MY THOUGHTS This was a very quick and easy read with charming fun! In fact, I enjoyed it a bit more than Keeping the Castle, which this is technically a companion to.
This book follows a multiple cast of characters, including 8 girls of The Winthrop Hopkins Female Academy. The school is supposed to teach them to be ladies so they can find a husband. The problem: there are no eligible gentlemen in Lesser Ho.
I need to first mention that this book IS NOT A SEQUEL! This is a companion to Keeping the Castle, since it takes place in the same place, but the major characters are different. The characters of Keeping the Castle do make appearances, though, so fans can look forward to that.
It took a bit to get onto the book. This book focuses a lot of characters, and I mean a lot. There are the girls, the gentlemen, the inhabitant of Lesser Ho, as well as others. The book kind of jumps around from character to character and takes some getting used to. eventually, though, I was very entertained by the strange cast of characters and the multiple events afoot!
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this was quite an enjoyable read! If you're looking for a quick, fun read, this would be a great place to look!...more
MY THOUGHTS This book focuses on a group of ex-friends: Joy, Tali, Luce, and Zoe. After JoyThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS This book focuses on a group of ex-friends: Joy, Tali, Luce, and Zoe. After Joy moved without explanation, the friends drifted apart. It's when the summer camp they used to attend has a reunion that the girls see eachother again and end up accidentally transporting 2 years into the part. To their last summer as friends. The girls have to recreate their past, and their last photo, in order to get back to the present. But how can they live in the past when their older now? And what if they change things?
I was actually surprised by this book. For some reason I thought they metaphorically transported in time, so I was expecting a full-on contemporary. I was pleasantly surprised by the time travel aspect. Yet, this book is still very realistic. I think a praise on the book "Sisterhood of the (Time) Traveling Pants" is an accurate way to describe this book. The friendship and the summertime feeling to this book reminded me of the Traveling Pants book, though there are definitely differences.
There is the fact that this book is very very slow-paced. It makes sense considering the plot, but most of the book is the friends doing their separate things. Not that it was dull or anything. It was interesting seeing the girls try to recreate their summer, and not really recreate it. I actually really did end up liking seeing their different stories. This book is mostly about friendship and second chances, so there is hope and lots of drama in this.
This book also follows each of the girls individually. It's in third person, but it's like we're seeing the POV from each girl. I'm not a big fan of third person and some might find the switches confusing, but I think this worked out for this book! I really can't see how we could've gotten the story in any other way. Now, I did have issues with the girls. They seemed much younger. In fact, it seemed like they completely took over their roles of being 15 again, which kind of bothered me. It's not a huge problem, but I kind of wish that they seemed more their age. Besides this, though, these characters did grow so much throughout this book, learning about things about themselves and their past.
As for romance, some of the girls have their romances in the book, but I don't think that's important. This book is, again, about friendship. Whether it's a past friendship or a current one.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this was a great book with magical realism. I had issues with the characters and pacing, at first, but I grew into liking this book. I think this is a great summer read abouts second chances and friendship! I recommend this to fans of contemporary friendship reads!...more
I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS Emma's boyfriend, Lucas, is dying of cancer. Lucas's family has given up and has already started planning for the funeral, but Emma still has hope. Out of desperation, Emma goes to a local woman who creates remedies for something to cure Lucas. The woman gives her something but with a warning that Lucas might not come back the same. Emma uses the cure and Lucas miraculously recovers, to the astonishment of everyone, but he begins to act strangely. He speaks in stunted language, his dog doesn't recognize him, and he can't recall events of his past. Emma begins to question if he is even the same person. But government agents crawling around the house looking for a piece from an airplane crash lead Emma to the discovery of a strange object. Maybe it wasn't her remedy that cured Lucas at all, maybe it was something else.
What drew me to this book was the cover/title hinting at aliens as well as the line "unidentifiable object" in the synopsis, which also hinted at aliens. Basically, I love to read books with aliens and this book didn't disappoint. This book has a very interesting premise and it was, well, interesting seeing it being carried out.
This book is told in 3rd person, but a majority of this book follows Emma. I'm torn about Emma. My main problem with her mainly lies with her relationship with Lucas, but I also liked this. I had problems with their relationship only because their high schoolers and she acted like they were meant to be (she planned to have children with him for crying out loud!). I'm sorry, but I have a hard time believing in first loves are the only loves and that relationships will live through high school. Even with this, though, it brought out what I liked out Emma: her strength. Her love for Emma causes her to never give up on Lucas and eventually, Scout (mention him later). I read a blog post today about how strength in female characters isn't all about being badass, but standing up and not giving up. Emma had that.
Now, Scout is probably my favorite character. Scout is the alien that crash lands and takes over Lucas's body (not that much of a spoiler). What I liked about Scout was how much he changed throughout the book. He went into Lucas's body out of necessity and viewed the lifeforms as just lifeforms. He slowly grow, though, to like Emma and learn about this planet. My favorite part about him was the fact that he was very, um, clueless to this world and it was interesting seeing him try and do things. He's also very innocent, even though it takes awhile to notice.
Back to the perspectives, I enjoyed seeing from Scout's point of view, for obvious reasons, but I also wish we didn't have it. Only because his point of view in the beginning gives away the fact that he's inside Lucas, rather than shocking us.
As for romance, this isn't really a romance book. There's the romance between Emma and Lucas, but this isn't really in the book. Still, love is a major topic, as Emma is doing all this because of her love for Lucas.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, I liked this book. It's a very interesting semi-light sci-fi with strong characters. I recommend this to those who would like an earth-bound alien read! ...more
MY THOUGHTS It took me awhile to get ended this book, but I ended up enjoying it!
This book is from the perspective of three characters: Rhiannon, Nicole, and James. Rhiannon's boyfriend just broke up with her, without explanation, and wants him back Nicole broke things off with her boyfriend, and is now chasing after a crush...on her math teacher. And James has always been best friends with Rhiannon, but does he feel for more? These characters will overcome challenges, as well as have some fun.
I read this in audiobook format while I was at work, so I basically listened to it for a few weeks. This fact made the book feel slow, but to be honest, the first part has a very slow pace. This especially worsens with the unusual formatting. You start with Rhiannon telling you what happened from her perspective in the first half of the week, then Nicole will give her perspective of the same days, then James. Then the process repeats itself for the last half of the week. It's a very interesting perspective, and I'm torn at how I feel about the same days being repeated. On one hand, it was repetitive. On the other, It added so much more depth and let me understand the lives of all the characters.
As for characters, I was meh about them at first. Rhiannon was especially irritating because of how she was hanging onto her ex-boyfriend, who is a a-hole. I was mostly upset by her moping and how I just knew that things would come back and bite her. Eventually, the characters grew on me and, in the span of only a week, they grew as well!
IN CONCLUSION Overall, I did end up liking this book, even though it took awhile. The format is hard to get used to and the pacing was a bit slow at first, but the last half really picked up and I loved the growth of the characters. To be honest, I think I would have liked this book more if I read it in traditional form rather than audiobook, but I still liked it. This was a very realistic read and great for fans of contemporary!...more
I received an ecopy of this book via First to Read in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS I've read almost every Sarah Dessen book and this one has to be one of my favorites! It was absolutely beautiful!
Sydney has always felt like she was in her older brother's shadow, but for the past few years her brother has been in and out of holding cells and escorted home by officers. Then her brother drives drunk and hits a teenager on a bike, paralyzing him for life. Now Sydney is known as the girl with the brother in jail. Sydney decides to move to a new school, away from the whispers, and ends up becoming friends with a girl, Layla, whose family works in a pizza shop. She gets introduced to Layla's brother and Layla's friends and Sydney begins to feel happy again. But her parents are too preoccupied to notice anything but Sydney's brother.
What I love so much about this book is how much depth is within it. This book has the usual coming of age tale that I expect from Sarah Dessen, but there's so much more to it. It has a strong aspect of family. Sydney's parents, especially her mom, become very controlling of Sydney in this book, as if she is her brother. They also see Peyton, Sydney's brother, as a victim and even act as if Peyton is away at school, not in jail. It is very infuriating the way they treat Sydney, but it's very realistic.
Sydney begins to live outside her brother's shadow. She's at a school where no one knows her brother's past and she has friends that like hanging out with her. It's hard for Sydney to have a life like this because of her parents who always seemed like they liked Peyton more, especially now. We really get into Sydney's life and point of view. Her character is very realistic! She has her flaws, but she's the girl that will always do the right thing and will always be there for her friends. Something her parents can't see. It's very beautiful, though, seeing Sydney change and grow throughout this book!
There is a romance, but this isn't a romance book. There is so much more to this book!
IN CONCLUSION I love this book so much! I was so engrossed in this book! It was absolutely beautiful and it was amazing seeing Sydney and her growth! Really, I recommend this book for everyone!...more
MY THOUGHTS Wow. I actually read an adult book. For those who don't know me, which is probably everyone, I love to read Young Adult books. In fact, I'MY THOUGHTS Wow. I actually read an adult book. For those who don't know me, which is probably everyone, I love to read Young Adult books. In fact, I've read maybe 5 adult books in my life, out of over 1,000 YA books. So, yeah, I see this as an accomplishment.
Anyway, I unlikely was not planning to read this book. I saw the movie a few months ago. I usually hate watching the movie before the book, but it was my roommate's choice of movie so I just went with it. It wasn't until just recently when my local library had a challenge going on to read 5 books to either take place or were published in 5 different decades from the past hundred years (you could do this up to 4 times). I only had one more book to go to finish all 4 tickets and I had nothing in my stuffed bookshelf that would work. So, I asked my roommate, and she gave me this.
This book took me what felt like forever to read, but I do think this was a beautiful book. This book tells the story of Chiyo/Sayuri. At the age of nine, she and her sisters are taken, separated, and sold. Chiyo, as her name is at the time, ends up in a geisha home (there is a word for it, but I don't remember how to spell it). This book chronicles her life as she begins to train as a geisha and as she eventually becomes one.
The big interesting factor of this book, according to many reviews, is all of the Japanese culture. I really did like this aspect as well and it was obvious that the author did a lot of extensive research. Though, I felt like most of the culture in this book was the culture of those within the geisha lifestyle of those whom surrounded themselves with such. Also, the history within this book is particularly interesting. It details what it was like, for a geisha at least, in the years before World War 2 and after. The Depression was also a very defining factor.
If you have a problem with slow-pacing, then this book is definitely not for you. As I already mentioned, this book spans decades of this woman's life. The years from age nine to around her thirties are very detailed. The pacing did bother me a little bit, as I'm not used to books like that, but it makes perfect sense considering. This book is about Chiyo/Sayuri and her life, which can not be told in a very fast way. I actually do think it worked for the story.
My only actual issue with this book was the whole Chairman thing. The Chairman helps Chiyo/Sayuri with a very small act of kindness and after that, she kind of becomes obsessed with him. I could understand why, but it was particularly irritating since he never really paid any attention to her. He was also thirty years older and had a wife, but that didn't actually bother me as much just because of the fact that Chiyo/Sayuri wanted to, basically, be his mistress. Still disturbing though.
IN CONCLUSION Despite the whole Chairman thing, I loved almost everything else about this book. Sure, the pacing is a bit slow, but it does work with the book. This book is very realistic, historistic, and beautiful. I do recommend it to those who enjoy looks on different cultures and historical fiction.
I will say that, based on what I remember from the movie, it does follow the book :) ...more
MY THOUGHTS I will read basically anything YA, but I do tend to avoid books with teen pregnaThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS I will read basically anything YA, but I do tend to avoid books with teen pregnancy or sports. Obviously this book focuses on the former. For awhile, I didn't bother to pick up this book, but for some reason I decided to go outside my comfort zone and I discovered this beautiful book.
This book is separated in before and after. Before, Reena has always had a crush on Sawyer, but it seems that he never really sees her, that he prefers her best friend instead. But one day he does and they develop a strong, but bumpy relationship, that leaves with Reena pregnant and Sawyer disappearing. Flash forward three years and Reena now has a beautiful daughter named Hannah. Reena is now used to her life and even has a boyfriend, when Sawyer comes back to town. Sawyer was completely unaware that Reena was pregnant and wants to fix what he broke, as well as get to know Hannah, but can Reena let him into her life again.
I think what makes this book really beautiful is how realistic it is. This book has very raw realism, but it only makes it more beautiful, if that makes any sense. This book is told via both before and after which only enhances this. It's very interesting because we already know what happened, from the after, but we only know the ending. Through the before, we learn so much more about the relationship and it makes everything more clear.
Reena is our main character and she's a great one at that. In the before chapters she has naive innocence, which does change as it goes on. In the after chapters, she's such a strong character. She's been through a lot in her young life, but she continues to take it. She loves her daughter and does a great job at raising her, as well as going to college classes and work. What's really frustrating is that nobody seems to see how strong she is, only her mistakes, and it takes awhile to get people to see this part of her.
I'm a bit torn on Sawyer. I liked after Sawyer, but before Sawyer was a bit of a jerk. He was a troublemaker and did drugs. Even though, it was obvious that he did love Reena. He just had his own issues. In the after, Sawyer has changed after traveling the country. He is no longer a troublemaker and he really is sweet. He really does want to fix things.
As for romance, I don't consider this a romance book. Yeah, it's about a couple falling in love, twice, but there's more to this book than that. This book is about how to love, but not only the romance variety. It is about family, bothe Reena's and Sawyer's, who distanced themselves after Hannah. It is also about Hannah. This book is also about being able to forgive and learning how to love again.
IN CONCLUSION Anyway, I'm getting a bit teary-eyed while writing this review. Overall, this was a very realistic, but beautiful read. I'm very glad that I reached out of my comfort zone and picked up this book! I already have Katie Cotugno's new book checked out from the library, so I hope to read that one soon!...more
MY THOUGHTS After reading How to Love, I needed to read another book by KatieThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS After reading How to Love, I needed to read another book by Katie Cotugno! I didn't find this book quite as beautiful as How to Love, but I still found this book very engaging!
Molly Barlow has one big regret that no one will ever let her forget. When her and her boyfriend, Patrick, got into a fight, Molly ended up sleeping with Patrick's brother. Molly kept the secret for years, until her mom publishes a book that is "based on her daughter's complicated relationship with two boys". People connect the dots and Molly runs off to a boarding school. Now, Molly is back for the summer, 99 days, until she goes off to college. Everyone still remembers her as a slut and she's more than happy to hide away in her room watching documentaries.But the summer has bigger plans for Molly.
This book focused on a controversial issue: Cheating. This is something that I really despise when someone does, so yes, this book was out of my comfort zone. This book, though, shows the reality of slut-shaming. Yeah, Molly made a stupid mistake and might've made things worse by not telling, but while she did all of this, she didn't fully deserve what happened to her. She is called a slut, her house egged, her car keyed, for this one mistaken. Yet, Gabe, Patrick's brother, who is as much to blame as Molly, has nothing happen to him. Molly herself doesn't realize this truth and believes she deserves all this and it takes all 99 of these days for her to realize that.
Though, Molly does have many flaws. I was enjoying this book, loving it, until Molly made stupid decisions again. She saw what happened last time and I just couldn't understand why, when she's finally repairing things, would she make that mistake again. I thought she learned her lesson, but it takes another mistake for her to finally reach a point where she changes, hopefully for the better.
The romance in this book is obviously complicated. It takes love triangles to the realistic level. This complicated relationship is the main focus of the story, but this book is not about the romance. In fact, I wouldn't call this a romance at all. Calling it a love story would be laughable. Now, my thoughts on the two boys are different. I actually liked Gabe, which surprised me. Patrick, on the other hand, was a jerk. I understand his anger towards Molly in the beginning, but his actions later on in the book were ridiculous.
Lastly, this book has sort of an open-ended ending. At first, this upset me, but now I think it works the best for the book. I think it ended wonderfully.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this book focuses on a very controversial subject from the viewpoint of a girl who still needs to learn from her mistakes. I actually enjoyed reading this book and despite Molly's unlikeable characteristic, I begin to root for her to find her way. I strongly suggest that everyone should read Katie Cotugno!...more
MY THOUGHTS Yeah, I'm a bit late to this one aren't I? This book is a huge mark in the YA woThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS Yeah, I'm a bit late to this one aren't I? This book is a huge mark in the YA world and it come out 15 years ago, so the fact that I didn't get to this one now is very unusual. At least I got to it, right?
This book focuses on Melinda who just started high school and is a social outcast. She used to have friends, until Melinda called the cops on a party over the summer. Now, no one wants to talk to her. All the while Melinda is falling apart, trying to hide within herself what really happened.
The only thing I really knew about this book was that it's about rape. I think everyone in the book world already knew that about this book, since it's been out for 15 years, but just in case. I really do wish I could've gone into this book without knowing that, so I would be more shocked as I think that was the intent, but oh well.
I must admit, I was on the fringe on whether I should have given this 3 or 4 stars. I completely love the message behind this book and the writing is absolutely amazing. This book captures greatly how you can speak out about something and about depression as well. Really, this book does a great job at focusing on tough subjects. We need books like this out in the world!
It is very easy to feel for Melinda in this book, even without knowing what she went through. And, while I have never gone through what Melinda has gone through, she is relatable. My only issue with this book is just the pacing and overall non-existent happenings.This book is incredibly realistic and it captures Melinda's depression in an entire school year, and it makes for a slow book. Don't get me wrong, I really think this is perfect for the book, I just had some trouble with that.
IN CONCLUSION I can honestly see why this is practically considered a YA classic. It is a very sad book, and I hate thinking that girls (and some guys I guess, but mostly girls) have to go through this. The author did such a great job with creating such a realistic read with a tough subject....more
I received an ecopy of this book via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS This was such a beautiful book and it brought tears in my eyes, but it wasn't just sad tears, there were tears of happiness in there as well.
Oakley's brother, Lucas, just passed away from cancer. Lucas wasn't just Oakley's brother, but her best friend as well, so the loss of him is hurting her and she doesn't know how she will ever get over it or if she ever should. Her mother decides that she and Oakley should go to California and live for Aunt Jo for awhile. While there, Oakley finds comfort from a notebook full of letters Lucas wrote to Oakley during his last days, but she finds other surprising in California. She ends up befriending a surfer named Carson who helps her heal, but does she deserve happiness? When Lucas can't anymore? And how can she get close to someone again, when she's eventually going to leave?
There are numerous books out there focusing on grief, but death is something that happens in the real world all too often and the grief that comes with it is very raw. This book features this so realistically. Honestly, this book is entirely about Oakley trying to live her own life again after Lucas's death, which is much harder than it sounds. She doesn't want to forget Lucas and she doesn't feel like she could live happily anymore. This was dealt with so well and, honestly, even I almost cried while reading this book (I was at work, so I couldn't full-out cry without raising a few questions).
The character development was spot-on. Oakley grows so much throughout this book. She was fearful of being happy, but she was also very fearful of growing close to anyone. This causes her to make some dumb decisions throughout this book regarding relationships. She closes herself off and distances herself from not only perspective friends, but her family. She does eventually grow to realize what she's doing wrong and that Lucas would want her to be happy, but it's such a tragically beautiful growth.
There is a romance in this book, but it's very slow and realistic. Carson, our love interest, is such a great guy and he's very sweet. He understands Oakley and does his best to help her. He honestly does care about her, something that takes Oakley awhile to realize. Also, the romance is not the bigger picture in this book, this book is entirely about Oakley and Lucas which makes the book even better.
IN CONCLUSION This was a very beautiful book about grief. This book did remind me very much of Sarah Dessen's style, with her coming of age tales and very raw books, but Chantele Sedgwick obviously has her own voice and she is a wonderful writer. I very much look forward to reading anything else she will write in the future!...more
I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
ACTUAL RATING: 3.5 Stars
MY THOUGHTS I usually don't go for thrillers, because most of the ones I read seem to be the same thing, but this was a very entertaining read and much more different that other thrillers out there!
Lexi and Ava are twins and were adopted after being found in front of their, now father's, restaurant. When they were young, they made up a third twin, a triplet, named Alicia. Alicia was to blame when anything went wrong. Now that the girls are older, they pretend to be Alicia in order to get guys. After the guy guy attempted to rape her, Lexi wants to be done with Alicia. Then, just a day later, the guy ends up dead. Another boy Alicia dated ends up dead and the evidence starts piling up. All of it pointing to Lexi and Ava.
First off, the idea behind this book is very interesting. Many people, myself included, have made up imaginary 'friends' as a child and put all of the blame on them. Lexi and Ava did this as children and then later decided to become her, using Alicia as an alternate identity. I disagreed with them doing this, although it does sound like fun, but I thought it was a very unique idea. Then add on the idea that Alicia may possible be real, and you have a very engrossing book!
Lexi is our main character and I liked her character. She isn't shy, but she's more reserved and she feels more free as Alicia, who isn't afraid of anything. Ava is more of a party girl. I liked their relationship. There definitely acted like sisters, as they didn't always get along, but they did love each other. I was annoyed with Lexi as she was so quick to point fingers at Ava. I know, all the DNA points at the two of them and she knows that she didn't do it, but I would think that she would have trusted her more.
The mystery was actually very surprising! I thought I had it all figured out, but in reality, I was completely wrong. I do think the book ended oddly. I don't know how to explain, but some of the revelations near the end felt off to me.
IN CONCLUSION If you want to read an interesting and surprising thriller, than this is the one! It was a fairly quick read and very different from other thrillers. I did have a few issues, but I still enjoyed it overall! ...more
MY THOUGHTS I went into this book fully knowing that I would cry, and cry I did. I cried teaThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS I went into this book fully knowing that I would cry, and cry I did. I cried tears of sadness, because this book is so sad for every character, but this book was also so raw and beautiful.
Liz Emerson tries to take her own life by driving her car off the road. She miscalculates and ends up in the hospital in critical condition and will most likely survive the night. Throughout this book we get to see the perspectives of her friends, family, and peers. But we also see the moments leading up to Liz's decision and why she decided that she had to take her own life.
I can go on and on about how tragically beautiful this book is, but I'll start with the writing. The writing takes a bit to keep used to, but I adored it. The story jumps around in the timeline, in short chapters, as well as following numerous different people. The jumping around in the timeline let us showly understand Liz. It slowly lead into the crash as well as giving flashbacks of her life and regrets. We also see the multiple people that Liz affected in her life, both good and bad. All the jumping around seems really confusing, but it also makes the book more raw, emotional, and, strangely, makes perfect sense. I would also like to mention the narrator. We are never really told outright who the narrator is, but it's fairly simple to guess as the story goes on. The narrator is not only very unique, but it adds so much more meaning to the book!
Despite the narration, Liz is the main character of this book. The entire story focuses on her life and her decision to end it. Liz is the popular girl in school and everyone sees her as untouchable, and invincible, so they're shocked to know that sees possibly dying. By the way, they don't know that she attempted suicide. The truth is that Liz has realized that she has become the person that she despised, the person that she promised to never be as a child. Yes, Liz is a mean girl. Liz realizes that she has ruined many people's lives, even those closest to her. Liz is most definitely a flawed character, all the characters in this book have flaws, but this is make makes this book so realistic.
IN CONCLUSION I really can't do this book any justice! I read this book in one sitting, reading this horribly beautiful story, and I cried. If you don't like books that make you cry, then you might not want to read this, but I strongly suggest you to rethink that! This book is a new favorite of mine and I will recommend this book to everyone!...more
MY THOUGHTS Ever since Jackie's family moved in with her aunt and uncle, Jackie has been carThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS Ever since Jackie's family moved in with her aunt and uncle, Jackie has been carrying on a secret relationship with Marcus, her own cousin. Feeling guilty about their relationship, and the love she feels, she decides to break things off, which only makes her and Marcus more miserable. It's even worse when Marcus begins a relationship with the new girl in town, a girl that Jackie thinks is hiding something. Jackie believes that she has something to do with Ellie, her best friend that went missing, and she intends to find out.
Oddly enough, the romance didn't bother me, but what bothers me is how it takes up most of the book and what it did to the characters. This book is supposed to be a thriller/mystery with a forbidden romance added to it, but instead it was the opposite. I felt like the mystery was hardly mentioned then came up again in the last 50 pages. While the romance that took over was all angsty and I don't like angsty characters.
Besides the angst and how much the romance took over, I actually didn't have a problem with it. It sounds odd, as they are cousins, but I actually rooted for them. A big part of it is that I can see it from their perspective and how guilty they feel, how they know this is wrong. They try to stop, but these two really do love each other, they just have the misfortune of being cousins.
As for characters, Jackie was okay, but she was a pretty average YA MC and her back-and-forth motion with Marcus was a bit annoying. Marcus, on one hand, was such a sweet guy! Will is another great guy who is in the book and his situation is a bit unusual, as he is very supportive of Jackie's relationship with her cousin and wants to help her. He's an awesome guy and a great friend!
IN CONCLUSION Overall, I felt like the romance took main stage, while the mystery aspect was a bit neglected. The romance was angsty and a bit unusual, but I oddly rooted for it! If you are okay with forbidden romances and your mysteries being a bit less, then try this out. I think I'm mainly disappointed by the mystery and expected more, but I was really surprised by my feelings towards the romance. That factor caused me to like this book and I will look into more books by this author....more
I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS This book was not at all what I expected. I thought that this would be an action-packed paranormal with gargoyles! Gargoyles! I've read very few books with gargoyles as the main creature, so I was excited to read this one! Sadly, this book fell flat.
Kate Mercer is an actress and few the past few years she has been playing a major role in the Dark Fall trilogy. She's used to paranormal elements being only on screen until, every night, she has extremely realistic dreams of haunting a castle. Ian McGuire is an author and has been invited to the castle to research for his books. What's most interesting to him is a supposed "ghost" haunting the halls of the castle. Both will discover what is truly going on in the castle and the roles they both need to play.
Sounds interesting, right? But this book just didn't reach up to the expectations I had. A majority of the book was just Kate trying to decide is she really wanted to be the next sentinel. I understand that it takes awhile to decide, but probably 70% of the book was just this. The other percent was a weird add-on storyline with a crazed stalker. Again, I understand that, as an actress, she has stalkers, but this really wasn't necessary for the story. Especially since the first part reads as a paranormal and the last part reads as a thriller, they don't really work together,
I was also really confused by the castle. The castle is a Sanctuary for supernatural creatures and I guess it just bothered me that there were other supernatural creatures just seemingly added into the story. But what bothers me the most is just has the characters don't seem shocked at all by this. Sure, Ian chalks all this up to an elaborate act at first, but he still doesn't act that surprised. The world-building and character development in general was just lacking. Everything felt flat in this book and I, honestly, couldn't care less for the characters.
Now, I keep bashing on this book, but it's not that horrible. The ideas behind this book were really good and I would've loved to read more about them. Sadly, this book went about the ideas the wrong way.
IN CONCLUSION This book isn't a bad book, but it really just fell flat. I hate saying this, but I don't really recommend this book. There are other books about gargoyles that are much more exciting....more
MY THOUGHTS I wasn't really sure what to expect from this book. I decided to pick it up soleThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS I wasn't really sure what to expect from this book. I decided to pick it up solely based on the large amount of great things I've heard about it. I'm glad to say that this was a great book.
This book is from the point of view of Aristotle, who goes by Ari. He's a bit of a loner and doesn't really have any friends. That is until he meets Dante at the pool one summer. Ari and Dante don't have much in common, but they become the best of friends.
This was a very slow-paced story and that's my only major problem with this book. Although, the pacing makes sense. This book is entirely real. The characters are flawed and their lives, in general, are very realistic. The writing and the narrative is also very real and might bother some people, but I loved how real it was.
This book is a friendship story, a coming of age story, and a love story. I think the first two is most prominent in this book. It's a beautiful story about friendship and growing up. The love story involved is, again, very real. It is slowly added into the mix. It was one that I expected, as I knew that this book featured a gay romance, yet was still shocked by. I knew it would happen, but Ari never even hints at playing on that team. The love story portion does not come until the very end and it made me so happy when it did! I also have to mention how much I loved how the parents were very supportive of their sons. In fact, Ari's parents knew about it before Ari himself did.
This book also has a theme with family as well. Ari's brother is in jail and Ari doesn't even know why because his parents never mention him. There isn't even a single picture of his brother in the house. Throughout the book, Ari continues to question about his brother. There is also a little bit about Ari's dad, who hardly ever talks. In this book, Ari also grows closer to his family.
IN CONCLUSION This was a really great book. It was beautiful and very realistic. I loved the friendship and the eventual love story! I recommend this book for pretty much anyone, especially if you love contemporary. ...more
MY THOUGHTS Krissy is a normal girl. She's popular at school, has a great boyfriend, and sheThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS Krissy is a normal girl. She's popular at school, has a great boyfriend, and she's an athlete with full scholarship coming her way. But a visit to the doctor changes her life forever when they tell her that's she's intersex, meaning that she's outwardly a girl, but has boy parts on the inside. Krissy tries to deal with this new information, keeping it underwraps, but the news gets out to the school anyway. Now, her entire life in unraveling and she has to deal with bullying everyday. All the while, she has to convince everyone, including herself, that she's still a girl.
I picked up this book mostly because I have never heard of the term intersex, I didn't even know that this was a thing that existed. I was curious and wanted to understand this more. I think this is one of the reasons why this book needs to be important. I had no idea this existed, and I know other reviewers also didn't. This book does not only a great job at explaining what it means to be intersex, but gives a realistic look at what it's like.
This book is also very sad and made me incredibly angry. The main focus is on Krissy and dealing with being intersex, but there's also a focus on bullying. High School kids can be so horrible! The bullying that Krissy had to go through was cruel and no one should have to go through that. That's the sad and realistic thing, though. Many kids have gone through similar types of bullying and I wish that it wasn't like that!
What really does define this book is how realistic it is. I keep using that word in my review, over and over, because this book is so very real! The characters, the plot, the entire book was done so it does not feel fictional, it felt like we were watching Krissy's story. I would also like to mention how this book is very emotional, but it's not all anger and tears. There are bright spots in the book and the entire time we're watching Krissy deal with this, we see Krissy grow and deal with this change in her life. Even though it's a bumpy road.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this was such a realistic read and I was invested in Krissy's story. I do want more people to read this book. It will give more insight on what it means to be intersex and even talk about other harsh topics that I really think people should be more aware of. Meanwhile, I'm looking forward to what else I.W. Gregorio writes. ...more
This and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Actual ratingThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Actual rating: 3.5 Stars
MY THOUGHTS It's kind of odd that I read two books with similar themes so very close to one another. I recently read What She Left Behind, which also revolves around an abusive father and a missing mother. But while both books have similar themes, the books are really different.
This book is about Edie who constantly has to move from place to place with her mother in order to escape her violet father, who will not let them go. This time, they move from Canada to London, where Edie's mom grew up, to see if they can finally escape the past. But when Edie's mother doesn't return home from work, Edie fears that the past has finally caught up with them. Edie has to keep up with school all the while she's living alone and trying to find her mother. She has a limited amount of money and will not ask the police for help, in fear that she may be put back in the hands of her father in absence of her mother.
This book, obviously, focuses on tough subjects and I believe that the author has done a great done with that. What I believe worked out the best for this book was Edie's characterization. She hasn't had an easy life and it's hard for her to later to keep up the pretense that her mother has not disappeared. I wished through it all that she would tell the police, but with her dad actually being a cop she knew that cops may believe him over her and I could understand that. What I really liked was how she grew more courage in the book and was eventually able to face the past.
Another character I liked was Jermaine. He had no reason to help Edie, but he did so anyway. I liked their friendship and their search for Edie's mother. I wasn't particularly fond of how it turned into a romance, I much preferred the friendship, but it wasn't bad.
I think my main problem with this book was the pacing. A majority of this book is very slow-paced. I understand that it may take awhile to find her mom, but the story was very slow-going for awhile. Then it was resolved very quickly and I felt like the end was a bit rushed.
IN CONCLUSION The story focuses on tough subjects, but the story was very well done. The characters were great, especially Edie, who grew during the story. I had issues with the pacing, but other than that this was a quick, emotional read. If you enjoy contemporary mysteries that touch on tough subjects, you might enjoy this one....more
This and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd I received an ecopy of this book via First to Read in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd I received an ecopy of this book via First to Read in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS I honestly had no idea what this book was about. I just really wanted to read another book by Carrie Ryan! I'm glad to say that this was a very interesting read and completely different from Carrie Ryan's other books!
This book starts with Frances being rescued after being stranded at sea for a week. She was on the cruise ship Persephone when it was attacked, everyone on the ship was murdered. Frances escaped with her friend Libby, but Libby sadly didn't survive the days lost at sea. Turns out that The Senator and his son--Frances' first love--also survived, but tell the media that the ship was taken by a rogue wave. Frances ends up taking up Libby's identity , to help Libby's father and to also have a home. For four years she lives overseas to hide from the media and those who know Libby, the real Libby, until, at 18, she comes back with a plan. She wants to find out the truth of what happened, and unleash the truth. And she will do anything to make it happen.
The entire idea behind this book is fascinating. First of all, the idea of taking someone else's identity was done so well here. Frances has been Libby for four years and has long since buried Frances. What's really interesting is that she is neither Frances or Libby. She has completely taken over Libby's identity, doing what she believe Libby would do, but she could never truly be Libby and all of her ideals have been morphed by revenge. The mystery aspect of this book, as well as the revenge, but I really think Frances/Libby as a character is also very important. This entire book focuses on her getting over her past and realizing who she really is.
Still, I loved the mystery aspect. The book is slowly-paced, but there is so much suspense that I couldn't help turning the pages to find out what happened to the ship and what Frances would do to get her revenge. I was a bit disappointed when I found out what actually happened, it wasn't as big as I thought it would be (not big enough to have so many people killed) and it just felt odd, but I still loved how everything came together in the end.
Lastly, there was romance, but there wasn't. The romance is a complete mess in this book because it starts out as revenge and then there's the whole Frances/Libby thing. Really, it's hard to explain. There are feelings in the romance, but there is more focus on Frances and the entire ship mystery.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, I'm so glad that I picked up this new book by Carrie Ryan! It is completely different from her zombie horror, but this is not a big to be missed by fans of mystery and revenge! I hope to be able to read more from her in the future!...more
MY THOUGHTS I don't know what I was expecting, but this book took me by surprise!
This book is follows Ben, whose family decided to go to a little town called Carmenton for vacation, due to the fact that a lot of their family lived and grew up there. But Carmentown is an odd little town; half of the town is in ruins. A hundred years ago, a horrible fire destroyed the town and instead of rebuilding the town on top of the burned houses, the few townspeople decided to rebuild right next to them, leaving the burned buildings in respect for those who died. When his family drives by the town, he sees one large house still in almost perfect condition and a person seemingly living there. He runs into this person, curious to know who is living within the ruins, and finds out her name is Verla. Ben begins to ask questions about the ruins of the town to those who live in the rebuilt town. All of them don't really know anything and aren't even remotely curious about the ruins. There's one thing Ben does find out: The fire started in Verla's house one hundred years ago.
Pretty much all the ideas in this book is so unique, interesting, and overall unusual! I was breezing through this book, wanting to know about Verla and the burnt ruins. Then when I received answers for those, the author presented more ideas, more questions, and I was again desperate to know more.
The characters were also unusual in a way. It's hard for me to describe, because it's just the vibe I got from them, but the characters are very much unlike other characters I have come across in YA.
As for any problems I've had with this book, very few. In fact, it's hard for me to pinpoint any issues that I had. One might be that I was expecting a bit more horror. Another could be that when Ben was trying to help Verla, the pacing did become a bit slow. These problems, though, did not affect my overall feeling in the book.
IN CONCLUSION Though the pacing was slower at points, this was a very quick and engaging read. If you want to read a paranormal mystery with new ideas and characters, this is a great one to read! If Katy Scott decides to write any more books, I'm definitely picking them up!...more
I received an ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
MY THOUGHTS This was such an interesting book. This book takes place in a future where hypercanes (super-hurricanes that last years) devastates the Earth. So, the Earth's population lives underground. Jasin has always wanted to see the surface and the sky, but it has always been deemed unsafe. When her parents decide to go on a retreat to the surface, it's a surprise to Jasin. But when the island her and her family is vacationing at gets attacked, she begins to question everything she was raised to know.
What I really loved about this book was how much Jasin changed throughout the book. I loved seeing how her perceptions changed throughout the book and I loved seeing her interactions with the surface dwellers.
The plot, while similar to many dystopian books, brings many new ideas and the overall plot is very different than any other dystopian. This book is full of twists-and-turns and questions, that kept me wanting to turn the page. I did have issues that I didn't feel like everything got resolved, but that was my only issues.
As far as romance, as this is a YA book, it was great. There was very little romance in this book. Enough to make me happy and want to ship it, but not too much to distract from the plot.
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this book was thrilling, fast-paced, with lots of twists. The plot, characters, and romance were all great. I had issues with how much was unresolved, so I wish this was a series, not a stand-alone. Otherwise, this was a really great read!...more
MY THOUGHTS This book was one of my most anticipated releases this year! It wasn't quite whaThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS This book was one of my most anticipated releases this year! It wasn't quite what I was expecting, but I discovered a wonderful contemporary with an interesting premise!
Around a year ago, Quinn's boyfriend, Trent, died in an accident. Trent's organs were donated to different people and Quinn has been able to contact almost all of the people, except for the boy who has Trent's heart. Quinn actually goes to find him and ends up becoming friends with him. She begins to have an attraction for him, but is it for him or for the heart he carries? And how can she carry on with this without telling him about Trent?
What intrigued me about this book in the first place is basically the entire premise. The idea of a girl trying to find a boy who has her boyfriend's heart? It's something that I've never read before! Many contemporary books seem to be very similar to one another and this one was something completely new! This book touches on the subject of grief, but it's not all depressing. It has the aspect of moving on and while I don't have any experience, I do think it was done quite well. There is also a distinct amount of just lain hopefulness in this book. All these things added together being in a heaping ton of emotions while reading, but I think it was done brilliantly.
Quinn is a great main character. She's extremely realistic. I had issues with her choices, though, as she kept putting off telling Colin. Colin had no idea that Quinn knew about his past heart problems and that she was Trent's girlfriend. I really wanted her to tell him, because I knew that the longer she put it off, the outcome would not be great. While this bothered me, it did make her more real.
As for romance, this book does have a theme of it, but I feel like it's not what this book is about. Still, the relationship between both Trent and Colin is very important. I really liked Colin and I liked how Quinn and Colin's relationship grew throughout the book! I thought it was really sweet and I was rooting for them!
IN CONCLUSION Overall, this was a fantastic contemporary! It's new and it brought so many emotions! This is my first Jessi Kirby book, but it most certainly won't be my last!...more
MY THOUGHTS I loved Ruta Sepetys' Between Shades of Gray, as heartbreaking as it was! So, IThis and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd
MY THOUGHTS I loved Ruta Sepetys' Between Shades of Gray, as heartbreaking as it was! So, I wanted to see if this book would be just as beautiful! This book is still dark, but definitely not as dark as the author's previous book!
This book takes place in 1950's New Orleans. Josie's mother is a prostitute and doesn't care for Josie at all. Josie just wants to leave New Orleans and go to college, but her lack of money makes that very hard for her. After a man is mysteriously murdered, Josie wants to know who this man was and what exactly happened to him. To make matters worse, Cincinnati, a guy in the mafia, has returned. Josie's mom is, apparently, in love with this man even though he beats her. Josie has to struggle with trying to find the murderer, prevent Cincinnati from causing more damage, along with finding a way to get into a good college.
A misdemeanor of historical fiction is that they are slow-paced. This book was definitely not slow-paced! There is event after event after event and it is very thrilling but also very upsetting, as none of it goes very well for Josie. Still, the whole vibe behind this book, even though all the action, is just how vividly realistic this book is. All the characters and the world are so very real and full of flaws. Honestly, Ruta Sepetys is very talented at created raw and real stories.
As for Josie, she is a very great main character! It's very easy to connect with her. She has had such a hard life and she is such a strong character. I especially loved how much she wanted to stick to her dreams and how she would continue to go after them!
There wasn't really a romance in this book per say, even though there was an odd love triangle. I say there wasn't really a romance because of how realistic it was and how this book is not a romance. The focus of the book is on, really, everything else and the little romance there was just hovered in the background. I, honestly, think this was perfect for the story.
IN CONCLUSION I didn't like this as much as Between Shades of Gray, but this is still a really great read. This book is incredibly real and fast-paced! Ruta Sepetys is a wonderful author and I am definitely reading anything else she writes!...more