Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Mini Reviews: Intangible + Preloved

J. Meyers
Paranormal Young Adult
264 pages
Self-published
Available Now
Received from author for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Twins Sera and Luke Raine have a well-kept secret—she heals with a touch of her hand, he sees the future. All their lives they’ve helped those in need on the sly. They’ve always thought of their abilities as being a gift.

Then Luke has a vision that Sera is killed. That gift they’ve always cherished begins to feel an awful lot like a curse. Because the thing about Luke’s ability? He’s always right. And he can’t do anything about it.


MY THOUGHTS
Intangible is one of those stories that pleasantly surprises, our expectations upon cracking the spine not necessarily high nor low, but from the first page we find ourselves easily lost in Luke and Sera’s contemporary paranormal world. While we logically understand that vampires don’t exist (right?) and gifts like precognition and the ability to heal by touch are purely fictional, Luke and Sera still feel incredibly real, directly contrasting the title of their story with their distinct tangibility, and making it easy for us to forget that the defining characteristics of their world don’t extend into our reality.

One of the highlights of this story is Luke and Sera’s extremely close sibling relationship, the two of them family, best friends, and loners, burdened by the weight of the gifts they keep secret but able share the baggage between them. Though there is a great deal of darkness to be found in between these pages, there’s also an abundance of humor, Luke’s playful banter with both his sister and their friend Fey causing many an unexpected smile and snort to escape even as our stress level increases with every page as a juggernaut in the form of Luke’s unchangeable and unstoppable visions barrel ever closer. All in all, Intangible is entertaining on a variety of levels, and I’m certainly hoping a sequel is already in the works.

Rating: 4/5


Shirley Marr
Paranormal Young Adult
272 pages
Black Dog Books/Walker Books
Available Now
Received from author for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
If you had a second chance at love, would you do it all over again?

Amy has enough to deal with for one lifetime. A superstitious Chinese mother. A best friend whose mood changes as dramatically as her hair colour. A reputation for being strange. The last thing she needs is to be haunted by someone only she can see.

Logan is a ghost from the Eighties. He could be dangerous. He's certainly annoying.

He might also be Amy's dream boy.


MY THOUGHTS
Preloved is a quick, sweet read that doesn’t delve deep into emotional complexities, but rather has us navigating the layers that exist just beneath the surface, down far enough to keep our interest yet not so deep as to yank us into the story heart-first or brand itself in our memories. Ms. Marr touches briefly on the fascinating concept of reincarnation, and the idea that though pieces of us may be tied to lives before, we always have the choices in our current life, and possess the ability to be a different person than we were previously.

Amy is a cute protagonist, often exhibiting a quick wit or tossing out a snappy one-liner to bring a smile to our faces, and her mother is absolutely hilarious, drawing on their Chinese heritage on a daily basis with Amy by imparting highly amusing tidbits of wisdom regarding ghosts in particular. Amy’s interactions with ghost Logan are at times both humorous and poignant, but though we enjoy their time together, a little more of Logan’s backstory and the reason for his attachment to Amy would have been ideal, ensuring our connection to Logan would feel as real to us as it does to Amy. The eighties slang can also be a bit much at times, but overall Preloved entertains enough to have us wanting to pick up Ms. Marr’s other books.

Rating: 3.5/5

35 comments:

  1. The first one sounds creepy, I would not want to know that!

    The second one, a ghost, huh, I do wonder how that will turn out for them

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    1. I wouldn't want to know that either! I'm not sure I could bear the burden knowing I've never once been able to change the outcome of a vision I've had.

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  2. Intangible!? Hmmm, sounds familiar, and GOOD. I must read it sooner. It looks creepy though, but isn't that the best part?:D

    And Preloved sounds a bit like Hereafter by Tara Hudson, hmmm? Sounds like a good enough read *adds to TBR list*

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    1. Preloved is a little like Hereafter in premise, but not quite as dark and complex. More a quick, fun read!

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  3. Ooohhh both of these sound so awesome<3 I'm really interested in the sibling relationship between Luke and Sera! I absolutely LOVE it when siblings banter :P hahaaa
    I'm really curious about Preloved :)It sounds like a really awesome ghost story! Loveee your reviews Jenny!<3

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    1. I loved the Luke/Sera relationship, I haven't read about too many siblings in YA and it was nice to have family be such a big part of the story!

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  4. I've been wanting to read Shirley Marr's novels for awhile, but somehow haven't gotten around to it yet. I love your mini review of Preloved though and I'm glad you enjoyed it! I can't wait to read it myself!(:

    ~Keertana
    Ivy Book Bindings

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    1. I've heard great things about Fury, I'm hoping to pick that one up soon! This one was cute, though the 80's/Aussie slang caused me to stumble a few times.

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  5. Both these books sound fabulous. I think I really want to check out Intangible. I adore the cover, but I'm very happy to hear that the characters in that book are very realistic. I love sibling relationships, so I'm going to be happy reading Intangible. :)

    I've seen Preloved around and I've heard how great it is. I wish it was a little deeper though.

    Lovely mini reviews, Jenny. They might be short, but they were very helpful!

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    1. I really enjoyed Intangible, I'm excited there's going to be a sequel:)

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  6. Ive seen the first book around for awhile now, still on the fence if Im going to read it but the second one sounds really good!! Sometimes the just scratch the surface books are great for reading slumps...:)

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    1. It was a quick, easy read. Didn't blow me away, but I didn't need it to you know?

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  7. I've seen both of these books for a while too but I'm not sure of picking it up. I'm becoming a bit burnt out on the paranormal scene right now. I'll definitely keep them in mind for book recommendations for library patrons looking for something a bit different.

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    1. Maybe when you're out of your paranormal funk you can give one of these a try!

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  8. I read and reviewed both of these books and my thoughts are in line with yours. I adored the sibling relationship in Intangible and liked that vamps were back to the vicious scary hunters. Preloved was just sweet but you know a ghostly relationship is never going to end well.

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    1. I thought Luke and Sera were great - I loved how close they were:)

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  9. Intangible sounds like one that I would enjoy. I love books with strong family relationships.

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  10. Ok ... *sigh* now I have to read Intanglible! I have been eying this book since EVER but seeing that you know also loved it? I'm sold :)) Geee, I need time to read!

    I haven't heard of Preloved before but.. I do not hink I will pick it up anytime soon... doesn't totally convince me!

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    1. I think you'll like Intangible! It was a really fun book, great story, and solid characters:) I would have loved a little more romance (as per usual), but I think there's more coming in future books.

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  11. Awesome mini reviews! I have not heard too much about either of them but I am glad to hear you enjoyed both of them!

    The sibling bonds in the first book seem interesting.
    And I like the cover for the second book. However I am not a big fan of ghost stories!

    Both of them seem like light, quick reads. Thanks for the reviews :-)

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    1. Thank you! I really liked the sibling relationship between Luke and Sera, I can't wait for more from this series:)

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  12. I love when a book surprises by being better than what we expected. Intangible sounds like a great read, especially since it exceeded expectations.

    Not sure about Preloved but cut protagonists are always good, especially when there's humor involved!

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    1. I was really pleasantly surprised. I didn't think it was going to be bad by any means, it was just better than I had prepared myself for!

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  13. I have Intangible on my list to read. The other book I have seen around but just have had time to pick it up. Thanks for the awesome review Jenny!

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  14. I know Chel had a bit of trouble connecting with the characters in Intangible and since I can't seem to muster up interest in it despite the sibling relationship - more books focusing on siblings would be nice - I'm probably going to skip it. Preloved on the other hand sounds like a cute read for when I'm in a reading slump.

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  15. Both of these are on my to-read pile and I can't wait to get started. I'm glad to see you enjoyed these books! Intangible especially sounds like an interesting read. Isn't it great when a book ends up pleasantly surprising you? :) Lovely mini reviews, Jenny.

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  16. The fact that you can't wait for a sequel says a lot about the first one. Just that makes me want to pick it up. As for the second one. I might enjoy it, but I have a feeling I would be frustrated with the book sticking to the shallows and want something deeper. Hm... I think I'm adding Intangible to the wishlist. :D

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  17. I think Intangible might be a book that gets me to bypass my no self pub books rule. Unfortunately, I'm too busy right now with moving to read it. But I'd like to.

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  18. I love mini-reviews Jenny! They get to the heart of the matter quickly. I like the sound of Intangible but I'm wondering if there's a romance in it as well. Big on romance here. I've seen Preloved around and it sounds cute but I don't really go for ghost romance stories because they never seem to end well. :)

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  19. I'm so happy to hear Intangible is a winner! It sounds good to Mr so maybe I will check it out.
    Preloved is one I have been wanting for awhile. The 80's stuff appeals to me so hopefully I wont think its too much.

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  20. I'm glad you enjoyed PRELOVED overall, Jenny! I agree, I wish it had delved a little deeper into some of the themes it touched upon (and the 80s stuff wore on me a bit, too), but I thought it was very cute as well. I think you might like FURY better, it's much darker and more sarcastic.

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  21. I've heard some fun things about Preloved, and am very intrigued by the storyline! :) Can't wait to read it!

    Sierra @ Yearning to Read

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  22. Both these books sound wonderful! I'm so glad you enjoyed them :)

    Intangible seems intriguing with the whole contemporary paranormal world and I'm curious about the close sibling relationship - a close brother and sister are always a plus for me!

    I'm dying to read Preloved - it sounds like such a sweet read and I like how there's a ghostly theme too! Chinese superstition is always interesting too :) It's a shame Logan's backstory wasn't explored more though.

    Fab mini reviews, Jenny! So glad I was browsing through your blog otherwise I would have missed these (I was away for a few days)!

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