Ray Chelle


This member has not published any books.

Ray Chelle's favorite authors on Smashwords

Smashwords book reviews by Ray Chelle

  • Angel Evolution on May 28, 2012

    The best thing about this book is its originality – most angel and demon books I’ve read are very clear – demons are bad, angels are good. This book questions those beliefs, and does so in a unique fashion. Taylor’s role is also different from most books – she’s not an angel, demon, or a simple love interest, but instead is *kind of spoiler* similar to an energy source for the angels, providing power “beyond your imagination” *end spoiler*. The plot is mildly engaging – it is interesting enough for you to want to keep reading, although it isn’t as suspenseful as it could be. However, there are points in the book where you think afterwards, Wow, this book/part of the story is really well written, or something along the lines of that. The main problem I had with the book is the lack of characterization and relationship development. Taylor and Gabriel’s relationship seemed rather flat, and is the classic “love at first sight tale”, without as much charm, as did Sam and Chris’s. Moreover, I found there wasn’t really anything interesting about Taylor (aside from her gifts), who seemed like the classic college girl and Sam (aside from the fact that she has a relationship with a demon), who seems like the classic prom-queen-cheerleader-pretty-good-at-everything-but-best-friends-with-the-normal-girl. Hopefully, there will be more of that in the rest of the trilogy (which I plan to read because the idea itself is so interesting). Overall, a book of this nature and price is worth reading, especially if you’re looking for a light, paranormal romance and aren’t picky with characters (unlike me, most of the time).
  • Phantom Universe on May 28, 2012

    To be honest, one of the main reasons I liked this book is because of the cute romance. I’m a sucker for it, and it just makes me go “Awwww…”, or something of the sort. Gage and Summer’s relationship is just so endearing, with Gage supporting Summer through almost every hardship and always understanding her – it seemed like a perfect relationship. However, how Gage was portrayed is also one of the slight problems I had with Phantom Universe. He seemed to good to be true, especially with his ranking as a Lieutenant. Nevertheless, it was cute to see how Gage helped Summer survive and eventually regain her voice. However, I also admired Summer’s strong bonds with Landon and Jaden. Their friendship was remarkable and reasonably developed throughout the story. They supported Summer as much as Gage did, if not more. The plot was well written – it had its peaks of excitement and moved along pretty quickly. My only complaint is that *spoiler* Summer’s rescue from the Secret Clock Society seemed to easy for the characters to go through. They encountered almost no problems, if not none. In addition, Gage’s relationship with Summer seems too good to be true, and developed relatively quickly. Finally, the regaining of her voice also seemed oversimplified. After all those years, how was it so easy for her to shout (not whisper, or simply say, shout) *end spoiler*. However, the romance probably pulled me in so successfully, I loved this book anyways. Despite my various problems with the plot and Gage, I’ll probably be reading the next book, Forsaken Harbor. It’s mainly because I’m curious to find out what happens to Julian, after he says *spoiler* Why did you make me love her? (Summer) *end spoiler*. I recommend this book to teens (mostly females) who are looking for a (free!) read who like romance and a bit of fantasy, for the romance is pretty endearing c:
  • Crimson Midnight (Crimson Series Book 1) on June 08, 2012

    Disclaimer: The fact that the author has provided me a free copy of Crimson Midnight in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. As the first adult urban fantasy novel I've read, I'm not quite sure what I was expecting - more mature situations? Maturer characters? In Crimson Midnight, Rose, who was mugged when she was fifteen, takes a new job in London as a self defense teacher in a gym. There, she discovers love, true friendship, and finds her own identity. The best part of this book for me was Rose. Despite being mugged (and never having the perpetuators caught), Rose is quick-witted, sarcastic, and definitely kick-butt (she teaches self-defense! Fighting skills!) She definitely didn't allow herself to be patronized. For example, in the beginning of the book, she breaks up with a bad boyfriend and tells him to f*** off after he begs to be taken back. When she moves to London, she fights Derek, another predator, to back off, and for the majority of the beginning of the book, Roman, to defend herself against his seductive moves. Overall, Rose definitely made the story more entertaining, from her kick-butt-ness and her humor. The other characters were also (mostly) likable. I didn't expect to like Thistle, Roman's vampire fling, although she turned out to be a likable female companion to Faye. Even before Faye was revealed to be a fey, I actually liked Thistle better than Faye, because of her attitude in general towards Howard or Catherine. And Roman - another witty character! He entertains by verbally sparring with Rose, although I feel that his character wasn't as developed, so when he dies, I didn't feel as big of a "hole" in my heart as I felt I should have. The plot overall is also pretty exciting. One of the surprising elements is that Amos Cassidy is able to transition from the supernatural alley haunting scenes to the "normal" human bar/party scenes surprisingly well. Moreover, although there was a small suspicion planted because of the violet eyes - Osshian!, I didn't suspect the true identity of the murders. My only complaint is the additional characters' POV chapters - when reading them, I was slightly confused, and since they were only a few chapters, their characters didn't develop much either. However, these chapters may also have been necessary for the end to come together. And the last chapter - I'm not sure what to say! It leaves a lot of open ends and questions for me. Maybe if I decide to read another adult fantasy novel (I actually picked this one up, mistaking it for YA - oh well!), I'll definitely read the sequel. Overall, if you're an adult/mature teenager (there's some heaavvvy scenes in there!) and like adult urban fantasy, try Crimson Midnight - it doesn't disappoint throughout the whole book!
  • Resurrection, a YA Paranormal Romance (The Guardians of Vesturon Series, Book 2) on June 12, 2012

    Disclaimer: The fact that I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. To be honest, I disliked Maddie in the beginning. She seemed immature, naive, and a little annoying. For example, when the Yarristers are telling Maddie about Rayn's upcoming obstacles and his imprisonment, she focuses on Sharra's "Sharrababble" instead of Rayn himself. Moreover, her klutziness and choice of decisions made her seem annoying to me. As said in some of my status updates however, the book did get better and included much more action. For example, Maddie decides *spoiler* to become a Guardian *end spoiler*, obviously resulting in more endurance, fighting, monsters, etc. Her struggles and achievements were probably the most remarkable parts of the book, although sometimes I thought her troubles were resolved a little to easily. But nonetheless, I liked the fact that Maddie had to struggle to earn her place and respect with some people. Another especially entertaining part of the plot that I enjoyed is when *spoiler* Rayn must be rescued *end spoiler*. It was interesting to see Vesturons' various technology and people to work together and use their wits in order to accomplish their goal. However, as I said before, this may feel a little rushed, but is still full of action c: I also like the fact that Rayn *spoiler* finally got mad at Maddie for once *end spoiler*. I know, it might sound mean, but it shows that Rayn isn't perfect. Earlier in the book, Rykerian mentions that Rayn was the best at everything. In addition to that, he's good looking, plays the piano, and is extremely tolerant towards Maddie. His actions show that he does think for himself sometimes and does have the potential to be at least a little less than perfect. Voldruk's role in the story was also interesting. Although his part was relatively small, the chapters he was involved in made me think a little. My only complaint is that it seems like *spoiler* Athyna's grief seemed short-lived, or it wasn't mentioned much. *end spoiler* This might have been because Athyna is a relatively minor character, but I hoped for a little more development. AND THE SEXUAL TENSION asldfjadsklfjads;klfja. As a partially hormone-driven teenager, I reserve the right to be slightly gushy about this. My only other complaint is that Rykerian's interest in Maddie seems to have disappeared. I was hoping for more of a development, although I think this issue is mentioned in Determinant (the third book!), so I look forward to reading that someday c: Overall, if you're a fan of paranormal romance and like futuristic situations (their technology is pretty cool!), try Resurrection c: Of course, you would have to read Survival first, although in my opinion, Resurrection is different in terms of the style of the plot and amount of action.
  • Survival, a YA Paranormal Romance (The Guardians of Vesturon Series, Book #1) on June 12, 2012

    Disclaimer: The fact that I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. I enjoyed the first 25% - 45% of the book thoroughly - it highlights the struggles and friendships Maddie has to go through after she suffers by losing her father. For example, you watch Maddie settle into a comfortable and relatively enjoyable lifestyle, by making friends, going to dances, attending college, potentially gaining a second family etc. You also meet Darryl Carter - I found his story and point of view especially interesting, even though some of his thoughts were quite disturbing. He definitely brought more action and caused many developments. During that part of the book, Maddie's character was moving, strong, and brave. Having lost two parents, but still continuing with her life was quite remarkable in my opinion. Moreover, she's able to camp overnight in mountains, in freezing snow - I wouldn't be able to do that, even with the help of my parents. And even after that, she's able to *spoiler* run from a murderer (Darryl) after being stabbed - if I was in her position, I would cry, beg for mercy, etc. - but I wouldn't be able to fight. That's what I admired about her *end spoiler* However, after Book 1 ended, I felt the story went a little downhill. On the positive side, it was interesting to learn about the Guardians and Vesturon (aliens is quite rare in PNR nowadays... I'll give Hargrove that!) and their technology. Moreover, I found the bonds that the Guardians had with their families were admirable, and classic in terms of loyalty. However, I found Rayn's insta-love towards Maddie, as well as her reaction towards Rayn, a little cliche and slightly annoying. Moreover, Rayn and Maddie seemed perfect to me (except for Maddie's clumsiness, I suppose). I also felt that the story didn't really go anywhere, except during the end and when *spoiler* Rayn was taken to Vesturon *spoiler*. Nevertheless, I suppose I enjoyed this book, and I would read the next book because of the cliffhanger and the impending mystery regarding the Council, and the potential for the developing of characters like Xarrid, Sharra, Tesselar, and Rykerien. Relatively quick (I think), sweet, full of romance, and easy-to-read, Survival is a relatively enjoyable read, and recommended for teenage girls who gush over paranormal romance (like Twilight)
  • Faelorehn - Book One of the Otherworld Trilogy on June 20, 2012

    Disclaimer: The fact that I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. Before I start my review, I want to say that Faelorehn is a beautifully written book. The imagery is wonderful, and I love the prose the author creates! It's just that some of the situations and characterization are not suited for someone like me. Let me start off with what I liked. I liked how the author used Celtic mythology - it's been a while since I've seen that used in YA literature! The idea of Daemorehn (I hope I spelled that right...), Morrigan, and geis are unique and make the plot more interesting. These aspects are what made me keep on reading the book. In my opinion, the main fault is in the pacing of the book. Meghan finds out she's different at 47% into the book, and the action doesn't really start until about 60 or 70 percent. Before that, the book basically describes Meghan's daily life, where she and her friends are bullied. However, despite the heavy amount of time spent describing Meghan's more normal life, her friends were underdeveloped. For example, it was mentioned that Thomas was gay - what happens afterwards? That problem just kind of disappears... I also found Meghan to be an angsty teenager when it came to Cade. She didn't even know him that well - how could she claim to love him after so little meetings? Then after seeing Cade's "girlfriend", she goes into a state of depression - to me, that's overreacting, considering the time she new the guy and not knowing much about him. Moreover, he decisions she made seemed easily avoidable and kind of stupid. When she decided to go to the Otherworld, I was screaming in my head, No, you idiot! Don't go - she's probably some evil witch (probably Morrigan). She's tricking you! No. No. No. No. Don't go! I'm not sure if I was picky at that time, or if it's just me. But this book's characterization and pacing probably weren't for me and put me off a little.
  • Kings & Queens on June 20, 2012

    Disclaimer: The fact that I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. Kings & Queens was, in a word, a different book. When I think of YA mystery, I think of urban-fantasy-evil-witch mysteries, I-think-I-am-secretly-a-billionaire-heir-because-I’m-adopted mysteries, or popular-girl-whodunnit mysteries. Instead, Kings & Queens is a lot more focused on real life crime and murders. Vail is able to manipulate both characters and readers’ minds. I not only suspected innocent characters but also thought some completely evil characters were innocent. Moreover, there are some side plots that I never thought could be related to the main plot! She keeps the suspense and suspicion rising throughout the novel, while implying small amounts of crude humor. All the characters seemed distinguished and had their own strengths and weaknesses. One of the unique things is that Vail uses many POVs (Majesty, Derek, Warren, Preston, Majesty’s mother, Alec, etc.), but is still able to also develop these characters fully. My one complaint is concerning Majesty. She has this sort-of love triangle thing going on, which was kind of confusing and strange, in a way. At one point, she seems to love Derek, and is jealous of him and Cynthia, then switches to being infatuated with Alec and being jealous of him and A, while Derek falls in love with Majesty. Moreover, when Majesty discovers the truth about Derek, at one point she claims to hate him, but then desperately tries to save his life. Somehow, Vail also seemed to incorporate high school and some serious crime, again, making it a unique book. It’s because of this that I think Kings & Queens has some adult crossover appeal (which also leads up to Sapphire Reign, its adult-targeted sequel). Overall, Kings & Queens is a suspense filled book that is definitely engaging and unique! It also has some crossover appeal towards adults, and is great for YA readers, mature readers, and adults alike.
  • The Heart's Discovery on July 02, 2012

    The Heart’s Discovery is yet another touching and made-me-sob book! It was heartwarming, cute, fuzzy, warm… all that good stuff that should be in every chick-lit book! The relationship between Anji and Gabe was definitely cute and fuzzy. It goes along the cliché (but enjoyable – it’s my guilty pleasure!) road: Girl Meets Boy -> Girl thinks Boy is hot/gorgeous/mysterious/whatever -> Boy thinks girl is weird or is completely obsessed with her -> Some embarrassing or life scarring thing happens -> Girl and Boy eventually fall in love but don’t dare to confess to each other -> Girl and Boy confess and get into a “perfect” relationship -> Something drastic happens -> Girl and Boy fight -> Something drastic happens -> Girl and Boy make up. It’s cliché – but I suppose at that time, I was looking for romance and a cute read. The supporting characters really brought out the book. Evie has so much pain, and her portrayal is amazingly realistic! One of the reasons I’m looking forward to the next book is because I hope to see more development with her. I also liked Damian – he’s such a complex character. To be honest, I can’t tell if he actually liked Anji – but to me, that shows how complex he is. However, my one complaint is that after he leaves, his presence almost completely disappears. I was hoping that his presence on Anji would be a little stronger. My other complaint is that Anji seemed to (almost) completely forget about Quito. After she leaves, she mentions the place and its festival only a handful of times.. I was half hoping this book would be about moving on, which it was, just not in the way I had expected it. And one last thing – the main reason why I degraded this book from 5 to 4 in overall is because of the second book’s preview. Gabe’s depression didn’t seem realistic, seeing as how he mourned before. Moreover, I couldn’t believe his thoughts at the end. I really hope that he doesn’t change his mind about Anji… Overall, however, The Heart’s Discovery is quite a sweet and charming chick-lit treat c: I recommend it to teenagers who like romance, haha c:
  • Children of the Gods - A Chosen Novel on July 03, 2012

    Let me start off by saying I loved this book. Don't be fooled by my rating - although I actually consider 3.5 to be pretttty high - Children of the Gods is a beautifully written book that certainly made my heart ache. I should be a little ashamed to say this, but the best part of this book for me was the romance