Who can say Love isn't madness? This book is a perfect example of the kinds of love we all experience in our lifetimReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
Who can say Love isn't madness? This book is a perfect example of the kinds of love we all experience in our lifetime. The love of a husband to a wife, even when all the odds are against them. The love of a daughter to her mother even when she's already being taken from her by an illness she can barely fight. And first love. That pure, happy feeling of falling in love for the first time and the complications of figuring out what to do with those feelings.
Alice is a kid I easily sympathized with. You can't really blame her for spinning a tale of lies for her mother. When you only have one parent left you will do anything to protect her. She's a child who's just struggling to just put the pieces back together, but how easy can that be when you feel unloved half your life by the one person who complete you? Alice lost her faith in love early on her life and that's really one of the biggest tragedies in this book.
Errol just broke my heart. His character is quite an intriguing portrayal of Cupid. No playful, chubby winged angel who makes people fall in love for fun. He's just a boy who got greedy and was tricked by the Gods and suffered with the mistake he committed. When you can make people fall in love with you, living can be quite difficult because you never know if your partner's feelings for you were genuine or not. Errol has lived the last days of his life in an unhappy way that I can't help but feel sad for him. I liked him better than Tony. A love that can't be always had a greater appeal to me than that of a budding relationship.
Mad Love is a healthy blend of family, friendship all combined with books and writing. People want happy endings, plain and simple. That's what Alice couldn't understand. People would rather feel happy than see that sometimes, love ends the way we don't wait it to. Even I have to agree with it. Truth be told, not everyone gets their happy endings.
Mrs. Bobot and Archie and the Reverend were interesting characters. I even loved Realm, even with her dark aura and snarky ways. I always love reading about characters that support the main lead's personality and allows her to develop in a good way. They contributed bits and pieces that made Alice who she is. Alice had made quite a loving but unique family with these unlikely people, and it's one of the heart warming side of the story. Knowing you have people there for you no matter what happens.
I have been a fan of Suzanne Selfors' writing after reading Coffeehouse Angel, and I just love the fact that she was able to put an interesting spin on the tale of Cupid and Psyche. Tragic love stories are always the best ones, as what was said in the book and I couldn't agree more. Love isn't sunshine and butterflies and putting it out in the open is what makes Cupid and Psyche love story somewhat real. It's that kind of love spanning a great deal of time, but it's still as painful and as tragic as it was before.
This might not be the best book to read if you're looking for something easy and light to read, because even if deals with love, Mad Love shows every facade of this particular emotion, and they're not all happy or beautiful. The good and the bad. It can be dark and twisted, painful and sometimes hurts people more than anything, but it also gives hope and warm feelings for those who know how to seize it and treasure it. Truthful and touching, Mad Love is a nice read if you're looking for something worthwhile to pass your time....more
Katie made a mistake, and she wishes she can undo it. One simple kiss, one make out, and everything crumbled. IFull review posted at Amaterasu Reads
Katie made a mistake, and she wishes she can undo it. One simple kiss, one make out, and everything crumbled. Isaac, her boyfriend, found out on her birthday and broke up with her, and now she's confused and wondering why she allowed her best friend Mitch to kiss her. Katie, who tries so hard to prove to everyone that she's worth having Isaac as a boyfriend, that she can also be a part of the "platinums", that she can be popular. Then the locket comes, and Katie was transported back to two weeks before. As Katie makes small changes, chose differently, she was horrified that not only was she changing her mistakes, she was also changing everything in her life, and not for the good.
The phrase "be careful what you wish for" comes to mind while I was reading this book. That one innocent act of finding The Locket on the day Katie needed to change her life the most was the start of everything. Katie had the chance to change, but should she be changing them? By doing so she was bringing more damage to the mess she had already created.
It's also a classic story of three best friends, about love and friendship, which I am very familiar with. A love triangle right from the start. Katie was with Isaac because it was what was supposed to happen. They grew up together, and it's but natural to be together. But what about Mitch?
Isaac and Mitch were as different as night and day. While I think Mitch has an easy, laid back personality, quirky and funny at times, Isaac is popular and striving too hard. A jock and a rock star wannabe, but their differences is what makes you think which one should be good for Katie. Let's just say I'm satisfied with her choice in the end.
When you look at it closely, the premise for this book was very simple, but that simplicity is what draws you to it. Cliche at times, but unpredictable. Katie, Isaac and Mitch are characters we can all relate to, they have lives of a typical teenagers, with problems each of us face and emotions we all feel. The supporting characters are your staple type of antagonists in Young Adult books, snarky popular girls backstabbing their "friends", supportive best friends drifting away from you, high school. The Locket has all of that, but the way Stacey Jay combined all of these ordinary and typical elements and created a fascinating story was just wonderful.
I loved how Stacey Jay was able to tackle such a theme in her book. Our choices, the consequences and responsibility that comes along with everything we do, and second chances. What happens when we change what we're not supposed to change? Katie found out firsthand how terrifying it is to play with fate and how it was destroying her instead of helping.
For once an inanimate thing like a locket scared me. Something lifeless has given a teenage girl a glimpse of what it was like to have the power to change things. Katie was taught a lesson by letting her relive the moments in her life she wanted to change, turning it the other way around for her to learn to stick by what she had done and learn to accept that things fall apart just so they can fall into place.
The Locket took me through a whirlwind of emotions, a book that started out with a very simple plot that turned into a complicated wave full of choices, what ifs, deception and lies, and in the end, hope and love. Stacey was able to capture in detail Katie's emotions, from desperation to love and overflowing happiness and the thoughts of everyone around her. The Locket is well-paced and filled with gripping twists and turns.
This book just proves that things happen for a reason and no matter what we must stand by the decisions we've made, may they be good or bad. Changing things and doing them over, sometimes isn't worth it, especially if it changes even the things you don't want to change.
The Locket is a book that will make you reflect about life and questions us and all the choices we have made that lead us to where we are now. This is the first Stacey Jay book I've read and I absolutely loved it! ...more
See when Corrinne, the protagonist, warned the readers that they would eventually hate her, she wasn't joking. I immReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
See when Corrinne, the protagonist, warned the readers that they would eventually hate her, she wasn't joking. I immediately hated her after reading the first page.
If I was remotely related to this kind of girl, or even if I'm not, I am going to wish her dead ten minutes into meeting her. No one will ever be able to stand being in the same company as a girl who mocks everything about her grandparents, treats her mom and dad with almost NO respect, and always want to have her way with everything. Corrinne is beyond spoiled!
However, my feelings for Bubby is different. (weird name though) That first encounter with Corrinne at the party, he was able to say what exactly needs to be said to Corrinne. Just because she's from Manhattan doesn't mean she can act all high and mighty. Bubby's a cute example of a guy from a small town who's destined for greater things in the city. He reminds me a little bit of Luke from Linda Kage's The Stillburrow Crush, but a bit more irritating and outspoken.
As much as I despised Corrinne (I have something against kids who has everything and had the nerve to complain) I do adore the story as a whole. I know that Corrinne's dramatic reaction to everything is a necessary part of the story, but it just gets into my nerves.
I loved reading about Corrinne's transformation, no matter how cliche it is. From being a girl from the city, Corrinne unconsciously and gradually becomes accustomed to life in Texas, and it takes a visit from someone part of her former glamorous life to make her realize that her life "A.R." (after recession), isn't so bad after all. Stripped of all the materialistic things that constantly surrounded her life, Corrinne gradually accepts that things won't be back to the way it was "B.R." (before recession) but the things she's experienced and done in Texas has opened her eyes that she needs to make do of what she has and appreciate the things she took for granted.
Where I Belong's supporting characters are much easier to love than the protagonist herself. Kitsy captures the perfect Texan girl that showed Corrinne that life in a small town is not as bad as it looks. Kitsy, who has big dreams, of going to the city, is the total opposite of Corrinne and she's just what Corrinne needs to wake-up from her Saks filled dreams and superficial wants in life. Waverly is the perfect embodiment of how Corrinne was, and I'm glad that she was able to realize the faults in her personality through Waverly's actions, because Corrinne was like her once.
I can't say that what happened to their family is what they deserved, nobody deserves to be in such a dire situation, but its a blessing in disguise. Corrinne and the rest of her family was able to re-examine how they were living once they hit the lowest points of their lives. She was able to touch roots with a part of her life that she wouldn't even be aware of if she continued to be a pampered, spoiled brat in the city. Corrinne learned that she can be herself and still enjoy living both as a Manhattan and Texan girl. I was touched with how the concept of family was integrated into the story. Corrinne had nothing when she came to Texas, but she HAS a family, not like when she was in Manhattan when she had money, and yet eating lunch together seems like a foreign concept to all of them. That in itself is what made this story good. Also, it touches the theme that is familiar and recent, the Recession, which I know we can all relate to. The ending felt a bit rushed, and I felt like there was not much resolution made in the story, but its a good close for a book.
Where I Belong is filled with lessons we all want to read about once in a while. Recession has been hard for everyone, and Where I Belong, a story about this recession seen through a teenager girl's eyes, is a story part amusing, part funny, and deeply engrossing. Despite my constant dislike of Corrinne, I couldn't help but feel like I was living alongside her. A heartfelt, contemporary novel that you can't help but love, I recommend Where I Belong to contemporary fans who wants a quick, cute read....more
I was a mess when I finished reading. I can ignore the goosebumps I felt once or twice, but I felt the sadness and tReview posted at Amaterasu Reads
I was a mess when I finished reading. I can ignore the goosebumps I felt once or twice, but I felt the sadness and thankfully the hope when I've read the last pages of Cryer's Cross so much I almost tear up.
You can probably remove the mystery element in this book and it will still pass as a good contemporary novel. Kendall has OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and everyday she goes to school earlier than everyone else to fix things in school or else her OCD will kick in. Everyone expects her to be with Nico, her bestfriend since she was little. In comes two transfer students, Marlena and Jacián, the eternally brooding, extremely talented in soccer new guy, also a senior who is especially mean at Kendall. An instant love triangle.
Once you weave in the mystery in the story, you get something much more impressive and enjoyable to read. I couldn't stop flipping through the pages, reading as fast as I possibly can. I admit that I got lost and concentrated on Kendall's grief and the way she was coping with the sudden loss of Nico that I almost forgot there was something that will eventually make me jump a few pages later.
That's what I love about this book. You can be deeply distracted by the characters itself and then you suddenly find your heart racing because of the flashes of the paranormal and mystery coming up on the next pages. I do think of Kendall as one of the most fascinating characters I have read this year. Her OCD and the way she struggles to fight it makes her a unique character. I wish there were more Jaciáns in the world. Its difficult to find someone who can understand a person with Kendall's uniqueness and Jacián was not the least bit bothered with Kendall's condition.
As Kendall grieves for Nico, the mystery surrounding his disappearances and how its connected with Tiffany Quinn just intensfies and builds up along with the romance and the rest of the story. Lisa was able to write it in such a way that everything gets time to develop and not much has been left out.
The setting, also, was perfect. Cryer's Cross is a small town seemingly stuck in time, with one room school classes, horses used as a means of transportation and miles and miles of fields. The town itself makes the creepiness factor work.
In between cheering for Kendall and Jacián, I have to say that what makes the book bone-chilling and scary were the fact that in each chapter, the readers can read about "We". Each time a new graffiti appears on the desk, I'm filled with dread. These writings, the perspective of these "We" is what gives the novel the strong sense of evil lurking nearby.
Even with intense moments of creepiness, what made a mark on me was Kendall's strength and perseverance to know what really happened to Nico, and how she was able to deal with her feelings for Jacián amidst her grief. Knowing how the "we" had come into existence made my heart ache. It was sad and tragic to say the least.
This is the first Lisa McMann book I have read, and with her fantastic writing, I am now very much willing to try her other books. Despite the scary theme, Cryer's Cross can be an addictive read. I probably will look twice when I see a desk because of this story, but if you like to read about things that will leave you wide awake at night, which also has a great amount of romance in it, pick up a copy of Cryer's Cross!...more
Review posted at Amaterasu Reads (the review will be posted on the blog tomorrow)
Before I write anything else, let me just say that Nova Ren S3.5 stars
Review posted at Amaterasu Reads (the review will be posted on the blog tomorrow)
Before I write anything else, let me just say that Nova Ren Suma writes beautiful prose. Her words will entrance and enthrall you, hypnotize you into a world she has crafted through her words.
I have a sister. A wonderful, older sister like Chloe does, who has done things for me that only an older sister will do. Like what Ruby did for Chloe, raising her when their mom was never around to do so. My sister is also as different from me as I was of her, like Ruby was with Chloe. But try hard as I might, Imaginary Girls might be a step above what I can comprehend. Because even if I have an older sister, my relationship with her was as different as Chloe was with Ruby.
Chloe was as obsessive of Ruby as Ruby was as obsessive of her. It's a very unhealthy, scary, and precarious relationship. I keep getting the feeling that even if Ruby was "loyal" to Chloe, she'd also be the first person who'd stab her sister when she gets the chance. Their relationship revolves mostly just around the two of them, not really leaving any room for anyone else to get in. And Chloe thinks so highly of her sister she overlooks all the strange things about her. Will an older sister make you swim through a reservoir you know you couldn't swim?
I still have mixed feelings over Ruby. She's one of the most complex characters I've ever read about, and it's hard to say what I really felt about her as a character. Chloe owed her a lot but Chloe growing up with just Ruby in her life didn't help her much at all in the long run. I do feel bad for Chloe because she deserves so much more. A family. A normal relationship with a boy. Love. Some genuine feelings that isn't as destructive as what she has for Ruby. But she has to learn to step out of Ruby's shadow and live her life the way she wants to.
The lethargic pace of Imaginary Girls is a perfect way of making the story creepier, more frightening and more intense as you pass through the pages. Imaginary Girls crossed over the contemporary genre to something else entirely, and Nova was able to make both genres collide and blend well in this book.
Nova's writing is great. Her words paint vivid pictures of life in a small town, of heavy tension between sisters, the kind of drama that can put you down and greatly affect you effortlessly. Undeniably, there is depth in Nova's writing. Maybe it's something that not everyone can understand. Until now I felt confused over a lot of passages, wondering if I was missing something I should've seen, or heard, or read. Or maybe there's something in reading about two unstable characters. Chloe is not the best narrator there is, and it's not helping how she's always been the shadow of her sister.
The ending though, definitely, deserves a second look. Readers will keep wondering. I haven't been this puzzled in a long time, or bothered with a book's ending. But even at the last moment, Nova Ren Suma makes her writing and novel memorable. Filled with mystery, intrigued, a hint of fear, Imaginary Girls is a surreal read. It's not something that is easy to digest, or comprehend, but there is beauty in it....more
While other teens their age get to do what they want during summer holidays and vacations, sisters Gabriella anFull review posted at Amaterasu Reads
While other teens their age get to do what they want during summer holidays and vacations, sisters Gabriella and Evangelia Betarrini spend theirs with their archeologist parents, searching for priceless artifacts, long-forgotten castles. Gabi and Lia are with their mother in another archaeological site, in the city of Tuscany, after finding an Etruscan city. Still recovering from their father's death six months before, Gabi and Lia just want to spend this summer on their own. But being transported to medieval 1332 in the midst of battle between two families isn't really their idea of summer. Or is it?
When I first featured this book on my Waiting on Wednesday post, I already have a feeling I'm going to love every moment I'll spend reading it. I was right. Sometimes you get a feeling like that about books and trusting your instinct works.
Waterfall just made me love historical YA fiction books more. Lisa was able to write about Tuscany, Castelo Forelli and it's surrounding cities in such a simple yet attractive way. It makes me want to visit Italy and explore the places mentioned in the book. The great world building adds to the attractive plot, making Waterfall such an irresistible read.
I am glad that YA books today portray female protagonists as strong willed women, stubborn but not to be trifled with. Gabi is a perfect example of that. Maybe part of it is because she's from another time, and ladies during the medieval times do not wield swords or ride horses bareback, but Gabi was a girl who would stand up for herself. I love her strong sense of family and sticking by what she thinks is right. Even Lia, younger and more oblivious of the ways of the world, with her amazing skill in archery, found courage in herself when Gabi was in danger. The Betarrini sisters are exceptional and loyal to each other. Their father will be proud of them! It's funny how they were only able to discover these qualities when they were transported back in time. It's what makes them attractive and fascinating to those in Siena, they really are she-wolves, brave women who only wants to save each other at first, and ended up saving hundreds of people.
And of course a great story wouldn't be complete without the element of romance. Waterfall had an abundance of Italian Knights, and it was highly entertaining and fascinating to read of how medieval men behave during those times, so different from the men of today. Chivalry and honor were very important then. Marcello share Gabi's strong love for family, and what started as a responsibility to help Gabi find her family turns out to be a new path for Marcello, one with Gabi in it. I'm still curious how Marcello and Gabi's relationship will work out. Time is a big factor, and you can see the flashes of struggle to understand each other in the book. Will love be enough for whatever it is they have, survive? I don't know about any of you but I am cheering them on!
Luca, Marcello's right hand man is such a joy to read. Charming, witty and funny, Marcello could use a few lessons on how to be a lighthearted, bright person from Luca. I look forward to reading more of Luca in the next two books. And I am still rooting for him to be with Lia. My hopeless romantic heart still thinks they have a chance together.
Waterfall has all the right elements that will make readers fall in love with it instantly. A story set in one of the most attractive cities in the world, with diverse characters brought to life by such wonderful writing, filled with action all throughout and knights you can't help but like. Grab a copy of this book and tell me what you think! But be warned, Waterfall is highly addictive. If you manage to fall in love with the book, it will leave you wanting for more! I am dying to read Cascade!
Waterfall is definitely on my list of 2011 best reads!...more
I have not, in fact, read Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. I'm vaguely familiar with the book since its a classic,Review posted at Amaterasu Reads
I have not, in fact, read Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. I'm vaguely familiar with the book since its a classic, but I dived in head on into this book with a vague familiarity of Jane Austen's famous work.
Needless to say, even with my ignorance, I enjoyed reading Prom and Prejudice. You do not need to be well-versed with Austen to enjoy this fluffy and light hearted novel.
Prom and Prejudice might be a re-telling, but for someone like me who knows very little about the book it was based on, I enjoyed reading it a lot. It came off as something separate from Pride and Prejudice for me, and I have said this countless of times before, I love authors who can write a novel based on something else and make it completely their own.
Darcy must be one of the most popular male leads that Austen has created. The Darcy in this book is lovable too! Will is gorgeous if not a bit brooding and didn't know the right things to say to Lizzie most of the time, but even with his withdrawn personality I'm pretty sure readers would love him. He's very sweet too. No wonder people who've read Pride and Prejudice swoon over Darcy!
Lizzie is a simple yet a strong character. She reminds me a bit of the female protagonist in Nodame Cantabile with her passion for playing the piano. I felt sympathy for her quite a few times but the torture she receives from school didn't stop her from doing what she sought out to do in school, and for that I admire her. On the other hand, I think Lizzie should learn to stop judging people from the moment she meets them because that's where the entire conflict in the story revolved. Her own prejudice.
I love how Elizabeth was able to incorporate the prom into this book. Making it one of the central themes of the book made it easier for me to grasp the story further, and it definitely helped modernized the re-telling.
The other characters were also a delight to read. Jane and Charles are both adorable! Though Lydia irritates me, Jane more than made up for her sister's behavior. Jane and Lizzie's friendship is very admirable as well.
The only thing that prevented me from giving this a full five star rating was the romance. I really wish it could have progressed further, because I was really looking forward to knowing how Lizzie and Will's relationship will turn out to be.
I had a huge grin on my face when I finished reading this book. I was pulled into the story right from the first page. I loved how it was easy to get immersed into it and I enjoyed reading it a lot. Sweet and cute, Prom and Prejudice is an excellent way to introduce readers to the book it was based on. I tell you, you won't be able to put down this book once you start reading it!...more