Thursday, June 27, 2013

Power Down (Dewey Andreas #1)

Title: Power Down (Dewey Andreas #1)
Author: Ben Coes
Date Published: September 2010
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 449

A major North American hydroelectric dam is blown up and the largest off-shore oil field in this hemisphere is destroyed in a brutal, coordinated terrorist attack. But there was one factor that the terrorists didn't take into account when they struck the Capitana platform off the coast of Colombia—slaughtering much of the crew and blowing up the platform—and that was the Capitana crew chief Dewey Andreas. Dewey, former Army Ranger and Delta, survives the attack, rescuing as many of his men as possible. But the battle has just begun.

While the intelligence and law enforcement agencies scramble to untangle these events and find the people responsible, the mysterious figure of Alexander Fortuna—an agent embedded into the highest levels of American society and business—sets into play the second stage of these long-planned attacks. The only fly in the ointment is Dewey Andreas—who is using all his long-dormant skills to fight his way off the platform, then out of Colombia and back to the U.S., following the trail of terrorists and operatives sent to stop him. 

Power Down was one of the most amazing books I have read in a long time. I absolutely LOVE how Ben Coes tells a story. He tells it from one person's point of view, rewinds a few sentences and then goes to another character in the book and talks about how they view it or what they are going through during the same time period. This is Ben Coes' first book and I hope that there are many more to come, I am a dedicated fan now. In the synopsis for Power Down, they compare Ben Coes to Vince Flynn which I think is a grave injustice to both writers. Being a (major) fan of Flynn also, having read a lot of his books and then comparing it to Coes, the only similarities I see are that they focus on government issues and they are both great writers. Amazing. The way Coes developed the main character, Dewey Andreas, and made him so imperfect was also a big hit with me. I love it when the main hero is flawed and doesn't come out of gun battles unscathed and you don't see that too often. I am definitely impatiently waiting the next installment of Dewey Andreas ... hopefully there will be one! Great job, Coes!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

** Lauren Oliver's YA novel picked up by Universal **

There is some big news that was announced last week ... a book that Lauren Oliver (the author of the Delirium trilogy) is writing has been picked up by Universal studios for the film rights. The book isn't even published yet and apparently, there was a major bidding war for the film rights on this book! The bidding war ended well for Lauren Oliver because sources say that it was a seven figure deal. 

The book is called Panic and unfortunately, it will not be out until March 4th of 2014. Since the book isn't out yet, you can bet that the movie won't come out until after the book is on the shelves.

You'll need to keep a watch out for the book/Nook/Kindle pre-ordering on this one ... it's not yet open but that could change in the next couple of months, so keep it in mind!

So far, it looks like Panic will be a stand-alone novel ... but we all know how that can change!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Broken (Will Trent #4)

Title: Broken (Will Trent #4)
Author: Karin Slaughter
Date Published: 2010
Publisher: Delacorte Press

 When Special Agent Will Trent arrives in Grant County, he finds a police department determined to protect its own and far too many unanswered questions about a prisoner’s death. He doesn’t understand why Officer Lena Adams is hiding secrets from him. He doesn’t understand her role in the death of Grant County’s popular police chief. He doesn’t understand why that man’s widow, Dr. Sara Linton, needs him now more than ever to help her crack this case.

While the police force investigates the murder of a young woman pulled from a frigid lake, Trent investigates the police force, putting pressure on Adams just when she’s already about to crack. Caught between two complicated and determined women, trying to understand Linton’s passionate distrust of Adams, the facts surrounding Chief Tolliver’s death, and the complexities of this insular town, Trent will unleash a case filled with explosive secrets—and encounter a thin blue line that could be murderous if crossed.

Broken starts off with what Grant County personnel thinks is a suicide. Through a series of events, a suspect is captured and Dr. Sara Linton is dragged into the fold (unwillingly at first) along with Will Trent. They both start investigating the circumstances surrounding the arrest of the suspect and the unfortunate set of events that follow.

As expected, Broken is absolutely amazing. Anything about Grant County is great because Karin Slaughter writes in such a way that you really feel a connection to the characters. After I finish reading each Grant County book, I always find myself wondering what certain characters will be up to next or feeling angry at them for something they have done - like they are real people. This book just leaves me speechless. This is by far Karin Slaughter's best book to date in my opinion. The pages blow by and before you know it, you're angry because you've finished the book. Broken is filled with surprises that completely blind side you and keep you on your toes!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Low Pressure

Title: Low Pressure
Author: Sandra Brown
Date Published: 2012
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Pages: 467

 Bellamy Lyston Price was only 12 years old when her older sister Susan was killed on a stormy Memorial Day. Bellamy's fear of storms is a legacy of the tornado that destroyed the crime scene as well as her memory of one vital fact that still eludes her...

Now, 18 years later, Bellamy has written a novel based on Susan's murder. It's her first book, and it's an instant sensation. But because the novel is based on the most traumatic event of her life, she's published it under a pseudonym to protect herself and her family.

But when a sleazy reporter for a tabloid newspaper discovers that the book is based on a real crime, Bellamy's identity - and dark family secrets -- are exposed. Suddenly, she finds herself embroiled in a personal conflict and at the mercy of her sister's killer, who for almost two decades has gotten away with murder...and will stop at nothing to keep it that way.
Just finished this one a couple of minutes ago and wow. This is one of my favorites by Sandra Brown now.

Writing was phenomenal (as usual), Brown can really write some amazing characters! The depth that she goes to in order to really delve into making them feel like real people is pretty amazing. I think that Brown creates awesomely flawed characters. Who doesn't like a flawed character?!? This is a little weird, but I would much rather read about someone who is messed up than the perfect person. I guess it just makes them more ... normal ... to be flawed.

Anyway, in order to avoid a complete derailment ... Low Pressure. I was a little unsure of this one for some reason. I thought that the premise was good but I didn't really know how this story would play out at the beginning. I was afraid it would turn into more of a family drama than her usual books and that isn't really what I am looking for when I read a Sandra Brown book. I want something with a little romance, a lot of mystery and tons of suspense. Well Brown totally hit the nail on the head. The family aspect didn't play as much of a part as I was afraid that it would. But even if it had, it would have been okay because this was one majorly messed up family. I can never complain about the weirdos in my clan again. Well, I probably will ... but not as much. 
I had pretty much picked out the bad guy in this one from the get-go. That's not always a bad thing though ... because even though I had my suspicions, I wasn't totally for sure and I had NO IDEA as to the motivation of the antagonist and then it turns out there was a lot more to the story than I had banked on. At the time I was delighted that the story was so twisted and convoluted because that wasn't what I had expected but then I finished the book and I realized that this was why I read Sandra Brown books. She always lets you think that you know what is going on and then pulls some magic scene that twists stuff beyond recognition. 
Low Pressure had a lot less romance than most of the Sandra Brown books that I have read and it was a nice change of pace. The action and suspense really took the front seat this time. I'm kinda hoping that this is the direction that her writing is taking for the future. Not that I don't like romance in the novels, but I think that sometimes it can overshadow deeper aspects of a book that some authors don't explore enough. 
I would give this book 4.75 stars ... just a great read. Definitely something to read poolside this summer. But watch out ... you better keep your eye on the time because before you know it, you could be frying by the side of the pool, not realizing that you've been sitting out there reading all day because you just can't put this book down!

Friday, June 21, 2013

The Lovers (Charlie Parker #8)

Title: The Lovers (Charlie Parker #8)
Author: John Connolly
Date Published: 2009
Publisher: Atria
Stripped of his license, Charlie Parker takes a job in a Portland bar. Alone and directionless, he faces at last a shadow he has lived with since his childhood: what made his father, a respected police officer, apparently shoot dead two unarmed teens and then commit suicide. His quest leads him back to the little New York town where he grew up, to the secret history of the NYPD, and to the existence of mysterious friends and hidden enemies.

For waiting in the shadows, as they have been throughout Charlie’s life, are a man and a woman with only one purpose: to bring an end to his very existence . . .

John Connolly is a painter - he just uses words instead of watercolors. The way that he writes makes you picture everything as it happens! I think that a lot of authors miss that mark but John Connolly has it down pat!

John Connolly jumps right into the story and you feel like you're there with Charlie Parker as he deals with the police, his lawyer, old friends and memories from long ago. Charlie is delving into his past to find out more about the killings his dad was involved in before his suicide. As this is happening, two people are trying to keep him from finding out any information and they are killing people as they get closer and closer to Charlie.

True to John Connolly style, this book is full of twists and turns that are completely unexpected and they all throw you for a loop. The Lovers is part of the Charlie Parker series, but don't disregard it if you haven't read any of the other books in the series. It is so well written that you don't HAVE to know everything in the past (although it does help a little). Such a great read all around, definitely something I will read over and over

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Decisions, Decisions ...

Just received a copy of True Love by Jude Deveraux!! I won the book through Goodreads and if you haven't signed up for giveaways on that site, you are missing out! I've won close to 60 books on that site and most of what I receive is amazing. I say most because, man ... there were some bad books in that mix. But you never know until you try! 

If I could pass along one tiny piece of info to anyone who may stumble onto this blog, it would be that you have to read outside of your "normal" genre at least once. Just give it a try. I used to be the type of reader that stuck to my staples:  James Patterson, Nicholas Sparks, Tami Hoag and Vince Flynn. I hardly ever read outside of those authors. They were my safe zone, so to speak. I was so afraid of picking up a new author's book because I was terrified that I would hate it and I would waste my time. 

I'm happy to say that I've stepped outside of my comfort zone in regards to books and I've discovered some amazing authors and intriguing genres because of that big step of faith. 

The moral of the story is ... don't be a stick in the mud like I was! 

Anyway, now that I've run the train way off of the tracks ... I started writing this post to talk about the new book. So ... now I have a dilemma. Do I finish reading the new Sandra Brown book that I'm half-way into or do I dive into this new Deveraux book .... decisions, decisions ... 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Opal (Lux #3)

Title: Opal (Lux #3)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Date Published: December 2012
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 382


No one is like Daemon Black.

When he set out to prove his feelings for me, he wasn’t fooling around. Doubting him isn’t something I’ll do again, and now that we’ve made it through the rough patches, well... There’s a lot of spontaneous combustion going on.

But even he can’t protect his family from the danger of trying to free those they love.

After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of. The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever.

Together we’re stronger... and they know it.

Finally, Daemon and Katy get their act together and finally behave like a couple! I really don't have any negatives with this book ... if I did ... you know that I'd point it out. 

This book pretty much runs the same as the previous two in the Lux series. With a few twists. More than a few twists. The ending completely threw me for a loop. I've read so many books that I can usually pin-point the bad guy pretty close to the beginning of the book and I really couldn't with this one. I thought that something was a little hinky with one of the characters and then it seemed to resolve itself and before you know it ... BAM!! ... mind blown. 

There was one point at the end of the book where I just had to sit there ... I was so stunned. I'll just tell you this, there was a huge betrayal. Major. Epic. For some reason, this betrayal just came out of left field for me. I don't know why. I should have guessed it!! But Jennifer Armentrout is a tricky author. She writes stories that are so ... normal. You feel like you're there, you know? And then she pulls some twisted plot whirlpool out of nowhere and you feel like the rug has been yanked out from under you. 

I think that is a sign of a good author ... if someone can keep me guessing, you're a good author. I mean, I watch Criminal Minds. That makes me an expert in like ... everything ... right? If only!

Anyway ... great 3rd installment in this series ... I'm interested to see where else Armentrout can take this.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Onyx (Lux #2)

Title: Onyx (Lux #2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Date Published: August 2012
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 366

Being connected to Daemon Black sucks…

Thanks to his alien mojo, Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But we’ve got bigger problems.

Something worse than the Arum has come to town…

The Department of Defense are here. If they ever find out what Daemon can do and that we're linked, I’m a goner. So is he. And there's this new boy in school who’s got a secret of his own. He knows what’s happened to me and he can help, but to do so, I have to lie to Daemon and stay away from him. Like that's possible. Against all common sense, I'm falling for Daemon. Hard.

But then everything changes…

I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

No one is who they seem. And not everyone will survive the lies…

After sitting back for a while and contemplating everything that happened in this book ... I'm still confused. Not by the writing - it's stellar ... I still love how this writer is a no-frills kind of lady with her style (writing that is). I'm confused about the story line ... not about what has happened, but about where in the world can it go next? Who am I going to love and then hate, who am I going to hate and then love ... it's a jumble of emotions with this book. One minute, I'm freaked out by what is happening and then it's fine. Or everything is all good and then ... BOOM ... mind blown.

Great series ... I'm already reading #3 which is why this review will be a little short ... I have to get back into Katy's world and find out what is happening now.

Pick up the first one in the series, you won't be disappointed. It's light-hearted and fun, the characters are so realistic and sassy ... love it.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Obsidian (Lux #1)

Title: Obsidian (Lux #1)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Date Published: November 2011
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 361


Starting over sucks.

When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I'd pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring.... until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.

And then he opened his mouth.

Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something...unexpected happens.

The hot alien living next door marks me.

You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon's touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I'm getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades.

If I don't kill him first, that is.

Three words ... MY. NEW. FAVORITE!!!

This book is absolutely awesome. Armentrout developed an amazing character in Katy. She's this spunky and (extremely) sassy teenager who holds nothing back when it comes to the leading male, Daemon, (who happens to be my new favorite male character). Daemon is mouthy and bossy and full of himself and apparently, drop dead gorgeous. The rapport between these two main characters is like watching someone throw gasoline on a fire - you know it will be cool to look at and fun to be around but it's so hot that you don't want to go near it.

If this ever turns into a movie ... please, for the love of everything soft and fluffy, cast Channing Tatum as Daemon. You and I both know that it's the right thing to do.

Anyhow. Armentrout pulls you in from the very first page. Her style of writing is so .... laid back (?!?) ... I can't think of another word for it ... you just feel like it's happening around you. She doesn't add any extra descriptions that you don't really need. Everything she writes is pertinent to the story and can't be cut out ... no filler (yay)!!

Great book ... I recommend it to anyone who wants a fun summer read. This is definite "by-the-pool" reading. I can't wait to read it again. 

Pick it up. Read it. You won't be disappointed!!

Insurgent (Divergent #2)

Title: Insurgent (Divergent #2)
Author: Veronica Roth
Date Published: May 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 525

One choice can transform you, or destroy you. Every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves, and herself, while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Veronica Roth nailed it. Again.

There really isn't anything to say other than ... LOVED IT! I know that I said that for the last one also. But it's true. And I'm hard on books. I usually find faults with what the characters' behavior is or how something is over-described or under-described or even how there is a lack of editing. I'm hard on authors. I know that. But I'm honest and if something bothers me, it will be the first thing out of my mouth.

But I honestly had no issues with this book. It's beautifully written, I adore the character development and all of the twists and turns. She describes things so that you get an amazing picture of what is going on without beating you to death with the details.


Enough said. Now I'm going to sit around and stew in my unhappiness that there isn't another one for me to read until October. OCTOBER!?! I have to wait that long after such a cliff-hanger ending? That's really the only thing that I'm not happy with. But Roth wrote the ending really well ... it's just rude to leave me wondering ...


Title: Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Date Published: May 2011
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Pages: 487

In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

I can't begin to explain how much I love this freakin' book!

At first I was thinking that Divergent was going to be another tired play on the post-apocalyptic genre that has become so popular lately. Unfortunately for all of the other books in that category ... you won't hold a candle to Divergent. Ever. Don't even try.

I know what you're thinking - it can't possibly beat HUNGER GAMES ... uh ... totally did. Easily. Within the first chapter.

Not that HG isn't good ... it is. But it's not the new literary bible that everyone is making it out to be. Especially since I've read Divergent.

This book is nothing short of amazing. It's one of those that I stayed up (while I was sick with the nastiest cold EVER and all I wanted to do was sleep) with and just HAD to finish the page I was on and then I would go to bed. But wait! There's more! I have to finish this other chapter and then I'll get some sleep. Then it turned into another chapter and another. Until it was 4am and our kids were going to be up in two hours. But I didn't care. I threw caution to the wind, knew that I wasn't going to be in the greatest mood the next day, but I didn't care. I just had to keep reading. Eventually I woke up to my Nook hitting me in the face because I had fallen asleep. And I didn't care. Not a curse was said when I nailed myself in the face because the book is that good!

It's just good. Veronica Roth is amazing. And I love this book. I need to go read the next one now.

I'm re-reading Divergent for what has to be the 17the time. I fall more in love with the characters with each reading. Not that I didn't read the book completely the first time ... but I always find things that I missed with the previous time that I read it. I think that I get so excited about what is going to happen that I start skimming the pages just so that I can get to the next part. The characters that Roth has introduced to us through this book are written beautifully. I hate it when an author creates a "perfect" character ... characters are meant to have flaws and seem more human than just someone that is made up. Especially after seeing who has been slotted to be in the film, I can totally hook each written character to their movie counterpart and it's believable. Great book, worth a read!!

The Marbury Lens (The Marbury Lens #1)

Title: The Marbury Lens (The Marbury Lens #1)
Author: Andrew Smith
Date Published: November 2010
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 358


Sixteen-year-old Jack gets drunk and is in the wrong place at the wrong time. He is kidnapped. He escapes, narrowly. The only person he tells is his best friend, Conner. When they arrive in London as planned for summer break, a stranger hands Jack a pair of glasses. Through the lenses, he sees another world called Marbury.

There is war in Marbury. It is a desolate and murderous place where Jack is responsible for the survival of two younger boys. Conner is there, too. But he’s trying to kill them.

Meanwhile, Jack is falling in love with an English girl, and afraid he’s losing his mind.

Conner tells Jack it’s going to be okay.

But it’s not.

Little Miss Bookmark did not like this book. Little Miss Bookmark thought this book was weird. Little Miss Bookmark had high hopes that this book would be good but Little Miss Bookmark thought that it fell short. REALLY SHORT. (If I could quadruple underline REALLY SHORT, I totally would ... just thought you should know that ... )

Annoying when people talk in 3rd person, right?!? THIS BOOK WAS FULL OF THAT!!!!

First of all, I HATE having to say that a book is bad. I can only imagine how much work goes into writing a book and to bash what someone has slaved over makes me feel horrible. But. Oh. My. Goodness. This book was almost like a train wreck - I didn't want to look, but I just had to. I had to finish this book even though everything inside me kept saying, "STAY AWAY!!".

It was just weird. I had a hard time looking past the main character talking in third person and the story line was ... weird ... just weird. Jack gets kidnapped and then all the sudden, "his brain is messed up". Uh ... okay (???). Then Jack went to England and he met a guy (I still don't know if he existed or was just in Jack's head) that gave Jack some glasses so that he could see another world through them. Literally. An alternate universe. The premise of the book was awesome - it had a great chance to be one of the most amazing books. But it was just too confusing, I had no idea who it was that was talking sometimes because Jack kept talking in 3rd person!

And new paragraphs were started.

For no reason.

In the middle of the action.

With only one sentence each. WHO DOES THAT?!?

Anyway, in case I didn't make it clear ... I was disappointed. I had really looked forward to reading this. It's just unfortunate. Little Miss Bookmark wishes she could get the hours back that she lost 




Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Deeper Than the Dead (Oak Knoll #1) by Tami Hoag

Title: Deeper Than the Dead (Oak Knoll #1)
Date Published: December 2008
Publisher: Dutton Adult

California, 1985. Four children, running in the woods behind their school, stumble upon a partially buried female body, eyes and mouth glued shut. Close behind the children is their teacher, Anne Navarre, shocked by this discovery and heartbroken as she witnesses the end of their innocence. What she doesn’t yet realize is that this will mark the end of innocence for an entire community, as the ties that bind families and friends are tested by secrets uncovered in the wake of a serial killer’s escalating activity.

Detective Tony Mendez, fresh from a law enforcement course at FBI headquarters, is charged with interpreting those now revealed secrets. He’s using a new technique—profiling—to develop a theory of the case, a strategy that pushes him ever deeper into the lives of the three children, and closer to the young teacher whose interest in recent events becomes as intense as his own.

As new victims are found and the media scrutiny of the investigation bears down on them, both Mendez and Navarre are unsure if those who suffer most are the victims themselves—or the family and friends of the killer, blissfully unaware that someone very close to them is a brutal, calculating psychopath.

Deeper than the Dead is set back in the 1980's when they didn't have the technology that we take advantage of today. The story revolves around a small town that harbors a serial killer and the people within it. The focus is primarily on four children and their teacher who all learn to cope with death, a demented student and troubles at home.

Deeper than the Dead is a little off the beaten Tami Hoag path but it was a refreshing difference. I'm a huge fan of all of her books and I think that this one is the best I've read so far. I can't sing its praises enough, AMAZING book!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Selection

Title: The Selection (The Selection #1)
Author: Kiera Cass
Date Published: April 2012
Publisher: Harper Teen

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself—and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

This book completely deserves the 5/5 stars that I gave it!

And I thought that 50 Shades of Grey was controversial! This book is right up there with it, but just for other reasons.

Biggest reason? Because the author's editor called a reviewer a bitch. Is that right? Hell no. And the author and editor conspiring to "like" all of the reviews that gave the book 5 stars ... moral? Again, hell no. But here's my thing. I'm not going to hate a book just because the author or their editor or their dodgy-old-man-neighbor down the street is rude to someone. I'm here to rate books, not become some kind of Book God that can thrust an entertaining book into a shame-filled book hell just because the people who are responsible for it have no manners.

Another reason it's so controversial is because of how similar it is to Hunger Games. And it's pretty similar - they are both in post-apocalyptic settings, there's a love triangle, there is a male stylist, a competition that parents thrust their children into, parents benefiting from their child being used in the contest, extravagant food and an annoying woman that is the girls'"handler". There's even a place where this is said, " ... we want to make them really pull for you. And that won't happen unless they can get to know you". Sounds a lot like what Katniss was told when she was getting ready for the games and was learning about sponsors.

There is also a bit of The Bachelor in this book ... tons of girls vying for one man's attention ... but no hot-tub scenes. Sorry, ladies. You could always imagine one though ... but then there we are again with the 50 Shades thing.

All of that aside - and that may be too much for some perspective readers - it's a really cute book. The characters are lovable and the book is pretty well written. I mean, it's no Grapes of Wrath or Sense and Sensibility, but it's cute and entertaining. I really liked how the story progressed - no parts were lagging or boring or lacking, for that matter.

I don't think that the book deserves the flack that it's been given. You have to think, this is a book for young adults. Will they like it? Absolutely. I can't wait for the rest of the series. In hindsight, I should have waited until all of the series was out before I started on it so that I could read it all in one sitting, but I had to see what all of the fuss was about. Because of that, I'm going to be tortured until the others come out - I can't wait to see what happens next.

I would hate for someone to base whether they get this book on what others are saying. Just grab it, read the back of the book and form your own opinions instead of using some random person's opinion to determine whether you would really like this book. You might be pleasantly surprised because I sure was!

I'll definitely read this again and again. Now hurry up with the rest of series!