Un-Required Reading: "Queen of the Dead" Review and Contest

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"Queen of the Dead"
by Stacey Kade

Publisher: Hyperion
Release Date: May 31, 2011 
Source: ARC sent by publisher

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Summary from goodreads.com:

After being sent back from the light, Alona Dare - former homecoming queen, current Queen of the Dead - finds herself doing something she never expected: working. Instead of spending days perfecting her tan by the pool (her typical summer routine when she was, you know, alive), Alona must now cater to the needs of other lost spirits. By her side for all of this - ugh - “helping of others” is Will Killian: social outcast, seer of the dead, and someone Alona cares about more than she’d like.
Before Alona can make a final ruling on Will’s “friend” or “more” status, though, she discovers trouble at home. Her mom is tossing out Alona’s most valuable possessions, and her dad is expecting a new daughter with his wicked wife. Is it possible her family is already moving on? Hello! She’s only been dead for two months! Thankfully, Alona knows just the guy who can put a stop to this mess.
Unfortunately for Alona, Will has other stuff on his mind, and Mina, a young (and beautiful) seer, is at the top of the list. She’s the first ghost-talker Will’s ever met—aside from his father—and she may hold answers to Will’s troubled past. But can she be trusted? Alona immediately puts a check mark in the “clearly not” column. But Will is - ahem - willing to find out, even if it means leaving a hurt and angry Alona to her own devices, which is never a good idea.
Packed with romance, lovable characters, and a killer cliffhanger, Queen of the Dead is the out-of-this-world sequel to The Ghost and the Goth.

My Review:

This book wasn't what I expected it to be, in a good way! The cover looks like a cheesy teen romance, but this story deals with some tough issues and it's actually really scary! There were parts that I personally didn't really like, but overall, it's a well-written teen story with a lot for readers to think about.

First off, Alona is an awesome character. I love that she used to be a "mean girl"  in high school, but in the afterlife, she's grown so much. She hasn't stopped being that mean girl altogether, but she really has a lot more perspective on others and their feelings. It's great to see her mix of hard and soft character traits.

I loved the complicated romance between Alona and Will. It's not easy when your girlfriend is a ghost. I feel like underneath the romantic tension, Alona and Will are truly great friends. I was never a fan of Mina, she never came across as likable to me at all, so I could totally jump on board with Alona's jealousy!

Alona's feelings towards her family were really sad to see play out. I tried not to think too hard about it, otherwise, it was really tough to deal with. The author played these feelings in a true way that was pretty heartbreaking. 

I don't want to give any spoilers, but what happens towards the end is very odd and more than a little creepy to me. It adds an interesting dimension to the story, but I honestly didn't really enjoy what happened, too creepy for me. 

Main Characters: 5/5
Supporting Characters: 3/5

Setting: 4/5

Romance: 4/5

Uniqueness: 4/5
Cover: 4/5
Writing: 4/5

Bottom Line: More than meets the eye, this is a deeper than usual YA paranormal.


Hyperion has generously provided a deck of Un-Required Reading playing cards for a lucky reader of my blog!

These cards are even cuter than the picture shows. They are real playing cards, but each card has on of the Un-Required Reading book covers and author on it. Your friends will be sooo jealous when you bring these out to play crazy 8s :)

All you have to do is follow my blog publicly and leave a comment on this review with your email address! Please follow publicly or I can't tell that you are following :) Also, if you aren't comfortable leaving your email here, go ahead and leave a comment and then send me an email with your email addy
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  • Ends Mon Aug 1
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  1. Thank you for the giveaway, the cards sound awesome :) Love the review, I definitely need to read this soon.

    I tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/ramen_addict/status/94112590376075264


  2. Enter me!

    ashleysbookshelf at gmail dot com

  3. Odd and creepy...now I really want a spoiler ;) no no bad me! But you just make it so interesting

  4. Oh, I wonder what you didn't like.
    But yeah, I agree about Mina, I never liked her at all, even though she seems to have had some tough luck, I still didn't like her.

    And I love how Alona is so snarky. And I can't wait to see how it all turns out in the end.

  5. Thanks for reminding me that I need to read this series.

  6. Thanks for the giveaway!!!

    gfc follower


  7. I never thought this would be creepy! It seemed more like a humorous book. I will have to read the first part. Thanks for the review!

  8. This sounds like an interesting book with lots of meat on the bones, so to speak, although I don't like the cover much. Good review. It made me want to grab a copy when I'm already in danger from my to-read pile.

    Don't enter me. I'm in New Zealand. :)

  9. Ever since I read The Ghost and the Goth, I was really craving more! I csn't wait to read this one! I have to get my hands on it soon.

  10. Thank you for the great giveaway! I loved these books :) edysicecreamlover18ATgmailDOTcom GFC Krystal Larson

  11. These are so cute! Thanks so much for the giveaway!!


  12. Thanks for the giveaway!!
    GFC: ruby95660

    Tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/Ruby95660/status/95401182503239680

    Blog Link: http://2011megareadingchallenge.blogspot.com/

    Email: ruby95660@yahoo.com

  13. I so want to read this series, it sounds like a great series! =)

  14. ohhh! I've been wanting to read this! XD


Thanks so much for your lovely comments!