reviews · YA

“The Babysitters Coven” by Kate Williams (Review)

Hello friends! Can I just say, I was so happy when the publisher allowed me to read this ARC! I’d seen this ARC on Netgalley and just really liked the concept BUT this was not what I was expecting so here we go!

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my views of the book. All opinions stated are unbiased.

STATS FOR THE BOOK

Length: 368 Pages

Publication Date: September 17th, 2019

Goodreads Rating: 3.59 Stars out of 22 Ratings

SYNOPSIS

Seventeen-year-old Esme Pearl has a babysitters club. She knows it’s kinda lame, but what else is she supposed to do? Get a job? Gross. Besides, Esme likes babysitting, and she’s good at it.

And lately Esme needs all the cash she can get, because it seems like destruction follows her wherever she goes. Let’s just say she owes some people a new tree.

Enter Cassandra Heaven. She’s Instagram-model hot, dresses like she found her clothes in a dumpster, and has a rebellious streak as gnarly as the cafeteria food. So why is Cassandra willing to do anything, even take on a potty-training two-year-old, to join Esme’s babysitters club?

The answer lies in a mysterious note Cassandra’s mother left her: “Find the babysitters. Love, Mom.”

Turns out, Esme and Cassandra have more in common than they think, and they’re about to discover what being a babysitter really means: a heroic lineage of superpowers, magic rituals, and saving the innocent from seriously terrifying evil. And all before the parents get home.

WHAT I LIKE

  • Babysitter witches, must I say more. I really enjoyed the idea of the “sitters” but I did have some small qualms with this idea. I’ll write more about this in my “WHAT I DON’T LIKE” section of the post. I’ve always just adored reading about witches and their craft! It’s kind of a weird hobby but ya know-
  • The cover is absolutely stunning! I adore the color scheme and just how abstract the colors are aligned.
  • The storyline was easy to follow! It didn’t feel slow paced at all which is sadly something that makes me hate most books.
  • Esme and Janis’s friendship was realistic.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE

  • Our main character Esme acts more so has the nature of a 10-year-old than an actual almost 18-year-old. It was really… It just made the story less worth reading.
  • It felt like the author was trying to force the magical elements at times. I feel as though the whole “sitters” idea was cool, just not planned out well enough.

OVERALL OPINIONS

I actually really liked this book even with the problems I found! These problems could be easily amended by the author or just straight up ignored by the reader. However, I don’t believe that these issues are too big of a deal for me.

Truthfully, at first, I was unsure what to rate this book.

I mean, yes I love the idea of witches. But I also can’t say that I believe the author executed this theme well.

I liked how the characters interacted, but I didn’t like the main character at all.

So what do I rate this book?

Overall, I will be giving this book 4 out of 5 stars!

Thank you for reading! Have a wonderful day!

Tell me, how do you feel about immature teen characters? Do you like them or is it something that makes it difficult for you to get through the book?

 

 

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reviews · YA

“Crown of Coral and Pearl” by Mara Rutherford (Review)

Welcome back to the blog, friends! Today’s post is a book review! (I’m catching up on my Netgalley arcs)

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my views of the book. All opinions stated are unbiased.

STATS FOR THE BOOK

Length: 384 Pages

Publication Date: August 27th, 2019

Goodreads Rating: 4.41 Stars out of 59 Ratings

SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS

For generations, the princes of Ilara have married the most beautiful maidens from the ocean village of Varenia. But though every girl longs to be chosen as the next princess, the cost of becoming royalty is higher than any of them could ever imagine…

Nor once dreamed of seeing the wondrous wealth and beauty of Ilara, the kingdom that’s ruled her village for as long as anyone can remember. But when a childhood accident left her with a permanent scar, it became clear that her identical twin sister, Zadie, would likely be chosen to marry the Crown Prince—while Nor remained behind, unable to ever set foot on land.

Then Zadie is gravely injured, and Nor is sent to Ilara in her place. To Nor’s dismay, her future husband, Prince Ceren, is as forbidding and cold as his home—a castle carved into a mountain and devoid of sunlight. And as she grows closer to Ceren’s brother, the charming Prince Talin, Nor uncovers startling truths about a failing royal bloodline, a murdered queen… and a plot to destroy the home she was once so eager to leave.

In order to save her people, Nor must learn to negotiate the treacherous protocols of a court where lies reign and obsession rules. But discovering her own formidable strength may be the one move that costs her everything: the crown, Varenia and Zadie.

WHAT I LIKE

  • The relationship between the sisters, Nor and Zadie, just felt real. The whole thing just felt authentic which really was a plus to the story!
  • Nor’s loyalty. Nor was not only loyal to her family but she was completely loyal to her home.
  • Ceren was the perfect villain but also was your stereotypical villain. If you like stereotypes, you’ll like Ceren as a villain.
  • The plot kept me wanting more. Every time you thought it was getting boring. BAM! Something happened in the story to spice it up!

WHAT I DON’T LIKE

  • The romance with Talin was actually terrible and not worth putting into the story in my opinion. The entire time reading this, I just kept waiting and waiting and waiting for this romance to actually develop. And it never did. As someone who really enjoys reading romances, this really let me down.
  • The ending was not wrapped up at all.

OVERALL OPINIONS

I really enjoyed this book for the most part. My favorite thing about the story was just the sister bond. Not all authors are able to execute this very well so for me, that made the story that much more worth reading.

Also, just the fact that the plot was good up until the end. But personally, I would have preferred everything to be nicely wrapped until in a bow. I wouldn’t say this made the story terrible, I just think it could have been done better is all. The ending is one that you would expect for a sequel and that is not the case here.

I’d recommend this book for Fantasy readers as a whole. I think everyone could find something to like about this book! Honestly, so long as you can make it through the underdeveloped romance, you may love (or at least like) this book!

Overall, I would give this book 3.5 out of 5 stars!

Thank you for reading! Have a wonderful day!

Tell me, if books have romance, how do you feel is it’s underdeveloped? Do you care or is it not a huge deal for you? 

Fiction · reviews

The Magicians Original Graphic Novel: Alice’s Story (Review)

Welcome to another beloved book review!

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my views of the book. All opinions stated are unbiased.

STATS FOR THE BOOK

Length: 208 Pages

Format: Graphic Novel

Publication Date: July 10th, 2019

Goodreads Rating: 3.83 Stars out of 29 Ratings

SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS

“Alice Quinn is manifestly brilliant, and she’s always known that magic is real. During her years at Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, she rises to the top of her class, falls in love with Quentin Coldwater, and witnesses a horrifically magical creature invade their dimension.

It’s not soon after graduation when Alice, Quentin, and their friends set their sights on the idyllic setting of Fillory—a place thought to only live in the pages of their favorite children’s books—where magic flows like rivers . . . But in this magical realm nothing is what it seems and something darker lies behind the spellbinding facade. It is in the darkness where Alice will discover her true calling and her life, and those friends forever changed.”

WHAT I LIKE

  • The story is different but the same as the first book. It shows how Alice navigates the world instead of solely focusing on Quentin. It’s different from the usual Magician novels but personally, I like seeing how Alice’s personality develops throughout the graphic novel.
  • I love that its a graphic novel. Every other book in the Magician series is in the usual book format so it’s a, I suppose, fun way to read the usual story. The art gives the book a more entertaining aspect.
  • The unrequited romance! Gosh! I honestly love reading about unrequited love and although it’s not a major plot point, for me, it was so important! Penny has always been one of my favorite characters so it was just all the feels when reading about Alice and him and their adorable unrequited love!
  • This novel is very much so parallel to the TV series.
  • It’s completely possible to read this without having read the series or saw the TV show! It starts from the beginning so you don’t truly need to be caught up to understand the plot which is so important!

WHAT I DON’T LIKE

  • The art style. I’ll be honest, I’m very judgemental about how art is in graphic novels. Or how art is in general. Now, this is not meant to be rude about the art but the art was too simple. It almost felt as though the art didn’t give the story any pizazz. And don’t even get me started on how the characters are portrayed by the artists involved. I just feel as though there could have been a tad bit more effort put into the art.
  • Alice is kind of a bland character. Don’t get me wrong. She is a bland character who is fairly undynamic throughout the novel which can throw people off.

OVERALL OPINIONS

Honestly, I loved how the authors went about recreating the Magicians story while changing the main character. Alice was always viewed as just the love interest in the TV show and book series. It gave me a different perspective from the one I used to have about Alice.

However, the art style just really kept pulling me out of the story. It was too distracting at times which usually is good but as someone who didn’t enjoy the art, it made the story not as worth reading.

I’d recommend this book to anyone that enjoys the theme of the supernatural. Although this is based on the book and TV series, it is easy to read regardless. The novel starts at the beginning making it easy to read even if you know nothing going into it. This is a graphic novel for fans of magic.

Overall, I would give this novel 4 out of 5 stars.

Thank you for reading! Have a great day!

Tell me, do you like graphic novels? If not, what’s your favorite genre of books? Are you very particular about how the art looks in graphic novels?

 

reviews · YA

“Smoke and Key” by Kelsey Sutton (Review)

Welcome to once again another book review!

I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my views of the book. All opinions stated are unbiased.

STATS FOR THE BOOK

Length: 309 Pages

Publication Date: April 2nd, 2019

Goodreads Rating: 3.93 Stars out of 136 Ratings

SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS

“A sound awakens her. There’s darkness all around. And then she’s falling…

She has no idea who or where she is. Or why she’s dead. The only clue to her identity hangs around her neck: a single rusted key. This is how she and the others receive their names—from whatever belongings they had when they fell out of their graves. Under is a place of dirt and secrets, and Key is determined to discover the truth of her past in order to escape it.

She needs help, but who can she trust? Ribbon seems content in Under, uninterested in finding answers. Doll’s silence hints at deep sorrow, which could be why she doesn’t utter a word. There’s Smoke, the boy with a fierceness that rivals even the living. And Journal, who stays apart from everyone else. Key’s instincts tell her there is something remarkable about each of them, even if she can’t remember why.

Then the murders start; bodies that are burnt to a crisp. After being burned, the dead stay dead. Key is running out of time to discover who she was—and what secret someone is willing to kill to keep hidden—before she becomes the next victim…”

WHAT I LIKE

  • The cover is stunning! It’s a cover that you’ll see and just want to know what the story is about. The cover is always the first thing people judge so having a beautiful cover was what drew me to this book.
  • It had some creepy sort of mystery elements. It did not rely too heavily on the mystery which made the book better.
  • The intrigue didn’t stop.
  • It’s original. Now I know, I know, a lot of people think nothing can be original in the book world anymore but lemme tell ya. The world of Under is so intriguing and well thought out. It’s very imaginative and gives the sense of The Wizard of Oz and a Tim Burton movie combined but at the same time, it doesn’t. This is a world difficult to explain and that my friends are what makes it that much more unique.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE

Honestly, there’s not much about this book that I didn’t like, but here they are!

  • To start, there were some plot twists that were too predictable. It took away from the mystery aspect at times.
  • The opening of the book goes kind of slow which really gets boring. It took me a couple of days to force myself to get further in the book just because I kept getting so distracted.

OVERALL OPINIONS

I really enjoyed this book but going into it, you just have to be wary of how slow paced it can be at times. The book itself is truly wonderful if you can push past that boring beginning.

It’s one of those books that if you don’t like fantasy, you will not enjoy this book. The fantasy elements are what drive the main storyline which for me, I loved. Being taken into a world that isn’t real is just so calming.

I’d recommend this book to people who have the time to invest in reading the book.

Overall, I would give this book a 3.5 out of 5 stars. I may love the atmosphere but the pace is what really prevented me from giving this book 4 stars.

Thank you for reading! Have a great day!

Tell me, is it easy for you to get invested in slow-paced books? Do you like slow beginnings or do you like the books to jump right into the story?

 

reviews · YA

“The Path Keeper” by N.J. Simmonds (Review)

Welcome to bookland featuring a new review!

ARC provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS

“What if every coincidence was a tiny miracle? What if our life was already mapped out before birth? What if someone had the power to change the path we were destined to follow?

Ella hates her new life in London, she misses Spain and she’s struggling to get over her past until she meets Zac. He has always loved her but he isn’t meant to be part of Ella’s story. Not this time. Not ever. Little does she know that his secret is the one thing that will tear them apart and will force her to live in a world that no longer makes sense, a world more dangerous than she could ever imagine.

The first in a thrilling new YA fantasy series, The Path Keeper is a tale of passion and secrets, of first loves and second chances, and the invisible threads that bind us. Can love ever be stronger than fate?”

WHAT DID I LIKE

  • The romance may have been very cliche at times but don’t we all love that, the feeling of knowing the couple will be together but worrying about the risk anyway
  • Angels. Just straight up Angels.
  • Forbidden Romance – This could have honestly been turned into my kind of chick flick.
  • The cover is beautiful no matter what edition you choose

WHAT I DON’T LIKE

  • The usage of sensitive topics was not covered in a great way, anyone can have trouble writing about suicide and sexual assault. Just it feels like these topics could have been at least researched, it felt like the author didn’t know what they were writing about.
  • Stereotypical romance – This is just something I love but also hate. It’s not entirely black and white but some elements just make the story bland and this is sadly one of them.
  • Zac’s “stalking” of Ella.

OVERALL OPINIONS

I can’t personally say I hated this book. There were things I loved and things that I genuinely thought made the book boring. Does this mean it’s a bad book, no. I just personally had my qualms with it is all.

Even with the problems I found, I’m still giving this 3 out of 5 stars. It’s a book I think people just need to go into not knowing very much.

reviews · Uncategorized · YA

“A Short History of the Girl Next Door” by Jared Reck (Review)

“A Short History of the Girl Next Door” by Jared Reck, for one, this title has a LONG name but also this was NOT the fluffy contemporary goodness I had originally expected from this novel. This novel will make you cry!

This is a novel you should go into as blindly as possible in my opinion.

SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS

“Fifteen-year-old Matt Wainwright is in turmoil. He can’t tell his lifelong best friend, Tabby, how he really feels about her; his promising basketball skills are being overshadowed by his attitude on the court, and the only place he feels normal is in English class, where he can express his inner thoughts in quirky poems and essays. Matt is desperately hoping that Tabby will reciprocate his feelings; but then Tabby starts dating Liam Branson, senior basketball star, and an all-around great guy. Losing Tabby to Branson is bad enough; but, as Matt soon discovers, he’s close to losing everything that matters most to him.”

REVIEW BY MOI

Lemme tell you, I genuinely thought this novel would be all fluff. It’s generally what I expect based on the synopsis. I was wrong I’ll admit that this novel broke my heart into many pieces. All this novel truly needed was a hug!

WHAT I LIKED 

  • This novel was spectacular at getting me invested in the characters lives! By the end of the novel, I was in a way TOO invested in the characters! I didn’t know I could get that invested in the characters.
  • There was a true rollercoaster of emotions I felt while reading!
  • This story really, I guess, brought the fact of unrequited love to life for me. I’ve never really experienced an unrequited love so I feel like that really made this novel heartbreaking for me.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE

  • The beginning was slow, it felt uneventful and for maybe a short second, I thought about DNFing this novel. I can’t stand slow beginnings in novels and I feel like that has shined through in my blog. It’s mostly ADHD though so it’s generally not actually against the novel-
  • Realistically speaking, that was my only issue with the novel as a whole.

OVERALL RATING

Altogether, I enjoyed this story, it was very poignant and powerful in a sense. You could truly feel the emotions of the characters which really helped the novel as a whole! I’ll be giving this a 4.5 out of 5 stars!

Thank you for reading! This novel was given to me by Blogging For Books for an honest, unbiased review.

Book Tag · Contemporary · Fiction · Historical Fiction · personal · reviews · Uncategorized · YA

Top 5 Tuesday – Releases of 2017

Welcome my dudes to the best-ish post you’ll ever read-

Hey y’all! This is a new segment that will be on my blog every Tuesday from now on. I’ve seen a ton of bloggers do these top 5 days and I really wanted to start one! So here we are, today we’ll be talking about releases of 2017!

All of these are my opinions so I hope they don’t upset anyone lol if they do I apologize in advance!

These are in no particular order, only the order in which I thought of them.

1. “Turtles All the Way Down” by John Green

OK, let’s be real y’all, you knew or at least assumed this novel would appear somewhere on this list BUT I didn’t think I’d put it on this list. I will make it clear not, I am NOT a John Green fan. I mean he’s a great guy I’m sure but his writing style has never been my thing. The reason this novel is on my list is that I enjoyed how he implemented mental illness into this novel. It made it a worthwhile read and I was able to get through it, I usually can’t finish his novels lol. For John Green fans, this, in my opinion, is one of his best novels so far!

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2. “The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas

This novel shook me. This was one of those reads that I couldn’t put down, it deals with the ideas of racism amazingly! For me, this novel brought into play some important topics that I normally avoid in the world. I enjoy believing that racism doesn’t still exist but it’s an important issue that needs a change. “The Hate U Give” reminded me of how our world is and frankly, it shines a different light on race and that’s really important!

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3. “The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue” by Mackenzi Lee

This book was amazing, I had just read “My Lady Jane” prior to reading this and in my mind, they were both similar but amazing and different at the same time! I’ve been REALLY into historical fiction recently so I’m very biased about this novel. Hilarious is an understatement for this novel and the cover is fantastic. Originally, I had no intentions of reading this but I had a lot of people tell me it was amazing so I did. I have no regrets lol! If you enjoyed “My Lady Jane” go buy this book right now, you will not be disappointed, it just pulls you in and gives you a good laugh!

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4. “Hunted” by Meagan Spooner

Beauty and the Beast is one of my all-time favorite fairy tales, be it the fabulous Disney version or the very grim Grimm fairy tales version, I love the premise of this particular fairy tale! So lemme tell you this, “Hunted” does an amazing job of retelling the best fairy tale of all time. Once again, slight bias, not towards the book but every other aspect of the books premise. While “Hunted” has its own little spin on the classic tale, the truth remains that this version of Beauty and the Beast is VERY similar to the Disney version of the tale. That part slightly bothered me at first but all around this novel was spectacular at bringing the tale to life!

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5. “Eliza and Her Monsters” by Francesca Zappia

To be honest, I only picked up this novel because I’d heard it was similar to “Fangirl.” That’s quite literally my only excuse for reading this, but let’s be real fam, THIS WAS SO GOOD! This novel is one of those fantasies that artists have lol, they created a top webcomic and find the love of their dreams. I, at first, figured this would be a fluffy contemporary with no true plot but I was pleasantly surprised. I won’t go too in-depth on why I adored this novel as I believe it’s best to experience the joy for yourself!

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Thank you for reading! I appreciate you taking the time to read this!