Jul 242014
 

24 PrototypePrototype by M.D. Waters
#2 in Archetype

Genres: Science Fiction
Publication Date: July 24th 2014
ARC Provided by Netgalley and Dutton Adult

Synopsis from Goodreads: The stunning debut that began with Archetype— and has readers buzzing—concludes in Prototype, when a woman’s dual pasts lock onto a collision course, threatening her present and future.

Emma looks forward to the day when she can let go of her past—both of them. After more than a year on the run, with clues to her parents’ whereabouts within her grasp, she may finally find a place to settle down. Start a new life. Maybe even create new memories with a new family.

But the past rises to haunt her and to make sure there’s nowhere on the planet she can hide. Declan Burke wants his wife back, and with a little manipulation and a lot of reward money, he’s got the entire world on his side. Except for the one man she dreads confronting the most: Noah Tucker.

Emma returns to face what she’s done but finds that the past isn’t the problem. It’s the present—and the future it represents. Noah has moved on and another woman is raising their daughter.

In the shocking conclusion to M.D. Waters’s spectacular debut, Emma battles for her life and her freedom, tearing down walls and ripping off masks to reveal the truth. She’s decided to play their game and prove she isn’t the woman they thought she was. Even if it means she winds up dead. Or worse, reborn.

Christal’s Review - 4.5 Skulls – A

Warning: This review may contain spoilers for the first book in this series, Archetype.

Prototype was an amazing sequel and I loved how it wrapped up everything in the Archetype duology.  There were some very surprising aspects in this entry, some I saw coming and some I was completely blindsided by.  I loved the action, the romance, the science, and the characters.  M.D. Waters has written a phenomenal set of books and I highly recommend them to science fiction readers looking for a unique story with a hint of romance.

In Archetype, we met Emma and learned that she was a clone created after her host dies.  She was taken in by Declan, her husband by law, but soon learned she was actually a member of the resistance and truly married to Noah, the love of her life.  Emma 2.0, as she is referred to in Prototype, understandably has a difficult time reconciling herself with the idea that she is just a copy.  She can’t be the “real” Emma and, after learning the truth about Declan and the cloning process, she decides to leave Noah to try to find her parents, find herself.  Prototype picks up a year after Emma left.  I do not recommend reading this installment without first having read Archetype.  M.D. Waters does a fantastic job of providing refresher information without it feeling shoe-horned in, but you will miss all of Emma’s personal struggles and true feelings towards everything that has happened to her if you skip the first book.

In Prototype, Emma has not been successful in finding her parents and unexpected circumstances finally force her to return to the resistance camp and, more specifically, to Noah and Adrienne.  We see more of the internal struggle Emma faces about wanting to be with Noah, but knowing she is not his Emma.  She wants him to love her for her, not because she wears the same face as his dead wife.  Emma also has to adapt to being around her daughter who she loves instantly.  She wants to be a mother to her, but she’s not sure how or even if she has the right.  Externally, Emma is still being hunted by Declan, who she suspects is now also a clone, and she continues to search for her parents.  On top of everything, the original clones have started dying and no one can seem to figure out why.  As Emma’s nightmares become harder and harder for her to wake from, she begins to wonder if they are actually death coming for her too…

I absolutely adore Emma.  I think she is a wonderful, sympathetic character and even when she is making stupid decisions, I still just want to hug her.  She has almost no memories of her life before, but the people around her remember and of course they have expectations.  I really connected with Emma’s struggle to be her own person in the face of those expectations and just wanted her to have the opportunity to live her life.  Everyone around her was trying to guide her or control her, but she could take care of herself – thank you very much.  In Prototype, we get to see her make friends and experience real love — she gets to be a mother.  These relationships are hers, not Emma 1.0′s, but real relationships based on others accepting her as a clean slate.

Prototype also deals with the complicated feelings between Emma and Noah.  While everything ends in a very satisfying way, I just wanted them to get there quicker.  I know, I know, there were plenty of people and issues keeping them apart, but it was obvious to anyone with eyes that they should be together.  Noah might have had a hard time accepting Emma 2.0 as Emma or even as her own person in the first book, but here he has come to realize how wonderful she truly is and to cherish her in a different way than he did his first wife because they are different people.

There are also some fantastic new characters in Prototype.  We still have sweet, loyal Foster and nasty Dr. Sonya, but we also add some new soldiers and even a new doctor to the equation.  My favorite new characters were Leigh and Miles, two soldiers who Emma befriends.  Emma 1.0 apparently couldn’t stand them, but Emma 2.0 forms a deep friendship with each of them.  Leigh was a needed confidant for Emma and Miles helped Emma search for her family, all the while keeping her spirits up with his inappropriate humor.  Dr. Malcolm is a new geneticist brought to the resistance to help them study the cloning process.  He’s a little quirky and childlike in his unwavering trust, but he was dedicated to help Emma and all the other clones in the process.  The last two characters I really enjoyed were only around for a short snippet, but I could see them becoming a part of Emma’s family in the future.  Peter was a former resistance fighter that opened his home to Emma during her year on the run.  He never asked anything of her or tried to pressure her into anything, he was just simply content to be her friend.  The other character, Colonel Updike, had a very close relationship with Emma 1.0 but, unfortunately, Emma 2.0 can’t remember him.  Even though they have to start over, it is obvious that he cares for her just as much as he did her host and may become something of a father figure to Emma.  Most of the other characters we meet are rather mean to Emma, but we do solve the mystery of her parents.  I have to say I was surprised by the reveal, even though I should have seen it coming.  I think it worked well within the context of the story and I think M.D. Waters left things with them on a hopeful note.

While the majority of Prototype is devoted to Emma and her more personal, pressing issues, it does still tackle the cloning process and the way women and girls are treated in general.  Strides are made for clone rights and the entire program itself comes under scrutiny.  The Women Training Centers (WTC) are looked at more closely and decisions about their futures are made.  While there were no complete 180° turns made, the first steps to women’s freedom in the East look possible.  I would love to follow this society as it continues to develop and change.

Prototype and its predecessor Archetype are definitely on my favorite books of 2014 list.  The plots are complex, the characters are lovingly flawed, the politics are dastardly, and the science is interesting.  While I am happy for Emma and the way her story ended, I would very much enjoy returning to this world in the future if M.D. Waters decides to make another trip.  Again, I highly recommend these book to science fiction readers or really anyone looking for a compelling and complex look into one woman’s journey through an unfamiliar and unwelcoming world.

Thank you to Netgalley and Dutton Adult for providing an ARC copy of this book!

Rating: ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠  + ½

Series Reading Order:
1.1. Archetype
1.5. Antitype
1.2. Prototype
Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 24, 2014 at 11:48 am
Jul 222014
 
Graphic Novels: Strong Female Characters

    Now is a great time to get into comics and graphic novels!  DC and Marvel both relaunched many of their titles with new #1 issues in the past few years, The New 52 and Marvel Now! respectively, and independently published comics are continuously producing profound and unique stories.  With SDCC right around the corner and Marvel’s announcement last week that a woman would be taking up the mantle of Thor, I thought it would be a perfect time to take a look at some graphic novels that feature strong female characters. These are some of my personal favorites, [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 22, 2014 at 1:53 pm
Jul 212014
 
Review: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion Series: Don Tillman #1 Genre: Humor, Romance Release Date: May 1st, 2013 Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. He is a man who can count all his friends on the fingers of one hand, whose lifelong difficulty with social rituals has convinced him that he is simply not wired for romance. So when an acquaintance informs him that he would make a “wonderful” husband, his first reaction is shock. Yet he must concede to the statistical probability that there is someone for everyone, and he embarks upon The [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 21, 2014 at 6:44 am
Jul 202014
 
Steals & Deals: Kate Daniels Series for $1.99 each! (Just today 7/20/14)

Just for today, the Kate Daniels series is on sale for Kindle – get all the ebooks for $1.99 each. If you are an audiobook fan, you can get Renee Raudman’s amazing narration for an additional $1.99 each ($3.49 for Magic Rises), thanks to the magic of the Whispersync discount. It’s an amazing bargain so now you have no excuse to start the series!  Magic Bites – Book 1 | Kindle $1.99 + $1.99 for Audiobook When the magic is up, rogue mages cast their spells and monsters appear, while guns refuse to fire and cars fail to start. But [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 20, 2014 at 9:28 am
Jul 172014
 
Jumble Your Genres Reading Challenge: Adult - The Prime Minister's Secret Agent by Susan Elia MacNeal

The Jumble Your Genres Reading Challenge was Adult for July so we decided on a historical mystery that was definitely meant for adult readers! Christal has loved the Maggie Hope Mystery series from the very beginning but now AH is a convert too. Read on to see why we think you should give this series a try. The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent by Susan Elia MacNeal Book #4 in A Maggie Hope Mystery Genres: Adult Historical Mystery Publication Date: July 1st 2014 ARC Provided by Edelweiss and Bantam Synopsis from Goodreads: World War II rages on across Europe, but Maggie Hope has finally found a moment of rest [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 17, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 162014
 
Release Day Review: Into the Shadows by Carolyn Crane

Release Day Review: Into the Shadows by Carolyn Crane Release date: July 16, 2014 Book 3 in The Associates series Genre: Romantic Suspense Book provided by the author Synopsis from Goodreads: He’s working undercover for the good guys. That doesn’t mean he’s one of them. HE’S A KILLER. Thorne McKelvey knows exactly how Nadia sees him—as a brute and a killer just kinky enough to play her sexy games. And that’s how it has to stay. Leaving her was the hardest thing he ever did, but his undercover mission could blow up at any second. No way will he drag [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 16, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 152014
 
New Release Review: The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno

The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno Genres: Young Adult Contemporary Publication Date: July 8th 2014 ARC Provided by Edelweiss and HarperTeen Synopsis from Goodreads: You take it for granted. Waking up. Going to school, talking to your friends. Watching a show on television or reading a book or going out to lunch. You take for granted going to sleep at night, getting up the next day, and remembering everything that happened to you before you closed your eyes. You live and you remember. Me, I live and I forget. But now—now I am remembering. For all of her seventeen [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 15, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 142014
 
New Release Review: Child of a Hidden Sea by A. M. Dellamonica

New Release Review: Child of a Hidden Sea by A.M. Dellamonica Release date: June 24, 2014 Genre: Fantasy Book 1 of a 3 book trilogy Book provided by NetGalley and MacMillan-Tor/Forge Synopsis from Goodreads: One minute, twenty-four-year-old Sophie Hansa is in a San Francisco alley trying to save the life of the aunt she has never known. The next, she finds herself flung into the warm and salty waters of an unfamiliar world. Glowing moths fall to the waves around her, and the sleek bodies of unseen fish glide against her submerged ankles. The world is Stormwrack, a series of [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 14, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 112014
 
New Release Review: The Vanishing Season by Jodi Lynn Anderson

The Vanishing Season by Jodi Lynn Anderson Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance Publication Date: July 1st 2014 ARC Provided by Edelweiss and HarperTeen Synopsis from Goodreads: Girls started vanishing in the fall, and now winter’s come to lay a white sheet over the horror. Door County, it seems, is swallowing the young, right into its very dirt. From beneath the house on Water Street, I’ve watched the danger swell. The residents know me as the noises in the house at night, the creaking on the stairs. I’m the reflection behind them in the glass, the feeling of fear in the cellar. [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 11, 2014 at 4:00 pm
Jul 112014
 
Early Review: Dirty Wings by Sarah McCarry

Dirty Wings by Sarah McCarry Book #2 in All Our Pretty Songs Genre: Young Adult Magical Realism Publication Date: July 15th 2014 ARC Provided by St. Martin’s Griffin and Netgalley Synopsis from Goodreads: A gorgeous retelling of the Persephone myth, Sarah McCarry brings us the story of Cass and Maia–the mothers from All Our Pretty Songs–and how their fates became intertwined. Maia is a teenage piano prodigy and dutiful daughter, imprisoned in the oppressive silence of her adoptive parents’ house like a princess in an ivory tower. Cass is a street rat, witch, and runaway, scraping by with her wits and her knack for [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 11, 2014 at 10:38 am
Jul 102014
 
Early Review: Black Rook by Kelly Meade

Black Rook by Kelly Meade Book #1 in Cornerstone Run Trilogy Genre: Paranormal Romance Publication Date: July 15th 2014 ARC Provided by InterMix and Netgalley Synopsis from Goodreads: She never saw this coming… Brynn Atwood is a low-level Magus whose unpredictable precognitive powers have made her an outcast among her people—and an embarrassment to her highly-regarded father. After a frightening vision in which her father is murdered by a loup garou man, Brynn decides to prove herself by finding the killer, and stopping them at any cost. Her target is Rook McQueen, the son of a small-town loup garou Alpha. Despite being the youngest of three, Rook is first [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 10, 2014 at 10:45 am
Jul 092014
 
New Release Review: Shattered by Kevin Hearne

Shattered by Kevin Hearne Series: Iron Druid Chronicles #7 Genre: Urban Fantasy Release Date: Jun 17, 2014 For nearly two thousand years, there was only one Druid left walking the Earth—Atticus O’Sullivan, the Iron Druid, whose sharp wit and sharp sword kept him alive while pursued by a pantheon of hostile deities. Now he’s got company. Atticus’s apprentice Granuaile is at last a full Druid herself. What’s more, Atticus has defrosted an archdruid long ago frozen in time, a father figure (of sorts) who now goes by the modern equivalent of his old Irish name: Owen Kennedy. And Owen has [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 9, 2014 at 7:01 am
Jul 082014
 
Review: Threatened by Eliot Schrefer

Threatened by Eliot Schrefer Genre: Realistic Fiction/Animal Story Publication Date: February 25th 2014 Publisher: Scholastic Press Synopsis from Goodreads: Into the jungle. Into the wild. Into harm’s way. When he was a boy, Luc’s mother would warn him about the “mock men” living in the trees by their home — chimpanzees whose cries would fill the night. Luc is older now, his mother gone. He lives in a house of mistreated orphans, barely getting by. Then a man calling himself Prof comes to town with a mysterious mission. When Luc tries to rob him, the man isn’t mad. Instead, he offers Luc a job. [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm
Jul 082014
 
Re-Release Review: The Trouble With Harry by Katie MacAlister

Re-Release Review: The Trouble With Harry by Katie MacAlister Book 3 in Noble series Re-Release date: July 1, 2014 Original Release Date: May 2004 Genre: Historical Romance Book provided by NetGalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca Synopsis from Goodreads:  1. He is Plum’s new husband. Not normally a problem, but when you consider that Harry advertised for a wife, and Plum was set to marry his secretary, there was cause for a bit of confusion. 2. He has a title. Plum has spent the last twenty years hiding from the ton, and now Harry wants her to shine in society? Horrors! 3. [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 8, 2014 at 12:04 pm
Jul 072014
 
7 Books Everybody Loved Except Me

Today I’m sharing with you a list of 7 books that I didn’t like at ALL but which are loved by a LOT of readers, as shown by the thousands of Goodreads members that rated them 4+ stars. Some I hate, others, I just dislike. Once you finish reading the list, please share in the comments books you didn’t like but everybody seemed to love. Divergent by Veronica Roth Genre: Young Adult Dystopia Avg. Goodreads Rating: 4.35 Rated by: 920,000+ Goodreads Members D.G.’s Rating: 2 stars Why I Didn’t Like It:  I don’t get it. I really can’t understand why [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 7, 2014 at 6:47 am
Jul 042014
 
New Release Review: (Don't You) Forget About Me by Kate Karyus Quinn

(Don’t You) Forget About Me by Kate Karyus Quinn Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Mystery Publication Date: June 10th 2014 ARC Provided by HarperTeen and Edelweiss Synopsis from Goodreads: Welcome to Gardnerville. A place where no one gets sick. And no one ever dies. Except… There’s a price to pay for paradise. Every fourth year, the strange power that fuels the town exacts its payment by infecting teens with deadly urges. In a normal year in Gardnerville, teens might stop talking to their best friends. In a fourth year, they’d kill them. Four years ago, Skylar’s sister, Piper, was locked away after [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 4, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 032014
 
Group Review: The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu

**************************************************************** The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Publication Date: June 3rd 2014 ARC Provided by Roaring Brook Press and Netgalley Synopsis from Goodreads: Everyone has a lot to say about Alice Franklin, and it’s stopped mattering whether it’s true. The rumors started at a party when Alice supposedly had sex with two guys in one night. When school starts everyone almost forgets about Alice until one of those guys, super-popular Brandon, dies in a car wreck that was allegedly all Alice’s fault. Now the only friend she has is a boy who may be the only other person who [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 3, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 022014
 
New Release Review: On The Fence by Kasie West

On The Fence by Kasie West Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance Publication Date: July 1st 2014 ARC Provided by HarperTeen and Edelweiss Synopsis from Goodreads: She’s a tomboy. He’s the boy next door… Charlie Reynolds can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn’t know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at a chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world. To cope with the stress of her new reality, Charlie takes to spending nights chatting with her neighbor Braden through the [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 2, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jul 012014
 
Spotlight on July's New Releases

Welcome to our monthly feature where we take a look at the books releasing in July and offer up our top picks. We have chosen 30 of our most anticipated new releases. The release dates are on a best known basis and are not guaranteed. Books may get delayed or sometimes even released earlier so please check with your favorite store to ensure availability. Now, on to the books!        On The Fence by Kasie West – Expected publication: July 1st 2014 by HarperTeen Fireborn by Keri Arthur (#1 in Souls of Fire) – Expected publication: July 1st 2014 by [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on July 1, 2014 at 7:00 am
Jun 302014
 
New Release Review: The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith aka J.K. Rowling

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith aka J.K. Rowling Series: Cormoran Strike #2 Genre: Mystery Release Date: Jun 19, 2014 Audiobook narrated by Robert Glenister When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband has gone off by himself for a few days–as he has done before–and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home. But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine’s disappearance than his wife realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone [ Read More of this Review ]

Bookmark and Share
 Posted by on June 30, 2014 at 6:51 am