Book Reviews

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

My edition: Owned Paperback
Pages: 374
Series: The Hunger Games #1
Genre: YA, Dystopian, Romance
Published: July 1, 2010, by Scholastic Inc.
Rating: 5 star



In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weight survival against humanity and life against love.


No one will forget me. Not my look, not my name. Katniss. The girl who was on fire.

This book came out the year before my junior year in high school. I didn’t pick it up until 2014. I loved it and gave it five stars. Recently, I have been watching people see all the movies for the first time on youtube. It’s been giving me the motivation to pick it up for a reread.

After reading this I have come to the conclusion that the movie has done all the characters dirty. Especially Peeta. I forgot how much I love Peeta and Katniss’s relationship. I think I love this book more now than I did back when I first read it. I forgot how much I love Collins writing in the series. So much detail and world-building that was sadly left out of the movies.

I can’t wait to get into the second book. That book is my favorite. I can’t wait to get more of Peeta and Katniss. Not a big fan of Gale. I think I somewhat liked him when I first read this book, but now looking at it, he’s okay. I am just glad for Peeta.

MCs: 5 stars
Side Characters: 5 stars
Plot: 5 stars

Book Reviews

The Selection by Kiera Cass

My edition: KU
Pages: 331
Series: The Selection #1
Genre: YA, Dystopian, Romance
Published: April 24, 2012, by HarperTeen
Rating: 2.5 stars


For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself—and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.


When this book came out, I was probably worried about the senior prom and graduation. I avoided this book for a long time. I have seen a lot of hate thrown its way. So why am I picking it up now? That is a very good question. I read a copious amount of books that are a fight to the death to be queen or something along those lines. With such books, they are a hit or miss. I thought I really need to read the book that started off the pageant-like contest to be queen. I stumbled across this on the KU list.

With that being said, on to the review.

I didn’t want to be royalty. And I didn’t want to be a One. I didn’t even want to try.

I have many problems with The Selection’s first book. I do not like her mother. I really don’t like the non-supportive parent trope that is heavy in YA. Also, don’t like the trope that tends to follow it which is the other parent not standing up to the non-supportive parent.

My next problem with this is Aspen. How he entered the book was eh. I did not get a build-up with this character. He and America’s relationship was thrust upon us in the second chapter. I could not buy into their relationship because Cass doesn’t explain any of their relationship until the halfway mark. The little bit of him that was shown was toxic masculinity.

That was my great ambition. Not to be Illéa’s princess. To be Aspen’s

Y’all this was said on page 14 of the book. Now it is said that America has been in love with Aspen for two years. But he is a caste lower than her which is not a good thing. Especially with America’s gold-digging mother.

America… I’m not going to mention my thoughts on the name American Singer. But the character herself, I am not a fan of. It took me twenty-two pages to hate the character. Now did she redeem herself? I would say yes and no. At times she would be funny and other times a whiny teen.

Maxon, I kind of like him. He wasn’t as bad as Aspen. I really liked his relationship with America. America wasn’t as insufferable when she was with him. I was thoroughly enjoying this book until the author brought Aspen back into the scene. Like why? Why do we have to have a love triangle? Can’t we just have a brokenhearted girl finding herself after a break-up and learning to move on in a healthy way?

Is that too much to ask for? I went ahead and spoiled it for myself to see who she ends up with. And since that happened I am done with The Selection.

Book Reviews

Tithe by Claire Vale

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 231
Series: The Offered #1
Genre: Dystopian, YA, Romance
Published: April 14, 2020
Rating: 3 stars


Pair up or be Tithed!

Two things are ever certain in Ironcross: the beasts outside the wall and the Tithe.

When Senna Rhys turns eighteen, she must go through the Tithe, a rite of passage to adulthood and a selection process that claims ten souls for the treaty with the wall. The unpaired are chosen first—securing the next generation to supply the Tithe is the foundation of Ironcross’ survival.

There’s Gabriel, the gorgeous boy next door with blue, blue eyes. He’s been my best friend since forever. He’s the keeper of my heart.

There’s Kane, arrogant and self-assured and darkly beautiful. He wants everything but my heart and has an irritating habit of catching me when I fall.

There’s Ironcross. The wall that keeps the beasts out. The fear that keeps us in. The Alders who rule with ruthless clarity.

Above all else, there’s the Tithe. The pact and sacrifice and pairings that bind our world.

Tithe is a post-apocalyptic romance and adventure with some disturbing themes set in a dark, dystopian world.


The story starts off with our heroine on her 18th birthday. Two days before the tithe. Ironcross is a small community that the first settlers walled themselves in when the plague devastated the world and left what is called ferocious beasts outside the wall. Then a family, the Alders, made a deal with the beasts. The Tithe in which ten people who just turned 18 will be sent to the wall. What that means isn’t really explained to the people. All they know is once it’s tithe year over the course of two weeks ten will be gone, never to be seen again.

To tell the truth, I have no idea how I feel about this book. I skimmed. I wasn’t totally invested in the characters. I can’t even tell if this was a love triangle or quadruple or more than four people. There really is too much going on with the whole partner situation. I’m still confused about what exactly the Tithe is.

The heroine started out with the right guy. The guy who was good for her, but I guess he’s the hero, makes a hard moral decision and it throws everything off balance. I don’t think I will go on with the series. I am just not interested in seeing what happens to those who have been tithed and those who haven’t.

Book Reviews

Dwindle by K.A.Gandy

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 202
Series: Populations Crumble #1
Genre: YA, Dystopian
Published: December 19, 2020
Rating: No rating. DNF @ 30%


Humankind is in trouble. The Sterilization Vector has crippled reproduction across the globe. With the human population on the brink of utter collapse, the government has stepped in to try to save the human race.

Sadie is just one woman, but could her genes hold the key to unlocking what remains of the world’s reproductive potential? Taken from her home and family, she must fight to find not just her best genetic match, but a man she can try to build a life with.

Will she be able to find someone to love, despite the odds stacked against her, or will she be one more woman swallowed up by the decline of humanity?


Yeah… Yeah… No!

I can’t do it. I don’t like the writing style nor do I like the plot. I understand some people like this book for what I hate about it. I understand what the author is going for but it also feels like it has subtle attacks on men. Maybe I’m reading too much into what the author says but that’s how I feel. Also, I’ve been bored since the start. There is nothing that pulls me in.

The h is lackluster. The H is bland. I couldn’t connect and I just don’t think I should waste any more time. I tried. I did. I was going to DNF at 5% but I decided to continue on but I can’t anymore.

Book Reviews

Sandstorm by T.W. Piperbrook

My edition: Kindle owned
Pages: 208
Series: Sandstorm #1
Genre: Sci-fi, Fantasy, Dystopian
Published: June 2, 2018
Rating: 2 stars


Something is hunting the inhabitants of Ravar…

For three generations, the colonists on Ravar have been stranded on a harsh planet, forced to survive in a desert environment where only the scrappiest animals and the heartiest plants survive. Most live without the foolish hope that Earth’s supply ships will ever grace the skies again.

Trapped in a sandstorm, Neena Xylance struggles to make her way back to her colony. What she doesn’t know is that she isn’t alone, and what she finds might destroy the last of the fragile life on her planet. 


Most speculated Earth was dead.

This takes place on Ravar. Ravar used to be a mining colony but it’s been years since the last supply ship from Earth has been seen. No one mines anymore. Neena is a native of Ravar. She was out hunting for food when the sandstorm hit with no warning.

Throughout the book, we get to see different sides of the sandstorm. Neena is stuck out in the desert, Gideon is in a bunker with the Heads of the Colony, Raj (Neena’s younger brother) is at home with the little brother and Darius is in his workshop.

Neena, I think is the only view I didn’t skim through. I was not interested in the other views. I think that they took away from Neena and what was going on with her. I didn’t care about what the other characters were doing. I didn’t feel as if they helped the story move along.

Will not be moving on to the next one. This did end on a cliffhanger but not one that made me want to know what’s going on.

Book Reviews

The Princess Crown by Cordelia Castel

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 544
Series: The Princess Trials #3 final book
Genre: YA, Dystopia
Published: Dec. 3rd, 2020
Rating: 4 STARS


She wanted to destroy the monarchy.
Now she must battle to save her prince.

Zea resumes her role as a spy but this time against the people she once pledged her loyalty—the Red Runners.

Rescuing Prince Kevon won’t be easy, especially when suspicion plagues Zea’s every step. She also doesn’t know how the prince will react to learning her terrible truth.

Lies are uncovered, hearts broken… Can Zea and Prince Kevon overcome their differences, save Phangloria and find love?


While the first book was magnificent and kept me on edge. The following two books didn’t quite measure up. The series is wonderful but the first book set a high bar. It almost reminds me of Divergent. The first book is amazing but the following books don’t quite measure up even though they are good.

Zea has to continue the fight but Prince Kevon has learned of the real reason why she had entered the Princess Trials.

I feel like the romance was good. The action at the beginning of the book held my attention. Towards the middle, it slowed down a smidge then picked back up then would slow down then pick back up to an ending that was surprisingly good.

There is a book called Princess Purge but that falls Princess Briar’s story. Briar was a character that I wasn’t very fond of nor did I dislike her. It’s up in the air if I will read her story.

A good end to a good series.

Book Reviews

The Princess Games by Cordelia Castel

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 516
Series: The Princess Trials #2
Genre: YA, Dystopia, Survival Games
Published: August 13, 2020
Rating: 4 stars


The stakes are higher and the competition more brutal in round two of the Princess Trials. Zea’s relationship with Prince Kevon intensifies, and she must choose between the prince and the rebel who holds her heart.

When her enemies uncover a secret that drives a rift between Zea and Prince Kevon, she’s not only battling for survival but facing execution.


I ate up the first book like crazy. It had been a while since I had a book keep me on the edge. Now this book on the other hand… I’m not saying it’s bad, but it’s not as good as the first book. At times it was slow and getting towards the end of the book it seemed it was wrapping up, but then something happens.

Just when I thought my troubles were over, just when I thought I could return to Rugosa to my anonymous life as a Harvester apprentice, Queen Damascena brings me back into the Princess Trials.

Zea was happy at the end of the first book. She was about to go home and see the boy she loved. But the Queen ruined that by inviting her to stay in the game. Zea has no idea who to trust. She just wants to go home. But the Queen won’t allow it. Now Zea just has to survive the game.

In the beginning, a lot more action took place and I was on the edge of my seat. But then some stuff popped up and everything slowed down to a lull. About 75% through something happens and it helped the story a bit.

I’m hoping the next book is more like the first book.

Book Reviews

The Princess Trials by Cordelia K. Castel

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 504
Series: The Princess Trials #1
Genre: Dystopia, YA
Published: May 3, 2020


Thirty young women. A handsome prince. A battle to the death

Water is scarce. Deserts have taken over the land. Nuclear war has devastated humanity. Humans live in walled super cities to keep out the irradiated. The land that was formerly known as America is divided into kingdoms ruled by royal elites.

Born into the lowest Echelon of the Kingdom of Phangloria, sixteen-year-old Zea Calico faces a life of hunger, thirst, and toil. The only way out of this drudgery is revolution, and Zea is desperate to help the cause.

When the palace calls for candidates to compete to marry Prince Kevon, Zea joins the Princess Trials to search the palace for weaknesses.

The trials should be a fairytale of sumptuous meals, ballgowns, and romance, but one misplaced word causes Zea to attract the Prince’s attention. When Zea uncovers the man beneath Prince Kevon’s public facade, she is at risk of falling in love and losing sight of her mission.

But the televised beauty pageant turns deadly, and Zea must fight for survival.


Water, not food, is the currency in our Echelon. Echelons are levels of society that define a person’s caste, social status, access to resources, and freedom.

Zea is a harvester. The harvesters are at the bottom of Phangloria’s system. The system consists of six echelons. Royals, Nobles, Guardians, Artisans, Industrials, and Harvesters make up the system. There are also the Foundlings that live outside until they prove they can contribute to society. Phangloria is a country in North America. They are separated from the desert by the Great Wall. The country only has one water source, the Oasis. The harvesters live the furthest from the Oasis.

The Princess Trials are an old tradition where the king and queen invite young women of any echelons to compete for the prince’s hand.

Infiltrate the palace, find the hidden entrances, and don’t fall in love with the handsome prince.

To help the revolution Zea enters the Princess Trials. There is only one problem. Harvesters never get picked.

This started out slow and at first, I didn’t know what to expect. In the synopsis, it says it’s a mixture of The Hunger Games and The Selection. I haven’t personally read The Selection but read many reviews on it. I loved The Hunger Games.

This didn’t disappoint. Like I said at first it started slow but once the first girl died, it picked up. I was on the edge of my seat. I can’t tell you when the last time a book had me like this. OH, I am so glad we had more than one awesome kick-butt heroine. You didn’t know who to trust and what side was which. I can’t wait to get to the second book.

I can only imagine what will happen with Zea and Kevon in the next book. Also what’s happening to Ryce and does he really like Zea or is he using her feelings to get even with the royals?

Book Reviews

Tallas by Cathrina Constantine

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Pages: 310
Series: The Tallas #1
Genre: Dystopia, Sci-fi
Published: Feb 1st, 2014
Rating: 3 stars


In a decimated world, setting foot outside of Tallas is certain death ~ or so they say. Mutations caused by those in the wilderness have plagued citizens ~ or so they say…

For Doogan and Keeyla their belief in a Free Tallas has lost its glimmer. And when their young son, Fabal, is given a dangerous assignment, they risk everything to protect him. Fleeing Tallas, they head for the wilderness. But when they are ambushed by cruel Mediators, Doogan is recaptured, and while Keeyla and Fabal escape, she is severely injured.

Can the two of them survive in the wilderness? Will Doogan get away from the clutches of the Mediators? And are the legends about the terrible monsters beyond the walls of Tallas true?


But Tallas isn’t free. It’s a dictatorship.

This story is good, but it wasn’t for me. I think if I was younger I would have loved this story. As we all know, the older we get the more our preferences change due to experiences we encounter. (Plus certain books we read that destroy our hearts and we never recover nor find a book as good.) While I still love dystopian novels, some just fall short of my parameter.

history forever repeats itself. Corrupt people in power with their hypothetical rhetoric continue to despoil what is left of civilization.

I don’t care which side of politics you are on, this quote is true. No matter what political opinions all end up becoming dictators for the “common good” to help out the people. Face it when most people get power it goes to their heads. This is quite a good story of how that happens but I kind of wish it was flushed out more. I think then I would have liked it then. There seemed to be certain plot points that need to be a little more detailed.

Dying and death had been commonplace over the years yet it never lost its repulsive nature.

I don’t want to dispel you from this book. I due think it is good, I just wish there was more. Maybe there is in the second book. I am just not compelled to read it. Maybe a day in the future I will but as of right now, I think I will move on.

Book Reviews

The Queen of All that Lives by Laura Thalassa

My edition: Kindle Unlimited
Series: The Fallen World #3
Rating: 4 stars

She’s a martyr.
A myth.
A ghost.
A legend.
She’s my soulmate and my captive, my conscience and my wrath. I love her too much to let her die; I fear her to much to wake her from her slumber.
She’s mine.
And now she’s gone.

He’s unnatural.
He’s the keeper of lies and lost souls. Mine slipped through his clutches.
I am his wife, his queen, the love of his very long life.
And soon, I will be his executioner.

ReviewOf all ironies to exist, we are the worst one.

So it is 104 years later. Yeah you read that right. One hundred and four years later. Serenity has been in the sleeper for that long. The world she once knew is different. The king is not the same man she once knew. (Yes the King is still alive.) The people all around her are not the same.

It should never have been this way. The two of us have done so many unforgivable things. But at the end of the day, we are two wrongs that, together, make something right.

Serenity woke up with people she did not know around her. She had been kidnapped by the WUN. They want her to end the war. Serenity escapes with the help of the king’s guards. She now has to learn everything she has missed. People expect her to end a war that has been going on for more than a hundred years. Serenity doesn’t know how but she will do anything to stop it.

I am the girl from the WUN-the girl born a citizen of the United States of America. I am vengeance and I am salvation.

During most of the book Serenity is like herself from the first book. Then there were certain parts were she would get annoying like she did in the second book. I did like this one better than the second book but I didn’t like it better than the first. The ending was perfect. I like the way it ended. Couldn’t have been better.

I do like Thalassa’s writing and will be reading more of her books soon.