Save the Date - Book Review

Monday, 18 June 2018

Started: June 15, 2018 | Finished: June ??, 2018

Save the Date by Morgan Matson
Published by Simon & Schuster on June 5th, 2018
Genre: YA, Contemporary 
Pages: 432
Book Edition: Ebook, Hardcover Signed Edition
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait—for the first time in years, all four of her older siblings will be under one roof. Charlie is desperate for one last perfect weekend, before the house is sold and everything changes. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect.

The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.

There’s the unexpected dog with a penchant for howling, house alarm that won’t stop going off, and a papergirl with a grudge.

There are the relatives who aren’t speaking, the (awful) girl her favorite brother brought home unannounced, and a missing tuxedo.

Not to mention the neighbor who seems to be bent on sabotage and a storm that is bent on drenching everything. The justice of the peace is missing. The band will only play covers. The guests are all crazy. And the wedding planner’s nephew is unexpectedly, distractingly…cute.

Over the course of three ridiculously chaotic days, Charlie will learn more than she ever expected about the family she thought she knew by heart. And she’ll realize that sometimes, trying to keep everything like it was in the past means missing out on the future.
Rating: 4.5/5

My Review:

Morgan Matson does it again!!! I loved this one so much! It was so cute, and adorable, and had all the feels! I think it's only downfall, and by downfall I mean losing a half a point on the rating, is that I read this back to back with The Unexpected Everything which I loved so much, that this one I loved just teensy weensy bit less. Also the stress and anxiety this book gave me when things were going on the day before or day of the wedding also contributed to it losing half a point. But because it's Morgan Matson, and her books are just the best, I couldn't take away a full point for it.

I really loved that this book's main focus was on the family. With most contemporaries, it's all about the romance, but for this one that took a bit of a backset which is nice to switch it up every now and then. There was romance, but just not that much. But what there was, I liked. Bill FTW!! That's all I will say on that. I really loved Charlie, and I loved her entire family. I just loved the whole Grant family dynamic, it was just amazing.

Also I'm going to mention it again in this review, but I really love that there's always a bit of crossover in Morgan's books. This one was a bit more than the usual subtle crossover. This one had a chapter where our characters interacted with Andie, Clark, and Andie's Dad from The Unexpected Everything!! Which given my love for that book, made me so happy! We got a bit of an update on where Andie and Clark are right now, and I'm happy they are still together. You got to see Andie's Dad who is now the governor more than once in this book which was so cool. Also there was a subtle mention of a character from one of her other books, Amy & Roger's Epic Detour (which is still one of all-time favourites from Morgan Matson).

Something I forgot to mention in my last review, but I must mention now is the book covers!! The book covers on Morgan Matson's book are phenomenal! I love that they give you a clear picture of the main characters for the book as well as these little details for what the book is about. I own all the hardcover editions, so the dust jackets on them are so awesome, they have images on both sides. I just love that added little detail that helps bring her books more to life.

Anyways, I think I've gushed enough. But if you are looking for the perfect summer read, honestly pick up one of Morgan Matson's books, I can't recommend them enough!

The Unexpected Everything - Book Review

Friday, 15 June 2018

Started: June 2, 2018 | Finished: June 12, 2018

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson
Published by Simon & Schuster on May 3rd, 2016
Genre: YA, Contemporary 
Pages: 518
Book Edition: Ebook, Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Andie had it all planned out. When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future. Important internship? Check. Amazing friends? Check. Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks).

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life. Because here’s the thing—if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected. And where’s the fun in that?
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING! Morgan Matson writes the perfect summer reads. Every book of hers I just adore! I think I can officially go on record and say that she is my favourite contemporary writer. I just love her characters, and the stories are always so good and heartfelt. Her writing style is just so flawless. I could go on and on, she's amazing!!

I loved everything about this book. I loved the main character and seeing her learn that sometimes it's best to not have everything planned out all the time. Her friends were amazing, I loved their dynamic. Without getting into the details as I want to keep this spoiler free, but the ending had me a bit sad for what happens with them, but I think with it being left open-ended, you can believe that everything eventually gets mended. Her relationship with her Dad and seeing how that developed throughout the book was so great. I really enjoyed that part of the book. As someone who is by definition a Daddy's Little Girl, stories with good father/daughter dynamics are so heartwarming to me. The romance was great!! I really liked Clark, he was so cute! I also thought it was so interesting that he was a writer. I loved that part and that we got little samples of his books throughout this book, that was cool. Also she's a dog walker!! So lots of cute parts with dogs, I mean that was just the cherry on top!

Also something I love about Morgan Matson's books is she'll have a very brief appearance of characters from one of her other books in her new books. It's so subtle that if you didn't read her other books then you wouldn't find it odd or anything. But if you have read them then it's a little part that connects you to her other books so it made me smile. This one had characters from Second Chance Summer in it.

This was such a good book!! I regret that I waited until now to read it, but the size use to intimidate me. But now that I've read it, it's worth all 500+ pages for sure!

Do you love Morgan Matson's books as much as I do? What's your favourite from her?

Someone Like You - Book Review

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Started: May 27, 2018 | Finished: June 2, 2018

Someone Like You by Sarah Dessen
Published by Speak on June 1st, 2012
Genre: YA, Contemporary 
Pages: 304
Book Edition: Ebook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

The world is a terrible place not to have a best friend.
Scarlett was always the strong one. 
Halley was always content to follow in her wake.
Then Scarlett’s boyfriend died, and Scarlett learned that she was pregnant.
Now Halley has to find the strength to take the lead and help Scarlett get through it.
Because true friendship is a promise you keep forever. 
Rating: 3.5/5 

My Review:

I liked this one a lot!! I really enjoyed the plot and the friendship between Halley and Scarlett, and seeing how much they supported each other through everything. They were my favourite part of this book by far. I really liked Scarlett as a secondary character, I thought she was great and so strong through everything that she was dealing with.

Now our main character on the other hand, Halley, I had some issues with and that's why the rating on this one dropped a bit. I liked her at times, but other times I really questioned her choices. I didn't like the way she treated her mom like the enemy, although I did find her mom to be extreme at times, I do think Halley overreacted to things sometimes. Maybe it's my age that's making me see Halley's actions as a bit childish because I think if I read this when I was sixteen then maybe I'd feel differently. But I was always a rule follower growing up, so I don't know.

Another thing that I wasn't a fan of was the main relationship between Halley and Macon. I just didn't like Macon at all. Maybe a little at first, but as soon as he started getting all pushy with her in regards to sex then I was all 'boy bye!'. Which I think that was the direction that Sarah Dessen wanted us to feel when dealing with Macon considering what happens in the book in regards to their relationship.

I do really love Sarah Dessen's writing style!! Her books are great summer reads, they are easy to read and the story flows really nicely. I want to read all her books for this very reason, and I'm making it my mission to do so.

What are your thoughts on Someone Like You and Sarah Dessen's books?

The Foreseeable Future - Book Review

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Started: May 14, 2018 | Finished: May 20, 2018

The Foreseeable Future by Emily Adrian
Published by Dial Books on May 8th, 2018
Genre: YA, Contemporary 
Pages: 378
Book Edition: Ebook, A.R.C.
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Audrey's life has been planned out for her since she was born, and now she's supposed to attend Whedon College in the fall, where both of her parents work. But Audrey has a different plan in mind: She's not going to attend college at all. She's going to earn some money and move to Seattle, the city she's loved since she was a child. And the best way to earn that money is by working the night shift at the local nursing home.

Seth O'Malley works there, too, and a romance quickly blossoms between them. But things get complicated when Audrey saves the life of Cameron Suzuki, Seth's ex. A video of her performing CPR at the beach goes viral, and suddenly, Audrey's wanted for TV interviews and newspaper articles. And just when Audrey starts to love life at the nursing hom--and life with Seth--Seattle comes knocking. Does she follow the path she set out for herself, even when it means leaving behind Seth and the cast of quirky patients she's come to care for? Or does she embrace a future with Seth--at least for the foreseeable future--at the cost of abandoning her dreams?
Rating: 3.5/5

My Review:

I did enjoy this book, I found the plot very interesting. I liked the main character for the most part, but her impulsivity gave me whiplash. One moment she'd be set on one thing and then just change her mind the next. But I understood her decisions, so that's why I ultimately didn't mind. I've never read a book where someone goes viral before, so that was interesting. Also liked that she worked in a nursing home, and the friendship she made with one of her patients.

As for the romance in the book, I did really like their relationship but I didn't love that she was contemplating giving up her future for him. I'm not going to reveal the outcome of it, you'll just have to read the book. But if you have read it, and given my stance on it then you should have an understanding about how I felt with the ending. Was that vague enough for ya? *insert winky face here*

I also liked the family dynamic/drama throughout the book. It's a very real situation, and I thought it was handled really well. I really enjoyed Emily Adrian's writing style, it was very easy reading and she made everything flow really well. I thought it was a great book to read for this time of the year, a good summer read for sure. Also I love the cover of this book!! I never mention that in my reviews and I feel like I should when covers are beautiful like this one!

Let me know what you thought of The Foreseeable Future in the comments!

That Summer - Book Review

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Started: May 6, 2018 | Finished: May 13, 2018

That Summer by Sarah Dessen
Published by Speak on June, 2012
Genre: YA, Contemporary 
Pages: 198
Book Edition: Paperback, Ebook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

As far as Haven is concerned, there's just too much going on.

Everything is changing, and she's not sure where she fits in.

Then her sister's old boyfriend shows up, sparking memories of the summer when they were all happy and everything was perfect...

But along the way, Haven realizes that sometimes change is a good thing.
Rating: 2/5

My Review:

I tried so hard to like this book, and I just couldn't. I finished it so that's something. But I just found the main character to be so whiny and constantly complaining about the same thing over and over throughout the whole book. It felt like every chapter she was complaining about being to tall and complaining about her sister. Honestly that's basically the whole book in a nutshell.

But the thing is I'm not going to let this stop me from reading Sarah Dessen's books. I've heard nothing but good things about her books. This was her first book and it was originally published back in 1996. So I will give her the benefit of the doubt, and carry on reading her books. I want to read them all in order. The good thing about this book is that it's very short, so it was a quick read. It's also set in summer, obviously, but it got me so excited because summer is my favourite season.

A Night to Remember - Book Review

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Started: April 16, 2018 | Finished: May 6, 2018

A Night to Remember by Walter Lord
Published by Open Road Media on March 6th, 2012
Genre: Non-Fiction, Historical
Pages: 293
Book Edition: Ebook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

The classic minute-by-minute account of the sinking of the Titanic, in a 50th anniversary edition with a new introduction by Nathaniel Philbrick

First published in 1955, A Night to Remember remains a completely riveting account of the Titanic's fatal collision and the behavior of the passengers and crew, both noble and ignominious. Some sacrificed their lives, while others fought like animals for their own survival. Wives beseeched husbands to join them in lifeboats; gentlemen went taut-lipped to their deaths in full evening dress; and hundreds of steerage passengers, trapped below decks, sought help in vain. 

Available for the first time in trade paperback and with a new introduction for the 50th anniversary edition by Nathaniel Philbrick, author of In the Heart of the Sea and Sea of Glory, Walter Lord's classic minute-by-minute re-creation is as vivid now as it was upon first publication fifty years ago. From the initial distress flares to the struggles of those left adrift for hours in freezing waters, this semicentennial edition brings that moonlit night in 1912 to life for a new generation of readers.
Rating: 3/5

My Review:

Before I get into the book review, I thought I would mention how I do the Published part of my reviews. I don't put the original publication dates and original publishing company unless the copy I read is the original. The original copy of this book was released in 1955, but the copy I have is the one that was released in 2012. So I only will put the copy that I own.

Okay on to the book! I read this on/off in between reading other books. I found it to be a very interesting read. As someone who watched Titanic every year in April since 2012, I always like knowing more about what happened on that tragic night. This book gives you an hour by hour depiction of that night. The author collected his information from the survivors themselves.

The only thing I found difficult was it was a little hard to follow at times. You just have to try to not remember all the names being thrown your way, eventually some names will stick with you. I also struggled with some of the wording. But other than that it was a quick interesting read. I also liked that you can tell the people who screenwrote the movie possibly got their source material from this book as there was lines quoted in here that were in the movie as well as some of the characters from the movie being based off of real life people.

Good book if you like to know more about a historical tragedy.

A Court of Frost and Starlight - Book Review (Spoiler Warning)

Sunday, 6 May 2018

Started: May 1, 2018 | Finished: May 5, 2018

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas
Published by Bloomsbury YA on May 1st, 2018
Genre: YA, Fantasy 
Pages: 229
Book Edition: Hardcover, Ebook
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Narrated by Feyre and Rhysand, this bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming novels in the series. 

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can't keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated--scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

The only reason I'm throwing up a Spoiler Warning is because this is a book that is well into a series, so if you haven't read the series than it's probably not best to read this review. But I will say, if you haven't read this series yet then DO IT!!! I can't describe just how much I love this series and how happy it makes me! Like I'm still blown away by how much the second book in the series affected me. I'm not one on picking up on things, and often my predictions can be wrong, so I had no clue what to expect when going into that book, and it was so mind-blowing for me that I don't think I'll ever be over it!

Anyways, we are now on the novella that kind of closes out Feyre and Rhysand's story in a way. The first three books are told from Feyre's perspective and this book is the bridge between the next set of books told in another character's perspective (not saying who, but for once I guessed/hoped for this person and was so pleased that I'm getting my wish). This one is told mainly from Feyre and Rhysand's perspectives, but you also get a few other characters who have their own chapters which I really liked. I love this world that Sarah J. Maas has creative, everything about it is just so good. That woman writes as we say "book crack" and it's so true to how addictive her books are. She's honestly brilliant!!

I'm trying to keep this as spoiler free as I can, but as I said this is a book well into a series, so I feel like I need to talk about some things that we got in this book. So first, Feyre and Rhysand continue to be the perfect couple/mates. I love their story so much, and loved all the great things we got of them in this book. I really loved where their story is going, and can't wait to get glimpses of them in the next set of books as I'm sure they will now be secondary characters. I'm also really interested to find out what comes of the discontent going on in the Illaryian camps. This book starts setting up through Cassian's perspective and such, so I'm interested to see where that goes. There's also things that need to happen like Lucien finding out who his real father is. Also what's going on with Elain, Lucien and Azriel. I'm completely on the fence for where I want that to go. I just would like to see more of her, and what's going on with not only how she feels for each of them, but also find out more about her seer power. There's so much that we need, and it's making so excited for more!! Another year long wait that I know will be worth it in the end!

I can't gush enough about how amazing this series is!! It's one of my top favourite series ever, if not the top favourite! It's just so good!! Exclamation points good!!! Highly recommended, please read this series and then tell me your thought and feelings because I love talking about these books!!

Little Monsters - Book Review

Monday, 23 April 2018

Started: April 14, 2018 | Finished: April 21, 2018

Little Monsters by Kara Thomas
Published by Delacorte Press on July 25th, 2017
Genre: YA, Mystery 
Pages: 324
Book Edition: Paperback, A.R.C.
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Kacey is the new girl in Broken Falls. When she moved in with her father, she stepped into a brand-new life. A life with a stepbrother, a stepmother, and strangest of all, an adoring younger half sister.

Kacey’s new life is eerily charming compared with the wild highs and lows of the old one she lived with her volatile mother. And everyone is so nice in Broken Falls—she’s even been welcomed into a tight new circle of friends. Bailey and Jade invite her to do everything with them.

Which is why it’s so odd when they start acting distant. And when they don’t invite her to the biggest party of the year, it doesn’t exactly feel like an accident.

But Kacey will never be able to ask, because Bailey never makes it home from that party. Suddenly, Broken Falls doesn’t seem so welcoming after all—especially once everyone starts looking to the new girl for answers.

Kacey is about to learn some very important lessons: Sometimes appearances can be deceiving. Sometimes when you’re the new girl, you shouldn’t trust anyone.
Rating: 4.5/5

My Review:

This book was so good!! I found it to be a really good YA mystery that left me guessing right until the end which is what you want in a good mystery book. I enjoyed the characters for the most part. I also really liked how the book was written, most of it was told from Kacey's perspective but I liked how every now and then we'd get a journal entry style chapter from Bailey's perspective.

The only things that took this book from a 5 star to 4.5 was Kacey. Now I actually liked Kacey as a character, but it was just little things that I wasn't a fan of. Like how furious she would get about being a potential suspect when she was acting so suspicious throughout the whole book. Anytime something happened, she was more often than not there which is super suspicious in my books. Also I completely understand why she was acting the way she was, but I think because I'm such a rule follower I couldn't relate in some cases. But then again, I don't know how I would be if my best friend went missing. But I don't think I would compete actual crimes just because I'm curious to find out.

Those are just small little things that didn't bother me too much because I was captivated throughout the whole book regardless. I'm not going to say what the outcome of Bailey missing is, but I will say that it wasn't what I expected. Not going to reveal if that's good or bad. I will say though that I love when books aren't predictable and are surprising. Like when the big reveal comes, and then you need to finish the book then and there because you have to find out everything from that point on, I love that! I found this book did a really good job with that, and that's why I would recommend this to anyone who wants a good mystery book to read.

To Kill a Kingdom - Book Review

Monday, 16 April 2018

Started: April 3, 2018 | Finished: April 14, 2018

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo
Published by Feiwel Friends on March 6th, 2018
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Pages: 342
Book Edition: Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. Until a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own. To punish her daughter, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into the one thing they loathe most—a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian’s heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever.

The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby—it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears. She promises to help him find the key to destroying all of sirenkind for good—But can he trust her? And just how many deals will Elian have to barter to eliminate mankind’s greatest enemy?
Rating: 5/5

My Review:

With all the fairytale retelling books out there, I was just waiting for one on The Little Mermaid, as it's one of my favourites, and this book is finally it!! Keep in mind I haven't read the Hans Christian Andersen version, yet, so I've only see the Disney movie of it. It had certain elements from The Little Mermaid that I know, but with a darker twist, and I loved every moment of it!

This is the first book I've read with a siren in it, and they are pretty evil characters or so they like you to believe. The Sea Queen controls the entire ocean and everything in it including the sirens, and specifically her daughter, Lira. Evil isn't born, it's made. The dark magic that resides in the trident of the Sea Queen has been passed down through generations. Anyways, as the synopsis says, Lira kills one of her own and becomes a human. That for me is when the book got very interesting. The first few chapters you need to meet the characters and know their backstories before they can really get into it. I did enjoy it though because it didn't take too long for it to happen, and I thought it all flowed really well.

This story isn't just told in Lira's perspective, but also Prince Elian's as well. Both characters I really liked, and I enjoyed that you had two characters who are meant to hate each other; he's a siren killer, and she's a siren turned human who needs to kill him to become a siren again. I found that very fun, and it was great seeing these two develop throughout the book and see how their opinions change and grow. I thought it was really well done!

I would highly, highly recommend this one if you love fantasy books and fairytale retellings. Also the great thing about this is that it's a standalone book. I love series books don't get me wrong, but I find them a bit intimidating at times, especially if they're a large series. So this was great that it was just the one book, and that was it. I found the story wrapped up nicely where you were left satisfied and not needing more. Such a great book!!!

Sam & Ilsa's Last Hurrah - Book Review

Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Started: March 23, 2018 | Finished: April 2, 2018

Sam & Ilsa's Last Hurrah by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
Published by Knopf Books on April 10th, 2018
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 209
Book Edition: Paperback, A.R.C.
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

The New York Times Bestselling duo behind Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist and The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily return with twins out to throw the party of a lifetime--or at least the best party of high school!

Siblings Sam and Ilsa Kehlmann have spent most of their high school years throwing parties for their friends--and now they've prepared their final blowout, just before graduation.

The rules are simple: each twin gets to invite three guests, and the other twin doesn't know who's coming until the partiers show up at the door. With Sam and Ilsa, the sibling revelry is always tempered with a large dose of sibling rivalry, and tonight is no exception.

One night. One apartment. Eight people. What could possibly go wrong? Oh, we all know the answer is plenty. But plenty also goes right, as rather surprising ways.
Rating: 2/5

My Review:

This was definitely not my favourite book by these authors that's for sure. I've only read the Dash & Lily books by them, but I really loved those because I really liked the characters in it. This one however was not the case. I barely liked any of the characters especially the main two. I just found them both to be spoiled, whiny, and very childish. I found I couldn't be bothered to really care all that much on what happens with them. With Rachel Cohn and David Levithan books, I'm finding that they want to write their characters to be extremely quirky and unique, but I just found with this one that it was too much and completely overdone. Maybe there are people like this in the world, but I personally just found these characters to be unrealistic.

It was interesting enough that I finished it, but it was also very short so that could also be another reason why I finished it. It just left no lasting impression on me. When I was finished the book, I was so glad it was over. I feel bad for sounding harsh, but I also want to be honest. Usually when I finish a book, I like to write the review right away while it's fresh in my mind, but this one I couldn't be bothered. I'm only writing it now (I wrote this yesterday) because I want to make sure to post this on the day the book is released.

If you're interested in very unique characters, and a quick read then you'll have to judge this for yourself. I personally wouldn't recommend it, but it also doesn't stop me from wanting to read their other books. I would like to reiterate though that this is just my own personal opinion and experience with this book. Everyone is different in what they like and dislike, so please feel free to give this one a try if it sounds like something you'd be interested in reading.

Was I too harsh? What's your opinions on this book?

The Upside of Unrequited - Book Review

Friday, 23 March 2018

Started: March 15, 2018 | Finished: March 22, 2018

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli
Published by Balzer + Bray on April 11th, 2017
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 336
Book Edition: Hardcover
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love—she’s lived through it twenty-six times. She crushes hard and crushes often, but always in secret. Because no matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. Will is funny and flirtatious and just might be perfect crush material. Maybe more than crush material. And if Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back. 

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker Reid. He’s an awkward Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him. Right?
Rating: 4/5

My Review:

Another very cute book by Becky Albertalli!! Two in a row for me, and I've found that I just really love her books and her writing style. I'm so excited for any book she brings out and I think she'll always be one of those must read authors for me. I also love the characters that she writes, she really makes you want to root for them. As was the case with Molly! I liked her a lot, and I related to Molly's form of anxiety very much in this book.

Let's actually talk about that for a second, the anxiety. I thought this book did a fantastic job at representing what's it like especially in social situations where you just get inside your head a lot, and don't say much because of it which then makes people think you're standoffish or super shy. I also related to the no love due to the anxiety and overthinking, except I'm not 17 and I haven't been able to be "un-careful" as Molly does with the guys in this book. It's a sad fact that while there's been opportunities in my life for love, I've always let my brain ruin everything. I overthink, I shutdown and they move on, story of my life!.....(okay that got depressing)...moving on!

As always the supporting characters in this book were fantastic! I love the representation of Molly and Cassie having two moms. My mom has been with her partner for nearly 22 years, so I basically have two moms as well and it's amazing, they're amazing! Also loved Reid, he was so awesome and I rooted for him from the start. Will is an alright guy as well, I actually really liked his character too. But Reid was just so lovable from the moment he was introduced. Loved Cassie and Mina together, they were adorable!! Also really loved the small appearances of characters from Simon vs the Homo Sapiens agenda in this as Abby from that book is Molly and Cassie's cousin. So I was really happy about that little crossover.

Overall, I really loved this book! It was a quick, fun read that I would recommend. Now just got to wait for Leah on the Offbeat to come out for more Becky Albertalli in my life!!

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Book Review

Friday, 16 March 2018

Started: March 9, 2018 | Finished: March 14, 2018

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Published by Penguin on April 7th, 2015
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 303
Book Edition: Paperback
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

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.
Rating: 4/5

My Review:

The premise of this book makes you feel like there would be lots of drama involved with blackmail and whatnot, but it was very lighthearted and sweet and I enjoyed that about it. Simon is an amazing main character! I found him very sweet, smart and witty which is all the things you want for a character. I wasn't a fan of what Martin did to Simon, it's very unfair to blackmail someone into trying to help you get a girlfriend. I found that very cowardly and cruel despite how genuine he was, especially towards the end.

The romance between Simon and Blue though was what was so gripping about this book. You wanted to know who Blue was and when was Simon going to find out. I guessed pretty early on about who Blue was, but I was more excited for Simon to find out for himself, and I love the way the book went about it. The supporting characters were also so great in this book! I loved Simon's family, they seemed to very fun and down-to-earth. Simon's friends were awesome!! Although another qualm I had was how they really kind of abandoned Leah a lot in this book. I guess because I know Leah is going to have her own book coming out soon, I expected Simon to be closest with her, and to find out that, while she was one of his best friends, they weren't as close as I thought. So I was a little disappointed about that. Luckily he makes up for it in the end, and it does leave me excited for her book when it comes out.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It was a quick, fun read and I would recommend it especially if you're planning to see the movie like I am.

Book vs TV Show: Thirteen Reasons Why

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Book vs Show: 
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher


You can't stop the future. You can't rewind the past. The only way to learn the secret. . . is to press play.

Clay Jensen doesn't want anything to do with the tapes Hannah Baker made. Hannah is dead. Her secrets should be buried with her.

Then Hannah's voice tells Clay that his name is on her tapes-- and that he is, in some way, responsible for her death.

All through the night, Clay keeps listening. He follows Hannah's recorded words throughout his small town. . .

. . .and what he discovers changes his life forever.

When this series came out on Netflix last year, I watched it right away and was just blown away by how powerful and thought provoking it was. It was a show that stayed with you, and made you think and realize that your words and actions matter. They can have an impact that you may not realize, and you need to choose wisely on the things you say and do, especially during your teenage years where everyone around you is trying to figure out who they are.

Basically I'm reiterating a bit of what I said yesterday in my book review because I think it's important. Now I'm going to get into the differences between the book and show, and which I preferred. So I'm leaving this on the assumption that if you're reading this then you've read the book, or seen the show, or both.

One of the biggest differences between the show and book is that Clay finishes the tapes all in one night in the book whereas on the show he takes his time with them. Another is the way in which Hannah chooses to go about her suicide is different in the book. In the book she swallows a bunch of pills, and in the show she cuts her wrists. Both are horrifying, but I found seeing the show version was so much more horrifying for me. 

What I liked about the show is that you got to see more backstory for not just Clay and Hannah, but everyone involved in the tapes. With the book, it's told only from Clay and Hannah's perspectives so you don't have much insight on the other characters and how they were dealing with the aftermath of Hannah's suicide and listening to the tapes. I also liked that in the show you got to see Hannah's parents and get more story on what was going on with them. Throughout the book there's not much mention at all of her parents, and I found that a bit odd. 

With the book, the ending is very closed and it didn't make you feel like you needed more, you can pretty much imagine where things go from there. But the show is the complete opposite, it left you with so many questions that if there wasn't a second season, I would've been very disappointed! Speaking of, I hope we get word soon when we'll be seeing Season 2. There's so much that I need to know after it ended. I think because I watched the show first, it lessened my book experience. Usually the books are the ones that are more fleshed out while the adaption of the book misses things, but it was the complete opposite of this for me.

For that, I think it's pretty obvious..
Show wins over Book

What did you think? Do you agree or did you prefer the book over the tv show?

Thirteen Reasons Why - Book Review

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Started: March 5, 2018 | Finished: March 9, 2018

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Published by Razorbill on June 14th, 2011
Genre: YA, Drama, Tragedy 
Pages: 288
Book Edition: Paperback
No. of times read: 1
Links: Goodreads

You can't stop the future. You can't rewind the past. The only way to learn the secret. . . is to press play.

Clay Jensen doesn't want anything to do with the tapes Hannah Baker made. Hannah is dead. Her secrets should be buried with her.

Then Hannah's voice tells Clay that his name is on her tapes-- and that he is, in some way, responsible for her death.

All through the night, Clay keeps listening. He follows Hannah's recorded words throughout his small town. . .

. . .and what he discovers changes his life forever.
Rating: 4/5

My Review:

I decided to read the book version to kind of refresh my memory a bit in hopes that Season 2 will be back soon. But speaking of the series, I think since I watched the show before reading the book, it may have lessened my reading experience. I spent the whole time comparing the two, and I felt like it took away from it a bit. But overall, I still liked the book as I liked the series.

There was a lot of controversy when the series came out and thus putting the book in the limelight with a lot of people saying that it glorified suicide. I personally didn't see it that way, but took it as more of way to bring awareness to a huge issue in the world, and that is bullying and how much your words and actions can affect another person. It's unfortunate how people, or in this case, kids will do anything they can to put any negative attention they can on someone else as a way of either punishing that person for their own misfortunes or so that the negative attention doesn't turn to them. It's a common occurrence, especially in high school where you are just beginning to shape your life.

I felt for Hannah so badly throughout the book, and you just wished that someone, anyone stepped up and really helped here, but you obviously knew that no-one did or at least not in the way she needed. I felt for Clay because he was this scared kid who had a crush on a girl, but didn't do enough because he believed in rumours and ran without really fighting for her when he had the chance. I don't blame him though. In fight or flight situations, I flight every time! So I can understand him in that sense, and it broke my heart that he had to then live with the consequences that he didn't know he'd have to face at the time.

I enjoyed the book and series and the overall message of both; choose your words and actions wisely because you don't know what impact you may be having on another person.

4 Year Blogiversary!

Saturday, 10 March 2018

So as you can tell there wasn't that many posts between my last blogiversary and now. You can check out my Life Update; Long Time, No See post to find out why that was.

In keeping with tradition, I'm going to highlight the top 5 posts starting after I made last year's post.
1 year blogiversary highlights
2 year blogiversary highlights
3 year blogiversary highlights

And there you have it, my Top 5 for the past year. I'm hoping by next year I'll have a bigger selection to go through. Thank you to everyone who follows my blog and reads my posts! It means so much to me, and I appreciate the love so very much!! Here's too many more blogiversaries in the future!

Why my Dad reminds me of Jack Pearson on This Is Us!

Monday, 26 February 2018

It's been a year to the day since I lost my Dad, and my life changed irrevocably. Since that moment, I'll forever be living with this Dad shaped hole in my heart that will never been full again. It's a very strange feeling, losing someone you love, because in some ways it feels like the time flew by and in others it feels like he's been gone for so long. There has not been a single day that's gone by that I haven't thought of him, and I can't foresee there ever being a day where I won't.

So you're probably wondering why I decided to use this title. Just know this post isn't going to be all about Jack Pearson, the character, but all about my Dad and why I felt like he reminds me of the superhero Dad that Jack was on This Is Us. I'll most likely do a separate post all about This Is Us in the future because that show is phenomenal. But this more about my Dad with some character comparison to a real life superhero Dad.

I'm going to throw up a SPOILER WARNING here; if you have not seen This Is Us, and don't want to know anything about the show until you see it, then I suggest not reading on since I'm going to get into character details and plot points that I don't want to ruin for anyone. It's best to go into that show with fresh eyes, knowing nothing, trust me!! My post isn't going anywhere, it'll still be here when you get all caught up or at least get through the first half of the first season. By then I feel like you'll have a good understanding on the show and characters, like Jack.


I got the idea for this post when I was watching the latest gut-wrenching episodes that had to do with Jack's death. For me, This Is Us is a hard show for me to watch even though I love it so much. To have the Dad character of the show not only die, but die young is very close to home for me. The circumstances are completely different to Jack's death and my Dad's. But I think the thing that struck me first is when I worked out the math and realized Jack died at the age of 53, which is the same age my Dad was when he passed. That's when I really started to think about how much Jack actually does remind me of my Dad in the way he parents his kids. Now just know I'm basing this off the episodes I've seen, which is all of the Season 1 minus the last 2 or 3 episodes and all of Season 2 except for the two most recent episodes. Reason being is like I said before it's just too hard for me to watch right now (and yet I watched the two saddest episodes there was, don't ask me how my brain works!).

Now I know my Dad had his flaws, every human has them, there is no flawless person in the world! My Dad wasn't a drinker though, so he wasn't an addict like Jack. My Dad was never an addict, but he had his flaws to which I'm personally not going to get into. But as far as character comparison goes, the drinking showed that Jack was not flawless by any means, so I wanted to make note of that before I went on. When I think of the character of Jack Pearson, I think loving Dad who would do literally anything for his kids. That was my Dad. I was his only child, but I always knew that no matter what, my Dad would be there for me if I needed him. So you can imagine how hard the last year has been knowing that I don't have that anymore. But the thing I miss most of all is just being able to talk to my Dad and have him talk back, and have him make me laugh. My Dad was the funniest guy I knew, he always knew how to make me laugh. I miss that so much!!

My Dad also did whatever he could to make my childhood fun, much like I think Jack did for his kids. (Also a quick sidenote: I think Rebecca did and does the same for her kids. I could go into detail why I think she's an amazing mom, much like my own mom. But this is a Dad post.) One of the big things that comes to mind for me right now when I think of my childhood and what my Dad would do to make it fun is whenever we would watch a movie especially if my cousin, Stephanie, came over, he would try to transform our basement into our own movie theater. We had a big screen TV, and my Dad would put a comforter blanket over the top of it as the curtain. I would make my own movie tickets, and we'd have to rip the tickets before all heading down to the basement where not only was the blanket curtain over the TV, but my Dad would move the two couches into rows in front of the TV for us. Then when it was time for the movie to start my Dad would slowly raise the blanket up the TV until it was off and then it was showtime. How amazing is that!! Something so simple, but something that has stayed with me for so long as one of the many amazing things my Dad would do.

I don't know if this turned out the way I wanted it to, but I'm going to wrap it up here because this is getting too hard for me to write. I miss my superhero Dad who was the greatest Dad a girl could ask for. Life is cruel and unfair at times, and cancer is one of the worst things to exist. I wish this past year was just some horrible nightmare that I could just wake up from, but unfortunately this is real life. My Dad was the funnest and funniest, coolest, best Dad ever!! What I wouldn't give to have him back in my life, I would give up everything! 

Dad, I love you and I'll miss you everyday for the rest of my life!!

I'll leave you with a surprise picture I took of my Dad on one of our many Florida March Break trips since it's the way I most remember him looking, no crazy breads and mustaches, haha!!

Life Update; Long time, No see!

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

My sincere apologies for the lack of posts on this blog. There was a time there where I honestly thought I was done with blogging for good. Ever since losing my Dad, I just had no motivation for a lot of things, many things got put on the back-burner. A lot happened in 2017 that continued to pile on with making it the worst year of my life. From the moment my Dad died, it was already the worst but life decided that wasn't enough. So I thought I'd take the time to go over everything that's been going on since my last post to give a bit of insight as to why I nearly gave up on blogging.

First off, my step-mom, Julie who is my Mom's partner had lost her job. I won't go into the details as that's her business. But there was a bit of stress at first as we weren't sure what was going to happen. Lots of questions arose, one of the main ones being 'will we have to move?'. That stressed me out at the thought just because I love my house, and also I was worried if we were going to have to move out of the area, how would I get to work without the bus route that's by my house that takes me right to my work plaza. Luckily it's all worked out, and everything has been okay on that front. So now I MUST work on getting my license! As much as driving terrifies me, I know that when I'm focused, I'm a good driver so I just need to get back to that mentality and started practicing!!

A few months after that at nearing the end of October, we had to say goodbye to our family dog of 14 years, Riley. That was devastating!! But for a long while he was having problems in his lower back, which would cause he's hip or legs to give out. It became very hard for him to go down the stairs or to simply lie down. Because of the disease in his lower back, it also would cause him to lose his bowels often. On the morning we had to say goodbye, he had lost his bowels really badly and there was blood mixed in. (Sorry I know this is TMI, but I want to explain what happened). My stepmom woke me up at 5am to tell me and her and I went to the Emergency Clinic. That was the first time I've ever been there to witness one of pets being put to sleep. It was so hard and completely heartbreaking to watch.

The next bad thing happened at the start of this year in January. We had to say goodbye to another one of our pets. This time it was Bo, our 18 year old cat. He was also have some problems for a little while, but it wasn't until we discovered a large mass on his throat that we knew it was time. No matter what it's always sad and difficult to say goodbye to pet that you've had for so long. But I'm thankful knowing that both Riley and Bo had long good lives. I miss them daily, but I'm so relieved knowing that they're not suffering anymore. And I like to think my Dad's watching over them for me now.


One very good thing did happen in 2017. Because we were missing Riley so much, and missing having a dog in the house, we ended up getting a puppy!! Her name is Bella, she's a Pure-Bred Yellow Labrador. We got her on Nov 12, when she was just 6 weeks old. She's now nearly 5 months, and I love her so much!! I'm so thankful to have her in our lives, as she just adds so much joy to our lives everyday.

Through all that, I really did think that I was done with blogging. But I decided to revamp everything, said goodbye to sunshinegold and start fresh with a new domain name and new look for the blog. I'm feeling refreshed and ready to get back into the swing of things!!

 It's good to be back!

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