It feels kind of stupid to point out that this book feels very young, considering it skews towards Middle Grade. Goodreads does list both YA and MG as categories for it though. Be that as it may, this book feels very young. I borrowed the book from my 13 year old sister, so that should give you a solid indication of the best audience (she loved it). I couldn’t resist borrowing it from her though, because hello? Disney villains! The premise of this story is just so appealing to Disney lovers. It sat on my shelf for a number of months before I was compelled to read it. I started with the physical copy from her but realized it didn’t really hold my attention in that format. I got the audio from Scribd and decided to truck along, using both formats (until Winter was released and I switched to just audio). Speaking of the audio, the narrator was the worst. Sofia Carson is an actor in the Descendants movie (which is essentially the “second book” in this series, I guess). She narrated the book as if she was over-acting in a Disney movie. So. Yeah. Not fun. The plot was pretty slow as far as pacing is concerned. Most of the action was at the end, and even then… it was anticlimactic. It read like a prequel novella and not a story that was needed on its own. I did like it OVERALL even though I have more complaints than […]
The Nostalgia Project is my way of revisiting and rereading old favorites from my young adulthood to see if they still resonate with me. Learn more here and read old posts or reviews here! My first successful series revisit within The Nostalgia Project has come to an end! Let’s be honest, I totally cheated with this one. I had determined last year that I was planning on rereading the Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter because there were three remaining books I never managed to read. I started listening to the audiobooks back in October 2014 and steadily trucked through the series until December. I then bought books five and six to finish off my collection… and didn’t get around to reading them. I finally picked up book five to finish them off before the end of 2015. Because I individually reviewed the previous four books, I’m going to continue that here first. Then, you’ll see my thoughts on the entire series and what I learned at the bottom. This has to be one of my favorite books in the series. It’s hard to say that now, considering that all of the previous books blend together when you haven’t read them in a year, but I just feel it. I haven’t physically read a book in this series since the first few books came out and I forgot how addicting they are! It’s a totally different experience with the audiobooks. I thought that some parts of the book were frustrating because of the […]
Book Buddies is a discussion-style review that takes place with one of my two buddies. (Learn more and see past reviews here) We both read the book and then have a private discussion about it. We post our discussion as a review on the last Wednesday of each month. You’ll be able to see our similar/different opinions on the overall book, characters, writing style, etc. – just like a regular review. The first half our discussion will take place right here, and the second half will be on Cristina’s blog! (Link at the bottom) View Cristina’s part of the discussion here. Some spoilers ahead, so proceed with caution. How did you feel about Cricket as a main character? Lauren: I had weird feelings about her at first, to be honest! She started out being very critical about the girls she knew, and there were some major hints of slut-shaming. I was hoping that wouldn’t continue! I also thought it was a bit odd how quickly she decided to go to Nantucket by herself, right after her friend said they wanted family only. At one point she wonders if she should have told her friend she was going first, and I thought “UM yeah of course you should have!” I questioned Cricket’s intelligence and maturity a bit at the beginning and occasionally throughout the rest of the book. I thought she had a weird attitude towards girls (not necessarily full-on slut-shaming, but certain bits and pieces of it). I don’t expect all books with female MCs to be […]
Faves I have to say, choosing to sign up for the ARC tour of this was completely random. I saw the description of the book and thought it may be interesting, but knew it was something I usually wouldn’t be drawn to. I couldn’t be happier that I decided to try this book! It was amazing. I really liked the main character, Maggie – her voice was real and interesting. I can’t lie that the fact that she lived in Connecticut was a major factor in this! I don’t often get to read books that happen in my home state. Aside from Maggie, I looooved all of the characters. Ben was easily my favorite; he was adorable and hilarious. Maggie’s parents (well, mostly her dad) were definitely interesting too. You don’t normally think about how something like this happening also affects your family. Her mom and dad had to completely alter their lives to make sure she was taken care of, but they didn’t realize how much that affected Maggie, too. She just wanted to try to live as normally as possible. I liked her father’s effort and concern about her. This book definitely made me think. I can’t imagine having sight and then going blind – you know what the world was like but you no longer get to see it. It made me wonder which would be “better,” being born blind vs. going blind. You don’t realize how many things need to change once you lose your eyesight. […]
I’m sorry for the inevitable rant that this review is going to become. I was immediately intrigued by the premise of this book before it was released and thought it’d be a solid one to listen to on Audible. I was definitely wrong in that, and now I’m wondering how much the format of the book impacted my rating and feelings. Would it have been different to read this in print, or did I reaaaally just not like the book at all? Anyway, this book was pretty painful to listen to for a variety of reasons: THE AUDIOBOOK NARRATOR. This is certainly my biggest gripe, hence the debate above. The narrator read so fucking slowly that I wanted to speed up the narration. (Yes, I know that’s possible on Audible, but then the person gets a squeaky mouse voice.) She had the weirdest inflection on certain words and characters’ voices that I cringed so often. It can always be awkward when narrators try to change their voice for different characters, but this was just so bad. THE MAIN CHARACTER. Maddie made me SO annoyed throughout the whole book. Coupled with the narrator’s young-sounding voice, Maddie was so damn immature and stupid sometimes I can’t even explain it. Her whining was so melodramatic; I rolled my eyes WAY too many times. I feel bad saying this because she went through so much, especially with the bullying from her classmates, but I can’t help it. Some examples where I wanted to punch my phone: Lady […]
Book Buddies is a discussion-style review that takes place with one of my two buddies. (Learn more and see past reviews here) We both read the book and then have a private discussion about it. We post our discussion as a review on the last Wednesday of each month. You’ll be able to see our similar/different opinions on the overall book, characters, writing style, etc. – just like a regular review. The first half our discussion will take place right here, and the second half will be on Kaitlin’s blog! (Link at the bottom) View Cristina’s part of the discussion here. Some spoilers ahead, so proceed with caution. What past experience have you had with sci-fi books like this? If you’ve read some before, did you find this book easy to slip into, or was it a challenge from lack of experience? What did you think of the world-building? It felt a lot different than the world-building in fantasy books I’ve read. Lauren: I don’t think I’ve really read any book that falls into this category. I was kind of leery but extremely interested to see how it worked for me. To be honest, it took a while to get into. I was eager to see what happened with the characters but started off quite confused about their world. I couldn’t grasp the fact that (I think?) Earth didn’t exist to them. They were just floating around the galaxy on a ship and there were loads of other planets to explore. With fantasy books, they’re usually set […]
I finally made it to the first Gallagher Girls book that isn’t a reread! It was nice hearing a story I hadn’t read yet. DAMN this book got crazy, though! Just when you start to think it’s a fluffy story that is more romantic than spy-filled, you’re wrong. This book was definitely action-packed, which was certainly a breath of fresh air compared to the last book. Things are starting to get wild. Cammie’s spy activities are much more high stakes in this one. Instead of spying on her ex-boyfriend or other boys, she’s pretty much trying to stay alive. Part of me still doesn’t know who to trust or what’s going to happen. The one thing that continues to bug me is how immature Cammie seems. Maybe I’m so far removed from high school that I don’t remember what it was like, but I can’t help but feel like her voice is a bit more 12 year old than 17 year old. (I think part of this has to do with the audiobook narrator, though.) Regardless, I’m really excited to continue with the series and see what happens next! Pretty decent cliffhanger with this book.
So far this one is my least favorite. I guess I just feel like it was kind of boring and not much happened. It started out strong because the girls get involved with some kidnappers within the first few chapters, but then they’re just hanging around school and rehashing the event. I think it opened things up to get more interesting in the rest of the series, though. I didn’t remember anything about this book at all before rereading. Nothing ever came back to me as it got going either. My guess is that this one was my least favorite the first time around, too 😉 The romance aspect of this one was essentially nonexistent 97% of the book. I don’t remember much about what happens with Cammie and her love interests in the rest of the series and I honestly don’t know if I care which one she ends up with. However, all was not lost! Here are the things I enjoyed, as always: Strong friendship of Cammie and Bex/Liz/Macey Learning cool things about spies and seeing how their school-related lessons intertwine with what actually happens to the girls Crazy events at the end!
I think I MIGHT like Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy a littleee more than I’d Tell You I Love You but Then I’d Have to Kill You. A little more. I think there’s more of a mystery element to this book than the previous. You follow Cammie as she tries to get to the bottom of what the Blackthorn-related mysteries are. I didn’t care too much for Zack (I’m a Josh fangirl) but I started to be okay with him towards the end. The overall storyline of this book was just maybe more interesting than the first one? The fact that I don’t remember anything about these books anymore has nothing to do with their QUALITY, but everything to do with TIME. I read these back in eighth grade/freshman year of high school. It’s been quite a while! I have a hard time remembering my thoughts and basic plot points of books I just read a day ago, let alone 8 years ago! I’m excited to continue with the series and remember what happened with all of my Gallagher Girls. There are hints that hopefully she’ll learn some more about the circumstances of her father’s disappearance/death too.
You know I don’t like to reread books. However, when I realized that the final two books in the Gallagher Girls series had somehow slipped past me, I knew I needed to revisit the other books before finishing the series. I remembered that they were fun, quick reads; I figured why not try out the audio version of all the books? So far, so good! The books are just as cute and fun as I remember. I love the characters. Cammie, our MC, is the daughter of the Gallagher Academy headmistress. She’s known as the chameleon because she can blend into any situation; she’s pretty much the epitome of an average plain jane….. except for the fact that all Gallagher Girls are spies in training. I loved listening to all of the spy stuff that the girls would learn, and how Cammie applied it to her personal covert operations mission. Cammie and her friends (Bex, the British badass, and Liz, the country girl klutz) have a great friendship. All of the Gallagher Girls have an extremely loyal sisterhood, which was so cute. When Cammie meets a cute boy in the town one day, Bex and Liz help her learn more about him using their spy tools. Macy, the spoiled rich girl that just started at Gallagher, brings her knowledge of boys and normal prep schools. Armed with this information, Cammie starts seeing her new boyfriend, Josh, as much as she can… and has to lie about her real life. The […]