Source: Scribd

Holiday Review: Christmas at Lilac Cottage

Posted December 16, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Holiday Review: Christmas at Lilac Cottage

This month I’ll be highlighting different holiday or Christmas-oriented books on the blog. I love reading based on the season, so stay tuned for more wintery reviews. To learn more about what’s coming and my holiday book rating system, check here! This book started out really strong for me and then my feelings kind of dwindled towards the end. I can’t put my finger on it, but I feel like I’ve been reading a lot of instalove-like romances and I’m getting tired of it. I need a good hate-to-love romance to get back in the swing of things. I didn’t realize throughout most of my reading that this book basically only happens over the course of a week… meaning there was some EXTREME instalove. This bugs me more than love triangles do. I did feel some chemistry but the whole use of the L-word right away is a major deterrent. Here’s a breakdown of some good/bad things. Overall, I would definitely recommend this book if you don’t mind the instalove factor. I enjoyed it a lot aside from that. If the plot was just stretched out over a longer period of time, it would probably work okay for me. The story was cute in general and very atmospheric. I love the town of White Cliff Bay so I will definitely be reading the next story at some point!I definitely expected the book to be more Christmassy, especially because of the title. It took place in the week leading up to Christmas […]

Review: The Isle of the Lost

Posted December 9, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Review: The Isle of the Lost

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 […]

Holiday Review: Icing on the Lake

Posted December 7, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Holiday Review: Icing on the Lake

This month I’ll be highlighting different holiday or Christmas-oriented books on the blog. I love reading based on the season, so stay tuned for more wintery reviews. To learn more about what’s coming and my holiday book rating system, check here! I had literally no idea what to expect from this book. I couldn’t track down a real synopsis for the life of me. I knew it was one of those HarperTeen books from back in my high school days; they tend to read like a romantic comedy. Early contemporary romance YA, I suppose. I really enjoyed Snowed In last year, which I imagined was quite similar. I remember getting these types of books out from the library after school and reading them in the library. Anyways, the book is about a girl (Kirsten) who goes to stay with her young divorcee sister and her son, because she hurt her leg or something. She is somehow able to live there for a month or two while her sister heals. She’s just… not attending high school, but is able to work on an independent project for the month instead. Pretty not realistic, but okay. Basically she gets involved with some ~boys~ because she wants to bring one to a weekend away with her friends. →  A few highlights because I really don’t know what to say: The writing and dialogue felt super awkward (especially the “banter”) Lots of characters were fleetingly introduced at the beginning and I couldn’t keep her friends straight […]

Review: The Boy Most Likely To

Posted October 16, 2015 / Book Reviews / 10 Comments
Review: The Boy Most Likely To

I AM SAD AND DISAPPOINTED. I don’t know how else to start this review. 🙁 In the first book, I didn’t really like Tim at all. He grew on me, for sure, but not enough to make me say “hey I’d love to read a book about him.” Regardless, when I saw this one on Scribd, I thought it’d be a perfect audiobook to start. I was pretty interested at the beginning and Tim continued to grow on me even more. And then the TWIST happened (which happens so early in the book that it feels weird to call it a spoiler?) and everything went downhill. Don’t worry, I’ll be spoiler-free for a while. In the most general terms I can say, I didn’t MIND this turn of events. It’s not what I was expecting when I set out to read this book, but it also wasn’t surprising. I knew exactly what was going to happen when certain things started happening. Sorry for the vagueness, but go with it. Regardless, I don’t think this particular element of the story (which turned into pretty much the entire plot) bothered me like it may have bothered others. I didn’t care about Tim much so it didn’t upset me that this was happening to him. I was intrigued but slowly that interest waned. I had a big feeling of what was going to happen by the end of the book, so it all felt pointless to me. There were some pretty big glaring holes that […]

Review: Two-Way Street

Posted October 2, 2015 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Review: Two-Way Street

For an outdated road trip book with characters I barely liked, this book wasn’t bad. It was a really quick read and perfect for Bout of Books (when I read this back in August). I’m glad I finally read it but it’s definitely not a new favorite. This had alllll the makings for a book I’d love. I read Ex-Mas back during the holidays last year and loved the concept: exes taking a road trip together and falling back in love. In this book, Jordan and Courtney are taking a road trip from their hometown in Florida to their new college in Boston. They broke up a few weeks earlier but decide to make the trip up together still. The gist of the story is that Jordan says he dumped her for some girl he met on MySpace (yep, this book is old) but really that’s a lie. He’s covering ~something~ up that I happened to figure out within the first few chapters. I really, really didn’t like Jordan that much. He made CONSTANT sexist references to girls, their clothing, their habits, and their bodies. I rolled my eyes and/or cringed at something he said or thought in literally all of his chapters. He’d talk about girls like they were crazy, generalize all of them into one big group, and talk shit about their “slutty” clothes. He even said Courtney looked like a tramp at one point! All of that macho bullshit is SO not okay with me. Otherwise, I did […]

Reread Review: Keeping the Moon

Posted September 21, 2015 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Reread Review: Keeping the Moon

Some summer many years ago, I think. I remember bringing a few Dessen books to Maine with me throughout the summer and I’m pretty sure this was one of them. This is the book I remembered the most details about out of all of her books, actually. I remembered the main character working at the Last Chance Cafe and how much I loved Colby, NC. This is the first Dessen book I read that is set in Colby, so it kind of held a special place in my heart. I pretty much forgot all of the other details though. Dessen reread 2015! I was thinking of what audiobook I should start next and decided on this one because I finally tracked it down. I just kept remembering the one book with the restaurant setting and was determined to get to it next. After reading the synopsis again and not seeing a hint of romance, I was kind of excited to see how a book with friendship as the main focus would be. I’ve read plenty of books with friendship as a strong theme, but I feel like it’s usually coupled with family issues and/or romance. This one seemed to be straight up friendship feels.Ah, this was so good. I’m surprised to see that most people don’t count this as a favorite or even like it that much. Colie was an interesting character and I totally forgot about all of the bullying she dealt with. I absolutely loved the friendship storyline in this […]

Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Posted August 17, 2015 / Book Reviews / 14 Comments
Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

This was so cuuuuute! AH. I finally see what all the hype is about (to an extent…). I started listening to the audiobook of this but eventually decided to finish it up with my copy from the library. I’m so glad I did because I was ridiculously excited to find out who the eff Blue was. So, this book was chock-full of adorable and realistic moments about relationships, friends, and family. I’m SO SO glad I finally read it. It centers around Simon, who has been emailing with a mystery guy named Blue. They know that they both go to the same high school and neither one of them is openly gay. I won’t spoil too much about how things progress, but UGH THE FEELS. “People really are like house with vast rooms and tiny windows. And maybe it’s a good thing, the way we never stop surprising each other.” I started off literally loving this book but my obsession waned a little in the middle. I liked it, but I wasn’t getting the same off-the-charts level of feels as everyone else. That changed back again towards the end! I can’t really count this as an all-time favorite for some reason but it comes super close. This is such an important story about coming out, being yourself, dealing with friends, communicating with your parents… you name it. It was such a realistic story about high school; I felt like I was back there dealing with all of the same issues. […]

Reread Review: What Happened to Goodbye

Posted August 12, 2015 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Reread Review: What Happened to Goodbye

I read this book for the first time, I think, during the summer of 2012. It may have been a few years earlier, to be honest. I’ve been iffy about which of her books I’ve actually read – there are so many and they all sound similar (even though they aren’t) when I read the synopsis again – but I knew I did read this one back in the day. Honestly, not much. The mini town model is the one thing I remembered the most from this book. The restaurant itself also seemed familiar. For some reason, the Dessen books that take place in restaurants always stick in my mind the most. I’m so glad I revisited this one, especially because I barely remembered anything from the first time I read it. I’m so terrible with remembering book details; rereading is ideal for someone like me. I remember loving the restaurant, the model, the characters, and the whole plot, actually. I also had a vague idea of how the book ended.When Cristina mentioned that she was rereading this one soon, I knew I had to hop on board. I’ve been aiming to read more Sarah Dessen this summer (somewhat failing, I guess) and this was a perfect one to add to the mix. I will say, I miss Colby (as a setting) and hope to get into some of those books by her during the duration of the summer. There was a glimpse at Colby in this book, which was nice, but I need […]

Series Review: The Lying Game Books 4-6 + Novella

Posted August 7, 2015 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Series Review: The Lying Game Books 4-6 + Novella

So, as you saw in my previous post, I went on a little binge. It was a very spur of the moment decision and I figured I’d just work through the audiobooks for these ones over the course of the month…. but, I couldn’t stop. It ended up being a full-on series binge-read, which fits nicely in my Summer of Series Challenge! I didn’t put it on my TBR, but oh well. I should have known Sara Shepard would make me turn the pages nonstop until I was finished with the series. The Lying Game: Books 4, 5, and 6, plus the other novella I won’t spoil each individual book in the reviews, as usual, BUT each review will likely have spoilers for the previous book(s)! So, beware.   To be honest, this rating is probably a little too high. The ending definitely didn’t surprise me but it did make the book a bit more interesting. I’m getting sick and tired of the same plot in each book: Emma learns a piece of information, aggressively suspects someone the entire book, chases down dumb leads and assumes the worst without thinking first, and refuses to think it could be anyone but the person she chose as the latest suspect. She spent the entire book being an idiot and jumping to conclusions. It was just SO convenient that the person she suspected just so happened to be doing sketchy things while she suspected them (when they never really had before). The TV show made me suspect […]

Series Review: The Lying Game Books 1-3 + Novella

Posted August 5, 2015 / Book Reviews / 3 Comments
Series Review: The Lying Game Books 1-3 + Novella

So, I went on a little binge. It was a very spur of the moment decision and I figured I’d just work through the audiobooks for these ones over the course of the month…. but, I couldn’t stop. It ended up being a full-on series binge-read, which fits nicely in my Summer of Series Challenge! I didn’t put it on my TBR, but oh well. I should have known Sara Shepard would make me turn the pages nonstop until I was finished with the series. The Lying Game: Books 1, 2, and 3, plus the prequel novella I won’t spoil each individual book in the reviews, as usual, BUT each review will likely have spoilers for the previous book(s)! So, beware.  WOO that was really good! I shouldn’t say that I’m suprised at how good it was, but I kind of am. Sara Shepard is known for writing the same kind of books over and over again. I think most people admit that, even her big fans (like myself). There’s just something about her writing style that works for me and keeps me engaged, even if some of it feels like deja vu. THE GOOD NEWS IS: this book was actually not like her other books/series at all. It felt like a completely fresh story, which is definitely what made all the difference. Instead of following a group of girls around trying to figure out mysteries and/or murders (Hi, Pretty Little Liars, The Heiresses, and The Perfectionists), this one involves long-lost twin sisters. […]