November 14, 2013

REVIEW: Fault Line by Christa Desir

Fault Line by C. Desir
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: October 15, 2013
Source: Edelweiss eARC*
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Get it: Amazon | B&N
Ben could date anyone he wants, but he only has eyes for the new girl — sarcastic free-spirit, Ani. Luckily for Ben, Ani wants him too. She’s everything Ben could ever imagine. Everything he could ever want.

But that all changes after the party. The one Ben misses. The one Ani goes to alone.
Now Ani isn’t the girl she used to be, and Ben can’t sort out the truth from the lies. What really happened, and who is to blame?

Ben wants to help her, but she refuses to be helped. The more she pushes Ben away, the more he wonders if there’s anything he can do to save the girl he loves.

My Review
I have never read a book like Fault Line by Christa Desir. I was simply flabbergasted by how this novel was written with raw, harsh, and brutal honesty. This book is not what I expected at all, but I mean that in a very good way. Fault Line took me off guard, completely shattered me with resounding silence and left me with thoughts I couldn’t settle within me. 

With all the dark books I’ve read, I think Fault Line not only took a part of me, but left a part of itself as well. This book was a tough read in the sense that the issue was gutting and completely heart-wrenching for the main character and for the character that faced the horrific rape. Desir does an amazing job of really making the reader think about the issue at hand. She put the question in your mind about what you would do if you were in the shoes of Ben? She puts you in a place where you think you would do one thing, but possibly should do the other. The whole ordeal Ben was in was entirely a difficult and complicated situation and being I thought I was throughly frustrated, angry and upset as Ben was. 

I really love that Desir created an authentic male character who was downright realistic in his decisions, actions and reactions. Ben was not hero, but he wasn’t a bad guy either. He did what he thought was right for him no matter how wrong it may have seem.   He wasn’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination. Sometimes he said the right things, sometimes he said the wrong things and sometimes he just didn’t know what to say at all and I was ok with that. It made him real. I really got to see Ben struggle and dig himself into an even bigger hole for himself and Ani. He tried to be there for her, tried to work things out and get pass the doubt, anger and sadness. I saw him at his very best and his very worst and when he finally stood up and did something that needed to be done long ago. I felt so helpless for Ben, but I also felt proud of him for sticking to his beliefs and especially when he did what he needed to do, no matter how painful it was. 

Fault Line is not a typical boy meets girl, they fall in love and go through all kinds of crap and live happily ever after kind of book. No way in hell. It was hard to read because Ben and Annika do fall in love and everything seemed damn near perfect. I loved seeing them together because they were too cute for words. To read how both of them were slowly unraveled and broken down from what happened was so so hard to read. And I think Desir totally brings you into the story as if you were experiencing what Ben and Annika were feeling and you couldn’t do anything about it. It was heartbreaking and exhausting in so many ways. How do help someone when they don’t want to be helped? How can you help yourself when you don’t know where to begin or don’t believe you can be helped? Where is the blame placed? 

Most of the books I’ve read about this situation is always in the point of view of the victim, but this time around it’s in the point of view of something who isn’t but who is still affected nonetheless. I really liked being put into this perspective because changed how I viewed things. This book beats you down and truly makes you question yourself if you were ever put into this situation. It’s disabling, disarming and gutting in way that leaves you feeling completed raw and exposed. 

*Thanks to Simon Pulse for sending a copy for review.
I was not compensated for my opinion. 

November 12, 2013

REVIEW: Sins & Needles by Karina Halle

Sins & Needles by Karina Halle (The Artists Trilogy #1)
Publisher: Forever
Publication Date: June 4, 2013
Rating: 5/5 stars
Get it: Amazon | B&N
Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents' latest scam. Now she's much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for - Camden McQueen.

Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie's counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she's not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time. When Camden discovers Ellie's plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn't dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it's one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerous road. 

My Review
I already knew Sins & Needles by Karina Halle was going to be absolutely blow my mind worthy, but I never knew just how much it was going to rock my freaking world and more. Sins & Needles had everything I wanted: danger, sex, tattoos, illegal activities, criminals, redeemable yet flawed characters, and a crazy ass ex-boyfriend on the hunt. This book was 5 stars worth of badass. 

I loved main character, narrator, totally fantabulous, Ellie Watt. She was one amazing character because I got to see the good and bad sides of her. She was a character who had all kinds of faults, she wasn’t a typical heroine, but one in gray area of black and white, right and wrong. Ellie Watt was more human that any character I have every encountered in my time of reading. She was fatally flawed, not able to resist temptation, can do bad things, but still feel guilt and remorse. She was a survivor of a tough life and did things that were illegal and deceiving, but it was who she became to be and I liked that she admitted it and sometimes embraced it even though she wanted to change it. She sometimes had an attitude of consequences be damned that I really liked about her. 

The romance in this book wasn’t butterflies and happy endings full of true love. I’m not even sure you could really call what Ellie and Camden have as romance because of how complicated everything was for them. It was sometimes hurtful, brutal, and intense. There was betrayal and understanding and sometimes cruelty. Though it was not perfect for Ellie and Camden, they were passionate nonetheless. They got where they wanted to be or at least tried to make it work and build the trust they have lost. Camden was one scary sexy beast. He was intoxicating right off the very bat. He was charming and endearing but he was also dangerous and wicked all at once and I loved all sides of him. I loved that he could be gentle and soft and then be cold and unforgiving in one flip of a switch. Camden’s impending darkness and the way he saw beauty in broken things made him much more desirable than he already was. Even in his clever, conniving and intense manner, Camden McQueen was simply breath-taking. 

I completely enjoyed the heck out of Sins & Needles. Halle gave me one dirty, gritty, deliciously dark and one completely engrossing novel. I just loved how easily placed I felt in this book because of how she appealed to all of my senses. I envisioned everything with so much ease. I especially appreciated the flashbacks that were very well placed in the book. I loved being able to see a glimpse of Ellie and Camden’s past, of who they were before and how they got to where they were now. The flashbacks never get in the way of the present storyline. In fact, the third person flashbacks enhanced it to really give you the full experience of seeing that the Ellie you’re meeting now was not the same Ellie back then. I thought Halle really brought in an exciting and thrilling ride. Sins & Needles was dangerous, scandalous and oh so sexy. It had a certain edginess to give the book its originality. It’s crazy and chaotic and sometimes a little wild too. I loved that book messed with the laws, with morals, and meaning of love, trust, betrayal and sacrifice. Some of the characters are bat shit crazy and sometimes the things they do were brutal, but it was because of that Sins & Needles was fucking amazing through and through.