I adored Kissing in America, it’s one of those books that you can’t even completely describe the vibe you get from it. It’s a great story for so manyI adored Kissing in America, it’s one of those books that you can’t even completely describe the vibe you get from it. It’s a great story for so many reasons..the different types of love, the diversity and the travel.
I loved the plot of the book. There is nothing like a good road trip in my mind and I admit that I have actually road tripped to see a boy in high school. He was also my “kind of” “sort of” dating guy friend. It was similar in the aspect that I had convince my friends that we would go camping as well as seeing him, they needed a reason to make the drive. That is still one of my favorite trips and reading reminded me of it and I couldn’t help smiling.When Eva and Annie set out on the trip, they know that it’s going to be an adventure but they definitely didn’t realize how much they are going to learn about themselves and the people in their lives.
I liked that even though Eva’s father passed away a long time ago, she is still going through the grieving process. There is no time limit on grief and the book is such a great depiction of that. I’ve always thought of it for myself is that you never really get over it but you learn to live with it. It’s just another component of you. Eva never really had the proper closure that she needed and it has put a strain on her relationship with her mom and how she views the people around her.
Annie is the fantastic friend that takes the journey with her. Annie is always supportive and understanding no matter what happens with Eva. She is working towards an awesome scholarship and there is a pivotal point between the two girls that kind of show the give and take.It also proves Annie’s character.
The romance is also very well depicted. There were times when I thought it was cute how Will and Eva wrote actual letters and other times where I thought it was weird he didn’t use a cell phone.
The cast of characters that are from New York and that they meet along the way are brilliant. It’s such a fantastic book because of it’s diversity and age representation. We have everything from Aunt Gonorrhea to a Cowboy that wants more out of life then shoveling hay.
I really like Margo Rabb’s writing style. I described it to my husband as short sentences but that’s probably not the best descriptive. It kind of has that poetic quality. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t but with this story I think it really did. I also loved the little romance novel version of events thrown in since Eva is a big fan of them. Plus Margo incorporated so many cool poems and literary figures.
I really loved Kissing in America and I thought the book had one of those perfect endings. The kind that makes you walk away and leaves you with a satisfied vibe. Like wow that was a great read. ...more
I’ve actually had my eye on Love, Lucy for a while because I love the cover. It makes me think romantic summer in Europe, which is how the first partI’ve actually had my eye on Love, Lucy for a while because I love the cover. It makes me think romantic summer in Europe, which is how the first part of the book goes.
Lucy and Charlene are backpacking across Europe. We pick up with them when they reach Florence and decide to splurge on a hotel room. That’s where Lucy encounters Jesse, who she originally thinks of as a rude boy but it turns out she had him pegged wrong. She ends up spending lots of time with Jesse in the final days of her trip but at the end they part ways being that he has no intention of going to the states and she is going to college.
Lucy kind of allows herself to be pushed around and while she is spending time with Jesse she finds a little more of a voice. Standing up to Charlene. I had complicated feelings about Lucy. Although I was glad when she would stick up for herself it was almost like she would take the wrong route to do it. I understood her feelings sometimes but other times she was being hurtful or a sneak, instead of seeing the other persons side of things. She avoids confrontation which I think is a problem many people have. I think she acts her age in the book, which although can be frustrating to me, it’s how old she is. I could see her changing and kind of figuring things out. I think she learns what standing up for yourself really means.
I liked Jesse for the most part. I thought at times he was a little pushy and kind of a mixed signal sender. He was really up in Lucy’s business about her parents and I think he was projecting some of himself on her. Especially when he didn’t want to come back to the states and give his parents “the satisfaction”. He is a nice guy though and I liked how he tells Lucy that she has to make a choice between him and Shane she can’t have both and he gets angry at her when she doesn’t treat him well. He holds her accountable.
Shane is probably the character that is the most likeable. He’s generous and kind. I do think sometimes he tries too hard but he really cares about Lucy. I like that sometimes the perfect guy isn’t always the right guy.
There is the topic of cheating. I know sometimes people rather avoid books with it in it. It honestly doesn’t bother me. I am someone has been cheated on and even though it was an extremely devastating chapter in my life and it still hurts to think back on it. I can tell you that I learned a lot about myself in that time too and I made a very difficult choice of forgiving the person. Cheating is not black and white so when I see it in a book for me, I think I wish it didn’t happen but it happens. It’s not something that comes until much much later in the book.
I really liked the set-up of the plot starting in Florence and ending up in Pennsylvania. The whole idea if a vacation flirtation can turn into something long lasting. That when they leave Florence and Lucy has to make a choice at the end of the trip. Gave the story a great expanse of time of and places instead of just staying in the same town. I did enjoy it and think it’s a great summer read. It made me want to backpack through Europe.
Pretty Wanted picks up where Pretty Sly leaves off, although it’s interesting how each book in the series focuses on it’s own part of the story. Put tPretty Wanted picks up where Pretty Sly leaves off, although it’s interesting how each book in the series focuses on it’s own part of the story. Put together they make the whole picture. In Pretty Wanted, Willa and Aidan are still on the run but are now trying to track down information on Willa’s mother. There is no way to avoid spoilers from the first books in this review, I just want to put that out there.
This leg of the series has us put on our crime solving thinking caps on. After Willa discovers that she has actually been raised by her older sister and not her mom, she heads to St. Louis to find out more about her real mom. Only to dive head first into a 15 year old murder case that has gone cold. With the help of Aidan and Tre she puts together pieces of the puzzle, which isn’t exactly the safest idea.
It’s so strange I don’t know if I have ever read a book with characters like this. Ones that I’m not exactly sure how I feel about them all the way through. I like Willa don’t get me wrong but sometimes her noble ideas almost have a selfish tinge to them. Even when she was helping out the girls at school as Sly Fox. She was doing it to make them feel good about themselves but also to get back at the Glitterati. It makes her interesting vigilante, a little on the flawed side. I actually like that about characters.Willa is also caring though and really feels like she needs to put the pieces of her mom’s death together to find some closure.
Aidan is kind of an immature but broken boy. He’s a mixture of bad and good for Willa. He really cares about her and has stuck with her through some sticky situations. He is also using her to escape his own problems as well though. Plus there is some shady business with him. Something about the two of them made me sad even when they were doing sweet or romantic things.
Tre of course is a good friend. He says things how they are and points out when Willa and Aidan are being idiots. Whether he is near or far though he is supportive.
The plot was pretty interesting but I really liked the ending. It was so different and not exactly what I was expecting! It was perfect in that way and a great wrap up to the series. Everything about this book just had a unique feel for me. ...more
I had a really dumb moment while reading this book...You know this reminds me more of West Side Story then Romeo and Juliet….wait, my brain catches upI had a really dumb moment while reading this book...You know this reminds me more of West Side Story then Romeo and Juliet….wait, my brain catches up. Right West Side Story is based on Romeo and Juliet. Ha ha. To be honest with you I’m not the biggest fan of Romeo and Juliet. I enjoy Shakespeare’s comedies much more but for some reason I’m drawn to the retellings of the story. The Thorn and the Sinking Stone intrigued me because of Valencia’s curse. I liked how even though it had the basics it really takes it in a completely different direction.
I really liked the plot, it takes the star-crossed lover bit and keeps that in tact but really spins some other things. Rain City is definitely a scary and strange place. In my head I kept picturing everything gray and the characters in color. I don’t know if that explains how things unfolded in my mind. At first when I started reading I was a little confused by the gangs. I think it was more of their names that mixed me up. There are the Black Roses (Thorns), The Daggers (Irishmen), The Boatmen and the Cowboys. Since they sometimes called them by two different things it would confuse me. Then there is the law which are the Watchmen. I liked how they were kind of a common enemy amongst the gangs. It was also interesting to get a glimpse into how the two different gangs are raised and how things get twisted by vengeance. The gangs are one part of it but it also really digs into the Cursed and how being one of them can make you public enemy number one.
I loved Sebastian, I definitely kept swooning over him. Such a mellow and reasonable guy. I liked how he always has this peace and calm over him. He is a little bit on the brooding side but how much he cares about his family really shines through.
Valencia is tough, distrustful and a bit confused. She thinks she knows where she fits in but finds out she really doesn’t. Where Bast is more sure of things Valencia is more hesitant. It made them compliment each other well.
I loved the Daggers family bond of Kane, Sebastian and Callan. Plus they had their Uncle Corduroy and the Bowler Hat. Who would pretty much do anything for them. Such a solid unit in such a weird world. Very unlike Valencia’s upbringing who has a mother who acts like she despises her and a brother who is a bit on the crazy side.
Great ending. I liked everything about it. It leaves you satisfied but there is room for companion novel.
It’s been awhile since I’ve read Prisoner of Night and Fog but luckily Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke reminds me of the events without info dumping. WhIt’s been awhile since I’ve read Prisoner of Night and Fog but luckily Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke reminds me of the events without info dumping. Which is nice.
We rejoin Gretchen and Daniel as they are living in Oxford now after managing to escape from Hitler. When Daniel gets a disturbing telegram, he takes off back to Germany. When Gretchen then gets a telegram learning that Daniel has been accused of a murder he didn’t commit, she takes off after him. They find themselves back in the demon’s lair, while trying to prove Daniel’s innocence to clear his name and flee back to England they unravel yet more of Hitler’s lunacy and conspiracy.
I’m fascinated how Blankman plunges us into such a interesting point of history. On the side I don’t think you really see. You can tell this is someone who does thorough research because of how well the fiction is mixed with the fact. I found myself thinking, oh I remember reading about that. It’s crazy to find yourself in Germany during such a scary time and I felt like she does such a great job of reconstructing it in your mind. I was completely immersed in her world building.
I liked Gretchen, she is a very clever girl. In the quiet cunning kind of way. She also has a lot of emotional trauma to deal with. Being back in Germany just triggers memories. Even though she recovers more about her brother Reinhard and where his hate for her stems, she still can’t forgive him for his actions. She powers through, finding her center.
At times I was frustrated with Daniel. Gretchen thinks of him as being Selfless where I thought of him being selfish. He claims to only need Gretchen but we find out that is not true. He finds life in chasing down the bad guys. As much as clearing his name was important, I thought he should have chosen keeping Gretchen safe over it. I had a hard time agreeing with his actions. Although I feel like he comes to a little bit more of realization that sometimes chasing a dream makes you lose sight of the dream you already have you grasp on.
I loved reading about the Ringverein and the Iron Fist Friedrich. I thought it was such a cool thing to incorporate.
The book is definitely a thriller. Gretchen and Daniel are constantly having to dodge and escape danger. Making you quickly turn through the pages to find out what is going to happen next.
Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke is a strong sequel from Anne Blankman. Bringing parts of the first book in with a fresh new part of the story. I loved how well the history is woven in with the fiction. ...more
Love, Lucas is a story that is like a giant ball of Emotion Twine that is unraveling before the reader.
I have three older brothers but I don’t have thLove, Lucas is a story that is like a giant ball of Emotion Twine that is unraveling before the reader.
I have three older brothers but I don’t have the kind of relationship that Oakley has with hers. I would be devastated if one of them passed away so I can’t even imagine how Oakley feels. How she even gets up in the morning even though sometimes she doesn’t. I love the theme of the book where Lucas has written a journal for Oakley for her to read after he dies. He gives her hope and reasons to keep living her life. I could feel myself getting a little choked up by the time we get to his final letter in the journal.
The book is not just about Oakley and her losing her brother Lucas. Or even Oakley’s romance with Carson. It’s also about how her family deals with the loss of Lucas. Pushing eachother away and falling apart. Oakley has to really make sense of and figure out how to grieve not just for Lucas but for the family she used to have when he was alive and well.
I love when Oakley and Carson meet. It’s very cute. I just really liked how things to developed and the pacing. He kept pursuing her even when she was being weird. It was sweet and he was really able to be there for her when she needed someone.
I liked Oakley and really felt for her. Even though you could see her doing something dumb or pushing people away you could also see where she was coming from. Why she might want to. I’m understand the not wanting to talk about something that is hard. I function on that autopilot mode sometimes.
Oakley’s Aunt Jo is also pretty cool. I couldn’t really get a feel for Dillon. I was thinking that if the book was a thriller he would for sure be the serial killer. I think I’m just suspicious of everyone though. He doesn’t really do anything bad.
I really liked the writing style and the plot of the book. It feels weird to say that since it’s about loss.There are were things that really surprised me but I thought were good to show different sides of Oakley. It was easy to read through the book quickly. I was always waiting to see what happened and what Lucas would next write about it.
I have to say too that this is one of my favorite covers for a book. It’s simple yet it captures so much. While reading I kept thinking back to it. ...more