I think I am in love. No. I am in love. No. I love. No. LOVE. That’s all really. Just plain, old, good, old, fashion, old (cause it felt like it needed another old) LOVE with this book. So with that said, I received an ARC from Janelle, and I felt honored she would ask me, but with that said I need you to understand I am not going to be lying or alternating my feelings for this book just because Janelle gave me an ARC, I wouldn’t do that, it’s not right, and it’s not what I believe in. Got it? Good. Now let’s start this awesome sauce review!
Song Choice: “Taking Control” by Eisley, “Hoodoo” by Muse (oh I have been waiting to use this bad boy for a while now – does happy dance), “What’s Left Of the Flag” by Flogging Molly, and “Rebels of the Sacred Heart” also by Flogging Molly, “The Scientist” by Coldplay (now usually I don’t pick songs that are in the book but I am expectation) and last but not least “Murder in the City” by the Avett Brothers. Okays so this song choice this is where I pick songs that I felt help describe the overall tone, certain pieces of the book and what nots, now these are books that I picked myself for the most part, and if you choose to listen to them, cool, if not, cool.
Review time?! Sweet!
First Thoughts: Okay so about 25% into this book I was about to rip out my hair. I was so unsure about everything, in this strange crazy good way. This I have to say, the writing…wow…fan-freaking-tastic! Amazing. It makes you question everything, it makes you wonder what is right and what is wrong, it may also having you wondering what right and what left is. The overall story that is being told is god I can’t believe I am about to say this, and no this has NO reference to the book, but this book is filled with gray shades, gray areas. Nothing is quite what is seems, and when you think you figured someone out, I don’t think you really have. Anyways before I get carried away last first thoughts: I think that this was a utterly fascinating, thrilling, epic read.
Thoughts on Plot: Now the plot is interesting because usually I don’t like the forbidden love stuff because there are a good chance we all know how those will end up. But I sort of was unbelievably excited about it before I even read the book. The romance wasn’t the only focus on this book though, when it comes straight down to it for me, this book was about humans, and the fact we are not perfect. We aren’t all good, we aren’t all bad, and in the very end it’s about human nature. When all is said and done it’s who we feel we are at the end. Now this was a thriller for me, I was at the beginning taking my time with this read because I was having conflicting feelings about certain things, but I will talk about that later. But once I got over myself and stopped worrying so much (pfft, yeah right) anyways, I couldn’t do this down, I didn’t want to ever stop reading it. It was thrilling, it was exciting, it was steamy, it was terrifying, it was I am sitting on the edge of my seat, biting my nails, and screaming like a little girl good. So there was a lot going on here but it didn’t feel rushed, it didn’t feel overwhelming and it was pretty centered, nothing too like seriously, or nothing too boring where you are going…when is something going to happen!!!
Romance: NOW normally I don’t take time to talk about this I just do a little ditty in the plot, unless it a loooooovvveeee triangle, this was not. Thank you, so very much! But I just wanted to say I loved it, I love love love love love love love it. It was beautiful, while yes I can see where people are going to be like: HEY HEY THAT happened to fast!, well take a look around kids, in your mind not literally, where are you in this book? Times have changed you take what good things you have and you hold on tightly cause who knows how long you are going to get to keep them.
Characters: OMGOSH YES, I CANNOT WAIT TO TALK ABOUT THEM!
But first I would like to introduce you to who I “casted in my mind”/thought they were as close as could try to get what my amazingly awesome mind conjured up (and I don’t do a whole lot of these casting things so yeah – warning)
Meet the Kickass Charlotte/Dinah:
Meet the dashing Pete McKay:
Say Hi to Bridgette:
Now stop ogling :p !!!
Okay I want to make some general statements about the characters so that I am not repeating myself constantly. These characters all of them, yes ALL OF THEM, have multiple sides, they became more than a stereotyped character, they are not the bad guy or the good guy, they are just human. I don’t think that I can describe how much I love, seriously loved these characters, they were all amazingly done even the “bad” guys I loved how they were written. For me they came right off the page, they formed and became 3D, multiple dimensional characters. What do I mean by that? I mean they were just the quiet, silent ones, they were everything. They I don’t know how other to say this than they were more than characters, they were people, they were living breathing entities with more than meets the eye about them. They were flawed, they were cruel, they were unbelievably sweet, they were oddly comforting. They were awe-worthy. I don’t care if you hate the idea of this plot (I don’t know why you would but to each their own) but these characters make the read worth it (but so does the plot…just saying)
Charlotte/Dinah: Now she was an interesting character…she was one of the few characters that made me feel like I needed to take my time reading this book. At first I didn’t understand her, not at all. (see I am being completely honest) but besides that: I didn’t understand her and I thought I wasn’t going to like her, but then I took a step back and I had a talk with myself. And I decided I would give her more of a chance, I shouldn’t judge, and you shouldn’t either. Because while there were things about Dinah I was like really confused about they are explained, and they are explained well that makes you understand. She is totally badass in that I am still feminine though way. Not feminine as like oh look at these cute books while I kick your ass with them! But she is vulnerable, she is scared, not that she will let anyone know that! She is doing her best in the situation she was given. While it took me some time she definitely became a favorite character of mine (like of all time). I forgot to mention she is super sassy, this girl ugh just loved her!
Pete McKay: *Sigh* WOW. Now usually I don’t go for blondes, but damn he had me at, “It was way too easy to break into your apartment.” This is one intense cat, and I loved him, I loved him to bits! He is passionate without being shove-y down your throat, he is protective but understands that Dinah can take care of herself and allows her the space that she needs to do so. He is complex, while he starts out a womanizer he doesn’t stay that way for long. He is loyal, but in the end this man is a good person. Even good people have blood on their hands sometimes (figuratively or literally I will never tell, but I will tell you this, I am a good person and I literally had blood on my hands tonight, I killed a mosquito in the name of my friend who it sucked her blood…you don’t care do you? Well alright I will go on). I loved – which is strange I usually hate third person because it seems that so few people can do it so flawlessly – yes what I am saying is that Janelle did it flawlessly in my opinion. I loved being in his head, I loved feeling what he was feeling, I love him. Oh…um…well this is awkward….anyways back to Pete not my undying love for him – I didn’t say undying before did I?…even more awkward. Long story short, Pete was written as well, and awesomely :D!
Bridgette: I really liked her, like instantly but I think it has a lot to do with the fact that she was the type of MC girl that I gravitate towards. The sweet girls that have their quiet strengths. She is loyal, smart, sassy, and fun. I really did love her the moment I met her. I loved that while she believed what that was going on wasn’t right but in the end more violence wouldn’t save anything. I love that she was so loyal to her own beliefs and she wouldn’t have anyone shake her morals. I can’t wait for more Bridge!!!
Roman: Now he was another character that put me off for a bit. I think I know what was putting me off is that some characters did things I just didn’t want them doing because I wanted them to be the bad guy, I didn’t want to think of them as humans which I am about to go on a rant about that so I am going to stop while I am ahead. So Roman he slightly confused me as well, I feel like he had…has? Feelings for Dinah as well, but I am not 100% sure if it is a friend/sister feelings or like “how you doin’” (sorry Friends in on in the background…not to mention I have seen every episode at least 5 times). He was an interesting character while seemingly uncaring, he does care, there are things I know this man is hiding and I cannot wait for more Roman.
The mysterious “bad” guys I kept mentioning: well I don’t want to name names and give anything away but again these characters did things that I just couldn’t see them doing, they confused me to no end, and I loved it. I really do! It’s so refreshing and new, and exciting you don’t know what one character might do next, they really aren’t predictable. But yup. That is all.
The ending: : | UM that is my I might hurt someone face. Not to be confused with my serious face which is this : | ……grr.
Yes I am going to go on with this series. Yes I am totes going to check out other stuff by this author (this was my first Janelle book – and I was unbelievably pleased, and I cannot wait to get my hands on more of her books).
About the Author:
Janelle Stalder was born and raised in Brampton, Ontario. At an early age she developed a love for literature. Her debut novel, Eden, was the first book in a series of four, released in September of 2011. The second book, Eden-West, was released in July of 2012, and the third book, Eden-South was released in March of 2013. The fourth book of the Eden Series, Eden-East, will be release at the end of 2013. She is a strong supporter of other independent authors, and loves to interact with her readers. When she’s not writing, Janelle is at home with her husband, two children, Aiden and Elora, and her two furry children, Alice and Lily. She now resides in the small town in Ontario in her old, possibly haunted, century home.
Trapped within the cruel world of hormones and bullies, fifteen-year-old Aiden is convinced life has more to offer him. His instincts are proven correct on the night he is awakened by a voice calling to him from outside his window. As he sleepily peers into his yard, his eyes slowly focus on a woman who says she is there to take him to Eden. Aiden is about to fulfill the life purpose he never knew he had.
It is in Eden, a land on the brink of war, where Aiden will finally learn to trust himself and those around him. Accompanied by Wolf, his sidekick Logan, and the beautiful archer, Elisa, Aiden is soon thrust into a battle to save Eden. Meanwhile Elisa, the only girl in the King’s Army, is in the midst of her own struggles. Betrothed to a man she has no intention of marrying, Elisa is caught between the need to prove herself and her desire for true happiness. And now that she has met Aiden, she is more confused than ever.
In this action-packed fantasy tale, romance, adventure, and intrigue surround Aiden as he learns just what he is capable of when he discovers confidence and courage.
New beginnings, new conflicts, and new adventures arise in the second installment of the Eden Series, Eden-West.
Months after his initial journey to Eden, Aiden is learning to cope with his own transformation. His social status has changed, his friendship with his best friend Ethan is in jeopardy because of it, and worst of all, he has heard absolutely nothing from his new friends in Eden. What has become of the world he fell in love with? Are his friends safe? Is the war over? With no answers, and no hope for contact, Aiden decides to focus on his life in his world. Just as he makes this decision, he encounters a familiar bright light and thinks he knows exactly what it means. Except the light isn’t at all what he expects and neither is the person behind it. When Aiden returns to Eden, it is to a whole new part of that special world, and a whole new set of adventures.
Weeks after Aiden was returned to his own world, Elisa is sent to Nysa, the revered Southern city, to retrieve the one thing she’d rather avoid – Wolf. Captain Turk instructed her to get in and get out – but that is easier said than done. When she finds her missing friend, she also stumbles upon a great deal of trouble. This trouble goes by one name – Markus, the leader of the Sun People.
Follow all your favourite characters as they ready themselves for battle and fight for a world threatened to be destroyed.
The betrayal that tore a family apart. Two brothers bent on destroying the other. A whole world on the brink of war.
Aiden has been through his second battle in the magical world of Eden. The victory is short lived and Aiden is sent racing toward his friends in the Capital. After being back in Eden with the Riders, he is eager to reunite with Wolf, Elisa and Logan, although he doesn’t realize just what he’s returning to. Surprises await him when he arrives in the Capital; his close-knit group of friends is slowly falling apart. On top of it all, another battle is just around the corner, one that will change everything.
Rain has made her choice, and now she is in some unknown fortress with the feared sorcerer, Aziz. She wants nothing more but to please him, but being his Queen isn’t as easy as she thought. While trying to learn sorcery, and dealing with Aziz’s advances, Rain is finding her new life a bit overwhelming. Just when she thought it couldn’t get worse, she discovers a secret of Aziz’s, and it is nothing she could have expected.
Rose has supported Callum throughout their journey, but now that the final battle is just around the corner she is faced with a hard reality. Everything she has gained with him could be taken away. Is she willing to live the rest of her life without him? Can she just stand by while he destroys everything, including himself? Will he ever be able to find peace? Will she?
In the third installment of the Eden Series fates will be decided, and the battle between brothers that has been a decade in the making will finally come to an end. Only one of them can be High King.
The battle starts now.
All’s fair in love and war.
Two thirds of the world’s population has been wiped out, devastated by the worst war earth has ever seen. Still standing amongst the ruins is a mind reader who finds herself on the wrong side of the war. Everyone does what they must to survive. When the rebels bent on bringing down the New World leader start to rise up, it is her job to make sure they stay down where they belong. That is, until one rebel sneaks past her defences and into her heart. Love will blossom from the ashes, but will it be enough to save them, or will it mean the end of them both?
Eden-East (Book Four, Eden Series) – October 2013
Brush Strokes (Contemporary Romance) – Early 2014
Masked (Book Two, New World Series) – 2014
Elysium (YA Fantasy Spin-off of the Eden Series) – 2014
Author Contact Information:
Facebook: Janelle Stalder
I was told by Janelle I could giveaway ONE e-copy of Switch: Please either leave or email me your address, and answer this little question and I will pop it into a random drawing if we get more than one person so the question:
IF the world had become a dystopia what would you do? Like: run to live in the woods, move to a city, etc, (you can use the example I gave or you can make up your own – have fun with it)