Friday, February 22, 2013

Flat-Out Love ~ Jessica Park

Flat-Out LoveFlat-Out Love by Jessica Park
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In order for me to avoid going off on a rant that I feel would seem pointless to most people who see that i gave this book 4 stars, I will keep this review short and sweet.
This book is hard for me to review, to be honest. I have many conflicting emotions regarding the story line, the characters and how the plot ended up playing out. But, I will say that Jessica Park has written a unique, heartfelt story that definitely touched my heart and left a lasting impression on me.
This book was funny, sweet, heart-breaking and frustrating as hell. There were many times where I wanted to throttle the lead character of Julie...for many reasons, but mostly for being so blind through-out most of the book. I realize she more than likely just refused to see what was right in front of her from the beginning, but I still can't believe it took her so long to accept what was really going on inside that family.

I loved Matt, and I hated the way Julie treated him for 75% of the book. I also absolutely adored Celeste. Such a sweet, fragile little girl that I wanted to protect as much as Matt did.

Flat-Out Love wasn't what I expected it to be at all, but despite the fact that I spent a good deal of my reading time wanting to kick Julie's ass, I really enjoyed this book over-all. A sweet story about a quirky family that truly deserved a happy ending.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Graffiti Bridge ~ Cath Crowley

Graffiti MoonGraffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

6 stars = perfection on paper

Best Books of 2012

I have to admit, I was slightly hesitant to read this book when I managed to grab an ebook ARC at the beginning of the year. But what a truly wonderful surprise this ended up being for me.

Lucy is obsessed with meeting an infamous graffiti artist named Shadow. One night she and her best friend run into two boys who claim to know who Shadow is and will help them look for him. We quickly learn that one of the boys, Ed, went on a disastrous blind date with Lucy which ended in her accidentally on purpose breaking his nose. So, the tension between Ed and Lucy starts off as more than a little frosty.

And there is also the fact that Ed is Shadow.

Okay, maybe the premise does sound a bit silly and convoluted. However, from the first page, this story completely took me over. It is unlike anything I have had the pleasure of reading before. The writing style is unique in that I didn't really feel like I was reading a book, but listening in to a conversation. Which only made me enjoy the experience more.

Lucy and Ed go on an all-night adventure visiting some of the places that are special to Shadow, and in the course of only a few hours the characters bond in a way that was both beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time. Crowley has such a way with words that I found myself wondering where the hell she has been all my life.

Even though it has been several months since I read this book, the story has stayed with me, and is still near the very top of my list of the best books I have read in 2012.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Into The Hollow ~ Karina Halle

Into the Hollow (Experiment in Terror, #6)Into the Hollow by Karina Halle
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

6 stars. Of course.

Having just devoured this entire book in one evening, to say that I am feeling a wee bit shell shocked and emotional would be putting it rather mildly.

It is not a secret that I love this series. I have made quite the pest of myself by pimping it out to just about everyone I know. But, I can honestly say that with each book Karina Halle exceeds my expectations. Her talent as an author is just staggering to me. And I'm not just saying that as a gushing fangirl. I am genuinely in awe of this woman. So much so that each time I sit down to attempt to write a review, I feel like a complete ass because I never know the right things to say to convey to someone who hasn't read one of her books, just how amazing they really are.

But...I will keep trying.

Thanks to the insane events leading up to this book... (view spoiler)[Perry's possession and subsequent exorcism in On Demon's Wings, and all the revelations revealed through Dex's POV in The Dex Files (hide spoiler)] my anticipation was through the roof going into this story. And as a result of some of the huge events that have gone down over the last couple of books, the Dex & Perry that we see in Into The Hallow are quite different than the ones we were first introduced to at the beginning of the series. That is both good and bad. Bad in the sense that I sort of miss the Perry from Darkhouse...a slightly awkward & insecure firecracker that I felt a kinship with immediately. But, the Perry Palomino that we have in book 6 has been through some intense shit (talk about an understatement), and she has come out the other side both stronger and more closed off. Which is understandable. But still, there were a few times while reading this that I wanted to shake that girl like a snow globe. More about that in a minute. On the good side of things...we also have the new and improved Dex Foray. Who has gone from a slouchy smoker with a rapist mustache to a (somewhat) clean-leaving badass with a 6 pack and a hell of a lot of new found strength. His transformation is for the most part in the hopes of becoming a better man...good enough for Perry. And I have to say...I love the Dex. Not only is he more confident (though still as pervy as ever, bless his soul), but he is opening himself up to Perry like never before.

Now, here is where my emotions will get the better of me. When Perry shuts down completely after she and Dex have sex again. THAT was when I wanted...NEEDED to shake that girl like there was no tomorrow. Yes...I know how much he hurt her. I know how much pain she was in. But all she was really doing was punishing Dex (and herself!). Giving him a taste of his own medicine, which quite frankly was childish. Especially after he completely ripped himself open and offered his heart to her on a silver platter. And she still walked away. After everything he had done...all the times he saved her, proved that he was trustworthy and truly cared about her...she threw it all back in his face. Even though she regretted it she did when she swapped out his meds with placebos as an 'experiment' drove me nuts. I'm obviously biased when it comes to Dex, but I love Perry as well. And I hate to see her sabotaging herself. Gah. Okay....done.*steps off soapbox*

Moving on...

The decision to take Perry out of the toxic hell that was her parents house and have her move to Seattle with Dex was an excellent one, though I did miss Little Fifteen something fierce. And having said that, I'm hoping to have much more Ada and much less Douchecaneo Maximus in the future (though I know we are probably far from seeing that last of that ginger bastard unfortunately). The location for most of the isolated cabin in the snowy Canadian mountains...was perfect with it's creepy & claustrophobic feel, and as usual the paranormal aspect of the story worked well.

And a review of this book wouldn't be complete without mentioning the llamas. Oh, Twatwaffle. How I enjoyed our short time together.

And then there was the ending.

It was part

and part

While not a traditional cliffhanger, it definitely left me with a lot of questions as to the future of my favorite fictional couple. really hope that Perry has managed to pull her head out of her ass when it comes to being with Dex. But, I have a feeling that things won't be that simple.
This review is all over the place, and not much more than random thoughts slapped together,'s what I'm good at and I am nothing if not consistent. :P

As usual, I leave you with a few of my favorite quotes. Slightly spoilery so read at your own risk! :)

"I was trying to be a better man, Perry. For you."
I shifted in my seat, "Dex..."
"And I'll keep trying," he quickly said, voice low and somber. "Until I get it right."

"You know, we could always make a clothing optional rule around each other. That way we'd always be naked and never have to do laundry."

"Who is it?" I asked teasingly.
"Bigfoot," Dex answered from his room.
"What do you want, Mr Foot."
"Please, just call me Big."
I snorted. "You wish."
"You know."

"You can talk the talk, but you can't walk the walk."
His eyes narrowed in challenge. "Oh, I can walk the walk. I can walk the walk so hard you'll be sore for days."

"Within your light, I lose the madness."
"You," He said slowly. "You're the light. You're my light."