Saturday, December 19, 2015

Naked and Far From Home by J.P. Grider

Naked and Far From Home 
YAReads Blog Tour 

Tia Mercury was a freshman in high school and had her first serious crush – on a senior who wouldn’t touch her. At least not until she turned eighteen.
Clinton Daniels was not your everyday teenage boy, and because his tougher-than-nails father wouldn’t let him forget it, Clinton became a loner. And learned to distrust everyone.
Until he met Tia.
She was sweet, she was funny, and she knew nothing about good music. It was the nineteen-eighties for goodness sake – time to turn off that AM radio crap. So, while Tia drooled over Clinton, he was busy making her mix-tapes.
She was falling in love. He was ignoring his heart.
See, Clinton had a secret. But sharing it could cost him their friendship, and he was not willing to risk losing the only person he ever loved.
Naked and Far from Home is a serious story that spans a decade. A tale about unconditional love and what two people are willing to look past to prove that love.      

My Review:

This book had the most unusual love story I have ever read. It was very complicated and confusing but I think I understand what the author was trying to get across: love isn't always simple and it isn't as straightforward as we would think. I would recommend this book to people who enjoyed Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe  by Benjamin Alire Saenz. I thought the overall plot was twisted (all over the place) but I found some of the twists to be entertaining or surprising. I also found the love story surprising but I had my issues with that as well. Overall it was a very fast paced read (I finished it in one day) and it kept me reading, though not always for the most positive reasons.


The twists that I found to be appropriate and believable were her mom's sickness and the reveal of her father's identity. The fact that her "father" that left her wasn't her biological father was probably my favorite twist of the novel. It was surprising but also explained why her dad left her mother. I also really liked the scene where she met her half brother. It was cute and I liked how their relationship changed throughout the book.      

That being said one of the issues I had with Tia and Clinton's relationship stemmed from her half brother. I found it sort of weird that after Tia died Clinton started dating and eventually marrying Tia's half brother. I didn't completely understand Clinton's sexual orientation (which I think is part of the book, the idea that you can't label how he feels) but I still couldn't completely condone his relationship with Tia's brother after she died. I like that her brother helped Clinton through her death and with the child but I know that I wouldn't want my husband marrying any of my siblings after I died. It wasn't the fact that it was her brother, it was just that it was her sibling. 

My last problem with Clinton and Tia's relationship had to do with Clinton's drinking problem. I didn't like it at all that he would drink and then drive Tia home. It is one thing to risk your own life but to risk the life of someone you claim to love is something else. He knew he was drunk but he still made the choice to drive her home multiple times. This was the only part of the book that really made me dislike Clinton.


Interested in buying the book?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Dreamscape: Saving Alex


Sixteen-year-old Alexis Stone is used to getting away from life’s frustration with Dreamscape, a video game she’s loved since childhood. As her family prepares to move, a sleepy night of gaming pulls her into the world like never before. Trapped in Dreamscape’s realm, Alex is about to learn that being a hero has consequences… and this time, the stakes are deadly. Will helping the rebellion cost her everything she knows and loves? Or will she betray them to save her own life?

So today is the day that I review this amazing book! This was the first blog tour that I have ever participated in and I am beyond pumped to be a part of this experience. I am also thrilled that my first blog tour is dealing with a book that I really enjoyed. Since starting college I have read maybe three books... in the three months! I have been in a huge reading slump and have abandoned many books or it has taken me almost a month to finish. This book drew me in right off the bat and I finished it in two days. Every chance I got, in between classes and studying, I found myself going back to this book. I stayed up way too late in order to finish it and went to class the next day a little tired.  I thought this book was quite original and very fast paced. I would probably recommend it to people who enjoy gaming in general or enjoyed reading Ready Player One by Earnest Cline. This review will contain spoilers so if you are interested in reading the book just know that I loved it and go read it yourself before reading this review.

When I started this book I was a bit skeptical because I am not a gamer and I wasn't sure if I would enjoy it as much as someone who liked video-games would. However, I found the video-game aspects very accessible and I really liked how they were incorporated into Alex's adventure, I liked how the fireworks that went off at the end of every level, were represented by the rebellion celebrating the queen. I also like how the little coin chests the character collects throughout the game, were actually rebellion money hidden to use for supplies. I thought both  of these elements of the game were translated well into the real life fantasy world that Alex was sucked into. One translation that I didn't quite get was the theme song of the game. When Alex was first sucked it it seemed like the music was always playing, with no source of origin. After that it wasn't mentioned except when birds sang the same melody. I just didn't understand how the song came into play and I wish there had been a more definitive representation of the song in the world.

Besides this one minor flaw I really did love the adaptation of the game into the world. The characters were also very interesting. I immediately loved Arrow and his sarcastic banter with Alex. I enjoyed their relationship and was rooting for Alex to just give in the entire book. When Melody was first introduced, I instantly became defensive for Alex until I found out that Melody was Arrow's cousin. I loved how affectionate and adorable Alex and Arrow's relationship became after Alex finally gave in. That being said, I was completely crushed when there wasn't another way for Alex to get back into the Dreamscape realm. It was kind of hinted at in the beginning that the luminescence powder was what brought her to Dreamscape. I was hoping that in the end she would be able to take some powder back with her so she could return to help rebuild the realm and visit Arrow. I'm not sure if this book is written to have a sequel, but I think it should because I am dying for Alex to be reunited with Arrow. They were so cheesy and adorable and I couldn't stop reading this story and I just don't want it to be over!

One last thing that I wish could have been touched on in the end was Pipes and Deakon. I enjoyed their characters when they were first introduced and I was hoping to find out if they survived after helping Alex. Also, after finding out about Melody and Pipes I wanted them to be reunited and have a chance together after the king was killed. Despite those few hiccups in the plot, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I wish there was a sequel because I would buy it today so I could start reading it tomorrow.

As a final note, I would like to thank YaReads BlogTours for including me in this wonderful event and Kirstin Pulioff for sending me a beautiful copy of her book.


**Purchase Links**

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Mid-Semester Update

So obviously my last post said I would try to review books once I got to college and as you can see that hasn't happened. I haven't read too much since I started school because it has been stressful but I hope to at least do a monthly post recapping what I read that month. Really all I have read so far this semester was A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin. I did not like it as much as I liked the first book (3.5 stars) but I hope that the next book will just raise the level of insanity that I felt in the first book. Besides my pathetic reading schedule here at school, I am excited to announce that I will be participating in the Dreamscape: Saving Alex ( by Kirstin Pulioff) Review Tour that is being hosted by YaReads BlogTours. I will be posting my review of the book on November 10th. Be sure to check it out because I am super pumped to read this book!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Summertime Sadness: A Quick Look at the Books I Failed to Review in the Past Months of Summer (Middlesex, Harry Potter, Red Queen, and Game of Thrones)

In the past two months I have of course continued to read books, but I got so caught up in the books that I was reading that I just didn't feel the motivation to review them. As in the past I am only going to recap the books that count towards my 2015 Reading Challenge. I have read many other books, and am very close to my 60 book reading goal (currently 53 books), but I only want to mention the ones that count towards my challenge.

1. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (a Pulitzer Prize winning book)
When I saw this challenge I immediately thought of The Goldfinch, but I chose Middlesex because I wanted to read from a very different and modern perspective. I had never read a book that dealt with the issue of gender indentity and I found this novel very eye-opening. It was interesting to see how Cal reacted to the concept of nature-vs-nurture. I would have liked to see even more of this struggle because that's what I was expecting, but it actually had a lot to do with her family history. The story contained much more about her parents and grandparents than it did Cal. I was dissapointed in the shockingly small part of the book that dealt with Cal's transformation. Despite this, the book was beautifully written and dealt with a few racy issues (gender identity and incest) so I understand why it won the Pulitzer. I personally prefer a  book with a bit more plot though.

2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling (a book that came out the year I was born)
This was a reread for me, so obviously not much of a challenge or a stretch for me but I wanted something simple to read and something that I knew I would enjoy. A lot of the books I have read this year have been really long or something I wouldn't normally pick up so they have been taking me awhile to read (2+ weeks). I chose this book because I knew I could get through it really fast and because I haven't reread the series since I read them in second grade. Of course I loved it but I couldn't seem to stop comparing the book to the movie or envisioning the characters as their movie actors because I have seen the movies so often.
MY RATING: *****

3. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard (a book with a color in the title)
Despite many recent reviews that have only criticized the book, I actually think this book lived up to the hype. I was caught up in the action and the plot of the book and I hardly noticed the faults other reviewers found. Sure the book had part in it that have been seen in other YA novels, but with the amount of popular YA it is hard to be 100% original. I thought any similarities with other books were overshadowed by the originality of the book and the way the pieces were weaved together with in the story. I really like dhow strong and independent Mare was, also there was't that much romance with was refreshing. There was a touch but in the end of the book Mare was independent and I was completely okay with that.

4. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin (a book that was turned into a TV show)
I finally got into the Song of Ice and Fire series!! I thought the beginning of the book was a little boring because of all the characters and past plots that were being thrown at me but once I got half way though the story I couldn't put it down and I flew threw the ending. I thought it was very unexpected (especially the deaths!) and I loved the way it laid the groundwork for the rest of the series. I can't wait to continue on, although I am intimidated because I heard that even more characters are introduced in the second book. Because this challenge had to do with the TV show, I tried to watch it but I couldn't really get into it. I kept comparing it to the book and the first season was so similar that all the surprising parts didn't phase me because I knew they were coming. I think after I finish the book series I may watch the TV show because I heard that they do have a lot of differences but I want to read the George R.R. Martin version first.
MY RATING: *****

I hope to keep up with me reviews in the upcoming months but I am starting my first semester of college in two weeks so I might have another stretch with no posts. I promise to try my hardest to keep up with them.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The 100 by Kass Morgan (a book with a number in the title)

Although I am not the biggest fan of Sci-Fi books, I really liked how this book was set up; characters both on earth and on on the spaceship colony. I liked reading from all of the characters and realizing how all of them were connected. I thought the story moved very quickly and I cannot wait to watch the TV show because this book was practically written for TV. The format was perfect for a television show because of the almost constant revelation of information and the cliffhangers due to the shifting point of view. All of the characters were very likable even though they were all "criminals". The only character I didn't really like was Bellame. He just seemed rude and did everything in his own self interest. He was reckless and cared for no one but his sister. Clark didn't seem to have a problem with him even though he called her a Pheonix bitch. I think the only reason she ended up liking him was because she was angry with Wells. I also cannot wait to read the second book because this one ended in such a cliffhanger; the group was split up and Walden was in danger.


Monday, June 1, 2015

Penryn and the End of Days by Susan Ee (a trilogy)

 I received a copy of the last book in this trilogy, The End of Days, for review so I decided to reread the first two books to refresh my memory. I remembered really enjoying the first book but not loving the second one. When I reread them I think I liked them more than I did the first time. Maybe it was because I marathoned the series but I didn't have any big issues with the second book when I reread it. I was concerned about the final book because the trilogy had originally been pitched as a five book series but was cut down to three books. I was worried that it would be a rushed ending and that it wouldn't be a satisfied conclusion. However, I was surprised and didn't think it was rushed at all. I do think that if the series had been the original five books that some parts could have been drawn out and developed a bit more but I really enjoyed it as it was. The only thing I thought was rushed was the fact that it was never truly clarified why the angels came to earth in the first place. It can be inferred that the reason they came was because of Uriel and his plan to become the messenger but that was never really confirmed or clarified. I really like how the tension and romance between Penryn and Raffe was explored a bit more in this book. I was frustrated by the second book because they were separated for so long, so I really enjoyed that the two of them were back together, I also really liked the conflict that arose between them because their races were at war. I found it realistic because they might be able to trust eachother with their own life but when it comes to the fate of their race they were conflicted. Their romance wasn't too sugary and it was realistic for the apocalyptic atmosphere. Even though I knew there was a chance that they would choose their race over each other I was really hoping there would be a way to meet in the middle. I liked the way that Susan Ee combined the best of both of their worlds as a resolution to the problem; Raffe gave up his angel wings in order to save the human race but he was still able to keep his demon wings and his ability to fly. The angels also finally left Earth but the Watchers were able to stay behind even though it wasn't the real apocalypse. I also liked how the problem with Penryn's sister was resolved. I would have been skeptical if they had just been able to reverse the things the angels did to Paige. I liked that she was still the person the angels made her into but she was able to adapt to a semi-regular diet. I thought the action in the book was entertaining and bad ass and I really loved the final battle between the angels and the humans, I was a bit worried at first that Raffe was being forced into the blood hunt but he ended up helping Penryn and the humans take down Uriel. I was a bit confused when Penryn said her idea was a talent show but I thought that it played out very well. The actual show was beautiful and moving, especially the ballet scene with the lost troupe members, and I thought it was a good way for Penryn to unify the humans and keep them calm until the battle. Then, like a boss, she turned the talent show stage as a weapon  against the angels which was ingenious. Overall the ending was great and it summed up everything in a realistic way. The only other weak point was that after Raffe lost his wings and Uriel was killed they decided to make Michael the Messenger. If that was an option all along, why didn't Michael return earlier? He never made an appearance in any of the books but he was the solution to the angels' problems. As a whole the series is very unique and is a great read. I highly reccomend the series because it is underrated and despite it being cut back into a trilogy I think the story has a great finish.

MY RATING :*****

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Archer's Voice by Mia Sheridan (a book by a female author)

I figured I use a romance novel for this category even though I have read a lot of other books this year that meet the criteria. Every once and awhile I just need to read a good romance or new adult novel. They always help get me out of reading slumps because they are always very entertaining and they don't require too much thought to enjoy. Every girl needs steamy romance novels to satisfy her book boyfriend needs. This book was exactly what I needed after I had a hard time getting through Redeployment. It was heart-wrenching and beautiful and had just enough sexy times. I loved the main male character Archer because of his innocence and adoration for Bre. I thought the situation of a mute character was unique and not a perspective I am used to reading from.


Holy shit was this story emotional and heart-wrenching! I don't think I have ever read a romance where the girl is more experienced than the guy and Archer's insecurities were heart breaking. His "guys night out" practically killed me. I was so mad a Travis for manipulating Archer and making feel insecure about his relationship with Bre. I was so upset when he felt forced to go into the back room to "learn" so that he could make Bre happy. Travis knew what he was doing and he played Archer in the hopes of ruining his relationship. I listened to this as an audiobook, and had just gotten to the part where Archer goes to Bre's house after the strip club before I got to work and I had to wait over six hours to get back to listening! It almost killed me having to wait that long to see how they fixed their problems. I was upset with Archer for listening to Travis and I just wanted him to explain the situation to Bre. I was also heart broken when I thought that he had gone through with it with the stripper and felt so bad for Bre. When they talked and Archer admitted that he hadn't had sex with her, I was beyond relieved. I began to hope that their relationship could go on smoothly. Of course that wouldn't make a very good book, so there had to be other bumps in the road. When ARcher was texting Bre and she wasn't responding I was just as worried as he was that she had been in an accident. I was worried that Archer would have to relive the death of his parents and lose the one person that he had finally opened up to. I understood that he had problems showing his love for Bre but I couldn't believe it when he left her. He left for months and never said anything to her and I thought that he wouldn't be coming back and that Bre would find him hurt in a hospital somewhere. I didn't expect him to come back when he did because it was pretty random but I couldn't complain that he finally returned. I liked that he took the time to try and become normal for Bre and conquer his insecurities but I wished he had at least let her know what he was doing. When Bre's father's murderer showed up and shot Archer I seriously thought he was dead. I thought the town meeting they had was a memorial service not Archer claiming his family land. I liked how the book ended with and epilogue five years in the future. I loved seeing his kids learning sign so that they could communicate with their dad. It was so sweet and a perfect ending. The only thing that caught me off guard was the fact that Archer never spoke; the book is called Archer's Voice but he never truly talked. I thought when he left for a few months that he was going to a doctor to see if he could have his vocal chords fixed. I kept expecting a Maybe Someday ending where the mute man finally expresses his love through words. Even though that didn't happen because it was too late to fix the damage I enjoyed the book and thought the title was a good fit.


Monday, May 25, 2015

Redeployment by Phil Klay (a book of short stories)

After reading this book I now understand and solidify my dislike of short stories. I can't connect to the characters, because I never have enough time to actually relate to them; there really isn't a plot or an arc, and there is no definitive end. Most of the stories in this book fit the mold of no plot, unrelated bel characters, and poor endings. The only story I really enjoyed was the first, and the title of the novel, Redeployment. It had a full arc of the realities of war following the soldier home. The only redeeming quality of the collection was the rawness and new perspective it provided on modern war. I don't really enjoy short stories in general, so don't let my poor opinion of the book stop you from reading it. 


Saturday, May 16, 2015

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir (a book published this year)

For once a book that was actually worth all the hype surrounding it! This book was really fast paced and each chapter ended in a great cliff-hanger that was made even more awesome because of the changing perspectives. Yes, this book had a lot of elements found in other YA, like the trials and the dictator society, but the book was unique and interesting. I only have two problems with the book; it didn't really remind me of ancient Rome and that it is a stand alone. The book was pitched as ancient Rome and I didn't see that at all. It isn't a huge deal, I just feel like it was advertised wrong. Also there is no way that this book can be a stand alone. There were so many loose ends and problems that need to be resolved! I am giving this book a five star rating but only on the assumption that there will be a second book (if not the book would get lower ratings because it wasn't wrapped up well enough).


I have to start off by saying that this book was quite violent for YA. Most YA characters have some sort of trauma in their past but Laia and Elias's pasts are f-ed up. Laia's parents and older sister were arrested and tortured to death, then she watches her grandparents get murdered right in front of her. Elias was abandoned at birth and then forced to attend a school to teach him to kill people when he is six. The school leaves his in the desert to die when he is like eight and makes him watch other kids get beat to death. Also in the third trial he has to kill his friends in order to prove he is strong. Don't get me wrong, I loved the drama but WOW.

I also liked the not so romantic romance. At first I was surprised because it seemed like Laia would end up with Keenan and Elias would be with Helene. It surprised me because normally when there is a male and female characters whose story lines cross they end up together. I liked how there was the conflict with the attraction with people besides Elias and Laia. It was interesting and something you don't normally see in YA. I still am pulling for them to ed up together though because Helene is just to ruthless for Elias.

The main thing I have to say about the book though, is that IT CAN"T BE A STAND-ALONE!! There are so many problems that need to be solved. For one thing, the whole reason Laia went to Blackcliff was to help free her brother, which didn't happen in this book! If it was a stand-alone we could assume that Elias eventually helps her free her brother but come on, I want to know how. Also the Teluman blacksmith tells Laia that he and her brother have a lot of work to do to help overthrow the empire. AND Marcus can not remain emperor. I also want more of the Elias/ Laia romance. We still don't know who the spy is in the resistance, although it could be Maven. We don't know the whole story about Cook. Also, there is a chance that Laia's parents are still alive. She never saw their bodies and someone told her that people can survive for years in Kauf because they are tortured not killed there. I can't believe they would leave all of this unresolved. The author says she has their stories planned out til the end, she just needs someone to publish the next book!

MY RATING: *****

Friday, May 8, 2015

Slammed by Colleen Hoover (a popular author's first book)

This book was a reread for me but after reading all of Colleen's newest books I wanted to go back to the first book she published and fall in love with her writing all over again. I enjoyed going back to read this book because the first time I read it for some reason I skimmed a lot of the poetry, which is what makes this book so unique. I love that Colleen Hoover is constantly changing the experience you have while reading her books. I love how she doesn't just write but she makes the story come alive. I felt that all over again when I read this book and the amazingly captivating poetry that is a part of it. I loved her characters like always and i was in tears a few times while reading. She is one of my favorite authors because of her unique books and her love for her fans. She is so down to earth and a fun loving person. I really like how she donates her books to the free library near where she lives. This book was just as awesome the second time around.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson (a book with more than 500 pages)

Aaahhhhhh! I finally read a Brandon Sanderson book and I understand what all the hype is about! This book was so good. It had a great world, magic system, and characters. I loved the politics involved in the plot and the way it was constantly changing into something I wasn't expecting. A great adult fantasy read!

Spoilers Follow!

I have to say that I loved Vin's character and I loved seeing how she grew in the novel. In the beginning she was weak and didn't trust anyone but by the end she was a BOSS! I also liked learning about her background before the crew, even if it wasn't mentioned very often. Her story is one filled with even more pain than Kell's but she was able to overcome it. I was thrilled to find out that her either didn't betray her and even died for her because I think that realization will go a long way in helping her trust others.
The other characters were equally interesting but Kelsier was the hardest to figure out. I wasn't able to discern his true motivations until after his death because I doubted him just like the other members did. I couldn't help but compare his inner dialect to the diary of the "Lord Ruler" and I was concerned that he would be corrupted. The scene where he dies was so abrupt and unexpected that I had to reread the paragraph to make sure he was really dead. I kept thinking that there was a twist and that he would burst into the shop smiling but it never happened. I felt terrible for Vin because he was one of the first people she was able to truly trust. 
The other characters were equally awesome and I can't wait to see how they develope in the next book. I am particularly excited to read about Elend as king and his relationship with Vin. At the end I was a little concerned that she wouldn't go back to him but she did (thank the Lord Ruler). I am curious about their relationship because they haven't even kissed in the first book. I get that it is a fantasy novel, and it's written by a guy, but I can't help but want a little romance to spice things up. I am also eager to learn more about the Deepness and maybe even the man who was supposed to be the Hero of Ages. (BTW I am proud to announce that I figured out that the Lord Ruler Rasheik before it was actually revealed, but I was still surprised).

MY RATING: *****

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver (a book with a love triangle)

In all technicality this book doesn't have a love triangle; people that have read this book will understand what I'm talking about but originally it started out with two sisters liking the same boy. It is getting harder now to just read whatever I want and fit it into a category, so soon I will have to start reading more specific books. But for now I can work to fit this book into the love triangle category.

I didn't really like this book at all. I hated the "twist"; even though I didn't see it coming, it wasn't very original and it seemed like a bit of a stretch for the book. I didn't like how the book was marketed because the synopsis really didn't fit the story. It was a really slow book but I kept reading because I wanted to see what happened at the end but that only disappointed me too. Dara doesn't even disappear until  3/4 of the way through the book. I was expecting the whole thing to be about the missing girls but it wasn't. I also found the characters to be really annoying. Nick seemed to get on my nerves more because she blamed everything that happened to her on her sister even thought her sister was the one that was hurt in the accident. Dara complained a lot too and I just couldn't relate to either one of them.


If you read the book and you read the top part and were confused by how I talked about the sisters, I understand. After finding out that they were both Nick the whole time, I struggled to try and think of them as two separate people. After finding our about Nick's personality disorder, I hated to think about how her family and friends had overlooked this for so long. I know that she  was seeing a therapist but her family let her continue to think that her sister was alive. Even Parker enabled her through his relationship with "Dara". When they were kissing in the car and her called her by her real name, he didn't seem surprised when she freaked out and he even tried to defend himself. They all overlooked it while she continued to pretend to be two separate people. They let it get to the point when she could have harmed herself during her breakdown. 

I also didn't like the Madeline Snow story. The synopsis made it seem like Dara and Madeline were related in some way but that wasn't true. Really Madeline wasn't even kidnapped, she just got scared and ran off for ten days! I can't believe that a child could hide for that long and the police wouldn't find her. Also, Madeline's sister's cover story wasn't very convincing. She made up this whole story about being at the ice-cream shop when Madeline was taken, when really she was wasted at a club! When I found that out, I didn't understand how the police wouldn't immediately figure out that was a lie. If she had really been at Big Scoop people would have seen her, she would have been on video, and the police would have verified all of that. Even the neighbor didn't tell the police she was lying until Madeline had been missing for about a week. Overall, i pretty much hated it and was beyond disappointed because I had been so excited to read a YA thriller.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (a mystery or thriller)

I actually finished this book about two weeks ago but I haven't had a chance to review it, so I am going to keep this post short. I enjoyed this book and I would compare it to Gone Girl in the sense that they both have unreliable narrators but I didn't like it as much as I liked Gone Girl. I was frustrated by the main character and her drinking problem and I thought the plot was very slow moving. There were a few plot twists that caught me off guard but ultimately I figured who did the crime about 2/3 through. My main issue was how frustrated I was with the main character, her drinking problem, and her obsession with her ex husband and Scott.

MY RATING: *** 1/2

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan (a book my mom loves)

As soon as I saw this challenge on the list  I knew that I would read Joy Luck Club because every women in my family, including my mom, loves this book. I enjoyed it but o wouldn't say I loved it. I thought the book was very unique and revealed a lot about the Chinese culture and how their women are expected to behave. There were a lot of surprises in this book about the women and the trials they faced in their lives. Each chapter revealed a bit more about their trials and past but the stories never really "entwined" live the back of the book said. I liked reading each story but if you enjoy a more plot driven book, this isn't for you. The main plot that I wanted to read about (June visiting her missing sisters) was only two chapters in the whole book and they were the very first and last chapter. I liked th book but it was mostly character driven which I don't enjoy as much as a book with huge plot twists.

MY RATING: ***1/2

Fairest by Marissa Meyer (a book you can read in one day)

Since this book was obviously short enough to finish in one day, this is going to be a short post because I don't have a ton to say. There also aren't really spoilers in this post because it is a companion novel; as long as you have read up to Cress nothing in this post should spoil you too much. 

I thought this was a neat novella to read if you want to know more about Levana. I love the Lunar Chronicles series and I didn't want to wait until Winter came out to read more about this world. I thought it was interesting to read about Levana's marriage and how manipulative she was even as a child. I also didn't know that Winter wasn't her real daughter, so that helped me piece together their relationship. I also really enjoyed seeing Cinder and Winter as kids before they got  separated and grew up in completely different worlds. Cinder's mother wasn't what I was expecting and I was glad to know that she was separated from her mother early on because her mom was probably worse than Levana. It was interesting to find out the reason that Levana wears her glamour or the veil all the time. Overall it is a good read for those who love the Lunar Chronicles because it reveals stuff about the characters. I wouldn't recommend buying it though because it isn't very long and it isn't necessary for the series; just borrow it from your library.

MY RATING: ***1/2

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Confess by Colleen Hoover (a book with a one word title)

If you haven't read anything by Colleen Hoover yet, shame on you. Colleen Hoover is the queen of the new adult genre. I absolutely love all of her books and this one wasn't any different. 


 I find it really amazing that Colleen Hoover can create a heart-wrenching relationship in just a few pages like she did in the prologue of this book. This book had a lot of mystery in the beginning that kept me completely absorbed in the book trying to figure out how everything connected. I only figured out one secret before it was revealed. I figured right off the bat that Owen had to know Auburn from the time when his dad was in the hospital. I was beyond surprised when I found out that Auburn had a son with Adam. I was not expecting that at all. I loved how Owen handled that situation and was willing to sacrifice his relationship with Auburn because he saw how much she loved AJ. I also was not expecting that the drugs that Owen was arrested for possession of were his fathers. I thought that maybe they were Harrison's or that he was a drug dealer to try and make money. I was so mad at Owen's dad for letting his son take to the blame and get arrested for his mistakes. I understood why he wouldn't take the blame but he should have gone into rehab or something to avoid the situation in the first place. 

Seeing the struggle that Auburn was going through with AJ and Lydia broke my heart. Lydia was a huge (pardon my French) BITCH! I get that she loved her grandson because he could "replace" the hole her dead son left, but she had no right to take him from his mother. She made it seem like she was the one helping Auburn but really she was taking AJ and making up excuses not to left his mother visit him. I hated how Auburn felt that she had to date Trey in order to get to her son, even though she felt nothing for him. When Owen said that Trey was a bad person I believed it, but I wasn't sure how Trey was a bad person. Owen said that Trey was the first person her ever punched and I assumed that they knew each other from high school or just from around town. When Trey tried to assault Auburn and then she still tried to justify his actions I hated him even more. Then he ruined Owen's paintings and framed him just so he could have Auburn! I trusted Owen's judgement but i never believed that Trey would turn out to be that bad. I liked how all of the issues were resolved because it was realistic and it made sense. Auburn finally got custody of AJ and Trey dropped the charges against Owen. I loved that Auburn was finally able to stick it to her terrible mother-in-law. 

The final chapter of the book is what pushed this novel up to the top of my favorite Colleen Hoover list. When I was looking through the paintings I noticed that the one that Adam gave Auburn was in the same style as Owen's paintings. I thought that was because maybe Owen recreated the painting for her after they fixed all of their problems. I did not expect at all that Owen had painted it and given it to Adam when he was still in the hospital. This chapter had tears pouring down my face. I loved that the reason Owen punched Trey was because he wanted Adam and Auburn to have more time to say goodbye. It fit so well with what I expected of Owen and it was heart-breaking and heart-warming all at the same time. 

I wouldn't change a single thing about this book. It was absolute perfection and I completely loved not just the romance but the secrets and the plot. This book was packed full with all the emotions that I expect when I read one of Colleen Hoover's books. The only "negative" comment that I have is that I wish I got to find out what the confessions were that Auburn and Owen wrote when they first met and Auburn shoved them in the box. I would have loved to know what thoughts they had before they really knew each other. 

MY RATING: *****

Friday, March 20, 2015

We Should Hang Out Sometime by Josh Sundquist (a nonfiction book)

The reason I chose this for my nonfiction book was because of the Booksplosion read-a-long that is happening this month. For those who don't know, Booksplosion is a group on Goodreads and YouTube that does monthly read-a-longs and reviews them at the end of the month. Three of my favorite YouTubers of all time, Christine (PolandBananasBooks), Kat (Katytastic), and Jesse (JesseTheReader), are the creators of this group. I also really like Josh Sundquist, so I figured this would be the perfect nonfiction book for me to read. If you are interested in joining the discussion you can visit the groups Goodreads page here...
Also, if you participate the live show discussion will be on March 28th @ 7 PM EST. This live show will be extra epic because Josh (the author) will be joining them to talk about his book!

Now for the actual reviewing part. This review will contain some spoilers but won't really ruin your experience with the book because it is obvious that none of the relationships in the book turn out well.

Even though this book was nonfiction (which I tend to usually find boring) this book was hilarious and entertaining. I would compare this book to An Abundance of Katherines by John Green because of the overall nerdy awkwardness of Josh Sundquist and the footnotes that he includes. I really like the premise of this book because it seems like the perfect mix of awkward encounters and hilarity that Josh normally includes in his videos. I found myself laughing out loud at points in this book because it was just outrageously funny and it was made better by the fact that these are real events. My favorite chapter in the book was the Francesca Marcelo one. It was the perfect combination of weird high school relationships and Josh Sundquist awkwardness.

Another reason I really liked the book was the math jokes that occur throughout the novel. I happen to be a HUGE math nerd myself, and I really enjoy that type of humor. If you have ever watched any of Josh's videos, you know that he does math nerd videos where he explains everything in graphs. He incorporated these types of graphs into his novel and they made it really unique.

If oyu have read the book, then you know at the end the last chapter is about a successful relationship that Josh had. What you may not know, is that a few months after this book was published Josh proposed to this girl using his book. It is literally the cutest proposal that I have ever heard of. He printed another copy of this book titled We Did Hang Out Sometime, and he uses it to lead his girlfriend to the place where he is waiting to propose to her. If you want to watch the video where Josh talks about it and shares pictures I will link it below:


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Made for You by Melissa Marr (a book that scares you)

I am not scared easily, especially by books so it was hard to find one that fit this criteria. I wouldn't necessarily call this book scary but it was definitely creepy so I am going to count it. There isn't a lot that I can say in the non-spoiler part about this book besides the fact that I really enjoyed the mystery and I wouldn't recommend it to people who get freaked out by serial killer or stalker novels.

Spoilers...(mostly about who the killer is)

The thing that made this book creepy was the serial killer. His chapters were so twisted and the reasons that he killed his victims just creeped me out. He kept trying to justify his murders by saying that it was what God wanted him to do. What really scared me about this part was the fact that there are people out there that really think that way. The other thing that scared me about him was the fact that he was friends with his victims. He was young, only a junior in high school, yet he was able to kill a bunch of his friends and mutilate them after their deaths. When I went into this book I wasn't expecting it to be that graphic or actually go into detail about the kidnappings and murders because its young adult. That aspect of the book surprised me because I wasn't really expecting it.

About halfway through the book I had a few theories about who the killer was. I thought it was either Reid or Jamie. I figured it was one of Robert's friends but the killer disguised his personality so well when he was in public. I figured out it was Reid the second that Eva saw his death vision. I knew that it wasn't Madison screaming because the killer shot him but that Reid was the killer and he was shot because he was trying to hurt someone else.

I really liked the mystery in this book and I didn't mind the romance either. The romance wasn't really the focus of the book and I liked that because I was really caught up in the mystery of the killer. I tend to like friends turn boyfriend-girlfriend relationships so I liked that aspect of the romance. Overall, I thought it was a good book. If you get freaked out by serial killers, stalkers, or anything like that I wouldn't recommend reading this book because even though it is young adult it still has some very realistic scenes in it.


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (book by a new to you author)

The explanation for how this book meets the criteria of my book challenge is pretty obvious, so I don't really have to go into that for this book.

This book was marketed as the Titanic in space but I didn't really get that. The space ship does "sink" but it is at the very beginning of the book. The book is actually more of a survival story on an unknown planet. Also I was expecting a lot of romance because the book instantly begins with a connection between the two main characters but there wasn't really any romancy stuff until close to the end. I liked the idea of the book but I think a few parts could have been changed or explained more to make the book even better.


I know some people have issues with Lilac as a character but I really enjoyed her. I loved that she was kind of princess-y but at the same time she was an awesome mechanic. She also understand the reality of her situation. It isn't her being bratty she just doesn't want Tarver to be hurt because he gets close to her. I liked Tarver's character too, but I don't think he had quite as much personality as Lilac did. 
Most people that I hear criticize the book don't like the ending. I have to agree with them on some level. I didn't like that right after Lilac and Tarver finally connected, Lilac is killed lighting the fuse. I think she could have been smarter and made a longer fuse or used something else to light it. Then after Tarver grieves for just one day, Lilac "comes back to life". I just think it felt like the ending was rushed and Lilac died and was brought back to life in such a short amount or time. I did think the explanation of how she was brought back to life though. I thought it made sense and it worked out nicely because I was pretty upset when Lilac died. Overall I liked the book but I had some issues with the romance and the way the book was marketed as the Titanic. 

MY RATING: **** 

Friday, March 6, 2015

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray (a book based solely on its cover)

Well now I know why they say not to judge a book by its cover. The cover of the book was beautiful but I'm still not sure how I feel about it. Since I read this book based only on the cover, I should probably add a picture of it...

If I had read the synopsis, instead of basing my purchase solely on the cover, I probably wouldn't have bought the book. I have read a few parallel universe books before and I never really liked any of them. I didn't really connect to any of the characters in the book because they were constantly changing and I wasn't all that interested in the plot until the very end. 


The biggest problem I had with this book was the "romance". Marguerite fell in love with a man that wasn't even from her dimension in about a week. Then when Peter admitted his feelings for her, she said she couldn't return them because she felt like she was cheating on the other Peter. I thought the whole thing was ridiculous but I was already halfway through so I decided I might as well finish it. I thought the ending of the book was decent because the twist made up for a bit of the ridiculous romance from the beginning. The reson I didn't really like the characters was because with each dimension they went through they changed based on the new world they were in. Overall, I was very disappointed and wouldn't recommend it, unless you want a pretty cover for your bookshelf.


Sunday, March 1, 2015

To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han (a book that takes place in high school)

This afternoon I finished To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han. Even though I mainly read YA, I don't read a lot of book set in high school because I mostly read fantasy or dystopian or new adult, which is normally set in college. This book was literally a rom-com in book form. I think this book would make a great book-to-movie adaptation because I love rom-coms but there aren't enough of them anymore. I really liked Lara-Jean; i thought she was the perfect high school character that had some experience in the world but was still a bit naive. She was funny and adorable and I loved her sense of fashion. I also liked the family dynamic and I was able to relate to her feelings towards her sisters.


The whole book I wasn't really sure which boy she would end up with; Josh or Peter. At the beginning of the book I was thinking "screw Margot, go for Josh" because he was just so sweet but after she found the letter Josh wrote to Margot I realized that it would never work out between them. At that point I wasn't exactly sure how things with Peter would turn out but every time he hung out with Lara-Jean and Kitty I began to like him more. When Josh kissed Lara-Jean, I got kind of mad at him because he had his chance to date her but he passed her up and instead dated Margot. It was unfair of him to put her in that situation, knowing that Lara-Jean would respect her sister and not pursue Josh. I was happy when Lara-Jean finally told Josh no and decided to finally go for Peter. I was beyond excited when Peter admitted that her liked her even though it was obvious he still had feelings for Gen. Lara-Jean was jealous of Gen but I understand how Peter still talked to her because after you date someone for that long, you can't just cut them out of your life if you see them everyday. When Peter came to the Christmas party to talk to Lara-Jean I was hoping they would work out their problems but then Josh had to barge in and Margot had to overhear the argument. I thought that Margot responded in a pretty shitty way. She was the one that broke up with Josh, so she really had no claim to him, yet she reacted terribly when she found out that he kissed Lara. I thought that she was a bit of a hypocrite and a bitch when she told their dad about the hot tub rumor. I am happy though that the sisters were able to work it out because the problem was a minor one. I hope in the next book that Lara and Peter have the talk that they need to have. I read the synopsis for the next book and I am not thrilled to hear that there will be another boy in the next book that Peter will have to compete with. I think he came a long way in this book and I think he and Lara just need to work a few things out. That being said, I can't wait for May 26th!

MY RATING: *****

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (a book a friend recommended)

I have read a few books this week but haven't had time to write a review, so today I am going to be playing catch-up. Early this week I finished The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, which I am using for a book a friend recommended. I had been considering reading this book for awhile but a friend's insistence was what finally got me to pick it up. I had been dissapointed before by Maggie's books but this was surprised me. Many people say it is hard to get into but I didn't really have any trouble. I thought that the first few chapters ended with some surprising sentences. They left me hanging and I couldn't help but to read on. The concept of the book is very original and though I have read books that have mentioned ley lines, none of them have taken the approach that this book did. I loved the characters because they were all unique and you kept learning new things about them and seeing different sides of them. Blue is a very unique character and her situation is even more interesting.

Some spoilers may follow...

 The fact that if she kisses her true love, he will die is nothing short of an attention getter. Even though Steifvater insinuates that Gansey is Blue's true love I was still leaning towards Adam for most of the book. I think there will be a twist and Gansey won't be her true love and her will die some other way. When they found the body in the woods with Noah's wallet I was hoping there was going to be some reasonable explanation and wasn't expecting the twist at all. When it was revealed that Noah was actually dead it was like The Sixth Sense all over again. I was so into the book but the last few chapters of the book were really confusing to me. When Adam said he was sacrifice himself I thought that he was going to die but he didn't and the ley line still woke up. Also, the last line of the book didn't mean anything to me at all but the friend that reccomended the book t me assured me that the line is explained more in the next book. I am anticipating reading the next book because I want to find out what happened to Adam and what Ronan's cryptic comment meant.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (a book set someplace I want to visit)

After 700 pages of reading I have finally finish Outlander! I am using this book for a place I have always wanted to visit because who doesn't want to visit the beautiful rolling hills of Scotland. I have been hearing great things about this book and I was not disappointed at all. Going into the book I was expecting a stereotypical romance with a dashing Scottish man but little else. When I began reading I was surprised. The book did have romance but I came after several hundred pages of back story and the characters actually getting to know each other first. The story also was full of historical content that plays into the plot. There is a lot of political happenings that play into the main characters lives and I found it very interesting the time and effort Gabaldon put into making the book historically and culturally accurate. The story is accurate for the time period and because of that there is quite a bit about sexual assault. My enjoying this book in no way means that I support the idea of rape (people are accusing fans of this on Goodreads). Gabaldon was being accurate to the time and the struggles that women face. I like that she didn't sugar-coat it because it's a romance novel but instead was truthful won't the audience. I found some of the scenes gruesome but necessary in the overall plot and atmosphere. I can't wait to continue the series and see how Ckaire uses her knowledge of the future to help the people of the past.

MY RATING: *****

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Saga Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughn and Fiona Staples (a book with non-human characters)

This is my second graphic novel ever and I have to say my outlook on graphic novels has changed. I absolutely loved this one! The art was fantastic and the plot, although short, drew me in immediately. I am using this book for my book with non-human characters because there re so many weird alien things in this book and I don't think there is even one human character. I highly recommend this to anyone, whether you have read a graphic novel before or not.

I loved the story line of the book and how it was executed. I really enjoy how the authors chose to tell the story in the present but also have the daughter Hazel narrating on the side. I think adding Hazel's perspective to the story makes it even more interesting because the reader know she survived but not who else survived with her. Also she gives little hints about the future of the series that drew me in even more.

I loved the dynamic between Marko and Alana because even thought I didn't get a lot of their backstory yet I could feel the love and devotion between the. The artwork also brought out the characters really well because I could actually read the facial expressions of them during certain scenes. I love the detail of the art because many graphic novels I have seen take a more cartoonish perspective but this art had awesome realistic sci-fi characters and settings. I have already started Vol. 2 and I am loving it so far!

MY RATING: *****

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Vicious by V.E. Schwab (a book written by someone under 30)

I'm writing this post about a week after I finished the book, so I'm going to make it short because I don't necessarily remember all of the details. I am using this book for a book written by someone under 30 because Victoria Schwab is 27. I was going to use it for a book with magic but since their powers are technically based on science I figured it didn't really count.

Going into this book I had incredibly high expectations because of the non-stop hype on booktube and Goodreads. Unfortunately, I didn't think it lived up to the hype or my expectations. I'm not saying the book was bad, I really did enjoy it, it just wasn't all that I expected it to be. That being said I am still very excited for V.E. Schwab's upcoming release, A Darker Shade of Magic, but I don't think that I am going to spend the $25 on it anymore. I'm hoping with the new release that I will be able to read it before it becomes hyped. I have found that I tend to REALLY enjoy books when I know little to nothing going into them. If I go in with a neutral mindset I am usually pleasantly surprised, like I was with Snow Like Ashes (a great book).

My faults with the book have to do with the lack of plot. Although the book spanned over 10 years it really on discussed a few days I detail and most of the plot centered around 3 days. The book is very character oriented which I tend not to enjoy as books that are more plot based. I loved the characters in the book, and I loved to hate them but I found that I wasn't all that invested in their story. I actually like the character of Sydney and her story, more than I did the main characters. I think I was disappointed mainly because of the hype surrounding the book. If I had read it when it first came out I might have  book more but as it was I found the book to be entertaining but not as engaging as I thought it would be. It took me about a week to read this book even though it is relatively short compared to other books I have read.

MY RATING: *** 1/2

I hope to be posting another book review soon because I am just about halfway through Outlander. (loving it so far & completely in love with Jamie)

Monday, February 9, 2015

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll (a graphic novel)

This book was my first ever graphic novel. I wasn't really sure what graphic novel I should start with, but I have seen Jesse from Jesse the Reader on YouTube talking about this book, so I decided to read this one. I'm not sure if this was the best boo to introduce me to the genre but it's too late now. The book consists of five creepy stories all centered around the woods. The whole thing only took me about a half hour to read, so I really enjoyed the fast-paced nature. I also really enjoyed the artwork; each story started out with regular color art but when they got to the creepier parts, the art changed to black, white, and red. I thought the stories were interesting but overall they were just okay. My favorite one was "His Face All Red". The main reason I didn't like the stories was because they didn't really have the plot that I am used to from reading full length fiction. Most of them didn't have a resolution, which is normal for short stories but not really my favorite thing. Overall the main thing I liked was that it was a really quick read. If I pick up another graphic novel in the future it will probably be one that has a full length story. If you have a favorite graphic novel that you think I should try, comment below because I am interested in reading more from this genre.


Thursday, February 5, 2015

All the Light We Cannot See (a book based on a true story)

Now I know looking at the title of this post may be a bit confusing; this book is fiction but it is historical fiction and thus I used it to complete this challenge. All the Light We Cannot See, is based on World War 2 and takes place throughout Europe. I am not exactly sure how true the events in this book are but I know that the bombing of Saint Malo was a real event towards the end of the war. Since this book is historical fiction I thought it would be pretty cool to incorporate some pictures of the actual bombing.

This image shows a B-4 plane flying over the burning city.
        This one shows prisoners (men ages 16-60) from the city being rounded up by the German's.

I just thought these pictures are really neat and were worth including because they are scenes from the book. Now moving on to the actual reviewing part! I absolutely loved this book and the writing. It did take me longer than normal to read this book; not because it was boring but because the writing style was so rich that at times I just had to set down it down and think about what I just read. The author using incredible imagery and metaphors. I found it very interesting to read from the perspective of a blind girl because even though she couldn't see to describe what was going on around her, most of the time I was still able to visualize what was happening. I also really enjoyed the change of both the perspectives and the time shifts. I think they helped build the suspense and make a more well rounded story. This book  told a story of immense courage on both sides of the front and the story was just absolutely beautiful. That being said I think this book needs to be made into a movie, like right now. There were scenes in the book where I could not only see it on the big screen but I could also hear the music that would go along with the scene. For those people who have read it you understand what I am talking about, especially the "music" chapters toward the end where all the characters in different parts of the city heard music. Those scenes were made for film and I am dying to see them acted out before my eyes. ANY DIRECTORS/PRODUCERS REAING THIS, MAKE THIS BOOK INTO A MOVIE, NOW!...PLEASE?

This book also had one of the greatest endings ever. I'm not saying that I loved everything that happened but the way he author tied up every single loose end was amazing. I loved it when characters from different story lines meet and that happened in the most beautiful ways in this book. I highly recommend this book to every person no matter what age, gender, or even if you hate reading. Just read it people!

My Rating: *****

Monday, January 26, 2015

Wonder by R.J. Palacio (a book that made me cry)

I continue to crops challenges off my list by checking off "a book that made me cry". This is the fifth book I have read this year towards my sixty book goal. This book had been recommended to me by so many people that I just had to read it; plus I got a copy of it for my birthday! When I started it I wasn't really sure what to expect besides a story about a boy with a facial deformity and honestly the book didn't go much beyond that. Don't get me wrong the book was beautiful and moving but I felt it was a bit lacking in plot. For example... Have you ever been to see some animated film with your younger sibling or cousin? It's a cute film but the plot goes little beyond the underdog hero saving the day. That's kind of what this book is like. That being said, I did still really enjoy this book but since it was so hyped I went into it expecting to have my mind blown while using up a whole box of tissues. Instead I teared up a bit throughout the book but I didn't really cry until the end. The thing about the copy of the book I got was that it included "The Julian Chapter". This is a novella that the author wrote after Wonder to explain and give a voice to one of the more controversial characters. This chapter was the only point in the book that I truly cried. When Juilian's grandmere is telling him the story of the crippled boy from her school i began to cry for the first time. You have to understand that I am not really a book cryer but this chapter that explained Julian's hatred and his remorse was one of the saddest but also uplifting points in the book. So, if you plan on reading this book read "the Julian chapter"! If you have already read the book but didn't read the novella, read "the Julian chapter"!

My Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Yes Plese by Amy Poehler (a funny book)

I continue my reading challenge of 2015 by crossing off "a funny book". My funny book was Yes Please by Amy Poehler. This hilarious woman can not only play a pretty funny fake pregnant woman but also write an equally funny book. This book is made up a short stories about her road to fame and life lessons that she learned along the way. Her writing was so completely honest and that honesty was one of the most refreshing things about the book. She doesn't sugar-coat the truth but she does like to add a humorous sin. I recommend this book to any woman. If you want to break into an acting career this book has some tips. If you just had kids or went through a divorce, Amy can offer some good advice. Or if you are just looking for something fun and entertaining to read (with lots of pictures!) you should pick up this book. The only reason I gave this book four stars instead of five is because there was just something missing. The book was funny but I couldn't always picture Amy Poehler writing this book. If you want to get the complete experience you should listen to the audio book while looking at the pictures and extras in the actual book.


Thursday, January 15, 2015

The Cuckoo's Calling (a book that takes place in a different country)

My third read of the year was The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling). This book counted towards my reading challenge because it took place in a different country.  I was super pumped to read a mystery novel written by the great mind that wrote the Harry Potter series. Unfortunately, I was severely disappointed. The characters were likeable enough but the plot had little going for it. For the first three-quarters of the book all that happened was the main character, Coromon  Strike interviewed all of the people that interacted with Lula. Strike seemed to be getting clues from these meetings but as a reader they didn't offer anything. It wasn't until the last few pages that it all began to come together and then the book was over. To write a successful mystery novel I think the author needs to drop clues that keep the reader interested and this book had none of those. Also the ending (the killer) was very predictable, not because of the clues that were revealed (or lack of) but because the "twist" was something that I have seen in many other movies and books. Overall I was completely disappointed and I will not be continuing on with this serious. I wish I could say that J.K. Rowling could write books other than Harry Potter but sadly this book didn't prove that.


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

New Year, New Me (2015 Reading Challenges)

I know it has been forever since I last posted but I wanted to try and get back into the habit of recording the books I read.
This year I am setting a few challenges for myself. Once again I will be attempting the 100 book challenge! Also I will be attempting another reading challenge. This challenge consists of a list of 43 challenges that I will have to complete. This list can be found on line but I removed some of the more outlandish challenges so that I would still have some freedom to read whatever I wanted. These are the 43 criteria I will have to read books for:
- a book with more than 500 pages
- a classic romance
- a book that became a movie
- a book published this year
- a book with a number in the title
- a book written by someone under 30
- a book with non-human characters
- a funny book
- a book written by a female author
- a mystery or thriller
- a book with a one word title
- a book of short stories
- a book set in a different country
- a non-fiction book
- a popular author's first book
- a book from an author that you haven't read yet
- a book a friend recommended
- a Pulitzer Prize-winning book
- a book based on a true story
- a book your mom loves
- a book that scares you
- a book more than 100 years old
- a book based entirely on its cover
- a memoir
- a book you can finish in a day
- a book set somewhere you always wanted to visit
- a book that came out the year you were born
- a book from your childhood
- a trilogy
- a book with a love triangle
- a book set in the future
- a book set in high school
- a book with a color in the title
- a book that made you cry
- a book with magic
- a graphic novel
- a book by an author you've never read before
- a book you own but have never read
- a book that was originally written in a different language
- a book set during Christmas
- a book written by an author with your same initials
- a book based on or turned into a TV show
- a book you started but never finished

I am so excited to begin this challenge and I hope to push myself to be open to reading book I may have overlooked before. I have actually already completed two of these challenges. I read a book that became a movie when I finally finished The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien. I also read a book by an author I loved but I had never read when I read (and loved!) Stone Cold Touch by Jennifer L. Armentrout. This is the sequel to White Hot Kiss and it left me craving the next book in the series which doesn't even have a cover or a release date yet (the agony). These books were the first two books of my 2015 reading year which leaves me with only 41 more challenges and 98 more books to read. I hope your 2015 reading year is EPIC!!