Into the End

 

by Bonnie R. Paulson
Kindle EditionRead July 31, 2015

Original Release Date:  March 10, 2012

Length: 297 pages

Official Description: (This is book #1 of Into the End series)

***America’s end is near.***

No one knows why, but the great country is under attack.

After being weakened by countless natural disasters, America opens its airspace for aid. But instead, what is left of the devastated west coast finds itself nearly obliterated from above. The key may belong to tests designed by a Pacific Northwest psychologist, Rachel Parker.

Rachel loses the love of her life in a house fire as they escape with their children to the nearby Rocky Mountains following the first round of air raids. In refuge, she faces her husband’s best friend, Joshua, but doesn’t want to face his ill-harbored feelings or her own inability to face fear.

Her sister, Brenda, escapes the fallen city, and, mistaken for Rachel, is captured. Terrified and alone, Brenda is protected by the enigmatic Daniel even while he helps keep her captive. Through torture and mind games, Brenda discovers information about her sister’s work that could spin the free world into a tumultuous frenzy where the unknown is safer than reality.

Can one woman’s inability to feel fear destroy a nation?

My Take:

Into the End takes a quasi realistic look at what would happen if America was invaded. First of all I found the description a bit misleading, it seems that it is describing the series instead of just this book. Most of the book is spent in the chaotic aftermath of invasion, and trying to understand rather than finding out any real information. First America is invaded when it is at a weak point, it was riddled with natural disasters and whomever invaded decided this was the opportune time. As to the who, what and why, we just see the tip of the iceberg here. Overall the book is back story, lots of flashbacks, not a lot of momentum forward. It isn’t bad, but it’s not captivating until the end. There is so much potential in the story that I’m not willing to write it off, but it just doesn’t come forth in this book. There are many interesting side bits, lots of mystery, it’s just the back stories and momentum that bring everything down. I will read more, eventually, to see if the story moves but I remain cautiously optimistic.

Up Next:

A Game of Thrones Volume 1

by George R.R. Martin, Daniel Abraham (adapted), Tommy Patterson (Illustrator)
Hardcover EditionRead July 27, 2015

Original Release Date:  March 27, 2012

Length: 240pages

Official Description:

This graphic novel adaptation contains more than fifty pages of exclusive content not available in the original comic books, including

• a new Preface by George R. R. Martin
• early renderings of key scenes and favorite characters from the novels
• a walk-through of the entire creative process, from auditioning the artists to tweaking the scripts to coloring the final pages
• behind-the-scenes commentary from Daniel Abraham, Tommy Patterson, and series editor Anne Groell

You’ve read the books. You’ve watched the hit series on HBO. Now acclaimed novelist Daniel Abraham and illustrator Tommy Patterson bring George R. R. Martin’s epic fantasy masterwork A Game of Thronesto majestic new life in the pages of this full-color graphic novel. Comprised of the initial six issues of the graphic series, this is the first volume in what is sure to be one of the most coveted collaborations of the year.

Winter is coming. Such is the stern motto of House Stark, the northernmost of the fiefdoms that owe allegiance to King Robert Baratheon in far-off King’s Landing. There Eddard Stark of Winterfell rules in Robert’s name. There his family dwells in peace and comfort: his proud wife, Catelyn; his sons Robb, Brandon, and Rickon; his daughters Sansa and Arya; and his bastard son, Jon Snow. Far to the north, behind the towering Wall, lie savage Wildings and worse—unnatural things relegated to myth during the centuries-long summer, but proving all too real and all too deadly in the turning of the season.

Yet a more immediate threat lurks to the south, where Jon Arryn, the Hand of the King, has died under mysterious circumstances. Now Robert is riding north to Winterfell, bringing his queen, the lovely but cold Cersei, his son, the cruel, vainglorious Prince Joffrey, and the queen’s brothers Jaime and Tyrion of the powerful and wealthy House Lannister—the first a swordsman without equal, the second a dwarf whose stunted stature belies a brilliant mind. All are heading for Winterfell and a fateful encounter that will change the course of kingdoms.

Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, Prince Viserys, heir of the fallen House Targaryen, which once ruled all of Westeros, schemes to reclaim the throne with an army of barbarian Dothraki—whose loyalty he will purchase in the only coin left to him: his beautiful yet innocent sister, Daenerys.

My Take:

I feel like a terrible human being. I have watched Game of Thrones I have read this adaptation, I have only read the first half of the first book. One day I will buckle down and actually read the whole series. After all it is just sitting on my shelf waiting for me to read them. Anyway, let us talk about this graphic novel. I liked it. It brings new depth to the story that we are familiar with, and gives a visual element that neither the show nor the book can bring. It is different, it is drawn beautifully and adapted well. In my opinion. I think my favorite part was the forward by George R. R. Martin. He goes into his history of comics, and gives reasons why everything is different. He also says he enjoys all the formats. I imagine it is fun, yet difficult, to see your hard work adapted and changed to so many different forums, the following that his epic world has gained. The comic was well done, the art was beautiful. I half expected the artist to draw each character as the actors portraying them on TV. I am glad that they did not, it gives the creators that much more of an edge. Anyway if you enjoy GOT then you’ll probably want to get your hands on this. It is just a fun way to enjoy a great series.

My Favorite Quote:

“The comic book is not the book; the graphic novel is not the novel. The same, of course, is true of films and television. When we move a story from one medium to another, no matter how faithful we attempt to be, some changes are inevitable. Each medium has its own demands, its own restrictions, its own way of telling a story.”

Up Next:

Kiss of Death

by Rachel Caine
Kindle Edition Read July 24, 2015

Original Release Date: January 1, 2010

Length: 256 pages

Official Description: This is book #8 of the Morganville Vampire series

Claire Danvers has a few things on her mind. First of all there is the laundry, which is now an unfortunate shade of pink. Then there is her boyfriend, Shane, who is never too far from her thoughts. Finally there is her best friend Eve’s relationship problems. As if life as a student wasn’t complicated enough, Claire just happens to be studying in Morganville. A town run by vampires.

Trouble seems to follow Claire and her friends like a shadow and tonight is no exception to the rule. They must find the most difficult documents for a vampire to acquire; people passes that will allow “bad ass” Morley and his friends to leave Morganville. But it’s proving incredibly difficult, and with the odds seemingly stacked against them, the biggest question of all is…

Will they survive?

My Take:

The crew has left Morganville. As Claire, Shane, Eve, and Michael leave Morganville and road trip to Dallas, lots of drama occurs. I mean why wouldn’t it? I am actually a little disappointed in the story, I would have loved to see more of the crew in the big city, but oh well, they are destined for vampire business and cleaning up other people’s messes. I miss Myrnin though, he is my favorite, he only is in the story for the briefest of seconds. Overall, the story is alright, we have danger in small town Texas, we save small town Texas then everyone decides if it is worth going back to Morganville. We all know the answer to that. The magic was off, the chemistry was off, maybe it was because I haven’t read a Morganville book for 2 years, maybe it’s the dynamic. I hope the next book has more spark, in it.

Quote:

“My dad used to say that life’s a journey, but somebody screwed up and lost the map.”

My Take on Previous Books in This Series:

 

Up Next:

Vampire Academy

by Richelle Mead
Paperback EditionRead July 19, 2015

Original Release Date: August 16, 2007

Length: 332 pages

Official Description: (This is book #1 of the Vampire Academy series)

ONLY A TRUE BEST FRIEND CAN PROTECT YOU FROM YOUR IMMORTAL ENEMIES…

Lissa Dragomir is a Moroi princess: a mortal vampire with a rare gift for harnessing the earth’s magic. She must be protected at all times from Strigoi; the fiercest vampires—the ones who never die. The powerful blend of human and vampire blood that flows through Rose Hathaway, Lissa’s best friend, makes her a dhampir. Rose is dedicated to a dangerous life of protecting Lissa from the Strigoi, who are hell-bent on making Lissa one of them.

After two years of freedom, Rose and Lissa are caught and dragged back to St. Vladimir’s Academy, a school for vampire royalty and their guardians-to-be, hidden in the deep forests of Montana. But inside the iron gates, life is even more fraught with danger…and the Strigoi are always close by.

Rose and Lissa must navigate their dangerous world, confront the temptations of forbidden love, and never once let their guard down, lest the evil undead make Lissa one of them forever…

My Take:

I love Richelle Mead, I love her sarcastic way of writing, I enjoy her characters. I already knew what was going to happen in the book, though so that was a bummer. I did watch the movie, and it wasn’t horrible, it was not cinematic gold either but it kind of got the gist of the story. I just really enjoy Ms. Mead’s writing style, and from going from the serious Age of X series to this one is nice too. I know this book has been out a long time, but I was reluctant to read this because of all the hype, and the fact that I like the adult books Mead writes so much. I just didn’t want to be disappointed. I wish I hadn’t seen the movie first, I knew all the twists and turns that were coming, there were no real surprises. I liked the additional characters, that the story is more flush and whole. I love the quirky sarcastic Rose, and the relationship with Dimitri seems like it has potential. I wonder where the story will go with Rose and Lissa, the relationship between Vampire and Dhampir does not seem like a fair one. I will have to add the next book to my reading queue ASAP, because I just really enjoy the writing.

 

Quotables:

“The greatest and most powerful revolutions often start very quietly, hidden in the shadows. Remember that.”

Up Next:

Other Books by Richelle Mead:

Georgina Kincaid Series:
Succubus Dreams (Book 3), Succubus Heat (Book 4), Succubus Shadows (Book 5), Succubus Revealed (Book 6)

Dark Swan Series:

Shadow Heir (Book 4), Dark Swan (Graphic Novel)

Age of X Series:

Gameboard of the Gods (Book 1) The Immortal Crown (Book 2)