Friday, October 31, 2014

ARC GIVEAWAY: Charmed by Michelle Krys



This giveaway is now CLOSED. The winner has been notified and has 48hrs to answer me back, otherwise I'll be forced to pick a new winner. Thank you all for entering. I'll be posting a new giveaway almost immediately, so stay tuned =)


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Suspicion by Alexandra Monir ARC Review (SPOILER ALERT)


Suspicion by Alexandra Monir
ebook, 368 pages (according to Goodreads)
Published by Delacorte Press,
an imprint of Random House Children's Books
Expected Publication Date: Decemeber 9, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 2/5 Stars


Synopsis: Take The Princess Diaries and add magic, murder and mystery, and you've got SUSPICION. A delightful read!"—Amy Plum, author of the of the international bestselling Die For Me series

"If Alfred Hitchcock had directed Downton Abbey, the result would have been this book. Alexandra Monir takes us on a gripping, nonstop thrill ride with just the right amount of supernatural and an ending that you definitely won't suspect. I devoured it in one sitting."—Jessica Brody, bestselling author of the Unremembered trilogy

Mysterious. Magnificent. Creepy. Welcome to Rockford Manor.

"There's something hidden in the Maze." Seventeen-year-old Imogen has never forgotten the last words her father said to her seven years ago, before the blazing fire that consumed him, her mother, and the gardens of her family's English country manor.

Haunted by her parents' deaths, Imogen moves to New York City with her new guardians. But when a letter arrives with the news of her cousin's untimely death, revealing that Imogen is now the only heir left to run the estate, she returns to England and warily accepts her role as duchess.

All is not as it seems at Rockford, and Imogen quickly learns that dark secrets lurk behind the mansion's aristocratic exterior, hinting that the spate of deaths in her family were no accident. And at the center of the mystery is Imogen herself--and Sebastian, the childhood friend she has secretly loved for years. Just what has Imogen walked into?

Combining a fresh twist on the classic REBECCA with a spine-tingling mystery and powerful romance, SUSPICION is an action-packed thrill ride. 

Thank you Netgalley and Delacorte Press for my ebook copy of this book. 

What to say about this book--it has left me feeling befuddled. I wanted to like this book and I would have if it was it was just solely a murder mystery but alas, it wasn't. Its' review from Amy Plum has it right about one thing, it's definitely a Princess Diaries story that's combined with The Parent Trap mixed with some magical nonsense thrown in there for good measure. I'd have to say that Alfred Hitchcock (Jessica Brody's review) would have focused more on the murder mystery aspects of this book (which it should have) and not add in the magical parts that are so under-detailed that it seemed more like an afterthought the author added in to give the book a little extra umpf, but it doesn't work.  I can't say that the story itself was bad. There was some definite potential. It held my attention all the way through, it had a nice pace, and it wasn't badly written. It definitely failed in its execution. The storyline is a bit choppy and the instant love made me want to gag. Although there are some interesting twists it ultimately has a lot of plot elements that were overdone and unnecessary.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I really liked the murder/mystery aspect of this book. All of the perplexing deaths of Imogen's family and the intrigue about how it happened and what's hidden in the Shadow Maze. That's what kept me involved in the book when I had problems with all of the other plot elements. If the author had just focused on this I could see myself really liking it.

2) The book kept up a good pace with all of its twists and turns. Even though I had problems with it, I found myself pulled into the story and reading any time I had a spare minute.

Weaknesses/Dislikes (HUGE SPOILERS):

1) Can someone explain to me how two, not identical girls, are able to switch places and everyone who knew them since birth could not tell the difference? Somehow, I highly doubt that absolutely no one wouldn't notice any difference. Perhaps in their facial features or body types? Even if I allow the fact that Lucia's house-staff couldn't say anything about her switching places with her maid's daughter, what about her childhood friends? My older sister and I are only a year apart, we have the same hair color and eyes which according to the logic of this book we could easily switch places if we just went to boarding school for a little while right before we hit puberty and no one would notice. Seeing the ridiculousness yet?

2) I could not get into the couple at all. For starters, Sebastian (lover boy) was originally with Lucia (who was actually the maid but you know being without your girlfriend for a few months it's easy to confuse her with someone completely different), but apparently never loved her. He was forced into dating her due to family pressure and even though his own little brother Theo was seeing said girlfriend (which he knew about), he couldn't bring that out in the open or make any attempt to contact his "long lost childhood love." If someone had told me this about their significant other, I'd say he/she was just making excuses so they could have an affair with them.

3) The fantastical parts in this book were really lost on me. As I mentioned it seemed like something the author through in there to bring in a wider audience. First of all, Imogen is a thing called an Elemental which apparently means she can control all of the Earth's elements. That's pretty amazing, but what did Imogen get out of that? A surging pain that ran through her body any time she touched the earth making flowers pop out of the ground instantly, water spurting out of her hands like a hose, and being able to do the same thing any person with a match could do. If this was going to be a fantasy book there should have been more details about these powers, and how she learns how to use them, etc. Oh and wait, she can only use these powers when she's at home. Makes sense.

4) At the end of the book it's not clear if Imogen remains the Duchess of Rockford. I have reread the passage over a few times and asked a friend about it and neither of us could come out with a clear answer. Which makes the ending too ambiguous. Maybe this was intentional so the author can continue the story in another book? Who knows. Let me know what you guys think, can you figure it out? Here's the passage:

"Despite everything that's happened here, this is where I belong. I wouldn't hesitate to throw away the title, the fortune, or the notoriety--after seeing what the allure of high society did to the Mulgraves, I don't want that anymore. I'm not sure I ever wanted it. But it's the land that I belong to, the very earth that was here long before the Manor was built."

The true heir has returned, so, technically Imogen could have given up the title. But here it seems like she's not giving it up because she wants to live there still? I don't know. 

5) I'm sorry, but the maid did it? Isn't that the old adage of old murder stories. It kind of felt like I was reading the ending to a Scooby Doo episode, I was just missing "if it wasn't for you meddling kids..."

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "Watching him, I can't wishing he weren't so ridiculously good-looking. If only he'd grow a crazy unibrow, or do something to take the edge off my attraction."

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay ARC Review (light spoilers)



Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay
eARC, 402 pages 
Published by Delacorte Press
Expected Publication Date: December 9, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 4/5 Stars


Synopsis: Game of Thrones meets the Grimm's fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty's daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.

Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora's throne ten years ago.

Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it's too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?


Thank you Delacorte Press and Netgalley for my ebook copy of this ARC.

Absolutely fantastic. Filled with all the fairy-tale goodness you've enjoyed as a child without it being overly-cheesy. It's focused on Aurora's (Sleeping Beauty) daughter that is basically the non-Chinese Mulan and her quest to save her brother and her kingdom. There is action, adventure, fantasy, love--this book has everything. I wasn't hooked from the beginning but I quickly got into the story and the characters. There are little cameos of other beloved fairy tale characters. I have to say that my favorite part of the whole book is the witty and hilarious dialogue between Ror and Niklaas. If you like Disney movies but want more of an adult twist, I definitely suggest reading this book.

Strengths/Likes:

1) This book is extremely well-written. The language is witty, funny, romantic and embodies that old fairy-tale telling charm. In all of the descriptions of the world, the characters internal thoughts and dialogue I was mesmerized.

2) The characters have a real depth to them. No one is straight up good or bad. Their characters all have interesting backstories that are well developed and intertwine with all of the other character's stories.

3) I like how many feminist messages are in this book. For me, the last place I would expect these type of messages would be in a fairy-tale style book. It shows many struggles and superficial views that women have to put up from men and society today.

4) I love the allusions to other fairy-tale stories such as the Six Swans (Brothers Grimm) aka The Wild Swans (Hans Christen Anderson),  Rapunzel, and Little Red Riding Hood. All of them have a new twist to the original stories though.  

5) I absolutely adore Niklass. I think he's hilarious and charming. Even through his misguided misogynistic views (which don't worry it doesn't last long), I love him.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) Even though the author put so much work into the plot with all of it's details, descriptions, and characters the end kind of crapped out. It was very rushed and melodramatic. It just didn't fit with the rest of the story. I wanted to give it another half star but I couldn't because of the ending. It felt that the author worked so hard on the rest of the book that when she came to the end she was unsure of herself and hastily did ended it. The book fought against most of the clichés that have come to pass with these popular fairy tale retellings but the end of the book brings it all right back to those overly cheesy moments that are commonplace.

1a) Another problem that I had with the end of the story was the chase scene between the main couple that is extremely overdramatic and cliché. It's the kind of chase scene that are famous in rom-com movies. It was so predictable too. In fact that while reading it, I envisioned how it would end down to the trick Aurora does with her horse (I'm trying not to spoil anything, but those of you have read it will know what I'm talking about).

2) I got tired of how much Ror was lying to Niklaas. In the beginning it makes sense, she doesn't know him, she can't trust him, etc. After a while it becomes the main thing that is moving the plot forward. Her lies keep piling up and obviously they were going to have to come out but I thought the author could have found something else to move the plot forward.

2a) Another problem I had with Ror and Niklaas is how much time they spent discussing and thinking of reasons as to why they couldn't be together. They both loved each other but kept coming up with excuses. It was fine at first but became annoying really quickly. Especially when Niklaas tries denying his feelings but saying he had "sisterly" feelings towards her. Yuck.

3) It's a pretty slow read. Not The Hobbit slow but similar. The audience gets a lot of details on minor characters (most of them do tie into the main plot nicely) and the character's surroundings but some of it dragged the pace of the story down.

4) I rarely talk about the covers of books (because you can't judge a book by its cover) but I hate it. It makes it look like a cheesy romance novel. Something either written by Danielle Steel or Nora Roberts.

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "I'm as sore as a newlywed's nether," he says, thankfully letting the matter drop. "Feel like I've been beaten between the legs with a rolling pin. Which, sadly enough, actually happened to my sorry self upon one occasion."

"Really?" I fall in behind him as he takes off into the trees, down a gentle hill.

"Really." He sighs. "One morning, not long ago, a baker off the coast of Eno City got up to set his loaves cooking and caught me asleep by the fire with his daughter."

"Whose loaves you'd set cooking the night before."

2) "I realize what he intends to do, but before I can turn my back, his pants slide off his hips, and Niklaas, eleventh son of the immortal king, is as naked as the day he was born.

I freeze--jaw dropping, blood draining from my face--unable to tear my eyes away, though I know I should. But, warrior's clothes be damed, I'm a seventeen-year-old girl, and what seventeen-year-old girl could look away from a sight like that?"

3) "You can trust me."

"Said the spider to the fly."

"I'm not a spider."

4) "I will not remember her as a corpse. I will remember her smile and the way her eyes danced when she built castles of pillows for Jor and me on days when it was too cold to go outside. I will remember her stories and songs and the way she never let a day go by without whispering 'I love you' in my ear. I will remember the flower smell of her clothes when she hugged me tight and her laughter when we would sneak out to dance in the rain without Jor, because rain dancing was our secret."

Monday, October 27, 2014

Moronic Monday: Lena Haloway

Mondays, the worst day of the week. Despite the fact that it's the start of your school/work week, there is always something extra that just pushes it to the next level. That someone that just permanently keeps Monday at the top of most dreaded days of the week. That's what this meme is about. The one character that drives you mad with their stupidity. Their idiocy is the type that you can spot their impending train wreck from miles away, the type that makes you want to slam their heads into a desk repeatedly. Moronic Mondays are not for your lovable idiots, no, it's for the ones that you think they deserve every bad thing they get it.

Lena and I were pals while I was reading Delirium but once we got to Pandemonium and especially Requiem, her and I were no longer buds. My problem with her began with the fact that she never went back to look for Alex, she had no confirmation that he was actually dead but didn't bother to look into it. Then when Julian comes along, she fights tooth and nail to save his life.

Additionally throughout Requiem she barely tries to even get on normal speaking terms with Alex. She loves him, is constantly thinking about him, but after one conversation at the beginning of the book she pretty much writes off their entire relationship. She just gives up. Who does that? 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Books VS. Movies: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

It seems like nowadays that all of our favorite books are being turned into movies. This meme is about the failures and winners of the silver screen in comparison to their books.

Despite how well the movie did, I can't say that I think that this movie did the book justice. When I first heard that this trilogy was going to be made into movies, I like many other people quickly went and read the books first. I don't have any written reviews on these books, but in general I thought they were great. They were so full of depth, with amazing characters and setting. That being said, when I read The Hunger Games I didn't think it made sense to make it into a movie. Most of it is Katniss by herself wandering around, not having much interaction at all. Plus, I feel like she's a really internal character which is something that doesn't translate to the silver screen well.

Where the movie failed:

I already said how Katniss is a very internal character and that doesn't translate well into film but I had other problems with her in the movie. I don't know if it's because of Jennifer Lawrence or the director, but the Katniss in the movie seems more timid and vulnerable. While book Katniss is a badass, who depends on only herself, and shows very little weakness. 

Also, the movie has a lot of cool effects but it doesn't make up for the fact that it was made in a way that only those of us who have read the books would understand the plot completely. I watched this movie with friends and family at home, and I paused several times to explain the plot. In addition, the movie had random scenes that were really slow with no dialogue.

It wasn't clear in the movie that Katniss was struggling with her feelings for Peeta. In the book, we know that she has sworn never to be in a romantic relationship due to the terrible society that she lives in, knowing that caring for people only brings more pain and reproducing has the same effect. The book also has audience wondering about Peeta's feelings. Is he playing her or are they real? The movie makes it seem like Katniss is just awkward and Peeta is obviously in love with her. For me, the best part of Katniss and Peeta's relationship is their struggle in their feelings for each other and I don't think the movie spent enough time on that. 

 I hope you guys liked this one, I'm still working out the kinks for this meme, which is why they don't have a set structure so please bear with me until I figure it out. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Melt by Selene Castrovilla ARC Review with Author Q&A


Melt by Selene Castrovilla
ebook, 276 pages
Published by Last Syllable Books
Publication Date: November 6, 2014
Buy It: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 2.5/5 Stars


Synopsis: Based on true events, MELT is both a chilling tale of abuse, and a timeless romance. MELT will hit you like a punch in the face, and also seep through the cracks in your soul. 
MELT is a brutal love story set against the metaphorical backdrop of The Wizard of Oz (not a retelling). When sixteen year old Dorothy moves to the small town of Highland Park, she meets, and falls for Joey – a “bad boy” who tells no one about the catastrophic domestic violence he witnesses at home. Can these two lovers survive peer pressure, Joey’s reputation, and his alcoholism? 

Told in dual first person, Joey’s words are scattered on the page – reflecting his broken state. Dorothy is the voice of reason – until something so shattering happens that she, too, may lose her grip. Can their love endure, or will it melt away?


Thank you Netgalley, Last Syllable Books and Selene Castrovilla for my ebook copy of this ARC.

I can't say that I loved it, but it definitely held my attention. This is a story about love, family, and domestic abuse. All of which are truly heart wrenching. There are odd snippets from The Wizard of Oz inserted into the book but I have no idea why they are there or how it relates to the plot. The writing style reminds me of Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me, with the repeating phrases and poetic writing during Joey's POV. It's pretty short so it was easy to get over the things that bothered me about it.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I was sucked right into Joey and Dorothy's relationship. I did have some problems with it but once I got further into the story, I was rooting for them.

2) There was such raw emotion in this book. I could feel all the love and fear and the struggle of the characters.

3) I feel that this book gives a realistic view of domestic violence. Not just what goes on in the home but how others perceive it and how people are affected by it.

Weaknesses/Dislikes:

1) A lot of people write about love at first sight, and the main couple is really based upon that. Although I got into their relationship as it developed, I didn't buy into their instant attraction. When they meet, they don't speak to each other much but somehow they can sense each other's feelings, and I need a little bit more than that. Joey has all the signs of danger written all over him, callouses and bruises all over his knuckles, the reputation of being a druggie, alcoholic, and a jail bird. Yet, somehow, Dorothy can sense the good in him even though the two barely speak on their first meeting.

2) I didn't like how Joey's POV is written. I mentioned earlier that the writing style reminds me of Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me, but it's only inside Joey's POV that it happens. His voice is written in this poetic style with repeating phrases over and over again. It does give a dramatic spiral downward effect that Joey has due to his lifelong physical abuse at home but it gets old really fast. Here are a couple of examples:

"She touched me she touched me she touched me and something warm crackled through my body"

"The white ceiling lights beamed down on my head bright bright bright."

This happened over and over and as I said, it gets old really fast. Don't get me wrong, in some of the places it really worked but in others... not so much.

3) The overuse of the word "melt." It's the title of the book and it is used what seemed like a million times over.

4) As I mentioned above, there are odd snippets of The Wizard of Oz inserted into this book. I knew it wasn't a re-telling of the original story but I didn't understand how these passages related to the plot. Selene Castrovilla actually sent me an e-mail to clarify my confusion.

Here is what she said: "I'd like to try and clarify about The Wizard of Oz. That story has always haunted me, not the literal story - but its ramifications. The threads of humanity lay in The Wizard of Oz. I've mentioned it in my previous novels, in passing. And not on purpose - the references came pouring out. It's a strange thing to be a writer. I feel like I'm a conductor for a universal force, flowing its communication to the world. Anyway, Melt isn't meant to be a re-telling. The passages I've quoted are meant to mirror and magnify the situation Joey and Dorothy are in, the journey they must travel, and the lessons they will or will not learn."

I understand that this is what she was trying to accomplish but to me, it didn't come across this way in the novel, at least not to me.

Selene Castrovilla has also been kind enough to provide me with a brief Q&A about how she became inspired to write this story:

Q: What inspired this story?

A: I take boxing lessons, and got close with my trainer, Joe. He told more than once, “My dad used to beat my mom.” That was sad, but a little too vague to be inspiring. Then one day he looked me in the eyes and said, “My dad used to come home every day and shove a gun down my mom’s throat.” That was a specific image that stuck in my head. He also told me about becoming a teen alcoholic, and how violent he was while drunk. He was tagged a “bad” kid – but no one ever bothered to find out what was going on inside. Finally, he told me about the one girl who believed in him, and loved him.

One night he said to me, “You’re gonna write my story. I just know it.”

I went home, and opened The Wizard of Oz – which I’d instinctively purchased a few weeks prior. I didn’t know why – but I always listened to the guiding voice in my head. The page I turned to was the scene in which Dorothy and her friends return to the Emerald City. The Guardian of the Gate is shocked to see them, saying: 

            “But I thought you had gone to visit the Wicked Witch of the West.”

            “We did visit her,” said the Scarecrow.

            “And she let you go again?” asked the man, in wonder.

            “She could not help it, for she is melted,” explained the Scarecrow.

            She is melted. That line resounded with me. I wrote it three times a piece of junk mail. Then I wrote, “Melt.” And I knew that was the title of my book. I started writing Joe’s story – it just came pouring out – with quotes from The Wizard of Oz interspersed. The first section is called “No place like home,” and we witness the father abusing the mother in front of Joey and his brothers. In “Munchkinland,” the second part, Joey meets good-girl Dorothy in Dunkin’ Donuts. This unlikely couple heads down the metaphorical Yellow Brick Road looking for a way to beat the odds and be together. But what’s waiting for them ahead?

Thanks again to Selene for taking the time to reach out to me to try to clear up my confusion, as well as for providing me with the Q&A.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Since You've Been Gone by Mary Jennifer Payne Review

2.5/5 Stars
Details of the Book:
ebook, 216 pages
Published by Dundurn
Expected Publication Date: January 24, 2015
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository |


Synopsis: Is it possible to outrun your past? Fifteen-year-old Edie Fraser and her mother, Sydney, have been trying to do just that for five years. Now, things have gone from bad to worse. Not only has Edie had to move to another new school she's in a different country. 

Sydney promises her that this is their chance at a fresh start, and Edie does her best to adjust to life in London, England, despite being targeted by the school bully. But when Sydney goes out to work the night shift and doesn't come home, Edie is terrified that the past has finally caught up with them. 
Alone in a strange country, Edie is afraid to call the police for fear that she ll be sent back to her abusive father. Determined to find her mother, but with no idea where to start, she must now face the most difficult decision of her life.


Thank you Netgalley and Dundurn Group for my ebook copy of this ARC.

If you guys like Elena Dillon's novels, Shimmer in particular (it has a very similar plot), you'll like this book. Two words come to mind when thinking of this book. Sad and Rushed. A story of domestic abuse that has forced mother and daughter to flee their home and leaves any time Edie's father tracks them down. The whole story is very tragic but it lost a lot of its seriousness in how short the book is. It's well-written but all the details are hasty and because of this the reader is being told what is going on instead of showed. Also there were random scenes that threw off the plot completely, the book was already short, it should have stayed on course. I really wanted to like this book, but due it's hurried plot and randomness I fell short of it.

Strengths/Likes:

1) I really liked the writing style of the book. There were some great lines and quotes, I just wish there was more. For me, this is the main reason I'm not giving this book just 2 stars because I can really see its potential.

2) Sydney Fraser, what a great character. I loved her so much. Even though the book was so short, there was some real depth to her.

Weakness/Dislikes:

1) This book has one major problem. Everything is rushed and because of this all of its details suffered. If the author had made the book longer, maybe, she would have been able to fix this problem. Instead all of the character development, relationships, and plot suffered because the author told the reader everything instead of showing it. In the writing style it's very clear that Payne is capable of writing all the details out and well, so it's really puzzling as to why she didn't. I couldn't take anything seriously because when anything became intense or dramatic is over with the snap of my fingers. This problem really halted me from liking or getting attached to any of the characters. I was given information about them but I didn't get to know them. This makes it really hard to relate or really get into the story if I don't care enough about the characters involved.

2) There were long random scenes that didn't add anything to the plot. Actually, it took away from the main plot of the book as a whole and it makes no sense as to why they are there. One scene that comes to mind is that our main guy, Jermaine, saves a little kid from drowning and gets all this media attention. This does not add to the plot, it doesn't solve anything, it's just there.

Favorite Quotes/Moments:

1) "The flat came fully furnished, but the furniture is ancient and worn. I wonder if the owner is waiting for it to disintegrate before buying anything new. And everything made out of fabric smells musty, like beach towels that haven't dried properly."

2) My mother smiles at me. "I just want to let you know that I love you more than anything in this world."

"You needed to pull me out of the shower and make me late for school just to tell me that?"

"I felt it was important that you know." She leans in and kisses me on the cheek. "Now get into the shower and get to school so you can someday rule the world, Edie Fraser."


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Love is the Drug ARC Review by Alaya Dawn Johnson

Love is the Drug by Alaya Dawn Johnson
ebook, 357 pages
Published by Arthur A. Levine Books
Published date: September 30, 2014
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |
Rating: 1/5 Stars

Synopsis: From the author of THE SUMMER PRINCE, a novel that's John Grisham's THE PELICAN BRIEF meets Michael Crichton's THE ANDROMEDA STRAIN set at an elite Washington D.C. prep school.

Emily Bird was raised not to ask questions. She has perfect hair, the perfect boyfriend, and a perfect Ivy-League future. But a chance meeting with Roosevelt David, a homeland security agent, at a party for Washington DC's elite leads to Bird waking up in a hospital, days later, with no memory of the end of the night.

Meanwhile, the world has fallen apart: A deadly flu virus is sweeping the nation, forcing quarantines, curfews, even martial law. And Roosevelt is certain that Bird knows something. Something about the virus--something about her parents' top secret scientific work--something she shouldn't know.

The only one Bird can trust is Coffee, a quiet, outsider genius who deals drugs to their classmates and is a firm believer in conspiracy theories. And he believes in Bird. But as Bird and Coffee dig deeper into what really happened that night, Bird finds that she might know more than she remembers. And what she knows could unleash the biggest government scandal in US history.

Thank you Netgalley and Arthur A. Levine Books for my eARC copy of this book. 

This review will be a short one because even after reading the entire book, and certain sections several times, I couldn't give you a precise answer about what this book was about. It has a lot going on. It's one big hot mess. This book has a lot to do with drugs and pharmaceuticals and it had me wondering if I needed to be high for all of the details to make sense. I had to be convinced more than once to push through and read this book, but it definitely wasn't worth it. There were moments of brilliance, but they are few and buried underneath a copious amount of baffling details.

Love is the Drug has a lot different plot lines going on but none of them, at least in my opinion, come together in a cohesive manner. It tries to conquer many societal and political issues such as government corruption, conspiracy, biological warfare, racism, homosexuality, family life, abusive relationships, and more. It seemed as if the author wanted to take an all these details but couldn't execute them properly.

I had a huge problem with the main plot line (or what I assume is the main plot line) which was about the CIA drugging our protagonist and persecuting her and one of her boyfriends (that's right, I said one of her boyfriends) because they believe that they know something about this virus that's killing thousands of people in the world. You know, because that seems likely that two rich kids in their junior year of high school involved personally in government and global politics that has lead to the experimenting and killing of thousands of people. Seems likely, right?

The other focus of the novel is Bird's (our protagonist) relationship with Coffee (one of her boyfriends). Their relationship along with the rest of the book is confusing. They have this love-hate thing going on at the start of the book, and somehow Bird feels he's the only one she can be her real self around, but hates him at the same time (at least for a while). The audience is introduced to their relationship with the idea that Bird and Coffee don't spend a lot of time together, but somehow she has deep feelings for him and is the only one she trusts..at the same time she doesn't trust him at all. If you think this makes no sense, that's because it doesn't.

The book is written in an haphazard manner, one minute I'm in the past, next I'm in the present, one minute the writing style is written in first person in Bird's POV, the next it's written in third person where the audience is asked to figure out what's going on by random snippets of details. The scenes that are from the past, are thrown into the present plot randomly and it's difficult to tell that the author is talking about the past. It's only after reading a few times over that I understood the past events were not the current ones.

All in all, I highly disliked this book. Even though there were tiny moments I thought were interesting or nice, it was all lost under all the other ridiculousness.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Moronic Monday: Colin Novak from Christina Lauren's Sublime (some spoilers)

Mondays, the worst day of the week. Despite the fact that it's the start of your school/work week, there is always something extra that just pushes it to the next level. That someone that just permanently keeps Monday at the top of most dreaded days of the week. That's what this meme is about. The one character that drives you mad with their stupidity. Their idiocy is the type that you can spot their impending train wreck from miles away, the type that makes you want to slam their heads into a desk repeatedly. Moronic Mondays are not for your lovable idiots, no, it's for the ones that you think they deserve every bad thing they get it.

From the beginning of the book, it's clear that Colin is into doing stupid and dangerous things. He likes BMX which as a lot of people know is dangerous in the first place, but he always likes putting extra danger in already dangerous sport. The audience is told that he has broken many bones by doing stupid stunts that he was sure could kill him, but he does them anyway.

This is next part is what makes me go really nuts; Colin is surrounded by people who love him. Guardians who love him and friends, a pretty good life. All of this he literally throws away because he wants to have sex with his ghost girlfriend. Maybe others will say it was love, but to me it was just fascination and sex. So for me ruining all of his loved ones lives forever by killing himself to be with this "lover" is disturbing and completely idiotic. 

You guys can check out my full review of Sublime here

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Book Bucket list: The Giver by Lois Lowry

There are books in your life that you come across and you know you have to read them. They can be old, they can be new but before your time runs out you have to find time to read them. Welcome to my Book Bucket List everyone!


This book has been getting a lot new buzz because it's movie but before I heard of this movie, I wanted to read this book. I've actually been told by friends who love this book to stay away from the movie because it ruins the book. That's probably a bit unbelievable since it a lot of people have been reaching for it since it's movie release, but oh well. You'll just have to take my word for it.

Why is it on my Book Bucket List:
From what I understand that this is the grandfather of all dystopian novels. Even in it's premise it reminds me a lot of Lauren Oliver's Delirium, which I loved so why not give this classic a chance?

Why haven't I read it yet:
It wasn't until fairly recently that I've gotten into the dystopian scene. I'd say that I'd gotten into it..at most three-four years ago. Before that I didn't want to go near books where the entire world was crappy and everything that seemed perfect wasn't. Basically meaning that the character's lives are all one big lie and that's extremely depression to me. But I've grown up a bit and I'm starting to branch out. So hopefully, I'll find some time to read this one. If I do, I'll probably wait until the buzz around it dies a bit more. Only because when I'm reading a book I hate it when people start talking to me all about because there is a high chance of it being spoiled.

Did you guys read the book and see the movie? If so, do you also believe that it ruined it? Let me know.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Forgotten Friday: Tabula Rasa by Kristen-Lippert Martin

This meme is about books that have been pushed aside while others have gone viral and made into movies. It can be old books, new books, any book that never got its (or enough) time  in the spot light.

Maybe that it's a little early to be writing this about this particular book but it's just so amazing that I feel like it's not getting enough attention. This needs to be on everyone's to-read list. I've said it before and I'll say it again that this book is everything that it promises it to be. There is action, romance, comedy. It's absolutely amazing. I was so upset when my Netgalley copy disappeared because I'm so in love with this book. The main character Sarah is such a strong and incredible woman, instead of her love interest leading the way, she's the one to take charge and kick some ass.

Check out this synopsis: The Bourne Identity meets Divergent in this heart-pounding debut.

Sixteen-year-old Sarah has a rare chance at a new life. Or so the doctors tell her. She’s been undergoing a cutting-edge procedure that will render her a tabula rasa—a blank slate. Memory by memory her troubled past is being taken away.

But when her final surgery is interrupted and a team of elite soldiers invades the isolated hospital under cover of a massive blizzard, her fresh start could be her end. 

Navigating familiar halls that have become a dangerous maze with the help of a teen computer hacker who's trying to bring the hospital down for his own reasons, Sarah starts to piece together who she is and why someone would want her erased. And she won’t be silenced again.

A high-stakes thriller featuring a non-stop race for survival and a smart heroine who will risk everything, Tabula Rasa is, in short, unforgettable.

You guys can check out my full review of it here.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Allegiant (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth Review (HUGE SPOILERS)

1/5 Stars
Details of the Book:
Hardcover, 526 pages
Published by Katherine Tegen Books, 
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date: October 22, 2013

Synopsis: The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories. 

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love. 

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.

It's taken me a long time to even want to write my thoughts about this book. In fact, even now a year later I'm still upset about how this book went. Am I a fan of Tris' death? No. Is that the only reason I didn't like this book? Absolutely not. I felt that this book wiped away all of the greatness from Divergent and Insurgent.  Honestly, the only way for me to think of this trilogy in a positive light is to pretend that this book didn't happen.

The only redeeming quality I can say about this book is that the split point-of-views between Tris and Four was very well written. I was actually concerned about this because upon reading Free Four: Tobias tells the Knife-Throwing Scene, I was actually pretty concerned. I didn't like the way it was written and it made me question my initial impression of the character, but I found that I didn't have this problem in this book whatsoever.

If you were to ask me what my main problem with this book it would be that I feel like Tris and Tobias's relationship was destroyed. It was like I was reading about a new dysfunctional couple. There was no trust, Tobias made decisions that completely went against Tris. It's like I was rereading Insurgent except everything took a turn for the worse. It didn't feel like they were themselves. It was very difficult for me to read. On top of the fact that Tris dies with their relationship still recovering from it's problems created in this book, it just makes everything so terrible. I can't handle the idea of Tobias being miserable the rest of his life. It's not what either character deserved and it was just...horrible. 

Now about the main reason people are torn over this book: Tris' death. At first, I was okay with it. I didn't even understand everyone's outrage at first. But the more I thought about it, the more I became upset with it. There were so many signs leading up to her death that this was going to happen. For example, when Tris first told Caleb that she would never lead him to his funeral, and when Tris and Four finally get it on, it felt more like a goodbye. Also, I felt that the way she died was a disgrace to the character. She has been through so much, did so much, lived past the death serum stuff but is killed by a gun shot wound. 

I also had a huge problem with Uriah's death. Uriah is one of my favorite characters and his death, (I predicted it before I even started Allegiant), to me was an insult to the character. The reason I say this is because he was such a bright, strong, funny, and vibrant character that he deserved a more of a tragic death. It was already terrible that he died, but to be in a coma and only towards the end of the book to pull the plug..by then I was over his death, and I think it deserved more of an impact. 

Basically, I feel like this book ruined the other two. When I think of this trilogy, all I have is disappointment and depression. In one book, Roth was able to destroy the characters that she built up in one fell swoop and it's horrible. I cringe every time that I look at it. I'm sorry that this review is not in my normal format. I hate that this is goodbye and that this is the type of goodbye that I'm giving to this trilogy.

Be sure to check out my reviews of Divergent and Insurgent. As well as my Moronic Monday post on Tris and Book Boyfriend post on Four. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Book Boyfriend: Roar (Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi)

So I've seen this meme floating around many book blogs, but initially I got the idea from Reading Lark and they got this meme from The Unread Reader. I've enjoyed the meme so much that I will also be joining in on the fun on Wednesdays. Welcome to Book Boyfriends everyone!


Appearance: 
  • Lean and strong
  • Dark hair 
  • Dark Brown Eyes
  • Sharp features

Why He's My Book Boyfriend: He's really charming. From the minute he appeared I was swept off my feet with his witty and flirty way of speaking. I love his confidence and strength. He's an amazing friend and when he cares there's nothing he won't do for you. Roar is very supportive of his loved ones in all ways, whether it comes to him risking his neck for you or saying something silly to brighten your mood. He has such vibrance and passion, I guess that's why his sadness broke my heart in Into the Still Blue. 

The Actor to be my Roar: 

Well, this is a toughy. We're not given a whole lot about his physical features other than that he's considered to be attractive by everyone, and he has dark features. So, I'll have to go with Taylor Lautner. He has the right look from the little descriptions we have, and his role as Jacob Black from Twilight is similar in certain ways, so I'm sure he could play this part.


Quotes from and about Roar: 

1) "Seers are good at looking and good-looking, but before you start wondering, no, I'm not a Seer. Just lucky." 

2) Roar's smile widened. "I know. You missed me."

She rolled her eyes. "It's barely been three weeks since I saw you."

"Miserable stretch of time," he said."

3) "Did he just call you pretty?"

Roar nodded, chewing. "Can you blame him?"

Her eyes moved over his even features. "No, I really can't," she said, though pretty didn't quite fit Roar's dark looks.

4) "So it should be me doing the vouching, don't you think? I'm perfect for it. I've taught you everything."

Aria shook her head, trying not to smile. Truly Roar was the perfect choice. He had taught her all she knew about sounds--and knives. "Everything except modesty."

He made a face. "Who needs that?"

"Oh, I don't know. Maybe you do, pretty."

"Nonsense"

5)"And you're safer out here with me. I can't watch you come that close to dying again" Through the Ever Night

I could write out Roar's quotes all day, but I'd just end up copying all the books down. Unfortunately, all you guys are a few small snippets of him, but if you read the books you'll love him like I do. You guys can check out my full reviews of all three books of the trilogy below:




You guys can also check out my other Book Boyfriend from this trilogy, Perry. What? I can have them both haha. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Moronic Monday: John Tyree from Dear John by Nicholas Sparks

Mondays, the worst day of the week. Despite the fact that it's the start of your school/work week, there is always something extra that just pushes it to the next level. That someone that just permanently keeps Monday at the top of most dreaded days of the week. That's what this meme is about. The one character that drives you mad with their stupidity. Their idiocy is the type that you can spot their impending train wreck from miles away, the type that makes you want to slam their heads into a desk repeatedly. Moronic Mondays are not for your lovable idiots, no, it's for the ones that you think they deserve every bad thing they get it.

Warning, this post will contain spoilers from Dear John so read at your own risk. 

For those of you who didn't read this book, let me tell you what exactly makes John this week's moron. Basically, John is a soldier, he travels home for a short period of time in between having to go back to serve. He falls in love with Savannah and they talk about building a life together after he's done with his tour. Then 9/11 happens and John feels that it's his duty to re-enlist and be separated from Savannah for years. Well, low and behold John discovers that re-enlisting doesn't mean he gets to fight the actual terrorists that made 9/11 but being sent to the middle of nowhere while the one he loves moves on with her life. 

I'll probably receive a lot of criticism for this post but I think that it's John's fault that he and Savannah lived unhappy lives. She was waiting for him, and they were both wanted to build a life together but he decided it was more important to stay at war. I understand he felt the call to defend his country; that's very admirable and all but that choice ruined everything. 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Book Bucket List: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle

There are books in your life that you come across and you know you have to read them. They can be old, they can be new but before your time runs out you have to find time to read them. Welcome to my Book Bucket List everyone!

Synopsis as taken from Goodreads.com: It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger. 

"Wild nights are my glory," the unearthly stranger told them. "I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me be on my way. Speaking of way, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract".

Meg's father had been experimenting with this fifth dimension of time travel when he mysteriously disappeared. Now the time has come for Meg, her friend Calvin, and Charles Wallace to rescue him. But can they outwit the forces of evil they will encounter on their heart-stopping journey through space?

It's amazing how many books I missed out in my childhood, but with so many books in the world it's to be expected right? Here's what I know about this book, it comes highly recommended by everyone who's read it, it's won a couple awards, and in general is considered a must read. I've been told before that it's actually a really a short book, so hopefully I'll be able to pick it up one day in between work or my other responsibilities and read it.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Books VS. Movies: Divergent by Veronica Roth

It seems like nowadays that all of our favorite books are being turned into movies. This meme is about the failures and winners of the silver screen in comparison to their books.




What I liked about the book:

I thought that the entire world that Roth had built was very interesting. I liked a lot of the characters and obviously, I was a big supporter of Fourtris. You guys can check out my full review of the book here. It's much more accurate about my feelings about the book since I wrote the review for it right after reading it.

What I didn't like about the book:

I thought that the beginning was really long and boring, I understood that it was necessary with all of the explanations about the world but it was just so difficult to push my way through it. When I finally did, there was a huge payoff but still. 

Where the movie failed: 

The first time I saw this movie in theaters, I couldn't help but cringe when Theo and Shailene were together. First off, he looks like his actual age and she looks like she's a teenager. So that made it a little uncomfortable for me to watch. Second, I didn't feel the passion and chemistry that I felt when reading the book. Even though they didn't get off to a great start in their relationship, you could feel the attraction between the two. I think in the movie it came off forced. 

The movie left out great dialogue, a lot of that is to do with the fact that Uriah wasn't in this movie. Which is really upsetting and I don't like that they're going to introduce him in the second movie. It seems too late for me, but we'll see. Also, they left out cutesy moments in the dialogue between Tris and Four, like when he asks her if she's asking him to undress. How can you mess that up?

I don't like how they left out a lot of the info about Tris's mom, she was a badass character and they should have used that more. Hell, when Tris goes off to Dauntless instead of looking proud of her daughter, she was crying. Maybe it's a small detail but it irked me. 

I own the DVD and there is some great moments that they have in the deleted scenes that should have been in the movie, including when Edward gets stabbed while sleeping. It was a great scene, filmed really well, they should have kept it. 

What I liked about the movie:

Despite my complaints, I think that it was a pretty good adaptation. I understood that they couldn't include everything from the books. I was generally happy with all of the acting, I thought Shailene's acting during the death of Tris's mother was amazing. I actually really liked the change at the end of the movie between Tris and Jeanine. It was more badass and I think that it fit the book perfectly. In a way, I wish the book wrote it just like that. 

I definitely recommend those who may have cringed like I did during the Fourtris moments, to watch the movie again. It's easier the second time and I found that in general I was able to over look the changes and get more into it the second time around. 

All in all I can't complain about the movie. I think it was pretty good and I'm excited for the next one. 

What did you guys think? 

Friday, October 10, 2014

Forgotten Friday: The Lais of Marie De France

This meme is about books that have been pushed aside while others have gone viral and made into movies. It can be old books, new books, any book that never got its (or enough) time  in the spot light.

Synopsis as taken from Goodreads: This is a prose translation of the lais or poems attributed to Marie de France. Little is known of her but she was probably the Abbess of the abbey at Shaftesbury in the late 12th century, illegitimate daughter of Geoffrey Plantagenet and hence the half-sister of Henry II of England. It was to a king, and probably Henry II, that she dedicated these poems of adventure and love which were retellings of stories which she had heard from Breton minstrels. She is regarded as the most talented French poet of the medieval period.

Some of you might take one look at the description of this book and go, "Medieval poetry? Oh god." But really, you should give this a chance. It's a book full of what I would consider to be fairy tales (Not disney fairy tales, but still great). There is action, magic, romance. My favorite Lais is the one called Lanval. A story about a knight who falls in love with a mysterious woman, and is promised riches and love by her as long as he never tells anyone about her. My second favorite is called Nightingale and is more sad about two lovers that are neighbors but can never be together due to the woman's marriage. I really hope that some of you will look this up. You won't regret it.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Book Boyfriend: Rafa from Paula Weston's Rephaim Series

So I've seen this meme floating around many book blogs, but initially I got the idea from Reading Lark and they got this meme from The Unread Reader. I've enjoyed the meme so much that I will also be joining in on the fun on Wednesdays. Welcome to Book Boyfriends everyone!

Appearance: 
  • Green eyes
  • Dark Blond Hair
  • Muscular build from Demon fighting

Why He's My Book Boyfriend:

My god, he's just so sexy. From his sarcastic attitude to the way he tears through hellions, I just swoon as soon as he's on the page. He's pretty rugged and strong from spending his time fighting demons, but he also has a tender side. Like a lot of boyfriends he has his faults, he's sometimes a little too rough around the edges but I could work with that haha. He's sweet when he's around Gaby, so does it really matter that he's grouchy towards most others? 

Actor to be my Rafa:
The first actor that comes to mind for this part is Theo James. After seeing him in Divergent, I think he's perfect. Four and Rafa are similar in their attitude, their strength (at least physically), and Theo has the training to pull off all of Rafa's fight scenes.

Quotes from and about Rafa: 

1) 'Gabe,' Rafa says, and I bite my lip. 'I know. I'll take care of it.' He leans closer. His T-shirt is twisted between my fingers. 'It's been a long time since you asked me for anything. I'm not going to fuck it up.'

'Any chance you could ease up on being an arsehole for a while as well?'

'That I can't promise.'

2) 'So why wouldn't Gabe forgive you?' I hate talking about myself in the third person, but I have to: she's not me. 

His fingers lightly brush my skin. 'I told you,' he says, 'you and me, we haven't been on good terms for a long time. So if I took advantage of the fact you don't remember why, and then you got your memory back…' He gives me a grim smile. 'You'd probably make a coin purse out of my balls.

'Nah,' I say lightly, like his rejection doesn't sting. 'I'd want something big enough to carry more than five-cent pieces.'

3)'Do you want me to stop?' His hair is damp on his forehead.

'No.'

He leans forward until his face is only centimetres from mine. I don't move back. The last few days recede. The only history between us, the one he won't tell me about, melts away under the warm sun. And then Rafa kisses me, not with urgency of our last encounter, but softly, thoughtfully. He tastes like oranges, His hands stay on my ankle restrained. The kiss deepens. I slide my palm up his thigh. He stops me and pulls back. 'You're killing me, you know that?'

'Do you want me to stop?' I mean to sound playful but it comes out breathless.

'No.'

4)"Rafa glances at me as we walk. His hair looks fairer out here in the sunlight. Right now I'd like to run my fingers through it, get a good handful, and smack his head into the brick wall we're passing."


If you guys are interested you can check out my reviews to all three of the books in the series by clicking the links below.