ARC Review: Road Signs That Say West by Sylvia Gunnery

32171679Road Signs That Say West by Sylvia Gunnery

Expected publication: May 1st 2017

It’s Hanna’s wild idea, of course: take their mom’s car, pack up the tent, and drive across the country. Just three sisters, one guitar, and the Trans Canada Highway. They can be back in Nova Scotia before their parents are home from Europe. She doesn’t say she wants to forget about what happened in Italy, and at university. Claire doesn’t say she keeps having nightmares about her friend’s recent suicide. Megan doesn’t say much, unless it’s a complaint. But maybe they all feel, somehow, that this is their one chance to do something together, something big, before time begins to scatter them. With empathy and insight, Sylvia Gunnery writes an engaging summer read about three sisters navigating the difficult roads of adolescence, trauma, secrets, shame, and fear for the future. Peopled with chance encounters and warmed with fireside heart-to-hearts, Road Signs that Say West is a compelling ride through real life.

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I really love road trip books but Road Signs That Say West just wasn’t for me.
I thought it was poorly written and I hated how it jumped from perspective to perspective. I felt like Megan was a pointless character and she was even less developed than the other two girls.
I was pretty bored through out the whole book and nothing interesting really happened.
I liked the idea of this book but the overall execution wasn’t great.

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ARC Review: Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

28245707Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde 

Expected publication: March 14th 2017

When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.

Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Jason Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.

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This was such an unexpectedly great book. I’m so blown away by how much fun this book was to read.
Super adorable romance, really diverse and relatable characters, wonderful writing, this book has it all.
The plot of this book is pretty cool but the characters are what makes this book so fantastic. I really loved the positive representation that these are character provided and how relatable they were.
I loved the fandom aspects of this book and it was so awesome that it was set at Comic-Con.
I really enjoyed all of the references and how fangirly the characters were.
Overall, Queens of Geek is super fun and wonderfully diverse. It’s relatable and has so much positivity. I’d definitely recommend it.

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ARC Review: The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Yoon_9780553496680_jkt_all_r1.inddThe Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Expected publication: November 1st 2016

Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

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This book was amazing. I loved everything about it. The characters were incredible and very well written. The writing style was so beautiful. Nicola Yoon is such a talented writer and everything she writes is perfect. I really loved the plot. The entire book takes place in one day and I thought that was such an interesting concept. I’m not normally a fan of insta-love but I really didn’t mind it in The Sun Is Also a Star.
Overall, I loved this book. I read it in one sitting and I can’t wait to pick up a hardcover copy so I can reread it. I highly recommend The Sun Is Also a Star if you’re looking for a new favorite contemporary.

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Blog Tour: The Midnight Star by Marie Lu + Review

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The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

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Publication: October 11th 2016 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

The thrilling finale to the New York Times bestselling Young Elites series from “hit factory” Marie Lu.

There was once a time when darkness shrouded the world, and the darkness had a queen.

Adelina Amouteru is done suffering. She’s turned her back on those who have betrayed her and achieved the ultimate revenge: victory. Her reign as the White Wolf has been a triumphant one, but with each conquest her cruelty only grows. The darkness within her has begun to spiral out of control, threatening to destroy all that she’s achieved.

Adelina’s forced to revisit old wounds when a new danger appears, putting not only Adelina at risk, but every Elite and the very world they live in. In order to save herself and preserve her empire, Adelina and her Roses must join the Daggers on a perilous quest—though this uneasy alliance may prove to be the real danger.

Bestselling author Marie Lu concludes Adelina’s story with this haunting and hypnotizing final installment to the Young Elites series. 

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Review:

The Young Elites is one of my favorite series’ and I’m so sad that it’s come to an end. However, The Midnight Star is probably my favorite in the series and I can’t wait to reread all the books soon.
I loved the plot of this book. It was pretty different from the other two books but in a good way. I love how much more the series developed in this last final book.
Marie is such an amazing writer. Her writing style, her ideas, the characters she creates, everything is perfection and The Midnight Star showcases all of her talents perfectly.
Honestly, I could ramble on and on about how much I loved this book. It’s the perfect end to an amazing series and I highly recommend this series to everyone.

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20821111.jpgThe Young Elites

Published October 7th 2014

I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.

Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.

Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.

It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.

 

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23846013.jpgThe Rose Society (The Young Elites #2) by Marie Lu

Published October 13th 2015

Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, and she destroyed them all.

Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she flees Kenettra with her sister to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers who nearly killed her.

But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good when her very existence depends on darkness?

Bestselling author Marie Lu delivers another heart-pounding adventure in this exhilarating sequel to The Young Elites.

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ARC Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

23207027.jpgThree Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Expected publication: September 20th 2016

Every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown.

If only it was that simple. Katharine is unable to tolerate the weakest poison, and Arsinoe, no matter how hard she tries, can’t make even a weed grow. The two queens have been shamefully faking their powers, taking care to keep each other, the island, and their powerful sister Mirabella none the wiser. But with alliances being formed, betrayals taking shape, and ruthless revenge haunting the queens’ every move, one thing is certain: the last queen standing might not be the strongest…but she may be the darkest.

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I’ve been a fan of Kendare ever since I read Anna Dressed in Blood when it first came out and all of Kendare’s books have been on my auto buy list ever since. And Three Dark crowns blew me away. It was way darker than I was expecting and THAT ENDING WAS CRAZY. I was pretty confused when I first started this book because there was several different perspectives and I wasn’t familiar with the characters and I couldn’t really tell who was who. But I pushed past that and I’m so glad that I did. I loved the plot, the writing, and the concept of this book so much. This book was such a roller coaster and I loved every second of it.

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ARC Review: Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova

27969081Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova
To Be Published : September 3 2017

Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

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A big thank you to the lovely people at Sourcebooks for sending me this ARC!

I know it’s cutting it close to the pub date of this book but I was in a bit of a slump (don’t let my reviews fool you, I was super behind on posts) and I finally got around to reading this book and I was pretty surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

I was very entertained while reading this book. I’ve never read anything in terms of buja/bujo magic and it really intrigued me. Of course I’ve heard of it but never have I read a book where this was the way magic was used and it felt really authentic and really well written, and I appreciated that a lot while reading this book.

I absolutely loved the world (Los Lagos), the writing, the story but there were a few things that fell short to me. I felt like I didn’t really get as immersed in this book as I usually do with others which I’m not saying is an overly negative thing but I REALLY wanted to feel like I was completely enveloped in this story this place around all this magic and amazement, but I just didn’t and it sucked when I could easily put the book down and go do something else. Being so excited for this book I was really looking forward into really diving deep into it and having trouble coming out of this book…but it just didn’t happen. And I think it could be because of the characters? But I’m still not quite sure (hmmm maybe  a re-read needs to happen to figure that out…)

I preferred Nova over Alex. I think she kind of just fell under the radar in comparison to other lead ladies I’ve read about and just felt that like overall there could have been a lot more development overall across the board. I feel like I wanted more from them. All the characters, I needed more from Alex, more from Nova…hell I needed more from the villain! And I think that’s where this book started to fall short. Although really entertaining, and a great premise and AMAZING diversity in all fronts (ethnic, romance, just unf I loved all the diversity in this book!) a big part of books that really make or break it for me are the characters.

But I have to say, for one of my most anticipated reads Zoraida gets ALL THE CLAPS! Thank you for this good read! It’s something that’s snaked me out of my slump and got me reading again. Overall great plot, awesome world, good characters, and entertaining.

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ARC Review: Someone I Wanted to Be by Aurelia Wills

S28814852omeone I Wanted to Be by Aurelia Wills

Expected publication: September 6th 2016

When an insecure teen starts impersonating someone else, her life spirals dangerously out of control in a realistic, relatable novel about finding yourself—and discovering your true friends.

Leah Lobermier dreams of becoming a doctor, but it’s hard to stay focused on getting good grades when boys make oinking sounds at her in school and her mother spends every night on the couch with a bottle of wine. Leah’s skinny and popular “friends,” Kristy and Corinne, aren’t much better and can hardly be counted on for support. When the girls convince a handsome older man to buy them beer, Leah takes his phone number and calls him, pretending to be Kristy—coy and confident—and they develop a relationship, talking and texting day after day. But as the lie she created grows beyond her control, can Leah put a stop to things before she—or Kristy—is seriously hurt?

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Personally, I just couldn’t get into this book. The first half was okay and the last half was a lot better but I couldn’t ever become emotionally invested in the story or the characters. I think the biggest “problem” with this book is that is has so many tough, sad topics that I did couldn’t enjoy anything about it. It was like everything that could go wrong, did go wrong and it was just an exhausting read. There was just so much sad stuff going that it felt really depressing.

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ARC Review: The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Yoon_9780553496680_jkt_all_r1.inddThe Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Expected publication: November 1st 2016

Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

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This book was amazing. I loved everything about it. The characters were incredible and very well written. The writing style was so beautiful. Nicola Yoon is such a talented writer and everything she writes is perfect. I really loved the plot. The entire book takes place in one day and I thought that was such an interesting concept. I’m not normally a fan of insta-love but I really didn’t mind it in The Sun Is Also a Star.
Overall, I loved this book. I read it in one sitting and I can’t wait to pick up a hardcover copy so I can reread it. I highly recommend The Sun Is Also a Star if you’re looking for a new favorite contemporary.

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ARC Review: It Looks Like This by Rafi Mittlefehldt

24755394.jpgIt Looks Like This by Rafi Mittlefehldt

Expected publication: September 6th 2016

A new state, a new city, a new high school. Mike’s father has already found a new evangelical church for the family to attend, even if Mike and his plainspoken little sister, Toby, don’t want to go. Dad wants Mike to ditch art for sports, to toughen up, but there’s something uneasy behind his demands.

Then Mike meets Sean, the new kid, and “hey” becomes games of basketball, partnering on a French project, hanging out after school. A night at the beach. The fierce colors of sunrise. But Mike’s father is always watching. And so is Victor from school, cell phone in hand.

 

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I’m bothered by a lot of things about this book.
The complete lack of quotation marks with the dialogue so annoying and I didn’t see how it benefited the story. It made the entire story seem very flat and didn’t have any emotion. I didn’t find this book to be particularly different from a bunch of other books that I’ve read. The plot was very similar to other LBGTQ+ books that I’ve read and I was kind of bored by it.

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ARC Review: The Light Fantastic by Sarah Combs

28814848.jpgThe Light Fantastic by Sarah Combs

Expected publication: September 13th 2016

Seven tightly interwoven narratives. Three harrowing hours. One fateful day that changes everything.

Delaware, the morning of April 19. Senior Skip Day, and April Donovan’s eighteenth birthday. Four days after the Boston Marathon bombing, the country is still reeling, and April’s rare memory condition has her recounting all the tragedies that have cursed her birth month. And just what was that mysterious gathering under the bleachers about? Meanwhile, in Nebraska, Lincoln Evans struggles to pay attention in Honors English, distracted by the enigmatic presence of Laura Echols, capturer of his heart. His teacher tries to hold her class’s interest, but she can’t keep her mind off what Adrian George told her earlier. Over in Idaho, Phoebe is having second thoughts about the Plan mere hours before the start of a cross-country ploy led by an Internet savant known as the Mastermind. Is all her heartache worth the cost of the Assassins’ machinations? The Light Fantastic is a tense, shocking, and beautifully wrought exploration of the pain and pathos of a generation of teenagers on the brink—and the hope of moving from shame and isolation into the light of redemption.

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I loved the writing style (I think it’s the best thing about this book) and the characters were pretty cool but I’m not a fan of books that deal with shootings or bombings or anything like that. I don’t like reading about those things at all. So even though I loved the writing style, I couldn’t get into this book for even a second. It’s definitely a case of personal preference and not the book’s fault at all. It just wasn’t for me. If you’re fine with reading about shootings/bombings, I’d say give this book a try. But if you’re hesitant at all, skip it.

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