Monday, February 20, 2017

#Monday Review - Wayfarer by Alexandra Bracken #YALit, #Science Fiction @alexbracken @DisneyHyperion

Series: Passenger # 2
Format: Hardcover, 532 pages
Release Date: January 3, 2017
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Source: Library
Genre: YA, Science Fiction

All Etta Spencer wanted was to make her violin debut when she was thrust into a treacherous world where the struggle for power could alter history. After losing the one thing that would have allowed her to protect the Timeline, and the one person worth fighting for, Etta awakens alone in an unknown place and time, exposed to the threat of the two groups who would rather see her dead than succeed. When help arrives, it comes from the last person Etta ever expected—Julian Ironwood, the Grand Master’s heir who has long been presumed dead, and whose dangerous alliance with a man from Etta’s past could put them both at risk. 

Meanwhile, Nicholas and Sophia are racing through time in order to locate Etta and the missing astrolabe with Ironwood travelers hot on their trail. They cross paths with a mercenary-for-hire, a cheeky girl named Li Min who quickly develops a flirtation with Sophia. But as the three of them attempt to evade their pursuers, Nicholas soon realizes that one of his companions may have ulterior motives. 

As Etta and Nicholas fight to make their way back to one another, from Imperial Russia to the Vatican catacombs, time is rapidly shifting and changing into something unrecognizable… and might just run out on both of them.

"From the shadows they come, to give you a fright.From the shadows they come, to steal you this night."

Wayfarer is the finale in Alexandra Bracken's Passenger duology. Wayfarer alternatives between Henrietta "Etta" Spencer and Nicholas Carter. Etta is a modern day violin virtuoso. She's traveled the world while preparing for her debut as a concert soloist which ended with her world being upturned, and being dragged into a entirely new one. Nicholas is an 18th century privateer, the son of Augustus Ironwood, and a slave woman. He was purchased and freed by Captain Hall whom he treats as a son. Nicholas is weighed down that he may have killed his brother Julian 

While the Passenger duology focuses mainly on Etta, and Nicholas, Sophia Ironwood, Cyrus Ironwood (the ultimate bad guy who controls both time lines and other families with an iron grip), and Rose Linden nee Spencer (Etta's mother who has done some bad things that have brought Etta into a dangerous world) are just as important as understanding the world that Bracken has created. In fact, the opening chapter of this story has a peek into the life of Rose Linden (Spencer) who lost her parents, and started down a dangerous rode after a mysterious stranger visited her. 

After the stunning conclusion to Passenger, Etta and Nicholas find themselves in two entirely different eras. After Rose's chapter, I had the feeling that something dangerous was lurking just off stage, and, Wow, was I right. Passenger 
alternatives chapters & adventures by Etta and Nicholas so you know exactly who the key players are and what era they find themselves in. We also get a cast of new characters like Henry Hemlock, Tsar Nicholas I, and Belladonna, the witch of Prague who puts a huge amount of pressure on Nicholas to do her bidding.  To catch readers up, Etta was snatched up by time, shaken & tossed through a series of passages. 

Etta's starts in this book when she wakes up in 1905 Texas hurt badly and orphaned by the timeline. The timeline has been altered & her future is quite possibly gone forever. She's also not happy about losing the astrolabe which she was sent to retrieve in order to save her mother. Etta's journey leads her to various eras which are too numerous to mention, except for 1906 San Francisco where she finds out the boy who saved her in Texas is the very much alive Julian Ironwood. For much of the story, Etta & Julian are attached by the hip. Even though they don't share a common goal, Julian is necessary to Etta's success because he knows the whereabouts of passages in various eras. He knows about bounce backs, and where the Ironwoods store their stash of goods that become useful to be successful in retrieving the astrolabe. 

Meanwhile, Nicholas has managed to ally himself with Sophia who he found very much alive at the end of the previous novel. Sophia is sporting her own wounds thanks to her encounter with the Thorns. She also lost the astrolabe to them as well which doesn't make for a kind or mellow Sophia. Nicholas is hoping that Rose Linden will have news about the fate of Etta, and where the original timeline may be. Instead, he and Sophia find themselves being saved by an even more interesting character named Li Min. Whenever someone says to me we need more diversity in books, I shake my head. You have to read books like Wayfarer for just that reason. Nicholas is black, Li Min is Chinese, and one of the more intriguing characters in this book. Li Min also has her own agenda which you can read about on your own. 

Wayfarer is an action-packed finale that I couldn't stop reading until I found out how the author would wrap up the story. Etta learned a whole lot about Passages, and Travelers, and Guardians, and even the Astrolabe, an artifact from the original travelers which can open passages and close others. She discovered a world where families are fighting against each other to save and protect the timelines, while one wants to bring back someone he lost. Etta discovered the dark truth about her mother, suffered an important loss in her life which still resonates, found the man who is her father, and yes, found love in the boy who changed her life. 

I close with this quote for Li Min.

"We come together with others to make our way and survive it's trails. But we are, all of us, also Wayfarers on a greater journey, this one without end, each of us searching for answers to the unspoken question of our hearts." 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

#Stacking the Shelves / Bought, Borrowed, & Bagged # 51

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

Bought Borrowed and Bagged is all about the latest additions to your library – virtual or actual, with books that are  bought, borrowed, won or ARCs  you will be reading soon. Bought Borrowed and Bagged is a homage to to Barron’s Books and Baubles from Karen Marie Moning’s amazing Fever series, and is hosted by Braine over at Talk Supe. 

Thanks for Shopping by!

Hello everyone! Some very, interesting books this week! 
I hope you find something you like!

Have a great weekend!

This Weeks Reviews: 

Tuesday - Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (YA, Fantasy)

Wednesday - Heart of the Storm by Michael Buckley (YA, Dystopia)

Friday - The Valiant by Lesley Livingston (YA, Fantasy)

Saturday - The Dark Days Pact by Alison Goodman (YA, Paranormal)

*Received from Publishers, Edelweiss, NetGalley, Borrowed from Library*


Friday, February 17, 2017

#Saturday Review - The Dark Days Pact by Alison Goodman #YALit, #Historical #Paranormal @AlisonGoodman @VikingBooks

Series: Lady Helen # 2
Format: Hardcover, 496 pages
Release Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers
Source: Library
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

Summer, 1812. After the scandalous events at her presentation ball in London, Lady Helen has taken refuge at the fashionable seaside resort of Brighton, banished from her family and training as a Reclaimer with the covert Dark Days Club. She must learn to fight the dangerous energy-wielding Deceivers and prepare to face their master, the elusive Grand Deceiver.As she struggles to put aside her genteel upbringing, Helen realizes that her mentor, Lord Carlston, is fighting his own inner battle.  Has the foul Deceiver energy poisoned his soul, or is something else driving him towards violent bouts of madness? Either way, Helen is desperate to help the man with whom she shares a deep but forbidden connection.When Mr. Pike, the hard bureaucratic heart of the Dark Days Club, arrives in Brighton, he has a secret mission for Helen: find the journal left by a mad rogue Reclaimer, before it falls into the hands of the Deceivers. Coerced by Pike, Helen has no choice but to do as ordered, knowing that the search for the journal may bring about Lord Carlston’s annihilation.

The Dark Days Pact is the second installment in author Alison Goodman's Lady Helen series. The series is set during England's Regency era, more to the point, July 1812. This was the time when England was facing wars against the American Colonies, and with Napoleon. It has been 47 days since Lady Helen Wrexhall's world changed. That is when she found out that she was a Reclaimer, just like her mother, and it is her job and a select others, to protect England from Deceivers, and more important, defeat the Great Deceiver who is said to rise along with the Great Reclaimer. 

This group of people is called The Dark Days Club

Goodman wastes absolutely no time in jumping right back into Helen's life, and her struggles with being the only living female Reclaimer. Because she is female, she is expected to dress like a man, and do what her "betters" tell her to do, most notably the arrogant Ignatious Pike. Pike tears a wide swath of destruction in this story and upsets the balance between Helen and her new allies. His main target though is Lord Carlston, her mentor, and the man she has suddenly became connected to after an encounter in the previous novel. Carlston himself is having major issues that seem to be spiraling out of control, and if Helen does find a way to save him, Pike may put him down.

Helen takes her oath to join the Dark Days Club even though her training is still in infant stages. She's also given an important job of searching for an incredibly important journal that was written by the former Reclaimer named Benchley who readers met in the first installment. Helen must do this without telling her mentor, or anyone else except Hammond. Helen knows now that if she messes up, or refuses Pike's orders, she can be charged with treason. Helen's own powers are slowly coming into full force, which is a good thing since she's supposed to do great things soon. 

Helen was born to fight the hidden creatures. She is also a direct inheritor which makes her abilities all that more impressive considering she's a rookie when it comes to understanding her new world. Even though Helen is constrained by societies rules regarding women, she is a character who doesn't allow the misguided rules to stop her from doing what is right, and from protecting those she has put her faith in. These not only include Carlston, but her maid Darby who will become her Terrene when she's ready, Margaret Ridgewell, Mr. Hammond who have taken her in after her uncle cast her out of his home, and her best friend Delia Cransdon who had her own encounter with a Deceiver.

What I didn't Like:  His name is the Selburn. The Duke of Selburn doesn't understand the world NO. If this were the 21st century, Helen would have labeled him a stalker and called the coppers on him. He would probably get off since he's snobbish and rich. Selburn is like an annoying gnat who continues to suck blood from the same healing sore. He pursues Helen, and gets into her business time and time again even though Helen has told him to bugger off. I suppose there will be those who will say that he means only the best for Helen, and yes, I get that. Even though it is apparent that Selburn will not go away any time soon, I still maintain that Helen is better suited with Carlston who needs to have his own life reexamined after some stunning secrets are revealed.

Despite my issues with Selburn, I have to admit that I hope he is the Great Evil that is coming soon. This series gets better with each book, and it a series that I encourage others to read. It is a series that features brilliant world building, and a cast of characters who are so far from perfect. One could say that there is no sophomore let down after the brilliant Dark Days Club. This is Helen's own coming of age story. It shows how much strength and confidence she gathers. Helen has to fight demons and male misogyny with equal force. One small misstep, could me the end of everything she's working towards. Bring on the next installment please?!?!

#Friday Review - The Valiant by Lesley Livingston #YALit, #Fantasy @LesLivingston @HarperCollinsCa

Series: The Valiant # 1
Format: E-Galley, 372 pages
Release Date: February 14, 2017
Publisher: HarperCollins Canada
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Princess. Captive. Gladiator. Always a Warrior
The youngest daughter of a proud Celtic king, Fallon has always lived in the shadow of her older sister Sorcha's legendary reputation as a warrior. But when Fallon was a young child, the armies of Julius Caesar invaded the island of Britain and her beloved older sister was killed in battle.
On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is excited to follow in her sister's footsteps and earn her rightful place in her father's royal war band. But she never gets the chance. Instead, Fallon is captured by a band of ruthless brigands who sell her to an exclusive training school for female gladiators—and its most influential patron is none other than Julius Caesar himself. In a cruel twist of fate, Fallon's worst enemy, the man who destroyed her family, might be her only hope of survival.
Now, Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries, chilling threats and the dangerous attention of Caesar himself to survive the deadly fights that take place both in and out of the arena—and claim her place in history among the Valiant.

"Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once." Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare

The Valiant is the first installment in author Lesley Livingston's The Valiant series. It is a series set during the time of the Roman Empire with Gaius Julius Caesar in charge. Most of us, I think, have seen the movie Gladiator with Russel Crowe, yes? Well, think of this series as a gender swap of that movie. Instead of sweaty hot men fighting in an arena for their freedoms & for revenge, this series features some hardcore female Gladiatrix's who fight against each other for the right to earn money and to buy back their freedom.

In the first installment, the author introduces readers to our protagonist 17-year old Fallon, the youngest daughter of Virico, a Celtic King from Prydian, which is actually Britannia. Ever since her eldest sister Sorcha died fighting against Caesar's legions, Fallon has been eager to train hard, and take her place as a Contii warrior. She's even tried different stunts in order to prove her worth as a warrior and carries her sisters sword. But, when her birthday arrives, her father has other plans for her. These plans ultimately leads to betrayal, murder, and a disheartened Fallon who just happens to fall into the arms of slavers, one of whom decides that Fallon should be shipped off to Rome.

Fallon has to face a whole lot of challenges, a whole lot of hurtful pride from others, and a serious of adversaries who would love to see her fail miserably. But, our Fallon is not that kind of girl. She's fierce as they come. She knows what she wants from life, and life can just get the hell out of the way if she has anything to say about it. She fights like nobody's business. And, she has Morrigan, the Goddess of war & death, watching over her. Fallon's journey is filled with realistic action and adventure. Nothing is easy for Fallon, not even while trying to survive her training, especially when someone makes an effort to put dead things in her quarters. But, as I said before, Fallon is not going to just wade away, and become anything other than the warrior her sister was. 

The most interesting part of this series is that the author has done some factual research which seems to prove the existence of these female gladiators. Whether or not this story would be considered Historical Fiction, is to be determined. There is so much to talk about and love about this story. There are other characters who I loved as well. I loved Elka who comes along with Fallon to Rome and becomes her best friend. Their banter is humorous and I appreciated the fact that two women could be friends, without making it sexual in nature, or a rivalry. I also adored Caius Antonius Varro, Cai, who becomes sort of a lifetime for Fallon, and also a romantic interest even thought she could get in deep trouble for crossing the line. 

I will say, without spoilers, that there are some very interesting twists in this book, especially after Fallon and Elka arrive in Rome and are sold to the Gladiatrix school run by Lady Achillea. I also love the fact that whether you liked her or not, Cleopatra is an character who genuinely appreciates what Fallon is trying to do. She could have at any moment said something and Fallon would have been sold off to someone much harsher. 

I definitely say that this is one of the best books of 2017 and yes, I know we are only in February! I am eager to read the sequel to this story. Lastly, I offer a HUGE Thank you to HarperCollins Canada who approved me for this title. I appreciate you guys so much! Seriously! 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

#Thursday Review - The Last of August by Brittany Cavallaro #YALit #Mystery @skippingstones @KTegenBooks

Series: Charlotte Holmes # 2
Format: E-Galley, 336 pages
Release Date: February 14, 2017
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery

In the second brilliant, action-packed book in the Charlotte Holmes trilogy, Jamie and Charlotte are in a chase across Europe to untangle a web of shocking truths about the Holmes and Moriarty families.
Jamie Watson and Charlotte Holmes are looking for a winter break reprieve in Sussex after a fall semester that almost got them killed. But nothing about their time off is proving simple, including Holmes and Watson’s growing feelings for each other. When Charlotte’s beloved uncle Leander goes missing from the Holmes estate—after being oddly private about his latest assignment in a German art forgery ring—the game is afoot once again, and Charlotte throws herself into a search for answers. 
So begins a dangerous race through the gritty underground scene in Berlin and glittering art houses in Prague, where Holmes and Watson discover that this complicated case might change everything they know about their families, themselves, and each other. 

The Last of August is the second installment in author Brittany Cavallaro's Charlotte Holmes series. As with A Study in Charlotte, this story is once again told in the first person narrative by James (Jamie) Watson, Jr. There is, however, a caveat. There are several chapters where we actually get into Charlotte's head while Jamie is out of action. This more than makes up for a whole lot of quite time, and honestly, it was a good change of direction. 

Jamie and Charlotte are on winter break in England as the book opens. Jamie, having taken Charlotte to meet his mother and sister Shelby in London, later joins Charlotte in Sussex where he meets her parents Alistair & Emma Holmes, as well as Uncle Leander who is best friends with James Watson, Jamie's own father. There is so much to talk about regarding Jamie's time at Sussex, and how there is so much darkness right under the surface, and how Jamie is treated by Charlotte's mother, that readers will have to figure out what is really happening right before their eyes. 

But, that's not the only issue. After Leander disappears abruptly without leaving his normal present for Charlotte, Jamie and Charlotte find themselves in Berlin looking into an art forgery ring, which eventually leads them to Prague and even more twisted storylines,. This leads to Charlotte's narrative during a tumultuous trial of fits and starts where Jamie is hurt. Readers will also meet the man, August Moriarty, who we know that something awful happened between him and Charlotte which has led to Lucien Moriarty's desire for Charlotte's demise. August is one of those supporting cast members who means well, but eventually you have to actually do something with him one way or the other or it's pointless to have him around.

I have to speak about the relationship between Charlotte and Jamie. This book focuses not only on the duos relationship, but the possibly of a budding romance between Jamie and Charlotte, and Charlotte's issues that really need to be addressed. Charlotte, granted is beyond smart, has superb intelligence, and solved her first case when she was 10. But, she treats Jamie like a pet, and not someone who may have lost his heart to her. On the other hand, I do believe Jamie and all of the Watson's have a masochist streak in them to have hung around the Holmes for as long as they have. 

Can you imagine being only thought of as the Holmes biographer, and never really getting any credit for helping a Holmes solve a mystery? One of the things you definitely see in this book, is Jamie getting a bit of a backbone and exploring a bit more on his own. I'm all for this. I want Jamie to be his own person. But, I also don't want him to be reckless for the sake of not being left behind by Charlotte. I am also curious to see where Jamie's head is at when the next installment comes out after all he's seen, heard, and witnessed over the past 2 installments.

While I appreciated of receiving an early version of this story, I was kind of disappointed with the fact that I was not able to enjoy the author's family tree graphics regarding the Holmes and the Moriarty's. It was blanked out in my edition. I do encourage those who will read this in the final version of the book, to pay close attention to the family tree since it does come in handy time and time again. There are names that come up that you really won't have a clue who they are unless you can shift back and forth to the family tree. There are a whole lot of issues between the Holmes and Moriarty's, and now that Jamie is involved, he clearly has a target on his back as long as he remains heavily involved with Charlotte.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

#Wednesday Review - Heart of the Storm by Michael Buckley #YALit #Dystopia @michaelwbuckley @HMHKids

Series: Undertow # 3
Format: E-Galley, 320 pages
Release Date: February 7th 2017
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

“There’s something out in that water. Be ready to take the people you love and leave when it comes onshore.”
For three months, Lyric Walker has been trapped in the hunting grounds, the Alpha city at the bottom of the ocean. But Lyric Walker, Brooklyn girl, is not going down without a fight. She makes an unlikely alliance with her jailor, a Rusalka named Husk. Husk reveals the truth about what actually resides in the Great Abyss. The Great Abyss is not some Alpha god but belongs to an unknown clan of monsters, ones who think in a hive mentality and believe anyone who cannot hear their voice is broken and must be destroyed. And Lyric has just woken them.
After a death-defying escape, Lyric makes her journey back to the mainland to prepare humanity for another monster invasion. Once reunited with her parents, Bex, and hot-nerd-with-potential Riley, Lyric has to break the terrible truth.
Lyric was just a girl when the Alpha arrived in her hometown. She was a soldier in the second attack that saved her world. What will she have to become now, and who will she have to leave behind?

Heart of the Storm is the third and final installment in author Michael Buckley's Undertow series. When last we saw our protagonist, Lyric Walker, she was being dragged down into the deepest part of the ocean by her nemesis Minerva, and her Rusalka allies. The story actually goes back and forth through several chapters before pushing ahead. There are chapters where we learn how Lyric was treated while being held by Minerva. Then, there are the chapters that focuses on Lyric's time after being rescued, and finding herself once again at center stage in the biggest play she's ever starred in.

I must offer that Lyric's time spent with Husk, and Minerva, was very interesting. There were parts that enlightens readers as to why the Alpha built their city where they did. Why they have those powerful bracelets that Lyric and her team have learned how to use? And, how she is forced to learn how to learn new things like fishing for food for Minerva, while trying to remain alive when she is hated by almost everyone around her because she's not fully Sirene, Ceto, Triton, or Selkie. Lyric learns a valuable lesson in what the Great Abyss really is all about from her new friend Husk, a Rusalka, and how he ends up helping her. There is even one final battle between Minerva and Lyric which leads to curious possibilities. 

Meanwhile, back in the States, life has moved on for Lyric's team of hybrid kids like Riley & Chloe, her parents, and her best friend Bex who has become something of a rock star, and is at the top of the FBI's most wanted list for inciting protests and encouraging dissent. Bex really stands out in this installment, and I can honestly say that I am glad. I loved seeing her become someone fierce, and determined, and a leader in her own way. Lyric must find a way to collectively bring together those who hate each other, Humans and Alphas, into an alliance of biblical proportions if anyone is going to survive what is to come.

She has to make deals with the shady White Tower group that took her and her friends hostage, treated her mother as a specimen, and jailed her father in a camp. Let's not forget about the newest species aka nemesis known as the Tardigrade that makes Lyric's life even more worrisome by talking to her and Husk. Lyric must find a way to defeat the Tardigrade before the world is swamped with beings who hate humanity and wants to created new children who like Husk and Lyric, are connected to them. 

This is the point where I get nervous. Telling readers why my rating isn't higher. It's not a slap at the author. In fact, I have nothing but respect for the world that he has created. It is the way I collectively take in things as an older reader. What is holding me back from a higher rating is simple. Lyric, Riley, Bex, her mother, father, and Bex's team goes through all this trouble to put together a formidable force which includes Fathom, and his Alpha brethren, and a ton of humans, only to have things quickly come to an end. Instead of lots of action, there is a whimper, and then the story moves forward 3 years in the future. I wasn't sure in what direction the author was going with Riley, Bex, and Lyric, but I am happy with the way it plays out. There is nothing at all wrong with Lyric's choice in the end, especially after everything she's been through. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

#Tuesday Review - Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard #YALit #Fantasy @VictoriaAveyard @harperteen

Series: Red Queen # 2
Format: Hardcover, 444 pages
Release Date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Library
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they've always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.
Mare Barrow's blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.
Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

Glass Sword, by author Victoria Aveyard, is the second installment in the Red Queen series. Glass Sword picks up right where Red Queen left off. Mare Barrow, aka lightning girl, is someone who has red blood and silver abilities. She has the power to control lightning which not only makes her a weapon, but it's something only the silver blooded are supposed to have. She is valuable, powerful, and to those looking to take down Maven and his mother, the ultimate tool to free the red bloods, and even some silver bloods who are tired of the status quo. 

One has to understand that after the events of Red Queen, there is going to be some emotional times, some slow times, some time where Mare and her allies travel to and fro, and some times where Mare will struggle to make the right decisions after the stunning betrayal by Maven who she thought was her friend. While there is enough action in the first third of this book to keep the reader focused on what comes next, it is the final third that will completely blow your minds. With Maven now a powerful adversary, Mare, Cal, her brother Shade, Farley and others have to put a group together to find the so called new bloods. 

Glass Sword is a wild ride that tests Mare's internal struggles as well as keeping her friends and family safe. Her abilities make her more than dangerous, it makes her curious about whether or not she is on the same path as Maven. Not an easy act to balance when things are clearly moving in a direction that Mare can't imagine. While Mare is able to collect a few powerful new bloods, and those new bloods are useful tools for the fight against Maven, Maven seems to know exactly where she is going next, and has all the answers for stalling Mare in her tracks.

I can't talk about that ending without cursing. Loudly. I am heart broken for the loss of a certain character. I am angry that Mare let her own issues blind her to what Maven was doing and then did what she does. I am not a fan of romances between characters who do the most vile thing possible, only to have the female character forget what she's fighting for. I dare say that I hope Mare doesn't end up with a case of Stockholm Syndrome and falls head over heels for Maven again. I can also say that I feel for Cal. He's definitely got the shaft and it will be interesting to see what path the author chooses to follow in the follow up sequels. I am also thinking that Aveyard is either an evil genius when it comes to Maven, or we are all in trouble.