Genre: Young Adult

Review Round Up | The Language of Thorns, Every Heart a Doorway, and War of the Cards

Posted January 5, 2018 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 10 Comments
Review Round Up | The Language of Thorns, Every Heart a Doorway, and War of the Cards

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! Ayama and the Thorn Wood  This story really hooked me after the first couple of pages; what an interesting collection of stories this already is shaping up to be! I liked this story a lot. I always struggle with reviewing short stories but Bardugo’s writing style is gorgeous and addicting. The Too-Clever Fox  Another excellent one. This one was very clever (lolz) and I didn’t expect that ending. Loved it. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to be ~learning lessons~ from these but I am so bad about fables haha. The Witch of Duva  Another excellent one. This one was very clever (lolz) and I didn’t expect that ending. Loved it. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to be ~learning lessons~ from these but I am so bad about fables haha. Little Knife  I liked the message of this one. Bardugo is really good at surprising me when I reach the end of each story. The Soldier Prince  Gorgeous writing as usual but I’m not 100% sure what happened there, or what the message is? The concept overall was interesting but still don’t know what any of it means or what really happened haha. When Water Sang Fire  I wish I had a better memory of the other Grisha […]

ARC Review: Meet Cute

Posted January 3, 2018 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: Meet Cute

Further down you’ll find reviews for each story with their own star ratings, but my overall feelings about the book are right below. I really loved all of these stories overall, and this anthology left me with a really positive feeling… compared to other anthologies I’ve read! Meet Cute anthology Some People are Destined to Meet Edited by Jennifer L. Armentrout Average rating: 3.75 stars Whether or not you believe in fate, or luck, or love at first sight, every romance has to start somewhere. MEET CUTE is an anthology of original short stories featuring tales of “how they first met” from some of today’s most popular YA authors. Readers will experience Nina LaCour’s beautifully written piece about two Bay Area girls meeting via a cranky customer service Tweet, Sara Shepard’s glossy tale about a magazine intern and a young rock star, Nicola Yoon’s imaginative take on break-ups and make-ups, Katie Cotugno’s story of two teens hiding out from the police at a house party, and Huntley Fitzpatrick’s charming love story that begins over iced teas at a diner. There’s futuristic flirting from Kass Morgan and Katharine McGee, a riveting transgender heroine from Meredith Russo, a subway missed connection moment from Jocelyn Davies, and a girl determined to get out of her small town from Ibi Zoboi. Jennifer Armentrout writes a sweet story about finding love from a missing library book, Emery Lord has a heartwarming and funny tale of two girls stuck in an airport, Dhonielle Clayton takes a […]

Holiday Reviews: We’ll Always Have Christmas and The Afterlife of Holly Chase

Posted December 24, 2017 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Holiday Reviews: We’ll Always Have Christmas and The Afterlife of Holly Chase

Story Tis the season for my favorite holiday author! I always wait until it’s VERY close to Christmas to embark on my Jenny Hale book of the year, because they’re usually the most atmospheric. This one was a little different, which I’ll get into later. Noelle takes on a new job helping an elderly man in a local mansion while trying to fix up her family’s bakery to improve business. She falls for Alex, the man’s grandson, while staying there with her son. She has mixed feelings because Alex is the landlord for the bakery and is the one “pushing them out” with higher rent. Noelle has close friends, Phoebe and Jo, and a tight-knit family between her parents, grandfather, and sister. It was a  really well-rounded story, even if some of the plot pieces were kind of annoying. There was a whole side thing that I predicted earlier with the grandfather’s lost ~first love~ and the fact that Noelle was thinking of moving to LA with Phoebe. The second thing there wasn’t needed in the story and took up an unnecessary amount of her headspace. The first one made sense even if it was predictable. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels I feel like this is the first time I’ve given a Jenny Hale book less than “full-on holiday cheer” on my cheer-o-meter. The book takes place in the month or two leading up to Christmas, so there were bits of the holiday sprinkled throughout. The cozy bakery setting and […]

Holiday Book Buddies: Bittersweet

Posted December 18, 2017 / Book Buddies Reviews, Book Reviews / 5 Comments
Holiday Book Buddies: Bittersweet

Cristina and I are teaming up for our seasonal Book Buddies read! This time, we chose BITTERSWEET by Sarah Ockler. I wanted to keep up with my usual holiday review theme for the month but we obviously have a little something more for you at the bottom! As usual, don’t forget to check out Cristina’s post too! Story I’ve had mixed experiences with Sarah Ockler so far. I loved one and felt so-so about another. This book unfortunately falls more into that second category, but I definitely enjoyed it a bit more. The diner setting was a lot of fun; I always love books that take place in restaurants of some kind (like some classic Dessens). Hudson, in addition to figure skating again, bakes insanely delicious-sounding cupcakes for the diner too. Each chapter started off with a little description about one of the cupcakes and it made me so hungry. I loved her brother and their relationship. Her mom expected a lot from her but I didn’t find it overly unreasonable, especially because Hudson kept her in the dark about everything going on in her life. I enjoyed the friendships she developed with the hockey boys but hated how she treated Dani. Hudson was a selfish character with a few goals she had laser focus on, so it was hard to like her at times. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels I wasn’t expecting full-on holiday feels for this one because it doesn’t allude to that in the synopsis, but it […]

Holiday Reviews: My New Crush Gave to Me and Winter Solstice

Posted December 15, 2017 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
Holiday Reviews: My New Crush Gave to Me and Winter Solstice

Story I was really hoping for something cute and Christmassy, which I got in some ways. Unfortunately I spent most of the book incredibly frustrated by the clueless yet often bitchy and domineering main character. I like predictable holiday stories because they’re comforting but there was literally no surprise for any element of the plot. By a quarter of the way through the book, I knew every detail about how it was going to end. The side characters were fun and nice people who definitely put up with Charlie FAR longer than I would have. Her best friend was too understanding but it helped that there wasn’t a best-friend-fight subplot. The general storyline is that she is determined (with absolutely no actual evidence) that Teo is the perfect boyfriend for her, so she stops at nothing to make this happen… and I mean nothing. She refuses to see any kind of sign that maybe he’s not the right guy for her and ignores the compelling evidence that perhaps someone else is. I definitely wanted to give her a swift kick in the ass 99% of the time, which doesn’t make for the most fun holiday read. Wintery Setting & Holiday Feels The book took place in Connecticut, which I love, but they didn’t really make it a point to reference that too much. The main character has (in the past) loved Christmas and she celebrates pretty hard with her mom when she’s not working. (I literally can’t even remember if […]

ARC Review: The Cruel Prince

Posted December 13, 2017 / Book Reviews / 11 Comments
ARC Review: The Cruel Prince

Initial Excitement & Summary I loved Holly Black’s TITHE series when I was younger. Unlike a lot of bloggers I’ve noticed, I actually love fae stories. My cousin and I were always obsessed with faeries when we were kids and that definitely spilled into my reading life. And, of course, Black is the absolute QUEEN of fae stories. Needless to say, I was realllly jazzed up about this one. I had it on my Goodreads TBR since 2015, then Ellice grabbed it for me and let me borrow it early, so I read this back in September/October. Jude and her two sisters, Vivi and Taryn, witnessed a faerie come kill their parents and whisk them away to the Faerieland. They live there with Madoc, a high-ranking fae, because he is technically Taryn’s father. Jude grows up and starts to fight for power. She clashes with one of the princes, Cardan, and trains to become a Knight. I can’t say too much more summary-wise because things get awesomely twisty as the book goes on! Storytelling & Characters Hoooly shit, you guys. This book was amazing. All of Black’s descriptions were out of this world (I guess literally?) and I really felt like I was there. The beginning part of the book is sort of a slow climb up to the climax, where we learn more about the land they live in and Jude’s relationships. She forms alliances, learns new skills, and even has to kill. She is manipulative, fascinating, and a straight-up […]

Review Round Up | Kissing Max Holden and Follow Me

Posted December 4, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 2 Comments
Review Round Up | Kissing Max Holden and Follow Me

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! My sister lent me her copy and has been bugging me for MONTHS about reading it. I can’t say that I blame her now that I’ve finished it. What a wonderful contemporary I didn’t know I needed! I had just went through a binge of mysteries and other non-contemporaries when I decided I should give this one a try. It ended up being so perfect that I read it in one sitting and stayed up until 3 AM to finish. I would call this fluff, but it’s a liiiittle more serious that fluff often implies. There is a LOT going on, family-wise, in this book. I absolutely hated her dad the entire time I was reading and was hoping she would tell him off at some point. The familial relationships were incredibly complex, both for Max and Jill. Max’s dad was recovering from a stroke that changed their relationship and, as I mentioned, Jill’s dad was basically a dickhead. I loved seeing her relationship with her stepmom grow throughout the book too. The romance was solid. I love childhood friends/neighbors-to-more SO much, because you can just feel the history bubbling into something new. They had a solid base to build a real (romantic) relationship and it showed […]

Review Round Up | Crazy Little Thing Called Love and The Becoming of Noah Shaw

Posted November 27, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 2 Comments
Review Round Up | Crazy Little Thing Called Love and The Becoming of Noah Shaw

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I either buy an ebook on sale and never read it, or read it within the first couple weeks of buying it. There’s no in-between. In this case, I’m very glad I hopped on reading CLTCL because it was completely delightful. The book starts on Christmas, has a big Christmas scene/section in the middle, and ends on Christmas as well. It was a nice unexpected “first holiday read” of the year, but could definitely be read in any season. Leila has gone on a “man ban” and started running a successful blog for other single women, which then moves into events, retreats, and presentations, all while balancing her landscape design job. When her brother gets married three months into her celibacy promise, she meets his new brother-in-law, Nick… and her man ban is all downhill from there! I really loved the couple of Leila and Nick, even though they had a number of obstacles to overcome in their journey. Leila was definitely a spunky main character and I just loved their chemistry together. The ending got a bit wild and absurd, but I really liked it. I think it actually was fairly reasonable based on how the characters’ personalities were. The reader really gets to know everyone […]

ARC Reviews: A Dangerous Year, The Key to Everything, and The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett

Posted November 6, 2017 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
ARC Reviews: A Dangerous Year, The Key to Everything, and The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett

I immediately saw comparisons to Ally Carter’s books, plus a little bit of Pretty Fierce by Kieran Scott, when I first saw this book on Goodreads and Netgalley. I was definitely intrigued, as I love the whole teen-spy genre. Add in the fact that this takes place at a Connecticut boarding school and I was HERE FOR IT. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this book. There were some potentially problematic sentences that really rubbed me the wrong way, and I initially felt that this book would definitely be under the three-star mark as a result. The author said things like “hooker red lipstick,” which is rude, and didn’t understand how something like Man Crush Monday or Woman Crush Wednesday worked. I know that one is small potatoes but it still definitely bugged me as I was reading. If you’re going to write for teens and about teens, you should run those passages by a couple of them. The cab driver said his name was Steve and the MC thought, because of his accent, it should be more like “Tariq or Malik.” And one other thing that bugged me, more in terms of the MC as a friend or human:  Aside from those things, the book was sub-par until the very end. The last 10% was an absolute whirlwind. I thought I had everything figured out pretty early on, but there were a LOT of twists. The ending was definitely a cliffhanger too, so I’m really curious to […]

Review Round Up | There’s Someone Inside Your House and The Fifth Letter

Posted November 2, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 4 Comments
Review Round Up | There’s Someone Inside Your House and The Fifth Letter

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! Unlike many other readers before me, I was really happy to find out that this book was more of a contemporary mixed with horror. I don’t do horror – even in October – but knew I needed to read this book because of its author. Anyways, I agree with everyone else that said basically not to go into this expecting an actual horror novel. There’s a lot of romance with a bit of killing thrown in throughout. The premise is that a serial killer starts attacking high school students in a small Nebraskan town. I can’t really say too much more on that end, except that the typical hysteria starts spreading throughout. Not a lot really stuck out about the characters or even the romance. Makari and Ollie were cute enough and liked them together. They definitely found plenty of time to fool around even though their classmates were dropping like flies, but I guess there’s not much else to do when a killer is on the loose and no one has school to keep them busy? Her whole backstory wasn’t that interesting… even though it was built up throughout to be this big surprising reveal. Her friends, Alex and Darby, seemed to be okay friends? I […]