Book: The Murder On The Orient Express

Book: The Murder On The Orient Expressmurder on the orient express

Author: Agatha Christie

Synopsis: Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its track by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. One of his fellow passengers must be the murderer.

Isolated by the storm and with a killer in their midst, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer amongst a dozen of the dead man’s enemies, before the murderer decides to strike again.

Rating:

Review(Spoilers): Although this isn’t going to tell the big spoilers I feel that it is best to go into this book not knowing anything. I picked this up without knowing much about it because the adaptation is coming out. Typically, mysterious are not my thing. I find them boring and predictable. I was disappointed with how predictable this book was too.

Characters:⅖ There wasn’t much about the characters beside their relations to the murder. We didn’t get a look into anyone’s personality, not even Hercule, making the whole story very distant. Hercule’s thinking process was very interesting, as I have never thought like a detective. I did find that no one’s acts really surprised me.

Plot:⅗ While it was predictable, I did love it. The way that they all had relations and ties to this one man and all seemed to be on this one train did raise a lot of questions. I wish it wasn’t so predictable because that always seems to ruin my opinion. The entire time I did think it was one person until the last section, that was when I thought that everything was put together so smoothly that it had to have been planned.

Writing Style: ⅖ I understand how much effort is put into the writing when it comes to mysteries, especially murders, because it has to flow while giving evidence, but it can’t give anything away. When it came to the explanation it was well thought out, but it felt like he was explaining to us rather than he was trying to solve the problem. There was something about the dialogue that felt off. Of course, she did a flawless job of providing well thought out evidence for all the characters. I didn’t have a problem with any of that just with the dialogue.

Overall, I did really enjoy this story. It was a nice refresher from fantasy, and it really gives your mind a challenge to figure it out. I will be eagerly awaiting the adaptation set to come out in November.

 

Book: Flame In The Mist

Book: Flame In The Mist

Author: Renee Ahdieh

Synopsis: The only daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has always known she’d been raised for one purpose and one purpose only: to marry. Never mind her cunning, which rivals that of her twin brother, Kenshin, or skills as an accomplished alchemist. Since Mariko was not born a boy, her fate was sealed the moment she drew her first breath.

So, at just seventeen years old, Mariko is sent to the imperial palace to meet her betrothed, a man she did not choose, for the very first time. But the journey is cut short when Mariko’s convoy is viciously attacked by the Black Clan. a dangerous group of bandits who’ve been hired to kill Mariko before she reaches the palace.

The lone survivor, Mariko narrowly escapes to the woods, where she plots her revenge. Dressed as a peasant boy, she sets out to infiltrate the Black Clan and hunt down those responsible for the target on her back. Once she’s within their ranks, though, Mariko finds for the first time she’s appreciated for her intellect and abilities. She even finds herself falling in love-a love that will force her to question everything she’s ever known about her family, her purpose, and her deepest desires.

Rating:

Review (Spoiler Free): Everyone talked about this book and how good it was, so I had to high hopes for this book. Sadly, it didn’t reach those expectations. There was a lot of confusing things and the world building was a little too far fetched.

Characters: ⅗ Mariko seemed like she was going to be a strong character. She didn’t seem to have her priorities straight, and she didn’t even start to put together a plan. Mariko’s motivation was strong and nor was it the best decisions. I had seen loads on how much feminism there was, but to me the feminism wasn’t put there for any gaining factor. It was forced, and didn’t impact her character at all.

Plot: ⅗ The plot was confusing. It seemed very choppy and not smoothly connected. I wish there would have been more world building to help make sense of the things that went down. It was very dull, and I wish I could have been more drawn into the story,

Writing Style: ⅖ A lot of the things mentioned didn’t have an explanation. There was a glossary, but not all of the words were there. The first time something is mentioned there should be a sentence to describe what it is. Instead we have to guess or go to the glossary. Her sentences weren’t overly flowy, preventing me from really connecting to the story and the characters.

Overall, I didn’t enjoy this book. I wish it had more world building, and less focus on the relationship that blumes out of nowhere.

Autumn Reads

I’m not typically a seasonal reader. I also live in Texas, so there isn’t really a Autumn season. I really want to move somewhere the leaves change colors, it snows, and there is a temperature below 80 degrees. There are quite a few books that do remind me of Autumn, or what I have seen of Autumn online. The goodreads will be linked below if you want actual summaries of these books.

Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

harry potter

This one is one everyone thinks of, and I started rereading them to immerse myself in some version of Autumn. The way the seasons are described are represented makes you really crave for a Hogwarts. The meals, the classes, the quidditch, and everything to do with the wizarding world gives me feelings.

Vicious by V.E. Schwab

vicious

Last year, my wonderful friend gave me this book for my birthday. I started as soon as I got it, and it was mid-December. The writing was so atmospheric. It was nice to read during school because the beginning and part of the middle is set in a University. This book was perfect to read while in bed while drinking tea.

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

bone gap

This book was set in a small town, and it had a lot to do with friendship, love, and an underlying creepy vibe I didn’t expect. We follow Finn, the main character, as he finds out and goes through a lot of stuff. I found the writing very emotional, and I would definitely recommend getting a cup of tea for this one.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

the raven boys

Now this wouldn’t be a Autumn recommendation post if I didn’t put my favorite read of the season. The Raven Boys is probably the best thing to read while cuddled up with tea, a candle, and the rain falling on your window. You go through the adventures with these themes of ghosts and death always hanging around the corner. This series is one I will ALWAYS associate with Autumn.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

the unbecoming of mara dyer

I love this series a lot (I am also siked for the Shaw Confessions coming out in a few months) She does a great way of tying in a very creepy element. You are able to feel scared, uncontrollable laughter, happiness, sadness because she toys with every emotion you have. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is looking for a book in which you are kept in the dark, but you don’t realize it.

September Wrap Up

This month was especially good for me because I read a lot whilst balancing my studies. I read a lot of new releases because so many good ones came out this fall, and even more new releases are coming out this fall.  I also know I haven’t been consistent with posting, and I promise to try this week.

Trails of Apollo by Rick Riordan 3.5/5 Goodreads

The_Hidden_Oracle

I really did enjoy this book. Uncle Rick is very good at connecting to my childhood and pulling its strings.

Wonder Woman by Leigh Bardugo 5/5 Goodreads

wonder woman

My favorite author back at it again. Even though I didn’t feel it was her strongest book, it was good. She really had a different take on Diana’s story.

Girls Made of Glass and Snow by Melissa Bashardoust 4.5/5 Goodreads

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THIS BOOK WAS SO GOOD! The characters were so on point. I could feel a book slump coming on and this book demolished it.

The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sánez ⅗ Goodreads

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This did really blow me away. I was laughing, I was in tears, and I felt on edge the entire book.

Warcross by Marie Lu 5/5 Goodreads

warcross

Marie Lu has blown me away, once again. She has this way of twisting and breaking your heart, and it’s wonderfully painful. I can’t wait to see how the rest of the story unfolds.

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke ⅗ Goodreads

wink poppy midnight

It was very tough to get into, but it was very mysterious and different to what I was normally reading.

Flame In The Mist by Renee Ahdieh 3/5 Goodreads

flame in the mist

While I am excited to see how this story unfolds, I did find it a bit slow and confusing. We didn’t have a very firm grasp on the world.

Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling ⅘ Goodreads

harry potter

I was really feeling down on a sick day, so I decided that I could start the Harry Potter reread over again. (It’s still going strong.)

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling ⅗ Goodreads

chamber of secrets

Easily, this is my least favorite. It’s funny because growing up this was my favorite growing up. I just find Lockhart and Dobby’s characters over the top and annoying.

The Hush by Skye Melki-Wegner ⅗ Goodreads

the hush

I haven’t read a book quite like this in a while. It reminded me of Six of Crows with the whole heist idea.

Book: Girls Made Of Snow and Glass

Book: Girls Made Of Snow and Glass

Author: Melissa Bashardoust

Synopsis: At sixteen, Mina’s mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone. Her heart has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that normal-she never guessed that her father had cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: Win the king’s heart, become queen, and finally know.

Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: A magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do-and who to be-to win back the only mother she’s ever known.

Rating: 4.5/5

Review (Contains Spoilers): I received this book as an arc after winning it in a giveaway. I was so excited, and I’m happy to say it didn’t disappoint. The characters were so complex, and I couldn’t help but love and hate them.

Characters: 5/5 My favorite part of the entire book was the relationships. The relationship between Mina and Lynet was so hard to understand. There wasn’t the basic stepmother trope which was refreshing. I couldn’t begin to think how much changed between them. I WILL BE SCREAMING ABOUT LYNET AND NADIA. I didn’t expect it at all, yet it seemed so fitting. Throughout the book they went through so much, and I loved them just being there for eachother all the time. Not too long ago I read a post about lack of F/F relationships, and this book represented it very well.

I didn’t like Mina as much as I liked Lynet. Obviously she had that more villainy side that came out in the way she talked. For some reason, she reminded me of Kaz Brekker. I think it was the “Can’t love” trope going for them, but also in the way they represented themselves. Mina was constantly thinking about presentation and ways to maneuver her way to the top. She was still so well written even if she wasn’t a good character.

Lynet on the other hand was amazing to read from. I don’t know why, but I found her more interesting and more human. She did feel more childish than her age. Yet Lynet sacrificed so much for her own happiness to help her dad. Lynet did almost everything her dad told her to, and even though she was scared of becoming like mother, she tried to disappoint her father as little as possible. Such a pure soul, and the ending she really had changed. After all of this, she had realized her duties and what she needed to do.

Plot: ⅘ This plot was seemed unoriginal, but it was still shocking. Every betrayal felt real even though sometimes it wasn’t. I felt that it was a little fast, but I was eager for more, and it fed that need. There was some parts that I wish was expanded on like their powers because it felt a little skimmed. Large gaps of time threw me off because so much time passed, but the scenery or seasons never changed.

Writing Style: ⅘ There wasn’t a lot of dialogue which is different from most books. My only problem with the writing was the way it skimmed over monumental parts. Big parts of the story were wrapped up in a few sentences. That was another factor that contributed to the pacing.

In the end I loved it. This was such an amazing book, and I will recommend this until the day I die.

Book: The Inexplicable Logic of My Life

Book: The Inexplicable Logic of my Life

Author: Benjamin Alire Sańez

Synopsis: The first day of senior year:

Everything is about to change. Until this moment, Sal has always been certain of his place with his adoptive gay father and their loving Mexican-American. But now his own history unexpectedly haunts, and life-altering events force him and his best friend, Samantha, to confront issues of faith, loss, and grief.

Suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and discovering that he no longer knows who he really is- but if Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?

Rating: 3.5/5

Review: (Spoiler Free) I really do love this book. Most of it hit my heart so hard, and I cried like a baby the entire time. I don’t think I liked it more than Aristotle and Dante, but I still did very much enjoy it. It did seem a little repetitive at some points.

Characters: ⅗ Salvador didn’t feel original, but I still felt a very strong connection to him. Every heartbreaking moment I was crying. Sal and Sam’s relationship didn’t feel very real to me. I couldn’t find in what way it was similar at all to my best friend. Of course, the circumstances were very different. They were the only relationship that really fit. Sal and his dad were supposed to have this great relationship, but it didn’t feel right.

Plot: ⅖ There wasn’t much of a plot. It felt more like a collection memories and moments. There was also very large gaps between these small moments. The conflict was a little too drawn out too.

Writing Style: ⅖ There wasn’t much depth, which what the author was trying to get. A lot of the dialogue seemed a little over the top in terms of the jokes. No one seemed to have basic conversations.

That was a very short review, but overall I did enjoy it. I wished I loved it as much as Ari and Dante.

Book: Frostblood

Book: Frostblood

Author: Elly Blake

Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a Fireblood who has concealed her powers of heat and flame from the cruel Frostblood ruling class her entire life. But when her mother is killed trying to protect her, and rebel Frostbloods demand her help to overthrow their bloodthirsty king, she agrees to come out of hiding, desperate to have he revenge.

Despite her unpredictable abilities, Ruby trains with the rebels and the infuriating- yet irresistible- Arcus, who seems to think of her as nothing more than a weapon. But before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to compete in the King’s tournaments that pit Fireblood prisoners against Frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her-and from the icy young man she has come to love.

Rating:

Review (Spoiler Free): Frostblood was full of troupes making it seem very unoriginal. The book didn’t grip me or connect me to the story at all.

Characters: ⅖ Ruby felt very basic. I didn’t get much from her interactions with anyone. Arcus was cliche, and I hated him. He was very cruel in the beginning and mean, yet she found that endearing and felt that “pull” to him.

Plot: ⅗ The King’s tournament was a big part of the story. It was very short, the author just drew it out to last longer. Majority of this book is just training, and Ruby resisting and doubting everyone. The plot was full of troupes too, it made it to cliche for my liking.

World Building: ⅗ This world is very far fetched. I think that we were given the information at the right time. It did annoy me how much wrong information we were given; Ruby said that the Firebloods did this then she learns that the Frostbloods did nothing wrong. It really amounted to me doubting all the information our main character gave us.

Writing Style: The writing style wasn’t overall prominent. It didn’t connect me to the characters, making them seem really surface. Dialogue was very obvious, and included way too much banter.

I didn’t really enjoy this book, but I may continue with the story. I think it’s a series, but I could be wrong. What did you think of this book?

Book: The Trials of Apollo

Book: The Trials of ApolloThe_Hidden_Oracle.jpg

Author: Rick Riordan

Synopsis: How do you punish an immortal? By making him human. After angering his father, Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disoriented, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favor.

But Apollo has many enemies-gods, monsters, and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go… an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

Rating: 3.5/5

Review (Contains Spoilers):

Characters: ⅗ I really enjoyed these characters. I seemed that Meg’s actions were a little childish, but she wasn’t written like a child. Meg always seemed like a little sister to Apollo, and I think that we will be seeing more of her in the coming books.

Apollo was the only character we got the thoughts on, and he is the brattiest character ever. Why do the other Gods act so normal? His personality did bring so much more humor into the story, it felt forced. The jokes were only sometimes funny, and Rick trying to write more modern it really felt short to me.

The LBTQ+ characters were amazing. I liked how Apollo mentioned it, was fine with it, and quickly moved on. Will and Nico are so cute with each other. You can really see how loving they are, and their flirty jabs never failed to make me smile.

Plot: ⅘ Dull moments were almost nonexistent. I found the plot the most interesting part. I did find the Geyser scene was very stupid. The personalities were annoying, and the scene felt overall forced and fake. The ending scene was very quick. We have an entire book of build up, yet the battle scene lasts a chapter. Apollo knew exactly what to do, and there was no failed tries.

The parts about Apollo’s past lovers was my favorite part. They really gave him a human perspective. I also loved how it was not just a woman but a man too.

Writing Style: Rick Riordan writes middle grade, so it was very easy for me to read. Things are very clearly written and spelled. That did make the story very choppy, and the dialogue wasn’t very flowy.

Overall, this story was enjoyable. My inner child can come out and really enjoy middle grade.

 

The Seven Deadly Sins Tag

Greed- What is your most expensive and inexpensive book?

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Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare is probably my most expensive book at almost $20.

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\My cheapest would probably be The Boy In The Striped Pajamas by John Boyne at $2.

Wrath- What author do you have a love hate relationship with?

Sarah J. Maas because I have so many memories loving her books, but now I see how problematic her books are.

Glutton- What book have you devoured over and over with no shame?

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Obviously Six Of Crows, I love it so much.

Sloth- What book have you neglected reading because of laziness?

mistborn

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson is going to be hard to get through, so I’m trying to put it off.

Pride- What book do you talk about most in order to sound like an intellectual reader?

harry potter

I really don’t know. I’m careful not to talk about a book too many times. As a kid, I used to use Harry Potter to brag because most kids my age hadn’t read it yet.

Lust- What do you find attractive in male characters?

I like them being dark, but I don’t want them being mean to their other. I want them to be protecting, but know that the other can handle themselves. They can’t be strong all the time, they need to be a little human.

Envy- What book would you most want to receive as a gift?

every heart a doorway

I really want Every Heart A Doorway right now.

secret for the mad

I’m also looking forward to Secret For the Mad by dodie, but that is not out yet.

August Wrap Up

This week was my last month of summer. It was pretty solid. My reading experience this summer has been amazing. It’s been awhile since I’ve read a book I didn’t. I don’t know if I will read as much from now on, but I’m certainly going to try.

Legend ⅘ (reread) Goodreads

I didn’t obsessed over it like I did the first time, but I still really enjoyed it.

Six of Crows (reread) 5/5 Goodreads

I love Six of Crows with all my soul. It has great representation, amazing and human characters, and the best setting. I reread it because I was really missing the characters.

Lucky In Love ⅖ Goodreads

This book was disappointing. I really wanted more from it, but it was quick.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved BeforeGoodreads

One of the best contemporaries I’ve read in awhile. I loved how the relationship was a big part, but it didn’t consume the entire story.

P.s. I Still Love You ⅗ Goodreads

Sadly, I didn’t love this like the first one. Lara Jean just seemed very babyish to me.

Wolf by Wolf 5/5 Goodreads

I loved this book so much. The Jewish rep is so rare. Yael is one of the best and strongest (mentally and physically) that I’ve read from is so long.

CinderGoodreads

I really didn’t like this book at all. There were very few redeemable parts for me.

Frostblood ⅗ Goodreads

This book was okay. It was very basic and border.

A Million Junes ⅘ Goodreads

This book surprised me with its magical elements. It was portrayed very well too.

The Problem With Forever ⅗ Goodreads

I found the main character’s anxiety relatable, I found myself understanding of her freakouts. Though she was a little over the top for me.