Category: Psychological

Review: Henry Franks by Peter Adam Salomon

Title: Henry Franks
Author: Peter Adam Salomon
Published: September 2012 by Flux
ISBN: 9780738733364
Links: Goodreads
Received: Received on Netgalley
Rating: 5 of 5

Sometimes, the only thing worse than forgetting is remembering.

Sixteen-year-old Henry Franks almost didn’t survive the accident that claimed his mother’s life and, suffering from post-traumatic amnesia, he relies upon his father to tell him who he is.

If he can trust his father.

HENRY FRANKS details one man’s obsessive desire to save his son and one boy’s need to find himself.

While a serial killer stalks the small southern town he lives in, Henry unearths the bitter truth behind his mother’s death—and the terrifying secrets of his own dark past.

My thoughts:
There is a special place in my heart for this book. It’s basically a retelling of Frankenstein, though Henry does not at all terrorize the public. He’s a normal kid who can’t remember anything. He sees a psychologist, he hangs out with the girl next door, he tries to live some semblance of a normal life, but you see, Henry has a dark secret.

Henry should be dead.

Henry’s father is our regular old Dr. Jekyll in this story, being the one that orchestrated Henry’s miraculous recovery. His father is psychotic, trying to pull their whole family back together, make Henry live. It’s all sort of sick.

What I loved about this book was the writing style. We’re mostly inside Henry’s head, and we experience things the way Henry experiences them. I had some very serious chills going on while reading this book and managed to read it in one sitting. It took me about two hours to get through it.

What I hope is that you pick up this book. It’s refreshing, it’s scary, it’s well done, a bit on the confusing side at times, but then you pick up right into the psychological thriller side of it and you’re right there. I’m happy that the young adult genre has a decent horror, drama, thriller in it. It’s sorely missed.

If you liked Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, you will likely love this book. Go ahead put it on your TBR list!

Review: Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

“I won’t tell anyone, Echo. I promise.” Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. “You didn’t do that-did you? It was done to you?” No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

Title: Pushing the Limits
Author: Katie McGarry
Published: July 31st 2012 by Harlequin Teen
Links: Goodreads
Received: Received from Netgalley
Rating: 5 of 5

My thoughts:

I was skimming through Netgalley and chose this one along with a few others. Was pleasantly surprised when I was allowed to read this one! I admit I read the feedback about it first and was a bit skeptical since reviews were saying Katie McGarry was amazing, perfect, surrel, etc. etc. I’m always a bit wary when people have big things to live up to. That being said I read the first few pages of the book and put it down. Not the right time to read it for me.

Earlier this week I was feeling like yuck and wanted a book I could escape into for an afternoon. Honestly, with all the work I’ve been doing in June from moving stuff to storage, to festivals, to renovating my office, I needed a break from the world. My original plan was to sit on the new futon couch in my office and have a nap, but I chose Pushing the Limits. I guess it called to me and as I began reading and understanding what Echo was going through I was drawn in, unable to put it down.

I sat there for a good four hours doing nothing but reading, and found myself about forty percent through the book. I didn’t like Echo’s Dad, or the way everyone kept the truth from her. In my opinion, telling Echo the details instead of making her remember, would have been better for her sanity. Ashley, her ex babysitter, and Dad’s new wife, was hilarious. In the first scene Echo makes a comment about Ashley being the “Ashley Show” with her being pregnant and all, and throughout the book whenever Ashley showed up she couldn’t go one scene without trying to make it about her. I really didn’t like Echo’s friends, Grace, Natalia, etc. The popular mean girls who kept spouting crap about Echo’s social status and whether she was “in” or not. It could have come off cheesy but if I had to think about it, I had people act and talk the same way when I was in High School so yeah it does happen. The only friend I could stand was Lila, because she was the only true friend Echo had.

And then there was Noah. I don’t know where to begin with Noah because he’s not your usual, OMG kind of character. His reputation is the stoner who screws a lot of girls in the backseat of his car. Echo is his new flavor of the month apparently. Only, he’s not. His foster siblings do the pot. He doesn’t even look at another girl after he meets Echo and his main goal is to gain custody of his younger brothers. He saved them from a fire that killed his parents.

What I loved about Noah was the scenes from his POV. He’s such a guy and you’ll have to read it to see what I mean, but he’s a a very swoonworthy guy. Echo is a bit standoffish in her romantic prose, but she’s true to herself. I loved watching them struggle through the attraction to each other, finally give in, and how they came together in the end. Katie McGarry’s writing style is flawless and the book has such depth. It was like a living, breathing entity more than it was words on a page.

And that’s how I like it when I’m escaping in a book. I finished it in two days, but wished I could have sat there and finished it in one sitting.

This one gets major love from me, and is definitely worth more than five stars!

REVIEW: Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson

The Blurb: Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.

This is not her story.

Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison’s condition is proving difficult to diagnose.

The Short Stick: Sticky fear mixed with the sensation of falling and the color of puke.

The Goods: Forget about red being red for a minute. They say red is angry, that it means anger, but what does red taste like or smell like or feel like? What about yellow or green or blue? If they had a number what number would they be? That’s pretty much this entire book. Someone speaks and it tastes like chalk across a tongue, or they move a certain way and it’s nails against a chalkboard. The book itself is a backwards sensory experience and it’s easy to get lost in all of those sensations. Behind it is an awesome main character, Alison is pretty much one of my fav. main characters ever, and she’s surrounded by idiots. Except for Faraday.

The Not So Goods: This isn’t contemporary YA. I thought it was supposed to be and was confused when it made the switch from contemporary to sci-fi in such a way that you kinda feel like your brain is oozing out the side of your head. And it tastes like green. I was kinda disturbed by some of the kissing scenes, like really, they’re gonna kiss now? I was also disturbed by some of the psychological stuff but that’s just me. I’m not a fan of psychiatrists. Otherwise, the ending will throw you, and I’m otherwise unimpressed by how it ended, and was unimpressed by who Faraday turned out to be.

Rating: 4/5

Other Stuff:
Pinnochio Factor: Pass, they were way more than real. Alison most of the time smelled like different things. Lavender comes to mind.
Bella Swan Factor: Pass, Alison is awesome!
Jace Factor: Pass, Faraday is pretty hot for awhile. And then later he made me want to throw up.
Primrose Factor: Fail, we lost someone I would have preferred to keep and kept someone I thought was gone.
Potter Factor: Pass, nobody writes about synethesia, it’s a very rare and interesting condition.
Cheese Factor: Pass, not too many of them although Kirk bothered me.
Bible Factor: Pass, there was enough religion.
Temperature: 80 degrees, some kissing, and with Alison’s senses going wild it was kinda awesome.

Recommendation: Read it if you’re anybody because everyone should read this book at least once and then go outside and listen to the trees sing.