f0zKg0J4zFLYz-Yq0aednQVqREE Once Upon a Prologue: January 2013
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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Review + 5 Favorite Quotes: The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd

The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd
Publication: January 29, 2013 (Balzer+Bray)
Source: E-Galley from the publisher
Rating: Squee-worthy
In the darkest places, even love is deadly.  Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father's gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father's handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father's madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island's inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father's dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it's too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father's genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Memorable Quotes

1.) The ship jerked suddenly, and I flew backward.  My head struck the wall.  Montgomery tumbled out of his chair and would have fallen on top of me if he hadn't braced himself against the wall with quick instincts.  I clung to his arms as if I were falling, but we weren't going anywhere.  My fingers tightened.  He was a finger's distance from me.  Closer.  Close enough to feel the brush of his loose hair on my face, to feel the heat from his sunburned skin.  If it hadn't been for the thin fabric of my chemise, we'd have been skin against skin.  

2.) It struck me he was almost a ghost, straddling the fine line between the living and the dead.  I wanted him to live, to see again whatever was so important in that photograph, as if it would make up for my morbid fascination.  

3.) Suddenly he brushed his rough thumb against my jaw, catching me by surprise.  Heat erupted across my face as I drew in a sharp breath.  Was he going to kiss me?  My eyelids sank closed.  Our bodies were practically touching.  It was wrong to be so close to a boy - every moment of Mother's upbringing had taught me that.  But I didn't care.  We were bound together, he and I.

4.) The day was beautiful.  A blue sky stretched as far as the ocean, which we glimpsed between breaks in the trees.  I'd traded a bitter English winter for the lush tropical sun and beautiful calls of faraway birds. 

5.) I had forgotten what I loved about the piano.  The precision of the notes and the mathematical intricacy of the notes and measures.  It was like a complicated equation that you work out with your heart instead of pencil and paper.  I concentrated on the keys, letting my mind clear.  I played and played until the final  bar, where I let the chord ring until the last trace of sound faded. 

My Review

The Madman's Daughter is an eery, Gothic story that will absolutely sweep readers off their feet.  As I began reading, I was immediately transported to London - a lonely placed for orphaned Juliet.  My heart went out to her, and I liked her at once.  She's one of my favorite kind of heroines - brash, intelligent, witty, and curious.  She makes impulsive decisions, and she does what she has to do.  Juliet Moreau was an awesome narrator for this spooky YA historical, and her point of view complimented Megan Shepherd's writing perfectly.  

As the reader, I saw everything so clearly through Juliet's eyes, and because Megan pulled me into the story so completely, I also felt what Juliet feltHer emotions were so clearly stitched into The Madman's Daughter: from wonder at her father's island, to trepidation throughout the perilous journey there, the blush of a renewed attraction to Montgomery, and ultimately, the terror as she became caught up in her father's machinations.   

Each time I thought I grasped the full scope of the mad doctor's plans, Megan Shepherd threw another curve ball into the story.   The plot of The Madman's Daughter is full of mystery and danger, literally around every corner of the teeming jungle.  There was so much life in the pages, but also many questions of morality, and what life means to different people and speciesI was fascinated to see how the doctor's actions effected everyone on the island in different ways, from Juliet and Montgomery, to Edward, Alice, and Balthasar.  

While definitely creepy at times, and positively hair-rising at others, The Madman's Daughter is definitely a fabulous story.  Megan Shepherd made me gasp in surprise at the revelations - some of which I suspected, while others took me totally by surprise.  While I thought the love triangle was somewhat superfluous, I still enjoyed reading about both the boys.  With an ending you won't see coming, The Madman's Daughter is a must-read! 

Other books by this author:

Untitled (The Madman's Daughter #2 - 2014 Balzer+Bray)
The Cage (The Cage #1 - 2014 Balzer+Bray)

You're sure to fall for:

The Diviners by Libba Bray

About Megan  

I’ve been many things, like a professional exchange student, park ranger in Montana, and LOST enthusiast, but what I am now is a writer.  When I'm not writing, I can usually be found horseback riding, day dreaming at coffee shops, or hiking in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina.
Visit Megan at: her website | her blog | her twitter

Shop for The Madman's Daughter at: Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository


If you'd like to visit the previous and next blogs on this tour, here is the full schedule!

1/21  A Dream Within A Dream             Playlist
1/22 Hobbitsies                                      Author Q&A
1/23 Birth of a New Witch                     Top 5 Favorite Quotes
1/24 365 Days of Reading                      Author Q&A
1/25  Sci Fi Chick                                  Favorite Scene

1/28 Word Spelunking                           Top 5 Favorite Quotes
1/29  Books with Bite                            Author Q&A
1/30 The Mod Podge Bookshelf            TBA
1/31 Once Upon a Prologue                   Top 5 Favorite Quotes
2/1    Book Twirps                                 Favorite Scene

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday - #46: The Elite by Kiera Cass

The hotly-anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestseller The Selection.

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

The Elite by Kiera Cass (The Selection #2) | Publication: April 22, 2013 (Harper Teen) | Add it to your TBR!

Why it's worth waiting on: I REALLY liked The Selection - I thought it was super cute and sweet, and a good "entry level" dystopian.  I'm excited to see where the story goes in The Elite!

What books are YOU “Waiting On” this Wednesday?  Be sure to link me to YOUR post so I can check it out!

This weekly feature is graciously hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. You know that feeling you get when you're browsing upcoming books on Goodreads or Amazon and one strikes your fancy?  Maybe you squee.  Maybe you giggle to yourself.  Maybe you bounce in your seat. We all get excited (I do a combination of all three of the previous choices...) about new books, be it a favorite author you're familiar with, or someone whose work you'll be reading for the first time.  Jill's meme gives us the chance to spotlight what we are anxiously awaiting this week.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday - #45: Top Ten Frustrating Characters

{ ++ } Hosted by the girls over at The Broke and the Bookish, this meme features a different theme every week, and hey, it's Tuesday - we've got the rest of the week ahead of us.  We all need a little fun, and who doesn't love the challenge of ranking their top 10 anything...especially when it comes to books?!  I know I do, hence why I thought it'd be fun to participate, and spice things up a little!

January 29: Top Ten Most Frustrating Characters Ever

I'm going to ATTEMPT to do this without ranting, but I make no promises.  Also I may only do 5, depending again on how rant-y I get.  LOL.  I usually like the characters I read about, so I'm having trouble coming up with 10!

1. BELLA FREAKING SWAN.  Oh man.  What an incredibly hot mess.  Her character has ruined the name forever, not to mention just the incredible amount of damage these books did for females in literature.  I could say so much here, because she offends me on several levels, but really I think I'll try to be succinct.

2. Gemma from the Watersong series.  She's such a flat, boring character, and a large part of why I recently broke up with the series.  

3. Evelyn in Me, Him, Them, and It.  I have never EVER EVER hated a character more.  I hated her more than Bella.  At least when I first read Twilight, I liked Bella.  Evelyn made me want to stab her on pretty much every page.

4. Eve from the Eve trilogy.  I enjoy the author's story-telling ability, but Eve is a terrible narrator for these books - naive, too trusting, and she makes the most horrible decisions consistently. 

5. Megan from Miracle by Elizabeth Scott.  Oh man, I wanted to STRANGLE her.  Never before have I read an entire book where ALL a character does is whine. 

To these characters, all I have to say is:

Monday, January 28, 2013

Review: Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook

Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook
Publication: January 29, 2013 (HarperTeen)
Source: E-galley from the publisher
Rating: Squee-worthy
Shop: Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

Bonnie and Clyde meets IF I STAY in this addictively heart-wrenching story of two desperate teenagers on the run from their pasts.

They’re young. They’re in love. They’re on the run.

Zoe wants to save Will as much as Will wants to save Zoe. When Will turns eighteen, they decide to run away together. But they never expected their escape to be so fraught with danger....

When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can’t run fast enough.

Nobody But Us, told in alternating perspectives from Will and Zoe, is an unflinching novel, in turns heartbreaking and hopeful, about survival, choices, and love...and how having love doesn’t always mean that you get a happy ending. Described as “beautiful, heartbreaking, and exhilarating” by Kody Keplinger, author of The DUFF, Nobody But Us will prove irresistible to fans of Nina Lacour, Jenny Han, and Sara Zarr.

Memorable Quote

It scares me.  These things that I thought were real a week ago - feelings that felt so big, so overwhelming - now seem like they were a fairy tale, a little girl's imaging of her Prince Charming.  But these moments, every second more I spend with Will, show me how flat, how untrue, the fairy tale is.  how much better - and worse - real life is. 

My Review

Nobody But Us was billed as a "modern day" Bonnie and Clyde, but as I began reading, I was more drawn to the intense emotions between Zoe and Will.  Kristin Halbrook painted a very realistic and heart-wrenching vision of a two young, broken teenagers both in need of escaping their tragic lives.  I enjoyed the dual perspective, and the writing style, as well as the heart of the story, but the ending left me more broken-hearted than I expected to be. 

Both Will and Zoe came across as totally believable, and their characterizations were spot-on.  Halbrook did a great job of getting two teenage "voices" right.  I could FEEL Zoe's desperation to escape her abusive, alcoholic dad, and Will's fervent need to help her, and prove that he was worth something.  Both characters were just so tragic in their own way - beaten down by their circumstances, and looking for self-love/worth in each other.  As an adult, it's easy to see how wrong that is, but when you're a teenager and in love, you don't always know this.  Zoe and Will each learned a lot while on the road - about life, and about themselves.  As their relationship fissured and cracked, I felt like my heart was breaking for them.  

Watching Nobody But Us play out was a tense experience, especially because the pacing was just about perfect.  I had an inkling of what might happen, especially the ending, but I was still caught off guard.  So much changed, from the beginning to the end - some for the better, some for the worse.   As the climax of Halbrook's story neared, the dual point of view only heightened the experience, and made me more nervous, which meant I felt like I was right there with Zoe and Will, two characters I'd grown to care about.  

Ultimately a good read, I didn't have the "all the feels" response to Nobody But Us I was hoping I would have.  However, it's still a solid read, and I for one am really looking forward to reading more of Kristin Halbrook's work!

About Kristin

When I was little, I wanted to be a writer, the President of the USA or the first female NFL quarterback. Despite being able to throw a wicked spiral, I didn't really grow to the size needed for the NFL. Then, as I got older and studied more, I came to realize there were better ways to effect positive change than becoming president. The first one, however, stuck. Even when I was pursuing other dreams, I always took time to write here and there. NOBODY BUT US will be published by HarperChildren's in 2013.

Visit Kristin at: her website | her twitter

Saturday, January 26, 2013

January Wrap Up Post

January was a fun month here at ONCE.  I got back on track after the holiday craziness and various food hangovers, and I started getting back to the basics of why I blog.  It's something you'll see me talking a LOT about this year, and I'm happy to see that so many other bloggers feel the same way. 

In case you missed something at the blog, here's a recap!


I'm moving to WordPress.  Unless something drastic changes, I will STILL BE at THIS web address, but things like GFC will be gone.  I will likely keep Linky followers, and there will be RSS/Email subscriber options of course.  You can read more about this move here


Delusion by Laura L Sullivan.  Rating: Beam-worthy.  Read it: here.
Lullaby by Amanda Hocking.  Rating: Beam-worthy.  Read it: here. (See why I broke up with this series.)
Touching the Surface by Kimberly Sabatini.  Rating: Squee-worthy.  Read it: here.
Catherine by April Lindner.  Rating: Beam-worthy.  Read it: here.
Normalish by Margaret Lesh.  Rating: Beam-worthy. Read it here.
Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum.  Rating: Beam-worthy.  Read it here
The Archived by Victoria Schwab.  Rating: Swoon-worthy.  Read it here.  (I LOVED THIS BOOK.)
Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi.  Rating: Swoon-worthy.  Read it: here


Waiting on Wednesday - A Darkness Strange and Lovely by Susan Dennard
Waiting on Wednesday - Shadow of the Mark by Leigh Fallon
Waiting on Wednesday - Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Waiting on Wednesday - Sweet Peril by Wendy Higgins
*This is the LAST month that WOW will be done weekly.  Starting in February, it will ONLY be once a month.*


None this month.  Look for NEW discussion posts starting very soon!


  •  NEW FEATURE!  Becoming a Better Blogger - #1: Kicking Blogger Jealousy to the Curb.  I confessed that I get jealous of other bloggers - and am working on ridding myself of that. 

Awesome from the blogging community!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Author Interview: Alyssa Rose Ivy

One of my 2013 goals is to feature more authors on my blog.  I want to feature both self-published, and traditionally published authors, because a writer's dreams are the same regardless of how they get there: to write great stories, to be read, and to have those stories mean something to readers.  Once a month, or as often as I can, I'll feature a different author for an interview or guest post.

Author of the Month: Alyssa Rose Ivy

Alyssa Rose Ivy is a Young Adult and New Adult author who loves to weave stories with romance and a southern setting. Although raised in the New York area, she fell in love with the South after moving to New Orleans for college. After years as a perpetual student, she turned back to her creative side and decided to write. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and two young children, and she can usually be found with a cup of coffee in her hand.

Visit Alyssa at: her website | her twitter | her pinterest
Add Alyssa's books on GoodReads!
Read my review of Derailed (Clayton Falls #1)!

Choose a fictional character you’d:

1)    Want to be best friends with: 
Elizabeth Bennet!

2)    Trust with all your secrets:
Nanny from Peter Pan (who’s more loyal than a dog?)

3)    Want to be roommates with:
Bella Swan (She wouldn’t need to sleep there, so it would be like having my own place)

4)    Call if you needed to be bailed out of jail:
James from my Afterglow Trilogy- he could talk his way out of everything, and could probably get them to drop all charges in the process.

If you were stranded on a deserted island and you could have one book, one album, and one luxury item, what would they be?

One book: 
Pride and Prejudice (never get tired of it!)

One Album:
Snow Patrol Up To Now- I’m always in the mood for it   (OUAP: Nice choice!)

One Luxury Item:

What book, or books have really resonated with you, and made an impact on your life?

Moby Dick- Best depiction of obsession
The Hobbit- Started my lifelong love of fantasy

What is one book you would recommend to someone who isn’t an avid reader, to sway them?

The Perks of Being a Wallflower.  Everyone I’ve recommended it to has loved it.

What is your “go-to” book when you are asked to recommend a good book?

It changes based on what I’ve recently read. :)

If you could have dinner with one author, living or dead, who would it be, and why?

Jane Austen-I love her books, and I have so many questions!

What is your earliest and strongest memory involving reading or writing?

My father used to always tell us stories that I thought he made up completely. I remember when I realized they were influenced by the Hobbit. I thought it was so cool that one person’s story could spur so many new ones.

What is one thing you’ve learned about yourself through your writing?

I’ve learned just how much I love romance. I never considered myself to be such a big fan of reading it until I started to write it.

This or that: 

1)    E-books or physical books? 
2)    Movies or music? 
3)    Junk food or healthy food? 
Junk food
4)    Sleeping late or up with the sun? 
Now it’s sleeping late

Tell me about one book you’ve owned for awhile, but have been saving for a special moment/time in your life to read it?

I’ve been meaning to read MOLOKA’I by Alan Brennert for ages, but I haven’t yet.

Thanks so much to Alyssa for this interview.  I really appreciate it!  If YOU'RE an author who would like to be featured here at Once Upon a Prologue, please email me!  Happy reading. 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Review: Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi (Shatter Me #2)
Publication: February 5, 2013 (Harper Teen)
Source: ARC from the publisher
Rating: Swoon-worthy

tick, tick, tick, tick, tick
it's almost
time for war.

Juliette has escaped to Omega Point. It is a place for people like her—people with gifts—and it is also the headquarters of the rebel resistance.

She's finally free from The Reestablishment, free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch.

Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible.

In this exhilarating sequel to Shatter Me, Juliette has to make life-changing decisions between what she wants and what she thinks is right. Decisions that might involve choosing between her heart—and Adam's life.

Memorable Quote 

And it's like he sees what I'm thinking, like he can feel the change happening in my head, because suddenly he's different.  His energy slows down, his eyes are deep, troubled, tender; his lips are soft, still slightly parted, and now the air in this room is too tight, too full of cotton, and I feel the blood rushing around in my head, crashing into every rational region of my brain.

I wish someone would remind me how to breathe.


I feel his hands on my arms, I feel his skin against my skin, and I'm holding my breath.  I don't move an inch.  I don't say a word as his hands drop to my waist, to the thin material making a poor attempt to cover my body.  His fingers graze the soft skin of my lower back, right underneath the hem of my shirt, and I'm losing count of the number of times my heart skips a beat.

I'm struggling to get oxygen in my lungs. 

My Review

Picking up shortly after where Shatter Me left off, Unravel Me jolts the reader right back into the world of the Reestablishment, and into the mind of one of the most unique protagonists I've ever had the pleasure to read about.  Juliette is trying to find a place to belong at Omega Point, but doing so is more difficult than she thought.  Immediately as I sank into Tareheh Mafi's second novel, any faint worries I had about a sophomore slump vanished; by the end of Unravel Me, I could say with certainty: it is better than Shatter MeThe stakes are higher.  The danger is more prevalent.  The decisions Juliette has to make are more wrenching.  The romance is swoon-ier. 

Everything is heightened in Unravel Me.  Juliette's hope is palpable - something I felt keenly thought the novel, mixed in with her despair.  Though her narration is more reliable, we still see the dying world through her eyes, and her voice, while strong, is still that of a lost girl.  However through Tahereh's story, Juliette grows so much, and learns to own her actions, and becomes less of a victim, which I was proud to see.  If possible, this made me like her even more.

The pacing was superb - one of those books where, despite the fact that not much time passed, everything that happened within that time felt realistic and necessary.  There's almost a timeless feel to Unravel Me, as though everything is suspended outside of reality - though there's enough going on in the broader plot to remind us of the dangers that the Reestablishment face.  There's the threat of war looming, and the question of if the Reestablishment - Juliette included - will be prepared.  And then there are the love interests.

There's not much I can say without spoiling key points, but I will say that as much as I loved Juliette and Adam in Shatter Me, Unravel Me adds new depth to their interactions, bringing the development I craved.  We gain a great deal of insight into many characters in this book - Adam included.  Some questions are answered, while others are posed.  Which brings me to Warner.  *sighs*  Oh Warner.  I do this thing where I want to fix all the broken characters, and the same is true here, but in Unravel Me, despite the odds against it, Warner begins to genuinely seek, if not atonement, at least redemption.  And it.  Was.  Beautiful.  I don't want to say too much, again - spoilers - on the emerging love triangle, but I will say something happened here that rarely does: I switched sides, and I stand 1000% behind my choice.

Unravel Me is a spellbinding addition to the Shatter Me series that will leave readers breathless.  I was moved to the point of tears several times, and wanted to shout my frustration at others. I read this book in one sitting, in a matter of mere hours; it was impossible to look away once I began reading.  I'm on the edge of my seat for the final installment!

Other books by this author:

Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1)
Destroy Me (Shatter Me 1.5)
Untitled (Shatter Me #3 - Fall 2013 Harper Teen)

You're sure to fall for:

Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi

About Tahereh

She’s 24. She was born in a small city somewhere in Connecticut and currently resides in Orange County, California, where she drinks too much caffeine and finds the weather to be just a little too perfect for her taste. When unable to find a book, she can be found reading candy wrappers, coupons, and old receipts. SHATTER ME is her first novel.

Visit Tahereh online at: her blog | her website | her Twitter

Shop for Unravel Me at: Amazon | The Book Depository | Barnes & Noble

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Waiting On Wednesday - #45: Sweet Peril by Wendy Higgins

Anna Whitt, the daughter of a guardian angel and a demon, promised herself she’d never do the work of her father—polluting souls. She’d been naive to make such a vow. She’d been naive about a lot of things.

Haunted by demon whisperers, Anna does whatever she can to survive, even if it means embracing her dark side and earning an unwanted reputation as her school’s party girl. Her life has never looked more bleak. And all the while there’s Kaidan Rowe, son of the Duke of Lust, plaguing her heart and mind.

When an unexpected lost message from the angels surfaces, Anna finds herself traveling the globe with Kopano, son of Wrath, in an attempt to gain support of fellow Nephilim and give them hope for the first time. It soon becomes clear that whatever freedoms Anna and the rest of the Neph are hoping to win will not be gained without a fight. Until then, Anna and Kaidan must put aside the issues between them, overcome the steamiest of temptations yet, and face the ultimate question: is loving someone worth risking their life?

Sweet Peril by Wendy Higgins
Publication: April 30, 2013
Add it to your TBR!

Why It's Worth Waiting On:  Remember a book called Sweet Evil that took the blogging and reading world by storm?  Remember Kaiden Rowe, and Anna Whitt?  Remember their tension and steamy moments, and the AWESOME world Wendy Higgins created?  Remember waiting for news of a sequel, then the fear it wouldn't ever happen?  WELL IT IS.   Sweet Evil was one of the few books that I literally screamed in happiness when I received an ARC, and I just KNOW that Sweet Peril is going to be JUST as awesome, if not more so.

If you'd like to pre-order this book from The Book Depository, please consider using the below link; any and all proceeds from my TBD affiliation will go toward future giveaways for you!

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

This weekly feature is graciously hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. You know that feeling you get when you're browsing upcoming books on Goodreads or Amazon and one strikes your fancy?  Maybe you squee.  Maybe you giggle to yourself.  Maybe you bounce in your seat. We all get excited (I do a combination of all three of the previous choices...) about new books, be it a favorite author you're familiar with, or someone whose work you'll be reading for the first time.  Jill's meme gives us the chance to spotlight what we are anxiously awaiting this week.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Review: Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum

Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum
Publication: January 8, 2013 (Harper Teen)
Source: ARC from the publisher
Rating: Beam-worthy
Twenty years ago, the robots designed to fight our wars abandoned the battlefields. Then they turned their weapons on us.

Only a few escaped the robot revolution of 2071. Kevin, Nick, and Cass are lucky —they live with their parents in a secret human community in the woods. Then their village is detected and wiped out. Hopeful that other survivors have been captured by bots, the teens risk everything to save the only people they have left in the world—by infiltrating a city controlled by their greatest enemies.

Revolution 19 is a cinematic thriller unlike anything else. With a dynamic cast of characters, this surefire blockbuster has everything teen readers want—action, drama, mystery, and romance. Written by debut novelist Gregg Rosenblum, this gripping story shouldn’t be missed.

 Memorable Quote

And when the bombs rained down, and then legions of bot foot soldiers marched into the ruins, killing any humans who resisted, and dragging away the rest of us, we finally called it what it was: revolution.  - Prologue

My Review

When I first read the synopsis for Revolution 19, I knew I wanted to read this book; it reminded me of Battlestar Galactica, which I loved, but for some reason, don't talk about a great deal.  I'm continually drawn to science fiction, and Gregg Rosenblum's novel is a good mix of dystopian and sci-fi.  I think it's an example of a lower level YA, better for readers transitioning out of MG and into YA, because although it does explore some serious themes, and introduces a great group of characters, it didn't blow me away or make me think as much as I expected.  

One of the plot devices I have a love/hate relationship with is dual point of view perspectives.  Sometimes it works for me, sometimes it doesn't.  To me, it's one of those devices that authors over-use.  Not EVERY story needs a million voices narrating, and I don't think it was necessary in Revolution 19.  I enjoyed getting to know the main characters: Nick, Kevin, and Cass, but it was a bit disorientating for this particular story trying to follow them all, and I think that held things back in some ways, for me at least.  I also liked several of the secondary characters, like Lexi, and definitely want to get to know them better!  

That said, a lot happens in a short amount of time in Revolution 19, and there is a good foundation laid for the sequels, as this is the first in a trilogy.  One thing that I want to applaud is, although Rosenblum leaves us wanting more, enough is resolved in Revolution 19 that I wouldn't call the ending a cliffhanger - finally!  I also really liked the importance of family in this, and the world-building was well done.  In fact, I can't wait to find out more about the bots, their masters, etc.  

Revolution 19 is not a perfect novel, but it is a novel with a lot of potential, and I look forward to seeing how the author and characters grow in the sequels! 

You're sure to fall for:

Partials by Dan Wells


About Gregg

Gregg Rosenblum works at Harvard, where he wages epic battles against technology as an editor/webmaster/communications/quasi-IT guy. He graduated from UC San Diego and has an MFA in creative writing from Emerson College. He lives in Boston with his wife and daughter. 

Visit Gregg at: his Twitter 

Shop for Revolution 19 at: Amazon | The Book Depository | Barnes & Noble  

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Bye, bye Blogger!

A few quick notes:

  • This blog will be moving to WordPress in the next few weeks.  
  • This means that GFC WILL BE GONE soon.  
  • Subscribing options like Email/RSS WILL be available, and prominently displayed on the blog.  
  • I'll also be talking more about my posts on Twitter, if you want to keep up with me there.
  • I'll also be debuting a new layout.  I'M SO excited for it.
  • Basically, I'm almost looking at this as a blog "restart."  It's time.  I need a clean slate to get back to blogging basics.  I'm really looking forward to blogging at WordPress.  I'll STILL be www.onceuponaprologue.com, but again, NO GFC or Linky Followers, so I'll need YOUR help and support to get the word out.  
  • Oh and did I mention that once I'm settled in there, I'll have lots of giveaways coming up over the next few months?  :)
 Happy Saturday, everyone!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Becoming A Better Blogger - #1: Kicking Jealousy To the Curb

Becoming A Better Blogger is a new series at Once Upon a Prologue; it's a combination of my feature If I Could Writer A Letter To Me, (inspired by Jamie at The Perpetual Page Turner) and my own thoughts on a chilly winter night.  Becoming A Better Blogger is about the things I've learned while blogging, the advice I've received, and about shedding lesser versions of myself - from the first growing pains of becoming a new blogger, to where I am now, and all the growth I hope to do.  As always, discussion is encouraged and welcomed!

Becoming A Better Blogger: Vanquishing Blogger Jealousy

Recently, I made my 2013 list - a list of books I've been lusting after.  This was mostly ARCs I "had" to have, be they books from debut authors, or sequels I need in my life.  I made the list, filled it to the brim, and then saved it and didn't think much about it for a few weeks.  Today, I took another look at it, and was surprised at what I found. 

Of the list, I could only remember what half of the books were even about. 

With that in mind, I set about trimming down that list, and asked myself an important question: which of these books was I passionate about?  Which of them had I added because I HAD to read them, and which had I added just thinking they looked interesting, or would be cool to have?  When I answered those questions, the list dropped to the titles I truly, genuinely want to read.  And since then I’ve been asking myself that question more often, especially when I see other blogger’s book hauls: that book is shiny and awesome-looking, but am I passionate about it?

Blogger jealousy is an ugly thing, and I don’t really like who it makes me.  Despite telling myself I wouldn’t go there, I fell into the trap of thinking I had to have ALL THE BOOKS.  I’m not proud of it, but it is what it is.  I see bloggers I admire who get five or ten books each week, and they all look AWESOME, and that little devil on my shoulder whispers “don’t you wish that was you?”

And you know what?  No, I don’t.  I mean sure, there's that part of me that does - hello, I'm human!  I love shiny, new, book-ish things, and there's ALWAYS something awesome coming out, something I think I - have - to have.  But...I don’t want the pressure of knowing I have a pile of books to review, because I take things like that seriously – and I start to stress.  I would rather keep things low-key, and read a few special review books, plus make time for the books I’ve bought that have been sitting on my shelf for WAY too long, waiting to be reviewed. I've been rejected for ARCs before and...I survived!  Nothing bad happened.  I just had to wait a little longer to read that certain book. 

So sure, I’ll miss out on some ARCs.  My book haul videos won’t be as epic as some other blogger’s are.  But they’ll be awesome just the same, because I’m reading, and I have this whole, amazing community in which to share my love of books.  And that’s enough for me.  

And that's what it comes down to: being ME.  Not anyone else.  Those other bloggers may have triple the review books I have, or a thousand more followers, but there's no guarantee they're happier than I am.  I started this blog to share my love of reading, and that's why I continue it.  Not for status or being one of the "cool" kids.  For me, and to share my love of reading!

What's your take on the green-eyed monster?  What have YOU learned about blogger jealousy, and what helped you overcome it?