THIS IS NOT A TEST is a departure from Courtney Summers's other gritty, contemporary YA books because of well (no spoiler here, I think)--the ZOMBIES....moreTHIS IS NOT A TEST is a departure from Courtney Summers's other gritty, contemporary YA books because of well (no spoiler here, I think)--the ZOMBIES. It's a refreshing addition to the zombie/horror genre! I think it was the realism that struck me most about this book. Anyone familiar with Courtney Summers's previous novels will know her characters are usually their own worst enemies...so imagine the effect when she turns the intensity up a notch and surrounds those poor, flawed people with hungry, undead corpses! YES PLEASE!
I don't want to give the impression this isn't a serious book, however. It is a post-zombie-apocalypse story with blood/gore and intense situations. A lot of what the characters are dealing with (aside from impending zombie doom) are very real, difficult life circumstances from the everyday world. But I think it's the blend of these two things that make this book stand out to me so much. It isn't set in a completely new world in the future. It's set right now, maybe TOMORROW, with characters in situations that are relatable and desperate, and those situations don't go away when the zombies descend.
Basically, THIS IS NOT A TEST seems like the obvious next step for Courtney Summers, and I simply can't wait to see what she's going to write next.(less)
I want to time travel to 2012 just so I can squee with more people about TIME BETWEEN US! It's a sweet romantic journey perfect for curling up with un...moreI want to time travel to 2012 just so I can squee with more people about TIME BETWEEN US! It's a sweet romantic journey perfect for curling up with under the covers and losing yourself. In full disclosure, I am friends with Tamara Ireland Stone, but that simply gives me another reason to love her book even more!
Anna Greene has dreamed of traveling her whole life, but she's barely left the borders of her home state, Illinois. She knows there's something mysterious about Bennett Cooper when she meets him, and as their romance unfolds, Anna will travel to places she's never thought possible.
I really loved the chemistry between Anna and Bennett, but the romance was well balanced with a touch of mystery and adventure. Anna finds herself on a heart-pounding journey at home AND away, while having to confront serious choices and consequences in her personal life. The decisions she makes are heart-wrenching and believable. I couldn't stop turning pages to find out What Happens Next?!
If I'm being a *little* vague, it's because I don't want to spoil anything before the book comes out! Simply put, TIME BETWEEN US was well crafted, a lot of fun, and will grab you by the heart strings and take you on an amazing journey! (less)
Thank you to Tye Cattanach for sending this my way!!
Having written a book about a boy who deals a lot with grief myself, I was really intrigued (and o...moreThank you to Tye Cattanach for sending this my way!!
Having written a book about a boy who deals a lot with grief myself, I was really intrigued (and okay a little intimidated) to see how Lia Hills approached the subject…and I couldn’t have been more engrossed by the story. I finished this book in two sittings (FAST for me, ok). Maybe I am a sucker for ~boys in pain~, but I found myself directly inside Will’s head (and sometimes his pants), trying to piece together some meaning out of his mother’s death.
Meaning begins to take shape for Will through cleverly-inserted philosophical quotes he comes upon throughout the book. I’ve always leaned toward the Existentialists when it comes to philosophy, but I never felt like the author was trying to push any one opinion or outlook on life down my throat. Will and I interpreted the lines as they came, and I’m not sure either of us came out with a definitive answer in the end…but isn’t that often the point in philosophy?
The other thing I loved about Will’s journey was how he came to change perspective about his mother’s death based on his interactions with other people…even the times when he seemed to keep making all the wrong choices, you could see that he was adding up his experiences, taking tally, and searching for something greater than oblivion.
THE BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO LIVING had me questioning everything I thought might be right for Will from the beginning, and opened my mind up to the choices and alternatives he was presented with along the way. I love when a book forces me to look at things differently, to reconsider my preconceived ideas about the paths characters should take.
This book was a gem that I highly recommend, and I’d like to thank Tye Cattanach once again for sending it my way!!!(less)