The Merciless by Danielle Vega

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The book’s about a girl named Sofia who moves to a new town and befriends the three popular girls (Riley, Alexis and Grace). They want her to spy on their former friend, Brooklyn, who’s now more “alternative” (dark eyeliner, tattoos, piercings, etc.). It’s literally Mean Girls in reverse for the first few chapters, but the book knows that and at one point Sofia quips “Most girls would just write a burn book.” (Pg. 112)
This is much more violent and gory than Mean Girls though. There are very detailed descriptions of physical harm and dead bodies. The book moves along at a quick pace and once it gets to the part where Riley (the head popular girl) is trying to “save” Brooklyn, the pace really picks up. This ends in kind of a cliff hanger, but I already own book two. I actually bought that one first. Oops.
I enjoyed this, though I think there could’ve been a bit more character development. We mostly learn about Sofia through her interactions with her grandmother and flashbacks and not much is really mentioned about the other characters. One other small issue I had, and it might be petty, is that there’s a song that’s supposed to be skipping on a cd in the book and it’s going “shout to the, shout to the,” but the song is “Shout at the Devil” not “Shout to the Devil,” so the lyrics are wrong.
I’d recommend it to anyone who likes young adult/horror who doesn’t mind swearing. It was also kind of fun reading a pink book with a pentagram on the cover on public transportation. I gave it 4/5 stars.

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Brief, Horrible Moments: A Collection of One Sentence Horror Stories by Marko Pandza

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This book has 242 one sentence horror stories and not one of them was truly scary. I honestly couldn’t wait to finish this one. It got repetitive very fast. The author seemed to get stuck on the themes of being buried and/or eaten alive and having your loved ones come back from the dead. I’m aware that there’s not much that you can do with one sentence, but some of them were actually pretty long.
I won this in a First Reads giveaway on Goodreads but all opinions are mine. I gave it 2/5 stars.

Unbroken: 13 Stories Starring Disabled Teens edited by Marieke Nijkamp

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Unbroken is a collection of short stories about teens with a variety of disabilities written by autors who also have disabilities. There’s a good amount of diversity represented here too. Most of them are good, but I did find myself losing interest a little bit in the middle of the book. It might just be me, but in some of the stories it wasn’t quite clear what the disability was.
My favorites were “The Leap and the Fall” by Kayla Whaley and “One, Two, Three” by Corinne Duyvis (It’s called “A Curse, A Kindness” in the official version.) I plan on checking out more of their work.
I received my copy for free from NetGalley but all opinions are my own. I would recommend this book to teens with disabilities, anyone who wants to diversify their reading and people who like short story collections. 3/5 stars.

The Harlequin by Laurell K. Hamilton (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter #15)

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I won this book through a First Reads giveaway on Goodreads and then realized that I already owned a hardcover copy from one of my thrift shop trips. Oops.
It took me forever (four and a half months) to read this because I just couldn’t get into it. This review probably has spoilers.  Anita has six boyfriends of various supernatural types (vampire, werewolf, wereleopard) and they’re being threatened by mysterious, powerful vampires known as “The Harlequin.”
Since Anita needs to feed the ardeur every however many hours, there’s lots of sex. Jean-Claude and Richard get put in comas and they need more power, so she sleeps with the head were-rat and they take the whole rat clans power using the ardeur, followed by doing the same thing with the head were swan. I found myself wondering how she even gets people to sleep with her, but then I remembered that any guy who sees her wants her/falls in love with her. Silly me.
Finally some action scenes that aren’t in a bedroom happen and, though she’s injured, Anita’s able to miraculously heal. Unfortunately, someone dies and her friend’s son in injured. He’s in love with her too.  Her work friend, Dolph, confronts her about sleeping with monsters and being the human servant of the master of the city, but she doesn’t want to hear it, so she makes him leave.
They get an execution warrant for the vamps, but the vamps call and threaten them first, so they head off for the big showdown. At this point, it just wasn’t exciting enough. She was more concerned about her shirt showing her cleavage at times than fighting vampires. I really don’t think she had her priorities straight. Someone else died during the climactic showdown, but Anita and co won.

Honestly, at that point, I kind of didn’t care. I hate feeling like that with books, but I didn’t. I felt like a deserved a cookie for finally finishing it. I’m done with this series. This book’s going in my donation pile. Both copies.

Haunting the Deep by Adriana Mather

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Haunting the Deep is set six months after the end of How to Hang a Witch and Samantha hasn’t been talking to anyone, especially the Descendants. That changes when she starts seeing ghosts and dreaming about the Titanic, which they’re studying in school. That sets off a chain of events that effects everyone around her. Samantha and the Descendants, with help from some new and old allies, race to find the answers before it’s too late.
The book is a quick read since in takes place over a two week period and I figured out who the bad guy was right away (unlike the first book), but it was still a fun read. I like the friendship between Samantha and her neighbor Mrs. Meriwether and her friendship with the rest of the Descendants. She even gets a ghost cat. If there’s a third book in the series, I’ll definitely read it.
The author works in some social commentary about the way the class system was on The Titanic and how things are similar today.  At the end, she gives a brief history of her family members who were on the Titanic. I’d recommend this to fans of the first one, historical fiction, books about magic or books about the Titanic.
I got this book for free from Blogging For Books in exchange for this review. All opinions are my own.

I gave it 4/5 stars.

WWE Vol. 2: Lunatic Fringe by Dennis Hopeless

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Vol. 2 focuses on Dean Ambrose and Sasha Banks’ journey to the Money in the Bank pay per view. The two pair up after saving each other from their respective nemeses and become travel partners. There are some fun scenes of them trying to get each other to loosen up before they run into the Wyatts (They’re persistent). A surprise superstar helps them out and they make it to the ppv on time. I like that it has a happy ending.
It was a little odd that they gave Dean a different backstory and, honestly, I wanted more Shield interaction. I know the Wyatts aren’t done with them. I was also bummed that they made Dean’s eyes green when they’re blue. That might be picky, but I’m ok with that. I’ll still be getting Vol. 3 at some point.

I’d recommend it to WWE fans and I gave it 4/5 stars.

Freaks I’ve Met by Donald Jans

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I won this in a First Reads giveaway on Goodreads that I entered because the description sounded funny. I wasn’t disappointed. Freaks I’ve Met is about a man named Jack Fitzpatrick who is moving from Spokane, Washington to Los Angeles, California to be a male model after running into a talent agent at a car wash. That doesn’t exactly work out but, after a few temp jobs, he eventually finds a more permanent job at Freedom Capital, a bond broker. Insanity ensues.

Some of the situations that Jack finds himself in are so outrageous or messed up that they’re just hilarious. I started laughing out loud at this book while reading it in the mall before work. The story flows well and I liked the author’s writing style.

The end of the book was alright and it ended on an entertaining note. If you like to laugh and don’t mind swearing, check it out.