~Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen~

ImageIt’s always pleasurable to read Godbersen’s books. She has that unique style of writing and story-telling that makes every character, every scenery, every setting and every moment jump out of life. I just love the way she describes people, places and things. It’s very imaginative and incredibly vivid. I read The Luxe before but I liked this story better. I guess I was smitten by the “Romeo & Juliet-ish” twist to the plot as well as the predictability of some characters. This is the type of story wherein you couldn’t really relate to any of the main characters but you still feel empathy towards them. You can almost feel their emotions surging through as if they were yours. I personally liked the story of friendship between Cordelia and Letty – how these two country bumpkins stepped out of their comfort zone and bravely took on the challenge of living in the big city. They both experienced happiness, success, fame, love and failure but in the end, they still ended up together as they share their agony and heartaches.

 

Astrid is one delightful character for me. She surprises me the most. Although the last part of the book was sort of “I saw that coming”, I think she still has some sort of facade that she’s concealing pretty well. Charlie is a bastard but I like him out of all the boys too (although Thom Hale & Luke were the ones who induced girlish squeaks of excitement from me ^^). I just like Charlie’s dignity and how protective he is of his family. He may be a player but I think he really loves Astrid. I was a bit annoyed at Letty during about 60% of the book. I just don’t like her irritatingly innocent & naive personality. She makes me wanna roll my eyes several times. But I guess she learned her lesson at the end.

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The death at the end was quite unexpected although I’ve been apprehensive of the events that followed afterwards. I kinda saw it coming too. Like deja vu. It didn’t ruin my excitement upon reading it though. It was a compelling and fun read. I like the fact that on the surface it seemed to be the success and sob stories of the three girls when I kinda see it as the story of rival families and the desire to grab the upper tier of the society mingled with complicated love affairs, nasty secrets, friendship, broken dreams and promises, and family relationships. It was like a complete set of meal and I couldn’t ask for more. ^.^ A must-read for hopeless romantics like me~ 

Images are from: fayeflamereviews.blogspot.com and thebooksmugglers.com

~Hollow-fied~

“It’s exhilarating, Abbey. You exhilarate me” ~ Caspian, The Haunted

Ever since the Harry Potter series ended, I’ve never been attached to any book trilogies or series. Well, I THOUGHT I’d never get hooked again. But then there’s Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl’s fantastic trilogy, Beautiful CreaturesBeautiful Darkness– ??? Yeah, I dunno the third book’s title yet. ^^ I loved it from start to finish and I just can’t hardly wait for the third installment.

So I started reading Jessica Verday’s THE HOLLOW. Then went on to read THE HAUNTED. It took me about two and a half months to finish them. And I can say it was well worth my time.  I don’t really plan on making a long-ass review here. I just want to share my thoughts about these wonderful reads.

I liked The Hollow due to the simple fact that it was refreshing and unique as compared to the current craze over sparkling vampires with bad attitudes or hot-tempered fallen angels. There are no werewolves or wizards here either. Just a simple dead boy who is haunting the haunted village of Sleepy Hollow. 😀

From the start, Caspian had been nothing but nice, sweet, kind and a true gentleman. Although he has his ‘moments of teenage angst‘, he never showed it to Abbey. I think my problem with the first book was Abbey’s ‘pity-me-my-bff-died-its-all-my-fault-i-shouldn’t-be-happy-i-should-forever-be-emo’ attitude. With the first few chapters it was okay. Tolerable, to say the least. But as I read more of her outbursts and crazy wild emo moments, I got more and more irked. Okay, I know how she feels. I lost someone too. Been there done that. But it was just… I dunno… sometimes it feels like she’s being TOO emotional and she’s overreacting.

Anyway, although there were lots of loopholes and WTF moments in The Hollow, especially when my suspicions about Caspian were right, some of them were thoroughly explained in the second book– The Haunted.

I still don’t get Nikolas and Katy though. I KNOW. They’re Shades or whatever, but their connection to the legend of Sleepy Hollow is just– WTF. ~__~

The things that didn’t make sense in The Hollow were finally explained in The Haunted which made it a compelling read. With every page I  get awed by Caspian’s sweetness and I get enlightened by the revelations. ^^

What set Caspian apart from the other ‘lead guys’ in fiction novels is the fact that he’s just a boy. Who died, yeah. But his being separated from his physical body didn’t stop his heart from beating. It didn’t stop him from falling in love with Abbey. And that makes it more interesting and special.

He has his flaws, yes, but that’s what makes him more gorgeous. He’s NOT perfect. It’s just like having a normal teenage boy as your  boyfriend. Only he’s dead. 😄 But I think he’s so much better than most kids his age who are ill-mannered, bad-tempered and who thinks of nothing but doing ‘THAT’.

Another thing about The Haunted is that it stands well alone. I think even if I wasn’t able to read book one, I won’t be lost upon reading this. All the important facts and events in book one were recalled and well expounded in book two. Although the author might’ve missed a few issues here and there –like what the hell is Nikolas and Katy REALLY??? Or what is Ben supposed to be– the dead bff’s secret admirer, the unofficial other guy or just Abbey’s friend? Why was Caspian chosen as a shade? Or rather, how did he become a shade?

I dunno. I don’t really nitpick when it comes to the books I read. Unless there’s really A LOT to nitpick on. 😄 I try to put myself in the author’s shoes, being a writer myself… ^^

Anyway, although I sympathize a little with Ben– the unofficial other guy– I still love Caspian to death. Okay, no PUN intended. XP He’s just the best dead boyfriend ever.  He understands Abbey’s shortcomings and unreasonable emotional outbursts and he really cherishes her so much. I mean, let’s face it. The way I imagined Abbey, she’s not THAT pretty. I bet she’s more on the average-looking side. Not the head-turner type. I really like how deep and passionate their love for each other is despite their young age.

I still don’t get how this story’s gonna end though… ^_^;; I mean, okay, so Vincent Drake doesn’t want Abbey to die coz he doesn’t want her and Caspian to be ‘whole/complete’– but WHY??? And what’s up with those creepy revenants anyway? Why should the living half die as well…? Are they really trying to help?  Can’t the living half and dead half be together as it is? *sighs* I need the third book NAO! >_<

AND can I just say that IF EVER there is  a movie adaptation, this person should TOTALLY be Caspian. 😀

Tom to tom tom ~ Tom tom ~~~