Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bound (The Guardians #1) by M.J. Stevens ~YA Paranormal/Fantasy~ Review~ Excerpt

Bound (The Guardians #1)

by M.J. Stevens
Published January 21st 2014 by M.J. Stevens 
(first published January 20th 2014)
ISBN13 9780992407407
Cover design by KILA Designs

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‘No good deed ever goes unpunished, Mellea…’

Mellea Wendorn hasn’t exactly had a normal life. Misfortune seems to follow her, and her family, wherever she goes. 
However, when Mellea stops to assist a mysterious young man suddenly her prior hardships seem trivial.

His name is Leo. He is a Successor, a child of the Guardians of Selestia. 

He is royalty. 
He is handsome. 
And he wants Mellea completely to himself. 

Unable to escape the Guardian's laws, Mellea must learn the ways of the royals. She is convinced her life can’t get much worse. But when a timeworn Guardian enemy arises from the shadows, Mellea must make a choice that will change her destiny forever.

I loved this book, except the major cliffhanger ending, so fair warning there, lol. I hate cliffhangers so much, especially if I do not have the 2nd book, and especially when I have no idea when the next will be out.

Anyway, this book sure took me on a ride. I loved the dystopian/high tech/sci-fi/paranormal feel to this book. It was great. I was hooked pretty fast too.

I really like Mellea after I got to know her more, at first she just seemed pretty immature for her age, but she grew fast and overall just grew on me I guess. She is strong, and doesn't give in easily, she is a fighter. She is claimed by a Guardian Prince, Leo, and he wants her as his bride, and she has no choice, this is after she helped him when he got injured too,  Well this doesn't sit well with her, as she was coached by her dad, who detests the Guardians. There is a lot more to why on that, but that isn’t really revealed till the end.

Anyway, Mellea is whisked off to the Guardian tower and prepped to be Leo’s bride. She doesn't give up on trying to find a way out of this.

Now for Leo, he was a complete jerk, at the beginning anyway, he was conceited, rude, pompous, and spoiled.  He really got on my nerves at first. But as the story progressed the really Leo comes out, and he is great. So no worries, she isn’t stuck with a complete jerk, it was more of a act, how he felt he is supposed to act. Poor Leo has not had much socialization; so really, he is pretty lost when it comes to interactions with others his age. After the real Leo came out, I really came to like him a lot, and found him to be a great guy.

I hated Mellea’s dad, he is a jerk, and I just knew something was really off about him. I won’t say more on that, as you will have to discover that when you read this, if you hadn’t yet, you sure need too.

I loved the world-building of Selestia, it was so vivid that I was able to picture it in my head with no trouble. The author did a great job with that. The way the enemies are were well described, and creepy too. I could picture it so easy. Great villains.

The 2nd half of this book was the best. It was a bit slow for me the first part, maybe slow is not the word, just not as intense I guess. But overall just loved the idea of this fantasy/sci-fi/paranormal book. That’s how I would describe it, and thought the mix was great.

I guess the only negative in my mind is the ending, I really detest cliffhangers that are right in the middle of an intense scene, just feels so cut off I guess. I know authors do this to make us want more, but sometimes is just pisses us off. Lol. But I will want to read book 2, if it’s out soon enough, as if it’s too long, then I would have to re-read this one to remember everything. Hope it is soon. Its called Divided, and shows to be out December 2014, I sure hope so.

Oh, and I dislike the name, it doesn’t fit for me, also if you go to search Bound at any book retailer, you get a ton of erotic type books come up, and also with this name, that is the first thing you think when hearing the title.

Give this book a try, it was a great ride. I give it 5 out of 5 stars.
I received this book from the author for my honest review.

C over review: I liked the cover, but not loved it. It fits for the most part, but what fits about it isn’t even discovered till the very end, so really think it could have been done a different way. The cover itself is very well done, so just meaning on as a fit for this story is all. But like I said, I like it ok, and it does show it should be paranormal at least some. 

I say 4 out of 5 stars on the cover alone. (as anyone who has read my reviews, the covers are super important to me, it’s what will get a reader interested enough to read the description at least.

Note to Readers. This Author is Australian, so the grammar and spelling differs from ours in the U.S

This review is also at Amazon, and Goodreads (likes are appreciated )

Buy Link

Excerpt (part of Chapter Three)
I end the call and unfold my scooter. I step on and hover out of Poridos. I travel down a long concrete path, taking the fastest route to Absotras. Eventually it turns into a dirt road alongside the lake hidden by trees. I prefer this way rather than having to go through the surrounding suburbs. Most of the directly outer housing groups aren’t much better than Pekkin, scum wise. They’re filled with people who can’t afford to live directly in Poridos, but they still want to be close. Residents there have to beg and scrape to be able to survive when they could easily afford a nicer place somewhere further away. But they don’t want to.
I putt along the dirt road. My mind is a million miles away. Until, that is, I hear a popping sound. At first I’m concerned it’s my scooter again. I slow down a bit. But the noise doesn’t stop, in fact it gets louder. I tilt my head upwards to follow it.
Above me, but a short distance to my right, flies a man on a blue flight board. He’s blond, wearing a grey bodysuit over his clothes and a pair of yellow goggles over his eyes. His mouth and nose are covered by a flap from the suit. He powers through the sky and does a few flips.
My eyes narrow. ‘What a show off,’ I mumble.
I start to turn away when I unexpectedly hear yelling. Two men on black flight boards are trailing after him. They wear dark bodysuits and black glasses. Both have a silver pistol in their hands. One of the men shoots at the blond guy. He flies up higher, but appears to be having trouble balancing.
He’s hurt.
The other man fires a shot that connects as with the blond man’s leg. He and his flight board lose altitude and strike the ground with a loud crash.
Both attackers stop for a moment. They hover above to observe the scene. One looks at the other, signals to him, and they both fly away. Without hesitation I jump off my scooter and fold it up. I run from the path and through the trees. I find the clearing where the man has landed and rush over to him.
I fall to my knees and begin to panic. He’s on his back, lying flat, not moving at all. I reach over, carefully. I want to pull the mask down to see if he’s breathing, I really believe he might be dead. Unexpectedly, he groans. I pull back. One of the man’s arms twitches and he cringes as he drags himself up. The mask covering his mouth gets pulled down by his left hand. He takes two deep breaths in and out. Carefully, but with a pained look, he tugs the yellow flying glasses off his face.
I’m stunned. He’s a lot younger than I’d first thought. Guessing I’d say nineteen or twenty years old tops. His face is soft creamy colour but pale from the attack. His eyes are a stunning and vibrant blue. I’ve never seen anything like them. He’s gorgeous.
Gradually he tilts his head towards me. ‘Who…are you?’ he asks huskily.
It takes me a moment to stop staring at this stunning specimen and answer. ‘Oh…I was travelling past and I saw you get shot. I came over to see if you were alive.’
Glancing towards the young man’s long legs, I gasp. The area where he’d been shot is bleeding. Blood drips from his boot onto the grass. He glances at his foot as well, but he’s surprisingly calm as if it has happened before. Jerking forward he unclips his feet from the flight board. Once free, he pulls himself backwards along the ground with a painful moan.
‘I should get you some help,’ I cry, fishing fiercely around my bag for my phone.
‘No. I do not need help. I am fine.’ The stubborn boy tries to stand and stumbles. I quickly leap up and grab him as he topples forward. He regains balance and glances down at me.
My eyes widen. Wow…He’s tall, really tall! I’m only in line with the middle of his ribs.
‘Why are you trying to assist me?’ he asks strongly.
‘You’re hurt. I can’t leave you here. Besides what if those people come back? Who were they anyway? I can’t believe they would shoot at you like that and in a public area as well.’
‘You talk too much.’ He groans, pulling away.
The young man starts to stumble through the trees towards the dirt road. I turn my head and notice he’s left his flight board behind. I try to pick it up, managing only to lift one side. It’s the first time I’ve held a board before. They’re surprisingly heavy.
I take the opportunity to study it quickly. It’s an advanced model with high powered levitation jets on the base. It’s also stunning in design. It’s long and almost stands as tall as me.
The board is painted in sparkling shades of blue with a yellow lightning bolt across the middle. The foot straps are black and I can see the directional peddles used to drive it. It’s an amazing piece of machinery, to say the least.
‘Hey, you forgot this,’ I yell, trying to keep up with the board dragging behind me. For someone who’s hurt, he’s managed to get rather far in a short amount of time.
‘I do not need it,’ he calls.
I frown, annoyed. I couldn’t save up for one if I wanted to and here’s this guy abandoning such a beautiful device like it’s nothing. He’s probably a rich boy from Poridos, no sense of value because his parents pay for everything.
‘You need to stop moving around!’
The boy pauses… to yell at me. ‘Listen to my words: put the board down and go away!’ He then keeps moving.
‘No…no… you listen to me!’ The board’s weight is dragging me down. I have to let it go. Running in front the young man I stick my arms out at shoulder height and scrunch my face. He stops. ‘I’m not going to turn you into the local Concords or anything. Obviously I understand that being shot at means you’re involved in something shady and that’s why you’re reluctant for help. But if you give me your address I will help you get home, then maybe you can call your own doctor or something.’
The young man slowly twists his head to the side. His blue eyes study me curiously. ‘Are you being serious…?’
I nod once.
He walks around me and steps onto the path I was travelling down when he crashed. Sluggishly, he lifts his arm and points back towards Poridos.
‘Do you see up on that hill?’ the young man asks. ‘I live there.’
I follow the line he’s drawing with his arm. I glance to the north and a shiver runs up my spine. He’s pointing at Guardian’s Tower. I stand staring at it glimmering away in the afternoon sun. I frown at him, then back, then at the guy again.
‘Please… tell me that you’re joking…’

About the Author

M.J.Stevens was born in Newcastle, Australia and moved to Brisbane when she was 8. Her love for English, writing and general story telling didn't evolve until she was 16 and she was looking for a constructive way to funnel her creativity.
Fun Facts -
Star Sign: Pisces Loves: Movies, her dog, ice-cream and Japanese sub-culture Hates: Onion, people with B.O and hardstyle ganster rap.
"I wish I could say that I was one of those kids that read insane amounts of books and that's why I was inspired to write, like a lot of authors. But I actually found the joy on people's faces [when they talk about stories they love] more inspiring and wanted to create something of my own that will give young readers that same excited expression." M.J.

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