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The Maze Runner 2: The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

The Maze Runner 2: The Scorch Trials by James DashnerBlurb

Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. No more puzzles. And no more running. Thomas was sure that escaping meant he would get his life back. But no one knew what sort of life they were going back to…

Burned and baked, the earth is a wasteland, it’s people driven mad by an infection known as the Flare.

Instead of freedom, Thomas must face another trial. He must cross the Scorch to once again save himself and his friends…

My Perspective

The Scorch Trials sees the surviving Gladers not rescued to go back to living a normal life, but rescued to be thrown back into another test. This time everything isn’t provided for them, they have a time limit and there’s a catch. Plus they have to complete it in the section of Earth now known as The Scorch – a barren wasteland with a city in the middle riddled with those who have caught the infectious disease known as The Flare.

The Scorch Trials is the second book in The Maze Runner series and follows on immediately after the first book. The flow on is actually pretty seamless – it’s almost like you just turned the page from the last book.

I think I enjoyed this book better than the first in terms of its storyline and content however the romance parts I found even more tiresome than the first. Are they really necessary?

I liked Thomas a lot especially as he continues to mature and grow. He’s realistic and his past is quite intriguing. The more you find out, the less you know.

The book is faster paced than the previous and I’m pretty sure I read it in a day. It’s action packed and you’re holding your breath quite a bit.

Overall it was an enjoyable read and I would definitely recommend it the young adult audience. Obviously you need to have read the first book in the series, The Maze Runner.

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The Maze Runner 1: The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner 1: The Maze Runner by James DashnerBlurb

When the doors of the lift crank open, the only thing Thomas can remember is his first name. But he’s not alone. He’s surrounded by boys who welcome him to the Glade, an encampment at the centre of a bizarre and terrible maze.

Like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they came to be there, or what’s happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything to find out.

My Perspective

Kel and I watched the movie, The Maze Runner, when it came out on DVD. When I learned that it was a book I was curious to read it. I also didn’t realise that it was a three book series, The Maze Runner, being the first. Kath from Minuscule Moments of Inspiration lent me the trilogy – thanks Kath!

The Maze Runner follows Thomas as he is hurtled upwards in a lift towards an unknown destination, having lost all of his memories. At the top he is let out into “The Glade”, a large field and forested area, where a group of teenage boys welcome him, all having experienced the same thing. The Glade is surrounded by a maze and so far no exit has been found. Soon Thomas learns about the dangers within the maze and the strict rules the boys live by to survive. Who created The Maze? And what do The Creators want from the boys? Thomas may be the newbie but he is determined to find out.

As I had seen the movie, I already knew the storyline however most book to movie adaptions have a lot left out and this certainly had it’s share.

The whole ‘all boys’ encampment, the need to survive and creating a mini civilisation reminded me a little of The Lord of The Flies (although I’ve never read the book I know the general gist of it). However there the resemblance ended. The Maze Runner is about far more than that and you really start to question the people who created the whole scenario and how awful humans can be.

I liked Thomas however I did find him a bit cocky. He does mature a lot through the book though due to the circumstances he is put through. I didn’t get the relationship with him and ‘the girl’. It felt like the author was trying to create a love interest that just seemed a bit lame. I felt that the book would have been better without it. I will reserve my judgement on it though because as a said, it’s a three book series and it might make better sense later.

The book is action packed however medium paced. You are as unaware as Thomas throughout, which makes it interesting as you only learn the back story as he does.

I did find some of the language a little tiresome (there’s no swearing, when I say language I mean the expressions and style the boys talk in). I just wanted to shake them and tell them to speak properly! I don’t know whether it makes it more realistic though having them create phrases and talk a certain way – I’m not a teenage boy and never have been so I have no idea.

Overall I did enjoy it however it was kind of depressing. And makes you wonder what the world is coming to. I would feel comfortable letting my teenagers read this and would recommend it to any age, males especially.

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More Mischief by Kate Thompson

More Mischief by Kate ThompsonBlurb

Life is sweet for rising stage and TV soap star Deirdre O’Dare. But jealous fears, spawned by arch-rival Sophie, that roguish boyfriend Rory is having a Hollywood fling threaten to ruin her happiness.

Retreating from Dublin to the hauntingly beautiful West of Ireland to work on a screenplay and lick her wounds, she meets gorgeous Gabriel – straight out of the Diet Coke ad and squire of the local manor. How could a girl possibly refuse?

In this moving and wickedly funny tale by the bestselling author of It Means Mischief, Deirdre O’Dare learns some painful, enlightening and hilarious lessons about the art of life and love as she comes face to face with the most difficult decision she’s ever had to make. 

My Perspective

This is the fourth book i chose to read from my post Third Lot – And It’s A Lot

More Mischief is about Deirdre O’Dare, an actress who decides once and for all to end her on again off again relationship with fellow actor Rory McDonagh. Encouraged by her best friend to take some time away to clear her mind and to write the screenplay she’s been talking about, she ends up staying in her parents holiday cottage in the West of Ireland. There she meets Gabriel and he seems to be sent from Heaven above. However in her heart she knows she still loves Rory. Who will she choose?

The story was well written and captivating. There was some sexual content in it however it was always brief so it was on the line for me.

Deirdre was easy to like however I did find her to be a bit annoying sometimes. I felt like she couldn’t just be her own woman, that there had to be a man around. Even though I didn’t agree with Rory’s lifestyle at all, he was hard not to like. Gabriel was too perfect for my liking, he made me nervous. Throughout most of the book, even though I hated Rory’s outlook, I actually felt better about Deirdre being with him than Gabriel. However it wasn’t up to me was it?

The story was interesting and kept me turning the pages. I wouldn’t say it was predictable however I was kind of guessing where the end was headed and I was right.

Overall it was an enjoyable read and I would definitely recommend it for those who like lighthearted chick lit.

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Sliver of Truth by Lisa Unger

Sliver of Truth by Lisa UngerBlurb

Love hurts … Sometimes it even kills

It’s like any other day in New York for freelance writer Ridley Jones. She collects some prints from her local photo lab expecting nothing more than a set of routine photographs. But when she looks more closely, a shadowy figure of a man appears in almost every picture she’s taken in the last year, just far enough away to make identification impossible.

When she investigates further, she soon discovers that everyone from the FBI to the criminal underworld wants to know who the man is – and where he is. And some people are prepared to kill to find out …

My Perspective

This is the third book i chose to read from my post Third Lot – And It’s A Lot

Sliver of Truth is about Ridley Jones, and how finding out after his death that her Uncle Max was actually her biological father, is trying to discover who he really was. As the FBI, NYPD, CIA plus high profile criminal organisations close in around her, Ridley must decided who she can trust, if she can trust anyone at all. And whether or not Max is actually still alive.

I read this book in a day. It was a fast paced, psychological thriller that kept me interested and guessing throughout.

I liked Ridley however i did find that i didn’t really connect with her. I guess her life and the situation she was in is so far removed from my own that i wasn’t able to relate to it. It was hard not to have mixed feelings about all of the other characters as just like Ridley, there is no one you can trust and all their identities are shady.

The story was written in first person and was written with the main character, Ridley, telling you the story. I found that sometimes it worked and other times i felt like the author was trying too hard.

I actually didn’t realise that this was a sequel until after i had finished reading it (Beautiful Lies being the first book). I must admit i felt like it was because the way the story unfolded felt like you should be familiar with it. Apart from that though i don’t really feel it made a difference. This could obviously change if i read the first one and it probably makes for a richer read with better understanding however really, you can read it as stand alone because i did!

Overall i enjoyed the story and it definitely kept me on my toes. It was a tad unbelievable however not in a way that was too over the top.

I would definitely recommend it for those who like a fast paced thriller.

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Malia’s Miracles (Devya’s Children: Volume 3) by Julie C. Gilbert

Malia's Miracles (Devya’s Children: Volume 3) by Julie C. GilbertBlurb

How much is one life worth?

Danielle Matheson faces a difficult decision: helplessly watch Christy’s mother die of cancer or ask Jillian and her genetically Gifted siblings to risk their freedom to save her.

Once committed to the cause, Jillian, Malia, and Michio turn their full attention to fighting the cancer, but more danger awaits them. Defeating the disease and dodging government agents soon become the least of their worries when measured against the race against time to rescue one girl from certain death.

My Perspective

This is the third book in the Devya’s Children series, Ashlynn’s Dreams being the first and Nadia’s Tears being the second.

Having escaped Dr Devya’s compound, Malia is now being adopted into the Davidson family. However only a day after the adoption, Danielle’s friend Christy calls from the hospital because her mother is dying. Jillian, Danielle, Malia and Michio make their way to be with Christy and her sister. However not prepared to just watch and wait while cancer claims its next victim, Danielle asks Malia whether Devya’s children can save her.

Malia’s Miracles pretty much follows on from Nadia’s Tears.

The concepts in this book were quite thought provoking. Having the gifts and abilities to possibly cure someone of disease, do you choose to save them even though you are meddling with the “Space-time Continuum”? I think it dealt with it really well, allowing the reader to explore and decide for themselves.

Both Jillian and Danielle continue to grow more and more and I’m finding that my favourite character is probably Danielle. She’s really relateable (is that a word?) and down to earth. I like Jillian however i think because of her gifts, it is harder to connect with her. It’s hard to not to both like and be baffled by Malia and the others.

Again, as in the previous two books, the story was written as many letters and journal entries compiled together as case evidence to the Devya’s Children project. I have become completely accustomed to the style now having read the previous two books.

In this story, i found it to be even more of a stretch in its believability however again, as it comes under Sci Fi, really anything is possible. There also wasn’t as much explanation of some occurrences as there were in the previous two books, it was more of a “it happened because it could” so i don’t know if I’m just missing something or what.

Overall the story was enjoyable, interesting and thought provoking. I’m really curious to next see where Devya’s children are headed, especially as Danielle is starting college.

I would definitely recommend this book if you like YA and/or YA Sci Fi however it’s probably best for you to read Volume 1 first (Ashylnn’s Dreams).

This review is based on a digital copy provided by the author.

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The Reluctant Widow by Georgette Heyer

The Reluctant Widow by Georgette HeyerBlurb

Stepping into the wrong carriage at a Sussex village, Elinor Rochdale is swept up in a thrilling and dangerous adventure. Overnight the would-be governess becomes mistress of a ruined estate and partner in a secret conspiracy to save a family’s name. By midnight she is a bride, by dawn a widow . . .

My Perspective

This is the second book i chose to read from my post Third Lot – And It’s A Lot

The Reluctant Widow is about Elinor Rochdale, a governess who gets in the wrong carriage and ends up marrying a man on his deathbed to prevent the man’s estate from being passed on. However soon her and the rest of the family realise that he may have been involved in a lot more than was thought. And Elinor is becoming more and more worried about her choice in marrying him.

The story was set in the Regency era and so had the feel of a Jane Austen novel. It was quite lengthy and wordy however I really enjoyed it and didn’t find my interest waned at all.

Elinor was easy to like, albeit being a bit tiresome occasionally, however for the era, she was quite witty and sensible. I really liked Lord Carlyon and his brothers – Nicky was a very loveable character. Really, the whole cast was excellently written and you got a feel for exactly what kind of person each of them were.

The book isn’t fast paced however there are a lot of incidents that happen throughout. I was surprised to realise after I had finished the book that only a week had passed in the timeline of the story! The book feels like it was a much bigger chunk of the character’s lives.

The story isn’t realistic or believable however I don’t really think it’s meant to be. It’s a light, enjoyable story that keeps you happily engaged.

Overall I really enjoyed it and I would definitely recommend it those who are looking for a light period fiction.

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Outcast Child by Kitty Neale

Outcast Child by Kitty NealeBlurb

It’s the 1950s, in South London, and when Daisy loses her mother, she retreats into a world of silence. To make matters worse, her once-happy home soon becomes a prison when her father remarries. It is only Daisy’s cousin, the naive and vulnerable Lizzie, who brings a little sunshine back into Daisy’s life.

Then things begin to change when Daisy’s father discovers a shocking secret about his new wife – and Daisy finds unexpected happiness in a way she could never have anticipated . . .

My Perspective

This is the first book i chose to read from my post Third Lot – And It’s A Lot

Outcast Child is about Daisy, a young teenage girl who has just lost her mother. Her father remarries soon after and she finds herself being treated from bad to worse by her new stepmother. Only a stay in the country with her aunt and Down Syndrome cousin Daisy, brings her out of her shell. However when she is summoned back home, will she have the courage to stand up for herself or will the situation continue to spiral out of control until she has nothing left?

This story was actually quite depressing.

I don’t know if I liked Daisy but I felt mighty sorry for her. Vera was a hard one because she couldn’t like her for what she was doing except that you knew the exact reasons why she was doing it.

The story was well written and flowed well however like I said, it was depressing and seemed to be just one disaster after another. It wasn’t a very uplifting book. The plot was interesting and it did keep me turning the pages though, wanting to find out how everything turns out.

I think I would recommend this book if you like drama. Definitely not a lighthearted book.