Review: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1)

Title: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Purchased
Format: Paperback
Release Date: May 27, 2007
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder― much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing―not even a smear of blood―to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know…

Review:

When Clary Fray goes to an all-ages nightclub in New York City with her best friend, she witnesses a murder of a teenager by three other teens. However, her best friend Simon couldn’t see them. One of the teens, Jace, finds Clary the next day and brings her into the world of the shadowhunters, who hunt demons. Clary becomes personally involved in the lives of the shadowhunters when her mother disappears after being attacked by demons. Clary has to find her mother, while also discovering the secrets of her past.

I had been holding off on reading this series, because I knew I would love it and would have to read it all immediately once I started. I was sucked into this world right away. I loved that there were so many different creatures all in one world, including vampires, werewolves, and warlocks. They had a wide range of powers, but they all fit into the world.

The twists and big reveals in the story were predictable. When secrets of a character’s past were revealed, I could predict how it would affect the lives of the main characters. Even though it was predictable, I loved the storyline. I’m excited to see where it goes next!

What to read next:

City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments #2) by Cassandra Clare

Have you read City of Bones? What did you think of it?

Review: Ghosted in L.A., Vol. 1

Title: Ghosted in L.A., Vol. 1
Author: Sina Grace, Siobhan Keenan, Cathy Le
Genre: Graphic Novel, Contemporary, LGBT, Paranormal
Publisher: BOOM! Box
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: April 14, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Daphne Walters moves to Los Angeles and finds that the only ones who can help her find love and live life to the fullest are the ghosts of her new home!

In Los Angeles, finding an apartment is killer—unless you live with the dead. Daphne Walters moves to Los Angeles for her boyfriend Ronnie, ready to live her happily ever after. But when happily ever after turns into happily for a month, she’s stuck in a strange city with no friends, family, or prospects for fun. Desperate to escape the lingering ghost of Ronnie’s presence everywhere, Daphne sets out to explore the city—and ends up encountering ghosts of a more literal kind! Rycroft Manor is abandoned, beautiful, and haunted. Will the dead be able to help Daphne find the life she’s been missing in the big city? From GLAAD Award-nominated Sina Grace (Iceman) and illustrator Siobhan Keenan (Jem and the Holograms) comes a story about learning how to make friends, find love, and live life to the fullest with a little help from some friends whose lives didn’t end at death. Collects Ghosted In L.A #1-4.

Review:

Daphne chooses to go to the same university as her boyfriend, but when she arrives on campus, he tells her he wants to break up. She leaves her dorm and discovers a beautiful mansion that appears to be empty. She quickly learns that it is filled with ghosts from a variety of backgrounds. Daphne spends time with the ghosts while also learning more about her ex-boyfriend.

I loved the format of this graphic novel. The chapters had small scenes from the ghosts’s previous lives. The ghosts come from different decades, like the 40s and 80s. These scenes explained a bit about what happened to them and how their lives were affected by the time periods. This was a great way to give some background on the ghost characters.

There were some huge reveals and cliffhangers in the final pages. I’m really excited to see where this story goes next.

Thank you BOOM! Box for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Avant-Guards, Vol. 1 by Carly Usdin, Noah Hayes

Eat, and Love Yourself by Sweeney Boo, Lylian Klepakowsky

Have you read Ghosted in L.A., Vol. 1? What did you think of it?

Review: Lola: A Ghost Story

Title: Lola: A Ghost Story
Author: J. Torres, Elbert Or (illustrator)
Genre: Young Adult, Graphic Novel, Paranormal
Publisher: Oni Press
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 24, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Jesse sees dead people, monsters, demons, and lots of other things that go bump in the night that no one else can see. No one except his ailing grandmother—a woman who used her visions to help those living in her small town… the same rural community in all the scary stories Jesse’s heard as a child. Man-eating ogres in trees. Farmhouses haunted by wraiths. Even pigs possessed by the devil. Upon his grandmother’s passing, Jesse has no choice but to face his demons and whatever else might be awaiting him at grandma’s house. 

Review:

Jesse has inherited his grandmother’s ability to see ghosts. When his grandmother dies, his family travels back to their home country of the Philippines. He revisits some of his memories of his grandmother and his cousin, who died when he was a kid.

I didn’t know about this Filipino folklore before reading the book. There were some creatures in the graphic novel that were so creepy. There were some that were used as explanations for birth complications, and those “creatures” targeted pregnant women. All of the different kinds of creatures were listed in a glossary of these creatures at the end of the book.

This book was also dark at times. I found the ending really creepy.

This was a great, ghostly graphic novel!

Thank you Oni Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Sheets by Brenna Thummler

Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier

Have you read Lola: A Ghost Story? What did you think of it?

Review: Echoes Between Us

Title: Echoes Between Us
Author: Katie McGarry
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Publisher: Tor Teen
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: January 14, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Echoes Between Us is bestselling author Katie McGarry’s breakout teen contemporary novel about a girl with everything to lose and the boy who will do anything to save her.

Veronica sees ghosts. More specifically, her mother’s ghost. The afterimages of blinding migraines caused by the brain tumor that keeps her on the fringes and consumes her whole life haunt her, even as she wonders if it’s something more…

Golden boy Sawyer is handsome and popular, a state champion swimmer, but his adrenaline addiction draws him to Veronica.

A girl with nothing to live for and a boy with everything to lose–can they conquer their demons together?

Review:

This is a great paranormal story.

Veronica has a brain tumor. Her mother died of brain cancer, and Veronica’s tumor is getting worse, but she wants to keep it a secret. This is more complicated because she also sees her mother’s ghost in her house. That makes her want to research ghosts for a paper at school. When Sawyer, the popular boy at school, moves into the apartment in her house, she has her suspicions of her haunted house confirmed because his sister also sees the “monsters” downstairs.

I loved the paranormal, ghost hunting aspects of the story. They were creepy. I found myself holding my breath in many parts. Those parts were very descriptive and realistic.

The paranormal parts were slightly fantasy, but there were also serious issues addressed in this book. Veronica has a brain tumor, which she is in denial of. There are also some characters with addictions. These health problems were also scary because they were very realistic.

I really enjoyed this story!

Thank you Tor Teen for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer #1) by Michelle Hodkin

Say You’ll Remember Me by Katie McGarry

Have you read Echoes Between Us? What did you think of it?

Review: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw

Title: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw
Author: Michelle Hodkin
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: November 13, 2018
Rating: ★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Noah Shaw confesses all in this second novel of a chilling new companion series to Michelle Hodkin’s New York Timesbestselling Mara Dyer trilogy!

Noah Shaw doesn’t think he needs his father’s inheritance.
He does.

Noah believes there’s something off about the suicides in his visions.
There is.

Noah is convinced that he still knows the real Mara Dyer.
He does not. 

Everyone thought the nightmare had ended with Mara Dyer’s memoirs, but it was only the beginning. As old skeletons are laid bare, alliances will be tested, hearts will be broken, and no one will be left unscarred.

Review:

I was looking forward to this book after the cliffhanger of the previous one, but it was so disappointing.

The main problem with this story was that it didn’t progress the plot. There were some interesting flashbacks to what happened when Noah was in the hospital, which was in the Mara Dyer series. However, there were also flashbacks to Noah’s ancestors, which could have been explained in a couple of sentences, rather than multiple chapters.

I had a hard time keeping track of the characters by the end. There were some new people, but they all seemed the same. They had long drawn-out conversations about the same things over and over. There wasn’t much that actually happened in the story, other than many conversations.

Unfortunately, this book didn’t live up to my expectations. I expected a lot more from the book.

Thank you Simon and Schuster Canada for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Shatter Me (Shatter
Me #1) by Tahereh Mafi

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) Maggie Stiefvater

Other Books in the Series:

Have you read The Reckoning of Noah Shaw? What did you think of it?

Review: Tunnel of Bones (Cassidy Blake #2)

Title: Tunnel of Bones (Cassidy Blake #2)
Author: Victoria Schwab
Genre: Middle Grade, Paranormal
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Source: Owlcrate Jr. Box
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: September 3, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Trouble is haunting Cassidy Blake . . . even more than usual.

She (plus her ghost best friend, Jacob, of course) are in Paris, where Cass’s parents are filming their TV show about the world’s most haunted cities. Sure, it’s fun eating croissants and seeing the Eiffel Tower, but there’s true ghostly danger lurking beneath Paris, in the creepy underground Catacombs.

When Cass accidentally awakens a frighteningly strong spirit, she must rely on her still-growing skills as a ghosthunter — and turn to friends both old and new to help her unravel a mystery. But time is running out, and the spirit is only growing stronger.

And if Cass fails, the force she’s unleashed could haunt the city forever.

Review:

I’ve loved paranormal stories since I was a kid. This series reminds me of The Mediator series by Meg Cabot, which is one of my all time favourites! It has a similar storyline, with a girl who has a best friend who’s a ghost, but for a middle grade audience.

One of the best parts of these books is that it teaches kids about different cities. Cassidy and her parents went to Edinburgh in the first book, which is somewhere I’ve always wanted to go. In this book, they went to Paris. I went to Paris 10 years ago and I was constantly reminded of that trip while reading this story! We went to many of the tourist attractions also featured in this book, such as the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, but not the Catacombs. The Catacombs sound fascinating, but I don’t know if I’m brave enough to go there!

This is a great story! I can’t wait to see where Cassidy Blake travels next!

What to read next:

Shadowland (The Mediator #1) by Meg Cabot

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Harry Potter #1) by J.K. Rowling

Have you read Tunnel of Bones? What did you think of it?