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BOOK REVIEW – Rogue (Talon #2) by Julie Kagawa

BOOK REVIEW – Rogue (Talon #2) by Julie KagawaRogue (Talon #2)
by Julie Kagawa
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Ember Hill left the dragon organization Talon to take her chances with rebel dragon Cobalt and his crew of rogues. But Ember can't forget the sacrifice made for her by the human boy who could have killed her—Garret Xavier Sebastian, a soldier of the dragonslaying Order of St. George, the boy who saved her from a Talon assassin, knowing that by doing so, he'd signed his own death warrant.

Determined to save Garret from execution, Ember must convince Cobalt to help her break into the Order's headquarters. With assassins after them and Ember's own brother helping Talon with the hunt, the rogues find an unexpected ally in Garret and a new perspective on the underground battle between Talon and St. George.

A reckoning is brewing and the secrets hidden by both sides are shocking and deadly. Soon Ember must decide: Should she retreat to fight another day…or start an all-out war?

Ladies and gentlemen! Welcome to the Dragoooooon Gaaame! Please welcome the fighters, I said PLEASE WELCOME THE FIGHTERS, Talon and Rooooooogue!

► I can’t deny that this sequel is action-packed, and that’s why my rating isn’t lower. Moreover, we learn more about both Talon (via Dante’s and Cobalt’s POV) and Riley’s rogue organization. Secrets societies people! You’ve being watched. Controlled. Hunted. All this stuff was pretty cool.

► I’m going to be blunt here : in my opinion none of the characters was fleshed-out in this sequel, except Riley. Indeed Ember and Garret seem to be the shells of themselves, and they often act out of character (especially EMBER, because Garret I can understand his reactions, and he’s fucking trying at least!). I mean, at some point, I felt like book 1 NEVER HAPPENED for fuck sake!

That’s why while I loved Ember and Garret in Talon, here my favorite character was Riley by far : the rogue is loyal, sarcastic, brave, and even if I don’t agree with everything he does, I like him, because he makes me laugh and he knows what he wants (and that’s maybe the only one, sadly). BUT. What bothers me is the fact that I feel like I was supposed to root for him here. That is to say that the whole changes in the characterization sounds rather manipulative to me, because in my opinion Riley is the only character who is fairly treated.


► In my review of Talon, I said that there wasn’t a love triangle, not really. Well. I guess I have to eat my hat now.

Because welcome to the fucking love triangle hell! I’m so mad right now, I can’t even. Ember, remember Ember?? In Talon I really appreciated her personality and sadly, I can’t say the same thing now. Yes she fights, yes she’s sometimes snarky, but overall, she annoyed me something fierce because American Singer syndrome. I can’t deal with that shit anymore. I. Can’t. To be fair, I know that some readers found it acceptable because of the dichotomy between her dragon side and her human side but to me it was schizophrenic, confusing and bloody annoying.

Just tell me : Why makes me care for this storyline if everything goes downhill in the end? Why? It’s predictable and completely unnecessary – I can just see it coming 20 000 miles away. Mark my words : Ember will end with Garret. SO WHY FUCKING BOTHER WITH THE LOVE TRIANGLE? Maybe I’m wrong, but I’m pretty sure I’m not, and if I am, I’ll eat a hat again, that’s all. But then, the end is scheduled for 2019 so well, let’s say that I’m not that scared >.<


► That’s pretty simple actually, because I felt completely disconnected most of the time in Rogue. Indeed except for some scenes including Riley, I didn’t care much about what happened to the characters and it’s a shame, really, because in the first I felt enthralled. While here, No butterflies. No fears. Everything felt flat, dull, tame.

It’s Kagawa, therefore it’s well-written, duh. Even if I never felt fascinated, I was never bored either, I have to admit. Indeed when it comes to her writing, I can’t help but be hooked from page one, even when the plot struggles to keep my interest.

★ EVEN ★

Results!


Sadly, Rogue was a disappointment to me, as the accelerated action couldn’t make up for the lack of characterization and the useless love triangle, which are part of my biggest peeves. Finally, I didn’t like the ending^^

BOOK REVIEW: Rogue (Talon #2) by Julie Kagawa

BOOK REVIEW: Rogue (Talon #2) by Julie KagawaRogue (Talon #2)
by Julie Kagawa
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Ember Hill left the dragon organization Talon to take her chances with rebel dragon Cobalt and his crew of rogues. But Ember can't forget the sacrifice made for her by the human boy who could have killed her—Garret Xavier Sebastian, a soldier of the dragonslaying Order of St. George, the boy who saved her from a Talon assassin, knowing that by doing so, he'd signed his own death warrant.

Determined to save Garret from execution, Ember must convince Cobalt to help her break into the Order's headquarters. With assassins after them and Ember's own brother helping Talon with the hunt, the rogues find an unexpected ally in Garret and a new perspective on the underground battle between Talon and St. George.

A reckoning is brewing and the secrets hidden by both sides are shocking and deadly. Soon Ember must decide: Should she retreat to fight another day…or start an all-out war?

It was our job to find and kill as many of the monsters as we could, in the hopes that one day, we could push their numbers over the brink and firmly into extinction where they belonged.
That was what I’d once believed. Until I met her.

Bawling sick upset emotional dying a slow and painful death…. Yeah. So….Is it weird if I’m not okay? This one….wasn’t one of those books that I would say out-shined it’s predecessor in any way, shape, or form. Normally, with Kagawa, I don’t enjoy her first book much, but know I’m in for a treat for the rest of the series, whereas it’s the opposite here-except, I did enjoy it. I did swoon over my dear Garret and his adorable soldier-ness. I did love the action and the perilous situations but…my heart. My heart was torn into pieces time and again, and like my great friend, Anna, I have to agree that some of this heartbreak is unnecessary. However…I disagree with her on one front: I don’t know that there is one certain boy that she WILL end up with indefinitely. I think that, while both guys are great, that this turned into an unnecessary love triangle and it’s clear who she SHOULD end up with, but it’s gotten all twisty and turny and I don’t know that it’s quite that clear, anymore.

I didn’t regret my choice. I’d meant every word I said in the courtroom. And if it came down to it again, and I stood on that beach with the dragon I was sent to kill, knowing that if I let her go I would die instead…I would still choose to save her.

And OMG guys, I love cliffhangers. I am so frikkin’ obsessed with an amazing, well planned out, explosive, heart-breaking, TEAR ME TO SHREDS cliffhanger…but I wasn’t ready for this one. This one gutted me, mutilated me, ripped my fucking heart out and stomped on it. Kagawa chewed up my heart and spit it back into my face. I love Kagawa, but she has finally created a cliffhanger that killed me mentally-it wasn’t a thrilling end-It was a soul-crushing emotional tornado. And I can barely see straight through my tears.


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And that’s what is so funny to me-This wasn’t even a bad ending!!!! Literally no one else will probably have this demented and dramatic visceral reaction to such a simple little folly that so frequently occurs during these fantasy/YA/dystopian/sci-fi/LIFE books. I mean…I knew from my friend’s reaction that things went into a light love-triangle land, but, it was so clear to me that it was the way it was supposed to be and…well, look at that-it’s not. It’s fucked up and heart-breaking and even though nothing horrible even happened, my soul is destroyed, just a little. And I am truly shocked by my reaction. Check-mate, Mother Fucker.

I knew that wishing was wasted energy, and regret changed nothing, but for perhaps the first time in my life, I wished we’d had more time. If I’d known what would happen, I would have spent every moment I could with her. I would have done a lot of things differently, but it was too late now.

So, I am and forever will be, in love with Garret-the soldier that was sent to kill Ember in book one. Mortal enemies. Raised to hate each other from birth. A secret operation that brought these two together by fate-Garret never knew if she was actually the dragon, but even without knowing for sure, he fell in love with her. So Talon turned into a forbidden love story that had my heart soaring and made me choke on butterflies. Now, book one, while scary as we watched everything unfold, was still so light-hearted and fun and care-free…it was young love at the beach, fighting how they’ve been trained to be since birth, never knowing where it could possibly lead…and finally ending in the ultimate sacrifice. My heart still stutters thinking about it. But this installment was no longer care-free. Decisions have to be made, they can trust no one, no place is safe, and they are constantly fleeing….and each of them has a death warrant on their head. And, GD if I wasn’t BEGGING Garret and Ember to just LOVE EACH OTHER ALREADY!!!!!!! All the frustration AGH! You KNOW YOU LOVE EACH OTHER!! Now kiss each other already, damn it!


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I could go on and on and on about Kagawa’s writing and how absolutely fucking fantastic it is, but we all know that. We all know Kagawa is a fucking master manipulator who doesn’t hesitate to rip the rug out from beneath you, but we all still keep reading her wonderfully evil stories. I just never imagined I’d be so drastically bitch-slapped by one of them-and I’ve read them all. So, instead of gushing about Kagawa, because, you know, she ripped my soul to pieces last night, I’ll just show you all how fucking loyal I am-to the point of being more annoying than even I can handle.

Anna: Hmm. I don’t like where this is going.
Me: Whatcha mean?
Anna: Well, they are making it all about Cobalt. He probably will end up alone or dying so why is she doing this? Making us love him?
Me: Hmm…I dunno. She has a reason for everything. I really do like Cobalt/Riley, but I will rip his head off if he takes Ember from Garret.
Anna: I am so mad.
Me: GARRET *heart eyes emoji* AGHHH
Anna: Why is she making this a love triangle? It wasn’t in the first book! Why?
Me: I don’t know…GARRET *heart eyes emoji*
Anna: I am just so upset.
Me: GARRET. OMG. THAT SCENE WHERE OMG YAS HE DID IT AGHHHH YES. Garret *heart eyes emoji*
Anna: Well, I’ve finished. I can’t say anything because I don’t want to spoil you.
Me: Is it a cliffy?
Anna: Hmm…kind of. Yes.
Me: AGHH!!! Garret. It’s guna be epic. EEEEEPSSSS.
Anna: I can’t wait to see what you think…
Me (as she has fallen asleep but I text endlessly on-as per her request for updates): Garret
Squee
Omg
Garret
Squee!! He just….
OMG. My heart. I’m bawling. I’m dying omg.
*And I’ll cut it off there*

At which point, I’m sure Anna was to this point:


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So, as you can see, I wasn’t much fun to read this with…because…Garret. My Garret fangirling was out of control.

I glared back at him. “I wouldn’t let you go, anyway. So you can stop being so damned fatalistic. No one is giving anyone up. We’re getting out of here together, or not at all.”
He blinked, a raw, almost vulnerable look passing through his eyes, and we stared at each other a moment. Outside, it was eerily silent. The sunlight slanting through the broken window caught on shards of glass and glittered red, like drops of blood.

No, this wasn’t what I wanted or expected it to be, but it’s still Julie Kagawa who rarely does wrong in my eyes and she is still a master manipulator of my heart and soul. Soooo, you know, here we are. A ‘not what you wanted’ Julie Kagawa story is better than a great book by an author I barely care about, so, I’ll still take this as a win. As for those who didn’t love the first book-You will probably like this one better. Everyone seems to. As for people like me, who worship the first book, you probably won’t. It’s just an inkling. I still loved this story, but it definitely tried my patience more than once-it’s just like, WHO THE HELL CARES? Ugh. That’s wrong, though. This was a well-rounded story with lots of action, forbidden-and-not-so-forbidden love, and a great back story…for Cobalt. I want people to read this, but ultimately, I am ready for book three NOW. I need more Garret in my life and, oh, hey, oh yeah- FUCK YOU, EMBER!


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******************************

AWESOMENESS, HERE I COME!!!!! GARREEEEEEET! ♥

I NEED YOU, GARRET!!!!

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AAAGHHH! After the ending of that last installment I. Am. Going. Insane!!!!

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I NEED IT NOW

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APRIL 28, 2015. Okay…I guess I can do that…I’m just not happy about it.

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Now, I wait.

BOOK REVIEW – The Iron Daughter (The Iron Fey #2) by Julie Kagawa

BOOK REVIEW – The Iron Daughter (The Iron Fey #2) by Julie KagawaThe Iron Daughter (The Iron Fey #2)
by Julie Kagawa
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Half Summer faery princess, half human, Meghan has never fit in anywhere. Deserted by the Winter prince she thought loved her, she is prisoner to the Winter faery queen. As war looms between Summer and Winter, Meghan knows that the real danger comes from the Iron fey—ironbound faeries that only she and her absent prince have seen. But no one believes her.

Worse, Meghan's own fey powers have been cut off. She's stuck in Faery with only her wits for help. Trusting anyone would be foolish. Trusting a seeming traitor could be deadly. But even as she grows a backbone of iron, Meghan can't help but hear the whispers of longing in her all-too-human heart.

Wow. I feel like I. just. can’t. get. enough. of. this. world. As I was travelling through Nevernever, following Ash Meghan’s steps, my wonder never ever faded. My dear friends who took part in Chelsea’s birthday’s buddy read can attest how much I got lost in this outstanding world, my heart aching to come back there. I fell in love with every single character I met, from this yawning, infuriating and hilarious Grimalkin to the giant spiders who… Wait, no. I’ll follow Meghan on this :

“I could handle goblins and bogeymen and evil, flesh-eating horses, but giant freaking spiders? That’s where I drew the line”

I couldn’t agree more. What? Have you seen their legs?

Are you ready to go? Yes? Okay then.

“Now, listen. Whatever you see in there, don’t buy anything, don’t offer anything, and don’t accept anything, no matter how much you want it. The vendors will try to make a deal with you – ignore them. Keep silent, and keep your eyes on me. Got it?”

Julie Kagawa’s writing manages to describe perfectly every single creature we meet, making them fleshed out, so much that I could totally see them jumping out the page and appear in my living-room for real.

“An ancient gnome stared up at me, her face wrinkled and shriveled like a valnut under a frayed clump of white hair. Barely two feet tall, dressed in a once-white robe with tiny gold glasses on the end of her nose, she glared at me like a furious midget bear, black eyes snapping with irritation.”

As the characters, none of the different settings are rushed : from Queen Mab’s palace to the Between, via the High-School, all the places are filled with tiny details which let the world literally appear in front of our wide-eyed eyes.

That says it all. Grimalkin, remember?

“How do you know your way around this place, Grim?”
Grimalkin blinked. “I am a cat,” he said, and vanished down one of the tunnels.”

Remember Ash? Yeah? That icy Prince I decided to not ramble about in my review of The Iron King? If I thought he won me in that first book, that’s nothing in comparison to the way I felt and fell for him in that one. Forget all the broody and wounded male-lead you know : none of them can beat him. Seriously : It took him only one apparition to warm my heart and send a flutter of emotions through me like crazy.

Well, I can ramble and ramble over and over again about him, but it’d be completely useless : just keep in mind that he’s loyal, heart-breaking, courageous, selfless – he’s perfection – but the good kind of perfection, that is to say, the perfect imperfection (and no, the fact he’s hot isn’t even taken into account).

Again, the plot was well-wrapped and the story fast-paced, and we’re reading as in a run, never resting, always captivated, gasping, sometimes frightened, always mesmerized.

Oh, and by the way, I like Meghan. Yes she shares many personality traits with other young-adults heroines and yes I could have been annoyed at some point but you know what? I never was. I understand her, I can relate to her (throwing rocks? I could totally do that), I’m proud of her. That’s all.

“Make your choice.”
Ash looked at me. I saw pain in his eyes, and a little regret, but they shone with such emotion I felt breathless. “I already have.”

 

Reading Order & Links:
Amazon (click on covers), iBooks (click on titles) & Book Depository (click on book #)
the iron king julie kagawa
The Iron King #1
Reviews:
Jen
Chelsea
Anna
winter's passage julie kagawa
Winter's Passage #1.5
Reviews:
Jen

Chelsea
the iron daughter julie kagawa
The Iron Daughter #2
Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
Anna
the iron queen julie kagawa
The Iron Queen
#3

Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
summer's crossing iron fey novella julie kagawa
Summer's Crossing #3.5
the iron knight julie kagawa
The Iron Knight #4
Reviews:

Chelsea
iron's prophecy julie kagawa
Iron's Prophecy #4.5
Reviews:

Chelsea
the lost prince julie kagawa
The Lost Prince: Call of the Forgotten #1
Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
the iron traitor julie kagawa the iron fey
The Iron Traitor:Call of the Forgotten #2
the iron warrior julie kagawa the iron fey
The Iron Warrior:Call of the Forgotten #3

BOOK REVIEW – The Iron King (The Iron Fey #1) by Julie Kagawa

BOOK REVIEW – The Iron King (The Iron Fey #1) by Julie KagawaThe Iron King (The Iron Fey #1)
by Julie Kagawa
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Meghan Chase has a secret destiny; one she could never have imagined.

Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth - that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil, no faery creature dare face; and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

Warning : I’ll do what I can, but I’m feeling restless – and I’m pretty sure this sensation will end when, and only when, I’ll be able to grasp The Iron daughter. Therefore, before taking the time to write a proper review of each book, I intend to… well, do my best?

This book managed to reach a part of me I had forgotten for years. The part of me who used to watch The Never Ending Story, wide-eyed, to read Alice in Wonderland, eager to meet that odd cat and to visit whatever weird world fantasy on which I could get my hands. All of that is to say that I was constantly mesmerized by the references and eyewinks Julie Kagawa inserted in The Iron King, smiling like a little child full of wonder.

“I don’t even recognize myself.”An image frashed through my head and I giggled with slight hysteria. “I won’t turn into a pumpkin when midnight comes, will I?”
“If you annoy the wrong people, you might.”

Welcome trolls and goblins and squirrels nails! I love you all already.

Color me impressed : the world-building was incredible. Quickly I found myself completely fascinated and captivated by all the details the descriptive and beautiful writing offers us : I am in awe of Julie Kagawa on this one. Cause, you know, contrary to many readers I liked Talon which I’ve read several weeks ago, but there’s nothing in it which can beat the complexity of Nevernever’s world. Nothing.

That’s pretty rare I read a book thinking it’d be awesome as a movie but let me tell you : this thought came into my mind many, many times while I was reading, as I couldn’t help but see what Meghan discovered, with bright and wonderful details, either she described some creature – by the way, I want a cat like this, Grimalkin’s the best, I’m telling you – or the settings, that is to say the never ending forest she travels in.

“It’s an elf,” hissed another, giving me a toothy leer. “An elf what lost its ears, maybe.”
“No, a goat-girl,” cried yet a third. “Good eatin’, them.”
“She ain’t no goat, cretin! Lookit, she ain’t got no ‘ooves!”

I giggled out of amazement. All. The. Time.

A few words about the plot now. As many readers noted it, that’s not the most interesting storyline I had the chance to read about, yet I couldn’t put it down and felt like it just clicked into place nicely. Actually I was on the verge of writing that the pacing was fast, when I remembered that the majority of readers grew bored in the middle of the book. That wasn’t my case. At all. I don’t know if that can be explained by the fact I’m such a sucker for fantasy and always have, I don’t have a damn clue about it. Sorry.

Oh, well. That’s my review after all, so perhaps it should be taken with a grain of salt, but in my opinion this book is compelling and fascinating, as it was such a page-turner for me. *shrug*

And in the end… The surprise. Indeed all the concept of Iron Fey is truly fascinating. I don’t want to spoil potential late readers like I am, so I’m not saying more about that but trust me : that’s quite original and well imagined from Julie Kagawa who took the best of fairies’ world and created an inventive land from it.

That’s what I adored. Of course the forbidden romance made my heart beat faster but you know what? I’d have loved the book without it.

As for the characters, I’m running out of time and it’s the first book of a series therefore I know I’m going to talk about them later so I’ll be short : Meghan isn’t a strong-minded fighter character, that’s for sure, but you know, I’m feeling indulgent with her because she never annoyed me nor maddened me. She isn’t dumb or infuriating, actually she’s pretty average and in my opinion her personality fits perfectly in the plot developments. Furthermore, she knows her moments of pure awesomeness –

“Stop it!” I hissed glaring at both in turn. “Stop it right now! Put your weapons up, both of you! Ash, you’re in no condition to fight, and, Puck, shame on you, agreeing to duel him when he’s obviously hurt. Sit down and shut up.”

Moreover, I really enjoyed Puke and no, that’s not because his character is one of my favorite from A Midnight Summer Dream. Noooo. Despite the fact I can’t bring myself to trust him, I enjoyed his apparitions as he managed to make me laugh with his comments.

“Charming,” Puck commented, gazing around in distaste. “I love the barren, dead feel they’re going for. Who’s the gardener, I wonder? I’d love to get some tips.”

Even if I feel his contentious relationship with Ash might end with a choice to make. I’ll choose Ash. Same for Oberion. Now that I think about it – that idea of bringing them in a young-adult book is wonderfully awesome.

Oh, and maybe you’re waiting for Ash? Nope. I’m not gonna start talking about this cold and infuriating – but exciting and captivating – Winter Prince. Yet. Otherwise I’ll begin to endlessly ramble about his awesomeness and I REALLY want to read The Iron daughter right now. But what an amazing male-lead. Wow. I’m in love. Did you know he was Mab’s son? How interesting is that! Right? RIGHT? Okay, I’m out now. But throwing ice darts? Awesomeballs.

And now, wonderful friends, I’m waiting for your ‘I told you so’. You were SO right.

Sans rancune?

“I am a cat,” Grimalkin replied, as if that explained anything.”

PS : The beautiful arts come from here and here.

 

Reading Order & Links:
Amazon (click on covers), iBooks (click on titles) & Book Depository (click on book #)
the iron king julie kagawa
The Iron King #1
Reviews:
Jen
Chelsea
Anna
winter's passage julie kagawa
Winter's Passage #1.5
Reviews:
Jen

Chelsea
the iron daughter julie kagawa
The Iron Daughter #2
Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
Anna
the iron queen julie kagawa
The Iron Queen
#3

Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
summer's crossing iron fey novella julie kagawa
Summer's Crossing #3.5
the iron knight julie kagawa
The Iron Knight #4
Reviews:

Chelsea
iron's prophecy julie kagawa
Iron's Prophecy #4.5
Reviews:

Chelsea
the lost prince julie kagawa
The Lost Prince: Call of the Forgotten #1
Reviews:

Jen
Chelsea
the iron traitor julie kagawa the iron fey
The Iron Traitor:Call of the Forgotten #2
the iron warrior julie kagawa the iron fey
The Iron Warrior:Call of the Forgotten #3

BOOK REVIEW: Talon (Talon #1) by Julie Kagawa

BOOK REVIEW: Talon (Talon #1) by Julie KagawaTalon (Talon #1)
by Julie Kagawa
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

A ruse. That’s all it was. Pretend to like this girl. Pretend to have feelings, to pursue some kind of relationship. Earn her friendship and trust, knowing I might have to destroy it, and her, in the end.

Ruthless. Julie Kagawa is ruthless. Mad. Intoxicating…Brilliant. I just….I don’t get why people aren’t loving this one. Is it the content? Is it because it’s about dragons and you just can’t get past it? Is it the non-existent love triangle? The not-so-insta-love? Is it because it isn’t over-packed like an action movie full of explosions and power-plays? Is it the substance? OR, is it because it isn’t all about her abilities as a dragon and it focuses more on the romance? Well…see…that’s the problem: That’s why I loved it so much.

Those eyes. I felt like they pierced right through me; that if I didn’t break away now, they would peel me open to see what lay beneath. Deep within, the dragon stirred, growling. She didn’t like this human, I realized. Maybe he scared her, or the intensity of his gaze reminded her of a predator. Or maybe she felt that, if I stared at him much longer, I would lose myself in those stormy eyes and forget all about a certain golden-eyed rogue, waiting for me in the darkness.

This story isn’t about learning her abilities, about Talon itself, or even how she got to where she is now: It’s about being free. It’s about having one summer to be free from the system, to have fun, to not look at her past, to not face her chosen future, to fall in love. And, not only that, it’s about falling in love with the enemy. You know, that person that is sworn to kill you without blinking an eye? That person that would soon rather stab themselves in the eye than to be in the presence of the very thing they fear and loathe more than anything in the world. I mean, how could that ever work? A human and a dragon? But, as they find themselves wrapped in each others’ embrace, one undercover as a ploy to get close to the ‘sleeper’ and one actually being said sleeper, they start to wonder what it would be like to be normal, to stay frozen in that moment together and to never face those harsh realities and responsibilities ever again. But how could they ever be normal when they are both hiding a deadly secret-a deadly secret that could kill each other?

I wanted to spend more time with her; she was constantly in my thoughts, and right now the only thing I wanted was to lean in and kiss her. Which was, of course, disastrous for the mission, but I couldn’t help it. Somewhere between that day on the beach when I’d met her for the first time and the night of the party when we’d kissed in the ocean, she had become something more than a potential target. She had, very inexplicably, become the most important thing in my life.
And that terrified me.

This is Julie Kagawa-Her romance is unrivaled and she embraces forbidden love like she would coddle a child. No one compares and I admire her work greatly. Kagawa is the type of writer that can suck you in without you ever intending for it to happen. She writes beautifully and has a way with words, as my friend said, erasing any remnants of the novel before that you read and loved dearly and holding nothing back-Kagawa takes no prisoners-you will succumb to her writing and drown in her expertly woven pages…there is no way around it.

I clenched my fist around the railing, finally forcing myself to acknowledge what that meant. I’d always known, of course. It was always there, at the back of my mind; I just didn’t want to think about it. But if Ember was the sleeper…I would have to kill her.

If it’s possible, I think her writing is even better than before. This is so different from her previous novels and it really showed in this story. I didn’t once feel she was drawing ideas from her previous works and nothing felt recycled. It was fresh, clean, like a whole new slate. And despite the fact that I had my doubts on whether I would like this story or not, I never once thought, ‘oh, this might be a four,’ or ‘should I take a .5 star off?’. No, this was a five through and through-and as another friend said-she finally beat the 3 star book one curse! I always three star her first books in her series only to love and adore the rest of the remaining books. I am so happy with this book, it’s unreal-seriously.

I sighed again, tipping my head back. My skin was still flushed, whether from anger or adrenaline or both, and my dragon crackled and snapped in myriad different directions. I needed to calm down. I wished I had my board. It was impossible to stay tense while floating on the surface of the ocean, its cold, dark depths lulling you to sleep. The sea was fascinating. It always amazed me how calm and peaceful it was one moment, only to bear down on you a moment later with the power and savagery of a hurricane.

Ember and Garret were just…so fun to follow. Maybe at first I was skeptical as to how the alternating POV would work because she’s never done it before, but I loved every minute of it. I was never mad it switched to one or the other and I loved seeing the events through each of their eyes. I didn’t think it was possible, but I fell in love with yet another of her male leads. Garret, for real, doll, you better watch out-I. Am. Obsesssssed with you.

I found myself hating him, wanting to hurt him, to drive him away from the red-haired girl who was supposed to be mine.
Breathless, I slumped to the wall, numb with the realization. This anger, these illogical feelings of rage and possessiveness…I was jealous. I was jealous of a girl I was supposed to be stalking, seducing, for the sole purpose of revealing her true nature. This had become more than an objective, more than a mission.
I was falling for her
.

An undercover soldier out to kill the girl he’s falling in love with??? Come on. Come ooooooon. How. HOT. is. that? Every look, every touch, every caress…every kiss…..I couldn’t breathe. I was choking on butterflies, my heart swelled to immeasurable proportions. I was biting my lip and covering my mouth with the largest smile on my face because I couldn’t contain my geek out. I don’t know when or how, but he got under my skin…and every time he doubted himself or how he would ever be able to kill this girl he was holding and hoping wasn’t the sleeper, my heart broke a little more…and my evil side cackled without remorse.

At certain (okay, many) points near the end of the story I was gasping out loud, shooting my hand up to stifle my weird sounds, chanting ‘oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no…’. I was smiling so big and then tearing up when the hard decisions had to be made. It was a roller coaster of emotions-up, then down, up, then down, thrown to the side against a massive rock and then pummeled with the ocean waves, then up again. Not once was I bored and it came to a point where this was unputdownable, because I just didn’t know when that ball would drop and they would find out they were sworn enemies…and, hey, I loved those stolen kisses-I am a girl, after all.

Being with him did strange, twisty things to my insides. My dragon instincts did not approve; they still didn’t like this human with his amazing reflexes and bright, intense eyes. They eyes of a predator. But there was another part of me that couldn’t resist. And the thought of never seeing him again was unfathomable. Even if I knew it was probably for the best.

Jealousy (yaaas), lies, betrayal, true love, angst, and much more, this story became an instant favorite. The beginning was mild, I’ll give you all that. But I know Kagawa, and if I know anything, she’s hiding in the shadows with a malicious smile and steepled fingers because the pain will come. Oh, she’ll bring it. I don’t doubt that even for a second. I know her, and I know the end of this book was just the beginning of what we’ll face in the future books. Our little Ember (on a side note, how damn cute is that name? Ember. Like a spark, a flame, a fiery soul trapped and hidden in a tiny, harmless body. So clever and fun-I love her spirit.) and my dear Garret are in for a world of trouble. I don’t know what all is to come or what’s up Kagawa’s sleeve. But I do know one thing: She is a genius and I’ll never doubt her ideas again. Because, in the end, she got me, I’m rooting for the impossible: I want that human and dragon together, damn it!

 

 

 

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Urrrmmmmmmm….another book by Julie fuckin’ Kagawa??


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In 2014, you say?


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YES


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PLEASE! ! ! ! !


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Never in a million years would I have guessed that a book about dragons, DRAGONS, would excite me…but I would read ANYTHING this woman writes-now…..GIVE IT TO ME IMMEDIATELY

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