Busted review

busted

352 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by Sourcebooks Fire
This book had everything I was looking for.  It’s filled with drama, romance, betrayal, humor-everything you need if you’re looking to break from the monotony.
I couldn’t put it down.
This is a story about Marisa who accidentally finds her best friend’s boyfriend cheating on her and hesitantly decides to make a business out of catching cheaters. She then falls for one of the accused and finds herself spiraling down a tangled web of lies.
Marisa was pretty cool in spite of making some mistakes which we’ve all done especially in high school…with hot boys… That being said, she didn’t take shit lying down and even stooped to her enemy’s levels which I didn’t find all that unnerving because, well, they deserved it. *shrug*
I liked the love interest, TJ. He’s the quiet, artistic type that all gals vie for and you say you don’t, you’re lying.  Marisa’s friends are also pretty bad-ass. I mean, someone who defends you when you’re being attacked if someone you want to keep around. That’s love, baby.
What I loved most if that every single person is called out on their actions and nobody gets by easy peasy. Overall, I loved it.

Everless review

everless

 

368 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by HarperTeen
The entire YA fantasy genre is filled with either female protagonists with magic they don’t know about or magic they develop. I am trying desperately to steer clear of these tropes, but….this cover though. ❤
I wanted to love this book. I wanted to love Jules and her father as they slog through a world run with time as their currency. It’s a cool concept and world, but had me confused for about half of the book. I hate when I feel as though books remind me of other books (before you say it, I know there are NO original ideas anymore, but at least when a plot is similar, the characters and situations differ), but sadly this one crushed Red Queen with some Ember in the Ashes and a few others and I couldn’t get past it.
That is not to say I didn’t enjoy reading it. I did. The writing was good except for some info dumps and confusing backstories. Jules was sort of dry and I admit that I do enjoy romance, but this one was lacking in that department.
Here’s the break down: Jules goes to work at Everless to pay off her father’s debts despite his warnings to stay away from the palace AND the queen both. She ignores all warnings which pissed me off. She came off like such a smart gal with a head on her shoulders, but she put herself into some stupid situations for reasons that were not even justified. Thus is the YA fantasy i suppose.
I feel like there was potential that was missed, characters that could have developed a little better and plot-lines that could have been scratched. I hope others enjoy it more than I did.

Love, Hate & other Filters review

31207017
288 pages
Published January 16th 2018 by Soho Teen
This is the story of Maya, an Indian-American-Muslim who dreams of attending school in New York while simultaneously dodging her old fashioned Indian parents and their ideals and the racism she finds so close to home.
I wasn’t expecting this to be as fluffy as it was. I mean, half of it was a a YA romance, I really wasn’t seeing where it was going in the long run. It didn’t fall into the category I would put The Hate U Give or Dear Martin where I felt for the characters on a deeper level than I did Maya. She came off rude and a little childish at times. I mean, her parents were oppressive in a way, but she was lying to them and didn’t give any chance for them to understand until she rolled it all out of them. I know she was scared about telling them about going to NY and liking a white boy and all, but if she wanted to be understood so badly, she had to give others the same courtesy.
The terrorist attack came almost as in afterthought, to push the story into a different category. By that time I was already in romantic fluff mode. It escalated quickly. This is not to downplay what happened. Maya deals with what I am certain tons of people in her situation do especially after such things happen. People want someone to blame Unfortunately they love to blame an entire group of people and that just sucks. It gives a peek into how racism can affect people in more ways than you can imagine.
I hated the ending and how her parents reacted to everything, but part of me felt like it wasn’t entirely their fault which means I wasn’t 100% on board with Maya.
This book wasn’t bad. Was it what I expected? No. Basically it was a love/hate for me.

Berserker review

berserker

 

352 pages
Published October 10th 2017 by Feiwel & Friends
Let me start by saying that the YA world is saturated with female protags with magical powers. Frankly, I’m a little tired of it. That being said, I don’t listen to myself at all so I picked up this book. Mostly because…Vikings.
Well, it has nothing truly to do with Vikings, but the powers the four Norse siblings have had been passed down by generations. They are blessed by the old Norse gods. Or so they believe.
Or do they?
Anyhow, this book is told by multiple perspectives. The main ones are Hanne, whose gift is called a “Berserker” meaning she has great power to kill. She lives in Norway with her two brothers and younger sister. When her dad is attacked one day and Hanne ultimately kills said attackers, they all must flee their home. So, they leave for America.
Que the cowboy! Note, this does take place in 1883 or so, where America is up and coming and gold rush and cowboys and all that jazz. Our second protag is Owen, a bastard out on his own, making his own way and making a lot of mistakes along the way. We know from the start that he’s going to be the romantic interest for Hanne, but it’s slow burned and almost set onto the back-burner, which I kind of liked.
Well, this Owen character ends up being the guide for the siblings on the run. They need to get to their uncle’s home somewhere in Montana. There’s a catch of course. There are men after them. These men seek out and find people with the “Nytte” gift.
Basically the mashup of Norse myth and The Wild West was just amazing for me. I didn’t expect it to be as violent as it got and at one point, I almost threw down the book with anger. Which is good. I book should invoke emotions. Even if you wanted to throw it out of the window.
Setting, characters, story, all of it worked for me. I will preorder the sequel the second it’s available. Emmy is an autobuy author for me.

Secret Horses of Briar Hill review

secrethorses

 

240 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
This book was everything I look for a middle-grade story. Magic. Tragedy. Beauty. Innocence…it was perfect.
The story follows Emmaline May who sees winged horses in the mirrors of the children’s hospital she resides in World War II era Britain. One day she finds an injured pegasus in the garden of the hospital along with a note from “The Horse Lord” with steps to take to protect the pegasus from what Em assumes is an evil horse out to hurt “Foxfire.”
The way Megan Shepherd writes this, it’s as if I am seeing the world in black and white and with each chapter, a little bit of color gets added in-a metaphor for the horrors of war and the innocence that is caught up in it.
What I loved most was we don’t truly know what was real and for some reason, I’m okay with that. This book is going to stay with me for a long time.

Song of the Current review

songofthecurrent

373 pages
Published June 6th 2017 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
I started off 2018 with nothing but adult reads because I was growing tired of the same old YA that’s floating around. Girl has magic powers, doesn’t know it or does and needs to learn to use it blah blah blah. Then if I read the first, I’m dedicated and HAVE to read the series, if there is one…which there probably is. That being said, I was happy to find that this one dealt very little with magic. +1 point so far.
So, the heroine Caroline is the daughter a wherry boat captain who deals in smuggling goods. From the first chapter you can see how capable she is. She sometimes borders of the Mary Sue, a very thin line, but doesn’t quite get there so rest assured. She can handle herself just fine.
Basically, I really loved her.
What happens is she takes on a cargo that turns out to be a boy. No surprise there. What did surprise me was how annoying the boy was and how much Caroline agreed with me. There’s a serious love/hate there going on.
There’s a ship after her and her “cargo”  Of course, but we need that to steer the plot along. Turns out cargo boy is someone of high importance which turns the trip into something a little more dangerous than Caro expects.
The story was well paced, save for all the ship talk which had me skipping paragraphs. I did love all the characters and the ending was satisfying. I am fairly certain this is a stand-alone which is what drew me in to begin with.
The cover is pretty btw. I keep stroking it when nobody is looking.

Leia, Princess of Alderaan review

leia2

 

Hardcover, First Edition, 409 pages

Published September 1st 2017 by Disney Lucasfilm Press

 

 

Let me start out by saying that this is my first Star Wars book and I am a little embarrassed because I am a huge SW fan. But, hey, everyone has to start out somewhere.

 

This book follows Princess Leia who, at sixteen, has to complete three challenges to delare her claim to the throne of Alderaan. The Challenge of the Mind, Body and Heart. This is all set before the events of A New Hope.

 

I love this because we get to see how strong Leia is and how she became that way. She sits in on Senate meetings, makes allies in her peers and experiences her first love and bout of grief. This sets her hope for the actions she takes in obtaining the plans for the Death Star. There are even clues in there of the rebellion of Saw Gerrarra who you see in Rogue One.

 

If you’re looking hard enough, you can even spot R2-D2 😀

 

It was a little bittersweet to read, knowing what happens to Alderaan, but it was cool to see the relationship between Bail and Breha who adopted Leia. I kept finding myself hoping for some hints as to her lineage and we do see some, but you have read between the lines.

 

Basically, this is the setup for how bad-ass Leia becomes. Claudia Grey paints a picture of a determined, courageous young girl who will soon grow to lead a rebellion.

 

All in all, this is a typical YA novel, with a little romance and some puzzle solving for our protagonist. Even if you aren’t a big SW fan, you may even enjoy this. For myself, I am ordering all of Claudia’s other books in the SW realm and wondering why in Hell my TBR pile grew to the ceiling.