Review: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

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Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Released: October 6th, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
# of Pages: 522 (Hardcover)
Source: Purchased
Summary: Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen. That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right. Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

– Via Goodreads

Rating: ★★★★☆

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Review: The Forest and the Farm by Vance Huxley

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The Forest and the Farm by Vance Huxley

Released: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Entrada
# of Pages: 488 (Kindle Edition)
Source: Received for review
Summary: Billi has always been different, and how could he not be? A man with one leg was uncommon enough. Then a three-legged Hound, Rabbit, came from the Forest and sat by his wheelchair, and he had to learn to be a Hunter. Paired for life, Hunters and Hounds are vital to their Village for hunting and protection in the Forest. They share a wordless song which allows them to know each other’s moods and warn of danger. Rules about the Farm and Forest keep the villagers safe – no living tree can be cut, and any man without a Hound is prey once in the Forest.
But an unexpected turn of events leads Billi into new territory. A solitary life evolves as he explores the Forest and finds friends in unlikely places. Now Billi must learn about gifts, chasing, catching and sparkuls as he includes others in his life. Light on magic, but big on heart, Billi’s story rings a chord with anyone who’s ever felt they don’t fit in.
Join Billi on a world-building journey through a land you almost feel you recognize that still has the ability to surprise you.

-Via Goodreads

Rating: ★★★★☆

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Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

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Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Released: June 7th, 2011
Publisher: Quirk
# of Pages: 352 (Hardcover)
Source: Borrowed from library
Summary: A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.
A horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

– Via Goodreads

Rating: ★★★★★


Let me start off by saying, I loved this book so much more than I expected. Going into this book, I was extremely hesitant about starting it because it’s so different than what I have typically been reading. I felt the urge to get into reading more “mysterious” books so I thought I would give this book a try one day; and to my surprise, I loved it. Before I picked it up to read I hadn’t read the synopsis so I expected it to be some horror story. But to my surprise, it was just about kids with strange abilities and featured some time traveling. The book does have a creepy feel to it, but it was not the horror book I was expecting.

When I first started reading this, the writing style was definitely something different. It was hard for me to get into it when I started reading. But then again, I was trying to read in the car while I had a lot of noise around me. It’s hard for me to read in situations like that. But very quickly after I started it I fell in love with the way it was written. I really enjoyed how unique the writing was; therefore, I am sure that I’m going to read much more from this author. And the way he wrote about the characters were great. The story felt so real and it was very entertaining to see all the peculiar children interact with the main character.

This book contained amazing world building and brilliant plots. The pictures included throughout the book really did add to the story and made it feel more real. I’m glad the author incorporated this aspect into his book.

I don’t want to spoil anything, so I highly recommend that you pick this book up and read it for yourself. This is definitely one of the best books I’ve ever read and for a long time, I will consider it to be one of my favorites.

 

Review: Gone by Michael Grant

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Gone by Michael Grant

Released: June 24th, 2008
Publisher:
Katherine Tegen Books 
# of Pages:
560, Hardcover
Source:
Borrowed from Library
Summary:
In the blink of an eye, everyone disappears. Gone. Except for the young. There are teens, but not one single adult. Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what’s happened. Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day. It’s a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: On your birthday, you disappear just like everyone else…

– Via Goodreads
Rating: ★★★★☆

First of all, I never imagined that I would like this story as much as I actually did. I never actually planned on picking it up from my school’s library, but after taking a quiz in the library for my Latin class my teacher told us we couldn’t get books out of our bags to read, instead we had to check one out from the library. (She made this new rule that we couldn’t touch any of our stuff during testing times because some students were caught cheating, ugh. So now I can’t read my own book afterwards and I have to start a new one. :/) I was looking for something that I thought was quick and easy so I picked up this book, and I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would. Now, on to my review..

The writing style of this book was not too bad. It could have been better, maybe a little more sentence variety, but it didn’t bother me too much. The plotline was overall pretty good. I think the pacing of all the events was decent because I was never bored of reading this book, however, some people believe there was too much happening in such little time. It just depends on the individual reading the book. What I didn’t like about the plot was I felt like there were too many twists involved in the story. The main premise of the story (everyone over the age of 15 suddenly disappearing), would have been enough for a story, but I don’t think some of the additions were necessary. (Talking/mutated animals, really?) I loved the main concept of the story, but I feel like there was too much added in.

The characters, in my opinion, weren’t portrayed the way they should have been. The kids seemed to be acting much older than they were; the oldest are only 14 year olds, yet they acted like young adults. I understand if they acted a little older because they had to step up and become more responsible so they could survive on their own, but they did not act like the kids they really are. (This may have not been an issue to others, but it affected my opinion of the story. I kept forgetting they were just kids because of how they were acting.) That was not the only thing that bothered me about these characters. While reading I noticed that they were either really good kids or really bad kids. The kids were either the “good guy” or the villain; there was no in-between. They should have been more diverse. I couldn’t connect with the characters at all. There was always just a few traits given to the characters. There weren’t any in-depth descriptions of them, so it was really hard to relate to them and they didn’t feel very realistic.

Even though there were several things in the story I did not like, I still really enjoyed reading this book. Overall it was very action-packed and thought-provoking! While reading it kept me thinking a lot about what would happen if this happened in real life. I love when a book really makes me think. This book is very enjoyable, and I definitely recommend it. 🙂

 

 

Review: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

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Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Released:
September 10th, 2013
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
# of Pages: 445
Source: Purchased
Summary: Cath is a Simon Snow fan.
Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…
But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere. Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to. Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone. For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories? And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

– Via Goodreads

Rating: ★★★★★


 

Let me tell you, I absolutely loved Fangirl. This is the first book I have read by Rainbow Rowell and I am 100 percent sure that I am going to read another one of her works very soon. The characters, the plot, as well as the short snips of the Simon Snow stories were all amazing. I have heard so many great things about Fangirl from other bloggers and booktubers alike, so I decided I just had to pick it up and try it and I am so glad that I did.

The book as a whole felt very real. The story takes place during Cath’s first year of college with her twin sister and I really enjoyed how Rainbow Rowell captures the whole college scene. From the dorm room, to the classes, and to the late weekend parties, I felt that Rainbow did a great job of setting the scene well. The characters themselves seemed very real to me too because I believe everyone who reads this story can at least find one character that they can relate to. There were many different characters with many different personality types and Rainbow did a great job of representing each of them. I especially enjoyed the romance because the author didn’t rush it. One of the reasons why I was hesitant to pick up this book was because I thought it would include insta-love, but that is definitely not the case here!

I highly recommend this to lovers of YA contemporary, but I do think it’s an enjoyable story that anyone can read. I consider this to be the best book I’ve read so far and I will definitely be rereading it! ❤

Puppet by Pauline C. Harris – Book Review

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Book: Puppet by Pauline C. Harris
Publisher: Patchwork Press
Publication Date: October 2014
# of Pages: 246
Price: $9.99
ISBN: 1927940141

My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Puppet is a very suspenseful and intriguing read. This book is about a sixteen year old girl named Penelope who lives in a foster home. Penelope makes a very dangerous deal with Jed, a marionette-obsessed scientist. She must undergo his experiments and tests for him to be able to take her out of the foster home. This ultimately creates the world’s first living marionette. Jed shows off this shocking creation to the world and soon enough, concerns arise about Penelope’s abilities and what she’s capable of. Jed is ordered to lessen her abilities so he makes a desperate attempt to make her more human. After being confronted by officials, Penelope lies about her past and Jed makes sure this is the last time it will ever happen. The truth has now become the only thing she is capable of telling. Penelope is thrust into a world of mayhem and all she wants is one thing: to be a real, normal girl again.

Just a quick note, I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review. So now let’s go over my thoughts of this book.

What I liked about this book was the uniqueness of the plot. The story overall was really original and it was so intriguing to read. This is the first fairy tale retelling I have read. This kind of book would typically not be something I would read. A Pinocchio retelling sci-fi novel, definitely not something I would have thought about reading. However, I am so glad that I picked this book up and read it. It was interesting to read about Penelope’s life and see how she dealt with all those hard times throughout the book. I felt that I could definitely relate to her. That brings me to my next point. I loved the characters in this book. They were mostly all described very well. I loved all of the adventures Penelope and James (Jed’s son) went on. And lastly, the writing was really descriptive and just overall amazing and I just couldn’t seem to put the book down.

There wasn’t much I didn’t like about this book. I loved pretty much all of it. However, I felt that the story was kind of rushed. Meaning, I think this could have been stretched out into a second book or a trilogy to be more detailed.

In conclusion, I believe this is a book well worth reading. This is the first fairy tale retelling I have read and I am sure that I will be picking up some more very soon. This has been one of my favorite reads this year and I would recommend this book to anyone who likes fairy tale retelling, science fiction, or fantasy novels. If you end up reading this book, let me know because I would love to hear your thoughts.