ARC: The Fourth Monkey by J.D Barker

the fourth monkey

Rating: 4/5
Release Date: June 27, 2017

***This book was given to me for an honest review, but all my thoughts and opinions are my own***

This is my first ever ARC and I was really excited to receive it. The first time I read the synopsis of this book, I was definitely hooked and was really excited to pick it up. Unfortunately, I really wanted to read it closer to the release date so that I can write a review closer to the date.

As seen in my rating, it’s obvious that I enjoyed this book. I admit there are a few things that bothered me, but overall, I’m really glad that I received this ARC.

Let’s start with what I enjoyed about the book. The main reason why I requested for this book is because the mystery aspect really did intrigue me and I wasn’t disappointed. From the beginning to the end, it was none stop guessing game, and it was awesome. The way the author set up his novel is similar to a Criminal Minds episode, each person in the team is dedicated to a specific task which they must accomplish and contribute their findings. This part of the book is pretty well done and different because most mystery novels I’ve been reading lately is done either individually or solved by an amateur sleuth. Although, we do get one protagonists, I feel that his team is able to contribute to the story and you get to see their personalities shine through. I also love the friendly banter between the colleagues. I’m a fan of Porter. He’s actually quiet different from other heroes that I’ve read before and it’s a nice break from the cliched ‘distraught hero’. I actually wish that Barker will make this a series rather than a standalone since I really did enjoy the cast that he has created.

As for the mystery, like I’ve said before, it was amazing! All the twist and turns that the author included made me enjoy the story overall. Yes, the end is a bit trope-y, but I feel that it works for the story plot. Even though you know who the serial killer is at the start, the diary that is presented to the detectives still gave you the chill factor. I wasn’t too interested with that side story, but it does help explain a lot of things by the end of the novel. I’m actually disappointed and hopeful with the Epilogue, since it does leave us hanging onto something that might not pan out. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the author will continue the story of Porter and his group.

I don’t really want to leave this review on a bad note, but I do have to explain why I gave this book a 4 star instead. I think the one thing that bothered me the most is that there were some down time, not a lot, but enough for me to notice it. I understand that background stories need to be explained and I would have understood the extent of the explanation if this is going to become a series. As a stand alone, I feel that the author didn’t need to spend too much time on Porter’s wife, but rather use those pages for a bit more intrigue on the serial killer. Now, don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed it and will continue to watch out for more books that Barker releases.

 

TBR Challenge #6: Favorite Trope

wires and nerve

Wires and Nerve by Marissa Meyer

Rating: 4/5

Why? So I picked this book for this theme because this graphic novel includes one of my tropes ever and that is the hate-love relationship. I love these types of love story of boy meets girl and they instantly hate each other, but as the book/series progress they eventually fall in love for each other. Now I’m not saying that this graphic novel will turn into that, since it is the first in the series, but it does have the essence of it. I think eventually there will be something there.

Review: I really enjoyed reading this graphic novel and seeing all the beloved characters again. Yes, I know I wasn’t a fan of this series before, but after I read Winter I was totally floored! So of course I had to pick this up since Iko is one of my favorite characters in the original series.

I’m glad that Meyer decided to do a spin-off series on the android, but I’m not that thrilled on the graphic part. Although the story is amazing so far, I think the graphic part didn’t quite hit the mark. Meyer’s books are always so vivid and detailed when she’s describing her characters, settings and world building. The problem is that did not resonate into this graphic novel. I would have love for her characters to be more vibrant and exciting, similar to her books.

That rant over, I really did love the story. I wish I waited a bit longer to get my hands on this so that I don’t have to wait so long for the next one. This volume is filled with so much action right from the start. I love that I get to see Scarlet and Wolfe again and the whole gang. I did wish that there would have been more Scarlet and Wolfe, but that’s ok, I actually wasn’t even expecting them, so it was a pleasant surprise.

That being said, I’m really excited to see what happens to Iko and her little adventure!

Book Date #8

its-monday-what-are-you-reading

I can’t believe that Monday crept up so fast and I totally forgot to post this Book Date Monday, oh well, better late than never!

Last Week I Finished:

the-vault-of-dreamers

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this book yet, but I did give it a 3 out 5. It’s a unique story and I enjoyed reading it. I just had a problem with the ending. ARGH! That ending! I’m not really sure if I will be continuing this series though.

Currently Reading:

the fourth monkey

This book was given to me for an honest review and therefore I will most likely write a review for it. That being said, I really enjoyed the book. It was an exciting read with a twist in the end.

Upcoming Read:

I really want to start a new series this week, but I’m debating on which one. I’m leaning more on A Court of Thorns and Roses, but we’ll see.

 

Books I’ll (probably) Never Read Tag

I saw this tag on Youtube, obviously, with one of the Booktubers I follow. Original tag creator is LittleSpider9.  The concept of the tag is to answer the questions with books that you’re most likely not going to read. Almost like a anti-TBR, if that makes sense.

Anyways, lets get on with the tag!

1. A really hyped book you’re not interested in reading?

Carry On

This is one of those books that everyone has read and love, but I never really got in the band wagon with this spin-off. I just found the idea of this fan-fic ridiculous. Sorry! When I read Fangirl, which I also wasn’t a fan of, this storyline reminded me too much of Harry Potter. I don’t if it’s her omage to HP or an unintentional copy of the beloved series. Yes, I know I shouldn’t really criticize since I haven’t read the book, but really I have no intention of picking it up.

2. A series you won’t start/won’t be finishing?

Ok, I think this is one of those tags that I’m going to get a lot of hate for, but remember all, I’m not trying to hate on your favorite books, we just have different taste. For this question I’m leaning more on Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi than Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. For sure, 100% sure, I’m never going to finish Shatter Me, on the other hand Throne of Glass I’m still on the fence about. Either way I might not end up reading it as well. Celeana isn’t one of my favorite characters in the first book, but I hear the series does get better. So I’ll probably wait and see how I feel about the books when the series ends.

3. A classic that you’re just not interested in?

rome and juliet

I’m not much of a classic reader to begin with, but most likely I won’t be reading Rome and Juliet by William Shakespeare. Actually, I’m cheating a bit because I have read this before, but because of school. If I have a choice I won’t be reading this play ever again.

4. Any genre’s you never read?

It’s pretty difficult to say NEVER to any genre. As a reader you must be open to all stories, especially those that interest you. I do have a genre that I don’t naturally gravitate towards and that Contemporary Romance and Non-Fiction/Biography. I won’t say I never read them, but I don’t really go out of my way to find a book in that genre.

5. A Book on you shelf you’ll probably never read?

born at midnight

Hmmmm…I actually have a lot of books on my shelf that I haven’t read yet, but this is the one book that popped into my head when I read this question, Born at Midnight by C.C Hunter. I think I’m just done with these types of books with this type setting. It’s been over played and overwritten.

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So that’s it for this tag and hope you enjoyed it. I tag everyone and anyone who wants to do it. I actually had fun doing it and watching other people’s tags. So head on over to LittleSpider9 and watch her video.

Top 5 Side Ships

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No, I’m not talking about cruise ships, or sail boats or any other floating transportation, but rather relation’ships’. This week’s top 5 is focusing on relationships that doesn’t include the main characters.

FYI: Mostly likely will reveal spoilers

1. Nymphadora Tonks and Remus Lupin

These two adults in a book for teens captured a lot of people’s hearts and broke them as well by the end of the series. Just thinking about them brings tears to my eyes.

2. Samwise Gamgee and Rosie Cotton

After everything Sam did for Frodo and the ring, I think he deserved to be happy. I love this part of Lord of the Rings because we get to have background stories of the heroes.

3. Leo Valdez and Calypso

Leo was technically one of the POV in some of the books in the Heroes of Olympus series, but I really don’t think he’s one of the main characters. That doesn’t mean I don’t love him and when he found his other half, I could be even more thrilled! Love their relationship

4. Iko and Liam Kinney

Ok, so technically they’re not together or even in a relationship, but their chemistry is off the charts and I would LOVE for them to be together. PLEASE make it happen!

5. Mal and Molly

I have to add these two. They’re too cute. Love Lumberjanes and love this relationship.

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Ok, so that’s it for this week’s Top 5. Do you agree with me?

Series Review: Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

Book 1: Dorothy Must Die
Book 2: The Wicked will Rise
Book 3: Yellow Brick War
Book 4: The End of Oz

Overall Rating: 3/5

Synopsis: After Dorothy came back to the Oz, everything changed for the worst. Now Amy is brought in to right things, but how can she defeat Dorothy, when she is not even sure who is good and who is bad.

Review: Usually in my Series Reviews I try to put my two cents in each book within the series. For this series, I’ll try to do an overall review for all four books.

I first picked up the series two years ago with Dorothy Must Die, and I loved the new take on the famous heroine. Even with all the controversy with the author, I still wanted to give this series a try because I’m a fan of The Wizard of Oz. I enjoy fairy tale re-tellings as much as the next person, but the fact that Dorothy, the heroine of The Wizard of Oz, is more wicked than the Wicked Witch of the West, so definitely I had to see what it was all about. For me, the first installment had me at the first chapter. I enjoy the new heroine, Amy Gumm and I love seeing all the characters I loved in the old classic, but with the twist. I think Paige did a great job creating a new heroine for readers to love. Amy is the opposite of Dorothy in terms of personality and characteristics, but she’s a tough cookie that has a tough life. I also love the other characters that Paige included, it’s still a bit confusing on who to trust and such, but I’m enjoying the mystery. It was also great seeing the yellow brick road, munchkin land and all the other beautiful places in Oz. It might not look the same as I was used to, but the differences made Paige’s world different from Frank Baum’s world. I don’t really want to go into details on Paige’s world building, but I think she did a fantastic job in this first book.

The second book, The Wicked Will Rise, is also a great read, not as great as the first book, but an enjoyable sequel. There really wasn’t much that was happening to the characters that the author didn’t go through on the first book. Amy must still focus on her goal in defeating the evil Dorothy and her minions. The pacing in this book was rather fast-paced and a lot of things happen that made you want to look forward to the third book. I appreciate the romance in this second book, since it wasn’t the focal point of the story, but at the same time it was a cute added bonus. Basically, the first and second book was a great read until the last two books kicked in.

I think the third book, The Yellow Brick War, for me is the game changer. When this book was released, I was so excited because I thought this book was the last installment. I was sadly disappointed. Seriously, everyone thought this series was going to be a trilogy, and I was shocked that when I finished the book, it left with a cliffhanger. To be honest, this series did not need a fourth book, this story definitely could have ended with this last book and I think it would have been a fantastic ending. I’m really not sure why Paige thought it was a good idea to include another one, but I think everything could have been wrapped up nicely with the third installment.  I found this book to be slower than the other two books, only because the story line was stretched out to include the fourth book. The battles almost became repetitive as Amy gets taken out of battles in order to find Dorothy. As I said there is a cliffhanger at the end so beware!

Finally, the last book, The End of Oz, was even a greater disappointment as the previous, only because the ending totally gave up on me. I’m not really sure if Paige is going to do a spin-off series, or she enjoys toying with her readers, but I don’t really want to go into that. I’m not really a fan of this book out of the whole series and I really think the inclusion of this book is an afterthought. The one highlight for me in this book is Lang, I love her, a lot better than Amy in this book, but I’ll explain that later. Lang is an amazing character and the epitome of an Anti-heroine. Other than that, the book was bleh. Even Amy’s character became very bland and she seemed to loose herself with her relationship with Nox. I wish that there was more of a concrete ending to the series, but even if there will be another book, I’ll most likely skip it.

***********************SPOILER ALERT!!*********************

Ending: I hate the ending. Let’s just say she was able to defeat Dorothy.

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Hogwarts House Book Recommendation

top-5

It’s been awhile since I posted a Top 5 Wednesday and this topic is quite exciting. So I’m a proud Potterhead, if you didn’t know that yet. So of course I know what wand I have and which house I belong to, which of course is Ravenclaw. So for this week’s Top 5 we are to list books that a Ravenclaw most likely will recommend.

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“…yet in wise old Ravenclaw, If you’ve a ready mind, Where those of wit and learning, Will always find their kind.” – Sorting Hat

I always pictured that Ravenclaws will enjoy a good mystery book, one that is well written and full of twists and turns, something that will make their minds work out the outcome of the plot. So here is my Top 5 Ravenclaw Book Recommendation.

I know that A Monster Calls is not within the mystery genre, but the book is just so beautifully written and heart wrenching that it will definitely be  in every Ravenclaws TBR.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s Top 5, because I did. Yay! ^_^

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Comment down below and let me know which Hogwarts House you belong to.