I first came into contact with Cassandra on Instagram. This girl loves her books and <3's anything and everything pertaining to them! I direct messaged her, thanking her for consistently liking my posts and offered up Altering Authority for her scrutiny. With baited breath, I sheepishly waited for this girl (with dark lips and eyes, her posts displayed on a Ouija board cloth), to respond, not entirely expecting her to. To my surprise, within minutes we were chatting as if we'd been friends all along. When I asked her to help me out with a post, she was just as excited as I was! I hope you'll check her out on Instagram (Click here) and on her website where she has some great reviews, naturally (Click here).
Without further ado, here is our Q and A!
What do I look for in a book as a reviewer: I love it when the pace reflects perfectly on the plot. Sometimes authors create a fantasy world that is too slow and it's a big let down. Something that will always make me pick up a book is romance. Be it a side thing or the main plot line, I have to have some romance or I will most likely lose interest from the beginning. Also, I think we can all agree here, when the author brings something completely unique to the table. Something nobody else has even thought about portraying, not even the reader. The awe experienced after such a feat is accomplished is out of this world and addicting to say the least.
What I love in a book: I always looking for the next incredible plot twist. I've read so many books that most often than not I see the plot twist coming a million miles away. It's a fresh breath of air when the author manages to make the world come crashing down on me when I least expect it. And when it's done more than once in a book, I am in love! I absolutely love it when the author manages to make me forget that I'm reading about fictional characters. When the world is turned from 2D to 3D without my noticing is one of the best feelings I could ever experience. When the plot is so incredible that I am experiencing it alongside the character, if not in their shoes. When the author turns me from a spectator to a character. I also love it when a book manages to make me cry, full body-wracking sobs. It sounds pretty messy but it only proves that the author has my heart in the palm of their hands. I also have a weakness for books told in a male perspective. I love to witness the passion behind their every action and emotion.
What I hate in a book: Rushed romances and declarations of "love." Build-up in a romance is crucial tot he plot line and overall experience of the reader. Have them have sex too early, it's mostly a physical thing. Make them say "I love you" too early and it's a lie. Nobody falls in love in three minute. You fall in awe, in lust, but not in love. When the author has the main character have a best friend and delivers poorly. I have high expectations for friendships. They must have a depth to them not matched by anybody else in the character's life. I've seen so many authors portray best friends as excessive name-calling sexual beings. Excessive swearing will not make me believe they are best friends. Also, when the title has nothing to do with the plot. I've seen a couple of these. The title sounds like a fantasy but it's a taboo romance... I'm left with a "what the heck?"
My motto for reviewing is 'Quality over Quantity.' I have read 500+ page books that can't begin to compare to the depth a 200 page novel did. It's all in the world-building. When it's done wrong, everything else falls with it.
Favorite book/s: I have a few but the book that will always have the number one spot in my heart is 'The Exceptions' by David Cristofano. I read it last month and I was not prepared at all for it. It broke me and mended me better than the last. It's told in a male's perspective and that already had me in the palm of his hand. The main character, Jonathan, has set the bar incredibly high for every other male I read about. His emotions were raw and true to ho he is at heart. The plot is violent, family oriented, and passionate. Jonathan has no problem giving up everything in order to protect the one he loves and ensure she is completely safe from his mafia family. The ultimate price and he pays it with his head held high. I have never read nor felt emotions like I did with this book. There are MANY quotes in it that I felt down to my bones. Love is exploited in the rawest and most undeniable form. You can't help who you fall for... even if it means the death of everything you once were, a lesson Jonathan learns alongside the reader. If I could recommend one book for the rest of my life, this one would be it.
Cassandra is on Goodreads as well. Click Here to check her out.