Monday, August 31, 2009

Radiant Darkness by Emily Whitman


 I picked up Radiant Darkness after seeing it pop up on my Amazon recommendations page.  I have to admit that I was a little skeptical when I found it at the bookstore because the cover is a little 'cheezy'!  I am not one to judge books by their cover art and the description inside the book flap sounded interesting- so I bought it.
    This story is a retelling of the classic myth of Hades and Persephone.  I love mythology and Emily Whitman totally turned this classic myth upside down!  In its original form the myth says that Hades (Ruler of the Underworld) came above the ground to Earth and kidnapped Persephone against her will and tricked her into becoming his wife and Queen.  Hades is viewed as cruel, evil and manipulative.  Demeter (Goddess of the Harvest) is Persephone's mother and retaliates against Hades by causing massive drought and suffering on Earth.  Zeus eventually steps in and declares that Persephone must spend half of the year in the Underworld with Hades (this is said to occur during the cold months of the year when there is no growth on Earth because Demeter is in mourning for her daughter) and half of the year with Demeter on Earth (this is said to occur in the warm months when the Earth is bountiful because Demeter is happy to have her daughter home).
     Radiant Darkness spins the myth from Persephone's point of view.  In this story she is absolutely suffocated by her mother and her rules and restrictions.  She longs for a chance to break free and become her own person. Demeter forces Persephone to stay secluded in the vale, away from any possible bad influences (especially men!).  Persephone is desperate to "grow up" and finds the opportunity when a handsome and mysterious stranger wanders into her vale.  The two begin to meet secretly and fall in love before Persephone realizes that he is Hades (ruler of one third of creation!!).  Hades professes his love to her and asks Persephone to leave the vale and join him in the Underworld as his Queen.  Persephone leaves with him without letting her mother know her plan.  As Persephone is getting accustomed to being a Queen and learning the ways of her new home, Demeter is unleashing her fury of Earth.  As in the classic tale, Zeus steps in to help settle this dispute, but this story has Persephone suggesting the compromise that will enable her to be with her beloved husband as his Queen for half the year and to be with her mother the other half to help her renew the Earth.
     I really liked hearing the story from Persephone's perspective.  It was original and fun to read.  However, I would have liked to have seen the relationship she had with Hades developed better.  Yes.. you knew that they were in love but I didn't feel the connection between them as much as I wanted to.  Hades was dark, mysterious and seductive and Persephone was young, innocent and completely inexperienced.  With the target audience young adult,  this book was understandably very PG when delving into the more intimate aspects of their relationship.  However I feel that, even while maintaing an appropriate tone, the author could have explored it further.  This dynamic is important to their relationship but is left largely to speculation.  That being said........ this is a good book and a fun read!  I think that is appropriate for ages 4th grade and up.  I would definitely recommend it to those who enjoy mythology and to those that appreciate cute (and clean!) love stories

Monday, August 3, 2009

My Wishlist

This is an ongoing list of released and future releasing books that I really want! 
My Wishlist
Abyss (Timeless #3) by Laura Kreitzer
Entangled by Cat Clarke
Claire De Lune by Christine Johnson
Nocturne (Claire de Lune #2) by Christine Johnson
Desires of the Dead by Kimberly Derting
Sweetly by Jackson Pearce
Everlasting by Angie Frazier
The Space Between Trees by Katie Williams
Red Glove by Holly Black
Trial By Fire by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Mieradome by Kate O'Hegarty
The Thirteenth Chime by Emma Michaels
Where She Went by Gayle Foreman
Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer
Shift by Jeri Smith-Ready
Entwined by Heather Dixon
Die For Me by Amy Plum
A Slice Of Cherry by Dia Reeves
Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini
Possession by Elana Johnson
Angel Burn by L.A. Weatherly
Hourglass by Myra McEntire
Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore
Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
Original Sin (Personal Demons #2) by Lisa Desrochers
Wildefire by Karsten Knight
Bad Taste In Boys by Carrie Harris
Wildcat Fireflies (Fenestra #2) by Amber Kizer
Luminous by Dawn Metcalf
A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young
Haunting Violet by Alexandra Harvey
Graveminder by Melissa Marr
Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson
The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong
The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan
Human .4 by Mike A. Lancaster
Blood and Flowers by Penny Blubaugh
Betrayal (Haunting Emma #2) by Lee Nichols
Rival by Sara Whealer Bennet
Mad Love by Suzanne Selfors
Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
Betrayal (Immortal #2) by Gillian Shields
Knightley Academy (Knightley Academy #1) by Violet Harberdasher
The Betrayal of Maggie Blair by Elizabeth Laird
Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst
Bloodlines by Richelle Mead
Forever (Wolves of Mercy Falls #3) by Maggie Stiefvater
Fins Are Forever (Fins #2) by Tera Lynn Childs
Stolen Nights (Vampire Queen #2) by Rebecca Maizel
Dead Rules by Randy Russell
Cleopatra Confesses by Carolyn Meyer
Flying Blind (The Dragon Diaries #1) by Deborah Cooke
Queen of the Dead (The Ghost and the Goth #2) by Stacey Kade
Between The Sea and The Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore
The Eternal Sea (Everlasting #2) by Angie Frazier
Nightspell (Mistwood #2) by Leah Cypess
Dark Descendant (Descendants #1) by Jenna Black
Blood Magic (The Blood Journals #1) by Tessa Gratton
The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
Huntress by Malinda Lo
Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann
Timeless by Alexandra Monir
Lunarmorte by Samantha Young
The False Princess by Eilis O'Neal
Hereafter by Tara Hudson
The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
Future Imperfect by Ryer K. Breese
Embrace (The Violet Eden Chapters #1) by Jessica Shirvington
Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen
Guardian of the Gate (Prophecy of the Sisters #2) by Michelle Zink
Whisper by Phoebe Kitanidis
Devil's Kiss by Sarwat Chadda
Dark Goddess (Devil's Kiss #2) by Sarwat Chadda
Shadowed Summer by Saundra Mitchell
The Liar Society by Lisa and Laura Roecker
Faerie Winter by Janni Lee Simner
Once A Witch by Carolyn MacCullough
Memento Nora by Angie Smibert
Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz
Low Red Moon by Ivy Devlin
Half-Blood by Jennifer Armentrout
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Tiger's Quest (Tiger's Curse #2) by Colleen Houck
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Blood Feud by Alyxandra Harvey
Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake
Fateful by Claudia Gray
All You Desire (Eternal Ones #2) by Kirsten Miller
Nightspell (Mistwood #2) by Leah Cypess
Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs
Vanish (Firelight #2) by Sophie Jordan
Supernaturally (Paranormalcy #2) by Kiersten White
Night School by Marianne Mancusi
Hexbound (Dark Elite #2) by Chloe Neill
Sirensong (Faeriewalker #3) by Jenna Black
Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky
The Power of Six (Lorien Legacies #2) by Pitticus Lore
Always A Witch by Carolyn MacCullough
The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell
Absolution (Heavenly #3) by Jennifer Laurens
Bloody Valentine by Melissa de la Cruz
Thirst No. 4: The Shadow of Death by Christopher Pike
Undercurrent (Siren #2) by Tricia Rayburn
Passion (Fallen #3) by Lauren Kate
Harmonic Feedback by Tara Kelly
Sea Change by Aimee Friedman
The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
Evercrossed (Kissed By An Angel #2) by Elizabeth Chandler
Eon by Alison Goodman
Eona by Alison Goodman
After the Golden Age by Carrie Vaughn
Eternal (Immortals #3) by Gillian Shields
Ripple by Mandy Hubbard
Lost Voices by Sarah Porter
Pegasus by Robin McKinley
The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen
Trapped by Michael Northrop
The Gray Wolf Throne (Seven Realms #3) by Cinda Williams Chima
Unraveled by Gena Showalter
Almost To Die For by Tate Hallaway
Bargains and Betrayals (13 to Life #3) by Shannon Delany
Crossed (Matched #2) by Ally Condie
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
The Candidates (Delcroix Academy #1) by Inara Scott
Insatiable by Meg Cabot
Abandon by Meg Cabot
Possess by Gretchen Mitchell
Hades by Alexandra Adornetto

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Contact Me!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Image stock