Monday, June 29, 2015

Review: P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

P.S. I Still Love You
(To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #2)
Publication Date: May 26, 2015
Hardcover, 337 pages, Simon and Schuster
Genres: YA, Contemporary

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I've Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

My Review

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is a beautiful story. I had barely finished it before I was ordering its sequel—that’s how good it is. Plus, I absolutely HAD to know what happened! I don’t understand how people who read the first book when it came out could wait so long to know the ending. I was dying just waiting two days! Despite my anticipation, I was let down when I read this book. I guess Jenny Han and endings just don’t mix.

The book starts out right where its predecessor left off. Lara Jean is trying to fix her relationship with Peter. And that was totally what I wanted to happen. What I didn’t want to happen was the sex tape drama. I LOATHE contemporary books that involve anything where private situations are shared online via social media. I cannot stand reading about it. I’ve figured up some reasons for this:

1) In my high school we only had one instance of this happening and it was immediately dealt with and no one actually saw anything.

2) Going along with my high school thing, most of the teachers and students would have been aggravated by the culprit or the post-er, not the victim.

3) I think this trope is overdone by authors who are older and don’t really understand what it’s like for teenagers in high school. They think that it’s all bullies and mean girls with phones and internet access. And that’s just not true.

So, once I knew that this book would be all about that ridiculousness, I immediately lost some enthusiasm.

I also didn’t like that this book made Lara Jean seem a little less like regular teen girl and more of a girl set on revenge. Her entire storyline just didn’t add up to what I had pictured her personality to be.

I did like the part about the childhood friends getting back together, but the way it played out made me hesitant. John just wasn’t a character I cared to get to know about, I mean we’d already been introduced to two guys—Josh and Peter—and I didn’t want a third one in the mix.

All in all, this book let me down. Jenny Han always comes up with these amazing first and sometimes even second books but the finale always leaves me disappointed. I’d still say that you should pick up this sugary sweet duology, if only because the first book is so tooth-rottenly delicious!

*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Which Team Are You? : The Suits Edition

I basically just post a book series every week and have people vote on what team they are. I know the YA Sisterhood does the YA Crush Tournament, but I just want to find out how much you guys like one love interest over another, in one series.

Last week's poll was over Team Noah, Ryan, Isaiah, or West from Katie McGarry’s Pushing the Limits series. Team Isaiah won!

So for this edition of “Which Team Are You?” I’m going to ask you who your pick of hunky man-flesh is from the television show Suits (in honor of season five having started):

You can choose from:

1) Mike

or 2) Harvey

I’m Team Mike because honestly, Harvey is too conceited. He just irks me sometimes, err… a lot of the time. Plus, Mike’s cute with Rachel and I just want them to be together forever! Do they have a ship name? If so, let me know!
If you had to choose one, who would it be, and why? If you haven’t seen the show (And why not?), who do you think sounds more appealing from the Suits summary below:

On the run from a drug deal gone bad, Mike Ross, a brilliant college-dropout, finds himself a job working with Harvey Specter, one of New York City's best lawyers.

  • Team Mike
  • Team Harvey
More polls: Create

***Please note that I stop checking the poll the Friday before the new poll comes out (on Sunday). Also, please only vote once so everyone’s vote counts, unless you need to vote for both guys. I give you permission to do that because sometimes choosing is tough.***

**Also note that these are not my images. I found them online.**

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Stacking the Shelves: The Heart of a Lion Edition

"Stacking the Shelves" is a weekly haul meme that is hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It allows book buyers to share their accumulation of books with the online book-loving community.

I went to Barnes & Noble….so I had to pay full price. Boo.

Lion Heart by A.C. Gaughen

I’ve already finished this book and I enjoyed it. I’ll have a review up soon-ish!

What books have you bought/received lately?

Friday, June 26, 2015

Dean Winchester Friday

Dean Winchester (or sometimes Jensen Ackles) Fridays make me a very happy fangirl. You'll see why when you look at the pic.;_ylt=AwrB8pzyRmtViwQAIqkunIlQ;_ylu=X3oDMTIyazg5amE1BHNlYwNzcgRzbGsDaW1nBG9pZANjZDAzM2YzMjE0ODE2MWUzYzMyMGY5ZjY3YmI2OWYyNARncG9zAzEEaXQDYmluZw--?.origin=&

Lullaby and goodnight, go to sleep my precious Dean… La la la la la la

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Review: To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
(To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #1)
Publication Date: April 15, 2014
Hardcover, 355 pages, Simon & Schuster
Genres: YA, Contemporary

Lara Jean keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her.

They aren't love letters that anyone else wrote for her, these are ones she's written. One for every boy she's ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she can pour out her heart and soul and say all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly Lara Jean's love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

My Review

This book has a lot of hype surrounding it, so I totally went into it thinking that it would just be a cute, light contemporary read. And it was. But it wasn’t. And I’m not sure how to explain that. You’ll just have to read it to see what I mean. ;)

Lara Jean has two sisters, an older one and a younger one. Margot, the oldest, has a boyfriend named Josh. Margot breaks up with Josh because she’s leaving for college. Lara Jean has a crush on Josh. Lara Jean writes a letter to Josh about her crush. That letter gets accidentally mailed. Cue a messed up whirlwind of drama and craziness.

Lara Jean is a great main character. She’s the epitome of every homebody girl that just doesn’t understand why people like to go to parties, football games, etc. I think we’d get along great. She also spends a lot of time with her family which makes for some adorable familial interactions throughout the book. Now the love interests, Josh and Peter, are very different. Josh is kind of like the nerdy guy next door, while Peter is the lacrosse star that everyone loves. And while Josh is a nice guy, I just didn’t see him clicking with Lara Jean. But that’s just my opinion.

The plot of the book was amazingly entertaining. While there are some original elements to the story, like the letters getting accidentally sent and the family and boyfriend dynamic, the big plot points of the story have really already been done before, but Han does a great job making all of these situations seem like she invented them. Like the pretending-to-date-another-guy trope or even the ex-girlfriend-is-a-beotch cliché. Nothing about the book seemed like it had been overdone in every Hollywood rom-com ever.

I loved Han’s The Summer I Turned Pretty series and I didn’t think that this book would surpass the feels I had for those books (at least the first two, because the last one wasn’t that great), but To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before totally blew me away, and I can’t wait to read the next book in this sugary sweet duology!

*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: An Inheritance of Ashes by Leah Bobet

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

This week, what's really got my pages in a twist is...

An Inheritance of Ashes
Publication Date: October 6, 2015
Hardcover, 400 pages, Clarion Books
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

The strange war down south—with its rumors of gods and monsters—is over. And while sixteen-year-old Hallie and her sister wait to see who will return from the distant battlefield, they struggle to maintain their family farm.

When Hallie hires a veteran to help them, the war comes home in ways no one could have imagined, and soon Hallie is taking dangerous risks—and keeping desperate secrets. But even as she slowly learns more about the war and the men who fought it, ugly truths about Hallie’s own family are emerging. And while monsters and armies are converging on the small farm, the greatest threat to her home may be Hallie herself.

My Thoughts

I actually don’t know a whole lot about this book, but it’s young adult fantasy and that has me intrigued.

What book are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

My Favorite Cover of 2015

So there are only a few cover reveals that have yet to be shared for the 2015 book year (*cough* A Mad Zombie Party *uncough*), and I think I’ve found the winner of the Most Beautiful Cover Award.

Their Fractured Light
(Starbound #3)
Publication Date: December 1, 2015
Paperback, 400 pages, Disney-Hyperion
Genres: YA, Sci-Fi

A year ago, Flynn Cormac and Jubilee Chase made the now infamous Avon Broadcast, calling on the galaxy to witness for their planet, and protect them from destruction. Some say Flynn’s a madman, others whisper about conspiracies. Nobody knows the truth. A year before that, Tarver Merendsen and Lilac LaRoux were rescued from a terrible shipwreck—now, they live a public life in front of the cameras, and a secret life away from the world’s gaze.

Now, in the center of the universe on the planet of Corinth, all four are about to collide with two new players, who will bring the fight against LaRoux Industries to a head. Gideon Marchant is an eighteen-year-old computer hacker—a whiz kid and an urban warrior. He’ll climb, abseil and worm his way past the best security measures to pull off onsite hacks that others don’t dare touch.

Sofia Quinn has a killer smile, and by the time you’re done noticing it, she’s got you offering up your wallet, your car, and anything else she desires. She holds LaRoux Industries responsible for the mysterious death of her father and is out for revenge at any cost.

When a LaRoux Industries security breach interrupts Gideon and Sofia’s separate attempts to infiltrate their headquarters, they’re forced to work together to escape. Each of them has their own reason for wanting to take down LaRoux Industries, and neither trusts the other. But working together might be the best chance they have to expose the secrets LRI is so desperate to hide.

My Thoughts

I just LOVE this cover! I don’t know why, but it’s soooo beautiful! The purples and the shinies! And just everything! I haven’t even read the first two books yet, but you can bet that I will be buying them and binge-reading them as soon as the release date for this book gets closer!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Publication Date: April 7, 2015
Hardcover, 303 pages, Balzer + Bray
Genres: YA, Contemporary, LGBT

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

My Review

Cute! Adorbs! Awkward! Funny! All the light, fluffy, contemporary book feels wrapped into one lovely read!

This book was great. There’s no getting around the fact that Simon is a lovable main character. His friends are sweet, his family is fantastic, and everyone in this book is just so bloody awesome! At first, it was kind of hard to read the book from Simon’s point of view. The way the book read was how Simon’s thoughts actually played out (or at least, that’s how I pictured it), so when I first started reading it was difficult to understand exactly what was happening, but then his voice just clicked and I was loving every thought he had.

The way Albertalli dealt with the friend characters and other side characters of the book really had me smiling. I never disliked any of her characters, even ones who may have deserved some of my ire. They were all redeemable in my eyes and I think that that’s a great quality to give your characters. I think a lot of authors forget that these fake people are supposed to seem real, and sometimes human beings make mistakes.

While I loved the characters of the book so very much, I thought that the plot of the book was just good. It was a little predictable. And the book was super short. I especially wanted some expansion on the ending. I think all Simon lovers will agree to that! I also have to say that the ending just seemed to wrap things up a little too nicely, as well as a little too quickly. However, the issues I had with the plot didn’t really detract from the love I felt for the characters and a lot of the book in general.

All in all, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is a must-read for anyone who wants to read a laugh-out-loud, feel-good contemporary book. You’ll smile, you’ll cry a little, and you’ll just plain enjoy yourself.

*Note: I borrowed a copy of this book from my library.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Dean Winchester Friday

Dean Winchester (or sometimes Jensen Ackles) Fridays make me a very happy fangirl. You'll see why when you look at the pic.

Dean and Cas (sometimes) have the best interactions. Cas is so oblivious and Dean is so well… Dean.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses
(A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)
Publication Date: May 5, 2015
Hardcover, 416 pages, Bloomsbury
Genres: YA/NA, Fantasy

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!

My Review

Team Tamlin! Team Tamlin! Team Tamlin!

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, I’ll start my review.

I wasn’t planning on reading this book so early after its release date. I mean, it’s only been a month. And now I have almost a full year to wait for the sequel, and after that ending, I don’t think I can handle waiting. URGH!

I’m sure everyone in the YA community knows who Sarah J. Maas is by now. Her Throne of Glass books are practically legendary. So, when I heard she was writing a new series, of course I was on board! Knowing that the book is about faeries, like her ToG series, made me a little hesitant, however. ToG didn’t get heavy on the faeries until I’d already grown connected to the characters. But I trusted the author, and that’s all that matters, right? Ehhh…

The characters of ACoTaR are definitely a fascinating bunch. Feyre (whose name I always manage to mispronounce in my head) is a strong character who doesn’t take any crap. And Tamlin, the cursed, shape-shifting faery who “kidnapped” her, is a hunk. And I want one. Or five. Okay, twenty. He’s also actually a good guy. I like that Sarah writes alpha males, without taking away their sense of humanity—even though a lot of the time the guys aren’t human. Now, I say this but there’s one exception—Rhys. Don’t hate me Rhys-lovers, but I feel like he’s just a douche. He didn’t really add a lot to the story, besides being a second love interest, and he was weird. I’ll expand more on the weird in a little bit.

The plot of the book was absolutely fantastic! It was like a romance novel, but with more action and adventure and I could see all the similarities to Beauty and the Beast and I loved them! I wanted to burst out singing “Tale as Old as Time.” The blossoming romance between Feyre and Tamlin was so awkward and cute and sexy! But then, things got weird… The faery court and the world that had been presented to the readers changed into something that I can only describe as bizarre. I did not like it at all. This was the last third or so of the book, when all of the action was actually happening, and I was just so thrown off by the strangeness! Thankfully, things managed to get back on track for the last few pages, but I was seriously losing any love I had for the beginning of this book there for a while.

All in all, Sarah J. Maas is an excellent world-builder and writer. I just didn’t appreciate some of the directions that were taken in the story. I do however, recommend this book to anyone who either likes her other books, or is wanting to read a steamy paranormal/fantasy romance, just be aware that things take a turn for the strange further in.

P.S. I have a theory for what happened at the end. If you want to know what it is, comment below and we can discuss.

*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: The Iron Warrior by Julie Kagawa

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

This week, what's really got my pages in a twist is...

The Iron Warrior
(The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #3)
Publication Date: October 27, 2015
Paperback, 384 pages, Harlequin Teen
Genres: YA, Fantasy

The Iron Prince—my nephew—betrayed us all.

He killed me.

Then, I woke up.

Waking after a month on the brink of death, Ethan Chase is stunned to learn that the Veil that conceals the fey from human sight was temporarily torn away. Although humankind's glimpse of the world of Faery lasted just a brief moment, the human world has been cast into chaos, and the emotion and glamour produced by fear and wonder has renewed the tremendous power of the Forgotten Queen. Now, she is at the forefront of an uprising against the courts of Summer and Winter—a reckoning that will have cataclysmic effects on the Nevernever.

Leading the Lady's Forgotten Army is Keirran himself: Ethan's nephew, and the traitor son of the Iron Queen, Meghan Chase.To stop Keirran, Ethan must disobey his sister once again as he and his girlfriend, Kenzie, search for answers long forgotten. In the face of unprecedented evil and unfathomable power, Ethan's enemies must become his allies, and the world of the fey will be changed forevermore.

My Thoughts

I haven’t read any books in this spin-off yet. I’m waiting for all of them to be out so I can just marathon away. That’s what I did for the first three books and I think I enjoyed them more because of that.

What book are you waiting for this Wednesday?