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Saturday, July 4, 2009

Introducing...Maharani of Mayhem & Mysteries

Maharani of Mayhem and Mysteries

aka Liyana from Liyanaland

Hey everyone! My name is Liyana and I’m the brains, brawns and beauty *ahem!* behind the book blog LiyanaLand. I’m so excited to be part of the Royal Reviews team. You could say that this post is my inaugural post on this blog as the Maharani of Mayhem and Mysteries.

I chose the moniker “Maharani of Mayhem and Mysteries” because it has the three things I adore when reading books: Mayhem, Mysteries, and alliteration. ;) Without mayhem and mysteries, stories would be pretty dull, wouldn’t they?

YA books, fantasy in particular, is my main focus when reading. The angst, the innocence and naivety warring with jaded perceptions of the world, all of these intrigues me! Not to forget the gorgeous, utterly drool worthy love guys. There’s Seth from Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series, Ariel from Lisa Mantchev’s Eyes Like Stars, Dmitri from Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series… sigh. Overall, the passion these characters in YA books have for what they are doing; that’s the ultimate draw for me.

Let’s use the Twilight saga as an example. The passion Bella has for Edward, the passion the author and fans have for the story, that’s what made me read Twilight. I have a love hate relationship with the series. At times I gush like a Jacob obsessed fan, during others I throw the book away in disgust. But in the end, the love I have for hating it became the reason why I started blogging about books.

Talking about books, I have lots of favourite books and series. The Harry Potter series will always be first and foremost in my mind when it comes to favourite series. It’s the ultimate series, I just can’t compare it with any other books. That’s why I have favourite series of the year! Right now, Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments trilogy is fighting with Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series for the ultimate title of Liyana’s Favourite Series of 2009.

There’s always Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series and Scott Westerfield’s Pretties series. Lisa Mantchev’s Eyes Like Stars is a strong contender too. But who knows? Ask me again in a week or so, and my answer might change. ;)

Okay, I think that’s it for now! I hope you learnt a few things about me here. Don’t hesitate to email me, comment on Royal Reviews and LiyanaLand, and even add me on Twitter! Thanks for reading, have a great day!

Review of Sacred Sin by Estevan Vega

Suspense Paranormal

Pages: 218

Copyright: 2007

"Do you think you're crazy?"

Jude Foster is on the verge of a mental breakdown. A world weary and jaded cop, he's seen too much in too short a time. It's been a year since his partner tried to kill him and things have gone seriously downhill since then.

Tormented by his inner demons, all Jude wants is to leave the past behind and move on. When a new case opens, Jude jumps at it. When he gets to the crime scene, he fins that the body bears no hint of murder upon it, yet that's clearly what happened. The only clue is a cross that is somehow etched, almost like a birthmark, on the body.

Armed with a brand new (unwanted) partner, he finds that the case is not as open and shut as he thinks it is. With no lead, how are they supposed to proceed with the investigation?

Another body soon appears.

And another.

In order to stop the killer and solve the case, Jude must confront his past. But how can one stop a killer who's slaying his victims by stealing their souls?

This is a very dark, gritty, no holds barred tale. We're brought into the twisted world Jude Foster lives in. He's a tired detective who covers up his true feelings behind sarcastic remarks and wise cracks. After his partner tried to kill him a year ago, Jude has turned numb against the crimes of the world. There's a scene where he kills a teenager who was holding an old man hostage. It made me squirm a little, the cold bloodedness of the act.

There's a sense that Jude had been an excellent detective, so it was heartbreaking to see him deteriorate as the story progressed. That's not to say that Jude is uncaring; on the contrary, he feels guilt and even cries at the death of the teenager. But the fact that he's the one who committed that murder, even while protecting an innocent... it bugged me.

I liked reading this. It was different. I also liked the fast pace and the fact that there was close to zero purple prose in there. It gets straight to the heart of the matter, so perhaps that was why the previous scene affected me so much. The supernatural factor was one of the things that kept me engaged and reading the book till the end, along with the question that maybe all of this wasn't actually supernatural, but the creations of Jude's mind.

The witty, engaging dialogue kept me entertained, especially the banter between Jude and his new partner, Rachel. She's the one character who really appealed to me, a breath of fresh air in a sea full of messed up characters. And it was really nice to see her show Jude that there is some good in life too.

Here's my favourite scene in the book. Eliam is a priest who loves to curse and/or blasphemise. Being that Jude and Eliam's meetings only take place in the church where Eliam is staying at... Tsk tsk. Naughty priesty.

Eliam nearly leapt in his skin. “What the hell are you doing here?”“This is a church; I came to talk to a priest.”“You nearly gave me a heart attack.”Jude smirked. “That’s the first time I’ve ever heard you curse.”“Don’t be silly. Everyone knows hell is not a curse; it’s a place.”

While there's a sense of closure, the ending is not pretty and it's not meant to be. All in all, if you like dark, gritty tales with a dash of the supernatural, here's the perfect book for you


Blodeuedd said...

Welcome Liyana, great name :)

The Book Resort said...

Welcome, Liyana! Love Ariel, too! Bertie is so precious! Lisa really wrote an amazing book.

Enjoy your day!

Mishel said...

I love the name you chose Liyana. So glad to see you here!! =)


have you read the michelle paver series...it starts with wolf brother. i hear the first book as a podcast read by liam mckelum...it is a wonderful book to listen to while knitting. (fyi i am a 63 yo who love harry potter and series, too...check it out)


i am spvaughan in twitter, i tried to follow you using your twitter like but got a message it could not be found.

Liyana said...

Hey everyone! Thanks so much for the love! (L) :D

@Hodgepodgespv - No I haven't, what's it about? I'll go check it out. :D Here's my twitter link.

Teddyree said...

Welcome to our Royal family. Hope the Vampire Academy series takes out the 2009 fave spot!!

Loved your review, the "dark, gritty, no holds barred tale" certainly caught my attention