Genre: Young Adult

ARC Review: In Some Other Life

Posted August 11, 2017 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: In Some Other Life

Initial Excitement I adore parallel life books. Anything involving that premise goes on my TBR immediately. The concepts of fate and destiny vs. free will have always been super interesting to me. I’ve enjoyed the synopses of Brody’s books but hadn’t managed to pick one up until this one. I think I’ll definitely try her other sometime soon! Summary & Storytelling The story starts with a fairly long glimpse into Kennedy’s real life where she chose the public high school. She’s the school newspaper editor and helped revive it from being shut down. Soonafter the story starts, she discovers her best friend and her boyfriend kissing at his house. She rushes to the Windsor Academy, where she’s been secretly pining over the fact that she got in and didn’t go, and promptly hits her head. She wakes up from this concussion and is in the parallel universe where she said yes to Windsor Academy and started there instead. There’s no newspaper, she’s in Robotics Club, and plans to major in Economics in college. Basically, her life is super different. I loved that her younger brother, Frankie, is incredibly smart for his age and interested in physics. She was able to talk with him about what happens and he came up with theories about the parallel universes out there. Usually books like this involve the main character having no one to talk with about what’s going on with them. It was annoying because she knew what happened when she moved into the […]

Review Round Up | Here Lies Daniel Tate, Just Dreaming, and Same Beach, Next Year

Posted August 3, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 4 Comments
Review Round Up | Here Lies Daniel Tate, Just Dreaming, and Same Beach, Next Year

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 backlist books I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I was pretty eager to get my hands on HERE LIES DANIEL TATE. I’ve thought about ALL OUR YESTERDAYS so much since I finished it a few years ago and have been hoping for a new book from Terrill. This one seriously did not disappoint! I expected something twisty that I couldn’t put down and I totally got that. “Daniel” is the ultimate unreliable narrator. He blatantly lies, tells you that he was lying, and always implies that maybe some of the story isn’t even true. I can’t say too much about him or the plot without giving a lot away about what happens, but just know that his unreliability does not change. I still, weirdly, found myself liking him as a main character. Mia was super adorable and Nicholas was really interesting as well. I have a few issues overall, but not much. I think the inclusion of some kind of “romance” was definitely not necessary. I mean, I can sort of see why it was included? Minor spoiler in italics: I think it was to show that the MC was really a normal human boy with feelings, or at least was starting to develop them. It added a little bit to his character because part of him really just wanted that normal life and […]

Bite-Sized Reviews: The Last of August & Lucky in Love

Posted July 10, 2017 / Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews / 10 Comments
Bite-Sized Reviews: The Last of August & Lucky in Love

I know I have full reviews and I have mini review round-ups, but there are some books that could be reviewed in just a few sentences. This is mini round-up I’ll have sometimes for books that really don’t need much more than my small Goodreads review and progress updates say. First up, we have the sequel to A Study in Charlotte. I enjoyed the first book but it wasn’t a favorite. I felt really disconnected from the characters and those issues definitely continued in book two. I’m still intrigued by the “retelling” of Sherlock Holmes vibes, so I will probably read the next book. Next, the newest Kasie West book! She’s clearly in my top three favorite authors. I always love her stories and have not rated one less than four stars. This wasn’t my favorite by her, but it was a solid story about winning the lottery and finding your own way.

ARC Reviews: What to Say Next and Hello Sunshine

Posted July 4, 2017 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
ARC Reviews: What to Say Next and Hello Sunshine

OH MAN, I loved this book. I don’t think I have a lot to say about it because I can’t put the feelings into words. The setup is that Kit’s father died a month ago, so she decides to sit with David at lunch to get away from her friends. The two of them end up talking and she’s refreshed by his honesty and bluntness with her, since everyone else has either been tiptoeing around her feelings or acting like she should be behaving normally. David is on the spectrum and was really interesting to read about. I work with a pediatric neuropsychologist that specializes in testing for ADD, autism, etc. so I’m fairly well-versed in those areas. I liked being able to understand where David was coming from because of that, but I also think he was a character that anyone could really connect with. Buxbaum did an amazing job explaining how he was feeling or why he said certain things. I loveeeed the family relationships in this book. David is close with his sister Lauren, who was a cool girl in HS that no one messed with her (or him). They had a great relationship and she taught him some everyday “rules” for fitting in with everyone else. His parents were great and supportive too. On Kit’s side, she pretty much just had her mom. They were close throughout the grieving process but there were moments of tension in the second half of the book as well. I just […]

Saying Goodbye to the Hundred Oaks Series | ARC Review: Coming Up for Air

Posted June 26, 2017 / Book Reviews / 6 Comments
Saying Goodbye to the Hundred Oaks Series | ARC Review: Coming Up for Air

This is it! The end of the Hundred Oaks series by Miranda Kenneally. I’ve looked forward to each new installment since I read BREATHE, ANNIE, BREATHE back in 2014. I thought because of the cover that it wasn’t included in the same series, so I read it first. I ended up going back soonafter and reading the rest of them in order. Some of these books are all-time favorites and MK became an auto-buy author for me. I thought the final review for the final book would be a great place to share how much I love the series as a whole and rank them in order of favorites. Favorites, Ranked:     #1- Catching Jordan – 5 stars – Football This one had me at football, but I love friends-to-more! #2 – Breathe, Annie, Breathe – 5 stars – Running Clearly my expectations for the rest were high right off the bat. #3 – Jesse’s Girl – 4.5 stars – Music There was something so addicting and cute about this one! #4 – Coming Up for Air – 4 stars – Swimming Super steamy and a wonderful conclusion to the series!    #5 – Stealing Parker – 4 stars – Softball I loved reading about Parker and c’mon… Corn Dog. #6 – Defending Taylor – 4 stars – Soccer Taylor was a frustrating character, but the story was good. #7 – Racing Savannah – 3.5 stars – Horseback Riding This one just lacked a spark I can’t put my finger on, but still good! #8 – Things I Can’t Forget – 3 stars – Camp Too much religion […]

Review Round Up | Blacklist, Once and For All, Blood of Wonderland, and The Hate U Give

Posted June 23, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 3 Comments
Review Round Up | Blacklist, Once and For All, Blood of Wonderland, and The Hate U Give

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 reviews of already published books (either older/backlist or newer releases) that I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! After enjoying UNRIVALED and being incredibly interested to see what would happen next, it felt like BLACKLIST would never arrive. I checked it out from the library and stashed it under my bed (where I unfortunately keep and forget about all of my library books). I finished up what I was reading and suddenly remembered that I had BLACKLIST to dive into. Let me tell you, it was exactly what I needed at the time. Like its predecessor, I couldn’t put this one down. I don’t see many differences in my feelings between the two books, to be honest. I felt the same way about the characters (didn’t really care about or for them). I felt the same way about the pacing (awesome). I felt the same way about the mystery (really interesting; I have a few theories!). I don’t know why but I think I liked this book more than the first. Maybe it’s because the stakes feel higher? I can’t put my finger on it. Long story short, I stayed up late to finish one night and had to wake up at 4:30 AM the next day. On my way home that evening, I was so excited to think I had more to read when I […]

ARC Reviews: Roar and Trusting You & Other Lies

Posted June 19, 2017 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
ARC Reviews: Roar and Trusting You & Other Lies

I’ve seen some pretty stellar early reviews for this one, plus Cora Carmack is one of my favorite NA authors… so needless to say, I had fairly high expectations! I usually would blame my negative feelings about this book on those expectations and hype, but I absolutely don’t think that was the case here. I was on the fence about reading this one in the first place because the synopsis didn’t really sound like a Lauren book. I decided to give it a go because of the reviews and author, but I ended up pretty disappointed. I’ll keep this short and break it down by the main elements of the story. Main plot: The story is about a princess, Aurora (or Ror, or Roar) who doesn’t have any magic. She has a marriage alliance planned with a prince of Locke (another kingdom) in order to avoid this information getting out. She soon learns that there’s a way of essentially buying magic on the black market and decides to set off on a journey with a group of stormhunters. I honestly thought the plot was kind of boring? I really didn’t care what was happening and often had no motivation to pick up the book. It was a struggle. I like books where people are on the road journeying and training with magic, but this book had almost no ~major events~ I can think of. Main character: On top of the pretty boring plot, Aurora was a boring character for me. Locke thought she was […]

Review Round Up | My Not So Perfect Life, Literally, ACOWAR, and Always & Forever, Lara Jean

Posted June 8, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 4 Comments
Review Round Up | My Not So Perfect Life, Literally, ACOWAR, and Always & Forever, Lara Jean

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 reviews of already published books (either older/backlist or newer releases) that I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! Man, this was cute. Seriously… so good, guys. If you like early Kinsella like Can You Keep A Secret, Remember Me, and I’ve Got Your Number, give this one a shot. I read all of those – plus a few more – back in the day and had been craving her style again. This book did not disappoint. The story starts in London, where Katie/Cat is struggling to achieve the city life of her dreams. She’s soon let go from her job and returns home to her dad’s house in the country, where her stepmom and father have started a glamping business on their farm. She quickly settles back into life there and her scatter-brained ex-boss suddenly appears with her family on vacation. The book was pretty long and covered a lot more time than I expected, but it was nice to see all the different “phases” of her life to see how things progressed. I loved learning more about her boss, Demeter, who was not who she seemed. I loved Katie trying to find herself, fit in, and/or put her talents to good use on the farm’s business. I loved Alex. I loved her parents. I loved Steve. Seriously, everyone was fantastic. I really liked seeing secrets get […]

(Re)Reading Sarah Dessen | Introduction and Someone Like You Discussion

Posted June 7, 2017 / Book Lists, Book Reviews, Features / 10 Comments
(Re)Reading Sarah Dessen | Introduction and Someone Like You Discussion

Everyone knows that Sarah Dessen is the queen of contemporary romance and adorable (and often darker or more complex), coming-of-age summer stories. I have read and loved most of her books already, but I made it a point recently to read (or in a lot of cases, reread) all of her books. Her books are important to so many people and really are what got many of us into reading contemporary romance books. This summer, Cristina from Girl in the Pages and I have teamed up to talk alllllll about Sarah Dessen – when we started reading her books, our experiences with rereading, and other fun discussions, recommendations, and personal stories. Our feature will take place over 4 weeks this June on Wednesdays (here) and Thursdays (there). Schedule Introduction, Our Sarah Stories, and Discussion of Someone Like You June 7th on Bookmark Lit – June 8th on Girl in the Pages Dessen Recommendations and Similar Stories June 14th on Bookmark Lit – June 15th on Girl in the Pages Blog Features: Cover Colors and I Will Go Down with My Ship June 21st on Bookmark Lit – June 22nd on Girl in the Pages Once and For All, Dessen Favorites, and Wrap-Up June 28th on Bookmark Lit – June 29th on Girl in the Pages   As I mentioned in my intro paragraph, Sarah Dessen has been my go-to favorite for years and years. I don’t remember the first time I picked up one of her books, but I’m fairly sure it was This Lullaby or The Truth About […]

ARC Review: Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index

Posted June 5, 2017 / Book Reviews / 7 Comments
ARC Review: Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index

Initial Excitement & Summary It was pretty obvious how excited I was for this book when I first heard of it. (I talked about it multiple times on here.) I can’t believe I waited until release week to read the ARC I was so pumped to receive. 🙄 I always do this to myself because I get nervous that it won’t live up to my expectations, since they’re so high. I love books involving lists, letters, and other ~quests~ so this was right up my alley. When Juniper finds a letter addressed to YOU shortly after her sister, Cammie, passes away, she is determined to figure out who YOU is. In the meantime, she loses one of her own index cards with a secret on it that she doesn’t want people to find. Along the way, she develops relationships/friendships with others who are in need of a little something. Storytelling, Setting, and Feels Like I said, I had a great feeling I’d love this book from the moment I saw the synopsis (and, to be honest, the cover!). It’s pretty amazing when a book you hyped up like CRAZY for yourself ends up completely hitting the nail on the head. I’d say JUNIPER LEMON ended up even exceeding those expectations. I’ll talk more in the next section, but I loved all of the characters and the friend group Juniper pulled together. Juniper wasn’t alone on her quest to figure out who YOU was because these people helped her constantly. I don’t read many […]