Saturday, July 23, 2016

Regina Shen: Defiance by Lance Erlick

Title: Defiance
Author: Lance Erlick
Series: Regina Shen #3


Abrupt climate change melted ice caps, flooded coasts, and expanded deserts. Outcast Regina Shen is a fugitive the World Federation believes has DNA that can stop human extinction. Rival Federation agents fight over capturing Regina to gain power amidst turmoil over who will become the new World Premier. Regina has to flee from Virginia through desert and wilderness to Alaska to hunt a treasure big enough to barter for her freedom and that of her sister. Can she find allies and tools to remain free long enough to find something to trade?


This series just keeps getting better and better! This book didn't feel filler, as some 2nd and 3rd books can tend to be. It had it's share of adventure and plot movement, and stood on it's own (not in terms of being read alone, I don't recommend that at all) but as it was a legit addition to the series and needed to be there for the continued growth of the series. 

The character development in this series is starting to surprise me. I have read so many series where I enjoy the ride the characters take in personal growth, but this one has taken the cake. I have grown so attached to Regina and her journey that I find myself talking about this book whenever I can. I feel for her, and root for her. She is just such an unseen character in some of the YA dystopian books. She has a brain, and she uses it. It isn't an afterthought for her. And it's nice to see a strong, SMART, female lead for a change.

In this book Regina is still on the run, and now looking for her sister. This added to the adventure and page turning for me. I couldn't stop reading because I needed to find out what happened. We find out a lot about the world Regina lives in this book as well, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I love when series just get stronger as they progress. I can't wait to find out what happens in the last book! I have so many unanswered questions and feelings about certain characters: like the mother and the Chief Inspector. I just need to know what happens and know that it all works out for Regina :)

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Regina Shen: Vigilance by Lance Erlick

Title: Vigilance
Author: Lance Erlick
Series: Regina Shen #2

Source: For review


Abrupt climate change melted ice caps and flooded coasts. Outcast Regina Shen has unique DNA that the World Federation believes can prevent human extinction. Not trusting them, Regina jumps the barrier wall into the Federation to hunt for her sister, kidnapped two years earlier. She reaches the well-guarded university near where they’re holding her sister. Two rival inspectors close in on her. With time running out, can she escape campus and rescue her sister from an obvious trap?


So, I loved this book! I think this is quickly becoming one of my favorite series of the year. It's so much fun, and it packs a punch. 

This book talks place a few years after the last one ended. I loved that this book was unpredictable. I have become weary of dystopian books because of the almost formulaic setup of most of them. But this series has proven to be unlike the rest. And, I would like to add, that this book didn't suffer from sophomore book syndrome. It was just as engaging and fast paced as the first one. I didn't feel as if this one was filler in the least. 

I loved the character development Regina underwent in this book. And I can see that she will continue to grow as a character throughout the series. I love the setup the author has given her for the future books, and hasn't let her growth be set aside for plot and shock value! Kudos to you Mr. Erlick for giving us a well rounded character that doesn't fall flat! :) I also liked the introduction of new characters, and look forward to seeing how they flesh out in the later books. I love when more characters are introduced in addition to the ones we already know and love and not just to replace them. It makes the world and series more full. 

I can't wait to get to the next one because the ending of this book was, just WOW! I highly recommend this series! 

Friday, June 3, 2016

Regina Shen: Resilience by Lance Erlick

Title: Resilience
Series: Regina Shen #1
Author: Lane Erlick

Amazon  (only .99!!!!)


Abrupt climate change melted ice caps and flooded coasts. Regina Shen is an outcast condemned to live on the seaward side of barrier walls. A hurricane threatens to destroy Regina’s world, tearing her from sister, mom, and home.

The World Federation’s notorious Department of Antiquities polices barrier walls and suppresses knowledge from the past. Regina thrives on salvage from sunken cities, including illegal print books from before the Federation. With photographic memory, she defies Antiquities by reading books not available in the Federation. Antiquities claims Regina has unique DNA that could single-handedly stop human extinction. It's too bad she doesn't trust them enough to barter fairly, let alone with her life.

As the storm worsens, Antiquities and their allies doggedly pursue Regina. Does she have the resilience to survive the storm and avoid capture while hunting for family?


I knew instantly that this was going to be a favorite series of mine. I loved Regina straight from the get go, and the plot was seriously made for me. This covers many buzzwords for me, a few being DNA, environmental collapse, climate change. When I got the email asking for sign ups, I didn't even hesitate, because it had it all. And I am so glad I was chosen! I honestly haven't read a book from this iRead Tours that I haven't liked, so I'm pretty happy about that.

Regina was such an awesome character. I felt that she portrayed so much that many authors like to hide about characters, the human side. She was a young teenager, living in a tough time, and she rose to the challenge, but at times you could still see that 15 year old shining through. And I loved that aspect. It's nice, and it brings the story to a grounded level, one that as a reader I can connect with. So that small writing of Regina made this story click in so many ways. I just loved it that much more.

The plot of this book was perfect. It has Regina on the run from a Department of Antiquities officer due to Regina's special DNA. This entire part of the book had me completely enthralled, and I can't wait to find out more. It's a storyline that, personally, I haven't seen done. And done this well. Lance Erlick really knows how to keep the story moving, but at the same time giving the reader enough information that they aren't fumbling along.

This book takes the much used dystopian trope and gives it a new set of wings. I think Lance Erlick did a fantastic job spinning a unique tale, and once that I can't wait to continue one with. I am so glad I have book two waiting and ready to be started!

Saturday, May 28, 2016

DC Universe: Rebirth #1 by Geoff Johns (Kinda review)

Title: DC Universe: Rebirth #1
Author: Geoff Johns


It all begins here. Do not skip to the last page. Do not let a friend or message board ruin this comic for you. The future (and past) of the DC Universe starts here. Don't say we didn't warn you!

THEY SAID IT: "Rebirth is about focusing in on the core of the character and their respective universe," says writer and DC Entertainment Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns. "It brings back what has been lost: the legacy of the characters, the love and the hope of the DCU!"


So this is a thing I have been anticipating since I knew it was happening. And that was quite a few months back. And I am a little bit torn. 

Let me start this review off by saying I have never been into the Big Two. Neither DC nor Marvel gave me much to look forward to or anything really that I felt like trying. I was late to the whole comics fan club, so I stuck to the stories I knew I liked. And those were, and still are being published by BOOM! and Image comics, almost exclusively. I do dabble here and there in other publishers works, but for the most part, I like the types of stories that Image and BOOM! studios delivers. I am the audience for those comics, and I've always been okay with that. The whole capes comics never really interested me, from either Marvel or DC. 

That changed, however, when I heard that DC was resetting it's entire Universe. And for me, that seemed like the perfect opportunity to jump on the bandwagon of some pretty iconic superheroes. I thought that it was my chance to see what I've been missing, as I would be on the same ground floor as everybody else.

So, I waited. And I looked into websites, and blogs, and others opinions of the reset. And I did my research as to what titles were coming out, who was on the team, when they would be released. I have an entire three page outline of release dates for the comics in this reset I wanted to get my hands on (basically ALL of them). I've been counting down the release of the 80 page intro to the new world for over a month now. This has been one of the first events in a long time that I have anticipated this hard. That I have been this excited for. And I'm torn.

Release day happened this past Wednesday, and of course I had to work. So, I avoided all social media all day. Easy enough, I was supposed to be working... Then I got to the store, and saw the SOLD OUT card where my copy of this glorious start was supposed to be. I literally felt like crying. But I looked again, and saw the last copy of a variant cover (not the one I wanted, but it would due to get me the story). And I grabbed it.  I wasn't leaving the store without it.

When I got home, I sat down and started. Straight out of the gate I was let down, because there at the bottom of page one, there was a little publisher note saying that this story, the reset story, the beginning of the entire world, needed to be read after Justice League 50 and Superman 52. Well, I didn't have either of those comics, because from all the research I had done, this was going to start the entire thing off. So I hadn't expected being behind from the beginning. And that feeling carried throughout the comic. There were references to many characters that I frankly don't know, backstories and alternate worlds were referenced, again that I don't know. And the ending, the big was about characters and a story that I DON'T KNOW! 

Even through the confusion, I kept reading. How could I stop? This was the single most anticipated comic for me, well since I had started reading comics. Everything up until this point had always already been released, I didn't have to wonder or wait. The next one was always already there. With this DC Rebirth, I felt like a part of something. And I got left behind out of the gate. But, I finished it. And sat and thought about it. And then looked up spoilers, which I will refrain from mentioning because of, well spoilers. I had already read the comic, I just need clarification. 

I ended up really liking it. For what it was, a start to a new Universe. A reset, if you will. But not completely. I had this change of heart from my initial let down because I felt like I had a fresh perspective. I had no real expectations going into this series, I had no love of a certain character that was being let go or reintroduced. I was, if you will, falling for the Universe and it's inhabitants as the creative teams deemed fit to introduce or get rid of them. I may be a slight bit lost as to plot line direction, or even how the reveal was so shocking, but I still got the story for what it was. 

And I figure, we all have to start somewhere. Comic readers of now weren't reading comics back when all these superheroes were first introduced probably, so they were new at some point. And I am new, and I am glad I get to be on this bandwagon. This story was most definitely a feels read for me. And I liked that there seems to be a level of emotion going on with this direction of these stories. I look forward to reading the first issues of a lot of the characters that we see in this Rebirth issue #1 come June 1. 

I feel as if this wasn't a review of the actual comic story but of my journey to where I am now. But that is okay, I felt it necessary to talk about. And it's almost one in the same as with a review of the comic. 

I was once intimated by the Big Two, and the long list of backstory issues that I had missed, as well as trying to follow along with continuity and the vast perimeters the words of DC and Marvel encompass. But, thanks to DC Rebirth, no more! I am a cape fan, and look forward to the journey this will take me. This was a win in my book. A win for an entire new type of story that I will now be enjoying. 

And PS...DC please make sure I see a TON of Aqualad! He is by far my favorite introduction so far! :)