Miranda @ Bibliodaze

I'm an awesome 24 y/o reader and writer of YA fantasy/historical fantasy. I mainly write about awesome ladies and the people who love them. I work at a library and I'm a contributing reviewer to Bibliodaze.

Foretold: 14 Tales of Prophecy and Prediction

Foretold: 14 Tales of Prophecy and Prediction - Diana Peterfreund, Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl, Matt de la Pena, Simone Elkeles, Heather Brewer, Laini Taylor, Michael  Grant, Saundra Mitchell, Carrie Ryan, Lisa McMann, Malinda Lo, Richelle Mead I don't typically read short story anthologies, but this one caught my attention with the awesome themes of the stories and the amount of authors I enjoyed on the list. I decided to check it out and I'm glad I did.Gentlemen Send Phantoms by Laini Taylor: 3.5/5. A predictable but cute story. I enjoyed the narrative voice of it and the worldbuilding was intriguing (and strange, as is Laini's wont). I wish some parts had been a little more explored, like how women turn into different animals when they die, but otherwise I enjoyed the romance and the characters. I wasn't as wild about how two girls who saw different phantoms than the ones they wanted just sort of suddenly decide why yes, they do like them, as if they didn't know their own feelings until the phantoms showed up. Still, I did enjoy it.Burned Bright by Diana Peterfreund: 5/5. I loved this one. The premise grabbed me right away and I was captivated throughout the story. I was originally a little unsure of the switching POVs but they ended up working and helping the story. Despite the fact that she was an extremist, I did appreciate Bright's absolute faith in her religion, even when it caused her to act as she did. The ending was a shock and I'm still thinking about the story a day after reading it. The Angriest Man by Lisa McMann: 1/5. The concept was a little weird and the writing was just off to me. I didn't really enjoy it. Out of the Blue by Meg Cabot: 3/5. I enjoyed it, but I do think Cabot's writing style isn't suited to a short story format. The characters were pretty stock and typical Cabot and the short story format didn't allow them to really grow. While it was fun, it wasn't anything amazing. It was a nice light story amidst a lot of heavy ones.One True Love by Malinda Lo: 4.5/5. Enjoyed this one a lot, especially because it featured a romantic storyline with lesbians. I liked the subtle commentary on how everyone defaulted to heterosexuality and didn't expect the princess to fall in love with another woman. The romance veered perilously close to insta-love, but the two leads did spend time together before they proclaimed everlasting love. The pacing did slow a little in the middle and the ending seemed a little abrupt, and the villain was a little flat, but otherwise I enjoyed it tremendously. This Is a Mortal Wound by Michael Grant: 2/5. The concept ended up being stupid rather than funny, and while the narrative voice was lively, it did get irritating after a while. Misery by Heather Brewer: 3/5. The narrative was good and I'd be interested in reading more of her novels, but the story itself ended up being a little confusing. I suppose the town called Misery was supposed to be something like Purgatory, but I can't say for sure because the writing itself didn't seem sure. Ending was a bit abrupt, yet again, after a leisurely pacing beforehand. The Mind Is a Powerful Thing by Matt de la Pena: 1/5. While the situation of the main character did hit a little too close to home at times--the way she obsesses over crimes and statistics and how an awful thing could happen at any time to her was exactly the same place I was in a few years ago due to anxiety disorders--overall I wasn't impressed. The characters were stereotypical depictions of women, and some details that weren't needed were left in and served no purpose in the long run, and the ending seemed to punish the main character for her anxiety, which was not a message I appreciated.The Chosen One by Saundra Mitchell: 5/5. I loved this one; it was easily the best story in this collection. I loved the relationship between the sisters and how strong both of their personalities were. The pacing was good (though it did lag slightly at the end) and I didn't entirely buy the romance, but I did enjoy that Corvinia did the quest mostly on her own and that her sister was her impetus. The last passage and line were utter perfection and just what I love to see in a story. This has convinced me to read the rest of Mitchell's work.Improbable Futures by Kami Garcia: 1.5/5. Hated the sexual shaming in this one, and it definitely brought the story down a tad. The writing was okay in places, but why switch POVs to some of the people the main character had given predictions to? It was unnecessary, we would have gotten that information in the morning along with the MC later. It wasn't awful but it was definitely one of the weaker pieces.Death for the Deathless by Margaret Stohl: 1/5. Not awful, but both narrative voices sounded the same and I couldn't really bring myself to care about either of them. The writing was also a little confusing in places, and the overuse of French got highly irritating after a while. It was a nice touch to include Nostradamus and show how he wasn't real, it was just a construct made by immortals, but otherwise I didn't overly care about this story.The Killing Garden by Carrie Ryan: 1.5/5. I suppose there's just something about Ryan's writing that does not click with me at all. While the concept was great, I ended up skimming near the end because I simply didn't care. Ryan has a habit of making her female characters obsessed/dependent on other men, and this was no different. I especially hated how the main character needed a guy to make her realize she didn't need to be basically an executioner to prove herself. Sure she could have figured that out on her own, thanks.There were two stories in here I'm not reviewing: Fate by Simone Elkeles and Homecoming by Richelle Mead. The first because I will no longer read anything by that author after her treatment of some reviewers, and the last because I simply don't care about Dimitri and Rose anymore. Overall I really enjoyed this anthology, and it's even convinced me to read some authors I might not have before I read their stories in this collection. While there were more than a few misses, they don't bring down the anthology that much. I'm half tempted to buy a copy just for Saundra Mitchell's story alone. Definitely recommended.

Currently reading

A Feast for Crows
George R.R. Martin
Where the Girls Are: Growing Up Female with the Mass Media
Susan J. Douglas
The Winter Rose
Jennifer Donnelly
Progress: 259/720 pages