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Smashwords book reviews by Maja

  • Root Bound on Feb. 20, 2013

    Have you ever enjoyed reading The Chronicles of Narnia, Harry Potter or Alice in Wonderland, this is a book for you. I don’t really know what I expected from this story since I am not familiar with this author, but her writing had me surprised. I have really liked, I cannot say loved per se, this book but it is an interesting read, and if you like the world of fantasy and magic you should read this book. It is only the first in the Emma and Elementals series, but Gough gives a promising start. The first half of the book deals with plain old human girl, Emma, her father musician, constant moving from home to home, a creepy old neighbor woman, the mean girls at the new school, you know, all the typical adolescence problems. However, the storyline picks up after Emma hears the house speaking and meets some brownies. Ha, and those are really cute little creatures from mythology. That had me thinking, finally something is happening that actually makes this book fantasy, and after I got a little more into the story, I could not put the book down. I have loved reading of prophecies, mythology, witches, magic and a whole intricate design of the Under, the world that Gough gives such an elaborate description of. Even though I found the first half to be a little strenuous, I developed the appreciation and understanding for it because of its interweaving with the magic world. Gough complicates this fantasy into so many details that at times you can get lost and forget the meaning of it, but to an explorer brain like mine, reading this book proved a “real field trip”. Hopefully, you will feel the same, if you decide to read this book. Also, Emma as the protagonist is likeable enough in her grasping the magic world, even escaping into it, quite like I seem to escape in any book I can get my hands on. The basement brownies are simply charming little creatures that I developed instant love for. Are you looking for a funny and easy fantasy novel? This is a story for you that will leave you anticipating and feeling anxious for what is to happen every step of Emma and the brownies’ adventure. Overall, I really like this story and its character, and think it an excellent escape read. Also, you know what?, this would be an excellent movie story!
  • Barbie Girl on Feb. 21, 2013

    Having just finished Barbie Girl by Heidi Acosta, I want nothing more than to read the second book ASAP. And I mean, ASAP! I have loved reading this book. Reason behind this is how the author ended the book. Really? I usually read books that have a closed structure with an ending and not leave me hanging like that. Why did you, Heidi, do that? I seriously didn’t think you liked to torture your readers. Oh well. Nevertheless, I loved this book. Barbie Girl is one of those books you cannot put down until you finish it in one breath. The storyline is a perfect example of judging the book by its cover. Same applies to people. Barbie Starr is a character that I have extreme appreciation for, her strength in surviving, love for her little brother, and not giving up. When the going gets tough, the tough get going! And is she tough! She is one of the characters that you love because she is so different; she does what she wants, lives however she wants and doesn’t go against her beliefs. Dylan, Barbie’s match is a great character, with both good and bad sides to him, just like any real life person. Third and Roxie, they are also excellent characters. Barbie Girl proves that Heidi Acosta weaves a net of greatly developed characters that naturally step out of the pages and come hang with you while you’re reading their story. And that is what I love about this book the most. I have missed that feeling, almost as if you can see and talk to the “people” you are reading about. That is what makes the best books I have ever read. I appreciate Acosta’s ability in writing and success in bringing the characters to life. This book is a perfect young adult (I would even say new adult) contemporary romance with all the following drama of family and peer relationships. There were a lot of crazy events in the book, which made me feel a range from hate to love, concluding with a very high opinion of the book by me. Also, at some strong emotional points, the book reminded me strongly of Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry, but a story completely its own, even if it is told from two points of view, Barbie's and Dylan's. Overall, I would recommend this book to any young adult/new adult book lover in search of a great and quick read in hope of losing themselves in a fantastic world of characters.