this sorta messed me UP

The Infinity Courts – Akemi Dawn Bowman 

Young adult, fantasy, death, afterlife, computers, science fiction, fiction.

7/10

Nami was ready for her future until she was murdered. She died when the bank robber at the liquor store shot her. She finds herself in Infinity where the mind is alive but her body is dead. The people who greet her tell her about the war against Ophelia who has taken over the Infinity and hates humanity. Nami is the only one to help save them from disaster or their world from actually ending. 

This young adult novel was one of the trendy books I saw and was instantly interested. However, the chosen one trope was what got to me but besides that everything else is really good. The storyline and plot goes smoothly. The characters and their interactions with each other were alright but the chosen one trope kept getting more annoying as the characters kept telling Nami she is the chosen one and that she should train for the ultimate fight. I was expecting better for this novel but then again the chosen one trope is heavily in most young adult novels as it is popular among that demographic. It sells right off the shelves.

not gonna finish this series.

Scythe – Neal Shusterman

Death, reaping, young adult, fantasy, science fiction, dystopian, fiction. 

Rating 7/10

Citra and Rowan are chosen as Scythe apprentices to practice the art of reaping. Since the world is nearly perfect where death is not as easy to happen, someone has to reap to keep the population in check. Faraday chooses Citra and Rowan to train even though they do not want to become the reaper of death. He increases intensity and importance by forcing them to make the ultimate decision. Who gets to become the reaper while the other has to be reaped by the new reaper. 

I loved the idea of reaping in this dystopia but I found this too predictable. I loved the writing and world building. The characters are really diverse and each person of the novel has such a rich character development. I know this is a series but I do not wish to continue the series. Maybe down the line I might change my mind. I mostly got this book because I recalled reading one of Shusterman’s books before. I read one of his children series that was really well written and I loved those books. The author writes phenomenally and I would recommend any of his works. Expect uniqueness and intensity with the works.

life after loss

The Two Lives of Lydia Bird – Josie Silver

Romance, loss, death, mourning, soul search, healing, fiction.

Rating 9/10

Lydia loved Freddie and longed to be his wife and mother of their children. On his way to her place to pick her up for her surprise dinner, he had to make a detour to pick up their mutual friend, Jonah. When he was on his way to her place, their last conversation on the phone will forever be ingrained in her memories. The police come knocking on her door telling her that Freddie died, and Jonah survived. For a couple weeks she mourns for Freddie and her family tries to soothe her. Only in her dreams, Freddie is very much alive and prefers to dream than face reality. A whole year goes by and Lydia realizes that she can’t be mourning his death no more as well for the dreams that offer her an alternative reality. Lydia decides to live her life to the fullest.

I was forever wanting to read this book because of the bittersweet reviews I have read. Also, to see why this book was popular and trending everywhere on the internet. After finishing the book, I sort of predicted the ending prior to finishing, but decided to read through just because I loved how the author describes the different stages of losing someone. Not everyone goes through the same processes as others would. This novel really had me in tears until the end. Most happy tears though.

Innocents lost in LINGO

Everlost: Book 1 of SkinJacker Trilogy – Neal Shusterman

Traffic accidents, death, future life, spirit possession, young adult, fiction.

Rating 9/10

Allie and Nick got into a car crash. Neither of them survives and they don’t grasp what happened to them immediately. Up until a boy their age tells them what and where they are. They are in a world between heaven and hell, trapped in a limbo called Everlost. Nick adjusts to this new life in the afterlife. Sadly, Allie is not satisfied and wants to be alive again. Allie does whatever it takes to rejoin the living even if she must take another body.

I read this novel when I was younger and was intrigued with the plotline and the contrasting characters. I found myself finishing the novel quickly as it was a small novel but there is a lot of plot. Later on I decided to reread the novel recently and found myself enjoying the novel more and more.

A Sinister Mystery

The Death of Mrs. Westaway – Ruth Ware

Inheritance, succession, suspense, fiction, thriller

Rating 9/10

A young woman by the name of Hal works as a tarot reader just to get by with paying bills and such. She is presented with a letter saying she must come forward to receive some sort of inherited money from a deceased family member. The awful twist is that she doesn’t recognize the name and knew the little family she had, all passed away. Hal not only struggling to make ends meet, but during this horrible timing, Mr. Smith, a man whom she borrowed money from, sends a messenger to her to tell her Mr. Smith wants his money back. Hal does an impulse move, respond to the letter by showing up. Even though she has no connection to these people, this might be a shot at getting at something or fail horribly. Hal has come to terms that these strangers might be her actual family and that her recently deceased mother had never spoken of them. There is a possibility that her mother might’ve been connected to this family. Hal is faced with a sudden realization that she knows she doesn’t belong and is about to embark on fraudulent journey and solve the mystery of this situation as well.

I think I have read another novel that Ruth Ware had written, In A Dark, Dark Wood, and enjoyed her suspenseful story telling. At first the book was slow and depressing but things got a bit thrilling when Hal is being chased after by money sharks as well as receiving a possible small fortune from a deceased person whom she has no connection to or possible connection. I love how the book slowly builds up. Also, I had binged read this novel because it made me want to read more and more about what would be the outcome of this scenario that Hal was put in. Totally worth rereading again and I highly recommend this novel.

Dead Teenagers and Time Travel?

Ascenders: Omorrow Book Three – C.L. Gaber

Supernatural, young adult, fiction, death, afterlife, school, teenagers, time travel

Rating: 10/10

Walker and Daniel plus a team of other various teenagers are sent out on a mission to retrieve the item that is needed to be retrieved from the past. It’s risky because it’s in the living realm. They’ve been prepared for the worst, demons, as well as anything else that is thrown at them. One thing they must do is time travel through the decades in search of the lost writings of Albert Einstein. Walker and Daniel must be careful to live because if one dies in the past, they’ll never be born. Cease to exist. This makes their journey even more perilous than the two hopefully had planned.

As what I thought was the final book in the series, it left off at a cliff hanger. Loved how time travel was added into the mix. I thoroughly enjoyed this one. It made me laugh, cringe, and sympathize with the protagonists. Not much more to say other than I hope the series continue. I would want to see where Walker and Daniel end up in the afterlife. I find them to be cute together and especially how they have chemistry. Sometimes I would scream for them to like to become serious and get married in the afterlife. There are no rules other than don’t go to the living realm. I want to see more of this story however expanded into new adventures in general.

Aftermath = Punishment

Ascenders: Skypunch Book Two – C.L. Gaber

Supernatural, young adult, fiction, death, afterlife, school, teenagers

Rating 10/10

In the next installment comes another adventure for our protagonists, Walker Callagan and Daniel Reid. After rescuing Daniel’s little brother, Walker seeing her mother for the last time, and escaping demons, they return to the afterlife alive. Sadly, what fate was store for them was a fate worse than being distinguished by demons. Being sent to the ITT, a place where criminally disturbed teenagers go to face punishment for eternity. Walker does what ever possible to stay alive and stay sane for Daniel. Hopefully Daniel is doing what he can to stay sane as well. The Godfather gives Walker an assignment, to ghost write, his memoir in exchange of freedoms as well as letting her beloved have freedoms if Daniel does what the GF tells him to do. Play Hockey and bring home the trophy or Walker is sent to the Hole for six months to mentally rot. A clairvoyant by the named of Cass, comes and visits Walker. Also, Cass sort of found Walker’s mother and began assisting her mother just to torment Walker into possibly dating him, Even though he is alive and she isn’t. Anyways Walker and Daniel are given a task that they retrieve an item lost in history or face going back to the ITT. It is a dangerous mission that involves training with not only students from the Academy and ITT but also another school that is called FREAKS that inhabit teenagers with special mental powers.

This second installment of this book series, Ascenders, kept me wanting to read it nonstop. It was hard to put down because I wanted to figure out what is happening and what will happen. I swear this book is worth reading! Again, the author Gaber got me craving for the next page to the point I find myself nearly finishing the book. Can’t wait to read the next one which I will be doing a book review for and will be posted after this one.

High School for the Dead?

Ascenders, High School of the Recently Departed – C.L. Gaber

Young adult, fiction, after life, death, high school

Rating 10/10

After an accident, Walker Callaghan finds herself somewhere new and unfamiliar with her mother. A place called The Academy where teenagers go when they unfortunately died young. Walker tries to understand what is going on and is sort of enjoying this after life high school. One day her mother goes back to the living because she woke up from a coma. Sadly, Walker needed to properly say goodbye because she didn’t get a chance. Someone else wants to return to the living as well. Daniel Reid wants to return to the living realm to save his brother who didn’t make it back from the crash where Daniel and his siblings died and came to this after life realm. Both Daniel and Walker work together into research to get back to the living realm. It becomes risky when they join a Criminology class, receive an assignment to go to the other school that is for the bad teenagers who committed horrendous crimes. They get an answer from a teenager who claims to have returned to the living realm and came back. Daniel and Walker talk to this teen and after preparing to return to the living realm. It’s dangerous because in the living realm the bad parts stayed and the good parts came back to this realm, the so-called demons, once they sense the part of themselves, they go after the other part to kill. Only way to fight the demons is with old age weapons. No modern weapons. Walker and Daniel take a huge risk that can cost them their lives.

I had gotten this book and the entire book series at Los Angeles Festival of Books on April fourteenth of this year because the genre was very unique and something I haven’t read yet. After reading this book, I instantly was glad I had gotten the trilogy because the first book made me curious as to what will happen next and now, I don’t have to do much waiting. I really love this book. I plan to possibly post the next book in the series as well as the third book also. I highly recommend giving this book a read. I would say that this book can be read by adults as well.

A Lovely Gem

The Husband’s Secret – Liane Moriarty

Suspense, drama, fiction, secrets, death

Rating 9/10

In a town full of people who unknowingly have history together, remember the death of this girl, Janie, Rachel’s daughter who was murdered. The murderer got away and there was no evidence or so what Rachel thought. Rachel had found a tape possibly showing Janie’s murderer. Cecilia has a happy marriage and three daughters with a man whom she loves very dearly. While cleaning, she comes across a letter her husband had written ‘in case’ he had died. Out of curiosity, she read the letter to find out her husband, Jean Paul, had murdered Janie. Tess finds out her husband is in love with her best friend, leaves with her child to her mothers for a while. During the two weeks, Tess thought that her husband was sleeping with her best friend but, he was just feeling the middle-aged blues and because of her assumption, she slept with an ex-boyfriend. Rachel find injustice and decided to act, who she thought the murderer of her baby girl, wasn’t him? In this misconception, Rachel accidentally injures Cecilia’s child in the process of gaining revenge. In the end, secrets can become a ticking time bomb and injure innocents in the process.

I had loved this compelling story and glad to have read this book. It is a bit sad but there is a somewhat happy ending. However, it was left on a cliff hanger and those aggravate me. I enjoyed the layered storytelling to bring the story full circle and complete.

Moriarty , Liane. The Husband’s Secret. Penguin Random House , 2013.