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REVIEW: The Explorers: The Reckless Rescue

REVIEW: The Explorers: The Reckless Rescue

The Explorers: The Reckless Rescue

by Adrienne Kress 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35896551-the-reckless-rescue

“The he thought about himself. About not making it. About all the adventures he had never had because he had never known he’d wanted to have them”

I received an advanced readers copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This is a middle grade series about an adventure society and this book is focused on the rescue of one of their newest “members”. The point of view is told from 12 year old’s Evie and Sebastian. Evie’s perspective takes her on a journey to find Sebastian and her grandfather and Sebastian’s takes him on a wild ride of running from bad guys and being kidnapped. I would say this book is best suited for the younger middle-grade readers, probably 7-12. This book is a quick and fun read that focuses on the discovery of self and the love of adventure. It is action packed throughout and keeps the reader on their toes.

The writing by Kress is so much fun to read. Her chapter heading and footnotes are witty and hilarious, adding an extra bit of fun to the novel, especially during the slower parts of the book. The plot is well thought out and takes the reader on a wild journey. It is an excellent read. The only downfall to the book was that it seemed like a filler novel, because only the smallest bit of it drove the larger plot forward. That being said, the adventure they go in is necessary for character development and I found that he dynamic characters of Evie and Sebastian were relatable and realistic. they have their strengths and their weaknesses and they play on both in fun and interesting ways.

The Reckless Rescue uses fun and clever plot structures and dialogue to make an interesting adventure for all readers. A younger audience is suited because most of the plot, the younger characters are accompanied by an adult, lending to a feeling of child-like protection. I think the adults in the book are interesting characters all in their own and an older audience can learn from them as well. This is a book that will hook you instantly and keep you wondering what is going to happen next. There is something for everyone and the writing has a cinematic feel to it that makes the book come alive.

REVIEW: The Little Clan

REVIEW: The Little Clan

The Little Clan

by Iris Martin Cohen

3/5 Stars

“She wondered why, in the reflected glow of the scenery she had worked so hard to create, she felt a small internal deflation, a sigh, a hesitation; it didn’t quite feel as satisfying as she had expected.”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35457939-the-little-clan

This novel follows a young woman with an old soul, lost in her own life, running while staying in the same place. Never leaving her comfort zone and never trying new things, she works in the library of the Lazarus club and lives in the apartments above. Her best friend Stephanie, ambitious and a little over the top, comes barreling back into Ava’s life one day and they decide (Stephanie decides and does everything) that they are going to open a literary club. Filled with Great Gatsby themes and the journey to self-discovery, getting out of ones comfort zone, this novel is a fun and thought-provoking read.

SPOILERS:

Ava: I was intrigued by Ava at first. A lover of classic novels (only written by men), and a true introvert, she clashed with the back-drop of New York City life. I found Ava to be prudish, selfish, and a “better than thou” attitude. She dressed differently and played heavily on her unique attributes, succumbing to what I would call “special snowflake syndrome”. Her tendency to put herself above others did not, however, take away from the realism of her character. Ava was not a character I was hoping would grow up throughout the novel and branch out from her inner thoughts to care about the people around her. In the end, she did change in minute ways but continued to feel self important throughout the novel. This made her a frustrating character to root for.

Stephanie: The back story of Stephanie was intriguing and gave great insight into her motivations. I found her to be a dynamic and interesting character that I wanted to know more about. Because the story was told through Ava’s eyes for the most part, Stephanie was antagonized during certain sections of the novel. I found Stephanie’s story to be tragic and realistic and I was rooting for her throughout the story to grow and become a more well rounded individual.

Story: The overall story was beautifully written and laid out wonderfully. The progression of the story and the way the writing flowed was very well done. The New York scene was an interesting setting that helped the story to progress in a fast-paced and chaotic manner. While there were parts of the story that dragged, the majority of the story had a natural and fun progression and it was an enjoyable and dynamic book.

REVIEW: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

REVIEW: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

by Mackenzi Lee

5/5 Stars

“If the Good Lord didn’t want men to play with themselves, we’d have hooks for hands”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29283884-the-gentleman-s-guide-to-vice-and-virtue

Lord Henry Montague (Monty), a lover of revels and vices, is going on his last hurrah, a trip to the continent with his best friend, Percy, and his sister, Felicity. Afterward he is to settle into his role as the eldest son of his house. Only problem is, he is madly in love with Percy and can’t stand to be around his annoying sister. And of course, as any story goes, the plan doesn’t exactly go the way it was supposed to. Filled with awkward moments, hilarious dialogue, the occasional pirate and a few scandals, this novel is a fun trip around Europe.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue had me laughing and swooning from the first chapter, that continued throughout the novel and right up until the very last page. Within moments of beginning the novel, I was hooked. The writing and witty banter made me want to revel in the moment, emerging myself into the story.

SPOILERS

Monty in a self-centered, mess of a young man. He can’t seem to keep himself from trouble, whether its with the drink, the ladies, or the lads, he always seems to get himself into the worst situations. While Monty may not have been someone I wanted to idolize, he had several characteristics that made me love him. The dimples. Yup. the amount of times he whipped those beautiful things out was hilarious, and I will be honest, I would probably have swooned too. He may have been cocky, but there is something very magnetic about a character that loves themselves – even if it may have been a tad too much. His love for Percy, and occasionally Felicity, was a contrast to his actions. Despite his reckless attitude, he truly wanted to be better for his loved ones. Monty was a dynamic, hilarious character that had flaws (a lot of them) and became a living being through Lee’s writing.

The plot was a hilarious road-trip fantasy gone wrong and done right. I couldn’t seem to stop thinking about these characters and what would happen next. On top of the wonderfully dynamic characters and scenic setting, the writing flowed with the perfect tone of the novel and rose and fell with the characters and the way the plot was progressing. It may have been a fun read, but sewn into it were some really difficult topics like gender inequality, homophobia, racism, abuse, and illness. It seems that Lee was able to create a world that was fun and engaging by entwining such relevant and pressing societal and economic topics into a somewhat silly narrative. The way it was all handled was done so well and it made for a very real novel and characters that were engaging and easy to relate to.

Overall, I couldn’t say enough about how wonderfully written the characters, struggles, and adventure plot was done. It was a movie playing in my mind that I would read over and over again.

REVIEW: The New Dark

REVIEW: The New Dark

The New Dark

by Lorraine Thomson

1/5 stars

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36184792-the-new-dark

“I admire your passion and convictions, Sorrel, but you are naive”

The New Dark is about a girl, Sorrel, who lives in a apocalyptic forest society that is attacked by mutants. Her people are slaughtered and she is the only one who makes it out alive and well. Other young members of her village are taken by the mutants, including David, the boy she loves, and Eli, her younger brother. She is then thrust on a journey to find them and save them. Presumably…

I received an advanced copy of The New Dark through Netgalley for an honest review of this book.

SPOILERS.

I am going to start off by saying that I wanted to stop reading this book as soon as I started. Everything about this book confused me and jarred me. The concept for this book hooked me at once, mutants and post apocalyptic elements sound great. The world itself was underdeveloped (which I look at below) and not explaining to the reader how the world came to be as it was created confusion. We begin the book with a possible romantic interest story and within moments the entire village is dead without warning. After this jarring moment I was skeptical to continue. This could have been done better by letting the reader know more about the world and its possible threats beforehand so there was a sense of loss and kinship with the main character when this happens. The rest of the novel dragged by in several different places, and with a few intertwining plots. I will examine below some of the elements of the story:

CHARACTERS:

Sorrel:  Sorrel, Sorrel, sweet Sorrel. My good gracious, the amount of times her name was said in this novel was insane. I felt like I was being assaulted by her name alone. She is suppose to come off as a bad-ass female heroine but I found her to be a childish and naive character through her actions. I felt that her “strength” was supposed to be gathered through her ruthlessness and bravado, but that only made her seem more underdeveloped. In the beginning, she survived the mutants my killing them and getting away, but then later on, with the Free, she refused to fight for herself. She spends a great deal of the book whining and seems to have very little emotion and reaction to the things that are going on around her. She has little to no reaction about her mother being killed in front of her and is constantly whining after David. Now, she is supposedly, “in love” with David, but we get about two seconds of them together in which he is skinning bats and she is checking him out, this doesn’t seem like a realistic basis for the love they are suppose to have through the novel. Sorrel is also very unintelligent in many of her decisions and quick judgements, lashing out and making decisions with no backing. Overall, I felt Sorrel was an underdeveloped and childish figure.

David: I had a little bit of hope for David at the beginning, as he seemed to have a little bit more personality and emotion than Sorrel for the loss of his village. However, he tried to escape from the mutants in the same way three times, and ended up getting beaten every time. Though, was he effected by his constant beatings, of course not. He was suppose to be portrayed as strong, but instead, came off as unrealistic. His pining for Sorrel made him seem pathetic, as wishing for her wasn’t going to help his situation at all. Overall, I thought that David’s character was static, but less annoying than Sorrel and their love unrealistic.

Mara: I know that Mara was suppose to be villainous but I honestly was rooting for her more than the main characters. She seemed to be somewhat affected by what was happening to her and tried to blend in so she wouldn’t get hurt. I thought she was an interesting character and wished to know more about her, until she betrayed Sorrel. This moment was a low for Mara, not because I cared that she betrayed Sorrel, but because she was doing it so David would stay with her. Girls pitted against each other over a boy is childish and not really enough realistic motivation to be needlessly cruel. I would have liked to know more about Mara’s motivations.

Martin: This character was gross. The author wanted me to hate him and she did a good job making him about as disgusting as possible. I didn’t really understand his motivation in being cruel but understood enough about his character to root against him, and in that moment, for Sorrel, which was done well.

Einstein: If you are thinking about reading this book, do it for Einstein. This was the only character I really cared about long-term. First, a mutant whom Sorrel is fighting against, turning into a friend who she treats horribly. We find out half-way through the book that the mutant has a name and can speak, and is actually really intelligent. Something I wished I had more clarification with Einstein was his appearance as I couldn’t get a good enough feel for him which may have helped me fit together his place in society and in the book. He makes the decision to trust Sorrel to get them both away from the Free after she treats him in a decent manner. He seems to see something redeemable in Sorrel, his major flaw in my opinion, and they journey to find David and Eli together. I don’t really understand why he is helping her, as it isn’t really explained, since she treats him poorly a lot of the time. He is a very confusing character, but comparatively is the most realistic one in the book.

WORLD

The world is so confusingly crafted I never had any idea where anyone was or how much time had passed. The three main places the story takes place are: Sorrel’s village, Ulbroom (the Free), and around Dinawl, the mutant city. These places are all night and day to each other and switching between them seems like the story had changed to a completely different world. Despite the fact that all of these places are so close, none of them have any knowledge of the others. The readers are given no back story on how the world got to be where it is at and therefore, much of what is happening is confusing and jarring. These places may not interact with one another but they share the same general language and movements, which made me think that the world must be recently apocalyptic, but nothing was explained, so I couldn’t really infer why the members of each society did what they did.

Time was the most confusing element in the entire book. There was so many ‘fade to black’ and ‘days passed’ moments that I never had any sense of how long it had been. Without the solid standing stone of time, the actions of the characters made less sense. It doesn’t explain how long Sorrel is trapped with the Free before she is suppose to marry Martin. We are given a sense that it is a long time, but it does not show in her internal monologue. The inconsistency with travel time bugged me as well. It takes the mutants a supposedly long time to get from the village to Dinawl, but then takes Sorrel and Einstein only a day. The most jarring moment was when Sorrel meets Mara again and refers to her as “her childhood enemy”, as if she has grown up so much, so much time has passed, and she still isn’t a whiny child. I felt jostled through the entire thing, never knowing how much time had passed.

Connected to the characters, the world didn’t explain the existence of the mutants, what their mutations were and why the society began throwing these types of beings out of their village or killing them. The readers little information on the world building meant that it was difficult to get to know the world and care about where the story was going.

WRITING:

Despite the fact that the story was thrown around, too much was going on, and the characters were flat, the writing wasn’t terrible. The conversations and scenes had a good style of progression and the descriptors weren’t horrible. I would say that the author has huge potential but needs a bit more guidance in the story building process.

IN CONCLUSION:

I had a very difficult time reading this book and thought it could have been handled a lot better. The characters were not ones I thought were strong or dynamic and the world was not explained very well. This book was lost potential and what ever the author decides to follow up to this series I hope these holes will be filled as there is plenty of possibility.

 

 

REVIEW: Caraval

REVIEW: Caraval

Caraval by Stephanie Garber 

4.25/5 Stars

“Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game…”

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27883214-caraval

Wow. This book. Centred around two sisters who just want to escape the harsh realty of their lives and enter a world of magic, this story takes one sister, Scarlett, on a journey to find her sister, Tella, on the crazy game world of Caraval. Using clues she must find, the game take Scarlett through a devious plot where she can’t quite figure out who is real. Wonderfully thought out and beautifully written, Garber take the reader on this game too and has twists and turns that make everything more intriguing.

I thought this book was very well written and the plot was very well thought out. It had a unique twist on a normal carnival where the audience can become a part of the show. This book blew me away with all of the twists and turns, definitely not a predictable novel.

Spoilers!!

So.. If you have read this novel, I hope you are with me in how incredibly devastated I was at the end. The novel was great throughout, with drawing me in and creating the game around Scarlett, and ultimately me. However… The horrible mess that was the ending knocked it down a few pegs for me. Now, I think this was the whole point of the novel, and the ending wasn’t poorly written or anything but I felt like it ended too abruptly for the giant WHACK that I received with the endings truths. Scarlett spends the entire thing going through horrifying experiences, seeing people dismembered, her love dying in front of her eyes, and her sister bleeding out and broken before her…. This girl has just gone through HELL! and then … whoops SURPRISE! No one is dead and it was all just a fun prank, lol. NO! NO!

 

This ending was surprising and twisting, which made it entertaining, but ultimately made me want to curl up and cry. Scarlett is going to have some serious PTSD and trust issues after this and everything ends in a party. I just found the ending to be very unrealistic and maddening for me, though that may have been the point.

This rant being said, I REALLY did enjoy the novel immensely! It was well written and fun to read. I felt like I was a part of Caraval, which was enchanting and confusing. It is a wonderfully written book and I encourage anyone to read it that might love carnivals or fairs. Its also a good book for those who may enjoy Sherlock Holmes and puzzle games, it really makes you think and screws with your mind. LOVED IT!

REVIEW: November 9

REVIEW: November 9

November 9 by Colleen Hoover

4/5 Stars

“Meeting up once a year on the same date sounds like a really good basis for a romance novel. If you fictionalized our story, I’d add it to the top of my TBR”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25111004-november-9

This quote is exactly what happened to me. I have a stack of books on my nightstand so high they fall over from time to time if not set just right, and yet when the library told me that my hold on the Nov 9 ebook was available it went right up to the top of my TBR. I read it in less than a day. There is something so deliciously addicting about Colleen Hoover’s novels. Whether its the beautiful detail or the relatable characters, its REALLY hard to put down her books. I read it on the bus to school, during class break, on the bus back, and while walking up the hill home (almost getting hit by a car because i was walking like a drunkard while reading a particularly intense scene) and while eating supper until the book was done and I was a heap of feelings and covers on my bed.

This novel is about a girl who suffers an accident that derailed her entire life and career at age sixteen. After healing physically, at age 18 she meets a boy who defends her by pretending to be her boyfriend. Despite the fact that she is leaving that night for NY they spend the day together, enjoying each others company. when it comes time to leave they just cant say goodbye, despite not wanting to drag out any long distance communication. They decide to meet once a year on that day, Nov 9 until they are 23. Every year they meet… but as life happens to them both they have to make some tough decisions.

and chaos ensues of course yada yada yada, I’m not crying YOU’RE CRYING!

SPOILERS!!:

Hoover does such a fantastic job at addressing so many relatable topics in her novels, and even a few widely used new adult tropes. In Nov 9 she addresses the idea of “insta-love” and whether or not this is real, it definitely made me think a little differently about how long it truly takes to fall in love with someone. (May have to change that ranting Romeo an Juliet paper for school now..). What I love most about Hoover’s books are her characters. Where most NA books focus heavily on jaded pasts and angsty boys to men, Hoover gives her characters depth. In some NA novels, the back story of a character seems to be put there only as a plot devise to make them angsty, where with characters like Fallon, her difficult past, her scars, are what make her the person she is, and instead of being used as a jaded past, Hoover shows her readers that flaws are human. This makes her characters so relatable.

I absolutely loved Ben. Mostly because he says exactly what comes to his mind at all times and I think thats so admirable. He straight up tells Fallon within half an hour of meeting her that he wants to see her naked, and not as a flirting technique or in a creepy way, but because he is being honest. Even though he keeps a pretty big secret to himself, these little honest moments made me fall in love with him as quickly as Fallon did.

the layout of the novel was also a fantastic element of it. You only got the most important snippets of this love story, sans the brooding and the difficulties of their years. I loved that this story was told through one day each year, because despite it only being one day, and that would be excruciating for the characters, it was nice not to have to read the lulling parts of their lives and skip right to the action.

All in all, Hoover has yet to disappoint me in her novels despite my general distaste for NA. I highly recommend these if you want to be glued to you pages all day or want something as addicting as crack cocaine and don’t mind your emotions going for a rollercoaster while you’re at it.

 

REVIEW: Six of Crows

REVIEW: Six of Crows

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

5/5 Stars.

“There’s always more to lose”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23437156-six-of-crows

There are those books that become instantly popular, Six of Crows being one of them. For me, it was one of those books that I had always meant to pick up but never seemed to make it to the check out. It took me over two year to finish The Grisha Trilogy (finished just this December) because I could never seem to get behind the characters. I feared that it was the writing, so I was afraid to pick up this new duology. Not only that, but this book is so hyped, how could it possibly be as good as everyone says? it cant POSSIBLY be that good? that FANTASTIC? that incredibly SOUL CRUSHING AND MIND BLOWING? but my friends I am here to tell you, OH HELL YES IT CAN! 

This novel follows six incredibly diverse characters and one impossible heist. They are thieves and gamblers, spies and bombers attempting to pull of the biggest con ever known for the prize of money and power. The incredibly complex and diverse set of characters are complemented wonderfully by the intricately built world and eery settings. Bardugo does an incredible job of putting us inside each characters mind and plotting along with them at every turn, only to be constantly surprised by the twist of events.

SPOILERS!!

I think this book is made incredible by so many wonderful things: the setting, the world-building, the imagery, the plots and schemes. etc etc etc… but the best thing Bardugo does is makes this novel revolve around the characters. She creates depth in each character that drives the plot backward and forward in engaging stories that wind together to create this book.

Kaz- I cant even with him. Half the time I’m like “oh my sweet darling baby Kaz what has this world done to you” and the other half I am screaming at him to stahp being so damn cruel. What I love about Kaz is that he blurs the line between hero and villain. He does whatever is necessary, and I mean WHATEVER, to complete his goal of ultimate revenge for his brother death. He oozes with power and cunning cleverness that makes him an incredibly complex protagonist. His actions as the leader drive the stories of each of the other main characters. It is obvious he cares for his friends but has shoved everything so far down to protect himself it can be difficult to see the good. Ps. Him and Inej ASDFKJUG.

Inej- It took me a while to unravel Inej because she both belongs among the thugs and thieves, and yet doesn’t. I admire Inej the most out of any character in this novel, and most novels. She has a good, kind heart and a strong faith that stays with her throughout the HORRORS that have happened to her. Being taken and sold into prostitution is a very real thing that happens in our world, and this makes it so much more horrifying to me. There is a realism placed on Inej because of this issue in our society today and the way that she handles it is admirable. She does what she has to in order to survive and does it with such grace and faith. ps. He and Kaz YAAAAS.

Nina- Oh my. Nina is everything I aspire to be in life. She is confident in every situation she is faced with, an absolute flirt who loves to eat. Everything that might be seen as a weakness is Nina’s strength, and she goes through hell and back, taking a lethal drug to save her friends because she is incredibly loyal. Nina is everything. She uses what might be deemed as “feminine weakness” as her weapon, and on top of it all, she’s curvy and sassy as hell- what is not to love. I ADORE her snippets with Matthias and their banter, they are just toooo cute.

Matthias- A giant Fjerdan with a love for a witch (Nina) and a heavy taste for propriety. It took me a while to warm up to Matthias but I just think of his as a large teddy bear that blushes a lot and can snap a tree with his hands. I love that Matthias’ character gave depth to the world of the Grisha and the customs of their world- and ours. Despite what he had been taught his whole life he was able to eventually put aside his prejudices and look at the world through the eyes of others. And oh man he loves Nina so much, they are so cute together, completing each others personalities so perfectly.

Jesper- For a while I was like, Jesper who? thinking that he was a side character, but there is so much to Jesper’s character. He has an addiction to gambling, which gets him into a lot of trouble, specifically getting him kicked out of school for spending all his money at the tables. Also, plot twist, he is a Grisha Fabrikator, which was super handy while getting the gang out of a few tricky situations during their heist. I love Jes’ ability to ramble and to talk to everyone. I love his relationship with Inej, specifically on the boat talking about Kaz (sigh). Jesper x Wylan 5ever tho.

Wylan- Oh my baby. He has his ups and his downs of course. Most are totally justified considering he is new to the whole “being an outcast” thing and all that. I think it is incredible how well he fits himself into the group, despite firstly being there as a captive. He is incredibly smart, despite not knowing how to read (dyslexia perhaps?) and builds bombs and other science related things that help with escapes and ultimately their heist. He is a sweet little cinnamon roll that should be protected at all costs. ps. Jes is allowed near the cinnamon roll. 

Altogether I could write an entire essay on the merits of this novel. There are so many real world issues addressed in this novel that are so important and maybe one day I will write about them in a formal essay, because I think Bardugo has done an incredible job at making an important, beautiful, romantic, hilarious and spectacular book for all audiences.

REVIEW: Maybe Someday

REVIEW: Maybe Someday

Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover 

4/5 Stars

“For her I bend, for you I break”

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24445517-maybe-someday

It has been a long time since I read a book that had me unable to put it down. Usually when I read at night I will get to a point, say midnight, and call it a day (I need my beauty sleep), however, with Maybe Someday midnight rolled around and I shoved it away, as I did with the next three hours. This is the first of Colleen Hoover’s books that I have picked up… I know, I know.. How could I have waited this long? Why did I choose this one to read first? And I have very good explanations for those questions but instead of answering them, I am going to rave about this incredible book.

Maybe Someday follows Sydney, who had just had her life turned upside down when her boyfriend is found cheating with her best friend/roommate. She is informed of this by the mysterious and handsome guitar player she’s been sending her lyrics to that lives across the street. This handsome man puts her up and aids her after her life tumble, resulting in a music-filled novel of what it means to trust, love and listen.

 

SPOILERS AHEAD!!

So first off, I cant write this without spoilers because, if you’ve read it you’ll know, Ridge- the handsome guitar player- is deaf. It through me for a loop and changed the way I had to assess every situation, the way someone who is deaf might approach things. Colleen Hoover incorporates these rich characters with so many faults and feelings into a romantic book riddled with humour and wit. This is a quick read, mainly because the characters are so vibrant and dynamic, they really pull the story (and your heart) in many directions.

Sydney- The protagonist. She is kick-ass right from the beginning to the very end. (Sydney book punch count: 4). After going through finding out her boyfriend of two years and best friend have been sleeping together their entire relationship, she handles it the way most people would, Throwing some punches, pranks and mean words and then crying and holing herself up for a while. When she and Ridge start realizing their growing feelings for each other, Sydney did everything she could not to become her best friend. Her quick wit and love of music made her a character I could identify with and was rooting for the entire way.

Ridge- 2nd Protagonist. Ridge is a deaf musician, who plays guitar beautifully and writes songs for his brother band (until he gets writers block and needs Sydney to). His internal struggle throughout the novel between his love for his girlfriend Maggie, and Sydney as well as his struggle with being deaf when the world around him is rich in sound makes him a character you instantly fall in love with. His incredible loyalty to everyone he loves and his joy with the world made me want to jump right inside the book and beg him to pick me instead.

Each of the supporting characters, Warren, Bridgette, Maggie, Brennan, Hunter and Tori, all had their own dynamic story that gave the book depth. In my opinion, when you can fall in love/hate with a side-character, something has been done right. 

This novel is full of moments that will have you on the edge of your seat/bed/carpet/where ever you read wanting to become a part of these characters lives. The main battle in this book is between desires and actions, putting aside what you want because it is right. The battle against the heart is not so easily fought and won, leaving Sydney and Ridge in a confusing place and battling their feelings together. Something I appreciated about their relationship was how truthful they were with each other, their honesty was refreshing and made their struggle both easier and harder. I recommend this book to anyone who loves romance and music, or reading about them. This novel is one that you wont be able to put down, or at least I couldn’t.

REVIEW: Heartless

REVIEW: Heartless


blog-heartlessHeartless by Marissa Meyer

4/5 Stars

“If I had given my heart to someone else, I surely think I would know of it”

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18584855-heartless

After only finishing this last night all I can say is “OFF WITH MY HEAD” because I obviously do not need it anymore. My heart either, you can take that and be off with it as well. This book is silly and heart-wrenching, ridiculous and wonderful- it pays great tribute to the original Alice story, bringing in characters and phrases that will have your nostalgia levels through the roof. There are so many ups and downs and turn arounds this book is a perfect movie inside your head. I found myself entranced with the witty banter and ridiculous conversations.

Just so you have a bit of a background before I go into more spoiler-y things, This book is centered on Lady Catherine Pinkerton, daughter of the Marquess of the Land of Hearts. While her only dreams are to open up the best bakery in all of Hearts, her parents conspire to set her up with the King. Of course, to further complicate Catherine’s dreams, a new court Joker shows up named Jest. And with his floppy dark hair and golden eyes how could she not (quite literally) faint right into his arms. This book is topsy-turvy and wonderful, that will have you rooting for the once villain – Queen of Hearts.

Now SPOILERS AHEAD. So if you haven’t read the book GO READ THE BOOK.

Now, to everyone who has read the book or enjoys having all the fun sucked out of reading, here are my thoughts…

You know when you know your mother hates that particular pair of shorts you have, and you know she will never let you leave the house in them? But you still wear them and when you are sent back to your room to change you are surprised? Thats me right now. You know something is going to happen and still WHOOPS surprised! Of course I know that things have to end badly for Catherine, but there was that tiny bit of me that was going.. “Marissa could change it… she could give her a happy ending…” NOPE! SIKE! it all happened so fast and all of a sudden theres blood everywhere and I’m like nooooooo you can’t have gone through with it!!

The Characters in this novel were very likeable. (Except Catherine’s parents of course… asses) Jest was someone that I immediately fell in love with, so the fact that Catherine did as well I wasn’t too surprised with. It was a bit fast for love but heck I loved him too so I can’t really judge. The banter between him and Cath was so fun to read. Hatta was another character I absolutely loved, this novel gave him a depth and almost cynical persona that I thought went very well with his character in the Alice books. One of my favourites was the King – his bubbling foolishness and idiocy was comical – especially his notes of courting.

Every time Jest and Cath were in a room together but not TOGETHER I felt like my heart was being ripped out of my chest, which I guess is how she felt since at the end of the book she had her heart literally ripped from her chest. (horrid to imagine) This books ending was … inevitable , I guess. But it left me feeling very hollow. I hope Meyer decided to write another book and gives Cath a happy ending.

This review is scatterbrained because I am still stuck in the nonsense world of Wonderland. By the by, I may have to edit this when I don’t feel terribly heartless myself. I gave this book 4/5 starts because it was beautifully and intricately written, the only thing that I was unhappy with was perhaps the pacing and the untied ends. All together this is a wonderful novel that I will definitely be picking up again to re-read and re-brea my heart. Now, ON WITH MY DAY!

 

REVIEW: The Raven Boys

REVIEW: The Raven Boys

blog-trbThe Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater 

5/5 Stars

“The trees speak Latin”

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17675462-the-raven-boys

I had heard this quote over and over in the fandom world. I had always seen these books on the bookstore shelves and wanted to read them, however, the hype behind them was so huge that I thought to myself “how will this ever live up to my expectations?” If this is what you are thinking when you look at these books.. STOP THAT RIGHT NOW. Stiefvater’s writing is the best YA writing that I have encountered in a long time. This book is so well thought out and researched that it has a little bit of everything for everyone and is completely unique all at the same time. The dynamism the characters and the quick wit of the writing style create a world that I never want to leave. I just want to love all the Raven Boys!!

The Characters: The book focuses of a main group of four boys and a girl in high school but also contains side characters of various ages that do not simply act as static plot devices, but also have dynamism to their stories and growth. Blue, the main character (or at least one of them) is a strong, bad-ass character with so much spunk contained in her tiny form, you just cant help but want to love her, admire her, and be her best friend. Gansey, the head of the Raven Boys, is an old soul with a passion for history and a winning smile and you just want to open him up to see how he ticks, such an interesting character. Ronan, the bad boy (sorta), has so many layers to his personality, this book creates a need to unravel him. Adam, oh Adam, this sweet little cinnamon bun made me giggle (I don’t giggle) because he is just too much adorableness. I love each and every character because they have so many flaws, and this makes them a truly real group to read about.

The Setting: This takes place in the small town of Henrietta but contains so much magic and history that the world seems like an ever-inflating balloon of possibilities. Stiefvater does a great job in her descriptions that put the reader right into the town; becoming part of the action.

I started this book while in a reading slump and needless to say I no longer am in one. Stiefvater’s writing contains the perfect blend of description, familiarity and wit that left me aching for more. I could go on for days about each an every element in this book that made me love it but I will leave it up to you, readers, to grow your own hype and your own love for this series. Trust me. This is one book that lives up to every sqwee and every giggle and every heart wrenching scream.

“MAKE WAY FOR THE RAVEN KING”