Chasing Daybreak (the Dark of Night #1) by Ranae Glass

chasing daybreakBlurb: Isabel Stone wanted a normal life. But when the unexpected death of her father leaves her at the helm of the family business, things quickly go from weird to worse. Vampires are on the loose and out of the coffin, and only Isabel can walk the fine line between the world of the living and the world of the undead.

Torn between letting go of her past and embracing her future, Isabel will have to decide who she can trust, and be willing to use all the weapons at her disposal, to get to the bottom of a terrifying string of deaths that lead right to her doorstep—before she becomes the next victim. In a city where nothing is what it seems, ending up the target of a deranged killer might actually be the high point of her week. Because in this town, the things that go bump in the night… just might kill you.



4 Stars

This book was part of a read along in our blogging group, I’m a little behind. (I’m house hunting, gimme a break) This is a YA paranormal with a hint of romance. It’s perm-free, I think.  I really enjoyed Isabel’s sarcastic, snarky verbal sparing she had going on. And she didn’t discriminate, she made them to EVERYONE she met.  This author kept it consistent with her MC.

What was really cool was the chemistry she had with Shane and Xavier and how they were opposites to each other.  Shane is someone who’s been there for her, they are very close but can’t be more than friends and Xavier is a friend who wants to be more than friends but she is hesitant.  It had a really nice compare and contrast.

The back story of Shane and Isabel relationship was really heartbreaking.  They work together, he’s a vampire and she’s a human, they can’t grow old together, they can’t have kids together. So shes trying to move on but its hard when she sees him on a daily basis.  I could feel it; how do you resolve that relationship when it stares you in the face everyday, that stood out for me.

There were many parallels in the relationship between her and Shane and Shane and the conclave, it was very well written.  I kinda wanted to see what was going on with Tyger, Heather and Duke. I wanted more of those side stories. And her family? They were real. Not all hugsy wugsy, but talk shit to your face but help you bury the body when they need you real.  Moms is quite the asshole.  All judgy judgerson with her kids.  Hello pot, the kettle is calling, they want the color black back.

Read it if you like good books.

Favorite quotes:

Just walking through the chapel’s Gothic double doors gave me the creeps.  Or maybe it was the fresco on the ceiling that depicted a dozen winged angels holding down a vampire and tearing off its head that made my stomach turn.

A quick search confirmed that the counsel had ties inside the law firm, so many in fact, that I was beginning to believe the entire firm was a front for counsel activities.  I always believed that lawyers were blood sucking demons.  Now I had proof.

We stopped by the tailor first, you know, just in case Shane was staked or something and the place closed before we could get out of the hospital.  Priorities.

Curly Carla_small

Out of the Shallows by Samantha Young

Charley and Jake’s story concludes in Out of the Shallows…

Somehow, after everything they’ve been through, Jake Caplin and Charley Redford made their way back to one another. But finding each other and staying together are two completely different things.

When Charley’s world is flipped upside down, she begins to question the choices and decisions she’s made since her arrival in Edinburgh, and in an effort to grip onto what she holds most dear she believes she must sacrifice her love for Jake.

Returning to the States for her senior year, Charley struggles to find peace and happiness. While everyone else seems to be finding themselves in college, Charley is terrified that, along with almost everything else that’s important to her, she’s lost herself.

While friends and family deal with their own tumultuous lives, there is one person resolved to uncover the reason behind Charley’s sudden defection and unhappiness. Refusing to give up without a fight, Jake believes he is the only one who can truly understand what Charley is going through, and this time he’s determined to prove he’s there for her no matter what obstacles are thrown in their way.

However, as Charley strives through the biggest personal journey of her life thus far, there is no guarantee that the woman she is becoming will still need Jake as much as the girl she once was did…

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My Review:
3 stars — Well darn.  I kind of didn’t have my hopes up for this sequel, but I guess part of me was hoping I was just being pessimistic.  But in the end I just didn’t enjoy the characters as much, and so much of the book just felt like drawn out angst…I didn’t find myself empathizing with Charley at all.  She was so sassy and witty and tried so hard in the first book, and that all just disappeared in this book.  I know she was supposed to be a shadow of her former self due to “circumstances”, but I expected her to show up again at some point…and that just never felt like it happened.

This book also reuses the present/past alternating chapters thing from the first book, but I wasn’t as intrigued by it and I lost all my patience for learning what happened that way.  I’d mostly enjoyed it in the first book, but reusing it just felt like trying too hard or something.  I found myself just wanting to know so I could move on and feel something for once.  Plus even when we were in the “past”, it would occasionally have a time jump in that section (like 48 hours earlier).  I’m not entirely sure why it bothered me, but it did.

Charley’s family was also kind of horrible.  I guess in some ways it was realistic, in that not all families are great and people behave irrationally, but I just never got behind the way they were treating Charley, and how they couldn’t see what her decisions because of them was doing to her.  I had already been upset at Andi in the first book for how she behaved when Charley told her about being with Jake again, and I guess that just never really went away.

In the end I didn’t feel like Charley’s reasons were good enough for the way she was treating Jake.  I don’t really think she deserved to have him be patient with her with all her wishy-washiness.

Even Beck and Claudia’s storyline felt a bit tired to me.  I know Claudia was burned and thus untrusting of men, but she really toyed with Beck too.

So yeah.  A lot of drawn out angst that felt boring and repetitive, and not as much character growth as I would have liked.  I didn’t even really get a satisfying epilogue conclusion.  I wish I’d only read the first book and left this one.


Into the Deep by Samantha Young

17970255Live young. Live hard. Love deep.

Charley Redford was just an ordinary girl until Jake Caplin moved to her small town in Indiana and convinced her she was extraordinary. Almost from day one Jake pulled Charley into the deep and promised he was right there with her. But when a tragic incident darkened Jake’s life he waded out into the shallows and left Charley behind.

Almost four years later Charley thinks she’s moved on. That is until she takes a study year abroad in Edinburgh and bumps into none other than Jake Caplin at a party with his new girlfriend. The bad-boy-turned-good attempts to convince Charley to forgive him, and as her best friend starts spending time with Jake’s, Charley calls a truce, only to find herself tumbling back into a friendship with him.

As they grow closer, the spark between them flares and begins playing havoc with their lives and relationships. When jealousy and longing rear their destructive heads, Charley and Jake struggle to come to grips with what they mean to one another.

And even if they work it out, there is no guarantee Charley will ever trust Jake to lead her back into the deep…

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My Review:
4.5 stars — Another book devoured!  I was a little bit leery going into this book, b/c while I enjoyed myself reading Ms. Young’s paranormal series, they didn’t blow me out of the water like I was expecting (and they had some reoccurring pitfalls that didn’t work for me).  But I know her Adult Contemporary series is highly acclaimed, and since I had this little NA contemp gem on my kindle already, I thought I would give it a go and see if she could surprise me.

And seriously folks, it was like I was reading a different author for me.  I was completely enraptured by the characters, and totally engaged with the story.  Charley may just be one of my favourite kinds of heroines — while extremely vulnerable and generally f’d up from her past, she is still one hilarious and sassy smartass.  I LOVED her character traits and I thought she was portrayed beautifully.  The banter between Charley and Jake (mostly in the past flashbacks) had me just in delight — right from their first meeting at the bonfire.  Now *that* is chemistry.  I LOVE when two characters just seem to fit together and you can see what draws them to each other.

I think in the end I was actually more drawn to the flashback story than I was to the present story, and wouldn’t have minded even more of that…maybe it was more what I was in the mood for.  I just loved the buildup of their relationship and how they almost made it together despite so many obstacles.  In the present…well they’re both kind of f’d up, kwim?  The past has really done a number on them, particularly Charley, and so watching her deal with her feelings could be kind of heartbreaking.  Actually no, not just Charley — Jake is just such a different guy in so many ways.  He’s almost meek.  And while they are still so drawn to each other, it was hard to watch what they were doing by allowing themselves to spend time together despite how unhealthy it was.  In the end I found I was somewhat less engaged with that part, and it kind of dragged out a bit longer than I was anticipating…  So while I’m interested in where the story is going in the sequel, I’m not sure it will be able to top all that young love magic that we got in the flashbacks in this book.

I also found it really weird how Charley saw Jake as a “bad boy”.  Was that because of the sleeping around?  B/C he really wasn’t much of a bad boy otherwise.  That kind of confused me.

Great cast of secondary characters in this one.  They were all so colourful, and I really enjoyed some of the other friendships that Charley developed, particularly with Lowe.  That boy needs a HEA.  I’m on the fence with the Claudia/Beck storyline.  While I’m interested, it’s also been drawn out longer than I was expecting.  I do love Claudia and Charley’s friendship though, and really love how they are there for each other.

Even if the sequel doesn’t live up to this one, I’m so glad I finally found where Ms. Young’s strengths lie…well, at least more match up with me anyways.  I will definitely have to bug my Partner in Crime to borrow On Dublin Street and find out what all the fuss is about with that series.  🙂


Bite and Release (Bite and Release #1) by Cory Cyr

Bite and releaseBlurb: Ryan Chase left Fairbanks, Alaska, when she was 21 years old to pursue her dream of becoming an actress. Somewhere along the way her dreams of stardom crashed and burned, along with her life. Thirteen years later she is forced to return to Fairbanks because her unforgiving and emotionally-distant father has suddenly died. Ryan seizes the opportunity to not only escape her abusive husband but to be able to attend her best friend’s wedding. What could go wrong? It’s only Fairbanks, Alaska… While wishing she was anywhere but her father’s funeral and wake, Ryan is struck senseless by a stunning, drop-dead gorgeous man. Her thoughts turn carnal and she desperately wants to know him in every way-and position-possible. There’s only one problem… He’s the devil’s spawn. He’s the one who marked her for life. He’s the kid she used to baby-sit. And he’s hotter than hell! Shea Michaels has loved Ryan Chase for most of his life. After surviving an unspeakable childhood, he became a man of whom she could be proud of…if she ever came back. Now that she’s returned, Shea pursues her with a vengeance, undaunted by the thirteen year age difference that Ryan uses as the shield between them. Confusion, guilt and lust bombard Ryan as she battles the memories of the little boy she used to know while still being drawn to the heart-stopping man he has become.



3 Stars

First off, let me say that there is a lot of sex in this book. And honestly it got to the point where it was overdone.  Coming from someone who enjoys erotica, sometimes less is more.

At first I was totally on Ryan’s side in the beginning.  He was way too young for Ryan to date.  And baby sitting him?  I don’t think I could get past that.  But as I read on I realized age really is nothing but a number and them dating really wasn’t that big a deal.

And another thing, the abuse that she was supposedly subjected to? I had a hard time identifying with that part of her personality because it seemed as if it was thrown in as an afterthought.  There were only a few references to it in the beginning and the level of abuse was really toned down and just didn’t seem to fit with the climax.  (I hope I’m not giving too much away with that statement.)  Up until that point there was nothing for me to really know how bad it was. It was vague and ambiguous statements and I needed more in order to get a true fear and understanding of this mysterious opposing character.

The detail was there for Shea, and I felt empathy towards his character because it was described just enough. I don’t understand why Ryan’s abuse didn’t get the same attention in this story.  Shea was a sweetheart. He wasn’t really like an alpha male. He was like an alpha beta I guess you could say. He respected her wishes to be left alone. When she finally admitted her attraction to him and allowed him in; he expressed his happiness is such an endearing way. He wasn’t over the top, he was genuine and emotional. It was adorable.

I liked the setting, I’m not familiar with Alaska; so when the author threw in those really cool attributes that only Alaska has, it gave it a nice layer to the world building and background.

The book was good, there were just some things that impacted my enjoyment of it.

Would I recommend it, yeah I’d recommend it if you want a nice, easy read with some explicit sex scenes.

Curly Carla_small


Beacon by Angela Brown

23627081***When ignorance is bliss, Bliss is power.***

Tsunamis reduced the USA into a shell of itself, called The Fold. Surviving humans and vampires joined forces to form The Colony, where registered citizens do as they’re told.

They donate blood quarterly and dream of being chosen as Attendees for the Jubilee celebrations, that is, everyone except Macie Breen. With high school graduation near, she’s anxious to ditch the rules in hopes of starting a new life with Thane, an unregistered and also her best friend.

Her hopes fizzle when Macie is selected as an Attendee, forever registered. Any future with Thane…impossible. Being chosen comes with another unexpected price.

Truths about The Colony blaze into ashes and lies when she discovers the vampires haven’t kept their part of the bargain. Worst still, Macie’s life unravels as her stint in the city of Bliss forces her to face daunting truths about who, and what, she really is.

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My Review:
2.5 stars — I probably should have DNF’d this one.  I could tell fairly early on that it probably wasn’t my kind of book, but I’d won it in a contest so I kind of felt like I should give it a better chance.  (Also, it’s Black History Month, and this was the one book in my TBR that appeared to have a POC in it, so I was striving for diversity)  But it just never got better for me.

The writing starts out very descriptive…I’m not a literary kind of girl, but it felt like taking the whole “show, don’t tell” thing to another level.  It just didn’t flow naturally for me.  Might be a personal taste thing.  If you’re like me, you would totally notice it in the first few pages, so you could always sample it and see…  Strangely enough that sort of petered out as the story went on, so it was really only predominant in the first third of the book.  What’s really strange is that for all of the description that was given, I had a hard time picturing things — like the devil spawn…it didn’t really incite fear in me.  It more made me think of a Star Trek The Original Series creature.  Maybe it was the furriness?  Maybe it was just me….

I never became all that attached to the characters…there just wasn’t enough connection for me.  Some really horrible/terrifying things happen in this book, and quite honestly I NEVER felt enough emotion from our heroine, Macie.  Seriously.  People die.  She’s forced to *kill* people.  She learns all sorts of lies and about all sorts of new creatures (including things about herself).  And through it all she just sort of dealt with it.  Not that she had *no* reaction, it just felt like a blip and then it was over and it was on to the next crisis.

The pacing also felt weird to me.  There was a LOT that happens, but it was never a big buildup, mostly just these little hills and then we would move on to the next hill and the next.  Even the climax didn’t feel all that big to me, just felt like yet another hill.  I guess I was just never really that engaged with what was going on.

I didn’t really feel a lot of chemistry with Thane  either.  I almost felt more for Rig, and that went in a completely different direction than I was expecting.

It’s funny, b/c it almost felt like there was too much going on that it was hard to keep track of, but at the same time I felt kind of bored.  *sigh*  I don’t know.  😦  I hate writing reviews for books I don’t enjoy.


Top Ten Books I Enjoyed Recently That Weren’t My Typical Genre

Top Ten Tuesday
(Images link to Goodreads, Titles link to Amazon)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in which you make a list of ten to do with a certain topic.  This week’s topic is “Books I Enjoyed Recently (last yearish) That Weren’t My Typical Genre/Type of Book (or that was out of your comfort zone).”

Lenoreo’s Top Ten:

OK, I will admit that this was a really hard topic for me, b/c I do NOT stray from my typical genres…  So I had to stretch it a little bit to get to ten (in that I had to go beyond the last year, and “not my typical genre” may have been stretched too).

  1. Moon Spell by Samantha Young — I just recently got back into my paranormal readings, and I tend to stay away from werewolf books for no particular reason.  But I had this series in my TBR pile, and actually enjoyed it in general.
  2. Ride the Wind by Starla Hutchton — I tend to shy away from high fantasy and historical books, preferring contemporary/casual language.  But this fairytale retelling had me captured despite that.
  3. Mismatched in Love by Jolene Betty Perry — I’m not a huge reader of religious fiction, since, you know, I’m not religious.  But I’ve read other books by this author and loved them, and this one was a treat despite it’s religious tones.
  4. The Legacy Human by Susan Kaye Quinn — I’m not a huge reader of sci-fi, so I’m counting this one as out of my typical genres…
  5. The Telepath Chronicles by Various — An anthology of short sci-fi stories — don’t tend to read a lot of short stories, and don’t tend to read a lot of sci-fi…particularly if it doesn’t contain romance.
  6. Haven by A.R. Ivanovich — This one had elements of fantasy and steampunk to it, both of which I tend to shy away from…and yet I LOVED this one!!  Really need to get back to it and read more in this series.
  7. Darkhouse by Karina Halle — This one is kind of horror light (horror for me anyways), and yet I enjoyed myself b/c I really enjoyed the heroine.
  8. The Tears of Elios by Crista McHugh — This was a fantasy book that I got sucked into, and I’ve been waiting a few years for a sequel…:(
  9. And All the Stars by Andrea K. Host — This wasn’t so much b/c it’s sci-fi as much as the very fancy way it was written…it had a more literary feel than the books I tend to gravitate towards.
  10. The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson — Another book with a fantasy/historical feel that I ended up really loving.  But by the time the next books came out, it went up in price hugely and so I’ve never gotten back to it.


Deja Revu – Feb 22nd


Déjà Revu is a weekly review round-up that is open to all book review blogs.





Action & Adventure
Science Fiction


Graphic Novel


Shades of Blood by Samantha Young

13158451Eden’s life has taken a turn she would never have imagined. She’s gone from soul eater to warrior, left behind a family she was ashamed of and moved in with one she admires. She has a purpose, a future, and… she has Noah.

Life should be good.

But… the most fervent and powerful soul eaters are determined to take down the Ankh and Eden is the key to the destruction of the warrior race.
Moreover, a shadowed enemy is still after Eden, and the mortal Warriors of Neith have chosen the worst time imaginable to start an uprising.

With an enemy in every corner the problems before her are overwhelming. Then again, Eden hasn’t come this far to let anyone snatch her new life from her…
However, just when Eden thought she’d battled the monster within and won, the warrior who took something precious from her comes back into her life, tempting Eden to take a course of revenge there is no turning back from.

Vengeance is such a bitch…

… So is Eden when the stakes are high.

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My Review:
3 stars — Another strange reading experience — I stayed up until 3am finishing the book, but in the end it was only ok for me.  This review *might* be a bit spoilery, so you’ve been warned.

The plot was quite different from what I’m used to in paranormal reads, in that there wasn’t really a big bad guy to fight and win against.  There were a few enemies, but those plots really seemed to stay in the background, and the climax wasn’t traditional either…heck, our heroine wasn’t even there to deal with them all.  In the end the big bad seemed to be more Eden herself, and her inability to deal with her grief over Stratton and her thirst for vengeance.  And while I appreciate the uniqueness of this, I guess I just wasn’t completely won over.  I’m having a hard time pinpointing why.  I guess there just didn’t feel like a lot of build up to a climax, a crucial point where things had to be taken care of.

I also didn’t see as much growth in Eden as I would have liked.  Her issues ended up feeling very repetitive, so maybe I grew bored?  But then why did I keep reading til it was over?  Maybe I was waiting for something to happen?  It’s not that I don’t feel for Eden…I do.  I just ran into a wall with her character and I wanted more.

I had mixed feelings on the romance as well.  Geez, I’m not sure this review is going to be worth anything at all — I can’t seem to figure out what I liked and didn’t like.  Or at least I can’t seem to articulate it.  I appreciated that the romance was there, but I didn’t always feel it…it just existed.  I was even hoping for more from Tobe and Cameron, and I didn’t really get anything from that either.

And in the end I think the thing that bothered me the most (and bothered me with her other series too) was the questionable morals.  Not just in Eden’s thirst for vengeance (and quite honestly I don’t think she ever really got why killing Romany would be a bad thing for her).  But I wasn’t really down with Darius and his methods.  Or heck, for how they treated the rebellion.  I guess I want my heros to be spick and span, or at least have more reasons for behaving badly than these guys did.  They just wanted to protect their group of Ankhs, and the authority they had…yeah yeah, I know, so they could focus on the soul eater killing, but no…I just didn’t like that at all.  So they all went down in my esteem.

Also, the Unforeseen ability?  Felt like that was thrown in just to ramp up Eden’s thirst for vengeance…felt like a convenient plot device, and really served no other purpose…especially since they wanted to keep it hidden.

Wow.  So that really looks like I didn’t enjoy it at all.  It’s not that…it’s more like a feeling of disappointment in the end.  I guess I’m just not a fan of Ms. Young’s paranormals.  We’ll give her contemporaries a try, but she may just not be a fit for me.


Blood Past by Samantha Young

12388671All Eden wants is redemption… but the road to redemption is never an easy one.

Travelling to Scotland to find her mother’s bloodline, Eden is soon embroiled in the politics and training of the Scottish Warriors of Neith. It is a world where some stand with open arms ready to welcome her as family, while others keep a wary distance, conspiring against her. Through it all Eden learns of love, friendship, and what it means to be a warrior. Her future has promise… that is until a man she thought was forever gone from her life returns to threaten it all.

When the one person Eden loves above all else is endangered, she will have to make a choice. Him… or her?

Life is such a bitch…

… but so is Eden when you don’t play nice.

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My Review:
3.5 stars — Definitely a solid followup to the first book.  Sometimes I thought I knew where this book was going, but at other times I was surprised — especially about the outcomes of the battle at the end.

I loved meeting more fabulous secondary characters in this installment — Valeria, October and Cameron were great new friends to Eden.  Sometimes I wished for a little more depth to their friendships, but then again, she just met them.  And Mhairi/Nana was a hoot!

I also enjoyed the increased romance aspect in this book.  I was a bit disappointed in that part in book one, and in the previous series I read by Ms. Young, so it was nice to have more of that in this one.  It’s funny, though, b/c I felt a stronger connection between Eden and Noah in the first book as friends than I did in this book in some cases.  The kisses were definitely hot, but I guess I was just missing some of that glow that I get from other books.  I’m not sure…there was just something missing.

Still really intrigued by the mythos of the world, and I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen in the conclusion…especially since things happened in this one that I wasn’t expecting.  I don’t really have anything else to say…so I guess while I enjoyed it, it didn’t stand out as much as the first book.


Blood Will Tell by Samantha Young

blood will tellWhat would you do if you were born to be a predator? Would you fight your natural instincts or give in to your nature?

Eden is a soul eater closing in on her Awakening. Her family has convinced her that soon she will have to take a life in order to save her own. It’s a decision Eden doesn’t want to deal with even as her hunger for souls grows stronger every day.

To complicate her impossible position, new guy in school Noah Valois’ determination to befriend her puts Eden in touch with a humanity she’s never known. Addicted to his company, his friendship and affection, she becomes more and more terrified that giving into her hunger will mean losing him forever…

… But when she discovers that Noah is not what he seems, his betrayal forces her to face two choices. One will offer her revenge and the destruction of a boy she loved. The other may offer her a life of eternal redemption…

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My Review:
4 stars — WOW.  This one starts off with a really dark bang in the prologue.  I found myself all kinds of intrigued by a heroine who lives with the evil people, and is aware of the evil things that are done in her home everyday.  It just felt very unique to me.  And you could really feel all the struggles that Eden was going through, growing up how she did but not having the same overwhelming urges that the rest of her family had.  There was a lot of internal struggling going on in Eden’s mind too, particularly after the “hunger” was awoken.  I couldn’t imagine what that must have been like to live with.

I found the relationship with her brother to be epically intriguing.  They had such a strange relationship given their upbringing.  And seeing Stratton have those dark urges, but try to quell them because of his love for his sister?  I just couldn’t figure out what to think.  I mean, I actually really liked him and the way he protected Eden, so it made the whole thing so much more shades of gray if that makes any sense.  I mean, he’s a guy who is genuinely tempted by “the dark side”, and yet because of how he feels for Eden, it actually gives him some sense of guilt…like he wants to be better for her.  It kind of broke my heart and got to me in a way I wasn’t expecting.

On the other side of things we have Noah, part of the “good side”, and yet I wasn’t always that impressed with him.  As I’m beginning to notice in Ms. Young’s paranormal series, there really isn’t a strong romance aspect…it’s really more about the building of the paranormal world and the conflict that arises in each.  Personal preference?  I miss the romance.  I’m used to reading these series and having a hero to root for and make into a book boyfriend, and we didn’t really get that in Noah.  I mean, he has a girlfriend for part of it, and is conflicted on his feelings for Eden and whether he’s disgusted by her (even though he’s spent 6 months getting to know her).  So that part was kind of disappointing.  I wanted more from Noah I guess.

The paranormal world is intriguing though — very different, though it still had that infodump feel to it as I’ve experienced in her other series.  And I enjoyed the backstory of her birth (even if it was seriously disturbing), and I’m liking Cyrus so far.  We really didn’t get to see much of the Ankh side, so I’m hoping the next books give us a better glimpse of them.

I was really surprised by some of the twists that came during her awakening — I can honestly say I didn’t see some of that coming, and so I’m curious who the big bad is going to be, and I’m saddened for the loss of one of the characters.

The strength of this book (and series) so far is definitely in Eden, and all the conflict she experiences (mostly internal).  I’m looking forward to seeing where this one goes…