Special Review, YA Dystopian

ARC Book Review: Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott

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I was given an ebook copy of this book by Scholastic through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review

Goodreads Summary:

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can’t determine what’s wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She’s lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she’s helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It’s an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother’s illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there’s no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can’t trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

My Initial Thoughts:

I originally requested this book because Kayla over at The Thousand Lives was really excited. She was like REQUEST IT, and I did. I’d also heard it was the NEXT dystopian book and you guys know how much I love me some dystopian novels so I was like this sounds good. But then… Kayla didn’t like it and I was bummed. I started reading it with very low expectations.

Review:

Let’s just dive into this review. The first half of the book, I would give it a 3. The second half of the book I would give it a 4. At the beginning, Tella was really whiny and I could not believe she was the main character or a contender. I kept thinking to myself do I really have to put up with her for the rest of the novel? I thought about DNF’ing the book right then and there, but I decided to persevere, and I was happy I did.

*SPOILER ALERT*

Guy’s and Tella’s relationship is a complicated one. Some see their relationship as insta-love, but when you think about it. People in such crazy circumstances need some normalcy, and finding a partner or maybe a love interest is a very good way to find comfort, normality, and companionship in such dire situations. The thing about Guy that I loved is that he isn’t completely sold on this “attraction” or whatever you want to call it at first and she doesn’t really exactly know what to do about it either. They both know there can only be one winner.

I also found the whole idea of each contender having an animal with them to protect them was a pretty good unique thing to add to the “let’s throw people in the arena and kill each other for the prize” dystopian trope. It added a twist I didn’t know I had been wanting until I read it.

*SPOILERS OVER*

In conclusion, I like the concept and plot of this book. I like where it is going. If you want to check it out, go ahead! You’ll just have to get past the first 20% of the book, which is where I almost stopped reading it and gave it a DNF. After that it gets better and the plot thickens.

Rating: 3.5/5

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Special Review, YA Paranormal

Special Review: A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty

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I was provided with a copy of this book by NetGalley & Scholastic. Thank you very much for approving my request.

Goodreads Summary:

The first in a rousing, funny, genre-busting trilogy from bestseller Jaclyn Moriarty!

This is a tale of missing persons. Madeleine and her mother have run away from their former life, under mysterious circumstances, and settled in a rainy corner of Cambridge (in our world).

Elliot, on the other hand, is in search of his father, who disappeared on the night his uncle was found dead. The talk in the town of Bonfire (in the Kingdom of Cello) is that Elliot’s dad may have killed his brother and run away with the Physics teacher. But Elliot refuses to believe it. And he is determined to find both his dad and the truth.

As Madeleine and Elliot move closer to unraveling their mysteries, they begin to exchange messages across worlds — through an accidental gap that hasn’t appeared in centuries. But even greater mysteries are unfolding on both sides of the gap: dangerous weather phenomena called “color storms;” a strange fascination with Isaac Newton; the myth of the “Butterfly Child,” whose appearance could end the droughts of Cello; and some unexpected kisses.

Review:

I am going to start off with a food analogy to explain how this book was for me. It was like a big juicy delicious looking steak without the seasoning. It was missing something. I liked the idea of the book. I loved how Moriarty build the world in the book but I wasn’t swept away by the story. This had so much potential for being great. I really wish I wasn’t giving it a bad review. This book did not move me and the characters, especially Belle and Jack didn’t move me. Kala didn’t add much to the story either. The only character I liked was Elliot. I felt nothing special for Madeline.

Overall, this book could have been better. Part of the reason why this book did not move me was the writing. It was strange and it took me a while to get used to it.

Sidenote: I love the cover art for this book. It’s so beautiful. 

Rating: 2.5/5

Rating System:

1/5: I hated it.

2/5: It had some redeeming qualities but overall, not a good book.

3/5: I liked it (A fun read).

4/5: I really like it, but something was missing.

5/5: I love it! It’s as close to perfection as it can get!