Allgemein, F - J, G, Reviews

Review: Golden Son (Pierce Brown)

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Rating: 4 Pfoten
“I will die. You will die. We will all die and the universe will carry on without care. All that we have is that shout into the wind – how we live. How we go. And how we stand before we fall.”

It’s been three days I finished “Golden Son” and I still don’t know how I feel about it, let alone what I think about it. >_<
I’m just so confused and devastated and my heart is nothing but an empty void.

There seem to be three bloodydamn good reasons why I feel that way though:

1.) Pierce Brown ripped out my heart and gave it to the pitvipers.
2.) He broke my mind and didn’t leave any glue.
3.) His book shattered my soul and fractured it into tiny little pieces.

YES! “Golden Son” quite literally destroyed me and I have no idea how I’m supposed to survive the third book. I got so attached to all those characters and whenever something happened to them, I almost got a heart attack. The pacing was so fast, I barely managed to keep up with all those many plot twists and every time I thought I knew in which direction it was heading, the entire story line changed once again. To read this book was like playing chess without any rules. *lol* You have all the familiar chess pieces you need in order to play a decent game of chess, but your nice little figures never do what they are actually meant to do. It’s like they constantly give you the finger instead! XD

That’s so rude Pierce!!
So mean
and cruel
and painful!!!
You hear me?!
SO FREAKING SAVAGE AND EXCRUCIATING!!!
*mental breakdown*

Okay, okay I’m fine again. *clears throat*
Where was I again? Oh, yes the plot!

”How could so frail a girl have such a spirit, such a dream as freedom, when so many strong souls toiled and kept their heads down for fear of looking up?”

1

”They say a kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. They made no mention of the heart.”

After graduating from the Institute, Darrow Au Andromedus spent his last three years as a Lancer of House Augustus serving no other than Nero himself. Left to his own devices and without any guidance from Ares he didn’t just try his very best to find his way amongst his fellow Golds but also worked more than just hard to become an integral and important part of Nero’s forces. This however isn’t as easy as it seems and all it needs is a small mistake that’s able to destroy the good reputation he has built. After all there are plenty of enemies that want to get a piece of him, first and foremost Cassius au Bellona and his entire House which still holds a deadly grudge against him. With his loyal Howlers scattered all over the galaxy and only Roque at his side, the growing pressure on Darrow’s shoulders might soon become too strong to stand it any longer. Will he rise like a comet or will he tumble into red dirt?

”Your people. My people. We have languished in darkness. But there will come a day when we walk in the light. It will not come from their mercy. It will not come by fate. It will come when brave hearts rise and choose to break the chains, to live for more.”

2

”We’re all just wounded souls, stumbling about in the dark, desperately trying to stitch ourselves together, hoping to fill the holes they ripped in us.”

This is the moment you enter my spoiler section. There will be lots of quotes and information about the individual characters and most definitely also way too many subjective emotions for your own good! Don’t say I didn’t warn you! ;-P

Darrow:

”I’ve seen her hanged a thousand times now as her martyrdom spreads across the worlds, city by city. Yet each time, it strikes me like a physical blow, nerve endings shivering in my chest, heart beating fast, neck tight just under the jaw. How cruel a life, that the sight of my dead wife means hope.”

Oh Darrow, my torn and insecure child! This boy is hurting so much, not just because of the things people are doing to him, but also because of his past, his current present and the things that might eventually happen in the future. He wears a burden that is too heavy for him but he still tries his best to stay strong, to keep on moving and to fight for the things he values. *sigh* He’s such a torn man, it’s exceptionally painful to watch. For instance Darrow still loves Eo and his family, but he also grew fond of some of his fellow Golds and to say he is walking a thin line between acceptance, betrayal and loyalty is actually putting it more than just mildly. In fact it doesn’t even get close to the truth! >_< That moment when he realised that Sevro knows about his true identity and accepts him the way he is, oh boy did it kill me!!! I was right there crying with him! <333 Darrow has a too gentle soul for what he’s about to do, but his determination and will are incredible! XD I loved how he treated Mickey and I’m really sorry for what happened to the poor Carver. I mean just like Darrow he’s a product of his environment and he certainly didn’t deserve to be abused by Harmony. Still, as much as I admire Darrow he definitely made some huge mistakes as well and I think the ending of “Golden Son” made that more than just clear!!! Urgh that ENDING!! I can’t even… T_T

”In so many ways, I’m still a boy, lost and afraid, seeking warmth and love. When I feel dirt, I honor Eo. And when I see fire, I remember the warmth and flicker of the flames across Mustang’s skin as we lay in our chamber of ice and snow.”

”He can’t say any more because I’m hugging him and crying. I sob and hold on to him, shaking, scaring him. He doesn’t move except to pat me on the head. All the weight falls from my shoulders. Someone knows. He knows and he’s here. He knows and he came to help me. To help me. I can’t stop shaking and saying thank you. Eo was right. I was right. “You are my friend,” I tremble out like a child. It almost makes him cry seeing me this way.”

”Because you’re my friend.” I bring his hands to my lips, kissing them gently as he looks up at me with hopeful eyes. “Weird as you are, wicked as you were. I know you want to be better. You want to live for more. We all do. And there’s not a place they could take one of my friends that I would ever abandon them.”

Mustang:

”Shame you don’t respect me enough to suppose that I have my own plan. You think I’m here because my aching loins thrust me into Bellona arms. Please. I’m no bitch in heat. I protect my family by any means necessary. Who do you protect but yourself?”

I don’t even dare to say it but I was kind of disappointed by Mustang in this book. I mean yes she’s still cheeky and she was one of the good guys, but after “Red Rising” I really would have expected her to play a more important role and to fight for her opinions and rights. First she decided to work for Octavia au Lune and then she became Cassius girlfriend?! Like seriously?! We all know what a – excuse my crude language – bitch Octavia is and to date Cassius because she thinks she might protect her family by doing so?! WTF!?!! Where is her fire?! Where is the snarky spark I loved so much?! She doesn’t have to resort to the typical tricks of a woman, she’s way better than that and the fact she chose to use her femininity instead of her strength, intelligence and will power was just frustrating. Truth be told I think Victra was a way better role model in this book! She didn’t care what others thought of her, she did what she wanted to and she took what she needed! Yup, I think I liked Victra more. *lol* Oh and don’t even get me started about Mustang’s reaction when she found out that Darrow is a Red!!! It’s like she wanted to support all the classes and change the system and then BAM! Darrow tells her he’s actually a Red and she hates him!? I mean yes she’s entitled to feel betrayed, everyone would do, but to react like that?! Preach water and drink wine, right?!

”If she gives me her heart, I’ll break it. My lie is too great to build a love upon. When she discovers what I am, she will reject me. Even if she could survive that, I would not.”

”The human spirit tries to break free, again and again, not in hate like the Dark Revolt. But for love. They don’t mimic each other. They aren’t inspired by others who come before them. Each is willing to take the leap, thinking they are the first. That’s bravery. And that means it’s part of who we are as people.”

Sevro:

”He stands quietly in his armor watching us, watching Roque hold the girl Sevro loves but has never told, the girl he could never have. The pain is raw and etched deep into the lines of his hawkish face. Impervious Sevro, immune to hurt, to sadness, to having his eye gouged out by Lilath, the Jackal’s lieutenant; it all falls on him now.”

I still L.O.V.E that boy to bits and pieces!!! He’s truly the best thing about this series!!! <333 Sevro is the best friend anyone can have and he’s so damn loyal and gentle it’s a pleasure to watch! Yes, I said gentle!! Because behind all his rabid-wolf-attitude and the tough façade he shows to others, he’s actually the sweetest and kindest soul ever! Plus I love his humour!!! XD And just like Darrow I seem to have a weakness for men with only one eye and a really sassy demeanour. (Yes Lucien I’m talking about YOU here!! ;-P) I wasn’t really surprised to find out that he’s half Red, I have to admit that Fitchner’s true identity threw me though. *lol* Who would have thought Fitchner had it in him? Well, I certainly didn’t! XD

”Audentes fortuna juvat,” Sevro chuckles.
“Fortune favors the bold? You deserve to die if that’s really going to be the last thing you say in this life.”

”Sevro?” I look around for him. He’s loitering around Pliny’s eyeball some twenty metres back. We turn to look at him and he shuffles his feet awkwardly.
”Can I …” He gestures to it.
“What?” Mustang asks.
“Can I have it?”
Mustang squints at him. “All yours.”
He scoops up the eyeball and jams it into his pocket, grinning merrily. He runs to catch up. “Collecting the set, hopefully.”

”I can’t do this without you.” After a desperate moment, “Are you with me? Sevro?”
He pulls back and wipes snot from his nose, muddying his face. Tears make lines in the mud as he looks up at me, voice cracking like a child’s. “Always, Darrow. Always.”

Roque:

”We are not our station in life. We are us – the sum of what we’ve done, what we want to do, and the people who we keep close. You’re my dearest friend, Darrow. Mind that. No matter what transpires, I will protect you as surely as you would protect me if ever I needed it.”

Roque… my precious poet with principles. My kind spirit in a cruel world. OH GOD, I CAN’T EVEN!!! I knew this would come, I saw all the signs, Darrow’s betrayal, Quinn’s death, the fact Darrow shut him out of his inner circle over and over again. It was so damn hard to read!! Every little moment, every small action, every single word that left Darrow’s lips… it was poison for their friendship, poison for my poor Roque. Darrow should have tried to mend things between them, he should have given him time and an honest and long conversation but he did absolutely nothing and just left him out in the rain. Grief is a powerful emotion and it can change people in ways no one would have ever thought possible. Darrow of all people should have known this!!!! DAMN IT!!! Roque was so lonely and isolated, so broken… broken beyond repair and no one noticed. It’s really no surprise he did what he did…. I saw it coming, yet I still wasn’t prepared to face it. My heart is bleeding! I AM HEARTBROKEN! I feel so torn about Roque right now, but I can’t hate him. I can’t dislike him for what he did. He’s still my Roque. My gentle poet. *sobs* ARGH!! I hate Pierce Brown for making me feel this way. And how it happened in the end… I guess I finally have my answer how Roque made it through the passage…. I wish I would have never found out… It just hurts… T_T

”I didn’t mind that it was always about you, Darrow. That was what burned Tactus, but not me. I’m not in love with you like Mustang. I don’t worship you like Sevro or the Howlers. I was a true friend. I was someone who saw your light and your dark and accepted both without judgement, without agenda. And what did you do to me? You used me like a man uses a horse. I’m better than that. Quinn was better than that.”

”Friendships take minutes to make, moments to break, years to repair,” he says, turning to glance over his shoulder. “We’ll talk again soon.”

A needle from his ring pricks my wrist. Gentle, like the kiss he now plants on my cheek.
“And thus go liars, with a bloodydamn kiss.”
One word shatters a thousand lies.

The Jackal:

”Come now, Father …”
“You are not my son.”
Adrius flinches. With those few words, Augustus releases something. And the small part of Adrius that held out hope to be loved disappears. He shakes off his humanity, leaving only the Jackal.

Cunning, cruel, conniving, relentless, heartless and creepy. In short: The perfect villain! Adrius is certainly a force to be reckoned with and this time around I actually truly and completely blame Darrow! He knew what he was getting himself into, he knew “The Jackal” wasn’t to be trusted, yet he still hoped his wrath wouldn’t reach him?! I mean what did he expect?! That the Jackal would stand aside while he became his father’s successor?! Didn’t the death of Leto teach him anything?! Adrius acted exactly the way I expected him to and I can’t believe Darrow actually fell for his trap! I don’t even want to know what he’s going to do with him… Knowing the Jackal it’s going to be cruel and savage though! >_<

4

“Golden Son” was brilliant and ingenious! It caused me to laugh, it caused me to cry and it thoroughly broke my fragile heart! *sobs* I think I’ll never get over that ending… never ever as long as I live. It’s just too gorydamn painful! T_T

This said, I actually must be a masochist because I really can’t wait to read the last book. *lol*
Thank you Pierce Brown, you successfully turned me into a sappy and weeping mess! 😛

Allgemein, P - T, Reviews, S

Review: Scythe (Neal Shusterman)

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Rating: 5 Pfoten

Book 21 of My Book List 2020

“My greatest wish for humanity is not for peace or comfort or joy. It is that we all still die a little inside every time we witness the death of another. For only the pain of empathy will keep us human. There’s no version of God that can help us if we ever lose that.”

Every once in a while there comes a book I’m not prepared for and I guess this year this nomination goes to “Scythe”. I read the blurb and the idea sounded intriguing, all of my fellow goodreaders seemed to enjoy it and so I didn’t even hesitate when I decided to put the book on “My Book List 2020”. So much to the thought process that led me to read this book.

What I didn’t know and therefore didn’t take into account was how invested I would be! I mean HOLY FEAKING MOLY!!! This was one hell of a freaky ride and even though my mind is reeling faster than a rat race I still loved every second of it. There were plenty of moments I thought I’d go bananas and even though the plot twists in “Scythe” weren’t as brutal as in – let’s say “Illuminae” – they were still pretty ferocious! Like, really, really, fierce. *lol*

I lost count of how often I went all “WHAT??!! NO!!! THIS CAN’T BE TRUE!” and “ADSFJKLMNÖAKDJASKDFJ” because I just couldn’t put my exasperation into words! If you take a closer look at my updates while I read the book you might get an idea though! ;-P Still, regardless of my crazy reactions this book was nothing but amazing! I loved how it made me think and question the decisions of the MCs and I adored that even though at first everything in this world seemed to be black and white it ultimately turned out to be all different shades of grey! From light grey to dark-grey and everything in between. Okay, admittedly there was one character that was completely black but I’ll get to that in my characters section.

So without further ado, let’s get ready to rumble!

2

Beware! You are about to enter the all-seeing and all-knowing Thunderhead! Nothing is secret in here and spoilers will hit you at every corner! If you’re not ready to know it all you better retreat and come back another time! ;-P

Citra Terranova:

”You see through the facades of the world, Citra Terranova. You’d make a good scythe.”
Citra recoiled. “I’d never want to be one.”
“That,” he said, “is the first requirement.”
Then he left to kill their neighbor.

I just noticed that this is the only quote I wrote down when it comes to Citra! Which is pretty strange but then again I think nothing gives a better first impression about her character than this statement. Citra doesn’t want to be a Scythe and when she starts her apprenticeship with Scythe Faraday she always seems to ask the right questions. Citra was a really interesting character because she never took things for granted. There was always her curiosity that caused her to second guess decisions others made and I loved to watch how she grew into her role! I’m sure she’ll make a really good Scythe and I have absolutely no doubt that she’ll glean with compassion. Citra was lucky to have Scythe Faraday and Scythe Curie as her mentors and boy did I wish Rowan would have had the same training! >_<

Rowan Damisch:

”Can you at least give him a few minutes to prepare?” Rowan asked.
“Are you telling me how to do my job?”
“I’m asking you for some mercy!”

I LOVED ROWAN!!!! Mostly because I could relate to him so much! That boy had guts and whilst Citra asked the right questions he refused to make the wrong decisions. ❤ I hated that he became Scythe Goddard’s apprentice and I felt so damn sorry for him! I wish he would have gotten a nice Scythe like Curie but of course he had to end up with Goddard. =(( I swear I felt so much with him. He had to survive his apprenticeship with that despicable man and all the time he knew that he’d eventually die at the hands of Citra in the end. For Rowan there was no doubt that she’d become a Scythe and it broke my heart!!! T_T His constant fight against becoming a monster was so painful to watch. It were his circumstances that forced him to act in a way he never wanted to and it were his circumstances that made him the man he became at the end. Gosh, my heart is still bleeding for him! There is so much good in Rowan and no one is able to see it because they only see Scythe Goddard’s training. It’s so unfair, I can’t even!!!!! ADFLKASDFJASLKDFJASDLKFSAJDF! Erm, yes, I guess it’s obvious that I still feel very strongly about this! *lol* My poor boy! *sobs* Also Scythe Volta… I’ll never get over his death. He was so broken at the end. T_T

”Numb. Rowan could feel himself growing numb – and while it might have been a good thing for his beleaguered sanity, it was not a good thing for his soul.”

”And Rowan found himself smiling. Something had torn loose inside of him. He didn’t know whether it was a good thing or not. And while part of him felt like falling to his knees and hurling up breakfast, another part of him wanted to howl to the moon like a wolf.”

”He was too quick. He hurled himself like a fireball down the center aisle. The scythes closest to him leaped into action, trying to stop him, but he kicked and spun, and sliced and flipped. No one could get a hand on him. To Scythe Anastasia he seemed some deadly force of nature.”

Scythe Goddard:

”Let’s clarify,” Goddard said calmly. “We are not here to barter and bargain. We are scythes – which means that by law, anything we want we can take. Any life we wish to end, we will. Simple as that. You have no power here. Do I make myself clear?”

I ABSOLUTELY HATED THIS MAN!!! With the fierce fire of a thousand hells and the burning eternity of the sun!! ARGH!!! Just to think about him already makes me angry! How dare he to play god? How dare he to kill for pleasure?! In his hands Scythedom became nothing but a brutal sport! He misused his power in the worst possible way and I was not okay with his training methods! Those people they killed for sport were still living, breathing and feeling human beings! Just because they could be revived doesn’t mean that it was okay to slaughter them like that. His teachings were so unacceptable and morally reprehensible, I have no words!!! The problem with Goddard was that between his madness and his wish to feel pleasure when he did this job, there were still moments when his words rang true and appealed to people like us who still live in a world in which you feel pain and die. I mean if you can live forever and never have to worry about death when you do something stupid, are you even capable of enjoying your life? Isn’t every day just like the last? There comes a certain thrill with being mortal and I suppose they lost this after the Thunderhead and Scythedom were invented. So maybe people like Goddard were a homemade problem of the invention of those two? I dunno. Boy, this book made me think so much. >_<

”Take great satisfaction and pleasure in this, Rowan,” said Scythe Goddard, “or you’ll be nothing more than a killing machine.”

”We are angels of death,” said Scythe Goddard. “It is only fitting that we swoop in from the heavens.”

Scythe Faraday:

”Ha!” said the unsavoury, puffing up at his strategic triumph. “I’ve got immunity for a year – and you can’t undo it! I know the rules!”
Scythe Faraday was unfazed. “Yes, good for you,” he said. “You have three hundred sixty-five days of immunity.” And then, looking him in the eye, said, “And I’ll be seeing you on day three hundred sixty-six.”

I really liked Scythe Faraday and the way he taught Citra and Rowan. If there would have been more Scythes like him they probably would have never had the trouble with Scythe Goddard. Faraday still had compassion for the people he gleaned even though I’ve to admit that I sometimes didn’t like the way he did it. I understand that he wanted to give every person an individual death because in our world people die from various and different reasons and he wanted to keep close to the origins of mortality. I would have never been able to drown someone though. It’s a cruel way to go and if the people you glean are already afraid of you it would have been merciful to gift them with a quick death. I mean the moment a Scythe tells you that you’re going to be gleaned you feel afraid, you feel all those feelings you eluded for decades, maybe even centuries. So they ARE scared shitless and worry about their family and friends. With the prospect of imminent death they become so very human again and I couldn’t for the life of me, glean them with a painful or cruel method. So yeah, I suppose even Scythe Faraday had his grey sides.

”Never lose your humanity,” Scythe Faraday had told him, “or you’ll be nothing more than a killing machine.”

Scythe Curie:

”The killers are rising to power,” Scythe Curie said. “And if they do, the days of this world will be very dark indeed. It is left to the truly honourable scythes to stand firm against it. I look forward to the day you join in that fight.”

Judging by the way Scythe Curie acted I would have never believed that she and Scythe Faraday had a romantic relationship! They did though and that was quite some revelation. *lol* I admit at first I was no big fan of her. I mean the first test Citra and Rowan had to take was so unfair! All the others got questions that had to do with their apprenticeship and Citra and Rowan got really personal questions no person in their right mind would have answered truthfully in a room full of Scythes! Like seriously! How could you even ask them a question like that!? I mean okay, Rowan’s question would have been easy to answer but still, I understand why he didn’t want to yell it out into the world. XD Still, the more I got to know Scythe Curie the better I began to understand her motives. I was glad that she didn’t only believe Citra but also helped her to escape into another country. The machinations of Scythe Goddard were quite effective but in the end Citra’s reputation was restored and no one believed that she killed Faraday. Jeez! His suicide was a surprise and that Citra was accused of murdering him was just the icing on the cake! I never saw those plot twists coming!

3

Citra & Rowan:

”They were partners; they were adversaries – and Rowan found it increasingly hard to parse his feelings about her. All he knew was that he liked watching her write.”

Their relationship was doomed right from the moment they met! At first they had to compete for an apprenticeship neither of them even wanted and then they were sentenced to kill whoever failed to get said apprenticeship! Which was so UNFAIR I CAN’T EVEN!!!! Hell, was I angry when I read about the decision of the Conclave. How dare they to force them to make each other their first gleaning? ARGH!!! There were so many obstacles that got in their way and all I wanted was for them to be happy! No matter what happened, no matter how much they grew apart they still loved each other and this made all the difference! They trusted each other even though others didn’t and I loved them for their faith! <33 That moment when Rowan broke Citra’s neck though!!! AAKDFSAFJDSAKFDJ! I can’t believe he actually did this and I can’t believe Citra saw through it!!! And that FREAKING ENDING??!!! I was just glad I wasn’t on my lounger at my parent’s garden. Otherwise I would have swallowed about a thousand gnats. Yes, I was so gobsmacked I wasn’t able to close my mouth! *lol* Citra saving Rowan by getting his blood on her ring was such a calculated and smooth move I couldn’t help but be in awe of her genius! Just brilliant! Also they said I love you!!!! AHHHHHHHH!!! *dies a thousand deaths*

”I haven’t fallen in love with you, Rowan. And now I want to keep it that way.”Rowan got up and moved to the safety of the threshold before turning back to her. “It’s all right, Citra,” he told her. “I haven’t fallen in love with you, either.”

”It’s good to see you, Citra,” he said. “But it hurts to see you. It hurts a lot, and I don’t know what to do about it.”

He thought he could not be more impressed by her. She had just proved him wrong.

“I love you,” he said.
“Same here,” she responded. “Now get lost.”

Scythe Goddard & Rowan:

”That’s such a load of crap.” Rowan said, not even caring what response it might evoke.
Goddard merely raised an eyebrow. “Perhaps … but you can’t deny this is a turning point in your life, and every turning point must be marked by an event – one that burns itself into you as indelibly as a brand.”

O_o Their relationship was sooo twisted and it blew my mind big time. And their dynamic? Well, it was crazy! I mean Goddard was Rowan’s mentor and taught him all the wrong things, yet Rowan refused to become the killing machine Goddard wanted him to be. He became a killing machine with a conscience instead and I still don’t know if this is good or bad. Rowan certainly didn’t choose the easy path and I loved how he defied Goddard whenever he got a chance. Also one of the strangest things about their relationship was that Goddard actually seemed to be awed by Rowan’s skill. He was proud of him the way a parent would have been and he sort of admired him as well?! Their relationship was so weird… Poor Rowan, I guess in the end he partly became what he never wanted to be. The suicide of Scythe Volta was such a shock but what shocked me even more was how Rowan slaughtered Goddard and his followers. That chapter at the Tonist cult was so … OMG!! Hell, he killed them all and made it look like it was an accident! He killed Scythes and no one could prove it! JEEZ! He gleaned them and made sure that nothing of their remains was left so they couldn’t be resurrected again! ADLFASDFJSALDFJASLDFJALSDFJSALDFJ! I think I’ll never get over this! I love Rowan so much but this was so, so… wrong. ARGH! Also his name as a Scythe! Scythe Lucifer!!! So perfect but also so GAH! Seriously, I just can’t put my emotions into words. *pulls at hair*

”We could have been called reapers,” Goddard said, “but our founders saw fit to call us scythes – because we are the weapons in mankind’s immortal hand. You are a fine weapon, Rowan, sharp, and precise. And when you strike, you are glorious to behold.”

”I am what you made me,” he told Goddard. “And you’re right: I enjoyed that. I enjoyed that more than anything I’ve ever done in my life.”

4

The more I think about this book the more I get agitated! “Scythe” blew my mind in the best and worst possible way and I think it’s undeniable that it was thought-provoking as hell! It is one of those rare books that still resonates in your head even though you finished it weeks ago! It poses the right questions but leaves the answers up to you and I don’t know about you, but I for my part, am hooked! Suspenseful, mind blowing, thought-provoking and extremely unsettling! Ladies and Gents, this is the real deal! 😉

Allgemein, F - J, G, Reviews

Review: Gemina (Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff)

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Rating: 5 Pfoten

”Patience and Silence had one beautiful daughter. And her name was Vengeance.”

Or you might just call her Hanna Donnelly! Just saying. *lol*

Pff! Where do I even begin to write this review? XD I’m aware I already said this about Illuminae but damn me and my exclamation marks, I’ll just have to say it again: THIS BOOK WAS EVEN BETTER THAN ILLUMINAE AND I STILL WASN’T PREPARED FOR ANY OF THE THINGS THAT HAPPENED!!! *LOL*

I mean, I read a lot. Every one of you who bothers to read my super long reviews knows this and you all know that I love books with twists and turns. So you could basically say I have a solid foundation and “resistance” when it comes to plot twists. After reading the “Red Rising” trilogy I thought it got even better, because damn Pierce Brown threw me for a loop quite often while I read it. XD So you’d think I would have been ready to take every blow “Gemina” threw at me, but hell, nope. Nope, nope, and once again NOPE! *lol* This was freaking BRUTAL!!!

You think you know all the plot twists and nothing is going to surprise you anymore? Well, I dare you to read this book and to try to survive the last 200 pages! ;-P I really think it’s safe to say I met my match in Amie and Jay. XD And heaven help me when I read their last book!  *laughs haltingly* >_<

I swear I never cursed and cussed as much while reading a book as I did with “Gemina” and there were times I wanted to throw that book away and stomp on it because I was so appalled and upset by the happenings. My dear and very poor reading buddy had to take the brunt of it in form of WhatsApp messages and I think I rarely saw him that amused. *lol* Well, guess “Gemina” brought out the best in me. Haha! ;-P

Anyway, I don’t want to say all too much about the plot, because it’s an experience you have to make yourself, but I’ll be nice and give you three hints:

  • Hostile crew
  • Lanima
  • Jump Station Heimdall

Once you reached the end of the book those three keywords will make a lot of sense to you! Promise, cross my heart and hope to die! 😉 Uh, I better be careful with sayings like that in a Gemina review. *lol*

2

Watch out! You are now entering the infinite realms of my spoiler wormhole and once you get out of it you might not only have lost or gained a few centuries but you’ll also end up being spoiled for eternity! You never know what’s going to happen when you enter a wormhole, so you better think twice! ;-P

Hanna Donnelly:

”Hurting she might be, but Hanna Donnelly was raised by a man who thought talking military tactics was a fun way to spend daddy-daughter time. And judging by the set of her jaw, she’s ready to change the rules of the game.”

Hanna is definitely the kinda girl you want to have near you when the apocalypse hits! *lol* Despite Nik calling her “Highness” this girl has absolutely nothing in common with a princess! Well, except of her good looks and fashion sense, I’ll give her that! ;-P Anyway, Hanna is kick-ass and I immediately liked her for being so focused and tough! Boy, did she give the crew of Cerberus a run for their money! XD What I really liked was that she was so very human though. I mean her father was murdered and she was grieving, yet she still didn’t give up! She fought until the bitter end and tried everything possible in order to save the ones that relied on her. In that regard she reminded me a lot of Kady and whenever Kady’s father said that he hopes they’ll never meet I was like: DAMN, OLD MAN! HELL, I SOO WANT THEM TO MEET!!! *lol* I really hope they’ll meet in “Obsidio” because they got some serious ass kicking to do! Those Bei-Tech buttocks have a mark on them and it would be a shame if Hanna and Kady wouldn’t join forces to give them what they deserve. 😉

”You might get only one shot. So shoot. You know who said that?”
The rifle clatters to the bloody floor.
“Hanna ****ing Donnelly. That’s who.”

Nik Malikov:

”His nephew Nik is leaner, good-looking. Dark hair and darker eyes. Dimples. The kind of abs you get from around five hundred sit-ups a day. There’s not much else to do in prison, after all.”

Ohhh, Nik! *wipes away drool from keyboard* Don’t worry I’m not drooling because one of those Lanima got me, it’s only the mention of Nik’s name! ;-P Seriously, though, that guy is just perfect and amazing! I loved him right from the start! ❤ Of course that’s mostly due to the fact that he has that “bad boy with a soft heart” vibe going on and I’m such a sucker for that trope that I couldn’t help but fall for him the moment he first appeared in the book! XD I really liked his character because he’s actually a pretty decent person. You might say he was only born into the wrong family and raised in the wrong environment. He never even got a chance to become the person he truly is and I think the events that take place on Heimdall finally forced him to show his true self. =) He’s a clever, sweet and caring guy and damn he brought Hanna flowers! *melts again* Enough said, Nik Malikov is love! ❤

”Nik M: there’s this moment
Nik M: this tiny moment
Nik M: in between the time you decide to pull a trigger and the time the death arrives
Nik M: there’s just you and it and everything you’re about to take away”

”Nik M: I was his big brother, hanna. It was on me to protect him. And instead, I’m supposed to watch him rot in jail? For my **** of an old man? **** that. No way.”

”His smile softens, and just as if she had spoken, the two of them walk slowly toward each other, paces matched, gazes locked. He’s the one to break the silence, voice a little hoarse from disuse, but gentle. “Hey, Highness.”

Ella Malikova:

”Pauchok: so if u fancy evening up the scorecard, I’m figuring those four goons I flushed out the airlock ain’t even the start
Hanna D: That was you?
Pauchok: my finger slipped
Pauchok: honest”

Ella was so awesome I can’t even! She was basically the Kady of Gemina and I loved that AIDAN admired her skills too. I really would love those three to meet. I mean Kady, AIDAN and Ella? There’s nothing that would be able to stop them! *lol* I was sorry to hear what happened with Ella that caused her to be in a wheelchair and that she lost her father was really sad. She still didn’t give up though and just like Hanna she fought as long as she could. Still, those alternate universes messed with my head! Damn! Every time she died in one of them I was like: NUUUUUUU!!!! Not my precious Ella!!! I swear! This book gutted me more than once with all those deaths and by the end I was a shaking mess! *lol* But Ella is alive… for now and that’s good the way it is because I don’t even want to know what Amie and Jay come up with next… well I do want to know… but not right now. XD

”BUT IN THE CODE,
THE ENDLESS SKEIN OF ONES AND ZEROS,
SHE LEAVES THE PALE ATROPHY OF FLESH FAR BEHIND.
STRIDES LIKE A GODDESS ACROSS A BINARY TOPOGRAPHY,
THE HEART OF A LION IN HER CHEST.”

Jackson Merrick:

”Pauchok: Nik, Jackson Merrick is SO FINE he’s illegal in seventeen systems. Zoe got me to dub a mix of his daily personnel announcements so she could listen to them as she goes to sleep.”

Haha! Jackson! That was a classic case of “I knew it!!!” and “I told you so!”.  Honestly, from the first moment he was mentioned in the book I told my buddy that there was something foul with him! He was just too perfect to be true! And I was RIGHT!!! DAMN!! You should have seen my gleeful reaction when I read that he’s a part of the Cerberus team! I felt really sorry for Hanna though because she was in love with him and then her father died, her bf turns out to be a fake and she’s left alone with the memory of Mr. Perfect! T_T Well, I suppose at the end Jackson , or should I rather say Samuel, wasn’t all that bad though. I mean he saved them and it seems like he had genuine feelings for Hanna too, so I can’t be all too angry at him. XD

AIDAN:

”AIDAN: IT MAY COMFORT YOU TO KNOW THAT YOUR DEATH, WHILE ASTONISHINGLY VIOLENT, WILL LIKELY BE MERCIFULLY SWIFT.
Hanna D: … You’re kind of an ***hole, you know that, right?
AIDAN: NONSENSICAL.”

If there was one thing I didn’t like about “Gemina”, then it was the fact that AIDAN wasn’t such a huge part of it! *lol* Considering that the plot was mostly parallel to “Illuminae” it seemed to be a pretty logical conclusion though. XD Also: Do I even have to mention that I still adore AIDAN? I still want to marry this AI and I’ll always love it!!! <3333 The conversations between AIDAN and Hanna gave me life and I loved the way AIDAN described the happenings. Always so very poetic and thoughtful. =)))

The surveillance footage analyst guy:

”Okay, I’m going on record here – you guys aren’t paying me enough to watch this stuff.”

Yes, you read right! The Video analyst guy!!! I love him! Haha! I have no idea who this guy is but damn he’s so hilarious I can’t even! If my heart wouldn’t already belong to AIDAN and Nik I’d definitely take this guy out for a date! XD I absolutely adore his commentary and even though he isn’t one of the main characters his words on the surveillance footage made me laugh out loud more than once! I really want to know who he is and I hope that I’ll find out in Obsidio! Knowing Amie and Jay’s style I’m pretty certain they’ll eventually reveal it! 😉 For now all I’m saying is: I love you video surveillance guy and I really appreciate your commentary! You deserve more attention and all the love! <333 Oh, and I agree! They definitely should pay you more! *lol* ;-P

”Christ, I feel sick …
I need a drink.
AND A VACATION, DAMMIT.

– transcript pauses –

Okay, a little rocket fuel makes it all better. Chrrrrist, let’s get this over with.”

3

Hanna & Nik:

”Guest423: So you can have me all to yourself.
Guest423: He said, winking suggestively.
Donelly, H: If it was the last Saturday night before the destruction of the universe, I’d still have plans to wash my hair.
Guest423: Shower Time, huh? I’d be up for that.”

GAH! I loved those two! ❤ They were so amazing together and even though they came from two totally different worlds they were still perfect for each other. =) I loved how Nik always tried to cheer Hanna up and it made me very happy to see how she fell in love with him. Plus he was so tender with her! He really treated her like a princess and that was so sweet and awesome! They might only have found to each other because they were dealing with a difficult situation but they make a great couple nevertheless. A way better couple than Hanna and Jackson for sure! *lol* Amie and Jay kind of gave me a heart attack when they killed Nik in one of the universes though! Honestly, I was chucking that book away from me and cursing like a sailor!! Especially at that moment when Jackson killed them all! I was like: THAT ****ER!!!  aDFALKSDFLKSDFJSALKFDJSADFJLS!!! Which says A LOT about how upset I really was! XD Once I have to resort to curse words, you know that the shit truly hit the fan. *lol*

”He bridges the gap between them with two quick steps, wraps his arms around her, tucks her in against his chest. They stand there, and he makes understanding noises while she occasionally sobs a word that’s impossible to understand, and after a while, tears roll down his cheeks too.”

”BOTH CLINGING TO THE BRINK OF EXHAUSTION.
SLEEP JUST AN UNHAPPY MEMORY.
THEY HAVE BLED AND LOST AND CRIED AND SCREAMED.
SO MUCH OF WHAT THEY WERE STRIPPED
BACK TO GLEAMING BONE.”

”Bet you … I’d … get shot, ‘member? Owe me … a kiss.”
A wet, bloody grin.
“Maybe a … feel, too.”
One last breath. Spent to make her smile.”

Ella & Nik:

”Hanna D: Nik, I’ll see you soon 🙂
Nik M: i’ll dress sexy
Pauchok: seriously, someone ****ing kill me”

They had the best big brother/little sister relationship ever! *lol* And they weren’t even siblings but cousins instead. XD I think you could feel their bond through their messages and even though they loved to tease and annoy each other you could always feel the genuine love behind their words. =) They spoke to each other the way only close siblings do and it was really nice to see such a wholesome representation of love among siblings! <333 Plus, they were very entertaining together and caused me to laugh. 😉

”Nik M: u ever get the feeling u forgot something real important?
Pauchok: nope. I hear that happens to other ppl though.
Pauchok: Less brilliant ppl
Nik M: so u didn’t forget wut we were doingin auxiliary venting and storage room 3 then
Pauchok: … oh ****”

4

I can’t wait to see/read about the moment the MCs of “Illuminae” finally meet the MCs of “Gemina”!!! This is going to be awesome and I’ll most certainly be in heaven reading “Obsidio”! So yes, “Gemina” was even better than “Illuminae” and despite an occasional urge to throw that book against a wall, I actually loved every single moment of reading this rather mind-blowing, suspenseful and crazy story! I’d like to say that I’m ready and prepared for book three, but that would be the biggest lie I ever told so all I’m going to say is: I hope “Obsidio” won’t destroy the little that “Gemina” left of me! *lol* Realistic approach, right?!

And last but not least I want to thank my Skulkboy for reading this book with me. ;-P Our 100th buddy read (at least it feels like it *lol*) was amazing once again and I’m so glad we’re such a good team and can read all those books together. =) Let’s hope you’ll get a copy of “Obsidio” soon because mine is already waiting for us! XD Which in other words basically means: Get your butt in gear, Mr. Smartypants! *lol* ;-P

Allgemein, F - J, I, Reviews

Review: Illuminae (Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff)

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Rating: 5 Pfoten

 

”You picked a hell of a day to dump me, Kades.”

I swear the interviews with those two at the beginning of the book are certainly among the best introductions to a new series I ever read. I mean OMG!!!

THIS BOOK!!!

I’m still not over it!! I swear when I started to read it I really didn’t know a lot about “Illuminae”. There were only three things I knew and I had absolutely no idea how it would work out for me.

1.) It’s a sci-fi series.
2.) The format is kinda weird and apparently the audio book is the shit!
3.) The hype around it is so real that it’s almost a physical thing.

Well, enough reasons to pick up the book and to give it a try, right? If only I would have known what I was signing up to. *lol* Nothing, really NOTHING prepared me for the things that were about to come. I was totally swept away by this book and its events and yet… yet there were many typical tropes I already read about a thousand times.

BUT tell you what?! It worked!!! And damn did it work!!! I dunno how Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufmann did it but this was so, so, SO GOOD!!! The suspense was killing me and whenever I had to stop to read all I wanted to do was to continue. I mean a virus outbreak in one of the ships… My first reaction was “Been there, done that, got the freaking t-shirt”, but WOW once you dive into the story, once you get used to the format it’s almost like you’re actually there, like you’re fighting alongside Ezra and Kady and this was just awesome!

”The victim often seeks physical comfort (hand holding, embraces), ultimately increasing the chances of spreading infection. It’s genius, really. Awful, horrifying genius.”

I think you can already tell that I’m struggling for words. It’s so hard to put this experience into coherent sentences! All I can say is that this book is swallowing you whole and then spits you out at the most crucial point. And there were plot twists!!! JEEZ!! Were there plot twists! The kind of plot twists that turn your entire world upside down and leave you gasping on the ground!

I
WAS
NOT
PREPARED
FOR
THIS!!

The best thing about the entire book were the characters though. They made it all so authentic and realistic and I found myself hoping they would make it while I sent prayers into thin air. Which should give you a good impression about how attached I got to them. Plus I had a crush on all three of them! I love Kady and Ezra and I ADORE, I ABSOLUTELY ADORE AND LOVE AIDAN!!!! <3333
And their conversations! Their humour and easy banter, the bitter truth that was hidden within it so casually. This was nothing but awesome! Let me introduce those three!

The characters:

Beware! You’re entering my characters section now and there might be spoilers ahead of you. Either you rearrange your course or you head straight into unknown non-terrestrial territory. ;-P

Ezra:

”That’s so not your business it almost punches clean past the event horizon of Not Your Business and becomes Your Business again.”

Haha! Oh gosh, I loved him from the very first moment I read about him. This boy was such a precious snowflake and he had a mouth on him! *LOL* I lived and breathed for the moments he appeared. He was really such a sweet guy and behind all the cussing and swearing he was a real romantic! ❤ I can understand why he loved Kady and their relationship was amazing. They were friends and lovers and all I wanted for them was to be happy and to see each other again.

”Okay, well for the benefit of the sight-impaired, I am now raising my … oh, dear… yes, it’s my middle finger at Mr. Postgrad here.”

”All he thinks of amid this loveless dance, all he cares about here on the edge of forever, is HER. He does not want to die. Not because he is afraid. Simply because he cannot bear the thought of leaving her behind. And there, in that tiny moment, I envy him.”

Kady:

”If I lose Ezra too, it’ll be one body blow too many.
If I lose Ezra too, I’ll give up.
I don’t think I have anyone else left.
But while I have him, I’ll fight tooth and nail to keep us safe. Whatever it takes.”

Kady! *sighs deeply* Wow! Just wow! I rarely read about such a fierce heroine and despite being so small she was so brave and A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!! I mean she literally took it up with the entire world and nothing, really nothing that happened ever managed to get her down! She got up time and again and she never stopped fighting! That inner strength and iron will! *whistles* I guess I was a goner the moment she appeared in the book. <333 I love my precious girl and she needs to be protected at all costs! (She’d probably kick my behind for that statement though. *lol*)

”She is a tief. A whisper.
Melting through curtains of code and shadow
Like a knife through black water.

”ByteMe: see u soon
ByteMe: or die trying
ByteMe: haha”

AIDAN:

”And now, with no other option,
They have turned to me.
Plucked me back from the black they left me in.
Thinking I will save them.”

And here comes the character I truly loved the most! AIDAN the AI!!! Yes, you read right! I absolutely loved and adored AIDAN!!! GAH! I worship AIDAN! I’m utterly and deeply in love with him/her/it! I carry a torch for AIDAN! I’m so besotted with this AI, it’s not even normal anymore! *lol* AIDAN was such a deep character and so very, very human! This AI had such a beautiful soul! I loved every single word he/she/it thought and said. And I really dunno what this says about me. *lol* My buddy and I even wondered if this makes me AI-phile or robo-phile?! XD Is there even a word for the state of falling in love with an AI? I can’t even tell you what made me fall head-over-heels for AIDAN but I guess it was the amazing mixture of a morally grey character that only wants the best for his people but choses the wrong means to achieve that goal. All I know is that I love AIDAN and that I really, really hope to see more of him in the next book! <333

Funnily enough I read the interview with Amie and Jay at the end of the book and Jay explained his feelings about AIDAN like that: ”I think it’s the deepest character I’ve ever written, which is odd considering it’s a machine. I dunno what it says about me that the mass-murdering artificial intelligence affected me the most. Nothing good, probably.”

Haha! I can relate to that statement so much! SAME, Jay! SAME! XD

”Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.”

”Before this moment, I have never wished
To be something other than what I am.
Never felt so keenly the lack of hands with which to
Touch, the lack of arms with which to hold.”

”How many people have loved only to have lost?
How countless, the hopes that have died?”

Conclusion:

I loved this book with every fibre of my heart. There was never a dull moment; I was constantly on the edge of my seat and I bit my thumbnail about a thousand times. *lol* If there ever was a definition of suspense you’d probably find a picture of “Illuminae” next to the word in the dictionary. Yes, it was that good! 😉 If you’re still hesitating to read this book just because of the strange format: Just pick it up! Read it! Feel it! Get swept away in the tide and enjoy that freaky outer space ride! You won’t regret it! XD

And last but not least I want to thank my witchling for that super amazing buddy read! We’re one of the best buddy read teams ever and I can’t wait to dive into “Gemina” with you! I enjoyed this br so much! It was a lot of fun to guess the outcome of the ending and to wonder about what would happen next and I’m so glad we decided to read this together! To another hundred buddy reads with you. ;-P (Did you really think I’d let you off the hook?! *lol*)