Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shephard

Three years ago, Alison disappeared after a slumber party, not to be seen since. Her friends at the elite Pennsylvania school mourned her, but they also breathed secret sighs of relief. Each of them guarded a secret that only Alison had known. Now they have other dirty little secrets, secrets that could sink them in their gossip-hungry world. When each of them begins receiving anonymous emails and text messages, panic sets in. Are they being betrayed by some one in their circle? Worse yet: Is Alison back? A strong launch for a suspenseful series.

Pretty Little Liars sets the story a group of five friends and when the leader of the group Allison mysteriously disappears, the girls all go their separate ways. A year after her death 

I have been following the show for a while now. Pretty Little Liars has to be one of the best and high rated shows ABCFamily has aired in a long time. I've been watching it since day one, and I knew the T.V. show was based on a book but I wasn't sure as to whether or not to read the books because like the Vampire Diaries, whenever This is one of the shows that is still renewed for a contract. I had seen the novels around the bookstore and I did judge it by the cover. I thought by looking at the cover this was going to be another one of those books series that tries to knock-off the popular books, like the Gossip Girl series. 

I hope this review doesn't make me sound biased but here it goes. I'm not going to lie. I thought the first four books in the series were really good. The final book in the series was originally book six, and that left everything into piece. Then comes in ABCFamily who decided to make Pretty Little Liars into a T.V. show, and still keep the show running because of it's highest ratings.  So then the publisher demanded more books from the series, and just like with the House of Night novels, the plot and everything else just went down the drain, and taking the characters with them. The first four books were good, then after that the rest of the series went south.

Saturday, July 06, 2013

The Lost Hero (Heroes of Olympus Bk 1) by Rick Riordan

I love Greek Gods!

The Lost HeroJason has a problem. He doesn't remember anything before waking up on a school bus holding hands with a girl. Apparently he has a girlfriend named Piper. His best friend is a kid named Leo, and they're all students in the Wilderness School, a boarding school for "bad kids", as Leo puts it. What he did to end up here, Jason has no idea—except that everything seems very wrong.
Piper has a secret. Her father, a famous actor, has been missing for three days, and her vivid nightmares reveal that he's in terrible danger. Now her boyfriend doesn't recognize her, and when a freak storm and strange creatures attack during a school field trip, she, Jason, and Leo are whisked away to someplace called Camp Half-Blood. What is going on?
Leo has a way with tools. His new cabin at Camp Half-Blood is filled with them. Seriously, the place beats Wilderness School hands down, with its weapons training, monsters, and fine-looking girls. What's troubling is the curse everyone keeps talking about, and that a camper's gone missing. Weirdest of all, his bunkmates insist they are all—including Leo—related to a god.

Years ago when I finished the Harry Potter series I told  myself I wouldn't like many other adventure series. But MAN Rick Riordan can write and is now one of my favorite middle school.

For a brief summary,  three teens, Jason, Piper and Leo, are at a Wilderness Camp a camp for delinquents when they are attacked by wind spirits. The coach is carried away, and they make a near escape on a chariot pulled by Pegasus. Leo, a fiery Latino; Piper, a beautiful charmer of Native American and Hollywood heritage; and Jason, a guy with a magical sword and virtually no conscious memory of his life before that fatal day at camp; are taken to Camp Half-Blood, into a series of self-discoveries and a quest. 

At firs I thought Jason was a replacement for Percy, but as you get further into the series you see the characters evolve more, I didn't find myself too gripped to them, but they do bring the story out.What I liked most about this series is how it combines Greek and Roman Gods. Great book for the first in a series, I am anxious to read the next book in the series.

Friday, July 05, 2013

The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.
Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty fa├žade is a town at war.
Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils ... Pagford is not what it first seems.
And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?

This book has about several different storylines going at one time. Mrs. Fairbrother, recently widowed begins a relationship with her husband's beat friend. Fairbrother’s opponent, the Howard Mollison, is those stuck up rich people who think they are better than anyone else; Krystal Weedon, is a prostitute and her drug addicted mother, Terri; Krystal’s new social worker, Kay Bawden, who has recently moved to Pagford with her teenage daughter; the disaffected adolescent boys, Fats and Andrew; and a variety of local gossips and pot-stirrers.

I checked out the book at my university library. I wanted to read it but the price was a little too steep and I wanted to read it so imagine my surprise the library  actually had it. Honestly, Rowling's writing is still perfect, the description and everything. The story itself is just bland. I understand this is her first project away from the universe of Harry Potter, and there has been criticism on how she should have just stuck to writing Harry Potter books. One thing the literary world said "Can Rowling being the same magic to her adult fiction like in Harry Potter?" First off people need to stop reading it like it's a Harry Potter novel. I respect Rowling for taking her time with her writing and seeing it as a new original story. Every new series by an author I like I read their work with a fresh eyes, not comparing too much to their previous work. I didn't like the book too much, and maybe Rowling's next book will be good. The writing is good, but it just doesn't have that spark. Rowling still has it, it just may take a while for things non Harry Potter. 

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

My Favorite Jr Turned Sr for the 2013-2016

Now that the London Olympics is over, I am more than ever excited to see the upcoming talent of gymnasts for the 2013-2016 gymnastics season. And onto Rio 2016!

My first favorite is Sarah Finnegan. What was a shame was how Sarah couldn't get much international experience due to the stupid age limit rule.

Sarah Finnegan

Sarah is from the same gym as 2008 Ivana Hong, and 2004 Olympians Courtney McCool and Terin Humphrey. What I like about Sarah is her beam routine and her choreography.

Katelyn Ohashi

Katelyn trains under Valeri Liukin at WOGA, the same gym of Rebecca Bross, 2008 Olympics Champion Nastia Liukin, and 2004 Olmpic Champion Carly Patterson. What I like about Katelyn is how she is a mix between Carly and Nastia, and I like her beam, if only she would connect her standing arabian into her first layout series then her difficulty value would go up like crazy.

Polina Shchennikova

Polina is pretty much a mini Nastia. BOTH Russian and parents trained in gymnastics in the Soviet Union, both are coached by their parents, and both have what the Soviet was known for, artistry in gymnastics. 

Bailie Key

Simone Biles
Simone Biles has to be the most powerful gymnast I have ever seen, her vaulting is ten times better than Maroney, and she is currently working on a Yurchenko triple no woman has ever done this vault.

Amelia Hundley

Amelia is so happy all the time. She's not every powerful on floor, but she is trying to work on all four events. 

Lexie Priessman

Lexie is most likely an event specialist due to her vaulting and floor, her floor routine is good but she needs to work on her landings, and change her floor music to something less cheerleading.

Good luck girls, and make Team USA proud!