Books Read February 2016

REVIEWS

LOIS LANE: FALLOUT

Gwenda Bond

Lois Lane is starting a new school, where she promises herself she will not make trouble. But trouble seems to find Lois first as she runs into gaming group, The Warheads, on her first day, and overhears a conversation where a student isn’t getting the help and support needed from her principal. Lois can’t help but get involved, which results in her earning the attention of Perry White and landing a job at the Daily Planet. Lois joins three other students at the Daily Scoop offices and proposes her story. But as the story grows, Lois and her friends find themselves deeper in the world of the Warheads. Even with the help of online friend, SmallvilleGuy, the group have a long way to go to find answers and most of all: prove what they discover to their readers. 

Lois is ambitious and determined to do the right thing to protect her friends. I loved her no-nonsense attitude and high-tech world. Lois’s online friendship with SmallvilleGuy was a nice touch and the Superman-related references made me smile. Lots of characters to root for, high-stakes, good humour, and a mystery waiting to be unravelled. The setting was great – both reality and virtual-reality! I knew from page one that this was something I was going to like and fell easily into the flow of the story. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and am really looking forward to reading the next book.

GLASS SWORD

Victoria Aveyard

Glass Sword continues on from where Red Queen left off. Mare, the Lightning Girl, is running from her Silver life with no hope of returning to Red. She knows she is different, that she’s not the only one, and that the world of Red and Silver needs to change. But making that change won’t be easy–there’s much at stake on all sides and not everyone can win. Reds and Silvers both take hits in this exciting sequel to a fantastic debut.

A strong start packed with action and danger doesn’t let up as Mare and the Scarlet Guard risk it all to beat back at a vicious prince who earned the king’s crown by deceiving and betraying those who trusted him most. This series has everything I love to find in the books I read. The pages crackle with energy, power, battle, and romance, and I find the dystopia/medieval/superhero combo wonderful. A real page-turner!

THE STEEP AND THORNY WAY

Cat Winters

Hanalee lives in 1920s prohibition-era Oregon with her mother and stepfather. Her father was hit by a car and killed a year before, but there are rumours that his ghost still wanders at the crossroads, unsettled. The teenager, Joe, who was driving the car that hit Hanalee’s father had been drinking that night and was sent to jail for the crime. Now Joe has been released on good behaviour, and has returned to the community, hiding out for more than one reason. Hatred takes root in their small town, and neither Hanalee nor Joe is safe from its clutches. And the deeper the hatred runs, the more secrets stir in the shadows surrounding Hanalee’s father’s death, waiting to be uncovered.

As always, this book was a dream to read. Rich, compelling, and wonderfully atmospheric, this is the fourth Cat Winters novel where the beautiful, haunting tale has gripped me from the beginning. I was completely swept away by this Hamlet-inspired supernatural/historical mashup where the people are scarier than the ghosts. A constant sense of unease settles while reading, and the fear of the community outweighs the fear of any paranormal beings. I worried for the main characters, with the violent methods planned to run them out of town. But I admired them, too, and their determination to make a stand, make a change, and not have their lives end in tragedy. Spectacular.

 

13 MINUTES

Sarah Pinborough

When Natasha is pulled from the water, where she died for thirteen minutes, she doesn’t remember what led her to be there in the first place. It’s unclear whether it was an accident, intentional, or if someone else was involved. Natasha can’t recall that night, but it soon becomes evident that somebody knows what happened . . .

This is a really clever and well crafted story. I liked the way it was told, adding in diary entries, text messages, recordings, and files. With an honest voice and a sharp tone, the Mean Girls toxic friendships vibe the book had promised was definitely there. It wasn’t what I expected when I started reading, then not what I expected when I thought I knew what to expect! It surprised me in the best way.

A seriously excellent crime thriller–dark and gritty and extremely gripping. As soon as I finished, I wanted to go back to the beginning and read again with a new outlook. This one sneaks up on you!

Also read this month:

Beyond the Red by Ava Jae

Love on the Ledge by Zoraida Cordova

(See all reviews on Goodreads here)