Life Update! (School, Hiatus, Reading)

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Hello, hello! It’s been a while since the last time I posted anything. Over a month to be exact. And if I’m being completely honest, I haven’t been involved in the reading world since I last posted. Life has been busy, but I have had some time to collect my thoughts and get the motivation to post again.

Now, when most book bloggers go on a hiatus, it’s because they fell into a book slump. However, that isn’t how my absence started. In the past, I haven’t been having that regular “want” to read that most readers get. It felt more like I “needed” to read. And honestly, I enjoyed reading so much that I didn’t mind it at first. However, after some contemplation, I started asking myself if reading was actually right for me. Was this just a hobby that I would end up quitting? So, I ended up challenging myself to taking a break from reading.

Let me just tell you, taking away something really important is quite the experience. At first, I didn’t know what to do in my free time. But, after a few weeks, it started to feel more like myself again. It was just me without books. However, often times I would end up contemplating if I should pick up a book or not. And most times I ended up going back to my phone and spending hours scrolling through random YouTube videos. But, I’ve started to not like the idea of spending my free time watching the lives of other people.

So, here I am now. I haven’t picked up a book in over a month, but I feel like after getting back into blogging, things will change. I want to use my blog as motivation to read more. Knowing that I have only finished one book this year is very depressing. However, I know that with enough motivation, I can go back to reading every day! I cannot wait to get back to doing what I love!

So, you may also be thinking something along the lines of “What did you do while you were gone?” Well, school has been a big priority for me. I wrote my first semester exams, and have now started my second semester of my Sophomore year of high school. Although my current classes are quite challenging, I am enjoying all of the new information I am learning. Along with school, I have also been playing on my school’s junior varsity basketball team. I truly am not the greatest player, but games and practices add up for an amazing workout!

Besides that, my life has been pretty boring. However, I am hoping that reading will help make my free time more exciting. Before I wrap-up this post, I just wanted to thank all of you for sticking around during my hiatus. Somehow, this blog managed to reach 200 followers while I was gone, which is AMAZING! I cannot wait to get back to posting and talking about books with all of you!

Happy Reading,
Alaina

 

Review: Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout

REVIEW (3)

Onyx (Lux, #2)Title/Author: Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Lux (#2)
Release Date: August 14, 2012
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Genre: Paranormal/Sci-Fi
Rating: ✭✭✭✭✭

Being connected to Daemon Black sucks…

Thanks to his alien mojo, Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But we’ve got bigger problems.

Something worse than the Arum has come to town…

The Department of Defense are here. If they ever find out what Daemon can do and that we’re linked, I’m a goner. So is he. And there’s this new boy in school who’s got a secret of his own. He knows what’s happened to me and he can help, but to do so, I have to lie to Daemon and stay away from him. Like that’s possible. Against all common sense, I’m falling for Daemon. Hard.

But then everything changes…

I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

No one is who they seem. And not everyone will survive the lies…

This is the second installment in Jennifer L. Armentrout’s electrifying Lux series. This series is filled with intense fight scenes, kick-ass females, sexy men and everything else you could ever want from a YA novel. Add on Jennifer L. Armentrout’s emotional and humorous writing and you’ve got a masterpiece. Before you read this post, I strongly recommend reading my review on Obsidian, the first book in the Lux series. Don’t worry, it’s spoiler free. Before we get into this review, be sure to check out my old review of Onyx (CLICK HERE).

WHAT I LIKED

Onyx is the one book in this series that I didn’t LOVE when I first read it. I thought that it had too slow of a pace and seemed to stretch on endlessly! But, absurdly, each time I read this book I love it a little bit more. It’s really weird, but I’m so glad that I have finally come to love this book!

We’ve got to start this section off super strong, right? SO why not start off by talking about Daemon and Katy. Daemon’s a Luxen (an alien if you are not familiar with the series) and Katy’s a human. The two really shouldn’t mix, but they did. It was obvious in the latter chapters of Obsidian that the two characters had feelings for each other. But it wasn’t until Onyx that both characters recognized these feelings. Although their relationship was a mess for the majority of this novel, I am determined to go down with this ship!

Overall, I found that both Katy and Daemon’s characters had really changed from what we saw in Obsidian. Although Katy was still a huge, naive, book nerd, she had a bit more maturity. She could still throw out a ramble of non-sense to Daemon, but for the most part she only spoke when she was confident with what she was going to say. And Daemon had really lightened up from the douche-bag I read about in Obsidian. He truly was more caring, emotional and NICE.

I feel like we also got to REALLY meet some of the characters introduced to us in the first book. Unlike Katy, Daemon, and Dee, there were some characters who didn’t get a lot of page time in Obsidian. The stunning, blonde haired Thompson triplets had quite a bit of page time, whether it was because they were sitting with Daemon in the school cafeteria or because they were having ACTUALLY having a conversation with Katy. And even, you can’t help but love Ash’s sass! Matthew, Katy’s biology teacher and the Thompson’s and Lux’s “guardian” was also frequently in this book. I still don’t LOVE him as a character, but I do love the role he plays in this series.

I also really enjoyed having Katy’s mom appear in this novel so often. In Obsidian, we only really saw her watching over Katy whenever Daemon came walking up their steps. But literally, she is the MOST chill mom you will ever read about. Like, come on, I wish I could wave my middle finger in a hot, cocky boy’s face with my mom looking. But, although every scene Katy’s mom was in included Will (Yea, let’s not talk about Will…), it was nice to have her appear so much in this novel. Even though she is constantly working, I love knowing that Katy and her mom still maintain such as strong relationship.

Just know to keep your eyes out for two scenes in this novel when you read it: the Thanksgiving scene and the movie theatre scene. You will totally thank me later. Also the ending might have you in tears.

WHAT I LIKED (1)

For the most part, I still disliked the same things as before. The DOD and the Arum are still HORRIBLE. But, during Onyx I really found myself disliking certain characters. Some are new, while others were mentioned in the previous novel. But they were all just evil, even if they didn’t try to be.

Blake Saunders. Santa Monica native, surfer, blogger, wears nerdy shirts, cute, average boy most girls would try to go out with. Yep, and Katy actually did that last one. But the two characters seemed to have a lot in common. They both moved from a warmer place to LITERALLY THE MIDDLE OF NO WHERE. They both blogged about things they were passionate about. And, they both seem to be HUGE nerds. She thought that it would be smart to go for someone normal, unlike an alien like Daemon. But really, she ran herself into the biggest problem EVER.

Will, Will, Will. I thought you had potential but really you were only in this book to ruin Katy’s life. In case you didn’t know, Will is a doctor who worked at a local hospital with Katy’s mom and later went on to start a relationship with her. I really was starting to lighten up to Will, until certain things were revealed about him. After that I just couldn’t stand him. Especially during the last 20 pages. Ugh.

WHAT I LIKED (3)

‘“Cookie?” he offered, holding a cookie full of chocolate chips.
Upset tummy or not, there was no way I could refuse that. “Sure.”
His lips tipped up one side and he leaned toward me, his mouth inches from mine. “Come and get it.”
Come and get…? Daemon placed half the cookie between those full, totally kissable lips.
Oh, holy alien babies everywhere…’


‘“Your mail could’ve waited.” Daemon followed me into the kitchen. “What is it? Just books?”
Grabbing the OJ from the fridge, I sighed. People who didn’t heart books didn’t understand.’

WHAT I LIKED (4)

I absolutely LOVED this novel and couldn’t help but give it 5 stars. If you asked me back in 2015 what I would’ve rated it, I honestly would have given it 4 stars. But with all of my re-reads throughout the years, I have managed to bump it all the way up to 5 stars! And trust me, it really does deserve it. This book (and the entire Lux series) is a must-read. So, you better drop your laundry and run to the bookstore after reading this review and pick up a copy of the first book, Obsidian. You will not regret it.

Amazon | Chapters/Indigo | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Happy Reading,
Alaina