Category Archives: NetGalley

Review: Deadly Pursuit by Nina Croft

Breaking assassin Jonathon Decker out of a maximum security prison on Trakis One seemed like a good idea at the time. Now, pursued across space by the two most powerful factions in the universe, the crew of El Cazador are having second thoughts. They’d like to give him back. Unfortunately, that no longer seems an option.

Jon is used to working alone. Now, he’s stuck on the space cruiser El Cazador until he can work out just what he’s supposed to know that puts him on everybody’s most-wanted-dead list. He s not happy that the crew includes a runaway priestess with designs on his virtue such as it is. Jon likes women, but he gave up the role of protector a long time ago, and Alexia, High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life, is an accident waiting to happen.

After twenty-four excruciatingly boring years of doing her duty, Alex is finally having some fun. She never meant to run away it was a rash impulse and she means to go back eventually. But first, she’s going to squeeze enough excitement out of the situation to last her a lifetime. And what could be more exciting than a stunningly gorgeous werewolf?

Meanwhile, the Church are chasing their missing priestess, and the Collective are pursuing their escaped assassin. Being hunted has never been more deadly…or more fun.

Deadly Pursuit (Blood Hunter #2) by Nina Croft

Release Date: 6 December 2011
Read Date: 5 December 2011
Rating:

Firefly with a paranormal twist. Better than Break Out, Deadly Pursuit continues from where BO we left off.

Al, the small teenage boy, turns out to be Alexia High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life, the 24 year old woman. Suffocating from boredom and lack of control over her high profile life she escapes, disguises herself as a boy and ends up on the spaceship El Cazador.

Both the Collective (people who’ve taken the expensive immortality treatment Meridian) and now the Church (believe in immortality of the soul which goes to heaven when they physically die) are chasing the crew for the recapture of Jon the werewolf assassin and the return of the High Priestess.

Despite her deception, the crew immediately defend Alexia. She’s one of them and they’re not going to hand her over if she doesn’t want to go. Jon, on the other hand, is wanted for an unknown reason, pointing to a conspiracy so they’re not giving him up after they were hired to risk their lives breaking him out of prison until they get some answers.

Alexia is instantly attracted to Jon. Unfortunately her disguise worked only too well, looking like a scruffy child. Her innocence is compounded by the fact that she’s a virgin who’s lived a sheltered life, and Jon doesn’t do virgins. He’s a rough, tough, manly 6ft 4 werewolf to her doll-like 5ft 1. He’d break her. But she knew what she wanted and was determined to experience as much of life as could before she was forced to return to her duty so the predator became the prey. Poor man, he had no chance. At least he has a new pack now i.e. the crew and a buddy in Rico despite him being a vampire.

Similarities to Firefly (Rico is Mal with fangs and a lust for blood) and the introduction of shapeshifters, my favourite supernaturals, meant I quite liked this. However, I’m slightly uncomfortable with how Alexia, seconds after being almost raped and killed on two occasions, jumped her mate-to-be’s bones. That struck me as wrong since she was beaten and manhandled. I doubt I’d feel up to it if I was in her shoes.

Tannis is next to be matched up with her crush Callum Meridian, the man who first took the immortality treatment and has been transformed by it. They’re hired as his bodyguards in the next book.

***Many thanks to Entangled Publishing for providing the ARC via Netgalley for an honest review.***

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Review: Touch of Power by Maria V. Snyder

Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan assumes their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Territories, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos.

Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader, an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own, is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince—leader of a campaign against her people. As they traverse the daunting Nine Mountains, beset by mercenaries and magical dangers, Avry must decide who is worth healing and what is worth dying for. Because the price of peace may well be her life…

Touch of Power (Healer #1) by Maria V. Snyder

Release Date: 27 December 2011
Read Date: 4 December 2011
Rating:

Please, Sir. May I have some more?

Touch of Power may be mildly similar to Poison Study which does bring in an element of predictability but it doesn’t feel repetitive. This world is far larger and more complex than that of the Study trilogy.

Avry has been in hiding and on the run for 3 years and she’s tired of it. After people blamed the spread of the plague on healers, they’re captured and executed whenever they’re found. However, Avry can’t stop herself from healing fatally ill children and each time she does she must move on in case the child’s parents turn her in, though this time the sickness she’s assumed overcomes her and she’s captured. While in prison awaiting execution she’s approached by a man called Kerrick who breaks her out so she can heal his “friend”.

Unfortunately this friend is hundreds of miles away and with a bounty on her head the journey is dangerous even with Kerrick’s men accompanying them. When Avry is informed of who she’s to heal, she refuses because it’s a prince accused of inhumane crimes. Assuming his illness, the plague, would mean certain death for her. Sacrificing her life for a child is one thing, they’re innocent but for a cruel and powerful man -no. Kerrick reacts badly, punishing her until she changes her mind. She’s too stubborn so they try to change her mind in other ways while they travel.

On the journey she gets to know each man, saving her hate for the mysterious Kerrick. They teach her survival and fighting skills so she can defend herself. Along the way they begin to understand more about the plague, it’s link to the sentient network of huge human-eating venus flytrap flowers and the healer’s guild. They also encounter a real madman, Tohon, who can influence and read thoughts and emotions using it to gain more territory and power. His experiments are nightmarish and genocidal. Politics and intrigue ensue. There are many fighting for power in the game of thrones kings in this post-apocalyptic fantasy.

The hundreds of miles Avry & co travel, and on foot, makes my feet ache in sympathy. I thoroughly enjoyed the world-building and Avry’s journey spanning about 6 months. I loved the high level of detail involved and the intricacies of the characters’ magical abilities. I laughed at the Men in Black moment when Avry shouts “Eat me!” to the mutant plant. In fact, I did a lot of laughing. Avry and her merry men grow to be a tight-knit family who jump at the chance to tease, compete and help each other. I was sad when a character died but I have a feeling we’ll see them again though I’m worried about how they’ll be changed by the experience. I wish I had a Papa Bear and friends like these who’d die for me if need be, and vice versa.

Kerrick and Avry’s relationship develops and evolves slowly as he learns how to handle his emotions. His desperate 2-year search for a healer and Avry’s stubborn refusal turns him into an unlikeable man but with the persuasion of his men he pushes back his anger and gets to know Avry and comes to understand what makes her tick. He shares his skills with her and they come to find they can share and enhance each others magic, something they never thought possible. I enjoyed their slow-burning combustible chemistry, Kerrick’s jealousy and finally his realisation that not every woman is like his ex Jael.

And can I just say I love these covers! It’s rare when I want both. One shows pure grit, determination and “power” (LEFT). The other, the delicate yet beautiful effect a “touch” can have (RIGHT).

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I definitely look forward to the next installment of this series. Bring it on!

***Thank you to Harlequin for the ARC supplied via NetGalley for an honest review.***

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Review: On a Dark Wing by Jordan Dane

The choices I had made led to the moment when fate took over. I would learn a lesson I wasn’t prepared for. And Death would be my willing teacher.

Five years ago, Abbey Chandler cheated Death. She survived a horrific car accident, but her “lucky” break came at the expense of her mother’s life and changed everything. After she crossed paths with Death—by taking the hand of an ethereal boy made of clouds and sky—she would never be normal again.

Now she’s the target of Death’s ravens and an innocent boy’s life is on the line. When Nate Holden—Abbey’s secret crush—starts to climb Alaska’s Denali, the Angel of Death stalks him because of her.

And Abbey finds out the hard way that Death never forgets.

On a Dark Wing by Jordan Dane

Release Date: 27 December 2011
Read Date: 3 December 2011
Rating:

I’m torn. There are some brilliant aspects to this book but it was dreadfully slow. I dragged myself through because after figuring out the Meet Joe Black angle I was curious to know if it would end the same way. It didn’t. Actually, it took an unexpected yet not unwelcome turn that may not be liked by the masses.

Abbey is excellently portrayed. Her predicament: the ever-present crushing guilt over her mother’s death, the growing distance between her and her father, and her misplaced obsession with Nate (the jock who has an obsession of his own with mountain climbing) resulting from her inability to deal with her guilt, wallowing in it instead of moving on with her life. So she imagines this fictitious romantic relationship with him to help her deal with reality. It comforts her. Yes, it’s sort of creepy. She was one step away from becoming a full-on stalker but I understood her crush and empathised.

Her only company was her best friend Tanner but she hadn’t revealed much about her mother’s death and how she felt about it to him. He had his own hang-ups. He’d also been in a tragic accident but he hadn’t been so lucky; he was paralysed from the waist down and in a wheelchair. I enjoyed reading Tanner’s POV, witnessing how he was treated by others, how his relationships had suffered and the difference in how Abbey treats him. Without pity. She understands how it is for him without even asking.

‘Being loners might have drawn us together out of necessity, but it was our friendship that had made us strong enough to come out the other side.’

Kind of reminds me of The Dream-Maker’s Magic.

The story is all about Abbey’s transition. Realising that she’s tired of being unhappy, of pretending, lying and hiding. She wants to live. It’s a great message and I liked the method in which it was conveyed, reminiscent of Riders of the Apocalypse. Love, and the selfish versus the altruistic needs, wants and decisions we make based on that love were also expertly demonstrated. FYI, love’s a bitch.

“Dealing with guilt and grief doesn’t leave much room for anything else. I know about that dark stuff, but one day if you’re really lucky, you get tired of feeling bad all the time. It’s like a curtain opens and light comes in. First, it’s only a sliver. Then more.”

However, it’s not all smooth sailing. Besides being slow I really struggled to remain interested whenever we joined Nate’s dangerous climb up the mountain. Since seeing Cliffhanger as a child I never even contemplated doing something so unnecessarily hazardous. Rescue teams must love those guys. Anyway, when the Angel of Death does his Joe Black thing to Nate I cringed at his interactions with Abbey. Perhaps it was realistic given her crush but the way she sort of accepted not-Nate’s behaviour was uncomfortable to read. I wanted her to push harder when she called him on it, which would’ve sped up proceedings.

Death had been dealt a bum hand, poor guy. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. As powerful as he was he couldn’t control everything and he wasn’t perfect. He made mistakes. The mythology surrounding Death was intriguing. He’s sort of a swallower of souls, holding them inside him for safe-keeping until the day he’s the last one to die. But each soul changes him, for better or worse and this is what prompts him to make contact with Abbey. The ravens were a nice touch -suitably eerie.

As for the romance, well this is tricky. How much to say? There are three potential boyfriends, I guess. One from Abbey’s past, her present and future. And the most obvious is not the guy Abbey chooses, and I’m glad of this. Some might not be pleased but just this one aspect makes On a Dark Wing unique, for multiple reasons. The resolution at end was well done. I can definitely see people reacting in that manner to such an extraordinary situation although the lead-up to the climax was a little ludicrous.

Would I recommend this to anyone? Well, I didn’t hate this book and I wouldn’t dissuade anyone from reading it. In fact, I might warn them it’s slow but I’d encourage them to read to the end because I think the effort just might be worth it.

***Thank you to Harlequin Teen and Netgalley for providing me with this ARC.***

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Review: Where Demons Fear to Tread by Stephanie Chong

Fledgling guardian angel and yoga teacher Serena St. Clair dares enter Devil’s Paradise nightclub on a mission—to retrieve the wayward Hollywood “It Boy” she’s assigned to protect. But she’s ambushed by the club’s owner, arch demon Julian Ascher. The most powerful demonic entity in Los Angeles, Julian is handsome as sin, a master of temptation who loves nothing more than corrupting pleasure–seeking humans. He won’t release the lost soul Serena is supposed to guard. Unless she accepts his dangerous wager…

After the disastrous way his human life ended, Julian vowed that no woman would get the better of him again. Yet this sexy–sweet angel, smelling of fresh ocean air and happiness, triggers centuries–old feelings. Now, their high–stakes game of seduction, where angels fall from grace and where demons fear to tread, will lead them either to an eternity in hell or a deliciously hot heaven.


Where Demons Fear to Tread (The Company of Angels #1) by Stephanie Chong

Release Date: 23 Aug 2011
Edition: Kindle
Read: 25 Aug 2011

Rating:

Where Demons Fear to Tread is the first book in Stephanie Chong’s new The Company of Angels series. When I saw this book was about angels and demons I had to read it. I am loving all the angel v. demon novels coming out this year. It’s always fun to read about the ultimate good v. evil battle, especially when the lines between the two blur a bit.

In this story, we meet Serena, an selfless angel who has never been jaded by love and an arch demon, Julian, who excels at his job of gathering souls of the wicked. Serena’s charge is Nick Ramirez, a hot, new celebrity. When she follows him into Devil’s Paradise, the club owned by Julian, her job becomes a whole lot harder. Serena sees Julian and recognizes him as a demon. Even though demons and angels do NOT mix, she’s drawn to him. This scares her. When Julian spots her he MUST have her. Can true love save an arch demon?

Sadly, as honorable as Serena’s selflessness and willingness to sacrifice herself was, I just could not relate to her. I hunger for strong, kick-ass heroines who know what they want. Serena was the polar opposite. However, Stephanie did a good job presenting her in a way one may visualize a pure, naive angel. Parts veered too far into the religious zone for my liking.

However, Julian’s character was well-rounded, wicked, but hot. He is the best demon he can be and thrives on damning souls to Hell. But, the sight of Serena has him second-guessing himself. Again, a little hard to swallow, but his character is written in a way that pulled me to his side, hoping he was able to have what he wanted.

Poor Nick. He’s been assigned an angel for a reason, but he seems to get the short end of the stick here. He just wants to be loved. But, instead the demon trying hard to corrupt him and the angel assigned to save him find love. Doesn’t seem right. I’m all for an angel and a demon HEA, but at the cost of a human life?

Overall, I felt Stephanie did a wonderful job of presenting the wickedness of demons. The story was a quick read and the romance was hot. My full rating is 2.5 stars, but I rounded up to 3 because of Julian.

This was a Mira ARC provided to me by Netgalley

Review: Lord of the Vampires by Gena Showalter

Once upon a time…the Blood Sorcerer vanquished the kingdom of Elden. To save their children, the queen scattered them to safety and the king filled them with a need for vengeance. Only a magical timepiece connects the four royal heirs…and time is running out.

Nicolai the Vampire is renowned for his virility, but in a cruel twist of fate “The Dark Seducer” has become a sex slave in the kingdom of Delfina—stripped of his precious timepiece and his memory. All that remains is a primal need for freedom, revenge—and the only woman who can help him.

When the wanton vampire summons Jane Parker, she is helpless to obey. She’s drawn to his dark sexuality and into his magical realm. But for this human, all is not a fairy tale. For saving Nicolai could mean losing the only man she’s ever craved…


Lord of the Vampires (Royal House of Shadows #1) by Gena Showalter

Release Date: 23 Aug 2011
Edition: Kindle
Read: 21 July 2011

Rating:

Lord of the Vampires kicks off the quad Royal House of Shadows series by Gena Showalter, Jill Monroe, Jessica Andersen and Nalini Singh. Each book will follow a royal house sibling from the kingdom of Elden who’s “queen scattered them to safety and the king filled them with a need for vengeance”.

Nicolai is one of the royal heirs scattered to the winds. He’s ends up without a memory of who he is, chained in the dungeon playroom of Odette, Princess of the witches in the kingdom of Delfina.

Jane, a scientist recovering from a car accident that killed her family, starts having “don’t ever stop” dreams about a vampire chained up. {Where can I sign up for one of those?} When a mysterious book arrives for her, she is sure it has to do with her dream lover and falls asleep reading it. When she awakes, she finds herself in another world.

This book had some serious “Oh, yeah, baby!” moments in the beginning with Memory-Loss Nicolai chained, all nekked and helpless. And, how could anyone forget the seriously hot vampire sex throughout? Impossible!

Nicolai is your quintessential alpha-caveman-male. His “Mine!” and “Want!” at times had me thinking “Yes!” and others wishing he’d form a full sentence. I also had moments with Jane of “oh, for the love of Pete, shut up already” to “take what’s yours, hun”. I was feeling quite bi-polar throughout this book actually.

The best bits for me included Nicolai regaining his memories. Honestly, I wasn’t sure exactly how to rate this book. I settled on 3.5 stars, but didn’t round up.

When I saw two of my favorite authors listed in this lineup, I had to check it out. While Nicolai’s story didn’t wow me, it was super hot and set the stage for the family’s story. I plan to check out Jill’s story, Lord of Rage, about Princess Breena.

This was a Harlequin ARC provided to me by Netgalley

Review: Green-Eyed Demon by Jaye Wells

Green-Eyed Demon (Sabina Kane, #3)

Things to do:

1. Rescue sister.
2. Murder grandmother.
3. Don’t upset the voodoo priestess.

The clock is ticking for Sabina Kane. Her sister has been kidnapped by her grandmother, the Dark Races are on the brink of war, and a mysterious order is manipulating everyone behind the scenes.

Working on information provided by an unlikely ally, Sabina and her trusty sidekicks–a sexy mage named Adam Lazarus and Giguhl, a Mischief demon–head to New Orleans to begin the hunt for her sister. Once there, they must contend with belligerent werewolves, magic-wielding vampires and–perhaps most frightening of all–humans.

But as much as Sabina is focused on surviving the present, the past won’t be ignored. Before she can save those she cares about most, she must save herself from the ghosts of her past.

Read: 16 Feb 2011
Review: 5/5✰

Details:
Kindle Edition
Published February 22nd 2011 by Orbit
ISBN#: 9780316037778

Green-Eyed Demon by Jaye Wells
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Green-Eyed Demon is the 3rd book in the Sabina Kane series, so some series spoilers may exist.

I have enjoyed Sabina’s assassin adventures and twisted “family life” since first reading about her in Red-Headed Stepchild. In The Mage in Black, as quoted in the blurb, “… she arrives in New York to meet the mage side of her family {and} the reunion takes the fun out of dysfunctional.” But, in Green-Eyed Demon Sabina finds herself with a true family for the first time. A family comprised of mages, an Oprah-obsessed demon, vampires and even a were. And, although she feels the support having such a family brings with it, she finds herself wondering how’d that happen?

See, Sabina grew up under the control of Lavinia, her wicked grandmother, who happens to be the leader of the vampire race. Sabina’s never really known love and it scares the crap out of her. But, her ever faithful demon, Giguhl is there with words of wisdom – Seize the moment! And, that’s what she’s determined to do.

Following her twin, abduction, Sabina sets out to find Maisie and put an end to Lavinia’s madness once and for all. The search leads them to N’Awlins where she, Adam and Giguhl meet up with Voodoo priestess, Zenobia and her fae, drag queen friend and assistant, Brooks AKA: Pussy Willow. Together the five start searching the city for Maisie. In their hunt, they meet lesbian were and bar owner, Mac and her partner who promise to pass any information they hear about a new female vampire in town. Next, they meet Erron Zorn, the lead singer of Necrospank and recreant, or outcast mage and his band mates. They have had their battle with the Caste of Nod and don’t wish to be further involved.

Following Giguhl’s suggestion, Sabina thinks of all she needs to accomplish and forms a To-Do list:

“1. Perform voodoo ritual on evil owl.
2. Find out who sold us out to the anachronistic Caste vampires.
3. Make amends with lesbian werewolf.
4. Rescue twin.
5. Murder grandmother.”

Will she be able to pull it off? Just maybe, maybe, with a little help from her friends. That is if she can open herself up to the fact that she cannot do everything on her own any longer, this fight is much bigger than just her and her hatred for her grandmother. After all, the prophecy did say she would unite the dark races and stop the war. That’s a lot for one person to accomplish alone.

As a reader of a series, one of the things I enjoy is seeing characters grow, learn more about themselves, adjust to their situation, powers, etc. Another thing is seeing relationships becoming stronger and new ones forming. This book has that and more. The book made me laugh out loud, Giguhl never fails to amuse. There are a couple of “how’d you do that?” moments, but it is fantasy after all, right?

Overall, this was my favorite of the series so far. I enjoyed the snippet from the upcoming Silver-Tongued Devil in which we find Sabina causing trouble once again, but in a dark race roller derby with team members who go by names like Bitch N. Heat, Ima Cutchoo and Stankerbell. She also happens to be jonesing for her next fix, seems she’s been 114 days since she’s killed anyone. That certainly can’t last long! I look forward to the 2012 release of book #4.

This was a NetGalley ARC

Reading Order:
Red-Headed Stepchild (Sabina Kane, #1) The Mage in Black (Sabina Kane, #2) Green Eyed Demon (Sabina Kane, #3)

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Review: Hunting Human by Amanda Alvarez

❝For two years, Beth Williams has run from the past, and the beast that dwells inside her. She is haunted by memories of being kidnapped and the savage attack that killed her best friend. Now Beth finally thinks she’s ready to move on…with Braden Edwards, a charming, irresistibly sexy man who tempts Beth to embrace the present.

But the past lurks closer than Beth realizes. Markko Bolvek, one of the werewolves who kidnapped her, has tracked her to Portland, Oregon, his pursuit fueled by a hunger for vengeance. Only Braden, a werewolf himself, senses the danger shadowing her steps. The Edwards and Bolveks have been enemies for centuries—and despite the instant connection he feels with Beth, Braden isn’t sure which side of the war she’s on.

With suspicion at odds with their attraction, Beth and Braden must learn to trust one another to stop Markko for good. Can Beth accept the wolf within—and love a man who embodies everything she fears?❞

Read: 16 Mar 2011
Rating: 4/5✰

Details:

Kindle Edition
Published March 28th 2011 by Carina Press
ASIN#: B004MPRZGQ

Review:

Hunting Human is at times your typical “werewolf meets human he can’t resist” story and others an emotionally intense story about a girl who lost her closest friend (sister from another mother) in a brutal attack.

We are introduced to Beth (Elizabeth; Lizzy) and Rachel through Beth’s flashbacks of their trip through Europe. Liz being the responsible one of the two. As usual, she watched over Rachel while she partied a bit too hard at a local bar. While there, they attracted the wrong kind of attention from Markko Bolvek, a local werewolf. He abducts a not yet sober Rachel and Liz. She watches Rachel get attacked and killed before managing to escape.

Flash forward 2-3 years, Beth has spent much of her time back in the US wandering from one place to another, always looking over her shoulder and never settling down. Not until she gets a job at a local coffee shoppe and cafe in Portland, Oregon where she forms a bond with the shoppe’s owner, Angie and other employee. The two ladies make her laugh and without knowing it, help her get to a place emotionally where she can truly begin to rebuild her life.

Angie, a long-time mother-like figure in his life, tries to sway Braden Edwards’, from approaching Beth when she notices his peaked interest in her. She warns, “Not that one. She’s complicated. Not quick to socialize. There’s a past there. She’s not suited to casual romances.” But, he can’t resist. “He had to know her.”

Braden’s attempts to break through Beth’s shell as they get to know each other were adorable. He’s charming, handsome and funny. Beth’s equally nervous, this being her first date in three years. Their dates quickly turn hot as Braden spoiler – highlight to read:  s wolf’s attraction to her is unable to hold back. From there, things are hot and cold between the couple as Beth tries to overcome the horrors of her past and the discoveries they make of each other.

Past and present collide when the shadow Beth’s been hiding from emerges to have his revenge. There are a lot of things the couple haven’t shared about themselves when he appears, throwing their relationship into a spiral and neither is sure what will happen next. Or if it’s even possible to have a relationship at all.

Amanda Alvarez created a dark, emotional and steamy PNR that draws you in and keeps you intrigued throughout. I’d definitely read another book by this author. I also hope that this may turn into a series. I’d really enjoy seeing more of Braden’s family, who were a great addition to the story. Especially Lucy, Braden’s sister, who quickly fills the whole in her heart left by losing Rachel. Of course, I wouldn’t mind reading more about his brothers either.

This was a free NetGalley ARC.

Review: Outside In by Maria V. Snyder

❝Me? A Leader? Okay, I did prove that there’s more to Inside than we knew. That a whole world exists beyond this cube we live in. And finding that led to a major rebellion – between worker scrubs like me and the snobby uppers who rule our world. Make that ruled. Because of me, we’re free. I thought that meant I was off the hook, and could go off on my own again – while still touching base with Riley, of course. He’s the one upper I think I can trust. But then we learned that there’s outside and then there is Outside. And something from Outside wants In.❞

Read: 25 Feb 2011
Rating: 5/5✰

Details:
Published March 1st 2011 by Harlequin Teen
ISBN: 9780373210114

Review:

Outside In, the second book in the “Inside Out” series, picks up six weeks post-Force of Sheep rebellion which occurred in Inside Out. Trella, used to being the Queen of the Pipes and now seen as victorious leader of the rebellion, is doing all she can to avoid any responsibility, most importantly aftermath clean up and reorganization of the Insiders.

The Insiders, now a combination of Uppers and Scrubs, find themselves under control once again. But, this time, instead of Pop Cops and the Travas, there’s a Committee – “comprised of one representative from each of the nine upper families and one leader from each scrub area like hydroponics and waste-water. Eighteen in all. Since an even number could cause problems when members voted, a nineteenth spokesperson had been added.” They’d wanted that person to Trella, but she refused, taking position of Consultant. Jacy filled the nineteenth spot.

Despite Trella’s hopes that the creation of the Committee would solve the problems faced by the Insiders, people remained resistant to them. Scrubs eventually stopped doing their jobs because Uppers refused to get their hands dirty and help out. Chaos was not far behind.

ROLL-OVER SPOILER

Trella’s world continues to change throughout the book. Her physical world is growing. They’ve discovered levels above those where they’ve spent their lives. They are trying to remodel them to accommodate all the Insiders in a more comfortable, spacious setting. Her personal life is changing as well. Her relationship with Riley is growing; Dr. Lamont, who believes Trella’s her long-lost daughter, tries to prove that she is on Trella’s side; and Trella must realize that she needs to step up if she wants things to work Inside.

With every turn of the page, you question, along with Trella, the loyalty of those in her life. The lines are blurred as she becomes a leader once again.

For the first 1/2 of the book, readers who fell in love with Trella’s quick thinking and do-or-die-trying attitude will be disappointed to find her avoiding everything. But, once Trella realizes that she is in fact needed and can help, she accepts the challenge with the gusto and persistence we’ve come to expect from her.

The relationship between Trella and Riley was one that you could relate to easily. Their feelings for each other and their attraction was more evident in this edition. Though the story remains PG-rated, they had some hot warm new love moments. The ups and downs they faced and their reactions to them were realistic, even if frustrating at times.

I really enjoyed this addition to the series. I’m hopeful that the series will continue, there are still questions left unanswered. However, the ending did wrap up much of the story which leads me to wonder if it will be a duology instead.

Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin Teen for allowing me the opportunity to read this ARC.

Other books in the series: