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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Mini YA Book Reviews - Descendants & Perfect Cover

Descendants Junior Novel

Kindle Edition, 176 pages
Published July 14th 2015 by Disney Press

Goodreads synopsis: Mal, Evie, Jay, and Carlos are the offspring of some of the most terrible villains of all time. They're offered a chance to leave the Isle of the Lost, where they have been imprisoned all their lives, and go to prep school in the idyllic kingdom of Auradon with all of the 'good' kids. There, they must choose whether or not to follow in their parents' evil footsteps. Watch out Auradon--here come the Descendants!

I have not seen the movie but I always like the family-friendly stories Disney puts out. I kept wondering how they would redeem these so called Evil Teens but I found the ending to be very sweet and lovely. I only wish they would have made this story more in-depth. It would have made it even better. 

I purchased this book with my own money and have the hardback version.

Perfect Cover (The Squad #1)
by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Goodreads Author)
Mass Market Paperback, 275 pages
Published February 12th 2008 by Laurel-Leaf (first published January 1st 2008)

Goodreads synopsis: Bayport High operates like any other high school--jocks at the top, outsiders at the bottom, and everyone else in between. Enter Toby Klein, a sophomore computer hacker who doesn't play well with others. She has zero school spirit, a black belt in karate, and what her guidance counselor calls an attitude problem. She's the last person you'd expect to be invited to join the varsity cheerleading squad.
    But things are different at Bayport.
    Bayport's varsity cheer squad is made up of the hottest of the hot. But this A-list is dangerous in more ways than one. The Squad is actually a cover for the most highly trained group of underage government operatives the United States has ever assembled. Athletically, they're unmatchable, though they make it all look easy on the field. Mentally, they're exceptional--but with one flash of their gorgeous smiles, you'll completely forget that. Socially, they're gifted, so they can command and manipulate any situation. And above all, they have the perfect cover, because, beyond herkies and highlights, no one expects anything from a cheerleader.
    Toby Klein might not seem like the most likely recruit, but she's never been one to turn down a challenge. If she can handle the makeover, Bayport Hight may just have found its newest cheerleader.
    Pretty, popular, armed, and extremely dangerous--meet THE SQUAD.

I kind of struggled through this title. I had purchased it in my Apple iBooks app but it is not as convenient for me as my Amazon Kindle ebooks. But besides that, I did enjoy the book. It took me a hot minute to get into it but when Toby was introduced to The Squad, things started to get hopping. I thought the relationship between her brother and her was really the best part of the series and I wished they had went more into that aspect of it. I didn't get to see too much of Toby's computer hacking skills which they really spoke a lot of but there was truly  no action in that department. But overall, I did like the book.

I purchased this book with my own money.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: Do or Die (Reluctant Heroes #1) by Suzanne Brockmann

Hardcover, 576 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by Random House (first published January 1st 2014)

Goodreads synopsis: Navy SEAL Ian Dunn went rogue in a big way when he turned his talents to a lawless life of jewel heists and con jobs. Or so the world has been led to believe. In reality, the former Special Ops warrior is still fighting for good, leading a small band of freelance covert operatives who take care of high-stakes business in highly unofficial ways. That makes Ian the hands-down choice when the U.S. government must breach a heavily guarded embassy and rescue a pair of children kidnapped by their own father, a sinister foreign national willing to turn his own kids into casualties. Shockingly, Ian passes on the mission... for reasons he will not–or cannot–reveal.
   But saying no is not an option. Especially not to Phoebe Kruger, Ian’s bespectacled, beautiful, and unexpectedly brash new attorney. Determined to see the abducted children set free, she not only gets Ian on board but insists on riding shotgun on his Mission: Impossible-style operation, whether he likes it or not.
   Though Phoebe has a valuable knack for getting out of tight spots, there’s no denying the intensely intimate feelings growing between Ian and Phoebe as the team gears up for combat. But these are feelings they both must fight to control as they face an array of cold-blooded adversaries, including a vindictive mob boss who’s got Ian at the top of his hit list and a wealthy psychopath who loves murder as much as money. As they dodge death squads and play lethal games of deception, Ian and Phoebe will do whatever it takes to save the innocent and vanquish the guilty.

I really enjoyed this book. It took me awhile to read it only because my life was so busy, but when the action started rolling there was a lot of good stuff to love.

Phoebe sort of gets thrust into this whole covert world where Ian (or Eee as he is referred to through most of the book) is taken out of prison in order to save the kids of an important scientist lady.

The secondary cast is just as great as the main cast. And I can totally see this book as the beginning of a series.  I would love to see more stories just about these characters and Ian's "team."

If you do not want to read about how to men get together and have a great life, then the sections featuring Aaron and Shel might not be to your taste. But truthfully, it is mostly an emotional bond in the text between Aaron and Shel and no hanky-panky is really seen on stage, if you know what I mean. I found those sections quite compelling and had a great emotional impact. I also like how Phoebe had the same sort of impact in Ian's life.

This is definitely one you will want to check out if you love action, intrigue, suspense and romantic suspense. 4 Stars. I look forward to the next book in the series.

I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) from Net Galley in return for an honest review. I thank the publisher, the author and Net Galley for allowing me to read this title.