City of the Falling Sky (Seckry Sequence series) by Joseph Evans

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Official Rating: 3/5

Synopsis:

“When Seckry Sevenstars is forced out of his village by the greedy Endrin Corporation and relocated to the daunting metropolis of Skyfall City, he harbours resentment for the company and vows to get them back one day for taking away his home, his school and his friends.
Fortunately, the marvels of the city do a good job in distracting Seckry from his anger and homesickness, and it isn’t long before he’s competing at Friction (the city’s most popular multiplayer video game), slurping awe-inspiring multicoloured milkshakes, and getting butterflies on his first date.
Then, when a mysterious email asks Seckry to break into the headquarters of the Endrin Corporation and steal a container full of worms for a hefty sum of money, his anger resurfaces, and he can’t resist the revenge he promised himself.
Alone at night, Seckry creeps through the sewers whilst wondering what experiments Endrin might be doing on the worms, and emerges into the silent complex. But the worms aren’t the only thing that he finds. Staring at him through the darkness, with wide, innocent eyes, is something that makes Seckry’s heart almost stop.

A girl.


She’s shaking, petrified, and has no recollection of who she is or what she’s doing there.
Floodlights bleach the area and Seckry has no choice but to grab a hold of the girl and escape with her.
Suddenly the question of what Endrin were doing with a few worms becomes the last thing on Seckry’s mind. What were Endrin doing with a human?

My Review:

Seckry Sevenstars is a young man who gets relocated to Skyfall City with his mother and sister, Leena. At first, Seckry is certain that he will not adjust to his new life, but gradually, to his surprise, he meets great friends and starts to enjoy his new home. Then, he receives an email that wants to send him on a quest to steal worms from Endrin Cooperation for an amazing sum of money; he accepts the mission. Then he finds a girl and so on.

The first thing that stood out to me were the names. The last and sometimes the first names of all the characters were odd, “Thumbsuckle” or “Gobbledee”, which I thought was rather interesting. However, they didn’t really match the science fictional environment.

Of course, Seckry leads an uprising of sorts, nothing as big as other dystopian novels, but it’s an uprising no less. What bugged me was that everyone seemed immediately willing to help him. There were adults that didn’t know him at all and yet bent themselves backwards trying to help him. I didn’t know why and I still don’t know why. Almost all of these people endangered their lives, jobs, or both for a teenager, why? What did they see in him? It didn’t make sense to me. Everything seemed to just plop in his lap right when he needed it to. If something wasn’t working or he was just about to get hurt, something or someone would arrive just in time to save the day. If I was Seckry, nothing would look bleak because I would know that it’s definitely going to work out for me.

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Breaking Rules (Breaking series) by Tracie Puckett

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Official Rating: 2/5

Synopsis:

“Sometimes, the lessons of childhood are damaging enough that, by eighteen, you’ve figured out some rules so you don’t repeat your parents’ mistakes. For Mandy, that meant finishing her last year of high school, going to college, and then returning to small-town Sugar Creek to live a solitary life as a writer.
That was the plan, and her main rule for avoiding complications and staying on track was to never, ever, EVER let someone get too close.
That was before she met Gabe.
And when Gabe starts to awaken emotions she’s never experienced, Mandy suddenly begins to question every belief she’s ever had.
She can’t be falling in love, can she? That would be the biggest mistake of her life, wouldn’t it? Could she break one of her most important rules—for Gabe?”

My Review:

First if all, ugh. This does NOT, I repeat in bold lettering, NOT need to be a series! It doesn’t need to have a sequel! There’s no need! None! Everything could have been cleared up in the first book without the vague mysterious ending. There was barely any plot as it was in the first book. What could the second book possibly have as a plot (based on the ending)? Is Gabe being pursued by the Mafia and is also tied in with the CIA and he has a limp because there’s a microchip in his knee that Russia uses to track him with? I would read it if that was the case and I had better tag this review as a huge spoiler.

Mandy has a list of rules. If these rules are kept then her heart will not be broken and she will live a life of solitude in content. Until one day, Gabe comes along and suddenly she’s breaking one rule…and then them all.

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A Dance of Dragons: Series Starter Bundle by Kaitlyn Davis

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Price: Free!

Official Rating: 4/5

Note: I received the Series Starter Bundle which came with “The Golden Cage” (Dance of Dragons #0.5) and the first official book of the series (“The Shadow Soul”).

Synopsis:

The Golden Cage (Dance of Dragons #0.5)

“In the land of Ourthuro, cruelty is a way of life. The king rules with an iron fist and no one dare defy him–no one except his daughter. Princess Leena is keeping a dangerous secret, she has fallen in love with a soldier and it would mean both of their lives if her father ever discovered their affair.

But Leena will risk it all to be with the man she loves–her heart, her life, her freedom. And when her brother’s birthday celebration takes a dangerous turn, Leena is forced to make a decision that will change the fate of her nation and eventually the world.”

The Shadow Soul (A Dance of Dragons #1)

“When Jinji’s home is destroyed, she is left with nowhere to run and no one to run to–until she meets Rhen, a prince chasing rumors that foreign enemies have landed on his shores. Masquerading as a boy, Jinji joins Rhen with vengeance in her heart. But traveling together doesn’t mean trusting one another, and both are keeping a deep secret–magic. Jinji can weave the elements to create master illusions and Rhen can pull burning flames into his flesh.

But while they struggle to hide the truth, a shadow lurks in the night. An ancient evil has reawakened, and unbeknownst to them, these two unlikely companions hold the key to its defeat. Because their meeting was not coincidence–it was fate. And their story has played out before, in a long forgotten time, an age of myth that is about to be reborn…”

My Review:

I loved both the book and the short story and I’m sorry that the whole collection wasn’t free, otherwise I would have continued it. I bought this book thinking that it was about dragons, but for the most part, a dragon was only mentioned once and it wasn’t in the fire-breathing-angry-dragon way I was expecting. Nonetheless, Davis wrote this book in a graceful way, using magic and deep secrets that the two main characters possessed in a way that I was hooked. I loved how Davis gave the reader a short story that gave a tiny background for some of the characters. Once I connected them to the second book, I gasped on the inside.

I also adored Rhen and Jinji’s relationship. Jinji had a certain spice to her and Rhen had a careful love to him. I liked the secrets that Jinji held specifically from Rhen and how he never knew the truth until the very end (which I will get back to later). There were plot twists and I couldn’t guess any part of the book, it was completely original, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I recommend it.

I still gave it a 4/5 instead of a perfect score because of how the ending was delivered. I realize that in order to lead the way to the second book, you need a cliffhanger, but it felt rushed and “empty”. As if Davis ran out of the usual descriptive and engaging writing style she usually had and went with a rather stale ending.