Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Round Up | A Heart So Fierce and Broken, The Hand on the Wall, and Royce Rolls

Posted March 5, 2020 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | A Heart So Fierce and Broken, The Hand on the Wall, and Royce Rolls

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 saw some lower ratings for this one ahead of reading it and most stemmed from people thinking this would be about Harper/Rhen again. I knew what to expect going into it (Grey and another new character as the POVs) so that definitely helped with my enjoyment. Like the first one (and most fantasy books), it was a bit slow-going at first. I broke my reading up into sections to pace myself out for a week until book club’s meeting date. I do think I was a bit disappointed by this one though, and I think – like everyone else – it had to do with the characters being slightly less interesting to follow. Grey fascinated me in book one and he did keep me interested here, but Lia Mara was much less interesting than Harper was. The plot involved them, plus a few other characters, making their way to another country. I tend to enjoy books where a couple of characters go on a journey and there’s some fun magic and banter involved, but this one didn’t have as much going on for me. One thing, romance-wise, that I’ve enjoyed about these books is that they don’t jump right into loving each other (even if the […]

ARC Review: The Map From Here to There

Posted January 8, 2020 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
ARC Review: The Map From Here to There

I realized while reading this book that I have not read new words from Emery Lord since 2017. (She did have a small story in an anthology from last year, I realized, but whatever.) That is EONS ago. I was obviously eager to read this book because THE START OF ME AND YOU is probably (???) my favorite Emery Lord book. I will tell you: I recommend rereading that one before this if you have a bad bookish memory. It’s obviously a contemporary romance, which makes it less challenging to get up-to-speed on (IMO), but I still found myself completely forgetting who people were. It didn’t take long to sink into her writing and characters though. This story follows Paige and Max beginning at the end of the summer. Max, as we know, was in Italy for a summer experience. Paige did an NYU film program and came home to work at the local cinema. We’re introduced to Hunter, her coworker that I LOVED, and I could just sense that some trouble may brew from their friendship down the line. Sidenote: give me a Hunter Chen book. PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE! Anyways, this story brings us through senior year moments and highlights (as well as some definite lowlights). Paige is really struggling with her anxiety in this one and I definitely felt for her. I certainly deal with that on a daily basis but in a different way; it was challenging to see her unable to express her feelings. I wanted […]

Review Round Up | Girls’ Night Out, Maybe This Time, and Past Perfect Life

Posted October 9, 2019 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | Girls’ Night Out, Maybe This Time, and Past Perfect Life

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! Backlist Review I’m glad that my adult fiction book club is making me read backlist Kindle books I’ve purchased! I’ve been really trying to get more into actually *reading* the adult mystery/thrillers I put on my TBR. The premises always excite me and then they sit and stew, never getting read. Anyways, GIRLS NIGHT OUT features Natalie, Ashley, and Lauren, as they “enjoy” a friendship-saving (hopefully) trip to Mexico. The book alternates between their points of view in the present and Ashley’s in the past, because she goes missing at the start of the book. Overall, this book was broadly fine? I was usually in the mood to read it, once I got going, but it it wasn’t necessarily unputdownable. I couldn’t keep ANY of the characters straight for the life of me. I also feel like the book specifically leads you to believe something happened so obviously that’s not what ACTUALLY happened. I also thought the “secrets” they were hiding from each other were pretty transparent. I couldn’t suspend my disbelief at times either – these ladies are 40 years old and one of them blindly trusts a stranger she meets in Mexico after two minutes? This trip was organized for them to reconnect but instead […]

Review Round Up | A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Well Met, and We Came Here to Forget

Posted August 26, 2019 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Well Met, and We Came Here to Forget

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! ARC August Edition As always with fantasy books, I kind of waited forever to read my review copy of this book. I was hoping to mix in the audiobook but I couldn’t track it down in my usual places, so I just broke up my reading and charged through. I also made sure it was both my August book club selection AND a pick for my Disney-a-thon TBR, so I would be guaranteed to have read it. I’m not 100% sure if this book is classified as a true portal fantasy, but I loved that it featured both “our world” and another fantasy world – Emberfall. It was fun to learn about that world and those who inhabit it (Rhen, Grey, etc.). The curse and Beauty and the Beast elements were really well done and more unique than the traditional Stockholm Syndrome-esque story or other retellings. I appreciated that a lot. Harper was kind of a badass main character and it was cool to read about a fantasy heroine with cerebral palsy. Like the author’s note said, she wasn’t defined by it throughout the story but there were clear mentions about how it affected her daily life. I do wish I read this all in […]

Review Round Up | The Goose Girl, The Cottingley Secret, and Everything Must Go

Posted April 12, 2019 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | The Goose Girl, The Cottingley Secret, and Everything Must Go

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! When planning out my books for the retellings challenge this year, I knew I needed to attempt THE GOOSE GIRL. This is a classic fantasy novel that everyone seems to love. It reminded me a bit of ELLA ENCHANTED or STARDUST when it got started, with the princess/girl heading out on some kind of adventure/quest/etc. It honestly took me a little while to get into this and see what all the fuss was about, but it was worth it. I should also mention that I started with the audiobook, which has a full cast (!!) and was pretty adorable as a result. The latter half of the book was pretty fantastic, honestly. I’m glad I wasn’t fully aware of the original Brothers Grimm story, or else I wouldn’t have gasped as much as I did LOL. I didn’t see certain things coming and was honestly on the edge of my seat, deciding to finish the book off as an ebook instead of an audiobook. Ani was a great character to watch grow up and learn about life outside of being a princess. Her experience as a goose girl definitely shaped her into a more well-rounded person. I loved the bit of romance, even though it definitely wasn’t […]

Virginia Shreves: Now and Then

Posted September 12, 2018 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Virginia Shreves: Now and Then

I always wanted to read THE EARTH, MY BUTT, AND OTHER ROUND THINGS when I was younger, but was never sure what my mom would think if I tried to pick it out at the bookstore. I decided to give this “classic” a go when I saw the audiobook on Scribd. I later received the sequel, THE UNIVERSE IS EXPANDING (AND SO AM I) in the mail for review, so I decided to combine them here! I have a lot of feelings about this book. The first thing I feel like I need to mention is that obviously it was written in the early 2000s, so a lot of the words and references are outdated. I knew that going into it. The weird thing is that the sequel coming out isn’t like a “fifteen years later” kind of book. It takes place right after this ends. (More on that later.) Virginia was an extremely difficult narrator for me. She spent the vast majority of the book — I mean every single page — talking about her fatness and her (horrible) family reacting to her (horribly). I can feel for her on a lot of things, because I personally get it, but oh my god. It’s a very unhealthy and outdated (IMO) view of being a fat teen. She HAS to be sad and pathetic and unhappy with herself until she “gets healthier” in a very cliche way. I just don’t feel like there’s room for this portrayal of fat girls […]

Review Round Up | Not If I Save You First and A Court of Frost and Starlight

Posted May 18, 2018 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 4 Comments
Review Round Up | Not If I Save You First and A Court of Frost and Starlight

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’m a big fan of Ally Carter… clearly, if you look at all the reviews up at the top there. She writes some of the most fun and engaging “light mystery” kinds of books. I love all of them for different reasons. I was pretty excited to explore a standalone too! This was a first for her. The whole Alaskan survival thing didn’t exactly appeal to me but I can’t resist her stories, so I dove in soonafter it came out. I enjoyed Maddie and Logan, and the complexities of their relationship. I’m a huge fan of childhood-friends-to-more, especially if there’s hate-to-love involved. This checked off a lot of boxes for me in terms of tropes I love! There was a decent amount of build for their relationship and understanding where they both were coming from. I shipped them but not to OTP levels. The survival aspects were nicely done and not overkill, considering that I don’t love that genre/topic in general. The journey was really quick (the book itself is quite short and I listened to the audiobook, which was only around 6 hours). I think I would have liked a little more to the story? It was kind of simple, if that makes sense. I […]

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 […]

ARC Review: The Names They Gave Us

Posted May 3, 2017 / Book Reviews / 5 Comments
ARC Review: The Names They Gave Us

NOTE: This is one of my favorite reviews I’ve ever written. It’s very long and discusses so many things, like the book does, so TL;DR… I highly encourage you to read this story. Even if religious books or “cancer books” aren’t your thing, I would be shocked to hear you didn’t enjoy it. Initial Excitement Full disclosure: I don’t do well with books involving religion. I like reading books about various topics – especially about people who are not like me – but religious main characters are some I never click with. I’ve only read a few books involving main characters who are openly very religious and reference it, but they didn’t work. I knew I was going to read this book even though any summary involving the world “faith” (unless it’s about cults…) doesn’t make it on my TBR. I just can’t do them, but Emery Lord made me change my mind. I couldn’t not read a book by her. I was cautiously optimistic that she’d use her superb writing style to make me love a book about faith. Quick Summary … and, spoiler alert: she totally did. Lucy and her parents (her dad is a pastor and her mom has cancer) head to their church camp over each summer vacation. Because her mom’s cancer is back, she pushes Lucy out of her comfort zone and into a different camp on the other side of the lake. Its meant for healing and has kids dealing with various home or personal […]

Mini ARC Reviews: The Adjustment, Secrets of a Reluctant Princess, and At First Blush

Posted April 10, 2017 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Mini ARC Reviews: The Adjustment, Secrets of a Reluctant Princess, and At First Blush

Like I did last week, I’m rounding up three ARC reviews for today! Sooo many March and April titles to catch up on… good lord! There’s a bit of a mixed bag, enjoyment-wise. Some of them were really great while others were… not so great. I hope you enjoy these slightly smaller reviews 😉 S H O R T  &  S W E E T   A R C   R E V I E W S Honestly guys, I have no idea how Suzanne Young does it. She is totally the master for crafting an incredibly interesting series, where each book is just as good (sometimes better) than the last. I really can’t fathom it. I’m not ready to leave the world of THE PROGRAM yet and thank god there’s one more book! This story happens after the Program has come and “gone” from the world. (I recommend reading these in published order instead of chronological order because it keeps the suspense going!) There’s a new thing called the Adjustment, which allows for someone’s memories to be essentially implanted in another person. Tatum and her boyfriend Wes end up giving it a try. He comes back from the Program and doesn’t remember how much they loved each other before, so they start working with the Adjustment because he starts to get feelings for her again. Of course, there are plenty of problems and mysteries to work through. These books are a wild ride. I have to say that I did […]