Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

The Here and NowFrom Goodreads: An unforgettable epic romantic thriller about a girl from the future who might be able to save the world . . . if she lets go of the one thing she’s found to hold on to.

Follow the rules. Remember what happened. Never fall in love.

This is the story of seventeen-year-old Prenna James, who immigrated to New York when she was twelve. Except Prenna didn’t come from a different country. She came from a different time—a future where a mosquito-borne illness has mutated into a pandemic, killing millions and leaving the world in ruins.

Prenna and the others who escaped to the present day must follow a strict set of rules: never reveal where they’re from, never interfere with history, and never, ever be intimate with anyone outside their community. Prenna does as she’s told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will one day ravage the earth.

But everything changes when Prenna falls for Ethan Jarves.

From Ann Brashares, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, The Here and Now is thrilling, exhilarating, haunting, and heartbreaking—and a must-read novel of the year.

This was unlike any other time travel novel I’ve ever read, and I enjoyed it thoroughly. Traveling back in time, Prenna, her mother, and a few survivors have come to the present, though they have no intention of trying to stop the plague that runs rampant in their own time.

With technology beyond the current times dreams, the elders run a strict regiment, one that Prenna is intent on defying for the good of society.
It’s scary how efficient the elders are, and one must question why they choose to do nothing to alter the future or save the time they come from. As I read this novel, I was never 100% certain who was truly right—Prenna and Ethan in their suspicions, the homeless man, the elders… Brashares has done a superb job keeping the reader guessing as the novel unfolds, and as events come to a head, the truth, a stunning truth, is revealed to all.

I really enjoyed the characterization of this novel, though truth be told, Prenna was a little weak in my eyes. She must go against the grain, and that is hard for anyone, but there were times that I really wanted her to take control, only to have her rely on Ethan when I wanted her to care for herself. And yet, it works for this novel. Having been brainwashed for much of her life, it makes sense that she is not as strong as some female leads we see in novels, and in retrospect, her reactions help drive the novel onwards. Overall, this is a great read that I highly suggest. Four stars.

4 stars

In exchange for an honest review, Random House Children’s and Delacorte Press have been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel, via Netgalley, prior to its release on April 8, 2014.

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13504881From Goodreads: When destiny is on the line, will love be enough to light the way?

In order to save Ethan, Nara gets pulled deeper into his dark world, where everything she thought she knew about Ethan and herself turns on its head. Ethan and Nara turn up the heat with bone-melting seduction and heart-rending moments, but surprising revelations, lies, treachery, betrayal, and unimaginable evil will challenge their relationship and their future together. As the stakes rise, encompassing more than just her relationship with Ethan, will Nara make the ultimate sacrifice?

I really love the story of Ethan and Nara.  Filled with the paranormal and many enticing scenarios, their story holds readers captivated from start to finish, and that’s true for all the books in the series, including this third installment.  In the first novel, Brightest Kind of Darkness, we meet Nara as she battles fate, and it’s an amazing ride.  Then, in Lucid, swoon worthy Ethan disappears, and it’s a whirlwind adventure for Nara as she attempts to decipher the truth about herself and Ethan, especially the sword tattoo that showed up on Ethan’s body one day.  While the first two novels have been somewhat shrouded in mystery, and even events within book three leave some stones unturned, Michelle does a great job tying up many loose ends and explaining the bond between Ethan and Nara, setting the stage for the fourth and final novel, which I can’t wait to release.

At the end of Lucid, Ethan finally returned from his “parents’ house,” a much awaited event on the part of both Nara and myself.  The best part is that Ethan comes in with guns blazing, and he’s even more fierce and swoon worthy this time around.  Although it is apparent that Ethan wasn’t actually at his parents’ and that he’s learned a lot over the past month away, it takes a while for his whereabouts and mission to be made clear in Destiny, especially as Ethan suffers from brain trauma in the very opening of the book, leaving him with memory loss that further shrouds his actions in mystery.  And yet, as he begins to remember and yearns to be with Nara, it’s the perfect romance.

I just loved the way that Michelle sets up her novels.  They are always captivating, and I love this paranormal world that the author has created.  If you haven’t yet read any of the books in the series, I highly suggest you do.  Four stars.

4 stars

I received this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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Brightest Kind of Darkness is currently FREE on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

15811405From Goodreads: In the real world, when you vanish into thin air for a week, people tend to notice.

After his unexpected journey into the lands of the fey, Ethan Chase just wants to get back to normal. Well, as “normal” as you can be when you see faeries every day of your life. Suddenly the former loner with the bad reputation has someone to try for-his girlfriend, Kenzie. Never mind that he’s forbidden to see her again.

But when your name is Ethan Chase and your sister is one of the most powerful faeries in the Nevernever, “normal” simply isn’t to be. For Ethan’s nephew, Keirran, is missing, and may be on the verge of doing something unthinkable in the name of saving his own love. Something that will fracture the human and faery worlds forever, and give rise to the dangerous fey known as the Forgotten. As Ethan’s and Keirran’s fates entwine and Keirran slips further into darkness, Ethan’s next choice may decide the fate of them all.


This is another fantastic novel in the Iron Fey spin off series, and I must say, it’s utterly perfect.  Kagawa has a way with words and her storyline is enticing, energetic, and breathtaking all at once.  Of course, she leaves us with a rather awful cliffhanger that will have readers biting their nails and dying to know what happens next, especially as it seems the prophecy is about to swallow all those we’ve come to love.

I was floored by this novel—it was absolutely wonderful!  From the characters to the plot and all that came in between, Kagawa’s world is stunning and almost makes me wish it were real—though I’m not really sure I’d want to be surrounded by the fey, if you know what I mean.

Ethan Chase once again finds himself on the wrong side of reality, trekking through the fey underworlds in order to try and locate and save his nephew, Keirran, as Keirran defies all those around him in attempts to save his beloved.  The twists are even more sinister in this novel, especially as Keirran refuses to listen to logic and is set on doing things his way, regardless of the cost to those around him.  There are some jaw dropping scenes, especially toward the end as it all comes to a head, and I just adored it, even though it’ll be another year until I can find out what’s next for Ethan and Keirran, because right now, things aren’t looking up.  Five stars.

5 stars

Harlequin Teen has been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel prior to its release on October 29, 2013.

et cetera
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