The Definition of Original: Don’t You Forget About Me, Kate Karyus Quinn

Don't You Forget About Me

Don’t You Forget About Me

Kate Karyus Quinn

Welcome to Gardnerville.

A place where no one gets sick. And no one ever dies.

Except…
There’s a price to pay for paradise. Every fourth year, the strange power that fuels the town exacts its payment by infecting teens with deadly urges. In a normal year in Gardnerville, teens might stop talking to their best friends. In a fourth year, they’d kill them.

Four years ago, Skylar’s sister, Piper, was locked away after leading sixteen of her classmates to a watery grave. Since then, Skylar has lived in a numb haze, struggling to forget her past and dull the pain of losing her sister. But the secrets and memories Piper left behind keep taunting Skylar—whispering that the only way to get her sister back is to stop Gardnerville’s murderous cycle once and for all.

You know what I’m going to call Kate Quinn from now on? The Queen of Queer. It’s a rightly earned title. Like her debut novel, Another Little Piece, Quinn returned with a brilliantly crafted tale that made little sense at the beginning, but then came together at the end and smacked me right in the face with answers for all the questions I ever had. And let me tell you, she did this all through an amazingly complex and original plot that just swept me off my feet. Too bad she wasn’t able to impress me throughout the story, though.

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Compact Reviews: Backward Glass / Scorched

Backward GlassBackward Glass

David Lomax

Where do I start? This book had so much going in it that oftentimes, it was more confusing than it was entertaining. Time travel is not an easy subject to write about, but I think it’s safe to say that David Lomax did a fairly decent job with the whole “backward glass” concept and the idea of kids from several different years grouping together to figure out the chilling myth of Prince Harming, as well as to save an unknown baby.

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Meg is Pissed: The Iron Traitor, Julie Kagawa

The Iron Traitor (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten, #2)

The Iron Traitor (Call of the Forgotten #2)

Julie Kagawa

In the real world, when you vanish into thin air for a week, people tend to notice. 

After his unexpected journey into the lands of the fey, Ethan Chase just wants to get back to normal. Well, as “normal” as you can be when you see faeries every day of your life. Suddenly the former loner with the bad reputation has someone to try for-his girlfriend, Kenzie. Never mind that he’s forbidden to see her again. 

But when your name is Ethan Chase and your sister is one of the most powerful faeries in the Nevernever, “normal” simply isn’t to be. For Ethan’s nephew, Keirran, is missing, and may be on the verge of doing something unthinkable in the name of saving his own love. Something that will fracture the human and faery worlds forever, and give rise to the dangerous fey known as the Forgotten. As Ethan’s and Keirran’s fates entwine and Keirran slips further into darkness, Ethan’s next choice may decide the fate of them all.

Forgive my french, but: GODDAMN, THAT ENDING. I mean, I already knew what was coming, but nothing would have been able to prepare me for how The Iron Traitor just ended. Can you even call that an ending?! Julie Kagawa, you better have some real good tricks up your sleeve for the next novel, because dammit, I refuse to let that ending slide!

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A Tragedy Indeed: A Wounded Name, Dot Hutchinson

A Wounded Name

A Wounded Name

Dot Hutchinson

Ophelia Castellan will never be just another girl at Elsinore Academy. Seeing ghosts is not a skill prized in future society wives. Even when she takes her pills, the bean sidhe beckon, reminding her of a promise to her dead mother. Now, in the wake of the Headmaster’s sudden death, the whole academy is in turmoil, and Ophelia can no longer ignore the fae. Especially once she starts seeing the Headmaster’s ghosts two of them on the school grounds. Her only confidante is Dane, the Headmaster’s grieving son. Yet even as she gives more of herself to him, Dane spirals toward a tragic fate dragging Ophelia, and the rest of Elsinore, with him. You know how this story ends. Yet even in the face of certain death, Ophelia has a choice to make and a promise to keep.

I remember death. I remember the silence and the stillness, the absolute serenity. I remember that there was no fear, no dread of something after. This constant terror, this uncertainty, this unceasing pain didn’t exist, but beyond the gates of Elsinore, they exist in abundance.


Much like Conjured by Sarah Beth Durst, A Wounded Name was senseless… and also plot-less. And it’s such a shame, because here is a pretty cover that actually suits the story, and Dot Hutchinson has gorgeous writing that further adds to the mysterious atmosphere surrounding Elsinore Academy. However, these things just weren’t enough to redeem the book for me. A stupid protagonist, no sense of story, and an abusive love interest aren’t things that are easily overlooked.

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Confusing, Queer, Pointless: Conjured, Sarah Beth Durst

Conjured

Conjured

Sarah Beth Durst

Eve has a new home, a new face, and a new name—but no memories of her past. She’s been told that she’s in a witness protection program. That she escaped a dangerous magic-wielding serial killer who still hunts her. The only thing she knows for sure is that there is something horrifying in her memories the people hiding her want to access—and there is nothing they won’t say—or do—to her to get her to remember.

At night she dreams of a tattered carnival tent and buttons being sewn into her skin. But during the day, she shelves books at the local library, trying to not let anyone know that she can do things—things like change the color of her eyes or walk through walls. When she does use her strange powers, she blacks out and is drawn into terrifying visions, returning to find that days or weeks have passed—and she’s lost all short-term memories. Eve must find out who and what she really is before the killer finds her—but the truth may be more dangerous than anyone could have ever imagined.

“Don’t be afraid, Eve. Not of this. You can be afraid of spiders or snakes or airplane crashes or a zombie apocalypse… but don’t be afraid of yourself.”

Hold on, I’m still struggling to piece together what I just read. Having gone into this book expecting a gruesome paranormal-mystery, maybe something reminiscence of Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma, or Another Little Piece by Kate Karyus Quinn. So you can imagine my shock when the story took a completely different direction from what I was expecting. But before you make up your minds that Conjured was a horrible read, let me tell you that I am not wholly disappointed with this. I am just not wholly satisfied, either.

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Magic In Every Page: The Dream Thieves, Maggie Stiefvater

The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2)

The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle #2)

Maggie Stiefvater

Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after…

Whatever good stuff you heard about The Dream Thieves? It’s all true. This book was all I could ever hope for in a sequel — and more, if possible. After having read and enjoyed The Raven Boys, and after reading five-star review after five-star review, I’m not lying when I say that my expectations were space-high. I ended up sneak-reading this book at every opportunity I got, staying up way past midnight, reading during mealtimes, in between homework — and you know what? I don’t regret a single moment of it.

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