Review: Fragments by Dan Wells

Fragments (Partials #2)
Author: Dan Wells
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: February 26, 2013
Pages: 576
Format: Hardcover/Library

Kira Walker has found the cure for RM, but the battle for the survival of humans and Partials is just beginning. Kira has left East Meadow in a desperate search for clues to who she is. That the Partials themselves hold the cure for RM in their blood cannot be a coincidence—it must be part of a larger plan, a plan that involves Kira, a plan that could save both races. Her companions are Afa Demoux, an unhinged drifter and former employee of ParaGen, and Samm and Heron, the Partials who betrayed her and saved her life, the only ones who know her secret. But can she trust them?

Meanwhile, back on Long Island, what’s left of humanity is gearing up for war with the Partials, and Marcus knows his only hope is to delay them until Kira returns. But Kira’s journey will take her deep into the overgrown wasteland of postapocalyptic America, and Kira and Marcus both will discover that their greatest enemy may be one they didn’t even know existed.

The second installment in the pulse-pounding Partials saga is the story of the eleventh hour of humanity’s time on Earth, a journey deep into places unknown to discover the means—and even more important, a reason—for our survival.

Review: Overall, I enjoyed Fragments. We got a great amount of character and story development and I quite enjoyed it. Fragments took us all over. With Kira we started out in New York, then progressively made our way to Chicago and then all the way to Denver. Marcus also went on a smaller trip of his own in areas of New York and New Jersey close to the settlement. It was quite enjoyable reading about pretty much everywhere but East Meadow. I really enjoyed reading about Kira and Samm's journey though. We got to see what the most of the rest of the US looks like after the Partials war. We came across cities halfway underwater, we came across some that were completely underwater, making their journey harder. We also saw the destruction caused by the war with how many things were broken or completely gone. They also went through the toxic wasteland which that in of itself is a serious feat, though not everyone who started the journey with them made it through there. We hear about acid rain but it isn't really experienced, Kira and her companions had to cross hundreds of miles that could potentially bring down acid rain on them and hurting them, not to mention the fairly toxic air as well. I was very surprised though that when they got to Denver finally they end up finding a settlement with more humans, and at that, children, that somehow they've had a cure for RM since the beginning almost.

I really enjoyed Kira's character development. We found out at the end of Partials that Kira herself is a type of Partial. We see her become interested in finding out more about herself and going to great lengths to do it. But we also see her struggling to deal with the fact that she is a partial instead of a human. She is constantly thinking of herself as a human and talking to the others as so. They have to constantly remind her that she herself is a partial, even though they don't know what type. Eventually though she finally starts to see herself as a partial. We find out a lot about her. We find out that one of the developers of the partials is her "father," though we still have no word on whether he's alive still or not. We also find out about Nandita and why she disappears and how she fits into the picture with the partials and Kira. The most important thing though, is that we finally figure out what kind of partial Kira is and how she fits into the big picture. And I was a bit surprised as to how big of a role she ends up playing. I also liked how Kira and Samm's relationship developed. They went from being very distant to very close. 

I also enjoyed reading about Marcus trying to form an alliance with some of the other partial factions to band against Morgans. So far they haven't really been able to get anywhere with this but it is a brilliant idea if he can get some factions that haven't been destroyed or joined with Morgans on his side. 

The one thing I constantly hated throughout this book was Heron. She was a constant downer and just filled with negativity. I seriously wished she never went on the journey from the beginning. I also suspected she wasn't exactly going to be loyal to Kira and Samm and I was right. I just really despise Heron. 

4 1/2 Stars

Review: The Infected by Michelle Pickett

The Infected (PODs #2)
Author: Michelle Pickett
Publisher: Hayes Publications
Publication Date: October 12, 2015
Pages: 364
Format: Kindle

From the author of the award winning Unspeakable, and the best selling PODs, comes the highly anticipated sequel to PODs. A world where death stalks the unsuspecting, and this time even the PODs might not save them.

A virus nearly wiped out humankind...

Months have passed since a human infection has been reported. Survivors of the deadly pandemic have finally started to build a life in a world left devastated by plague.

Ironically, for nineteen-year-old Eva, life made more sense when she battled the deadly Infected than it does in the serenity of her new home in Rosewood. Separated from fiancé and former POD-mate, David, after an impossible ultimatum, Eva finds her life a little lonely and a lot confusing.

But as troubled as Eva’s life is, it's about to take a turn for the worse as untold dangers watch and wait for the right moment to attack…

The virus refuses to die quietly.

Review: I'm SOOOOOO happy this finally came out! I loved PODs and I seriously couldn't wait for the next installment! The Infected lived up to my expectations! I really like how there is a genuine picture of an infected on the cover of the book. Blue veins and everything! I know a lot of people said the blurb for PODs gave away a lot of the story and I can say that the blurb for The Infected definitely doesn't! In fact, the blurb is only a tiny piece of the story. 

I had a love hate feeling for David in this book. If you recall from my review of PODs, I actually really liked his character. I ended up not liking him about a chapter in to this book and I felt like that for over half the book. Some stuff happens in between when PODs ended and The Infected starts that is explained in the first chapter that really changed how I felt about David for a while. Eventually I came back to liking him again, but not as much as I did in PODs. I also really enjoyed Eva's development in this story. She decided that absolutely no one was going to tell her what to do or how to do it and I loved it! She gets told to stay behind on a mission while the boys handle it or not to take on the infected and she says HECK NO! She stood up for herself and showed the men just what she was capable of doing and how well she was capable of doing it. 

We also got to get to know some new characters such as Devlin and his sister Jessica and some other people from Rosewood, the village Eva was assigned to live in. Devlin was generally a nice guy and I quite enjoyed getting to know more about him throughout the book. I also enjoyed the friendship he formed with Eva. We also got to see more of Tiffany and George and see how their relationship has grown and developed. 

I have to say the story went in a different direction than I was expecting. I was not expecting David and Eva and the group that got stuck outside of Rosewood to make a trip to the main settlement to get stuff. I was also not expecting them not to just up and leave Rosewood for good so easily. I was expecting a little more time and thought to be put in that decision. I was also surprised at how many people decided to leave with Eva and David and their group. It's really sad when so many people put their faith in a 19 and 20 year old over the military. That says something. 

I have to say I was super happy with the ending! Eva got something back that is so precious to her and I couldn't be happier! And Eva and David finally got their happiness as well after all that happened throughout the book.

5 Stars!

Stacking The Shelves [#69]

Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews as a way to share all the books we got during the week!

Bought for Kindle:
  • Milayna (Milayna #1) by Michelle Pickett (Goodreads)
  • The Orphan Queen (The Orphan Queen #1) by Jodi Meadows (Goodreads)
  • The Infected (PODs #2) by Michelle Pickett (Goodreads)
Bought/Gifts (Part 1):
  • Talon (Talon #1) by Julie Kagawa (Goodreads)
  • Rogue (Talon #2) by Julie Kagawa (Goodreads)
  • Golden by Jessi Kirby (Goodreads)
  • Glass Heart (Cold Kiss #2) by Amy Garvey (Goodreads)
  • The One (The Selection #3) by Kiera Cass (Signed) (Goodreads)
  • Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle #3) by Maggie Stiefvater (Goodreads)
  • Perfect Ruin (The Internment Chronicles #1) by Lauren DeStefano (Goodreads)
  • The Impossibility of Tomorrow (Incarnation #2) by Avery Williams (Goodreads)
  • A Discovery of Witches (All Souls #1) by Deborah Harkness (Signed) (Goodreads)
Bought/Gifts (Part 2):
  • Dreams of Gods & Monsters (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #3) by Laini Taylor (Goodreads)
  • Waterfall (Teardrop #2) by Lauren Kate (Goodreads)
  • Starglass (Starglass #1) by Phoebe North (Goodreads)
  • The Program (The Program #1) by Suzanne Young (Goodreads)
  • The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg (Goodreads)
  • Dearly, Beloved (Gone With The Respiration #2) by Lia Habel (Goodreads/Review)
  • (Not Pictured) The Essence (The Pledge #2) by Kimberly Derting (Goodreads)
  • (Not Pictured) The Forsaken (The Forsaken #1) by Lisa M. Stasse (Goodreads)
  • (Not Pictured) Vitro by Jessica Khoury (Signed) (Goodreads)
  • (Not Pictured) Elusion (Elusion #1) by Claudia Gabel & Cheryl Klam (Goodreads/Review)
  • Zodiac (Zodiac #1) by Romina Russell (Goodreads)
  • Earth Girl (Earth Girl #1) by Janet Edwards (Goodreads)
  • Oblivion (Nevermore #3) by Kelly Creagh (Goodreads)
  • The Offering (The Pledge #3) by Kimberly Derting (Goodreads)
  • The Stars Never Rise (The Stars Never Rise #1) by Rachel Vincent (Goodreads)
  • A Thousand Pieces of You (Firebird #1) by Claudia Gray (Goodreads)
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Saraha J. Maas (Goodreads)
  • Sweet (Sweet #1) by Emmy Laybourne (Goodreads)
Star Trek:
  • Taking Wing (Star Trek: Titan #1) by Michael A. Martin & Andy Mangels (Goodreads)
  • The Red King (Star Trek: Titan #2) by Andy Mangels & Michael A. Martin (Goodreads)
  • Day of the Vipers (Star Trek: Terok Nor #1) by James Swallow (Goodreads)
  • Night of the Wolves (Star Trek: Terok Nor #2) by S.D. Perry & Britta Dennison (Goodreads)
  • Behind Enemy Lines (Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Dominon War #1) by John Vornholt (Goodreads)
  • Call To Arms (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Dominon War #2) by Diane Carey (Goodreads)
  • Tunnel Through The Stars (Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Dominon War #3) by John Vornholt (Goodreads)
  • Sacrifice of Angels (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Dominon War #4) by Diane Carey (Goodreads)
  • Gods of Night (Star Trek: Destiny #1) by David Mack (Goodreads)
  • Lost Souls (Star Trek: Destiny #3) by David Mack (Goodreads)
  • Hollow Men (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) by Una McCormack (Goodreads)
  • Unity (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) by S.D. Perry (Goodreads)

Review: Elusion by Claudia Gabel & Cheryl Klam

Elusion (Elusion #1)
Authors: Claudia Gabel & Cheryl Klam
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: March 18, 2014
Pages: 382
Format: Paperback/Library

Soon, Elusion® will change the world and life as we know it.

A new technology called Elusion is sweeping the country. An app, visor and wristband will virtually transport you to an exotic destination where adventure can be pursued without the complications—or consequences—of real life.

Regan is an Elusion insider. Or at least she used to be. Her father invented the program, and her best friend, Patrick, heir to the tech giant Orexis, is about to release it nationwide. But ever since her father’s unexpected death, Regan can’t bear to Escape, especially since waking up from the dream means crashing back to her grim reality.

Still, when there are rumors of trouble in Elusion—accusations that it’s addictive and dangerous— Regan is determined to defend it. But the critics of Elusion come from surprising sources, including Josh, the handsome skeptic with his own personal stakes. As Regan investigates the claims, she discovers a disturbing web of secrets. She will soon have to choose between love and loyalty…a decision that will affect the lives of millions.

Suspense, thrills, and romance fuel this near-future story about the seductive nature of a perfect virtual world, and how far one girl will go to uncover the truth behind the illusions.

Review: I really looked forward to reading this book. I enjoyed Elusion very much. I was very interested in this idea that the Elusion technology could let you escape real life for a while. I really enjoyed getting to know Regan as a character and actually found her quite relatable. In a good amount of stories the characters seem not to have the issues and drama of a normal person. Regan does have that. From getting into fights at school with someone who doesn't like her and getting detention, to having a friend who seems bad but actually isn't while the supposed "real" friend isn't actually acting like a good friend at all. All that sounds more closely related to the real life of a teenage girl. Sounds perfectly like high school. I liked that I could relate to her having those experiences that any of us could have had in high school. That made the story much more enjoyable to read.

However, I didn't exactly like Patrick. He seemed like one of those on and off again friends throughout the story. First its "I'm your best friend, I'll do anything for you," then it's "I can't talk to you about anything, leave me alone." Not to mention the fact that he didn't seem to be there when Regan needed him or listen to anything she said. And don't even get me started on the jealous jerk he was over Regan and Josh. Regan made it pretty clear to him that she was not interested in him as more than a friend yet he still acted like she was his and his alone. I did like Josh more however. I was not the biggest fan of him not telling certain things to Regan but unlike Patrick, he actually apologized for his mistakes. He actually tried to make things right which made me like him a lot more.

I was actually surprised by what happened in parts of the story. I didn't see coming what actually happened to Regans father (I won't spoil it). I was actually blindsided by the truth about it and who was involved. I was also surprised at the people behind it doing what they did. Up until I read that scene I didn't think those people were involved at all. I was also surprised at the end of the book discovering the Ether World. It doesn't sound anything like I initially thought it was going to be like. It will be interesting to see what happens in it in the next book.

The one thing I didn't like with the book is that the world building was lacking some. We get the general information that it's in the future Detroit. However, we don't get much detailed information as to how the city ended up the way it did or much as to how it looks. We just know it's in Detroit, the air isn't great and the city is split up into sectors. I would have liked a more detailed idea of how things actually looked!

Overall I really enjoyed the book!

4 Stars!

Review: Flame by Amy Kathleen Ryan

Flame (Sky Chasers #3)
Author: Amy Kathleen Ryan
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: January 7, 2014
Pages: 336
Source: Hardcover/Library

In the thrilling conclusion to the Sky Chasers series Waverly, Kieran, and Seth struggle to survive on-board the New Horizon—and take down their enemies before it's too late.

Waverly and the other members of the Empyrean have scattered, and their home ship has been destroyed. Their mission to rescue their parents didn't go as planned, and now they're at an even greater disadvantage: trapped with their enemies on the New Horizon, trying to find a way to survive. Kieran has been pulled under Anne Mather’s wing, but is she really trying to make peace, or just using Kieran to build her own power? Meanwhile, Waverly is taken in by a mysterious old man who wants to help her bring Anne Mather down—but the more Waverly cooperates with him, the more dangerous her position is, and the more at odds with Kieran she becomes.

Seth's situation is even worse. After setting out from the Empyrean on his own, with only a vague strategy to guide him, he is a fugitive aboard the New Horizon. He's doing what he can to challenge the power of Anne Mather, but he's badly hurt, and getting sicker.

Will Seth ever see Waverly again? Will his health hold out long enough to help her topple their enemies? And will Waverly find a way to unite with her friends before they all fall? Nothing is sure and every moment is a risk in this explosive finale of the Sky Chasers series.

Review: Overall I thought this was a great ending to the series. This book was filled with action, and not all of it physical. I thoroughly enjoyed not only the pulse pounding physical action taking place but also the mental action of everyone using everyone to advance their own position, no mater what the cost. I couldn't put this book down because something was always happening, whether it was the doctor trying to use Waverly to take Anne down, Anne trying to use Kiernan to take the doctor down, everyone searching for Seth etc. There was always something happening!!!

I really enjoyed the multiple view points! In some books it works and some it doesn't, but due to the nature of the situation the characters find themselves in, the multiple POV's worked well to tell the whole story without just focusing on one person to tell it! Overall, I had to say I enjoyed the POV's of the people hiding on the Empyrean and Seth the most. There was always something interesting going on during the scenes of those still on the Empyrean and Seth was always getting into trouble or having trouble find him. His scenes were always interesting to read. 

The story was predictable in some areas but surprising in others. Such as when Jared took Waverly somewhere alone. I could see where that situation was going right away. But then when you had a scene like when Kieran was forced to swallow bombs, I totally didn't see that coming! The story had a good mix of surprise while keeping certain things predictable like some things usually are in a story. 

I was overall happy with how things turned out. I really wasn't sure that the Empyrean would be salvageable after what happened to it but I'm glad it got fixed to the point of being able to run for a few more years! I was also very happy that the people from the Empyrean went back to their ship and were able to find a planet to live on without the New Horizon people. I was very bummed though that Kieran got taken back to the New Horizon and never got to experience the new planet with the rest of the Empyrean crew like he planned to, but I'm glad he got operated on and was OK. I also definitely think the people that needed to end up together did! Waverly definitely belonged with Seth and I think after seeing how they were with each other, Kieran definitely belonged with Felicity! I'm super happy these couples got to have their happily ever afters with each other!

5 Stars!