Cover♥Trailer Reveal: Stained by Cheryl Rainfield

Book Description:

In this heart-wrenching and suspenseful teen thriller, sixteen-year-old Sarah Meadows longs for "normal." Born with a port-wine stain covering half her face, all her life she’s been plagued by stares, giggles, bullying, and disgust. But when she’s abducted on the way home from school, Sarah is forced to uncover the courage she never knew she had, become a hero rather than a victim, and learn to look beyond her face to find the beauty and strength she has inside. It’s that—or succumb to a killer.

Read more »

Cover♥Trailer Reveal: Stained by Cheryl Rainfield

Book Description:

In this heart-wrenching and suspenseful teen thriller, sixteen-year-old Sarah Meadows longs for “normal.” Born with a port-wine stain covering half her face, all her life she’s been plagued by stares, giggles, bullying, and disgust. But when she’s abducted on the way home from school, Sarah is forced to uncover the courage she never knew she had, become a hero rather than a victim, and learn to look beyond her face to find the beauty and strength she has inside. It’s that—or succumb to a killer.

Tag Line:
Sometimes you have to be your own hero.
Release Date:
Nov 19, 2013
Publisher: 
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

From the author:
Like I did with SCARS and HUNTED, I drew on some of my own experiences of bullying, abuse, and trauma to write STAINED and to give it greater emotional depth. Like Sarah in STAINED, I experienced abduction, imprisonment, periods of forced starvation, mind control, and having my life threatened. And like Sarah, I tried hard to fight against my abuser, keep my own sense of self, and escape. I hope readers will see Sarah’s strength and courage, and appreciate her emotional growth as she reclaims herself.

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Review: Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

STELLA REVIEWS…

A zombie who yearns for a better life ends up falling in love—with a human—in this astonishingly original debut novel.

R is a zombie. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He doesn’t enjoy killing people; he enjoys riding escalators and listening to Frank Sinatra. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.

Not just another zombie novel, Warm Bodies is funny, scary, and deeply moving.

Movie Trailer

Book Trailer
 

Review:

Although this book gets 5 stars from me, it is by no means, perfect. Don't go in and think, well Stella gave it 5 stars so I'll love it. Truth is, I didn't love a large portion of this book, but if you value by opinions, then I ask you, please read on.

-Start of review-
Okay, as mentioned above, this book is not perfect. This is a graphic (sinusoidal) representation of how I would have rated this book throughout the novel:

Read more »

Review: Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

STELLA REVIEWS…

A zombie who yearns for a better life ends up falling in love—with a human—in this astonishingly original debut novel.

R is a zombie. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He doesn’t enjoy killing people; he enjoys riding escalators and listening to Frank Sinatra. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.

Not just another zombie novel, Warm Bodies is funny, scary, and deeply moving.

Movie Trailer

Book Trailer
 

Review:

Although this book gets 5 stars from me, it is by no means, perfect. Don’t go in and think, well Stella gave it 5 stars so I’ll love it. Truth is, I didn’t love a large portion of this book, but if you value by opinions, then I ask you, please read on.

-Start of review-
Okay, as mentioned above, this book is not perfect. This is a graphic (sinusoidal) representation of how I would have rated this book throughout the novel:

A cosine!

The book started out humorous, refreshing and a bit quirky. R, our main character is awkward, lacking a bit of neural activities and most importantly, a zombie. He is like a newly released piece of avant-garde clothing arriving at a major department store near you. You’re intrigued by it, you want to like it because it’s not your typical t-shirt and jeans but you’re also afraid. You’re afraid because he is not your typical YA main character, which means, all bets are off. There is no predictability as to where this character is going, no “a girl who finds out she is the daughter of a very powerful man, which means she possesses this special power,” no “quiet girl whose male best friend has been crushing on her since they could walk, but instead falls for the hot, cold guy she barely understand.” So right off the bat, for about 30 pages, I enjoyed the book, I would give it 5/5 stars.

But then, things started to change. I blame my YA-trained brain for expecting “insta-love” romance to blossom. Well, THANK YOU ISAAC MARION. It didn’t quite happen. Instead, the readers are confronted with about 120 pages of development. I appreciate this part because this is the character growth and relationship reinforcement that so many YA lack. But at the same time, my YA-trained brain was twitching for some action. So for the majority of this part, I thought this part was going to be a 2.5/5 for me. But I don’t like to give up on books, not when I am so intrigued by the unpredictability of the plot. So, I read on, and for this, Stella’s brain would like to thank Stella’s curiosity.

After this slump, things picked up and it was as if an old Mercedes was restored to life, it began to chug along. I won’t comment on the last 70 or so pages for fear of saying too much. All I can say is the unpredictability of this book definitely bumped up this book’s rating. I want to read more and more of it. Devouring words after words, hoping to find out more and more of this world Isaac Marion has painted. And we arrive at 4/5 stars.

What gained this book that sought-after, coveted last star?
I thought and thought about this book after I finish and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. So, first of all, that is a sign I really enjoyed this book. Many neuronal action potentials later, I’ve summed up the other things I loved about this book:

1) Marion’s poetic writing. They are soft as butter and so reminiscent of John Green and Tahereh Mafi (or so I’ve heard). Here are some samples:

“I want out ribcage to crack open and our hearts to migrate and merge. I want our cells to braid together like living thread.”

“I want to change my punctuation. I long for exclamation marks, but I’m drowning in ellipses.”

“Sex, once a law as undisputed as gravity, has been disproved. The equation is erased, the blackboard broken.”

“[What is love?] Maybe it’s a kind of death throe. A distant echo of that great motivator that once started wars and inspired symphonies, that drove human history out of the caves and into space.”

2) A tie-in to Marion’s writing style is his diction in certain areas – so anatomical, so relevant to the concept of the Living Dead.
“The soft pink zygote of a plan.”

“…her zygomaticus major pulling her lips in a faint smile.”
At one point, Marion even describes Julie being out of breath as her bronchial constricting. Thanks for being specific and accurate.

3) The humour:

“Why is it beautiful that humanity keeps coming back? Herpes does that, too.”

“Every time I go into the city, I bring back one thing that catches my eye. A puzzle. A shot glass. A Barbie. A dildo.”

4) So many Frank Sinatra references!!

5) The “different perspective”(view spoiler) It would translate great onto the big screen.

Phew. If this review is any larger, it might be up for contention as a planet circling our sun. If you’re still around at this point, I thank you. You value my opinions! Can our cells braid together like living thread? 

Wait! Wut? There is now a sequel? Untitled Warm Bodies Sequel. I was happy with it being a stand-along but whatevaaaa, I’m happy to read another book by him.