I really feel that this book deserves a better rating--it's good; but there's just something about it that's stopping me from liking it more than I doI really feel that this book deserves a better rating--it's good; but there's just something about it that's stopping me from liking it more than I do, and I can't even tell what it is.
First off, there's nothing negative I can say about the writing style. It's great; a smooth, easy-to-read narration, with the pacing just right. Consistency is a big plus, too.
Next. I liked many of the characters here, on differing levels and points. They were very whole, well-rounded people who felt real, at least in my opinion. And not just one, but so many of them. It'd take me hours to explain how that came out nicely in the book, but it's enough to say that it did, in a magnificent way.
The romance was... Well, honestly speaking here, I was absolutely looking forward to some nice, make-me-smile-like-an-idiot romance. Not to say that it didn't. And not that I wasn't satisfied with it either. It just left me confused. Yeah, that's it. I was confused about the romance. If that makes any sense. (And as I'm writing this review, it barely does.)
So, there you have it. It's a very messed up review, I know, but that's exactly how I'm feeling right now. Puzzled and...lacking...something. And I'm not not recommending it. Give it a try if you're up to some girly friendships and other types of...relationships. (Don't worry, it doesn't mean anything negative.)...more
When I saw this book, I was super duper hyped about it. The synopsis was very interesting to me--antihero (kind of), mystery, detective stuff, loss ofWhen I saw this book, I was super duper hyped about it. The synopsis was very interesting to me--antihero (kind of), mystery, detective stuff, loss of a good friend, etc. Which is why I read it as soon as I could. So, you can just imagine me not appreciating the first few chapters where I was wondering who the heck was this guy (main character) praising, ogling at, and making out with this girl half the time she's there. OK, so, I'm not anti-romance, don't get me wrong. But this book, for me, was supposed to be different. Sure, why not have romance? I love plots mixed in with romance, too. But...I don't know. Maybe I couldn't appreciate it since it was right at the beginning where I didn't even know the characters yet.
The mystery bit was OK, how the MC discovered this and that, how this related to that, etc. etc. By around 50%, I stayed up too late into the night reading, so there's your proof that the book did have my interest halfway through. And actually, the book did seem better and improved for me around that time.
(view spoiler)[Honestly, I was relentlessly being suspicious of Parvati since the story came around to the part where Max was discovered in the Colonel's cabin. Seriously, I thought it was her who killed Preston, and I had good reason--the cabin, the Las Vegas trip and the arson, the shark's tooth. What I didn't have was the motive. But, I never thought of Preston's motive either. And I don't know what to say about that matter. At first, his reasons seemed rather childish and trivial. After some time, though, I realized that I could never really underestimate people's feelings just because I feel otherwise. Dramatic and cheesy, yes. But that's why I have nothing to say about Preston and his killing motive, and I can't completely blame him for being mad at Max because of the adopted parents thing. Though I do wish he and Max had ended (or patched things up) better, and not just "goodbye and stay in prison" kind of ending. (hide spoiler)]
The characters, in the beginning, felt flat to me. The MC: typical HS boy, a bit rebellious, insecure, untrusting but to a few. The girl: popular, rich man's daughter, sexy, manipulative (for me). The friend: nice, a bit aloof. And that's it, them sticking to these traits. The MC was the first to feel more alive, probably because he's the narrator. The others (aside from these three) were OK, too. They're not really...spectacular, in these terms, but they were pretty good.
I really can't say whether I liked or disliked this book. Honestly, I was about to drop it after the first five chapters or so. By half and towards the end, it got better, but I'm not sure if I'm satisfied with it. Some good mystery plot, but that's about where it really interested me....more
One warning to my dear friends: Don't read the summary on Goodreads. I read it before writing this review, and it pretty much tells half of the story.One warning to my dear friends: Don't read the summary on Goodreads. I read it before writing this review, and it pretty much tells half of the story.
So, onto my review.
Honestly, I thought this book would be spelling depressing all over the pages, since this is about that and something even darker than simple depression. Yes, it's not all sunshine, and it is still rather dark, but it's not the dark kind that I myself feel like I want to shut myself from the world and be lonely and depressed all alone. Somehow, such a delicate topic was written in such a beautiful way, like I can see where the lead are coming from, including their thoughts and actions; how they turned out to be the kind of people they are; and what effect and to what extent other people had over them. In other, shorter words: wonderfully written.
I also kind of like how things flowed out. The actual time frame in the book may seem short, but I think even that had an effect on why things turned out this way and that way. And the two leads' relationship? The only thing I can say about it is that it was heart-wrenchingly sweet. OK, honestly speaking, I'm not sure if I was just swept up in the story or the writing style or because I like the two leads or because I'm a sucker for ultimate sufferings. But, it could be because it simply was delivered in a very awesome way, too. So, for me, another plus for a beautifully played-out romance, among other things.
This book is surprisingly...satisfying, despite its dark topic. And I really am amazed at how Warga created and portrayed her characters, especially the narrator. I'm looking forward to her other books, and hopefully they're as good as this....more
Somehow, I found that I'm pretty disappointed in book. But I don't think it's the book, or is it the way of writing; it's just me.
In the beginning, ISomehow, I found that I'm pretty disappointed in book. But I don't think it's the book, or is it the way of writing; it's just me.
In the beginning, I had fun reading. I was so into it that if was hard to actually stop reading. Two-thirds into the book and the excitement dwindled. I think that's mainly because of my expectations in regards to the storyline. Not that there were parts that made me think, Now that's just not possible! Or something. The happenings were likely to happen, I know. I just couldn't accept them. And I just felt annoyed by the turn of events.
So, blame me for rooting for something different from what the author planned....more
This book really goes along with my love for English. London? British accent? And, finally, a book set in London that does not describe it as gloomy aThis book really goes along with my love for English. London? British accent? And, finally, a book set in London that does not describe it as gloomy and gray--quite the opposite, actually. Awesome.
But I guess I have to push aside my baseless love for England for my review.
Maybe it's because all the recent books I've read were dark and mostly contained zero to forty percent romance, but I really enjoyed reading this love story. The plotting and the events were nicely played. I smiled like crazy most of the time, laughed a lot, and wanted to giggle and squeal many times. I loved the sweet moments, because they really are sweet, and definitely not cheesy or mushy. (view spoiler)[Like when Jason sang to Julia at the park, the dance, at the music store, the kiss, and the ending. So cute. <3 (hide spoiler)]
It's a big plus that I liked the heroine, her thoughts and actions, though of course not all. Whatever she lacked in, I was glad she felt regret and guilt, and she did try to make up for most of it. And of course, the guy was really likable as well. Well intially, (view spoiler)[he was a big promoter of green jokes, which I hate, (hide spoiler)] but not even halfway through, I started liking him. I think they're a good pair.
(view spoiler)[My only reason for not giving this a full five-star rating is because it left quite a number of questions unanswered. For example: When did Jason start liking Julia? Did he exchange their phones on purpose? Who was he texting all the time? Did Phoebe have any idea she was texting Jason and not Julia, even towards the end? What exactly was Sarah's role in their relationship? Hmm, that was a lot. But yeah, a little disappointment there. But very little. I still enjoyed it very much. (hide spoiler)]...more
Bad Apple is, so far, the cleanest contemporary book I have read. That was definitely a plus.
One thing I really liked about this book was the heroine.Bad Apple is, so far, the cleanest contemporary book I have read. That was definitely a plus.
One thing I really liked about this book was the heroine. Tola was a very strong person. I liked her determination in things. (view spoiler)[And despite being marked a rebel in family and in school matters, she was an emotional girl. It made her feel real and whole. (hide spoiler)] But she didn't carelessly fight head on too. And contrary to her image, I believe that she was not stupid.
I also liked the people who, honestly and in a hidden way, supported the lead girl. They didn't exactly say, "You can do it." Rather, in their actions, they made the heroine feel they believed her. Which is such a beautiful way of encouraging someone.
(view spoiler)[The biggest factor of my high rating is because I really appreciated Tola and Madge's relationship as sisters. I think it's rare for sisters to be bonded so nicely, and although between Tola and Madge their convos weren't so sweet and sisterly, they showed their love for each other. It was a nice change because a lot of books with siblings out there, contemp or fantasy, they don't get along well. (hide spoiler)]
The only bad thing I found that I should say in my review is that Ruby made sure anyone reading this would hate the antagonist. I mean, they're humans too, so shouldn't they at least have something someone would like? (view spoiler)[And the fact that she hated Tola for a very simple and idiotic reason just added to her evilness. (hide spoiler)] Not that it really matters, because I'd never root for the villain. But it didn't give the book a real-life feel....more
I honestly did not expect this book to be so disappointing. I'm not even sure why, since I liked Some Girls Are which share the same genre. This bookI honestly did not expect this book to be so disappointing. I'm not even sure why, since I liked Some Girls Are which share the same genre. This book simply did not work for me.
The plot is unique, I guess; too unique that it felt absurd to me.
When I started reading this, I liked it, and I enjoyed doing so. The story moves on...and it just gets annoying.
I didn't even end up liking one of the guys, which is very unusual for me reading a romance novel like this. It's not very hard for me to have a crush on a fictional character.
(view spoiler)[I thought I would like Parker Fadley. I mean, an honor student who suddenly falls behind? Sounds like something that could happen in real life. But, gosh, she turned out to be so annoying for the completely wrong reasons. Her meanness were out-of-place, and I just wanted to shout at her every single time she opened her mouth to say something bad. She thinks she's so great, but sometimes she thinks she doesn't deserve Jake Gardner.
As for Jake, I found him weird in the beginning, stupid in the middle, kind of liked of him as I read towards the end, but it stopped there. He was a good guy, but he was also flat. He had no strong personality that I can immediately pinpoint. He was just there, the new kid who ended up liking Parker in an instant.
What's even worse is the fact that they freaking had sex, then nothing. Ugh. I don't approve of sex before marriage, and this one just blows me off. It's so irritating.
The other characters didn't stand out for me. They were either flat and predictable, or they have double personalities.
Parker's dilemma, scarred past, mistake, whatever, was obviously her problem. And it's just plain stupid why she didn't do anything about it. When I reached the ending, I felt stupefied by her actions, or lack of, and again, it annoyed me.
The ending obviously didn't satisfy any hope I had left. Courtney Summers should study making right conclusions with the right amount of length first before writing another book. It's like, she had finished the story, the plot, and she just thought of finishing it right then and there. (hide spoiler)]
Besides the plot and the characters, Cracked Up to Be probably had the same level of curses and swears as Some Girls Are, and three times more of sex. That didn't work out for me....more
Reading a novel set in the city, non-fantasy is quite refreshing, and I liked the time spent reading this one. It's all good reading fantasy books, wiReading a novel set in the city, non-fantasy is quite refreshing, and I liked the time spent reading this one. It's all good reading fantasy books, with all those supernatural humans and powers, but a realistic setting feels nice too.
This book got me hooked. I love how Courtney Summers narrated the whole story. It was done well, and I couldn't think of a better way to have it told. She didn't jump from one event to the other in a confusing way, and she took the time and pace needed for the development of the plot and characters. Thumbs-up for that!
It is also an amazing fact that, although this is told from the lead girl's POV, a protagonist who, as identified by the summary, is very mean and possibly annoying, I didn't find her irritating at all. Because, in all honesty, there's only a handful of those kinds of girls.
(view spoiler)[Regina is also very likeable. While it is true that she is very mean, it's quite astonishing how bullying actually affects her. From what I read and watched, bullies never had a thread of guilt in them, which makes Regina very unique from the regular mean girls. As the story goes on, she doesn't whine, complain or do annoying stuff whenever she gets bullied. It's great how strong she is emotionally and mentally, although she did have a few breakdowns. Nevertheless, she grows, even on her own, and that's one of the best things about this novel. Regina and the other characters don't stay stagnant throughout the whole story. They change gradually, just like normal people. Besides that, I like her wittiness at some point. Well, not exactly wittiness. Sadistic? Or rub-it-in-your-face style? For example: "What do they say, again? You reap what you sow." I didn't know she tried to kill herself. "Then this should make you feel good," I say. "Donnie Henderson? I totally didn't have sex with him, but not for lack of him trying really hard--" My voice breaks. "I even have the bruises to prove it." Silence. He gets it, and for a second he almost looks sorry, sick. "Regina--" "Tell Liz," I say, "the mean girl totally got what she deserved in the end." And this: I leap back at the same time the door swings open and nails me in the back, knocking the wind out of me... When I open my eyes, I can breathe again and everyone is gone but Michael. "Are you okay?" he asks. "Get away from me, Michael." "I'm serious. That looked really painful." "You should be happy. You totally just got to see me suffer up close." He pales and slinks off. Funny in a very dark way, really.
And of course, let's not forget about Michael Hayden. His name alone sounds really nice. He's a really twisted, good lead. He's not even the perfectly-handsome type, but I ended up liking him very much. (hide spoiler)]
I am, however, very sad, for a few things, some of which I'll be hiding under spoilers, since they...er, spoil the book.
The book's full of swears. It's kind of...annoying at some point. Why can't the story be told normally? is what I'm thinking most of the time. I don't like having to read books with ninety-nine percent bad words because it makes me feel dumb. That's one of the reasons I couldn't give this book a four-star.
And of course, the fact that the plot circulates around what happened to Regina, and what most teens are hyped about lately, doesn't help. It's quite disturbing, actually. I'm just glad there's no detailed scenes about it.
(view spoiler)[Well, the ending kind of sucked. I mean, it happened all too quickly, and I was so surprised that the book had already ended. Maybe the right word is abrupt. Courtney Summers didn't even make an epilogue or something to formally end the story. It left me feeling a bit disappointed.
I also found a very annoying character, and I guess not all will agree with me. Josh is a total jerk. I kept on hoping that his love for Regina would make him listen to her, believe her, but he completely failed me. Not only that, he even helped set up another setting of Regina-Donnie in a locked room. Towards the end of the book, his apologies felt to stupid to me. I wish he could somehow suffer for what he did, or lack of it, even just a little. (hide spoiler)]
When I read the first few pages of this book, I was ready to stamp it as a "not my style" kind of book. Why? I'm honestly surprised to find that thisWhen I read the first few pages of this book, I was ready to stamp it as a "not my style" kind of book. Why? I'm honestly surprised to find that this book (or at least one POV) sounds a lot more teen-ish that I originally thought. But I forged on, and I am delighted with the book.
I have to say, though, I wasn't sure whether to put this book under "contemporary", "fantasy", "urban fantasy", or "paranormal". It's quite an odd mix of contemp and fantasy, and I don't know how you call that, so...
Okay, moving on. I won't delve into the details because I'm tired and sleepy.
I am very happy to say that the characters, though not all, grew on me. (view spoiler)[Brewster is definitely one, but I ended up liking Tennyson too. I liked his battles against and especially for Brewster. I know, I just realized I'm a sucker for bromance too. Haha. As for Brontë, I neither like her nor dislike her; she's just in-between, I guess. But she's okay. She could be liked, but I just didn't really spend much time on her to actually like like her. Sorry. (hide spoiler)]
The narration is... unique, I suppose. I will not spoil any details on that, but I will say that I liked a part of it. And the story is pretty nice too. (view spoiler)[Though I do wonder about one thing: If Brewster would rather not have anyone to care for, why did he even ask Brontë out in the first place? That is what puzzles me most. (hide spoiler)]
Well, this review definitely sucks, but I can't be bothered with flowery sentences and whatever stuff to make this a better review. I mean, if my brain is feeling more juicy, I might try rewriting this. But just because this review is rather unfeeling doesn't mean I didn't like the book. I very much enjoyed it....more
Honestly, I was looking forward to this book. I thought it'd be better than the first book. But I was greatly dAttempted reading: 9/1/2011 to 12/31/11
Honestly, I was looking forward to this book. I thought it'd be better than the first book. But I was greatly disappointed. I was truly planning on finishing this, and I just decided now to officially drop it.
I can't even understand what's supposed to happen in this second book. The diary entries showed nothing but Stargirl's every day life. Nothing more about...not annoying characters. It's weird. It's like, you wrote a diary during your high school days, and decided you wanted to publish that.
I've read other books told in a similar way--with dates, told from only one person's POV--but this is completely different and dismaying. I probably shouldn't have bothered reading the sequel to Stargirl because I wasn't very pleased with the first book....more
Actually, I didn't think I'd like this book after reading the summary. Since I wasn't anticipating much, I didn't get disappointed either.
I'm not sureActually, I didn't think I'd like this book after reading the summary. Since I wasn't anticipating much, I didn't get disappointed either.
I'm not sure if I enjoyed reading The DUFF. One thing's for sure: there were too many sexy scenes and a lot of cursing.
Bianca annoyed me. And she kind of lacked in making up for it. She was below average for me. And yes, despite her reputation of being smart, she wasn't. Honestly. (view spoiler)[Her thought about her family's problems almost made me pull my hair out. I can't believe she's so stupid to be relying on sex as a distraction. And another thing, I absolutely hated her for being mad at Casey because her best friend was mad at her. And she didn't know why? (hide spoiler)]
Wesley just kind of disguted me. Sure, maybe he was supposed to be funny and witty and sexy, but he was just too much of a pervert. Not really a redeeming trait. So much for having nice, gray eyes. It made me think I'd crush on him. But that was partly my fault.
(view spoiler)[Toby felt unreal to me. He's kind and sweet and polite and patient, and as much as I'm positive those are traits I'd be looking for my partner, he seemed fake. Maybe because he was extremely kind, sweet, etc. Not that I hated him. I guess his green eyes (yes, again with the eyes) somehow made up for it. LOL. (hide spoiler)]
For having a not-so-complicated plot, the book seemed long for me. And the plot sort of sucked, now that I think about it.
(view spoiler)[And though the ending didn't make me feel frustrated or annoyed, it was funny how it ended up that way. Sure I didn't want Toby hurt, but I just found it strange and out-of-the-blue. (hide spoiler)]
This is definitely not on my to-buy list, and I'm very glad that I didn't buy this when there was a sale. I don't think I'll be recommending it to my friends either....more
The biggest reason for my three-star rating is because Green's writing style is great.
I'm not a fan of contemporary books because they always containThe biggest reason for my three-star rating is because Green's writing style is great.
I'm not a fan of contemporary books because they always contain adult scenes and words and a lot of cusses. Looking for Alaska was not an exception.
Truth be told, I didn't like Pudge or Alaska. Well, Pudge's thoughts were a fun read. There were times, though, that I just felt he was annoying. But I know his feelings were sort of normal, and it could happen to anyone, and for that, I don't dislike him so much. The characters I actually liked were the Colonel and Takumi. Quite a surprise, considering I liked them not because they were hot or whatever.
Actually, I liked better the second half of the book. Maybe because Pudge and the Colonel's friendship was highlighted more, and I really enjoyed reading their conversations, even though sometimes they were nonsense.
Anyway, Green's way of writing and the way he told this story pretty much made up for what I might have disliked in it. And for a book that was told from a guy's POV, I cried. I really think John Green is such a great writer. And so, this book is very much worth reading....more
I am very sad to give this only two stars, as I really had high expectations before and while reading this book. Unfortunately, this is all I can giveI am very sad to give this only two stars, as I really had high expectations before and while reading this book. Unfortunately, this is all I can give, for a few reasons.
First of all, I am hooked by the story, but not by the characters. Which says a lot, in my opinion. (Of course, good characters turn bad with flat stories, too. Still, I personally think characters should give a very big impact on the audience.) I could not really get attached to Clay, to Hannah, or to any other character in the book. So while I enjoyed travelling along with Clay, I cannot say I sympathized with any of the people he ran into. (view spoiler)[This is also reason #1 why I can't understand Hannah's feelings. (hide spoiler)]
Second, this may be very mean of me, but (view spoiler)[Hannah turned to be a whiny, woe-is-me (sorry, borrowing this term!) girl that screams self-righteousness down to her bones. I don't know, maybe that's how it usually is for depressed people; they're sensitive. But Hannah's reasons for suicide just didn't sit well with me. Like, okay, I felt bad for her. Sometimes I wondered why she had to go through this and that, but she didn't actually try to stop it. She just... stood there, willing it to stop, but of course it doesn't go the way she wants, and THEN she blames the other people. Even the people who she looked to for help, like Mr. Porter, was blamed because they could not help her. Well, for one thing, help for depressed people, and thus their subsequent feelings of being better, if any, does not happen in a blink. So I do not understand how Hannah could blame other people for not being able to help her. She comes once, they ask questions, she doesn't answer, she expects people to understand her without her having to say anything, they wait, she comes to the conclusion on her own that they won't/can't help, she leaves, and finally she blames them for her death. I can't say I feel for her.
And I actually found that Clay being the only good person in Hannah's book--or shall I say tape--of friends is quite... unbelievable. I mean, Clay wanted to help, so did a few others, but she only felt sorry and apologetic towards Clay, and the others she resented. Why? I mean, sure, I was rather relieved that Clay wasn't actually a bad bad guy here, but... I don't know. It just didn't seem... plausible. I'm probably not making any sense right now. Whatever. (hide spoiler)]
Finally, I am sorry this review was more of a rant than anything positive sounding. But this was honestly a pretty enjoyable (I couldn't think of a better word) read....more