Alex, Approximately 

Alex, Approximately

Author: Jenn Bennett

Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult

Goodreads Summary:

The one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.

Classic movie fan Bailey “Mink” Rydell has spent months crushing on a witty film geek she only knows online as Alex. Two coasts separate the teens until Bailey moves in with her dad, who lives in the same California surfing town as her online crush.

Faced with doubts (what if he’s a creep in real life—or worse?), Bailey doesn’t tell Alex she’s moved to his hometown. Or that she’s landed a job at the local tourist-trap museum. Or that she’s being heckled daily by the irritatingly hot museum security guard, Porter Roth—a.k.a. her new archnemesis. But life is a whole lot messier than the movies, especially when Bailey discovers that tricky fine line between hate, love, and whatever it is she’s starting to feel for Porter.

And as the summer months go by, Bailey must choose whether to cling to a dreamy online fantasy in Alex or take a risk on an imperfect reality with Porter. The choice is both simpler and more complicated than she realizes, because Porter Roth is hiding a secret of his own: Porter is Alex…

alex cover

Spoiler free Summary:

I recently read P.S. I Like You by Kasie West and really enjoyed it and wanted a read similar to it and found this book in the search. This is one of those super easy and fun reads that could help you get out of a reading slump if you want. I started and finished this book on my two flight today and really enjoyed it!

I really enjoy when authors can incorporate things such as texting and messaging so well into novels. One thing I hate is when it is hard to distinguish the difference between messages and real life and the author did an awesome job on letting you know. It really shows people where we have come over the years, being able to making friends over apps who share your hobbies, without ever knowing who they truly are.

I really liked the growth that the author showed in the characters from beginning to end. One thing that I didn’t like was that the author gave away the mystery by revealing who Alex would be in the book description. I mean I still guessed it in this book and P.S. I Like You, but I still enjoy to be questioning it until the very end. So, I would say that was the biggest downfall in the whole book. Otherwise it was such a fun read!

I would recommend this to anyone likes contemporary and romance!

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

Author: Jenny Han

Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult

Goodreads Summary:

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once? 

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control. 

Spoiler free Summary:

Everyone I did it again, I fell down the contemporary hole! I have heard everyone on Instagram and booktube talking about this series forever, but as usual I put off reading it forever. I am going to BookCon this year and the author will be there, so I decided it was time to finally read the book. It was my second book during readathonbyzoe and I couldn’t put it down!

The book is centered around Lara Jean Covey, the main character, who has written a letter to each of the boys that she has loved and kept them in her hat box, never intending for them to ever go out. Then the inevitable happens and somehow the letters were mailed out. Suddenly she needs a reason to escape from what she wrote on the letter to her sisters recent ex-boyfriend. It is then that her and another boy who got a letter got an idea to fake date to make the respective people jealous. This story has love, heart break, and embarrassment. The perfect concoction for the average teenage life.

I think the author had such good character development, it really shows you how fast your feelings about  one person can change or develop. Another thing I really enjoyed is that she included things from the characters Korean background, especially considering there aren’t may books out there that feature Korean characters. I was pretty proud that I recognized a lot of things that were mentioned because one of my good friends is actually from South Korea. Jenny Han is a master of words and I am dying to meet her in person! I cannot wait to continue on in the story and see watch Lara Jean develop more.

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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Batman Nightwalker

Batman Nightwalker 

Author: Marie Lu

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

Goodreads Summary:

Before he was Batman, he was Bruce Wayne. A reckless boy willing to break the rules for a girl who may be his worst enemy.

The Nightwalkers are terrorizing Gotham City, and Bruce Wayne is next on their list.

One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminals.

Madeleine Wallace is a brilliant killer . . . and Bruce’s only hope.

In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.

 

Spoiler free Summary:

I read Wonder Woman back in September and was really excited that is was a whole succession of books by various YA authors. I decided to get the LitJoy crate batman box because it included a signed copy and some other goodies. I immediately packed the book to bring on my vacation to Mexico.

Just off the bat I was very intrigued with the book. The reason being that it started of with Bruce’s 18th birthday. When watching all of the batman movies they are always centered around once he is older and fully developed. So I like that Marie did not stick to the batman stereotypes.

Marie used the perfect combination of character that are always in the batman world and new ones to juice up the story. When I pick up a book I want it to be a story I have never read or seen before. On that aspect she completely amazed me. the character development helped make the story that much better. She also threw some curve balls into the story that I did not see coming, which I LOVE when authors can accomplish that.

I really enjoyed Marie Lu’s rendition on batman, it was definitely a new twist to a story that has been told over and over. You can really tell that she put a lot of thought into the making of this novel. I would suggest this book to any super hero junkie in look of their next fix.

**SPOILERS**

My only complaint with this book was the relationship between Bruce and Madeleine. I felt that Marie wanted some sort of love interest to be involved and decided to say they liked each other. I just feel that a guy and a girl can develop a friendship without it turning into a romance. I just seemed out of place. But that was the ONLY thing that I did not like!

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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Miles Morales Spider-Man

Miles Morales Spider-Man

Author:  Jason Reynolds

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Comic

Goodreads Summary:

“Everyone gets mad at hustlers, especially if you’re on the victim side of the hustle. And Miles knew hustling was in his veins.”

Miles Morales is just your average teenager. Dinner every Sunday with his parents, chilling out playing old-school video games with his best friend, Ganke, crushing on brainy, beautiful poet Alicia. He’s even got a scholarship spot at the prestigious Brooklyn Visions Academy. Oh yeah, and he’s Spider Man.

But lately, Miles’s spidey-sense has been on the fritz. When a misunderstanding leads to his suspension from school, Miles begins to question his abilities. After all, his dad and uncle were Brooklyn jack-boys with criminal records. Maybe kids like Miles aren’t meant to be superheroes. Maybe Miles should take his dad’s advice and focus on saving himself.

As Miles tries to get his school life back on track, he can’t shake the vivid nightmares that continue to haunt him. Nor can he avoid the relentless buzz of his spidey-sense every day in history class, amidst his teacher’s lectures on the historical “benefits” of slavery and the importance of the modern-day prison system. But after his scholarship is threatened, Miles uncovers a chilling plot, one that puts his friends, his neighborhood, and himself at risk.

It’s time for Miles to suit up.

Spoiler free Summary:

Recently when I was on amazon searching for some new books to order with my gift card I cam across something interesting. I knew about the DC series that are being written by YA authors. I never knew that there was also a Marvel series of books currently being written. I decided to order both Spider-Man and The Runaways. I was very excited to dive into Spider-Man because it has been one of my favorites since I was little. I was surprised that it was only 261 pages, but thought it must be 261 awesome pages.

The book started out with Miles saying that he was done being Spider-Man and that being from a bad neighborhood he couldn’t be a superhero. From there I thought it would be about him getting his groove back and becoming a bada**. Then it just seemed to keep going on and on about struggle after struggle. I kept waiting for the action and it never seemed to really come. I was looking more for a background about how he got to where he is and how he was going to persevere. The only action was for about 10 pages out of the whole book.

I mean if you are looking for a book more on Miles Morales’ personal life then this the book for you. Though if you are like me and wanted an action packed book then I would not suggest reading this, you are in for disappointment. I also thought that the plot was a little odd and seemed rushed to get some last minute action into the book. Though you may like it, it just wasn’t for me.

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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When It’s Real

Author: Erin Watt

Genre: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult

when its real cover.jpg

Goodreads Summary:

From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend. 

Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley’s team decides it’s time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he’s settled down.

Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of “normal.” Under ordinary circumstances she’d never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn’t have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley’s team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley’s a shallow, self-centered jerk? It’s not like they’re going to fall for each other in real life…right?

Spoiler free Summary:

During christmas time I was reading about the suggested books by one of the publishing houses that I follow on Instagram. I came across this one and fell in love. I knew right away that I had to read it.

Have you ever read fanfiction? If you answered yes then you will totally get what I am about to say! Since I was 16 I have been very into fanfiction, particularly Mortal Instruments fanfiction. While reading all of them, you begin to notice somewhat of a them throughout all of them. They are usually going along with the story, having a pregnancy scandal, or have something to do with a band. I always love when the main male character was in a band and the normal girl main character fell in love with him. If you are like me then this is the book for you! I was finally able to live my favorite fanficition in novel form.

This book honestly had everything that I needed in life. I LOVE the plot line. This book has a sassy main character, bickering, love, and what we all need most: a happy ending. This was the perfect book for me to read after finishing a very long book, helping me not fall into a reading slump.

The main character (Oakley) is your typical star. When reading about him during multiple points in the book I just kept thinking of Justin Bieber. Especially when she mentioned his vogue cover in his underwear. Or I guess it could also be like Nick Jonas. He needs to fix his reputation and what better way than to get a normal down to earth girl to pretend to be his girlfriend for a year. It sounds like the perfect plan, but the thing with perfect plans is that they never quite end up going how you wish.

Honestly, one of my favorite parts about this novel is how she incorporated social media. I feel like it is such a large part of todays society, especially when you are talking about big celebrities. What amazed me is that she even made up twitter handles! They were quite wonderful and it really helped the imagination picture the twitter conversations that was happening between the two characters twitters.

I would definitely read this again, I loved it that much. Please do me a favor and go pick this book up ASAP!

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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End of the Year Book Tag!!

Happy new year everyone! For my first post of the year I thought I would do the tag that you have seen everywhere. I love tags, but don’t do them too often on my blog.

Hope you like it!

1. Are there any books you started this year you need to finish?

The only one is the first book in the Slayer Chronicles by Heather Brewer. I actually liked the book and have the next two books. The only reason that I have not finished it is because it got packed away when I was moving and I have not yet unpacked it.

slayer chronicles

2. Do you have an autumnal book to transition to the end of the year?

I don’t really have any seasonal reads, I kind of just read what I want when I want.

3. Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

There are some really cool new releases coming up this year! Some are Batman (came out today), A Court of Frost and Starlight, the last TOG book, Catwoman, and many more! I think 2018 is going to be an awesome reading year.

2018 releases.png

4. What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

Well its already past the end of the year, but mine was Lord of Shadows. I can proudly say that I finished it the day after Christmas! I was pretty proud of myself 🙂

5. Is there a book that you think could still shock you and become your favorite?

I am constantly reading books that shock me and go into my top favorites!

6. Have you already made reading plans for 2018?

My 2018 reading goals are probably reading 200 books and posting a review after every book that I read!

Let me know in the comments what your 2018 reading goal is!

From your local bibliophile!

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The Becoming of Noah Shaw

Author: Michelle Hadkin

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance

Cover Rating: 3.5

Goodreads Summary:

In the first book of the Shaw Confessions, the companion series to the New York Times bestselling Mara Dyer novels, old skeletons are laid bare and new promises prove deadly. This is what happens after happily ever after.

Everyone thinks seventeen-year-old Noah Shaw has the world on a string.

They’re wrong.

Mara Dyer is the only one he trusts with his secrets and his future.

He shouldn’t.

And both are scared that uncovering the truth about themselves will force them apart.

They’re right.

noah shaw quote.jpg

Spoiler free Summary:

I had no idea that this book was a thing and when I saw it on social media I was so pumped. I immediately ordered it on amazon and the other day I decided that it was time to finally read it.

The book starts off with a bit of interest because they are at Noah’s dads funeral and something peculiar happens. Since it was an interesting start I was expecting it to be an action packed and intriguing book that would measure up to the Mara Dyer trilogy. Then they get to New York and there were some new characters that seemed to be adding a helpful hand into the making of the book. In this book you are truly able to decipher parts of Noah and Mara’s relationship that you had not thought of before. They have both been through so much trauma that could traumatize a person for life. Throughout the whole book it seemed that the author was building everything up in a good direction and that the book was going to be mind blowing. Then … nothing. I kept thinking that this book would be so awesome because of the Mara Dyer trilogy, but it never came. I mean the end of the book I didn’t see coming, but it still didn’t make up for the lack of action throughout most of the book. I love Michelle Hodkin, but I felt like she had many missed opportunities in this book.

This book was suspenseful and mysterious, but a bit underwhelming. I was so pumped to read this book thinking that I would finally get to know what happens to everyone and finally get into the beautiful and intriguing mind of Noah Shaw. I really wanted it to be good, kept waiting for that moment like the other books where I just could put it down. That moment I was looking for never came. My only hope is that the next book in the series will have me more interested, especially since it had an interesting ending.

This has not made me doubt Michelle Hadkin’s writing. In my opinion it is just very hard to follow up an awesome series with another series based around the same world.

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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Kerrelyn Sparks

I have recently returned from a 3-week vacation and while on vacation I got addicted to Kerrelyn Sparks’ Love at Stakes series. I had read the first book in the series, How to Marry a Millionaire Vampire, back when I was in high school because I had gotten it on my kindle for free. Back then I didn’t know that it was part of a series. I have re-read it a couple times since and the last time I looked it up and saw that it was a series. From there I have read almost every book, I am on what I believe to be the last one.

One thing that I truly appreciate about Kerrelyn Sparks is the fact that she totally re-imagined the way we think about vampires. When you think of vampires, you will typically think about books such as Twilight and the Vampire Diaries. This author obviously put great thought into the making of the series, not wanting to conform to the norms that most authors do when writing a vampire novel. One thing that really sticks out to me is the fact that the vampires are not aloud to be around during the day because they are literally dead. That’s right, they have this thing called a death sleep where they are dead when the sun is up. I don’t know how she came up with some of the details she uses, but that is one of the reasons that I fell in love with her series.

Vampire GIF

Something that I feel a lot of authors lack creativity and that is what will pull readers in, especially if you want them to go and buy the rest of the books in your serious. I mean one way to get people to read books is to offer the first one for free on the kindle. Though the only way to get them to go and buy the second book is to pull them into the story with your creative and ability to create an intriguing plot line that keeps readers on the edge of their seat. I cannot tell you how many first books in series I own on my kindle because they were just so bad. Many people have to offer their book for free because otherwise no one would want to read it. I don’t mean to put anyone down or anything, but you are always better off to think through you plot and such before even putting anything down. Why make a book if it won’t be read?

I am a person who reads a lot more young adult than romance. Considering that I think that Kerrelyn Sparks is a brilliant author and I will definitely be looking into her other series. To anyone out there I would suggest reading her Love at Stake series!

 

Let me know if I should review the individual books in the series!

 

From your local bibliophile

 

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Looking for Alaska (Day 1&2 of ISATRAT)

Author: John Green

Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, Romance

Cover Rating: 5/5

Looking for alaska cover

I loved that this cover is so simple yet has so much meaning in it. Just Smoke. All I have to say is that this it is so aesthetically and metaphorically beautiful. Quote:

“‘Y’all smoke to enjoy it. I smoke to die.”

looking for alaska pic.jpg

Goodreads Summary:

Before. Miles “Pudge” Halter is done with his safe life at home. His whole life has been one big non-event, and his obsession with famous last words has only made him crave “the Great Perhaps” even more (Francois Rabelais, poet). He heads off to the sometimes crazy and anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young. She is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart. Then. . . .
After. Nothing is ever the same.

Spoiler Free Review:

This has been a long time coming. I don’t typically pick up contemporary books, but I have to admit John Green is truly a brilliant author. Whenever I read his books I am always blown away. I think the truly first contemporary book I ever read was The Fault i Our Stars and at the time I only read it because everyone was telling me to and I wanted to before the movie came out. That books made me cry so much, but it was written so beautifully and I loved all of the quotes in it. I was so glad that I had decided to read it. Then the next book I read was Paper Towns when I was 20. I read it because we were having a John Green week in my Young Adult Literature class. I had also been wanting to read this book for awhile and the movie was coming out around then. I loved his writing once again.

So, I read this for my read a small book challenge in the ISATRAT. This book was totally not what I would have expected. I mean having read John Green before I was expecting it to have something dramatic happen in it. I mean in the past we have had cancer and people disappearing. Though the majority of the storyline was always surprised me.

We had the main character Miles who had been going to a public school, but he was going to be a junior and wanted to go to the private school that his father attended. He was searching for the “Great Perhaps,” I mean I think there is a point in everyone life where they want some adventure. I love the idea of a great perhaps, I think that most people say they want something like this then they just get trapped in their life. They will get trapped in the never ending cycle that they call their life. Miles wants to end his never ending circle and do something exciting, which he is hoping to find at Culver Creek Boarding School. This is where he finds exciting and interesting Alaska Young.

I have mixed feelings about this book. I mean overall I think it is a very good book, John Green is an amazing writer. Though there were a couple things I didn’t like. The main thing is that I thought that the before section (not giving anything away) should have been longer. I didn’t like that it was pretty much split in half, I just thought the end felt a little like he had to make it longer at some parts. Though even with that one little complaint I think the novel still flowed very well.

I love that at this boarding school you got to experience the different kind of characters. You had the preppy kids, which were known as weekday warriors. The scholarship kids and weekday warriors were constantly in a prank battle with each other. It was refreshing for an author to include the scholarship kids. Whenever you say boarding school all people ever think of are rich snotty teenagers. People never think of the scholarship kids who work very hard to be there. I like how John displays the daily struggles they go through and the hard past that they come from.

I read recently that Alaska was actually based on a girl that attended the same boarding school as John. I love when authors include things that happened in their real life. I feel that when they do this it just feels more sincere and more heart goes into it. This is one thing that you can typically find more in contemporary reads since it is hard to include real life things in fantasy books. This is why I will still read contemporary books, they are just so heart felt and you can truly feel the struggle and how heart felt they were in writing the novel. This book had sad parts, happy parts, and everything in between. You really get to feel for the character, you almost feel as if you are experiencing their struggles in life with them.

If you like contemporary books, read this. If you want a sad book, read this. If you like John Green, read this. If you want to understand the struggle that many teenagers go through, read this.This is a wonderful book for anyone willing to take the time to experience this novel. Please go read it!

End note: Is it just me or does John Green love to put cigarettes into his novels?

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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