Tag Archive: 4-star


Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1)Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Normally, I decide to read a book based on its attractive cover + intriguing synopsis + overall good ratings. I find the cover of this book a bit boring because it’s mostly just text, and the reviews are mixed; however, the back cover blurb sounded interesting and there was so much hype over the series I was curious.

Beautiful Creatures is fairly long, but I found the writing style made it easy to read and I enjoyed sinking into its pages. I was pleasantly surprised to discover it was a male first-person point of view because that’s my favorite narrative style. The paranormal elements were nicely done – no one seemed to be all-powerful, just quirky and different enough from the run-of-the-mill humans. I also loved the southern atmosphere and setting.

While I didn’t find the plot or action terribly gripping, the details in between made the story work for me. I’m not racing out to read the next book in the series, but I’m definitely planning to continue with it.



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Pandemonium (Delirium, #2)Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If I based my rating entirely on the author’s writing style, I would give a strong 5 stars. Oliver has a way of captivating your attention and sucking you into the story until you empathize with the characters to the point of feeling cold or hungry yourself when the characters are suffering.

I enjoyed the storyline and Lena’s continuing journey, however there was one element I kept waiting to see that didn’t show up until literally the last page of the book. It’s hard to say anything without spoiling the end, but my expectation and desire to see this particular element became downright distracting. Normally, I respect an author’s way of telling their story however they want to, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t horribly disappointed by the ending.

There are so many good things happening with this tale that I’m still rating Pandemonium 4 stars, but I feel a lot of trepidation going into book #3.



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Of Triton (The Syrena Legacy, #2)Of Triton by Anna Banks

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love the mermaid-like Syrena mythology this author has created, and I think the cast of characters is great. I’ll admit I didn’t enjoy Of Triton as much as Of Poseidon though. The firework chemistry between Emma and Galen seemed to cool off significantly from the previous book, and the plot focused on politics, which wasn’t as appealing to me. There were several instances where I felt pulled out of the story because the characters’ actions didn’t make sense. At one point Galen makes Emma promise to stay out of the ocean, but she goes jet-skiing and big surprise, falls into the water. Another time, they hire a helicopter and bribe the pilot to take them way out over the ocean and they jump out; there’s no way the pilot would just abandon them. For people trying not to draw attention or expose the Syrena, that scenario didn’t ring true for me. Also, I couldn’t help noticing numerous spelling errors and typos.

Overall, I do think the author is very talented and definitely does well at writing an entertaining story, but book 2 didn’t blow me away like the first one.



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The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines, #4)The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve been wondering how Richelle Mead continues to put out book after book with such intriguing plot lines and non-stop action; The Fiery Heart is more what I expected to see this far into a spin-off series. It was still an excellent read, but with less of the action and fascinating plot lines than in earlier books from the series.

Adrian is one of my favorite fictional characters – he has so many layers and he’s the kind of guy you can fall in love with even though he’s not real, ha ha. I think he and Sydney make a great couple and I like the way their relationship is continuing to evolve. I would definitely have planned on continuing with the series, even without that non-conclusive ending!



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Allegiant (Divergent, #3)Allegiant by Veronica Roth

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I try not to let my expectations cloud my judgement, but I’m not sure if that’s what happened with this book. I did expect Allegiant to be fantastic considering how much I enjoyed the first two books in the series, but I was somewhat disappointed. I would have rated this book 3 stars, but in my opinion the ending brought it up to a 4-star rating.

We finally get to learn about the world outside of the city’s walls, although I don’t really understand why it was such a mystery to the city’s inhabitants. I pictured them making their way through a barren wasteland until they discovered another pocket of post-apocalyptic survivors, but there are people living right on the other side of the wall, practically under their noses. There’s very little action in the first two thirds of the book, and while the world-building here is important, all the political mumbo jumbo was too drawn out for me. It felt like each component was explained three or four times.

It’s hard to end a series and please every reader’s expectations, but I personally liked the way it wrapped up. Sure, this book wasn’t perfect (what book is?) but the author is definitely very talented and I’m curious to see what else she comes up with in the future.



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Shadow and Bone (The Grisha, #1)Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While this book didn’t completely knock my socks off, I did enjoy it and I don’t really have any constructive criticism to give.

Admittedly, I know absolutely nothing about Russian culture or history, but maybe that’s why I enjoyed that aspect of this book while others seemed to have an issue with it. I think the author did a great job creating a relatable main character; I felt immersed in her journey with its adventure, action, emotional ups and downs, betrayal, loyalty, etc. The world-building was well done and the plot moved along nicely with a few surprises thrown in.

I would definitely recommend this book to fans of YA high-fantasy fiction, and I’m looking forward to the sequel.



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Prodigy (Legend, #2)Prodigy by Marie Lu

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another well-written, entertaining read by Marie Lu!

This felt like a typical second book in a series, where the world is explored in more depth and the characters are developed further. The basic history of how this dystopian world came about is unveiled, and we learn more about the mysterious Colonies. The romance takes a bit of a back seat because June and Day spend a good portion of the book apart. There is also less action than in the first book, although there are a few great sequences.

The non-stop action is one of the things I loved about the first book, so I’ll admit I didn’t enjoy Prodigy quite as much as Legend. The world-building is essential to the series as a whole though, and I have a feeling amazing things await in book #3!



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The Hunt (The Hunt, #1)The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have mixed feelings about this book; I loved pretty much everything about it except for one thing, but that one problem was a big one.

Starting with the parts I liked, a dystopian version of our world with vampires is my favorite kind of book these days. Also, this book was stuffed to the brim with action and suspense! I felt for the main character, Gene, and admired his adaptability and tenacity.

The part I had a problem with was the extreme lack of plausibility of Gene surviving as a human amongst vampires for seventeen years. Every day, he pops in his pair of fake fangs, shaves off his arm and leg hair (not sure why they’re able to have hair on their heads though, or I assume, eyelashes and eyebrows??) and marches off to school. If the vampires figure out he’s human, they will instantly devour him. Things that will give Gene away include: sweat, body hair, coughing, throat clearing, sneezing, goosebumps, a single drop of blood, and any evidence of emotion. There is no possible way anyone would last a single day under those circumstances, never mind seventeen YEARS. He’s never had so much as a paper cut or scraped knee in all that time? He’s never had goosebumps despite taking swimming classes with the vampires? Yeah, right.

The end of the book absolutely makes you want to continue though, and I have high hopes this major weakness becomes a non-issue in book 2. I would easily give everything about The Hunt 5 stars, except for the fault with the premise.



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The Vampire With the Dragon Tattoo (Love at Stake, #14)The Vampire With the Dragon Tattoo by Kerrelyn Sparks

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If you’ve read this series in order, you already know what to expect from the first thirteen books in the series: a fun and easy read with romance and a host of supernatural hotties. No, these books are not literary masterpieces, but they’re funny and entertaining.

This installment focuses on Dougal, a vampire (with a cute Scottish accent) who has been feeling guilty over losing his true love a couple hundred years earlier. Feeling particularly down in the dumps after losing his hand in battle four years ago, it’s time for him to find love again.

There’s enough of a plot in these novels to keep you interested, but the main draw for me is the witty banter and humour which somehow manages to feel fresh and original throughout the series. If you liked the other books in this series, I definitely recommend continuing with this one.



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The Kill Order (Maze Runner, #0.5)The Kill Order by James Dashner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this prequel to the Maze Runner series, learning more about the events that led to the apocalypse: the sun flares and the origin of the virus. This is not a story about the main characters from The Maze Runner, although they are mentioned very briefly in the first few pages of the book.

As with Dashner’s other stories, there’s plenty of action, the characters are unique and well-developed, and the plot moves forward quickly. Fans of The Walking Dead would probably enjoy this book – the environment feels very similar between the two.

Overall, an entertaining read and a great addition to the series!



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