Posted in Young Adult

Waiting on Wednesday (5/17/2017)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by  Jill from Breaking The Spine that shows the upcoming books that many of us are anticipating! This week, I’m waiting for…


onceandforall

Title:  Once and for All

Author: Sarah Dessen

Expected Publication:  June 6th 2017

Publisher:  Viking Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Summary:

As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen’s thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

Sarah Dessen is probably one of my guilty pleasures. Normally, I read a lot of fantasy and probably a little sci-fi, but sometimes I like to pick up a good fiction book. I have read probably about 90% of Dessen’s books and I loved every single one of them. I also like how she brings previous characters into the books through cameos. Sort of like Stan Lee in all the Marvel movies. Needless to say, I am super excited for this book to come out and I will most definitely be reading it as soon as it hits shelves next month!

What are you waiting for this week?

Posted in Young Adult

P.S. I Like You Review

IMG_0070P.S. I Like You by Kasie West

Published: July 26th 2016 by Point

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Minor spoiler alert (I think)!

Goodreads Summary:

Signed, sealed, delivered…

While spacing out in chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds thatsomeone has continued the lyrics on the desk and added a message to her. Intrigue!

Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters—sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she’s kind of falling for this letter writer. Only, who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can’t always be spelled out…

“You’re my favorite way to pass the time. But time stands still when you’re on my mind.”

This book came in my August Uppercase subscription, and I am so glad that it did! I have been reading a lot of fantasy lately, and it’s nice to mix it up here and there. This was a very cute story about two “anonymous” pen pals trying to pass their time in chemistry class. This book reminded me a lot of A Cinderella Story with Hillary Duff and Chad Michael Murray. The only difference is they wrote e-mails and in this story it’s old fashioned letters stuffed under the desk.

“I’m with you on measuring this week in letters and the two-day drought we are about to experience. If only there was a way to transport letters faster, through some sort of electronic device that codes messages and sends them through the air. But that’s just crazy talk.”

Lily is described as weird, quirky, and kind of hipstery (is that a word? Well it is now). She is a self-taught guitar player who likes to write lyrics, and wants to submit a song to a competition. All throughout the semester, Lily can’t find the words and makes excuses to not share her lyrics with anyone.

Cade is the exact opposite of Lily. He is “mainstream” and very popular at school who also happens to play baseball. From Lily’s pov, we see Cade as a class A jerk, who is always trying to make Lily miserable. They have a hatred for each other that goes back years. When Lily finally explains why she hates him, I just don’t see how one incident could incite such hatred.

“But then I think: my guitar is just a thing. You know? And my brother is a person. A thing is not more important than a person…”

Plot wise this book moved very quickly. There was a lot of highs and lows and for the most part I followed along the emotional rollercoaster with Lily. I got so caught up in the moment, that I found myself smiling when something cute happened and tearing up when Lily starts crying.

This story is nothing if not a walking cliche. Almost every situation was a cliche of some sort, but for the most part it didn’t bother me too much. Let’s see…boy drama? Check. Friend drama? Check. Mean girl trying to ruin main protagonists happiness? Check. Love triangle? More like a brief square that never really amounted to anything, but check.

 

“We don’t need any cutesy traditions. We’re solid you and me.”

West could have ruined this book by having a love triangle be the main focus. Thankfully, it didn’t last long and two of the boys came in and out of the picture fairly quickly. (Whatever happened to the clarinet guy who kicked the rabbit? Two dates and he just disappears for good?) At least with Lucas we know why he is no longer in the picture. The relationship between Lily and Cade progressed naturally, and I just wished that she got over her prejudices earlier so that they could have been a couple more in the book!

Need a quick contemporary read with a sense of humor? Then I suggest picking up this book! Totally worth it.

Posted in Young Adult

The MakeUp Book Tag

makeupedit

First of all, I would like to thank Sam @ RiverMooseReads for creating this tag. Her blog is awesome so please go check it out! Second, I would like to thank Ash @ OnceUponABookshelf for tagging me!

Primer
Pick a book that left a lasting impression on you

Six of Crowsimg_1111

This is a close tie with Six of Crows and Girl Against the Universe. Both of these books left lasting impressions in their own way. They almost had me in a book slump because I didn’t want to pick up another book that might not live up to the greatness I just finished.

 

Foundation
Favorite first book in a series

aliceinzombieland

Alice in Zombieland was the first book I read by Gena Showalter and she quickly became one of my favorite authors. I got sucked into this first book, and then quickly devoured the rest of the series.

Concealer
Pick some characters you wish didn’t exist.

 

The two main characters in these books just really annoyed me. I could have lived my life perfectly fine without them. I didn’t know that a main character could have/be as many cliches as these two. 

Powder
Pick your favorite last book in a series.

Winter_Cover-318x480

 

 

I do have some issues with the last book of the Lunar Chronicles, but I also absolutely loved Winter. This was just a great book to finish a fantastic series.

Eyebrows
Pick a book you think everyone should read

 

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 6.34.33 PM

I would probably say The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas. It has almost a little bit of everything for everyone.

Eyeshadow
Pick a book with your favorite colors on the cover

9780373211579_BB.indd

 

I haven’t read this book yet, but I love the cover!

Eyeliner
Pick a dark and mysterious book

sinfulcinderella

This is a fairy tale retelling that you didn’t see coming. Cinderella isn’t the nice and innocent girl from the Disney movie, instead she has a bit of a mean streak.

Mascara
Pick a long book

 

harrypotterandtheorder

This is most likely the longest book on my shelves, but that isn’t surprising considering it is Harry Potter. I love this entire series, and if you haven’t read it yet, you definitely should! 😉

Blush
Pick a book with a cringe worthy romance

 

IMG_0021

Hmm . . . I would have to say that this was the most recent cringe worthy romance. You have your insta-love, and the “I’ll do whatever you say because I love you” mentality from the main character. Yikes.

Highlighter
Pick a book that brightens your day

thetruthaboutforever

Dessen is probably one of my favorite contemporary authors. When I am in between series, I love just picking up one of her books and getting lost in her universe. Each book is set in the same town, so it is great rereading a book and seeing how they all fit in with each other.

 

Lipstick
Your favorite book kiss

seaofshadows

I can’t really think of which characters shared a book kiss that is my favorite. But, I really enjoyed the little romance that was in this book. The ending though is what makes it all that much better!

 

I tag:

Anyone who wants to do this quick fun book tag!

Posted in Young Adult

Evergreen Falls Review

Evergreen Falls by Kimberley FreemanIMG_0021

Published: August 26th 2014 by Hachette Australia

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

1926: Violet Armstrong is one of the few remaining members of staff working at the grand Evergreen Spa Hotel as it closes down over winter. Only a handful of guests are left, including the heir to a rich grazing family, his sister and her suave suitor. When a snowstorm moves in, the hotel is cut off and they are all trapped. No one could have predicted what would unfold. When the storm clears they must all keep the devastating secrets hidden.

2014: After years of putting her sick brother’s needs before her own, Lauren Beck leaves her home and takes a job at a Blue Mountains cafe, the first stage of the Evergreen Spa Hotel’s renovations. There she meets Tomas, the Danish architect who is overseeing the project, and an attraction begins to grow. In a wing of the old hotel, Lauren finds a series of passionate love letters dated back to 1926, alluding to an affair – and a shocking secret.

If she can unravel this long-ago mystery, will it make Lauren brave enough to take a risk and change everything in her own life?

Inspired by elements of her grandmother’s life, a rich and satisfying tale of intrigue, heartbreak and love from the author of the bestselling Lighthouse Bay and Wildflower Hill.

This was my June Lit-Cube subscription book, “Roaring 20’s” themed.

“She loved him, too. Mad as it seemed, she loved him, too, and had sine their eyes met that evening in the dining room.”

For the most part I enjoyed this book, I enjoyed Lauren’s timeline a little bit more than the 1926 one. Lauren’s relationship with her family was very relatable, and I enjoyed seeing her finally stand up for herself and get away from her mother. Out of all of the characters in the book, Lauren grew the most and really became a strong, independent person.

“Love was a thunderbolt, crashing down on her with its brilliant, savage force. It was ancient and eternal and it peeled back the mundane layers of the world and showed her the wet, beating heart of reality beneath.”

 I did not enjoy all of the cliches that kept popping every other chapter. For instance, almost every new relationship in the story was an insta-love. Violet and Sam’s relationship was most likely the most annoying one in the entire book. Sam was a very weak, one-dimensional character and as the love interest for Violet, we didn’t really get a sense of who Sam is. Lauren’s relationship with Tomas while sort of insta-love, it wasn’t as annoying as the Violet and Sam’s. For one, Lauren didn’t lose herself in the relationship and actually grew as a character because of it. Although Tomas is just sort of a filler character that helps Lauren grow, he was a lot more likable than Sam as a love interest.

“But she knew what came next.”

The mystery aspect was very appealing when reading the blurb, and it was one of the main reasons why I decided to read this book. I wish the book spent a little bit more time trying to solve the mystery, than going back to Violet’s timeline and letting us see the mystery unfold that way. The “mystery” was also very easy to figure out early in the book and all of the plot twists could be seen way before it ever happened. Even though it was predictable, I liked how Freeman incorporated the two storylines together at the end. The ending went by a lot quicker than the whole book, and I wished there was more.

“Passionately. Once she had thought the word described something different. Something fast and hot, like lightening. Now, she realizes, passion is a deep well, ancient and fathomless.”

Overall, while the book moved a bit too slowly for my liking, I did enjoy it. I wouldn’t say it was a quick read, as I was flipping constantly to see how many pages I had left, but I would suggest at least giving it a chance. So if you like historical fiction mixed in with modern fiction with a hint of female empowerment, then you’ll enjoy this book.

Posted in Subscription Box, Young Adult

Girl Against the Universe Review

Girl Agains the Universe by Paula StokesIMG_0704

Published: May 17th 2016 by HarperCollins

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

No matter how many charms she buys off the internet or good luck rituals she performs each morning, horrible things happen when Maguire is around. Like that time the roller coaster jumped off its tracks. Or the time the house next door caught on fire. Or that time her brother, father, and uncle were all killed in a car crash—and Maguire walked away with barely a scratch.

It’s safest for Maguire to hide out in her room, where she can cause less damage and avoid new people who she could hurt. But then she meets Jordy, an aspiring tennis star. Jordy is confident, talented, and lucky, and he’s convinced he can help Maguire break her unlucky streak. Maguire knows that the best thing she can do for Jordy is to stay away. But it turns out staying away may be harder than she thought.

“Time doesn’t heal anything. It’s like drinking. The best it can do is help you forget, if you’re lucky.”

This was one of the books I received from Uppercase, and I am so happy that I had a chance to finally read it! This is one of the books that gets you hooked in the beginning and you just keep on reading until you are done. I don’t read contemporary often, but when I do and like it, I tend to read everything by that author. This was one of those books, I loved it so much!

Maguire suffers from PTSD and a little bit of OCD and it has affected her life in a major way. She definitely has survivors guilt, and thinks that every bad thing that happens around her is because of her and her curse. Stokes handled Maguires mental illness very well, you could tell how serious her condition was without the story being very dark.

‘‘Bad stuff happens around me.’’ I fold my hands in my lap. ‘‘You’re risking your life just by being in this room with me.’’

The story starts off with Maguire at a therapy session, and afterwards we get our first peek at Jordy. After the second or third session, Jordy starts to integrate himself into Maguire’s life. With Maguires curse, we see how she treats strangers and is always doing her 5 second checks to make sure everyone is safe. I love how the book starts off with Maguire in therapy and walking by this guy she has no idea who he is, and at the end we come full circle. Maguire is in therapy, discussing all the things she was able to accomplish, and now Jordy has become a constant figure in her life. By the end of the story, you could see how much Maguire has changed and struggled to get over her mental illness’ and try to live a normal life.

Besides Maguire and Jordy, the supporting characters and her parents are also great. The friends that she made from tennis are supportive and helpful. They don’t treat Maguire any differently after finding out about her problems. Maguire’s parents are also in the picture, so we don’t have that cliche of a single parent or absentee parents. Her mom and step father are very much in the picture, and helps Maguire in any way she needs. I really liked how this was mostly Maguire dealing with life and getting over her dad, uncle, and brothers death, but then it turns into her mom struggling also with their death and how they overcome it together. This to me, made the story more real and didn’t just ignore the fact that her mom may or may not be dealing with the deaths just like Maguire.

Overall, if you are looking for a quick read that isn’t too heavy on romance or a dark subject matter, then this book is for you! I can’t wait to check out some of Stokes’ other works. 

Posted in NetGalley, Young Adult

The Assassin Game Review

The Assassin Game by Kirsty McKay27969100

Expected Publication: August 2, 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Goodreads Summary:

Who will be left after lights out?

At Cate’s isolated boarding school, Killer is more than a game- it’s an elite secret society. Members must avoid being “Killed” during a series of thrilling pranks, and only the Game Master knows who the “Killer” is. When Cate’s finally invited to join the Assassins’ Guild, she know it’s her ticket to finally feeling like she belongs.

But when the game becomes all too real, the school threatens to shut it down. Cate will do anything to keep playing and save the Guild. But can she find the real assassin before she’s the next target?

Originally published in the United Kingdom by Chicken House in 2015 under title: Killer game.

I found this book for the most part to be really entertaining. Although, it did take awhile for the real “killings” to start, but after it did boy did the book really start to pick up speed. The first half of the book we get the backstory on the game, as well as a little bit about Cate and her friends. After Vaughan arrives, it seems as if Cate just drops her other two friends and the relationships don’t really evolve past that. If it helped the plot, then we saw Cate interact with them but other than that it was like they were acquaintances rather than best friends for the past two years.

Aside from the slow moving plot, in the beginning, I really enjoyed this book. I felt like Nancy Drew trying to solve the mystery before I was the next victim. Although, left to my own devices and following Cate’s judgement, I would not have been able to figure out who the Killer is in the game and the Killer in real life. After the revelation, it totally made sense and I couldn’t believe I didn’t see it sooner.

I liked how at the end, we got to see how Cate was handling the events a few months afterwards. It made her a more believable character that she didn’t just go riding off in the sunset with Vaughan. We saw that she was still affected by the real killer and was suffering from PTSD. I almost wish that this was a series, rather than a stand alone just so that the author could have gone into more detail about life on the island, and the game specifically.

This arc was provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.