2013 Book Reviews

Level 2 – Lenore Appelhans “…A unique, if bewildering, location lifts Level 2 above its competitors with intriguing technology and questioning the values placed on certain memories…not to be taken lying down…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Right & the Real – Joëlle Anthony “Joëlle Anthony’s The Right & the Real has a great concept, about a teen attempting to rescue her father from a cult. Who wouldn’t want to read this? And it starts off strong, with Chapter 2 particularly heart-breaking…” Buy (Worldwide)

Pivot Point – Kasie West “…Let it be known that the last fifty pages or so are bloody awesome and genuinely thrilling…” Buy (Worldwide)

Rayessa and the Space Pirates – Donna Maree Hanson “…This YA sci-fi starts off well…” Buy (US)

The Taken – Vicki Pettersson “…the setting of Las Vegas is fabulous as always. Vicki Pettersson writes it so well that even someone like me who’s never been there can learn to love it…” Buy (Worldwide)

Stakeout – Naomi Clark “…there’s chat about goats, and that’s good enough for me…a winner, as always…” Buy (US)

Pretty Girl-13 – Liz Coley “…This is a book I didn’t want to stop reading, and it appeals on so many levels: drama, secrets, trauma, mental illness, psychology, and – my favourite – psychosurgery. This harrowing story and its telling is a masterpiece.” Buy (Worldwide)

As They Slip Away – Beth Revis “…entrancing…a beautifully written tragedy…” Free (Worldwide)

The Hallowed Ones – Laura Bickle “…I was already a fan of Laura Bickle’s work, but this one takes the cake. The Hallowed Ones is a creepy-cool read, with plenty of suspense and gore to please everyone…” Buy (Worldwide)

Beta – Rachel Cohn “…so many awesome twists and turns…outstanding depth of world-building…Demesne is a stunning setting, and the story as a whole has a vivid colourscape…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Angel – Tiffany Reisz “Reading The Angel is catching up with your favourite people…Tiffany Reisz is a master of teasing, revealing, and concealing at exactly the right moments. There’s plenty of suspense and real drama, with the emotion matching the action in its vividness…If you’re not already hooked on the Original Sinners, get on board – it’s a ride you won’t forget.” Buy (Worldwide)

Reboot – Amy Tintera “…the first half of the novel is action-packed, with lots of interesting stuff going on…a pretty good read (four stars)…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Secret Life of a Submissive – Sarah K. “…one rather perhaps unintentionally funny scene…Sarah K’s The Secret Life of a Submissive beats Sophie Morgan’s The Diary of a Submissive, and I think I’ll tune in for the sequel.” Buy (Worldwide)

The Tease – Nikki M. Pill “…I’m glad I took a chance on it. I’ve been looking for a good psychological thriller starring a therapist since M. J. Rose stopped writing Butterfield Institute novels. Anna Zendel is a decent replacement…The Tease has plenty of twists…I’d love to read the rest of the series…” Buy (US)

Master – Master R. “…If nothing else, Master is memorable for the sheer WTFery…” Buy (US)

Claim Me – J. Kenner Buy (Worldwide)

Sever – Lauren DeStefano “I love this trilogy for its mad science, Gothic overtones, and – most of all – the sister wives’ relationship…” Buy (Worldwide)

Game On – Monica Seles & James LaRosaThe Academy is Gossip Girl‘s perfect replacement: glamorous, sporty, and undeniably trashy…I’m already desperate for Book 2.” Buy (Worldwide)

Steeplechase – Krissy Kneen “…an absolute gem that I loved reading. A Gothic tale stretching from Brisbane to Beijing, its story of art, sisters, and madness is both creepy and enthralling, with a lead character that readers will instantly relate to. The writing is beautiful, the subject matter both fascinating and disturbing, and if this isn’t nominated for every writing award possible in Australia, I might declare shenanigans…” Buy (US)

Forbidden Fruit – Ann Aguirre Buy (US)

Black Helicopters – Blythe Woolston “…short, sharp, and to the point…Blythe Woolston has a knack for knowing when to tease, and when to reveal…bloody brilliant…” Buy (Worldwide)

Hopeless – Colleen Hoover Buy (Worldwide)

Not a Drop to Drink – Mindy McGinnis “Big respect to Mindy McGinnis for having the guts to present a pus-and-all tale of survivalism and tough decisions…I adore the refreshing honesty and realism that Not a Drop to Drink presents…Will definitely be checking out the author’s next novel…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Forbidden Heart – V. C. Andrews Buy (US)

Uncharted – Tracey Garvis Graves “…a great tale with a fascinating setting and relatable characters. A brilliant antidote for the gaudy melodramas that clog contemporary fiction.” Buy (US)

Entwined with You – Sylvia Day Buy (Worldwide)

The Pool Theory – Alexa Nazzaro “…sometimes you strike it lucky: a novel from an author (and publisher) you’ve never heard of before, that knocks your socks off. Alexa Nazzaro’s The Pool Theory is that book…I was completely into The Pool Theory, and highly recommend it for fans of smart, honest, and awkward contemporary teen fiction. I’m definitely looking forward to whatever comes next from Alexa Nazzaro.” Buy (Worldwide)

Heaven – Christoph Marzi “…completely won me over. Christoph Marzi is the missing link between J. K. Rowling and Holly Black, and Heaven is truly an urban fairy tale…Marzi’s chilly but charming London is peopled with enchanting lead characters…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Truth About You & Me – Amanda Grace “…Amanda Grace specialises in teen characters that make mistakes, but she doesn’t shy away from showing the consequences…a great read…a solid four-star novel.” Buy (Worldwide)

Complete Me – J. Kenner Buy (Worldwide)

The Campaign – Elizabeth Karre “…Destiny Davis is a great character…” Buy (Worldwide)

Gravity – Melissa West “…pretty darn creepy…Gravity is my favourite kind of sci-fi – it’s set on Earth…Melissa West’s debut is big on action, low on romance (but still present), and abounds in science and technology that I’d love to learn more about…I’m definitely looking forward to reading more by Melissa West.” Buy (Worldwide)

All Our Yesterdays – Cristin Terrill “…rather enjoyable, and could very well spark a time travel trend in fiction…Cristin Terrill handles the paradox fairly well, and certainly interests me in subatomic particle colliders…” Buy (Worldwide)

Fingersmith – Sarah Waters “…Deception, betrayal, family secrets, villainy…Gothic, asylum, and Mr. Lilly’s business – they combine for a cracker of a read. I jolly well recommend it for those interested in any of the above mentioned elements. Enjoy!” Buy (Worldwide)

Omens – Kelley Armstrong “…There’s a spoilery plot element that I absolutely love…Anita Mosley is the most fascinating character…” Buy (Worldwide)

Midnight Blue-Light Special – Seanan McGuire “…just as good as its predecessor, if not better…It’s so exciting to find a new series you’re passionate about, and InCryptid is just that.” Buy (Worldwide)

Parallel Visions – Cheryl Rainfield “…It’s hard-hitting…I’ll read anything Cheryl Rainfield writes, and I’m particularly looking forward to getting my mitts on Stained.” Buy (Worldwide)

Kithra – Dani Worth Buy (US)

The Dinner – Herman Koch “…Are you sure you want to be parent? After reading Herman Koch’s The Dinner, reconsider. This wryly-told novel is clever and quirky, and overall a great read. Love the witty observations, love the drama, love that the author makes you think to understand the full picture. Huzzah!” Buy (Worldwide)

Demon Chained – Erica Hayes “…Gloriously colourful, textural, and more than a little messed up, the Shadowfae world is always a delight to read. The characters are screwy, which makes them believable, and the situations they get themselves into are less than ideal. Never boring, Demon Chained is jolly good fun, and has me desperate for another full-length novel set in this bizarro Melbourne. Erica Hayes is a champion.” Buy (US)

Stained – Cheryl Rainfield “…a fabulous premise…” Buy (Worldwide)

Hunter’s Blood – Erica Hayes “…I hear there’s a sequel (Hunter’s Heart) coming at some stage, and I’ll give it a go…” Buy (US)

Tampa – Alissa Nutting “…Tampa is a sordid tale with a sharp voice and strong narrator. Celeste Price is a fully-formed anti-hero, who’s as smart, funny, and just plain interesting as she is depraved. Tampa may be marketed as literary fiction, but it’s a modern noir with a particularly memorable femme fatale. I’m so looking forward to whatever Alissa Nutting writes next.” Buy (Worldwide)

Waiting – Carol Lynch Williams “…Carol Lynch Williams is an author of immense skill…It’s a delicate balance, and a successful one. Waiting punches readers in the feels – it’s a good thing.” Buy (Worldwide)

Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn “…Gillian Flynn has a witty way with words, and certainly doesn’t hold back on creating grotesque characters. Her social commentary is clever…sure to spark lively discussion…” Buy (Worldwide)

The In-Between – Barbara Stewart “…The In-Between is such a pleasant surprise, appealing to my dual loves of weird medical stuff and psychological suspense. A majestic stand-alone in a market full of series, Barbara Stewart has crafted such a welcome reprieve that I sped through eagerly.” Buy (Worldwide)

The Brokenhearted – Amelia Kahaney “…Amelia Kahaney is a talented writer, and The Brokenhearted has an awesome premise. The mad science won my heart…” Buy (Worldwide)

How I Live Now – Meg Rosoff Buy (Worldwide)

Tear You Apart – Megan Hart “…refreshingly real, with flawed characters that don’t always get what they want, but when they do it comes with a heavy price that may not be worth it. I love this…” Buy (Worldwide)

Contaminated – Em Garner Buy (Worldwide)

The 100 – Kass Morgan “…three spaceships – thumbs-up!…The spaceship happenings are a lot more intriguing…” Buy (Worldwide)

The Hook-Up – Abigail Barnette “…the middle with Neil and Emir is AWESOME and actually ground-breaking for me as a reader…a pretty great introduction to the Boss-verse…shouldn’t be missed.” Free (Worldwide) (legally free – price set by the author)

Come Unto Me – John Ajvide Lindqvist “…a wonderfully Gothic, scary read…There’s some freaky shiz going on here, and it’s fascinating stuff…” Buy (Worldwide)

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