Books are more than a words

Sep 26, 2016

Review: The Stranger Game by Cylin Busby


The Stranger Game
by Cylin Busby
Source: eARC provided for review. Thank you!
My Rating: 4 stars
Summary:
When Nico Walker's older sister mysteriously disappears, her parents, family, and friends are devastated. But Nico can never admit what she herself feels: relief at finally being free of Sarah's daily cruelties.
Then the best and worst thing happens: four years later, after dozens of false leads, Sarah is found.
But this girl is much changed from the one Nico knew. She's thin and drawn, where Sarah had been golden and athletic; timid and unsure, instead of brash and competitive; and strangest of all, sweet and kind, when she had once been mean and abusive. Sarah's retrograde amnesia has caused her to forget almost everything about her life, from small things like the plots of her favorite books and her tennis game to the more critical—where she's been the last four years and what happened at the park on the fateful day she vanished. Despite the happy ending, the dark details of that day continue to haunt Nico, and it becomes clear that more than one person knows the true story of what happened to Sarah. . . 


****

I didn’t know much about this book when I read it. I never read a review and I didn’t remember the synopsis, so everything I found there was surprising.
For starters, The Stranger Game is based in a real-life story. I can’t tell you which one, in case you know it, because it would ruin the plot twist. And believe me; the title of this book was really important when it finally made sense.

I liked how The Stranger Game is a story about sisters. There’s no guy involved, there’s no romance. It’s told from the POV of Nico, the main character, with a smaller POV of Sarah, the missing sister.
I don’t know if it was supposed to be a thriller or a mystery, but it was fast paced and I read it in two days even though I was reading slowly. It got me on the edge of my seat trying to know what happened the day Sarah disappeared.

Like I said, this is a story about sisters and the relationship between them. Sarah was the bad sister and used to bully Nico when she was a kid, so it’s a bit surprising that the summary mentioned beforehand that Nico was relieved for her disappearance, when in the book you only know that halfway through.
What I was not expecting is how Sarah’s POV changed everything. I wasn’t able to connect with Nico, but with Sarah everything was different. She had the answers, she has the most horrific and gut wrenching story and she reveals the most important mystery of the book.

I wish I could tell you more, but there’s some heavy stuff I was not expecting. The ending was unexpected, too, but in a “hmmmm” way.  The “big” reveal about what happened to Sarah was a little confusing to me and it’s the weakest part of the story, because I saw that coming.
Overall, I enjoyed this book and I would recommend it if you like fast-paced mysteries. However, I don’t recommend it if you are sensitive about abuse, mental and sexual. 

0

Sep 21, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: Scythe by Neal Shusterman



 
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine

 What I'm waiting for...

 


In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (“gleaned”) by professional reapers (“scythes”). Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythe’s apprentices, and—despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation—they must learn the art of killing and come to understand the necessity of what they do.

Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice. And when it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser, Citra and Rowan are pitted against one another in a fight for their lives.

 *****


Why am I waiting on this book? I love Neal Shusterman so much and I'm so, so excited for this book. I'm not kidding when I say that I've been looking for giveaways of this ARC everywhere, lol. It sounds really awesome and since I love his writing, I'm sure this will be epic!
What are you waiting on today?

8

Sep 20, 2016

What's New? Literally by Lucy Keating


 


OMG! Look at this cover! and the synopsis! I've never read anything like this, so I hope it's great. I hope I can read Dreamology first, if it's possible. Anyway, I'm really excited for this one.
Check it out!

Expected publication: April 11th 2017 by HarperTeen  

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17285330-the-last-time-we-say-goodbye 

A girl realizes her life is being written for her in this unique, smart love story that is Stranger Than Fiction for fans of Stephanie Perkins.
Annabelle’s life has always been Perfect with a capital P. Then bestselling young adult author Lucy Keating announces that she’s writing a new novel—and Annabelle is the heroine.

It turns out, Annabelle is a character that Lucy Keating created. And Lucy has a plan for her.

But Annabelle doesn’t want to live a life where everything she does is already plotted out. Will she find a way to write her own story—or will Lucy Keating have the last word?

The real Lucy Keating’s delightful contemporary romance blurs the line between reality and fiction, and is the perfect follow-up for readers who loved her debut Dreamology, which SLJ called, “a sweet, quirky romance with appealing characters.”

3

Sep 19, 2016

ARC Review: The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis


The Female of the Species
by Mindy McGinnis
Source: eARC provided by Publisher.
My Rating: 4 stars.
Summary:
Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.
While her crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people, even in her small hometown. She relegates herself to the shadows, a girl who goes unseen in plain sight, unremarkable in the high school hallways.
But Jack Fisher sees her. He’s the guy all other guys want to be: the star athlete gunning for valedictorian with the prom queen on his arm. Guilt over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered hasn’t let him forget Alex over the years, and now her green eyes amid a constellation of freckles have his attention. He doesn’t want to only see Alex Craft; he wants to know her.
So does Peekay, the preacher’s kid, a girl whose identity is entangled with her dad’s job, though that does not stop her from knowing the taste of beer or missing the touch of her ex-boyfriend. When Peekay and Alex start working together at the animal shelter, a friendship forms and Alex’s protective nature extends to more than just the dogs and cats they care for.
Circumstances bring Alex, Jack, and Peekay together as their senior year unfolds. While partying one night, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting the teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.


****

This book was so much darker that I expected, but it’s the first Mindy McGinnins book I can finish and I’m glad for that. I struggled a little because for me Mindy’s characters are hard to connect with in the beginning (I DNF A Madness so Discreet), they are too neat and… I don’t know; it’s like they feel too much and end up looking empty.

The Female of the Species is unlike every book I read before. Alex is psychopath? Sociopath? She doesn’t know how to call herself and I don’t have an idea either. The thing is... she feels so much anger. And she’s revengeful. She’s a killer and she doesn’t feel guilty about it.
Since this book is indeed different, I don’t know what to say about it. This book is about abuse. This book is about silence. This book is about female power.

The message of this book is very important. And yes, I think every female alive should read it and understand what the author is trying to say through a dark and messed up plot.
But at the same time, I’m a bit disappointed about it, because I loved many of the characters, I wanted to read more about them, but all I had was rape, rape, rape. There are a lot of violent scenes and I think they weren’t totally necessary. I mean, the message was clear; it would have worked out with less rape scenes and gore.

The Female of the Species is told through Alex’s POV, Peekay’s (the preacher kid and Alex's only friend), and Jack’s, the love interest. They played specific roles in the story. Alex is the killer. Peekay is one of the victims. And Jack is who gives Alex humanity. He brings the human out of the monster.
The first chapters are a little slow, but once you get to know these characters, you care about them.
And Mindy McGinnis’s writing is flawless. So, I had no problem with that.
What I didn’t like was the overuse of violence.

Do I recommend this book? Yes, unless you are very sensitive to this topic… (That doesn’t mean I’m not sensitive). But if you think you can be triggered by it, don’t read it! Stay away of it!


1

Sep 17, 2016

ARC Review: Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton


Diplomatic Immunity
by Brodi Ashton
My rating: 3.5-4 stars
Source: eARC provided by Publisher. Thank you!
Summary:
Piper Baird has always dreamed of becoming a journalist. So when she scores a scholarship to exclusive Chiswick Academy in Washington, DC, she knows it’s her big opportunity. Chiswick offers the country’s most competitive prize for teen journalists—the Bennington scholarship—and winning will ensure her acceptance to one of the best schools in the country.
Piper isn’t at Chiswick for two days before she witnesses the intense competition in the journalism program—and the extreme privilege of the young and wealthy elite who attend her school. And Piper knows access to these untouchable students just might give her the edge she’ll need to blow the lid off life at the school in a scathing and unforgettable exposé worthy of the Bennington.
The key to the whole story lies with Rafael Amador, the son of the Spanish ambassador—and the boy at the center of the most explosive secrets and scandals on Embassy Row. Rafael is big trouble—and when he drops into her bedroom window one night, asking for help, it’s Piper’s chance to get the full scoop. But as they spend time together, Piper discovers that despite his dark streak, Rafael is smart, kind, funny, and gorgeous—and she might have real feelings for him. How can she break the story of a lifetime if it could destroy the boy she just might love?


****

Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton was a fun and fast paced read. I didn’t have high expectations about this book because one of my favorite reviewers *waves, Ari* was a bit disappointed by it.
But since I wasn’t expecting to love it, I found myself enjoying it a lot. 

Piper wants to be journalist. She wants to win a very important scholarship and she’ll do anything to win it because her family has serious money problems. So, she decides to investigate the DI guys at her school and write an exposé about them. The kids with Diplomatic Immunity.
To get all the proofs she needs, she needs to join them, and Rafael Amador, the son of the Spanish Ambassador is her ticket to their world of privileges. 

There was nothing unexpected after this. Piper and Amador flirt a lot. Their relationships grow and Piper is unsure about what she’s doing.
I don’t think the strength of this book is in the plot, because it’s kind of predictable and light. But there’s no doubt what I liked the most were the characters. I don’t know why, but I found them all charming, and likable. Some are bad, some are good, and some are gray. And I liked them.
I can’t say there’s a big romance, but I loved Rafael, and I think he was a wonderful love interest. I’d be in love with him if I was Piper, too. 

Diplomatic Immunity was light and fun, but it was very realistic about the things people do out of desperation. The mistakes poor people do (believe me, I’ve been there). And the mistakes rich kids do looking for attention.

I liked almost everything about this book, except for the fact that, even though Raf is Spaniard, he almost never speak in Spanish, and at least in the eARC, his Spanish was bad and it had some grammatical mistakes. I mean, I probably have a lot of mistakes here, but those typos from the book would be easily fixed. I hope they were in the finished copy. 
There was a line I couldn't stop thinking about when I read it.
This one:  Ahi donde mi familia es de.
Instead of: Ahí de donde es mi familia. 
I kid you not, this line sounds like it was translated by Google.
And I have to say it; there was someone in the book named Jorgé Robles, as in Jorge. You write Jorgé in a Spanish sentence and people LOL at you. I seriously did when I read it.
Most of the time I don’t care about these things, I couldn’t help it this time. It made me cringe a little, because Rafael, it seemed, lived in the USA for 4 or 5 years, he couldn’t forget his Spanish in those years, and I wish the author put more attention to this. 

However, Diplomatic Immunity was a fun read. I enjoyed it a lot and I’m looking forward to Brodi Ashton’s next book.


5

Sep 16, 2016

Some Books Ago: Ashfall by Mike Mullin


Some Books Ago is a shout out to all those books published some years ago. I don't want you to forget them!

I don't remember much about this book because I read it a long time ago. But if you love stories about  survival and natural disasters, then you're going to love this one no matter the date! The only complain I had back then is that it was too disturbing, but I don't think that would be a problem now. Have you read it?
Check it out! 

It was published on October 11th 2011 by Tanglewood Press


 


Summary:

Under the bubbling hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano. Most people don't know it's there. The caldera is so large that it can only be seen from a plane or satellite. It just could be overdue for an eruption, which would change the landscape and climate of our planet.

For Alex, being left alone for the weekend means having the freedom to play computer games and hang out with his friends without hassle from his mother. Then the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts, plunging his hometown into a nightmare of darkness, ash, and violence. Alex begins a harrowing trek to search for his family and finds help in Darla, a travel partner he meets along the way. Together they must find the strength and skills to survive and outlast an epic disaster.
 
 
2

Sep 14, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: When the Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore



 
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine

 What I'm waiting for...

  

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees, and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town.

But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

 

****

Why am I waiting on this book? Well, I'm in love with the synopsis. I'm really in love with it.
What are you waiting on today?

3