Thursday, March 28, 2013

{Review} Good Oil by Laura Buzo

Title: Good Oil*
Author: Laura Buzo
Format: Library; hardcover
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Release date: August 10th, 2010
Date Read: March 24th
Rating: ✭✭✭✭✭
A wonderful, coming-of-age love story from a fresh new voice in YA fiction.

'Miss Amelia Hayes, welcome to The Land of Dreams. I am the staff trainer. I will call you grasshopper and you will call me sensei and I will give you the good oil. Right? And just so you know, I'm open to all kinds of bribery.'

From the moment 15-year-old Amelia begins work on the checkout at Woolworths she is sunk, gone, lost...head-over-heels in love with Chris. Chris is the funny, charming, man-about-Woolies, but he's 21, and the 6-year difference in their ages may as well be 100. Chris and Amelia talk about everything from Second Wave Feminism to Great Expectations and Alien but will he ever look at her in the way she wants him to? And if he does, will it be everything she hopes?

I really don’t know how to review this book. It’s one of the only books that I honestly find perfect. I cannot name a single flaw or even an aspect that could have used a bit of touching up.
I picked this book up on a hunch. I had never heard of it before or read a single review for it. I don’t know how or why, but I knew that GOOD OIL would be amazing. From the moment I finished the first chapter, I knew that I was right.
It’s not often that I finish a book and the first thought that pops into my mind is that the book was utterly perfect. While reading, GOOD OIL invaded my every thought. I could not keep away from it. The book ensnared me with its beautiful characters and raw, brutal emotion.
For the first time in a long time, I not only like the main character but I also really “feel” her. I understand her. I can really put myself into Amelia’s shoes. Her flaws, her strengths – they were all believable.
Amelia is one the most multifaceted, realistic characters I’ve ever encountered.
Chris was Amelia’s equal when it came to realistic, multifaceted characters. He had a jealous, angry streak but he was a good person. He was a bad drunk and a good friend. He was a charmer. He was deeply depressed. He was strangely happy. But most importantly, he was real.
The writing was fabulous. Amelia sounded her age and Chris did too. Chris felt male, instead of a guy with secret ovaries that many authors like to portray. Amelia felt her age instead of a strangely mature 15 year old or a girl who acts like she’s 7 instead of her age.
The novel tells the story of Amelia who is utterly infatuated with her coworker Chris, who happens to be 6 years older than her. When I first picked this up, I was sure that GOOD OIL would be about Amelia and Chris’ forbidden romance, as the blurb suggests.
However, GOOD OIL did a THE STATISTICAL PROBABILITY OF LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT on me and it turned out to be about much more than what I expected.
Buzo has an uncanny ability at creating realistic, witty, and deep conversations and through such discussions, the book’s true themes of friendship, growing up, and love are unearthed. Amelia’s observations and thoughts make you think about your own life and question your own actions.
Buzo’s writing was absolutely amazing and her narrative voice was flawless. Her ability to make characters that are realistic and likable is uncanny. I will read any Buzo book after this and I recommend GOOD OIL to anyone.
*GOOD OIL was published under two different names by two different publishers. I read it under LOVE AND OTHER PERISHABLE ITEMS but I used GOOD OIL in my review because it a) was easier to write and b) I prefer the title as Good Oil is Aussie slang that means roughly “useful information” which I thought fit the book. The summary and cover are from the GOOD OIL version.
Lisbeth is an American teenager who enjoys blowing shit up in videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

{Review} Zenn Scarlett by Christian Schoon

Title: Zenn Scarlett
Author: Christian Schoon
Format: Netgalley, egalley
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Release date: May 7th, 2013
Date Read: March 17th through March 20th, 2013
Rating: ✭✭✭
When you're studying to be exoveterinarian specializing in exotic, alien life forms, school... is a different kind of animal.

 Zenn Scarlett is a resourceful, determined 17-year-old girl working hard to make it through her novice year of exovet training. That means she's learning to care for alien creatures that are mostly large, generally dangerous and profoundly fascinating. Zenn’s all-important end-of-term tests at the Ciscan Cloister Exovet Clinic on Mars are coming up, and, she's feeling confident of acing the exams. But when a series of inexplicable animal escapes and other disturbing events hit the school, Zenn finds herself being blamed for the problems. As if this isn't enough to deal with, her absent father has abruptly stopped communicating with her; Liam Tucker, a local towner boy, is acting unusually, annoyingly friendly; and, strangest of all: Zenn is worried she's started sharing the thoughts of the creatures around her. Which is impossible, of course. Nonetheless, she can't deny what she's feeling.

 Now, with the help of Liam and Hamish, an eight-foot sentient insectoid also training at the clinic, Zenn must learn what's happened to her father, solve the mystery of who, if anyone, is sabotaging the cloister, and determine if she's actually sensing the consciousness of her alien patients... or just losing her mind. All without failing her novice year....

In early 2011, I read a book called THE GALACTIC GOURMET. THE GALACTIC GOURMET was about a renowned alien chef named Gurronsevas who was tasked with feeding other aliens.

What made this book special was White's imagination when it came to the aliens. Every alien was unique. Most didn’t even have vaguely “Earther” (to steal a word from ZENN) characteristics.

ZENN SCARLETT was severely lacking in exciting and unique aliens. Every alien could both breathe air and drink water. They were all mammals and each one was compared to some Earther life form such as an insect-like or a fox-like alien.

The aliens of ZENN SCARLETT were boring. The Indra - asteroid dwelling "whales" - were as interesting as they got. ZENN SCARLETT could've used some serious imagination when it came to aliens.

While I didn’t expect White-level aliens, I did expect something more than a series of mammalian, air breathing horses. 

One of the lowest points to the book was the feeling that you are constantly being preached at. I know other reviewers have covered this but I feel it needs to be gone over again – just for empahasis

Schoon, I agree with you. Science is good and narrow-mindedness is bad. But that does not mean you can spend the whole book drilling it into our heads like a teacher. 

Just because science good does not mean anyone can go up to a religious person and pretty much tell them that for believing what they do, they’re idiots. 

I’m not a religious person and, to be honest, I don’t like overly religious people at all. I can’t stand them. But I would never go up to someone and tell them “Hey, for believing in what you do, you are a complete idiot” which is what Zenn did.


Zenn wasn’t a very amazing character. Sh
e wasn’t a lifeless wall but overall, Zenn was pretty plain.
She’s supposedly a-little-too-smart-for-her-own-good (according to the blurb) but I didn’t find anything that would make me think “ah, she’s too smart for her own good”.

Zenn was infuriatingly oblivious and naïve. There is a guy is flirting with her throughout the book. It’s so OBVIOUS. But our little Zenn spent the whole book wondering “Does he like me? Is he flirting – no he couldn’t be because well, I’m just Zenn”. 

Guys, the naïve-little-girl trope is annoying. I cannot stand oblivious heroines. It is not that hard to see when is someone blatantly flirting with you especially if they have been flirting with you for WEEKS.

Another part that annoyed me was the angst. Girl, I get it. Your life is hard. But that does not give you the right to sit around moping about how you just want to be a real boy normal girl.

With all that said, Zenn isn’t a bad character. Sure, she gets on my nerves but at least she wasn’t a horrible person or a stick in the mud. She was brave at times and I admire her dedication to the animals.

Liam, the love interest, was bland and by bland, I mean, he was nothing. At all. He was pretty much just a name. He couldn’t be called a main character by any stretch of the imagination.

Thankfully, there were two redeeming characters. Hamish, the insect alien, and Katie, the rikkaset (a fox like alien) were absolutely adorable. Hamish was the sweetest insect ever. I just wanted to hug him! Katie was an adorable deaf rikkaset who spoke in sign language. 

They have to be the cutest characters I’ve encountered in a long time.

Plot and Writing


The book, for the most part, was a monotonous series of alien rescues. The rescues were bland and tedious since they were basically the same steps repeated with different animals. Find sick animal, help sick animal, think you can’t do help it, and then actually save it…

The first two to three times were really interesting and fun but after that, I lost interest. ZENN SCARLETT became a chore to read. It wasn’t bad but I felt less enthusiastic to read it.

The actual plot was a who’s out to get us type book. It was more of a side plot really. Zenn helped numerous aliens but she made these “uncharacteristic” mistakes and OMG someone is trying sabotage her!

This who-did-it plot was extremely predictable. From the beginning, it’s very obvious who “did” it because it’s all but said outright! 


The best part of the writing for ZENN SCARLETT was definitely the world. How cool is a book set on Mars? The world-building for the facility was fantastic and very immersive. 

The worst part is the dialogue. To be blunt: it’s terrible. It feels like every time Zenn is talking to someone she is either being interrogated or interrogating the other person. 

Through dialogue, most of the info-dumping happens. This is a common practice but it feels even worse in ZENN SCARLETT. I don’t know why or how, but it does.

Likes and Dislikes


- world building

- setting

- Katie and Hamish

- occasionally Zenn


- Zenn

- dialogue

- aliens


ZENN SCARLETT has a lot of problems. While my review doesn’t show it, I did actually like the book for the most part. It’s honestly not a terrible book and I would recommend it.

Lisbeth is an American teenager who enjoys blowing shit up in videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

{Review} Double Clutch by Liz Reinhardt

Title: Double Clutch
Author: Liz Reinhardt
Format: Netgalley, egalley
Publisher: Random House Children's Publishers UK
Release date: December 20th, 2012
Date Read: March 15th through March 17th, 2013
Rating: ✭✭
What happens when you fall in love with the perfect guy... twice... in one day?

Brenna Blixen spent her freshman year homeschooling in Denmark; now that she’s back in the States, she’s determined to make her sophomore year unforgettable. And by unforgettable, she imagined awesome classes, fun friendships, and maybe a little romance.

What she got was a whole lot of romance, and all at once.

The same day that dark, brooding Saxon Maclean charmed her with his killer good looks and whip-smart wit, Jake Kelly stole her breath away with his heart-wrenching smile and intelligent, thoughtful focus.

But Saxon is a proud player who makes it clear that he doesn’t know why he can’t get Brenna off of his mind and out of his system, and Jake’s sweet and humble attitude hides a secret past life that might be more darker and more complex than Brenna’s willing to handle.

Complicating the matter is the fact that Saxon and Jake were once best friends and are now arch-enemies... and the more Brenna finds out about their connection to each other, the more intrigued and worried she becomes.

Between keeping the peace with her lovingly over-protective parents, designing t-shirts for her high school’s rising punk band, keeping up her grades in both academic and technical high school, and running the track like a maniac, Brenna has enough to worry about with out juggling two guys who make her heart thud and drive her crazy all at once.

She has to make a choice. But how can she when giving her heart to one of them might mean breaking the other’s?


While going through the review for DOUBLE CLUTCH, I came upon a review that compares DOUBLE CLUTCH to BEAUTIFUL DISASTER. Before I actually go into my review, I'd like to say that there is absolutely no comparison.

Travis is an awful volatile person who manipulates Abby. He's emotionally unstable, clingy, controlling, self absorbed, and he likes to beat up guys who look at his girlfriend the wrong way. Neither of the love interests in DOUBLE CLUTCH could be called that, unless you count Jake who started acting like that by the end of the book.


It seems as if I have been confined to play the part of the black sheep. While conformity is always worse, it does get lonely being the only one who doesn’t love a book.

To all the 1,651 five and four star ratings, there are a few people who don’t like t
his book but we are few and far between. 

I do see where the fans of DOUBLE CLUTCH come from. This is a pretty well done New Adult book with a (mostly) likable main character and a cute romance, which is more than I can say for most NA books.

DOUBLE CLUTCH was meant to be a book that tells people not to be afraid to show sexuality. It’s very pro-intimacy. However I, like others, found this to extremely hypocritical because of the blatant double standards. It seems as though the rampant slut shaming undid all the positive messages.

One scene towards the end was especially bad. As I can’t share every horrible quote from this scene, I will show two of the worst:

I was being taunted by a corset-wearing, gum-cracking hoe with straw for hair.

I was practically deafened by the combined hissing of a dozen rejected hussies.

There are so many things wrong with this. I can’t.

These “hussies” and “hoes” were previously described as “scantily-clad” and “backstabbing hooker-want-to-bes”. Brenna had no background information about them but from looking at what they were wearing, she concluded that they had to be backstabbing hookers. 

They were also described as “hissing and clawing” (yes, hissing was used twice) and “hoochie-looking”.

I should stop talking about slut shaming (even though I haven’t even covered how Brenna is the good one because she doesn’t want to have sex) so I will.


Despite everything I talked about already, Brenna is actually a fairly good character. For once, I can actually see why the love interest likes the main character, even if his level of absolute adoration is a bit out there. 

Brenna is bubbly and cute. One of my biggest peeves with heroines is when they adore classic literature because it’s often only added to make them seem smart. Even though Brenna loved classic lit, I found her genuinely intelligent.

Brenna was definitely the reason I kept reading the book.

Jake was very annoying because he was the “good one”. His personality entirely revolved around how the other love interest was the “bad one”. For most of the book, he was sweet and cute to a nauseating extent.

But towards the end, he turned into one of those guys who pick a fight with everyone. Jake got into at least three fights with Saxon, the other love interest. The fights often started because Saxon was talking to Brenna.

He was just talking to Brenna and then without warning Jake punches in the face.

Dude, why? He was talking to Brenna. He didn’t do anything! 

Saxon, in my opinion, was the better man. Granted, he was obsessed with Brenna, but honestly both of them were. At least Saxon didn’t beat guys up! While I didn’t like him for the longest time (because he was controlling and a stalker), I sort of warmed up to him.

I’m not really sure whether a controlling stalker is better than a controlling fighter but at least Saxon wasn’t bland and lifeless.

Plot and Writing


As for plot, DOUBLE CLUTCH was about Brenna trying to make it through high school. This was another purely character driven romance book. There was no central plot, but that was to be expected.


The writing had its flaws and its strengths. 

Reinhardt is very good with dialogue. The conversations between the characters felt very realistic. They weren’t stilted or fragmented. I really enjoyed the character interaction in the book.

Conversely, there were many typos and grammatical mistakes which made me really annoyed. I do not think it is because this is an ARC copy as this is a republish.

Likes and Dislikes


- character interaction

- dialogue

- Brenna


- characters

- Jake

- sexism and slut shaming


DOUBLE CLUTCH is actually a pretty good NA book compared to the rest of the mini genre but compared to a normal YA book, it falls short in a lot of categories. I can’t really recommend this book but I probably will read the second one.

Lisbeth is an American teenager who enjoys blowing shit up in videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

{Review} Various Positions by Martha Schabas

Title: Various Positions
Author: Martha Schabas
Format: NetGalley ebook ARC
Publisher:  Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Release date: February 14, 2012
Date Read: March 17, 2013
Trapped between the hormone-driven world of her friends and the discontent of her dysfunctional family, fourteen-year-old Georgia is only completely at ease when she's dancing. When she is accepted into Canada's preeminent ballet school, Georgia thinks it is the perfect escape. Artistic Director Roderick Allen singles her out as a star, subjecting her to increasingly intensive training, and Georgia obsesses about becoming the perfect, disciplined student. But as she spends more and more time with Roderick, it's not so clear exactly what their relationship means. Is he her teacher and mentor, or is there something more? These blurred lines will threaten both Roderick's future at the academy and Georgia's ambitions as a ballerina.


Dude, that was a really weird book.

Weird in the way that you're going to remember it, but not in a good way.

VARIOUS POSITIONS I'd love to see you try to come up with a dirtier title than that shit is the story of fourteen year old Georgia and her adventures in seducing her ballet teacher, copying porn poses, acting like an idiot, and hurting everyone around her.

I mean, it sounds about right to me.

VARIOUS POSITIONS had a really strange plot, because it wasn't about the ballet. It was about a seriously fucked-up girl from a fucked-up family living in a fucked-up world.

Sounds like me.

I didn't enjoy the odd plot. I had high hopes when I first read the blurb, mostly because it was being compared to The Black Swan for teenagers (which I loved). However, it wasn't what I was looking for at all.

I understand that VARIOUS POSITIONS is about a girl experimenting with her own sexuality, but as someone Georgia's age and ten times more perverted (hey, I was raised in a French family), her sexual thoughts were downright disturbing.

She gives forty-year old men 'suggestive faces', tries kissing her ballet teacher Roderick, and can't look a single person in the eye without imagining herself having sex with them. 

I mean, I don't even do that and that's saying something.

The writing, I had to admit, was beautiful. Schabas is a very talented writer, because the style was quite beautiful. However, the plot and characters dragged her debut novel down. VARIOUS POSITIONS never got dull, but it was never quite absorbing, either.

I hated every single character in VARIOUS POSITIONS. There was not one redeemable character that I grew to love, and most of all, I hated Georgia.

Georgia screws up massively, and then blames everyone but herself. She constantly shames the more 'sexual' girls for not acting as virginal as she does. By sexual, I mean swiping on some lipgloss. That's right: Georgia mentally taunts the other girls and makes fun of them for wearing an ounce of makeup.

Bitch, when I go shopping, I do go for the shirt that makes my boobs look big! And I do like wearing makeup, because it makes me look better. I feel more confident with it, and as a result I TURN INTO A FUCKING BADASS.

And I have plenty of 'self-respect', so fuck you.

Georgia doesn't take responsibility for her actions, and her age is not an excuse to act like a fucking moron. Georgia puts her friend in the hospital for anorexia with her seriously flawed 'diet' and doesn't think about it twice. She has consensual, willing unprotected sex with another guy and suddenly gets up, calls him names, and acts like he's raped her. Georgia believes that her ballet teacher Roderick lusts after her (though there are absolutely no indications) and tries to make out with him. Even though he pushes her away immediately, he gets in huge trouble, and is labeled a pedophile and a predator.

I'm probably more immature than Georgia, but I know not to take naked pictures of myself and send them to Roderick.



Roderick is an asshole and a dickface, but he doesn't deserve what he got. Even though Georgia promised to tell everyone he wasn't the one that kissed her, his reputation will be forever tainted, and Georgia will just be that poor girl who made a little mistake and got to go to another new.

It's so unfair and I nearly threw the book across the room.

All of Georgia's 'friends' are bitchy, one-dimensional, and unlikable. Georgia's parents seriously screwed her up, and their relationship with her was strained and sad. I despised them all, really.

One last thing, though. A ballet dancer in VARIOUS POSITIONS was considered chubby because of her thighs, but by ballet standards, 'chubby legs' are probably more thin than mine are ever going to get.

*looks down at thighs guilty* I should've probably written this review on the treadmill, huh?

Even though I wasn't a fan of this book, Schabas sure knows how to reel us in and keep us interested. I'll probably read future books of hers.

Oceana is a French-blooded teenager who enjoys stalking British boys and asking them to marry her. She was diagnosed with severe fangirl disorder in 2011. Able to curse like a sailor with an angelic voice.

Friday, March 15, 2013

{Review} Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Title: Anna and the French Kiss
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Format: Bought for Kindle
Publisher: Dutton
Release date: December 2nd, 2010
Date Read: January 28th to March 13th, 2013
Rating: ✭✭
Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris--until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne has it all...including a serious girlfriend.

 But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

Contrary to my rating, ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS is not a bad book. It's really not. How could a bad book have such a huge fan base (unless we're talking about FSOG)? Reviewers and readers alike have given ANNA a high rating. ANNA has a 4.2 average rating on GR and my friends have given it an average of 4.45. And for the reviewers I follow? Almost all fours and fives.

So, why didn't I like it? 

I really should like the book. ANNA is adorable. Well, it's by Stephanie Perkins who is universally known as one of the cutest people ever! ANNA is funny and sweet. However, even with all that's going for it, ANNA didn't meet my colossal expectations set by my coblogger and my other friends.
Personally, the biggest problem with ANNA is fairly simple. I know I'm going to have fangirls attack me for saying this but my biggest problem is that...

I hate St. Clair and Anna.

There, I said it. *pulls out shield* Almost everyone loves St. Clair. He's in almost everyone's book boyfriend list. I do get why people like him. He can be funny and sweet. My problem with him is that he's a huge asshole.

Before you start sharpening your weapons, hear me out. I'll admit, there are times where I can see where the ANNA lovers are coming from. Like I said, he's cute. My biggest problem with him lies with how he was leading on Anna - even though he's "taken".

How am I supposed to like a guy blatantly flirts with another girl even though he's supposedly madly in love with his girlfriend? Anna rather plainly shows interest in him and St. Clair doesnothing to stop her or even tell her that he's not interested.

St. Clair even goes as far as to discourage guys who show any interest in Anna.

St. Clair doesn't make one move to break up with his current girlfriend, hoping to get the best of both worlds. This isn't a character I can find romantic, despite the fact that he's cute and funny. I wish I could love him as much as everyone else does but sadly, I don't.


Anna. Anna freaking Oliphant. This girl guys...

To be nice, I'll start of with a positive thing. Anna, when not being an annoying bitch, is pretty funny. Her humor reminded me a lot of Katy from Obsidian except she wasn't nearly as awesome as Katy was. 

Ok, I'm done with being nice for now.

Anna hated any girl who looked at St. Clair. I didn't know you could be a possessive imaginary girlfriend but good job Anna, you did the impossible. Go get a gold star.

Most girls were painted in a negative light. Every girl eventually morphed into a jealous bitch. Even Mer, Anna's bff, was reduced to an angry bitch by the end. 

A major gripe with Anna was her tendency to slut shamed. To tell you the truth, I sometimes find it hard to find slut shaming - even when it's pretty easy to see. But this example wasn't exactly subtle:

"Arse. She's not going as a slutty nurse.""Just a regular one?" I ask innocently. "With a low cut dress and really big breasts?"

Could she have been any less subtle? I think not.

Anna was also incredibly stupid at times. Apparently she was not only bad at French, she couldn't tell what a French word sounds like. Guys, even if you never learned any French, couldn't you tell that something like tout pourvoir is French just by looking at the word? No, our smart Anna had no clue that tout pourvoir is French.

With all that said, Anna isn’t a terrible character all the time. She’s sarcastic and humorous. I did like her sometimes but for the most part, she annoyed me with all her whining and complaining. 

As I said earlier, I really hate St. Clair. I also gave you my reason for saying that so I'll just cover the positive aspects (because there are some) and move on with the review. 

St. Clair can be unbelievably cute at times. I don't see how he's the best guy in the world but I don't think I ever will. He's definitely not perfect, which necessarily isn't a bad thing. It is a bad thing when these imperfections involve being a insufferable asshole.

Another big problem with the MCs was the common trope where everyone thinks the MC is the most gorg gurl ever (and the MC doesn't realize it) and everyone in the world lusts over the love interest. 
As for the side characters, my problem was that their only personality trait was funny. They were used to add humor into the book. 

Now, I like funny just as much as the next guy but I do hate when characters are only used for comedic effect and for furthering the plot and nothing else. There weren't any minor characters I really loved. I don't know if this makes any sense but I didn't like them but their humor.

Plot and Writing


Plotwise, ANNA isn't so strong (because the characters are obviously amazing). It is quite obvious that ANNA is a very character driven book. It follows a very routine story outline in which the main character moves to a new city and joins a new school.

There is no definite plot to ANNA, more of a series of events leading up to the big kiss. I can’t really dock any points for the lack of plot because in many purely contemporary YA romances, there isn’t much of a plot unless it’s a “girl is in horrible accident, recovers, and finds love” story. 


No one can say that Perkins is a bad writer. She's got a lot of talent, if only she used that to tell the story of two better characters.

Her writing is adorable. It can make me smile even when I really didn't want to find the scenes adorable. Even despite how much I hate Anna as a character, her narrative voice was engaging and entertaining.

Likes and Dislikes


- writing

- humor


- characters


There are a lot of fans for this book but I’m definitely not one of them. I can’t recommend this book and after this, I’m not sure if I’ll try another Perkins book.

Lisbeth is an American teenager who enjoys blowing shit up in videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

{Review} The Eternity Cure by Julie Kagawa

Title: The Eternity Cure
Author: Julie Kagawa
Format: NetGalley ebook ARC
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release date: April 23, 2013
Date Read: February 27, 2013 - March 3, 2013
Rating: ✭✭✭✭
Allison Sekemoto has vowed to rescue her creator, Kanin, who is being held hostage and tortured by the psychotic vampire Sarren. The call of blood leads her back to the beginning—New Covington and the Fringe, and a vampire prince who wants her dead yet may become her wary ally.

Even as Allie faces shocking revelations and heartbreak like she’s never known, a new strain of the Red Lung virus that decimated humanity is rising to threaten human and vampire alike.

ARC supplied by NetGalley and Harlequin Teen in exchange for an honest review.

Someone help me pick up my jaw, please.

*points at jaw on floor* Yup, right there. Thanks.

Julie sure knows how to write a soul-crushing cliffhanger, doesn't she?

THE ETERNITY CURE was a book that I was excitedly looking forward to. I'm unashamed to say that I'm a Julie Kagawa fangirl, and though THE IMMORTAL RULES was a four-star read for me, I loved THE ETERNITY CURE even more.

It follows vampire Allison Sekemoto as she searches for her soulmate, PLEASE mentor, Kanin, who is being tortured by the bat-shit crazy vampire Sarren. Along for the ride are Jackal, a former vampire Prince who has a lot more in common with Allie than she originally thought, and her romantic interest Zeke, a human. But saving Kanin isn't the only problem on their mind: a new strain of The Red Lung has appeared, a plague that can kill humans and vampires alike.

But apparently Allie and her friends do.

THE IMMORTAL RULES moved at a very slow pace for me, but THE ETERNITY CURE was snapping its fingers in my face and not slowing down. It was very rapid, with a lot of action that I couldn't help but adore. It was split into three parts, just like its predecessor, but all the sections were intense - so intense, in fact, that I couldn't put THE ETERNITY CURE down until I forced myself to...

... at three in the morning.


Julie's writing is superb. If I'm going to be perfectly honest, her style hasn't changed one bit - but I'm glad that it didn't. First person, present-tense, with lots of detailing that Julie managed to rein in so it didn't get too purple and flowery. 

The characters in THE ETERNITY CURE were unbelievably fascinating, especially Sarren, the psychotic vampire even though I wanted to rip his head off for hurting Kanin. Fleshed-out and detailed, they had a personality to speak of and a story to tell. 

It's true that I didn't love Allison in this book as much as I did in THE IMMORTAL RULES. When it came to killing, most of the time, she was the same Allison I had fallen in love with. The merciless bad-ass Asian chick who accepted what she was and didn't argue with it. However, when she was with Zeke in THE ETERNITY CURE, she became a sappy girl that constantly whined about not being able to be with him because she was a vampire.

And it got annoying, really fast.

Zeke also got on my nerves, because his mind was constantly changing about Allie. One moment he'd push her away and tell her that they'd never be together, but in the next he'd try to convince her to run away with him. I didn't care much about him - at all, actually - though that might be because I'm kind of a Kallison shipper.


Eek, let me explain. 

Yes, I adore Allison and Kanin together, but only if they're not technically daughter-and-father. Allison, at times, referred to Kanin as her father, but she also mentioned that they weren't actually family. So, Allison, make up your damn mind.

Kanin and Jackal were my favorite characters in THE ETERNITY CURE. Kanin ripped my heart out and handed it back to me in pieces while I sobbed uncontrollably. His sweet, shy, and quiet demeanor made me fall in love with him, hard. Kanin is one of the most emotionally depressed and broken characters I've ever encountered, and all I wanted to do was scoop him into my arms and stroke his hair.

Because that's not creepy AT ALL.

Jackal was like the eviler, meaner, murdering, PMS-ing version of Grimalkin from Julie's other book, THE IRON KING. I couldn't love him after everything he did in the previous book, but he did make me laugh out loud a couple of times. Jackal was a very dynamic character, and seeing him change throughout the book - though he maintained his violent, cold personality - was amazing.

And can we talk about Chapter 13, please? Oh my gods, my heart was racing while I read it. The chapter gave me the middle finger and stomped all over me, screaming, OCEANA, PLEASE WATCH THE LOVE OF YOUR LIFE SHATTER 

I adored THE ETERNITY CURE and I think a lot of people will love it as well.

Oceana is a French-blooded teenager who enjoys stalking British boys and asking them to marry her. She was diagnosed with severe fangirl disorder in 2011. Able to curse like a sailor with an angelic voice.