I am just a girl, fulfilling my lifelong dream of being a housewife and working on fulfilling the next one about writing a novel. I'm married to a wonderful man who is presently serving in the U.S. Navy. I'm a "mommy" to a German Shepherd/Black Lab mix named Archer and a Gray Tabbycat named Aeris. I love to read, listen to music, and play video games. I'm secretly 12, since you are only as old as you feel and I am practically a child most days.
Where to find Ariel Avalon online
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Smashwords book reviews by Ariel Avalon
- The Tower (Deck of Lies #2)
on Aug. 29, 2012
Rain is firm in her belief that River did not kill Lauren like everyone says. She is determined to find a way to prove his innocence. She just isn't expecting to become a suspect herself, or to find out that her world is about to become even more drama-filled.
This book was amazing. The same quirks as the first one were still present, the little cliffhangers in various chapters and scene ends, but the story is fast-paced and keeps you hanging on for dear life. The twists and turns are amazing and well thought out. Some things you see coming, but a lot of it is just tossed at you out of nowhere. The Von Sheltons have so many skeletons in their closet.
Other than a severe lack of River and the awful cliffhanger at the ending, this book was fantastic. It hooks you in and keeps you there. Great continuation to this series.
Original review posted on arielavalon.com
- Death (Deck of Lies #3)
on Oct. 16, 2012
(Originally posted at http://www.arielavalon.com/
--Contains spoilers for the first two books.--
Rain has figured out who really killed Laurel, but this is only the beginning. She very quickly finds that the Von Shelton's own her, and when they want secrets to hide, they stay hidden. Rain has a plan, she will see to it that River will not ever see trial, no matter what.
I cannot tell a lie. I thought this series was a trilogy and now I am horribly disappointed because I blew through this book in the small span of a morning and now I get to play the waiting game. Sure, the cliffhanger was missing this time around, but there are still so many twists, so many secrets, and so many confrontations that have yet to be seen.
The first two books were full of twists and turns, but they had nothing on this book. The characters are still their same fabulous selves. There was a lot more River in this book, love that. Sawyer is so many different kinds of messed up. He's one of those characters that I want to like, but I hate him too, so I am left feeling horribly sorry for him. He is just so unbalanced.
This series is strong, mysterious, and addicting. Go read it!
- Fields of Elysium
on Nov. 15, 2013
I really wanted to like this book. It has some problems though, which kept me from being able to really dive into it and not look away. The writing style is really stiff, which is hard to deal with, as the book is long. The flow was stunted and jerky and it became quickly obvious that English isn’t the first language for our author. It felt like the author came up with her ideas in one language and then wrote them down in another and a good part of things were lost in translation.
The writing style got to me. It was full of description. I read very far into the book and felt like I had read more details than dialogue, and when you do see dialogue, it’s awkward and superfluous. The writing is far too formal, for any novel really in my opinion, but especially a novel with teenagers. Teenagers don’t speak like that. It would’ve been fine if the Arkanians spoke formally only, but it leaks into other parts of the novel until the other characters are speaking and thinking formally and it doesn’t work. There were a lot of unnecessary scenes that could’ve been cut to make the book shorter, which would’ve been nice because the story repeats itself in places. There were a lot of plot elements that were tossed in there randomly for convenience with little to no purpose or explanation, which is one of those things I have problems forgiving. I hate when I can’t see the buildup. The lack of buildup leaked over into the plot as well. Usually, you can see threads of the climax as the story goes. You might not know which thread will be pulled, or how hard it will be yanked, but you know that you need to follow one of those threads because they will lead you to the climax. Having multiple threads is the way to keep the readers guessing and engaged. This story had no real threads, just wisps that were trying to become strings. By the time the climax happened, it was hardly led into and ended up being a let down because of it.
The characters needed better development. I couldn’t relate to them, or even care for them or their relationships. The interactions were unnatural, the dialogue uncomfortable to even read, and their emotions and actions hard to believe. Molly annoyed me the most, she could’ve been such a great character, but she spent too much time pining over Viktor (Who, by the way, switched between being “Victor” and “Viktor” often through the novel) and stressing over nothing. I hated being in her head. She was dull. Her motivations were shallow and tedious.
Despite the flaws with the story, lack of climax, poorly executed resolution, and underdone character development, the winning ticket of this story is Whelan’s imagination. I found the descriptions of Arkana to be captivating and beautiful. It is such an interesting place that it actually makes me want to spend more time there. So while I probably won’t rush out to continue the series post haste, I will eventually get the next because I want to see more of Arkana. I feel like this could’ve been a really great story with more polish. It needed more storyline input before being sent to publishing and probably more editing to make the writing and dialogue feel more real.
originally posted at arielavalon.com