Saturday, August 27, 2016

Fear University by Meg Collett

Fear University by [Collett, Meg]

Synopsis via Amazon:
I’ve always known I was a monster, and I don’t mean some teenage vampire shit either. 

My mother abandoned me when I was ten years old because I have a freakish mutant disease that makes me incapable of feeling pain. I bounced from one foster family to another because too many people like to test my medical condition in a game of “Try To Make Ollie Scream.” At sixteen, I killed a man for taking that game too far. 

Two years later, I’m still on the run in Kodiak, Alaska. Here, I’m the most dangerous person around, until I come face to face with a creature that should only exist in folklore. The monster is an aswang, and I, with my medical anomaly, am uniquely qualified to hunt the beast that haunts the night. At least, that’s what the two scarred, mostly crazy ’swang hunters tell me when they kidnap me and take me to Fear University, a school where young students learn to hunt and kill aswangs. 

I arrive at the university a prisoner, but I stay because I finally find my freedom. 

For once in my life, I belong. I’m needed. I make a home for myself inside the university masquerading as an old Alaskan prison. Something close to happiness warms my icy heart when I’m with my scarred, still mostly crazy tutor, Luke Aultstriver. For a murdering runaway like me, Fear University is a haven where I can put my skills to good use hunting monsters in the night. 

But when certain truths come to light and even more lies are exposed, I fear that I, Ollie Andrews, am the worst kind of monster of all. And, maybe, they should be hunting me.

So, I tried a new author and she is "fudging" AWESOME!!!
Meg Collett is a fellow Tennessean who is the author of four separate series. The Fear University is a contemporary fantasy series. And after just reading the first book, I happily inform you that it is one impressively mind blowing read!
Miss Collett has taken an old Phillipino myth and given it new life. She has taken a story of things that "go bump in the night" and made them "go bump in the present". But one of the things I like about Fear University is that she has introduced part of the Phillipino culture to the world.  Why is that important? Well, a lot of the older superstitions  from all cultures, are handed down the generations verbally. Because Miss Collett has taken an oral superstition and given it life in the written world. It will now survive for as long as her books are around.
Let's get to the detailed review. As most who visit my blog know, I do not like to "spoil" the book for other readers.
First, what I liked about the book:
The story is contemporary fantasy. It brings the supernatural into the present. It combines your imagination with the world around you making you ask "Is this something that could be real?".
With every character, there is more than meets the eye. Each character has a depth to them that will surprise you when they are  peeled like an onion. Will they make you cry? No, but they do make you reassess how you are expecting the storyline to progress.
I especially like the main characters and how they seem to evolve when you think you have them figured out. Their "evolution" (my term) helps the story maintain it's intensifying plot without feeling tired or monotonous. All of these together helped me read this 333 pages (e-book) in two days. I HAD to know what came next. I was totally engrossed.
What I didn't like about the book:
It only took me two days to read. I was up until 1:30 in the morning finishing the book because it was so engrossing. Thank goodness the next day was not a work day!! When I finally reached the last page, I was so engrossed with the story, I didn't realize I was on the last page and when I turned the page to find the book was over, I literally groaned and exclaimed "NO!!".
Okay, so the things I didn't like aren't bad things. They are reasons why you SHOULD read this story.

I will definitely be reading the next two books. And I found another author to place on my MUST READ list.
So this is on my list of "you have GOT to read this book!".
May you be blessed with the love of reading.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Made for Sin by Stacia Kane

Made for Sin by [Kane, Stacia]

Synopsis via Amazon:
A lot of bad hands get dealt in Vegas, but E. L. Speare may be holding one of the worst: He’s cursed with the need to commit sins, and if he misses his daily quota, there’s hell to pay—literally. Fortunately, his hometown affords him plenty of chances to behave badly.

But Speare’s newest case really has him going out on a limb. The right-hand man of a notorious crime boss has been found dead in a Dumpster—minus his right hand, not to mention the rest of his arm. What catches Speare’s attention, however, is that the missing appendage was severed clean by a demon-sword, a frighteningly powerful tool of the underworld.

Speare’s out of his element, so he turns to a specialist: Ardeth Coyle, master thief, dealer in occult artifacts, and bona fide temptress. Ardeth’s hotter than a Las Vegas sidewalk on the Fourth of July, but she’s one sin Speare has to resist. 

The dismembered corpses are piling up, unimaginable evil lurks in the shadows, and if this odd couple hopes to beat the odds, Speare needs to keep his hands off Ardeth, and his head in the game.

Made for Sin is a whole new take on demon stories.
First, we are introduced to Speare, a man living with a demon. literally. Speare shares his head with a demon. This demon requires Speare to voluntarily commit a sin or the demon takes over and Speare is forced to sit back and watch.
This story was a little slow in my opinion. I was intrigued by Speare's need to commit sins. Having a morbid curiosity, I wanted to find out which sins he committed, But I was really hoping I would get to find out what kind of sins the demon would reap.
I have to say that this was not one of my favorite stories. But it was definitely not the worst story I have read.
This will interest you if you like a mystery that does not require much thought.

Ghost in the Machine (The Spheres Cycle Book 1) by Kayla Hoyet

Ghost in the Machine (The Spheres Cycle Book 1) by [Hoyet, Kayla]

Synopsis via Amazon: 
Eighteen-year-old Tyler Gaines has always followed the rules--in part because it's too much trouble to break them, but mostly because her father's bedtime stories about the Sphere's elite red-coat Enforcers scared her senseless as a child. She does what she's told, just like everyone else, so when she goes to see the Broker--a woman whose sole purpose is to assign a match to everyone in the Sphere--and gets paired with a red-coat Enforcer named Aidan, she tries her best to put her father's stories to rest and adapt to her new family. When Tyler's best friend is killed and both fingers and technology point to Tyler as the main suspect, Tyler begins to think that her nightmares are coming to life. 

Aidan knows Tyler is innocent, but there's one big problem: Proving Tyler's innocence rests on proving that the government's high-tech system, the system on which the entire population depends, has a problem the likes of which it has never had before. Aidan doesn't have a lot of time to make his case. If he can't figure out what's wrong with the system soon, Tyler may end up paying the ultimate price for a crime she didn't commit.

I enjoyed reading this book. It is fresh and new, not the standard sci-fi story. Most people think that sci-fi equates to space, but Miss Hoyet is instrumental in throwing that equation out the door.
She introduces us to a government controlled state where the population is told who they will partner with, what their jobs would be, where they could and could not travel to, and where they live. Anyone who doesn't follow the rules went to the basement of the administration building and never came back.
Aidan and Tyler are matched by their sphere's broker. But soon after they are matched, Tyler is accused of murdering her best friend.
Tyler is likeable in a childlike innocent way. She has been raised in a society that doesn't let you date or have romantic relationships because they choose your life partner. She was removed from her mother and placed in her given profession at the age of 11.
Aidan is also a likeable character. He is kind, understanding, and caring. He is totally different in reality than the stories she was told about red-coat enforcers.
Miss Hoyet is a great story teller. She is clear, concise and articulate in building a world that is very different than our own. She combines conflict, angst, respect, family, and budding romance in a story that will make you thankful to live in the world we live in.
While this is the first book in a series, the ending does not leave you hanging to find out what happens. It winds up the story but, at the same time, leaves the storyline open to continue with Tyler and Aidan's story.
If you like sci-fi or YA, this is a book for you. I will definitely be looking for book 2.

Happy reading!!