Tag Archives: Young-adult fiction

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson : Review

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Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics.

But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills. 

Nobody fights the Epics… nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.

And David wants in. He wants Steelheart—the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David’s father. For years, like the Reckoners, David’s been studying, and planning—and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience. 

He’s seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.

While this isn’t the type of book I typically read, (I tend to avoid superhero type books), Brandon Sanderson‘s Steelheart is an imaginative, and enjoyable read. Taking place in future Chicago,Steelheart follows David on his quest for revenge, ten years after Steelheart kills his father.

While this was an enjoyable read, I found myself not entirely a fan of the characters. The protagonist, David, felt to be too perfect, with no real flaws besides for some awful metaphors (a bit ‘Mary Sue’ in my opinion), The characterization felt weak and a shallow (with only a couple exceptions) compared to many that we see in his other novels, which was a bit disappointing. However, I did enjoy the dynamics between the Reckoners, and as always with Sanderson’s works, there’s more to them than there seems to be on the surface. There were some great backstories to go along with a couple of the characters.

The plot of the book felt a bit formulaic — being extremely reminiscent of the first Mistborn novel (fans of his other books will feel right at home while reading Steelheart). However, the story had an interesting premise, was well-executed and was a fast-paced story. And as with all of Sanderson’s novels, his world-building skills showed clearly throughout the novel.

While this isn’t my favourite of his works, Sanderson once again proves himself to be a fantastic writer, painting a vivid picture of a strange new world, with vivid battles and a new magic system. Steelheart was a fun and entertaining read. It’s definitely written with a young adult audience in mind. I did enjoy it more than I did his other YA novel, The Rithmatist which came out earlier this year.

Steelheart will be released September 24th, and the sequel is set to be released sometime next year.

The prologue is available to be read here.


The Cupid War by Timothy Carter: Review

https://i0.wp.com/i43.tower.com/images/mm117423767/cupid-war-timothy-carter-paperback-cover-art.jpgRicky Fallon had decided not to kill himself after all–moments before accidentally slipping off a bridge and plunging to his death. Now he’s a Cupid in the afterlife, helping high school students fall in love. The job would be cool if it weren’t for the dorky pink bodysuits, his jerky boss, and attacks from joy-sucking shadowy entities called Suicides.

When Fallon discovers a dangerous new Suicide in human form, a terrific battle erupts. Before the Suicide can become too powerful, Fallon has to convince his fellow Cupids of the extraordinary threat, protect the girl he’s falling for . . . and foil the Suicides’ evil scheme to spread despair to all humanity. – Source

The Cupid War by Timothy Carter is an interesting read. Carter, who is known for writing far-fetched fiction lives up to that expectation in The Cupid War. Following the tale of Fallon, a new Cupid who must work to earn Love and try to save students from sharing his fate. What he finds is unexpected, impossible, and some of it? Quite nice.

First, I need to start off by saying I don’t read YA novels, at least not on anything approaching a regular basis. Neither do I read romance or anything that could almost be classified as a romance novel, (trust me.. I’ve turned down a ridiculous amount of books that whilst they sounded interesting, romance is just not something I read). So, it is a bit peculiar that I accepted a book that is not only a young adult fiction, but well.. It has cupids, and the picture on the cover is a heart and thus (to me at least) obviously romance. Nevertheless, I don’t regret choosing to read The Cupid War, even if it really isn’t my type.

Carter’s characters are fun and dynamic, and develop realistically throughout the story, and reacted in a believable way when thrown into peculiar and challenging circumstances. Character relations were also well done, especially with Trina and Fallon who were enjoyable to read, and watch as their friendship blossomed.  Though, some parts were written a bit better than others, as parts of The Cupid War did feel rushed at times, especially during the action scenes… However, it was a fun read and has some really great (quirky and strange) ideas like Love being a food, or the great battle for souls between Suicides and Cupids.

The Cupid War is a fun and amusing read, easy to get through and a definite change compared to what I usually read. Starting off as a strange and humorous read, it progresses and becomes a much more engaging and deeper book, with a bit more of a mature feel to it. Fans of Carter as well as new readers won’t disappointed by this latest novel.

Also, check back in the next few days for my interview with the author, Timothy Carter!

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Interview with Mercedes Lackey

As with Brandon Sanderson, I had the opportunity to interview best-selling fantasy author, Mercedes Lackey over this past weekend at the World Fantasy Convention here in Toronto. Admittedly, this one wasn’t that great as far as interviews go, simply because I hadn’t been properly prepared for it, as it was completely unexpected. Here’s what I did ask though.

As a bit of a disclaimer, I’d like to say that while nothing written below is false, it isn’t exactly word-for-word what was said. I didn’t have an audio recorder during this interview, so this is just what I was able to write during our conversation.

= Mercedes Lackey, and = Rebecca (Myself)

R: Hi Mercedes, thank you for this.. Just a few questions, will you ever be restarting the “Ask Misty” section on your website?

M: No, I can either answer questions all day, or I can write. I can’t do both.

R: Alright, and by any chance do you plan on writing about the history of the Sunsinger or Shadowdancer? Or will we just have the songs you’ve written about their story?

M: Nope, never.. There will only be the songs.

R: Okay, and earlier during your reading you read a bit of your secret project… I’ve been told that it was excellent, but not much more than that… Can you tell me a bit about it?

M: Well, there isn’t a publisher for it. The story is going to be taken to auction, and it’s a Young Adult post apocalypse novel.

R: Alright, well I look forward to hearing more about that.. And somewhat related to that, what can we look forward to seeing from you in the future?

M: Well, there’s the next book in the Elemental Masters series, Steadfast, which will be out June 2013. Other than that, there are two series that I’m currently working on with James [Mallory]. They’re both trilogies, and at the moment are untitled, but Tor has bought the first book of each. The first one is kind of like a mix between the Student Prince, Pirates of the Caribbean and a bit of magic.. So those will be out at some point.

R: I’ve never heard of The Student Prince.. but I’m sure both trilogies will be excellent.

as to how I’d never heard of the Student Prince/explained what it was.>

R: Well, I’ll have to look more into that, and I just have one last question, who is your favourite author?

M: That’s rather broad.. Depends, which genre?

R: Fair enough.. Favourite fantasy author?

M: That would have to be Charles de Lint, definitely.

R: All right, thank you.. That’s all the questions I have.

M: No problem, you’re very welcome! If you think of anything else, do feel free to ask.

So yeah, now after the fact I have a bunch of questions I should have asked her.. But I’m glad I asked what I did. This was also my first face-to-face interview, so I was a bit nervous about it.
Any ways, she was very kind — so, thank you Mercedes for the interview!

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