Book Review: Secrets in Phoenix (Phoenix Holt #1)

You can find the book at:

GoodReads
Amazon
Barnes & Noble (unavailable)
Author website

my review:

Rating: ★★★☆☆

When fifteen-year-old Sophie is sent, alongside her twin brothers, to a remote village and enrolled in a strange boarding school by their Great Aunt Ness, they never expected to find a hidden room which reveals that the residents of Phoenix Holt are anything but ordinary. And neither is her family.

I have to say I was extremely impressed with this one from Lapore. She seems to have this ongoing thing with witches in her novel, and since she has so many, I went in reading thinking it was going to be waay similar to How I Found You. But it wasn’t. And I certainly preferred this one than How I Found You.

It was a fun and energetic read from Lapore as we follow Sophie and her polar opposite twin brothers Sam and Todd in a journey to Phoenix Holt from their home of Port Dalton. I really enjoyed her writing style, it’s simple yet descriptive that you’re not overwhelmed by the language. What I really enjoyed were the moments between all three siblings, they played pranks, treated each other like crap, but at the end of the day showed that they cared for each other. It was just a nice difference compared to other YA I’ve read recently where siblings don’t exist or just distant to the storyline.

However, I wish there was a better development between Sophie and Jaxon. I know it would develop in the next novels, but it felt quite plain although I did enjoy Jaxon’s past which was really interesting. I also did have an issue with the boarding school. It was boys only, but it was never addressed why? Since the reason behind them being there is a massive spoiler, I won’t say, but it was confusing as to why no girls were there.

Overall, an interesting novel about witches, family and just the beginning of what Gabriella is capable of doing with this world.

Kindle Edition, 240 pages
Published October 13th 2015 by Oftomes Publishing

ASIN: B015L0GPD4

Advertisements

Book Review: How I Found You by Gabriella Lepore

you can find the book at:

GoodReads
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Author website

my review:

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Sixteen-year-old Rose comes to the sleepy village of Millwood to spend her summer holiday with her aunt and uncle while her parents work in Africa. For Rose, she’s expecting the same quiet summer as she always so it’s surprising when two brothers suddenly showed up and make themselves comfortable in her family home, and no questions asked from her other family members.

I’ve heard good things about Lepore so I read this book with good thoughts, and I certainly wasn’t disappointed yet there were a couple of flaws. I really enjoyed her new take on witches and the plot was a great combination of intense moments, an evil prophecy, and a continuous threat of a supernatural being that looms over the character.

However, there were also some scenes that confused me. The character of Caicus felt messy at some points, he sort of alternated from being shady and a nice guy rather than going through the process of being more open to others – although I did find it cute how he really did enjoy being with Rose’s family in the end. Also, the great reveal when Rose realises they’re witches I felt happened a bit too early. I feel like more could have happened to add the mystery of the two brothers.

Overall, I’m sort of in the middle with this book. On one hand, I really enjoyed the characterisation of Rose and the witty conversations between Caicus and Oscar. However, I just didn’t connect with the story, especially when it came to the history of witches, and towards the end, it felt really rushed. Despite this, I did enjoy the book enough to know I’ll be reading more Lepore’s books!

Format: Kindle, 269 pages
Published October 17th 2015 by Oftomes Publishing (first published July 16th 2012) ASIN: B016TD0AJ2