.
Kingsley & Mimi
I actually really like their relationship. They seemed like one in the same. They are both selfish, they are both very attractive, and they are both… adventurous. It’s a pity that their love is also technically forbidden. Unless Mimi wins the blood trial and Abbadon/ Jack dies… I will give nothing away. So of course Mimi goes on a mission to save her beloved from hell. To find out how it ends you will have to read the book yourself. All I can say is that I was rather shocked. How could he act so cool as if he doesn’t even care?! How can Mimi use her ‘friend’ like that? Urgh! 

The Other Twins- The Uncorrupted
Part of the novel also includes Allegra’s story, back when she had just finished High School I believe. We see how she really viewed Schuyler’s father, and Michael/ Charles. To some extent, I liked it and it definitely brought the whole ‘Lost In Time’ element because Cruz was recounting Allegra’s past. I think you will either hate it or love it. 
The Plot
All of the character go their separate ways. Sky goes to find the gate and gatekeeper, and uncovers hidden secrets. Jack goes to face his vengeful twin. Oliver helps Mimi find her true beloved in Egypt. I wasn’t sure why he would help someone he could barely stand once upon a time, but in some ways he has chosen a valuable ally. I don’t want to give too much away, but there are many twists and turns. Cruz leaves the novel on a frustrating cliffhanger. Why must she do this?! I’ll read her sequel anyway. I’m not sure what the Apocalypse twins think they’re up to. I wish them the best of luck. 
My rating? 
4 Stars

I was incredibly skeptical to read this book, which is the first of the new Blood of Eden series. I know the saying goes ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’, but I’ve long since given on it. I judge books by their covers and I’m not ashamed. Kagawa’s cover is quite simply morbid and terrifying, though artistic. What’s more, I just didn’t want to read another vampire book. I liked the Twilight saga to begin with, but Bella annoyed my senseless, and I now no longer have a clue what I first saw in the series. Melissa de la Cruz’s Blue Bloods series is the only other series I’ve read with vampires and the thing is, they’re more than that. Nonetheless, I read an excerpt of Kagawa’s new book, wanting to give it a chance- especially after hearing good reviews about it.

The Protagonist

I liked and admired Allison Sekemoto. Her voice didn’t irritate me, as some female protagonists have in the past. I felt sorry for her in the beginning, after seeing how awful her life was but I doubt she would want my pity. She is strong willed and very determined. This reminds me an awful lot of Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games. The world that they live in has shaped them and forced them to become very self reliant and independent. The difference is that Allie believes that it’s everyone for themselves, whilst Katniss looks after her family and even hunts with Gale. Although you can say that because Allie is part of a small group of Unregisters, they are not her family and she admitted that she would never sacrifice herself for any of them.

Allie has always hated vampires and I can’t blame her. I found it a bit hypocritical that she became the creature that she most loathed, but I understand that the human to want to live. Her choices were simple, become a vamire and ‘live’, or die and possibly become a rabid. Allie’s vampire transformation reminded me of Aislinn’s change from human to faery in Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series, as she too hated and feared the creature she would become. The main difference is the whole near death experience, which Ash was not in, and the choice, as Ash had none.

Allison is stubborn, often disagreeing and going against her creator’s commands. This stubbornness does help her control the blood lust later on, when she is a vampire though. She is at first a little naive, hoping to be a ‘good’ vampire, but she eventually comes to terms with the fact that she is a monster. Thankfully, this doesn’t make her give up on humanity, as she became very attached to a group of humans that she travelled with.

Allison is a kick-ass, katana wielding bad-ass!

Kanin, the Creator 


It’s never said how old he is but all I know is that it’s been 60 years since the Red-Lung disease first hit the world, becoming a wide spread plague. Kanin- this may or may not be his real name, I think not- is the infuriating secretive type. The sort of person who can be very cryptic. It’s no wonder he doesn’t just speak in riddles. That really would drive me insane. At first, I thought that he was slightly cruel, but we learn why that is so. He is a very lonely character, telling Allie from the beginning that they would not be able to travel with one another for very long. He is blunt to a point, telling Allison quite clearly what she is- a monster. I wanted to laugh out loud when he said that animal blood is junk food. Tell that to Edward Cullen! It’s hard to say whether I like him or not. A part of me dislikes him for… well, you’ll find out. But then again, he’s so filled with self loathing, a part of me want to hug him real tight and tell him it’s all going to be okay. He’d probably just tear my throat out. Or maybe not. He seems to be very in control of himself. 

Zeke, the Human

Oh my gosh! How can such a lovely person exist in such a world? He reminds me of Peeta for this reason. Peeta had never known the true harshness of District 12, as his parents were bakers. This didn’t make him wealthy or anything, just not a starving street kid. Zeke has all the traits you look for in a YA love interest. Unless of course you very much inclined towards a bad boy, in which case, look elsewhere. Zeke, first and foremost, is the son of a preacher man. I like Zeke’s morals. He doesn’t like to ever leave a man behind on the group’s dangerous travels. He believes that there is good in humanity, and he doesn’t like to turn anyone who wishes to travel with the group. Even a dangerous vampire like Allie, you ask? No. Even he doesn’t stretch that far, unfortunately. I like Zeke because he’s like a beacon of light in an otherwise dark world.

The Dystopian Society


The dystopian world that Kagawa created is the sort of thing I’ve only ever heard in movies. The sort of movies that I would never watch because I’d be peeing myself from fear. Yet somehow it’s alright to read about them. Don’t ask me how that works, but it just does. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way.  Growing up in a vampire city, Allie and other humans are treated as blood cattle. They are allowed to live because vampires need them and therefore allow them to. Allie lives in a run down place called New Covington, in the Fringes of sector 4. Sound a little bit Hunger Games like? Yeah, I thought so too. Strangely enough, the centre of the vampire city isn’t much like the Capitol at all. It’s just as run down as the rest of the city. Humans actually have a choice about whether they want to be Registered or not. If they become registered, they are the property of Prince Salazar, the Master vampire of the city. This means that twice a month, they must donate some of their blood. If they miss a bloodletting, guards come and take all the blood that is owed by force. Now imagine if you were sick, or had missed multiple blood lettings.

But vampires are not the worse creatures around. Outside the Wall of New Covington, and around the entire world, ferocious creatures called rabids roam around. Neither human nor truly vampire, they are mindless creatures whose only priority is to kill. Like vampires, they are ‘allergic’ to the sun, but by night, they literally erupt from the ground and prowl the lands. In my mind, they are like vampire-zombies.

The Plot


Kagawa divided her book into four parts.
Part I: Human- This is rather like an introduction into Allie’s world. We gain an insight into her hard life as an Unregistered, living in a vampire city. I enjoyed this part because we got to know what Allie was like before she was a vampire. 
Part II: Vampire- After being Turned, Allie gets coached about the ways of the vampires by her creator. I’ve heard some people criticise that they would rather have had Allie figure things out on her own. Realistically, I don’t know whether she would have survived all on her own. Kanin taught her how to fight, and the basics of what being a vampire was. He also told her a handy trick about burying oneself in the dirt to avoid the sun.
Part III: Monster- In this section, Allie fights her inner demons as she tries to avoid the savageness that is her inner vampire. It’s the part of her that sees humans as nothing more than food, that will kill first, ask questions never. 
Part IV: Wanderer- Allie is on her own again, and she tries to find some sort of purpose in her ‘life’, beyond sating the Hunger. 
Overall, the book is rather evenly paced throughout, but most of the really good stuff happens towards the end. This kind of sucks but I didn’t mind. Everything came together and the pieces of the puzzle finally made sense. Throughout the novel, we are given fragments, and Allison has to put them together. There are a few things that I saw coming well before Allison, but maybe I’ll put it down to all the ‘near death’ experiences and the Hunger gnawing down at her.

Overall Impression


This book was actually good, considering that I had been incredibly skeptical. I fell in love with Kagawa’s faeries, and now I’m captivated by her vampire world. I realised when she met up with the travelling group why it’s called Blood of Eden, and I thought it was really clever. Having faced betrayal earlier on in the book, I wasn’t sure how things were going to go in terms of Allison’s growth. I was disappointed that the crazy, poetic vampire didn’t feature very much, and I can’t wait to see this psychopath in the sequel. The ending of the book was alright, as it’s rather bitter sweet, but I liked that it ended with her fighting more rabies. This is because it emphasised the danger of the world Allison lives in but also highlights her bad-assery. As for the romance, I’m only going to gloss over this because it is not the main feature of this book. I’m pretty sure you can guess who the love interest is. It’s very interesting that the prey and predator are in love, more so than in Twilight because we get to see what it’s like for the vampire to try and resist. Like The Hunger Games, and actually, many other good books, their are casualties. Being a dystopian book, however, more people die than usual. I remember that the first significant death in The Percy Jackson series wasn’t until Book 3, and Book 4 had quite a number of deaths. If this is how bad it is in the first book of The Blood of Eden series, I can’t imagine how heart-wrenching the sequels will be. 
My Rating:

Three teenage descendants of Medusa, now united, must claim their heritage to fight the monsters escaped from the abyss.

Gretchen may have known she was a descendant of Medusa long before her sisters–after all, she’s spent her life fighting the monsters that escape the abyss–but that doesn’t mean it will be easy to teach the other girls the ropes.

Greer has pressing social commitments on her plate and precious little time to train in her newfound powers. But that wretched second sight won’t leave her alone, and her fabled heritage seems to be creeping into her fashionable life.

Grace has worries closer to home–like why her brother, Thane, has disappeared. He’s hiding something. Could it possibly be related to the secret heritage the triplets share?
– Synopsis from Goodreads


I have yet to read the first in the series, Sweet Venom, but I do plan to. This sequel is, Sweet Shadows is coming soon, by Tera Lynn Childs.

Coming: September 4th 2012

I like the title. It’s cool that the author is continuing the use of ‘sweet’. Once again, the hair twirls ever so slightly, suggesting snakes. If I’m honest, I’ve seen better looking people but the model looks beautiful nonetheless. My problem is that the air of mystery has been taken away. We did not see the protagonists’ face in the first book and now we do. It would have been nice if her face could have been silhouetted or something, to represent the shadows. Just an artistic suggestion.