Posts Tagged: young adult

Review: “Our Dark Duet” – Victoria Schwab

August 9, 2017 Book Review 2

Review: “Our Dark Duet” – Victoria SchwabOur Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab
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Published on: June 13th 2017
Published by: HarperCollins
Pages: 528
Series: Monsters of Verity #2
Genre: YA Fantasy
Format: Paperback

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The Story
 .(summary from Goodreads)

The world is breaking. And so are they.

Kate Harker isn’t afraid of monsters. She hunts them. And she’s good at it.

August Flynn once yearned to be human. He has a part to play. And he will play it, no matter the cost.

The war has begun.

The monsters are winning.

Kate will have to return to Verity. August will have to let her back in. And a new monster is waiting—one that feeds on chaos and brings out its victims’ inner demons.

Which will be harder to conquer: the monsters they face, or the monsters within?

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My Thoughts

I’ve never been one for duologies. Two books in a series just sounds weird to me plus there is never enough in two books. I always need more. Three is a much better number…a trilogy. I was surprised when I heard that Monster’s of Verity was only going to be two books. For me, a fantasy world this amazing deserved a trilogy and I was really worried that I was going to get to the end feeling very unsatisfied.

Well, I can happily say that I was wrong!

I know it hurts,” she said. “So make it worth the pain.

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Review: “Follow Me Back” – A.V. Geiger

June 14, 2017 Book Review 0

 Review: “Follow Me Back” – A.V. GeigerFollow Me Back by A.V. Geiger
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Published on: June 6th 2017
Published by: Sourcebooks
Pages: 368
Genre: YA Romance
Format: eARC

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The Story(summary from Goodreads)

Tessa Hart’s world feels very small. Confined to her bedroom with agoraphobia, her one escape is the online fandom for pop sensation Eric Thorn. When he tweets to his fans, it’s like his speaking directly to her…

Eric Thorn is frightened by his obsessive fans. They take their devotion way too far. It doesn’t help that his PR team keeps posting to encourage their fantasies.

When a fellow pop star is murdered at the hands of a fan, Eric knows he has to do something to shatter his online image fast—like take down one of his top Twitter followers. But Eric’s plan to troll @TessaHeartsEric unexpectedly evolves into an online relationship deeper than either could have imagined. And when the two arrange to meet IRL, what should have made for the world’s best episode of Catfish takes a deadly turn…

Told through tweets, direct messages, and police transcripts.

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My Thoughts

When I requested this book I was pretty intrigued by the story line. I’m a massive fan of romances between two totally different types of characters and had big hopes. Then I started reading it and I quickly became worried that I was going to hate it.

Tessa wasn’t the easiest of characters to connect with. I consider myself a fangirl of some pretty awesome authors, but I could never even begin to get in the mind of someone that obsessed with someone. Her agoraphobia was an interesting part of the story, but she didn’t seem to develop in anyway throughout the book. She literally spent the entire book as an obsessed fan girl sat in her room.

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Review: “One of Us Is Lying” – Karen M. McManus

May 31, 2017 Book Review 2

 Review: “One of Us Is Lying” – Karen M. McManusOne of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
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Published on: May 30th 2017
Published by: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Pages: 368
Genre: YA Contemporary
Format: eARC

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The Story(summary from Goodreads)

One of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.

Pay close attention and you might solve this.

On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.

Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.

Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.

Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.

Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.

And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.

Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?

Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.

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My Thoughts

I feel like I have been waiting FOREVER for this book and when I finally got my hands on it it turned out to be everything I had hoped!

I’m not one for murder mysteries, but this book was just so addictive that I couldn’t help but read it within a day whilst my mind spent the entire time trying to think up the answer to who did it! I literally thought of every single answer of who it could be and although at on point I did chose the right answer, it was still a great surprise when all was revealed.

“Bronwyn Rojas, I solemnly swear not to murder you today or at any point in the future. Deal?”
“You’re ridiculous,” she mutters, going even redder.
“It concerns me you’re avoiding a promise not to murder me.”

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Blog Tour: “Wishbones” – Virginia MacGregor

May 15, 2017 Blog Tour, Book Review 1

 Blog Tour: “Wishbones” – Virginia MacGregorWishbones by Virginia MacGregor
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Published on: May 23rd 2017
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Pages: 384
Genre: YA Contemporary
Format: ARC

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The Story(summary from Goodreads)

Feather Tucker has two wishes:
1)To get her mum healthy again
2) To win the Junior UK swimming championships

When Feather comes home on New Year’s Eve to find her mother – one of Britain’s most obese women- in a diabetic coma, she realises something has to be done to save her mum’s life. But when her Mum refuses to co-operate Feather realises that the problem run deeper than just her mum’s unhealthy appetite.

Over time, Feather’s mission to help her Mum becomes an investigation. With the help of friends old and new, and the hindrance of runaway pet goat Houdini, Feather’s starting to uncover when her mum’s life began to spiral out of control and why. But can Feather fix it in time for her mum to watch her swim to victory? And can she save her family for good?

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My Thoughts

It’s nice to read a YA book that deals so well with so many relevant topics. Eating disorders, depression, sexuality and mental health it is filled with heavy topics but written in a lighter way that lets us follow this story without totally loosing hope for the characters.

Feather was a beautifully written YA character and her strength and determination to unravel the mystery of her mothers illness and how to help her made her a fascinating character to read. Some of the time she comes across as a lot older than her age due to the responsibility she believes she holds in helping her mother, but there are also moments in which her younger self appears in her nativity and her unwillingness to always follow advice given to her.

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Review “The Scarecrow Queen” – Melinda Salisbury

March 17, 2017 Book Review 0

Review “The Scarecrow Queen” – Melinda SalisburyThe Scarecrow Queen by Melinda Salisbury
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Published on: March 2nd 2017
Published by: Scholastic
Pages: 320
Series: The Sin Eater's Daughter #3
Genre: YA Fantasy
Format: Paperback

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This book is part of the Sin Eater’s Daughter series. You can find links to my reviews for the rest of this series below:
The Sin Eater’s Daughter (Sin Eater’s Daughter #1)
The Sleeping Prince (Sin Eater’s Daughter #2)
The Scarecrow Queen (Sin Eater’s Daughter #3)

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(summary from Goodreads)

The final battle is coming . . .

As the Sleeping Prince tightens his hold on Lormere and Tregellan, the net closes in on the ragged band of rebels trying desperately to defeat him. Twylla and Errin are separated, isolated, and running out of time. The final battle is coming, and Aurek will stop at nothing to keep the throne forever . . .

Explosive, rich and darkly addictive, this is the stunning conclusion to Mel Salisbury’s internationally best-selling trilogy that began with The Sin Eater’s Daughter.

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My Thoughts

I feel like I have been waiting for the final book in this trilogy forever! I say that, however 2 weeks ago a chunky envelope arrived through my letter box (always exciting) with this book in it and I had totally forgotten it’s release day was this month so had to speed read The Sin Eater’s Daughter and The Sleeping Prince to remind myself of what actually happened pre-Scarecrow Queen so I could actually read this book!

So it really pains me to say that this book did not live up to what I had hoped it would be and I was really disappointed with how the trilogy ended. Don’t get me wrong there were some really great bits in this book, but after reading the final page I felt a bit like ‘What? That was it?’

“In every fairy tale there is a kernel of truth, and that is the truth of this one. For him, I am poison. I am his death. And I will deliver.”

The first two books in this trilogy are told in first person POV; Sin-Eaters Daughter from Twylla’s POV and Sleeping Prince from Errin’s, which worked perfectly. But in Scarecrow Queen, which is told from both Errin/Twylla POV this doesn’t really work.

One main problem for me is that the other main characters aren’t really with Errin or Twylla much in this book so they basically become background characters. I really wanted more of Silas and Leif in this book then I got. Also I struggled with the alternating POVs because instead of alternate chapters it was more like a big chunk of Errin and then a big chunk of Twylla with so much time between each characters POVs. So much happens to Twylla in the time we are with Errin and vice versa and I just felt like we missed out on so much good stuff because of this.

“I’m tired of taking people’s sins on myself.
I’m tired of running away from everything.

The beginning of this book is deliciously creepy. Aurek is a pretty dark person and does some horrible things to Errin, which don’t get me wrong I was totally sorry she had to endure them, but at the same time I love me some bad guys who actually do bad things (rather than just making empty threats) and I love that Salisbury took it in that dark direction. However I was really looking forward to seeing Errin’s struggle to return to normal life once she was free from Aurek and has to deal with the aftereffects of the physical and mental violence that was inflicted on her. But instead she just carried on as she was. I was hoping for a little damage, some struggles and ultimately Errin’s recovery from her traumatic ordeal.

I also kinda struggled with Twylla in this book and at times she was just a bit too ‘all about me’. She gave this impressed that she just expected that everyone should listen to and agree with her opinions and do what she said and didn’t like it when they didn’t agree with her. I really liked her in the first and second books but in this book she just felt totally different, like she was turning into some of the characters she herself hated in the first book and I just found it really hard to connect with her. Plus the whole Twylla/Merek dynamic that was built up in the previous two books just kind of disappeared in this book and I found it so hard to figure out who they were meant to be to each other.

“Scarecrow queen. Nothing but a dupe, alone in a field, hoping to keep the crows at bay.”

As with any YA Fantasy/Dystopian trilogy the first two books build up the tension and then in the third book we finally get our characters fighting back and taking on the bad guy. Pretty standard right? In this book we get a whole load of build up, and then like 40 pages before the end of the book it all finally kicks off. I was literally checking how many pages I had left the entire time worrying because no way could everything that needed to happen actually happen in just 40 pages. For me it just felt a bit rushed and I felt like I was left with a lot of unanswered questions and didn’t get to see how things ended for many of the characters.

“Sometimes he sounds so wistful and lonely that I forget for an instant that he’s a monster, lulled by his soft voice and his hands in my hair. Until he turns my face to his and I see him, and I recall exactly what he is, and the look in my eyes reminds him that he might control my body, but he can’t control my mind.”

I have loved Salisbury’s world from the start. The history, the traditions, the magic… just everything. Thankfully her amazing world building skills are still in this book and I just loved immersing myself in it all again. The writing was well paced and compelling and I loved the first 60% of this book for it’s dark and creepy nature. It was just the last 40% which started to slip a bit for me and didn’t quite keep to the level of awesome that other fantasy trilogies have with their endings. I just needed more from it.

“And that, my girl, is the secret. Quake all you must on the inside. But on the outside you must be stone. And you never know; with enough practice it might become the truth.”

Ok, spoiler time. Don’t read if you don’t want know! You have been warned! View Spoiler »

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Final Thoughts

I am gutted to say that this final book was a disappointment for me, but at the same time I would definitely recommend this series. The world building is incredible with so much detail, and the story compelling and one that I couldn’t put down.

Re-Readability: Yup

I would recommend this book to fans of: fantasy worlds, magic, rebellions, worlds with histories, worlds with legends, books with amazing world building

Have you read The Scarecrow Queen?

How did you feel about the trilogy ending?

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Review “Kings Cage” – Victoria Aveyard

March 2, 2017 Book Review 0

Review “Kings Cage” – Victoria AveyardKings Cage by Victoria Aveyard
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Published on: February 7th 2017
Published by: HarperTeen
Pages: 528
Series: Red Queen #3
Genre: YA Fantasy
Format: Paperback

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This book is part of the Red Queen series. You can find my reviews for the rest of the series below:
Red Queen (Red Queen #1)
Glass Sword (Red Queen #2)
Kings Cage (Red Queen #3)

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The Story(Summary from Goodreads)

In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

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My Thoughts

So, me being the idiot that I am totally forgot that this series was a 4 book series, so picked up this book thinking that it was the last book in a trilogy and stayed up until 3am to finish it. Then at 3am finished the book and realised it was in fact a 4 book series and spent the next few hours wide awake because I needed to know what happened next!

I came a little late to this series which meant that I was able to read Red Queen and Glass Sword together, therefore no agonising wait between books for me. Until I finished Glass Sword which had possible the most amazing ending which has kept me desperate for the past year. This book was no different and yet again I have been left a desperate puddle in need of the forth and final book in this amazing series!

“Love makes you weak. And she’s right. I learned that before I even knew you.”

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Review “The Memory Book” – Lara Avery

February 9, 2017 Book Review 2

 Review “The Memory Book” – Lara AveryThe Memory Book by Lara Avery
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Published on: January 26th 2017
Published by: Hachette
Pages: 357
Genre: YA Contemporary
Format: eARC

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The Story(summary from Goodreads)

They tell me that my memory will never be the same, that I’ll start forgetting things. At first just a little, and then a lot. So I’m writing to remember.

Samantha McCoy has it all mapped out. First she’s going to win the national debating championship, then she’s going to move to New York and become a human rights lawyer. But when Sammie discovers that a rare disease is going to take away her memory, the future she’d planned so perfectly is derailed before it’s started. What she needs is a new plan.

So the Memory Book is born: Sammie’s notes to her future self, a document of moments great and small. Realising that her life won’t wait to be lived, she sets out on a summer of firsts: The first party; The first rebellion; The first friendship; The last love.

Through a mix of heartfelt journal entries, mementos, and guest posts from friends and family, readers will fall in love with Sammie, a brave and remarkable girl who learns to live and love life fully, even though it’s not the life she planned.

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My Thoughts

This book packed an emotional punch so strong that I haven’t been able to find the words to describe it for a whole week!

Going into this book you know it’s not going to be all rainbows and unicorns. It’s a hard topic to write about but Avery does it which such talent and sensitivity that you’d think she’s been writing for the past fifty years, not the past five. I also found the illness that Avery chose to focus her story on quite refreshing. Since The Fault in Our Stars I feel that we have gotten a lot of books about young people fighting cancer, all of which I have loved, but still it was refreshing to read Avery’s book about Niemann–Pick type C (an illness I had never even heard of before).

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Review: “Traitor to the Throne” – Alwyn Hamilton

February 2, 2017 Book Review 2

 Review: “Traitor to the Throne” – Alwyn HamiltonTraitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton
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Published on: February 2nd 2017
Published by: Penguin Books
Pages: 512
Series: Rebel of the Sands #2
Genre: YA Fantasy
Format: eARC

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The Story(summary from Goodreads)

This is not about blood or love. This is about treason.

Nearly a year has passed since Amani and the rebels won their epic battle at Fahali. Amani has come into both her powers and her reputation as the Blue-Eyed Bandit, and the Rebel Prince’s message has spread across the desert – and some might say out of control. But when a surprise encounter turns into a brutal kidnapping, Amani finds herself betrayed in the cruellest manner possible.

Stripped of her powers and her identity, and torn from the man she loves, Amani must return to her desert-girl’s instinct for survival. For the Sultan’s palace is a dangerous one, and the harem is a viper’s nest of suspicion, fear and intrigue. Just the right place for a spy to thrive… But spying is a dangerous game, and when ghosts from Amani’s past emerge to haunt her, she begins to wonder if she can trust her own treacherous heart.

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My Thoughts

Being approved for an ARC of this book is possibly one of the best bookish things to ever happen to me. I BEYOND LOVED the first book and must have read it at least 10 times since it’s release, so getting an early copy was a dream come true!

My favourite thing about Rebel of the Sands was the world building, it was phenomenal! I didn’t think it could get any better but this book just kept on giving us more and more of this incredible world Hamilton has created. The history, the creatures, the myths, the magic, the places; Hamilton’s talent really shines in this book and I envy her world building talent.

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