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Tag Archives: YA science fiction

Progeny by Tosca Lee

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Progency_without-quoteSo . . . I just finished reading Progeny by Tosca Lee and I have to talk about it! This was really good YA fantasy. I was hooked from the storyline and the main character was likeable and relatable. One of my favorite things about this book was how well the author wove spiritual themes into a fantasy novel (that’s not strictly a Christian novel). She’s not afraid to create flawed, realistic characters in this fantasy setting, while at the same time explore questions about God’s existence and add in religious elements. Since I’m someone with a spiritual bent to begin with, this aspect of the story really connected with me. But even for someone who is nonreligious, this aspect just rolls into the storyline completely seamlessly. I’ve found that with lots of YA fantasy books, I enjoy the first novel in a series, but then find myself not invested enough to want to keep going. With this one, I’d like to know what happens in book 2. I know not every story can hook me like Harry Potter or Hunger Games (where I want to buy the next book as soon as it releases, even if it’s at midnight!) so it’s nice to read something that pulls you in and makes you want to keep going with these characters.

Here’s the Amazon blurb:

New York Times bestselling author Tosca Lee brings a modern twist to an ancient mystery surrounding Elizabeth Bathory, the most notorious female serial killer of all time.

Emily Jacobs is the descendant of a serial killer. Now, she’s become the hunted.

She’s on a quest that will take her to the secret underground of Europe and the inner circles of three ancient orders—one determined to kill her, one devoted to keeping her alive, and one she must ultimately save.

Filled with adrenaline, romance, and reversals, The Progeny is the present-day saga of a 400-year-old war between the uncanny descendants of “Blood Countess” Elizabeth Bathory, the most prolific female serial killer of all time, and a secret society dedicated to erasing every one of her descendants. It is a story about the search for self filled with centuries-old intrigues against the backdrop of atrocity and hope.

 

Terra Soul by S.J. Abraham

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Terra%20Soul%20Cover_zpsd6ycqimvLoveys, I want to tell you about a story I’m excited about! So I had the privilege of working on this super-fun, YA, sci/fi novel and I loved it! Here’s the book blurb:

Ayla thinks she’s just a comic-book nerd with a photophobia until the day a space fold forms in her living room and her father drags through it to the alien world of Karanik, her birthplace. When she discovers that soul-drinking aliens have infested Earth, she must embrace who she truly is in order to save it.

This story is great for young adults, boy and girls. It’s got aliens, teen angst, adventure, basically the world coming to an end and all that great stuff. I really enjoyed it and I think this author will have more amazing stories to tell. So check out Terra Soul on Amazon!!

https://www.amazon.com/Terra-Soul-S-J-Abraham/dp/0997625813

 

Tempest by Julie Cross

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So yesterday I finally finished Tempest by Julie Cross. I remember seeing this in Barnes and Noble and thinking it looked cool. So when I saw it on the shelf at our library, I grabbed it. This is a time-travel story (feels a lot like the movie Jumper). We’ve got our main character Jackson, who can time-travel, his brainiac best friend Adam, and Holly the girlfriend. To be honest, I wasn’t absolutely crazy about this book, however I did find the end to be great. I was worried it was going to be predictable and I was pleasantly surprised that the author didn’t take the easy way out (I hate when authors do that). But for me, I never really connected with the characters. I thought the idea of time-travel in a YA book was really cool, and the plot was interesting. But as for Jackson and Holly, they never clicked for me, which is sort of important since they are the main characters. But I could totally see how someone else might read it and just love it. Like I said, the end sort of redeemed it for me, but by that time I’d felt kind of frustrated with the characters. Holly is sort of confusing. She’s really sweet and sort of ordinary and comes across like she’s supposed to be shy–but then she’s the one initiating everything with Jackson, kissing him (and insisting on more), calling him and emailing him, and always forgiving him immediately when he’s a jerk because she’s just so in love with him that it must be okay that he’s a jerk. So she’s not really shy. I just found her character qualities to be confusing. Jackson can be a jerk to her sometimes, so I wasn’t crazy about that. Granted, he does a 180 by the end of the book and is ready to jump into marriage with both feet despite the fact that he knows his life is about to get crazy and Holly will be endangered (but he makes the wiser choice in the end and shows more maturity). I just felt like some of it was implausible (of course, I know this is science fiction) but it seemed like all the CIA agents and Jackson’s dad were just bending to whatever he wanted all the time, which did not fit. He’s a kid and they’ve been working in this area for years. His dad, who apparently is an agent with serious skills, is always giving into Jackson. And we already know that Holly is always giving in to him.

There were some unexpected twists and turns that were good. And Adam was a great supporting character. Jackson shows a lot of character development, which I appreciated. But this one was so-so for me. Still, if you like time-travel books, you’d probably really like it.

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson

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So I finished reading The Adoration of Jenna Fox sometime last week but I’m just now having a moment to sit down and think about it. This is a very thought-provoking book. I wasn’t sure if I’d get into it at first, but pretty early in, I was hooked. It’s a page turner. It’s sci-fi, but it has some futuristic feelings to it. For example, all the technology and advances in science seem totally plausible. The book feels like a mystery for a good portion of the book. The main character, Jenna, has woken up after having supposedly been in a coma for a year after a terrible car accident. But everything is strange. Her family has moved to CA even though her dad still works in another state. Her grandmother treats her like a stranger and seems resentful of the fact that Jenna’s there–even though they used to have a super close relationship. Jenna can’t remember anything of her life before. Her parents are secretive about too many things. Something’s way, way off. And Jenna knows it.

The story revolves around Jenna finding out what really happened to her and who she really is. The thought-provoking aspect comes into play when you start to consider the ethics (or lack thereof) of certain decisions Jenna’s parents made. To be honest, when I finished the book, I kept wondering what the author’s position would be on some things. You don’t end with a clear picture of what’s right or wrong, though you sort of have an idea of the direction the author’s going in. It made me question my own opinion of where the ethics line in science should be drawn. The book didn’t change my views whatsoever on that–but it was still a really interesting read. It raised some questions that it couldn’t answer, of course (things about a person’s soul). But overall, I thought it was a fascinating book. At some points, maybe a little disturbing, but definitely interesting.