Monday, September 16, 2019

All Our Yesterdays (Review)

All Our Yesterdays

By: Cristin Terrill
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Release Date: September 3rd, 2013
Genre(s): YA Science Fiction

My Review: (4/5 stars*)

This is the first book in a great, long while that I've had the chance to pick up, get invested, and actually have the time to start and finish it. I've been desperately searching for something to suck me in, and this novel finally did. After many pick-ups and put-downs of different titles I was digging through my cavernous bookshelves and came across All Our Yesterdays tucked away in a wooden cedar chest. So I'm happy to announce this was a real gem to get me back to my favorite pastime of reading.

Furthermore, on that note, this particular novel weaves through a timeline of events kicking off with a girl named Em and a boy named Finn locked in cells that are side-by-side. They've been there for months and have seemingly spent months of being tortured for information regarding time-travel. In an almost dystopia-like future, the world has crumbled around them due to a chain of events that they have been trying to go back in time and stop. With each failed attempt to escape their cells and previous versions lost to time they finally edge their way to a moment that may allow them to fix and change the future to a day where they aren't imprisoned and the world isn't destroyed by greed and power.

This is a mission-impossible, hopeless love, and non-stop suspenseful read. It doesn't lack for intrigue and it kept me up way past my normal bed time (as per usual with good reading). The story is told through two different individual's perspectives: Em and Marina, and Finn. It can get a little confusing at times understanding who is who, so you must read carefully. The story is one giant road intersection with a space and time traveling twist. It's unique, it's not always a happy read, but, it's secretly ingenious and I didn't want the novel to end once I picked it up. I enjoyed getting to know the characters and them getting to know themselves. The world-building is pretty cool as well, although I wish the writer gave more of it. But, to the effect I am glad All Our Yesterdays sits nicely at 340 pages and not 500. I believe a good story cuts the fluff and gets directly to the point without it taking too much of your time unless it's too big of a world such as Harry Potter and Game of Thrones books.

Anyhow, I loved the journey and thrill upon turning each page and discovering a novel that solved much more than my boredom. It dissolved my stress and created a legitimate source of escape and for that I am beyond thankful and can do nothing but recommend it! It's a young-adult and their is a medium amount of romance, and some violence (tear-jerking stuff), and I'm overall very impressed with Cristin Terrill's ability to tell this story so fluidly. Job well done, and hours of reading well spent. I really liked it, definitely fit my mood, and even though it has sci fi elements it definitely almost felt like a contemporary in some ways. SCOOP THIS ONE UP! And for those people who aren't in the mood to tackle an entire series to get from beginning to end, this one is a standalone novel. However, I wouldn't have minded more stories from it.


Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The Darkest Minds (Review)

The Darkest Minds

By: Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Release Date: December 18th, 2012
Genre(s): YA Science Fiction

My Review: (3.5 of 5 stars*)

Its been awhile since I've really gotten involved with a book, let alone a series. My first thoughts are that this was a bit of a heavy and suspenseful read. You need to be clear-headed, and ready to consume the text in the manner it requires. My truthful rating of The Darkest Minds is 3.5 stars out of 5. I must say its a good start leading into what I'm hoping will be action nonstop in the sequel. Clocking in at nearly 500 pages I feel this could've been easily reduced to 300 pages. A lot of what I found to be the best parts were very much elongated to the near point of disinterest. However, the concept of it all has much potential to changing my first thoughts.

This is definitely aimed at teens who are advanced and voracious readers. It has a heavy dose of violence, inappropriate language, and some sexual content. The story is compelling in many ways. The novel really begins with Ruby, the main heroine, who is toted to a camp called Thurmond for children who are considered dangerous. Prior to these events other children from school are either dying or disappearing. Ruby is unaware of why she's there until it's explained in a string of violent events. At camp children are being segregated based off of the colors red, orange, green, and blue. These represent the unique capabilities of the children and classify how dangerous they are. That said, these camps are basically prisons that keep the children suppressed from society because of their unstable powers. It's there that Ruby discovers her true nature and how her life will never be the same after it.

I don't want to say too much because much of the story can easily be condensed and that would take the enjoyment right out of reading the first installment. It was GOOD. I really loved some of the twists, and the mystery behind the shadier characters. I liked getting to know Ruby and was very curious to see what she could do that differentiated herself from most of the others. It's a gloomy read, with a long journey and a lot of backstory. I was a bit torn though because of all the text it didn't really focus on the finer details such as character's physical description, or explain thoroughly the abilities themselves. I think that's where as a reader it might've taken me from what I could've loved about the Darkest Minds to what I ended up just liking.

To be honest overall it was a well-enough constructed read that will have me picking up the sequel at some point. I'd say to anyone contemplating picking it up--do it. If you don't mind the length and a slower more digestive novel than it's most definitely worth it. I am highly interested to see the direction of where the continuing story will take off in Never Fade.


When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something frightening enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that got her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that had killed most of America’s children, but she and the others emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they could not control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones. When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. She is on the run, desperate to find the only safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who have escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents. When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at having a life worth living.

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