Saturday, October 12, 2013

Book Review: The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han


The Summer I Turned Pretty
Author: Jenny Han
Series: The Summer I Turned Pretty 1#
Genre: YA contemporary romance
Publication Date: May 5th 2009
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Belly measures her life in summers. Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August. Winters are simply a time to count the weeks until the next summer, a place away from the beach house, away from Susannah, and most importantly, away from Jeremiah and Conrad. They are the boys that Belly has known since her very first summer--they have been her brother figures, her crushes, and everything in between. But one summer, one terrible and wonderful summer, the more everything changes, the more it all ends up just the way it should have been all along.

Wow. What the hell did I just read?!? I don't know what to say.. I mean I kind of liked and hated this book at the same time. *_*

I decided to pick this one up based on its cover. I have a confession to make - I almost always judge books by their covers.. I can't help it!! How am I supposed to ignore a beautifully done cover like this one ?!?!
So, this summer-ish looking cover featuring a girl my age and two hot guys caught my attention. I am a HUGE fan of summer romance books and I really needed one now to remind me of the summer.

Well, this book actually did its job pretty well as a summer beach novel. It was light and fun and good-spirited. It made me miss the summer vacation.. I read it cover-to-cover in only a couple of hours and I actually felt sad when it was over, just because I had to leave this summer paradise for now.. :/

 The main issue I had with this book was Belly. I had a hard time understanding her. She was 16, but acted more like a 12 year old. She was whiny and selfish.. She threw tantrums whenever she was the slightest bit upset, and after that she was surprised when the boys treated her like a 4 year old.
She wanted boys to like her, but she never really cared about any of them. She USED a boy just to make another one jealous. There were times when I thought she was finally learning a lesson but she was always back to her childish behavior after no more than two pages.
I was so frustrated by her!! She made me want to slap her.. I mean come on. This is supposed to be a coming-of-age novel! She's supposed to grow up, right?

The whole story was very unrealistic. The sudden attention Belly got from guys was weird and kind of.. inappropriate. I mean, she was only 15 years old!!! Belly was presented as a normal girl, not a super-model. Normal girls don't get these looks from guys all the time. I couldn't relate to anything that happened it this book. It was just too strange...

Well, overall this was an ok read. I didn't hate it - the fluency of the writing and the plot kept me turning the pages and wanting more. It just that the book could've been so much better had the characters and the events been more realistic and relatable. I'm not sure if I will continue the series.. not right now anyway.


Disclaimer: All the photos used in this post were taken from Google Images.  I don't own them.

Please comment. It takes a moment and it means a lot to me. I comment and follow back so share your links with me.


Thursday, October 10, 2013

BOOK BLAST: Liar, Liar by Dawn Pendleton

This book sounds so good~~! I am sure going to read it. I already have it on my Kindle :):)

Hazel is a freshman at Coastal Carolina and looking forward to making new friends. When she meets Roman, she’s head over heels for him. There’s one problem, though: he’s still hung up on Hazel’s roommate, Cheyanne. But Cheyanne has a secret, one that has the potential to ruin her life in college. When Hazel learns the secret, she’s determined to use it against Cheyanne to win over Roman. She never imagines her plan could backfire, leaving her as a pariah among her new circle of friends.

The BFF series follows the lives of new adults, Hazel, Miranda, Cheyanne, Destiny, Audric, Nolan, Andre, and Roman. Follow their stories as the first season of novellas are released once a week from September to March.

Get your FREE copy today!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Book Review: Dare You To by Katy McGarry

Dare You To (Pushing the Limits, #2)
Dare You To
Author: Katy McGarry
Series: Pushing The Limits #2
Genre: YA contemporary romance
Publication Date: May 28th 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen

*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much!!*
Ryan lowers his lips to my ear. "Dance with me, Beth."

"No." I whisper the reply. I hate him and I hate myself for wanting him to touch me again....

"I dare you..."

If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk's home life, they'd send her mother to jail and seventeen-year-old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the day her uncle swoops in and forces Beth to choose between her mom's freedom and her own happiness. That's how Beth finds herself living with an aunt who doesn't want her and going to a school that doesn't understand her. At all. Except for the one guy who shouldn't get her, but does....

Ryan Stone is the town golden boy, a popular baseball star jock-with secrets he can't tell anyone. Not even the friends he shares everything with, including the constant dares to do crazy things. The craziest? Asking out the Skater girl who couldn't be less interested in him.

Wow. That was my reaction after reading this book - wow. I can't find any other words to describe the sheer awesomeness of this book.

Let me start off by saying that I was crazy excited when I first got my hands on this book! Pushing The Limits was the undoubtedly the best book I've read on 2012 and I just couldn't wait any longer to read its sequel.


So from that you can understand how high my expectations were. I was expecting to be BLOWN AWAY by this book, nothing less than that. And guess what? I was!!

This book tells the story of Beth and Ryan, two people that come from totally different backgrounds but that doesn't stop them from falling strongly in love.

If you've read Pushing The Limits, I bet you remember Beth. She was so mean to everyone!! She was awful. I remember how much I hated her. I never once stopped to think about what is standing behind her behavior. I judged her based on what was on the surface - I wasn't even trying to understand her. This book gave my a chance to see the world from her point of view and I was surprised at what I found. Beth's life are unimaginably difficult. She was surviving rather than living - no one ever took care of her and she had to be responsible for her drug-addict mother and deal with her abusive boyfriend.
After struggling so much with the world, Beth can't trust anyone. She keeps her guards up and doesn't let anyone reach her. That's why she comes off as mean and unfriendly, even though she is very soft and sensitive from the inside. I loved how the author presented Beth to me in a new light - this glimpse into Beth's soul helped me connect to her and I learned that I shouldn't judge anyone because I can never know what he has to deal with.

After getting involved with the police, Beth is forced to move into her uncle's house. She hasn't seen him for years and apparently he became VERY rich. She gets the opportunity to start over in a new school, but she can't really leave her old life. Who will take care of her mom? She plans to run away, but than something gets in her way - she falls in love.

Let me introduce you to Ryan, AKA the hottest guy ever!! He was my favorite character. I loved him right from the beginning!!! He was the school's baseball star, popular and handsome. And the best thing was - he had a great personality. He had a good heart. He really cared about the people around him - about his family, about his close friends and most of all - about Beth. He balanced her - his stability balanced her changing moods, his persistency balanced her easily giving up, his positive attitude balanced her negative thoughts. He loved her with all his heart and excepted her for who she was. He never once flinched by her behavior, even when she was very mean to him. He understood her soul like no one else did.

The book started pretty slow, giving the readers a chance to get to know the characters well before the plot actually start. That was pretty unnecessary in my opinion. The first 100 pages were a bit boring a dragged too much, and that's were one star goes. I was really disappointed at the beginning - I was worried that the whole story would be this slow. I almost gave up on the book then, but luckily, somewhere around page 100 the plot finally picked up and turned into a crazy rollercoaster.

So many things happened in this book. There wasn't a single moment of quietness. The two main characters were overflowed by so many troubles - both hers and his. Their lives were full of troubles and difficulties, but they helped each other overcome everything.
I love reading books in which the romantic relationship between the two main characters empowers both of them.

This book was so good. I had some minor issues with the beginning, but other than that I loved everything about it. It was definitely a satisfying sequel and I can't wait to read the next!!!



Sunday, September 29, 2013

Book Review: The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr

11819981The Lucy Variations
Author: Sara Zarr
Genre: YA realistic fiction
Publication Date: May 7th 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown
Lucy Beck-Moreau once had a promising future as a concert pianist. The right people knew her name, her performances were booked months in advance, and her future seemed certain.

That was all before she turned fourteen.

Now, at sixteen, it's over. A death, and a betrayal, led her to walk away. That leaves her talented ten-year-old brother, Gus, to shoulder the full weight of the Beck-Moreau family expectations. Then Gus gets a new piano teacher who is young, kind, and interested in helping Lucy rekindle her love of piano -- on her own terms. But when you're used to performing for sold-out audiences and world-famous critics, can you ever learn to play just for yourself?

National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr takes readers inside one girl's struggle to reclaim her love of music and herself. To find joy again, even when things don't go according to plan. Because life isn't a performance, and everyone deserves the chance to make a few mistakes along the way.

I was soooo excited about this book when I first heard about it a few months ago. First of all - the cover caught my eye with its beautiful purple script on a background of a piano keyboard. Secondly, I am a huge fan of piano playing. I play it myself (not professionally or anything, just for fun), and I get really excited when I meet someone who can play it well. I was intrigued to read about a piano prodigy my age living her life as a professional pianist.

This book is about Lucy, a 16-year-old girl who is a very talented pianist. Eight months ago, after years of playing in competitions and showcases, she suddenly decides to quit her music career. Her obsessed-with-success grandpa and her mom are very disappointed with her, and declare her decision as final - she'll never play again. That's why she avoids touching the piano for 8 months - she's afraid of their reaction, even though deep in her heart, she misses playing very badly.
The situation changes when her younger brother, who is also a gifted pianist, gets a new piano teacher - Will. Will, a young and kind pianist is very interested in Lucy's playing and slowly tries to convince her to start playing again, and this time for herself more than anyone else. Can Lucy do that? Can she make up with her family? Will she ever play again?

This book got my hooked right from the first page. I was intrigued by Lucy's love of music and how she played it. She lived and breathed music, and that was something I adored. It's pretty rare to find someone that already knows at the age of 16 what he really loves to do. Lucy's passion for music felt real and was also kind of contagious - I suddenly got much more motivation to practice the piano thanks to her!! I really enjoyed it when she described the music she listened to with so much love and excitement. It was like an avid reader describing books.

The story of Lucy's life was pretty interesting - I liked reading about her way to the top (right before she quitted). I found out that she never did it out of her own will. Her family decided she has to play professionally, without even asking her if she wants to. She didn't have any choice over her own life, and became a "piano zombie" as she called it.
I enjoyed reading about her experiences as a young pianist - about the festivals she attended, about the attention she got from people, about her feeling before and while performing. Her life were extraordinary, and it was actually what made the book interesting.

This book also had a bunch of things that annoyed me and on the top of them was the romance. Lucy had a thing for older guys, and when I say older I mean over 30. Or maybe even 40. That was more than a little weird!! At first it was her teacher, and then she fell for Will. And Will is married!! She has no shame, this girl. Lucy's crushes made her a stereotypical teenage character and that was so annoying. I mean, crushes like that happen only in stupid teenage movies.. I didn't expect it from a novel written by a National Book Award finalist. >_<

I can't really explain what else didn't work for me. It just that.. this book kind of lacked the depth I would expect from a realistic novel. I wanted more drama, more emotions. Everything was kind of flat. I like books that make you feel the characters' emotions, but it never happened here. This book didn't move me, didn't make me feel sad or happy or angry and I missed that!!

Overall, this was quite an interesting read with a nice premise. I liked it mostly because of the musical aspect, but I didn't love it or feel particularly connected to it. I would recommend it to people who like classical music and are interested in reading about the lives of child piano prodigies.


Friday, September 27, 2013

Feature and Follow Friday!!! :)

Alison Can Read Feature & Follow

Hi guys!!! Feature and Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee & Alison Can Read.

This week's question is....
Q: Reading Nook Tour: Give us a tour of your favorite reading spots.

My favorite reading place is my bed!! I almost always read there. It's so soft and comfy and doesn't have any TVs or computers near it (seriously, I can't concentrate with one of these around...)

Well, my parents won't allow me to upload any real pictures of my reading spot. Sorry!! >.<

What are your favorite reading spots?? Share with me in the comments!!

You can follow my blog in any way you like BUT I PREFER BLOGLOVIN!!! Thanks :)
I'm following back everyone via Bloglovin!! :)
Thanks you soooooo much for dropping by <3

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Book Review: Skinny by Ibi Kaslik

Title: Skinny
Author: Ibi Kaslik
Genre: NA realistic fiction, mental health
Publication Date: April 22 2005
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Do you ever get hungry? Too hungry to eat?

Holly's older sister, Giselle, is self-destructing. Haunted by her love-deprived relationship with her late father, this once strong role model and medical student, is gripped by anorexia. Holly, a track star, struggles to keep her own life in balance while coping with the mental and physical deterioration of her beloved sister. Together, they can feel themselves slipping and are holding on for dear life.

This honest look at the special bond between sisters is told from the perspective of both girls, as they alternate narrating each chapter. Gritty and often wryly funny, Skinny explores family relationships, love, pain, and the hunger for acceptance that drives all of us.

I found this book after a short Goodreads search about the subject of anorexia. We discussed this big, scary subject at school a couple of times, but it was mostly "dry" descriptions. I wanted to get the real FEEL of this illness that is so close to many of us teenage girls, and luckily I found exactly what I wanted in this book.

From the green popsicle on the cover, I was expecting a typical story about some teenage angst with  a happy ending. But I got it soooooo wrong. Don't let the cover fool you!! This book was so much more than teenage drama!! It was one of the most complicated and unique books I've ever read. EVER.

This book is narrated by two sisters, 20-something-year-old Giselle and 14-year-old Holly. Giselle had suffered from Anorexia for many years, and at the end of her first year in medical school, she's taken to the hospital after losing a lot of weight and having a mental breakdown. Besides her Anorexia, Giselle has many mental issues that were mostly caused by her father's preferring of Holly over her.
Holly, a middle school student, has a very strong spirit, the opposite of her sister's. She is a talented basketball player and runner and has a strong lean body, the opposite of her sister's skinny figure. While trying to shape her identity as a teenager, Holly has to deal with the sickness of the sister she loves.
This book describes a battle with Anorexia - a battle that involves not only Giselle, but all the people in her life.

What impressed me the most about this book was the sheer realism of it. Everything was so completely genuine and honest - the narrators, their feeling, their struggles. Both sisters were dealing with unbelievably hard situations, but somehow I could believe and understand everything. I was surprised at how much I could relate to their pain and struggles even though none of them are actually close to my life.

I can't decide which of the sisters I liked more. They both kind of balanced each other with their strong bond. I adored their close, harmonic relationship. They never let jealousy take over them and they always meant good to one another. Giselle didn't hate her sister even though she had everything she'd ever wanted - their dad's favoritism, a perfect body, a stable soul. Holly, from her side, never thought about herself when it came to Giselle's sickness - she always thought about her sister's health first and never about the effect it has on her own life. They definitely set an example to how a relationship between sisters should be - caring and ego-less.

This book showed how Giselle's anorexia and mental disorders were a result of many different reasons, some of them almost hidden. For example - the fact that her parents were immigrants from Hungary had an effect on Giselle. As people who came to America to get their children better lives, Giselle's parents put a lot of pressure on their first daughter to study very hard, be healthy, good-looking, etc..  Her eating disorder was in a way her rebellion against them.
This is only one example. There were so many complicated reasons behind this sickness. This book showed me how complex anorexia really is and how you can never judge people for having it.

This book taught me a lot about mental disorders and anorexia, about their causes and the strong effect they have on both person who has them and the people surrounding him. I don't think I'll ever forget this tragic, heartbreakingly beautiful story.


Theme Song:


This songs describe the complicated relationship between Giselle and Sol perfectly. You'll understand it better when you'll read the book.


THANKS FOR READING THIS!!! I hope you find my review helpful :)
I appreciate comments. I promise to comment back on you blogs <3<3


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Top Ten Tuesaday - BEST SEQUELS EVER

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week's topic is:

135819901. The Eternity Cure by Julie Kagawa
This is undoubtedly the best sequel I have ever read. It was even better than the first book in the series (which was also awesome). It was all full of action and surprises and I just couldn't stop reading. Kagawa is THE BEST.


15829962. City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
The first three books is the Mortal Instruments series are all on my list of favorite books ever. What can I say more?! This book is just incredible and even better than the first. This whole series keeps getting better.


66543133. Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
I really enjoyed this whole series and the second book was, in my opinion the best one out of the three. Grace's story is very interesting and I loved it that the author added more points of view to the story.


4. Blue Moon by Aliyson Noel
I really like this series. I know a lot of people who hate it, but I have to disagree. The best thing about this series is the unique ideas it has. This sequel was very good and added a lot of tension to the story. I can't wait to read the third book and find the answers to all the questions it opened!!


61480285. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
This sequel was just perfect!!! I was SHOCKED when I found out she's going to the arena again.. and the ending? OMG I can't forget these last words.


Ok.. that's all the sequels I could come up with.. I don't know why I barely continue series. :P

What are your top ten sequels? Share with me in the comments :):)