Diamond Bonds by Jeff Kish (ARC Review)

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Kindle Price: $0.99

Official Rating: 3/5

Synopsis:

“Era cares only of surpassing his father’s infamy as a master thief – until he stumbles onto a kidnapped girl and promises to return her home.

Dreaming of a quick and easy reward, Era and his thieving partner Jem set off to return the girl to her wealthy father. However, when bounty hunters and elemental mercenaries attack to recapture the girl, her claims of ignorance begin to ring hollow. When the girl’s own elemental talents are revealed, Era begins to question what else she may be hiding.

As Era fights off foe after foe with his untrained earth shaping skills, the temptation to simply collect the reward on her head sparks an inner conflict between his moral foundation and the future he has always wanted.”

My Review:

When Kish emailed me, he (politely) asked me if I would read his book and I calmly replied to his email in the most professional manner I could. Then I texted my friend in all capital letters (in an entirely unprofessional manner) my fears of what would I do if I didn’t like his book. You see, it’s way easier to hate a book when the author is rude. But it’s way harder to hate a book, when the author, this time being Kish, is respectful and polite. It’s always so very refreshing to talk to an author who doesn’t respond with a rather unappreciative tone. Nonetheless, my feelings cannot get in the way of an honest review, which is why I am most relieved to say that I did enjoy Kish’s book, Diamond Bonds.


I’m bound to honesty (how bad was that pun?) so I have to say that Diamond Bonds didn’t really have my interest until 85% or so into the book. That was, in my opinion, when the action truly started, along with a plot twist that quietly surprised me. I say quietly because I didn’t gasp, but was no less surprised.

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Flotilla by Daniel Haight (ARC Review)

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Kindle Price: $2.99

Official Rating: 5/5

Synopsis:

“Flotilla is a book for young adults and fans of Juvenile Dystopian Fiction about the world that is coming to our oceans. Jim Westfield is a messed-up kid thrown into the anarchic community his father lives on where they raise fish on the ocean when they aren’t breaking the law. This is a world filled with strange and dangerous characters that threaten Jim and his family’s lives when a terrorist attack hits Los Angeles. Now Jim must rise above his past if he wants to survive his future.

This whirlwind experience over two summers paints a vivid picture of risk and hardship. It takes a deeply moving look at the impact of sustainable technology on some hilariously dysfunctional characters.

Readers and reviewers are calling Flotilla ‘highly original, ‘intense and action packed’ and ‘for anyone who loves adventure.'”

 

My Review:

Today, everyone, history has been made. I remember mentioning my short attention span (at least I think I remember) a couple of times, and yes, it’s definitely still a piece of me. It cackles its way around while I’m trying to focus and oh look! If I enter this giveaway, I could win $10. But wait! Look! Here’s three more giveaways to enter, instead of completing your responsibilities! And that cycle has slurped up a good 5 hours (yeah…5 hours) of my day before. (And no, I haven’t won anything yet.) My friends roll their eyes when they send me a video and I groan, How long is it? Do I have to watch all of it? I suppose it’s pretty funny, considering how many hours I spend reading and working on this blog of mine. But, nonetheless, you didn’t click on this book review to hear about my attention span, so here’s why I mentioned it.

Flotilla took me about (and I used that word loosely) 4 hours or more to read. *Gasp* *Scream* *Evident shock!* I know, right? All the times I’ve complained about a book dragging itself across my eyes as I begged for it to speed up, and I spent 4 hours or more reading one book? And get this: The pace is slow.

Okay. Okay. These aren’t bad things, in case it came across that way. It was just a shocking revelation for me that I stuck with Flotilla. So, why did I stick with Flotilla?

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Valley of the Moon by Bronwyn Archer (ARC Review)

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Kindle Price: $2.99

Official Rating: 4/5

Synopsis:

“There’s just one semester left at the Briar School for Girls in Sonoma, CA. But it will take more than straight As for Lana Goodwin to survive . . .

***
Senior year is not going well for 17-year-old Lana Goodwin. Her father’s vintage car business is about to crash and burn, the nicest (and cutest) teacher at school was fired under a cloud of scandal, and her hot sort-of boyfriend may or may not have something big to hide.

She’s also totally over being the class pauper. It’s bad enough her dad was briefly married to the head of the board—the rich, cruel, impeccably groomed Ramona Crawford. What’s worse is going to school with her vindictive ex-stepsister, who never misses an opportunity to make her life hell. Not ever.

It also happens to be the tenth anniversary of her mother’s suicide. No one knows why Annie Goodwin jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge the day after Christmas. She didn’t leave a note. She wasn’t sick. Even Lana’s father can’t explain it. Ten years later, someone—or something—starts sending her clues about her mother’s past.

Before Lana can escape to college, she finds herself in a life-or-death race to uncover her mother’s long-buried secrets.

Can she claim her birthright before her future and her life are snatched away?

Valley of the Moon is a modern-day fairy tale with some intense themes.

A contemporary YA romantic mystery for ages 14 and up.”

My Review:

TRIGGER WARNING: Mention of rape and child abuse

 

I did not like Valley of the Moon. “But wait, Paige. You gave it 4 stars?” Yes, I did. The reason for the rating is quite simple. Even though I didn’t like it, the book still was written well.

The writing was excellent. I loved the similes Archer included like, “His face blurred, like a wet photograph smeared by a thumb…” and “The sound of her heels was like a metronome in the quiet showroom. TICK TICK TICK TICK.” Archer’s writing style is sound and keeps a steady pace. I could see the different reactions of characters and imagine the details provided as if I was watching a movie. The dialogue was great too with realistic responses that varied from character to character.

Of all the characters, I liked Lana the best. I felt that she was strong, even though life had beat her like eggs, put her in a frying pan, and then scrambled her. I didn’t agree with some of the choices she’d made, or the way she would ignore obvious issues, but she was still a good character. I can’t say I can relate to her, but I’m sure some people can.

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