Sunday, January 3, 2010

Review: The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

The Dark Divine The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

Publisher: Egmont USA
Publish Date: December 22, 2009
Pages: 375
Format: Hardcover

I received this from the publisher for review (along with a great shade of nail polish to match the toenail polish on the front cover)

My rating: 5.0/5.0

This was a truly amazing book to me. I enjoyed the story and the different look at werewolves/vampires and the paranormal. The one thing that really stood out to me was the fact that even though Grace is a preacher's daughter, she is not portrayed as a girl trying to rebel as is often the case in books. She is normal, she is trying to figure out right and wrong as it fits in her life. I liked the preacher's daughter perspective in this book, I think it really makes the book. I also think you aren't bogged down in the fact she's a preacher's daughter either. She is human, she does make mistakes and doesn't always choose the right thing, but she's not rebelling. She's just trying to get by.

The story is beautifully written and the characters really come alive. The cover is gorgeous but the book is even better. Once I started The Dark Divine I had a hard time putting it down. The plot is well-paced and full of suspense. I never could quite figure out who the monster was until I was told. Clues are given but the overall mystery wasn't given away to me until the appropriate time in the book. It always kept me guessing.

I also liked how the suspense starts on the first page - what happened that night the Daniel left and what has changed Grace's family? Daniel is also compelling and a great hero to Grace's heroine. Both characters are strong, yet unsure, making them both believable. I think this book would be enjoyable to young adults and adults. It has an intriguing storyline and wonderful characters and I just can't say enough about how great this book is.

Review: I, Alex Cross by James Patterson

I, Alex Cross (Alex Cross, #16) I, Alex Cross by James Patterson

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publish Date: November 16, 2009
Pages: 400
Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Series: Alex Cross #16
From: My local library

My rating: 4.25/5.0

I have read the Alex Cross books from the beginning when my husband's step-dad told us about Along Came a Spider.  I have eagerly awaited each yearly installment and read it through.  The first five or so were great and then they were just ok.  I wasn't ready to give them up though because I enjoy Alex Cross and James Patterson can really come up with some demented bad guys.  I am so glad I did not give them up because this installment reminds me of what got me reading these books to begin with.

If you haven't read the series, don't worry - you can jump right in with this one.  It works great as a standalone.

I think it helps that this one is not co-authored.  I enjoy Patterson's co-authors, but I really don't want them on my Alex Cross books.  This has the feel of the old Alex Cross books with Alex, the family and the case.  And this case is a doozy and very suspenseful.  Even though a very small clue is given in the book I never picked up on it until the bad guy was given away.  I was trying to figure it out the whole time and could not get it.  Very suspenseful through the entire book.  I could hardly put it down, especially the last 200 pages.  A thrill-ride until the end - this Alex Cross book does not disappoint.

About the Book:
You can't run
Detective Alex Cross is pulled out of a family celebration and given the awful news that a beloved relative has been found brutally murdered. Alex vows to hunt down the killer, and soon learns that she was mixed up in one of Washington's wildest scenes. And she was not this killer's only victim.

You can't hide
The hunt for her murderer leads Alex and his girlfriend, Detective Brianna Stone, to a place where every fantasy is possible, if you have the credentials to get in. Alex and Bree are soon facing down some very important, very protected, very dangerous people in levels of society where only one thing is certain--they will do anything to keep their secrets safe.

Alex Cross is your only hope to stay alive
As Alex closes in on the killer, he discovers evidence that points to the unimaginable--a revelation that could rock the entire world. With the unstoppable action, unforeseeable twists, and edge-of-your-seat suspense that only a James Patterson thriller delivers, I, Alex Cross is the master of suspense at his sharpest and best.

100+ Reading Challenge
Support Your Local Library Challenge

2010 Support Your Local Library Challenge

This is another challenge I joined last year that I am joining again this year.  I adore my local library and the people that work there.

I plan on joining at the Stepping it Up Level, which means I'll read 75 books.

I'll list my books here.  Go to J. Kaye's Book Blog to sign up and see the others that have signed up.

  1. I, Alex Cross by James Patterson
  2. L is for Loser by Lisi Harrison
  3. It's Not Easy Being Mean by Lisi Harrison
  4. Sealed with a Diss by Lisi Harrison
  5. Private by Kate Brian
  6. Poseur by Rachel Maude
  7. Smash Cut by Sandra Brown
  8. Let Them Eat Fruitcake by Melody Carlson
  9. When Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson
  10. ttyl by Lauren Myracle
  11. Hush by Kate White 
  12. Caught by Harlan Coben
  13. Prom by Laurie Halse Anderson
  14. Fever, 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
  15. When Lightning Strikes by Meg Cabot
  16. Scream by Mike Dellosso
  17. Think Twice by Lisa Scottoline
  18. Don't Look Twice by Andrew Gross
  19. The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
  20. Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer by John Grisham
  21. Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffen
  22. Untouchable by Kate Brian
  23. Confessions by Kate Brian
  24. The 9th Judgement by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  25. The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell
  26. Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
  27. Winter Garden by Kristen Hannah
  28. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  29. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
  30. Worst Case by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge
  31. The Everafter by Amy Huntley
  32. The Van Alen Legacy by Melissa de la Cruz
  33. Cross Bones by Kathy Reichs
  34. Wings by Aprilynne Pike
  35. Break No Bones by Kathy Reichs 
  36. Evermore by Alyson Noel 
  37. Spells by Aprilynne Pike 
  38. Legacy by Kate Brian  
  39. Bones to Ashes by Kathy Reichs 

    2010 100+ Reading Challenge

    J. Kaye's book blog will once again be hosting the 100+ Reading Challenge and I am definitely joining in.  Here are the rules.  Head over to J. Kaye's Book Blog to sign up.

    My goal for this year is 225 books.  I made 208 in 2009 so I'm going to try and make a few more this year.

    I will list my books with links to reviews as I finish them.

    1. I, Alex Cross by James Patterson
    2. Sydney's D.C. Discovery by Jean Fischer
    3. Good Ghoul's Guide to Getting Even by Julie Kenner
    4. The Chic Shall Inherit the Earth by Shelly Adina
    5. L is for Loser by Lisi Harrison
    6. It's Not Easy Being Mean by Lisi Harrison
    7. Sealed with a Diss by Lisi Harrison
    8. Private by Kate Brian
    9. Don't You Forget About Me by Cecily von Ziegesar
    10. Shadow by Jenny Moss
    11. Becoming Lucy by Martha Rogers
    12. Conflicts with Interest by Michael Ruddy
    13. Deadly Codes by J.P. O'Donnell
    14. Nailed by Jennifer Laurens
    15. Screen  Play by Chris Coppernoll
    16. Poseur by Rachel Maude
    17. Smash Cut by Sandra Brown
    18. The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher
    19. Let Them Eat Fruitcake by Melody Carlson
    20. A Black Tie Affair by Sherrill Bodine
    21. Invitation Only by Kate Brian
    22. Lone Star Legend by Gwendolyn Zepeda
    23. Jenna's Cowboy by Sharon Gillenwater
    24. Freaksville by Kitty Keswick
    25. Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris
    26. Island Sting by Bonnie J. Doerr

    1. Spring Breakdown by Melody Carlson
    2. Katy's New World by Kim Vogel Sawyer
    3. Dear Big V by Ellen W. Leroe
    4. Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt
    5. Dreams that Won't Let Go by Stacy Hawkins Adams
    6. Portrait in Death by J. D. Robb
    7. Oracle of Dating by Allison van Diepen
    8. The Mark by Jen Nadol
    9. Heavenly by Jennifer Laurens
    10. Hear No Evil by Matthew Paul Turner
    11. The Naughty List by Suzanne Young
    12. Anything But Normal by Melody Carlson
    13. The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams by Rhondy Hayter
    14. The Cougar Club by Susan McBride
    15. Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood by Eileen Cook
    16. Out with the In Crowd by Stephanie Morrill
    17. Never Blame the Umpire by Gene Fehler

    1. Magic Hands by Jennifer Laurens 
    2. Leaving Gee's Bend by Irene Latham
    3. The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
    4. Absolute Power by David Baldacci
    5. A Golden Web by Barbara Quick
    6. The Exile of Gigi Lane by Adrienne Maria Vrettos
    7. When Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson
    8. ttyl by Lauren Myracle
    9. Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcup

    1. Asking For Trouble by Sandra Byrd
    2. Sworn to Protect by DiAnn Mills
    3. A Most Improper Magick by Stephanie Burgiss
    4. White Cat by Holly Black
    5. Double Love by Francine Pascal
    6. Forget Me Not by Vicky Hinze
    7. Too Close to Home by Lynette Eason
    8. True Blue by David Baldacci
    9. Hush by Kate White
    10. Love Will Keep Us Together by Ann Dayton and May Vanderbilt
    11. Flaherty's Crossing by Kayla McFerrin
    12. Secrets of the Playboy's Bride by Leanne Banks
    13. Caught by Harlan Coben
    14. Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves
    1. Prada and Prejudice by Mandy Hubbard
    2. Prom by Laurie Halse Anderson
    3. Fever, 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
    4. When Lightning Strikes by Meg Cabot
    5. Scream by Mike Dellosso
    6. The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova
    7. Think Twice by Lisa Scottoline
    8. Infinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon
    9. Never Let You Go by Erin Healy
    10. Welcome to Harmony by Jodi Thomas
    11. The Ark by Boyd Morrison

    1. My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares
    2. Strange Neighbors by Ashlyn Chase 
    3. Don't Look Twice by Andrew Gross
    4. Wayfarer by R.J. Anderson
    5. Sins of the Mother by Victoria Christopher Murray
    6. Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
    7. Theodore Boone kid lawyer by John Grisham
    8. The Last Track by Sam Hilliard
    9. Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin
    10. Untouchable by Kate Brian
    11. Confessions by Kate Brian
    12. The Macgregor's Daughter by Dee Julian
    13. The 9th Judgment by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
    14. The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell
    15. Unspeakable by Laura Griffin
    16. Shattered by Karen Robards
    17. Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

    1. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver - read 7/1/10
    2. Winter Garden by Kristen Hannah - read 7/1/10
    3. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa - read 7/4/10
    4. Worst Case by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge - read 7/5/10
    5. Princess of Glass by Jessica George Day - read 7/6/10 
    6. Plan B by Steven Verrier - read 7/7/10 
    7. The Everafter by Amy Huntley - read 7/8/10
    8. Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel - read 7/10/10
    9. The Tension of Opposites by Kristina McBride - read 7/11/10
    10. Running from the Devil by Jamie Freveletti - read 7/13/10
    11. This is Me From Now On by Barbara Dee - read 7/13/10
    12. The Van Alen Legacy by Melissa de la Cruz - read 7/14/10 
    13. Past Tense by Samantha Hunter - read 7/16/10 
    14. Losing Faith by Denise Jarden - read 7/16/10
    15. Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill - read 7/17/10
    16. Cross Bones by Kathy Reichs - read 7/19/10 
    17. Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare - read 7/20/10
    18. Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken - read 7/22/10
    19. Wings by Aprilynne Pike - read 7/23/10
    20. The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong - read 7/24/10
    21. The Summer of Skinny-Dipping by Amanda Howells - read 7/25/10
    22. Virals by Kathy Reichs - read 7/26/10
    23. A Change of Heart by Shari Mauer - read 7/27/10
    24. Katy's Debate by Kim Vogle Sawyer- read 7/28/10
    25. Final Touch by Brandilynn and Amberly Collins - read 7/29/10
    26. Monster High by Lisi Harrison - read 7/29/10
    27. Premiere by Melody Carlson - read 7/30/10

    1. The Deadly Sister by Eliot Schrefer - read 8/1/10
    2. Freefall by Mindi Scott - read 8/2/10
    3. Matched by Ally Condie - read 8/3/10 
    4. Break No Bones by Kathy Reichs - read 8/4/10 
    5. Chill of the Night by James Hayman - read 8/5/10
    6. Evermore by Alyson Noel - read 8/7/10
    7. Spells by Aprilynne Pike - read 8/8/10
    8. Catwalk by Melody Carlson - read 8/8/10 
    9. Live to Tell by Lisa Gardner - read 8/11/10 
    10. Firelight by Sophie Jordan - read 8/13/10
    11. The Candidates by Inara Scott - read 8/15/10
    12. Inner Circle by Kate Brian - read 8/16/10 
    13. The Phantom Diaries by Kailin Gow - read 8/17/10
    14. Legacy by Kate Brian - read 8/18/10
    15. What I Learned From Being a Cheerleader by Adrianne Ambrose - read 8/20/10
    16. Bones to Ashes by Kathy Reichs - read 8/20/10 
    17. Elffolk and the Crystal Caves of Atlantis  - read 8/24/10 
    18. Chasing Brooklyn - read 8/25/10 
    19. Ashes to Water by Irene Ziegler - read 8/26/10
    20. The Perfect Family by Kathryn Shay - read 8/27/10
    21. Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters by Natalie Standiford - read 8/29/10
    22. Nightshade by Andrea Cremer - read 8/29/10 
    23. Manifest by Artist Arthur - read 8/31/10  

    1. Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler - finished 9/1/10 
    2. Personal Demons by Lisa Desrochers - finished 9/2/10 
    3. The Absolute Value of -1 by Steve Brezenoff - finished 9/3/10
    4. God is in the Pancakes by Robin Epstein - finished 9/4/10
    5. Candor by Pam Bachorz - finished 9/7/10
    6. Last to Die by Kate Brady - finished  9/10/10 
    7. Crusade by Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie - finished 9/11/10
    8. The Strain by Guillermo Del Tor & Chuck Hogan - finished 9/13/10
    9. Tough Customer by Sandra Brown - finished 9/14/10
    10. Finny by Justin Kramon - finished 9/14/10 
    11. Mostly Good Girls by Leila Sales - finished 9/15/10 
    12. Terminal Care by Christopher Stookey - finished 9/17/10 
    13. The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff - finished 9/18/10
    14. Three Quarters Dead by Richard Peck - finished 9/18/10 
    15. Low Red Moon by Ivy Devlin - finished 9/20/10