Book: The Truth About Forever

Book: The Truth About Forever

Author: Sarah Dessen

Synopsis: Macy has her whole summer planned out- working at the library, studying, and spending time with her mother, sharing silent grief at the traumatic loss of Macy’s father.

Her plans didn’t include landing a job at Wish Catering, with its fun-loving, chaotic crew. Or helping to renovate the family’s cottage at the beach, left in disrepair since the death of her father. Or Wes, a boy with a past, a taste for Truth-telling, and amazing artistic talent.

But Macy soon discovers that the things you expect least are sometimes the things you need most.

Rating: ⅗

Review (Spoiler Free): I picked this up on a random trip to Barnes and Noble purely because I needed that romance and contemporary feel. It was definitely not the most creative, interesting, and well put together book, but it was good. All the characters gave of this chaotic and chill feeling.

Characters: ⅘ All the characters were enjoyable, aside from the fact we didn’t get to know anyone. We dove really deep into the main character, but everyone else we were just given their sympathy and sad stories.

The romance made no sense. I did not see them together at all. It was rushed, and they barely knew each other. For the strong romantic bonds I think it would have taken more than a summer of infrequent talking to develop them.

Even though they were all great characters, I felt like I’d seen them already. They weren’t different from any basic contemporary. I wish there was a little more creativity and development with their characters.

Plot: ⅖ Again, super unoriginal. It’s the same story told over and over. It took a while for the plot to go. We spent about 100 pages with just backstory and nothing happening. Once something did happen it hooked me a little more. The big climax or what was supposed to be didn’t really feel like that big of a deal. It was kind of what did you expect.

Writing Style: ⅗ I didn’t have many problems with it. It did lack in dialogue but it had details and emotion portrayed very well. It was just very basic, not a lot of “challenging words”

Overall, I liked it. It was a nice sick read for me. What did you think about it?

Book: Secret for the Mad

secret for the madBook: Secret for the Mad

Author: dodie

Synopsis: When I feel like I’m going mad, I write.

A lot of my worst fears have come true-fears that felt so big I could barely hold them in my head. I was convinced that when they’d happen, the world would end.

But the world didn’t end. In fact, it pushed on and demanded to keep spinning throughout all sorts of mayhem, and I got through it. And because I persisted, I learned lessons about how to be stronger, kinder, better human-lessons you can only learn by going through these sorts of things.

This is for people with minds that just don’t stop; for those who feel everything seemingly a thousand time more than the people around them.

Rating: 5/5

Review: This isn’t going to be a regular review because it’s nonfiction. It’s also a very personal book. I relate so much to dodie. I cried about 50 times while reading this. The part that hit me the hardest was the letter to her best friend. I’m currently going through something with my best friend. It’s hard because I’ve gone to her when I have a problem. I can’t go to her this time. I really miss her.

The letter to Hedy hit me hard too. As the younger sibling, I was on the other side. I saw something from the older one. I don’t know if my brother was like that, but it was different. Plus I don’t have him around this year. He’s grown, he went off to college.

I feel like there is so much to learn from this book. It can teach you so much about the world, and I honestly felt like I came out of knowing more about myself.

Book: This Savage Song

this savage songBook: This Savage Song

Author: V.E. Schwab

Synopsis: There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains-and friends or enemies-with the future of their homes at stake. The first of books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city-a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent- but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

Rating:

Review (Spoiler Free): V.E. Schwab is a favorite writer of mine. She has created so many characters that I love and feel like I know as a friends. I did very much enjoy this book, but I did not love it as much as The Darker Shade of Magic series. This Savage Song was so much darker than previous books because just how chaotic the world is.

Characters: ⅘ There was a lot of character depth, which seems to be her strong suit. I found that you could clearly see each character’s motivations, their flaws, and their strengths. Another thing that made her characters realistic is they both realized how much they needed each other. They went through a lot, but they stuck together. Romance really wasn’t prominent which was nice. I expected it to take over most of the plot and become a big point.

Plot: ⅗ There seemed like very little action. It took about 200 pages for things to start moving along. Part of that is because she had so much world building to do. Once things did start moving I found myself easily captured and brought along on their adventures. Movement or traveling constantly is something I always find myself troubled with, but this time I found each scene different and stood out.

World Building: 5/5 Once again, I have to give this section its own just because I loved it so much. She did a wonderful job of describing this broken world. The monsters went into so much detail, and I was never confused about what they were talking about. In the small pages she had she gave us a lot of information at some points it was a little too much.

Writing Style: ⅗ Schwab has such a distinct and lyrical writing. In this book it fit perfectly to the dark matter and chaotic feel of the book. She wrote scenes so clearly I felt like I was there.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. Till the day I die I will be recommending Schwab’s books.

Book: The Diviners

divinersBook: The Diviners

Authors: Libba Bray

Synopsis: Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City-and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

Rating: 5/5

Synopsis (Spoiler Free) This is the first book in so long that I have felt this desire to read. I missed it so much. Magic in the twenties and a murderer around New York just makes for such a perfect and well thought out book. It’s a shame that many people opt out of it because of its size. The book is the perfect size for all that goes on and all the connections you get. Libba has outdone herself in every aspect of this book.

Characters: ⅘ These characters were so well thought out. There was great representation for diversity in this book. It was a little confusing to keep up with all these different characters, but there stories and situations were all so different that it helped differentiate. I didn’t find any character boring. I had my favorite which was Memphis and Evie’s perspectives because they just cared so much.

Motivation felt like such a big part of this story, as it does most mysteries. I found myself wondering why any of this would happen, and is anyone doing it for the sake of the greater good? There were times I really questioned everyone because it felt like everyone was just going through the motions of being good.

I liked the different perspectives which is weird because I don’t typically. With all these characters I was able to pick part of myself out of each of them really involving me in their stories.

Plot: 5/5 I was hooked from the beginning. The second it got supernatural I needed to know more. The mystery was more intriguing because of its darkness and connections to the occult. I didn’t feel rushed or like there was info dumping, it felt like we were working with them.

Writing Style: ⅘ Libba has such an ethereal and haunting writing. It really drew out and highlighted the gruesome parts of the story. Throughout the book her details enchanted these seemingly normal acts. She doesn’t get sidetracked from these details and lose the plot.

I don’t have much for these last two sections because I feel like it’s best to go in less knowledgeable. Please, please, please read this. I know so many people that would love this story, and I’m hopefully going to get them to read it.

Book: The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding

dreadful tale of prosper reddingBook: The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding

Author: Alexandra Bracken

Synopsis: “I would say it’s a pleasure to meet thee, Prosper Oceanus Redding, but truly, I only anticipate the delights of destroying thy happiness.”

Prosper is the only unexceptional Redding in his old and storied family history – that is, until he discovers the demon living inside him. Turns out Prosper’s great-great-great-great-great something grandfather made- and then broke-a contract with a malefactor, a demon who exchanges fortune for eternal servitude. And, weirdly enough, four-thousand-year-old Alastor isn’t exactly the forgiving type.

The fiend has reawakened with one purpose – to destroy the family whose success he ensured and who then betrayed him. With only days to break the curse and banish Alastor back to the demon realm, Prosper is playing unwilling host to the fiend, who delights in tormenting him with nasty insults and constant attempts tick him into a contract. Yeah, Prosper will take his future without a side of eternal servitude, thanks.

Little does Prosper know, the malefactor’s control over his body grows stronger with each passing night, and there’s a lot Alastor isn’t telling his dim-witted (but admittedly strong-willed) human host.

Rating:

Review (Spoilers): I really enjoyed this book.I did go to meet signing for this book, and Alex is such a sweet person. She interacts with the audience really well, and tells the funniest stories. It was filled with mysterious vibes that really took control of the plot, but there was still that innocence because Prosper is so young. It may deal with heavy topics, but it makes light of them because it is still middle grade.

Characters: ⅘ The family dynamic was perfect. Prosper seemed that he really wanted to make sure his family was safe, but it didn’t become the plot. Nell and Prosper’s relationship did seem a little fake because he ever met her, but he suddenly trusts her with putting magic on him. I doubted the legitimacy from the beginning, and I was right. I did love Nell so much though. I love how she decided to go for the part of the play even though it was a boy.

Alastor was the funniest demon I have ever read from. There were times when I wish he was a little more serious to push the story along. He seemed very humanized than a demon would be, and it’s a little scary to think of a demon having and showing these human traits like Alastor did. The ending of the book was what really shook me. Instead of this demon that’s bad, it’s this human. It was really such an eye opener that not all humans are good some are monsters. Just like humans an entire race can’t be judged on the action of some. We wouldn’t all like to be recognized as just Hitler, and the same could go for these demons. Maybe some of them are good, and we can’t judge the race as a whole because they are all different.

Plot: ⅗ It may have been the way I was reading it, in the middle of a bunch of testing, but the plot was really slow. It didn’t draw my attention span for long periods of time. There were some great moments throughout this book, just put all together it didn’t flow as nicely as it could have. I am going to be hoping for some more world building and action in this next book, especially since the ending of the last one.

Writing Style: This was perfect for test days because I could home to an easy read that gave my brain a break. It was filled with simple dialogue, not a lot of intense world building, and some very descriptive sights. I will not hold against her the lack of vocabulary, and sentence types because it is written for a younger audience.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book, and I will be eagerly anticipating the coming books. What did you think of this book?

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.

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?