Book Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses

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Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses #1
Published: 2015 by Bloomsbury Children’s
Pages: 416
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
IBSN: 9781619634442
My Rating: 4/5 stars

 

 

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.
When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.
As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it… or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.
Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down! (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

So it took me about a week to read A Court of Thorns and Roses because I had a really busy week. I would have loved to give the book more time and effort because I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had. However, I still did enjoy the book and am really looking forward to A Court of Mist and Fury. I started this book at the end of April hoping to have my pre-order of A Court of Mist and Fury in the mail by the time I was done. Sadly, my order ended up being delayed by 3 weeks so I didn’t get my order for A Court of Mist and Fury in for a while. But that doesn’t really have much to do with A Court of Thorns and Roses.

A Court of Thorns and Roses is a fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It follows Feyre, a human girl, who killed a wolf and now must pay her debt to the fairies by living with them in their court for the rest of her life. Feyre soon discovers that the fairies are very different from what she has heard in tales told by her mother. She also discovers that there is something brewing within the fairy politics.

So like I said I think I would have enjoyed this book a lot more if I had had more time to read it. I really enjoyed the characters especially Tamlin and Lucien. Tamlin for me didn’t necessarily remind me of the Beast but he was sweet and caring towards Feyre which I really liked. I also enjoyed Lucien because of his protectiveness over Tamlin and the Court. I enjoyed his back story which gave him a lot more dimension in my opinion. Feyre for me was an okay character, I was annoyed with her quite often but she was also a strong female character as well. I started liking Feyre a lot more towards the end of the book. For me that was when she really started acting like a strong character and showed us what a badass she could be.

I really liked the mystery in the book surrounding the blight. For me, this made the book so much better. Instead of having us already know what’s going on in Prythian, we learn about the world and problems along with Feyre. This also added a layer of excitement to the story. Sometimes it did feel like a bit of an infodump, so I wish Maas would have done that a bit differently. Hopefully this will be different in the next novel.

I’m pretty sure everyone knows about this part of the story, but if you don’t skip over this paragraph because it could be a spoiler. I did think this was important to add to my review because it really is what knocked a star off the rating for me. I hate love triangles. And I really didn’t like the one that was introduced at the end of this story. I really hope it doesn’t take a big part of the second book because for me that will probably ruin the series. I guess we’ll see what A Court of Mist and Fury brings.

So generally, I really enjoyed the fantasy aspects of this novel and I hope that that takes up most of the second novel. Along with hopefully some political drama, but we’ll see. I would definitely recommend this book if you are a fantasy lover. It is a great world you’re thrown into and it really did keep me hooked from beginning until the end.

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Book Review: the Crown by Kiera Cass


This review does contain spoilers for the first 3 books of the Selection series. 

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Title: 
the Crown
Author: Kiera Cass
Series: the Selection #5
Published: May 3rd, 2016 by
Pages: 279
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia
IBSN: 9780062392176
My Rating: 3.5/5

When Eadlyn became the first princess of Illéa to hold her own Selection, she didn’t think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. She spent the first few weeks of the competition counting down the days until she could send them all home. But as events at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the spotlight, she realizes that she might not be content remaining alone.

Eadlyn still isn’t sure she’ll find the fairytale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and soon Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more impossible—and more important—than she ever imagined. (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

I know a lot of people had issues with the Heir, I however quite enjoyed it. I didn’t enjoy it as much as the Selection series but it was a nice quick read between other books. For me the Crown was the same thing. Although this book had much more substance and character development than the Heir, it still wasn’t more than a quick romance read to me. That being said, there is nothing wrong with that and I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book.

As I said the Crown has much more substance than the Heir. Cass attempts to show us more of the political side of becoming queen, I enjoyed having this throw into the book because it gives the story more depth. Though it didn’t somehow become a completely politic driven novel.

The romance in this book was not as big as in the Selection books, Eadlyn approaches her choice much more rationally. Although I would have liked to see more heart in the book I understand that for an upcoming queen the choice has to also be looked at rationally. I enjoyed the character development Eadlyn went through. If felt she really grew up in this novel and started to act has her own person instead of just being the upcoming queen.

The reason I only gave this novel 3.5 out of 5 stars is because I felt the ending was very rushed. I would have loved it if Cass had taken more time with the ending. It would have made it more logical and also more realistic. I believe the way she ended it was correct, but I would have loved it if she took her time with it and explained it in more detail.

I also would have loved to see more from the side characters. Besides the boys from the Selection I didn’t feel like Cass put much effort in her side characters. She pretty much neglected Ahern and Kaden and Osten. I also don’t feel she gave us a lot of interaction between America and Maxon. It was more than in the Heir, but it still didn’t feel like America and Maxon were anything other than Eadlyn’s parents. They were just there to fill a hole, but they weren’t really their own characters anymore.

I am glad that I wrapped with series up and that it had an alright finish for me. I don’t hope that they add more books to this series because I really think this should be the end. Although I enjoyed reading all these books I think if they add more they’d be stretching it really thin and it wouldn’t be enjoyable anymore.

Have you read the Selection series? Let me know what you thought of it! I’d love to hear from you all and know what your opinions were on the books.

Waiting on Wednesday: The Leaving

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine.

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Title: 
The Leaving
Author: Tara Altebrando
Published: June 7th 2016, by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Pages: 432
Genre: Young Adult Mystery Thriller
IBSN: 9781619638037

Six were taken. Eleven years later, five come back–with no idea of where they’ve been.
Eleven years ago, six kindergarteners went missing without a trace. After all that time, the people left behind moved on, or tried to.
Until today. Today five of those kids return. They’re sixteen, and they are . . . fine. Scarlett comes home and finds a mom she barely recognizes, and doesn’t really recognize the person she’s supposed to be, either. But she thinks she remembers Lucas. Lucas remembers Scarlett, too, except they’re entirely unable to recall where they’ve been or what happened to them. Neither of them remember the sixth victim, Max. He doesn’t come back. Everyone wants answers. Most of all Max’s sister Avery, who needs to find her brother–dead or alive–and isn’t buying this whole memory-loss story. (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

This book has a really interesting premise to me. Last week I commented that I love to read mystery thrillers and that I don’t read them often enough. So this week I have another mystery thriller book on my WoW. This book I already have pre-ordered. It kind of reminds me of some tv shows out there, not that I watch them but they seem similar. I have been reading reviews on this story a lot lately, they are very mixed about the book. But that really just makes me more intrigued. I hope to find out for myself if I enjoy this book or not.

About the author:

I went to Harvard and studied American Government, which it turned out was not really my bag. Oh well.

I collect spoons. Not just any ole kitchen spoon, but collector’s spoons from cities and sites around the country and the world. I have, oh, maybe one hundred and fifty of them. Booyah!

I have lived in four out of the five boroughs of New York City (Staten Island, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens but not THE Bronx!) and also in Dublin, Ireland and, well, Boston (for college).

I was a music journalist when living in Dublin and interviewed groups like Rage Against the Machine, Duran Duran, The Frames (Glen Hansard!) and more.

I once (for a whole year!) saw fit to do stand-up comedy. Word on the street is I had good jokes but terrible stage presence.

I have a substantial collection of weird records from the 1950s and 1960s because they were left in the garage (hundreds of them!) of the house I now own.

I own a small trampoline that I use for exercise. We have high ceilings.

I have never had a full-time job! Ever! It’s rather remarkable, really, as is the fact that I once had a job where I got paid to watch television. (www.taraaltebrando.com)

Other books by this author:

Book Review: the Heir by Kiera Cass

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Title: 
the Heir
Author: Kiera Cass
Published: 2015 by Harper Teen
Pages: 342
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia Romance
IBSN:
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Princess Eadlyn has grown up hearing endless stories about how her mother and father met. Twenty years ago, America Singer entered the Selection and won the heart of Prince Maxon—and they lived happily ever after. Eadlyn has always found their fairy-tale story romantic, but she has no interest in trying to repeat it. If it were up to her, she’d put off marriage for as long as possible.

But a princess’s life is never entirely her own, and Eadlyn can’t escape her very own Selection—no matter how fervently she protests.
Eadlyn doesn’t expect her story to end in romance. But as the competition begins, one entry may just capture Eadlyn’s heart, showing her all the possibilities that lie in front of her . . . and proving that finding her own happily ever after isn’t as impossible as she’s always thought. (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

I started reading this book in the middle of April to prepare myself for the Crown coming out. But knowing myself once, I got the Crown I started putting off reading it because I didn’t want the series to end. I have really enjoyed the Selection series as a guilty pleasure and knowing that I’ll have to find a new guilty pleasure is pretty haunting.

Anyways, the Crown follows Eadlyn, America and Maxon’s oldest child, she was born 7 minutes before her twin brother which makes her the heir of Illéa. She isn’t very happy with this but also takes the role upon her and does her best to become a great future queen. However, recently there have been uprisings in some states and therefore, Eadlyn is thrown into her own form of the Selection.

I quite enjoyed this book, it wasn’t my favorite of the Selection series but it was a nice read. Of course like most people I disliked Eadlyn in the beginning of the book, but for some reason, she ended up growing on me. She is whiny and entitled but I think that gives her character. We always read about pristine and perfect girls and I’m glad Eadlyn also has realistic flaws, because let’s be honest all girls can be whiny sometimes. Eadlyn reminded me a lot of America and she had a lot of the same stubbornness that America had.

I really liked a lot of the boys in the book too. For me, I haven’t been able to choose a ship yet which pretty much never happens. I am really stuck between two boys and I really want both of them to become the one. This is probably another reason I keep putting off reading the Crown, because I want both of the boys to win. If I were in her position, I just don’t know how I would ever choose.

Waiting on Wednesday: With Malice

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine.

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Title: 
With Malice
Author: Eileen Cook
Published: June 7th 2016, by HMH Books for Young Readers
Pages: 320
Genre: Young Adult Mystery Thriller
IBSN: 9780544805095

A read about a teenage girl who wakes up in a hospital bed and cannot remember the last six weeks of her life, including the accident that killed her best friend–only what if the accident wasn’t an accident?
Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron wakes up in a hospital room, leg in a cast, stitches in her face and a big blank canvas where the last 6 weeks should be. She comes to discover she was involved in a fatal accident while on a school trip in Italy three days previous but was jetted home by her affluent father in order to receive quality care. Care that includes a lawyer. And a press team. Because maybe the accident…wasn’t an accident. Wondering not just what happened but what she did, Jill tries to piece together the events of the past six weeks before she loses her thin hold on her once-perfect life. (Goodreads)


My thoughts:

This book seems really interesting. I always love a good mystery thriller and this one sounds right up my alley. It combines traveling abroad with a mysterious story to hopefully make an exciting, action-packed book. I have this book pre-ordered so once it is released I will have it in my hands and be able to read it as soon as possible. And can we just take a moment to appreciate that cover?!

About the Author:

Eileen Cook grew up in a small town in Michigan, but would go on to live in Boston and Belgium before settling in Vancouver, Canada with her husband and two very naughty dogs.

In second grade Eileen’s teacher wrote on a homework assignment “I am sure someday you will be an author” which is a tribute to the psychic abilities of elementary school teachers, as well as Eileen penchant for making things up. While she would go on to fill endless notebooks with really bad poetry, short shorties, and the occasional start to a novel, she would first go on to pursue a career as a counsellor working with individuals with catastrophic injuries and illness. In this position Eileen was a senior therapist and was declared an expert by the BC Supreme Court.

Eileen quickly discovered that the challenge of working with real people is that they have real problems and she returned to writing where she could make her characters do what she wanted. Her first novel, UNPREDICTABLE, was published in 2008. She would go on to write a number of young adult novels and her latest, WITH MALICE will be out in June 2016.

When not planning murder and mayhem on the computer, Eileen enjoys reading, knitting, yelling at her dogs to stop digging holes and watching hockey (which she is required to do as a new Canadian.) (www.eileencook.com)

Other books by this author:

TTT: Books I Picked Up On a Whim

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is ten books I picked up on a whim. So these are the books I wasn’t recommended but just picked up randomly.

There are a few books in here that I didn’t really enjoy but there are also books in here that I did enjoy and would recommend if you’re into that genre. I added links to all the goodreads pages, so if you’re interested you can check out the book.

Armada by Ernest Cline. I have of course heard a lot of things about Cline’s other book Ready Player One, however, I hadn’t really heard of this book before. When I saw it in the bookstore I decided to pick it up just because, I really ended up enjoying the story and the writing. I would definitely recommend this book if you enjoyed Ready Player One.

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han. I read this book a few years ago before I was really in the book community. I picked it up because I was going on vacation and needed a light book to take with me. I really enjoyed this book and ended up buying the rest of the series when I got home. If you’re interested in a fun summer contemporary that does have some substance then I would recommend this series.

Kissing Annabel by Steven Herrick. I bought this book simply because it had my name on it. It is a verse novel about a relationship between Jack and a girl named Annabel. It was a quick read and they were pretty cute poems but nothing special.

Wake by Amanda Hocking. This book I haven’t read yet. I did, however, pick it up on a whim. I needed a few more dollars to get free shipping so I ordered this book because it was really cheap. I will probably be getting to it soon, though.

This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp. This books I have been seeing a lot around booktube the past few weeks. I however, bought it a while back simply because it was written by a Dutch author. I didn’t really enjoy the book because of the way it handled a very heavy subject, a school shooting, poorly. I have a full review on why I didn’t enjoy this book here.

UnEnchanted by Chanda Hahn. I picked up this book because it was a free e-book. However, I didn’t really enjoy it. There were a lot of spelling and grammatical mistakes throughout the book. I also thought the story was boring and didn’t have much substance.The Raft by S.A. Bodeen. This was a book I saw lying around my house, at the time I was feeling sick so I wanted something light to read so I picked it up without really knowing anything about it. I can’t say I really enjoyed it because I thought the main character was very annoying, but it was an okay read for how I was feeling.

The Raft by S.A. Bodeen. This was a book I saw lying around my house, at the time I was feeling sick so I wanted something light to read so I picked it up without really knowing anything about it. I can’t say I really enjoyed it because I thought the main character was very annoying, but it was an okay read for how I was feeling.

I could only find seven books that I picked up on a whim, all of my other books I bought for a reason. Let me know if you picked any of these up on a whim or what books you picked up on a whim!

Book Review: Too Late by Colleen Hoover

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Title: Too Late
Author: Colleen Hoover
Published: April 8th 2016, on Wattpad
Pages: 247
Genre: New Adult
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Sloan will go through hell and back for her little brother. And she does, every single night.

Forced to remain in a relationship with the dangerous and corrupt Asa Jackson, Sloan will do whatever it takes to make sure her brother has what he needs.

Nothing will get in her way.

Nothing except Carter.

Sloan is the only good thing to ever happen to Asa. He knows this and he never plans on letting her go; even if she doesn’t approve of his lifestyle. But despite Sloan’s disapproval, Asa knows what it takes to get what he wants. He knows what he needs to do to remain on top.

Nothing will get in his way.

Nothing except Carter. (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

For me, this was my first Colleen Hoover book so I was pretty excited going into it because everyone raves about Colleen Hoover’s books. Sadly, I was kind of let down by the book. First off I would like to give a trigger warning for domestic violence and sexual abuse because those are recurring themes in this book. So if you do not want to read about those things, don’t read this book. This book is available as a free book on Wattpad. So for anyone who’s wallet is as empty as mine and is still looking for a book to read, check this out!

This book is about Sloan who is in college and dating Asa Jackson. Sloan’s brother has a lot of issues in his life and is stuck in a mental care facility. Sloan is dating Asa to be able to help her brother out in his tough situation. Asa claims he loves Sloan but does not always show it correctly. One day Sloan meets Carter in her Spanish class and she starts to fall for him and his sweet demeanor.

First off a few things I did like about this book, I thought Colleen Hoover’s writing style was very good. I liked her description of things and I liked that she didn’t sugar coat situations, even the events of sexual abuse. This may sound weird to say, but sometimes I feel it is very unrealistic how authors portray sexual violence and abuse in novels. They may shy away from the really horrible parts of it. For this reason, the way Colleen Hoover didn’t sugar coat the events made it feel more realistic.

I also enjoyed Sloan’s relationship with Carter. Both of their characters were very likeable and you grew attached to them very quickly. I also enjoyed the way they interacted with each other. They were cute and made jokes which felt very true to what a college relationship should be like.

I disliked the way Hoover didn’t really go into Sloan’s brother. I would have loved to have seen more of Sloan’s relationship with him and I really think he could have been a much bigger side character.

I also felt that there was some instalove between Carter and Sloan, this really put me off at first and I even thought about putting the book down. Eventually, I got over the instalove and was able to continue on with the story but it did keep burning in the back of my mind.

Overall, I enjoyed this book enough to continue with Colleen Hover’s books. I will probably be picking up another one of her books in the summer for a nice contemporary read. This book didn’t get me off to the greatest start on her books but I did really enjoy the writing style and it was a quick and easy read so I will be picking up more of her books.

Waiting on Wednesday: the Last Star

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine.

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Title: 
the Last Star
Author: Rick Yancey
Published: May 24th 2016, by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Pages: 352
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
IBSN: 9780399162435

The Last Star is the heart-stopping finale to the bestselling 5th Wave series by award-winning author, Rick Yancey. Perfect for fans of The Hunger Games, Divergent and The Maze Runner.

‘Wildly entertaining . . . I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough’ The New York Times

We’re here, then we’re gone, and that was true before they came. That’s always been true. The Others didn’t invent death; they just perfected it. Gave death a face to put back in our face, because they knew that was the only way to crush us. It won’t end on any continent or ocean, no mountain or plain, jungle or desert. It will end where it began, where it had been from the beginning, on the battlefield of the last beating human heart.

Master storyteller Rick Yancey invokes triumph, loss, and unrelenting action as the fate of the planet is decided in the conclusion to this epic series.

I personally really enjoyed the 5th Wave, the first novel in this series and I have the Infinite Sea in my possession I just haven’t read it yet. I have heard some mixed things about the Infinite Sea, I really hope I enjoy it and then can finish this series off with the Last Star. I personally am a huge sci-fi nerd and I love a good alien book/series, so I really hope the Last Star will be an awesome finale to this series!

Also, it comes out the day after my birthday so that’s always fun! It’s like a birthday present from me for myself haha.

TTT: Ten Websites I Love

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is the ten websites I love that aren’t related to books. I guess some of these are kind of cheating because I mostly use them for bookrelated things like twitter and youtube. But they weren’t made to be used for books, so I thought I might as well include them.

  1. Facebook – obviously haha, I think this will be on most people’s list.
  2. Twitter – I mostly use twitter to read updates about upcoming books and have contact with other book bloggers.
  3. Youtube – I love to watch booktube videos on there. My favorite booktubers to watch at the moment are Hails Hearts NYC, abookutopia, Tilly andherbooks, A Clockwork Reader,  and chelseadolling reads
  4. Netflix – this is probably also on everyone’s list.
  5. Pintrest – I don’t use this a lot, but I love to cook and when I’m looking for a new fun recipe to try I’ll look something up on pintrest.
  6. Bol.com – this is kind of like the Dutch version of amazon.
  7. World of Wanderlust – I love this blog, I am a huge travel fanatic and I just love watching Brooke’s video’s on youtube and reading her blog posts on her blog.
  8. Wat een Studentje S’Avonds Eet – This is a Dutch food blog that I love to visit. Leonie always has cheep and tasty recipes on her blog that are perfect for students who are looking for some good meals on a budget.
  9. Sky radio – I listen to a lot of music when I’m doing stuff at home, reading or doing my homework. This is my favorite Dutch radio station.
  10.  Aspyn Ovard – I absolutely love her video’s on youtube and occasionaly I will read some posts on her blog as well.

Book Review: The Program by Suzanne Young

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Title: The Program
Author: Suzanne Young
Published: 2013 by Simon Pulse
Pages: 405
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia
IBSN: 9781442445802
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars


In Sloane’s world, true feelings are forbidden, teen suicide is an epidemic, and the only solution is The Program.
Sloane knows better than to cry in front of anyone. With suicide now an international epidemic, one outburst could land her in The Program, the only proven course of treatment. Sloane’s parents have already lost one child; Sloane knows they’ll do anything to keep her alive. She also knows that everyone who’s been through The Program returns as a blank slate. Because their depression is gone—but so are their memories.
Under constant surveillance at home and at school, Sloane puts on a brave face and keeps her feelings buried as deep as she can. The only person Sloane can be herself with is James. He’s promised to keep them both safe and out of treatment, and Sloane knows their love is strong enough to withstand anything. But despite the promises they made to each other, it’s getting harder to hide the truth. They are both growing weaker. Depression is setting in. And The Program is coming for them.

My thoughts:

I really enjoyed reading the Program by Suzanne Young. I thought it was original and at the same time dealt with some tough topics.

The Program is a dystopian book, but it’s very different from most dystopians in my idea. The plot is very original, I’ve never come across a book that has a similar plot. It was also very well executed in my idea. It was a fast-paced novel that kept me hooked from the first few pages.

The book is about a society where teenagers are committing suicide, according to the book every 1 in 3 teenagers dies from suicide. For this reason, the government started the Program which should apparently cure depressed teenagers and stop them from committing suicide. Sloane is our main character and the people around her are dropping like flies, so to speak. She does her best to keep herself and her boyfriend, James, out of the Program.

I really liked the characters in the book. I found Sloane to be very relatable, she had a lot of issues but I cannot imagine going through the things she had to go through and still putting on a brave face.  James I thought was sometimes hard to understand and he was a bit hot and cold. But I liked his character more and more throughout the book because I felt like I understood him more. Reign was my favorite character. Even though I am team James all the way, I loved Reign’s character. He was nice and warm and he cared for Sloane. But he also had a bit of a mysterious side.

I am very excited to start the second book, the Treatment soon. I want to see where the series goes, though I am a bit afraid it may take the conventional dystopian road. I hope there are some unexpected plot twists to shake it up a bit.

I gave the Program 4 out of 5 stars. I really enjoyed the book and will be continuing on with the series. However it wasn’t the most surprising books I’ve ever read.