The Sowing

December 16th, 2013 | Posted by Paola in Blog Tour | New Adult | Review | Science Fiction | YA Fiction - (0 Comments)

thesowingTITLE: The Sowing (The Seeds Trilogy, #1)

AUTHOR: K. Makansi

GENRE: YA/NA Science Fiction

PUBLISHED: 2013, Layla Dog Press

FORMAT: Paperback, 281 pages

The Famine may be over, but the Resistance has just begun.

When Remy Alexander is fifteen, her older sister is murdered in a cold-blooded classroom massacre. When the Okarian Sector hides the truth behind the attack, Remy’s family goes underground to join the clandestine and growing Resistance movement. Now, three years later, Remy is beginning to find clues about why her sister was murdered. But at the same time, Valerian Orlean, the boy Remy once loved, is put in charge of hunting and destroying the Resistance. As Vale fights to protect his people and Remy seeks justice for her sister, the two are set on a collision course that could bring everyone together – or tear everything apart. (From Goodreads)

The Sowing takes place in a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by environmental collapse and a series of devastating wars that has caused a severe population decline. There is safety and prosperity to be found in the Okarian Sector, but these things come at a terrible price: freedom. Almost everything is dictated, beginning with specialized diets tailored to every individual’s needs and station. Everything is ruled by science and the  Okarian Agricultural Consortium, which is responsible for the breakthroughs in artificial agriculture that ensure its citizens are fed and provided with the best medicine. Not everyone is happy with the way the Consortium handles things; a growing rebellion alleges that what appears to be nurturing is actually manipulative and oppressive.

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Don’t Turn Around

December 3rd, 2013 | Posted by Paola in Review | Science Fiction | Series | Suspense | YA Fiction - (8 Comments)

dontturnaroundTITLE: Don’t Turn Around (PERSEFoNE, #1)

AUTHOR: Michelle Gagnon

GENRE: YA Science Fiction

PUBLISHED: 2012, Harper Collins

FORMAT: Paperback, 336 pages

When Noa Torson wakes up lying on a table with stitches in her chest and an IV in her arm, it’s even more terrifying to realize that she has no memory of how she got there. She narrowly escapes the strange warehouse with her life, but this is only the beginning of a conspiracy that Noa must unravel at the risk of becoming a victim herself. What follows is a desperate race to uncover the truth. Noa will need every skill she has in order to survive and find out what really happened to her, as well as the help of fellow hacker Peter Gregory, the only other person who seems to be on her side.

This was extremely easy to get into and a quick, suspenseful read for me. There’s never a dull moment. Noa is on the run, struggling to stay one step ahead of her pursuers while trying to find answers at the same time. I really liked the pacing; it kept me turning the pages, burning with the need to find answers myself. I mean, I know Noa had a personal investment in this because she was the one they kidnapped and subsequently cut open, but I wanted to know why too because 1) creepy and 2) REALLY creepy. Not to mention the strange side effects she starts to experience… You better believe I had some crazy theories brewing in my head while reading. Uhh, you DEFINITELY don’t want to hear any of them either. I am not exaggerating the crazy. LOL.

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Of Beast and Beauty

September 16th, 2013 | Posted by Paola in Fantasy | Retelling | Review | Science Fiction | YA Fiction - (13 Comments)

ofbeastandbeautyTITLE: Of Beast and Beauty

AUTHOR: Stacey Jay

GENRE: Fantasy

PUBLISHED: 2013, Delacorte Press

FORMAT: eBook, 256 pages

The domed city of Yuan is the only safe haven for miles in the harsh deserts of Isra’s dying planet. The lands outside the dome are prowled by the Monstrous — mutated beasts like Gem. They were once human, and are now shunned from the cities where those without mutations dwell in privilege and even luxury. Their safety comes at a terrible price, however; a price that Isra knows too well. The blind princess of Yuan keeps many secrets, not all of which are her own. Her path collides with Gem’s when the starving Monstrous attempt to steal the source of Yuan’s prosperity and fail. What unfolds is a friendship, and then a love, that could change the fate of their world.

I’m a huge fan of fairytales and an even bigger fan of fairytale retellings, especially creative ones. I’ve read quite a few of these over the years, but I have to say that Of Beast and Beauty is by far the most unique version of Beauty and the Beast that I’ve ever encountered. And you know, sometimes I just get this gut feeling about a book… it’s hard to explain, but some books I just KNOW I’m going to love. I read the synopsis and DONE, let me have it RIGHT NOW. This was one of those inexplicable moments of book serendipity for me. (I mean, just read the synopsis… OF COURSE THIS WAS MEANT FOR ME. Hello???)

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In Time

August 6th, 2013 | Posted by Paola in Review | Science Fiction | Series | YA Fiction - (6 Comments)

066_intimeTITLE: In Time (The Darkest Minds, #1.5)

AUTHOR: Alexandra Bracken

GENRE: YA Science Fiction

PUBLISHED: 2013, Disney Hyperion – eNovella, 85 pages

PRECEDED BY: The Darkest Minds

America has been ravaged by an epidemic that robbed the population of its children and transformed the ones who managed to survive. This, combined with an economic crash, has left Gabe with very few options in life. His best chance of securing a future for himself is to become a skip tracer, hunting escaped children and teenagers who have broken out of the so-called reform camps. If he collects the bounties on their heads, he might just be able to save up enough to escape his troubled past. But when Gabe captures a young girl who can’t speak, he discovers that it’s even harder to just walk away. What if the government is wrong, and these children aren’t soulless or inhuman? What if giving this girl back to her captors would be the biggest mistake of Gabe’s life?

I absolutely loved this novella! I’m a huge fan of The Darkest Minds (as some of you might have been able to surmise by now, considering how often I babble on and on about it) and I really feel like this short story is the perfect bridge between the first and second installments. Fans of Zu, rejoice! Masochistic readers who somehow enjoy being Facepunched By Feels, also rejoice! This one is a must-read if The Darkest Minds broke your heart into teeny tiny pieces, then tossed those pieces into a raging bonfire. Just… be ready for the pain. In fact, start bracing yourself now. RIGHT NOW.

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