August Wrap-Up

These are the books I actually ended up reading! I think I was able to stick to my TBR decently, which is nice and quite unexpected. I totally went in a different direction with my reading this month, though. There aren’t too many books because I had an audition for orchestra seating, so I spent much of my time practicing for it and freaking out.

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I received an ARC of this book. I requested it a while ago, and if finally arrived in the mail! I really enjoyed this book. It was such a cute story, and it was about friendship rather than romance, which made it even better. Yeah, I know. This is another cancer story, but it’s about friendship and takes place in Australia. I think this story takes a more candid approach on the whole disease thing, as the two characters are clearly miserable and bored.

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I’m pretty sure everyone has at least heard of the Mortal Instruments series. If you haven’t, that’s weird. Anyway, I am marathonning the series along with the Infernal Devices. This brings me to the next book. Can you guess what it is? I bet you can….

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Wow! What a surprise. I’ve already read this trilogy, but I need to refresh myself. It’s been a while, and I am reading the Mortal Instruments for the first time. There is much discussion about the order in which the books should be read, and it seems the most popular approach is to read them in the order they were published, putting the trilogy in halfway through the Mortal Instruments. I personally think reading all of the Infernal Devices beforehand is the best method, as it gives so much more insight. Also, Church the cat appears in the Mortal Instruments, and you won’t care if you haven’t read the Infernal Devices. I hope this paragraph made sense. Anyway. Thoughts on the order of reading these books? I would love your opinion.

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I’m about halfway done with this book, and I already cried several times. This book gives me so many feels! I’m really mad, though, because I got spoiled. I went on goodreads to add it to my shelf, and someone didn’t hide their spoiler. I was so mad, because it was a huge spoiler that completely ruined the ending for me!

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I got an ARC of this book, which I am currently reading, and it’s really interesting! It’s written by the founder of okcupid, and it’s a bunch of data about human behavior and sociology based on the internet. It cites specific examples and includes lots of really cool graphs.

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I got this from NetGalley, and I really liked it! I’m excited for the next book in the series! It was really fun and had a good plot. I thought it was an excellent piece of middle grade fiction.

Those were the books I read this month! Tell me if you’ve read any of these or of you’d like to. I will post my TBR for September soon, hopefully.

Happy reading!

August TBR

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are the books I plan on reading this month in no particular order. I don’t want to pressure myself with school starting soon, but I will try to read these this month, although plans will likely change. I just got back from my Hawaii/Japan/Taiwan trip, which was really fun. Stay tuned for updates on the Buddy read! I hope to finish before the middle of this month.imgresurlCity_of_glassurl81XtC8dH1RL._SL1500_imgres-1

July TBR

Sorry this is kinda late, but here are the books I hope to read in July. Probably not gonna get through all of them. I have received several of these books from publishers in exchange for an honest review. 

 

June Wrap-up Part 2!!

Welcome to part 2 of my wrap-up!  

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith The Statistical Probability of Love at First SightHadley is supposed to be having the worst day of her life. She missed the plane to England, where she must watch her father marry a woman she’s never met. When she meets Oliver, everything changes. They sit next to each other on the plane, and time no longer exists. When they get off the plane, the two lose each other in the crowd. This is a quirky love story that accentuates the importance of family. I gave this four stars on goodreads. First of all, i love the cover and the title. I just really liked this book. I liked the fact that Hadley wasn’t dying over Oliver and that she had other things on her mind. I also liked the familial love theme. I don’t like to be bombarded with lovey dovey romancey goo. At first, I didn’t like Hadley, but she grew on me. \

 

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin 11408650 Mara Dyer wakes up in a hospital with no memory. She is told that her friends died in a building collapse. As she tries to figure out her past, she is bombarded with hallucinations and flashbacks. When she moves to a new school, she is haunted by her ex-boyfriend who died in the building. As she meets a new guy and starts to fall in love, everything unravels. 3.5 stars. I had very mixed feelings about this book. It kept me engaged and engrossed with the story because I wanted to see what would happens, but it was also just too weird at times. I hated/liked Noah. I thought that Mara’s unquestioning obedience towards him was annoying and weird. However, I also found this novel deliciously creepy. It was one of the scariest books I’ve seen in the YA genre, and I did like that aspect of it. Sometimes I felt like the hallucinations were a bit much, but it was still nice.

#scandal by Sarah Ockler scandal This book is about Lucy, who takes her friend Ellie’s boyfriend Cole to prom. Ellie is sick, so they go together. There’s just one problem: Lucy has been harboring a huge crush on Cole for the past four years. Someone steals Lucy’s phone and takes a picture of them kissing as well as other incriminating photos and uploads them to Facebook. Lucy must try to find who betrayed her and deal with the anger of Ellie and the rest of her classmates.

Read my review here.

       

 

 The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin urlI’m not gonna summarize the second book because they will contain spoilers. 3 stars. I have no idea what just happened. I really liked the fact that reality was really blurred while I was reading this, but I feel like everything was a little too abstract. It’s really hard to elaborate on my feelings without spoiling, but PLOT TWISTS! I was really confused in a good and bad way at the end of the book, and kind of through the whole thing. This book managed to go nowhere with a super slow and repetitive plot. Somehow, I was still engaged. It was pretty frustrating.    

 

 

 

The Diviners by Libba Bray Evie O’Neill has been sent to New York to live with her uncle due to reckless behavior. She is absolutely excited. Her uncle has a strange obsession with the supernatural and occult. imgres-3 There are serial murders going on in New York, each victim with a symbol at the crime scene. Evie and her uncle are dragged into it all as they try to help the police solve these crimes. As Evie helps with the case, she tries her best to conceal her supernatural powers. She meets another with these powers through a complicated set of circumstances, and they realize that dark powers are awakening. 3.6 stars. I was gonna rate this book a full 4 stars, but there were just a couple of things I didn’t particularly enjoy. I was annoyed with Evie’s speech patterns. I swear, if she says positutely one more time, I will break something. Also, I was confused by some of the lingo, such as the usage of “and how?” to mean yes. While I did enjoy the overall plot, I felt like some aspects of it were too long-winded and unnecessary. The book could have been quite a bit shorter. I was also confused with the ending and what happened to Evie and James. I did enjoy the occult references as well, and the creepiness it added to the story.

Every Day by David Levithan   A is neither a boy nor a girl. A wakes up in a different person’s body every day. What happens when A falls in love with his human host’s girlfriend? This is a story of acceptance, love, and family. Every Day   2 stars. I really, REALLY wanted to like this book. The cover flap totally drew me in, and I’d been wanting to read it for such a long time. I was really disappointed in this book. There is no doubt that Levithan is talented and stuff, but this book could have been so much better. I did like the writing style, but not too much of anything else. A just made me so mad. He just goes around ruining people’s lives and not realizing how much pain he is causing. This book covers the theme of acceptance. It’s about people, and it did do a good job of looking into the minds of others. However, A generally ignores his host and carries on essentially stalking Rhiannon. It just pisses me off.

 

Burn for Burn by Jenny Han       url-1

This is about 3 unlikely allies getting revenge on people who have hurt them or their siblings in the past. They sneak out past midnight and plot. Everything goes down on the day of the big dance.   Read my review here.  

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken     imgres-4 The disease affects all going through puberty. The kids either die or gain some sort of power. Those who survive are considered threats to society and locked up in government facilities. The most dangerous ones are executed. Ruby has been in the worst of these facilities for 6 years, masquerading as harmless. All the others with her power have already been killed. 4 stars. I really did like it. I thought the whole concept was interesting, and I liked the characters. I did wish the author expanded more on the different powers and the disease.      

Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore  by Robin Sloan   imgres-5 Clay Jannon has lost his job. When he finds a night shift listing in the help wanteds, he applies for and gets the position. He is the clerk at a strange bookstore where ancient manuscripts are frequently borrowed. He unravels the secrets of the store with Kat, a girl he meets in the store. 4 stars. I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It was tech-oriented and centered around mythology. That’s like really cool. I don’t really have anything bad to say about this. Also, THIS BOOK GLOWS IN THE DARK!!          

 

 

 

 Rush by Eve Silver (Put down)       When Miki Jones is pulled from her life, pulled through time and space into some kind of game—her carefully controlled life spirals into chaos. In the game, she and a team of othe

imgres-6r teens are sent on missions to eliminate the Drau, terrifying and beautiful alien creatures. There are no practice runs, no training, and no way out. Miki has only the guidance of secretive but maddeningly attractive team leader Jackson Tate, who says the game isn’t really a game, that what Miki and her new teammates do now determines their survival, and the survival of every other person on this planet. She laughs. He doesn’t. And then the game takes a deadly and terrifying turn. 1 star. Seriously not enjoying this book. Super melodramatic and filled with cliche. Also, the whole mysterious boy thing is definitely not working.Jackson keeps talking about the committee without saying what it is. Super frustrating.  

 

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (I’m listening to the audio book. It’s really long, so this is a long-term book. I’ll probably finish near the end of the year)   imgres-7 It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a thirteen-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don’t know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.          

 

Branded by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki (Halfway through, on July TBR)   images-1 This book is about Lexi, a girl who is accused of committing one of the seven sins. She is imprisoned in the Hole, even though she was wrongly convicted. She is the victim of taunting and jeering, but she makes odd friends. She learns of an ongoing protest and takes interest in it. I received this book from the publisher for an honest review, and here is the link.

June Wrap-up Part 1!

Agh! Republishing because this got deleted randomly..

I think I read a good number of books this month. Here is the list with the summary (non-spoiler) and brief comments. I read the books in this order, which is why it’s kind of random. Also, let me know if you want me to review any of these books, and I would be happy to do so! The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon 9781620401392_custom-7b685c3426b519eaa2745c21ff4462bdbc179f56-s6-c30 This book is the first in a series set in the year 2059. Many major cities are controlled by a mysterious organization called the Scion. The protagonist, Paige Mahoney, works in the criminal underground of Scion London where she uses her special abilities to aid a criminal organization called the Seven Seals. Her powers are the rarest of all the other powers relating to the aether, a magical substance. The voyants, those with rare abilities, are committing treason just by being alive. Paige is captured and sold into slavery in a voyant prison and controlled by otherworldly creatures called the Rephaim who have dominated humankind and plan to turn the voyants into an army. I gave this book 3 stars on Goodreads. Overall, I enjoyed it, but it didn’t live up to the massive hype. Also, if you are planning on reading this book, be aware of the glossary in the back! It’s infinitely helpful, and I had a hard time with this book until I found it. The worldbuilding was good but really complicated, so the diagrams were necessary. Scatter, Adapt, Remember by Annalee Newitz Scatter, Adapt, and Remember   This book is nonfiction. It discusses mass extinctions, their implications, what causes them, and how humanity is impacted. The first part details the different mass extinctions caused by a combination of evolution and natural cycles. It conjectures that near decimation of Earth every billion years or so is completely natural and necessary for the planet to keep spinning. Along those lines of logic, we are overdue for a huge natural disaster. Newitz speculates on the roles humanity plays in expediting the planet’s death and how we can survive. How can humans possibly live through something so unknown and dangerous? Annalee Newitz says it’s simple: scatter, adapt, and remember. I gave this book another 3 out of 5 on Goodreads. I really liked the premise, and the book was interesting, but I wish the author did a better job of organizing it. This book went on several tangents, and I took several breaks from it while reading. Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley Where Things Come Back Seventeen-year-old Cullen Witter is extremely bored in his tiny town in Arkansas. He works at a general store, and life is monotonous. The only thing that keeps him going is his brother Gabe. When Gabe disappears, Cullen’s life is destroyed. His days become a blur of police officers asking questions and trying to coax his mother out of Gabe’s room. Meanwhile, a depressed birdwatcher spots a species of woodpecker thought to have gone extinct in the 1940s in Cullen’s town. Lily, Arkansas becomes a tourist area. Cullen ignores the excitement and tries to focus on finding his brother. In Africa, a young missionary loses faith in his religion. He wanders, trying to bring more meaning into his life. These two remarkable stories take a dark turn and intertwine perfectly. I gave this book a 4 out of 5 on Goodreads. I really liked it. It was well-paced and compelling. It made me feel emotions. I was pretty confused at the end, though. To Alll the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han To All the Boys I've Loved Before This book tells the story of Lara Jean, who has never openly admitted her crushes. Instead, she writes, seals, and addresses letters to them and then hides them away in her room for nobody to find. One day, Lara finds that someone has mailed all the letters, and she has to deal with the embarrassing repercussions while trying to figure out who betrayed her. You may hate me for this, but I gave this book 1 star. I went into it excited and with an open mind and was just thoroughly disappointed. The main character, Lara Jean, is 16, but she acts like a preteen. It annoyed the crap out of me. I had to push myself to get through it. The second half is more interesting, but I just could not get past the bad characters. Killer Instinct by S.E. Green Killer InstinctLane is a typical teenager. She’s 17 years old and has a loving family, good grades, and a part-time job at an animal hospital.  She loves martial arts, but her real passion is studying serial killers. She understands them. Lane channels her dark impulses by hunting criminals and getting revenge on them, bringing them to justice. When a beloved preschool teacher goes missing, Lane is consumed with finding “The Decapitator” and avenging her. As she investigates, the Decapitator contacts her directly. As she continues with the case despite all the threats, Lane unravels her mysterious past. I gave this book 4 stars on Goodreads. I’m not really sure why. I guess I just really liked the ending. This book kept me very engaged, but I was not happy with the slut shaming. That was a very prominent theme in this book, even though it had nothing to do with the plot. We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo We Need New NamesTen-year-old Darling lives a hard life. In Zimbabwe, Darling and her friends run around and steal guavas to survive. She has never known anything else. When she gets the chance to fly to America and live with her aunt, she takes the opportunity. This book discusses themes of American culture, integration, and alienation. Darling’s friends in Zimbabwe see her as a traitor, and her American classmates ignore her. I gave this book 4 stars. NoViolet Bulawayo does a great job of portraying Darling’s character as it changes. At the beginning, she is a child who plays games and innocently goes about her life trying to forget her traumatic memories. When she moves to America, she starts trying to assimilate herself, meticulously perfecting her American accent. She neglects her old friends. Her innocence is ripped from her by her new friends. At the end, she is stuck between two identities: the child who is used to suffering and laughs at those who pamper themselves and a teenager who skips school for the mall and has lost all naïveté through the internet. This novel is a powerful reminder of the suffering of others and that perspective can change everything. Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer We Need New Names A young man named Jonathan Safran Foer sets out on an adventure with only a yellowing photograph in hand. He is traveling to find the woman who saved his grandfather’s life. On the way, he gets help from a Ukranian translator who butchers English, his grandfather, and an obnoxious dog. I gave this book 3 stars. I really enjoyed the premise of this book and loved the butchered language. This made it so much more interesting, although I could not fully understand some of the words as they were so randomly misused.. However, I felt that it couldn’t keep my attention constantly. Of course, this is partially due to the fact that I spent much of my time reading this in 1. Loud environments and 2. Surrounded by so many other books I also want to read. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein Code Name Verity A British spy plane crashes in Nazi Germany containing two female spies who happen to be best friends. One of them is captured and forced to divulge the British plans for the war or die. Read my review of it https://wordpress.com/read/post/id/69694419/64/